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Courtly literature and art have long been utilized as propagandists tools to exalt ruling dynasties, to propagate certain political interests, and even to recast historical events in order to portray a given monarch in a more favorable light. The disjunction between the private lives and public images of monarchs of the Habsburg court in Spain present a particularly compelling example. In artistic representation, we need only look at the iconographical programs crafted for public festivals celebrating the birth, death or marriages of members of the royal family for evidence of politically motivated image shaping, such as the funeral exequies for Philip IV. (1) Literary encomia of Spanish monarchs for the sake of projecting aggrandizing public images are most evident in the patronage plays, often commissioned by the dignitaries themselves. These have come to constitute a genre of their own, known as genealogical comedies, more than thirty of which were composed by Lope de Vega (Zugasti 25). (2) Viewed in their most positive light, such plays served as a school, "en donde al publico se le hacia participe de una vision triunfante de la historia, mediante la exhibicion de acontecimientos historicos recientes o la evocacion de los hechos del pasado de la monarquia o de algun gran linaje" (Ferrer Valls, "El juego del poder" 160).

A more cynical view, however, might posit that some dramatic works depicting monarchs do not serve as a mirror of history, but rather as a distortion of it with ulterior motives. Such are those genealogical comedies by Lope de Vega that made Menendez Pelayo irate due to their manipulations of historical facts: "Su desprecio se transformaba en colera cuando Lope se permitia transgredir la verdad con mayusculas, la verdad de las cronicas, en favor de cualquier apologia familiar, como en La fortuna merecida" (Ferrer Valls, "Lope de Vega" 16). The extravagant staging of theatrical works that exalted the monarchy, such as those performed at Aranjuez in 1622 to celebrate the seventeenth birthday of Felipe IV, had several purposes:

Podian servir de instrumento para asentar la union entre la corona y sus subditos; o podian funcionar como medio muy eficaz para iniciar, o fortalecer, un viraje politico, o una campana propagandistica. Pero mas que nada, causaban impresion la inmensa riqueza de la Corona Real, y la magnificencia y ostentacion que exigia en todas partes el ejercicio del poder. De vez en cuando un derroche extravagante podia justificarse como arma de la Realpolitik. (Davies 71)

I wish to explore in this brief study a play by Antonio Coello, Celos, honor y cordura, that may be a rewriting of a historical episode in the private life of Felipe II and despicts him in a rather nefarious light.

Antonio Coello y Ochoa (1611-1652) is usually ascribed to the school of Calderon and is best known for his collaborations with him and other Spanish Golden Age dramatists of some renown such as Rojas Zorilla, Perez de Montalban, Velez de Guevara and Solis. (3) Perez de Montalban is one of several contemporaries to laud our dramatist in the Indice de los ingenios de Madrid that he included in his miscellany Para todos: "Don Antonio Coello, cuyos pocos anos desmienten sus muchos aciertos, y de quien se puede dezir con verdad, que empieca por donde otros acaban, escrivio [...] otros muchos versos a diferentes sujetos que tiene echos de grande profundidad y valentia, y entre ellos dos o tres Comedias" (f. 228r). Of the works that Coello penned on his own, the tragedy El conde de sex, which details the queen's complicated relationship with the young favorite Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex, is the most widely-known. It is a work celebrated by critics as early as Bances Candamo (4) for its depiction of regal decorum, as the queen steadfastly suppresses her own amorous passions and jealousy for the sake of propriety (Wilson and Moir 213-15).

The little-read comedy (La gran comedia de) celos, honor, y cordura has been attributed to Coello. (5) It is another play that examines the complications that arise when a monarch falls in love with someone who is not his social equal. The central character in Coello's play is identified only with the title El duque de Milan, although he is also referred to as both prince and king in the dramatic dialogue. His amorous rival is Don Carlos, a Ghibelline, who loves Blanca, a Guelph (or Welf). Thus the two lovers belong to rival factions in the late Medieval dispute between the supremacy of Church or Empire in Rome and northern Italy. (6) In spite of the explicit identification of one of the play's male leads as an antagonist in the historical feud of the Guelphs and Ghibellines, I will build a case, using primarily circumstantial evidence, to suggest that the fictional duke of Milan might be intended as a veiled [emphasis added] depiction of Spanish king Felipe II for the purpose of reshaping public opinion of his scandalous treatment of Dona Ana de Mendoza y de la Cerda, Princess of Eboli.

Both the plot action and the characterization of the duke of Milan in Coello's play lead me to speculate that Celos, honor, y cordura may have been intended as a drama a clef. Carlos Iebellino (Ghibelline) is a young nobleman serving at the court of the duke of Milan. Although the play does not use the term valido or privado to characterize their relationship, the duke's description of their intimate friendship is very much in consonance with one of the main functions of a court favorite:
   Y asi ha mentester el Rey
   un amigo que sea medio
   para que aquestas finezas
   puedan llegar a su dueno.
   Pues Don Carlos Iebellino
   siendo vos el caballero,
   que por la sangre, y valor,
   por mi amistad, y mi deudo,
   mereceis mejor que todos,
   que os manifieste mi pecho
   a fiaros sus archivos
   ahora vengo resuelto.
   Y son para ti tan solo
   de un Principe los secretos,
   que fiaros el menor
   es teneros por mi mismo. (I, f. 53r) (7)

Carlos, then, is clearly meant to play the role of the king's privado, or valido. In the first chapter ("Si es conveniente que los Reyes tengan Privados") of the unpublished manuscript Discurso del perfecto privado, Fray Pedro Maldonado, Confessor of the Duque de Lerma, states: "Privado llamamos un hombre, con quien a solas, y particularmente se comunica, con quien no hay cosa secreta, escogido entre los demas para una cierta manera de igualdad, fundada en amor y perfecta amistad" (Mss/18335 y Mss/18721/48, unpaginated; orthography modernized). In Coello's comedy, this character is in love with Blanca, who is also the object of the duke's erotic desires. The plot is further complicated by the fact that the duke's sister, Irene, has feelings for Carlos. In an attempt to stave off the advances of their powerful suitors, Carlos and Blanca marry in secret. When the Duke begins to suspect that Carlos and Blanca are lovers, he has the former imprisoned in the palace tower under the pretext of disloyalty so he can pursue Blanca unencumbered. He tries on several occasions to rape her, but he is thwarted. In the end, the monarch learns that Carlos has been steadfastly loyal to him, so he relents and allows the young couple to enjoy their marriage together, but with the stipulation that they abandon the court forever. It is my contention that this basic plot is intended to parallel Felipe II's amorous dalliance with the Princess of Eboli, the wife of his privado Ruy Gomez de Silva.

A number of factors suggest the possible identification of the fictional duke of Milan with Felipe II in Coello's play. In the first place, Ana de Mendoza de la Cerda, princesa de Eboli (the fictional Blanca?) was in fact the wife of Felipe's privado, Ruy Gomez de Silva (the fictional Carlos?). In an unusual move, the marriage contract of Ana Mendoza de la Cerda at the age of twelve to the much older Portuguese courtier Ruy Gomez de Silva was arranged by then Prince Felipe himself, who provided a dowry of 6,000 ducados a year and even attended the betrothal ceremony in Alcala de Henares, serving as best man (Boyden 28). The extent of the power and favor that Ruy Gomez enjoyed in the mid-sixteenth century as Felipe's favorite is summarized in a comment made by Federico Badoero, the ambassador of Venice: "[T]he main title that everyone gives him is that of rey [king] Gomez, in place of Ruy Gomez, since it seems that no one has ever been so privy with a prince of such great power, nor as well beloved by his lord as he [Ruy Gomez] is by His Catholic Majesty" (Boyden 63).

As in the play, the real life duke of Milan, Felipe II, wished to make the wife of his favorite one of his erotic conquests. Manuel Fernandez Alvarez relates the encounter between nineteen-year old Ana, whose beauty was legendary, and the thirty-two-year-old Felipe when he returned to the court in 1559 after a five-year absence:

Es en ese primer encuentro cuando pronto el rumor general se hizo eco de las relaciones amorosas entre el Rey y la Princesa. Ruy Gomez de Silva era el marido, pero el Rey era el amante. Y de tal forma, que el tercer hijo que pare la Princesa en 1563, el futuro segundo duque de Pastrana, se daba como del Rey y no del privado. (Felipe II y su tiempo 843) (8)

Although he concedes that other historians have denied the affair in the absence of irrefutable proof, Fernandez Alvarez makes a strong case in favor of it by combining documentary evidence of Ana's political ambitions and manipulations with speculations involving the assassination of Escobedo by Antonio Perez. (9) Allegedly, this ocurred at the monarch's urging, the ensuing trial of Perez (also rumored to be a lover of Ana) and the subsequent harsh imprisonment of the Princess by Felipe II (843-50). Nacho Ares adds to the largely circumstantial evidence amassed by Fernandez Alvarez a 1584 Venetian document discovered by Francois Mignet that states not only that Felipe II was a great womanizer, but that one of the children that he fathered was "il duca di P ..." (88). Ares adds: "el unico 'duque de P' que existia en 1584 era el duque de Pastrana, don Rodrigo de Silva y Mendoza, el chiquito rubio de la princesa de Eboli" (88).

If indeed Coello intended his play to be at least in part a veiled portrayal of one of Felipe's many amorous entanglements, there is other intriguing textual evidence to support the notion that the duke of Milan is in fact the Prudent King himself. (10) The most obvious connection is the fact that Felipe acquired the title of duke of Milan in 1540. A second curiosity of note is the duke's utilization of encrypted messages in his amorous correspondence, as evidenced in this passage:

Duque: trasladadle, mas cuydad, que tales papeles son peligrosos, y assi siempre disfraco la letra yo como la vereys en este. (f. 57r)

Felipe II frequently used secret ciphers in his official communications (Osborne 279). But much more interesting (and unusual) is the repeated insistence throughout this comedy on the notion of dissimulation. This term, in all its variations, occurs a surprising eighteen times in the play, fourteen of which involve exchanges between the Duke and his privado. (11) In one example from the final act, both amorous rivals believe that the other hides the truth but that each one must remain circumspect:

Carlos: dissimulemos prudencia.

Duque: !Que ansi dissimule, y finja! (f. 65r)

In another example of the discourse of dissimulation, the duke of Milan decides to proceed cautiously in his pursuit of Blanca, just in case Carlos is trying to deceive him:

Duque: vaya pues con preuencion en el peligro el recato; hagan su aueriguacion el recelo, y la sospecha; dissimulemos, amor, y despertemos, cuydado. (f. 57r)

Even when the term dissimulation is not explicit, its essence permeates the dramatic dialogue in a discourse of suspicion and deceit, (12) as when Blanca is convinced that Carlos only pretends to love her while he secretly adores Irene:

Blanca: !que mucho que ande entre enganos vna fineza senzilla, Vn afecto sin doblez, y vn corazon sin enigmas! (f. 50r)

This constant evocation of what can be deemed a political philosophy must surely have captured the notice of spectators unaccustomed to such politically charged discourse in a light amorous comedy. (13)

Much has been written on the political concept of dissimulation (also called mental reservation or mental equivocation) in which deception is employed as a way to guard secrecy without resorting to total prevarication. In moral theology the practice has long been associated with the Society of Jesus. However, one of the earliest and best known advocates of Mentalis restrictio in Spain was the Dominican Martin de Azpilcueta Jaureguizar, in an anecdote related in his Oommentarius in cap. Humanae Aures, XXII. qu. V De veritate responsi; partim verbo expresso, partim mente concepti. & de arte bona & mala simulandi (Rome, 1584). The concept of dissimulation was frequently emblematized in early modern Europe as well, with a rich and varied iconography. (14)

The Jesuit Baltasar Gracian is commonly cited in discussions of dissimulation and the Jesuits in Spain, especially in the aphorisms and observations in his oraculo manual y arte de prudencia (1647). Under the heading sea el trato por mayor, procurando la sublimidad en el, Gracian counsels: "Es gran parte del regir, el dissimular: hase de dar passada a las mas de las cosas, entre familiares, entre amigos, y mas entre enemigos. Toda nimiedad es enfadosa, y en la condicion pesada" (449). The prudent prince is above all else inscrutable. He has many weapons at his disposal to make himself a complete enigma who will be respected and feared by all, especially his enemies. He avails himself of prudence, circumspection, wit and deceit in order to keep his enemies on the defensive (Quando no puede uno vestirse la piel del Leon, vistase la de la Vulpeja 478). (15) He is dispassionate and knows how to make sport of the truth (Saber jugar de la verdad): "Ai es menester el artificio, los diestros Medicos del animo, intentaron el modo de endulzarla; que quando toca en desengano, es la quinta essencia de lo amargo. El buen modo, se vale aqui de su destreza, con una misma verdad lisonjea uno, y aporrea a otro" (476). At the same time, however, not all truths need be communicated (sin mentir, no decir todas las verdades): "No hay cosa que requiera mas tiento, que la verdad, que es un sangrarse del corazon. [...] No todas verdades se pueden decir, unas porque me importan a mi, y otras porque al otro" (470).

Closely related to dissimulation, as we have seen above, are the concepts of secrecy and prudence. Felipe II was in fact known as El Rey Prudente. From the very beginning of the play attributed to Coello the Duke of Milan implores his privado Carlos to maintain secrecy ("vos tambien teneys secreto" f. 53v) in arranging a tryst with Blanca, to elude the gossips at palace ("por euitar con aquesto, / Que en Palacio se murmure" f. 53v). The need for secrecy is reiterated at least nineteen times in the play, (16) and variations on the concept of prudence (prudencia, imprudencia, cordura, etc.) occur an astounding 35 times in the course of the action. (17) To cite just one example, Carlos avails himself of the political metaphor of Reason of State in order to counsel Blanca to avoid jealousy in her amorous affairs:

Carlos: no gouiernes tus cuydados con la razon de los zelos, que es mala razon de estado. [...] no te rindas a tus zelos, mas cordura es sugetarlos, Mas prudencia es deshazerlos. (f. 51v) (18)

In his chapter "Providencialismo y prudencia: Felipe el prudente," Jose Luis Sanchez Lora reminds us that the Jesuit notion of prudence, as articulated by Botero, depends heavily on the use of dissimulation: "vale mucho la disimulacion ... Tiberio Cesar, de ninguna cosa mas se preciaba que del arte de disimular, en la cual era excelente, y llamase disimulacion, el mostrar de no saber, ni curarse de lo que vos sabeys, o estymais, y fingir de hacer una cosa por otra" (77). The discourse of political dissimulation associated with Felipe II is clearly at play in Celos, honor y cordura, at least on a subliminal level.

Celos, honor, y cordura is a paean to a controversial political philosophy at the service of an erotic quest. If in an amorous context Reason of State can be reduced to the old saw that "all's fair in love and war," Coello's duke of Milan and Carlos engage in an amusing tour de force of subterfuge involving secrecy, prudence and dissimulation in their attempts to win the favors of Blanca. (19) And in fact Carlos states explicitly that all pecadillos caused by love can be pardoned: "pues todo el amor lo escusa" (f. 69r). The art of equivocation is teased as an effective amorous strategy. (20) And just as in real life Felipe II exiled Ana de Mendoza de la Cerda from his presence at court after he tired of her machinations, (21) the duke of Milan in Coello's play exercises self-control and prudence by recognizing the marriage of the couple. However, he punishes them at the same time by banishing them from his presence forever: "Os yreys a vuestro estado / con vuestra esposa; y en suma / no boluereys a la Corte" (f. 69r).

If indeed Celos, honor y cordura is on some level an encrypted retelling of Felipe II's alleged affair with Ana de Mendoza, there is no hidden political agenda and no criticism of the monarch's purported indiscretions. Antonio Coello y Ochoa was well-connected in the social and political hierarchy of the court of Felipe IV, to such an extent that he was granted admission to the Order of Santiago in 1642 and was appointed Ministro de la Real Junta de Aposentos in 1652. Unsubstantiated (to date) rumor avows that Coello and Felipe IV collaborated on certain literary undertakings, including El conde de Sex (Borrego Gutierez 353), although there is no evidence at all that he might have collaborated on Celos, honor y cordura. Given their close relationship and mutual interest in the theater, one wonders if it might have been possible that Felipe IV himself commissioned a discreet dramatic rendition of a much rumored amorous indiscretion involving his grandfather, a sort of palimpsest in order to rewrite history so that the protagonist of the tale conquers his own passions and does the right thing in the end. Like Felipe II, the young monarch and patron of the theater indulged in numerous extramarital affairs. (22) This, however, is pure speculation. There is also a possibility that the play's moral message of self-control was a subtle message intended for Felipe's edification, in the sense intended by Bances Candamo in his Teatro de los teatros: "Son las comedias de los reyes unas historias vivas que, sin hablar con ellos, les han de instruir con tal respecto que sea su misma razon quien de lo que ve tome las advertencias, y no el ingenio quien se las diga. Para este decir sin decir, ?quien dudara que sea menester gran arte?" (qtd. in Arellano 179).

In any event, the dissembling of identities in a work of dramatic art intended for a court audience can be seen as a kind of rhetorical dissimulation. To be a courtier was to adopt a disguise: "the courtier could even be seen as a rhetorical figure in the flesh: more specifically, as a metaphor, given the fact that one's main strategy for survival and success at court was dissimulatio, the translation and representation of one's natural character into the required forms and accidents of rigidly structured court life" (Aercke 59). celos, honor y cordura, as a game of codified identities, pays homage to a courtly lifestyle in which dissimulation was highly prized and essential for advancement in the social hierarchy.



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Coello y Ochoa, Antonio. (La gran comedia, de) Zelos, honor, y cordvra. Parte treynta vna, de las meiores comedias, que hasta oy han salido / recogidas por el dotor Francisco Toriuio Ximenez; y a la fin va la comedia de santa Madrona, intitulada la viuda tirana, y conquista de Barcelona. Barcelona: Emprenta de layme Romeu ...: a costa de luan Sapera ..., 1638. Biblioteca Virtual Miguel de cervantes. Web. 26 Feb. 2017.

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(1) See Orso and Minguez Cornelles for studies on Spanish monarchical iconography.

(2) For more on Lope's somewhat sycophantic obsession with courting favor through his genealogical plays, see Ferrer Valls ("Lope de Vega," "El juego del poder," "Teatro y mecenazgo") and Rozas.

(3) Cotarelo y Mori rejects the characterization of Coello as a disciple of Calderon in spite of their collaborations and concludes that he was instead a disciple of Lope de Vega.

(4) In his Teatro de los teatros (ca. 1690), he says: "la comedia del Conde de Essex la pinta solo con el afecto, pero tan retirado en la majestad y tan oculto en la entereza, que el conde muere sin saber el amor de la reina" (qtd. in Preceptiva dramatica espanola 350).

(5) CATCOM explains: "es probable que la comedia que figura en la noticia de 1637 con el titulo de celos y honor sea la misma que celos, honor y cordura. La comedia celos, honor y cordura se publico en la Parte 31 de la coleccion Diferentes autores (Barcelona, Jaime RomeuJuan Sapera, 1638), donde aparece sin atribucion alguna. Mesonero Romanos la incluyo en su catalogo sin atribuirla a ningun autor, mientras que La Barrera la atribuyo a Antonio Coello, sin justificar realmente los motivos de su afirmacion. Este bibliografo recogio la opinion del baron de Munch-Bellinghausen cree que podria ser obra de Francisco Toribio Jimenez, quien figura como el recopilador de las comedias incluidas en la Parte 31 de la coleccion diferentes Autores. La atribucion hecha por La Barrera llevo a Sanchez Arjona a identificar celos, honor y cordura como obra de Antonio Coello al dar cuenta de su presencia en un listado de comedias de 1637. Por su parte, Cotarelo rechazo la posible atribucion a Toribio Jimenez propuesta en su dia por el baron de Munch-Bellinghausen, senalando que no se tienen noticias de que escribiera obras teatrales. Cotarelo dijo no haber leido la obra y, por lo tanto, no poder ofrecer su propia valoracion personal sobre la cuestion de la autoria."

(6) Antonio de Solis y Rivadeneyra also evokes this famous rivalry in his amparar al enemigo when the gracioso Munoz says: "Qual esta mi amo, yo pienso / que le andan en la cabeca / los Gevelinos y Huelfos" (353).

(7) I respect the play's original orthography, but resolve abbreviations and ligatures, and modernize the accentuation.

(8) The same historian, in his novel La princesa de Eboli, develops in great detail the intriguing thesis of a possible affair between Felipe II and Ana de Mendoza de la Cerda, Princesa de Eboli.

(9) Given his rather humble background, it is unlikely that Antonio Coello was related to Juana Coello (1548-1615), who helped her husband Antonio Perez to escape from prison.

(10) There is admittedly no textual evidence to support identifying Yrene, the Duke's sister who is in love with Carlos, with either of Felipe's sisters, Juana de Austria and Maria. For details on the biography of Antonio Coello, see Cotarelo y Mori.

(11) See: f. 56r; f. 56v; f. 57r; f. 57v; f. 58r; f. 60v; f. 61v; f. 62r; f. 63v; f. 64r; f. 64v; f. 65r (4X); f. 65v (3X).

(12) Other terms in the play that resonate attributes of dissimulation include, in their many variations: advertir: (f. 50r; f. 53r; f. 56v [2X]; f. 60r; f. 61r; f. 61v; f. 64r [2X]); atender (f. 54r [2X]; f. 54v; f. 55v; f. 56r; f. 58v [4X]; f. 59r; f. 59v; f. 60v; f. 63r; f. 64v [2X]); cautela (f. 65r; f. 67v; f. 68v); desconfiar (f. 56r; f. 58r; f. 60r; f. 61v); desvelarse (f. 56r; f. 62v; f. 63v); discrecion (f. 53v; f. 57r; f. 57v; f. 58v; f. 63v [2X]); disfrazar (f. 57r); doblez (f. 63r); embuste (f. 59r); encubrir (f. 55r; f. 68v); engano/desengano (f. 50r; f. 51r [5X]; f. 51v [5X]; f. 55r; f. 56r; f. 57r; f. 58r; f. 59v; f, 60r; f. 64r [3X]; f. 64v; f. 65v; f. 66r; f. 67v); enigma (f. 50r; f. 57r); equivocacion (f. 58r); fingir (f. 50r [2X]; f. 51r; f. 64v; f. 65r) guardarse (f. 55v); industria (f. 69r); mentir (f. 49v; f. 50v [3X]; f. 50v [2X]; f. 51v; f. 61r [2X]; f. 64r; f. 65v; f. 67v); mesurar (f. 58v); ocultar (f. 52r); prevenir (f. 56v; f. 57r; f. 58r; f. 59v; f. 66v); recatar (f. 56r; f. 57r; f. 58r; f. 59r; f. 60v [2X]; f. 61r; f. 61v [2X]; f. 62v; f. 63r; f. 67v); recelar (f. 54v; f. 55v; f. 56r; f. 56v; f. 57r; f. 59v; f. 60v); reparar (f. 55v; f. 60r; f. 60v; f. 65r); sospechar (f. 50v; f. 51v; f. 55v; f. 56v [3X]; f. 57r [2X]; f. 58r; f. 60v; f. 61r [4X]; f. 61v [5X]; f. 63v; f. 64v); trazar (f. 53v; f. 56r; f. 57r; f. 59v; f. 60r; f. 60v [2X]; f. 61v; f. 62v; f. 65r; f. 65v).

(13) CATCOM cites evidence of a 1637 performance by the company of Tomas Fernandez: "La comedia celos, honor y cordura aparece mencionada en una lista que acompanaba un poder otorgado en Toledo por el autor Tomas Fernandez en 1637 para impedir que otros autores representasen en Sevilla comedias que eran de su propiedad. Sanchez Arjona situo el poder en 1637, pero sin concretar la fecha en que fue otorgado. Como se puede ver en DICAT, este autor se encontraba a finales de junio en la zona de Toledo y es probable que alrededor de esa fecha enviase el poder a Sevilla, ciudad a la que llego para representar con su compania a principios de noviembre."

(14) On this topic, see Chapter 1 ("Est simulare meum--Ie ne le puis celer. Aspects of Dis/ simulation in Early Modern Emblem Books") of Gordian's unpublished doctoral dissertation.

(15) Deceit in and of itself is an extreme condemned by Gracian in Ei politico d. Fernando el catholico: "Vulgar agravio es de la politica el confundirla con la astucia, no tienen algunos por sabio, sino al enganoso; y por mas sabio al que mas bien supo fingir, disimular, enganar, no advirtiendo, que el castigo de los tales fue siempre perecer en el engano" (49).

(16) See: f. 49v (2X); f. 52r; f. 53r; (2X) f. 53v; f. 54v (2X); f. 55v; f. 57r; f. 58r; f. 58v; f. 60v; f. 63r; f. 63v (2X); f. 65v; f. 66v; f. 68r.

(17) Variations on prudencia include: f. 51v; f. 55v (2X); f. 59v (2X); f. 60v; f. 61v; f. 63v (2X); f. 64r (2X); f. 65r (3X); f. 68v and f. 69r, while variations on cordura include: f. 51v; f. 53v; f. 55r; f. 55v (6X); f. 56r (4X); f. 59v (2X); f. 61v; f. 62r; f. 62v and f. 69r.

(18) The duke himself also puns on the notion of Reason of State: "que es agora lo intratable / razon de estado de hermosa" (f. 56r).

(19) One wonders if Blanca's analogy comparing the monarch to the sun is a subtle wink to a motto frequently associated with Felipe II: En mis dominios nunca se pone el sol [A solis ortu usque ad occasum]: "El Rey es luz, este apartada, / no les muestre a los ojos la esperiencia; / que el que se acerca a verla, queda ciego, / y si se acerca mas, sabra que es fuego" (f. 63r). Later in the third act she adds: "Si por ser fiel me matare / esse Sol que nos alumbra / por darles su luz a todos / el mismo su muerte busca" (f. 67r).

(20) Pedro, the father of Carlos, marvels at the duke's ability to deceive with equivocation in a love letter he crafted for Blanca: "Ay tanta equiuocacion / Carlos, en este villete, / que en su fuerca se quedo / Nuestra duda" (f. 58r).

(21) On the harsh conditions endured by the princess of Eboli at the order of Felipe II, see Alegre Carvajal (612-16). After Felipe II ordered her arrest in 1579, Ana was imprisoned until her death in 1592 for reasons that were never made clear. Alegre Carvajal also documents the often contentious relationship between Ana and Santa Teresa de Jesus.

(22) Felipe IV's relationship with the actress Maria Ines Calderon (La Calderona), who gave birth to their son Juan Jose in 1629, is generally accepted, though not well-documented. See the entry for "Calderon, apodada la Calderona" in DICAT. In the words of Stradling: "A caricature figure thereby came into popular currency, a kind of operetta-king who wrote plays under the pseudonym of 'a wit around this court,' went to bed with all the comely actresses, and (in one such writer's words) 'spent almost all his time with poets and performers'" (308).
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Author:Cull, John T.
Publication:Romance Notes
Article Type:Essay
Geographic Code:4EUSP
Date:Nov 1, 2017

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