National Episodes, by Benito Perez Galdos, complete and illustrated edition (1976)


The National Episodes are 46 historical novels (10 per series except for the fifth, of which he was only able to finish 6), by Benito Pérez Galdós

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ISBN: 9788485266012 Category:
Reference: 866LIB Brand:


10 volumes in perfect condition of 23 x 26 cm with a total of 4,784 pages written in double columns and profusely illustrated with more than 5,000 full color illustrations with their corresponding comments, data and references on them and on the history of the Spanish 19th century. . Published in fascicles between 1976 and 1979 by Ediciones Urbión and bound in editorial leather in hard cover in two colors and gold. All volumes have two small round rubber stamps from their previous owner and volumes I and II also have an Ex Libris in rubber stamp. Impeccable conservation and some of them preserve the sensation of being opened for the first time. An exceptional work, a jewel of Spanish and international literature, and an excellent illustrated edition. The complete National Episodes as they have never been re-edited.

The great contribution, the outstanding novelty of this edition lies in the abundant graphic documentation that illustrates the text, taken from the last edition that appeared during the author’s lifetime, that of 1907-1914. It is an edition that fulfills the wishes of Galdós himself, who wrote in one of his prologues to the National Episodes: “Before these twenty novels became a reality… and when all this work of seven thousand pages was simply an illusion of artist, I considered and decided that the National Episodes should be, sooner or later, an illustrated work”. The work is preceded by a general introduction and a specific prologue to each of the 46 National Episodes, by Professor Juan Ignacio Ferreras.

The value of the National Episodes is not only political. This is the best historical novel written in Spain by an author internationally considered one of the great realist writers of the 19th century, along the lines of Dickens, Tolstoy, Gogol and Balzac. With Benito Pérez Galdós the Spanish novel returns to the heights that only Miguel de Cervantes could overcome.

The main illustrator of this edition of the National Episodes is, without a doubt, Goya. And it is that it is not possible to understand the history of Spain, from Carlos III, without knowing Goya. It is not possible to understand Goya without knowing the Spain that, since 1805, Galdós describes so well in his National Episodes. Galdós and Goya explain separately what Spain was like in those years. This illustrated edition of the National Episodes has brought them together for the Spanish language reader.

The National Episodes are, as a whole, a collection of forty-six historical novels (ten per series except for the fifth, of which he was only able to finish six), written by Galdós between 1872 and 1912. They are divided into five series (the last one unfinished), based on the historical events of Spain from 1805 to 1880, approximately. They are, therefore, historical novels that insert a series of stories with fictional characters created by the author within historical events.

In the first series (volumes I and II), with the exception of “Gerona”, all the episodes follow the adventurous and amorous wanderings of the young Gabriel de Araceli through Spain dominated at first by France and later in the War of Independence. , from the Battle of Trafalgar to the defeat of the French armies (1805–1814).

The Court of Carlos IV
March 19 and May 2
Napoleon in Chamartin
Juan Martin the Steadfast
The Battle of the Arapiles

The second series (volumes III and IV) was written between 1875 and 1879. Its leading character, not always the protagonist, is the liberal combatant Salvador Monsalud, originally a sworn guard of King José I of Spain, who suffered from the absolutism of the first six years of the reign of Fernando VII (1814–1820), extolled in the Liberal Triennium (1820–1823) and persecuted during the Ominous Decade (1823–1833). His perpetual dissatisfaction guides us through the convulsive Fernandina Spain, in which the conflicts of the future are already germinating.

King Joseph’s luggage
Memoirs of a Courtier of 1815
the second coat
The Great East
July 7
The Hundred Thousand Sons of Saint Louis
terror of 1824
A realistic volunteer
The Apostolics
One more rebel and some less friars

After this series, Galdós announced his decision to leave the work at this point, but after the disaster of 1898, he decided to continue with his work until the end.

In the third series (volumes V and VI), the Spain torn by the First Carlist War and the Regency of María Cristina is the time of the following episodes, whose axis is the romantic Fernando Calpena.

From Oñate to the Farm
The Master’s campaign
The romantic courier
Oca Mountains
The Ayacuchos
Royal Weddings (in volume VII)

In the fourth series (volumes VII, VIII and part of IX), José García Fajardo, uninterested in politics as the previous ones were not, is the protagonist of the following adventures that try to cover the entire reign of Isabel II, already contemporary to the author.

The storms of ’48
The Cabal Goblins
The July Revolution
Aita Tettauen
Carlos VI in the Rápita
Around the world in Numancia (in volume IX)
Prim (in volume IX)
The one with the sad destinies (in volume IX)

And, finally, in the fifth series (volumes IX and X), Tito, a first-person narrator who does not seem like a real character, but a concept of the author to create reflective dialogue, is the protagonist of this unfinished series, which begins in the Spanish Glorious Revolution and of which we only have six published titles and one project known and announced by the author.

Spain without a king
tragic Spain
Amadeus I
the first republic
From Carthage to Sagunto
Cánovas (last published novel)
Sagasta (in project, never finished due to the death of the author)

Benito Pérez Galdós (1843-1920) was born in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, and at the age of 19 he moved to Madrid, where he spent most of his adult life. In Spain, his most popular work is the National Episodes (46 historical novels), which we present in this beautiful 10-volume collection. Outside of his homeland, his contemporary Spanish novels are the best known.

His first novels mix historical and fictional characters and are the result of documentary research. They cover the period from 1805 to the end of the 19th century, providing glimpses of Pérez Galdós’s liberal and anticlerical views, which are developed in contemporary novels.

In 1886 the then Prime Minister Práxedes Mateo Sagasta appointed him deputy for the town and district of Guayama, Puerto Rico, before the Madrid Parliament; he never visited the place, but he had reliable information about the state of the area, and he felt a duty to represent its inhabitants appropriately.

In 1897, Pérez Galdós was elected a member of the Royal Spanish Academy. In 1907 he obtained the position of deputy for the republican party in Parliament. He went blind in 1912, but continued to dictate his books for the rest of his life. Shortly before his death, a statue was built in his honor in the Parque del Retiro, the most popular park in Madrid, financed solely by public donations.

Pérez Galdós was, and still is, immensely popular in Spain, where he is considered Tolstoy’s Hispanic peer. Until 1950, few of his works were available in English, although he had slowly become popular in the English-speaking world.

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