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by Voltaire

Candide Chapter 30 Summary

  • Candide returns the Baron to his slavery in the galleys.
  • Although the thought of making love to Cunégonde in her current state is really unappealing to Candide, he marries her as a matter of principle.
  • Candide and his friends acquire a farm where they live together.
  • Despite having finally achieved his goal, Candide is unhappy. Cunégonde isn’t attractive anymore, and she and the Old Woman are grumpy.
  • Everyone suffers from profound boredom.
  • Pangloss maintains his "best of all worlds" stance, but it seems like his heart just isn’t in it anymore.
  • One day, Paquette and the monk show up in utter despair.
  • The entire gang seeks the knowledge of a dervish. They basically say, "We are the most unenlightened group ever. Help."
  • The dervish says something like, "Yes, you are. I cannot help you."
  • But he does toss out an interesting question: "When his highness sends a ship to Egypt, does he trouble his head whether the mice on board are at their ease or not?"
  • He then says the best thing to do is stop talking.
  • Pangloss tries to argue about cause and effect, and has the door promptly slammed in his face.
  • Confused, the gang returns to their farm. On the way, they encounter another farmer who invites them into his home.
  • The farmer, also referred to as "an honest Turk," remarks that he has found that working helps him to overcome "the three evils": boredom, vice, and poverty.
  • Candide and his gang take the farmer’s advice and dedicate themselves to working. Life seem to go better for everyone.
  • Pangloss starts to philosophize, but Candide responds by saying they must "cultivate [their] garden."
  • Pangloss tries to philosophize about that, too, but Martin tells them all to stop talking and do their work.
  • Just when you think it’s over, Candide has to cut Pangloss off yet again and tell him to cultivate the garden already.

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