Sunday, June 30, 2013


God Is Very Angry

John Julius Norwich, A Christmas Cracker, being a commonplace selection (Huntingdon: Satellite Press, 1987), p. 2:
From "Near Home, or Europe Discovered", 1850:
Question: What is the religion of the Italians?
Answer: They are Roman Catholics.

Question: What do the Roman Catholics worship?
Answer: Idols and a piece of bread.

Question: Would not God be very angry if He knew that the Italians worshipped idols and a piece of bread?
Answer: God is very angry.
So also some other sources, with variations in wording. Near Home; or, The Countries of Europe Described and its companion Far Off; or, Africa and America Described were Victorian children's books, written by Favell Lee Mortimer (1802-1878) and appearing in various editions. The only 1850 edition I can find on the World Wide Web is an American one, viz. The Countries of Europe Described (Philadelphia: Geo. S. Appleton; New York: D. Appleton & Co., 1850), in which the passage quoted by Norwich doesn't appear, although Mortimer's animus against Catholics is evident throughout, e.g. (p. 57, on Irish priests):
The religion they teach is called the Roman Catholic religion. It is a kind of Christian religion, but it is a very bad kind.
The earliest source with the questions and answers in catechism form seems to be Robert Ross, "The Elethian Muse," The Academy (January 5, 1907) 15-16 (at 16).

Favell Lee Mortimer

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