The Basques of Europe are legendary for the curtain of privacy they have always drawn around their world, shielding it from visitors from the outside. As a result, accounts of the inner workings of Basque village life are almost nonexistent. In this unique book, author Robert Laxalt has managed to penetrate the deep reserve of Basque village folk. Shepherds, troubadours, merchants, and smugglers, caught up in the panorama of daily life, parade before the reader. They are portrayed against a backdrop of green rugged mountains and stone buildings, typical of the Basque provinces in France and Spain. Laxalt, an American born of Basque parents, unveils the Basque character with warmth, wry humor, and above all, honesty.