Espinel, Vicente Martínez

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Espinel, Vicente Martínez

(vēthān`tā märtē`nāth āspēnĕl`), 1550–1624, Spanish writer, musician, and adventurer. Espinel was notorious for his dissolute life, which his holy vows, taken in 1589, did little to change. An accomplished guitarist, he helped make the instrument popular and is sometimes credited with adding its fifth string. Espinel's Rimas (1591) introduced the decima, or espinela, a new poetic form of 10 eight-syllable lines rhyming abbaaccdde. Espinel is best known for his picaresque, semiautobiographical novel Vida del escudero Marcos de Obregón [the life of Squire Marcos de Obregón] (1618), from which Le Sage adapted episodes and characters for Gil Blas.

Espinel, Vicente Martínez

 

Baptized Dec. 28, 1550, in Ronda; died Feb. 4, 1624, in Madrid. Spanish writer.

After studying at the University of Salamanca, Espinel became a priest. He was the author of the collection Various Verses (1591). His modified form of the décima (a rhyming stanzaic form of ten lines) came to be known as the espinela. Espinel’s realistic novel The. History of the Life of the Squire of Marcos de Obregón (1618; Russian translation, 1935) was written in the style of the picaresque novel; several motifs from Marcos de Obregón were borrowed by A. R. Lesage in The Story of Gil Bias of Santillane.

REFERENCES

Vásquez Otero, D. Vida de Vicente Martínez Espinel. Málaga, 1948.
Haley, G. Vicente Espinel and Marcos de Obregón. Providence, R.I., 1959.