SPAIN: Poet's Sentence

"I am no swindler, only a poet," pleaded the handsome would-be lawyer Faustino Valentin. Citizens of Valencia, jamming the lofty, oak-paneled courtroom where he was standing trial, applauded lustily, for the swindles that Faustino had perpetrated were just such poems as all their dreams were made of. For 15 days last year, he had convinced them all—and many a harder head into the bargain—that a certain penniless foundling named Maria del Rosario was in reality a marquesa possessed of vast lands and riches. A local bank had cheerfully advanced money to Maria...

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