The Vicissitudes of Vives’ Fame
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During his life and in the first hundred years after his death (1540–1640) Vives enjoyed tremendous prestige. At the age of thirty the Humanist from Valencia was well known all over Europe. The Pope, Adrian VI, was his personal friend; Charles V, Henry VIII, Catherine of Aragon, and Ferdinand of Austria lavished their royal patronage upon him; Mary Tudor, the Archbishop-elect of Toledo, and the daughters of Thomas More were at one time or another his private pupils; the Universities of Valencia, Paris, Louvain, and Oxford were proud of their relation with him; the University of Alcalá was eager to obtain his services; the greatest scholars of the day — men such as Erasmus of Rotterdam, Thomas More, Linacre, Fisher, Budé, Juan De Vergara, Alfonso Valdés, and many others — were his close friends. The wealthy patrons of that time sought to have Vives under their generous wings: Busleyden in Louvain, Cardinal Wolsey and Lord Mountjoy in England, Doña Mencía de Mendoza in Breda. Erasmus himself was absolutely convinced that Vives’ fame would some day overshadow the reputation of any of his contemporaries.
KeywordsSixteenth Century Henry VIII Spanish Culture Charles Versus Opus Omnia
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