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Francisco Brines. Photo by Jesús Signes.
Francisco Brines. Photo: Jesús Signes.

Poet Francisco Brines dies at 89 years old

The winner of the Cervantes Prize in 2020 died in Gandía Hospital after undergoing surgery for a hernia.

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On May 15, 2021, the poet and winner of the Cervantes Prize, Francisco Brines, was admitted and underwent emergency surgery for a hernia. Since then, the artist remained hospitalized in Gandía Hospital, and after five days, he lost the battle at the age of 89. Tusquets Publishing House was the first to confirm the news of the death of the renowned Valencian writer. 

Brines was taken to the hospital shortly after the king and queen presented him with the 2020 Cervantes Prize at his home in the family estate "Elca," in Oliva, Valencia, as he was unable to attend the ceremony on April 23 due to his delicate state of health. Throughout his literary career, the writer has won the National Prize for Literature, the Queen Sofia Prize for Ibero-American Poetry, the Federico García Lorca International Poetry Prize and the National Critics' Prize.

Francisco Brines belonged to the so-called Generation of the 50s, which included Claudio Rodríguez, Ángel González, José Agustín Goytisolo, Jaime Gil de Biedma and José Ángel Valente, among other writers. He held an honorary doctorate from the Polytechnic University of Valencia and was Reader in Spanish Literature at Cambridge University and Professor of Spanish at Oxford University.

Today, the world of literature in Spain bids farewell to one of the greatest contemporary poets. The Royal House has sent an emotional farewell message:

"He opened his home, his thoughts and his poetry to us with his great humanity. We will always carry him in our hearts. Thank you Don Francisco."

From the world of politics, both Pedro Sánchez and leader of the opposition, Pablo Casado have remembered the writer and have spoken after this loss. 

"Spanish poetry has lost today one of its memorable authors and a master of several generations," said Casado. For his part, the president of the Valencian Community, Ximo Puig, expressed his condolences to his family and friends. "His family and his closest friends have given him a paper and a pen in his last moments. And Paco has written just two words: 'I love you.' A great person is gone. There remains an eternal memory," he wrote.

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