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Juan de Jáuregui

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A Spanish painter and poet, born at Seville c. 1570, or, according to some, as late as 1583; died at Madrid c. 1640-1. His family, a northern one, was apparently of noble rank, and he was early enrolled as a knight in the Order of Calatrava. He made a sojourn in Rome, and there, judging by what he says in his "Discourse on Painting ", he studied the old masters and formed his own pictorial methods. At all events, report has it that he became distinguished as a portrait painter. A current interpretation of a passage in the prologue to the "Novelas ejemplares" of Cervantes makes him out to have painted a likeness of the famous novelist. As a poet, Jáuregui began as a disciple of the Sevillian bard, Herrera. In point of fact, he adheres in many of his compositions too closely to the manner of his model, and hence a lack of originality in them. Notable among his poetic endeavors in his versions in blank verse of Tasso's "Aminta". It is deemed one of the best foreign renderings of that eminent pastoral play. First published in Italy, in 1607, it was included in the collected "Rimas" of Jáuregui put forth at Seville in 1618. In the same volume appeared various poetical pieces, among them a specimen of a translation of Lucas, and certain religious lyrics. In the earlier stages of his career, Jáuregui was a stern opponent of Gongorism and its stylistic excesses, as he clearly shows in his "Discurso poético contra el hablar culto y estilo obscuro", but he later succumbed to the influence of this noxious manner, amply illustrating its peculiarities in his poem "Orfeo" (Madrid, 1624) and even defending it in a special dissertation. Of the "Pharsalia" of Lucas, already attempted by him in his youth, he made, late in life, a complete version, which, however, was not published until 1684, and is over free in its rendering of the original.

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