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The Spanish Ballad (Raquel, the Jewess of Toledo)
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The Spanish Ballad (Raquel, the Jewess of Toledo)

4.26 of 5 stars 4.26  ·  rating details  ·  474 ratings  ·  21 reviews
The Spanish Ballad (originally published as "Die Jüdin von Toledo") is a 1955 novel by German-Jewish writer Lion Feuchtwanger. The story focuses on the "Golden Age" of learning in medieval Spain, and also describes the affair of Alfonso VIII with the Jewish Raquel in Toledo.

In Lion Feuchtwanger's prologue to the story, he mentions that the ballad was originally written by
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Published (first published 1954)
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Alex
It's Spain's Toledo in Castile at times of Reconquest
The pic of history entails both love and war along with Jewish people drama zest
My fellow Jews, who are advisers to the kings - to you I issue my advise
Please read this book and hide your daughters from king's eyes
Or otherwise so much to your surprise
In vanity pursuit and lack of humbling you will find your own family demise

Spanish Ballad
1. Memorable 5
2. Social Relevance 5
3. Informative 4
4. Originality 4
5. Thought Provoking 5
6. Expressiven
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Becky
This book was actually painful to read. But it was a sweet pain ;) It was painful because Feuchtwanger gives such keen insight into the psyche of his characters – so much so that you feel their frustrations as if they were coming from your own inner being. You can feel Yehuda’s disgust over the king’s barbaric ways; you can feel the king’s disgust over Yehuda’s shrewd ways. You can feel the weight of each moment as if you were standing there with them. One moment you hate a character, the next y ...more
Torben
Ja, dieser Roman ist Literatur, "große deutsche" schreibt Reich-Ranicki. Das Buch ist spannend, ohne wirklich viel Handlung zu haben, es lebt von der Sprache und Struktur. Es lebt von den tollen Sätzen und der Psychologie hinter allem. Es handelt von der Schwierigkeit und den "Kampf" Frieden zu halten und der Leichtigkeit, Krieg zu entfachen und so das in kurzer Zeit zu vernichten, was Jahrhunderte aufgebaut wurde. Es handelt von Toleranz und Liebe, von Weitsicht und Engstirnigkeit und Egozentri ...more
Telans


С Лионом Фейхтвангером мы раньше не встречались, по крайней мере, на страницах его произведений, хотя имя само по себе достаточно известное, бурные события века ХХ-ого значительно изменили жизнь этого певца своего вечно гонимого народа и яростного критика нацистского режима.

*Испанская баллада* - это поэтическая метафора максимы, что история повторяется, и фанатичное средневековье, и на века отдаленные от него европейские страны в веке ХХ-ом различаются несильно, только масштаб ужасов со временем
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Alexander Ledovskiy
В книгах Фейхтвангера есть что-то очень важное, чего практически нет скажем в трёх товарищах Ремарка или у Моэма.
Это что-то тонкое, какая-то идейная нить.
Испанская баллада - очень красивая книга. Безумно прекрасна средневековая Испания. Есть что-то общее с Пределом контроля Джармуша. Яркие, глубокие персонажи. Трагизм, который так сильно отличается от трагизма смерти Патриции Хольман.
Эта книга однажды открыла для меня творчество Лиона Фейтвангера. И я очень ей за это благодарен.
Olga Tikhonova
Jul 19, 2014 Olga Tikhonova rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: любителям классики
Исторический роман Лиона Фейхтвангера о «любви» короля Альфонсо VIII и красавицы-еврейки Ракель, действие происходит в Испании, Кастилия, в городе Толедо конца 12-го века.


Портрет Альфонсо VIII.

Любовь я взяла в кавычки не случайно. Когда я собиралась прочитать эту книгу и искала ее описания, мне повсюду встречалась одна и та же фраза: «роман о любви короля к еврейке». Ну что ж, подумала я, про любовь так про любовь. Дочитав книгу, я была удивлена, потому что если называть любовью отношения между
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El Segoviano
Aunque lo lei hace doce años lo recuerdo perfectamente. El libro se escribio en 1.954 y recrea el ambiente en Toledo en el siglo XII y la manera de vivir entre los diferentes grupos sociales, arabes, judios y castellanos en la que luego sería ciudad imperial.
El libro es muy ameno, recuerdo que me gusto mucho y sobre todo descubrí años despues de leer el libro que el lugar donde se desarrollan los amores del Rey Alfonso VIII de Castilla con la hija de un judio importante en Toledo existe, es el P
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Netti
Dass Lion Feuchtwanger schreiben kann, muss nicht erwähnt werden: er ist ein Stern am Literaturhimmel. Mir gefällt besonders, wie er die Personen des fernen 12. Jahrhunderts lebendig werden lässt. Das macht mir Lust, mehr über die historischen Hintergründe zu erfahren. Das große Thema des Buches ist für mich nicht die schwierige (und keineswegs romantische oder gar erotische!) Liebesbeziehung. Überlegungen zu Schuld und Verantwortung spielen eine wichtige Rolle. Noch bedeutender jedoch ist für m ...more
Lucie Novak
Lion Feuchtwanger is one of my favourite authors, pity he is not widely known in English reaidng world.
This is a very nice historical love story although maybe less good than his other books. Despite gruesome circumstances, maybe a bit too romantic. But a good read, and you find out about Spain in 15th century and the Jewish dilemma,
Mina
I did enjoy this book, even if it took me forever to read. I had at least 2 or 3 breakes, each about a week long; even the last 20 pages were postponed for a few days.
Parts of it were tedious reading, mostly the ones that presented the general state of things, about the country or less specific people or actions.
But the characters, the dynamic bethween them and the emotions got a pretty strong hook in.
Alexandra Tolnai


A story of love and hope! I fell in love with the city of Toledo after reading the novel and when in Toledo I thought that Feuchtwanger did justice to this amazing city!

The entire novel is dominated by the Oedipal dependency between father and daughter and cannot be solved by triangulation on the part of the father. The tragic symbiosis ends finally in death and can only be resolved by the next generation.
Stas
The best love story that I have read. Period. Brilliantly written, touching to the bones and incredibly moving. Do not pass this book. I have read it many times and will be reading more times in the future. Also, I suggest to read it in Russian translation.
Mae
Una lectura fascinante. Otro libro mas de esos que debieran ser lectura obligada para conocer mas sobre la historia de los judíos en Europa y para la constatación que no hemos cambiado mucho en los últimos mil años.
The author is a fabulous storyteller.
Angel Serrano
Alfonso VIII, rey de Castilla y Toledo, tiene grandes ambiciones respecto a la Reconquista. En su capital conocerá a la hija de su canciller y no mirará atrás. Su amor trágico es la historia del pueblo judío en su amado Sefarad.
Nikki
A bit heavy to read as his prose is rather old-fashioned, but a fascinating story and extremely well-written, full of insights and a vast knowledge of the three big religions in medieval Spain.
David
Aburrido, completamente alejado de la vida real de la época y con unos personajes planos y esteriotipados a más no poder. Más un cuento edulcorado que una novela histórica
Bhig
Feuchtwanger lays everything (thoughts, motivations, backgrounds, etc.) in front of the reader's eyes and doesn't make me feel anything. I like him for this.
Ruth
Sep 19, 2008 Ruth marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
I've started this one a couple of times, but keep turning to other books. It is interesting, but not too captivating.
Alena
Jeden z momentů, kdy si říkám, že jsem měla povinný četbě věnovat víc energie a nečíst na truc jen všechno ostatní :)
Gregory Brengauz
The best of Feuchtwanger.
Rebecca
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Dec 15, 2014
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Dec 10, 2014
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Lion Feuchtwanger (1884-1958) was a German Jewish emigre. A renowned novelist and playwright who fled Europe during World War II and lived in Los Angeles from 1941 until his death.

A fierce critic of the Nazi regime years before it assumed power precipitated his departure, after a brief internment in France, from Europe. He and his wife Marta obtained asylum in the United States in 1941 and remain
...more
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