The Repercussions of Martinís Death

 

Martin Rezabek had been entrusted to take care of the forest land and hunting gardens for a wealthy land owner.  For his care of the land he was allowed to live on the estate and have a small garden to support his family.  They could keep chickens and sell eggs.  It was not a comfortable life but provided enough to survive. 

 

One particularly hard year, Martin was caught hunting (poaching) on the estate.  He was to have his hand cut off and he and his family to be cast out.  Instead he chose to end his own life by hanging himself in the forest.  His family was still homeless and his son without a job, but it was what he felt he had to do.  This way they didnít have to support him too as he would be unable to work.

 

Andrej was young at the time, and finding himself head of a family with his mother to support for the rest of her life and several sisters to try to marry off, he immediately married Anna Hora.  Anna had 20 years use of family land as her dowry.  A place to live was a welcome dowry for a family with no roof over their heads.  Andrej had hoped that the land would produce enough that he could not only care for his family, but in 20 years when the dowry expired, he could buy a place of his own or in some way be able to support his family.

 

Annaís brother was the owner of the land and his wife was extremely greedy.  She treated them more as sharecroppers than family and demanded a portion of every crop and half of all calves, piglets, goats that were born within the confines of the land. She did not honor the fact that the land was Annaís dowry and she should have had the full use of it.  Andrej and Anna were not able to save anything so when the 20 years was drawing near, Andrej was again faced with a family and no place to live and no means of support. 

 

 

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