Thomas Müntzer is to God as a vulture is to Egypt

The enormous white ruins looked like a troop of ghosts.  I spent a night at the foot of the Colossus of Memnon, devoured by mosquitoes.  The old rascal has a fine fce - he's covered in graffiti.  Graffiti and birdshit, these are the only two things on the ruins of Egypt that indicate life.  Not one blade of grass on even the most eroded stones.  They crumble to powder, like a mummy, and that is all.  The graffiti left by travelers and the droppings of the birds of prey are the only two ornaments of decay.  You often see a great tall obelisk with a long white stain down it like a curtain, wider at the top and narrrowing toward the base.  It's the vultures; they've been coming there fore centuries to shit.  The effect is very striking, and curiously symbolic.  Nature said to the monuments of Egypt: you want nothing to do with me?  Not even lichen will grow upon you?  All right then, damn it, I shall shit all over you.

Flaubert, a letter from his trip to Egypt

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