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Brazil Honors 'Girl from Ipanema' Writer

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The flag of Brazil (marellinux (by-nc-nd)/flickr)

Brazil has posthumously given the rank of ambassador to a poet and songwriter who penned the famous Bossa Nova anthem, "Girl from Ipanema."

The Foreign Ministry bestowed the honor on Vinicius de Moraes, a one-time diplomat who was the poetic force behind Bossa Nova in the 1960s.

Moraes was first posted to Los Angeles in 1946 as a vice consul. His other postings took him to Paris and Rome.

A gregarious character - he was married nine times - Moraes embodied the free-spirit of his native Rio de Janeiro.

It was that lifestyle that led Brazil's military dictatorship to expel him from the diplomatic corps in 1969.

On Monday, he was permanently reinstated.

Moraes died at age 66 in 1980.

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