During the first half of the XVI century, the scientific and historical miscellanies were one of the most prestigious genres in the Spanish prose, with big representatives such as Fray Antonio Guevara and Pedro Mexia.
Guevara’s most significant creations were Marco Aurelio (Sevilla, 1528) and Clock for Princes (Valladolid, 1529), this last one was a huge editorial success and it was translated into multiple languages.
Mexia’s production (minor pieces aside) is restricted to the historical field and the scientific miscellanies. In the historical field, the most important piece is Imperial and Caesarian History, along with History of Carlos V. In regards to the scientific miscellanies, the most relevant pieces are Silva with a Varied Lecture and The Dialogues or Coloquios.
Mexia’s editorial success, in comparison to Guevara’s success, was extraordinary, and his work had a notorious influence in other writers as well. Many people have pointed out that traces of his influence can be found in works by Cervantes and Mateo Alemán; many others have also said that even authors such as Montaigne, Lope de Vega, Marlowe and Shakespeare will forever be in debt to this Sevillian humanist.
Many novels from the XV century continued to be read throughout the XVI century. Two of the most successful books back then were Grisel and Mirabella, along with The Prison of Love by Diego de San Pedro. These two productions were translated into Italian, French and English; by the XVI century there were 47 first editions and 27 second editions.