Grave site of Segundo Ramírez who inspired Güiraldes for his fictional character. Photo by E. Montes-Bradley
Don Segundo Sombra is a 1926 novel by Argentine rancher Ricardo Güiraldes. Like José Hernández's poem Martín Fierro, its protagonist is a gaucho. However, unlike Hernandez's poem, Don Segundo Sombra does not romanticize the figure of the gaucho, but simply examines the character as a shadow (sombra) cast across Argentine history. Unlike Martin Fierro, purely an imaginary character, Don Segundo Sombra was loosely inspired by the real life of Segundo Ramírez, a native of the town of San Antonio de Areco in the province of Buenos Aires. The life of Don Segundo Sombra made it to the big screen in 1969 in an Argentine production of a film by Manuel Antín.
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