Wednesday, August 29, 2012

The many authors of Margarita Madrigal's world

Margarita had a life filled with fascinating characters. In particular she taught and then made friends with many of the great authors of her age.

Sherwood Anderson (1876 - 1941)

One of the first authors she taught and became close friends with was the novelist and playwright Sherwood Anderson. She described him as "heaven". She would visit him in the afternoons and teach him Spanish. This was one of the few ways in which Anderson was able to escape the depression he suffered from. Margarita's final lessons with him prepared him for the cruise to South America where he then died on March 5, 1941.

André Maurois (1885 - 1967)

Margarita also taught and became good friends with the French author André Maurois. He was very affectionate towards Margarita, caressing her whenever he met her.

Ernest Hemingway (1899 - 1961)

Margarita also taught Ernest Hemingway. By the time of Hemingway's death, he had compiled a significant private library, which later became part of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum. Two of Margarita's books were among those in his treasured collection.

Edith Hamilton (1867-1963)

Perhaps Margarita's greatest friendship came with the author and classicist Edith Hamilton. Margarita and Hamilton first met in 1957 and Margarita described Hamilton as "the greatest person" she had ever met.  They became close friends. Margarita considered Hamilton to be the greatest prose writer ever produced by the United States.

Hamilton was more than anything an expert on Classical Greece, its myths and culture. Margarita was so influenced by her that when she needed to take a break from her stressful life she chose to take the first part of that break near Athens, Greece. When speaking of Hamilton Margarita said simply, "we were intimate friends."

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