Written in 1759, Candide is Voltaire’s most well-known satire. A prominent author and philosopher during the Age of Enlightenment, a philosophical era in Europe that criticized tyranny and promoted science and reason, Voltaire was known for criticizing religion and government alike. Candide does not shy away from either of these subjects and also explores issues such as historical events, other enlightenment era philosophies, and human nature.
Born in 1694 with the name Francois-Marie Arouet, Voltaire studied literature and religion at a prominent Jesuit university. He later joined the Society of Temple, and enlightenment intellectual group, where he gained fame for his short works of satiric literature. Eventually, however, his fame also brought criticism and he was imprisoned in the Bastille for writing against a member of the government. Prison did not deter him from writing, and it was during his imprisonment that he first used the pen name “Voltaire”.
Upon being released, he was exiled in England, where he met many fellow enlightenment intellectuals. A few years later he returned to France and continued writing. During the 1750’s Voltaire was profoundly affected by numerous tragedies such as the 1755 earthquake in Lisbon, the Seven Year German War, and the 1757 execution of an admiral. All of these historical events were put into Candide, and doubtless would have been easily recognized by his readers of the time. It was these events that led Voltaire to seriously question the philosophy of optimism that was held by other enlightenment philosophers.
Towards the end of the 1750’s Voltaire began writing Candide. Reports vary, but conclude that he began writing in 1757 or 1758. There is a myth that Voltaire wrote Candide in a mere three days, but there is strong evidence to suggest that he took his time with the work. Candide was published in 1759 in a somewhat secretive manner, and instantly became a success because of the controversial and scandalous subjects present in the novel. For this reason, however, the book also inspired considerable controversy and was banned in Paris and later by the Roman Catholic Church.
Despite the controversy, or rather because of it, Candide became a best seller and was published all over the world. The book’s popularity spawned numerous sequels and knock-offs, as well as some twentieth century plays. Candide is thought to have influenced absurdist theatre, as well as the black humor genre of literature. It is widely taught in classrooms worldwide, is recognized as a staple of Western literature.
Candide spends his youth living a rather sheltered life at the Baron’s castle. He is taught philosophy and metaphysics by Professor Pangloss, and Candide believes in all of Pangloss’ teachings. He is in love with the beautiful daughter of the Baron named Cunegonde, who also loves him back. One fateful day the Baron catches Cunegonde and Candide kissing, but because Candide has 1/72 of royal blood and Cunegonde has 1/71, the Baron kicks him out of the castle.
Lost, Candide wanders around the countryside and eventually comes to a town. There, he is recruited to the Bulgarian army and is forced to train to fight for them. He experiences the horrors of war and flees the first chance he gets. Candide ends up in Holland where he is helped by James the Anabaptist. In Holland, he also encounters his beloved teacher Pangloss, who has been ravaged by a rotting disease and needs medical attention. The teacher also brings news that the Baron’s castle has been sacked, and Cunegonde raped and killed. James takes Pangloss in, and, after they are recovered, all three of them take a ship to Lisbon.
During their trip, the ship is sunk by a fearsome storm. James dies rescuing a brutish sailor, but Pangloss and Candide end up on the shore of Lisbon. As soon as they arrive, a serious earthquake hits the city, leaving it in ruin. Pangloss tries to help by preaching his philosophy of optimism, but is arrested by the inquisition, along with Candide, for his beliefs. Candide is whipped, and Pangloss hanged. Later, an old woman hired by Cunegonde nurses Candide back to health and brings him to her.
Candide is astonished to see her alive, and Cunegonde reveals her story. She was raped in the castle but was taken by the general as a mistress for her beauty. She was then sold several times before she ended up as the mistress of both Don Issachar, a Jewish merchant, and the Grand Inquisitor. During her story, both these men come in, and Candide kills them both. Following the old woman’s advice, the group flees with horses and jewels and they head for Cadiz. On the way, Cunegonde’s jewels are stolen.
In Cadiz, Candide joins an army heading to Portugal to fight the Jesuits, and the group sets sail. In Buenos Aires, however, a pursuit ship catches up to them. A pompous lord wants to make Cunegonde his mistress and the old woman tells her to accept his offer. Candide is forced to flee with his valet, Cacambo, who join the Jesuits they were sent to fight. The general of the Jesuits turns out to be none other than Cunegonde’s brother, the new Baron. Their reunion is a happy one until Candide reveals his intent to marry Cunegonde. Like his father before him, the new Baron takes offense to the match, and Candide runs him through with a sword.
Forced to flee yet again, Cacambo and Candide set out into the country. On this leg of their journey, they shoot two monkeys and are captured by a native tribe. Upon being released, they decide to try and get back to Europe. However, they run out of food and money and are forced to travel down a river. They end up in the beautiful, wealthy land of El Dorado, where the streets are made of gold and children play with the precious jewels lying on the ground. The king greets them warmly and welcomes them into this seemingly perfect society that relies on science instead of religion and has no crime.
Eventually, they get bored and decide to leave. The king gives them over 100 sheep laden with treasures and provisions. During the journey, they lose all but two sheep but are still vastly wealthy. In Surinam, Cacambo travels ahead to buy Cunegonde’s freedom and Candide plans on meeting them in Venice. He tries to hire a Dutch sailor, who swindles him and takes off with his sheep in the middle of the night. Heartbroken, Candide uses what money he has left to hire another ship to take him to France and a travel companion named Martin.
In Paris, Candide becomes ill, and Martin’s constant pessimism does not help him get better. He is deceived by an Abbot and a Marchioness who want nothing more than his remaining money. Eventually, he gets on a ship headed towards England. Upon reaching the coastline Candide witnesses the execution of an admiral who did not kill enough men in battle. Disgusted, Candide immediately sets out for Venice.
They arrive safely in Venice but cannot find Cacambo or Cunegonde. Candide enters into a state of melancholy, which Martin only exacerbates. One day Candide sees a happy young couple and wants to prove that people can be happy. When he invites them to dinner, he finds out that the young woman is Paquette, the serving maiden from his old castle who has turned to prostitution to survive. The man is Friar Giroflee, who hates his profession and is in love with Paquette. Still wanting to prove that it is possible to be happy, Candide visits the Senator Pococurante, one of the wealthiest men in Venice. Although he owns many fine things, however, he cannot appreciate any of them and lives in a state of boredom.
When he is just about to give up hope, he runs into Cacambo at the inn. He is now slave to the wealthy man Candide is about to have dinner with, and Cacambo reveals that Cunegonde is in Constantinople. Candide has dinner with six men who all turn out to be dethroned kings from different countries in Europe. He buys Cacambo from his master and sets out to Constantinople. While going ashore, he notices that the galley men rowing the boat look exactly like Pangloss and the Baron. They are, in fact, and both survived their ordeals only to become slaves on the ship. Candide buys their freedom as well, and everyone goes to rescue Cunegonde.
They find Cunegonde and the old woman, but Cunegonde has become hideously ugly. Candide does not want to marry her, but is determined to go on with the match because of his honor. The Baron still disagrees, and they send him back to the galley. With their remaining money, they buy a farm to live on but are all unhappy. With nothing to do, they spend their days philosophizing and wasting time.
One day, Candide is invited to dinner by an old man who runs his own farm. He and his children have plenty of food and are happier than any other people Candide has met on his travels. Candide decides to adopt the old man’s lifestyle and has everyone begin working on the farm. Each member cultivates a trade to help out, and they spend their days working and being content with their life.
Voltaire’s Candide is a perfectly satiric piece, mocking everything, including European aristocracy, philosophers, science, religion, colonization, and human nature itself. Voltaire’s satire is employed using extreme, often unrealistic situations such as Candide’s journey to the mythical kingdom El Dorado, illogical characters such as Pangloss, who holds to his optimism even though the world is full of hardship and biting wit that at times gently pokes fun at ideas and at other times stabs them repeatedly. Although he brings up many ideas and problems with the world, in the end, however, he does give a sort of solution.
The main character and namesake, Candide, is obsessed with philosophy. Taught at a young age the philosophy of optimism by Pangloss, Candide begins his tale firmly believing his professor’s teachings. As he experiences more and more hardships, however, he slowly begins to give up this philosophy and seek new ones. His search for philosophy, and the other characters as well, often borders on ridiculous. Instead of spending time being productive, they instead waste days philosophizing with no end. Their philosophizing often hinders their efforts, and in the end Candide gives up philosophy for a life of meaningful work.
Candide’s first professor, Pangloss, believes in the philosophy of optimism above all else. He holds that this world is the best of all worlds (a popular belief in Voltaire’s time used to explain the existence of evil in a world created by a perfect God), and also that everything happens for a reason. He is optimistic to where he cannot easily interact with the world around him. For instance, after the earthquake in Lisbon he told survivors that it was for the best. While Candide holds these beliefs to be true in the beginning of the novel, he finds himself questioning, and ultimately relinquishing, this philosophy.
The exact opposite of Candide’s initial introduction in optimism, pessimism is the belief that nothing in the world is good and that no one is ever happy. Just as optimism was represented through the character of Pangloss, pessimism is represented through Martin, the unfortunate philosopher whose ills have made him negative towards everything. While pessimism is more based in logic than optimism, Martin’s character still embodies the philosophy to such a ridiculous degree that it becomes debilitating. In the end, Candide rejects pessimism.
Much of the book’s philosophy centers on explaining and identifying evil in the world. All sorts of evil are brought up throughout the journey, from slavery and objectification of women to warfare and tyrannical rulers. Optimism explains these evils by holding that, since it is the best of all possible worlds, the evils must be necessary or for a reason. Pessimism, on the other hand, copes with the hardships of the world by expecting the worst out of everyone and everything.
The harshness of reality is starkly contrasted by the existence of conflict-free metaphorical “Garden of Edens” throughout Candide. The place where Candide grew up, for instance, the Baron’s castle, is an idyllic place where there are no worries or strife. All Candide worries about is learning Pangloss’s teachings and whether or not Cunegonde loves him; it is only upon being kicked out of the castle that he even realizes another way of living exists. The mythical land of El Dorado also functions as a perfect society. Everyone is wealthy, there is no crime, and the state is ruled by science instead of religion. On some level, however, Candide realizes that even the “perfect” society of El Dorado is flawed and returns to the real world.
Throughout the story of Candide, beautiful women are objectified and subjugated, in the end becoming the unwilling mistresses of powerful men. Voltaire criticizes this way of looking at women by using his signature trademark of relaying ridiculous situations in a calm, straightforward manner. When Cunegonde is telling her story to Candide, for instance, she talks about being sold to numerous men for their pleasure in a detached and calm way, as if it were perfectly normal. By having Cunegonde, a woman, take this attitude, Voltaire stresses that it is not normal and emphasizes how wrong that way of thinking is.
Not many works manage to be both a comedy and a tragedy; however, Voltaire seamlessly merges these two genres together in order to create the sarcastic and often jarring tone of Candide. By juxtaposing extremely horrible situations and comic relief, many credit Voltaire with creating the “black humor” genre of literature. This approach allows Voltaire to expose serious evils in the world, such as slavery and the treatment of women, and criticizing them while writing it off as a joke.
Candide was profoundly influenced by Voltaire’s emotional reactions to real events that happened in Europe during the 1750’s. Many of these events made appearances throughout Candide, and doubtless Voltaire’s readers knew exactly what the references referred to. Many of the more prominent historical events inserted were the 1755 earthquake in Lisbon, the Seven Year German war, slavery on the sugar cane plantations, and the unjust execution of an admiral Voltaire witnessed. By not so subtly alluding to real life events, Voltaire forced his audience to connect the world of the book with the real world.
At its heart, Candide is an exploration of human nature. By exploring the extremes of good and evil through his journey, Candide is forced to think about and examine many aspects of life. At the end of his journey, when there is nothing to do but philosophize, Candide is forced to come up with his own way of explaining human nature. Instead of focusing on good, evil, or philosophy, he turns his attention towards living a simple life and doing meaningful work, in other words, “cultivating his garden”. Voltaire does not imply that this is the right way to live, but acknowledges that keeping life simple and focusing on rewarding work might be the only way to gain contentment.
The main character of Voltaire’s novel, Candide grew up in the sheltered household of the Baron’s castle. Two main forces from his days in the castle drive his adventure – his belief in professor Pangloss’s optimistic beliefs and his love for the beautiful Cunegonde. Upon being kicked out, Candide experiences the harshness of reality for the first time and undergoes many hardships. Eventually he comes to question Pangloss’s beliefs, and marries Cunegonde despite her becoming ugly. He decides to live a content life on his farm, working to grow his own food and support himself.
Candide’s first teacher and a professor of metaphysics and philosophy, Pangloss serves as Candide’s role model for the first part of the novel. Pangloss is a staunch believer in optimism, and Voltaire uses Pangloss to show how extreme optimism is foolish and unhelpful. During the earthquake in Lisbon, for instance, Pangloss tells the earthquake victims that their city being laid to the ground and their friends and family dying is for the best. Not only is this level of optimism hurtful, it is also not realistic. At the end of the novel, Pangloss holds to his beliefs for the sake of not changing his mind, but even he gives them up on some level.
The Baron’s beautiful young daughter, Cunegonde and Candide are deeply attracted to one another. After Candide leaves the castle, Cunegonde is raped by soldiers and becomes passed around from man to man as a mistress because of her beauty. She handles this situation calmly, and even after escaping her role willingly goes back to it in exchange for a comfortable life. Cunegonde is Candide’s main driving force, and he believes (mistakenly) that if he and Cunegonde can marry that he will finally be happy. Most of his adventures center around trying to get back to Cunegonde and rescue her from whoever is her owner at the time.
Cunegonde’s servant, the old woman is loyal to her and gives her practical advice. When Cunegonde complains about her lot, the old woman reveals that she is, in fact, the daughter of a pope, and, like Cunegonde, was renowned for her beauty. She lost her family and became a slave passed from household to household until her beauty was gone and eventually she became united with Cunegonde. The old woman does not change throughout the novel, but serves as a comparison to Cunegonde as well as a source of practicality that is neither optimistic nor pessimistic.
Candide’s valet who joined him on his flight from Buenos Aires. Cacambo is a Negro who is knowledgeable in the ways of the world. He recognizes that Candide is a good man, and becomes loyal to him, helping him throughout the novel. Because of his experienced nature, Cacambo serves as a foil to Candide’s ignorance of worldly affairs. After experiencing El Dorado and returning to Europe, Cacambo goes to find Cunegonde and remains loyal to his good friend Candide even after becoming a slave to someone else. In the end, Cacambo lives on the farm with the rest of the group.
Cunegonde’s brother also survives the attack of the Bulgarian soldiers and becomes the second Baron. After his near death experience, he becomes a member of the Jesuit order and is sent to Paraguay where he runs into Candide. Happy at being reunited, the celebration is short lived, and ends when Candide reveals that he wants to marry Cunegonde. Because of their slight difference in amount of royal blood, the new Baron takes offense to the match, and Candide kills him. Like many others, the Baron comes back to life, signifying that arrogance and hypocrisy do not really die.
After Candide has lost his fortune and entered his dark period, he hires the philosopher Martin to be his travel companion. The direct foil to Pangloss, Martin’s hardships during his life made him a complete pessimist. He cannot find the good in anything, and, while his advice is often more logical, he often revels in the misery of others because they prove him right. Just like Pangloss’s optimism, Martin’s pessimism does not help situations but instead makes them worse. He holds to his pessimistic beliefs until the very end, although Candide ultimately rejects them.
One of the more kind and helpful characters in the novel, James takes in Candide and Pangloss when they are in trouble in Holland. His philosophy is neither optimistic nor pessimistic, but he believes in always helping others and gaining joy in that way. Ultimately, his humanistic beliefs lead to his downfall when he risks his life to rescue a brutish sailor and is thrown overboard in the process. Voltaire seems to be cautioning against always helping others, because it might lead to being taken advantage of. James’ kindness, however, touches Candide in a way that the hardships of the world failed to do.
Cunegonde goes through several owners, and is fought over because of her beauty. These owners do not love Cunegonde, but just want her charms. When they are done with her, however, they inevitably sell her again. The most notable of these men are Don Issachar, the Jewish merchant, the Grand Inquisitor, and the Buenos Aires lord Don Fernando d’lbarra y Figueroa y Mascarenes y Lampourdos y Souza. Candide kills both Don Issachar and the Grand Inquisitor, but Cunegonde goes with Don Fernando willingly in exchange for a good life. These men represent the evils and arrogance of aristocracy, and have a sense of entitlement.
In charge of the wealthy and peaceful kingdom of El Dorado, the king welcomes Cacambo and Candide to his land with open arms. When the two voice their wish to leave, the King thinks they are crazy to want to leave a land where they are content and live in constant luxury. He helps them anyway, and has his scientists construct a flying machine to take them over the mountains. He also gives them 102 sheep laden with provisions and treasure for their journey.
After Candide returns to Europe with his vast fortune, he is repeatedly taken advantage of by people who want his money. When trying to set sail to Venice, a Dutch captain steals his sheep. In Paris, many people pretend to be his friend in order to swindle him. Among these is the Abbot of Perigord and the Marchioness of Parolignac. Both of these flatter him and ultimately steal his money. These betrayals hurt Candide worse than many of the physical hardships he encounters, and proves that wealth often brings more trouble than good in the world.
The serving maid at Candide’s childhood home, Paquette is a pretty young woman who gains favor with others through prostitution. Candide encounters Paquette in Venice while waiting for Cunegonde to arrive, and makes a bet with Martin that she and the friar she is with are happy. When he learns her story, he realizes that although she may look happy on the outside, her life has been full of just as much misfortune as everyone else’s. The friar too hates his profession and is not satisfied with his life. To make up for their troubles, Candide gives them money to help them along. In the end, both Paquette and Friar Giroflee squander their money and join the group living on the farm.
In Venice, Candide has dinner at the inn with six foreigners who are in town for Carnivale. One of them has bought Cacambo as a slave and offers to take them to Constantinople. When dinner is over, Candide realizes that all six of them are being addressed by their slaves as if they are kings. Thinking it is a joke, he asks them. Turns out all six are dethroned kings from all over Europe. Here, Voltaire is mocking European aristocracy as well as pointing out that royal blood does not necessarily mean anything, as Candide is far wealthier than all the men at the table and, in fact, gives charity to one of them.
One of the wealthiest men in Venice, Candide and Martin call on him because Candide wants to prove that people can be happy. They find that the Senator surrounds himself with beautiful landscapes, art, literature, and entertainment but that he is not satisfied by any of it. In fact, he is bored by his wealth tired of trying to appear refined for the sake of appearances. This has turned him into the ultimate critic, unable to see the beauty in anything.
Candide and his group meet the old man on the way back to their farm. He invites them in, feeds them, and pampers them. Candide is shocked that, out of all the people he’s met that this old man seems to live the happiest life even though he does not have much. Candide realizes that the man does not concern himself overmuch with the affairs of the world and spends his time working on his farm and with his children. Candide sees in the old man’s lifestyle a solution to all his inner turmoil, and the endless philosophizing of his friends and decides to adopt it. He and the group become content working on the farm and keeping busy.
How Candide was Brought Up in a Magnificent Castle, and How He was Expelled Thence
Candide grew up in the grand castle of a Baron in Westphalia. He was a young man with gentle manners, and thought to be the son of the Baron’s sister. The Baron is a powerful lord in Westphalia, and his castle large and extravagant. His wife, the Baroness, is a large, commanding woman. They have a daughter, Cunegonde, who is seventeen and beautiful, along with a son. The other tenant of the castle is Preceptor Pangloss, the oracle and live-in professor. Candide trusts Pangloss and listens to everything he says, although his logic is somewhat circular and nonsensical. Candide is extremely happy with his life, and secretly thinks that Cunegonde is beautiful.
One day Cunegonde walks around the woods and sees Dr. Pangloss giving one of her mother’s attractive chamber maids engaging in a “natural experiment”. She is flustered at seeing something so indecent and thinks of Candide. The two happen to run into each other when Cunegonde is on the way back to the castle, and they both blush. Later, after dinner, they end up kissing. The Baron catches them, however, and banishes Candide from the castle.
What Became of Candide Among the Bulgarians
Candide walks into the countryside away from the magnificent castle that was previously his home. He sleeps in the fields, and when he finally reaches a town he is almost dying of hunger. Candide looks longingly at an inn, and two gentlemen spot him. After saying that he is well-built, they give him free food and drink. During their meal, they ask him if he loves the King of the Bulgarians and tell Candide that he is going to be made into a hero. After eating they escort Candide to their regiment and begin training him.
Not fully realizing his situation, Candide decides to go on a walk one day. He is overtaken, captured, and sent to the dungeons as a deserter where he is given the choice of being whipped severely or being shot in the head. Candide asserts that all humans have free will, and as such he will choose neither option. However, in the end he is forced to choose the whipping.
During his punishment, the King of the Bulgarians happens to come by and realizes that Candide is merely an ignorant young man and not a deserter. He pardons Candide and sends him to a surgeon to be healed. Candide’s skin, which was almost all gone after his whipping, is healed by the time the King of the Bulgarians is ready to go to war with the King of Abares.
How Candide Made His Escape from the Bulgarians, and what Afterwards Became of Him
Two armies of the Kings of Bulgaria and Abares meet on the battlefield, resulting in unbelievable carnage. Amid the firings of muskets and killings by bayonets, Candide hides in fear. Eventually, he is able to escape the battle and travels across the countryside. He comes to several villages that have been torn apart by the war and is horrified. He sees burned buildings, mutilated bodies, and the old men and women who are left to die.
After traveling a long time and running out of provisions, Candide makes it Holland. He has heard that in Holland everyone is rich and Christian, and so he hopes someone will help him. When he asks for food, however, he is repeatedly turned down. He comes across a preacher who asks Candide if he believes in “the cause”. Candide, true to Pangloss’s teachings, replies that there is no effect without a cause. When the preacher finds out Candide does not believe the pope to be the anti-Christ he sends him away cursing.
An unchristened man named James sees the spectacle and takes pity on Candide. He takes him home, feeds him, and employs him. Candide is deeply touches by his kindness, and the next day encounters a severely diseased beggar on the streets.
How Candide Found His Old Master Pangloss, and What Happened to Them
Candide is horrified at the sight of the beggar but still feels compassions towards him. He gives the beggar the only money he has, and the beggar starts crying, revealing himself as Pangloss. Candide is shocked and immediately begins asking questions about what happened to Cunegonde and everyone else. Pangloss complains that he cannot stand, and Candide helps him to James’s stable and gives him some food. Eventually, Pangloss is able to continue his story. He reveals the Cunegonde, as well as everyone else in the castle, is dead. They were attacked by Bulgarian soldiers. Cunegonde was raped and killed violently, and the soldiers did not spare anyone else either. During this story, Candide faints twice.
He wants to know how Pangloss became so diseased, and he says he caught the deteriorating disease from Paquette, the pretty serving maid. Pangloss is not extremely bitter about his situation, because the disease was brought back by Christopher Columbus after coming into contact with the New World. It is Pangloss’s view that a negative consequence is natural, and offsets all the other good things a new continent has brought.
Pangloss has no money for a doctor so Candide goes to James and begs his help. James takes Pangloss in and pays for his doctor. After he is healed, James puts Pangloss’s talent for arithmetic and writing to work as his bookkeeper. Pangloss and Candide work for James for two months, and eventually go on a trip with him. On the ship, Pangloss and James argue about philosophy. Pangloss asserts that they live in the best of worlds, but James does not have much faith in humanity and believe that they have corrupted the earth. During this argument, the ship is hit by a powerful tempest.
Tempest, Shipwreck, Earthquake, and What Became of Doctor Pangloss, Candide, and James the Anabaptist
The tempest hits the ship and everything erupts into chaos. The mast breaks, and the Anabaptist James is hit by a brutish sailor, who is thrown by his effort and manages to hang onto the rail. James, being a good man, helps the sailor up and is thrown overboard himself. Candide sees James go overboard, and the sailor walk away. Candide gets ready to jump in himself to save the kind man. Pangloss, however, pulls him back, saying that it was James’ fate to drown.
When the tempest subsides the ship is almost entirely gone. The only survivors are Candide, Pangloss, and the sailor who let James die. They make it to shore and head towards the nearest city of Lisbon, hoping to buy some food. When they reach the city, however, they feel the earth begin to quake under their feet. Buildings fall, crushing the citizens of Lisbon.
When the earthquake is over, the sailor goes out to try and find some money while Pangloss and Candide attempt to rescue those trapped under the rubble. The sailor finds some money and alcohol, gets drunk and hires a prostitute right in the middle of the rubble. Pangloss interrupts him, telling him it is not right, but the sailor rudely dismisses him. In trying to rescue the crushed citizens, Candide receives some minor wounds and calls out for water. Pangloss is so busy philosophizing about the earthquake that he doesn’t notice Candide until he faints.
The next day the two find provisions and keep helping others. Pangloss tries to tell those who are rescued that everything is for the best, but they aren’t comforted. A man in the black clothes of the inquisition attacks Pangloss’s philosophies, saying that if everything is for the best then the fall of man wouldn’t have happened. Pangloss tells the man that even with the fall the world they are in is the best of all worlds, but defends his position so poorly that the man in black ignores him and begins drinking wine.
How the Portuguese Made a Beautiful Auto-Da-Fe to Prevent Any Further Earthquakes; and How Candide was Publicly Whipped
After the earthquake, the leaders of Lisbon decide to make some human sacrifices in order to prevent another earthquake from happening. They choose three men for minor offenses, but arrest Pangloss for speaking his mind so openly and Candide for listening to him. All the prisoners are put in cold, dark rooms without any company for eight days. After eight days, they are taken out and garbed with ceremonial clothing.
At the ceremony, there is a procession, a sermon, and music. The three men are burned alive, Pangloss is hanged, and Candide is whipped. After the ceremony is over, another earthquake hits Lisbon. Candide is terrified and wonders if this is the best of all worlds how terrible the others must be. He grieves for those he has lost so far on his journey, Pangloss, James and Cunegonde. While he is sitting there wounded an old woman approaches him and tells him to follow her.
How the Old Woman Took Care of Candide, and How He Found the Object He Loved
Candide obediently follows the old woman to a small house, where she feeds him and tends his wounds. He is so thankful he moves to kiss her hand, but she insists she is not the one to thank. Exhausted, Candide spends two days eating and sleeping while recovering from his whipping. Finally, he asks the old woman who she is and how he can repay her. In response, she takes him out into the countryside to a quaint cottage.
She leads Candide upstairs to a rich apartment and leaves him, promising to return. Candide cannot believe how his luck has turned around and thinks himself in a dream. Finally, the old woman comes back with another woman, jeweled and veiled. Candide lifts the veil to find none other than Cunegonde alive and well. He is so shocked he faints, and when he recovers they begin talking earnestly.
Candide asks Cunegonde what happened to her, and if Pangloss’s account of her rape and murder were true. She says that she was raped, and her father, mother and brother all killed, but she survived her wounds. When Candide asks how she got to Portugal, she tells him she wants to hear his story first. He starts at the beginning, telling her all the troubles he and Pangloss went through, and Cunegonde grieves for him.
The History of Cunegonde
After Candide is done, Cunegonde begins her story. She was sleeping when the Bulgarian soldiers attacked, and watched them kill the rest of her family. One brute of a soldier spotted Cunegonde and began raping her. When Cunegonde resisted, he cut her in the side with his sword. A Bulgarian captain came in and, seeing what was going on, slew his soldier and tending to Cunegonde’s wound.
The captain took her as a prisoner, but soon sold her to a Jew named Don Issachar. Failing to win her over, Issachar gave her the beautiful house she is in now in an attempt to win her over. One day the Grand Inquisitor spots Cunegonde and wants to buy her from the Jewish trader. The Jew is reluctant, but they agree to share her, dividing up the days of the week amongst themselves. That bargain was made six months ago, and so far Cunegonde has not given in to either man.
During that time, she was invited to the auto-da-fe (burning alive) in Lisbon where she was horrified to witness Pangloss hanged and Candide whipped. Thrown into turmoil, Cunegonde began to doubt Pangloss’s optimistic teachings and took action by hiring the old woman to care for Candide until he could be brought to her.
After she is done with her story, they sit down for dinner before going back to the sofa to talk. In the middle of their conversation, the Jewish trader Don Issachar comes in to confess his love to Cunegonde.
What Became of Cunegonde, the Grand Inquisitor, and the Jew
The Jew walks in and is enraged by the sight of Cunegonde with another man. He draws his sword and attacks Candide, who defends himself with his own sword given to him by the old woman when she clothed him. Candide kills Issachar, and his body is thrown on the ground before Cunegonde, who panics. Candide wishes that Pangloss were still alive to give advice, but decides to ask the old woman what they should do.
As they are talking, the clock strikes midnight and the Inquisitor walks in. He stops, seeing the Jew dead, Candide with a sword, and Cunegonde stricken. Very quickly, Candide reasons that if the Inquisitor lives then he will have them all killed for murder, and so he slays the man before he has time to react. Cunegonde is even more upset at this, but the old woman advises them to take three horses from the stables and all the jewels in the household and flee to the city of Cadiz. They follow her advice and set out.
Meanwhile, the Brotherhood enters the house and finds the dead bodies. They give the Grand Inquisitor a proper burial but throw Don Issachar’s body on a dung heap. At the end of the night, Cunegonde, Candide and the old woman have reached the s town of Avicenna in the mountains and found an inn.
In What Distress Candide, Cunegonde, and the Old Woman Arrived at Cadiz; and their Embarkation
During their stay at one of the inns, Cunegonde’s jewels and money are stolen, leaving them penniless. The old woman suspects that a reverend named Grey Friar who acted suspiciously was the one who stole the jewels. Candide, realizing that, according to Pangloss’s teachings, he should not care about such a loss, nevertheless is upset and does not know what to do. The old woman suggests that they sell one of the horses, and they eventually arrive at Cadiz.
At Cadiz, a fleet is getting ready to set sail for the new world. A small army is assembled in order to quell Indian rebellions against Spain and Portugal. Candide uses his military training to impress the general of the army and is made a captain. With this, Candide, Cunegonde, the old woman and their horses set sail.
During the voyage the three philosophize and talk about their lives. Candide, still following Pangloss’s teachings, is sure that the new world they are going to will be better. Cunegonde, however, is not so sure. She has been through so much misfortune that she has given up hope that any world can be better. Hearing this, the old woman laughs at Cunegonde and tells her that she has no reason to complain. Offended, Cunegonde lists off all the tragic things that have happened in her life since the Bulgarian soldiers killed her family, but the old woman insists that her life has been far worse.
The History of the Old Woman
The old woman reveals that she is the daughter of Pope Urban X and a princess. She grew up in a palace, surrounded by wealth, and blossomed into an incredible beauty. Because of her beauty, she had many suitors and was eventually engaged to a prince. They were madly in love, but he was poisoned during their wedding and died soon after. In despair, her mother decides to take her to a house in Gaeta. During the voyage, their ship is boarded by pirates, who strip everyone naked and search for hidden jewels. The mother and all their serving maids are handsome and are taken by the pirates. The princess, being the most beautiful of all, and a virgin, is taken by the captain.
The pirate ship lands in Morocco, where a violent civil war is going on. The ship is immediately seized, and the captain robbed of everything. While the captain hides the princess, the other women are literally torn apart because they are being fought over by the natives. When everything is over, the princess climbs out of the pile of dead and mangled bodies and attempts to run away. She does not get far before she faints, weakened by hunger and thirst. She is woken by the feeling of someone against her and opens her eyes to see a white man who speaks Italian to her.
The Adventures of the Old Woman Continued
The man takes the woman to a house where he cares for her. Turns out he is a eunuch who was cut for his singing voice and served in her mother’s household. He promises to take her back to Italy, but instead takes her to Algiers and sells her. In Algiers, the woman and many others catch the Black Plague. She survives, but everyone else dies.
After the plague, she is sold from household to household until she finally ends up in Russia. She and the other slaves are guarded, but when they are attacked the siege goes on so long that the guards begin eating parts of the prisoners. When the enemy finally breaks in, the woman is rescued by a French surgeon who takes care of the wounded women.
Once again the woman is sold from house to house, until she decides to flee and travel through Russian on her own. She says that many times in her life she wanted to end everything but never went through with it. Elaborating on this, she ponders why it is that so many people are miserable but so few actually set down their burden by committing suicide.
Eventually, the old woman was bought by Don Issachar where she was put in charge of Cunegonde, whom she bonded with and doesn’t wish to leave. The old woman tells the younger man and woman to ask everyone else on the boat about their stories, betting that all of them have been through times in their lives where they wanted to give up on everything.
How Candide Was Forced Away from His Fair Cunegonde and the Old Woman
The old woman’s story earns the respect of Cunegonde and Candide, and they follow her advice, asking everyone on the ship their stories. In the end, they admit she was right. Eventually, they land in Buenos Aires where a haughty nobleman is smitten by Cunegonde’s beauty. When the nobleman asks Candide if they are married, Candide does not know what to do and so says they are engaged. The nobleman gets Candide sent away and asks Cunegonde to marry him the next day.
Cunegonde asks the old woman what she should do, and the practical lady tells Cunegonde to take advantage of the opportunity. She will lose Candide, but they will both be wealthy. While they are talking, another ship enters the harbor in pursuit of the murderers of the Grand Inquisitor. The Grey Friar who stole Cunegonde’s jewels was found, and before he died he described the three he stole them from to the authorities who began the chase. The old woman, immediately realizing what has happened, tells Cunegonde to stay as she didn’t kill the inquisitor. She advises Candide, however, to flee as fast as possible.
How Candide and Cacambo were Received by the Jesuits of Paraguay
Candide brings with him a valet named Cacambo, who is loyal to Candide. He urges Candide to follow the old woman’s advice and not worry too much about the women, because God always takes care of them. Hearing this, Candide cries and mourns the second loss of Cunegonde. Cacambo suggests going to the Jesuits and using Candide’s knowledge of enemy warfare to make them rich.
They set out and eventually reach the Jesuit camp. When they ask to speak to the Father Provincial, however, their weapons and horses are taken away. The Commander does not want to see them because he hates Spaniards, but when he finds out that Candide is German he agrees to meet with them. They eat breakfast at the Commander’s lodging, and when the Commander meets them he returns their weapons and horses.
The Commander and Candide are happy to talk in their native language, and exchange stories. It turns out that the Commander is none other than Cunegonde’s brother. The two are joyous at their meeting and drink to their connection. The Commander is happy to know that Cunegonde is alive and safe in Buenos Aires.
How Candide Killed the Brother of His Dear Cunegonde
The Commander begins his story with the Bulgarian attack on the castle. Knocked unconscious, he was taken for dead and sent to the Jesuit priests along with the other bodies for burial. When a priest found out he was alive, he nursed him back to health. Eventually, he became a Jesuit himself and was sent to Paraguay because they wanted priests of non-Spanish descent.
He turns the conversation to Cunegonde, confirming that she is safe and telling Candide that they should go and rescue her. Candide agrees with this, and reveals that he intends to marry her when they are back together. This statement angers the Commander, who calls Candide insolent because Cunegonde is 1/72nd royalty and Candide only 1/71. At this, Candide tells Cunegonde’s brother that he agrees with Pangloss’s teaching that all men are equal, and points out that he saved Cunegonde from her life of slavery.
Cunegonde’s brother, however, doesn’t listen, and slaps Candide with his sword. In response Candide takes out his own sword and puts it through the commander. After he cries and does not understand how he, a good person, ends up killing people. Cacambo, seeing everything, disguises Candide in the Commander’s Jesuit robes, and they escape the city on horseback.
Adventures of the Two Travelers, with Two Girls, Two Monkeys, and the Savages Called Oreillons
The two escape without incident and end up in an unfamiliar country without any obvious paths. They stop in a meadow to eat, and Candide insists that he does not want to eat because there is no point. He eats anyway, however, and they set out once more. As the sun is going down they see two naked women being chased by behind by two monkeys. Thinking the women are being attacked, Candide shoots and kills the monkeys. He congratulates himself on being a good person when he notices the women weeping over the monkey’s bodies. Cacambo reveals that the monkeys were probably the lovers of the women, which Candide thought was only myth.
They go into the woods to sleep, and when they wake up they are bound and surrounded by fifty Oreillon savages. The natives have brought a cauldron and want to eat the Jesuit. Cacambo, however, convinces them that they are not Jesuits but have killed one. Men are sent to check on their story, and when the Oreillons realize their mistake they untie the men and give them every luxury available. Candide is grateful and takes this as a reaffirmation of Pangloss’s teaching that everything happens for a reason.
Arrival of Candide and his Valet at El Dorado, and What They Saw There
Cacambo tells Candide that the new world is no better than the old, and they decide to try and make their way back to Europe. During their journey, however, they run out of food and money. Their hoses die, and they end up by a small river with no way to continue on. Cacambo spots a canoe, and, seeing no other option, decides to follow the river and see where fate takes them. They begin traveling once more, but the next day their canoe is shattered by running into rocks. Desolate, they continue on foot.
They come over the mountains and find themselves in a beautiful land. They see children playing outside with something shiny. Looking closer, they realize that the children are playing with gold and other precious jewels. A schoolteacher comes out and calls the children inside. Obediently, the children leave the gold and jewels on the ground before going back to school. Cacambo and Candide think that the children must be royalty if they can leave such valuable treasures lying on the ground. Candide picks up all the jewels and tries to give them back to the schoolteacher, but the teacher just throws them back on the ground and walks away.
Seeing that neither the children nor the teachers want the treasures, Candide and Cacambo pick them up. They continue on their way until they come to a large palace. Going inside, they sit down and are served all manner of extravagant food by beautiful girls. They try to pay with the gold they found, but another patron of the public house laughs at them for trying to pay with the “pebbles found on the roads”. He explains that the public house is free and paid for by the government, and that since this is a small village the food and service is poor. Hearing this, Cacambo and Candide are astonished, and wonder if they have found the perfect world.
What They Saw in the Country of El Dorado
Curious about the country they have wandered into, they ask the landlord about the history of the land. Not knowing enough to satisfy their curiosity, the landlord takes them to the house of a learned retired man of court. The house was simple, although made of gold, silver and numerous precious jewels. The retired old man greets them kindly and answers all their questions. The country they are in is the ancient kingdom of the Incas, who left and were destroyed by Spaniards. The princes who stayed behind sealed off the kingdom to protect more citizens from leaving and also to prevent being killed by the Europeans for their “pebbles”. The country is called El Dorado and has been kept safe by the tall mountains surrounding it.
Cacambo and Candide ask more questions about the government, people and culture. There is no crime in the land, and all the men act as their own priests and worship god for providing for them so well. Seeing that their curiosity has not been satisfied, the old man lends a coach to take them to the king. They arrive at the palace and are greeted by beautiful women who bathe and pamper them. They greet the king with the custom of hugging him and kissing his cheeks. The king, a agreeable man, invites them to dinner.
Before dinner, they are allowed to see the city. It is full of wonders, and everyone lives in peace. Instead of prisons, Candide is pleased to see buildings dedicated to science. They spend a month in El Dorado, but eventually Candide becomes restless and reveals to Cacambo his wish to have Cunegonde by his side once more. He wants to take some of the earth and pebbles from the land and use them to ransom Cunegonde and buy a place for them to live. Cacambo agrees, and they ask the king if they can leave. The king thinks they are foolish for wanting to leave such a wonderful land, but provides them with sheep laden with gold, jewels and food. He asks his scientists to design a machine that will take them over the mountain. When the machine is completed, Candide and Cacambo embrace the king once more before they leave.
What Happened to Them at Surinam and How Candide Got Acquainted with Martin
Candide and Cacambo’s journey starts out with optimism, but as they travel they lose sheep to nature and the rocky terrain. After one hundred days, only two sheep remain, although there is still enough treasure to buy a kingdom. Finally, they reach a Dutch village called Surinam, where outside the gates they see a poor Negro waiting missing an arm and a leg. When Candide asks him what happened, the slave relates his life story. He was sold by his mother to work on the sugar can farm, and lost his hand to the machinery and his leg when he tried to run away. The slave insists that even animals are less wretched than he is. The slave’s story touches Candide, who renounces Pangloss’s philosophy of optimism.
They enter the city and try to hire a ship to take them to Buenos Aires. Candide finds one captain and tells him their story, and how he plans to elope with Cunegonde. Finding this out, the captain refuses to take Candide because Cunegonde is his master’s favorite mistress. Desolate, Candide begs Cacambo to go and bring Cunegonde to Venice where Candide will meet them with their fortune. Cacambo leaves after promising to bring back both the old woman and Cunegonde, and Candide tries to find a ship to take him to Italy.
He finds one captain who will take him, but the captain, noticing that Candide is willing to pay any price, realizes that the sheep (Candide’s only possessions) must have a great fortune on them. Candide pays the captain and boards the sheep on the ship the night before they are supposed to leave. During the night the captain leaves, taking the sheep and leaving Candide with just the jewels he kept on his person. Candide is angered by this thievery, and is more upset by it than any of his other misfortunes. He tries to get justice for his loss, but is just fined more money by the magistrate.
Giving up, Candide resolves to travel to Italy on another ship and wants to hire a companion. He sends out a notice that he will pay the most unfortunate man in the city to accompany him and listens to the history of many men to determine who his companion should be. He finally chooses a poor philosopher who has been abandoned by every member of his family and has nothing left.
What Happened at Sea to Candide and Martin
On the way to Bordeaux, Candide and the old philosopher named Martin entertain each other by comparing life stories and beliefs. They have both experiences misery, and so have a lot to talk about. There is a distinct difference between them, however – Candide has hope that he will see Cunegonde again, while Martin has no hope at all. Martin claims to be a Manichean who believes that God abandoned the world and that no good exists anywhere. This philosophy is the exact opposite of Pangloss’s, and Candide finds that he still has some optimism left in him after all.
One day while they are talking they hear cannon fire and witness a battle between two ships. One of the ships sink, and the sailor die. Candide sees something red swimming in the water and realizes it is one of his red sheep laden with treasure. He is overjoyed at the discovery, and realizes that the ship that sank was the Dutch sailor who robbed him. Candide takes this as proof that evil is punished and that there is good in the world, but Martin points out that all the sailors died along with the Dutchman. They talk for fifteen more days, and Candide finds that his hope has been renewed with the return of one of his sheep.
Candide and Martin, Reasoning, Draw Near the Coast of France
They finally see the coast of France, and Candide asks Martin if he has ever been there. Martin has, but has nothing good to say about the country or the people. Continuing, Candide tries asking him about Paris, but Martin is once again pessimistic. He traveled to Paris where a bout of misfortunes caused him to lose all his money and travel back home on foot.
Candide reveals that he does not wish to stay long in France, but intends to go from France to Italy to meet Miss Cunegonde. Martin agrees to accompany Candide on the next leg of his journey, and they begin philosophizing again. Candide asks Martin about the origin of the world, but Martin believes that the world exists only to make men miserable. Candide is somewhat surprised at his cynicism and insists that not all men were born violent of hypocritical. In response, Martin compares the ills of men to a hawk who, by instinct, eats a defenseless pigeon. Candide does not agree with this, and argues that men have free will, unlike the hawk. Before they can finish their conversation, they arrive in Bordeaux.
What Happened in France to Candide and Martin
Candide hires a Chaise to take them to Italy, but is persuaded to visit Paris before continuing his journey. In Paris, Candide becomes ill and stays at an inn. The people in the inn have taken notice of his diamond rings and some physicians attend him, making his illness worse. Eventually, he begins to get better and goes down to play cards in the evenings. He is obviously being cheated and loses a great deal of money, but never suspects his “friends”. He meets an Abbe who takes it upon himself to show him around Paris and takes Candide to see a play where he notices that the main actress looks like Cunegonde. Candide asks to be introduced to her, and the Abbe takes him to a dinner house where he can meet her.
At dinner, Candide and Martin talk to a philosopher whom Candide believes could be another Pangloss, but turns out to hold a more cynical view of the world. While Martin and the scholar talk, Candide meets the Marchioness who takes him up to her room and seduces him. Because of her sweet talk Candide gives her the two large diamond rings on his fingers. Later he feels remorseful for betraying Cunegonde. Acting sympathetic, the Abbe listens to Candide’s story about his lost love Cunegonde and finds out that he has never received a letter from her.
The next day Candide receives a letter stating that Cunegonde is in Paris but is ill and confined to bed. Candide rushes over to see her and is taken into a room where a woman is hidden behind a bed curtain. The maid claims that she cannot speak because of her illness and that the light hurts her. Candide cries and fills the woman’s hand with jewels through the bed curtain, still thinking that it is Cunegonde. While he is in her room, the Abbe enters with officers and has Martin and Candide arrested for being foreigners. Candide bribes the officer who takes them in with diamonds, convincing him to arrange for their travel out of the country. The officer has a brother in Normandy, whom Candide also bribes with diamonds, but the only place he is capable of taking him is to England. Candide wants to go to Venice, but realizes that getting away from France is more important.
Candide and Martin Touched Upon the Coast of England, and What They Saw There
Candide asks Martin what he thinks about England, and Martin says that it is just as bad a country as France. They arrive at Portsmouth and see a man kneeling on the ground with soldiers around him and a crowd gathered. As they watch, the man is shot. When they ask who the man was and what happened, they found out that he was an admiral who was not successful enough in battle. Horrified, they ask why he would be killed for that, and find out that in England admirals are killed to encourage others to perform well. Shocked and horrified, Candide refuses to go ashore and hires a skipper to take him directly to Venice. Candide is overjoyed to be in Italy, and trusts that Cacambo came through with his promise to bring Cunegonde with him.
Of Paquette and Friar Giroflee
When Candide arrives in Venice, he searches everywhere for Cacambo and Cunegonde but doesn’t find them. After several months, he begins complaining to Martin, saying that he should have remained in El Dorado. Martin advises Candide to get another mistress and is sure that Cacambo and Cunegonde will not be coming to Venice. This doesn’t cheer Candide up, however, and his melancholy persists.
One day he sees a young couple who look happy and in love. He tells Martin that at least some people are happy, but Martin is sure that they are not. To prove his point, Candide invites the young couple to dine with them. He finds out that the girl is none other than Paquette, the serving maid from the Baron’s castle. After revealing her identity, she proceeds to tell him her story. She was cured of the disease by a doctor and became his mistress out of gratitude. She was beaten by the doctor’s wife, and when he poisoned his wife she was sent to jail as the murderer. From there, she became the mistress of the judge who released her, and was passed from man to man. The friar she is with is one of her customers.
Candide realizes that Martin has won half of the wager and decides to get the friar’s story. The friar, although he looks happy, was forced to join the order by his parents and hates his life immensely. Candide finally admits that Martin was right, and gives the couple some money in recompense. He thinks that this will make them happier, but Martin says that having more money will only make them unhappy. In an effort to prove that at least one person on the earth is continually happy, he decides to try and meet with the Senator Pococurante, who is said to be always in good spirits.
The Visit to Lord Pococurante, a Noble Venetian
Candide and Martin call on the Senator Pococurante, one of the richest men in Venice. They are received in the gardens, which are large and beautiful. Although Pococurante’s greeting is relatively indifferent, they are served lunch by beautiful serving girls. When Candide remarks on how pretty they are, the Senator says that he is getting tired of them. After lunch, they go on a tour of his estate. He has a beautiful art gallery, but none of the pictures please him. In his extremely well stocked library, he criticizes many of the great masters such as Homer and Milton. Candide is sad, as he likes many of the authors that the Senator criticizes.
When Candide and Martin leave, Candide remarks that the Senator must be happy because he is above all his possessions. Martin disagrees, saying that he is disgusted by all his possessions and, therefore, cannot be happy. Candide resigns himself once again to waiting for Cunegonde.
Of a Supper Which Candide and Martin Took with Six Strangers, and Who They Were
At the beginning of the Venetian carnivale, Candide is getting ready to dine with six foreigners who are staying at the inn. He about to join them at the dinner table when he is approached by none other than Cacambo. Candide is overjoyed to see his friend and asks where Cunegonde is. She is not in Venice, but Constantinople. Cacambo says he is a slave to one of the men at the table, but that he will arrange to have Candide taken to Cunegonde.
Emotions swirling, Candide sits down to dine. He is happy at going to see Cunegonde, but cannot believe that Cacambo is a slave. After dinner, six servants arrive, one by one, to tell their masters that it is time for them to leave. Each servant calls their master “majesty”, the title given to kings in society. After the servants are gone, Candide asks the men if it is a joke. However, all the men are removed or dethroned kings from around Europe. One king in particular is having a hard time and is poor. The other kings pitch in to help him out, and Candide outdoes them all by giving the man a diamond worth 10 times the other contributions. The others wonder at who he is, and how is can give so much money away without even blinking. Candide, however, is thinking only of going to Constantinople.
Candide’s Voyage to Constantinople
Candide and Martin board the Sultan’s ship, who is the master of Cacambo. Candide happily embraces his friend and remarks that he has faith in Pangloss’s philosophy once again. Candide and Cacambo exchange stories. Cacambo succeeded in rescuing Cunegonde but was taken over by a pirate and sold into slavery. Cunegonde is the serving girl of a prince in Constantinople and washes dishes. Cacambo also reveals that she has lost all her beauty and is now ugly. Candide is disappointed to hear this, but says that he is a man of honor and intends to love Cunegonde anyway.
Eventually, they reach Constantinople and are rowed ashore by some galley slaves. Candide remarks that they look exactly like his dead friends Pangloss and the Baron. Upon hearing this, both men stop in surprise. They are, in fact, Pangloss and the Baron. Overjoyed at being reunited with everyone, Candide buys their freedom along with Cacambo’s and they all set out to rescue Cunegonde.
What Happened to Candide, Cunegonde, Pangloss, Martin, Etc.
The group sets out to rescue Cunegonde and the old woman, and on the way the Baron and Pangloss tell their tales. Candide apologizes to the Baron for stabbing him, but the Baron graciously forgives him. He says that after he was stabbed a surgeon took him in and nursed him back to health. Later, he was abducted by Spanish troops and sent to prison. Eventually, he ended up employed in Constantinople where he was caught bathing with a Muslim. For this crime, he was sent to the galley as a slave.
After hearing the Baron’s story, Candide asks Pangloss to reveal how he survived. Since the Inquisition has more experience burning people than hanging them, they did not tie the knot well, and his flow of air was not entirely cut off. A surgeon took his “corpse” home to dissect it, but when he cut into Pangloss’s body the philosopher screamed. Startled, the surgeon fell back, and his wife came to see what the commotion was. After Pangloss begged for their help the surgeon sewed him back up, and the wife nursed him back to health.
Later, Pangloss entered the service of a Venetian merchant and one day went into a mosque. There, he saw a beautiful young woman accidentally drop a bouquet that lay by her bosom. In returning it, Pangloss “took too long” and was ousted as a Christian. His crime was to be sent to the galley where he met the Baron, and they spent many days arguing about whose crime was worse. Candide asks Pangloss if, after all his hardships, he still believes everything is for the best. Pangloss still thinks that is true and does not renounce his philosophy.
How Candide Found Cunegonde and the Old Woman Again
During their conversation, Candide and the group arrive at the house of the prince. They see Cunegonde and the old woman outside doing laundry. The Baron and Candide are shocked at Cunegonde’s transformation – her skin is browned and wrinkled and she has lost all of her beauty. Candide ransoms Cunegonde and the old woman and decides, with the old woman’s advice, to buy a small farm.
Once they are settled, Cunegonde reminds Candide of his promise to marry her. She is not aware that she is no longer beautiful, and Candide cannot turn her down. The Baron, however, still insists that Candide cannot marry Cunegonde because of their slight difference in royal blood. Candide reminds the Baron of all that he has done for Cunegonde, and the fact that he just rescued the Baron from slavery. Still, the Baron insists that Candide cannot marry his sister while he is alive.
In truth, Candide does not wish to marry Cunegonde because she is so ugly, but wants to prove the Baron wrong. He consults the others, who all have different opinions about how to deal with the Baron. They decide to send him back to the galley without telling Cunegonde, and go ahead with the plan.
Now that Candide is with Cunegonde and all his friends living in peace, he and the others should be happy. However, instead they are miserable and bored. Cunegonde keeps getting uglier and harder to handle, the old woman becomes increasingly feeble, and Cacambo, who works in the garden, curses his work. Martin is the only one who stays the same. From time to time, they still talk about philosophy and good and evil. Candide wonders whether it would be worse to go through more hardships or to be bored as they are now. Martin comes to the conclusion that man is never satisfied. Even Pangloss, though he says everything is for the best, does not truly believe it.
One day Paquette and Friar Giroflee come to the farm. All the money Candide gave them is gone, and they are even worse off than before. Martin gloats at being right in that the money would only bring them more hardship instead of making them happy.
After a while, Candide and the others go to ask a famous Turkish philosopher about all the questions about life and happiness they have not been able to answer. The great philosopher is not helpful and slams the door in their faces. On their way home, they meet an old man who invites them inside for food. Candide is impressed by the man and his children, as well as their simple lifestyle. Most of all, he realizes that they are happier than any others he has encountered on his journey, even the wealthy.
He decides that man was not born to be idle, and that everyone needs to work in the gardens on their estate. Each member of the household learns a skill and helps around the house. Sometimes, Pangloss reflects on the string of events leading up to their life on the farm. Candide listens to him, but always replies that they need to “cultivate the garden.”
Sazed is in his room, studying and transcribing the rubbings he found. He knows that these few pages of transcribed text could keep him busy for months or even years. Vin enters through his window and wants to talk to him about the deepness. Sazed talks about if the deepness is even real or if it’s just a made-up story, some propaganda spun by the Lord Ruler. Vin says she thinks it’s real and tells Sazed that she thinks it’s actually the mist itself. The log book and the rubbings don’t say the mist actually killed people but that people died because of the mist. That could be because a permenant mist that covered the ground would kill crops and live stalk, leaving people to die of starvation. Vin also tells Sazed about the mist spirit that has been following her.
The assembly gathers, and Elend gets an opportunity to explain what he has done with his father. He uses twenty minutes to tell of the situation with the two armies and how his meeting with Straff went. He tells them that he used Vin’s power to threaten Straff, a move that may protect the city for some time yet. Meanwhile, Vin tries to pay attention to Elend’s meeting. She sees Zane in the crowd, and he smiles at her. They then have nominations for who should run for king. Elend and Lord Penrod are nominated, and, lastly, Cett is nominated. The man reveals himself to be in the crowd.
Vin sits in her room, studying the stacks of papers she has there. OreSeur is there with her, and they talk about the religious beliefs of the kandra. They practically worship the Contract above all else, the agreement they have with their human masters. Meanwhile, Elend discovers that some of the wells in Luthadel are being poisoned by someone, probably one of the armies outside. Vin talks to Dockson, and in the conversation, she determines that he can’t be the spy. She and OreSeur turn their attentions toward a new option: Demoux, a captain of the guard.
Elend works to find a way to convince the assembly to name him king again, while Vin wants to tell him her theory about Demoux. Tindwyle gets upset with Sazed when she finds out that he helped write part of the laws Elend put into place a year ago. Vin leaves the group and finds Zane, who immediately attacks her. She thinks he wants to spar, like before, but the fight becomes aggressive and Vin must fight him to survive. Zane tells her that he was ordered to kill her and that this attack was a warning. There are also many refugees coming from the koloss army, on their way to seek refuge in Luthadel. After giving his two warnings, Zane leaves.
Vin tries on another custom-made dress. Tindwyl tells her that Elend has nearly learned as much as he can from her; he’ll now have to learn to be a good leader through experience. Elend prepares his armored escort and carriage to go and see Cett. Breeze decides not to go, since he and Cett have history, which would only make the situation worse. When Elend and Vin actually enter the keep Cett is staying in and talk to the man, they discover just how sincere he is. He doesn’t want his daughter back, trusting that Elend will take good care of her. Cett wants Elend to step down from the election for king, and in return he won’t have Elend killed when he is made king. They also talk about the fact that no atium was found in all of Luthadel. Finally, Cett dismisses the two.
Sazed wanders through warehouse full of refugees from the koloss attacks, trying to help and health where he can. Tindwyl comes in and talks to him. She wants to see what he’s found–the rubbings he’s been transcribing. Meanwhile, Breeze has been listening in on the conversation, soothing both people in a way that would make them more friendly to each other. He walks among the refugees, trying to sooth away bad emotions and make them feel better. Elend and Ham come in, and Elend wants to make sure all the people have the clothes they need. Later, Breeze goes into the keep and has a secret meeting with Clubs. Though they always seem to hate each other, they drink together and talk; they’ve struck up a strange companionship. Allrianne walks in and tries to steal Breeze away. Vin, watching from outside, discovers that Allrianne is a rioter, since she was rioting Breeze’s emotions. She and OreSeur then go to find Demoux, still certain that he is the kandra spy. They find him in a little meeting of the church of the Survivor. He can’t be a spy, Vin decides. Then who is?
Sazed and Tindwyl sit together in the study, pouring over the rubbings, searching their metalminds for any references to the deepness or Hero of Ages. It’s morning, meaning they’ve been at it all night long. Tindwyl knows the course of actions Sazed takes is different from what the keepers want, but she is willing to stay with him and study these things further. Meanwhile, Elend and Ham walk along the wall. Ham comments that Elend looks more kingly than ever. As they walk, Elend announces that he has an idea to help Luthadel’s situation.
Vin, Elend, and the rest of the crew arrive early for the day of the election for king. Before the voting begins, Vin, trying to figure out what Elend has up his sleeve, discovers that he has joined the church of the Savior, in an effort to curry votes from the skaa members of the assembly. Suddenly, a groups of allomancers attack Elend and Cett. Vin manages to fight off the men, getting badly hurt in the process. After the fighting, the vote is moved to a more secure location, and the assembly members each announce their vote. Surprisingly, Penrod, a nobleman from the assembly is chosen the new king. Elend hands over his crown and leaves.
Straff Venture is angry that Zane sent a group of his allomancers to their deaths while Vin still lives. Zane promises that he has a plan to take care of her. Meanwhile, Straff meets with Penrod, the new king of Luthadel. Penrod is planning to give Luthadel to Straff, opening the gates to him and handing over the kingship. Straff, on the other hand, doesn’t want to enter the city while Vin still lives. Later, Zane tells Straff that he has been poisoned again. Zane leaves, and Straff is forced to ride hard back into the camp so his mistress can make him another antidote tea.
Vin awakes to see that Elend is with her. He tells her that he is not king, and he reports that OreSeur, who was badly hurt in the fight, is currently digesting a new set of bones. Vin feels that Elend is now scared of her somehow because of the way she fought those allomancers. Vin goes back to sleep, and awakes to find Zane there. He accuses her, saying that she could have killed those attackers easily had she not been so distracted with protecting Elend and other innocents. Later, OreSeur visits Vin, in another dog’s body. They talk more about the Contract that binds all kandra. Vin uses brass and duralumin to push strongly on OreSeur’s emotions. Even though he at first does not react at all, with enough force, Vin hurts him very badly, and she felt like she were controlling him for a moment. She apologizes for hurting OreSeur, and he leaves to get some rest. Vin promise to never tell anyone what she’s discovered about kandra.
Sazed and Tindwyl continue to talk about the things they are learning. Something doesn’t make sense about the rubbings, written by Kwaan. It seems that Kwaan did not trust Alendi, but he also knew Alendi was a good man. But if Kwaan knew Alendi was good, why did he have his nephew, Rashek, to mislead or even kill Alendi? Elend comes in and asks for advice. After a discussion, he decides that being king isn’t about a title, but about doing something to help others. He returns to his closet and retrieves the white suite, the one made for a king.
Elend is hard at work, helping the people. He’s sending men out to dismantle the wooden parts of keeps and houses to use as firewood. The many refugees are cold and hungry, and he wants to help them. Someone comes with news that one of the gates under the river has been broken. That is how someone has been getting into the city and poisoning the wells. Also, other reports say that an Inquisitor is lurking about the city. Elend decides to go out and talk to Jastes, with the koloss army, himself. He rides out and meets Jastes, unable to make any kind of deal. On the way out, Elend manages to fight and kill one smaller koloss, earning the sword and pouch as his own. He looks into the pouch and discovers how Jastes is controlling the koloss. He’s paying them.
Vin sees Elend, now returned from his meet with the koloss army, inured and resting. Zanes comes and says that Cett was the one that planed the attack at the voting ceremony. Vin gets angry and decides to attack Cett. Zane and Vin attack the keep that Cett has been staying at in Luthadel. Together, they kill guards and hazekillers. Fueled by rage, Vin kills quickly, working her way to Cett’s room. She realizes that Zane is using atium, while she has none, and yet she’s killing just as easily as he is. They finally get to Cett’s room, where he is with his son. Vin fights them at first, but when she discovers that neither of them is an allomancer and that Cett doesn’t have a single allomancer with him, she leaves them behind, injured and scared.
The crew sees that Cett’s army is now leaving, a result of Vin’s attack on his keep the night before. Elend does not know why Vin attacked Cett like that. Some in the crew think she’s crazy, but Elend just sees her as determined. They also discover that the “coins” Jastes has been using to control the koloss are fake, wooden coins painted gold. Elend goes to find Vin, who is hiding in the city. He finds her with OreSeur’s help. She says she must leave Luthadel and go north, to Terris. Elend says he trust her to do the right thing. They have one large bead of atium, and Vin gives it to OreSeur to hold for her.
Sazed and Tindwyl compare notes, studying the rubbing and other references they’ve managed to find. Tindwyl admits that she doesn’t believe in these prophecies, her interest in them being purely academic. Sazed, on the other hand, thinks Vin might actually be the next Hero of the Ages. While they talk, they discover that someone–or something–has torn a piece from one of the transcription pages. Vin comes in, while they try to figure out at what point were they both gone or occupied to not have seen an intruder going through their things. Vin asks Sazed how she can know if she’s in love. They talk about trust. After Vin leaves, Elend comes in and starts asking similar questions. Elend thinks he and Vin are too different to make a couple, but Sazed says that, to him, they are more alike than they think. After Elend leaves, Sazed realizes that Luthadel is going to fall soon; he needs to get both Elend and Vin out of the city before that happens.
Sazed calls a meeting with the members of the crew: Dockson, Breeze, Ham, and Clubs. He doesn’t invite Elend, Vin, or Spook. They talk about how the city is sure to fall. Straff apparently is in no hurry to take Luthadel. Instead, he’ll back off and let the koloss attack the city first. The koloss will win and enter the city, pillaging as they go. Then, with the koloss weakened and tired from the fight, Venture will ride in like a hero and save the city, defeating the koloss and taking Luthadel for himself. Sazed says that Elend and Vin need to get out of the city before these things happen. He wants Spook and Tindwyl to go with them. The rest of the group will have to stay and fight and die. Meanwhile, Vin feels she must follow the drumming she hears all the time. In Straff’s camp, Zane is attacked by his father’s men. He defeats them, but spares his father. He leaves, saying that tonight he will take Vin with him and leave Luthadel. He tells Straff that he should wait for the koloss to attack and then take the city.
Vin is in her room with OreSeur when Zane visits. He wants her to come with him, but she says she can’t because she doesn’t want to leave Elend. When Zane sees that she won’t go, he attacks her. They fight. When Zane starts to burn atium, Vin asks OreSeur for the large bead, a bead Zan had given her before. OreSeur doesn’t respond to her command. Vin discovers that OreSeur is not OreSeur. He is TenSoon, Zane’s kandra. Of course! There was no other spy. The bones they found were TenSoon’s and he had killed OreSeur! Zane corners Vin, but Vin uses a massive soothing to take control of OreSeur/TenSoon and attack Zane from behind. She then cuts the bead of atium fro TenSoon. But this is another trick. The bead is lead, with only a thin layer of atium. Soon, Vin is left helpless against a Mistborn killer with atium. Vin decides that Zane can see what she’s about to do, or, rather, what she plans on doing. If she attacks without thinking, though, she can, see in Zane’s reaction what she is going to do, only to change it at the last possible second. The trick works, and Vin defeats Zane. After Zane dies, she thanks OreSeur/TenSoon for helping her win. His contract is void, and he must return to his people. Vin goes to find Elend.
Elend is in his study when Vin comes in, bloody from her fight with Zane. She tells him that she killed him. He calls for Sazed, who comes to help with the wounds. While she is there, on the ground, she asks Sazed if he knows any wedding ceremonies. Of course, he knows hundreds. Vin asks which one is the shortest, and Sazed recalls one that only requires a declaration of love between the bride and groom before an ordained witness. Vin and Elend both say that they love each other, and Sazed declares them married. The wounds are clean, and Sazed sends Vin to get some rest. He also gives them a fake map to find the Well of Ascension. If the couple follows the map, they’ll be gone from Luthadel for a long time.
Elend and Vin prepare to ride out of the city. Tindwyl decides to stay in Luthadel. Spooks gets ready to go, and Allrianne will ride out, at Breeze’s insistence. So the four of them ride out, Vin quickly having to fight pursuers from Straff’s army. Once they are free, Allrianne breaks off to find her father’s army. Meanwhile, some of the crew watch as the escape, now sure of their own coming doom. Straff Venture hears of the escapes, but he has problems of his own now. He’s getting sick, which he knows is the result of poisoning from his son, Zane. He sends for his mistress, Amaranta, to fix him an antidote, but he discovers that she isn’t preparing what she normally does. She is actually killing, as she has for a long time. There never was any poison. Zane never tried to kill his father. But Amaranta, in her constant fixing of teas for Straff, has been causing him to become addicted to a rare drug. Without that drug, Straff will die. Straff, in a rage, kills Amaranta and then swallows as much powder from her medicine cabnet as he can, hoping to accidentally swallow some of the drug he needs before he loses consciousness.
Allrianne has made her way to her father’s camp, with the help of some bandits she’s tamed with her rioting. Her father, Cett, is not happy to see her. She convinces him to go back and join the winning party in the battle that is to come, although Cett promises that will likely be Straff. Meanwhile, Elend wakes up on the third morning out of Luthadel. He and Vin share a tent now, and he finds himself surprisingly comfortable on the hard ground, with Vin next to him. They get up and prepare the fire. It’s just the three of them: Elend, Vin, and Spook. Meanwhile Straff wakes up in bed. His men have taken care of him, and they’ve isolated the plant he needs to stay alive. When he hears that Vin and Elend have left the city, the men ask if they should attack now. Straff says no; they should pull back and wait for the koloss. Sazed meets with the others to plan a strategy for when the koloss attack. They plan to have a group of men at each gate. Saze and Tindwyl get a little time together, but then the warning drums begin to beat.
Vin is thinking about how the mist is staying later and later every day, instead of just disappearing with dawn, when she feels the pulsing of the mist spirit coming from Elend’s tent. She runs in, just in time to see the outline of that spirit lift some kind of knife to attack Elend, who is sleeping on the ground. She attacks the spirit and it disappears. Elend wakes up and never knows what was happening. She leaves Elend to sleep a little more and goes out to speak with Spook. He thinks someone is following them. Meanwhile, Sazed and the crew get ready, since it looks like the Koloss are about to attack. Men are at each gate, with one crewmember there to help. Straff sees that the koloss are attacking, but he tells his men to wait. Vin and Elend attack the camp of people that have been following them. It turns out to be Jastes. He’s lost control of the koloss, so he just left them. Elend kills Jastes because of his crimes against Luthadel. Vin discovers that the drumming sounds are getting softer, meaning the well is to the south, in Luthadel, and not in the Terris mountains.
Breeze works at his assigned gate, soothing soldiers by the dozen, helping them to be brave and fight well. The koloss pound at the door, while men atop the wall rain arrows down on the attackers. The koloss throw rocks up in return, smashing archers. Meanwhile, Vin runs towards Luthadel, burning pewter. She knows she will run out of pewter long before reaching Luthadel, and she wonders if the effect will kill her. But still she keeps running. Breeze and Clubs talk while the koloss continue to beat the gate. They blame themselves for being stupid enough to be in this mess, and they blame Kelsier for getting them into such responsibilities. Just then, the gates burst open. Meanwhile, Sazed gets word that Breeze’s gate had fallen. He doesn’t think he can really help. He notices that there is a crowd of skaa standing behind the defense force. When Sazed confronts them, telling them that they should flee to safety inside the city, the skaa answer that they are there to witness the fall of the koloss at the hands of Vin, who they are sure will return and make her appearance at Sazed’s gate. Then the gate breaks. Sazed musters his stored strength, growing in size, and faces the lead koloss, shouting for the men to fight. Vin, half collapsing and out of pewter, reaching a small village. At first she thinks to ask for pewter, but then she remembers how she used to travel with Kelsier on a path of metal bars in the ground. She asks for horseshoes, using them to “walk” by leaping, placing horseshoes ahead of her and pulling the ones behind to place further. In this way, she uses the horseshoes like stilts to help her travel in the air.
Outside Luthadel, Straff Venture sees that the koloss have now broken into the city gates. His men are ready to attack the koloss from the rear, but Straff decides to wait longer. Sazed, fighting the koloss, realizes that they need to get the gate closed again in order to survive. Using strength and weight, he manages to fight off the koloss and get the gate closed again. While getting a little break, a messenger comes and says that Tindwyl’s gate fell over an hour ago. Meanwhile, Clubs and Breeze are attacked and forced to run. Clubs is killed, while Breeze hides in a building. Dockson contemplates the root of their failure. He attacks a koloss, only to be cut down. Straff decides not to swoop in a save the city while the koloss are weak. Instead, he’d rather wait for the koloss to kill everyone and burn the city. Then Straff will move in. Meanwhile, Sazed fights on, wondering what happened to Tindwyl. He feels he is going to die, but then Vin arrives and starts killing koloss. Breeze is found by Ham and some others. They want to try to escape.
Vin continues killing koloss, several at a time. Sazed, outside Lord Penrod’s keep, begs the newly appointed king to go with them as they try to escape. Penrod insists on staying inside his keep. Vin continues to fight the koloss, but now she is almost completely out of pewter, steel, and almost every other metal. In desperation, to save some skaa from certain death, she super-soothes them, like she’d done to TenSoon, controlling the koloss with her mind. Sazed is standing outside Penrod’s keep when Vin walks up with koloss in tow. She orders Penrod to gather his men and put out the fires in Luthadel. Vin will take care of the koloss throughout the city. Later, Sazed finds Tindwyl’s dead body among the slain soldiers. He feels that all the faith, all the religions, he has always treasured is now useless. His life, he believes, has been a sham.
Straff wakes up and takes a sample of the drug he needs to stay alive. He gathers his men, expecting to be able to take the city now. But the koloss come out with the remaining soldiers of Luthadel. Vin jumps from among the koloss, sailing through the sky with a giant sword, cleaving Straff and his horse in half on impact. Allrianne watches these events from her father’s camp. She charges after them to help Luthadel’s army, forcing her father and his men to ride after her. Straff’s army surrenders, and Janarle, Straff’s general, is named the new Lord of the Venture army. Janarle, Penrod, and Cett all swear loyalty to Elend as their Emperor. Vin, needing rest, leaves Sazed in charge of the Empire until Elend can return to Luthadel.