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Tales from Saragossa Manuscript

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4.19  ·  Rating details ·  16 ratings  ·  2 reviews
Paperback, 159 pages
Published February 25th 2015 by Dedalus
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Average rating 4.19  · 
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Tim Pendry

This is an overrated picaresque 'classic' from very early in the nineteenth century. It has its moments of genuine surprise and horror - indeed eroticism - but it is also overwrought, messy and confused.

Brian Stableford has produced a solid piece of academic background for this edition. We are really not very sure of the book's origin. Is it Polish or French and, if Polish, which Potocki wrote it?

There have been great cultural claims for this book - including claims of it holding secret qabbalis
...more
Gabi Coatsworth
Dec 24, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: classics, translated
A fascinating book in the form of 65 tales of 17th-century cabalists, ghosts, and so on. It takes place largely in Spain, though there are digressions in the Middle East - like the story of the Wandering Jews. The original was written in French at the turn of the 18-19th centuries, French being the language of the Polish aristocracy of that time.
I put off reading this, thinking it would be too turgid and involved, not to mention the 600+ pages, but I really enjoyed it. Potocki was an erudite ma
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Jan Potocki was born into the Potocki family, an aristocratic family, that owned vast estates in Poland. He was educated in Geneva and Lausanne, served twice in the Polish Army as a captain of engineers, and spent some time on a galley as a novice Knight of Malta. He was probably a Freemason and had a strong interest in the occult.

Potocki's colorful life took him across Europe, Asia and North Afri
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