A lo divino (Spanish pronunciation: [a lo ðiˈβino]) is a Spanish phrase meaning "to the divine" or "in a sacred manner". The phrase is frequently used to describe a secular work, rewritten with a religious overtone, or a secular topic recast in religious terms using metaphors and symbolism. These types of adaptations were most popular during the 16th and 17th centuries, the Golden Age of Spanish literature.[1]

Marcelino Menéndez y Pelayo, a Spanish literary scholar felt the adaptations were of little note, calling them a short-lived whim of the pious. It took Dámaso Alonso's study of their influence on Garcilaso de la Vega's poetry before they were considered significant to the development of Spanish literature.

A lo divino also refers to a style of music that incorporates religious chants.

Famous authorsEdit

  • Saint John of the Cross - many of his poems contained a lo divino in the title, indicating that they were taken from a secular work and changed to fit a religious interpretation.
  • Sebastián de Córdoba - rewrote some of Garcilaso's secular love poems in this style.


  1. Ward, Philip (1978). The Oxford Companion to Spanish Literature. Oxford University Press, USA. p. 17. ISBN 978-0-19-866114-6.

Further readingEdit