A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court

By Mark Twain | Go to book overview
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CHAPTER XVIII
IN THE QUEEN'S DUNGEONS

WELL, I arranged all that; and I had the man sent to his home. I had a great desire to rack the executioner; not because he was a good, painstaking and paingiving official--for surely it was not to his discredit that he performed his functions well --but to pay him back for wantonly cuffing and otherwise distressing that young woman. The priests told me about this, and were generously hot to have him punished. Something of this disagreeable sort was turning up every now and then. I mean, episodes that showed that not all priests were frauds and self-seekers, but that many, even the great majority, of these that were down on the ground among the common people, were sincere and right-hearted, and devoted to the alleviation of human troubles and sufferings. Well, it was a thing which could not be helped, so I seldom fretted about it, and never many minutes at a time; it has never been my way to bother much about things which you can't cure. But I did not like it, for it was just the sort of thing to keep people reconciled to an Established Church. We must have a religion--it goes without saying--but my idea is, to have it cut up into forty free sects, so that they will police each

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