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Hans Aanrud's short stories are considered by his own countrymen as belonging to the most original and artistically finished life pictures that have been produced by the younger literati of Norway. They are generally concerned with peasant character, and present in true balance the course and fine in peasant nature. The style of speech is occasionally...
Hans Aanrud's short stories are considered by his own countrymen as belonging to the most original and artistically finished life pictures that have been produced by the younger literati of Norway. They are generally concerned with peasant character, and present in true balance the course and fine in peasant nature. The style of speech is occasionally over-concreted for sophisticated ears, but it is not unwholesome. Of weak or cloying sweetness, so abhorrent to Norwegian taste, there is never a trace. Sidsel Sidsrk was dedicated to the author's daughter on her eighth birthday, and is doubtless largely reminiscent of Aanrud's own childhood. If I have been able to give a rendering at all worthy of the original, readers of Elizabeth Longfrock will find that the whole story breathes a spirit of unaffected poetry not inconsistent with the common life which it depicts. This fine blending of the poetic and commonplace is another characteristic of Aanrud's writings. While translating the book I was living in the region where the scenes of the story are laid, and had the benefit of local knowledge concerning terms used, customs referred to, etc. No pains were spared in verifying particulars, especially through elderly people on the farms, who could best explain the old-fashioned terms and who had a clear remembrance of obsolescent details of high pasture life. For this welcome help and for elucidations through other friends I wish here to offer my hearty thanks.
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