A Cidade e as Serras

Published: 1901
Language: Portugues
Wordcount: 75,653 / 255 pg
LoC Category: PQ
Downloads: 1,808
Added to site: 2008.01.14
mnybks.net#: 19696
Origin: gutenberg.org
Buy new from: Amazon or Barnes & Noble
Find it used: eBay or AbeBooks
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Excerpt

ar os dois vidros simples de um binóculo de corridas, percebo, por trás da vidraça, presuntos, queijos, boiões de geleia e caixas de ameixa seca. Concluo portanto que é uma mercearia. Obtive uma noção; tenho sobre ti, que com os olhos desarmados vês só o luzir da vidraça, uma vantagem positiva. Se agora, em vez destes vidros simples, eu usasse os do meu telescópio, de composição mais científica, poderia avistar além, no planeta Marte, os mares, as neves, os canais, o recorte dos golfos, toda a geografia de um astro que circula a milhares de léguas dos Campos Elísios. É outra noção, e tremenda! Tens aqui pois o olho primitivo, o da Natureza, elevado pela Civilização à sua máxima potência de visão. E desde já, pelo lado do olho portanto, eu, civilizado, sou mais feliz que o incivilizado, porque descubro realidades do Universo q

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Average Rating of 4 from 1 reviews: ****
2008.01.14
Joe Romaninsky
****.

I read this book in an English translation published by the Carcenet Press. If you read Portuguese and haven't read the book, or any of Eca de Queiroz's marvelous novels, I can heartily recommend it. It may not be Eca de Queiroz's masterpiece, but it is a charming tale of a wealthy young Portuguese land owner living for no particular purpouse in Paris at the height of its late nineteenth century splendor and decadence, and of the love for his native soil and its sturdy, honest, and hard working people that draws him home again.

The novel's characters are drawn with Eca's usual affectionate humor and irony. The scene in which the French count, anticipating dining on a marvelous fish dinner, is foiled by a malfunctioning dumb waiter elevator is very funny. I only wish I were able to read Portuguese well enough to read the original. If it was that good in translation, it must be even better in Portuguese!


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