Did Lope really write more than a thousand works?


Yes, and he must be the only one. In the literary universe, there is no other body of work as abundant as Lope de Vega's. He began to write in his childhood, when he was only ten or twelve years old and continued, non-stop, until his death. Nevertheless, it is impossible to know the exact number of plays he wrote, partly because in order to amortize the prestige they attributed to him throughout his life, many plays were attributed to him that were not his. Lope himself took care of blowing his own horn and proclaimed his literary fertility. "And more than a hundred in twenty four hours, moved from the muses to the theater"

His biographer Juan Pérez de Montalbán attributed the amazing number of 1,800 plays and 400 autos to Lope de Vega, but Lope himself stated 1,500 in the Égloga a Claudio.

To this monumental theatrical production, we must add the composition of hundreds of lyrical poems, more than a half dozen extensive epic poems or epic-narratives and the creation of three long novels, four short novels and the 'action in prose' (as in La Celestina) La Dorotea, in addition to an abundant epistolary.

Lope had a disconcerting ease in writing texts and works of theater, however, as evidenced in two of the three codex manuscripts preserved by the poet, poetry did not come so easily to him. To write a sonnet (fourteen hendecasyllabic verses) the author wrote and crossed out 58 lines, according to Códice Pidal, which, by the way, includes close to forty unpublished poems.

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