Rabindranath Tagore was the first Bengali writer to elevate the short story to a serious art-form. Here in this collection are some of his finest stories that have been translated by a distinguished panel of translators to retain the delicate beauty of the original. Written mostly during the 1890s, these stories convey a variety of themes, showcase Tagore’s reflections on contemporary rural and urban life, and serve as a commentary on the social issues of the time. Tagore’s stories depict poignant human relationships within simple and relatively uneventful plots. In ‘The Postmaster’, a young orphaned girl employed by the postmaster in a remote village is devastated at being left behind by her master. The story ‘Kabuliwallah’ concerns a man who appears crude and violent—to the extent that he is imprisoned—but is so sentimental about his faraway daughter that he cherishes a crumpled piece of paper because it is smudged with her fingerprints. Some of the stories also focus on the struggles of women in traditional Indian society, and explore prescribed roles and society's expectations. ‘The Wife’s Letter’ is among Bengali literature's earliest depictions of the bold emancipation of women. ‘Broken Nest’, a novella, revolves around the sensitive story of Charu, who is caught in an inescapable stasis. Several short stories involve elements of the supernatural. ‘The Hungry Stones’ is about a man who becomes enchanted by invisible ghosts; in ‘The Living and the Dead’, a woman thought to be dead drowns herself to prove that she is alive. The short stories included in this collection are varied and representative of Tagore's range as a writer. Intermingled with psychological and social realism, these stories capture Tagore’s innate humanism and profound sensibility.