Biography of Gertrudis Gómez de Avellaneda (1814-1873)

Spanish poet who was born in Port-au-Prince, today Camagüey (Cuba), in 1814, and died in Madrid in 1873. Despite being born in Cuba which, on the other hand, at that time was a Spanish colony, Gertrude lived in Spain from the twenty-two years and developed here all his literary activity. In fact, he/she refused to participate in an album of Cuban poetry claiming not to be deserving of it for his entire literary career outside the island. This gave more than one annoyance with his countrymen, which interpreted as disdain and contempt the refusal of the author. Daughter of Spaniards, the young Tula, name that was known always familiarly, was die to his father at just eight years old. The wedding of his mother barely a year after maracaria deeply to the girl. From this child, unfortunately, the life of the author will be an accumulation of misfortunes that romantic in the end, will turn in poems, novels, letters and several autobiographies. These early years in Cuba, we know that literally formed from rich French and Spanish literature reading.

In 1836, he/she travelled to Spain with his family. Upon arrival, take contact with the more recent works of Spanish literature. In this way, meet the romantic authors that won't take in alternating in Madrid. Her beauty and intelligence, take it to be admired in a special way by a literary world that consisted almost exclusively of men. He/She writes for newspapers in Seville and Cádiz, under the pseudonym of La Peregrina. In 1840, premiered his first play in Seville: Leoncia. Begins his first novel, Sab, published the following year in Madrid there. In Seville he/she also meets the young Ignacio de Cepeda, he/she fell in love passionately and to which he/she dedicated, in addition to numerous letters, an autobiography which was intended to show such which was before her beloved. As it will happen frequently throughout his life, the passion that put this relationship startled the young, little certainly accustomed to a character as volcanic as Tula, given the silent role that society submitted to the woman. However, think from today's perspective, if possessive, romantic love up to the end, our author would not be oppressive by nature, regardless of sex and the social situation. To move away from the loving disappointment, he/she travels to Madrid where to publish his poems (1840). In the same year, it will be presented at the artistic Lyceum of Madrid and will become part of the literary world of the capital. The fact of being the only woman in a male world will create him problems of coexistence with several of his colleagues. Frequently it is said that benevolent criticism of his character came given by its status of women. Thus, the criticism has made special emphasis in the sentence of Breton de los Herreros: "is much man this Tula!", assuming it an implied masculinity that, under the circumstances, had nothing in particular, since the author moved alone in a world in which seldom had accommodated women and whose members were not at all prepared to deal with them. Moreover, the number of such criticisms and that the own Tula has come to us in letters and autobiographies suggests if would not be, indeed, something all the same by passionate character of the poet that, moreover, all admired.

His loves, wretched and passionate, stresses the stormy relationship that remained with the poet and politician Gabriel García Tassara, which had a daughter, Brenhilde, who died at seven months of age. These love began in 1844, the year of his third novel, Espantolino, and his tragedy, Munio Alfonso. The girl born the following year and Tassara abandoned Gertrudis accidentally see them either, not even on the deathbed of the girl. The desperate letter that Tula sent him so that he/she come to see her is shocking.

The following year, 1846, the author marries Pedro Sabater, political head of Madrid (political head was at the time the equivalent of the current civil governor), which at the time, died three months after a chronic illness of the throat. After spending a season of withdrawal in a convent, returns to the literary life of Madrid. Will he/she try to form hard entering the Academy without success. In 1855, he/she becomes remarried, this time with Domingo Verdugo, Colonel three years younger than she. It had little lasting happiness in this new marriage. In 1858, after an altercation in the street with one of the reventadores that had boycotted the premiere of the drama the three loves of Tula, was badly injured and never recovered health until his death in 1863. The remaining ten years of his life he/she dedicated them to literature, well that with little success, given that the romanticism did not hesitate to spend fashion in Spain. He/She died from diabetes which he/she suffered in his last years.

His work comprises both poetry and the novel and the theatre, but was especially known for his poetry. His verse is characterized by the metric audacity and taste by the colorful epithets. They are not finished and polished works, but fruit of a romantic and passionate soul, which gives them a vital impetus which gives them interest. His narrative work highlight: Guatimozin, last emperor of Mexico (1946) and the cacique of Turmequé (1860). His dramatic work is worthy of mention, in addition to those mentioned, Egilona (1845), Saúl (1849), errors of the heart (1852), the adventurer (1853), La Sonnambula (1854) and Baltasar (1858).

Gerardo Fernández San Emeterio.