Short Stories by the Generation of 1898/Cuentos de la Generación de 1898: A Dual-Language Book

Short Stories by the Generation of 1898/Cuentos de la Generación de 1898: A Dual-Language Book

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Overview

The generation of Spanish artists known as the 98ers, who renounced politics and sought their country's true spirit within its landscape, culture, and character, are well represented here by thirteen stories by five outstanding authors. Four of the stories are by Miguel de Unamuno, the spiritual leader of the Generation of 1898. Among the other authors included here. Ramón del Valle-Inclán was a chief representative of modernismo fiction. Vicente Blasco Ibáñez, one of the best-known of these writers (though not usually regarded as an authentic 98er), was a keen observer of peasant life. Pío Baroja, sometimes called the foremost Spanish novelist of the twentieth century, wrote a virile, unadorned prose whose style is reputed to have influenced Hemingway. And "Azorín" (José Martinez Ruiz), represented here with a short novel, has an impressionistic and elliptical style that has been described as a literary counterpart to abstract painting.
This dual-language edition features an informative introduction and ample footnotes, making it not only a pleasure to read but also a valuable learning and teaching aid for students and teachers of Spanish literature.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780486436821
Publisher: Dover Publications
Publication date: 09/23/2004
Series: Dover Dual Language Spanish Series
Edition description: Bi-lingual Edition (Spanish & English)
Pages: 256
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x (d)

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Short Stories by the Generation of 1898/Cuentos de la Generación de 1898

A Dual-Language Book


By Miguel de Unamuno, Ramón del Valle-Inclán, Vicente Blasco Ibáñez, Pío Baroja, "Azorín", STANLEY APPELBAUM

Dover Publications, Inc.

Copyright © 2004 Dover Publications, Inc.
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-0-486-12064-5



CHAPTER 1

MIGUEL DE UNAMUNO (1864-1936)

Redondo, el contertulio

A mis compatriotas de tertulia.

Mas de veinte años hacía que faltaba Redondo de su patria, es decir, de la tertulia en que transcurrieron las mejores horas, las únicas que de veras vivió, de su juventud larga. Porque para Redondo la patria no era ni la nación, ni la región, ni la provincia, ni aun la ciudad en que había nacido, criádose y vivido; la patria era para Redondo aquel par de mesitas de mármol blanco del café de la Unión, en la rinconera del fondo de la izquierda, según se entra, en torno a las cuales se había reunido día a día, durante más de veinte años, con sus amigos, para pasar en revista y crítica todo lo divino y lo humano y aun algo más.

Al llegar Redondo a los cuarenta y cuatro años encontróse con que su banquero le arruinó, y le fue forzoso ponerse a trabajar. Para lo cual tuvo que ir a América, al lado de un tío poseedor allí de una vasta hacienda. Y a la América se fue añorando su patria, la tertulia de la rinconera del café de la Unión, suspirando por poder un día volver a ella, casi llorando. Evitó el despedirse de sus contertulios, y una vez en América hasta rompió toda comunicación con ellos. Ya que no podía oírlos, verlos, convivir con ellos, tampoco quiso saber de su suerte. Rompió toda comunicación con su patria, recreándose en la idea de encontrarla de nuevo un día, más o menos cambiada, pero la misma siempre. Y repasando en su memoria a sus compatriotas, es decir, a sus contertulios, se decía: ¿Qué nuevo colmo habrá inventado Romualdo? ¿Qué fantasía nueva el Patriarca? ¿Qué poesía festiva habrá leído Ortiz el día del cumpleaños de Henestrosa? ¿Qué mentira, más gorda que todas las anteriores, habrá llevado Manolito? Y así lo demás.

Vivió en América pensando siempre en la tertulia ausente, suspirando por ella, alimentando su deseo con la voluntaria ignorancia de la suerte que corriera. Y pasaron años y más años, y su tío no le dejaba volver. Y suspiraba silenciosa e íntimamente. No logró hacerse allí una patria nueva, es decir, no encontró una nueva tertulia que le compensase de la otra. Y siguieron pasando años hasta que su tío murió, dejándole la mayor parte de su cuantiosa fortuna y, lo que valía más que ella, libertad de volverse a su patria, pues en aquellos veinte años no le permitió un solo viaje. Encontróse, pues, Redondo libre, realizó su fortuna y henchido de ansias volvió a su tierra natal.

¡Con qué conmoción de las entrañas se dirigió por primera vez, al cabo de más de veinte años, a la rinconera del café de la Unión, a la izquierda del fondo, según se entra, donde estuvo su patria! Al entrar en el café el corazón le golpeaba el pecho, flaqueábanle las piernas. Los mozos o eran otros o se habían vuelto otros; ni los conoció ni le conocieron. El encargado del despacho era otro. Se acercó al grupo de la rinconera; ni Romualdo, el de los colmos, ni el Patriarca, ni Henestrosa, ni Ortiz el poeta festivo, ni el embustero de Manolito, ni don Moisés, ni ... ¡ni uno sólo siquiera de los suyos! ¡Todos otros, todos nuevos, todos más jóvenes que él, todos desconocidos! Su patria se había hundido o se había trasladado a otro suelo. Y se sintió solo, desoladamente solo, sin patria, sin hogar, sin consuelo de haber nacido. ¡Haber soñado y anhelado y suspirado más de veinte años en el destierro para esto! Volvióse a casa, a un hogar frío de alquiler, sintiendo el peso de sus sesenta y ocho años, sintiéndose viejo. Por primera vez miró hacia delante y sintió helársele el corazón al prever lo poco que le quedaba ya de vida. ¡Y de qué vida! Y fue para él la noche de aquel día noche insomne, una noche trágica, en que sintió silbar a sus oídos el viento del valle de Josafat.

Mas a los dos días, cabizbajo, alicaído de corazón, como sombra de amarilla hoja de otoño que arranca del árbol el cierzo, se acercó a la rinconera del café de la Unión y se sentó de la Unión y se sentó en la tercera de las mesitas de mármol, junto al suelo de la que fue su patria. Y prestó oído a lo que conversaban aquellos hombres nuevos, aquellos bárbaros invasores. Eran casi todos jóvenes; el que más tendría cincuenta y tantos años.

De pronto, uno de ellos exclamó: "Esto me recuerda uno de los colmos del gran don Romualdo." Al oírlo, Redondo, empujado por una fuerza íntima, se levantó, acercóse al grupo, y dijo:

—Dispensen, señores míos, la impertinencia de un desconocido, pero he oído a ustedes mentar el nombre de don Romualdo, el de los colmos, y deseo saber si se refieren a don Romualdo Zabala, que fue mi mayor amigo de la niñez.

—El mismo —le contestaron.

—¿Y qué se hizo de él?

—Murió hace ya cuatro años.

—¿Conocieron ustedes a Ortiz, el poeta festivo?

—Pues no habíamos de conocerle si era de esta tertulia.

—¿Y él?

—Murió también.

—¿Y el Patriarca?

—Se marchó y no ha vuelto a saberse de él cosa alguna.

—¿Y Henestrosa?

—Murió.

—¿Y don Moisés?

—No sale ya de casa; ¡está paralítico!

—¿Y Manolito el embustero?

—Murió también ...

—Murió ... murió ... se marchó y no se sabe de él ... está en casa paralítico ... y yo vivo todavía ... ¡Dios mío! ¡Dios mío! —y se sentó entre ellos llorando.

Hubo un trágico silencio, que rompió uno de los nuevos contertulios, de los invasores, preguntándole:

—Y usted, señor nuestro, ¿se puede saber ...?

—Yo soy Redondo ...

—¡Redondo! —exclamaron casi todos a coro—. ¿El que se fue a América arruinado por su banquero? ¿Redondo, de quien no volvió a saberse nada? ¿Redondo, que llamaba a esta tertulia su patria? ¿Redondo, que era la alegría de los banquetes? ¿Redondo, el que cocinaba, el que tocaba la guitarra, es especialista en contar cuentos verdes?

El pobre Redondo levantó la cabeza, miró en derredor, se le resucitaron los ojos, empezó a vislumbrar que la patria renacía, y con lágrimas aún, pero con otras lágrimas, exclamó:

—¡Sí, el mismo, el mismo Redondo!

Le rodearon, le aclamaron, le nombraron padre de la patria y sintió entrar en su corazón desfallecido los ímpetus de aquellas sangres juveniles. Él, el viejo, invadía a su vez a los invasores.

Y siguió asistiendo a la tertulia, y se persuadió de que era la misma, exactamente la misma, y que aún vivían en ella, con los recuerdos, los espíritus de sus fundadores. Y Redondo fue la conciencia histórica de la patria. Cuando decía: "Esto me recuerda un colmo de nuestro gran Romualdo ...", Todos a una: "¡Venga! ¡Venga!" Otras veces: "Ortiz, con su habitual gracejo, decía una vez ..." Otras veces: "Para mentira, aquella de Manolito." Y todo era celebradísimo.

Y aprendió a conocer a los nuevos contertulios y a quererlos. Y cuando él, Redondo, colocaba alguno de los cuentos verdes de su repertorio, sentíase reverdecer, y cocinó en el primer banquete, y tocó, a sus sesenta y nueve años, la guitarra, y cantó. Y fue un canto a la patria eterna, eternamente renovada.

A uno de los nuevos contertulios, a Ramonete, que podría ser casi su nieto, cobró singular afecto Redondo. Y se sentaba junto a él, y le daba golpecitos en la rodilla y celebraba sus ocurrencias. Y solía decirle: "¡Tú, tu eres, Ramonete, el principal ornato de la patria!" Porque tuteaba a todos. Y como el bolsillo de Redondo estaba abierto para todos los compatriotas, los contertulios, a él acudió Ramonete en no pocas apreturas.

Ingresó en la tertulia un nuevo parroquiano, sobrino de uno de los habituales, un mozalbete decidor y algo indiscreto, pero bueno y noble; mas al viejo Redondo le desplació aquel ingreso; la patria debía estar cerrada. Y le llamaba, cuando él no le oyera, el Intruso. Y no ocultaba su recelo al intruso, que en cambio veneraba, como a un patriarca, al viejo Redondo.


MIGUEL DE UNAMUNO (1864-1936)

Redondo and His Coffeehouse Circle

TO MY CONVERSATIONAL COMPATRIOTS

For more than twenty years Redondo had been away from his homeland: that is, from the circle of friends in which he had spent the best hours of his long youth, the only hours he had truly lived. Because for Redondo his homeland was neither the nation, nor the region, nor the province, nor even the city in which he was born, had grown up, and dwelt; for Redondo his homeland was that couple of small white-marble tables in the Union Coffeehouse, in the back corner to the left as you come in, around which, day by day for over twenty years, he had met his friends, to pass in critical review all things human and divine, and even a bit more.

When Redondo reached the age of forty-four, he discovered that his banker had ruined him, and he was compelled to go to work. To do this, he had to go to the New World, to join an uncle who owned a huge hacienda there. And to the New World he went, sorely missing his homeland, the circle in the corner of the Union Coffeehouse, yearning to be able to return to it some day, nearly weeping. He avoided taking leave of the others in his circle, and once he was in the New World he went so far as to cease all communication with them. Now that he couldn't hear them, see them, share his life with them, he didn't want to know what had become of them, either. He broke off all communication with his homeland, cheering himself with the thought of finding it again some day, changed to some extent but still the same. And recalling his compatriots (that is, the members of his circle) in his mind, he'd say to himself: "What new satirical riddle has Romualdo made up? What new fantastic story does the Patriarch have? What humorous poem has Ortiz read on Henestrosa's birthday? What yarn, wilder than all the preceding ones, has Manolito been spinning?" And so on.

He lived in the New World, constantly thinking of the absent circle, sighing for it, nurturing his desire with his self-imposed ignorance of their current fortunes. And years passed, and more years, and his uncle wouldn't let him go back. And he'd sigh quietly but deeply. He never succeeded in making a new homeland for himself there; that is, he never found a new circle that could compensate him for the old one. And years continued to go by until his uncle died, leaving him most of his substantial fortune and—what was more valuable than that—the freedom to return to his homeland, since in those twenty years he hadn't permitted him a single trip. So then, Redondo found himself free, turned his property into cash, and, riddled with anxiety, returned to his native land.

With what inner turmoil he headed, for the first time in over twenty years, for the corner in the Union Coffeehouse, in the back to the left as you come in, where his homeland was located! As he entered the coffeehouse, his heart pounded in his chest, and his legs were weak. The waiters were either different men or had become different; he didn't recognize them, nor they him. There was a new cashier. He approached the group in the corner; neither Romualdo of the riddles, nor the Patriarch, nor Henestrosa, nor Ortiz the humorous poet, nor that fibber Manolito, nor Don Moisés, nor ... not even one of his cronies! All were different, all were new, all were younger than he, all were strangers! His homeland had sunk or had moved to other ground. And he felt alone, desolately alone, without a homeland, without a home, without any consolation for having been born. To have dreamed and yearned and sighed over twenty years in exile for this! He went back home, to a cold, rented place, feeling the weight of his sixty-eight years, feeling old. For the first time he looked into the future and felt his heart freeze when he foresaw how little of life still remained to him. And what a life! And for him the night of that day was a sleepless night, a tragic night, in which he heard the wind of the Valley of Jehoshaphat whistling in his ears.

But two days later, head bowed, downhearted, like the shadow of a yellow autumn leaf torn from the tree by the north wind, he approached the corner in the Union Coffeehouse and sat down at the third marble table, alongside the soil of what had been his homeland. And he lent an ear to the conversation of those new men, those barbarian invaders. They were almost all young; the oldest one was probably in his fifties.

Suddenly one of them exclaimed: "That reminds me of one of the riddles told by the great Don Romualdo!" Hearing this, Redondo, impelled by an inner force, rose, came up to the group, and said:

"Gentlemen, forgive a stranger's forwardness, but I heard you mention the name of Don Romualdo, the man of the riddles, and I wish to know whether you're referring to Don Romualdo Zabala, who was my best friend when we were boys."

"The very same," they replied.

"And what has become of him?"

"It's four years now since he died."

"Did you know Ortiz, the humorous poet?"

"How could we fail to know him, since he belonged to this circle?"

"And what about him?"

"He's dead, too."

"And the Patriarch?"

"He went away and we haven't heard anything about him since."

"And Henestrosa?"

"Dead."

"And Don Moisés?"

"He doesn't leave his house any more; he's paralyzed!"

"And Manolito the fibber?"

"He's dead, too ..."

"Dead ... dead ... went away and no news of him ... at home paralyzed ... and I'm still alive ... Oh, God! Oh, God!" And he sat down in their midst, weeping.

There was a tragic silence, which was broken by one of the new members of the circle, the invaders, who asked him:

"And you, sir, may we inquire ...?"

"I'm Redondo ..."

"Redondo!" they nearly all exclaimed at the same time. "The one who went to the New World after his banker ruined him? Redondo, about whom there was no further news? Redondo, who used to call this circle his homeland? Redondo, who was the joy of its banquets? Redondo, the one who used to cook and play the guitar, the specialist in telling racy stories?"

Poor Redondo raised his head and looked around; his eyes came back to life, he began to glimpse the rebirth of his homeland, and, tears still in his eyes, but different tears, he exclaimed:

"Yes, the same, the very same Redondo!"

They surrounded him, they acclaimed him, they dubbed him father of his country, and he felt the thrilling of that young blood entering his own dejected heart. He, the old man, was now the invader of the invaders.

And he went on attending their meetings, persuading himself that it was the same circle, exactly the same, and that the spirits of its founders still lived in it, in memory. And Redondo was the historical conscience of his homeland. When he said, "That reminds me of a riddle told by our great Romualdo," they all said with one voice, "Let's hear it! Let's hear it!" At other times: "Ortiz, with his customary wit, once said ..." At other times: "If you want a fib, none beats that one of Manolito's." And everything he said was highly extolled.

And he got to know the new members, and to love them. And when he, Redondo, told one of the racy stories in his repertoire, he felt himself being rejuvenated; and he cooked for the next banquet, and, at sixty-nine, played the guitar and sang. And it was a song to the eternal homeland, eternally renewed.

For one of the new members, Ramonete, who could almost have been his grandson, Redondo acquired a special affection. And he'd sit next to him, give him little taps on the knee, and praise his witty remarks. And he used to say to him: "You, Ramonete, you are the principal ornament of the homeland!" (He addressed them all as tú.) And since Redondo's purse was open to all of his compatriots, the members of the circle, Ramonete received aid from him in many a financial jam.

A new parishioner entered the circle, the nephew of one of the habitués, a young fellow who was lively and somewhat indiscreet, but good-hearted and noble; yet the idea of a new member displeased old Redondo: the homeland should be a closed territory. And, out of his earshot, he'd call him the Intruder. Nor did he conceal his distrust of the intruder, who, for his part, revered old Redondo like a patriarch.


(Continues...)

Excerpted from Short Stories by the Generation of 1898/Cuentos de la Generación de 1898 by Miguel de Unamuno, Ramón del Valle-Inclán, Vicente Blasco Ibáñez, Pío Baroja, "Azorín", STANLEY APPELBAUM. Copyright © 2004 Dover Publications, Inc.. Excerpted by permission of Dover Publications, Inc..
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

Contents

Introduction,
Miguel de Unamuno (1864-1936),
Redondo, el contertulio / Redondo and His Coffeehouse Circle,
Mecanópolis / Mechanopolis.,
El redondismo / Redondoism,
Don Bernardino y doña Etelvina / Don Bernardino and Doña Etelvina,
Ramón del Valle-Inclán (1866-1936),
Beatriz / Beatriz.,
Vicente Blasco Ibáñez (1867-1928),
Dimòni / Dimòni,
En el mar / At Sea,
La pared / The Wall,
Pío Baroja (1872-1956),
Los panaderos / The Bakers,
El trasgo / The Goblin,
Nihil / Nihil.,
La sima / The Chasm,
"Azorín" (José Martínez Ruiz, 1873-1967),
Don Juan / Don Juan Prólogo / Prologue,
I: Don Juan / Don Juan,
II: Más de su etopeya / More About His Character,
III: La pequeña ciudad / The Little City.,
IV: Censo de población / Census,
V: El espíritu de la pequeña ciudad / The Spirit of the Little City.,
VI: El obispo don García / Bishop García,
VII: Las jerónimas y don García / The Hieronymite Nuns and Don García ...,
VIII: Sor Natividad / Sister Natividad,
IX: Las monjas pobres / The Nuns of Poverty.,
X: El caminito misterioso / The Mysterious Little Road.,
XI: El obispo ciego / The Blind Bishop,
XII: Aurificina / Goldsmith's Shop,
XIII: El doctor Quijano / Doctor Quijano.,
XIV: Un pueblo / A Small Town,
XV: La casa de Gil / Gil's House,
XVI: La gaya tropa infantil / The Merry Troop of Children,
XVII: El presidente de la Audiencia / The Chief Justice,
XVIII: Historia de un gobernador / The Story of a City Magistrate,
XIX: El coronel de la Guardia civil / The Constabulary Colonel,
XX: Otro gobernador / Another Magistrate,
XXI: El árbol viejo / The Old Tree,
XXII: Por la patria / For One's Country,
XXIII: La tía / "Auntie",
XXIV: Don Federico / Don Federico,
XXV: La casa del maestre / The Master's House,
XXVI: El maestre don Gonzalo / Don Gonzalo, the Master,
XXVII: París / Paris,
XXVIII: Ángela / Ángela,
XXIX: Una terrible tentación ... / A Terrible Temptation,
XXX: ... Y una tentación celestial / ... And a Heavenly Temptation,
XXXI: Virginia / Virginia,
XXXII: El niño descalzo / The Barefoot Boy,
XXXIII: Cano Olivares / Cano Olivares,
XXXIV: El señor Perrichon / Monsieur Perrichon,
XXXV: "Le lion malade" / The Sick Lion,
XXXVI: La rosa seca / The Dry Rose,
XXXVII: El Enemigo / The Devil,
XXXVIII: La última tarde / The Last Evening,
XXXIX: Al partir / On Departing,
Epílogo / Epilogue,

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