The Tragedy of Die Jüdin von Toledo Author(s): Roy C. Cowen Source: The German Quarterly, Vol. 37, No.

1 (Jan., 1964), pp. 39-53 Published by: Wiley on behalf of the American Association of Teachers of German Stable URL: . Accessed: 28/09/2013 10:59
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1955). Abteilung.). 28 Sep 2013 10:59:06 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .1A review of the critical history of this drama indicates that the main difficulty lies in the determination of the central figure.144 on Sat.THE TRAGEDY OF DIE JUDIN VON TOLEDO Roy C. Lenz published Franz Grillparzer'sPolitical Ideas and "Die Jiidin von Toledo". 440-447.3 Although Rahel continued to excite the imagination of many critics.250. pp. 1909 ff. H. the nature of his tragic experience and. 7. the genre of the work. textual references are from Franz Grillparzer:S<mtliche Werke. It might be noted here. ed. however. which concentrates on showing how untenable Volkelt's position is.2 For the next fifty years the interpretation of the play as an Erziehungsdrama portraying Alfonso's education by experience as well as theory to his royal station and mission remained virtually unquestioned. p. if Grillparzer's representation of the court and the King is examined carefully. The text of Die Jiidin von Toledo is found in the 1. (Hamburg. In 1888. August Sauer (Vienna.the designation was first applied by Alfred von Berger in Dramaturgische Vortrdge (Vienna. 3rd ed.4 The second part of the book consists of a detailed examination of the Jiidin. the Jiidin was understood as the tragedy of the title-heroine. In the years immediately following its emergence from Grillparzer's Nachla3. 1890). 39 This content downloaded from 128. that the interpretation of the Jiidin as Erziehungsdrama continued to occupy a place of honor even in such modern treatments as Benno von Wiese's Deutsche Tragodie von Lessing bis Hebbel. however. when Harold F. Die Jiidin von Toledo has proved to be one of the most difficult to understand.144. 1888). Band. 1-105. Cowen Of all the plays Grillparzer wrote. Although the word Erziehungsdramais totally in accordancewith Volkelt's interpretation. in some cases where the designation of "tragedy" is questioned. Franz Grillparzer als Dichter des Tragischen (Nordlingen. The first major break with Volkelt's interpretation came in 1938. her name as the title of the drama was interpreted in the sense of "The Episode of the Jewess of Toledo". 22ff. Johannes Volkelt introduced a new perspective which made the King the central figure. 1938).5 In 1All 2 3 5 4 (New York.

Although he never really goes into the question of the genre. the one quality which raises him above the members of his court. Lenz says: "It is lost because a conscious understanding of and catharsis from. only Alfonso appears as an individual with tolerance and human understanding. the concept of a desirable and laudible order can no longer be applied to the court around Alfonso. and he does a thorough job of interpreting them. In Lenz's opinion." (p. the persistence of Volkelt's interpretation may simply be due to unfamiliarity with Lenz's work. who.144 on Sat. The end of the drama is a triumph of the state at the cost of all individual feelings for humanity. when Alfonso acquiesces in Act V to the action of the nobles. If its moral standards are presented by the playwright in such consistently bad light as Grillparzer has done here. This content downloaded from 128. who has lost his individuality and succumbed to the morality of the court. but the very qualities he is missing. his error does not occur. in von Wiese's copious bibliographical references.250. 60). But the Jiidin bears the designation of a "tragedy" and. In this atmosphere of hypocrisy and conformity. is not completely understandable by Lenz's interpretation alone. 28 Sep 2013 10:59:06 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Lenz demonstrates that the court is marked by hypocrisy and spiritual emptiness. from the standpoint of the audience. which was published privately and does not appear. Lenz seems to see the "tragedy" in the "broken" figure of the King. Lenz is admittedly concerned mainly with "Grillparzer'sPolitical Ideas". convincing analysis of its representatives. the tragedy is constructed on the loss of Alfonso's individualism. for. are necessary for a tragic figure. seem pitiable or pathetic. In light of the overwhelming evidence presented against it. Alfonso does not even realize that he is losing his individuality. Human understanding is totally lacking in the Queen.40 THE GERMAN QUARTERLY some cases. for example. as such. That is to say. Manrique and Garceran. such a court. for example. he becomes a part of the court and its convention. 68). is "nothing but an opportunist. By means of a detailed.144. can scarcely serve as a positive value or desirable goal in an Erziehungsdrama. experience must be of enduring quality. "conscious understanding"and "catharsis". drawn by the poet with delightful and devastating irony" as well as a "thorough hypocrite" (Lenz. The King may. But in speaking of Alfonso's individuality. Lenz contends. and the political order represented by it. p.

144 on Sat. was im Stiick geschieht. 25 f. so kann doch das spielerische Kind. however. Because Volkelt was the first one to dismiss her as the heroine of the piece. yet Grillparzer decided against using any form of "Comedia" or "Schauspiel" for his drama. sondern der Konig Alfonso Mittelpunkt und Held des Dramas ist. wie der Titel vermuten liiat. Kiimpfen und Leiden. It is. Grillparzer's main source for the Jiidin. an dem alles Oberfiiche ist. then Alfonso's attitude toward his experience with Rahel prohibits his being considered tragic. she seems to him to be too "superficial".THE TRAGEDY OF DIE JuDIN VON TOLEDO 41 if a character is to be called a "tragic hero". his reasons should be reviewed: Wenn auf das Tragische in der Jiidin niiher eingegangen werden soll. It must be noted. that Lope de Vega designated his Las Paces de los Reyes. It is my contention that the original designation. sondern es tritt auch sein Wollen. It has already been noted that the first criticism centered around Rahel. "HistorischesTrauerspiel".250. den tiefsinnenden und klarbewuBt handelnden Konig nicht aus dem Einheitspunkt der Handlung verdriingen. however. als dies bei Rahel der Fall ist. cannot be discarded until the drama has been examined thoroughly as a "tragedy".). a "Schauspiel".) Volkelt rejects Rahel as the heroine mainly because of her "lightness" and "childishness". namely that the King does not really feel remorse or true guilt. Volkelt avoids any problems of tragedy by suggesting in a footnote that the play should be called just that. Rahel. because the designation "tragedy" is not applicable (p. however. so muB zunichst dariiber Klarheit herrschen. as a "Comedia". So sehr auch diese durch ihr auffallendes Wesen das Interesse des Lesers in den ersten Akten fesselt und insofern den Konig verdunkelt. If Lenz's observation is correct. 28 Sep 2013 10:59:06 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Since Alfonso is obviously not a tragic figure.144. as have most of the critics of the Jiidin since Volkelt. seine Schuld und Siihne mit ganz anderm inneren Gewicht auf. it now becomes apparent that a closer examination of Rahel as the central figure must be made. fails to attain the depth of character which an assertion of his indi- This content downloaded from 128. I have concentrated on Alfonso. 200 f. by succumbing to convention. equally apparent that Alfonso. Nicht nur bestimmt der K6nig weit mehr als Rahel den Fortgang der Handlung und bildet mehr als sie den Beziehungspunkt fur alles. a designation which would perhaps best be reproduced with "Schauspiel". Until now. (p. dabf nicht.

28 Sep 2013 10:59:06 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions ..but not tragic.144 on Sat. his suffering must manifest greater breadth and intensity than that of any other tragic hero. an easy way to avoid the tragic dilemma of punishing the nobles or himself. this lack of inner greatness becomes synonymous with lack of tragic stature. his doing penance by the crusade is put in a questionable light by Esther in lines 1921-1942: Siehst du. when the tragic hero is a King. But when it is combined with a lack of intense emotional bonds and an inability to judge oneself and one's companions. demonstrated that the This content downloaded from 128. Sie sind die GroBen. Likewise. but his ignorance of the problematic aspects of his actions deprives him of the title "Alfonso der GroBe". e. Any depth in his character is furthermore belied by the fact that he never manifests any emotion of sustained intensity. in the above quotation. there is usually a feeling in the viewers of a tragedy that. his unjustified confidence in Garceran's judgment. Because of his apparent intentions.250. such as love. As a matter of fact.42 THE GERMAN QUARTERLY viduality would have brought about. he is "Alfonso der Edle". In any case. the repudiation of her upon seeing her corpse is an impulsive action which takes place without any inner conflict. He seems to be reaching for a quick way out of his situation. contrasts with Rahel "den tiefsinnenden und klarbewu3t handelnden K6nig".144. The lack of solitary greatness is not in itself prohibitive of a tragic figure. Alfonso is pitiable . I believe. Volkelt. Although it may put an unjust demand on the poet. there is no evidence that Alfonso arrives at his decision to go on the crusade because of inner conviction. his decision to abdicate and go on the crusade comes as a sudden reversal of his previous action. ambition or religious fervor. The preceding argument has. (1921-25) His action simply does not seem convincing either from the perspective of his own personality or from the situation. Alfonso's attraction to Rahel and his later revulsion are the results of seeing her. while the attraction to her on the basis of one glimpse of her beauty is understandable.g. although the end of the play is anticipated by several allusions to and discussions of the impending war against the Moors. but Alfonso is anything but consistent and contemplative in his actions. sie sind schon heiter und vergniigt Und stiften Ehen fur die Zukunft schon.haben zum Versihnungsfest Ein Opfer sich geschlachtet aus den Kleinen Und reichen sich die annoch blut'ge Hand. hate.

not only criticizes the choice of Frl. as a matter of fact. 8 For example. I must point out that some scholars who follow the main lines of Volkelt's interpretation may also concede the tragic stature of Rahel. because almost 6 1938): "Durch ihre Liebe zu Alfonso wird Rahel zur tragischen Gestalt. 1873 (reprintedin the Apparat. Grillparzers dramatisches Werk (Vienna.144.. For example. durch ihre schillernd unberechenbare Naturhaftigkeit interessiert und gewinnt sie. "kokett". But the correctness of Volkelt's analysis of the Jewess still remains to be examined. is not surprising in light of the obvious and lavish care of the poet in the development of this character (Grillparzer himself called her his "Rose von Toledo"). one of the main objections to the first production of the play was the miscasting of Frl. wo egoistische Gemeinheit nur anekeln konnte" (264). In terms of stage effect. however.THE TRAGEDY OF DIE JUDIN VON TOLEDO 43 very "superficiality" which Volkelt used as a criterion to exclude Rahel as a tragic figure is characteristic of Alfonso. "amoralisch". First of all. Band).6 There is. Yet these adjectives do not accompany a direct moral evaluation of her. to argue against Rahel as the central figure. This content downloaded from 128. at first glance.250. Wolter as Rahel. "spielerisch". the opening lines spoken off stage). of course. 7 This argument is used by Dorothy Lasher-Schlitt in Grillparzer's Attitude toward the Jews (New York. one notable circumstance which seems. "sinnlich". namely. aus der dieses Stiick besteht. 28 Sep 2013 10:59:06 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .7 Beside the fact that her murder does not take place until the beginning of Act V (v. Wolter. however. "'Die Jiidin von Toledo' ist ein Erziehungsdrama" (276). wer soil sie spielen in Wien?" For him. Abteilung. the play existed only in the role of Rahel. Then what kind of person is Rahel? Most critical descriptions of her have the following terms in common: "kindisch".8 This attention to the casting of the role of Rahel. Presse (Morgenblatt)of January 23. Cf. 21. that she only appears in the first three acts. 1936) to prove that Rahel is only a "foil to the unfolding of the story of King Alphons" (p. 80). 1.144 on Sat. Emil Reich. one must above all note that she dominates the first three acts by force of her personality. "verbuhlt". Rahel is one of Grillparzer's most successful creations. She dominates them so completely that the success or failure of a performance can depend on the actress playing her role. Ludwig Speidel in his review for the Neue Freie he also asks the decisive question: "Aber diese Rolle.

lines 586 ff. and Garceran can only recognize one side of Rahel. Kinn und Mund. calls her "die Wahrheit. He calls her an "albern spielend. But Alfonso also contradicts himself when he praises her beauty (1478-83). die List. Certainly in the beginning she recognizes virtually no morality herself. After so many contradictory and distorted evaluations and descriptions of Rahel. ging aus ihrem Selbst. den Trost.44 THE GERMANQUARTERLY all critics agree that she is not to be judged by ordinary moral standards. Yet the "childish". intolerant and jealous. but such words and actions are self-contradictory. from one pose to another.unless she underwent a basic change.144. Rahel. yet unlike Medea. nor is she condemned by anyone whose word is impartial. self-indulgent girl described by Volkelt and others would almost necessarily be incapable of true love for the King . The King. and he describes her appearance as "Ein b6ser Zug um Wange. Because the Queen is selfrighteous. Rahel's words and actions seem. to produce the impression of a seductive demon. the one scene. and certainly in the first two acts there does not appear to be any solid foundation underlying this constant flux. Even Esther says to Alfonso: "Ihr schlagt zu hoch sie an" (1676). urplotzlich. They are too self-contradictory to be viewed as expressions of any one quality. die Torheit und die Eitelkeit. is constantly associated with magic. ob verzerrt" and says "All was sie tat. what should one believe? Most studies which do not conveniently avoid the question concede that Rahel really falls in love with the King. as if by magic. considers impressive actions as expressive. Rahel never seriously "practices" magic or indulges in any ritual before our eyes. their opinions about her have only the limited value in keeping with their personalities and interests. 28 Sep 2013 10:59:06 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . from one mood to another. is supposed to be objective in his judgments.. which could be seen in terms of witchcraft belies by its levity any serious implications of magic.250. on the other hand. like Medea. The continued attempt to describe her basic nature as demonic. ein lauernd Etwas in dem Feuerblick vergiftete. in my opinion.144 on Sat. unverhofft und ohne Beispiel" (1685-87). die Schwache. Gefallsucht. let alone one of demonic proportions. For the characters on the stage. entstellte ihre Schbnheit" (1849-51). In the first two acts she is truly a child of nature whose actions seem This content downloaded from 128. the personification of all the "Fehler dieser weiten Erde. ja die Habsucht" (1456-58). toricht-weises Kind" (1029). narrow-minded. Rahel's entire character seems to be marked by change.

Almost all previous descriptions of her character also imply validity for all stages of her life. in characterizing the exposition. 12 For example. 1907). but the research on the Jiidin has generally been limited to the use of stage symbols. She is the picture of life. H. 53 in the Apparat. Gr. even if the later action contradicts an earlier one completely. however.l2 Yet surprisingly enough. 1943). only an echo from the first reviews of the play which often regretted the intellectualism of the work.9 Obviously. 147.). die durch eine natiirliche Lebensfiille verhiillt wird". 28 Sep 2013 10:59:06 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .11 The emphasis on "Durchdachtheit" is.WolfCirian is not able to coordinate several good observations into a penetrating analysis. Rahel cannot be restrained from doing something. p. which loves action for its own sake. Grillparzer: Dramaturgische Essays (Berlin. 10 One outstanding contribution to our understanding of the visual aspects of Grillparzer's dramas is Walter Naumann's "Die Form des Dramas bei Grillparzer und Hofmannsthal" DVLG XXXIII (1959). Mettin. in Die Presse of November24.250.144. 9 One notable exceptionis Francis Wolf-Cirianin GrillparzersFrauengestalten (Stuttgart and Berlin. moreover. speaks of "Durchdachtheit. Rahel still demonstrates in Act III many of the characteristics she showed in I and II. It is hoped that the present investigation will help to establish the Jiidin in the framework of the modern approach to Grillparzer as exemplified by Naumann. Unfortunately. in which Naumann speaks of a "Konfigurationder Gestalten".144 on Sat. as if there were no development in the three acts in which she appears. This content downloaded from 128. he never deviates greatly from his original interpretation of Rahel as a "Dime".10It must not be forgotten.THE TRAGEDY OF DIE JUDIN VON TOLEDO 45 frivolous because there is no single motivation or principle determining them. particularly the use of gesture. An often overlooked possibility for the playwright to show change is the meaningful contrast of similar events and actions. 329 ff. But no one would maintain that an inner change in a person must be immediately recognizable to those around him (it has already been shown that the remarks of the other characters about her do not produce any definite pattern). who discusses Rahel's character and its changes act by act. 1872 (reprinted as No. For example. that one is dealing here with a play of great complexity. p. 11 Hermann Christian Mettin. 20-38. however. The recent research on Grillparzer has done much on the visual aspects of his dramas.

Rahel has been his mistress. Alfonso seems to be a man who has already grown tired of his mistress. on the other hand. the primary allusion is to Esther of the Bible. an attempt will now be made to answer some of the previously unanswered questions by studying the structural implications of Rahel's actions. thoroughly embedded himself in the system of the state and is exploiting his position to the fullest. by the beginning of Act III. (873-75) Although there is the pun on Rahel's sister's name. Isaak has. An examination of the progression of time in Die Jiidin von Toledo shows that Act II follows almost without interruption Act I. when examined closely. A promise of even greater things is implied in his smile: Hort ihr? Da kommen sie mit Zimbeln und Posaunen Wie Ahasverus mit dem Weibe Esther. Since the psychological approach has obviously produced inadequate results.46 THE GERMANQUARTERLY virtually all of the criticism of the Jiidin has been psychological.144. who is commonly a symbol of a woman who becomes the power behind the throne as well as a symbol for the Jews of a deliverer.144 on Sat. Instead of a passionate or obsessed lover. The explanation for his position of favoritism is given by Isaak himself: "Mein Rahelchen steigt taglich in der Gunst" (850).250. not. It is. He still uses aphoristic expressions typical of "Schulweisheiten" and lacking emotional intensity: "Die Furcht ist Weiberrecht. and Acts III. But this remark seems. and that there has never been a mature feeling of love by the King in the intervening time. But the arrival of Alfonso and Rahel presents a sharp contrast to Isaak's picture of the situation. but there has been no intensification of the emotional This content downloaded from 128. IV and V also take place on the same day. "steht schon fest". to imply that Rahel has not yet reached the zenith of her influence. For Isaak her star is still in ascent. 28 Sep 2013 10:59:06 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . not structural (even the stage symbols have been interpreted psychologically). If Isaak's remark about her still climbing in the King's favor is accepted at face value . doch ihr mil3braucht's" (888). for example. quite obvious at the beginning of Act III that a considerable span of time has transpired since the end of Act II. Isaak says that she "steigt taglich". And he seems short-tempered: "Legt einen Teppich ihr und macht ein Ende" (893). Die unser Volk zu Glanz und Ruhm erh6ht.and there is no reason to doubt the honesty of Isaak's opinion then it can be assumed that the present situation in no way signifies a regression in the affair.

ambition and beauty. den Helm auf. that he is reluctant to present intense emotions on the stage. Wenn ich in einer Brust den Wahnsinn trafe Der mich erfiillte. for example. Bis dahin mach' ich die Gebriiuchemit. she has never evaluated her own actions or situation. And it is Rahel herself who brings out this motif here. Die hergebracht im Gotzendienst der Liebe. The note of resignation in her speech is likewise totally new. The image in 960-962 is. when she says: Ich habe nie geliebt. die spielerische Phantasie eines mit einem Tropfen Kiinstlertum bernadeten Naturells.144.THE TRAGEDY OF DIE JUDIN VON TOLEDO 47 bond between them . It has already been noted that the language of Alfonso has remained the same in Act III. 300). But a new tone comes into Rahel's speech. although she has spoken of her life. As if to underline this change in herself. the subsequent episode with the armor can be interpreted in its proper light.250. The conclusions drawn from this observation remain. Wie man in fremden Tempeln etwa kniet.144 on Sat. The effect of the events during the time between II and III is reflected primarily in the language of the two main characters. Even in such extended and colorful speeches as.. there is simply no deep-seated. Doch konnt' ich lieben. This content downloaded from 128. on the other hand. Rahel speaks only of the things at hand or of things about which she has been told. und ihre Phantasie. / Bin ich doch selbst ein Traum nur einer Nacht. and a display of passion or mere sexual attraction would be superfluous and even misleading. Rahel says in conclusion: "Ich will indes nur schlafen bis sie kommt. (957-62) Nowhere in her previous speeches can comparable imagery be found. mutual love to be shown. The reason that Grillparzer does not show any love scenes is not. however. The importance of this image is further emphasized by the fact that the life-as-dream motif plays a significant role in most of Grillparzer's dramas. 28 Sep 2013 10:59:06 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . as many critics have suggested. If the change in her language and thought has been established.13 It is remarkable that no one has attributed any im13 Wolf-Cirian (see footnote 9) makes the following observation about the scene with the helmet: "So setzt sie denn. 571 ff. wair'mein Herz beriihrt. as far as the King is concerned. in ihrem Spiele fortfahrend." (97879) There is no image in any of her previous speeches which even approaches this one in depth and sobriety. bemaichtigtsich sofort der neuen Rolle" (p. the result of a self-evaluation that has been unknown in her up to now. least.

is the action of a woman calculating the effect. in order to make her ridiculous in the King's eyes. Her actions are now the products of calculation and recognition of her situation. The first masquerade is truly the product of "natural coquetry". her "rival". In Acts I and II.g. When the King leaves the stage in Act III. This content downloaded from 128. Since a similar scene could have been planned especially for the King and would thereby indicate a calculating woman. eine Art Philine. the effect on Alfonso shows the effect which she can provoke without being aware of it. e. and 999 ff. Rahel has come to the realization that she is "ein Traum nur einer Nacht" and is now striving to hold onto her fleeting happiness. But what about the "masquerade" with the helmet in Act III? Here the masquerade. Her coquetry is usually considered accidental: "Um Alfonso zu bezaubern. like the flirtation with Garceran. yet her actions often convey the impression of calculation and coquetry. an inherent difference between the two "masquerades". 156. 558 ff. Rahel's speeches are shortened to poignant brevity: "Er liebt mich nicht." (1095) . unmotivated life.48 THE GERMAN QUARTERLY portance to two facts: that Rahel dons a "costume" in two scenes."14 Farinelli's observation is. Rahel's masquerade is intended only for herself. Rahel has left the realm of "pure". as well as the accidental arrival of the King. Grillparzers Rahel ist ein kokettes Wesen. "Natural coquetry" implies a virtually innocent intention which leads to a seemingly calculated action. Rahel is the incorporation of "life". Grillparzer und Lope de Vega (Berlin. It seems almost as if Rahel is consciously ridiculing the Queen. by and large. however. correct. die Koketterie ist aber natiirlich. which knows no ulterior motives and which remains only partially understood by those who think in terms of effect.250.144 on Sat. 28 Sep 2013 10:59:06 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . angeboren. however." 14 Arturo Farinelli. p.144. 1894). most critics have characterized Rahel as "kokett". The Rahel of the first two acts behaves impulsively and often without motivation. Grillparzer goes to great lengths to make it evident that her coquetry is largely involuntary. that there is. In her masquerade as the Queen. ich hab' es lingst gewuBt."Er war so heif und feurig im Beginn. Garceran or Eleonore.. braucht sie aber der Kiinste nicht viele. Grillparzer strongly emphasizes the spontaneous origin of her masquerade. In Act III.. As has already been noted.

the present interpretation depends on and therefore emphasizes Grillparzer's subtle presentation of all the characters. wahrhaft doch geliebt". The final line of Act III. She has trusted her charm. Coenen tries to refute any "pessimism" by a positive interpretation of Alfonso."Was aber wird aus mir. belies complete pessimism. but only uses it as the subject of obvious Galgenhumor: Ich will es gar nicht sehn. This content downloaded from 128.144. in Franz Grillparzer's Portraiture of Men.. launenhafte Wesen Rahels. yet it is also the final proof of her maturity. represents. die ich vertraut? / Laf uns entfliehn!" (1101-02) Line 1101 expresses Rahel's tragedy. by the maturation process of recognizing her love." (p. She has trusted the King.144 on Sat. Nur spaiter etwa Wenn unsre Haft sich dehnt zu langrer Zeit.). She has trusted love. who. but rather Rahel.250. 201) This assertion presupposes. She has shown a natural trust in life which approaches childlike naivete. however. erinnert an den Charakter Kleopatras in Shakespeares 'Antonius und Kleopatra'. Rahel is childlike in her ability to trust life and people. She does not take the necklace. a positive solution. a view which he claims has been gaining ground since the twenties of this century. University of North Carolina Studies in the Germanic Languages and Literatures 4 (Chapel Hill. questions whether "Grillparzer's end of Die Jiidin von Toledo represents a gloomy pessimism" (p. at least in part. "Und hab' ihn. 99 f. but it has also failed her.'5 Regarding lines 1104 ff. that Rahel's attention to the amethyst is genuine. 28 Sep 2013 10:59:06 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Manrique and Garceran. as a matter of fact. an interpretation which seems somewhat too conventional. Her ability to feel true love is the fruition of the trust which is leading to her tragic end.THE TRAGEDY OF DIE JUDIN VON TOLEDO 49 (1099) . to refute Coenen's main contention that Grillparzer was just as skilful in the portraiture of men as women. But the stage directions call for her to ask about the necklace "mit von Schluchzen unterbrochener Stimme". 1951). das von einem Gegensatz zum anderen iiberspringt. It is not one of the male characters. but she feels he has left her to an imminent death. of course. but it has failed her. the following comment is made in Sauer's notes to the critical text: "Das sprunghafte. in her naive acceptance of everything as it seems to be. Schwester. The present investigation is not intended. In this line she summarizes the problematic side of her existence: she has always acted with trust and confidence in everything and everybody. 15 Frederic E. Coenen.

Lowen. Thus. In Act III. The mention of the necklace. cit. the most famous Alfonso in the stage history of the play: he had the play conclude with the triumphant (?) speech of the King. but now she has no thought of saving her life with the jewelry. as for example Bancbanus or Hero. so giftig! Oh (1294-97) The word "Undank" occurs even more often in Das goldene VlieB. The interpretation of Rahel's tragedy in terms of a lost trust. (1112-15) Her macabre joke is not just a Gedankensprung. expressed this time by Esther.144.250. Rahel has resigned herself to her fate and does not. has been answered. 28 Sep 2013 10:59:06 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . for example. Wolfe sind's. recalls a motif present even in some of Grillparzer'searliest tragedies. so bunt. as in 315 ff. it is a commentary on her previous life and values. In Act I (lines 315 ff.50 THE GERMANQUARTERLY Zerstreuung heischt das ew'ge Einerlei. Sappho makes "Undank" the worst of vices. This content downloaded from 128. Der Undank ist die Schlange! Nicht? Die Schlange! So schon. Rahel's tragic experience continues to impress itself on the drama. Versuch' ich es. can only be understood by reference to a similar event in an earlier act. and previously neglected side of a trust which furnishes the basis for the tragedy of the Jiidin von Toledo. und schmiickemich zum Tod.16 In 1920-1941 Esther curses Alfonso 16 Another circumstancewhich has undoubtedlycontributedto a misunderstanding of the Jildin can be found in the changes made by Josef Kainz. Grillparzer is not only interested in the tragedy of a person obligated by a trust. who even cites the example of a critic who did not know that the play did not end at that point. where it is descriptive of the tragedy stemming from Medea's misplaced trust and love. It is the latter. 32. op. Although her question. Lenz. closes the drama. like the masquerade with the helmet.144 on Sat. Vid. he also sees the implications of a trust from the side of the person who trusts another.) she offered the King her jewelry for protection... "Was aber wird aus mir. die ich vertraut?". moreover. so glatt.. . think of buying her life. when she says: . Die andern Laster alle Hyanen. p. Tiger. not Alfonso's invitation to feast before the battle. But the tragedy of misplaced trust does not end with Rahel's death. The tragic theme of misplaced trust.

Now Isaak puts his money before his paternal obligation. 157). kommt! Wir haben dort zu tun.g. It is with a belief that she herself.und sie. Abt. den ich gesprochen. from the beginning. Bd. 972-977). who trusted them. trusted her for guidance and help (e. 28 Sep 2013 10:59:06 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .Im ersten Akte wird der Friede des Konigreichsdurch die verraterische Ermordung Lope de Arenas geschlossen. Wir stehn gleich jenen in der Sunder Reihe. as seen throughout the play. the inevitable tragedy arising around her sister.. experiences it with her and passes the final judg17 Grillparzer'sbelief that the King's decision does not resolve all the questions of the drama can be inferred from his observation on Lope's Las Paces de los Reyes: "Ja selbst in dem Titel: las pazes de los Reyes liegt vielleicht eine versteckte Tronie. Verzeihn wir denn. damit uns Gott verzeihe. because she sees. (Die Arme gegen die Seitentiire ausgestreckt.. Esther Denkt ihr noch das? Im Angesicht des Jammers und der Not.250. Vater. Esther already pronounced the .144.144 on Sat. (Auf die Seitentiire zeigend) Isaak (wie aus dem Schlafe erwachend). her father and Alfonso have all betrayed their responsibilitytoward Rahel. 15. Dann nehm' ich riick den Fluch. but after Rahel's death. who had. that she points to the Seitentiire.) (1942-48) Rahel trusted the King and he abandoned her.self-judgment (lines 1598-1611) that she had betrayed her sister.. im Dritten ist das Pfand des Friedens der Tod der von Allen am wenigst schuldigen Jildin" (1.THE TRAGEDY OF DIE JtDIN VON TOLEDO 51 for having slaughtered a victim "aus den Kleinen".though obviously too severe . she represents the continuation of the theme incorporated by Rahel. und ich . This content downloaded from 128.l7 Yet she takes back the curse pronounced on the King. Esther's role corresponds to that of an antique chorus. when she asks forgiveness for all of them. Grillparzer even lets Esther pronounce almost the same judgment in Die Jildin von Toledo. when her father wants to find his gold before taking care of Rahel's body: Esther Kommt. Esther plays only a slight role. Until the concluding act. Doch such' ich erst mein Gold. Dann seid Ihr schuldig auch.

With the conclusion of this struggle. is elevated to the same dramatic intensity as Rahel. She does not precipitate the tragedy. The thematic continuation through Esther takes place for two quite obvious reasons. Nevertheless. Since the King's inability to grow in moral responsibility must be shown by a reaction to Rahel's fate.52 THE GERMAN QUARTERLY ment. Esther. Just as the chorus suffers with and through the hero. Even in her last minutes she still This content downloaded from 128. she has emerged from the realm of pure life. 28 Sep 2013 10:59:06 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . When. Rahel says that she really loved the King. of action for its own sake.but the loss of her childishness occurs with her tragic insight into her situation. Although Rahel does not speak in Act V.144 on Sat. Her presence is also felt in the many allusions to her body's proximity in the next room. that is. but he may not be permitted to speak the last word. we must note the thematic curve from Act I. If we are to understand the play. in which Rahel achieves a purpose in her existence. Esther becomes the expression of her new insight. because no one sees the difference. Rahel is often described as "childish". although she demonstrates emotional and intellectual growth. the role of Esther in V corresponds in thematic and dramatic importance to Rahel's in the preceding acts.250. Rahel.144. Grillparzer does not completely drop Rahel after the third act. in which Esther speaks the fateful judgment on Alfonso. who has previously remained in the background. Secondly. at the end of Act III. Esther suffers with and through Rahel. but rather makes her presence felt even in the last act by using the sound of the murder to introduce the first scene. To make it clear that there is one continuous line here. the final level she attains cannot seem too far above her initial sphere. she only suffers with the true victim. It is her tragic insight that not even the genuineness of her love can protect against the fate set into motion by her "childish" actions. Esther still remains on the periphery of events. because the hollowness of his reaction must be shown with dramatic impact. her declaration is the result of a long struggle against herself. the character of Rahel would seem too unbelievable if she spoke the final judgment on Alfonso. which starts below the plane of Alfonso. he must appear after her death. through Act III. in which Rahel appears as the embodiment of life in its purest. most capricious form. crosses it in III and transcends it in V. of a child who trusts without reason. to Act V.

But because this room symbolizes the last stage of her maturation. In the Jewess.144.250.THE TRAGEDY OF DIE JUDIN VON TOLEDO 53 seeks refuge in the room where she spent the many hours with Alfonso and. While Prague will flourish.) The room symbolizes the encounter of two people which is in violation of. In his later dramas. Grillparzer shows increasing scepticism towards historical and political progress. like Libussa. but only for Rahel does this encounter prove significant. however. sie war. University of Michigan This content downloaded from 128. Rahel. but their very humanity prevents both women from adjusting to political necessity.144 on Sat. (1740f. religious and political influences. Rahel will always remain there. sie bleibt. Sie ist. In her ominous final lines Esther calls attention to a basic parallel between this play and Libussa. it represents the idyllic place where one encounters the "Du". Wo ich so oft -? Esther. 28 Sep 2013 10:59:06 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . innern Zimmer. because he was incapable of understanding this humanity. Alfonso is damned to defeat in the impending battle. in doing so. or isolation from all social. Sie ist in jenem letzten. but he failed to do so. learned about herself: Konig. represents the personal triumph of humanity. Alfonso could have expressed his individuality.

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