Alonso de Ercilla y Zuniga

Alonso de Ercilla y Zuniga
Alonso de Ercilla y Zuniga
    Alonso de Ercilla y Zúñiga
     Catholic_Encyclopedia Alonso de Ercilla y Zúñiga
    Spanish soldier and poet, born in Madrid, 7 August, 1533; died in the same city, 29 November, 1594. After his father's death, his mother became lady-in-waiting to the Infanta María and made young Alonso a page to Prince Philip. Ercilla received a very thorough education, for, besides having the most learned teachers, he enjoyed the advantages of very extensive travelling and of living at court where he came in contact with high personages. When he was only fifteen he accompanied Philip through Italy and Germany; and their travels lasted three years. Later, Ercilla accompanied his mother to Bohemia where he left her and then visited Austria, Hungary, and other countries. Returning to Spain, he soon started out again with Philip. In London he made the acquaintance of Jerónimo de Alderete (1555), whose stories of his thrilling adventures in the New World so fired Ercilla's imagination that he determined to accompany Alderete to the New World. He therefore obtained leave from Philip, and they set sail for America, 15 Oct., 1555. Soon after their arrival, however, Alderete died (near Panamá, April, 1556). Ercilla continued on his way to Peru, and in 1557 joined the forces of García Hurtado de Mendoza, who had recently been appointed Governor of Chile. During the succeeding two or three years he played a brilliant part in combating an insurrection among the natives of Arauco, a province of Chile, suffering great hardships, and distinguishing himself several times in battle. After a severe illness he returned to Spain in 15622, and for a time resumed his travels through Europe. In 1570, he married Doña María de Bazán, a woman of illustrious family and of intellectual attainments. He died at Madrid neglected and in great poverty.
    Ercilla's great work is La Araucana , an epic poem of thirty-seven cantos, describing the difficulties encountered by the Spaniards during the insurrection in Arauco, and the heroic deeds of the natives as well as his companions. The epic partakes of the character of history, and the author adheres with such strict fidelity to the truth, that subsequent historians characterize his work as thoroughly trustworthy. In it the difficult art of story-telling is carried to perfection. Places are admirably described, dates are given with accuracy, and the customs of the native faithfully set forth, giving to the narrative animation and colouring. The poem was published in three parts, the first appearing in 1569, the second in 1578, and the third in 1590. The best editions are those published by the Spanish Academy in 1776 and 1828.
    Transcribed by Michael C. Tinkler

The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume VIII. — New York: Robert Appleton Company. . 1910.

Catholic encyclopedia.

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  • Alonso de Ercilla y Zúñiga — (Madrid August 7, 1533 ndash; November 29, 1594 in Madrid), Spanish nobleman, soldier and poet. BiographyIn 1548 he was appointed page to the heir apparent, afterwards Philip II. In this capacity Ercilla (sometimes spelled Arcilla) visited Italy …   Wikipedia

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  • Alonso de Ercilla — y Zúñiga (Madrid, 7 de agosto 1533 29 de noviembre 1594). Poeta español autor de La Araucana. Al fallecer su padre, Fortún García de Ercilla, cuando sólo contaba un año, su madre, Leonor de Zúñiga, ocupa el cargo de dama de compañía de la reina… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • ERCILLA Y ZÚÑIGA (A. de) — ERCILLA Y ZÚÑIGA ALONSO DE (1533 1594) Né de famille noble, page du futur Philippe II, Ercilla voyage beaucoup, de l’Italie aux Flandres et à l’Angleterre, puis part, en 1555, pour le Chili où les Indiens Araucans révoltés viennent de tuer le… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

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