- This article deals with Hernández's poem. For other things named after it, see Martín Fierro (disambiguation)
is a 2,316 line epic poem by the Argentine writer José Hernández. The poem was originally published in two parts, El Gaucho Martín Fierro
(1872) and La Vuelta de Martín Fierro
(1879). The poem supplied a historical link to the gauchos' contribution to the national development of Argentina, for the gaucho had played a major role in Argentina's independence from Spain. The poem, written in a Spanish that evokes rural Argentina, is widely seen as the pinnacle of the genre of "gauchesque" poetry (poems centered around the life of the gaucho, written in a style that evokes the rural Argentine ballads known as payadas
) and a touchstone of Argentine national identity. It has appeared in literally hundreds of editions and has been translated into over 70 languages. It has earned major commentaries from, among others, Leopoldo Lugones, Miguel de Unamuno, Jorge Luis Borges (see
Borges on Martín Fierro) and Rafael Squirru. The Martín Fierro Award, named for the poem, is the most respected award for Argentine television and radio programs.