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Handwritten letter from Joaquim Nabuco (1898)

Handwritten letter from Joaquim Nabuco (1898)

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Retired from political life after the end of the monarchy, abolitionist Joaquim Nabuco responds to a request from the prestigious Brazilian Historical and Geographical Institute.

  • Handwritten letter from Joaquim Nabuco to Henri Raffard.
  • One sheet, two pages.
  • In Portuguese, 11 cm x 16.5 cm.
  • May 11, 1898, Maricá (RJ), Brazil.
  • Excellent condition.
  • Unique piece.

Pilar Farm, Maricá

May 11, 1898

My dear friend Mr. Raffard,

I see that the Institute adopted the date of May 20th for its commemoration. On that day, unfortunately, I won't be able to be in the city, I have come to “the countryside” because of my health and there is very little time to return - and with a speech. Please apologize to the Institute. It's a beautiful opportunity for others to exalt the Portuguese: for my part, I've done it enough and so many times that it would be monotonous for those listening to me. I will not telegraph you because this entire explanation cannot be contained in a telegram. Believe me, I am very sincere

Your friend and confidant [?]

Joaquim Nabuco

Known for his fight against slavery, being the founder of the Brazilian Anti-Slavery Society, Joaquim Nabuco (1849 - 1910) strongly criticized the Catholic Church, which, in his view, would not have defended the emancipation of slaves in Brazil. Furthermore, he defended religious freedom and the separation of State and Church. He was also a historian, jurist and journalist, in addition to being one of the founders of the Brazilian Academy of Letters. He assumed the position of Brazilian ambassador to the United States, between 1905 and 1910, at the end of his life.

With the advent of the Republic and Monarchist, Joaquim Nabuco retired from public life, married and had five children, dedicated himself to journalism, his work and studies. It was at that time that this letter was written on the Pilar farm, which belonged to Joaquim Nabuco's family. Also an interesting fact, Princess Isabel visited Maricá in 1868, stayed at the Farm and participated in a ball in her honor in the main hall of the Maricá City Council.

The recipient of this letter is called Henri Raffard (1851-1906), he was the son of a Swiss consul general, merchant, industrialist and elected first secretary of the IHGB from 1891 until his death. The IHGB is the oldest and most traditional entity supporting research and preservation of history and geography, culture and social sciences in Brazil, it was created in 1838.

Joaquim Nabuco is seen as one of the great names in the History of Brazil, he is considered a hero of the country and honored in several instances and monuments: his autograph documents appear very rarely, especially in excellent condition, with an important recipient (the IHGB) and a interesting content that reports a certain tiredness on the part of Nabuco “ It is a beautiful opportunity for others to praise the Portuguese: for my part I have already done it enough and so many times that it would be monotonous for those who listen to me”.

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