Gargantua and Pantagruel eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 952 pages of information about Gargantua and Pantagruel.

Bacbuc then said, Your philosophers will not allow that motion is begot by the power of figures; look here, and see the contrary.  By that single snail-like motion, equally divided as you see, and a fivefold infoliature, movable at every inward meeting, such as is the vena cava where it enters into the right ventricle of the heart; just so is the flowing of this fountain, and by it a harmony ascends as high as your world’s ocean.

She then ordered her attendants to make us drink; and, to tell you the truth of the matter as near as possible, we are not, heaven be praised! of the nature of a drove of calf-lollies, who (as your sparrows can’t feed unless you bob them on the tail) must be rib-roasted with tough crabtree and firked into a stomach, or at least into an humour to eat or drink.  No, we know better things, and scorn to scorn any man’s civility who civilly invites us to a drinking bout.  Bacbuc asked us then how we liked our tiff.  We answered that it seemed to us good harmless sober Adam’s liquor, fit to keep a man in the right way, and, in a word, mere element; more cool and clear than Argyrontes in Aetolia, Peneus in Thessaly, Axius in Mygdonia, or Cydnus in Cilicia, a tempting sight of whose cool silver stream caused Alexander to prefer the short-lived pleasure of bathing himself in it to the inconveniences which he could not but foresee would attend so ill-termed an action.

This, said Bacbuc, comes of not considering with ourselves, or understanding the motions of the musculous tongue, when the drink glides on it in its way to the stomach.  Tell me, noble strangers, are your throats lined, paved, or enamelled, as formerly was that of Pithyllus, nicknamed Theutes, that you can have missed the taste, relish, and flavour of this divine liquor?  Here, said she, turning towards her gentlewomen, bring my scrubbing-brushes, you know which, to scrape, rake, and clear their palates.

They brought immediately some stately, swingeing, jolly hams, fine substantial neat’s tongues, good hung-beef, pure and delicate botargos, venison, sausages, and such other gullet-sweepers.  And, to comply with her invitation, we crammed and twisted till we owned ourselves thoroughly cured of thirst, which before did damnably plague us.

We are told, continued she, that formerly a learned and valiant Hebrew chief, leading his people through the deserts, where they were in danger of being famished, obtained of God some manna, whose taste was to them, by imagination, such as that of meat was to them before in reality; thus, drinking of this miraculous liquor, you’ll find it taste like any wine that you shall fancy you drink.  Come, then, fancy and drink.  We did so, and Panurge had no sooner whipped off his brimmer but he cried, By Noah’s open shop, ’tis vin de Beaune, better than ever was yet tipped over tongue, or may ninety-six devils swallow me.  Oh! that to keep its taste the longer, we gentlemen topers had but necks some three cubits long or so, as Philoxenus desired to have, or, at least, like a crane’s, as Melanthius wished his.

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Gargantua and Pantagruel from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.