Carlos Ii El Hechizado

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libro Carlos Ii El Hechizado

On November 2 1837 the opening of Carlos II el Hechizado (Charles II the bewitched) at the Teatro del Principe in Madrid, Spain, became one of the greatest scandals of its times. The play is about an alleged spell cast on Charles II, the last Habsburg who reigned in Spain, by a young girl accused of the crime by a libidinous priest, father Froilan. The king condemns the girl to burn at the stake, in spite of knowing that she is his own daughter. The contemporary critique attacked the play blaming it of immorality and exaggeration, of containing scenes of base melodramatic quality and macabre iconography, and the lack of respect shown by the author towards the historical main character and the Catholic church. In spite of all this the play remained on stage for eleven days, and it was restaged repeatedly until the last third of the XIX Century. This obeys mainly to the fact that the exorcism endured by the monarch, the imprisonment of the two young lovers in the Santo Oficio dungeons, the conjectures on the succession at the Escorial pantheon, the popular revolt against the oppressing nobility, are attractive episodes that, conveniently presented by Antonio Gil y Zarate (1796-1861), contribute to a romantic and exceptional interpretation of the unhappy ending of Charles II (1661-1700), king of Spain between 1665 until his death. This critical and annotated edition by prof Montserrat Ribao constitutes a great enhancement to any course on Spanish literature and drama of the Romantic period.

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