About Luis Vaz de CamoesLuís Vaz de Camoes rendered in English as Camoens is considered the Portuguese language's popular poet. His mastery of verse has been compared to that of Shakespeare, Vondel, Homer, Virgil and Dante. We are listing here few of his best poems ever as he wrote a considerable amount of lyrical poetry and drama but is best remembered for his epic work Os Lusíadas (The Lusiads).
His collection of poetry The Parnasum of Luís de Camões was lost in his lifetime. The influence of his masterpiece Os Lusíadas is so profound that Portuguese is called the "language of Camões".
Camões, as his love of poetry can attest, was a romantic and idealist. It was rumored that he fell in love with Catherine of Ataíde, lady-in-waiting to the Queen, and also Princess Maria, sister of John III of Portugal.
He enlisted in the overseas militia, and traveled to Ceuta in the fall of 1549. During a battle with the Moors, he lost the sight in his right eye. He eventually returned to Lisbon in 1551, a changed man, living a bohemian lifestyle. In 1552, during the religious festival of Corpus Christi, in the Largo do Rossio, he injured Gonçalo Borges, a member of the Royal Stables. Camões was imprisoned. His mother pleaded for his release, visiting royal ministers and the Borges family for a pardon. Released, Camões was ordered to pay 4,000 réis and serve three years in the militia in the Orient.
Camões died in Lisbon in 1580, at the age of 56. The day of his death, 10 June OS, is Portugal's national day. He is buried near Vasco da Gama in the Jerónimos Monastery in the parish of Belém in Lisbon.
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