Stuff about Him

Parents: Don Francisco Vallego (Father) and Mrs. Santos Mendoza (mother)
youngest of 12 children
Cesar Abraham Vellejo Mendoza was born on March 16, 1892 in a town called Santiago de Chuco, in Peru. He was the youngest of eleven children and came from a very religious family. Vallejo entered the School of Philosophy and Letters at Trujillo University in 1910 and finally in 1915 he received a Master's Degree in Spanish literature. Vellejo soon moved from Trujillo and moved to a town called lima, there he became the principal of a very prestigious school, and there Vellejo’s poem Los heraldos negros was published, and was received enthusiastically, And Vellejo began to push his talent. His mother died in 1920, and he was imprisoned for 105 days after returning home to Santiago de Chuco and igniting a scandal there. While imprisoned he work on trilce and in 1923 it was published. Fearing that he would be forced to go back to jail, from the request of a friend he left for Paris in the June of 1923. There he lived there in poverty with his wife Georgette until his death, on April 15 1938. While in Europe though wrote many poems and five poems. 

Los heraldos negros (1918)

Trilce (1922)

Poemas humanos (1939) published by wife after death.

He is considered one of the great poetic innovators of the 20th century in any language. Always a step ahead of the literary currents, each of his books was distinct from the others and, in its own sense, revolutionary. 

Poetry is nearer to vital truth than history.  ~Plato, Ion 

He said things upfront never beat around the bush. 

A poet's work is to name the unnamable, to point at frauds, to take sides, start arguments, shape the world, and stop it going to sleep.  ~Salman Rushdie

He had many views on politics and used poetry to express himself. 

Poetry is not a profession, it's a destiny.

- Mikhail Dudan

He used poetry to see how his life was and what he saw as a kid etc. 

Poetry is a way of taking life by the throat.

- Robert Frost

Once again he used poetry as a way to express his feelings on different views in life. 


  1. What first got you into poetry? What made you realize it was your destiny?
  2. What are you favorite types of poetry and subjects to write about or on?
  3. What are your views for people using poetry as a forum of showing there feelings and govt. etc.?
  4. What are your favorite poems to read for a past time?
  5. Do you have any favorite poets? Who are they and why?

-Not only the last child, but the eleventh of the Mendoza family of north-peru.

-He was born in a mountain community of Santiago de Chuco on March 16, 1892 and got his elementary education there.

-He attended the regional university at Trujillo and obtained his degree in 1915. He stayed there until 1918 as an employee for local schools.

-At Vallejo’s beginning studies at the university his poems started showing up in newspapers. Then when he was more known his poems starting appearing in journals.

-In 1918, the year Vallejo left Trujillo for the broader horizons of Lima, he published his first collection of poems, Los heraldos negros (The Black Heralds).

-During 1919 Vallejo was associated with the short-lived but significant review Nuestra epoca(the magazine)

-In mid 1923 he left Peru and moved to Europe; First, Paris, Then, Madrid. He never went back to Peru.

-His other novel, Tungsten, published in 1931, was a good example of his new type of writing, literary hackwork.

-In the beginning of the Spanish war, he returned to poetry.