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By José de Medeiros E Albuquerque (1867—)
Member of the Brazilian Academy of Letters

OLD Felix had followed his trade of digger in all the quarries that Rio de Janeiro possessed. He was a sort of Hercules with huge limbs, but otherwise stupid as a post. His companions had nicknamed him Hardhead because of his obstinate character. Once an idea had penetrated his skull it would stick there like a gimlet and the devil himself couldn't pull it out. Because of this trait there arose quarrels, altercations on points of the smallest significance, which the man's acquaintances would purposely bring up, knowing his evil humor. But Felix, despite his vigorous and sanguine constitution, was by no means quick to anger, nor immediately responsive to injury; on the contrary he was exceedingly patient in his vindictiveness. For the longest time he would ruminate upon his vengeance, most