Purgatory in Painting
“No, my Lord,” says he, “I did it on purpose.”
“Then you must destroy that figure, for it is an outrage on the original.”
“I shall do no such a thing, my Lord, and your Lordship will not ask me to do it, I am sure, when you hear my reasons. Last year, this Reverend Abbot proved in one of his sermons that those who die without having made satisfaction are detained in the flames of Purgatory till they have paid their debts. Now his Procurator has owed me a hundred crowns these two years past, and I am not yet paid. So that is just the reason why I thought myself authorized to place the Abbot in my Purgatory. I assure you, my Lord, I will leave him there forever, unless your Lordship will have the goodness to see me paid.”
The Prelate and all who were present could not help laughing at this singular justification.
The complainant himself could not object to the demand thus made; he acquitted himself with a good grace, and ordered his Procurator to pay the hundred crowns. The Sculptor, on his side, modified the figure in Purgatory, and represented it ascending to Heaven, like a Soul which has fully satisfied the justice of God.