Rubén Darío
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Rubén Darío

Known to some as the prince of Spanish-language literature, Rubén Darío was a poet born on January 18, 1867 in Nicaragua. He started the movement known as modernism in spanish language, an art movement that combined romanticism, symbolism and Parnassianism. With a life that left no stone unturned, he was not only an intellectual but an adventurer who even became the Nicaraguan ambassador to Madrid.

His literary talents were to appear at a young age, publishing his first sonnet in a newspaper at the mere age of 13. His following pieces of that time followed a liberal influence, which led him to write his first book, though it wouldn't be published until many years after his death. In El Salvador, under the mentoring of other poets, he merged the Alexandrine verse into Spanish metric. Gaining himself great fame during this time, Darío had the opportunity to frequently demonstrate his work.

Things took a turn for the worse, however, and in 1883 he returned home. It wouldn't be long until Rubén Darío set off again, this time in the direction of Chile, which offered him plenty of opportunities to display his work, as well as a position in the newspaper La Época. During this time he produced Azul, which essentially heralded the start of the modernist revolution, with critics acclaiming his efforts.

Rubén darío then moved to San Salvador, where he became the director of the newspaper La Unión. The political situation in the country, however, forced him to move away again in 1890, following unrest and a coup d'etat. Darío then opened his own newspaper, El correo de la tarde, although this too would be a short lived adventure, as withdrawal of funds from the government led to its closure.

Looking for preferable economic conditions he headed for Spain, associating with renowned figures. In 1893, he traveled to Buenos Aires in Argentina, once again mixing with several personalities as Bartolomé Mitre. Once again in financial problems, he published two of his most important books Los raros and Prosas profanas y otros pemas. In late december, he arrived in Barcelona to help out at the newspaper, La Nación and in the Catalan capital he would meet Francisca Sánchez, his last sentimental partner.

Darío briefly became the ambassador for Madrid and was loyal to José Santos Zelaya's government. His final years proved difficult, with much moving around. At some point he went to Mexico to work for two Uruguayan businessmen who put him in charge of directing two magazines, Mundial, an illustrated magazine, and Elegancias, s publication geared towards a female readership. Soon thereafter he went to Paris, and then to the United Sates. By then the Great War had broken — the world was about to change, but Rubén Darío would not live long enough to partake in the calamity. Sick and feeble, he died in Nicaragua in February, 1916.

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