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Alexander von Humboldt: „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-41-neu> [abgerufen am 23.07.2024].

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Titel Mexican Wealth
Jahr 1847
Ort Wilmington, North Carolina
Nachweis
in: The Commercial 2:82 (25. September 1847), S. [2].
Sprache Englisch
Typografischer Befund Antiqua; Spaltensatz.
Identifikation
Textnummer Druckausgabe: II.76
Dateiname: 1809-Voyage_de_MM-41-neu
Statistiken
Seitenanzahl: 1
Zeichenanzahl: 3202

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|2|

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, sayshe, in the possession of a fixed and certainrevenue of 130,000 francs ($26,000)—butin Mexico there are individuals who possessno mines, and whose revenue amounts to amillion of francs ($200,000.) The familyof the Count de la Valenciano possessesalone, on the ridge of the Andes, a proper-ty worth 25,000,000 of francs, ($5,000,000,)without including the mine of Valenciano,which yields one year with another, a nettrevenue 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 Kingof Spain. The family of Fagoaga, well known forits beneficence, intelligence and zeal for thepublic good, exhibits the example of thegreatest wealth which was ever derivedfrom a mine. A single vein which theMarquis of Fagoaga possesses in the dis-trict of Sombredath, left in five or sixmonths, all charges deducted, a nett profitof $4,000,000. The European reader will be still moreastonished, when I inform him of the ex-traordinary fact, that this family lent aboutthe year 1800, a sum of more than threemillions and a half of francs, ($700,000)without interest, to a friend whose fortunethey believed would be made by it in a sol-id manner. The mines (says Humboldt) have un-doubtedly been the chief sources of thegreatest fortunes of Mexico; but there isalso a considerable number of rich familieswho have never had the working of anymines. Such are the descendants of Cor-tes, the conqueror of Mexico. The Dukeof Montelon, the head of that family, pos-sesses superb estates in the province ofCaxaca. They would yield him an annualrevenue of $300,000, but residing in Na-ples, the greater part of this sum is pock-eted by collectors. To complete the view of the immensewealth centred in the hands of a few indi-viduals in Mexico, (continues Humboldt,) Iwill add exact establishments of the reven-ue of some of the Mexican clergy; a vastnumber of whom suffer extreme poverty,while others possess revenues which sur-pass those of many of the sovereign prin-ces of Germany. For example:
The Archbishop of Mexicoreceives annually, $130,000
The Bishop of Puebla, 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 $539,000annually divided among eight clergymen!A sum almost sufficient to defray the ex-penses of the civil government of the Uni-ted States. But it is in Mexico, as everywhere else,the inordinate wealth of a few makes theinordinate poverty of many. The great bo-dy of the people (says Humboldt) are suf-fering for necessaries, while the nobles andgreat clergy are wallowing in princely es-tates. In the metropolis alone, a city whichcontains 40,000 inhabitants, you may see20,000 poor wretches, like the Lazaroni ofNaples, sleeping in the open air, and de-pending for their bread upon the bounty ofthe passenger.