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Hero y Leandro

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Literature, Poetry




Juan Boscán

Original title

Hero y Leandro

Juan Boscán wrote the first peom of the Spanish Golden Age which dealt with the theme of mythology.

This poem by Juan Boscán was first published in 'Obras de Boscán' in 1543. The author was responsible for introducing the Renaissance into the Iberian Peninsula, and in this poem dealt for the first time with a theme from classical mythology written in free hendecasyllable, using an erudite language richly interspersed with digressions. The poem narrates the love between Hero, a priestess of Aphrodite who lived on one side of the Hellespont Strait, and Leander, a young man from the city of Abydos on the other side of the strait. From the day they fell in love, every night Leander would swim across the Hellespont to join his true love. One day he was drowned during the crossing, at which Hero took her own life in despair.


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