What Were the Salient Features of the Cultural Transformations Known as the Golden Age of Spain (Sixteenth-And-Seventeenth Century)?
Its literature is characterized by patriotic and religious fervour, heightened realism, and a new interest in earlier epics and ballads, together with the somewhat less-pronounced influences of humanism and Neoplatonism.
When Velazquez began his career at Philip’s court, he had already earned a reputation as a talented Baroque artist. Baroque, which was a style that emerged as a result of the Reformation, was connected to the idea that the “arts should communicate religious themes in direct and emotional involvement”. The style was characterized by rich, deep colors and intense light and dark shadows. Philip and other Habsburg rulers were great supporters of Baroque because display of such artwork was a means through which a ruler could impress visitors to the court. “had a deep love of the art of painting and the resources to indulge it on a grand scale” “Phillip IV had a deep love of the art of painting and the resources to indulge it on a grand scale”. By allowing for a great Baroque presence in his court, Philip was also able to display power and wealth.
Of the two, Garcilaso was the superior poet, and it was he who successfully made the transition. His other major successes included the adaptation of Petrarchan imagery of nature and self analysis, and the remarkable use of Virgilian pastoral landscape. His poetry became an inspiration and model for later poets of the Golden Age, and the subject of learned commentaries. The development of Spanish verse in the Golden Age has traditionally been seen as a trajectory from Garcilaso to the Luis de Góngora (1561-1627), a poet who brilliantly captures the verbal inventiveness of the Baroque. Some may argue that a younger contemporary of Góngora, Francisco de Quevedo (1580-1645) was equally inventive, but he is equally if not better known as a prose writer and author of the picaresque novel El Buscón (Deyermond, A.D , 1971). Expanding the Spanish Golden Age to include Mexico, many anthologists also include a truly remarkable and original poet, much admired by feminists: Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz (1651-95). Between Garcilaso and Góngora, there are numerous poets of outstanding quality, but we’ll only look at a few. Among them are San Juan de la Cruz (1542-91, widely known as St John of the Cross) and Fray Luis de León (1527-91). Both were religious poets but each quite different in his approach to God (Gies, David, 2004). Fernando de Herrera (ca 1534-97), on the other hand, was a secular poet, usually considered a bridge between Garcilaso and Góngora because of his verbal and syntactic innovations.
1556-1598), who brought artists into Spain in order to inaugurate a Spanish Renaissance. Philip wanted the world to know that Spain was not only caught up but in the lead, and theater would play a part in that.
Deyermond, A.D A Literary History of Spain: The Middle Ages London 1971
Gies, David ed. The Cambridge History of Spanish Literature Cambridge 2004
Eisenberg, D Romances of Chivalry in the Spanish Golden Age Newark, 1982
Jones, R.O. A Literary History of Spain: The Golden Age Prose and Poetry London, 1971
Thacker, Jonathan A Companion to Golden Age Theatre Woodbridge, England 2007