Wednesday, April 24, 2019

“Well, that’s the Renaissance”

Wenzel Schaschek, bank clerk, has stolen from a museum a painting of Eleonor, the Duchess of Albanera. The painted Duchess has begun to tell Schaschek of her life: after killing her first husband, she was determined to forgive her second husband anything. But he betrayed her by taking a lover, so she took that lover for herself, enslaved him to her body, and “worked him” until he plunged a dagger into her husband’s heart.

Johannes Urzidil, “The Duchess of Albanera.” In The Last Bell. Translated from the German by David Burnett. (London: Pushkin Press, 2017.)

Also from this book

comments: 2

Frex said...

I don't know this author---this quote and the next, "realistic underwear", make me want to check him out.

Michael Leddy said...

He’s terrific — and this book is all of his fiction that’s available in English translation. I’ve already written to Pushkin Press hoping that they’ll do more.