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ago, and the result had been some purely sentimental,

pedagogical drivel! And a third might have edited a

festschrift for some alcoholic sleepwalker in the Academy.

Such was the society’s membership roster – at least for the

most part. The few authors who actually deserved to be

there had been branded “cultural mafia” by the media.

The danger here was that when another Árni Dahl decided

to write a new literary history in half a century or so, that

the person would turn to the Society’s membership roster in

search of fitting representatives. People who were no doubt

skilled with a copy machine would be called notable bearers

of Faroese culture.

Eigil could see only one reason that Dr. Napoleon was

honored with a place among the Faroese full and half gods.

He had the right DNA profile! The doctor was the son of the

old business manager Jákup Nolsøe, and therefore the

nephew of poet and national icon, Nólsoyar-Páll. It was

solely for that reason that Árni Dahl had smuggled him in

through the back door of his literary history!

When Eigil reached Napoleon’s grave, he set down his bag.

It was August 26th, exactly one hundred and eighty-five

years since Napoleon was born. Eigil placed a hand on the

stone and wished him happy birthday; as so often before, he

also asked Napoleon’s forgiveness for having sullied his

sleeping bones.