On Wednesday, October 12, 2016 at 7:46:55 PM UTC-7, Maria wrote:
> Yes that is so kind of you to share the information with me.
> Thank you Linda.
> Wow- that was tough living. It makes me think about the conditions of our
> ancestors. We are so abundantly blessed today to have the necessities of
> life and then some. I can't imagine how hard their lives were.
> Sent from my iPhone
> Hi Maria Elena,
> Mendicant denotes begging, but, no, I don't think we can assume
> homelessness. Nineteenth century travel writers to the Azores describe the
> material poverty and the custom of begging, but I don't recall reading any
> accounts of homeless elderly women.
> Ok, here's a quick summary of a description from one of the books I have:
> Saturday was the customary day they made their rounds; the beggars the
> author observed (on Sao Miguel) were all elderly impoverished women. He
> says that "Mendicity [sic] is confined to the aged and infirm poor and to
> the crippled and blind, for whom there is no legal provision. They are
> therefore dependent on the charity of the wealthy, to whom they make a
> weekly application and receive alms." "Their strength is to sit still; and
> they will wait on a staircase or at a gate for more than an hour, in dismal
> expectation of the smallest pittance." During the period when your Barbara
> Velha lived, the monasteries and convents distributed surplus food to the
> beggars as well as alms; later the religious houses were dissolved, and the
> author (writing about 20 years afterwards, if I recall correctly) suggests
> that added a bit more hardship to their lives.
> I recall reading an obito for a man in Cedros, Flores where the priest
> wrote that the man's occupation was "a beggar and nothing more". His tone
> struck me as exasperated, and now I wish I'd noted where exactly I saw it
> because now I'd like to look at it again.
> hope that's useful for you,
> On Wednesday, October 12, 2016 at 4:43:07 AM UTC-7, Maria wrote:
>> Linda, thank you for clarifying. Yeah, i saw those words, "that "she
>> had nothing". I looked to see if it said that in the other obits but it
>> didn't. And the priest used the word " VELHA" ( as in old? I wondered )
>> to punctuate her status.
>> It saddens me that with grown children the mother would be homeless.
>> Does mendicante also mean homeless (?)
>> Maria Elena
>> On Oct 11, 2016, at 10:34 PM, linda <menese...@gmail.com> wrote:
>> Barbara Velha, a widow, an aged beggar, "...died with all the sacraments
>> of the sainted church; she made no will for she had nothing; she was buried
>> in the churchyard near the main door of this church..."
>> I've read that in the mid/late19th century, it was the custom that on one
>> day of the week (Sundays, I think, but am not sure now) the poor of a
>> parish would go from door to door collecting alms, and that it was the
>> practice to give something if one could. The wealthier one was, the more
>> obligated to give alms-- not forgetting the religious obligation as well.
>> I don't know if this was the case earlier too, but I wouldn't be surprised
>> if it was a centuries old tradition. Anyway, my impression is that begging
>> was sort of an informal socio-religious based welfare system.
>> hope that helps,
>> On Tuesday, October 11, 2016 at 6:42:23 PM UTC-7, Maria wrote:
>>> LEFT side first name- BARBARA VELHA
>>> This is the second widowed woman in the same time frame where the priest
>>> wrote "mendicante" which I think in (spanish) it's a beggar. Wow! That
>>> very sad considering they had grown children. I can visualize them in rags
>>> begging on the street and even though it was so long ago, it breaks my
>>> heart to think they were left to beg when they were widowed. Maybe there's
>>> a better translation for mendicante. Also, I couldn't figure out where she
>>> was buried and wondered if someone could translate that about the burial(?)
>>> please? Some municipal place.
>>> Maria Elena
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