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chapter 4
 Uncle Juan had no sooner turned his back upon his gossip and counsellor than the latter took his pen and wrote the following letter:
 
"Don Bonifacio Tudela y Gonzalez, Chapel-master of the Cathedral of Ceuta.
 
"MY DEAR NEPHEW-IN-LAW,—To no one but a man of your piety would I confide the important secret contained in the accompanying document. I say important, because without a doubt in it are directions for finding the hiding-place of a TREASURE, of which I will give you a part if I should succeed in discovering it with your help. To this end you must get a Moor to translate the document for you and send me the translation in a certified letter, mentioning the matter to no one, unless it be your wife, whom I know to be a person of discretion.
 
"Forgive my not having written to you in all these years, but you know how busy a life I lead. Your aunt continues to remember you in her prayers every night. I hope you are better of the affection of the stomach from which you were suffering in 1806, and remain your affectionate uncle-in-law,
"MATIAS DE QUESADA.
 
"UGIJAR, January 15, 1821.
 
"P.S.—Regards to Pepa, and tell me when you write if you have any children."
 
Having written this letter, the distinguished jurisconsult bent his steps toward the kitchen, where his wife was engaged in knitting and minding the olla, and throwing into her lap the four golden coins he had received from Juan Gomez, he said to her, in a harsh, cross voice:
 
"There, Encarnacion, buy more wheat; it is going to rise in price during the dear months; and see to it that you get good measure. Get my breakfast ready while I go post this letter for Seville, inquiring the price of barley. Let the egg be well done and don't let the chocolate be muddy, as it usually is."
 
The lawyer's wife answered not a word, but went on with her knitting, like an automaton.


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