Eight Dramas of Calderón

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University of Illinois Press, Apr 24, 2000 - Drama - 440 pages
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Provocative and entertaining, these plays in Fitzgerald's English translation are available together in paperback.
 

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Contents

Foreword by Margaret R Greer l
7
Keep Your Own Secret
75
Gil Perez the Gallician
125
Three Judgments at a Blow
169
The Mayor of Zalamea
221
Beware of Smooth Water
263
The Mighty Magician
313
Such Stuff as Dreams Are Made Of
375
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About the author (2000)

Pedro Calderón de la Barca was born in Madrid, Spain on January 17, 1600. He was educated at the Jesuit College in Madrid. He was a dramatist, poet and writer of the Spanish Golden Age. He wrote more than 120 plays and over 70 allegorical religious plays with subjects from mythology and the Old and the New Testaments. Calderón's debut as a playwright was Amor, Honor y Poder, performed at the Royal Palace. His other plays include La Selva Confusa, Los Macabeos, El Magico Prodigioso, El Alcalde de Zalamea, La Vida Es Sueno, and La Estatua de Prometeo. Calderón gained popularity in the court, and was made a knight of the order of Santiago by Philip IV, who had already commissioned from him a series of plays for the royal theatre in the Buen Retiro palace. Calderón became a tertiary of the order of St Francis in 1650, and then finally joined the priesthood. He was ordained in 1651, and became a priest at San Salvador at Madrid. He was appointed honorary chaplain to Philip IV in 1663, and continued as chaplain to his successor. In his eighty-first year he wrote his last secular play, Hado y Divisa de Leonido y Marfisa, in honor of Charles II's marriage to Maria Luisa of Orléans. He died on May 25, 1681.

Edward FitzGerald (March 31, 1809-June 14, 1883), English man of letters. A dilettante and scholar, FitzGerald went to Trinity College, Cambridge, and spent most of his life living in seclusion in Suffolk. His masterpiece, a translation of The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam, appeared anonymously in 1859 and passed unnoticed until Dante Gabriel Rossetti made it famous. Revised editions followed in 1868, 1872, and 1879. FitzGerald's Rubaiyat has long been one of the most popular English poems. Although actually a paraphrase rather than a translation of a poem by the 11th-century Persian poet Omar Khayyam , it retains the spirit of the original in its poignant expression of a philosophy counseling man to live life to the fullest while he can. Among FitzGerald's other works are Euphranor (1851), a Platonic dialogue, and Polonius (1852), a collection of aphorisms.

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