This is an image from the non-fiction volume, ‘Nights and Days On the Gypsy Trail’ published in 1922. Written by an American of Gypsy descent, Irving Brown, I finally obtained a copy of this book that I had heard about, but never actually seen available. To be fair, I was looking for a 1st. Edition and not a reprint.
Reviewer ‘Black Cat’ rated this 3 stars out of 5 on goodreads.com. This is what he says:
“The author, Irving Brown, travels to different cities in Spain looking for Spanish Gypsies: their folklore, music, customs, language and more… The book reveals the nature of the spanish gypsy: care-free, passionate, lyric, impulsive and generous with their “kind.”
Not exactly illuminating – but accurate.
I started out reading this curiosity and not very long into the book, had a distinct feeling that this book, written in purple prose, was nothing but a paen to a nostalgic view of Andalusian gypsies that never existed. But I persevered and read on a bit further.
At some point thereafter, I thought: this book is written in 1921 and who am I to pass judgement on what was the reality of Gypsy culture in Andalusia throughout this period.
With descriptions like this:
“…IMAGINE yourselves in a square cave hollowed from the rock. A little Spanish Gypsy girl is dancing an abulea to the accompaniment of a wild song and the vibrant notes of a guitar. Other Gypsies sitting tensely on the rims of their chairs, in a half circle about the dancer, are beating time with vigorous handclaps, and Continue Reading →