The Innocents Abroad – Mark Twain : the Dominican friars

This series of posts on Mark Twain’s book is destined to be used mainly as tags for future projects. As I am progressing with the reading I pick the pieces which make the most impact on me and unload them here.

You may enjoy them too.

[The Innocents Abroad, or The New Pilgrims’ Progress is a travel book by American author Mark Twain published in 1869 which humorously chronicles what Twain called his “Great Pleasure Excursion” on board the chartered vessel Quaker City (formerly USS Quaker City) through Europe and the Holy Land with a group of American travelers in 1867. It was the best selling of Twain’s works during his lifetime and one of the best selling travel books of all time.]



I speak of the Dominican friars–men who wear a

coarse, heavy brown robe and a cowl, in this hot climate, and go

barefoot.  They live on alms altogether, I believe.  They must

unquestionably love their religion, to suffer so much for it.  When the

cholera was raging in Naples; when the people were dying by hundreds and

hundreds every day; when every concern for the public welfare was

swallowed up in selfish private interest, and every citizen made the

taking care of himself his sole object, these men banded themselves

together and went about nursing the sick and burying the dead.  Their

noble efforts cost many of them their lives.  They laid them down

cheerfully, and well they might.  Creeds mathematically precise, and

hair-splitting niceties of doctrine, are absolutely necessary for the

salvation of some kinds of souls, but surely the charity, the purity, the

unselfishness that are in the hearts of men like these would save their

souls though they were bankrupt in the true religion–which is ours.

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