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ARGENSOLA, LUPERCIO LEONARDO DE (1559-1613), Spanish dramatist and poet, was baptized at Barbastro on the 14th of December 1559. He was educated at the universities of Huesca and Saragossa, becoming secretary to the duke de Villahermosa in 1585. He was appointed historiographer of Aragon in 1599, and in 1610 accompanied the count de Lemos to Naples, where he died in March 1613. His tragedies—Filis, Isabela and Alejandra—are said by Cervantes to have “filled all who heard them with admiration, delight and interest”; Filis is lost, and Isabela and Alejandra, which were not printed till 1772, are ponderous imitations of Seneca. Argensola’s poems were published with those of his brother in 1634; they consist of excellent translations from the Latin poets, and of original satires. His “echoing sonnets”—such as Después que al mundo el rey divino vino—lend themselves to parody; but his diction is singularly pure.

His brother, Bartolomé Leonardo de Argensola (1562-1631), Spanish poet and historian, was baptized at Barbastro on the 26th of August 1562, studied at Huesca, took orders, and was presented to the rectory of Villahermosa in 1588. He was attached to the suite of the count de Lemos, viceroy of Naples, in 1610, and succeeded his brother as historiographer of Aragon in 1613. He died at Saragossa on the 4th of February 1631. His principal prose works are the Conquista de las Islas Molucas (1609), and a supplement to Zurita’s Anales de Aragón, which was published in 1630. His poems (1634), like those of his elder brother, are admirably finished examples of pungent wit. His commentaries on contemporary events, and his Alteraciones populares, dealing with a Saragossa rising in 1591, are lost. An interesting life of this writer by Father Miguel Mir precedes a reprint of the Conquista de las Islas Molucas, issued at Saragossa in 1891.

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History of the Universe eBook

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