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Bulletin Of The Comediantes Vol. XV Fall, 1963 No. 1 FORCED MARRIAGE IN CASTRO'S THEATRE John G. Weiger, Indiana University In recent years there have appeared in the Bulletin of the Comediantes, two articles dealing with matrimony in the plays of Guillen de Castro.1 Both articles expressed the need for further examination of this aspect of Castro's works. The present paper deals with a central point of the previous articles: forced marriage. The definition of forced marriage is clearly stated by Mr. La Du: ". . . one to which both parties agree, but one of the parties has consented, not . . . because of love, but because he feared to lose his life or some equally precious possession ... if he did not consent" (p. 12). Consequently, we cannot agree to dismiss forced marriages which occur at the end of a play because "one of the partners in such cases desires the marriage because of love" (p. 13; italics added in both cases). Nor can we dismiss these marriages because "we do not learn of their outcome" (p. 13) . When the audience hears: Señor, [dé] a Dalinda por esposa al Duque, que desta suerte quedará bien castigado, ques es dejalle casado mayor pena que de muerte (I, 365) there is little room for doubt with respect to the outcome of the marriage. The above is from El desengaño dichoso, a play in which the marriage of the King and Queen is—we are told (p. 13) —one of "those about which we are given no information as to how they were contracted . . . and hence fall into neither category of 'arranged' or 'forced'. . . ." Yet in this play we hear: Reina: Con un viejo me has casado. Polineso: Reina te he querido hacer, y porque rey quiero ser quise ser de un rey cuñado. (I, 322) A play that apparently (p. 12) does fall into the category of forced marriage is Las mocedades del Cid. Mr. La Du summarizes the martial situation as follows: Ximena is forced to marry Rodrigo because of the provisions of her pregón (II, 196-197), and because the King orders it (II, 208). Though Ximena does indeed love Rodrigo she would not have been able to marry him (because of the well known honor problem involved) of her own free will. We can agree that this is not an unhappy marriage, but if we are to abide by the definition of forced marriage agreed upon above, this marriage cannot fall into the "forced" category . Moreover, Ximena does not marry Rodrigo because of her pregón nor because the King orders it. E. Julia Martinez points out that "es mejor una apología del amor que no un panegírico del honor Io que en esta obra . . . resplandece. Ximena es la mujer enamorada que rompe con unas ideas tradicionales."3 Examining Ximena's first request for vengeance (?, 181-182) , one notes that the use of such words as justa querella, justicia, con causa, justos enojos, cruel, obligación, indicates BULLETIN OF THE COMEDIANTES Published in the Spring and Fall by the Comediantes, an informal, international group of all those interested in the comedia. Editor Karl-Ludwig Selig University of Texas Austin, Texas Associate Editor John E. Keller University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, N. C. Business Manager J. W. Peters Muskingum College New Concord, Ohio Subscription: $2 a year more than a request for royal aid. Rather, it is an attempt to defend her position. In particular, her choice of image to describe her father's bleeding on the handkerchief—"escribió en este papel /con sangre mi obligaci ón"—and the letras which "a tus ojos poner quiero," reveal a desire to prove that she is justified in seeking revenge. Let us examine her next appearance before the King: Si [el Rey] es magno, si es justiciero, premie al bueno y pene al malo [Rodrigo] profanó tus leyes justas, y tú le amparas ufano.¿Qué dirá, qué dirá el mundo de tu valor, gran Fernando, si al ofendido castigas, y si premias al culpado? Rey, Rey justo, en tu presencia advierte bien cómo estamos, él ofensor, yo ofendida, yo gimiendo y él triunfando; él arrastrando...


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