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Maarten Janssen, 2014-
|Author(s)||Joaquim de Mira|
Private letter from Joaquim de Mira, farmer, to an anonymous who had sent extortion letters to him.
The author replies to the second letter of extortion, excusing himself for not observing all the orders previously given to him by the recipient.
In the first quarter of the 19th century, extortion letters became a very typical practice. Authors threatened rich addressees with all sorts of ruinous events in the case they didn't hand in a certain amount of money. The frequentness of this practice was possible also because of the political and social turmoil associated with these first years of Liberalism.
I will be very pleased to know that these few lines will find you in good health.
I've received two letters from you, but when I received the first one, Saturday had already passed, because Xelrrito spent the night here, on his way to Alcácer, and when he left, he found it (the letter) under the door and put it in his pocket. And he felt curious on the way and he couldn't keep a secret and told it to whoever he felt like it [...]. Moreover, I asked him to keep it a secret and, if you don't believe me, ask Xelrrito whether this is true. Sir, as far as the 4 coins you asked me are concerned, I couldn't get them because I had bought 30 bushels of rye a few days ago and I have run out of money. Sir, I'm sending you a gold coin because I borrowed 4 coins from some friends but all they have lent me is this coin I'm sending you. And I also send you a bushel and a half of flour, because that was all I had at home. Furthermore, I also send you some bread and meat. I would like to know whether it satisfies you.
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