XIX - the division of social classes
Joao Pessoa Square, for decades, was surrounded
by iron fences. Only the high society could cross one of the
four gates locked the key for
At the beginning of the century XX there were frequent public
concerts in place and the audience was divided by social class.
Standing in circles, first came the high society around
the bandstand, public officials
in the middle and then, finally, students.
The people stood outside the bars of iron.
In 1921 the square was the scene of a tragedy which resulted
in the deaths of two young students of the Normal School (only
studying girls) and the Lyceu Paraibano. Students
from both schools could not found each other. For greater
control, was established a "line of decency," an invention
of director of Lyceu. No one could cross it on pain of
Ágaba and Sady, students, began a relationship.
The boy crossed the imaginary line and received a warning not
to do something more. Repeating that, Sady started a discussion
with the officer in charge for the "maintenance of order" and
took a fatal shot. About ten days later Ágaba
committed suicide. As they were under important
families the death of them caused
the fall of director of Lyceu and almost resulted in the deposition
of the mayor of the capital, Solon of Lucena.
In 1929 laws were withdrawn
and people could frequent the square freely.