January 24, 2021

Galdosian photo to remember – La Provincia

These days in which Galdós is being honored once again with the profusion of numerous acts, that other tribute that was celebrated in May 1964 in Madrid comes to mind within the events organized by the Canarian Home of that capital , appeared in the program of the IX Canary Week dedicated to Gran Canaria, which is why the main institutional authorities and numerous personalities of the island culture were from Las Palmas, not missing, nor the presence of journalists from the different media of this island.

There were numerous events held, highlighting the one on Sunday, May 3, in which a tribute to Don Benito Pérez Galdós was organized, which included a tour of Madrid that Don Benito lived, explaining several speakers the meaning and the Galdosian sentiment of each one. The capital tour, we remember, included among others the Plaza Mayor, the Plaza de las Comendadoras and how could it be less, the visit to the Hilarión Eslava street where the house where the writer lived and died Federico Carlos Sainz de Robles delivered a brief lecture to summarize that "to visit the Galdosian places is to visit all of Madrid, mainly that one where he wrote all of his literary and historical work." Another of the scheduled events was the visit to the El Cigarral de Toledo estate and, of course, to the study of the artist Victorio Macho, author of the sculptures dedicated to Galdos in the Retiro and the one that was placed in the disappeared Las Palmas Pier, now very damaged that is preserved in his House-Museum of Cano Street.

Amazing memory

That occasion provided us with the opportunity to meet Don Benito's daughter, María Pérez Galdós y Cobián, who was almost octogenarian but who kept an incredible memory evoking passages and anecdotes from her father whose encounter we retain the graphic image for the memory. It was, he told us, effectively the only daughter of the Grancanarian writer – despite having sounded love affairs with other women – with the model Lorenza Cobián González, born in the Asturian town of Bodes, council of Parres, in 1851. It was she who captivated to our countryman as a result of whose relationship his daughter Maria was born in Madrid in 1901, who lived with his mother until his sad outcome. Lorenza suffered from mental instability, a problem that led her in July 1906 to attempt suicide at the Prince of Madrid station. She was arrested and imprisoned in the dungeons of the Civil Government, in whose cell she ended her life by hanging.

The sad end of his mother, when she was 15, was no obstacle for Don Benito to take care of his recognized daughter. The writer received the news by the letter of Mary herself, to which she replied with another in the following terms: "Dear daughter, I received your letter yesterday in which I see the sad misfortune confirmed. […] Now you are more obliged that never to a blind obedience as long as I send you. That is your future. I will not send you anything that is not for your good. […] I have to look for you and the first thing is to count on me you will absolutely obey. I love you very much and I send you many affections your dad.

As María Pérez Galdós is known, she married Juan Verde, whose marriage was offspring. One of Don Benito's great-grandchildren, María Ángeles Verde, died in Santander in 2013 and was buried with her grandfather Juan Verde in the cemetery of the parish of Santo Tomás de Collia, in the Asturian council of Parres where Lorenza Cobián came from, Your great grandmother

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