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Lope de Vega Carpio, Felix. See Vega Carpio, Felix Lope de

Fishburn and Hughes: A Spanish playwright and poet of the Golden Age. Lope de Vega led an adventurous life: he sailed in the Armada, worked in the service of various noblemen, had many love affairs and repented of his earlier exploits, becoming a priest in 1614. He then wrote religious poetry until, seduced by an actress, he returned to a worldly life. He was a prolific dramatist whose 501 extant plays (he wrote over 1,500) form the nucleus of the Spanish national theatre. His plays are derived from various sources, but are set mainly within the Spanish historical and religious tradition. They uphold the monarch's role as defender of his people's honour, and also the people's right to be free and respected whatever their social position. (See El mejor alcalde el rey, 1602/3 and Fuenteovejuna, 1619.) Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote