Books: Symbol

CASPAR HAUSER—Jacob Wassermann—Liveright ($3).

In his preface to English-speaking readers Author Wassermann explains that he is recounting a notorious incident of German history to illustrate a universal abuse; for in the youthful victim of a political intrigue he sees the symbol of all misunderstood children. By such explicit labeling the author hopes to establish his book as something more than the excellent historical novel which a large and enthusiastic European public thought it.

In 1828, Caspar Hauser, 17, stumbling alone into Nürnberg, stimulated general curiosity because he could neither walk nor talk better than a child of two. He could remember that he...

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