(1) The theme of friendship and male bonding is introduced in the first cuadro of the play. (2) The aspects of friendship that Calderón emphasises through plot, character, and humour correspond to those that Cicero presents in his Laelius de Amicitia. (3) The theme is also underlined by an unexpected refererence to Boscán and Garcilaso, both pairs being friends, poets and soldiers. (4) This friendship, or bonding, is echoed by the barba, and (5) is contrasted to the relationhip established between the lacayos, who introduce the concept of interested friendships, also observed in the relationship between the two damas. (6) As the plot pursues its anticipated complications and expected conclusions, it becomes clear that it is the bonds of friendship that motivate the galanes and thus undermine the title of the play "My Lady First and Foremost." (7) This structural device is one that Calderón uses in a number of plays, but here he gives it a further twist which should provoke some thought on, at the very least, our perception of gender relationships in Golden Age theatre. (BPEB)


Additional Information

Print ISSN
pp. 67-88
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.