"Throughout the 24th of December the children of medical adviser Stahlbaum had not been able to enter the main room, let alone in the adjacent gala hall. Fritz and Marie were crouching in a corner of the back room; the dark twilight had already made their appearance and they were very afraid, for, as usual that day, they had not been brought any light. Fritz, whispering in secret, told his little sister (she had just turned seven) that, since early morning, she had been hearing noises, murmurs and soft bangs in the enclosed rooms. That not long ago a dark little man had sneaked through the aisle with a big box under his arm, but that he knew well that he was none other than godfather Drosselmeier."
Thus begins the classic tale that Hoffmann composed for the children of his friend Julius Eduard Hitzig: Marie and Fritz, who, as the translator, Isabel Hernandez, points out, in her...read more