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Legends of the Rhine   By: (1869-1927)

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Legends of the Rhine by Wilhelm Ruland takes readers on a captivating journey through the enchanting folklore and mythical tales surrounding the Rhine River. As an avid fan of folklore and legends, I found this book to be an absolute delight.

Ruland's writing style is engaging and transports readers to the picturesque landscapes that serve as the backdrop for these timeless stories. Whether it's the haunting castles, idyllic villages, or the majestic Rhine River itself, the author's vivid descriptions bring each setting to life, making me feel like I was personally experiencing the magic of the Rhine.

What truly sets this book apart is Ruland's meticulous research and knowledge of local folklore. From the legendary Lorelei, whose mesmerizing voice lured sailors to their doom, to the mysterious Black Dog of Bingen, each story is presented with depth and authenticity. Ruland's ability to seamlessly blend historical context with mythical elements adds an extra layer of richness to the narratives, making them even more intriguing.

The book is divided into chapters, each focused on a different legend, which allows readers to delve into the stories at their own pace. Additionally, Ruland provides brief but informative introductions to each legend, offering background information that enhances our understanding and appreciation of the tales.

Legends of the Rhine is not only informative but also beautifully illustrated. The inclusion of detailed artwork helps visualize the characters and scenes depicted in the stories, further enhancing the reading experience. The illustrations, combined with Ruland's emotive writing, make this book an absolute pleasure to peruse.

One minor drawback was the occasional repetition of certain themes or elements across different legends. While understandable, as many myths tend to overlap, it did make some stories feel slightly predictable. However, this did not significantly detract from the overall quality of the book.

In conclusion, Legends of the Rhine is a captivating collection of folklore and legends that offers a glimpse into the rich tapestry of the Rhine River culture. Wilhelm Ruland's in-depth knowledge, engaging prose, and stunning illustrations make this book a must-read for anyone with an interest in fairy tales, mythology, or the history of the Rhine region. I highly recommend this enchanting volume to both seasoned folklore enthusiasts and newcomers alike.

First Page:







"O, the pride of the German heart is this noble river! And right it is; for of all the rivers of this beautiful earth there is none so beautiful as this."


Prefatory Note.

Last year I made the journey between Mainz and Bonn on one of our splendid Rhine steamers. Our vessel glided along like a great water bird. On the shore rose mountains, castles, and ruins, and over all the sun shined brightly from a blue August sky. It was twelve years since I had visited the scenes of my youth, and every Rhinelander will understand with what pleasure I saw again those smiling landscapes arrayed in their summer beauty. Wandering back to my deck chair, I soon became absorbed in the ever changing panorama.

Then the sound of a melodious female voice speaking English fell on my ears. I looked around. A girl was bending over a book, and entertaining her father and mother by reading something of special interest and beauty... Continue reading book >>

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