By Paul Tabori
Released in England as Epitaph for Europe. a tender Hungarian author, greatly travelled at the Continent, seeks to reëvoke the fundamental spirit of that inter-war Europe, now blown to bits. He meets numerous literary figures at the approach, together with James Joyce, Jakob Wassermann, Miroslav Krleža and others.
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Additional resources for A Wreath for Europa
No one would suspect that they are empty. The milkman sees them and says to himself: 'M. Szamisky is a man of means. " I burst into laughter and could not stop it even when Szamisky began to splutter indignantly. He was hurt that I did not fully appreciate such a brilliant stratagem. But not so many weeks afterwards when I changed my last hundred-franc note, I began to envy the painter's astuteness. Paris seemed to be such a stupid place to starve in a city where to my uninitiated eyes everything seemed to be light and gay.
There was nothing "grand" about this hotel, though the loves, hates, triumphs, and failures of its patrons would have dwarfed the colorful marionettes of Miss Vicki Baum. It was an Annenian rugpeddler who first took me to the Dome and instructed me how to make a cup of coffee last for two hours without the waiter getting restive. (The Annenian had a stand on the Boulevard Jean Jaures. But Jaures has no longer a street in Paris nor have Ron1ain Rolland, Barbusse or Con1bes. And at Aix-en-Provence they renamed the street of Pierre Curie Rue Jean Chiappel) TI1cre I sat and watched the motley crowd: the pimps and painters, the European yogis with hair reaching to the shoulders and big red toes sticking out from their heel-less sandals, the Chinese revolutionaries and Japanese spies, the spongers and journalists.
I was sitting between a Lutheran vicar and a very fat Roman Catholic priest who enjoyed the spectacle far too much to be embarrassed. Alas, I had worked through the night before, sending some lastminute cables from London to Budapest, and I fell asleep in the midst of the most exciting scene of female pulchritude and manly strength. This titne it was Josephine who held the audience under her spell and it was a well-dressed audience. It filled the bars and exchanged boisterous ren1arks. The Paris of the tourists seemed to have received a new lease of life from the exhibition around the Eiffel Tower.