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Tales_Fulgencio_Orozco - 26 ~ Tales of Potosi T he Strange...

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26 ~ Tales of Potosi Biscayans simultaneously, with such skill that four of them went rolling down the roof and two never rose again. The Basques fired their harquebuses all at once, and luck favored them, for they killed one of the overseers and wounded two servants. Meanwhile the owners of the house opened the doors and the Indians went outside, and from an alley (the same one by which the Biscayans had approached) they loosed a shower of stones that wounded or knocked to the ground so many of the intruders that the rest fled, some of them throwing them- selves off the bridge. Such was the behavior of the wretched inhabitants of Potosi in their insane gang warfare. Many were the fights and brawls engaged in by twos, by fours, and by groups of ten and twenty on a side during the course of that year. And in them (as Captain Pedro Mendez and Don Antonio Acosta tell us) many noblemen of both Spain and the Indies perished. 1612 The Strange Case of Fulgencio Orozco N 1610 there arrived in this imperial city of Potosi a hidal~ named Fu~encio Orozco, of the kingdoms -of-spain. He WE fty years of age. strong of b.ruiy4 ~face, and terrible of glance; he lacked worldly goods and because of that had set out to improve his condition. The charitable inhabitants of Potosi helped him, as they are wont to do, and after having satisfied his most pressing needs they procured employment for him as ~r~ of an ore refinery so that by his own efforts he cOUld not only earn his bread but also try to save some money. He went to work with great enthusiasm but in vain, for his misfortune was such that he could acquire noth- ing useful for his worthy purpose. He worked hard at other employments, projects, and attempts to earn money, but in none was he successful; this must have been for his own good, since God's divine majesty invariably bestows on every man that which is appropriate for him. After a year and eight months of unproductive work, seeing that he had not saved anything, he became so desperate that (behaving as though he were no Christian) he shouted a thousand blasphemies and loosed as many curses; and refusing to accept good advice or to discuss the matter reasonably he went to the royal hospital. It appeared from the dreadful threats he made that he wished quickly to end his life, either because he was suffering from some illness or because of his very rage and despair. When he began to curse Christ our Savior and the holy saints, all who heard him thought that he was merely raving and that his c':!!s.es were amadorn..iospk~d ~ the devit Apparently the evil spirit spoke to him in secret, and the sick man seemed to be listening to him, for he screamed out, "What do you want of me? I am doing what you command, I have fulfilled my promise to you, yet you have done nothing of what you promised me." , When those who were present heard him say this, they \
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28 ~ Tales of Potosi supposed him to be possessed and went to call the Very Rev- erend Padre Maestro Fray Antonio de la Calancha (who at the time was chief preacher in his monastery, that
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Tales_Fulgencio_Orozco - 26 ~ Tales of Potosi T he Strange...

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