Society of the 1840s in Yugoslavia is encapsulated in the characters and events of the Tenth Brother, adapted from an 1866 novel of the same title by Josip Jurcic. After a young man arrives at a feudal castle to tutor the son of the lord of the manor, he falls in love with a woman he cannot marry because she is above his station in life. In the meantime, another son by the lord's deceased first wife, shows up on the doorstep one day seeking revenge for his abandonment as a child. Since he is the "10th" son, he was too low on the pecking order to obtain any endowment from his father's large estate -- a feudal tradition that he personally holds against his parents. To bolster his chance of revenge, he carries some incriminating letters from his mother that would blacken the image of his father if made public. His attitude and circumstances combined bring him into violent conflict with his half-brother, the son of the household, and he is stabbed to death. His father is also pushed to the edge by fear of exposure for past wrongs, and the tutor still cannot put aside his love for the noble lady -- as the protagonists wend their way to the final scenes, both of those issues may turn out to be connected.
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