I did not know where I could spit so as to annoy you less

From Machiavelli’s Life of Castruccio Castracani – from v.2 of the 3v. Allan Gilbert edition.

Once [Castruccio] was invited to supper by Taddeo Barnardi of Lucca, a man very rich and greatly given to display.  After her arrived at the house, Taddeo showed him a room all decorated with tapestries and having a floor made of fine stones which with their different colors, differently combined, represented flower, branches, and similar verdure.  Then Castruccio, having gathered much saliva in his mouth, spat it all in Taddeo’s face; when Taddeo showed offence, Castruccio said: “I did not know where I could spit so as to annoy you less.”

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