Francisco de Quevedo (Madrid, 1580-1645) was well known for his rich and dynamic style, achieved through an ingenious and complex manipulation of language. Yet he was also a consistent and systematic thinker, with moral philosophy, broadly understood, lying at the core of his numerous and varied works. Quevedo lived in an age of transition, with the Humanist tradition on the wane, and his writing expresses the characteristic uncertainty of a moment of cultural transition. In this book Alfonso Rey surveys Quevedo's ideas in such diverse fields as ethics, politics, religion and literature, ideas which hitherto have received little attention. New information is also provided towards a reconstruction of the cultural evolution of Europe in the years prior to the Enlightenment, and thus the scope of the book extends beyond that of Spanish literature.