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Alexander von Humboldt: „Idea of Mexican Wealth“, in: ders., Sämtliche Schriften digital, herausgegeben von Oliver Lubrich und Thomas Nehrlich, Universität Bern 2021. URL: <https://humboldt.unibe.ch/text/1809-Voyage_de_MM-32-neu> [abgerufen am 15.07.2024].

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Titel Idea of Mexican Wealth
Jahr 1819
Ort Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Nachweis
in: National Recorder 2 (Juli–Dezember 1819), S. 221.
Sprache Englisch
Typografischer Befund Antiqua; Spaltensatz; Auszeichnung: Kursivierung.
Identifikation
Textnummer Druckausgabe: II.76
Dateiname: 1809-Voyage_de_MM-32-neu
Statistiken
Seitenanzahl: 1
Spaltenanzahl: 2
Zeichenanzahl: 3325

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|221| |Spaltenumbruch|

IDEA OF MEXICAN WEALTH. From the Travels of Humboldt.

This traveller affirms that the riches ofMexico are infinitely superior to those ofPeru. I know of no Peruvian family (says he)in the possession of a fixed and certain revenueof 130,000 francs ($26,000)—But in Mexicothere are individuals who possess no minesand whose revenue amounts to a million offrancs ($200,000)—The family of the countde la Valenciano possesses alone on the ridgeof the Andes a property worth 25,000,000 offrancs ($5,000,000) without including themine of Valenciano, which yields one yearwith another a net revenue of 1,500,000 livres($240,000.) The count de Regia built at his own ex-pense two vessels of the largest size, worth$600,000, and presented them to the king ofSpain. The family of Fagoaga, well known for itsbeneficence, intelligence and zeal for the pub-lic good, exhibits the example of the greatestwealth which was ever derived from a mine. |Spaltenumbruch|A single vein which the marquis of Fagoagapossesses in the district of Sombredath, left infive or six months, all charges deducted, a netprofit of $4,000,000. The European reader will be still more as-tonished, when I inform him of the extraordi-nary fact, that this family lent about the year1800, a sum of more than three millions and ahalf of francs ($700,000) without interest, toa friend whose fortune they believed wouldbe made by it in a solid manner. N. B. I know a man who would have thoughtthe one-seventh of that sum a fortune withinitself. The mines (says Humboldt) have undoubt-edly been the chief sources of the greatestfortunes of Mexico; but there is also a consi-derable number of rich families who havenever had the working of any mines. Suchare the descendants of Cortes, the conquerorof Mexico. The duke of Montelon, the headof that family, possesses superb estates in theprovince of Caxaca. They would yield himan annual revenue of $300,000; but residingin Naples, the greater part of this sum is pock-eted by collectors. To complete the view of the immensewealth centered in the hands of a few indivi-duals in Mexico, (continues Humboldt), I willadd exact establishments of the revenue ofsome of the Mexican clergy; a vast numberof whom suffer extreme poverty, while otherspossess revenues which surpass those of manyof the sovereign princes of Germany. Forexample:
  • The archbishop of Mexico receives annu-ally ......... $130,000
  • The bishop of Pueble, ..... 110,000
  • of Valladolid, .... 100,000
  • of Guadalaxara, ... 90,000
  • of Durango, .... 35,000
  • of Monterey, .... 30,000
  • of Yucatan, ..... 20,000
  • of Oarcaca, ..... 18,000
  • of Sonora, ..... 6,000
Making the enormous sum of $539,000 an-nually divided among eight clergymen!!! Asum almost sufficient to defray the expensesof the civil government of the United States. But it is in Mexico, as every where else, theinordinate wealth of a few makes the inordi-nate poverty of many. The great body of thepeople (says Humboldt) are suffering for ne-cessaries, while the nobles and great clergyare wallowing in princely estates. In the me-tropolis alone, a city which contains 40,000 in-habitants, you may see 20,000 poor wretches,like the lazaroni of Naples, sleeping in theopen air, and depending for their bread uponthe bounty of the passenger. [St. Louis. Enquirer.