Fun Facts Friday: Pío Baroja

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Pío Baroja (28 December, 1872 – 30 October, 1956) was a Spanish writer, biographer and physician.


Portrait by Joaquin Sorolla (1914)
Books by Pio Baroja*

  1. Born as Pío Baroja y Nessi in San Sebastián , his father was Serafin Baroja, a noted writer at the time.
  2. Baroja started writing seriously at the age of 13.
  3. Even though he was a licensed physician, he only practiced for a short time in Cestona. His time as a student, however, was not wasted as it was material for his novel The Tree of Knowledge (El árbol de la ciencia – 1911).
  4. Other jobs the writer had were managing bakery of his aunt Juana Nessi ,and running for the Spanish parliament as a radical Republican.
  5. In 1899 the author met the Oscar Wilde and Jacques Élisée Reclus.
  6. In 1903 Mr. Baroja visited Tangier as a war correspondent for the newspaper El Globo.
  7. Ernest Hemingway was a fan of Mr. Baroja. When they met in October 1956 Mr. Hemingway said: “Allow me to pay this small tribute to you who taught so much to those of us who wanted to be writers when we were young. I deplore the fact that you have not yet received a Nobel Prize, especially when it was given to so many who deserved it less, like me, who am only an adventurer.”
  8. Ricardo Baroja, the author’s brother was a painter and engraver, as well as a writer. Julio Caro Baroja, son of the author’s sister Carmen, was a noted anthropologist.
  9. Baroja was a key member of the Generation ’98 – a Spanish society of novelists, poets, essayists and thinkers active during the Spanish – American War.
  10. At the start of the Spanish Civil War, Mr. Baroja was arrest, but released after one day. Not taking any changes, the author went into exile in France.

Books by Pio Baroja*

Zohar — Man of la Book
*Ama­zon links point to an affil­i­ate account

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