Excerpt from the Preface:
“These Spanish Short Stories are, for the most part, realistic pictures of the manners and customs of modern Spain, written by masters of Spanish prose.
All were written in the second half of the nineteenth century or in the first decade of the twentieth,—except the story by Larra, which was written about seventy-five years ago.
all describe recent conditions,—except the tale, partly historical and partly legendary, by Bécquer, which goes back to the invasion of Spain by the French under Napoleon in the early years of the nineteenth century;
the story by Larra, which, however, is nearly as true of Castile to-day as it was when written; and Trueba’s story, which is partly legendary, partly symbolic, and partly realistic.
The stories by Bécquer and Pérez Galdós contain incidents that are supernatural, and those by Fernán Caballero and Alarcón have romantic settings that are highly improbable;
but all the stories are, in the main, true to the every-day life of contemporary Spain.”