These Spanish Short Stories are, for the most part, realistic pictures of the manners and customs of modern Spain, written by masters of Spanish prose. All were written in the second half of the nineteenth century or in the first decade of the twentieth,—except the story by Larra, which was written about 1835.
first is now usually classed as a writer of psychological novels and plays, and the others as naturalistic novelists.
PÉREZ GALDÓS[J] began as a writer of historical romances modeled largely after those of Erckmann-Chatrian. His Episodios nacionales treat of the War of Independence (called by the English the "Peninsular War") against the French under Napoleon and of the immediately following years. These works are not historically accurate; but they present in an entertaining way the elemental facts of an important period in Spanish history. Their appeal to Spanish pride and patriotism won for them an extraordinary popularity in Spain, although they are little known outside of the peninsula. From the historical struggles of the past Pérez Galdós next turned his attention to the inner struggle that is now going on in Spain between conservatism and modern progress, and his prolific pen produced a series of interesting psychological novels. He is a firm believer in th