A lavater

Well, the vicissaness sent Baron Kadarkuthy to the Calvinist bishop of Miskolc.

That scholarly man had a very nice ordinary prædicatumos name, as they were titled when a letter was written to him; but in the meantime, everyone just thought it was «Lavater.»

In those years, “lavaterismus” prevailed throughout Europe.

Lavater (a Reformed preacher in Zurich) was the creator of the regular science, according to which the character of every man can be judged from the features of the face, eyebrows, eyes, nose, mouth, facial expressions, from which the most secret -47-tempers; those facial features lead to the killer, the evildoer, the lust, the avenger.

After all, it is hardly a hundred years since Lavater’s work entitled «Phragmente über Physiognomie» caused a real fanatic revival throughout the educated society. Every man talked about them. They opened up a new world to the company. The human soul itself became visible.4)

When the revered Avas crept into some company, a salutary surprise filled his breasts at once. Every man has endeavored to give his facial features an expression that reveals the secret virtues, knowing full well that this man of lavater reads the man’s most feared bad intentions from the bending of his two eyebrows, the grimacing of his nostrils, and records them to himself.

Your home accounts are full of such notes. He classifies them in his systematice as Linnaeus and has already filled them with a terrible amount of artisan paper fibers. Woe to Borsod, Abauj, but even Heves if you print them once.

And if anyone went to visit him, it was a ready-made prey for him.

It was received by the Reverend Mr. in his street room, giving a generous speech; he planted himself facing him in a profile facing in the direction of the window.

On the podium in front of the window sat the reverend of the esteemed gentleman and sang at him, who then, while the visitor was listening or speaking or laughing, -48-in that way he cut off his confa tree from a piece of black sheet of paper with his little scissors, so that all men recognized it. This branch of art was then thought to be a “silhouette.” It was also common fashion at the time. Without a silhouette, no manor house was in short supply. There we saw, in a black frame above the bed, our great father with his vuklis hair, the other’s czofja, and our great mother with her hair tucked high, her top-tiered headband, her curly chair, and her double holster; even the lashes were faithfully retained on the black shadow drawings created by art scissors.

The good vicissan teased the baron, who suspected the innocent, into this danger.

For as he entered and introduced himself to the revered gentleman, as he once looked into his face, all that was our character had already been betrayed.

These two intersecting folds on the forehead, this is deception; these lines converging like fans proclaim lust in the angles of view; this bitten upper lip is a symbol of insidiousness; and the swollen lower lip belongs to cruelty. The retraction of the right corner of the mouth, with the crescent-shaped fold, betrays cunning. There is relentless anger in the eyebrows.

The Baron told the bishop the reason and purpose of his coming, by advising him of the lieutenant. He thought he had learned to lie very well.

To lie! Before Lavater! It’s a ridiculous thing.

The bishop let him talk.

And how sweet he could be! That he rolled his eyes to the sky, that he pressed his palms to his chest, that he thinned his voice to the gentle paleness. (Because he learned all this among comedians once.)

When the question was asked, where is the friend of the Levites to be redeemed from his misfortune in this great forest: the reverend gentleman folded his arms across his chest and said:

“Does the Baron know what logic is?”-49-

The baron was already on the tip of his tongue to “know the cuckoos!” but he just sucked it back.

– Why are there Levites? and why are there ecclesias that keep the Levites? “Cause precedes cause.” This is a logical maxima. Is that so?

– It is.

– So the reason is ecclesia. It messes up imitt-amott with a lot of nostras; poor people: rusticus, coal burners, among whom no potior is found, nor Melchizedek, who receives them under their wings. On the other hand, reverence occupies their souls, and as it invades the soulless, needy ones, the instinct to sing.

– Please count the cats.

“So they’d like to sing, but there’s no one to teach them.” On the other hand, they also have children, who would also fit the alphabet –

– And scouting.

“But there is no one to make him a scientist.” The day of the Lord is also known either from the bells of the other religions that are present, or from the chimes of the neighboring villages; but there is no one who can explain the scriptures before them on this holy day. They have children, they have no one to baptize; they have loving pairs, they have no one to add up; they have no dead to say goodbye. Now comes the hysterone-proteron.

The baron looked away: what could it be? sounds like a dragonfly.

– At the same time, a peregrinus strikes: a studiosus eliminated from a kind of school, kit consilium abeundival locked outside the gates of the alma mater, whose «house on his back, bread in his bosom» has nowhere to be: they get it, get it there; they are given an apartment, a convention, a mensa outpatient clinic; it then does all that the priest, cantor, and rector used to accomplish; proclaims, sings, preaches: teaches children,-50-baptizes, copulates, bids farewell, to which he has accomplished all things, for such peregrines usually become quadriennis theologians who, because of some canonical error, could not be ordained priests. Do you like to understand?

– I understand perfectly.

– What is conclusio according to the rules of logica now? There is a great reason for the ecclesia of such levitation to continue its existence sub rosa; but there is an even greater reason for the Levite himself not to scribble his name on the wall of the duke’s house; for, as the tractualis consistorium learns that somewhere in its bosom such a Leviticia is an ecclesia, it immediately transforms it into a branch, forbids the Levitian from illegally violated functions, and from then on the village will be obliged to pay the closest motherhood, to consecrate, to bring the priest from there to the ceremonies, to send his children there to school. Then our big hangar! What is the logical concatenatio of these already? The fact that if posito, empyrice exists and subsists somewhere in a friendly village Levite,

“According to this, the gentleman does not want to know anything about where the Gézenguz Levite from Gézengúz can be obtained!” Cried Kadarkuthy, jumping up from his seat angrily. Believe me here, I see that all men have conspired to hide this evildoer.

“Please, please, just keep sitting,” the bishop said, forcing the baron to fall back on his chair. (There had to be some electricity in his fingers, it was also a big fashion in the era of mesmerism.) So I concede the first one that I don’t know where that friend of the Levites is? but I deny the second, as if I don’t want to know. Moreover, after the Baroness’s denunciation, it is made my duty directly,-51-to find out this clandestinus abusus. I will therefore instruct the Baron in which way he will investigate the secret of this charada with complete certainty.

– Well, I’m listening to that.

– The baron should have gone straight to the judge in Miskolc, who must have been aware of the names of all the villages in Bükk; for his governor takes the place money from the serfs who come to the weekly market, and distributes cards to them, and writes the name of the village on the card. Mr András Querczina will certainly provide information to the Baron.

– András Querczina! András Querczina – the baron repeated the strange name.

“If you want to forget the name, you can easily find the pallet that is exposed in front of your house; it is there on the shores of Pecze.

– Thank you. I’m going to Mr. András Querczina.

– Get some more advice from me. If the Baron will come before Mr. András Querczina, for the thick treasure of the world he will not bring to him the wise things which he has laid before me, for as he hears this word, “testament,” he cannot know in another language, not only from the lake, but you also hear a lot from it. He can then shout into his ear even through a tube, taking no word out of it other than «nye rozumim». Because he is as far from jurisprudence as Mako is from Jerusalem. Therefore, before Mr. András Querczina, do not say a word about the larvatus, processes, wills that he produced before me.

– What should I lie to him?

“Rather, tell him the truth.” Start by saying, “No, Mr. Querczina, why would you make me a ram out of wolfskin for such a good stature?”

– Kosokot?-52-

– No yes; for if he tells him to «clap», he does not understand; but if he says «kosokot» he understands, because it is also kosuch.

“But what bastard do I need rams for?”

“The baron needs it very much.” See the baron, if he wanders through the countryside in this foreign habitus, his fame runs, all the people pass on the word that the «csuma!» Haven’t you offered me sleeping milk somewhere yet? It is used to allow the kidnapping student to do so. The one he wants to find takes a good forefront, he stands further away with a county; by the time the baron finds his hiding place, only the cold nest will be there. It will be advisable for the Baron to take the place of this present ornament, which may be a fashionable dress in Versailles, but as masquerade as he is, he will take on some of the garments worn by the outsiders.

– Thanks for your advice, I accept. Surely I could have done that with my fists. Will the judge from Miskolc sew me such an outfit?

– Because signaturájára for his master furrier.

– Where was this judge shot?

“They didn’t shoot this, please, because it was chosen that way.”

– But the demons were miskolcziak the neck that elected birájuknak a master furrier, a Slovak man?

“Do not make a bad statement to the Baron about the inhabitants of my city.” Even the most impulsive facts have their own raation. I’ll tell you shortly.

The Baron was really curious about that. She put herself in a sitting posture again, giving our homemade lady a chance to sniff out her silhouette perfectly.

“After all, it can give everyone a reason for a worthy clash,” says the bishop, “that a city as large as Miskolc, whose population is largely noble,” -53-possessive lordship constitutes how the chosen judge may be an unlawful person; a craftsman engaged in needlework; even moreover lake. This is all explained by the extraordinary vicissitudes of this our famous city. Because it is notable to trust. Anonymus noted that the armies of Prince Árpád had already found the city of Miskolc here and kept a rest there. He was elevated to the rank of royal city by later rulers and endowed with great privileges. However, the Turkish occupation visited the city with dense dangers. His judges were abducted by the Basses and for a year in the aristocracy of Eger. If he did not create the lattice, he tied it to the horse’s harness, so he carried it with them.

– Ah! Well, that’s why the gentlemen don’t like to take over the Miskolc court.

“But later the conditions became even more difficult.” During the kurucz-labancz world, the city had to pay gratings on both sides, so that there was a time when the inhabitants cultivated their fields with a hoe, deprived of all draft cattle. During these times it was no longer possible to get a judge in Miskolc, so the church decided that which citizen would not come to the election of a judge would pay forty forints, and who did not accept the judge would pay 200 forints.

– And did the noble gentlemen pay the 200 forints rather than run to Eger tied to a saddle? I would have done it myself.

– Then it happened that the whole city of Miskolc was converted to the Reformed faith. He all handed over the papal temples to the Calvinists, the Lutherans. This church in Avas was called the Church of St. Stephen at that time. King St. Stephen was the patron saint of the city. The coat of arms also had the figure of St. Stephen on the seal of the town: a crown on his head, a royal wand on his right, and a golden apple of the country on his left. At that time it was «royal city» Miskolcz, czime: «civitas regia». After the big change, the cœtus said, -54-what does this royal cipher do to us, which costs us so much, let us accept a cheaper title: let us be «oppidum», and by the decree of the then judge we also left the old coat of arms, engraved in place of the royal figure a kurucz hajdút with he holds three golden wheat ears and in the other a bunch of grapes and adjusts his legs to a verbunk dance.

Hey but Kadarkuthy chuckled at the word.

– Well, that was a really great idea!

– It wasn’t. From this coat of arms, all our enemies once again thought that he could be hot, but that the city of Miskolc could have so much booze and wine that the coat of arms of that coat of arms boasts it! and we were scolded even more; the leaders just gave and took, exchanging the city like some bona vaccine. Then there was silence. The Kurucs are gone, the Turks are gone.

“Did the people of Miskolc just relax then?”

– Sure; but not for free. The high chamber pledged the city to itself. During the Burkusian war, the people of Miskolc borrowed forty thousand forints from Sándor Pulszky from Prešov, and sent it to the queen, who allowed them to be undisturbed for forty years. Now this is coming to an end. The city should sign a new contract with the chamber. But under this, the director of the chamber, Prince Antal Grassalkovich, invented the practice of agreeing well with the noble lords of Miskolc. The citizens were left alone, among whom there is no law-abiding man. Now then the officiuma of these one-minded people, respectively the judge representing their city, will be pertracted with a lord in omnibus versatus for the new contractus like the Duke of Gödöllő, the omnipotent director cameralis.

“Did they choose a judge who understood nothing of all this?”

– I liked finding it. Because it’s with your ignorance -55-he will better defend the righteous of the city than nine procurers with his own awareness. Because only two things can happen to this; or for everything he will say up there in Buda: «nye rozumim» (I do not understand), then up in Buda they will beat fifty sticks; or he will say, «yes, rosum» (yes, I understand), then your fellow citizens will beat fifty sticks here.

“And so Mr. Horoscope’s horoscope is perfectly measured?” said the baron, who found this condition extremely amusing, laughing.

Meanwhile, the bishop’s miss was also finished with the silhouette of the famous visitor, even the disintegrating czopf was faithfully carved out.

The baron pulled his hat out from under his arm and recommended himself with a gentleman’s nod.

Just as he had put the outer door behind him (in our small towns – very cleverly – two doors guard the crawl everywhere) the bishop’s miss got off the podium in front of the window and took the finished silhoutt to his father, which the reverend gentleman found satisfactory.

And then he took out of the drawer of the table the large stapled foil, which was now almost filled with similar facial copies; he glued the new silhouette to a blank sheet with gum arabicum, and below it he wrote these lavateri notes:

«Unforgivable revenge»,

“Insidious teasing”,

“Insatiable luxuries”,

“Dementia of the rapeseed”

«Killing mania».

These can all be read from the outstretched facial features, according to the lavateri systema.