“It is indeed so. And it is aware of its weakness. And like a starving animal, it now hungers after anything more vulnerable than itself. Jews and Turks are now entirely safe within our city. All Christians families have little to fear. “But for new Christians like Tristao dangers do remain. Because the conversions of the Jews of Portugal were coerced by King Manuel, the sincerity of Portuguese Christians are always suspect there.”
“In the end, what you or I or anyone else believes will not matter. Do you read Baccaccio, and the story he puts in the mouth of Melchizedek the Jew?”
“He hires a skilled jeweller to fashion two copies of the ring.
“So exact are these replicas that after the old mans death, no one, not even the jeweller can tell which is the original .
“So it is with the Christians, the Mohammedans, the Jews.
“Whether it matters at all?”