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This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.netTitle: Modern Spanish Lyrics Author: Various Editor: Elijah Clarence Hills And S. Griswold Morley Release Date: June 14, 2005 [EBook #16059] Language: English Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1 *** START OF THIS PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK MODERN SPANISH LYRICS ***
Produced by Juliet Sutherland, Miranda van de Heijning, Renald Levesque and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team.MODERN SPANISH LYRICS _EDITED WITH INTRODUCTION, NOTES AND VOCABULARY_ BY ELIJAH CLARENCE HILLS, PH. D., LITT.D. _Professor of Romance Languages in Colorado College_ AND S. GRISWOLD MORLEY, PH. D. _University of Colorado_ NEW YORK HENRY HOLT AND COMPANY 1913 Page iii PREFACE
The present volume aims to furnish American students of Spanish with a convenient selection of the Castilian lyrics best adapted to class reading. It was the intention of the editors to include no poem which did not possess distinct literary value. On the other hand, some of the most famous Spanish lyrics do not seem apt to awaken the interest of the average student: it is for this reason that scholars will miss the names of certain eminent poets of the _siglo de oro_. The nineteenth century, hardly inferior in merit and nearer to present-day readers in thought and language, is much more fully represented. No apology is needed for the inclusion of poems by Spanish-American writers, for they will bear comparison both in style and thought with the best work from the mother Peninsula.
The Spanish poems are presented chronologically, according to the dates of their authors. The Spanish-American poems are arranged according to countries and chronologically within those divisions. Omissions are indicated by rows of dots and are due in all cases to the necessity of bringing the material within the limits of a small volume. Three poems (the _Fiesta de toros_ of Moratín, the _Castellano leal_ of Rivas and the _Leyenda_ of Zorrilla) are more narrative than lyric. The _romances_ selected are Page iv the most lyrical of their kind. A few songs have been added to illustrate the relation of poetry to music.
The editors have been constantly in consultation in all parts of the work, but the preparation of the _Prosody_, the _Notes_ (including articles on Spanish-American literature) and the part of the _Introduction_ dealing with the nineteenth century, was undertaken by Mr. Hills, while Mr. Morley had in charge the _Introduction_ prior to 1800, and the _Vocabulary_. Aid has been received from many sources. Special thanks are due to Professor J.D.M. Ford and Dr. A.F. Whittem of Harvard University, Don Ricardo Palma of Peru, Don Rubén Darío of Nicaragua, Don Rufino Blanco-Fombona of Venezuela, Professor Carlos Bransby of the University of California, and Dr. Alfred Coester of Brooklyn, N.Y.E.C.H. S.G.M. Page v CONTENTS PREFACE INTRODUCTION: I. Spanish Lyric Poetry to 1800 II. Spanish Lyric Poetry of the Nineteenth Century III. Spanish Versification ESPAÑA
El conde Arnaldos
El amante desdichado
VINCENTE (GIL) (1470-1540?)
TERESA DE JESÚS (SANTA) (1515-1582) Letrilla (que llevaba por registro en su breviario)
LEÓN (FRAY LUIS DE) (1527-1591)
Á Cristo crucificado
VEGA (LOPE DE) (1562-1635)
Canción de la Virgen
QUEVEDO (FRANCISCO DE) (1580-1645)
Epístola satírica al conde de Olivares
VILLEGAS (ESTEBAN MANUEL DE) (1589-1669) Cantilena: De un pajarillo
CALDERÓN DE LA BARCA (PEDRO) (1600-1681) "Estas que fueron pompa y alegría,"
Consejo de Crespo á su hijo
GONZÁLEZ (FRAY DIEGO) (1733-1794)
El murciélago alevoso page vi
MORATÍN (NICOLÁS F. DE) (1737-1780)
Fiesta de toros en Madrid
JOVELLANOS (GASPAR M. DE) (1744-1811)
MELÉNDEZ VALDÉS (JUAN) (1754-1817)
Rosana en los fuegos
QUINTANA (MANUEL JOSÉ) (1772-1857)
Oda á España, después de la revolución de marzo
SOLÍS (DIONISIO) (1774-1834)
La pregunta de la niña
GALLEGO (JUAN NICASIO) (1777-1853)
El Dos de Mayo
MARTÍNEZ DE LA ROSA (FRANCISCO) (1787-1862) El nido
RIVAS (DUQUE DE) (1791-1865)
Un castellano leal
AROLAS (PADRE JUAN) (1805-1849)
"Sé más feliz que yo"
ESPRONCEDA (JOSÉ DE) (1808-1842)
Canción del pirata
Á la patria
ZORRILLA (JOSÉ) (1817-1893)
Á buen juez, mejor testigo
TRUEBA (ANTONIO DE) (1821-1889)
Cantos de pájaro
SELGAS (JOSÉ) (1821-1882)
ALARCÓN (PEDRO ANTONIO DE) (1833-1891) El Mont-Blanc
BÉCQUER (GUSTAVO A.) (1836-1870)
LXXIII page vii
QUEROL (VINCENTE WENCESLAO) (1836-1889) En Noche-Buena
CAMPOAMOR (RAMÓN DE) (1817-1901) Proximidad del bien
¡Quién supiera escribir!
El mayor castigo
NÚÑEZ DE ARCE (GASPAR) (1834-1903) ¡Excelsior!
PALACIO (MANUEL DEL) (1832-1895)
BARTRINA (JOAQUÍN MARÍA) (1850-1880) Arabescos
REINA (MANUEL) (1860-)
ECHEVERRÍA (O. ESTEBAN) (1805-1851) Canción de Elvira
ANDRADE (OLEGARIO VICTOR) (1838-1882) Atlántida
OBLIGADO (RAFAEL) (1852-)
En la ribera
ORTIZ (JOSÉ JOAQUÍN) (1814-1892)
Colombia y España
CARO (JOSÉ EUSEBIO) (1817-1853)
MARROQUÍN (JOSÉ MANUEL) (1827-)
Los cazadores y la perrilla
CARO (MIGUEL ANTONIO) (1843-1909)
Vuelta á la patria page viii
ARRIETA (DIÓGENES A.) (1848-)
En la tumba de mi hijo
GUTIÉRREZ PONCE (IGNACIO) (1850-)
GARAVITO A. (JOSÉ MARÍA) (1860-)
HEREDIA (JOSÉ MARÍA) (1803-1839)
En el teocalli de Cholula
AVELLANEDA (GERTRUDIS GÓMEZ DE) (1814-1873) Á Wáshington
PESADO (JOSÉ JOAQUÍN DE) (1801-1861) Serenata
CALDERÓN (FERNANDO) (1809-1845) La rosa marchita
ACUÑA (MANUEL) (1849-1873)
Nocturno: Á Rosario
PEZA (JUAN DE DIOS) (1852-1910) Reír llorando
Fusiles y muñecas
BELLO (ANDRÉS) (1781-1865)
Á la victoria de Bailén
La agricultura de la zona tórrida
PÉREZ BONALDE (JUAN ANTONIO) (1846-1892) Vuelta á la patria
MARTÍN DE LA GUARDIA (HERACLIO) (1830-) Ultima ilusión
La jota gallega
Himno de Riego
Himno nacional de México Himno nacional de Cuba NOTES
It has been observed that epic poetry, which is collective and objective in its nature, always reaches its full development in a nation sooner than lyric poetry, which is individual and subjective. Such is certainly the case in Spain. Numerous popular epics of much merit existed there in the Middle Ages. Of a popular lyric there are few traces in the same period; and the Castilian lyric as an art-form reached its height in the sixteenth, and again in the nineteenth, centuries. It is necessary always to bear in mind the distinction between the mysterious product called popular poetry, which is continually being created but seldom finds its way into the annals of literature, and artistic poetry. The chronicler of the Spanish lyric is concerned with the latter almost exclusively, though he will have occasion to mention the former not infrequently as the basis of some of the best artificial creations.
[Footnote 1: The popular epics were written in assonating lines of variable length. There were also numerous monkish narrative poems _(mester de clereçia)_ in stanzas of four Alexandrine lines each, all riming _(cuaderna vía)_.]
If one were to enumerate _ab origine_ the lyric
productions of the Iberian Peninsula he might begin
with the vague references of Strabo to the songs of its primitive inhabitants, and then pass on to Latin page xii poets of Spanish birth, such as Seneca, Lucan and Martial. The later Spaniards who wrote Christian poetry in Latin, as Juvencus and Prudentius, might then be considered. But in order not to embrace many diverse subjects foreign to the contents of this collection, we must confine our inquiry to lyric production in the language of Castile, which became the dominating tongue of the Kingdom of Spain.
Such a restriction excludes, of course, the Arabic lyric, a highly artificial poetry produced abundantly by the Moors during their occupation of the south of Spain; it excludes also the philosophical and religious poetry of the Spanish Jews, by no means despicable in thought or form. Catalan poetry, once written in the Provençal manner and of late happily revived, also lies outside our field.
Even the Galician poetry, which flourished so freely under the external stimulus of the Provençal troubadours, can be included only with regard to its influence upon Castilian. The Galician dialect, spoken in the northwest corner of the Peninsula, developed earlier than the Castilian of the central region, and it was adopted by poets in other parts for lyric verse. Alfonso X of Castile (reigned 1252-1284) could write prose in Castilian, but he must needs employ Galician for his _Cantigas de Santa María_. The Portuguese nobles, with King Diniz (reigned 1279-1325) at their head, filled the idle hours of their bloody and passionate lives by composing strangely abstract, conventional poems of love and religion in the manner of the Provençal _canso, dansa, balada_ and _pastorela_, which had had such a luxuriant growth in Southern France in the eleventh and twelfth centuries. A highly elaborated metrical system mainly distinguishes these writers, but some of page xiii their work catches a pleasing lilt which is supposed
to represent the imitation of songs of the people. The popular element in the Galician productions is slight, but it was to bear important fruit later, for its spirit is
that of the _serranas_ of Ruiz and Santillana, and of _villancicos_ and eclogues in the sixteenth century.
It was probably in the neighborhood of 1350 that lyrics began to be written in Castilian by the cultured classes of Leon and Castile, who had previously thought Galician the only proper tongue for that use, but the influence of the Galician school persisted long after. The first real lyric in Castilian is its offspring. This is the anonymous _Razón feyta d'amor_ or _Aventura amorosa_ (probably thirteenth century), a dainty story of the meeting of two lovers. It is apparently an isolated example, ahead of its time, unless, as is the case with the Castilian epic, more poems are lost than extant. The often quoted _Cántica de la Virgen_ of Gonzalo de Berceo (first half of thirteenth century), with its popular refrain _Eya velar_, is an oasis in the long religious epics of the amiable monk of S. Millán de la Cogolla. One must pass into the succeeding century to find the next examples of the true lyric. Juan RUIZ, the mischievous Archpriest of Hita (flourished _ca_. 1350), possessed a genius sufficiently keen and human to infuse a personal vigor into stale forms. In his _Libro de buen amor_ he incorporated lyrics both sacred and profane, _Loores de Santa María_ and _Cánticas de serrana_, plainly in the Galician manner and of complex metrical structure. The _serranas_ are particularly free and unconventional. The Chancellor Pero LÓPEZ DE AYALA (1332-1407), wise statesman, brilliant historian and trenchant page xiv satirist, wrote religious songs in the same style and
still more intricate in versification. They are included in the didactic poem usually called _El rimado de
Poetry flourished in and about the courts of the monarchs of the Trastamara family; and what may be supposed a representative collection of the work done in the reigns of Henry II (1369-1379), John I (1379-1388), Henry III (1388-1406) and the minority of John II (1406-1454), is preserved for us in the _Cancionero_ which Juan Alfonso de Baena compiled and presented to the last-named king. Two schools of versifiers are to be distinguished in it. The older men, such as Villasandino, Sánchez de Talavera, Macías, Jerena, Juan Rodríguez del Padrón and Baena himself, continued the artificial Galician tradition, now run to seed. In others appears the imitation of Italian models which was to supplant the ancient fashion. Francisco Imperial, a worshiper of Dante, and other Andalusians such as Ruy Páez de Ribera, Pero González de Uceda and Ferrán Manuel de Lando, strove to introduce Italian meters and ideas. They first employed the Italian hendecasyllable, although it did not become acclimated till the days of Boscán. They likewise cultivated the _metro de arte mayor_, which later became so prominent (see below, p. lxxv ff.). But the interest of the poets of the _Cancionero de Baena_ is mainly historical. In spite of many an illuminating side-light on manners, of political invective and an occasional glint of
imagination, the amorous platitudes and wire-drawn love-contests of the Galician school, the stiff allegories of the Italianates leave us cold. It was a transition period and the most talented were unable to master the undeveloped poetic language. page xv
The same may be said, in general, of the whole fifteenth century. Although the language became greatly clarified toward 1500 it was not yet ready for masterly original work in verse. Invaded by a flood of Latinisms, springing from a novel and undigested humanism, encumbered still with archaic words and set phrases left over from the Galicians, it required purification at the hands of the real poets and scholars of the sixteenth century. The poetry of the fifteenth is inferior to the best prose of the same epoch; it is not old enough to be quaint and not modern enough to meet a present-day reader upon equal terms.
These remarks apply only to artistic poetry. Popular poetry,--that which was exemplified in the Middle Ages by the great epics of the Cid, the Infantes de Lara and other heroes, and in songs whose existence can rather be inferred than proved,--was never better. It produced the lyrico-epic _romances_ (see _Notes_, p. 253), which, as far as one may judge from their diction and from contemporary testimony, received their final form at about this time, though in many cases of older origin. It produced charming little songs which some of the later court poets admired sufficiently to gloss. But the cultured writers, just admitted to the splendid cultivated garden of Latin literature, despised these simple wayside flowers and did not care to preserve them for posterity.
The artistic poetry of the fifteenth century falls
naturally into three classes, corresponding to three currents of influence; and all three frequently appear in the work of one man, not blended, but distinct. One is the conventional love-poem of the Galician school, seldom containing a fresh or personal note. Another is the stilted allegory with erotic or historical page xvi content, for whose many sins Dante was chiefly
responsible, though Petrarch, he of the _Triunfi_, and Boccaccio cannot escape some blame. Third is a vein of highly moral reflections upon the vanity of life and certainty of death, sometimes running to political satire. Its roots may be found in the Book of Job, in Seneca and, nearer at hand, in the _Proverbios morales_ of the Jew Sem Tob (_ca_. 1350), in the _Rimado de Palacio_ of Ayala, and in a few poets of the _Cancionero de Baena_.
John II was a dilettante who left the government of the
kingdom to his favorite, Álvaro de Luna. He gained more fame in the world of letters than many better kings by
fostering the study of literature and gathering about him a circle of "court poets" nearly all of noble birth. Only
two names among them all imperatively require mention. Iñigo LÓPEZ DE MENDOZA, MARQUIS OF SANTILLANA (1398-1458) was the finest type of _grand seigneur_, protector of
letters, student, warrior, poet and politician. He wrote
verse in all three of the manners just named, but he will certainly be longest remembered for his _serranillas_, the fine flower of the Provençal-Galician tradition, in which the poet describes his meeting with a country lass.
Santillana combined the freshest local setting with
perfection of form and left nothing more to be desired in that genre. He also wrote the first sonnets in Castilian, but they are interesting only as an experiment, and had no followers. Juan de MENA (1411-1456) was purely a literary man, without other distinction of birth or accomplishment. His work is mainly after the Italian model. The _Laberinto de fortuna_, by which he is best known, is a dull allegory with much of Dante's apparatus. There are historical passages where the poet's patriotism leads him page xvii to a certain rhetorical height, but his good intentions are weighed down by three millstones: slavish imitation, the monotonous _arte mayor_ stanza and the deadly
earnestness of his temperament. He enjoyed great renown and authority for many decades.
Two anonymous poems of about the same time deserve mention. The _Danza de la muerte_, the Castilian representative of a type which appeared all over Europe, shows death summoning mortals from all stations of life with ghastly glee. The _Coplas de Mingo Revulgo_, promulgated during the reign of Henry IV (1454-1474), are a political satire in dialogue form, and exhibit for the first time the peculiar peasant dialect that later became a convention of the pastoral eclogues and also of the country scenes in the great drama.
The second half of the century continues the same tendencies with a notable development in the fluidity of the language and an increasing interest in popular poetry. Gómez Manrique (d. 1491?) was another warrior of a literary turn whose best verses are of a severely moral nature. His nephew JORGE MANRIQUE (1440-1478) wrote a single poem of the highest merit; his scanty other works are forgotten. The _Coplas por la muerte de su padre_, beautifully translated by Longfellow, contain some laments for the writer's personal loss, but more general reflections upon the instability of worldly glory. It is not to be thought that this famous poem is in any way original in idea; the theme had already been exploited to satiety, but Manrique gave it a superlative perfection of form and a contemporary application which left no room for improvement.
There were numerous more or less successful love-poets of the conventional type writing in page xviii octosyllabics and the inevitable imitators of Dante with their unreadable allegories in _arte mayor_. The repository for the short poems of these writers is the _Cancionero general_ of Hernando de Castillo (1511). It was reprinted many times throughout the sixteenth century. Among the writers represented in it one should distinguish, however, Rodrigo de Cota. His dramatic _Diálogo entre el amor y un viejo_ has real charm, and has saved his name from the oblivion to which most of his fellows have justly been consigned. The bishop Ambrosio Montesino (_Cancionero_, 1508) was a fervent religious poet and the precursor of the mystics of fifty years later.
The political condition of Spain improved immensely in the reign of Ferdinand and Isabella (1479-1516) and the country entered upon a period of internal homogeneity and tranquility which might be expected to foster artistic production. Such was the case; but literature was not the first of the arts to reach a highly refined state. The
first half of the sixteenth century is a period of
humanistic study, and the poetical works coming from it were still tentative. JUAN DEL ENCINA (1469-1533?) is important in the history of the drama, for his _églogas, representaciones_ and _autos_ are practically the first Spanish dramas not anonymous. As a lyric poet Encina excels in the light pastoral; he was a musician as well as a poet, and his bucolic _villancicos_ and _glosas_ in stanzas of six-and eight-syllable lines are daintily written and express genuine love of nature. The Portuguese GIL VICENTE (1470-1540?) was a follower of Encina at first, but a much bigger man. Like most of his compatriots of the sixteenth century he wrote in both Portuguese and Castilian, though better in the former tongue. He was close to the people in his thinking and writing page xix and some of the songs contained in his plays reproduce the truest popular savor.
The intimate connection between Spain and Italy during the period when the armies of the Emperor Charles V (Charles I of Spain: reigned 1516-1555) were overrunning the latter country gave a new stimulus to the imitation of Italian meters and poets which we have seen existed in a premature state since the reign of John II. The man who first achieved real success in the hendecasyllable, combined in sonnets, octaves, _terza rima_ and blank verse, was Juan BOSCÁN ALMOGAVER (1490?-1542), a Catalan of wealth and culture. Boscán was handicapped by writing in a tongue not native to him and by the constant holding of foreign models before his eyes, and he was not a man of genius; yet his verse kept to a loftier ideal than had appeared for a long time and his effort to lift Castilian poetry from the slough of convention into which it had fallen was successful. During the rest of the century the impulse given by Boscán divided Spanish lyrists into two opposing hosts, the Italianates and those who clung to the native meters (stanzas of short, chiefly octosyllabic, lines, for the _arte mayor_ had sunk by its own weight).
The first and greatest of Boscán's disciples was his close friend GARCILASO DE LA VEGA (1503-1536) who far surpassed his master. He was a scion of a most noble family, a favorite of the emperor, and his adventurous career, passed mostly in Italy, ended in a soldier's death. His poems, however (_églogas, canciones_, sonnets, etc.), take us from real life into the sentimental world of the Arcadian pastoral. Shepherds discourse of their unrequited loves and mourn amid surroundings of an idealized Nature.
The pure diction, the Vergilian flavor, the classic finish of these poems made them favorites in Spain from the first, and their author has always been regarded as a master.
With Garcilaso begins the golden age of Spanish poetry and of Spanish literature in general, which may be said to close in 1681 with the death of Calderón. It was a period of external greatness, of conquest both in Europe and beyond the Atlantic, but it contained the germs of future decay. The strength of the nation was exhausted in futile warfare, and virile thought was stifled by the Inquisition, supported by the monarchs. Hence the luxuriant literature of the time runs in the channels farthest from underlying social problems; philosophy and political satire are absent, and the romantic drama, novel and lyric flourish. But in all external qualities the poetry written during this period has never been equaled in Spain. Its polish, color and choiceness of language have been the admiration and model of later Castilian poets.
The superficial nature of this literature is exhibited in the controversy excited by the efforts of Boscán and Garcilaso to substitute Italian forms for the older Spanish ones. The discussion dealt with externals; with meters, not ideas. Both schools delighted in the airy nothings of the conventional love lyric, and it matters little at this distance whether they were cast in lines of eleven or eight syllables.
The contest was warm at the time, however. Sá de Miranda (1495-1558), the chief exponent of the Italian school in Portugal, wrote effectively also in Castilian. Gutierre de Cetina (1518?-1572?) and Fernando de Acuña (1500?-1580?) are two others who supported the new measures. One whose example had more influence is Diego Hurtado de page xxi Mendoza (1503-1575), a famous diplomat, humanist and historian. He entertained his idle moments with verse, writing cleverly in the old style but turning also toward the new. His sanction for the latter seems to have proved decisive.
Cristóbal de CASTILLEJO (1490-1556) was the chief defender of the native Spanish forms. He employed them himself in light verse with cleverness, clearness and finish, and also attacked the innovators with all the resources of a caustic wit. In this patriotic task he was for a time aided by an organist of the cathedral at Granada, Gregorio Silvestre (1520-1569), of Portuguese birth. Silvestre, however, who is noted for the delicacy of his poems in whatever style, was later attracted by the popularity of the Italian meters and adopted them.
This literary squabble ended in the most natural way, namely, in the co-existence of both manners in peace and harmony. Italian forms were definitively naturalized in Spain, where they have maintained their place ever since. Subsequent poets wrote in either style or both as they felt moved, and no one reproached them. Such was the habit of Lope de Vega, Góngora, Quevedo and the other great writers of the seventeenth century.
A Sevillan Italianate was Fernando de HERRERA
(1534?-1597), admirer and annotator of Garcilaso. Although an ecclesiastic, his poetic genius was more virile than
that of his soldier master. He wrote Petrarchian sonnets to his platonic lady; but his martial, patriotic spirit
appears in his _canciones_, especially in those on the
battle of Lepanto and on the expedition of D. Sebastian of Portugal in Africa. In these stirring odes Herrera touches a sonorous, grandiloquent chord which rouses the page xxii reader's enthusiasm and places the writer in the first
rank of Spanish lyrists. He is noteworthy also in that
he made an attempt to create a poetic language by the
rejection of vulgar words and the coinage of new ones.
Others, notably Juan de Mena, had attempted it before, and Góngora afterward carried it to much greater lengths; but the idea never succeeded in Castilian to an extent nearly so great as it did in France, for example; and to-day the best poetical diction does not differ greatly from good
Beside Herrera stands a totally different spirit, the Salamancan monk Luis DE LEÓN (1527-1591). The deep religious feeling which is one strong trait of Spanish character has its representatives in Castilian literature from Berceo down, but León was the first to give it fine artistic expression. The mystic sensation of oneness with the divine, of aspiration to heavenly joys, breathes in all his writings. He was also a devoted student of the classics, and his poems (for which he cared nothing and which were not published till 1631) show Latin rather than Italian influence. There is nothing in literature more pure, more serene, more direct or more polished than _La vida del campo, Noche serena_ and others of his compositions.
The other great mystics cared less for literature, either as a study or an accomplishment. The poems of Saint Theresa (1515-1582) are few and mostly mediocre. San Juan de la Cruz, the Ecstatic Doctor (1542-1591), wrote the most exalted spiritual poems in the language; like all the mystics, he was strongly attracted by the Song of
Songs which was paraphrased by Pedro Malón de Chaide (1530-1596?). It is curious to note that the stanza
adopted in the great mystical lyrics is one page xxiii invented by Garcilaso and used in his amatory fifth _Canción_. It has the rime-scheme of the Spanish
_quintilla_, but the lines are the Italian eleven-and seven-syllable (cf. pp. 9-12). Religious poems in more popular forms are found in the _Romancero espiritual_ (1612) of José de Valdivielso, and in Lope de Vega's _Rimas sacras_ (1614) and _Romancero espiritual_ (1622).
There were numerous secular disciples of Garcilaso at about the same period. The names most deserving mention are those of Francisco de la Torre (d. 1594?), Luis Barahona de Soto (1535?-1595) and Francisco de Figueroa (1536?-1620), all of whom wrote creditably and sometimes with distinction in the Italian forms. Luis de Camoens (1524?-1580), author of the great Portuguese epic _Os Lusiadas_, employed Castilian in many verses with happy result.
These figures lead to the threshold of the seventeenth century which opened with a tremendous literary output in many lines. Cervantes was writing his various novels; the romance of roguery took on new life with _Guzmán de Alfarache_ (1599); the drama, which had been developing rather slowly and spasmodically, burst suddenly into full flower with Lope de Vega and his innumerable followers. The old meter of the _romance_ was adopted as a favorite form by all sorts and conditions of poets and was turned from its primitive epic simplicity to the utmost variety of subjects, descriptive, lyric and satiric.
From out this flood of production--for every dramatist was in a measure a lyric poet, and dramatists were legion--we
can select for consideration only the men most prominent
as lyrists. First in the impulse which he gave to
literature for more than a century following stands Luis
de ARGOTE Y GÓNGORA (1561-1627), a Cordovan page xxiv who chose to be known by his mother's name. His life was mainly that of a disappointed place-hunter. His abrupt
change of literary manner has made some say that there
were in him two poets, Góngora the Good and Góngora the Bad. He began by writing odes in the manner of Herrera and _romances_ and _villancicos_ which are among the clearest and best. They did not bring their author fame, however,
and he seems deliberately to have adopted the involved
metaphoric style to which Marini gave his name in Italy.
Góngora is merely the Spanish representative of the
movement, which also produced Euphuism in England and _préciosité_ in France. But he surpassed all previous
writers in the extreme to which he carried the method, and his _Soledades_ and _Polifemo_ are simply unintelligible
for the inversions and strained metaphors with which they are overloaded.
His influence was enormous. Gongorism, or _culteranismo_, as it was called at the time, swept the minor poets with it, and even those who fought the movement most vigorously, like Lope and Quevedo, were not wholly free from the contagion. The second generation of dramatists was strongly affected. Yet there are few lyric poets worth mentioning among Góngora's disciples for the reason that such a pernicious system meant certain ruin to those who lacked the master's talent. The most important names are the Count of Villamediana (1580-1622), a satirist whose sharp tongue caused his assassination, and Paravicino y Arteaga (1580-1633), a court preacher.
Obviously, such an innovation could not pass without opposition from clear-sighted men. LOPE DE VEGA
(1562-1635) attacked it whenever opportunity offered, and his verse seldom shows signs of corruption. It page xxv is impossible to consider the master-dramatist at length here. He wrote over 300 sonnets, many excellent eclogues, epistles, and, in more popular styles, glosses,
_letrillas, villancicos, romances_, etc. Lope more than any other poet of his time kept his ear close to the people, and his light poems are full of the delicious breath of the country.
The other principal opponent of Gongorism was Francisco GÓMEZ DE QUEVEDO Y VILLEGAS (1580-1645), whose wit and independence made him formidable. In 1631 he published the poems of Luis de León and Francisco de la Torre as a protest against the baleful mannerism in vogue. But he himself adopted a hardly less disagreeable style, called conceptism, which is supposed to have been invented by Alonso de Ledesma (1552-1623). It consists in a strained search for unusual thoughts which entails forced
paradoxes, antitheses and epigrams. This system, combined with local allusions, double meanings and current slang, in which Quevedo delighted, makes his poems often extremely difficult of comprehension. His _romances de jaques_, written in thieves' jargon, are famous in Spain. Quevedo wrote too much and carelessly and tried to cover too many fields, but at his best his caustic wit and
fearless vigor place him high.
There were not lacking poets who kept themselves free from taint of _culteranismo_, though they did not join in
the fight against it. The brothers Argensola (LUPERCIO
LEONARDO DE ARGENSOLA, 1559-1613, BARTOLOMÉ LEONARDO DE ARGENSOLA, 1562-1631), of Aragonese birth, turned to
Horace and other classics as well as to Italy for their
inspiration. Their pure and dignified sonnets, odes and
translations rank high. Juan MARTÍNEZ DE JÁUREGUI page xxvi (1583-1641) wrote a few original poems, but is known
mainly for his excellent translation of Tasso's _Aminta_.
He too succumbed to Gongorism at times. The few poems of Francisco de RIOJA (1586?-1659) are famous for the purity of their style and their tender melancholy tone. A little
apart is Esteban Manuel de VILLEGAS (1589-1669), an
admirer of the Argensolas, "en versos cortos divino,
insufrible en los mayores," who is known for his attempts
in Latin meters and his successful imitations of Anacreon
The lyrics of CALDERÓN (1600-1681) are to be found mostly in his _comedias_ and _autos_. There are passages which display great gifts in the realm of pure poetry, but too often they are marred by the impertinent metaphors characteristic of _culteranismo_.
His name closes the most brilliant era of Spanish letters. The decline of literature followed close upon that of the political power of Spain. The splendid empire of Charles V had sunk, from causes inherent in the policies of that over-ambitious monarch, through the somber bigotry of Philip II, the ineptitude of Philip III, the frivolity of
Philip IV, to the imbecility of Charles II; and the death of the last of the Hapsburg rulers in 1700 left Spain in a deplorably enfeebled condition physically and
intellectually. The War of the Succession (1701-1714) exhausted her internal strength still more, and the final acknowledgment of Philip V (reigned 1701-1746) brought hardly any blessing but that of peace. Under these
circumstances poetry could not thrive; and in truth the eighteenth century in Spain is an age devoted more to the discussion of the principles of literature than to the
production of it. At first the decadent remnants of page xxvii the _siglo de oro_ still survived, but later the
French taste, following the principles formulated by
Boileau, prevailed almost entirely. The history of Spanish poetry in the eighteenth century is a history of the
struggle between these two forces and ends in the triumph of the latter.
The effects of Gongorism lasted long in Spain, which, with its innate propensity to bombast, was more fertile soil for it than other nations. Innumerable poetasters of the early eighteenth century enjoyed fame in their day and some possessed talent; but the obscure and trivial style of the age from which they could not free themselves deprived them of any chance of enduring fame. One may mention, as the least unworthy, Gabriel Álvarez de Toledo (1662-1714) and Eugenio Gerardo Lobo (1679-1750).
Some one has said that the poetry of Spain, with the exception of the _romances_ and the drama of the _siglo de oro_, has always drawn its inspiration from some other country. Add to the exceptions the medieval epic and the statement would be close to the truth. First Provence through the medium of Galicia; then Italy and with it ancient Rome; and lastly France and England, on more than one occasion, have molded Spanish poetry. The power of the French classical literature, soon dominant in Europe, could not long be stayed by the Pyrenees; and Pope, Thomson and Young were also much admired. Philip V, a Frenchman, did not endeavor to crush the native spirit in his new home, but his influence could not but be felt. He established a Spanish Academy on the model of the French in 1714.
It was some time before the reaction, based on common sense and confined to the intellectuals, could take deep root, and, as was natural, it went too far and condemned much of the _siglo de oro_ entire. The _Diario page xxviii de los literatos_, a journal of criticism founded in 1737, and the _Poética_ of Ignacio de Luzán, published in
the same year, struck the first powerful blows. Luzán (1702-1754) followed in general the precepts of Boileau, though he was able to praise some of the good points in the Spanish tradition. His own poems are frigid. The _Sátira contra los malos escritores de su tiempo_ (1742) of Jorge Pitillas (pseudonym of José Gerardo de Hervás, d. 1742) was an imitation of Boileau which had great effect. Blas Antonio Nasarre (1689-1751), Agustín Montiano (1697-1765) and Luis José Velázquez (1722-1772) were critics who, unable to compose meritorious plays or
verse themselves, cut to pieces the great figures of the preceding age.
Needless to say, the Gallicizers were vigorously opposed, but so poor were the original productions of the defenders of the national manner that their side was necessarily the losing one. Vicente García de la Huerta (1734-1787) was its most vehement partisan, but he is remembered only for a tragedy, _Raquel_.
Thus it is seen that during a century of social and industrial depression Spain did not produce a poet worthy of the name. The condition of the nation was sensibly bettered under Charles III (reigned 1759-1788) who did what was possible to reorganize the state and curb the stifling domination of the Roman Church and its agents the Jesuits and the Inquisition. The Benedictine Feijóo (1675-1764) labored faithfully to inoculate Spain, far behind the rest of Europe, with an inkling of recent scientific discoveries. And the budding prosperity, however deceitful it proved, was reflected in a more promising literary generation. page xxix
Nicolás FERNÁNDEZ DE MORATÍN (1737-1780) followed the French rules in theory and wrote a few mediocre plays in accordance with them; but he showed that at heart he was a good poet and a good Spaniard by his ode _Á Pedro Romero, torero insigne_, some _romances_ and his famous _quintillas_, the _Fiesta de toros en Madrid_. Other followers of the French, in a genre not, strictly
speaking, lyric at all, were the two fabulists, Samaniego and Iriarte. F. María de SAMANIEGO (1745-1801) gave to the traditional stock of apologues, as developed by Phaedrus, Lokmân and La Fontaine, a permanent and popular Castilian form. Tomás de IRIARTE (1750-1791), a more irritable personage who spent much time in literary polemics, wrote original fables (_Fábulas literarias_, 1781) directed not against the foibles of mankind in general, but against the world of writers and scholars.
The best work which was done under the classical French influence, however, is to be found in the writers of the so-called Salamancan school, which was properly not a school at all. The poets who are thus classed together, Cadalso, Diego González, Jovellanos, Forner, Meléndez Valdés, Cienfuegos, Iglesias, were personal friends thrown together in the university or town of Salamanca, but they were not subjected to a uniform literary training and possessed no similarity of style or aim as did the men of the later Sevillan school.
José de CADALSO (1741-1782), a dashing soldier of great personal charm killed at the siege of Gibraltar, is
sometimes credited with founding the school of Salamanca. He was a friend of most of the important writers of his
time and composed interesting prose satires; his verse
(_Noches lúgubres_, etc.) is not remarkable. FRAY DIEGO GONZÁLEZ (1733-1794) is one of the masters of page xxx idiomatic Castilian in the century. He admired Luis de
León and imitated him in paraphrases of the Psalms. The volume of his verse is small but unsurpassed in surety of taste and evenness of finish. The _Murciélago alevoso_ has passed into many editions and become a favorite in Spain. The pure and commanding figure of JOVELLANOS (1744-1811) dominated the whole group which listened to his advice with respect. It was not always sure, for he led Diego
González and Meléndez Valdés astray by persuading them to attempt philosophical poetry instead of the lighter sort
for which they were fitted. He was in fact a greater man than poet, but his satires and _Epístola al duque de
Veragua_ are strong and dignified.
Juan MELÉNDEZ VALDÉS (1754-1817) was on the contrary a greater poet than man. Brilliant from the first, he was petted by Cadalso and Jovellanos who strove to develop his talent. In 1780 he won a prize offered by the Academy for an eclogue. In 1784 his comedy _Las bodas de Camacho_, on a subject suggested by Jovellanos (from an episode in _Don Quijote_, II, 19-21), won a prize offered by the city of Madrid, but failed on the stage. His first volume of poems was published in 1785; later editions appeared in 1797 and 1820. He attached himself to the French party at the time of the invasion in 1808, incurred great popular odium and died in France. He is the most fluent, imaginative poet of the eighteenth century and is especially successful in the pastoral and anacreontic styles. Fresh descriptions of nature, enchanting pictures of love, form an oasis in an age of studied reasonableness. His language has been criticized for its Gallicisms. José IGLESIAS DE LA CASA (1748-1791), a native of Salamanca and a priest, wrote much light satirical verse, epigrams, parodies page xxxi and _letrillas_ in racy Castilian; he was less successful in the graver forms. Nicasio ÁLVAREZ DE CIENFUEGOS (1764-1809) passes as a disciple of Meléndez; he was a passionate, uneven writer whose undisciplined thought and habit of coining words lead to obscurity. Politically he opposed the French with unyielding vigor, barely escaped execution at their hands and died in exile. The verse of Cienfuegos prepared the way for Quintana. Differing from him in clarity and polish are Fr. Sánchez Barbero (1764-1819) and Leandro F. de Moratín, the dramatist (1760-1828).
One curious result of rationalistic doctrines was the "prosaism" into which it led many minor versifiers. These poetasters, afraid of overstepping the limits of
good sense, tabooed all imagination and described in deliberately prosy lines the most commonplace events. The movement reached its height at the beginning of the reign of Charles IV (1788-1808) and produced such efforts as a poem to the gout, a nature-poem depicting barn-yard sounds, and even Iriarte's _La música_ (1780), in which one may read in carefully constructed _silvas_ the definition of diatonic and chromatic scales.
Early in the nineteenth century the armies of Napoleon
invaded Spain. There ensued a fierce struggle for the
mastery of the Peninsula, in which the latent strength and energy of the Spaniards became once more evident. The page xxxii French devastated parts of the country, but they
brought with them many new ideas which, together with the sharpness of the conflict, served to awaken the Spanish
people from their torpor and to give them a new
realization of national consciousness. During this period
of stress and strife two poets, Quintana and Gallego,
urged on and encouraged their fellow countrymen with
Manuel José QUINTANA (1772-1857) had preëminently the "gift of martial music," and great was the influence of his odes _Al armamento de las provincias contra los franceses_ and _Á España después de la revolución de marzo_. He also strengthened the patriotism of his people by his prose _Vidas de españoles célebres_ (begun in 1806): the Cid, the Great Captain (Gonzalo de Córdoba), Pizarro and others of their kind. In part a follower of the French philosophers of the eighteenth century, Quintana sang also of humanity and progress, as in his ode on the invention of printing. In politics Quintana was a liberal; in religious beliefs, a materialist. Campoamor has said of Quintana that he sang not of faith or pleasures, but of duties. His enemies have accused him of stirring the colonies to revolt by his bitter sarcasm directed at past and contemporaneous Spanish rulers, but this is doubtless an exaggeration. It may be said that except in his best patriotic poems his verses lack lyric merit and his ideas are wanting in insight and depth; but his sincerity of purpose was in the main beyond question and he occasionally gave expression to striking boldness of thought and exaltation of feeling. In technique Quintana was a follower of the Salamancan school.
The cleric Juan Nicasio GALLEGO (1777-1853) rivaled Quintana as a writer of patriotic verses. A liberal in politics like Quintana, Gallego also took the page xxxiii side of his people against the French invaders and against the servile Spanish rulers. He is best known by the ode _El dos de mayo_, in which he exults over the rising of the Spanish against the French on the second of May, 1808; the ode _Á la defensa de Buenos Aires_ against the English; and the elegy _Á la muerte de la duquesa de Frías_ in which he shows that he is capable of deep feeling. Gallego was a close friend of Quintana, whose salon in Madrid he frequented. Gallego wrote little, but his works are more correct in language and style than those of Quintana. It is interesting that although the writings of these two poets evince a profound dislike and distrust of the French, yet both were in their art largely dominated by the influence of French neo-classicism. This is but another illustration of the relative conservatism of belles-lettres.
In the year 1793 there had been formed in Seville by a group of young writers an Academia de Letras Humanas to foster the cultivation of letters. The members of this academy were admirers of Herrera, the Spanish Petrarchist and patriotic poet of the sixteenth century, and they strove for a continuation of the tradition of the earlier Sevillan group. The more important writers of the later Sevillan school were Arjona, Blanco, Lista and Reinoso. Manuel María de ARJONA (1771-1820), a priest well read in the Greek and Latin classics, was an imitator of Horace. José María BLANCO (1775-1841), known in the history of English literature as Blanco White, spent much time in England and wrote in English as well as in Castilian.
Ordained a Catholic priest he later became an Unitarian. The best-known and most influential writer of the group was Alberto LISTA (1775-1848), an educator and page xxxiv later canon of Seville. Lista was a skilful artist and
like Arjona an admirer and imitator of Horace; but his
ideas lacked depth. His best-known poem is probably a religious one, _Á la muerte de Jesús,_ which abounds in true poetic feeling. Lista exerted great influence as a
teacher and his _Lecciones de literatura española_ did
much to stimulate the study of Spanish letters. Félix José REINOSO (1772-1814), also a priest, imitated Milton in _octava rima_. As a whole the influence of the Sevillan
school was healthful. By insisting upon purity of diction and regularity in versification, the members of the school helped somewhat to restrain the license and improve the bad taste prevailing in the Spanish literature of the
time. The Catalonian Manuel de CABANYES (1808-1833) remained unaffected by the warring literary schools and followed with passionate enthusiasm the precepts of the ancients and particularly of Horace.
In the third decade of the nineteenth century romanticism, with its revolt against the restrictions of classicism,
with its free play of imagination and emotion, and with
lyricism as its predominant note, flowed freely into Spain from England and France. Spain had remained preëminently the home of romanticism when France and England had turned to classicism, and only in the second half of the
eighteenth century had Spanish writers given to classicism a reception that was at the best lukewarm. Now romanticism was welcomed back with open arms, and Spanish writers turned eagerly for inspiration not only to Chateaubriand, Victor Hugo and Byron, but also to Lope de Vega and
Calderón. Spain has always worshiped the past, for Spain was once great, and the appeal of romanticism was page xxxv therefore the greater as it drew its material largely
from national sources.
In 1830 a club known as the Parnasillo was formed in Madrid to spread the new literary theories, much as the Cénacle had done in Paris. The members of the Parnasillo met in a wretched little café to avoid public attention. Here were to be found Bretón de los Herreros, Estébanez Calderón, Mesonero Romanos, Gil y Zárate, Ventura de la Vega, Espronceda and Larra. The influence of Spanish epic and dramatic poetry had been important in stimulating the growth of romanticism in England, Germany and France. In England, Robert Southey translated into English the
poem and the chronicle of the Cid and Sir Walter Scott published his Vision of Don Roderick; in Germany, Herder's translation of some of the Cid _romances_ and the Schlegel brothers' metrical version of Calderón's dramas had called attention to the merit of the earlier Spanish literature; and in France, Abel Hugo translated into French the
_Romancero_ and his brother Victor made Spanish subjects popular with _Hernani_ and _Ruy Blas_ and the _Légendes des siècles_. But Spain, under the despotism of Ferdinand VII, the "Tyrant of Literature," remained apparently
indifferent or even hostile to its own wonderful
creations, and clung outwardly to French
neo-classicism. Böhl von Faber, the German consul at Cadiz, who was influenced by the Schlegel brothers,
had early called attention to the merit of the Spanish literature of the Golden Age and had even had some of Calderón's plays performed at Cadiz. And in page xxxvi 1832 Durán published his epoch-making _Romancero_. In 1833 Ferdinand VII died and the romantic movement was hastened by the home-coming of a number of men who had fled the despotism of the monarch and had spent some time in England and France, where they had come into contact with the romanticists of those countries. Prominent amongst these were Martínez de la Rosa, Antonio Alcalá Galiano, the Duke of Rivas and Espronceda.
In this period of transition one of the first prominent men of letters to show the effects of romanticism was Francisco MARTÍNEZ DE LA ROSA (1787-1862). Among his earlier writings are a _Poética_ and several odes in honor of the heroes of the War of Independence against the French. After his exile in Paris he returned home imbued with romanticism, and his two plays, _Conjuración de Venecia_ (1834) and _Abén Humeya_ (1836: it had already been given in French at Paris in 1830), mark the first public triumph of romanticism in Spain. But Martínez de la Rosa lacked force and originality and his works merely paved the way for the greater triumph of the Duke of Rivas. Ángel de Saavedra, DUQUE DE RIVAS (1791-1865), a liberal noble, insured the definite triumph of romanticism in Spain by the successful performance of his drama _Don Álvaro_ (1835). At first a follower of Moratín and Quintana, he turned, after several years of exile in England, the Isle of Malta and France, to the new romantic school, and casting off all classical restraints
soon became the acknowledged leader of the Spanish
romanticists. Among his better works are the lyric _Al
faro de Malta_, the legendary narrative poem _El moro
expósito_ and his _Romances históricos_. The _Romances_ are more sober in tone and less fantastic,--and it should be added, less popular to-day,--than the legends of page xxxvii Zorrilla. After a tempestuous life the Duke of
Rivas settled quietly into the place of director of the
Spanish Academy, which post he held till his death.
José de ESPRONCEDA (1808-1842) was preëminently a disciple of Byron, with Byron's mingling of pessimism and aspiration, and like him in revolt against the established order of things in politics and social organization. His passionate outpourings, his brilliant imagery and the music of his verse give to Espronceda a first place amongst the Spanish lyrical poets of the nineteenth century. Some of his shorter lyrics (e.g. _Canto á Teresa_) are inspired by his one-time passion for Teresa with whom after her marriage to another he eloped from London to Paris. The poet's best known longer works are the _Diablo mundo_ and the _Estudiante de Salamanca_, which are largely made up of detached lyrics in which the subjective note is strikingly prominent. Espronceda was one of those fortunate few who shine in the world of letters although they work little. Both in lyric mastery and in his spirit of revolt, Espronceda holds the place in Spanish literature that is held in English by Byron. He is the chief Spanish exponent of a great revolutionary movement that swept over the world of letters in the first half of the nineteenth century.
José ZORRILLA (1817-1893) first won fame by the reading of an elegy at the burial of Larra. Zorrilla was a most prolific and spontaneous writer of verses, much of which is unfinished in form and deficient in philosophical
insight. But in spite of his carelessness and shallowness he rivaled Espronceda in popularity. His verses are not seldom melodramatic or childish, but they are rich in coloring and poetic fancy and they form a page xxxviii vast enchanted world in which the Spaniards still delight to wander. His versions of old Spanish legends are
doubtless his most enduring work and their appeal to Spanish patriotism is not less potent to-day than when they were written. Zorrilla's dramatic works were
successful on the stage by reason of their primitive
vigor, especially _Don Juan Tenorio_, _El Zapatero y el rey_ and _Traidor, inconfeso y mártir_. This "fantastic and legendary poet" went to Mexico in 1854 and he remained there several years. After that date he wrote little and the little lacked merit.
Gertrudis Gómez de AVELLANEDA (1814-1873) was born in Cuba but spent most of her life in Spain. Avellaneda was a graceful writer of lyrics in which there was feeling and melody but little depth of thought. With her the moving impulse was love, both human and divine. Her first volume of poems (1841) probably contains her best work. Her novels _Sab_ and _Espatolino_ were popular in their day but are now fallen into oblivion. Some of her plays,
especially _Baltasar_ and _Munio_, do not lack merit. Avellaneda is recognized as the foremost poet amongst the women of nineteenth-century Spain.
Two of the most successful dramatists of this period,
García Gutiérrez and Hartzenbusch, were also lyric poets. Antonio GARCÍA GUTIÉRREZ (1813-1884), the author of _El trovador_, published two volumes of mediocre verses.
Juan Eugenio HARTZENBUSCH (1806-1880) was, like Fernán Caballero, the child of a German father and a Spanish
mother. Though an eminent scholar and critic, he did not hesitate in his _Amantes de Teruel_ to play to the popular passion for sentimentality. He produced some lyric verse of worth. Manuel BRETÓN DE LOS HERREROS (1796-1873) was primarily a humorist and satirist, who turned from page xxxix lyric verse to drama as his best medium of
expression. He delighted in holding up to ridicule the
excesses of romanticism. Mention should be made here of two poets who had been, like Espronceda, pupils of Alberto Lista. The eclectic poet MARQUÉS DE MOLINS (Mariano Roca de Togores: 1812-1889) wrote passively in all the literary genres of his time. VENTURA DE LA VEGA (1807-1865) was born in Argentina, but came to Spain at an early age. He was a well-balanced, cautious writer of mediocre verses that are rather neo-classic than romantic.
A marked reaction against the grandiose exaggerations of later romanticism appears in the works of José SELGAS y Carrasco (1824-1882), a clever writer of simple,
sentimental verses. At one time his poetry was highly praised and widely read, but for the most part it is to-day censured as severely as it was once praised. Among the contemporaries of Selgas were the writer of simple verses and one-time popular tales, Antonio de TRUEBA (1821-1889) and Eduardo BUSTILLO, the author of _Las cuatro estaciones_ and _El ciego de Buenavista_. Somewhat of the tradition of the Sevillan school persisted in the verses of Manuel CAÑETE and Narciso CAMPILLO (1838-1900) and in those of the poet and literary critic José AMADOR DE LOS RÍOS.
The Sevillan Gustavo Adolfo BÉCQUER (1836-1870) wrote perhaps the most highly polished Spanish verse of the nineteenth century. His _Rimas_ are charged with true poetic fancy and the sweetest melody, but the many inversions of word-order that were used to attain to perfection of metrical form detract not a little from
their charm. His writings are contained in three small volumes in which are found, together with the _Rimas_, a collection of prose legends. His prose work is page xl filled with morbid mysticism or fairy-like mystery. His dreamy prose is often compared to that of Hoffmann and his verses to those of Heine, although it is doubtful if he was largely influenced by either of these German writers. Bécquer sings primarily of idealized human love. His material life was wretched and it would seem that his spirit took flight into an enchanted land of its own
creation. Most human beings love to forget at times their sordid surroundings and wander in dreamland; hence the enduring popularity of Bécquer's works and especially of the _Rimas_. Bécquer has been widely imitated throughout the Spanish-speaking world, but with little success. In this connection it should be noted that the Spanish poets who have most influenced the Spanish literature of the nineteenth century, both in the Peninsula and in
America, are the Tyrtaean poet Quintana, the two leading romanticists Espronceda and Zorrilla and the mystic Bécquer.
Like most writers in Latin lands, Juan VALERA y Alcalá Galiano (1824-1905) and Marcelino MENÉNDEZ Y PELAYO (1856-1912) began their literary career with a volume or two of lyric verses. Valera's verses have perfect metrical form and evince high scholarship, but they are too learned to be popular. The lyrics of Menéndez y Pelayo have also more merit in form than in inspiration and are lacking in human interest. Both authors turned soon to more congenial work: Valera became the most versatile and polished of all nineteenth century Spanish writers of essays and novels; and Menéndez y Pelayo became Spain's greatest scholar in literary history. The popular novelist, Pedro Antonio de ALARCÓN (1833-1891), wrote lyrics in which there is a curious blending of humor and skepticism. page xli The foremost Spanish poet of the closing years of the nineteenth century was Ramón de CAMPOAMOR y Campoosorio (1817-1901) who is recognized as the initiator in Spain of a new type of verse in his _Doloras_ and _Pequeños poemas_. The _doloras_ are, for the most part, metrical fables or epigrams, dramatic or anecdotal in form, in which the author unites lightness of touch with depth of feeling. The _pequeño poema_ is merely an enlarged _dolora_. Campoamor disliked Byron and he disliked still more the sonorous emptiness that is characteristic of too much Spanish poetry. In philosophy he revered Thomas à Kempis; in form he aimed at conciseness and directness rather than at artistic perfection. His poetry lacks enthusiasm and coloring, but it has dramatic interest.
[Footnote 4: Menéndez y Pelayo (_Ant. Poetas Hisp.-Am._, I, p. lv) says: "Al fin españoles somos, y á tal profusión de luz y á tal estrépito de palabras sonoras no hay entre nosotros quien resista."]
The poets Manuel del PALACIO (1832-1895) and Federico BALART (1831-1905), though quite unlike in genius, won the esteem of their contemporaries. Palacio wrote excellent sonnets and epigrams. In his _Leyendas y poemas_ he proved his mastery of Spanish diction; he had, moreover, the saving grace of humor which was so noticeably lacking in Zorrilla's legends. The poet and literary critic, Balart, achieved fame with his _Dolores_, in which he mourns with sincere grief the death of his beloved wife. Mention
should also be made of the following poets who deserve recognition in this brief review of the history of Spanish lyric poetry: Vicente Wenceslao QUEROL (1836-1889), a Valencian, whose _El eclipse, Cartas á María_, and _La fiesta de Venus_, evince a remarkable technical skill
and an unusual correctness of diction; Teodoro page xlii LLORENTE (cf. p. 279); José GALIANO ALCALÁ whose verses have delicate feeling and lively imagination; Emilio
FERRARI (b. 1853), the author of _Abelardo é Hipatia_ and _Aspiración_; the pessimistic poets, Joaquín María de BARTRINA (1850-1880) and Gabino TEJADO; Salvador RUEDA (b. 1857), author of _El bloque_, _En tropel_ and _Cantos de la vendimia_; and the poet and dramatist, Eduardo MARQUINA.
After the death of Campoamor in the first year of the twentieth century, the title of _doyen_ of Spanish letters fell by universal acclaim to Gaspar NÚÑEZ DE ARCE (1834-1903). Núñez de Arce was a lyric poet, a dramatist and a writer of polemics, but first of all a man
of action. With him the solution of political and
sociological problems was all-important, and his literary writings were mostly the expression of his sociological and political views. Núñez de Arce is best known for his _Gritos del combate_ (1875), in which he sings of liberty but opposes anarchy with energy and courage. As a satirist he attacks the excesses of radicalism as well as the vices and foibles common to mankind. As a poet he is neither original nor imaginative, and often his ideas are unduly limited; but he writes with a manly vigor that is rare amongst Spanish lyric poets, most of whom have given first place to the splendors of rhetoric.
[Footnote 5: Speaking of Núñez de Arce's satire, Juan Valera says humorously, in _Florilegio de poesías castellanas del siglo XIX_, Madrid, 1902, Vol. I, p. 247: «Está el poeta tan enojado contra la sociedad, contra nuestra descarriada civilización y contra los crímenes y maldades de ahora, y nos pinta tan perverso, tan vicioso y tan infeliz al hombre de nuestros días, atormentado por dudas, remordimientos, codicias y otras viles pasiones, que, á mi ver, lejos de avergonzarse este hombre de descender del mono, debiera ser el mono quien se avergonzara de haberse humanado.»]
Most writers on the history of European literatures have page xliii called attention to the fact that at the
beginning of the nineteenth century there was a great
outpouring of lyricism, which infused itself into prose
as well as verse. When this movement had exhausted itself
there came by inevitable reaction a period of materialism,
when realism succeeded romanticism and prose fiction
largely replaced verse. And now sociological and
pseudo-scientific writings threaten the very existence of
idealistic literature. And yet through it all there has
been no dearth of poets. Browning in England and Campoamor in Spain, like many before them, have given metrical form
to the expression of their philosophical views. And other
poets, who had an intuitive aversion to science, have
taken refuge in pure idealism and have created worlds
after their own liking. To-day prose is recognized as
the best medium for the promulgation of scientific or
political teachings, and those who are by nature poets are
turning to art for art's sake. Poetry is less didactic
than formerly, and it is none the less beautiful and
The _Notes_ to this volume contain historical sketches of the literatures of Argentina (p. 279), Colombia (p. 285), Cuba (p. 291), Ecuador and Peru (p. 296), Mexico (p. 307), and Venezuela (p. 315). It is to be regretted that lack of space has excluded an account of the literatures of other Spanish-American countries, and especially of Chile and Uruguay.
(1) There must be a harmonious flow of syllables, in which harsh combinations of sounds are avoided. This page xliv usually requires that stressed syllables be separated by one or more unstressed syllables.
[Footnote 6: By stress is meant secondary as well as primary syllabic stress. Thus, _en nuestra vida_ has primary stress on _vi-_, and secondary stress on _nues-_.]
(2) Verse must be divided into phrases, each of which can be uttered easily as one breath-group. The phrases are normally of not less than four nor more than eight syllables, with a rhythmic accent on the next to the last syllable of each phrase. Phrases of a fixed number of syllables must recur at regular intervals. There may or may not be a pause at the end of the phrase.
[Footnote 7: The unstressed syllable may be lacking, or there may be two unstressed syllables, after the rhythmic accent. See under _Syllabication_.]
(_a_) In the n-syllable binary line the phrases may recur at irregular intervals. In lines with regular ternary movement phrasing is largely replaced by rhythmic pulsation (cf. p. lxx).(3) There must be rime of final syllables, or final vowels, recurring at regular intervals.
(_a_) In some metrical arrangements of foreign origin the rimes recur at irregular intervals, or there is no rime at all. See the _silva_ and _versos sueltos_ under _Strophes_.
Whether normal Spanish verse has, or ever had, binary movement, with the occasional substitution of a "troche" for an "iambic," or vice-versa, is in dispute. That is, whether in Spanish verse, with the usual movement, (1) the alternation of stressed and unstressed syllables is essential, or whether (2) the mere balancing of page xlv certain larger blocks of syllables is sufficient. For
instance, in this line of Luis de León:
ya muestra en esperanza el fruto cierto,
is there regular rhythmic pulsation, much less marked than in English verse, doubtless,--but still an easily discernible alternation of stressed and unstressed syllables? If so, there must be secondary stress on _es-_. Or is _ya muestra en esperanza_ one block, and _el fruto cierto_ another, with no rhythmic stresses except those on _-anza_ and _cierto_?
[Footnote 8: There are in Spanish certain types of verses in which there is regular ternary movement throughout. These are treated separately. Cf. p. lxx.]
The truth seems to be that symmetry of phrases (the balancing of large blocks of syllables) is an essential and important part of modern Spanish versification; but that, in musical verse of the ordinary type, there is also a subtle and varied binary movement, while in some recitative verse (notably the dramatic _romance_ verse) the binary movement is almost or quite negligible.
[Footnote 9: A count of Spanish verses (none from drama), by arbitrarily assuming three contiguous atonic syllables to be equal to-[/-]-(with secondary stress on the middle syllable), gave the following results (cf. _Romanic Review, Vol. III_, pp. 301-308):Common syllabic arrangements of 8-syllable lines: (1) / _ / _ / _ / (_): Esta triste voz oí. (2) _ / _ / _ _ / (_): Llorando dicen así. (3) _ / _ _ / _ / (_): Mi cama las duras peñas.
Of 933 lines, 446 (nearly one-half) were in class (1); 257 in class (2); and 191 in class (3). The remaining lines did not belong to any one of these three classes.Common syllabic arrangements of 11-syllable lines: (1) _ / _ / _ / _ / _ / (_): Verás con cuánto amor llamar porfía. (2) / _ / _ _ / _ / _ / (_): Cuántas veces el ángel me decía. (3) / _ _ / _ / _ / _ / (_): Este matiz que al cielo desafía.
Of 402 lines, 216 (slightly more than one-half) were in class (1); 94 were in class (2); and 75 in class (3). The remaining lines did not belong to any one of these three classes. Note that, in these arrangements of the 11-syllable lines, the irregularities in rhythm are found only in the first four syllables.]
page xlvi Some poets have used at times a quite regular binary movement in Spanish verse; but they have had few or no followers, as the effect was too monotonous to please the Spanish ear. Thus, Solís:
Siempre orillas de la fuente Busco rosas á mi frente,
Pienso en él y me sonrío, Y entre mí le llamo mío,
Me entristezco de su ausencia, Y deseo en su presencia
La más bella parecer.
On the other hand, some recent "decadent" poets have written verses in which the principle of symmetry of phrases, or of a fixed number of syllables, is abandoned, and rhythm and rime are considered sufficient to make the lines musical. Thus, Leopoldo Lugones (born 1875?), of Argentina, in verses which he calls «_libres_» (cf. _Lunario sentimental_, Buenos Aires, 1909):
Luna, quiero cantarte
¡Oh ilustre anciana de las mitologías! Con todas las fuerzas de mi arte.
Deidad que en los antiguos días
Imprimiste en nuestro polvo tu sandalia, No alabaré el litúrgico furor de tus orgías Ni su erótica didascalia,
Para que alumbres sin mayores ironías, Al polígloto elogio de las Guías,
Noches sentimentales de _mises_ en Italia.
This is largely a harking back to primitive conditions, for in the oldest Castilian narrative verse the rule of "counted syllables" apparently did not prevail. Cf. the _Cantar de mío Cid_, where there is great irregularity in the number of syllables. And, although in the page xlvii old _romances_ the half-lines of eight syllables largely predominate, many are found with seven or nine syllables, and some with even fewer or more. The adoption of the rule of "counted syllables" in Spanish may have been due to one or more of several causes: to the influence of medieval Latin rhythmic songs; to French influence; or merely to the development in the Spanish people of a feeling for artistic symmetry.[Footnote 10: Such as:
Stabat Mater dolorosa Juxta crucem lachrymosa Dum pendebat filius.]
Other poets of to-day write verses in which the line contains a fixed number of syllables or any multiple of that number. Thus, Julio Sesto (_Blanco y Negro_, Nov. 5, 1911):
¡Cómo desembarcan..., cómo desembarcan
esas pobres gentes...!
Desde la escalera de la nave todo Nueva York abarcan de un vistazo: muelles, río, casas, puentes...
Y después que todos sus cinco sentidos
ponen asombrados en ver la ciudad,
miran á la estatua de la Libertad.
¡Ella es la Madona, ella es la Madona,
que de la Siberia saca á los esclavos,
que á los regicidas la vida perdona,
y que salva á muchos de contribuyentes, pobres, perseguidos, subditos y esclavos!...
Spanish poets have often tried to write verses in classical meters with the substitution of stress for quantity. Thus, Villegas in the following hexameters:
Seis veces el verde soto coronó su cabeza de nardo, de amarillo trebol, de morada viöla, en tanto que el pecho frío de mi casta Licoris al rayo del ruëgo mío deshizo su hielo.
[Footnote 11: Apparently _trebol_ instead of _trébol_. These lines are quoted by Eugenio Mele, in _La poesia barbara in Ispagna_, Bari, 1910.]
¡Céfiro rápido lánzate! ¡rápido empújame y vivo! ¡Más redondas mis velas pon: del proscrito á los lados, haz que tus silbos susurren dulces y dulces suspiren!¡Haz que pronto del patrio suelo se aleje mi barco! (_En alta mar_)
The number of these direct imitations is large; but few succeeded. They are, at best, foreign to the spirit of Castilian poetry.
In singing Spanish verses two facts are of especial interest: that, where the rules of prosody require synalepha, hiatus sometimes occurs (especially in opera), thus:Recógete--ese pañuelo. (Olmedo, _Folk-lore de Castilla_, p. 133) Y el pájaro--era verde. (Ledesma, _Cancionero salmantino_, p. 53) And that musical accents do not necessarily coincide with syllabic stresses, even at the end of a phrase. Thus, ¡Cuántas vèces, vida mìa, Te asomàrás al balcòn! ¡Cuerpo buèno, alma divìna, Qué de fàtigas me cuèstas!
¡Bendiga Dios ese cuerpò,
Tan llenísimo de gracià!
(Hernández, _Flores de España_)
In most modern Spanish verse there is a fixed number of syllables in a line up to and including the last stressed syllable. In counting these syllables consideration must be given to the following facts:[Footnote 13: The number of unstressed syllables at the end of a line is not fixed. See p. lvi. In order to have the correct number of syllables, poets sometimes (1) shorten a word or (2) shift the accent: (1) ¿Ya qué mi puro _espirtu_ sucias carnes... (Cabanyes, _Á Cintio_) (2) Puede querer...? _Abralé_... (Zorrilla, _Don Juan Tenorio_, primeraa parte, III, 6) Deben de ser _angeles_. (Lope de Vega, _El mejor alcalde el rey_, II) Note the artificial separation of lines in some dramatic _romance_-verse:
... Soy un cate-
Cúmeno muy diligente.
(Calderón, _El José de las mujeres_, II)
De una vil hermana, de un Falso amigo, de un infame Criado...(Calderón, _No hay burlas con el amor_, III)] (1) SYNERESIS
Within a word two or three contiguous vowels usually combine to form a diphthong or a triphthong respectively (this is called "syneresis"): _bai|le, rey, oi|go,
ciu|dad, cui|da|do, es|tu|diar, es|tu|diáis, dien|te, lim|pio, gra|cio|so, muy, bien, pue|de, buey_, etc. Exceptions:
(_a_) A stressed "weak" vowel (_i, u_) may not combine with a "strong" vowel (_a, e, o_) to form a diphthong: _dí|a_,_rí|e, frí|o, ra|íz, le|í|do, o|í|do, page l con|ti|nú|a, con|ti|nú|e, con|ti|nú|o, ba|úl, sa|bí|a, sa|brí|ais, ca|í|ais,_ etc.
[Footnote 14: Note that in these combinations the weak vowel receives the accent mark. Some Spanish-American poets have sinned grievously, by reason of their local pronunciation, in diphthongizing a strong vowel with a following stressed weak vowel, as _maiz, a|taud, oi|do_, for _ma|íz, a|ta|úd, o|í|do_, respectively, etc.]
Exceptions are rare: Su|pe | que | se|ría | di|cho|so | (Calderón, _No hay burlas con el amor_, III)Cf. also _rendíos_, etc., where the _o_ of _os_ combines with the _í_ by synalepha.
(_b_) _uá, uó_, are usually disyllabic, except after _c, g_, and _j: a|dü|a|na, sü|a|ve;_ but _cua|tro, san|ti|guó, Juan_, etc. Syneresis may occur: _sua|ve_.(_c_) _úi_ is usually disyllabic, except in _muy: flú|i|do_.
(_d_) Two unstressed strong vowels, if they follow the stress, regularly form a diphthong; but if they precede they may form a diphthong or they may be dissyllabic, usually at the option of the poet.
Que | del | em|pí|r=eo e=n | el | ce|nit | fi|na|ba. (p. 180, l. 11)
Las | mar|mó|r=ea=s|, y aus|te|ras | es|cul|tu|ras. (p. 138, l. 22)
La | ne|gra ad|ver|si|dad|, con | fé|rr=ea= | ma|no. (p. 144, l. 20)
El | tiem|po en|tre | sus | plie|gues | r=o|e=|do|res. (p. 85, l. 24) page li
Te | van | á ar|mar | do | c=a|e=|rás | in|cau|ta. (p. 40, l. 24)
La | f=e|a=l|dad | del vi|cio|; pe|ro hu|yó|se... (p. 39, l. 14)
En | tan | frá|gil | r=ea=|li|dad.
(p. 97, l. 18)
La | sub|li|me | p=oe=|sí|a | re|ver|be|ra. (p. 149,1. 19)
[Footnote 15: Note that here poetic usage differs from the rules for syllabication that obtain in prose. Thus, in _empíreo_ the _í_ receives the accent mark, since it is held to be in the antepenultimate syllable, but in verse _empíreo_ is regularly trisyllabic.][Footnote 16: The _ea_ of _fealdad_ is normally disyllabic by analogy with _feo_. Cf. (_f_) below.] (_e_) Two strong vowels, if one is stressed, are usually disyllabic:
_pa|se|a, re|cre|o, ca|no|a,_ etc. A|rran|ca a|rran|ca|, Dios | mí|o,
De | la | men|te | del | p=o|e=|ta
Es|te | pen|sa|mien|to im|pí|o
Que en | un | de|li|rio | cr=e|ó=.
Oh | mi | pa|tria | que|ri|da?
¿Dón|de | fue|ron | tus | hé|roes | es|for|za|dos,
Tu es|pa|da | no | ven|ci|da?
(p. 78, ll. 1-4)
A|na|cr=e|o=n|te, el | vi|no y | la a|le|grí|a. (p. 150, l. 4)
S=a|e=|ta | que | vo|la|do|ra...
(p. 121, l. 15)
De o|ro | la | n=a|o= | ga|di|ta|na a|por|ta. (p. 39, l. 24)
Y | no | se es|me|re en | l=o|a=r|la.
(p. 43, l. 18)
Don|de á | c=a|e=r | vol|ve|rá.
(p. 121, l. 22)
page lii Syneresis is rare, but may occur,--except in _éa_, _éo_ and _óa_,--provided the second vowel does not receive a rhythmic accent:
Es|cri|ba|no al | c=ae=r | el | sol.
(p. 109, l. 3)
C=ae=n | es|ta|llan|do | de | los | fuer|tes | gon|ces. (p. 57, l. 19)
Cual | na|ve | r=ea=l | en | triun|fo em|pa|ve|sa|da. (p. 40, l. 15)
(_f_) In some words vowels that would normally form a diphthong are usually disyllabic by analogy with other forms derived from the same stem: _fi|é_, _fi|ó_ (cf. _fí|o_), _ri|ó_, _ri|e|ron_ (cf. _rí|o_), _con|ti|nu|é_ (cf. _con|ti|nú|o_), _di|a|rio_ (cf. _dí|a_), _bri|o|so_ (cf. _brí|o_), _hu|í_, _hu|i|mos_ (cf. _hu|yo_), etc.Syneresis is rare, but possible, as in _brio|so_ for _bri|o|so_.
(_g_) Prefixes, except _a_-, usually form separate syllables: _pre|in|ser|to_, _re|im|pri|mir_, _re|hu|sar_; but _aho|gar_. If the syllable after _a_-is stressed, dieresis usually occurs:
Á | los | que a|ho|ra a|cla|ma.
(p. 220, l. 3)
En | la | sub|li|me | so|le|dad | a|ho|ra... (p. 188, l. 3)
By poetic license vowels that normally form one syllable may often be dissolved into separate syllables (this is called "dieresis") at the will of the poet: _glo|rio|so_ or _glo|rï|o|so_, _rui|do_ or _rü|i|do_, etc. See also (1), _d_, above.
[Footnote 17: Note that the dieresis mark is generally used in dieresis of two weak vowels, or of strong and weak vowels where the strong vowel is stressed.]
page liii But dieresis is impossible if the diphthong is _ie_ or _ue_ from Latin _[e]_ and _[o]_ respectively, as in _bien_, _siente_, _huevo_, _puedo_.(3) SYNALEPHA
The final vowel or diphthong of one word and the initial vowel or diphthong of an immediately following word in the same line usually combine to form one syllable (this is called "synalepha") as in:
Cuan|do | re|cuer|do | la | pie|dad | sin|ce|ra Con | qu=e e=n | m=i e=|dad | pri|me|ra
En|tra|b=a e=n | nues|tras | vie|jas | ca|te|dra|les. (p. 137, ll. 19-21)
La | cien|c=ia au=|daz|, cuan|do | de | ti | s=e a=|le|ja. (p. 143, l. 16)
¡És|t=a e=s | Es|pa|ñ=a! A=|tó|ni|t=a y= | mal|tre|cha... (p. 147, l. 3)
Que | mi | can|tar | so|no|ro
A|com|pa|ñ=ó ha=s|t=a a=|quí|; n=o a=|pri|sio|na|do... (p. 49, ll. 6-7)
[Footnote 18: Note that the union of vowels in separate words is called synalepha, while the union of vowels within a word is called syneresis. But synalepha may occur in combinations of vowels in which syneresis would be impossible. Compare _te|ní|a_ and _ca|no|a_ with:A|sí al | man|ce|bo in|te|rrum|pe (p. 94, l. 13). Ni | la | mi|ra|da | que | lan|zó al | sos|la|yo (p. 219, l. 8).] The vowels of three words may thus combine if the middle word is _a_ (or _ha_) (see also (4), _a_):
Le | di|j=o é=s|t=e á u=|na | mu|jer.
(p. 79, l. 15)
Sal|v=a á e=s|ta | so|cie|dad | des|ven|tu|ra|da. (p. 143, l. 12)
page liv (4) HIATUS
(_a_) Hiatus (i.e. the final vowel of one word and the initial vowel of the immediately following word form separate syllables) is caused by the interposition of a weak unstressed vowel, as in:
En | sus | re|cuer|dos | de | hiel. (p. 84, l. 3)
De | sus | á|la|mos | y | huer|tos. (p. 91, l. 8)
Y hoy | en | sus | can|ta|res | llo|ra. (p. 84, l. 18)
Note that, similarly, the vowels of three words may not combine, if the middle word is _y, é_ (or _he_), _ó_ (or _oh_), _ú_:
O|las| de | pla|ta y | a|zul.
(p. 73, l. 12)
Que | la al|ma | no|che | ó el | bri|llan|te | di|a. (p. 180, l. 20)
¿Quién | cal|ma|rá, | ¡Oh Es|pa|ña! | tus | pe|sa|res? (p. 79, l. 7)
In modern Spanish, _h_, being silent, has no effect, but in older Spanish, _h_ for Latin _f_, being then pronounced, prevented synalepha, as in:Por | el | mes | e|ra | de | ma|yo cuan|do | ha|ce | la | ca|lor.
(p. 7, l. 1-2)
page lv Hiatus was common in Old Spanish, except when the first of two words was the definite article, a personal pronoun-object or the preposition _de_; or when the vowels were the same.
(_b_) Hiatus is usual when the initial vowel of the second word has a strong accent (usually the rhythmic accent at the end of a line or phrase):
Pues | en | fin | me | de|jó | una (Calderón).
Ta|les | fue|ron | ya | és|tos | cual | her|mo|so (Herrera). Tal | de | lo | al|to | tem|pes|tad | des|he|cha (Maury). No hay | pla|ce|res | en | su | al | ma.
Cuan|do | po|bre | de | a|ños | y | pe|sa|res
(p. 221, l. 9)
Con|ti|go | se | fué | mi | hon|ra.
(p. 103, l. 19)
De | gra|na|das | es|pi|gas|; tú | la | u|va...
(p. 215, l. 5)
Por|que es | pa|ra el | ser | que | a|ma.
(p. 84, l. 9)
Muy | más | her|mo|sa | la | ha|llan
(p. 44, l. 5)
El | ne|va|do | cue|llo | al|za
(p. 43, l. 4)
Por|que | tam|bién | e|ra| u|so.
(p. 115, l. 9)
Que en | la | bo|ca, y | só|lo | u|no.
(p. 52, l. 26)
Gen|te en | es|te | mon|te | an|da...
Ya | que | de | tu | vis|ta | hu|ye.
Gi|gan|te | o|la | que el | vien|to...
(p. 121, l. 23)
[Footnote 20: Synalepha is usually to be avoided when it would bring together two stressed syllables as in _gigante ola, querido hijo_, etc.]page lvi But synalepha is possible (especially of _de o-_):
To|do e|le|va|ba | mi á|ni|mo in|tran|qui|lo. (p. 139, l. 22)
Yo | le | da|ré|; mas | no en | el | ar|pa | de o|ro... (p. 49, l. 5)
Á o|tra per|so|na en | Ma|drid. (p. 36, l. 19)
To|da, to|da e|res | per|fec|ta. (p. 44, l. 22)
Del | sol | en | la al|ta | cum|bre
(p. 49, l. 13)
Tem|blar | en | tor|no | de él|: un | ar|co in|men|so... (p. 180, l. 10)
In estimating the number of syllables in a Spanish verse-line one final unstressed syllable after the last stressed syllable is counted whether it be present or not; or, if there be two unstressed syllables at the end of the line, only one is counted. Thus the following are considered 8-syllable lines although, in fact, one line has nine syllables and another has only seven:
La | sal|pi|ca | con | es|com|bros De | cas|ti|llos | y | de al|cá|za|res... Pa|ra | vol|ver | á | bro|tar...
[Footnote 21: In Spanish, a word stressed on the final syllable is called _agudo_; a word with one syllable after the stress is called _grave_ or _llano_; one with two syllables after the stress, _esdrújulo: farol, pluma, pájaro_.]
page lvii This system of counting syllables obtains in Spanish because there is one and only one unstressed syllable at the end of most verse-lines. It would, perhaps, be more logical to stop the count with the last stressed syllable, as the French do. For instance, a Spanish 11-syllable line would be called a "feminine" 10-syllable line by the French; but the French language has only one vowel (_e_) that may occur in a final unstressed syllable, while in Spanish there are several (_a, e, o,_ rarely _i, u_).RIME
Spanish poetry may be in rimed verse or in blank verse. (1) Rimed verse may have "consonance," in which there is rime of the last stressed vowel and of any consonants and vowels that may follow in the line, as in:
En las presas
Madre mía, yo soy niña; No se enfade, no me riña, Si fiada en su prudencia Desahogo mi conciencia,(p. 51, ll. 10-13)
¡Cuán solitaria la nación que un día Poblara inmensa gente!
¡La nación cuyo imperio se extendía Del ocaso al oriente!
(p. 76, ll. 19-22)
¡Oh tú, que duermes en casto l=echo=, De sinsabores ajeno el p=echo=,
Y á los encantos de la hermos=ura=
Unes las gracias del coraz=ón=,
Deja el descanso, doncella p=ura=,
Y oye los ecos de mi canc=ión=!
(p. 199, ll. 1-6)
In a diphthong consisting of a strong and a weak vowel the weak vowel may be disregarded in rime. Cf. above: _prudencia, conciencia; corazón, canción; igual, rival_.
(2) Or rimed verse may have "assonance," in which there is rime of the last accented vowel and of any final vowel that may follow in the line, but not of consonants.[Footnote 22: Assonance is rare in popular English verse, but it occurs in some household rimes; e. g.:
Little Tommy Tucker,
He cried for his supper.
What shall little Tommy Tucker have for his supper? Black-eyed beans and bread and butter.
Here the assonance is _ú-er_ (final unstressed _-er_ in standard present-day English represents vocalic _r_).] Assonance of alternate lines is the usual rime of the _romances_, as in:
Cabellos de mi cabeza lléganme al corvej=ó=n; los cabellos de mi barba por manteles tengo y=o=: las uñas de las mis manos por cuchillo tajad=o=r.(P. 7, ll. 15-20)
Here the assonance is _o_. page lix ¡Abenámar, Abenámar,
moro de la morer=ía=,
el día que tú naciste
grandes señales hab=ía=!
Estaba la mar en calma,
la luna estaba crec=i=d=a=:
moro que en tal signo nace,
no debe decir ment=i=r=a=.
[Footnote 23: The _romances viejos_ were originally in lines of approximately sixteen syllables, and every line then had assonance.]
Del salón en el ángulo obscuro,
De su dueño tal vez olvid=a=d=a=, Silenciosa y cubierta de polvo
Veíase el =a=rp=a=.
¡Cuánta nota dormía en sus cuerdas, Como el pájaro duerme en las r=a=m=a=s, Esperando la mano de nieve
_(a)_ In modern Spanish a word stressed on the final syllable may not assonate with one stressed on a syllable preceding the final.
[Footnote 24: In the old _romances_ and in the medieval epic, _á_ could assonate with _á-a._ In singing these old verses every line was probably made to end in an unstressed vowel by adding paragogic _e_ to a final stressed syllable. Thus, _son_ was sung as _sone, dar_ as _dare, temí_ as _temíe_, etc. Cf. Men. Pel., _Ant._ V, 65; XI, 86, 92; and Men. Pid., _Cantar de mío Cid_, I, 65 f.]
_(b)_ A word stressed on the penult may assonate with one page lx stressed on the antepenult. Vowels between the
stressed syllable and the final syllable are disregarded,
as in _cruza, cúpula (ú-a), bañe, márgenes, árabes (á-e)._
_(c)_ In stressed diphthongs and triphthongs only the vowels receiving the stress assonate, as in _vale, aire (á-e), cabellos, suelo (é-o), envolviendo, aposento (é-o), guardias, alta (á-a), pleito, siento (é-o), mucho, triunfo (ú-o)._
_(d)_ In unstressed diphthongs and triphthongs only the strong vowels assonate, as in _turba, lluvia (ú-a), licencia, quisierais (é-a), pido, continuo (í-o)_. Similarly, _e_ or _o_, before another strong vowel, is disregarded in an unstressed diphthong, as in _modo, erróneo (ó-o), crece, héroe (é-e)_.
_(e)_ In final unstressed syllables, _i_ and _u_ (not in diphthongs) assonate with _e_ and _o_, respectively, as in _verde, débil (é-e), amante, fácil (á-e), líquido, espíritu (í-o)_.
(3) In Spanish blank verse (_versos sueltos, libres, blancos_) there is usually no rime; or if there be rime it is merely incidental. Blank verse usually consists of 11-syllable lines.
¡Oh! ¡cuánto rostro veo, á mi censura, De palidez y de rubor cubierto! Ánimo, amigos, nadie tema, nadie, Su punzante aguijón; que yo persigo En mi sátira el vicio, no al vicioso.(P. 39, ll. 3-7)
Blank verse is little used in Spanish. It occurs chiefly in serious satirical or philosophical poems. But separate _versos sueltos_ are introduced into some varieties of compositions, such as the _romance, seguidilla, silva_, etc.
[Footnote 25: The _versos sueltos_ are, with regard to the absence of rime, in imitation of classic Greek and Latin verse. They came into Spain by way of Italy during the Renaissance movement. Abjured by the romanticists, they were restored to favor by Núñez de Arce.]page lxi VERSE-MEASURES A. VERSE WITH BINARY MOVEMENT
[Footnote 26: The term "binary" is used here to distinguish ordinary Spanish verse from that with regular ternary movement. Cf. p. lxx.]
In modern Spanish this verse is commonly found in lines of seven, eight or eleven syllables. It may occur in lines of any length; but in lines of five or six syllables the binary and ternary movements are generally mingled. In Old Spanish binary lines of approximately 8+8 and 7+7 syllables were common, and lines of 6+6, or of nine, syllables were then, as now, also occasionally used.
[Footnote 27: Verses of three or four syllables are best treated as half-lines, with inner rime (_versos leonínos_).]
The most popular measure, and the one of most importance in the history of Spanish verse, is the 8+8-syllable line of the old _romances_, which was later divided into two 8-syllable lines, and became the most common measure in the drama and in popular songs. This line usually has only one rhythmic accent, which falls on the seventh syllable.
[Footnote 28: By "rhythmic accent" is meant the musical accent on the last stressed syllable of a phrase and not syllabic stresses that may occur within a phrase.]
Mis arreos son las armas, mi descanso el pelear, mi cama las duras peñas, mi dormir siempre velar
(p. 5, ll. 1-4)
page lxii Rarely 8-syllable lines are written with a fixed accent on the third syllable (cf. p. 51, l. 10 f.). There is then sometimes _pie quebrado_ in alternate lines, as in:
Hijo mío mucho amado, Para mientes;
No contrastes á las gentes Mal su grado.
Ama: é serás amado; Y podrás
Hazer lo que no harás Desamado.
Sai tu dirme, o fanciullino, In qual pasco gita sia
La vezzosa Egeria mia
Ch'io pur cerco dal mattino?
Next to the popular 8-syllable line the most important measure in modern Spanish verse is that of eleven syllables, with binary movement, which came to Spain from Italy in the fifteenth century, and was generally accepted by the writers of the Siglo de Oro. This 11-syllable line, though of foreign origin, has held the boards as the chief erudite measure in Spanish verse for four centuries, and taken all in all it is the noblest metrical form for serious poems in modern Spanish. A striking peculiarity of the line is its flexibility. It is not divided into
hemistichs as were its predecessors, the 14-syllable Alexandrine and the 12-syllable _arte mayor_ verse; but it consists of two phrases and the position of the inner rhythmic accent is usually variable.
page lxiii A well constructed line of this type has a rhythmic accent on the sixth syllable, or a rhythmic accent on the fourth syllable (usually with syllabic stress on the eighth), beside the necessary accent in the tenth position. Generally the inner accent falls on the sixth syllable approximately twice as often as on the fourth.
Y con diversas flòres va esparcièndo... (León) Y para envejecèrse florecièron... (Calderón) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Cuna y sepùlcro en un botón hallàron... (Calderón) Se mira al mùndo á nuestros pies tendìdo... (Zorrilla)
Logically, the close of the first phrase should coincide with the end of the word that receives the inner rhythmic accent, and this is usually so, as in:¿Qué tengo yò, | que mi amistad procùras?... (Lope) Son la verdad y Diòs, | Dios verdadèro... (Quevedo) But in some lines the rhetorical and the rhythmic accents do not coincide, as in:
... pero huyóse
El pudor á vivìr en las cabànas... (Jovellanos) Del plectro sabiamènte meneàdo... (León) Que á mi puerta, cubièrto de rocìo... (Lope)
The 11-syllable line may be used alone. Cf. the sonnets of Lope de Vega (p. 14) and Calderón (p. 18), the _Epístola satírica_ of Quevedo (p. 15), the blank verse of Jovellanos (p. 38) and Núñez de Arce (p. 144), _et al._ The neo-classic poets of the eighteenth century and some of the earlier romanticists even used it in _redondillas_ or assonated: page lxiv
En pago de este amor que, mal mi gr=ado=, Hasta el crimen me lleva en su del=irio=, Y á no verse por ti menospreci=ado= Mi virtud elevara hasta el mart=irio=...
¿Por qué de nuevo pálida tristeza
Tus rosadas mejillas descol=o=r=a=? ¿Por qué tu rostro en lágrimas se inunda? ¿Por qué suspiras, niña, y te acong=o=j=a=s? (Bretón de los Herreros, _¿Quién es ella?_)
But the poets of the Siglo de Oro and the neo-classic poets generally used it in combination with 7-syllable lines, as in Leon's verses:
¡Qué descansada vida
la del que huye el mundanal rüido, y sigue la escondida
senda por donde han ido
los pocos sabios que en el mundo han sido!
Strophes of three 11-syllable lines and one 5-syllable line (_versos sáficos_) are not uncommon in highly lyric poems. Usually, in the long lines, the inner accent falls on the fourth syllable, with syllabic stress on the eighth, and with cesura after the fifth syllable. Thus:
Dulce vecino de la verde selva, Huésped eterno del Abril florido, Vital aliento de la madre Venus,
(Villegas, _Al céfiro_)
[Footnote 31: Mele (_op. cit_) states that the Sapphic ode was introduced into Spain from Italy by Antonio Agustín, bishop of Tarragona, in the first half of the sixteenth century, and quotes these lines by Agustín:
Júpiter torna, como suele, rico: Cuerno derrama Jove copiöso, Ya que bien puede el pegaseo monte
Verse y la cumbre.
page lxv The romanticists used the _versos sáficos_ with rime. Thus, Zorrilla:
Huye la fuente al manantial ingrata, El verde musgo en derredor lamiendo, Y el agua limpia en su cristal retrataCuanto va viendo. (p. 86, ll. 3-6)
In the Sapphic strophe of Francisco de la Torre (d. 1594), the short line has seven syllables, and the long line may have inner rhythmic accent on the sixth, or on the fourth syllable. Thus:
El frío Bóreas y el helado Noto Apoderados de la mar insana Anegaron agora en este puertoUna dichosa nave. (_¡Tirsi, Tirsi! vuelve y endereza_) The Sapphic strophe of Francisco de la Torre has been not infrequently imitated. Thus, Bécquer:
Volverán las obscuras golondrinas En tu balcón sus nidos á colgar, Y, otra vez, con el ala á sus cristalesJugando llamarán. (p. 122, l. 24-p. 123, l. 2)
[Footnote 32: These long lines are especially cantabile, as most are accented on the third and sixth syllables. Only one is accented on the fourth and eighth.]
The 7-syllable line is commonly used in combination with those of eleven syllables (see above). In the seventeenth century, particularly, the 7-syllable line was used in anacreontics, artistic _romances, quintillas,_ page lxvi etc., in imitation of the Italian _settenario_, as in
Villegas' _Cantilena_ beginning:
Yo vi sobre un tomillo Quejarse un pajarillo, Viendo su nido amado, De quien era caudillo, De un labrador robado.
The Old Spanish Alexandrine verse-line was composed of two 7-syllable half-lines. In the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries numerous monkish narrative poems (_mester de clereçía_) were written in this measure:
En el nonbre del Padre,--que fizo toda cosa, E de don Jhesu Christo,--Fijo dela Gloriosa, Et del Spiritu Sancto,--que egual dellos posa, De un confessor sancto--quiero fer vna prosa... (Gonzalo de Berceo)
The old Alexandrine fell before the rising popularity of the _arte mayor_ verse early in the fifteenth century. In the eighteenth century a 13-syllable Alexandrine appears in Spanish in imitation of the classic French line. This later Spanish Alexandrine is not composed of two distinct half-lines. It also has, like its French page lxvii prototype, alternate couplets of masculine and feminine lines (_versos agudos_ and _versos llanos_ or _graves_). Thus, Iriarte:
En cierta catedral una campana había Que sólo se tocaba algún solemne día Con el más recio son, con pausado compás, Cuatro golpes ó tres solía dar, no más.
There is an inner rhythmic accent on the sixth syllable. Iriarte also revived the older Alexandrine, but without hiatus:
Cuando veo yo algunos,--que de otros escritores Á la sombra se arriman,--y piensan ser autores...
Recent poets have revived the old Alexandrine. Thus, Rubén Darío uses it, even retaining the hiatus between the half-lines; but instead of grouping the lines in quatrains with monorime, as the old monks did, he uses assonance in alternate lines, which is, so far as I know, without precedent:
Es con voz de la Biblia--ó verso de Withman Que habría que llegar--hasta ti, ¡cazador! Primitivo y moderno,--sencillo y complicado, Con un algo de Wáshington--y mucho de Nemrod... (p. 211, ll. 1-4)[Footnote 33: For their use of this line with ternary movement, see p. lxxix.] Lines of five or six syllables usually have a mingled binary and ternary movement:
De pocos años
Y muchas gracias.
page lxviii Salí á las diez
Á ver á Clori
(No lo acerté):
Debe de haber...
Id en las alas--del raudo céfiro, Humildes versos,--de las floridas Vegas que diáfano--fecunda el Arlas, Adonde lento--mi patrio río
Ve los alcázares--de Mantua excelsa.
De sinsabores--ajeno el pecho, Y á los encantos--de la hermosura Unes las gracias--del corazón, Deja el descanso,--doncella pura, Y oye los ecos--de mi canción! (P. 199, ll. 1-6)The same measure appears in a patriotic song, _Himno de Riego_:
En las cabezas--él proclamó La suspirada--constitución, Y enarbolando--marcial pendón, Á los leales--acaudilló...
[Footnote 34: It should be noted that these latter verses, like most Spanish patriotic songs, are sung with ternary movement, thus:
Èn las cabèzas--èl proclamò...] page lxix This 10-syllable measure is cantabile, and its phrases are too short and too regular to make good recitative verse.
_Versos alcaicos_ differ from the _asclepiadeos_ in that the former have, in a strophe, two lines of 5 + 5, one of nine, and one of ten syllables. Thus, in these lines of Victorio Giner (who probably introduced this strophe into Spain in the second half of the nineteenth century):
Y si los nautas, cantando el piélago, Con remos hieren y espumas alzan, Se aduerme á los ecos sus penasY á los ecos su batel avanza.
Juan Luis Estelrich (_Poesías_, 1900) uses _versos alcaicos_ with the first two lines of each strophe _esdrújulo_, in imitation of Carducci:Carmen, tu nombre trae al espíritu Vuelo de aromas, susurro de árboles, Los píos consorcios del cielo, Y el cantar melodioso del Lacio. (_Á Carmen Valera._) [Footnote 35: Cf. Mele, _op. cit._]
_Romances_ in lines of 6 + 6 (or 6 + 5) syllables occur in popular Spanish verse, as in the Asturian _romance_ of _Don Bueso_, beginning:
Camina don Bueso--mañanita fría á tierra de moros--á buscar amiga...
Yo vi á vosotros,--vosotros á mí... page lxx The 9-syllable line was not well received in Spain, and it has been little used. Iriarte, in his desire to vary the metrical constructions of his fables, used it at least once:
Sobre una mesa, cierto día, Dando estaba conversación Á un Abanico y á un Manguito Un Paraguas ó Quitasol...
There is certainly no fixed inner rhythmic accent in these lines. The fact seems to be that the 9-syllable line is too long to be uttered comfortably in one phrase, or breath-group, and it is too short to be regularly divided into parts by cesura.B. VERSE WITH TERNARY MOVEMENT
Verse with regular ternary movement may occur in lines of any length, but it is commonly found only in lines of ten, eleven or twelve syllables. Many ternary lines of five and six syllables are found, but they are almost invariably mingled with binary lines. This _rondel antiguo_ (Nebrija, quoted by Men. Pel., _Ant._ V. 66) is ternary throughout, it would seem:
y pone tristura;
crece en querer
In lines with _regular_ ternary movement, properly
speaking, every primary stress receives a rhythmic accent, and these accents are always separated by two page lxxi atonic syllables, as in:
Rarely one finds 6-syllable and 9-syllable lines with regular ternary movement, and these are probably never of popular origin. Thus:
Serèna la lùna
Alùmbra en el cièlo, Domìna en el suèlo Profùnda quietùd...
Y luègo el estrèpito crèce
Confùso y mezclàdo en un sòn, Que rònco en las bòvedas hòndas Tronàndo furiòso zumbò...
En la calle de Atòcha, ¡litòn!
Que vìve mi dàma;
Yo me llàmo Bartòlo, ¡litòn!
Litòque, vitòque, y èlla Catànla.
--En la càlle del Sòrdo, ¡litòn!
Que vìve mi mòzo,
Pues á cuànto le pìdo, ¡litòn!
Litòque, vitòque, que sièmpre está sòrdo.
(Quiñones de Benavente, _Entremeses, bailes, loas y sainetes_, quoted by Milá y Fontanals, _Obras completas_, Vol. V, p. 324 f.)page lxxii Calderón used it in the _Viña del Señor_: Á la vìña, á la vìña, zagàles;
Zagàles, venìd, venìd á la vìña. Á la vìña, á la vìña, zagàles,
Y vàya de jìra, de bùlla y de bàile.
Zagàles, venìd, venìd á la vìña,
Y vàya de bàile, de bùlla y de jìra. A recent number of the _Ilustración Española y Americana _ (15 Enero, 1911) contains lines of similar construction by Don Rafael Torromé:
Al miràr su carìta sonriènte,
Tan dùlce y tan buèna,
Siempre obsèrvo que mi àlma presiènte, Con duèlo y con pèna,
Que más tàrde este mùndo inclemènte
Trocarà en sentimièntos de hièna Los pùros afèctos de su àlma inocènte.
Del salòn en el àngulo obscùro, De su duèño tal vèz olvidàda, Silenciòsa y cubièrta de pòlvo,Veìase el àrpa.
(Bécquer, _Rima_ VII) page lxiii In the nineteenth century this line came to be popular in patriotic songs which are sung by the multitude, while the crash of the drum marks the rhythmic accents:
Entonèmos festìvos cantàres, Pues el dìa felìz ha llegàdo, Que del yùgo servìl aliviàdo Goza yà el Españòl libertàd.(_La Constitución_)
Al combàte corrèd, Bayamèses, Que la pàtria os contèmpla orgullòsa; No temàis una muèrte gloriòsa, Que morìr por la pàtria es vivìr.
(Cuban national hymn, cf. p. 251) The commoner form of verse with 11-syllable ternary lines is that popularly called "_de gaita gallega_" (Men. Pel., _Ant._, V, p. cxcv; X, 141. Cf. also Milá, _op. cit._), the assumption being that this verse is intimately related to that type of popular Galician poetry known as the _muiñeira_, which was sung to the music of the bagpipe. These lines are typical of the "_endecasílabos de gaita gallega_":
Tànto bailè á la puèrta del cùra, Tànto bailè que me diò calentùra; Tànto bailè á la puèrta del hòrno, Tànto bailè que me dièron un bòllo.
[Footnote 34: Many Galician _muiñeiras_ have been collected: cf. Milá, _op. cit._; Carolina Michaëlis de Vasconcellos, _Cancioneiro de Ajuda_, Vol. II, Halle, 1904; José Pérez Ballesteros, _Cancionero popular gallego_, Madrid, 1885.]
page lxxiv Menéndez y Pelayo (_Ant._ X, 141) gives, in his collection of _Romances tradicionales de Asturias_, the following one in ternary 11-syllable lines:=La tentación=
--¡Ày, probe Xuàna de cuèrpo garrido! ¡Ày, probe Xuàna de cuèrpo galàno! ¿Dònde le dèxas al tù buen amigo? ¿Dònde le dèxas al tù buen amàdo?
--¡Muèrto le dèxo á la orìlla del rìo, muèrto le dèxo á la orìlla del vàdo!
--¿Cuànto me dàs, volverètelo vìvo? ¿Cuànto me dàs, volverètelo sàno?
--Dòyte las àrmas y dòyte el rocìno, dòyte las àrmas y dòyte el cabàllo.
--No hè menestèr ni armàs ni rocìno, no hè menestèr ni armàs ni cabàllo...
It should be noted that this poem has assonance of the odd and of the even lines. Men. Pel. says of this popular 11-syllable _romance_ that «su aparición en la poesía popular castellana es un fenómeno singular, aun en Asturias misma, y hasta ahora no se ha presentado más ejemplo que éste.» Note the apparent shifting of stress in _armas_. Iriarte and L. Moratin did not scorn to use this line.
Iriarte: Cièrta criàda la càsa barrìa
Còn una escòba muy sùcia y muy vièja...
Hùyan los àños con ràpido vuèlo; Gòce la tièrra duràble consuèlo; Mìre á los hòmbres piadòso el Señòr...
page lxxv The 11-syllable line of ternary movement has had less vogue in artistic verse than those of ten and twelve syllables.
[Footnote 38: In _Las hijas del Cid_ E. Marquina has used a flexible 11-syllable ternary line beginning with either [\-] - - [\-] or - [\-] - [\-]:Sus nòmbres jùntos los llèvo en el alma, Jùntos los guàrda tambièn mi memòria. These are blank verses with occasional assonance.]
The Spanish ternary 12-syllable line was formerly used chiefly in combination with lines of ten or eleven syllables. Some examples of mingled 10-and 12-syllable lines have already been given above. Another is:
Mancebìto, perdòne las hèmbras, Que còmen y bèben y no tienen rèntas.
--Pues, mocìtas, maldìtas sean èllas,
[Footnote 39: Cf. Milá, _op. cit._ In singing _pasar_, there is apparently a shifting of stress which is not uncommon in songs.]
Efforts have been made from time to time to use the ternary movements in erudite verse, but these, for the most part, have proven futile. The most serious and the most successful attempt appears in the use of the _copla de arte mayor_ in the fifteenth century. The _copla (metro, versos) de arte mayor_ consists of mingled 12-and 11-syllable lines arranged in strophes of eight lines, each with consonantal rime according to some definite scheme. The _arte mayor_ verse attained to its most perfect form and its greatest popularity in page lxxvi _El laberinto de la fortuna_ (1444?), by Juan de Mena, of which the following is a strophe:
Amores me dieron corona de amores porque mi nombre por más bocas ande; entonçes no era mi mal menos grande, quando me dauan plazer sus dolores; vençen el seso sus dulçes errores,
mas non duran sienpre, segund luego plazen; pues me fizieron del mal que vos fazen, sabed al amor desamar, amadores.
except that the final syllable of the first hemistich and the initial syllable of the second may not both be lacking. These arrangements may also occur (the third is rare):(2) (-) - - - [/-] - - | - - - [/-] (-) (3) (-) - - - [/-] | - - - - - [/-] (-). Examples of types:
(1) Las grandes fazañas | de nuestros mayores... (Str. 4) Vayan de gente | sabidos en gente... (Str. 3) Reconocerán | maguer que feroce... (Str. 274) Assí que qualquiera | cuerpo ya muerto... (Str. 244) Cuya virtud | maguer que reclama...
Sufren que passen | males e viçios... (Str. 232)
(3) Quando el señor | es en neçessidad... (Str. 258) page lxxvii The initial unstressed syllable of the first hemistich is lacking in approximately one-third of the lines of the _Laberinto_. These lines resemble the 11-syllable _gaita gallega_ verse, and the others resemble the popular Galician 12-syllable ternary line, for in both the final unstressed syllable of the first hemistich may fall, which seems to indicate that the appearance of the _arte mayor_ verse in Castilian was due to Galician influence.[Footnote 40: Cf. these Galician _muiñeiras_, cited by Milá y Fontanals (_Romanía_, VI, p. 47 f.):
Càndo te vèxo | na bèira do rìo,
Quèda o meu còrpo | tembràndo de frìo; Càndo te vèxo | d'o mònte n'altùra,
A tòdo o mon córpo | lle dà calentùra. Ìsca d'ahì | galìña maldìta,
Ìsca d'ahì | non me màte la pìta; Ìsca d'ahì | galìña ladròna,
Ìsca d'ahì | pra càs de tua dòna.]
Again, as in many Galician songs of this type, the ternary movement of the old _arte mayor_ verse is not strictly regular. Approximately nine-tenths of the lines in the _Laberinto_ may be read with regular ternary movement:(-) [/-] - - [/-] (-) | (-) [/-] - - [/-] (-),
by giving a rhythmic accent to a syllable with secondary stress or to a middle syllable in a group of atonics, in a not inconsiderable number of lines, as in:Pòr las altùras, | collàdos y cèrros... Assì que tu ères | la gòvernadòra... In the remaining lines the commonest movement is: (-) - [/-] - [/-] (-) | (-) - [/-] - [/-] (-), as in: Aquel claro padre, aquel dulce fuente... page lxxviii
In the second half of the sixteenth century and in the seventeenth century, the _arte mayor_ verse was out of fashion, although it appeared occasionally, as in these lines of Lope de Vega (a variety of the Sapphic strophe), with inner rime:
Amor poderoso en cielo y en tierra, dulcísima guerra de nuestros sentidos, ¡oh, cuántos perdidos con vida inquiëtatu imperio sujeta! (From first act of _Dorotea_)
In the nineteenth century it was restored to favor by the romanticists. Good examples are: Espronceda, _El templario_; Avellaneda, _Las siete palabras_; and Zorrilla, _Á un torreón_ (part). Some writers used it even in the drama (cf. Gil y Zárate, _Guzmán el bueno_). The modern _arte mayor_ verse is written in 12-syllable lines, usually with regular ternary movement. Thus:
¡Oh Antìlla dichòsa! | ¿qué màgicos sònes, Qué lùz inefàble, | qué extràña alegrìa, Del cièlo destièrran los nègros crespònes, Prestàndo á esta nòche | la pòmpa del dìa?
¿Por qué tan ufàna, | tan bèlla la lùna Con fàz refulgènte | comiènza su gìro, Y no hày leve sòmbra | que crùce importùna Su tròno esmaltàdo | de plàta y zafìro?(Avellaneda, _Serenata de Cuba_) [Footnote 41: Iriarte, of course, had written a fable or two in _arte mayor_ verse. Cf. _Fábula_ XXXIX.] page lxxix
Soldàdos, la Pàtria | nos llàma á la lìd;
Jurèmos por èlla | vencèr ó morìr;
Serènos, alègres, | valièntes, osàdos,
Cantèmos, soldàdos, | el hìmno á la lìd:
Ya nuèstros acèntos | el òrbe se admìre,
Y en nòsotros mìre | los hìjos del Cìd; Ya nuèstros acèntos | el òrbe se admìre,
Y en nòsotros mìre | los hìjos del Cìd.
Lines of fourteen and fifteen syllables with ternary movement are never popular, and in artistic verse they are exceedingly rare. Avellaneda used these measures in _Soledad del alma_:
Sàle la auròra risuèña, de flòres vestìda, Dàndole al cièlo y al càmpo variàdo colòr; Tòdo se anìma sintièndo brotàr nueva vìda, Càntan las àves, y el àura suspìra de amòr.
Huyèron velòces--cual nùbes que el viènto arrebàta-- Los brèves momèntos de dìcha que el cièlo me diò... ¿Por què mi existència, ya inùtil, su cùrso dilàta, Si el tèrmino ansiàdo á su espàlda perdìdo dejò?
Some recent poets have attempted to write ternary Alexandrine verse. Thus, the Peruvian poet, José S. Chocano (1867-):
Los Estados Unidos, como argolla de bronce, contra un clavo sujetan de la América un pie; y la América debe, si pretende ser libre,
imitarles primero, é igualarles después.
page lxxx Imitemos ¡oh Musa! las crujientes estrofas
que en el Norte se arrastran con la gracia de un tren, y que giren las rimas como ruedas veloces
y que caigan los versos como varas de riel.
There are certain conventional combinations of line and rime known by special names. Those used in modern Spanish may best be considered under the heads (I) Assonance, (II) Consonantal Rime, and (III) No Rime.
I. (1) The _romance_ is the most characteristic and national of all Spanish meters. The proper _romance_ consists of 8-syllable lines with assonance in alternate lines (cf. pp. 1-8, 42, etc.). The structure of the _romance_ line has already been treated (p. lxi). In the old _romances_ there was no division into stanzas, but poets from the end of the sixteenth century on regularly employ a pause after every fourth line, thereby creating a series of quatrains (pp. 42, 60, etc.), except in the drama (p. 19).[Footnote 43: Historically, of i6-syllable lines, all assonating.]
(2) Alternate assonance may be employed with lines of any length. With 11-syllable lines the verse is called _romance heroico_ or _real_. Lines of seven syllables make _versos anacreónticos_. The name _endecha_ is given to some assonated verse of either six (p. 124) or seven syllables. When the first three lines of a stanza are of seven syllables and the last of eleven, the verse is called _endecha real_. For examples of alternate assonance in lines of various lengths, see pp. 122 (2 examples), 123, 137, 160, 177.
An _estribillo_, or refrain, may be used in any assonating verse (p. 45).
page lxxxi (3) The use of alternate assonance in lines of fourteen syllables (pp. 211, 212) is a none too happy device of the author.
(4) The _seguidilla_ is usually a stanza of seven lines of seven and five syllables in length, in this order: 7, 5, 7, 5; 5, 7, 5. There is usually a pause after the fourth line; lines 2 and 4 have one assonance and lines 5 and 7 another. The assonances change from one stanza to another. See pp. 112 and 120. In some _seguidillas_ the stanzas consist only of the first four lines described.
II. The native Spanish strophes are usually combinations of 8-syllable or shorter lines. The 11-syllable line, itself an importation from Italy, brought with it many well-known Italian strophes. In none of the pure Italian forms are lines ending in _agudos_ or _esdrújulos_ permissible.
(1) The _redondilla mayor_ consists of four 8-syllable lines with the rime-scheme _abba_ (pp. 149, 167), or, less commonly, _abab_ (p. 136). It is a common and characteristic Spanish meter. The _redondilla menor_ has the same form expressed in lines of less than eight syllables. The same rime-schemes are found with lines of seven or of eleven (pp. 117, 207) syllables, and with combinations of eleven and seven (p. 134), or eleven and five (p. 86) syllables; but they are not properly called _redondillas_.
(2) The _quintilla_ is a 5-line strophe, usually of
8-syllable lines. Only two rimes are used in one stanza, and not more than two lines having the same rime should stand together (pp. 26, 114). _Quintillas_ are sometimes written with lines of other lengths. Examples with eleven and seven syllables are found on pp. 128, 133 and 148. The stanza used in _Vida retirada_ (p. 9) is termed _lira_: cf. _Introduction_, p. xxiii.
page lxxxii (3) The _décima_ (or _espinela_) is a 10-line strophe of 8-syllable lines which may be considered as two _quintillas_; but there should be a pause after the fourth line, and the rime-scheme is usually as follows: _abbaaccddc_.
(4) The _arte mayor_ line has already been described (p. lxxv). The _copla de arte mayor_ is a stanza of eight such lines, usually having the rime-scheme _abbaacca_.
(5) The _octava rima_ (Ital. _ottava rima_) is an Italian form. Each stanza has eight 11-syllable lines with the rime-scheme _abababcc_. Examples are found of octaves employing short lines. A variety of the _octava rima_ is the _octava bermudina_ with the rime-scheme _abbcdeec_, the lines in _c_ ending in _agudos_.
(6) The _soneto_ (sonnet) is formed of fourteen
11-syllable lines. In the Siglo de Oro it appears as a much stricter form than the English sonnet of the corresponding period. The quatrains have the regular construction _abba_, and the tiercets almost always follow one of two types: either _cde, cde,_ or _cdcdcd_. See pp. 14, 18, 148, etc.
(7) _Tercetos_ (Italian _terza rima_), the verse used by Dante in the _Divina Commedia_, are formed of 11-syllable lines in groups of three, with the rime-scheme _aba, bcb, cdc_, etc., ending _yzyz_. See p. 15.
(8) The term _canción_, which means any lyrical composition, is also applied specifically to a verse form in which the poet invents a typical strophe, with a certain length of line and order of rimes, and adheres to this type of stanza throughout the whole poem. The lines are of eleven and seven syllables,--the Italian structure. Of such nature are the poems on pp. 8, 20, 71, 137 (bottom), 174, 190.
The same procedure is employed with lines of any length, page lxxxiii but the poem is not then called _canción_.
For strophes in 10-syllable lines, see p. 199; in
8-syllable lines, pp. 16, 51, 83, 151; in 7-syllables, p.
(9) The _silva_ is a free composition of 11-and 7-syllable lines. Most of the lines rime, but without any fixed order, and lines are often left unrimed. See pp. 46, 54, 152, 214 (bottom), etc. A similar freely riming poem in lines of seven syllables is Villegas' _Cantilena_ (p. 17).
(10) The Asclepiadean verse (p. lxviii) and the Sapphic (p. lxiv) and Alcaic (p. lxix) strophes have already been described. These may be rimed, or in blank verse.
(11) Numerous conventional names are given to poems for some other characteristic than their metrical structure. Thus a _glosa_ (gloss) is a poem "beginning with a text, a line of which enters into each of the stanzas expounding it." A _letra_ may be a short gloss. The name _letrilla_ is applied sometimes to a little poem in short lines which may be set to music (p. 9), and sometimes to a strophic poem with a refrain (p. 16). A _madrigal_ is a short _silva_ upon a light topic, an expanded conceit. The term _cantilena_ is given to any short piece of verse intended to be set to music (p. 17). _Serranillas_, in which is described the meeting of a gentleman with a rustic maiden, are famous for the examples written by Juan Ruiz and the Marquis of Santillana. A _villancico_ is a popular poem with a refrain, usually dealing with an episode celebrated in a church festival (p. 13).
III. _Versos sueltos, libres_ or _blancos_ (blank verse) are formed, as in English, of 11-syllable lines, with occasionally a shorter line thrown in. There is no rime, but sometimes a couplet may mark the close of an idea. See pp. 38 and 144, and cf. also p. lx.Page 1 ESPAÑA ROMANCES ABENÁMAR
¡Abenámar, Abenámar, moro de la morería,
el día que tú naciste
grandes señales había!
5 Estaba la mar en calma, la luna estaba crecida: moro que en tal signo nace, no debe decir mentira.-- Allí respondiera el moro,
10 bien oiréis lo que decía:
--Yo te la diré, señor,
aunque me cueste la vida, porque soy hijo de un moro y una cristiana cautiva;
15 siendo yo niño y muchacho mi madre me lo decía: que mentira no dijese, que era grande villanía: por tanto pregunta, rey, page 2 que la verdad te diría.
--Yo te agradezco, Abenámar
aquesa tu cortesía.
¿Qué castillos son aquéllos?
5 ¡Altos son y relucían!
--El Alhambra era, señor,
y la otra la mezquita;
los otros los Alixares,
labrados á maravilla.
10 El moro que los labraba
cien doblas ganaba al día,
y el día que no los labra
otras tantas se perdía.
El otro es Generalife,
15 huerta que par no tenía;
el otro Torres Bermejas,
castillo de gran valía.--
Allí habló el rey don Juan,
bien oiréis lo que decía:
20 --Si tú quisieses, Granada,
contigo me casaría;
daréte en arras y dote
á Córdoba y á Sevilla.
--Casada soy, rey don Juan,
25 casada soy, que no viuda;
el moro que á mí me tiene
muy grande bien me quería. page 3 Fonte-frida, fonte-frida,
fonte-frida y con amor,
do todas las avecicas
van tomar consolación,
5 sino es la tortolica
que está viuda y con dolor.
Por allí fuera á pasar
el traidor de ruiseñor:
las palabras que le dice
10 llenas son de traición:
--Si tú quisieses, señora,
yo sería tu servidor.
--Vete de ahí, enemigo,
malo, falso, engañador,
15 que ni poso en ramo verde,
ni en prado que tenga flor;
que si el agua hallo clara,
turbia la bebía yo;
que no quiero haber marido,
20 porque hijos no haya, no:
no quiero placer con ellos,
ni menos consolación.
¡Déjame, triste enemigo, malo, falso, mal traidor, que no quiero ser tu amiga,
¡Quién hubiese tal ventura sobre las aguas del mar,
como hubo el conde Arnaldos la mañana de San Juan!
5 Con un falcón en la mano la caza iba á cazar,
vió venir una galera
que á tierra quiere llegar. Las velas traía de seda,
10 la jarcia de un cendal,
marinero que la manda
diciendo viene un cantar
que la mar facía en calma, los vientos hace amainar,
15 los peces que andan nel hondo arriba los hace andar,
las aves que andan volando nel mástel las faz posar.
Allí fabló el conde Arnaldos,
20 bien oiréis lo que dirá:
--Por Dios te ruego, marinero, dígasme ora ese cantar.-- Respondióle el marinero, tal respuesta le fué á dar:
Mis arreos son las armas, mi descanso el pelear, mi cama las duras peñas, mi dormir siempre velar.
5 Las manidas son escuras, los caminos por usar,
el cielo con sus mudanzas ha por bien de me dañar,
10 andando de sierra en sierra por orillas de la mar,
por probar si en mi ventura hay lugar donde avadar. Pero por vos, mi señora, todo se ha de comportar.
15 En los tiempos que me vi
más alegre y placentero,
yo me partiera de Burgos
para ir á Valladolid:
encontré con un Palmero,
20 quien me habló, y dijo así:
--¿Dónde vas tú, el desdichado?
¿Dónde vas? ¡triste de ti!
¡Oh persona desgraciada,
en mal punto te conocí!
25 Muerta es tu enamorada, page 6 muerta es, que yo la vi;
las andas en que la llevan
de negro las vi cubrir,
los responsos que le dicen
5 yo los ayudé á decir:
siete condes la lloraban,
caballeros más de mil,
llorábanla sus doncellas,
llorando dicen así:
10 --¡Triste de aquel caballero
que tal pérdida pierde aquí!--
Desque aquesto oí, mezquino,
en tierra muerto caí,
y por más de doce horas
15 no tornara, triste, en mí.
Desque hube retornado,
á la sepultura fuí,
con lágrimas de mis ojos
llorando decía así:
20 --Acógeme, mi señora,
acógeme á par de ti.--
Al cabo de la sepultura
esta triste voz oí:
--Vive, vive, enamorado,
25 vive, pues que yo morí:
Dios te dé ventura en armas,
y en amor otro que sí,
que el cuerpo come la tierra,
y el alma pena por ti.--
EL PRISIONERO Por el mes era de mayo
cuando hace la calor,
cuando canta la calandria,
y responde el ruiseñor,
5 cuando los enamorados
van á servir al amor,
sino yo, triste, cuitado,
que vivo en esta prisión,
que ni sé cuándo es de día
10 ni cuándo las noches son,
sino por un avecilla
que me cantaba al albor.
Matómela un ballestero,
¡déle Dios mal galardón!
15 Cabellos de mi cabeza
lléganme al corvejón;
los cabellos de mi barba
por manteles tengo yo:
las uñas de las mis manos
20 por cuchillo tajador.
Si lo hacía el buen rey,
hácelo como señor:
si lo hace el carcelero,
hácelo como traidor.
25 Mas ¡quién ahora me diese
un pájaro hablador,
siquiera fuese calandria, page 8 ó tordico ó ruiseñor:
criado fuese entre damas
y avezado á la razón,
que me lleve una embajada
5 á mi esposa Leonor,
que me envíe una empanada,
no de truchas ni salmón,
sino de una lima sorda
y de un pico tajador:
la lima para los hierros,
10 y el pico para el torreón!--
Oídolo había el rey,
mandóle quitar la prisión.
Muy graciosa es la doncella: 15 ¡cómo es bella y hermosa!
Digas tú, el marinero
que en las naves vivías,
si la nave ó la vela ó la estrella
es tan bella.
20 Digas tú, el caballero
que las armas vestías,
si el caballo ó las armas ó la guerra
es tan bella.
Digas tú, el pastorcico page 9 que el ganadico guardas,
si el ganado ó los valles, ó la sierra
es tan bella.
Nada te turbe;
5 nada te espante;
todo se pasa;
Dios no se muda,
la paciencia todo lo alcanza.
Quien á Dios tiene,
10 nada le falta.
Solo Dios basta.
¡Qué descansada vida
la del que huye el mundanal rüido,
y sigue la escondida
Que no le enturbia el pecho
de los soberbios grandes el estado, page 10 ni del dorado techo
se admira, fabricado
del sabio moro, en jaspes sustentado.
No cura si la fama
5 canta con voz su nombre pregonera,
ni cura si encarama
la lengua lisonjera
lo que condena la verdad sincera.
10 si soy del vano dedo señalado?
si en busca de este viento
con ansias vivas, y mortal cuidado?
¡Oh campo, oh monte, oh río!
15 ¡oh secreto seguro deleitoso!
roto casi el navío,
á vuestro almo reposo
huyo de aqueste mar tempestüoso.
Un no rompido sueño,
20 un día puro, alegre, libre quiero;
no quiero ver el ceño
de quien la sangre ensalza ó el dinero.
Despiértenme las aves
25 con su cantar süave no aprendido,
no los cuidados graves
de que es siempre seguido
quien al ajeno arbitrio está atenido.
Vivir quiero conmigo, page 11 gozar quiero del bien que debo al cielo,
á solas sin testigo,
libre de amor, de celo,
de odio, de esperanzas, de recelo.
5 Del monte en la ladera
por mi mano plantado tengo un huerto
que con la primavera
de bella flor cubierto
ya muestra en esperanza el fruto cierto.
10 Y como codiciosa
de ver y acrecentar su hermosura,
desde la cumbre airosa
una fontana pura
hasta llegar corriendo se apresura.
15 Y luego sosegada
el paso entre los árboles torciendo,
el suelo de pasada
de verdura vistiendo,
y con diversas flores va esparciendo.
20 El aire el huerto orea,
y ofrece mil olores al sentido,
los árboles menea
con un manso rüido
que del oro y del cetro pone olvido.
25 Ténganse su tesoro
los que de un flaco leño se confían:
no es mío ver el lloro
de los que desconfían
cuando el cierzo y el ábrego porfían. page 12
La combatida antena
cruje, y en ciega noche el claro día
se torna, al cielo suena
5 confusa vocería,
y la mar enriquecen á porfía.
Á mí una pobrecilla
mesa de amable paz bien abastada
me baste, y la vajilla
de fino oro labrada
10 sea de quien la mar no teme airada. Y mientras miserable-
mente se están los otros abrasando
en sed insaciable
del no durable mando,
15 tendido yo á la sombra esté cantando; Á la sombra tendido
de yedra y lauro eterno coronado,
puesto el atento oído
al son dulce acordado
20 del plectro sabiamente meneado.
No me mueve, mi Dios, para quererte
El cielo que me tienes prometido,
Ni me mueve el infierno tan temido
Para dejar por eso de ofenderte. page 13
Tú me mueves, Señor; muéveme el verte
Clavado en una cruz y escarnecido;
Muéveme ver tu cuerpo tan herido;
Muévenme tus afrentas y tu muerte.
5 Muéveme, al fin, tu amor, y en tal manera, Que aunque no hubiera cielo, yo te amara.
Y aunque no hubiera infierno, te temiera.
Pues andáis en las palmas, Ángeles santos,
Que se duerme mi niño, Tened los ramos.
15 Palmas de Belén
Que mueven airados
Los furiosos vientos,
Que suenan tanto,
No le hagáis ruido,
20 Corred más paso;
Que se duerme mi niño,
Tened los ramos.
El niño divino,
Que está cansado page 14 De llorar en la tierra,
Por su descanso
Sosegar quiere un poco
Del tierno llanto;
Le están cercando,
Ya veis que no tengo
10 Con que guardarlo:
Que vais volando,
Que se duerme mi niño,
Tened los ramos.
15 ¿Qué tengo yo, que mi amistad procuras?
¿Qué interés se te sigue, Jesús mío,
Que á mi puerta, cubierto de rocío,
Pasas las noches del invierno escuras?
¡Oh cuánto fueron mis entrañas duras,
20 Pues no te abrí! ¡Qué extraño desvarío,
Si de mi ingratitud el hielo frío
Secó las llagas de tus plantas puras!
¡Cuántas veces el ángel me decía:
«Alma, asómate agora á la ventana;
25 Verás con cuánto amor llamar porfía!»
Y ¡cuántas, hermosura soberana, page 15 «Mañana le abriremos,» respondía!
Para lo mismo responder mañana.
5 Silencio avises ó amenaces miedo. ¿No ha de haber un espíritu valiente? ¿Siempre se ha de sentir lo que se dice? ¿Nunca se ha de decir lo que se siente? Hoy sin miedo que libre escandalice
10 Puede hablar el ingenio, asegurado De que mayor poder le atemorice. En otros siglos pudo ser pecadoSevero estudio y la verdad desnuda, Y romper el silencio el bien hablado.
15 Pues sepa quien lo niega y quien lo duda Que es lengua la verdad de Dios severo Y la lengua de Dios nunca fué muda.Son la verdad y Dios, Dios verdadero: Ni eternidad divina los separa, 20 Ni de los dos alguno fué primero. page 16 LETRILLA SATÍRICA
Es don Dinero.
Madre, yo al oro me humillo:
Él es mi amante y mi amado,
5 Pues de puro enamorado,
De contino anda amarillo;
Que pues, doblón ó sencillo,
Hace todo cuanto quiero,
10 Es don Dinero.
Nace en las Indias honrado,
Donde el mundo le acompaña;
Viene á morir en España
Y es en Génova enterrado.
15 Y pues quien le trae al lado
Es hermoso, aunque sea fiero,
Es don Dinero.
Es galán y es como un oro,
20 Tiene quebrado el color,
Persona de gran valor,
Tan cristiano como moro;
Pues que da y quita el decoro
Y quebranta cualquier fuero,
25 Poderoso caballero
Es don Dinero.
Son sus padres principales page 17 Y es de nobles descendiente,
Porque en las venas de Oriente
Todas las sangres son reales:
Y pues es quien hace iguales 5 Al duque y al ganadero, Poderoso caballero
Es don Dinero.
10 Viendo su nido amado,
De quien era caudillo,
De un labrador robado.
Vile tan congojado
Por tal atrevimiento
15 Dar mil quejas al viento,
Para que al cielo santo
Lleve su tierno llanto,
Lleve su triste acento.
Ya con triste armonía,
20 Esforzando el intento,
Mil quejas repetía;
Ya cansado callaba,
Y al nuevo sentimiento page 18 Ya sonoro volvía.
Ya circular volaba,
Ya rastrero corría,
Ya pues de rama en rama
5 Al rústico seguía;
Y saltando en la grama,
Parece que decía:
«Dame, rústico fiero,
Mi dulce compañía»;
Estas que fueron pompa y alegría Despertando al albor de la mañana, Á la tarde serán lástima vana
15 Durmiendo en brazos de la noche fría. Este matiz que al cielo desafía, Iris listado de oro, nieve y grana,Será escarmiento de la vida humana: ¡Tanto se emprende en término de un día!
20 Á florecer las rosas madrugaron,
Y para envejecerse florecieron:
Cuna y sepulcro en un botón hallaron.
Por la gracia de Dios, Juan,
Eres de linaje limpio
Más que el sol, pero villano:
Lo uno y lo otro te digo,
5 Aquello, porque no humilles
Tanto tu orgullo y tu brío,
Que dejes, desconfiado,
De aspirar con cuerdo arbitrio
Á ser más; lo otro, porque
10 No vengas, desvanecido,
Á ser menos: igualmente
Usa de entrambos designios
Con humildad; porque siendo
Humilde, con recto juicio
15 Acordarás lo mejor;
Y como tal, en olvido
Pondrás cosas que suceden
Al revés en los altivos.
¡Cuántos, teniendo en el mundo
20 Algún defecto consigo,
Le han borrado por humildes!
Y ¡a cuántos, que no han tenido
Defecto, se le han hallado,
Por estar ellos mal vistos!
25 Sé cortés sobremanera,
Sé liberal y esparcido; page 20 Que el sombrero y el dinero
Son los que hacen los amigos;
Y no vale tanto el oro
Que el sol engendra en el indio
5 Suelo que conduce el mar,
Como ser uno bienquisto.
No hables mal de las mujeres:
La más humilde, te digo
Que es digna de estimación,
Estaba Mirta bella
Cierta noche formando en su aposento,
Con gracioso talento,
Una tierna canción, y porque en ella
15 Satisfacer á Delio meditaba,
Que de su fe dudaba,
Con vehemente expresión le encarecía
El fuego que en su casto pecho ardía.
Y estando divertida,
20 Un murciélago fiero, ¡suerte insana!
Entró por la ventana;
Mirta dejó la pluma, sorprendida, page 21 Temió, gimió, dio voces, vino gente;
Y al querer diligente
Ocultar la canción, los versos bellos
De borrones llenó, por recogellos.
5 Y Delio, noticioso
Del caso que en su daño había pasado,
Con el fiero murciélago alevoso,
Que había la canción interrumpido,