In the last part of the reign of Philip II, Spanish political literature focused on increasing frequency and attention on the figure of the favourite. The privado, present in the Iberian literary production since the fifteenth century, was modeled on biblical, classical and historical examples. It became a highly topical figure in the last fifteen years of the reign of the Rey Prudente, when the sovereign’s illness and advanced age allowed the rise of a small group of powerful advisers. Meanwhile, an aristocrat eager to redeem himself and his family, was preparing for the role of the king’s favourite, being that he was very close to the prince. The article therefore proposes to illustrate the direct correspondence between the evolution of the situation at court and the increase of texts written on the figure of the privado, while emphasizing how the concrete actions of the historical subjects and the theoretical reflections on the theme influenced each other. .
Keywords: Marquis of Denia, Philip II, Philip III, Antonio Pérez, favourite, court