The 12 most important Celestina characters

The Characters of the Celestina The main ones are Calisto, Melibea, Celestina, Sempronio, Pármeno, Areúsa, Elicia, Tristán and Sosia, Lucrecia and Centurio.

The Celestina was first published in 1499, but the preliminary material of the only existing copy disappeared. In 1500, another edition appeared with the title Comedy of Callisto and Melibea.

Characters of the Celestina

In some acrostic verses that precede the text of this edition, the identity of the author is revealed: Fernando de Rojas. Shortly after, the title changed to Tragicomedia of Callisto and Melibea before finally finishing with the name of Celestina.

The first two titles suggest that Fernando Rojas saw Callisto and Melibea as the main characters; However, many believe that Celestina and her world are the real protagonists.

Main characters

Callisto

He is a young man of noble lineage who one day, in search of his hawk, arrives at the garden of Melibea and reacts in a passionate way just by seeing it. Melibea despises him for his exaggerated praise and asks him to leave.

From that encounter, Callisto is obsessed with Melibea. Calixto is not the classic hero, he is simply a man controlled by his basic instincts, in fact, he is a comic character, and for that reason La Celestina is considered a tragicomedy. After being rejected by Melibea, Calisto returns to its house between laments and feeling great misfortune. One of his servants, Sempronius, advises Callisto to resort to the help of Celestina, a sorceress.

Calisto and Celestina meet and come to an agreement to fix the problems of love of Callisto, Celestina will be well paid by Callisto for getting Melibea give his love to the young man.

Callisto personifies the courtship love, an excessive lover capable of doing everything for the love of Melibea, neglects his social obligations, is a selfish young man who uses all to achieve his desires, uses his servants and the Celestina.

He is an incredibly impulsive and capricious young man and even in a moment of rapture comes to proclaim Melibea as his God:"Melibea is my lady, Melibea is my god, Melibea is my life: I his captive, I his servant".

Callisto is a really insecure young man who, in the midst of his obsession with Melibea, never worries about her honor. In fact, when he satisfies his desire, he returns to reality lamenting the death of his servants. His ending is very tragic, as he finds the death shortly after satisfying his sexual desire for Melibea.

Phrases of Callisto:

"Lady, who wants to eat the bird, first removes the feathers"Callisto to Melibea when it is trying to undress it".

  • "How shall the untempered tempt?"
  • "Close the window and let the darkness accompany the sad, and the unhappy the blindness."
  • "How much remedy Sempronio carries with his feet, so much you with your tongue, with your vain words. Pretending to be faithful, you are a lump of flattery, a vessel of malice, the same inn and the retirement of envy."
  • "And in all that you have glorified to me, Sempronio, without proportion or comparison is surpassed Melibea".
  • "Green eyes, torn; The lashes, luengas; Eyebrows, thin and raised; The nose, medium; The mouth, small; The teeth, small..."(Callisto describes his beloved Melibea)
  • "In this I see, Melibea, the greatness of God."

Melibea

Melibea is the symbol of the idealized love, but its innocence is corrupted by the intervention of Celestina and Callisto. She is a young virgin, very beautiful, wealthy, intelligent and cultured, of a firm, dynamic, decisive character, her character shows it both in the times she rejects Callisto and when later accepts Callisto.

Melibea believes that every woman should be able to choose her love, just as she believes that women should be free to decide their own destiny. Melibea is also out of control for the desire she felt for Callisto, she gives herself to her passions, she is not a naive young woman, she lies to her parents, she exposes her honor and believes that marriage is not acceptable, since she thinks a lover satisfies More to a man than his wife.

When Callisto dies, she suffers so much that she can not go on living. He tells his father about his feelings and then commits suicide.

Melibea Phrases:

  • "You weep with sadness, judging me cruel; I cry of pleasure seeing you so faithful." Melibea to Callisto.
  • "But, if it pleased you, my father, to command to bring some stringed instrument with which my pain is to be suffered, or with a sound or with singing..."
  • "To leave my sad to rejoice him, and to take the advantage of my doom, the reward of my error? To lose and destroy the house and the honor of my father by winning that of an old damn like you?"
  • "Oh my love and Mr. Callisto! Wait for me, I'm coming. Stop, if you wait for me; Do not incase the tardiness that I do giving this last account to my old father, because I owe much more to him. O my beloved father!
  • "I do not want a husband, I do not want to mess up the knots of marriage."

Celestina

She is the central character of the work to which it also gives the name, is a former prostitute, a teacher of manipulation, an old woman of about 70 years, painted, bearded and edentulous, with a large scar on her face and A crescent tattoo and his house is sometimes brothel.

The Celestina is in fact a controlling and cunning woman who by her greed manages to handle all the circumstances and the characters that surround her to obtain some benefit, and it is also his excessive ambition that leads to his death.

She describes herself as a sorceress and perhaps the power of her magic arises from her incredible capacity for persuasion and her way of life is to abuse the excesses of life like sex and wine. Among his offices is also the one of"mending virgins".

The sorceress Celestina uses religion for her own interests and her prayers are sacrilegious. Celestina believes that wealthy people are selfish and only care for themselves by exploiting the servants, Celestina really feels a great rancor for the lords. She is a really perverse woman, seeks to secure herself a safe old age and enjoys dominating men as if they were puppets.

Celestine Phrases:

  • "In this city born, in her maid, maintaining honor, as everyone knows, well known, then, I am not? Whoever does not know my name and has a foreigner."
  • So you feel the pain of your master Callisto, who seems to be you and he and you and the torments are in the same subject. Celestina to Sempronio before meeting Callisto
  • "It is a hidden fire, a pleasant sore, a tasty poison, a sweet bitterness, a delightful ailment, a joyful torment, a sweet and fierce wound, a soft death." Celestina, referring to love.
  • "[...] that even if there is to be some part of the profit, I want all the graces of the work".
  • "I do. One-eyed or upright, our house up to the roof."
  • "I said your sorrow was bad for grinding teeth." (Celestina tells Callisto the lie she has told Melibea to get her cord.)
  • "By a robe which you give to the old woman, she will give you into her hands the same thing that she carried in her body." (He blackmails Callisto so that in exchange for him to give Celestina a cloak, she will give him the cord of Melibea)
  • "Conjure, sad Pluto, lord of the infernal depth, emperor of the damaged court, superb captain of the damned angels"
  • "I say that the woman either loves very much the one of whom she is required or she has great hatred to him".

The servants

They are petty and resentful in their great majority. The servants live in depravity, on the edge of society between witches and prostitutes, and are protected by Celestina. However, eventually, they will be responsible for your death.

Sempronio

He is one of Calisto's servants, his page. He is really ambitious, violent and resentful and only seeks to obtain benefits from his master Callisto, who does not have genuine esteem.

When he advises Callisto to go to see the sorceress Celestina, he does so to take advantage of the situation. He is astute and cynical, he lacks values ​​and, driven by his greed and uncontrollable hatred, is who kills Celestina.

Sempronium Phrases:

  • "Mataduras no; More petreras yes". Sempronio talking to Celestina and Elicia.
  • "Oh misfortune, oh sudden evil! What was so contrary an event that I so quickly rob the joy of this man, and, the worst is, with her brains? ".
  • "You philosophers of Cupid call her what you will."
  • "Look at Nero from Tarpey to Rome how it burned; Shouts give children and old men and he did not hurt at all."
  • -"That's why I quiérome suffer a little: if in the meantime kill yourself, die. Maybe something will stay with me, someone else does not know."
  • -"Days to great I know at the end of this neighborhood an old bearded lady who says Celestina; Sorceress, astute, shrewd in how many evils there are. I understand that there are more than five thousand virgos that have been made and undone by his authority in this city. The hard rocks will promote and provoke lust if you want."
  • "I do not deceive myself, how crazy my master is." (Sempronius referring to Callisto)
  • "You are a man of clear wit. And more, to whom the natural endow of the best goods that he had, agrees to know: beauty, grace, greatness of limbs, strength, lightness. And beyond this, fortune fairly broke with you his in such a quantity, that the goods you have from within with those from without."

Parmeno

He is another of Calisto's servants. When Calisto decides to see the Celestina, Parmeno advises him not to do so, he shows himself faithful to his master and responds with fidelity. Later the Celestina manages to control it and Parmeno becomes corrupted and turns to Celestina to get the love of Areúsa.

Pármeno knew Celestina very well since as a child he lived with her in his lupanar, his mother, Celestina's companion left him and Parmeno had to serve the sorceress. Also has part in the death of Celestina, he and Sempronio end up killing it because Celestina refuses to share the money that obtains of Calisto.

Sempronio and Parmeno end up dying because after being persecuted by the Sheriff, they decide to throw themselves by a window.

Sentences of Parmeno:

  • "That's why I cry. That if it were possible to bring to my master the remedy with tears, so great would be the pleasure of such hope, that for joy I could not weep."
  • "Cadenilla calls her! Do not you hear, Sempronius? Does not estimate the expense. Well I certify you do not give my part by means of gold frame, as bad as the old woman shares it." (They know that Callisto is blinded by the cord of Melibea and that he would give anything for him, and these, take advantage of him)
  • "What do you think, Sempronius, how the fool of our master thought to take me for the meeting of the first danger?"
  • "Wealth desire; But who awkwardly climbs to the top, but aine fell that rose, did not want badly won goods.

Areúsa

She is a young prostitute, daughter of a pastry shop, very intelligent and malicious. She has a life of her own, she has her own house and she thinks she is a prostitute of a higher rank.

She is the concubine of a man who has just gone to war. She is also the lover of Centurio, and it is she who sends him to assassinate Callisto.

Sentence of Areúsa:

  • "Here I have you, we are on time, I forgive you on condition that you avenge me of a gentleman whose name is Callisto, who has angered me and my cousin."
  • "Calisto is a gentleman, Melibea hijadalgo."
  • "They never hear their proper name from their mouths, but whore here, whore, whence, where do you go tingling, what did you do wicked, how did you wash the frying pan, sow? Pinching, sticks and spanking".
  • "Ruin, whoever is a bad person. The works make lineage, that at last we are all children of Adam and Eve. Try to be good for yourself, and do not go looking at the nobility of your past virtue."
  • "Perhaps for good was the death of Celestina, that I already feel the improvement more than before. This is why the dead are said to open the eyes of those who live; Some with property, others with freedom, like you."
  • "And of God avenge me, that of Callisto, Century shall avenge me."

Elicia

She is a prostitute, very beautiful, family of the Celestina and lives with her in the brothel. He has a great grudge against upper-class girls like Melibea, a grudge that was injected by Celestina.

She has no knowledge of life since she has always depended on Celestina, who considers her an idle and irresponsible woman. Elicia only seeks carnal pleasure and does not really care about what goes on around her. Elicia is really helpless after Celestina's death because of her great dependence on her.

He has affairs with Centurio, Crito, Sempronio, Sosia and Sempronio, whom he only wants for his money. The kind of courtship he has with Sempronio is a relationship full of falsehoods, Sempronio uses it whenever he wants, but when Sempronio is absent, Elicia has relationships with other men.

Elicia Phrases:

  • "You have not seen me for three days. Never God see you, never God comfort you or visit! Cool of the sad, who in you has his hope and the end of all his good." Elvish Sempronius after seeing him after a long time.
  • "Never will that house lose the name of Celestina, may God have. There are always known and close girls, half a pair of the ones she raised. There they do their concerts, from where I will follow some profit".
  • "Oh Callisto and Melibea, causing so many deaths! May your loves end badly, in sweet taste your sweet pleasures become!"
  • "While we were eating today, let us not think of tomorrow. He also dies that much allega like the one who lives poorly, and the learned as the pastor, and the Pope as the sacristan... We do not have to live forever. Let us enjoy and rejoice, that old age few see it, and of those who see it, none died of starvation."
  • "[...] For my life I do not say it for praising me; More than I think I'm as beautiful as your Melibea."

Tristan and Sosia

They are valiant servants and loyal to Callisto. Tristan is a clever young man, he is very fond of Callisto, and he is very loyal to his master, in fact, he cries very much for the death of his master. Sosia is a kindly young man, he is in love with Areusa.

Lucrecia

He is loyal to Melibea, to the point of helping her meet Callisto during the nights. He showed a great hatred for Callisto but the truth is that he was in love with the young man. Lucrecia feels great envy for Melibea and that is why Celestina finds it easy to bribe her.

At some point he tries to warn Melibea's mother about his daughter's affairs, but nothing happens. In the end Lucrecia feels a great remorse of conscience because she feels in some way guilty by the death of Melibea.

Lucrecia's phrases:

  • "Ma'am, perfum touques, do solimán, and other thirty trades! He knows a lot in herbs, heals children, and some still call it the old lapidary." (Referring to Celestina).
  • "It is better known that the rude." (Rue is a very abundant marshy plant).

Centurion

He is a soldier, he is in love with Areúsa but at the same time he is his pimp. He is a vague and cowardly man, whom prostitutes order him to kill Callisto.

Alisa and Pleberio

They are the parents of Melibea. They are dedicated to look after and protect their daughter Melibea. Alisa is a wealthy and proud woman, who believes that there is no young man who lives up to her daughter. Alisa wants to decide who her daughter Melibea will marry.

Pleberio is an affectionate father and more loving and understanding than Alisa, he deeply loves his daughter, in which he trusts fully. Pleberio does not want to impose the love to Melibea, he supports it to find the love itself.

Pleber Phrases:

  • "[...] For my Melibea slew herself by her own will, in my eyes, with the great weariness of love which afflicted her; The other killed him in a very tender battle. Oh incomparable loss!"
  • "Oh love, my love! I did not think you had the strength or power to kill your subjects! I did not think you took the revenge of the parents on the children. Sweet name they gave you; Bitter things you do."
  • "There is no better way to preserve the fame of the virgins than with an early marriage. [...] In whom the four main things that are demanded in marriages fit, it is necessary to know: the first, discretion, honesty and virginity; Second, beauty; The third, the high origin and relatives; The end, wealth."

Alisa's Phrases:

  • "Beware, daughter, of her, who is a great traitor." (He advises his daughter Melibea regarding Celestina)
  • "Well, Melibea, please the neighbor in all that is right to give him by the spinning. And you, Mother, forgive me, that another day you will see us where we see each other."
  • "Is it Melibea's disease? For God's sake, tell me, because if she does not want me to live."
  • "But as this is the office of the fathers and very foreign to the women, as you order, I will be joyful, and our daughter will obey, according to her chaste living and honest life and humility."

References

  1. . How do the characters of La Celestina pray? 15-1-2017, from Jawarharlal Nehru University Website: parnaseo.uv.es.
  2. Spain Then and Now. (2009). The world of Calisto and Melibea. 15-1-2017, from Spain Then and Now Website: spainthenandnow.com.
  3. Publication of the students of the degree in Hispanic Literature of the Autonomous University of Aguascalientes (Gen. 2011-2015). (2012). Analysis of prostitutes and the maid, Lucrecia, in La Celestina. 15-1-2017, from Il Divino Blog Website: ildivinoblog.blogspot.com.
  4. Torres, D. (2006). La Celestina. 15-1-2017, from Azahar en camino blog Website: azaharencamino-personajes.blogspot.com.
  5. Wiki Literature. (2014). Psychological description of the characters of celestina. 15-1-2017, from Wiki Literatura Web site: wikiliteratura.net.
  6. Stadthagen, H. (2013). Elements of witchcraft in La Celestina. 15-1-2017, from Journal of the Institute Iberoamerican studies Website: lakis.or.kr.
  7. Flightner, J. (1962). Tragic characters of the Celestina. 15-1-2017, from University of Montana Website: scholarworks.umt.edu.

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