Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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GOMARA, Francisco Lopez de (go-mah'-rah), Spanish historian, born in Seville, or, according to some authorities, in Gomera. Canary islands, in 1510; died in Seville in 1560 or 1576. His parents had destined him for a military career, but he took holy orders, and was employed for several years as professor of rhetoric at Alcala. Desiring to acquire a personal knowledge of the New World, he went to Mexico about 1540, and remained there four years, part of the time as secretary of Hernan Cortes. On his return he resided for some time in Italy, and became intimate with Saxo Grammaticus and Olaus Magnus. His work is entitled "Primera y segunda parte de la historia general de las Indias con la eonquista de Mejico y de la Nueva Espana" (Medina, 1553; Antwerp, 1554). It had great success, passing in quick succession through two editions, and was translated into Italian by Gravalis (Rome, 1566) and by Lucio Mauro (Venice, 1566), and into French by Martin Fumee (Paris, 1606). The second part, which is a history of the life of Cortes, has been reprinted by Bustamante (Mexico, 1826). Gomara's style is clear and fluent, but, unfortunately, the second part of his work seems to have been written from notes, which were not complete or exact, and often supplied by a fervid imagination. In the royal library of Madrid there are two of his works in manuscript, " Historia de Horuc y Aradin Barbaroja, reyes de Argel " and "Anales del Emperador Carlos V," the publication of which has not been permitted by the royal government, because they depict the emperor's character in an unfavorable light.
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