Alfonso Reyes (älfôn´sō rā´yĕs), 1889–1959, Mexican writer, diplomat, and educator. Reyes is generally recognized as one of the greatest Spanish American writers of his time. After spending several years in Europe, Argentina, and Brazil as a diplomat, he became president of the Colegio de Mexico. Reyes gained international fame for his poetry, narratives, literary criticism, and essays. His Visión de Anáhuac (1917) is a long prose poem. His poetry also includes Huellas [traces] (1922), Romance del Río de Enero (1933), Yerbas del Tarahumara (1934), Golfo de México (1935), and Romances (1945). A classicist both in style and temperament, he brought grace, wit, and prodigious erudition to his essays. His prose works number in the hundreds; some of the most representative are La experienca literaria (1942), El deslinde [the frontier] (1944), Mexican Heritage (in English, 1946), and the series Simpatías y diferencias [sympathies and differences], Burlas literarias [literary spoofs], and Marginalias. His more recent works are Ancorajes (1951), Albores (1960), and A campo traviesa [open country] (1960). The complete works of Reyes were published in 14 volumes between 1955 and 1959.
See his selected essays (tr. and ed. by C. Ramsdell 1964); studies by J. W. Robb (1969), B. B. Aponte (1972).