The Comedia El Segundo Seneca de España of Dr. Juan Perez de Montalvan

Bacon, George W.

This comedia consists of two parts, the action of the first extending from 1569-1570, that of the second from 1588-1598. We shall examine each section separately.


This part covers the period from Don Juan of Austria's departure to wage war against the Moors at Granada, to the marriage of King Philip II with Ana of Austria. Ticknor asserts that Montalvàn has probably derived the subject matter from Cabrera de Côrdoba's Felipe Segundo, Rey de España,
Madrid, 1619; and Schaeffer remarks that our author has here reproduced some of the most effective scenes of Enciso's El Príncipe Don Carlos. The first of these statements is correct, but exception must be taken to the second, for it is impossible to say whether Enciso's play was written before Montalvàn's or not. AU that is certain is that the earliest edition known of El Príncipe Don Carlos bears the date 1634, while El Segundo Séneca de España first appeared in our author's Para Todos, two years previous. However, since Montalvàn's genius was distinctly adaptive and that of his contemporary rather original, it seems quite logical that Enciso's drama has the better claim to priority. At all events, the two plays have a number of scenes in common, which is almost conclusive evidence that one has served as a model for the other. Before discussing this relation, however, let us determine Montalvàn's indebtedness to Cabrera de Côrdoba.

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Romanic Review

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Academic Units
French and Romance Philology
Columbia University Press
Published Here
June 23, 2015


Source: / Bibliothèque nationale de France