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The Blood of the Arena   By: (1867-1928)

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First Page:

[Illustration: When the swordsman clasped her hand she looked into his eyes. "Don't go come; come!" [Chapter III]]

THE BLOOD OF THE ARENA

BY

VICENTE BLASCO IBÁÑEZ

FROM THE SPANISH, BY FRANCES DOUGLAS

ILLUSTRATED IN COLOR BY TROY AND MARGARET WEST KINNEY

[Illustration: colophon]

CHICAGO

A. C. McCLURG & CO.

1911

Copyright

A. C. McCLURG & CO.

1911

Published November, 1911

Entered at Stationers' Hall, London

W. F. Gall Printing Company

Chicago

CONTENTS

Chapter Page

I The Hero and the Public 9

II The Matador and the Lady 33

III Born for the Bull ring 64

IV At Carmen's Window grille 80

V The Lure of Golden Hair 106

VI The Voice of the Siren 126

VII The Spanish Wild Beast 153

VIII Diamonds in the Ring 178

IX Breakfast with the Bandit 195

X A Look into the Face of Death 228

XI Doctor Ruiz on Tauromachy 256

XII Airing the Saints 269

XIII The Mastery of Self preservation 288

XIV The Spanish Lilith 307

XV Behind the Scenes 328

XVI "The Greatest Man in the World" 348

XVII The Atonement of Blood 362

ILLUSTRATIONS

Page

When the swordsman clasped her hand she looked into his eyes. "Don't go come; come!" Frontispiece

Gallardo's wedding was a national event. Far into the night guitars strummed with melancholy plaint.... Girls, their arms held high, beat the marble floor with their little feet 96

"For me?" asked the bandit in tones of surprise and wonder. "For me, Señora Marquesa?" 224

The animal moved in confusion between the red cloths, drawing him far away from the swordsman 294

THE BLOOD OF THE ARENA

CHAPTER I

THE HERO AND THE PUBLIC

JUAN GALLARDO breakfasted early, as he did whenever there was to be a bull fight. A slice of roast meat was his only dish. Wine he did not even touch; the bottle remained unopened before him. He must keep himself calm. He drank two cups of thick, black coffee, and lighted an enormous cigar, sitting with his elbows on the table and his chin in his hands, looking with dreamy eyes at the guests who one by one filled the dining room.

It was a number of years ago, not long after he had been given "the alternative" in the bull ring of Madrid, that he came to lodge at a certain hotel on Alcalá Street where his hosts treated him as if he were one of the family, and the dining room servants, porters, scullions, and old waiters adored him as the glory of the establishment. There, too, he had spent many days wrapped in bandages, in a dense atmosphere heavy with the smell of iodoform, in consequence of two gorings, but the unhappy recollection did not weigh upon him.

In his Southern superstitious mind, exposed to continual danger, he regarded this hotel as a charmed shelter, and thought that nothing ill would happen to him while living in it; accidents common to the profession, rents in his clothing, scratches in his flesh perhaps, but no last and final fall after the manner of other comrades, the recollection of whom haunted even his happier hours.

On the days of the great bull fights, after the early breakfast, he enjoyed sitting in the dining room contemplating the movement of travellers. They were foreigners, or people from distant provinces, who passed near with indifferent countenances, and without looking at him; and then became curious on learning from the servants that the fine youth with shaven face and black eyes, dressed like a young gentleman, was Juan Gallardo, by all familiarly called Gallardo, the famous bull fighter... Continue reading book >>




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