1 I shall have ever present to my memory the dreadful day, on which I saw my father and mother killed, and my sister ravished.
2 I need not tell you how great a hardship it was for a young princess and her mother to be made slaves and carried to Morocco.
3 Instantly they were stripped as bare as monkeys; my mother, our maids of honour, and myself were all served in the same manner.
4 At length I saw all our Italian women, and my mother herself, torn, mangled, massacred, by the monsters who disputed over them.
5 My mother, in despair, and scarcely less afflicted than myself, determined to absent herself for some time from so fatal a place.
6 My mother was still very handsome; our maids of honour, and even our waiting women, had more charms than are to be found in all Africa.
7 I was in bed and fast asleep when it pleased God to send the Bulgarians to our delightful castle of Thunder-ten-Tronckh; they slew my father and brother, and cut my mother in pieces.
8 A Moor seized my mother by the right arm, while my captain's lieutenant held her by the left; a Moorish soldier had hold of her by one leg, and one of our corsairs held her by the other.
9 Cacambo went up to the door and heard they were talking Peruvian; it was his mother tongue, for it is well known that Cacambo was born in Tucuman, in a village where no other language was spoken.
10 One day Cunegonde, while walking near the castle, in a little wood which they called a park, saw between the bushes, Dr. Pangloss giving a lesson in experimental natural philosophy to her mother's chamber-maid, a little brown wench, very pretty and very docile.
11 When the Bulgarians retired, my dear sister could not be found; but my mother, my father, and myself, with two maid-servants and three little boys all of whom had been slain, were put in a hearse, to be conveyed for interment to a chapel belonging to the Jesuits, within two leagues of our family seat.
12 Imagine to yourself the distressed situation of the daughter of a Pope, only fifteen years old, who, in less than three months, had felt the miseries of poverty and slavery, had been ravished almost every day, had beheld her mother drawn in quarters, had experienced famine and war, and was dying of the plague in Algiers.