Manuel Legares was born in Spain in 1850 and made initial attempts as a novillero before realizing his calling was with the sticks. Thus, he became a banderillero instead, working in the cuadrilla of other toreros.
As was the custom in his era, Legares and his companions engaged in certain theatrics no longer practical in the bullfighting world. One was the pole vaulting over the bull. Not only was this torero accomplished with the banderillas, but developed a reputation for this stunt as well.
Until one time.
While attempting to pole vault over a bull in Madrid, he received a major goring. This did not kill him, but sidelined him for months and when he did attempt to return, hsi health and his nerves were not up to the task.
Slumping into depression at what looked to be forced retirement from the trade, Legares committed suicide in July of 1878 in his Sevilla home.
He cut his own throat with a straight razor.