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Antonio Gamoneda
León, 2007
León, 2007
Born Antonio Gamoneda Lobón
(1931-05-30) 30 May 1931 (age 92)
Oviedo (Asturias), Spain
Occupation poet
Nationality Spanish
Notable awards Miguel de Cervantes Prize

Antonio Gamoneda Lobón (born 30 May 1931) is a Spanish poet, winner of the Cervantes Prize in 2006.


Antonio Gamoneda was born in Oviedo, Asturias, on 30 May 1931. His father, also named Antonio, was a modernist poet who published only one book, Otra más alta vida (Another higher life) in 1919. In 1934, already an orphan, he moved with his mother, Amelia Lobon, to León. The presence of his mother as a refuge from the horror and misery of war is seen in all his poetry. In 1936, with schools closed due to the Spanish Civil War, he became literate by reading, on his own, his father's book.

Antonio Gamoneda in León

The poet lived originally in the main working-class district of León. This place was a privileged post to observe the repression carried out during the war and postwar years.

In 1941, he joined the religious school of the Augustinian Fathers and in 1943 dropped out.

The day he turned fourteen he started working as a messenger in the Banco de Comercio. He completed his pre-university studies on his own and remained in the condition of bank employee for twenty-four years until 1969.

While working at the bank he became part of the intellectual resistance to the dictatorship of Francisco Franco. He published his first book in 1960, Sublevación inmóvil (Motionless revolt), a work that was a runner-up for the Adonais prize. The book was a break from the traditional realistic rules of the time in Spain. In 1969 he started running the cultural services of the Diputación Provincial de León, and from 1970, the León State collection of poetry, trying to promote a progressive culture with the money of the dictatorship. He was deprived of his official status, and subsequently readmitted, by court order. During these years he began working regularly in different cultural magazines.

This first stage was followed by eight years absent from the poetry world, years strongly marked by the death of the dictator Francisco Franco and the beginning of the so-called "transición". The ideological and existential crisis of the poet is felt in his next book Descripción de la mentira (A description of the lie), León 1977, a long poem that marked a shift towards a total maturity. Later publications are Lápidas (Tombstones) (Madrid, 1987) and Edad (Age), a volume collecting all his poetry until 1987, revised by the author, and that won the National Prize for Literature in Spain.

In 1992, Libro del frío (Book of the cold) was published, making him one of the most important poets in Spanish. In the year 2000 the final version of this work came out, which included Frío de límites (Cold of Limits), a work in collaboration with Antoni Tàpies.

Antonio Gamoneda City Hall of Leon in November 2007

Arden las pérdidas (Losses are burning) was published in 2003, a book that crowns the period started in Descripción de la mentira. After that he published Cecilia (2004), named after his granddaughter, and La luz: Collected Poetry: (1947–2004), (2004).

In 2005, he was award the inaugural European Prize for Literature. In 2006, he was awarded the Reina Sofia Award, and the Cervantes Prize, the highest honor in Spanish literature.

He has also been awarded the Gold Medal of the city of Pau, the Silver Medal of Asturias, the "Lete" Gold Medal of the Province of León and the Gold Medal of the Círculo de Bellas Artes. He is Doctor Honoris Causa by the University of León.

The documentary Antonio Gamoneda: Escritura y alquimia premiered in March 2009. It was directed by Enrique and Cesar Rendueles Corti, with script by Amalia Iglesias and Julia Piera.

Books of poems in Spanish

  • Sublevación inmóvil [Motionless revolt]. Madrid, Rialp 1960
  • Descripción de la mentira [A description of the lie]. 1st ed. León, Diputación Provincial, col. County, 1977. 2nd ed. Salamanca, col. Barrio de Maravillas, 1986. 3rd ed. with a text by Julián Jiménez Heffernan Madrid, Abada Editores, 2003. 4th ed. with a text by Julián Jiménez Heffernan Madrid, Abada Editores, 2003.
  • León de la mirada [León of the sight]. 1st ed. León, Espadaña 1979. 2nd ed. León, Diputación Provincial, col. Breviarios de la Calle del Pez, 1990.
  • Tauromaquia y destino [Tauromachy and destination]. [with drawings by Juan Barjola] León, Retablo, 1980.
  • Blues castellano [Castilian Blues] (1961–1966). 1st ed. Gijón Noega, 1982. 2nd ed. Barcelona, Plaza y Janes, 1999. 3rd ed. Madrid, Bartleby, 2007.
  • Lápidas [Gravestones]. Madrid, Trieste, 1986. 2nd ed. Madrid, Abada, 2006 [with an epilogue by Julián Jiménez Heffernan].
  • Edad [Age] Poetry 1947–1986. 1st ed. Miguel Casado (editor and foreword). Madrid, Chair, 1987 [REIMP. 1988 1988 1989 2000].
  • Libro del frío [Book of the cold]. 1st ed. Madrid, Siruela 1992. 2nd ed. [foreword by Jacques Ancet] Valencia, Germany 2000 [ed. Revised and expanded]. 3rd ed. Madrid, Siruela 2003 [ed. revised]. 4th ed. Madrid, Siruela 2006 [ed. revised].
  • Mortal 1936. Mérida, Asamblea de Extremadura 1994.
  • El vigilante de la nieve [The snow-watcher]. Lanzarote, Fundación César Manrique, col. Penola White, 1995.
  • Libro de los venenos: corrupción y fábula del Libro Sexto de Pedacio Dioscórides y Andrés de Laguna, acerca de los venenos mortíferos y de las fieras que arrojan de sí ponzoña [Book of Poisons: corruption and the fable of Book Six Pedacio Dioscorides and Andres de Laguna, about deadly poisons and the beasts that throw them]. 1st ed. Madrid, Ediciones Siruela, 1995. 2nd ed. Madrid, Siruela 1997. 3rd ed. Madrid, Siruela 2006.
  • Arden las pérdidas [Losses are burning]. 1st ed. Barcelona, Tusquets, 2003. 2nd ed. Barcelona, Tusquets, 2004.
  • Cecilia. Lanzarote, Fundación César Manrique, col. Penola White, 2004.
  • Reescritura [Rewriting]. Madrid, Abada, 2004.
  • Esta luz [This light]. Collected poetry (1947–2004). Epilogue by Miguel Casado Barcelona, Galaxia Gutenberg / Círculo de Lectores, 2004 [REIMP. 2005 2006]
  • Extravío en la luz [Lost in the light], Madrid, Casariego, 2009 edition of six previously unpublished poems, with engravings by Juan Carlos Mestre.

Books of poems translated

  • Pierres gravées [Gravestones]. Jacques Ancet (translator and foreword), Paris, France, Lettres Vives, 1996.
  • Substances, limites. Nimphea. [with photos by Michel Hanique] Jacques Ancet (translator), Toulouse, France, Le Grand Os, 1997.
  • Livro do frio [Book of cold]. José Bento (translator), Lisbon, Portugal, Assírio & Alvim, 1998.
  • Froid de limites [Cold of limits]. Jacques Ancet (translator), Paris, France, Lettres Vives, 2000.
  • Mortel 1936. Passion et lumière de Juan Barjola (Mortal 1936. Passion and light in Juan Barjola). Jacques Ancet (translator), Europe. Revue littéraire mensuelle (Paris, France) 852 (2000) 102-109.
  • Beskrivning av lögnen [A description of the lie]. Ulf Eriksson (translator), Artes, Stockholm, Sweden, 3 (2002) 76-111.
  • Pétale blessé [Injured petal]. [with an original painting of Claire Pichaud] Claude Houy (translator), Barriac en Rouergue, Trames, France, 2002.
  • Ardem as perdas [Losses are burning]. Jorge Melícias (translator), Vila Nova de Famalicão, Portugal, Quasi, 2004.
  • Blues castillan [Castilian Blues]. Jacques Ancet (translator), Paris, France, Corti, 2004.
  • De l´impossibilité [Of the impossibility]. [with engraves by Jean-Louis Fauthoux and foreword by Salah Stétié] Amelia Gamoneda (translator), Montpellier, France, Fata Morgana, 2004.
  • Description du mensonge [A description of the lie]. Jacques Ancet (foreword and translation), Paris, France, Corti, 2004.
  • Im ki kvar meuhar [Even though is late. Anthology]. Rami Saari (foreword and translation), Jerusalem, Israel, Carmel, 2004.
  • Passion du regard [Passion of light]. Jacques Ancet (foreword and translation), Paris, Lettres Vives, 2004.
  • Boek van de kou [Book of cold]. Bart Vonck (translator), Leuven, Belgium, Vlaams Fonds voor de Letteren, 2005.
  • Livre du froid [Book of cold]. 1st ed. Jean-Yves Bériou and Martine Joulia (translators), Paris, Antoine Soriano Éditeur, 1996. 2nd ed. [with a foreword by Pierre Peuchmaurd] Paris, Antoine Soriano Éditeur, France, 2005.
  • Cecilia. Jacques Ancet (translator), Paris, France, Lettres Vives, 2006.
  • Clarté sans repos [Restless clearness]. Jacques Ancet (foreword and translation), Paris, France, Arfuyen, 2006.
  • Kitab al-bard [Book of cold]. Almahdi Akhrif (foreword and translation), Casablanca, Morocco. Publicaciones del Ministerio de la Cultura.
  • Dieses Licht [This light]. Eine Anhologie 1947–2005. Manfred Bös, Petre Strien-Bourmer, Karina Gómez-Montero (translators) [epilogue by Javier Gómez-Montero], Kiel, Germany, Ludwig, 2007.
  • Descriçao da mentira [A description of the lie]. Vasco Gato (translator), Vila Nova de Famalicão, Portugal, Quasi, 2007.
  • Förlusterna Glöder [Losses are burning]. Ulf Eriksson translator, Bokförlaget Tranan, Stockholm, 2007.
  • Gravestones [Lápidas]. Donald Wellman translator, University of New Orleans Press, New Orleans, 2009.
  • Description of the Lie [Descripción de la mentira]. Donald Wellman translator, Talisman House Publishers, Greenfield 2014.


  • "Poesía y conciencia. Notas para una revisión", Ínsula, 204, Madrid, 1963.
  • "El tema del agua en la poesía hispánica". León, Fray Bernardino de Sahagún, 1972.
  • "Poesía, situación, utilidad", República de las Letras, 23, Madrid, 1989, 27-29.
  • "Sobre la utilidad de la poesía provinciana", República de las Letras, 24, Madrid, 1989, 165-167.
  • "El arte de la memoria", El Urogallo 71, Madrid, 1992, 12-13
  • "Aquella primera pasión de la lectura", in Álvaro Ruiz de la Peña (ed.), Páginas de viva voz. Leer y escribir hoy. Oviedo, Universidad de Oviedo, 1995, 69-81.
  • "La poésie dans la perspective de la mort", en Bernard Noël (ed.), Qu’est-ce que la poésie? Paris, Éditions Jean-Michel Place/Ville de Saint-Denis, 1995, 228-230.
  • "Una lectura posesiva de Jorge Guillén", in Francisco Javier Blasco (ed.), Jorge Guillén, el hombre y la obra. Valladolid, 1995, 293-296.
  • "El cuerpo de los símbolos (Memoria, poética, ensayo)". 1st ed. Madrid, Huerga y Fierro, 1997, 2ª ed., Mexico, Calamus, 2007.
  • "¿Existe o existió la Generación del Cincuenta?", in several authors, II Congreso de Poesía canaria. Hacia el próximo siglo. Gran Canaria, Caja Canarias, 1997, 29-32.
  • "La creación poética: radicación, espacios, límites", en Ignacio Castro (ed.), Informes sobre el estado del lugar. Gijón, Caja de Asturias, 1998, 113-124.
  • "¿Poesía en los años 2000?", La alegría de los naufragios, 1-2, Madrid, 1999, 25-28.
  • "Valente: de la contemplación de la muerte", Cuadernos Hispanoamericanos, 600, Madrid, 2000, 7-10.
  • "Del sentir invisible de Marga Clark", Quimera, 187, Madrid, 2000, 19-22.
  • "Conocimiento, revelación, lenguajes". León, IES. "Lancia", col. Cuadernos del noroeste, 2000.
  • "Hablo con Blanca Varela" [epilogue], en Blanca Varela, Obra reunida, Barcelona, Galaxia Gutenberg/Círculo de Lectores, 2001, 265-278.
  • "Memoria de Valente", ABC/Cultural, Madrid 3/9/2001.
  • "Luis Cernuda: el poeta y el crítico", in Nuria Martínez de Castilla y James Valender (editors), 100 años de Luis Cernuda. Madrid, Publicaciones de la Residencia de Estudiantes, 2002, 223-231.
  • "Poesía y literatura: ¿límites?" in José Enrique Martínez Fernández (ed.), Estudios de literatura comparada: norte y sur, la sátira, transferencia y recepción de géneros y formas textuales. León, Universidad de León, 2002, 33-42.
  • "Presencias de la poesía europea", Moenia, Lugo, 2004, 5-16
  • "Poesía, existencia, muerte", in Antonio Gamoneda (ed.), Atravesando olvido. Antología personal. Mexico, Editorial Aldus, 2004, 207-221. French translation: "Poésie, existence, mort", Europe París, 875, 2002, 94-104.
  • "Las lágrimas de Claudio", Archipiélago, 63, Barcelona, 2004, 21-24
  • "Prólogo", en César Antonio Molina, El rumor del tiempo. Barcelona, Galaxia Gutenberg/Círculo de Lectores, 2006, 7-13.
  • "Quelques mots sur la poésie", Europe, París, 928-929, 2006, 223-226.
  • "Sur la poésie. Discours de réception du Prix Européen de Littérature 2006" suivi de Tombées (5 poèmes inédits). Jacques Ancet (translation), Mesnil-sur-Estrée, Librairie La Hune/Arfuyen, 2006.
  • "Ángel González: un histórico", La voz de Asturias, Oviedo, 3/2/2008.
  • "Valente : texto y contexto", Santiago de Compostela, Servizo de Publicacións e Intercambio Científico Campus Universitario Sur, 2007.
  • "Pórtico", en Nâzim Hikmet, Poemas finales. Ültimos poemas II 1962–1963. Madrid, Ediciones del Oriente y del Mediterráneo, 2008.ra física de María Ruiz" [The physical adventure of María Ruiz], in Cuentos. León, Caja de Ahorros, 1968.
  • "Relación de Don Sotero" [Relationship of Don Sotero], Los Cuadernos del Norte (Oviedo) 31, 1985, 74-76. Published again in Santos Alonso (ed.), Figuraciones. León, Diputación Provincial, 1986, 135-145.
  • "Relación y fábula" ("Relación de Don Sotero" y "Fábula de Pieter") [Relationship of Don Sotero and Pieter's short-story] . Santander, EditoriaLímite, 1997.
  • Un armario lleno de sombra [A wardrobe full of shadows, Autobiography], Galaxia Gutenberg - Círculo de Lectores, Madrid, 2009.

Books with plastic artists

  • "Lapidario incompleto" [Incomplete lapidary], in Antonio Gamoneda, Luis Mateo Díez, José Maria Merino, León: traza y memoria. [with engravings by Félix Cárdenas] Madrid, Antonio Machón, 1984, 11-40.
  • Encuentro en el territorio del frío [Encounter in the land of cold]. [with drawings by Albert Agulló and foreword by José Gómez Isla] León, Instituto Leonés de Cultura, 1995.
  • Eros y Thanatos. [paintings by Álvaro Delgado with eleven poems by Antonio Gamoneda] Madrid, Círculo de Bellas Artes, 1999.
  • ¿Tú? [You?] [with engravings by Antoni Tàpies] Madrid, Ed. T/ Antonio Machón, 1999.
  • Más allá de la sombra [Beyond the shadow]. [Bernardo Sanjurjo, Obra gráfica, 1999–2002. Antonio Gamoneda, Poemas, 2002] Oviedo, Museo de Bellas Artes de Asturias, 2002.
  • Memoria volcánica [Volcanic memory]. [with engravings by Amaya Bozal] Madrid, Ediciones Sen, 2002.
  • Extravío en la luz [Lost in light] with engravings by Juan Carlos Mestre and forewords by Amelia Gamoneda, Madrid, Casariego, 2008.

See also

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