at a chronology of Hispanic translation history
1495 Publication in Saragossa of Dichos y hechos de
romanos y griegos, Hugo de Urriés's translation of Valerius
Máximus Dicta fatique from Simon de Hedin's Latin version previously
translated from French.
1502-17 Edition of the Complutensian Polyglot or Alcalá
Bible, under Cardinal Cisneros. The first polyglot Bible to be printed.
1506 Castile has to import wheat for the first time.
1508 Foundation of the University of Alcalá.
1508 Publication of Amadís de Gaula. There will
be thirty editions before 1587, twelve continuations, making a total
of some 300 rewritings before 1608.
1509-11 Spain conquers Oran, Bugía (?) and Tripoli.
1509 Hernán Núñez translates Enea
Silvio Piccolomini's History of Bohemia into Castilian.
1510 Francisco de Madrid's translation of Petrarca's
De remediis is published in Valladolid.
1511 Hernando del Castillo's Cancionero general.
1511 Erasmus's Elogio de la locura is translated into
Castilian. Cicneros invites him to the University of Alcalá,
but Erasmus refuses: "Non placet Hispania".
1512 Spain annexes Navarra.
1512 The Laws of Burgos require that the conquistadores
train the Indians in the Catholic faith and the Castilian tongue.
1513 Machiavelli writes Il principe.
1514 Cisneros begins his project to produce a Graeco-Latin
Aristotle. The enterprise will be completed in Rome.
1515 Hernán Pérez de Oliva (d. 1531) writes
a preface in Latin, using only Castilian cognates. Asserts the superiority
1516 Pero Fernández de Villegas, arcediano in
Burgos, publishes a complete translation of Dante's Divina Commedia,
pretending to improve the content and style.
1516 Erasmus translates the New Testament into Latin.
1517 Carlos I arrives in Spain.
1519 Hernán Núñez publishes Moschus
in Greek with Latin interlinear version.
1520 Erasmus's Bible, in Greek, arrives in Spain. Is
criticized by Diego López de Zúñiga.
1520 Hernán Cortés begins the conquest
1520c. An anonymous Castilian translation of the Divina
1520-21 Uprising of the Comunidades in Spain.
1522 Juan Ginés de Sepúlveda translates
Aristotle's Parva naturalia into Latin, published in Bologna.
1523 Juan Ginés de Sepúlveda translates
Aristotle's De generatione et interita and De mundo into Latin, published
1525 Victory of Carlos V in Pavia.
1526 Andrea Navagiero, Venetian ambassador to the court
of Spain, convinces Juan Boscán to naturalise Italian poetic
forms in Castilian.
1526 Alonso Fernández de Madrid, arcediano de
Alcor, brother of Francisco de Madrid, translates Erasmus's Enchoridion
(Enquiridion o manual el caballero cristiano) from Latin into Castilian,
amplifying the text, omitting passages when thought necessary, and
adopting a popular preaching tone not to be found in the original.
1527 Carlos V is victorious in Rome.
1527 General acceptance of Erasmian principles at Valladolid.
1528 Hernán Pérez de Oliva adapts Sophocles'
Electra, probably from an intermediary Latin version, "to show
that lofty ideas can be expressed in Castilian".
1529 Antonio de Guevara, a Franciscan bishop, writes
Libro áureo de Marco Aurelio a pseudotranslation from an imaginary
1529 Sannazaro's Arcadia, written in 1504, is translated
into Castilian by the canon López de Ayala, captain Diego de
Salazar and the racionero Blasco de Gary.
1530 Carlos V receives the imperial crown from the pope.
1530 Appointment of the lecteurs royaux in Paris.
1530c. Martín Laso de Oropesa translates Lucan's
La Farsalia, dedicated to don Pedro de Guevara: "à cabo
de mill y quinientos años torna à hablar en la lengua
1531 Juan Luis Vives, a Spanish converso in the Netherlands,
writes De disciplinis libri xx, advocating use of the vernacular in
schools and the education of women.
1532 Juan Luis Vives writes De Ratione Dicendi, claiming
that in order to achieve equilibrium and equivalence a translation
has to be free: the figures and patterns of one language should not
be expressed in another.
1531 Conquest of Peru.
1533 Diego Gracian translates Plutarch's Apopthegmas
from Greek, dedicated to the emperor. Claims to have followed the
style and rhythm of the original, "porque la propiedad y maneras
de hablar de la lengua Griega responde mucho mejor a la Castellana
que a otra ninguna".
1534 Juan Boscán translates Baldassare Castiglione's
Il libro del cortigiano (1528) into Castilian at the request of Garcilaso
de la Vega. Dedicated to doña Gerónima Palova de Almogavar.
1535 Miguel Servet declares that Spaniards "care
little for letters and print few books, preferring to import French
1535c. Juan de Valdés, a follower of Erasmus,
writes Diálogo de la lengua, criticizing Nebrija for adopting
a Latinist and aristocratic view of Castilian. He probably left Spain
in 1529, was in Rome in 1531 in the service of the pope. After 1535
he completed partial translations of the Bible: El salterio traducido
el hebreo en romance castellano and El evangelio según san
1535 Conquest of Tunis.
1536 Carlos V speaks Castilian with the pope in the
1536 Beginnings of the Inquisition in Portugal.
1536 Fray Luis de Granada, said to have translated into
French and English (?), is the probable translator of Thomas à
Kempis's Imitacion de Christo.
1540 Death of Juan Luis Vives.
1540 Etienne Dolet writes his theory of translation.
1541 Antonio Barba translates Juan Ginés de Sepúlveda's
De conuenientia militaris disciplinae (1535)
1542 The New Laws of the Indies.
1543 Publication of Juan Boscán's translation
of Castiglione's Il Cortegiano.
1543 Francisco de Enzinas (also called Dryander, Duchesne,
Van-Eick, Eichmann), under the influence of Luther and in permanent
exile from Spain, publishes his Castilian translation of the New Testament
in Antwerp. Aware that Carlos V had ordered all copies to be siezed,
he dedicates the translation to the emperor and goes to Brussels to
give him the first copy. The translator will soon be imprisoned in
Brussels, although he will be allowed to escape the following year
and will become professor of Greek at Cambridge, translating Plutarch
and Lucian. His brother Jaime will be burnt at the stake in Rome in
1545 The Council of Trent proclaims use of the vernacular.
1545-63 Meetings of the Council of Trent, in opposition
to Protestantism. The council will be dominated by Spanish Jesuits
1548 Juan Ginés de Sepúlveda translates
Aristotle's Politics into Latin, published in Paris.
1548 Publication in Alcalá de Henares of Morales,
Diego Gracián's translation of Plutarch directly from the Greek.
1548 Publication in Medina del Camp of Libro llamado
Arte de Amistad, Ángel Cornejo's translation of Cicero's De
amicitia. Cornejo is a Cistertian friar. 'Los libros que desta sciencia
de traduzir tengo o son para sabios o para necios.'
1549 Publication in Antwerp of Libros de Marco Tulio
Cicerón en que se trata de los Officios, de la Amicicia y de
la Senectud, translated by Francisco de Támara.
1549 Hierónimo de Urrea translates Ariosto into
1550 Hernando de Alcocer translates he second part of
1550-1556 Gonzalo Pérez translates the Odyssey
into Castilian verse, using defective unrhymed hendecasyllables.
1551 Authorization of the universities of Lima and Mexico
1551 Spain's first list of prohibited books.
1553 Miguel Servet is burnt at the stake by order of
Calvin for denying the trinity and the divinity of Christ.
1553 Publication of translation of Petrarca's Tratado
de la excelencia de la vida solitaria by el licenciado Peña.
1554 The Spanish economy becomes unmanageable, resulting
in famine and depopulation.
1554 Publication of Lazarillo de Tormes.
1555 Juan Pérez de Pineda leaves Seville for
Geneva, where he publishes his Castilian translation of the New Testament
and the Psalms of David. The work manages to enter Spain because the
place of publication is printed as "Venecia". Pineda will
be arrested and condemnd by the Inquisition in 1557. His work will
be on the Index in 1559.
1556 Carlos V abdicates as emperor of the Imperium Romanum.
Felipe II comes to the throne.
1561c. Fray Luis de León, aged 33, translates
the Cantar de los Cantares.
1566 Andrés Laguna, a physician, translates Dioscoride's
Materia medica into Castilian, with notes that occupy twice the space
of the text. He is deeply involved in the Erasmian movement in Spain.
1557 Spain suspends payment of its debts.
1558-59 Felipe II imposes new laws meaning that the
importing of books is illegal without a special licence; Spanish students
are not allowed to study in foreign universities. Campaigns against
Protestants in Valladolid and Seville.
1559 Beginnings of the Index of prohibited books. Spain
will become increasingly isolated from the secularization and philosophical
and scientific revolution of the 17th century.
1563 The El Escorial monastery is completed.
1565 Uprising of the Netherlands.
1567 Alfonso de Ulloa, in Venice, edits the Castilian
translation of Petrarca's Sonnets and Songs by the Portuguese Jew
1568-70 Uprising of Moriscos in Granada.
1569 Casiodoro de Reina, a Protestant of Morisco origin,
in Basel, publishes his Castilian translation of the complete Bible.
He has spent four years on the translation. In 1564 Felipe II put
a price on his head. Casiodoro de Reina's son Marcos will preach in
French and German; his second son Agustín will translateworks
of geography from Italian and Dutch into German and Latin. Neither
will work in Castilian.
1571 Johannes Leizarraga translates the New Testament
into Basque, along with a catechism, at the request of the Calvanist
synod of Pau. He tries to create a common language based on Basque
dialects and Latin.
1571 Victory over the Turks at Lepanto.
1571 Fray Luis de León is imprisoned, partly
because of eroticism in his translation of the Song of Songs.
1572 Trials against four professors of Hebrew. Three
of them are of Jewish origin: Luis de León, Gaspar de Grajal
and Alonso Gudiel.
1574-75 Fray Luis, in prison, writes De los nombres
de cristo, published in 1583.
1576 Fray Luis returns to his chair at Salamanca after
five years as a prisoner of the Inquisition: "Dicebamus hesterna
1577 Publication in Alcalá of Mateo Boyardo's
Orlando Enamorado, translated by Francisco Garrido de Villena.
1579 Holland allows freedom of worship.
1580 Felipe II annexes Portugal.
1580c. Pedro Simón Abril translates Aristotles'
Ethics, dedicated to Felipe II.
1585 Fray Luis publishes De los nombres de Cristo. Castilian
is recognised to be as good as Latin.
1585-87 The English attack and sack Vigo and Cadiz.
1587 Juan de Sedeño translates Torcuato Tasso's
1588 Defeat of the Invincible Armada.
1589 Pero Sánchez de Viana translates Ovid's
Metamorphoses, wih a commentary making the classical myths accord
with Christian beliefs.
1590 Inca Garcilaso translates the Diálogos de
amor by the Spanish Jew León Hebreo, living in Italy.
1591 Publication in Madrid of Enrique Garcés's
Castilian translation of Petrarca's Sonnets and Songs.
1596 Spain suspends payment of its debts.
1598 Francisco Tremado translates Petrarca's Rimas.
1598 Death of Felipe II.
1599 Mateo Alemán publishes Guzmán de
On to the seventeenth century
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