Written for the Corpus festival of 1660, El lirio y la azucena celebrates the "universal peace" which Spain and France had negotiated in the Treaty of the Pyrenees. The auto presents the treaty as an instrument of concord through which the two Catholic monarchies have asserted their victory over the demonic opposition of Discord and War. Its central allegory interprets the agents and actions of the diplomatic process as figures or types of personages and events in Scripture, and its development relates the historical details of that process to general issues in contemporary political thought. Discord, who describes herself as the favorite of Synagogue, foments antipathy between France and Spain through Machiavellian reason of state; the Arms Secular (Luis de Haro) and Ecclesiastical (Mazarin), as perfect favorites who base their conduct on Christian models and values, counter this demonic stratagem with a true statecraft that leads to the reconciliation of the two realms through a marriage which repeats the figural pattern of Christ's union with the Church. In attempting to characterize the perfect favorite and to distinguish good reason of state from bad, the auto reflects the terms of debate in Catholic political theory; in placing the issues and events of Franco-Spanish diplomacy within the order of providential history, it portrays the Treaty of the Pyrenees as a triumph for the faith and the imperial policies of the Spanish Hapsburgs. (SR)


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pp. 107-125
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