Out of the Wings

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Las tres justicias en una (1630-1637), Pedro Calderón de la Barca


This is a three-act comedia.


In the first act, the scene shifts from the roadside on the outskirts of the city to the interior rooms of the royal palace and Lope Sr.’s house. In this act, a knife cuts young Lope’s hand when he gives it to Don Mendo and young Lope spies on Violante as she dresses in her room in Lope Sr.’s house. Most of the second act takes place in that house. Violante gives young Lope a flower as a token of her affection, which he and Guillén fight over. Guillén gives Lope Jr. a letter intended for Violante. Guillén must be able to hide in order to hear Lope Jr.’s conversation with Violante without being seen. Guillén and young Lope engage in a swordfight, which is heard outside before the scene shifts to where they are.  A crowd forms around the fighting young men, and Lope Sr. steps in and is struck by young Lope. Lope Sr. carries a walking stick that he uses to try to fight back, but he is too weak to do any damage. There is a quick scene change in which Lope Sr. leaves the stage, only to return in a new location as he is now at the King’s palace seeking justice for his dishonour. The third act begins out in the woods near a river, and Lope Jr. surrenders his sword to Mendo.  When the King comes to visit Blanca (Lope Sr.’s wife) he first appears with his face covered to conceal his identity. Doors are required in the final ‘reveal’ scene, as the characters enter from different doors and then together they enter the final door to discover young Lope’s garrotted corpse. In his hand he holds a paper with descriptions of the ‘Three Judgements in One’ written out on it.

Cast number
Minimum Maximum
6 males 12 males
3 females 6 females
9 (total) 18 (total)
  • DON LOPE DE URREA (JR.), Son of Don Lope de Urrea Sr.
  • DON LOPE DE URREA (SR.), An old man, father of Don Lope de Urrea Jr.
  • DON MENDO TORRELLAS, An old man, made the King’s Chief Justice
  • DON GUILLÉN DE AZAGRA, A young man, friend to Lope Jr.
  • VICENTE, Comic servant
  • DOÑA VIOLANTE, Noblewoman, daughter of Don Mendo
  • DOÑA BLANCA, Noblewoman, wife of Don Lope de Urrea Sr.
  • BEATRIZ, Female servant
  • ELVIRA, Female servant

Entry written by Kathleen Jeffs. Last updated on 7 March 2011.

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