Hemingway in the Martyred City: April, 1937

June 14, 2017
Ernest Hemingway with Ilya Ehrenburg and Gustav Regler during the Spanish Civil War, not dated, circa 1937. Hemingway Photograph Collection, John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston. Public Domain.

Ernest Hemingway with Ilya Ehrenburg and Gustav Regler during the Spanish Civil War, not dated, circa 1937. Hemingway Photograph Collection, John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston. Public Domain.

In April 1937, Ernest Hemingway filed a series of dispatches from Madrid on the atrocious Nationalist bombing campaigns. Curiously, he failed to mention the attack on Guernica. 

The legion of international observers – journalists, photographers, writers and “celebrities” of all kinds – passing through Spain during the Spanish Civil War undoubtedly shaped how that conflict was viewed, both at the time and across the decades. In August 1936 the work of a handful of foreign correspondents, Jay Allen being the most prominent among them, made the insurgent repression in Badajoz so notorious that the Francoist forces subsequently kept the press corps well out of the way while they “cleansed” Toledo in late September. Most famously, news of the aerial destruction of the Basque town of Guernica on April 26, 1937 stirred up an international furor thanks to rapid on-the-scene reporting by the Times journalist George Steer and a handful of other reporters based in the Basque Country. On March 31, 1937, and again a few days later, the absence of foreign reporters from the scene had rendered highly destructive aerial bombardments of the Basque town of Durango considerably less newsworthy, albeit not quite non-events.[1]

Yet despite the acknowledged link between the presence of non-Spanish observers at an event and the shock waves that it generated, the historical context of the war in Madrid in April 1937 has remained strangely out of focus. In this instance, there was no lack of visitors to the semi-besieged city. Only a handful of working journalists had covered the Battle of Madrid in November 1936 when the city unexpectedly held out against Franco’s troops. But from December 1936 onwards, and until fatigue set in in the final stages of the war, the much fêted world capital of anti-fascism received a continuous flow of illustrious foreign visitors. Most famously, Ernest Hemingway, already a celebrity thanks to A Farewell to Arms (1929), arrived in Madrid as the highly remunerated correspondent of the newspaper syndicate, the North American Newspaper Alliance. (His published reports are cited here as NANA.)[2] Hemingway held court in the Hotel Florida in the center of Madrid, where he took up with Martha Gellhorn, while other notable literary figures, like John Dos Passos and Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, also passed through the city.[3] The Hollywood actor Errol Flynn and a British fact-finding mission, which included the Duchess of Atholl and a Labor parliamentary representative Ellen Wilkinson, were among the visitors to Madrid that April.

Hemingway in Spain, Dec. 1937. (Tamiment Library, NYU, 15th IB Photo Collection, Photo #11_1353)

Hemingway in Spain, Dec. 1937. (Tamiment Library, NYU, 15th IB Photo Collection, Photo #11_1353)

In the second week of the month Hemingway and several friends set themselves up in what he called the “Old Homestead”, a half-ruined building among the formerly elegant houses on Madrid’s western plateau, with a panoramic view of the combats that were taking place in the open countryside of the Casa de Campo. The film-maker Joris Ivens was also in the group, and later incorporated footage of battle scenes into his documentary film The Spanish Earth, with which Hemingway was closely involved.[4] However, this was by no means the indeterminate fighting that generally figures in the secondary literature. In fact, it was a full-scale Republican military offensive intended to wrest Garabitas Hill and other strategic high ground in the Casa de Campo from Francoist control (April 9-14). This was the Republic’s one great wartime throw of the dice in and around Madrid, and its scale is attested to by the North American military attaché Stephen O. Fuqua, who estimated that the Republicans mobilized an army of as many as 50,000 men.[5] As well as relieving Nationalist pressure in northern Spain by forcing Franco to bring troops back to the central front, a Republican victory would have left the Francoist enclave in the University City exposed and probably untenable. This Republican offensive rattled Franco enough for him to consider withdrawing planes from the northern front on April 12.[6] Hemingway’s initial assessment that this was “perhaps [the] most important battle to relieve the Insurgent pressure on Madrid” (NANA, p. 26) was, if anything, understated. Later, on April 30, Hemingway displayed either prescient strategic thinking or the value of his inside contacts when he linked the fighting in central Spain to the Basque campaign: “Madrid can only help [Basque resistance to the Nationalists] by attacking on the central front, as they did in Casa de Campo three weeks ago, to draw off troops from the north” (NANA, p. 37). This was indeed what the Republic sought to do through a series of military initiatives like the Segovia Offensive, described in For Whom the Bell Tolls, and the Battle of Brunete in July 1937.

Initially, the Republican authorities were confident enough in their imminent military and propaganda victory to raise its profile by allowing Hemingway to go down into the Casa de Campo, and do embedded reporting, something that was quite unusual (NANA, pp. 24-25). And yet the Republican offensive fizzled out rapidly and only figures in much of the secondary literature as “a battle”, as though battles were a dime a dozen – when in fact this was the only one in Madrid between November 1936 and the end of the war. These combats were observed and chronicled by no less than a figure than Hemingway, and filmed for a classic Spanish Civil War documentary; and yet they were instantly overlooked and remained stubbornly unnamed.[7] No doubt, the outcome had much to do with this. The Nationalists could return to their main task in hand, namely their northern campaign, while the loyalists wanted no painful reminders of their botched birthday present to the Republic on its sixth anniversary (April 14). In consequence, this battle turned into a wraithlike non-event, mentioned in fleeting asides in the substantial literature on Hemingway et al. By the time Hemingway came to write his story “Night before battle” he described it as a doomed and ill-planned military initiative.[8] In a letter written well after the war had ended, Hemingway showed little of the enthusiasm that he had briefly felt in early April 1937.[9]

Like the battle of April 9-14, 1937 the bombardments of Madrid in the same month also “vanished” from history. These “disappearances” raise significant questions about the reporting and interpretation of the war. In one sense, of course, the shelling of Madrid is all too familiar thanks to some of its startling collateral effects, like the imagined aphrodisiac impact on Hemingway and Gellhorn.[10] In an attack on the Hotel Florida, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Hemingway, Gellhorn and others were forced out of their bedrooms in their pajamas. Later, in his play on wartime Madrid The Fifth Column, Hemingway mentioned the shelling from Garabitas Hill, perhaps as a moral counterbalance to the repression of fifth columnists within Republican Madrid.[11] But while the shells landing in the center of Madrid insistently beat time in our “soundtrack” to the Spanish Civil War, this belies the particularity of the April attacks which belonged, quite specifically, to a short-lived and highly aggressive Francoist campaign. According to a set of admittedly incomplete registers of civilian casualties, figures of about 10-20 dead and 70-80 wounded were recorded monthly between January and March 1937, but the total then jumped to 74 dead and 457 wounded in April.[12] (In fact, the actual figures were probably considerably higher.) The records show that numerous streets right across the center of Madrid were hit. These bombardments were a direct response to the Republican offensive of April 9-14 insofar as the principal Francoist artillery batteries were located high on Garabitas Hill, which was the Republicans’ main military objective. However, intensive bombardments continued until almost the end of April, two weeks after the combats had ended, weakening any pretense that they had a military rationale. At the end of the month, the British newspaper the Manchester Guardian, looking back on the bombardments, called them “senseless” and referred to the “horror and indignation” that they caused among all observers.[13]

Madrid bombed. (Archivo Rojo, Spanish Ministry of Culture.)

Madrid bombed. (Archivo Rojo, Spanish Ministry of Culture.)

The projectors shining on international celebrities could dazzle as much they illuminated – assuming, that is, that we are not simply concerned about literary biography but also the ways in which the war shaped the lives of ordinary Spaniards. For news outlets operating for an international mass market, the problem with an artillery campaign was that it was inherently repetitive and predictable, lacking the drama and existential terror of an aerial bombardment. Cynical news editors knew all too well that today’s report would not differ greatly from the one they received yesterday, or would reach them tomorrow. On the other hand, a shell exploding near a film star, duchess or best-selling author was an altogether different matter; news reporting reflected this need to put a face to the story. Thus, in early April the French newspaper Paris-Soir pushed the claim that Errol Flynn had narrowly escaped being bombed in Madrid, even at a time when it had put its Spanish news coverage firmly on the back-burner.[14] On April 18, the New York Times reported that a shell had hit the hotel where the Duchess of Atholl was staying; and a few days later she denounced the bombardment of Madrid as “utterly useless, and senselessly cruel”.[15] According to an item of stop-press news in the British Manchester Guardian on April 29, shells had hit the Hotel Florida where, among others, “Mr Ernest Hemingway, author of Farewell to Arms [was] staying”. In fact, Hemingway may not have been inside the hotel at the time; even so, the reporter had become the story.[16]

Later on in the year, a longer text in the Manchester Guardian presented the author as a fixture in the Hotel Florida, already projecting the larger-than-life image that endured over the years:

That first night in Madrid we went to see Ernest Hemingway, one of the three remaining tenants of the Hotel Florida, whose “modern comfort” we had seen advertised on the way up to Madrid that day. The Florida forms the angle of two of the principal Madrid avenues, and the side facing north-west is almost completely wrecked. The room Hemingway occupies is on the first floor in the south-east corner of the hotel, the only “relatively” safe room in the place. Hemingway, with his exuberant Douglas Fairbanks laughter, loves movement, action and human courage. He is immensely popular both in Madrid and in the trenches. He takes a boylike joy in collecting all the bits of shell that have landed in the Florida, and labels them lovingly according to the number of the room which they have wrecked. One of the “duds” that had landed in the Florida has now been turned into an electric lamp on Hemingway’s desk, with a lampshade painted by an anti-Fascist artist.[17]

Noctural bombing at the Plaza Antón Martín, Madrid. Winter 1936. Photo Juan Miguel Pando Barrero. Museo Reina Sofïa, Madrid.

Noctural bombing at the Plaza Antón Martín, Madrid. Winter 1936. Photo Juan Miguel Pando Barrero. Museo Reina Sofïa, Madrid.


However, one of the paradoxes of Hemingway’s enthusiastic immersion in his Spanish experience was that, despite being very much the paradigm of a celebrity author, he was also – almost uniquely – willing to roll his shirt sleeves up and get on with the day-to-day duties of a working reporter. This was not what NANA expected from their star correspondent, and it differentiates him from most of the famous writers who sent journalistic copy from Spain. Hemingway’s work stands in marked contrast to – say – Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s marvelous, carefully crafted texts in the distinctive French tradition of reflective reportage; or those of his compatriot Joseph Kessel.[18] At one point, the NANA editors in New York, clearly feeling that they were not getting good value for money, cabled their London manager: “Wire Hemingway suggesting future stories emphasize color rather than straight reporting” (NANA, p. 78). Hemingway obliged periodically – for example, in a highly personal portrait of a wounded North American volunteer, and later on with a colorful vignette about the chauffeurs of Madrid  – but the texts that he sent from Madrid in April 1937 were mainly composite news reports in which the bombing of civilians often took center stage. Hemingway’s first article from Madrid, on April 9, focused almost exclusively on the combats in the Casa de Campo (NANA, pp. 24-26), but a follow-up report on the same battle two days later also highlighted civilian casualties. Thus, Hemingway wrote graphically of the shells hitting Madrid, killing “an old woman returning home from market, dropping her in a huddled, black heap of clothing, with one leg suddenly detached whirling against the wall of an adjoining house. They killed three people in another square who lay like so many bundles of torn clothing in the dust and rubble…” (NANA, p. 27). The text accompanying an agency photo of April 11 described the bombardment as the “heaviest of the Spanish Civil War.”[19]

The shelling of Madrid figured prominently in a report that Hemingway sent on April 18 or 19, and then in another dated April 20. In the first report, Hemingway graphically described a wounded woman being helped into the hotel entrance with blood spurting out (NANA, p. 30). The second report, apparently written when Hemingway was drunk (NANA, p. 33), focused almost entirely on the bombing of the city. It began:

Madrid, April 20. Today is the tenth day of heavy indiscriminate bombardment of the non-military objective of the central districts of Madrid. Since 5 a.m. the city has been shelled by 6-inch and 3-inch batteries and by anti-aircraft batteries from Garabitas [Hill], and wherever I go and at whatever time, all day during the coming in of over 200 shells, I am unable to get out of sight and smell of the whitish grey granite dust and the acrid high-explosive smell, nor avoid the sight of the dead and wounded and hoses washing streets and sidewalks, not clear of dust but blood (NANA, p. 34).

Hemingway commented on the stoicism of the Madrid population once the immediate danger had ended and puzzled over the Francoist motivation for terrorizing the city. He concluded his text with an allusion to the “martyrdom of Madrid” (NANA, p. 36).[20]

A Madrid street after a bombardment. Photo from author’s collection

To put these reports into context, the minimum recorded figure of dead and wounded in the registers (cited above) spiked over a period of ten days after April 17: there were at least 6 dead and 111 wounded on April 17; 1 and 30 respectively, on April 19; 14 and 76 on April 21; 6 and 52 on April 22; and 21 and 58 on April 27. Hemingway, however, believed that the number of casualties was far higher, citing a total of 32 killed and 200 wounded for that day’s attacks in the report he sent on April 20 (NANA, p. 34). For Hemingway, “today [was] perhaps the worst bombardment of a civilian population any city has ever been subjected to” (NANA, p. 34). Irrespective of the actual figure, the bombardments were dramatic enough to have a huge impact on the journalists congregated in Madrid, and this was reflected in a cluster of reports in the international press on April 18-20. This was precisely the moment (as I discuss here) when Pablo Picasso, then living in Paris, scrawled a hammer and sickle over the front page of Paris-Soir, a newspaper that chose to highlight bland official observations on non-intervention instead of the bombing of Madrid. Hemingway was not the only person to evoke the “martyrdom” of Madrid. The French newspaper L’Œuvre, too, employed a similar expression just a day before Hemingway, headlining its report “Madrid, Martyred City”.[21] This image of a martyred city had been created by the French journalist Louis Delaprée in his incandescent accounts of the aerial bombardments of Madrid in November 1936. From January 1937 his reports had been published in five languages (including English) in a widely distributed pamphlet called The Martyrdom of Madrid.[22] So the renewal of the language of martyrdom explicitly linked together the attacks of November 1936 and April 1937. Rather than simply representing a limited albeit highly destructive shelling campaign, the new attacks tapped into the mystique of “martyred” Madrid, the city that had become synonymous with the bombing of civilians – before, that is, Guernica became the new point of reference. The French communist newspaper L’Humanité slyly nudged readers towards making this connection by publishing a front page sketch on April 23 1937 that showed airplanes dropping bombs on Madrid (as had occurred in November 1936), even though the April attacks were actually the work of the Francoist artillery.

In late April Hemingway made a trip to the Guadarrama Mountains northwest of Madrid (the terrain that would partly inspire For Whom the Bell Tolls), returning to the city on the 29th. In the report that sent after he had got back (April 30) Hemingway returned to the bombardments. He began his article by mentioning a lull in the shelling and citing a probably exaggerated official figure of 312 dead and over 3,000 wounded “after eighteen [in fact, twenty] days of very heavy artillery bombardment”. (NANA, p. 37).[23] He ended it by recounting what it was like to go home through the city “with the air still full of heavy granite dust and high explosive smoke, the sidewalks scattered by new round jagged holes with blood trails leading into half the doorways”, together with a reflection on the “punishment” suffered by the Madrid’s civilian population (NANA, p. 38). For nearly three weeks the shelling of Madrid had been intermittently a key news item, along with the military course of the Basque campaign. On April 28 and 29 the shelling of Madrid was still news; but thanks especially to the publication on April 28 of George L. Steer’s work in both The Times and the New York Times reporting the Guernica bombing of April 26, the international press began to highlight the attack on the Basque town. Simultaneously – but not, I believe, coincidentally – the shelling of Madrid came to an unannounced end. Hemingway speculated on why the 30th had been a quiet day, imagining that this was simply a lull. But Madrid’s martyrdom had in fact ended. Perhaps the Francoists feared a potential propaganda disaster if they had to defend or lie about the bombing of civilians in both Madrid and Guernica at the same time.

Strangely, however, Hemingway failed to mention the attack on Guernica in his dispatch of April 30 (NANA, p. 37). Given that there was a constant two-way flow of information between the journalists in Madrid and the outside world it is unthinkable that news of the attack and emerging controversy had not reached him by that date. William Braasch Watson suggests that Hemingway preferred to comment on information that he had collected himself. We might add that a Madrid-based journalist would not normally cover news from the Basque Country. However, Hemingway was not just any news reporter, with a career that depended on head office. On the contrary, his literary celebrity made him a free-wheeler, who could either examine a single subject in depth or digress to his heart’s content; and he exercised this freedom to a degree that frequently caused anxiety at NANA.[24] In this particular text, as well as describing the bombardments of Madrid, Hemingway provided an overview of the war that ranged from Franco’s Basque offensive to the strategic position of the Madrid front and conditions in the Guadarrama Mountains. It would have been one thing to omit news of the attack on Guernica in a report on an unrelated subject, but it was quite another that he did so in a piece that actually referred to the Basque campaign.

The aerial destruction of Guernica has so overshadowed the attacks on Madrid that it may seem absurd to insist that there was a competing news story that month. Many secondary accounts of the war wrongly insist on the extent to which the attack on Guernica was unique and unprecedented, omitting the recent attacks on the civil populations of Madrid or Durango.[25] And yet on April 28, 1937 the latest bombardment of Madrid figured prominently among the main headlines in the French newspaper Le Matin, while the news from Guernica was secondary.[26] This bombardment was even briefly mentioned on the New York Times’ cover of the same day, despite the fact that the newspaper had Steer’s sensational scoop on Guernica to showcase.

But all this is only surprising in retrospect. Madrid had become the archetypal “heroic and martyred city” thanks to its successful resistance to Franco and the bombardments that it had suffered; its name had taken on the same resonance that Sarajevo was to acquire in the 1990s. Hemingway was clearly conscious of this, making a small place for himself on the roll call of observers who had experienced and testified to the city’s destruction; hence his allusion to Madrid as the “martyred city”, and his insistence on the ferocity of the attacks on the city. The North American journalist Herbert L. Matthews, thinking back to his arrival in December 1936 when the Battle of Madrid had already ended, wrote that the city had become “the hub of the universe… the big story”.[27] But Hemingway defended the primacy of Madrid – ever the stubborn competitor, Hemingway knew about Guernica but Madrid was his story – on the very last day that this made sense. April’s bombing campaign against the city had finally concluded while the huge controversy over Guernica had only just begun.

Ernest Hemingway with other American visitors to 15th International Brigade, Dec. 1937. (Tamiment Library, NYU, 15th IB Photo Collection, Photo #11_1352)

Ernest Hemingway with other American visitors to 15th International Brigade, Dec. 1937. (Tamiment Library, NYU, 15th IB Photo Collection, Photo #11_1352)

If we want to understand how individuals experienced and responded to the Spanish Civil War, the contemporary press reveals what people considered significant more precisely than a conscientious reading of later secondary works. Perhaps in retrospect, the artillery attacks on Madrid in April 1937 were only stoking up the embers of the fire that had enveloped the city a few months before; but at the time they renewed the martyrdom of Madrid, one of the great motifs of the anti-Francoist struggle. During the great May Day demonstration in Paris in 1937, a speech by Pascual Tomás of the Spanish UGT evoked both the women and children murdered by international fascism in “immortal Madrid”, as well as in Guernica.[28] Thus, Madrid was not a distant memory on May 1, 1937 but a key part of a vigorous ongoing collective response to the bombing of civilians. I have previously argued that Picasso reacted furiously to the shelling of Madrid just a week before the destruction of Guernica. But even a few days after that attack, Ernest Hemingway still clung to his big story by summoning up all the ghosts of the “martyred city”.


Dr. Martin Minchom is the author of Spain’s Martyred Cities: From the Battle of Madrid to Picasso’s Guernica (Sussex Academic Press: Brighton, 2015). Photo research: The Volunteer.


[1] For a Spanish version of this article: http://www.fronterad.com/?q=15911 . This is a new text but I have borrowed some material from my work for The Volunteer (here and here), as well as Martin Minchom, Spain’s Martyred Cities: From the Battle of Madrid to Picasso’s Guernica (Sussex Academic Press: Brighton, 2015). I have streamlined the notes by not referencing general points documented in Spain’s Martyred Cities. In the case of the aerial attacks on Durango, a religious delegation actually visited the scene, but their sober report (online at Warwick Digital Collections) failed to capture public attention.

[2] Hemingway’s reports were republished by William Braasch Watson (ed.), “Hemingway’s Spanish Civil War Dispatches”, The Hemingway Review, VII (2), spring 1988 (cited as NANA). For Hemingway’s experiences in Spain, see especially: Alex Vernon, Hemingway’s Second War: Bearing Witness to the Spanish Civil War (Iowa City: University of Iowa Press, 2011), which includes references to the older biographical literature. Recent biographical works include Adam Hochschild, Spain in Our Hearts: Americans in the Spanish Civil War, 1936-1939 (New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2016); Richard Rhodes, Hell and Good Company: the Spanish Civil War and the World it made (New York: Simon & Schuster, 2015); and Amanda Vaill, Hotel Florida: Truth, Love and Death in the Spanish Civil War (London: Bloomsbury, 2014). The disappearance of José Robles, John Dos Passos’s friend, led to a break between Hemingway and Dos Passos: Stephen Koch, The Breaking Point. Hemingway, Dos Passos and the Murder of José Robles (New York: Counterpoint, 2005), provides a highly critical view of communist influence in the Republican camp; while Paul Preston, We Saw Spain Die: Foreign Correspondents in the Spanish Civil War (London: Constable, 2008), pp. 62-92, examines some of the issues surrounding Robles’s role in Spain.

[3] On the Hotel Florida, Carlos García Santa Cecilia, “El hotel Florida”, Five (December 2013), pp. 87-91. This hotel was pulled down several decades ago, but some of Hemingway’s other haunts (as well as the former war fronts) can still be visited: Ken O’Keefe, International Brigade Sites in Central Madrid: the Spanish Civil War (Madrid: AABI, 2013), and David Mathieson, Frontline Madrid: Battlefield Tours of the Spanish Civil War (Oxford: Signal, 2014). Spanish speakers may enjoy the tours organized by the Gefrema association: http://www.madridenguerra.es .

[4] Vernon, Hemingway’s Second War, p. 73ff.

[5] James W. Cortada, (ed.), Modern Warfare in Spain: American Military Observations on the Spanish Civil War, 1936–1939 (Washington D.C.: Potomac Books, 2012), p. 123, which was certainly a higher figure than during the crucial Battle of Madrid in November 1936.

[6] Paul Preston, The Destruction of Guernica (London: Harper Press, 2012) [kindle, at position 157/909].

[7] Although this battle is sometimes called “Operación Garabitas”, it often goes unnamed in the secondary literature. For a very thorough recent account, Luis de Vicente Montoya, Operación Garabitas: La otra batalla de Madrid (Madrid: La Librería, 2016).

[8] Ernest Hemingway, The Fifth Column and Four Stories of the Spanish Civil War (New York: Scribner, 1998), pp. 110-139.

[9] Undated letter of Hemingway to Jo Heidt (online at Yale University Library, YCAL MSS 436), referring to the battle: “There were those who said it wasn’t worth it”.

[10] Wikipedia’s summary of the HBO film Hemingway & Gellhorn is breathless: “Gellhorn resists romantic advances made by the famous author, but during a bombing raid, the two find themselves trapped alone in the same room, and lust overcomes them.”

[11] Hemingway, The Fifth Column, p. 68.

[12] Centro Documental de la Memoria Histórica, Salamanca / ACICR, C ESCI-161, “Bombardements de Madrid”, summaries. There was a higher, and apparently non-inflated, total of 95 dead and 695 wounded in “Madrid mártir”, ABC (Madrid), September 3, 1937. The totals may have been higher, but undercounting was probably not on the same scale as in November 1936.

[13] “Madrid’s 18 Days under Shell Fire”, Manchester Guardian, April 30, 1937.

[14] “Comment j’ai failli être tué dans Madrid bombardée, par le célèbre acteur de cinéma Erroll [sic] Flynn”, Paris-Soir, April 8, 1937, accompanied by photos. Flynn later filed a law suit against Constancia de la Mora, when she accused him of pretending to be wounded as a publicity stunt: Soledad Fox, Constancia de la Mora in War and Exile: International Voice for the Spanish Republic (Brighton: Sussex Academic Press, 2007), p. 102.

[15] “Shell hits Madrid Hotel housing British Visitors”, New York Times, April 18, 1937. “Loyalist Morale reported on Rise”, New York Times, April 24, 1937.

[16] “Shells hit Madrid Hotel”, Manchester Guardian, April 29, 1937. However, Hemingway was probably still in the Guadarrama Mountains.

[17] “In Republican Spain / Life in Madrid / Spirit Unbroken by the Siege / A Cheerful People”, Manchester Guardian, 29 December, 1937. This article was later republished in Murray Sperber (ed.), And I Remember Spain: a Spanish Civil War Anthology (New York: Macmillan, 1974).

[18] Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Un sens à la vie (Paris: Gallimard, 1956); Michel Lefebvre (ed.), Kessel / Moral, deux reporters dans la guerre d’Espagne (Paris: Tallandier, 2006).

[19] Wirephoto agency photo (now in my collection). See the illustration.

[20] This detail was spotted by Rhodes, Hell and Good Company, p. 135.

[21] “Madrid Ville Martyre”, L’Œuvre, April 19, 1937.

[22] For a fuller discussion, Minchom, Spain’s Martyred Cities, passim.

[23] Hemingway’s figure of 183 dead children out of an overall total of 312 dead is not credible. Either this was an error or Hemingway was being fed propaganda figures.

[24] NANA, passim, for the news editors’ repeated concerns about the material that Hemingway was sending, partly because he was being paid so much.

[25] For a fuller discussion, Minchom, Spain’s Martyred Cities, Chapter 7.

[26] “Madrid subit un nouveau et terrible bombardement” and “Guernica est détruite”, Le Matin, April 28, 1937.

[27] Herbert L. Matthews, Two Wars and More to Come (New York: Carrick & Evans, 1938), p. 184.

[28] “Magnifique démonstration”, L’Humanité, May 2, 1937.


2 Responses to “ Hemingway in the Martyred City: April, 1937 ”

  1. Rory on October 4, 2018 at 3:27 pm

    Excellent article.

  2. Alberto Losada on October 28, 2021 at 2:03 pm

    Details given about the Casa de Campo battle (April 9 to 14 ) are strongly appreciated, and I am be very grateful to Mr Minchom paper. I must add that next November 15th, at 19 pm, a presentation will be held at Centro Cultural Pablo Iglesias (in Alcobendas, near Madrid), about Commander Martinez de Aragon, who died there, on April-9-1937. A mail address to send more details about this would be greatly appreciated, too. Alberto