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Storie di santi e di diavoli by Gregorio Magno

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By Gregorio Magno

In un'Italia invasa da Goti e Longobardi, visitata dalle pestilenze e dalla carestia, tutto period caos e tenebra. Solo i monaci restavano, "come lucerne sul candelabro che diffondono los angeles loro luce", e in questo mondo sprofondato nella barbarie e nella superstizione compivano prodigi: resuscitando morti e liberando gli ossessi, ma anche moltiplicando olio e vino negli orci e riparando vasi rotti. Degno di nota il 4to e ultimo libro in cui los angeles narrazione di profezie ed eventi straordinari compiuti dai religiosi antichi e contemporanei si sussegue con un filo logico e un preciso intento: l. a. dimostrazione dell'immortalità dell'anima.

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It is no longer a 'monster' but becomes a friend to the people of Gubbio, who feed it on its regular visits to the town. Another example of the same variation is the story of Androcles (made the basis for Shaw's play Androdes and the Lion), who in the desert shows love to a fierce lion by pulling out a thorn from its paw. The resolution of the story comes years later when Androcles, as a Christian, has been thrown to the lions in Rome. When one approaches to eat him, it turns out of course to be the same lion to which he previously showed kindness and his life is saved.

Finally, with half the city burning, Quatermass works out that the only way to destroy the monster is to short-circuit its electrical energy with a steel cable. He throws this earthing device into the heart o f the spectral vision, there is a mighty electrical discharge, the vision disappears and its malign force ceases. Once again, thanks to our wise and indomitable hero, mankind has been saved in the nick o f time from what looked like certain destruction. Yet the underlying five-stage pattern o f all these stories is only too familiar.

But this type of story really belongs to a later stage of the book (see Chapter 11, 'Rebirth') where we look at tales which show the monster going through a 'change of heart'. OVERCOMING THE MONSTER onto a new plane of horror. In a 'decaying town' in the Pyrenees, an English scholar, Denniston, finds a folio o f old mauscripts which belonged to a Canon o f the local cathedral who had died in mysterious circumstances 200 years before. One drawing in particular catches his attention - a group o f horrified soldiers at the court o f King Solomon, surrounding a strange, shapeless creature.

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