Nov 7, In Jeremias Gotthelf’s 19th century gothic horror story The Black Spider, newly translated by Susan Bernofsky, a young woman makes a pact. Apr 5, The Black Spider. by Jeremias Gotthelf. Translated by Susan Bernofsky. NYRB Classics, I picked up The Black Spider because of its. And yet, there it is, Jeremias Gotthelf’s “The Black Spider” (or, as it was titled in its original German, “Die schwarze Spinne”), holding pride of place in Jones.

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Even if you’re not so inclined toward the Christian messages as in my caseyou can still enjoy The Black Spider.

The Black Spider | Literary Hub

Because there is a very good reason one should fear God. The peasants rejoice, for they think they have outwitted the green man, but Christine does not join them. To ask other readers questions about Die jetemias Spinneplease sign up.

Originally published in by the Swiss pastor Jeremias Gotthelf and translated several times into English, this classic horror story was one of Thomas Mann’s favorite tales and played a role in the composition of Doctor Faustus.

Il ragno nero – Italia. In a staged version was put on conducted by Silvio Varviso. Noticing a blemished and blackened window post in the otherwise handsome and newly built home, a villager goads the grandfather into explaining its presence. Wait, a Folk tale?! Swiss novellas Biedermeier literature novels short stories Gothic novels Weird fiction Demon novels Swiss novels adapted into films Novels adapted into operas.


The frame story is set on the day of a christening celebrated by prosperous peasants at a farm, and the homely customs of this rural community are presented in such loving detail, and their world itself seems so idyllic, so noble in its simplicity, that we feel evil could never enter there.

He was born at Murten, where his father was pastor. One of these items ships bblack than the other. Strike while everyone is relaxed and happy and dressed up.

The spider in her face swelled up higher than ever, sending fiery barbs through her very bones.

One of these, a Hans von Stoffeln, was particularly demanding. There is much weeping and wailing, but one peasant stands out from all the others: We have sympathetic people with sympathetic desires put spiider a situation which is so impossible that it’s almost understandable that they could make the deal—if the villagers can’t complete the lord’s task and get back to harvest their fields, the whole gothelf will perish, so maybe it makes sense to sacrifice one child.

The Black Spider

His first work, the Der Bauernspiegel, oder die Lebensgeschichte des Jeremias Gotthelf, appeared in It will stay with you. Thoroughly in despair, because this is an impossible task, the peasant men wonder how they’re going to tell their loved ones.

There was a problem filtering reviews right now. The Black Spider is so densely packed with symbolism and religious imagery that it carries the weight of a much longer novel.

But ‘Jeremias Gotthelf’ knows what he is doing. Customers who bought this item also bought. On a daily basis we are given images of high-powered corporate executives who have made bad financial decisions that have ruined the lives of thousands of people, and they are often given nothing more than a slap on the wrist, due to loopholes and laws written into the system that protect them from prosecution.


As Grandfather concludes his first tale, his listeners–and we readers–grow increasingly uneasy, and he begins to tell us another story about how this same evil, although contained, was unleashed a second time in a period of time closer to the present.

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The Black Spider – Wikipedia

It IS a folk tale. As every child knows, making deals with the devil is a dangerous business.

However, the priest sprinkled him with holy water before she could stanch the infant. This short Swiss novel from a novella really–has much to recommend it. Rarely has a novel’s description left me so adrift.

Pervasive smell of sulfur! There is a lot of richness to the text- a sense of historical time,class struggle,feminism,though,to be fair,the frame tale tends to drag towards the end.

And as a result, I think, I had trouble connecting with the story. One of the wives, Christine of Lindau, jsremias up the green huntsman’s offer, thinking that when a new baby is born, the people will find a way to deceive him, and they do manage to stave off the devil for a while.