About this site
The principal purpose of this site is to make available to students of Tirso everywhere the work of Jean S. Chittenden in her 1964 doctoral dissertation, "Los nombres de personajes en las comedias de Tirso de Molina." Working under the direction of Richard Tyler at the University of Texas at Austin, Chittenden produced an invaluable tool for studying Tirso's characters, the variety of the names he used, and the distribution among varying categories such as noble, criado, italiano, traidor, and gracioso. The original dissertation included the lists of characters by first name, last name or title, and category, that is, the information found on this site under the heading "Lists of Characters." In addition, however, Chittenden has provided plot summaries for the 61 authentic works of Gabriel TÚllez, or Tirso de Molina, found here. In typescript, this site is almost 600 pages long, and it requires one to go back and forth between sections. In other words, this type of study is perfect for the hypertextual environment of the World Wide Web. Now, when one looks up a character by first name, one can instantly click on the category and see what other characters in other plays share similar characteristics. Or one can click on the link to the play and see the entire reparto as well as the plot summary. For those plays that have online text at the comedia website maintained by the Association for Hispanic Classical Theater, Inc., there is also a link to the complete text of the play. Of course, not everything is cross-linked, but there are well over 10,000 internal links in the 100 or so pages contained in this site.
While in general the organization of the site is relatively easy to understand (though necessarily bilingual in English and Spanish), some indications need more explanation, and one should read the list of abbreviations and codes in order to realize that characters whose names appear in italics are those who are mentioned but do not appear on stage, for example. Of course, there will be those who might quibble with the editions used or some other aspect of the site. Overall, however, one hopes that this site will provide easier access to the works of Tirso de Molina. In the inevitable event that you find an error, please send the appropriate information to Matthew Stroud at Trinity University. Likewise, if you know of other sites that should be linked to this one, that information would also be greatly appreciated.