Category Archives: Folklore

Did you know…?

Arizona is a Basque word. It seems that it wasn’t that long ago that this seemed a fringe hypothesis, but now it appears on the National Park Service’s page. The state of Arizona gets its name from a ranch from the 1700s where silver was discovered. The name of that ranch, which still exists, is […]

Basque Book Roundup

There has been a lot of news about Basque books… It’s Hammer Time! (am I dating myself?) Begoña Echeverria’s book, The Hammer of Witches, was just chosen as Editor’s Choice for the month of May by the Historical Novel Society! If you haven’t heard about the novel, I mentioned it here. The story of a […]

Berriak for February, 2015

Here is a round-up of a few items I thought were notable. Inaki Williams became the first black player to score a goal for Athletic Bilbao in their 117 year history. You may know that Athletic Bilbao only recruits Basque players, players from the Basque Country. Inaki was born in Bilbao to parents from Ghana and […]

Two New Basque Novels: The Hammer of Witches and The Invisible Guardian

The Basque Country is central to two new Basque novels that The Hammer of Witches, by Begoña Echeverria, takes place during the Spanish Inquisition, a time when Basques accused other Basques of being witches, when witches were burned for presumed heresy against the Church, and when a few brave souls fought back against such maleficent […]

Rosettas

Throughout the Basque Country, on cabinets, headstones, and books, one finds various designs that adorn pretty much everything. There is of course the ubiquitous lauburu, but there are also other figures, rosettas, that are very common. The Enciclopedia Aunamendi has an article on “popular art” where they have an image of a number of rosettas […]

Oreka TX and the Txalaparta

If you haven’t ever heard the txalaparta, you are missing out.  Originally an instrument of communication, the txalaparta has become a central part of modern Basque folk music. The txalaparta is a set of planks, often about 5, that two people play together.  As such, it is billed as the only instrument in the world […]

New Book: Spanish and Basque Legends

Richard Marsh’s imprint, Legendary Books, has just released it’s newest title, Spanish and Basque Legends.  Focused mostly on Spanish legends, including El Cid, Fernán González, and The Seven Princes of Lara, it also includes a number of Basque tales. All told, 76 stories are featured, including The Jaun Zuria Cycle: Jaun Zuria – The Golden-haired […]

A Basque Superstition

Found in Folklore By Joseph Jacobs, Alfred Trübner Nutt, Arthur Robinson Wright, Folklore Society (Great Britain), William Crooke Can any reader of FOLK-LORE throw any light on a superstition prevalent apparently among the Basques of Navarre and the Aragonese of the Pyrenees, to the effect that the bear acts as a sort of watch-dog to […]