The Foxearth and District Local History Society

The Hysterical Hystorian

For occasional articles, snippets and announcements by the Resident Historians. (Andrew Clarke and GH) These articles are presented in date order, but if you explore the back-catalogue, you may find much of interest. Historical information doesn't really go out of date! Any member of the F&DLHS may add an entry or make a comment to an existing entry once they have got their userID and password from the Webmaster.

If you'd like to publish any interesting material about the history of East Anglia on the site, then please send an email to the Resident Historians at Andrew.Clarke@Foxearth.org.uk and we'll add it.

Family Historians have their own area on the site, so look there if your main interest is in tracing your family history.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

The Little World.....

I was reading the introduction to 'The Little World of Don Camillo', a book I must have read at least five times over, when I came across the following words in the introduction, words written by Giovanni Guareschi in 1951, which seem astonishingly modern in their sentiments

Men do not make history: they endure it as they endure geography. And history, anyhow, is all a matter of geography.

Men try to change geography. They bore through mountains and change the course of rivers, and in so doing imagine they change history; but they change absolutely nothing because, sooner or later, everything will go to rack and ruin. Water will engulf their bridges, destroy their dams and fill their mines; everything will collapse, from the most miserable dwellings to the grandest palaces, and then grass will grow on the ruins and all will once again be earth. The survivors will find themselves with stones as their only weapons against animals, and history will repeat itself.

And it will be the same old history,

Then, three thousand years later someone will find, buried deep in the mud, a drinking-water tap and perhaps a lathe made by Breda at Sesto San Giovanni, and in amazement will exclaim: "Just look at this!"

And they will set to work to achieve the same stupidities as their ancestors. Because men are hopelessly condemned to follow progress, which leads irrevocably to a substitution of the Almighty of olden times by the newest chemical formulae. And so, in the end, the Almighty is wearied, moves the tip of the little finger of His left hand a fraction of an inch, and the world is blown sky-high,

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