Private Text Chat
Merkuro has three methods for starting a private text chat. You can click on a name in the contact list, or, when you're in a chat room, you can click on a name in the list of participants. Thirdly, there's a menu item in the main menu; click on 'Private Chat', and the dialogue shown below will appear.
Enter the address (JID) of the person you want to chat with (email@example.com, in this case), and click on 'Chat'. A chat window will appear.
Of course, it's more convenient to use the contact list or the list of participants to start a private chat, because you will know if the person is online or not. However, if you don't want to add a name to your contact list, you can use this method.
The screen shot below shows how a chat window looks (in Linux). Notice that the menubar (at right) has three pull-down menus: the first has three functions (Beep, Save, Quit), the second is for choosing the font, and the third is for choosing the font size.
Under the menubar is the message area. When a chat starts, Merkuro writes out the date and contacted address. Every message begins with the hour and minute, and the name of the sender between angle brackets.
Under the message area is the message entry field. Type your messages here; messages are sent when you press the Enter key.