the thread can only be cut by the one who has suspended it? '
'Yes, yes,' said Pilate, smiling. ' I now have no doubt that the idle
gapers of Jerusalem have been pursuing you. I do not know who strung up your
tongue, but he strung it well. By the way. tell me, is it true that you
entered Jerusalem by the Susim Gate mounted on a donkey, accompanied by a
rabble who greeted you as though you were a prophet? ' Here the Procurator
pointed to a scroll of parchment.
The prisoner stared dubiously at the Procurator.
'I have no donkey, hegemon,' he said. ' I certainly came into
Jerusalem through the Susim Gate, but I came on foot alone except for
Matthew the Levite and nobody shouted a word to me as no one in Jerusalem
knew me then.'
'Do you happen to know,' went on Pilate without taking his eyes off
the prisoner, ' anyone called Dismas? Or Hestas? Or a third--Bar-Abba? '
'I do not know these good men,' replied the prisoner.
'Is that the truth? '
'And now tell me why you always use that _expression_ " good men "? Is
that what you call everybody? '
'Yes, everybody,' answered the prisoner. ' There are no evil people
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