‘The Leopard’ Turns 50

Pubblicato il 13 Luglio 2008 12:00 | Ultimo aggiornamento: 13 Luglio 2008 12:00

da: The New York Times

Sicily is the key to Italy, as Goethe once wrote, and one novel is the key to Sicily: “The Leopard,” Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa’s masterpiece. This tale of the decline and fall of the house of Salina, a family of Sicilian aristocrats, first appeared in 1958, but it reads more like the last 19th-century novel, a perfect evocation of a lost world.To mark its 50th anniversary this year, the novel’s American publisher, Pantheon, has issued a new edition with some previously unpublished material. It includes a new foreword by Lampedusa’s adopted son, Gioacchino Lanza Tomasi, drawing on newly discovered correspondence from Lampedusa, a gentleman scholar who died at 60 the year before the novel — his first and last — appeared. Initially rejected by several leading publishers, “The Leopard” went on to become one of the best-selling Italian novels of the 20th century (more than 3.2 million copies sold) and the basis for…

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