A Spanish Scholar Jnan De, born at Orotava, in the island of Teneriffe, Dec. 15, 1702, died in Madrid, Aug. 23, 1771. He studied in Paris and London, revisited Teneriffe in 1724, and then went to Madrid and became a secretary in the royal printing office, a librarian in the royal library, and in 1740 official translator to the principal secretary of state. He was elected a member of the royal academy in 1743, and devised an improved system of orthography, punctuation, and accentuation for the Spanish language. He collected 24,000 Spanish proverbs, and published Grammatica latina, en verso castellano (Madrid, 1771; 8th ed., 1820) and other works in prose and verse (select edition, 2 vols. 4to, 1773).
A Spanish Author Tomas De, nephew of the preceding, born at Orotava in 1750, died in Madrid in 1791. He received his education in Madrid under the auspices of his uncle, at the age of 18 produced some translations of French plays which were performed, and received a place in the office of the secretary of state, which he retained until the close of his life. His literary pursuits were much interrupted by personal controversies with rivals, and in 1786 he was summoned before the inquisition on suspicion of being tainted with the new French philosophy. His published works, apart from his controversial writings, comprise original and translated dramas, didactic poems, and fables. The best of his poems is La música, published in 1779, which has passed through several editions and been translated into the chief European languages. His reputation however rests upon his Fáibulm literarias, nearly 80 in number, in upward of 40 different metres. The fictions are restricted in their moral purpose to the correction of the faults and follies of men of learning.