The earliest documented manuscript can be traced back to the late 19th century. There had been several widespread speculations as who created it; one of which points to Antonio Rubira. The second one bore a distinct note “Melodia de Sor" (Sor's melody) at the bottom part referencing it to Fernando Sor. The earliest known recording entitled “Sort-Estudio para Guitarra" was said to be in between 1897 and 1901 done in Madrid featuring Simon and Luis Ramirez.
Two more renowned Spanish guitarists surfaced as the "author" of this guitar piece. Narciso Yepes is listed as the author of “Romance” as he holds the Spanish copyrights of the composition. Nevertheless, he was referred to be the arranger of the piece but not the author. In 1941, Vicente Gomez performed and published "Romance" in the movie “Blood and Sand” yet his claim to be the author is highly-unlikely as surely it doesn't match the time the first manuscript was dated.
Nevertheless, “Romance” has been popularly used from movies to huge concerts and live performances and remained to be one of the greatest acoustic pieces in the music industry.
Learn more about this compelling song at: https://galaxymusicnotes.com/pages/about-uncertain-origin-of-romance