The Book, Cat, & Cat Book Lovers Almanac

of historical trivia regarding books, cats, and other animals. Actually this blog has evolved so that it is described better as a blog about cats in history and culture. And we take as a theme the advice of Aldous Huxley: If you want to be a writer, get some cats. Don't forget to see the archived articles linked at the bottom of the page.

November 25, 2011

November 25, 1562

Félix Lope de Vega (November 25, 1562 to August 27,1635) was a contemporary of Cervantes, who called Lope de Vega "The Phoenix of Wits". Together they defined a golden age of Spanish literature. One of the playwright's later works was a "burlesque epic called The Battle of the Cats". Lope de Vega published this poem which has a feline heroine, Zapaquilda, in 1634.

According to a modern explication, the point of the parody, La Gatomaquia, was the "chasm between the ideal and the reality of those imperialist practices" which used medieval epic descriptions to justify an aristocratic assumption of power in ealry modern Spain. Such is the thesis of Barbars Simerka (assistant professor of hispanic studies at Queens College, CUNY).in her 2008 book Discourses of Empire: Counter-Epic Literature in Early Modern Spain.

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