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180

(1913) [MARC] Author: August Strindberg Translator: Claud Field
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of vengeance. He hurls an excommunication
against me, threatens me with occult powers,
tries to intimidate me by vulgar accusations, and
storms at me like a heathenish sacrificial priest.
Finally, he summons me before an occultist tribunal,
and swears to me that I shall never forget
the 13th of November. My situation is painful;
I have lost a friend and am nearly destitute.
By a diabolical chance during our paper war,
the following incident takes place: L’Initiation
publishes an article by me which criticises the
current astronomical system. A few days after
its appearance Tisserand, the head of the Paris
observatory, dies. In an access of mischievous
humour I trace a connection between these two
things, and mention also that Pasteur died the
day after I published Sylva Sylvarum. [1] My
friend, the theosophist, does not know how to
take a joke, and being superstitious above the
average, and perhaps, more deeply intitiated in
black magic than I, gives me clearly to understand
that he regards me as a wizard.

One may imagine my consternation when,
after the last letter of our correspondence, the
most famous of the Swedish astronomers dies of
a fit of apoplexy. I am alarmed, and with


[1] A botanical treatise.

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