Gerolamo Araolla was born into a distinguished family. He was a pupil of the Sassari physician and philologist Gavino Sambigucci. After studying literature and philosophy, Araolla graduated with a law degree from the University of Pisa in 1567. Shortly after graduation, he took his vows and became a priest in Bosa in 1569.
Araolla was an important poet, authoring verses in Italian, Sardinian and Spanish, the three dominate languages in Sardinia in the period. He said that poetry is especially delicate, sweet, and moving. He felt, however, that it was necessary to overcome the humanistic conception of poetry as polite and imitatio dei. Araolla was a Petrarchist, profoundly cultured, with a great knowledge of Torquato Tasso; his Neoplatonism rested on the solid foundation of Augustinian thought.
Araolla enthusiastically participated in the cultural ferment that animated his Sassari youth, and entered into friendships with the leading Sassarian intellectuals of the 16th century.
In 1582, he published his poem Sa vida, su martiriu, et morte dessos gloriosos Martires Gavinu, Brothu et Gianuari, based on folk tales about Saint Gabinus. This work, consisting of 244 stanzas and approximately two thousand verses, had wide circulation on Sardinia. It was probably distributed by the village clergy as an aid to pastoral work. The poem is the largest attempt at the construction of a literary Sardinian language. Even the metrical structure of the work, ottava rima, is an attempt to connect his work in the Sardinian language with Italian literature.
A few years later, the introduction of his work: Rimas diversas spirituales (1597), focused on notions of poetics and rhetoric in an effort to give Sardinian the same dignity as literary productions in languages such as Latin, Spanish and Italian. Rimas diversas spirituales was dedicated to D. Biagio d'Alagon.
- Sa vida, su martirio, et morte dessos gloriosos martires Gavinu, Brothu et Gianuari, per Francisci Guarneriu istampadore de Nicolau Canellas, Calaris (Cagliari) 1582.
- Rimas diversas Spirituales de su Dottore Hieronimu Araolla Sardu Sassaresu, Ioanne Maria Galcerinu, Calaris (Cagliari) 1597
- F. Delitala, Oratio de Hyeronimo Araolla poeta secerensi habita in solemni studiorum instauratione a Fulgentio Delitala philos. Collegii doctore, Saceri [Sassari], Ex Typ. Arch. Raymundi Azara, 1840.
- P. Mossa, Saggio di versione italiana del Gavino trionfante di Gerolamo Araolla, "La Stella di Sardegna”, Sassari, Tipografia Azuni, 3, 1876, vol. 2, pp. 172–174.
- P. Nurra, Antologia dialettale dei classici poeti sardi: G. Araolla, Sassari, G. Dessì, 1897.
- R. Garzia, Gerolamo Araolla, Bologna, Stabilimento Poligrafico emiliano, 1914.
- F. Alziator, Storia della letteratura di Sardegna, Cagliari, 3T, 1982, pp. 104–110.
- Girolamo Araolla and his Solution to the Sardinian "Questione della lingua", AAIS, April, 1990, University of Virginia.
- N. Tanda, Letteratura e lingue in Sardegna, Sassari, Edes, 1991, pp. 17–18, 60-61, n. 17.
- D. Manca, Introduzione a [A. CANO], Sa Vitta et sa Morte, et Passione de sanctu Gavinu, Prothu et Januariu, Cagliari, Centro di Studi Filologici Sardi/Cuec, 2002, p. 345
- G. Porcu, Régula castigliana. Poesia sarda e metrica spagnola dal '500 al '700, Il Maestrale, Nuoro 2008, pp. 13, 14, 21, 61, 145, 146, 153-156, 158, 164.
- D. Manca, La comunicazione linguistica e letteraria dei Sardi: dal Medioevo alla «fusione perfetta», «Bollettino di Studi Sardi», IV, 4 (2011), Centro di Studi Filologici Sardi, Cagliari, Cuec, 2011, pp. 49–75.