Garcilaso de la Vega


Garcilaso de la Vega (1501-1536) was born in Toledo from a noble family connected with king’s court. He was of big stature.

He fought in Communities War (1520-1522) for the sake of his king, since he was one of his knights, and was wounded in Olias battle.

Beetween 1522 and 1524 he colaborated in a useless expedition against moors and in another one against France in Navarre. So he became a knight of Santiago’s order. Next year, Emperor married him to Elena de Zunniga. He settles in Toledo, as a regent. Together with the Court, in 1526, he could have met his inspiration, the portuguese lady Isabel Freyre, in Granada. Until 1529 he lived in Toledo with his wife and three legitim sons. Indeed, he courted Isabel who got married in 1529.

Always together with the court, he traveled to Italy this year and visited his friend, Juan Boscan, in Barcelone. In 1530 he was in Bologne and, back to Spain, pay a service in France. Because of his actuation in his nevew’s secret weddings he was exiled close to Ratisbone, an island close to Danubio. In 1532 he moves to Naples, serving Duke of Alba.

He frequented here the most important poets and wrote both spanish and latin poetry. He traveled to Italy and Spain where he learned Isabel Freyre’s death. who inspired many of his best works. In Italy he became major oy Reggio.

In May 1535, he foght in a battle against Tunez and was wounded in La Goleta’s victory. He died a year later in Niza, after an unsuccessful expedition against french soldiers who tried to get italian countries. His corpse was lately token to Toledo.

His eclogues, sonnets and other poems are seen as a model of the penetration of italian renaissance art in Spain. They were published as an appendix to posthumous works by Boscan in 1543.

D.Miguel Pérez Rosado.
Ph. D. in Hispanic Philology.