In the Books of Correspondence of the Archivo Municipal de Orihuela (A.M.O.) in Alicante, a really large diversity of letters —from the most official to the most personal— can be found. On this occasion, we selected a sample of what we may consider as «Christmas cards», which are dated from 1679 and which were sent by people in charge of highly-prestigious public responsabilities —such as lawyers, notaries, and consultants— in this Alicante town. In the present paper we have tried to analyze the aforesaid letters with the aim of showing the complexity of this type of discourse, since, although they are written following a common general structure it is without linguistically nor diplomatically sistematically repeated pattern. Our Christmas cards fall under the influence of polite conventions, which makes obligation and affection formulae appear, providing a rich variety derived from its use, and revealing, in turn, the baroque spirit of this age.
Fórmulas lingüísticas; Felicitación; Cortesía; Navidad; Género epistolar; Lenguaje culto; Literalidad; Orihuela; Siglo XVII
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