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Remember the Rainforest 1

 

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The quartermaster was appointed, as the absolute lord, to the entire Diamond District, where he, as the king's representative, ruled with unique authority. He was not only vested with the supreme oversight the extraction of all these stones, but he was equally judge and chief of police. He could, at his discretion and at the slightest suspicion, banish any inhabitant out of the Demarcation, and upon finding a diamond in the hands of a District dweller, could expel him from it and confiscate his possessions. He sentences civil and criminal matters; of his judgment and of the Board, which is under him, there is no appeal, except the pardon of the king. In addition a consequent system of inspection of all the employees of the district was established, one against the other. It was the duty of the Board staff, if anyone with possession of diamonds was known, to report it immediately to the quartermaster, who immediately issued a warrant for arrest; Any District garrison soldier was allowed, under pressing circumstances, to make pursuit, without further question or delay for permission, and to bring the culprit to the quartermaster's presence. To escape the influence of the priests in this area, it was forbidden by the Regiment, then decreed by Pombal, to form a proper diocese there, which is why the Tejuenses (people of Tejuco belonged to the diocese of Vila do Principe).

Unique in history is this idea of isolating a county, in which all civilian conditions were subject to exploitation by royalty. For the establishment of this new order of things, all residents of the District, after rigorous investigation, were required to record their civil conditions. Anyone who could not give satisfactory information had to leave the District; if he returned later, he would soon be fined fifty-eighth gold and six months in prison; In the second recurrence, however, he was sentenced to six months' exile to Angola. Later settlers should also have plausible reasons for their establishment there. Even in the vicinity of the District, no one settled without the good will of the authority, who also banished people suspected of smuggling in the county of Serro Frio. The number of hotels, wineries and shops was limited. Entry into the Diamond District required an application explaining the reasons; permission of the quartermaster was required, who, moreover, could extend the period only once. The slaves in the District were subjected to the strictest vigilance. None of them were admitted there without well-founded information; if a slave were found without written declaration, if it was the first offense the master was sentenced to

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