One-bottle, two-bottle, three-bottle … Engels’s writing style

Excuse me for writing so badly, I have three bottles of beer under my belt, hurrah, and I cannot write much more because this must go to the post at once. It is already striking half-past three and letters must be there by four o’clock. Good gracious, thunder and lightning, you can see that I’ve got some beer inside me. [one sentence is indecipherable because the paper is damaged]’ (MECW, volume 2, 389).

This was written in a letter to Fred’s little sister, Marie, but it does lead me to suggest a task of literary criticism: determining whether Engels’s texts count as one-, two- or three-bottle efforts.

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