Mesa y Leompart, José

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Mesa y Leompart, José


Born 1840; died Jan. 22, 1904, in Saint-Macaire, France. A leader of the Spanish labor movement.

A printer by occupation, Mesa y Leompart joined the Republican Federalists and took part in the revolutionary actions of 1866. That same year he emigrated to Paris, where he remained until 1868. In 1870, Mesa y Leompart joined the First International; in 1871–72 he was a member of the Spanish Federal Council of the First International. From 1871 to 1873 he edited the newspaper Emancipatión.

Under the authority of P. Lafargue and F. Engels, Mesa y Leompart overcame the influence of P. J. Proudhon and M. A. Bakunin, becoming an active opponent of Bakuninism and one of the first propagandists of Marxism in Spain. In 1872 he helped found the New Madrid Federation. Mesa y Leompart translated the works of Marx and Engels into Spanish. After his second emigration to Paris in 1873, he maintained constant contacts with Marx and Engels. Mesa y Leompart took part in the founding of the French Workers’ Party and was one of the founders of the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party (1879).