Obscure? Damn straight it’s obscure.
An authentic man of marvels, as late as 1814, a man who breathed smoke, cured palsies, spoke in all tongues . . . and we have one reference to him? The Georgians loved this stuff. He should have been a sensation. There should have been satirical cartoons.
Instead, one chance account from an Italian noble – who never left home himself – visited by António de Tonti, a traveller whose own diaries were lost. Getting the picture?
And his collections. Roman silver. Norman gold. Exquisite Saxon enamelwork. Not mentioned in any gazetteer or catalogue. ‘And he seemed not to care for any of it, except that it glittered.’
Need I continue? Darker hints. That missing maid – and no mention of her in the newssheets, either. This isn’t just obscure, gentlemen. It’s been obscured.
If you want to find a dragon in hiding, I suggest you start here.
I had a blast with the VisDare prompt this week. See what other writers made of it here.