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An anonymous poison pen letter to a former teacher. The German text says: You ... [ass]. We are glad not to have you at our school any longer. The letter also contained the mask pictured here.

A poison pen letter is a letter or note containing unpleasant, abusive or malicious statements or accusations about the recipient or a third party. It is usually sent anonymously. Poison pen letters are usually composed and sent to upset the recipient. They were an outlet for Beethoven, who was often angered by or critical of others. One also figures in the life of Francis Bacon.

With the advent of e-mail and the general decline in letter writing, poison pen letters have become something of a rarity.

In literature

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