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Sculpture from the 16th-century sarcophagus of Suero de Quiñones by Pompeo Leoni

Suero de Quiñones (c. 1409 – 11 July 1456), called Él del Passo ("he of the pass"), was a Leonese knight and author. He gained fame by staging a pas d'armes, the Passo Honroso, at the river Órbigo and describing it in his Libro del Passo honroso.

Suero was the son of Diego Fernández de Quiñones, called el Afortunado, who was beneficed by his uncle Pedro Suárez and named sole heir of his possessions. Diego married María de Toledo, who bore him ten children, Suero being the second. Suero fasted in honour of the Virgin Mary every Tuesday, wore an iron necklet every Thursday as a sign of devotion to his lady, and heard Mass daily.

From 10 July to 9 August 1434 at the Órbigo bridge in Castile, Suero and ten of his companions encamped in a field beside the bridge and challenged each knight who wished to cross it to a joust. This road was used by pilgrims all over Europe on the way to shrine at Santiago de Compostela, and at this time of the summer, many thousands would cross the bridge. Suero and his men swore to "break 300 lances" before moving on.

The men fought for over a month, an account of which is left to us in great detail by town notary Don Luis Alonso Luengo who kept a detailed first-hand chronicle (latter published as Libro del Passo honroso[1]). After 166 battles Suero and his men were so injured they could not continue and declared the mission complete. Suero de Quiñones became legendary in Spanish history and was mentioned in Don Quixote, the 1605 satire on the sort of romantic chivalry out of touch with reality.

Notes[edit]

References[edit]

  • Riquer, Martín de (1967). Caballeros andantes españoles. Madrid: Editorial Espasa-Calpe.

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