[[ BOOKS ]] ✸ Manual de zoología fantástica Author Jorge Luis Borges – Bassgrotto.co.uk

Manual de zoología fantástica Alternate Cover Editions Here And HereFew Readers Will Want, Or Be Able, To Resist This Modern Bestiary Here You Will Find The Familiar Gryphons, Minotaurs And Unicorns As Well As The Monkey Of The Inkpot And Other Undeniably Curious Beasts Borges Cunning And Humorous Commentary Is Sheer Delight


10 thoughts on “Manual de zoología fantástica

  1. says:

    A fascinating compendium of incredible beasts from world mythology, folklore and fiction The entries are generally from one to three pages in length There are illustrations, too, by one Peter S s stylish intaglio etchings The format is that of an encyclopedia with the entries in alphabetical order My favorite entries include the Banshees, The Celestial Cock, The Chinese Dragon, The Western Dragon, The Hydra, Lilith, The Golem, The Unicorn, The Chinese Unicorn, etc etc This is a wonderful testment to the extraordinary breadth of Borges s reading, for which he was famous, as well his exquisite use of that hoary utility, the research library You may recall that Borges was rewarded by the subsequent Aramburu r gime with the directorship of the National Library in Buenos Aires for his public stance against Peron I think his named collaborator here, Margarita Guerrero, was a researcher at that institution Borges pores through the entire history of the written word from Gilgamesh onward to collect his examples There s a passage from Robert Grave s translation of the Pharsalia to illustrate the entry of the Basilisk We also find ourselves dipping into the Septaugint, the Old and New Testaments, Burton s Anatomy of Melancholy, the Babylonian Talmud, the other Burton s translation of A Thousand Nights and A Night, Thomas Brown s Pseudodoxia Epidemica, as well as works by Pliny the Elder, Benvenuto Cellini, Marco Polo, Confucius, Leonardo, Herodotus, Homer, Tennyson, Hesiod, Dante, William H Prescott and any number of Chinese and Indian and Arab writers One note of caution I went into this with my usual raging thirst for Borgesian narrative The book in fact provides very little of that What it offers in excess is a fascinating peek at Borges s astonishing erudition Highly recommended.


  2. says:

    I can t say I m surprised by the fact that it s so highly acclaimed That said, I can t say I found much interest in it, either Truth is, it kind of made the already long hours of the night shift at work a tiny bit longer All in all, The Book of Imaginary Beings is an admittedly big literary achievement that simply didn t touch me.Shit happens, I guess.


  3. says:

    Borges explains at the beginning that the book is not intended to be read through, but opened at random and skimmed Well, I read it through, and I don t regret it But that s because I m interested by very unusual things Borges has here compiled from what is essentially a set of utterly trivial facts something with meaning His selection is bizarre, pretty and humorous, and he describes each beast with great variation in tone The reason for each voice only becomes clear after several beasts are examined The optimal reading circumstances appear to be a small group of people intimately familiar with the work of Borges reading aloud to each other and chuckling knowingly at each other But it s still awesome You should keep it on a shelf nearby, and open it when wondering what doesn t exist.


  4. says:

    This book is great Unlike Rowling s Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them or Holly Black s Arthur Spiderwick s Guide to the Fantastical World Around You, which provide authoritative portraits of magical creatures in a particular fantasy world, The Book of Imaginary Beings compiles interesting stories and details about a diverse array of imagined beasts, drawing from both Western and Eastern mythologies Borges s aim is not simply to delight his readers with whimsical stories couched in a satirical tone though he manages this quite well but to ascertain the true purpose of these beings in humanity s collective consciousness We do not know what the dragon means, Borges writes in the Introduction, just as we do not know the meaning of the universe, but there is something in the image of a dragon that is congenial to man s imagination, and thus the dragon arises in many latitudes and ages It is, one might say, a necessary monster This gets to the heart of what fascinates every fantasy lover or typologist What are our profound hopes our neurotic fears What force drives us to tell the same stories over and over, resurrecting our favorite characters and their villains again and again Keep this noble cause in mind as you skim this book, and it will help you get through the drier bits Not every entry sparkles with Borges s wit Some unfamiliar creatures, like the A Bao A Qu or Animals That Live in the Mirror, are a joy to meet, while others could have remained obscure Read it before bed, and be sure to remember your dreams.


  5. says:

    Reading this again because I m in the middle of translating it, and it s still as beautiful as ever The creatures described in this book have been a major influence on all my horror work.


  6. says:

    hard to resist this amazing modern bestiary which surpass so many shallow creatures in now days films or books what a vivid imagination this great writer had.


  7. says:

    Like much of the Borgesian oeuvre, The Book of Imaginary Beings exists on the peripheries of the make believe On a certain level, the work does indeed function as an honest to goodness encyclopedia albeit one that deals almost exclusively with the fantastical But as one might expect, things aren t quite what they seem, and the astute reader should also view the legitimacy even the sincerity of its various mythological claims with a grain or two of salt.One of history s most prolific readers, Borges draws his material from several thousand years worth of literature and myth yet only sporadically does he actually cite his sources although translator Andrew Hurley has done an admiral job of tracking a good many of them down And even then, this great pioneer of POMO has elsewhere demonstrated a playful penchant for fabricating primary source material see, for instance, the absolutely wonderful On Rigor in Science.Nor do the many entries in this volume, which span the mysterious A Boa A Qu to the colossal Zaratan, appear to conform to any overarching methodological strategy Despite containing seperate entries for Chinese and Western dragons, The Book of Imaginary Beings makes no pretenses towards either rigor or exhaustiveness, with Borges haphazardly engaging in direct quotation A Crossbreed by Kafka, The Offspring of Leviathan , conceptual historicization Dragons , and even the occasional bout of philosophical speculation The Baldanders.In Reference and Existence, Saul Kripke the influential American philosopher of language and logic pontificates at length about the curious nature of real toy ducks despite the paradoxical name, real toy ducks exist he argues as a genuine part of our ontology, although one should take pains not to confuse them with real non toy ducks of the flesh and blood variety The Book of Imaginary Beings finds Borges toying with a similar notion only unlike Kripke, the Argentine writer cum bibliophile seems intent on further tangling the metaphysical strings relating fact to fiction.Which makes this real imaginary encyclopedia into something than just a testament to the staggering eruditeness of its author All in all, an immensely enjoyable read Recommended And as per usual, the Penguin Deluxe Classics Edition sparingly illustrated by Peter S s is simply gorgeous.


  8. says:

    First off, I read the 2002 Vintage edition, which I would not reccomend since it completely lacks illustrations apparently found in other versions, and a good bestiary does need the the occasional visual.The writing itself This starts off feeling like a lacklustre Top 100 Weirdest Monsters web list, with Borges describing beasties with the heads of pigeons and the bodies of scorpions, or merely quoting passages from whatever literary work birthed the monster in question, and little much else, which meant my interest in reading depended on the bizarre nature of the mythic creature itself and nothing to do with Borges writing.So this was annoyingly boring to begin with, until someone in Borges life either finally brought his coffee or smacked him round the back of the head, as about half way through the author pulls his finger out and goes full out on the etymology, story variations and associated myths with each entry It s the first time I ve seen a writer gain interest half way through a book, rather than lose it.Speaking of the Top 10 list again, the internet has pretty much ruined the purpose of this kind of book, but there are some interesting tidbits and rare beasts I haven t heard before The Lamed Wufniks, Scylla and the horrifying Un man were new and fascinating to me at least, and I didn t know Alarune was the German for mandrake, so Borges research has plumbed some depths that Top 5 Regional Legends, No.4 will give you nightmares hasn t.If you could find some beautiful, fully illustrated edition of this tome, it would be a lovely reference piece for your bookshelf, but it s not long enough to be a true bestiary and far too sporadic in its level of information to be a fully engaging read.


  9. says:

    I really don t know how JLB makes such exciting topic sound so boring Let s take Scylla as an example She is one of the weirdest monsters a girl with the heads of six barking dogs coming from her waist The story behind her transformation from Ovid s Metamorphoses is equally twisted a guy named Glaucus falls in love with Scylla lovely girl at this point , she scorns him Desperate, he seeks help from Circe, the sorceress He is probably hoping for some love potion to change Scylla s mind To his surprise, Circe falls for him and puts down Scylla And even though Glaucus says no, Circe goes ahead and poisons the water Scylla likes to bathe in She only sank her body halfway when the dog heads grew out of her loins Wild Ovid s story stimulates emotions and marvels us JLB makes this story, as well as 100 others, unbearably boring, just piles of exotic knowledge If you are interested in these fantastic creatures, read Homer, Ovid, and various world mythologies You ll enjoy the reading much .