XIV.4 The cause of the immutability of religion, of morals, manners, and laws in Oriental countries

, par Stewart

If, to this weakness of organs that makes Oriental peoples receive the most powerful impressions in the world, you add a certain indolence of mind, naturally linked to that of the body, which makes that mind incapable of any act, effort, or contention, you will understand that the mind which has once received impressions can no longer change them. That is why the laws, the morals, [1] and the manners, even those that appear indifferent, such as the manner of dressing, are today in the Orient what they were a thousand years ago.


[1We see from a fragment by Nicolas of Damascus in the compendium of Constantine Porphyrogenitus that the custom was ancient in the Orient to have a governor strangled who did not please ; it dated from the time of the Medes.