The King, The People and The Studiosi
Once upon a time there was a King. This King lived in a palace upon a famous
height overlooking a hamlet. The King had a dream—he dreamed he was monarch of
all he surveyed!
The King came to the throne when the Czar's brother, who was formerly the ruler,
ascended the Czar's throne to share it with him. The King wore a long tunic and pos¬
sessed long curly hair just like his ancestors wore. He was stately and dignified.
This King was also an orator. He swayed the multitude by his eloquence, but he
could not elocute all the time. Every morning he called his subjects together and
spake words of wisdom to them, for his learning was great.
This hamlet, which was overlooked by the King's castle, was infested with studiosi,
having been so diseased for over seventy years. Conditions it seemed could not be
remedied, the infection was pronounced incurable. In fact, the people did not wish to
be cured. They believed the disease made them immune from all others, that it pro¬
moted righteousness in their lives, excused sin, and some even based their hopes of a
blissful happy after-life on the suffering caused from this disease. It was believed this
pest was sent by Providence.
This plague had some good qualities. It furnished the King with subjects—for
there were many on the hamlet that threatened rebellion against him. It also kept the
Devil so busy finding things for the studiosi to do that he did not have time to tempt the
But the disease had bad qualities. It had brought with it a parasitic germ of
democracy. The King did not like this. It caused some of the people to doubt the divine
right of kings, others would not believe in absolutism and a few objected to the Czar,
to whom the King owed allegiance. Rebellion was more than once averted.
The King was a very wise one. He undertook a Herculean task of doubtful possi¬
bility. He wished to please the Czar, the people, and the studiosi. So the King decided
he would do something each wished very much. To appease the two Czars he refused to
allow the instituting of a certain reform measure particularly desired by the studiosi.
For the people he built a magnificent edifice. To please the third party, hepermitted
petition, if backed by the vox populis, to be brought before his council or cabinet of
advisers, though he had it understood if they were voted upon none were to be granted.
While the King owed allegiance and was limited only by the Czar, he nevertheless