Lope de Vega (1562–1635), playwright and poet of the Golden Age of Spanish literature (sixteenth and seventeenth centuries), considered the founder of the Spanish national drama with hundreds of plays to his name.
Pedro Calderón de la Barca y Henao (1600–1681), Spanish dramatist and poet, the last prominent writer of the golden age of Spanish literature.
Jose Echegaray y Eizaguirre (1832–1916), Spanish playwright, statesman, and co-winner of the Nobel Prize in literature in 1904.
José Ortega y Gasset (1883–1955), writer and philosopher known for his humanistic criticism of modern civilization, whose articles, lectures, and essays on philosophy and political discourse led to the fall of the Spanish monarchy in 1931.
Plácido Domingo (b. 1941), great tenor.
Julio Iglesias (b.1943), internationally renowned singer.
Carmen Maura (b. 1946), 1990 Felix Award (Spain's equivalent of the Oscar) winner for best actress and owner of a small art gallery in Madrid.
Because of its historic preeminence in national culture, politics and society, Madrid has always attracted some of Spain's most brilliant people. Most of Spain's authors and painters have studied or lived in Madrid for part or most of their lives. The city has also attracted literary figures from other nations, including:
American author Ernest Hemingway (1899–1961), who lived and worked in Madrid for a short time.
Spanish poet and writer Federico García Lorca (1898–1936), who studied in Madrid and spent most of his time in the city between 1919 and 1934, and Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra (1547–1616), author of the epic Don Quixote, who is considered the greatest Spanish author.