The Eye of the Needle

The dangers to which we are exposed from our Women must now be manifest to the meanest capacity in Spaceland. If even the angle of a respectable Triangle in the middle class is not without its dangers; if to run against a Working Man involves a gash; if collision with an Officer of the military class necessitates a serious wound; if a mere touch from the vertex of a Private Soldier brings with it danger of death; -- what can it be to run against a woman, except absolute and immediate destruction?

And when a Woman is invisible, or visible only as a dim sub-lustrous point, how difficult must it be, even for the most cautious, always to avoid collision!
Many are the enactments made at different times in the different States of Flatland, in order to minimize this peril; and in the Southern and less temperate climates, where the force of gravitation is greater, and human beings more liable to casual and involuntary motions, the Laws concerning Women are naturally much more stringent. But a general view of the Code may be obtained from the following summary: --
1. Every house shall have one entrance on the Eastern side, for the use of Females only; by which all females shall enter "in a becoming and respectful manner" and not by the Men's or Western door.
2. No Female shall walk in any public place without continually keeping up her Peace-cry, under
penalty of death.
3. Any Female, duly certified to be suffering from St. Vitus's Dance, fits, chronic cold
accompanied by violent sneezing, or any disease necessitating involuntary motions, shall be instantly destroyed.

Excerpt from Flatland, With Illustrations
by the Author, A SQUARE (EDWIN A. ABBOTT), 1884

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