Back Lafcadio Hearn, “The Soul of the Great Bell”

*Lafcadio Hearn (1850–1904)
From Lafcadio Hearn: American Writings*

The Yongle Bell, cast in 1403 at the end of the first year of the reign of the Emperor Yongle, the third emperor of the Ming dynasty. The bell is housed in the Great Bell Temple, located in the Haidian District of Beijing and built in the year 1733. (Image: Cultural China)

Patrick Lafcadio Tessima Carlos Hearn was born on June 27, 1850, to a Greek mother and an Irish father on the Ionian island of Lefkada, abandoned by his parents to the care of a great-aunt in Dublin, packed off by a guardian to a Catholic boarding school in France at the age of twelve, and then educated at a preparatory school in England.

At the age of nineteen he immigrated to the United States, where he eventually became a journalist in Cincinnati and, later, New Orleans. The last fourteen years of his life were spent in Japan, where he gained international fame as a writer on Japanese culture. The Lafcadio Hearn Memorial Museum, founded in 1933, remains one of the Chūgoku region’s most popular tourist attractions to this day.

Hearn’s love of Asian culture and history predates his arrival in Japan. One of his earliest books, Some Chinese Ghosts, presented his idiosyncratic adaptations of six Chinese stories—even though he didn’t know Chinese. The opening tale, “The Soul of the Great Bell,” recounts for American audiences the legend behind the famous Yongle Bell, which was cast six hundred years ago and can still be seen today in Beijing.

Read “The Soul of the Great Bell” by Lafcadio Hearn

Library of America

A champion of America’s great writers and timeless works, Library of America guides readers in finding and exploring the exceptional writing that reflects the nation’s history and culture.

Learn More

From poetry, novels, and memoirs to journalism, crime writing, and science fiction, the more than 300 volumes published by Library of America are widely recognized as America’s literary canon.

Benefits of Using Safe Crypto Casinos. One of the most captivating reasons people drift towards Australian casinos online-casino-au com is the promise of anonymity. Safe platforms guarantee that your identity remains a secret. Quick Payouts and Minimal Fees. No one likes waiting, especially for winnings. Safe crypto casinos ensure that payouts are swift and the fees minimal, if not non-existent.

Browse our books Subscribe

With contributions from donors, Library of America preserves and celebrates a vital part of our cultural heritage for generations to come.

Ozwin Casino offers an exciting array of top-notch slots that cater to every player's preferences. From classic fruit machines to cutting-edge video slots, Ozwin Casino Real Money collection has it all. With stunning graphics, immersive themes, and seamless gameplay, these slots deliver an unparalleled gaming experience. Some popular titles include Mega Moolah, Gonzo's Quest, and Starburst, known for their massive jackpots and thrilling bonus features. Ozwin Casino's slots are not just about luck; they offer hours of entertainment and the chance to win big, making it a must-visit for slot enthusiasts.

Support our mission