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  • Print publication year: 2015
  • Online publication date: May 2015

Appendix 3 - Delfina's Petition Guaranteeing Her Mental Health


Illustrious Judge of Orphans

Maria Delfina da Conceição Sodré, widow of Domingos Pereira Sodré, was surprised to find that she was considered incompetent by this court for being deemed senile and appointed a trustee for her person and property.

The Supplicant was surprised because she does not deem herself senile, merely ill with a congestion that brought about the paralysis of one side without robbing her of her intellect or affecting her mind. The Supplicant does not require further examination, because from what has been done it is clearly not the case that she is senile, as the seeing that said examination merely states that due to a cerebral hemorrhage the Supplicant's memory was enfeebled.

If the Supplicant is only enfeebled in memory due to an ailment, which mainly affected the lower members and is on the mend, and is not unwise, stupid or forgetful, she cannot be declared incompetent, according to the relevant law, which is Ord. Book 4 tit. 103 p, and the laws of several countries and the opinion of alienists, legislation and authors who provide that a person can only be declared incompetent when he is habitually stupid, insane or furious.

To give proof that she does not find herself in a state that requires a trustee, the Supplicant requests permission to come into Your Excellencies’ presence at a time of your choosing.

Accordingly the Supplicant asks Your Excellencies to appoint the place, day and time for her to appear after you lift the interdiction and allow the Supplicant to sign the document naming her executor to continue the inventory of the estate of her late husband, of whom she is the sole heir; a document for which

We request approval

E. R. M. [Hope to Receive Favor]

Bahia 29 May 1887

The Attorney

Antonio Carneiro da Rocha

Source :APEBa, Judiciária. Inventários, no. 07/3000/08