Raven has for sure had sugar daddies. Her body language in this show is fascinating. She is here for the exposure and wants to do only the amount of work necessary to get that. She'll never get married, she doesn't love SK. She just wants the show. She literally runs from intimacy. She had to force herself not to walk out the door at the proposal. In the real world, she wants to be worshipped and taken care of. And her rejection of Bartise was 100% a \"you can't break up with me, I'm breaking up with you\". She was so cruel. Ugh, not a fan.
If the impulse which this great king gave to lettershad been continued by his successors, Spanish literaturewould not only be two centuries forwarder, butwould have produced more works, and those moreperfect. The ferocious character of the times did notallow it. The fire of civil war began to blaze in the lastyears of Alfonso, with the disobedience and rebellion ofhis son, and continued, almost without intermission, fora whole century, till it arrived at the last pass of atrocityand horror in the tempestuous and terrible reign of Pedro.The Castilians, during this unhappy period, seem tohave had no spirit but for hatred, no arms but fordestruction. How was it possible, amidst the agitationof such turbulent times, for the torch of genius to shineout tranquilly, or for the songs of the muses to beheard Thus only a very scanty number of poets canbe named as flourishing then: Juan Ruiz, archpriest ofHita; the Infante Don Juan Manuel, author of CondeLucanór; the Jew, Don Santo; and Ayala, the historiographer.The verses of these writers are some of themlost, others exist wholly unedited, and those only ofthe archpriest of Hita have seen the light, which, fortunately,are the most worthy, perhaps, of being known.The subject of his poems is the history of his loves,interspersed with apologues, allegories, tales, satires,proverbs, and even devotions. This author surpassedall former writers; and but few of those by whom hewas succeeded, excelled him in faculty of invention,in liveliness of fancy and talent, or in abundance ofjests and wit; and if he had taken care to choose[Pg 14]or to follow more determinate and fixed metres, andhad his diction been less uncouth and cumbrous, thiswork would have been one of the most curious monumentsof the Middle Age. But the uncouthness ofthe style makes the reading insufferable. Of his versificationand manner, let the following verses serve asspecimens, in which the poet begs of Venus to interposeher influence with a lady whom he loved, who was,according to his pencil,
The form which had now been given to versification wasmuch less imperfect than that of former ages. Coplasde arte mayor and octosyllabic verses prevailed overthe tedious heaviness of the Alexandrine: their crossedrhymes struck upon the ear more delightfully, andstunned it not with the rude and heavy hammeredsounds of the quadruplicate rhyme; whilst the poeticperiod, more clear and voluminous, came from time totime upon the spirit with some pretensions of eleganceand grace. The writers of this period sweetened downa little the austere aspect which the art had hithertopresented, and abandoning the lengthy poems, devotionallegends, and wearisome series of dry precepts andbald sentences, devoted themselves to subjects moreproportioned to their powers, and the murmurs of thelove-song and tone of the elegy were now most commonlyfelt upon their lips. Lastly, a more generalreading of the Latin writers taught them sometimes themode of imitation, and at others, furnished those allusions,similes, and ornaments, which served to embellishtheir verse.
The other most distinguished poets of this centurywere the Marques de Santillana, one of the mostgenerous and valiant knights that adorned it, a learnedman, and an easy and sweet love poet, just and seriousin sentiment; Jorge Manrique, who flourished after,and who, in his coplas on the death of his father, lefta fragment of poetry, the most regular and purelywritten of that time; Garci Sanchez de Badajoz, whowrote verses with much fire and vivacity; and, lastly,Macías, anterior to them all, the author of only foursongs, but who will never be forgotten for his amoursand melancholy death.[D]
Hitherto poetry preserved the natural graces and[Pg 40]simplicity which it had caught from Garcilasso; andLuis de Leon had succeeded in giving it some sublimityand grandeur: Francisco de la Torre inclined more tosubjects that require a middle style, such as those whichrural nature presents. He had ornaments of taste, butwithout ostentation or wealth, and his language wasmore pure and graceful than brilliant and majestic.The best supporters of this style were Francisco deFigueroa, who in his eclogue of Tirsi gave the firstexample of good blank verse in Spanish; Jorge deMontemayor, who, with his Diana, introduced thetaste and love of pastoral novels; and Gil Polo, one ofhis imitators, who, less happy than he in invention, hadmuch the advantage of him in versification, and almostarrived at the point of throwing him into the shade.But, passing from these writers to the Andalusians[H],the art will now be seen to take a change in taste, toassume a tone more lofty and vehement, to enrich andadorn the diction, and to manifest the intention ofsurprising and ravishing; in short, to aspire to themens divinior atque os magna soniturum, by whichHorace characterises true poetry.
If from the exterior forms we pass to the essentialqualities, it may be said that no one surpasses Herrerain force and boldness of imagination, very few inwarmth and vivacity of emotion, and none even equalhim, if we except Rioja, in dignity and decorum. Thegreater part of his poems consists of elegies, songs,and sonnets, in the taste of Petrarch. It was Petrarchwho first, deviating from the manner in which theancients painted love, gave to this passion a tone moreideal and sublime. He refined it from the weaknessof the senses, converting it into a species of religion;and reduced its activity to be constantly admiring andadoring the perfections of the object beloved, to pleaseitself with its pains and martyrdom, and to reckon itssacrifices and privations as so many other pleasures.Herrera having, throughout his life, a passion for theCountess of Gelves, gave to his love the heroism ofPlatonic affection; and under the titles of Light, Sun,Star, Eliodora, consecrated to her a passion fiery,tender, and constant, but accompanied by so muchrespect and decorum, that her modesty could not bealarmed, nor her virtue offended. In all the verseswhich he devoted to this lady, there is more venerationand self-denial, than hope and desire. Thistaste has the inconvenience of running into metaphysicsnothing intelligible, into a distillation of pains, griefs,[Pg 43]and martyrdoms, very distant from truth and nature,and which, consequently, neither interests nor affects.To this error, which may occasionally be remarked inHerrera, must be added that his diction, too muchstudied and refined, offends, almost always, by affectation,and not seldom by obscurity. The style andlanguage of love must flow more easy and unencumbered,to be graceful and delicate. Thus Herrera,who, no doubt, loved with vehemence and tenderness,seems, in uttering his sentiments, to be more engagedabout the manner of expressing them, than with thedesire of interesting by them; and to this cause mustbe attributed, that, of the Spanish poets, he is the onewhose love-verses are the least calculated to pass fromlip to lip, and from nation to nation.
Without intending to diminish the just esteem whichis their due, or to contend with their many admirers,we may observe, that their fame appears to us muchgreater than their merit; and that if language owes themmuch for the exact attention and propriety with whichthey wrote it, poetry is indebted to them less, and thattheir reputation appears to rest more on their freedomfrom the vices, than on any great display of the virtuesof composition. In lyric poetry they are easy, pure, andingenious; but generally devoid of enthusiasm, majesty,[Pg 50]and fancy. As little have they in their love pieces thegrace and tenderness which erotic poetry requires; and ifwe except some sonnets of Lupercio, not one of their compositionsin this class can be quoted as deserving toarrest the attention, or be recommended to the memoryof lovers. I will not speak of the Isabella and the Alexandra,as it is evident to all, even without the necessityof a profound acquaintance with the subject, that thesecompositions have nothing of the tragedy in them butthe name, and the coolly atrocious deaths with whichthey end. Their severe character, the bias of theirdisposition, more ingenious and neat than florid andexpansive, the wit and mirth which at times they knewhow to fling forth, were more fit for moral and satiricpoetry, in which they have succeeded best. There arein them an infinite number of strokes, some valuable fortheir depth and boldness, and many for that ingenuityof thought, that facility and propriety of expression,which has rendered them proverbial.
These passages, extracted from various satires ofBartolomé, and many others of equal or superior merit,which might be quoted as well from him as fromLupercio, prove their happy genius for this kind ofpoetry. They have been compared to Horace, andundoubtedly bear most similarity to him, notwithstandingthe preference that Bartolomé gave to Juvenal.[J]But at what a distance do they stand from him! Thevivacity, the freedom, the variety, the conciseness, theexquisite and delicate mixture of praise and censure,the amiable disdain, and spirit of friendship, whichenchant and despond in that ancient model, are allwanting in them, and condemn the excessive condescensionor want of taste which led their cotemporariesto give them the title of Horaces. Facility ofrhyming led them to string tercetos together withoutend, in which, if we meet with no unnecessary words,we find plenty of unnecessary thoughts. This causestheir satires and epistles frequently to appear prolix,and even at times wearisome. Horace would havecounselled Lupercio to shorten the introduction of hissatire on the Marquesilla, and many of the tales thatoccur in it; and Bartolomé to suppress, in his fable ofthe Eagle and Swallow, the long enumeration of birds,[Pg 53]useless and unseasonable for a poet, superficial andscanty for a naturalist; he would have reminded both,in short, that strokes of satire, like arrows, should carryfeathers and fly, to wound with certainty and force.It is painful, on the other hand, to find that theynever leave the tone of ill-temper and suspicion whichthey once assume; and that neither indignationagainst vice, nor friendship, nor admiration, can drawfrom them one warm sentiment or gleam of enthusiasm.We choose friends amongst the authors weread, as amongst the men we have to deal with: Iconfess that I am not for those poets who, to judge bytheir verses, never appear to have loved nor esteemedany body. 59ce067264