On such nights, in the solitude of the empty road, the traveller can discover fear, disguised as a whistling wind or as moonlight shadows; he can intuit the eyes of the birds of the night camouflaged in a group of wretched holm-oaks, sense the staring of creatures all around or contemplate in disbelief the celestial spaces, unpolluted, packed with white, shimmering dots.
In Hontanas solitude and fear have to stop their harrying, and melancholy takes over from them.
We are in a romantic landscape, suitable for the stories of Bécquer. The village acquired its poetic name because of the springs all around it whose waters bestow greenness upon a countryside that for several leagues before had been bone dry.
Under the gaze of the moon the church of Hontanas, presided over by a tall, strong tower, in the middle of the village, is like a gigantic Polyphemus caring for his flock in a semi-hidden corner of the wide valley, by the waters of the River Garbanzuelo.
Tomás Álvarez Domínguez,