Sidney Franklin (bullfighter)

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Sidney Franklin
Sidney Franklin.jpg
Personal information
Full nameSidney Frumkin
Nickname(s)El Torero de la Torah
Born(1903-07-11)July 11, 1903
Brooklyn, New York, United States
DiedApril 26, 1976(1976-04-26) (aged 72)
New York City, United States
Bullfighting career
Début novillero27 July 1923
Alternativa18 June 1967

Sidney Franklin (11 July 1903 – 26 April 1976) was the first American to become a successful matador, the most senior level of bullfighter.


Sidney Franklin was born in Brooklyn, New York to Orthodox Jewish parents. In 1922 he traveled to Mexico City, where he would begin a career in bullfighting. He fought bulls in Spain, Portugal, Mexico, Colombia and Panama.

Writing in Death in the Afternoon on Sidney Franklin, Ernest Hemingway said, "Franklin is brave with a cold, serene and intelligent valor but instead of being awkward and ignorant he is one of the most skillful, graceful and slow manipulators of a cape fighting today. His repertoire with the cape is enormous but he does not attempt by a varied repertoire to escape from the performance of the veronica as the base of his cape work and his veronicas are classical, very emotional, and beautifully timed and executed. You will find no Spaniard who ever saw him fight who will deny his artistry and excellence with the cape.” And later Hemingway adds, “He is a better, more scientific, more intelligent, and more finished matador than all but about six of the full matadors in Spain today and the bullfighters know it and have the utmost respect for him."

Franklin appeared in a few films in the USA and Mexico. Later he presented bullfights on American TV. He wrote an autobiography, Bullfighter from Brooklyn and he also was a close friend of the American actor and legend James Dean, who was a big fan of the art of bullfighting.

He died of natural causes at his home. [1]


According to A. E. Hotchner, "Lillian Ross's career with The New Yorker was founded on the success of her profile of the bullfighter Sidney Franklin." – Papa Hemingway, A. E. Hotchner, 1955.

Partial filmography[edit]