Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa (1896–1957) was a Sicilian nobleman, Duke of Palma and Prince of Lampedusa. In the final two and a half years of his life he produced several drafts of one novel, three short stories (one conceived as the first chapter of a second, unfinished novel), and a childhood memoir. None of these were published in his lifetime, but two years after his death his great novel, The Leopard, won the Strega Prize and became a worldwide best seller, translated into twenty-three languages.
In the last two years of his life, the Sicilian aristocrat Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa, in addition to his internationally celebrated novel, The Leopard, also composed three shorter pieces of fiction that confirm and expand our picture of his brilliant late-blooming talent. “Lampedusa has made me realize how many ways there are of being alive.”—E. M. Forster