Monday, October 4, 2010

Better Stained than Empty!!

Galileo facing the Roman Inquisition, painting by Cristiano Banti

Andrea: We lost our heads. With the crowed at the street corners we said: "He will die, he will never surrender!" You came back: "I surrendered but I am alive." We cried: "Your hands are stained!" You say: "Better stained than empty."

"Better stained than empty.". It sounds realistic. Sounds like me.

Andrea: And I of all people should have known. I was twelve when you sold another man's telescope to the Venetian Senate, and saw you put it to immortal use. Your friends were baffled when you bowed to the Prince of Florence: Science gained a wider audience. You always laughed at heroics. "People who suffer bore me," you said. "Misfortunes are due mainly to miscalculations." And: "If there are obstacles, the shortest line between two points may be the crooked line."

From Galileo by Bertolt Brecht

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