He violently attacked Politian (Poliziano), whose Miscellanea (a collection of notes on classical authors) were declared by Merula to be either plagiarized from his own writings or, when original, to be entirely incorrect.
These consist of episodes in the life of the parish priest "Father Prout," and dialogues after the model of "Christopher North," varied by translations of well-known English songs into Latin, Greek, French and Italian verse, which he humorously represents as being the true originals from which the English authors had merely plagiarized them.
In 1803 he produced El BarOn in its present form; originally written (1791) as a zarzuela, it was shamelessly plagiarized by Andres de Mendoza, but the recast, a far more brilliant work, still keeps the stage.
He translated Gil Blas, adopting more or less seriously Voltaire's unfounded suggestion that Le Sage plagiarized from Espinel's Marcos de Obregon, and other Spanish books; the text appeared in 1783, and in 1828 was greatly modified by Evaristo Pena y Martin, whose arrangement is still widely read.
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