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Don Juan Manuel, nephew of King Alfonso X, The Wise, knew well the appeal of exempla (moralized tales), which he believed should entertain if they were to provide ways and means for solving life's problems. His fourteenth-century book, known as El Conde lucanor, is considered by many to be the purest Spanish prose before the immortal Don Quixote of Cervantes written two centuries later. He found inspiration for his tales in classical and eastern literatures, Spanish history, and folklore. His stories are not translations, but are his retelling of some of the best stories in existence. The translation succeeds in making the author speak as clearly to the modern reader as to readers of his own time.

John E. Keller, professor emeritus of Spanish at the University of Kentucky, was the author of numerous books, including Daily Life Depicted in the Cantigas de Santa Maria.

L. Clark Keating was chairman of the Department of Modern Foreign Languages and Literatures in the University of Kentucky.

"Keller and Keating's translation of the Conde Lucanor is a highly readable and accurate translation of Spain's most famous medieval anthology of brief narratives written with the double intent of recreation and instruction."—Richard P. Kinkade, University of Arizona

Publication Date



The University Press of Kentucky

Place of Publication

Lexington, KY






Juan Manuel, Conde Lucanor, Count Lucanor


Spanish Literature


Translated by John E. Keller and L. Clark Keating

The Book of Count Lucanor and Patronio: A Translation of Don Juan Manuel's El Conde Lucanor
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