Ferreira, António(äntô`nyo͝o fərē`rə), c.1528–69, Portuguese dramatist and poet. Ferreira served as a privy councillor and a magistrate. Influenced by the Italian Renaissance, he wrote his great play Inés de Castro (c.1557), employing Italian meters and classical form. The only Renaissance tragedy in Portuguese, it was translated into English in 1697. Ferreira also wrote comedies, sonnets, and odes. His writing is generally grave and elevated and displays his classical learning. He was important in the movement to free Portuguese literature and language from Spanish influence.
Born 1528 in Lisbon; died there 1569. Portuguese poet and dramatist.
Ferreira graduated from the University of Coimbra and held high posts at the Portuguese court. He was the first to introduce into Portuguese literature the ode, sonnet, elegy, and epigram, as well as new poetic meters. His comedies Bristo (1622) and The Jealous Husband (1622) criticize social evils, which were in large part the product of Portugal’s rapacious colonial policy. They expose the hypocrisy and falsity of court life and communicate a sense of civic duty. These themes are also present in Inês de Castro (1587), a tragedy of profound psychological insight based on Portuguese history.
WORKSInês de Castro. Gaia, 1930.
Poemas Lusitanos de Doutor António Ferreira. Lisbon, 1939.
REFERENCESCastilho, J. de. António Ferreira, poeta quinhentista, vols. 1–3. Rio de Janeiro, 1875.
Saraiva, A. J. História da literatura portuguesa, 6th ed. Lisbon, 1961.