Ricardo Palma (1833 - 1919) was a Peruvian author, scholar and librarian. His magnum opus is the Tradiciones Peruanas. He served as Director the National Library of Peru for many years until his death in 1919. Palma successfully took on the task of rebuilding the National Library after it was ransacked by forces of the Chilean army in 1881. Palma was able to bring the National Library back from the ashes which allowed it to be again recognised as one of the top libraries in South America. It was through his personal friendship with the then Chilean president Domingo Santa MarÃa, that Palma was able to recover an estimated 10,000 books, as well as many others works through his own personal efforts.
Palma's literary reputation rests upon his creation and development of the literary genre known as tradiciones - short stories that mix history and fiction, written both to amuse and educate. His Tradiciones Peruanas span several centuries and were published
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