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Legends, Tales and Poems   By: (1836-1870)

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Legends, Tales and Poems

[Illustration: After an etching by B. Maura]

LEGENDS, TALES AND POEMS

BY

GUSTAVO ADOLFO BECQUER

EDITED

WITH INTRODUCTION, NOTES AND VOCABULARY

BY

EVERETT WARD OLMSTED, PH.D.

ASSISTANT PROFESSOR OF THE ROMANCE LANGUAGES IN

CORNELL UNIVERSITY

TO

MY MOTHER

PREFACE

In preparing this collection of Becquer's legends, tales, and short poems, which is the only annotated edition of this author's works that has been published as yet for English speaking students, the editor has aimed to give to our schools and colleges a book that may serve, not only as a reader for first or second year classes, but also as an introduction to Spanish literature, through the works of one of the most original and charming authors of the Spanish Romantic school.

Fondness for good literature should be stimulated from the very first, and the quaint tales and legends of old Spain contained in this edition, told, as they are, in a most fascinating style, are well adapted to captivate the student's interest and to lead him to investigate further the rich mine of Spanish literature. Becquer's poetry is no less pleasing than his prose, and not much more difficult to read. With the aid of the ample treatise on Spanish versification contained in the introduction, the student will be enabled to appreciate the harmony and rhythm of Becquer's verse, and in all subsequent reading of Spanish poetry he will find this treatise a convenient and valuable work of reference.

The Life of Becquer, though concise, is perhaps the most complete that has yet been published, for it embodies all the data given by previous biographers and a certain number of facts gathered by the writer at the time of his last visit to Spain (in 1905 1906), from friends of Becquer who were then living.

The vocabulary has been made sufficiently complete to free the notes from that too frequent translation of words or phrases which often encumbers them.

The notes have been printed in the only convenient place for them, at the bottom of each page, and will be found to be as complete and definite as possible on geographical, biographical, historical, or other points that may not be familiar to the student or the teacher. All grammatical or syntactical matter, unless of a difficult or peculiar character, has been omitted, while the literary citations that abound will, it is hoped, stimulate the student to do further reading and to make literary comparisons of his own.

It remains for the editor to express his profound gratitude to the following gentlemen for their aid in collecting facts regarding Becquer and for their encouragement of this work: the Exc^{mo} Sr. Conde de las Navas, the Exc^{mo} Sr. Licenciado D. Jose Gestoso y Perez, and the Exc^{mo} Sr. D. Francisco de Laiglesia. It is his pleasure also to convey his thanks to Professor George L. Burr of Cornell University for aid in certain of the historical notes, and most especially to gratefully acknowledge his indebtedness to the aid, or rather collaboration, of Mr. Arthur Gordon of Cornell University, and Mr. W. R. Price of the High School of Commerce, New York City.

EVERETT WARD OLMSTED CORNELL UNIVERSITY Ithaca, N.Y.

CONTENTS

INTRODUCTION LIFE OF BECQUER UNPUBLISHED LETTER OF BECQUER BIBLIOGRAPHICAL NOTE SPANISH PROSODY DESDE MI CELDA CARTA SEXTA LOS OJOS VERDES LA CORZA BLANCA LA AJORCA DEL ORO EL CRISTO DE LA CALAVERA EL BESO MAESE PÉREZ EL ORGANISTA LA CRUZ DEL DIABLO CREED EN DROS LAS HOJAS SECAS RIMAS VOCABULARY

INTRODUCTION

LIFE OF BECQUER

"In Seville, along the Guadalquivir, and close to the bank that leads to the convent of San Jerónimo, may be found a kind of lagoon, which fertilizes a miniature valley formed by the natural slope of the bank, at that point very high and steep. Two or three leafy white poplars, intertwining their branches, protect the spot from the rays of the sun, which rarely succeeds in slipping through them... Continue reading book >>




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