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Main Page The Childhood of Jesus CYOU-266 Chapter

Chapter 266. – Cornelius asks if Cyrenius is aware of Joseph's departure. Joseph's answer. Cornelius explains the secret Roman letters.

266,1. Afterwards Cornelius asked Joseph, whether Cyrenius already knew that Joseph had left Egypt.

266,2. And in case he would not know, if one should inform him immediately out of political considerations.

266,3. And Joseph said: "Friend, do as you wish as regards your brother;

266,4. but I request you to tell him that he should not come here too soon!

266,5. And when he wants to come at all, he should come under cover of darkness, so that nobody notices his appearance here,

266,6. and no unnecessary attention is attracted, which could be harmful for me and the Child and disturb the divine peace in my house!"

266,7. When Cornelius heard this from Joseph he said:

266,8. "O my most noble friend, do not worry! – For as far as approaching someone incognito is concerned, we Romans are masters!

266,9. And when I come to Jerusalem tomorrow, it shall be my first business to quietly inform my brother through a secret letter about your presence here.

266,10. I would, if need be, send Archelaus himself to my brother with such a letter, and he would not know what is written in it, even with the letter unsealed in his hands!"

266,11. But Joseph asked Cornelius, how such a secret letter would be possible.

266,12. And Cornelius spoke: "O most noble friend! Nothing easier than that!

266,13. Look, you take a long strip of parchment, about a finger wide.

266,14. Then you wrap this strip like a snail shell around a round stick, so that the edges touch each other nicely.

266,15. When the strip is wound over the round stick, one writes his secret lengthwise across the windings of the parchment strip.

266,16. And Cyrenius has a stick of exactly the same thickness as mine.

266,17. When I have finished the letter, it will be unwound from the stick and sent safely and openly to my brother through someone, –

266,18. and without the same stick, no one will be able to decipher the content of such a letter even vaguely;

266,19. for on the strip he discovers nothing but single characters or at the most, syllables, from which he can never deduct what is written on the strip! – Joseph, did you understand me?"

266,20. And Joseph spoke: "Absolutely, dearest brother!

266,21. Thus you may write to your brother; because no one will likely decipher the secret!"

266,22. After that Cornelius turned to Eudokia and discussed various things with her.

Main Page The Childhood of Jesus CYOU-266 Chapter