Jose Zorrilla „ Moral, a Spanish poet, born in Valladolid, Feb. 21, 1817. He was educated in the seminary of the nobles at Madrid, studied law at Toledo and Valladolid, but devoted himself exclusively to literary studies, and in the periodical entitled El artista made his first appearance in print as a poet. His father, displeased with his occupations, sent for him, and placed him under the charge of a muleteer to be brought home; but on the way he managed to escape on a horse which he took from one of his relatives without permission of the owner, and with a few reals in his pocket made his way to Madrid. Here he lay concealed for some time, but on Feb. 15, 1837, at the funeral of the poet Larra, suddenly excited a great sensation by an elegy on the dead poet which he recited at the grave. In a few months his first volume of poetry appeared, and from that time the literary reputation of Zorrilla has steadily increased. He has published Cantos del trovador, coleccion de leyendas y tradiciones históridas (3 vols., Madrid, 1841); Floras perdidas (1843); and Granada, which is considered his masterpiece (2 vols., Paris, 1853-'4). He has written a number of comedies, of which that entitled El zapatero y el rey is the most popular.
His Ooras completas (2 vols., Paris, 1847; 2d ed., 3 vols., 1853) contain his biography by Ildefonso Ovejas. For some years Zorrilla lived alternately in Paris and Brussels, and then emigrated to America.