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Altneuland- Theodor Herzl's Zionist Utopia

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Friedrich stepped to the balustrade and looked out over the landscape. The shimmering blue waters of Lake Kinneret. The shores and distant heights softly outlined in the spring air. The steep declivities of the Jaulan hills on the farther side of the lake, mirrored in its depths. The Jordan flowing into the northern end of the lake. In the distance, the majestic, snow-crowned Hermon, a venerable giant overlooking the smaller ranges and the rejuvenated land. To the left, nearer the town, gentle inlets, lovely beaches, the plain of Kinneret, Magdala, Tiberias itself-a new gem set among the dark ruins of the fortress on the hillside. Verdure and bloom everywhere. A young world, and fragrant.

"The Garden of Eden, indeed!" murmured Friedrich to himself. As he felt Miriam standing beside him, he caught her hand and pressed it softly, as if to thank her that life could still be so beautiful.

The invalid saw from her chair, and her heart beat faster for joy.

"Children!" she murmured inaudibly, and sank into reverie.


The little villa which the Littwaks had rented for the period of the cure was too small to house all the guests. Miriam remained with her parents, while David reserved rooms for the rest of the party at a hotel near the baths. The baggage had been sent on ahead. After greeting the elder Littwaks, they drove to the hotel, where they found everything arranged for their convenience and comfort.

Entering the lobby, they were cordially greeted by an elderly lady and two gentlemen. David made the necessary introductions. The lady was Mrs. Gothland, an American Jewess, whose manner was so winning that people always took to her at once. Under its frame of gray hair, her face was still fascinating. The gentleman in the black Anglican clerical frock was the Reverend William H. Hopkins of the English church in Jerusalem. He had a long, patriarchal white beard, and dreamy blue eyes. To Kingscourt's astonishment, he felt complimented when the former took him for a Jew. The second gentleman was Professor Steineck, a bacteriologist, and brother of the architect of that name. The professor was a jolly, quick-tempered, absentminded scholar, who always spoke as if lecturing to an audience of partially deaf people. He and his brother idolized each other, but usually quarreled within five minutes after they met. So it was on this occasion. The architect had suggested that the strangers visit the Steineck Institute, his brother's famous laboratory.

The professor frowned. "I don't mind, understand," he shouted, "but there's nothing to see when you get there. Not worth the trouble. A house with some rooms and some hutches for guinea pigs. In each room, a worker making experiments. That's all. Understand? My brother always gets me into these dilemmas!"

Mrs. Gothland smiled. "The gentlemen don't believe you. Everyone knows that your Institute is one of the sights of this country."

Professor Steineck roared until the room re-echoed. "Nothing of the sort! Is it microbes you want to see? It's characteristic of microbes that they can't be seen. Not with the naked eye, at any rate. They're fine sights. Everyone knows I don't believe in microbes. I breed them with one hand and fight them with the other. Understand?"

"No!" roared Kingscourt, delighted. "Not a word. Seems to be some kind of chemical kitchen. What do you cook there, Professor?"

"Pest, cholera, diphtheria, childbed fever, tuberculosis, hydrophobia, malaria, smirked the Professor.

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