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- The Tale of Nokdu
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Instead, I could always be found sweaty and blissful hunched over on those clover leaf-shaped stools reading some fantasy or young adult novel that grabbed my eye at the public library after basketball practice and in between games at the Newport Rec Center just across the parking lot. But my obsession with libraries of great beauty and their collections has never waned. A magnificent library is a space that combines two forces beauty and knowledge to truly inspire awe in a way few places can. Two other edifices that come to mind are houses of worship beauty and faith and government buildings beauty and power.
Coleção de Contos Brasileiros by Various - Portuguese - Free at Loyal Books
Indeed, in any city anywhere, libraries, churches, and government buildings are usually the most visited sights. Some you may know, others will have escaped your notice. Our hope, though, is to give these places that hold so many of our shared stories, well, a better story of their own. In the heart of old Rio, across from a small plaza used as a parking lot, sits a charming but restrained Neo-Manueline building one could mistake for a neighborhood church or school.
Most of its facade is smooth limestone, and unlike many of its neighbors, free from graffiti. The only ornamentation hinting at the splendor inside can be found on finials, around the gothic windows and doorways, and along the roofline. In relatively demure lettering across the top of the center of the building is written: Real Gabinete Portuguez de Leitura. But inside, after passing under a lunette of elegant curling iron vines and through a vestibule floored with sumptuous tiles, one enters the library.
After I remember to breathe, the first word that comes to mind is divine.
The Tale of Nokdu
Rising from a floor of giant white marble diamond tiles outlined in black marble are ornate dark wood galleries of bookcases accented with gold. These then stretch upward into a blind arcade gallery of sorts of gold and dark pine green Gothic arches. And yet despite being a neo-Gothic library of dark wood and dark green, the space is far from somber and stuffy. Indeed, the whole space with its ornamentation and pointed, tine-like arches has the feel of a crown turned into a library.
Finally, the public patience was exhausted and stones were thrown at the windows of the bank; then the soldiers fired upon the crowd and several were killed; the people placed the corpses upon litters and paraded the streets of Paris, crying aloud for vengeance. The crowd met Law in his carriage, recognized him, heaped insults upon him, and tore his carriage to pieces. Provisions continued to grow dearer as the bills of the bank depreciated, and when the exasperation of the public had reached its height, new financial measures, such as canceling of bank bills, creation of life annuities, and the like, followed one another with great rapidity.
Finally, on October 10, , a decree was issued giving to holders of the yet outstanding bills an option to invest them in two per cent. According to data furnished by this decree, the bank had issued between January 5, , and May 1, —. According to the same authority, the face value of the bills destroyed had aggregated ,, livres, but the itemized statement does not agree with this total; assuming, however, that the total was correct, the bills remaining in circulation amounted to 1,,, livres, to which should be added a subsequent issue of 50,, livres.
The Bank of France had been in existence seventy years before it had in circulation bills to this amount. When it had been decided that the bills of the Royal Bank were soon to go out of circulation, merchants refused to accept them except at a discount of seventy-five or eighty per cent. Law, being held accountable for all these misfortunes, found his liberty, and even his life, in danger, and determined to flee the country. He took refuge in Brussels, where he was well received; thence he went into Italy, taking up his abode in Venice, and seeking his livelihood at the gaming-table.
Edition: current; Page: [ 28 ] He died, poor, in , leaving only a few pictures and a ring worth 10, crowns, which he had been in the habit of pawning whenever luck at play went against him. Looking at him from this distance of time, we can see that Law had no systematic theory of finance. He was a man fertile in expedients, who often advocated wise methods, but always spoiled them in the execution. There can be no question of his honesty and good faith; the best evidence of these is the condition of comparative poverty in which he lived and died after leaving France.
But his influence was to the last degree disastrous, and was thoroughly demoralizing to all classes of society. A certain Count Hoorn, of illustrious birth, robbed and murdered an unfortunate courtier named Lacroix, and expiated his crime upon the wheel; murders became far more numerous in Paris; people had acquired a habit of winning money without work; desires born of stock-jobbing did not die with it, and many turned to theft and to murder as a source of income. The very name of bank became so unpopular that seventy-nine years later it required all the authority of General Bonaparte, then First Consul, to make the name acceptable as the title of a credit establishment.
The liquidation of such a conglomeration of affairs presented considerable difficulties. The brothers Paris, though without official authority, were the prime movers in all matters connected with the settlement, and all their suggestions were made in the most malignant spirit. Though the Compagnie des Indes had simply obeyed the orders of the Government, its shareholders were made liable for all its undertakings and even for the bills it had issued.
The revision was rapidly carried on and was completed in June, , but the liquidation was not finished until September, The funds to which the process of revision was applied amounted to 3,,, livres, and this was reduced to about 1,,, livres. This sum, converted into perpetual two per cent.
The Tale of Nokdu
Fifty-six thousand shares of the Compagnie des Indes were left intact, and by a decree of March 22, , the company was reorganized as a private corporation, with a monopoly of various commercial enterprises. After undergoing several other reorganizations, in the course of the eighteenth century, it was finally abolished altogether in Before that time several of its ships, insured in English companies, had been wrecked, but the insurance, amounting to about , francs, was not paid until after the fall of Napoleon. When payment was made, the money, at the request of certain persons interested in the old Compagnie des Indes, was turned over to the Bank of France.
There it remained for a number of years, together with the books and papers of the company.
Finally, the Bank made an effort to get rid of the money and the archives. The Tribunal of the Seine appointed a liquidator; he succeeded in finding some families having interests in the old Compagnie des Indes, but some money yet remained, the title to which was not established, and this was turned over to the deposit and consignment office to await an owner. As to the Royal Bank, it disappeared and left no trace. A considerable burden had already been laid upon those who were called the newly enriched. They were once more heavily assessed, the demand this time being in the form of a per capita levy; and this they avoided, as far as possible, by marrying impecunious daughters of the nobility, and securing from the King, by virtue of this alliance, entire or partial immunity from the new assessment.
The general poverty was more severe at this time than it had been at the death of Louis XIV. Yet, again it may be repeated, all was not bad in the work of Law. To this question we can return no positive and unqualified answer. A movement so complex, an upheaval so thorough, and phenomena so extraordinary, produce upon us the most contradictory impressions. Our opinions vary with our point of view.
Bambi 2 - Um Conto Para Colorir (Portuguese Edition)
If some individuals were crushed beneath the wreck, it is incontestable that the thorough agitation of productive wealth tended toward the enrichment of the people. Nearly all debtors, and especially mortgage-burdened owners of the soil, were enabled to pay off their debts. Many ancient estates were preserved from impending ruin and many new buildings were erected. Farming lands received permanent improvements; industry, unduly stimulated, built new factories; and a precedent in maritime ventures was established by the Compagnie des Indes.
How is it that results so beneficial came out of such a woful calamity? His main purposes, temperately pursued, would have greatly promoted the wealth and power of France. But their remarkably prompt success was responded to by a craze of speculation, in which Law seems to have taken little part, but which whelmed in ruin enterprises largely legitimate and highly profitable. This is not the first instance in which the bold and beneficent plans of men of genius have been defeated through the excesses of speculations for which the schemes were not properly responsible. These establishments, having no other earnest of success save the confidence of the people from whom they borrow by means of the bills they issue, cannot thrive in a country where the very name of bank arouses the most intense aversion.
Yet the Bank of England, the Scottish banks, the Bank of Amsterdam, and a host of others make manifest the benefits a country may derive from an establishment which confines itself strictly to the banking business and is properly conducted. He was kept a suppliant for ten full years, and then his project was adopted in a mutilated shape; his plans were contracted to the narrowest limits, and the thing finally set in motion was a very small model of a very large machine.
Even then, it was necessary to brave the clamors and persecutions of capitalists, who imagined they saw in the widely diffused relief promised by a discount bank a ruinous competition with that sold by themselves. Its capital was fixed at 60,, livres, divided into 60, shares of livres each, of which only 40, were offered to the public, the other 20, being reserved to the King. It was to discount commercial paper and State securities at four per cent. This enterprise never developed into full activity; but, after a precarious existence of two years, it was abolished on March 21, , by order of the Council.
In , under the Ministry of Turgot and inspired by that illustrious economist, a Scotchman named Clonard, and Penchaud, a Genevan, drew up a plan of a bank of issue, which was incorporated under the name of the Discount Bank by a decree of the Council of March 24, The business of the bank consisted in discounting, at a rate which could in no case exceed four per cent. The corporation was forbidden to borrow at interest or to contract any debt not payable on demand; it was expressly forbidden to engage in any commercial enterprise or maritime undertaking, or to enter into any contract of insurance.
Its capital of 15,, livres was divided into shares of livres each. Five million livres were to serve for its current needs and 10,, to be turned over to the Treasury on June 1, , to constitute a guaranty for all the undertakings of the bank. And as security for these payments his Majesty will be requested to set apart the income from the postal leases and to direct the Warden of the Royal Treasury to deliver to the cashier of the Discount Bank in payment of the , livres of Treasury receipts to be redeemed each half-year, a draft on the holder of the said postal leases.
The 13,, livres forming the total of the Treasury receipts above mentioned, or such part of them as may remain after the payment of installments from time to time, shall be specifically pledged as security for all the operations of the bank, and that portion of the receipts not redeemed shall not be sold, alienated, assigned, or pledged. That part of the plan which proposed thus to tie up two-thirds of the capital was never carried into effect. A decree of the Council under date of September 22, , announced that the shareholders had decided that it was better to have a capital of only 12,, livres, all of it to be devoted to the business of discounting paper and dealing in gold and silver, and that Edition: current; Page: [ 33 ] in accordance with this decision the King had agreed to forego the loan of 10,, livres and had authorized the issue of a capital of 12,, livres, in shares of livres each.
This change was a very important one, because it left the Discount Bank in full control of its capital, which in case of need could be used to repair the losses of its discount business; whereas in possession of the King, it would have been of no use to the bank either for the transaction of its business or as an offset against losses. The by-laws of the bank, approved by a decision of the Council of State promulgated on March 7, , fix the number of directors at thirteen, two of whom are to go out of office at the end of each year and to be ineligible during the two following years; each of them must be the owner of at least twenty-five shares, inalienable during his term of office; and the directors serve without pay.
The bank was not expressly authorized to issue bills payable to bearer on demand, but this power followed as a necessary implication from that section of the law which forbade it to contract any debts not payable on demand. Aside from this, the bank enjoyed no special privilege or monopoly, and the circulation of its bills was a purely optional matter; anyone could accept or refuse them at pleasure. This establishment, answering to a real need of the community, led a quiet existence for some years, gradually expanding and enjoying a fair degree of prosperity; but in it encountered serious difficulties.
The fact of the loan was at first kept secret, but when it was inadvertently made known the public took alarm, demanded the redemption of their bills, and withdrew their deposits, so that the bank was soon unable to fulfill its engagements. The Government interfered by a decree of the Council of State under date of September 27, , in these words:. His Majesty commands that said bills of the bank payable to bearer continue to circulate and to be received and paid out as cash, as they have been in the past, in all transactions, public and private, in Paris only. His Majesty forbids all holders to institute any suit prior to January 1st next, to compel payment of said bills in coin.
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Shortly after this, De Calonne, who had succeeded to the Ministry, borrowed 24,, livres in the form of a lottery loan and repaid to the bank the 6,, livres due from the State; at the same time, an official report was issued showing that the bills in circulation aggregated 42,, livres, and that the assets of the bank exceeded its liabilities by 14,, livres. Acceptance of the bills had previously been made optional again by a decree of December 10, , and confidence soon returned. In view of these facts, the regulations of the bank were amended, and the capital was increased to 15,, livres by the creation of new shares of livres each, sold upon their issuance at a premium of livres.
In addition to the amount thus secured, the bank had a reserve of 2,, livres, consisting of undistributed profits. The by-laws were altered and the proportion of hard cash on hand to circulation was fixed at twenty-five per cent. Paper accepted for discount was made payable within ninety days, at most, and discount rates are fixed at four per cent.
All paper offered for discount was required to bear two good signatures. Two permanent directors were to be chosen by the stockholders to act as managers. Certain precautions provided by the by-laws show that the conditions of a rational distribution of credit facilities were not thoroughly understood by the founders of the institution; but they had at least a very clear conception of the necessity of maintaining a just proportion between resources and liabilities. Thus the amount of credit to be extended in the way of discounts was fixed weekly by the Administrative Council, and once fixed could not be exceeded; but whenever Edition: current; Page: [ 35 ] it came to the knowledge of the managers that the cash on hand was less than one-third of the circulation, they were required to curtail their discount operations, and to discontinue them altogether when the cash was reduced to one-fourth of the circulation.
Permanent loans and all investments in any permanent form were absolutely forbidden. Most of these regulations were wise and salutary. The bills of the bank were in denominations of , , , and livres. The public very easily forgot the difficulties that had beset the Discount Bank; and, unfortunately, the Government forgot them also.