Peter Harvey has discovered two spacious rooms, lightly high in the Alhambra.
“Room of the beds” is the literal translation of “Sala de las camas,” which must lead not a few visitors to giggle and wonder what the difference is between a “room of the beds” and a bedroom. Traditional use in English for such spaces, often assumed by orientalists with imperialist agendas, pace Edward Said, to be regal knocking-shops, favours the evocative “chamber of repose,” although you’d still have to drop “real,” royal, in this layout.
How did the hall acquire its name? I don’t think Washington Irving bothered about it, although he rather liked the view of the Vega from the tower-top. But a brief trawl fails to discover it in pre-mid-19th century Spanish. So were its name and function in fact dreamed up by an English-speaking tourist or a French army captain, translated poorly into Spanish once they realised there was money to be made and then back again? Is all human communication in fact an out-of-hand game of Chinese whispers? Etc etc.
- Bread made of Catalan woman
Someone once told the English that “tapas bar” was Spanish for “exotic chav drinking hole”. El Sabio in Winchester has taken
- Spanglish, an important new literary language
An interesting piece by the always interesting Ilan Stavans in a new French literary mag on the doormat describes briefly how
- The strange case of Rafael Ramos
La Vanguardia’s London correspondent can’t write English, passes off fiction as fact and is a rampant plagiarist.
- He would an elegy compose / On maggots squeez’d out of his nose
Samuel Butler on a writer of doggerel.
- The Spanish Prostitute Moment in pre-war French popular novels
This is a crucial element in what remains of French realist writing in the 1920s and 30s, which, for this reason