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The Treasure

Selma Lagerlöf

Book Overview: 

The Treasure is a fairly short Novel, both a Drama and a Ghost Story. The story is set in Bohuslaen on the West coast of Sweden in the middle of the 16th Century. Herr Arne, the old Parson in Solberga and all his household are brutally murdered, and his great Treasure stolen. The only survivor is Elsalill, the orphaned foster daughter. On her lies the burden to find out the murderers. She wants revenge, but falls in love with one of the murderers, who she must betray. Another important figure in the story is Torarin an old Fish hawker, who takes in Elsalill in his house after the murders, and Torarin’s dog, Grim, and also Elsalill’s dead foster sister.

Selma Lagerlöf was the first woman to be awarded the Nobel Prize in literature.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .Elsalill. "There are so many who have heard that story."

"Yes," said the stranger, "but I did not know till now that any of
Herr Arne's household had escaped alive."

Then Elsalill told once more of the wild robbers' deed. She spoke of how the old serving-men had gathered about Herr Arne to protect him and how Herr Arne himself had snatched his sword from the wall and pressed upon the robbers, but they had overcome them all. And the old mistress had taken up her husband's sword and set upon the robbers, but they had only laughed at her and felled her to the floor with a billet of wood. And all the other women had crouched against the wall of the stove, but when the men were dead the robbers came and pulled them down and slew them. "The last they slew," said Elsalill, "was my dear foster sister. She begged for life so piteously, and two of them would have let her live; but the third said that all must die, and he t. . . Read More