A King Travels examines the scripting and performance of festivals in Spain between 1327 and 1620, offering an unprecedented look at the different types of festivals that were held in Iberia during this crucial period of European history. Bridging the gap between the medieval and early modern eras, Teofilo Ruiz focuses on the travels and festivities of Philip II, exploring the complex relationship between power and ceremony, and offering a vibrant portrait of Spain's cultural and political life. Ruiz covers a range of festival categories: carnival, royal entries, tournaments, calendrical and noncalendrical celebrations, autos de fe, and Corpus Christi processions. He probes the ritual meanings of these events, paying special attention to the use of colors and symbols, and to the power relations articulated through these festive displays. Ruiz argues that the fluid and at times subversive character of medieval festivals gave way to highly formalized and hierarchical events reflecting a broader shift in how power was articulated in late medieval and early modern Spain.
Yet Ruiz contends that these festivals, while they sought to buttress authority and instruct different social orders about hierarchies of power, also served as sites of contestation, dialogue, and resistance. A King Travels sheds new light on Iberian festive traditions and their unique role in the centralizing state in early modern Castile.
Teofilo F. Ruiz is Distinguished Professor of History at the University of California, Los Angeles. His many books include The Terror of History: On the Uncertainties of Life in Western Civilization and From Heaven to Earth: The Reordering of Castilian Society, 1150-1350 (both Princeton).
Preface ix Abbreviations xiii Chapter I: Festivals in Late Medieval and Early Modern Spain: An Introduction 1 Chapter II: The Meaning of Festivals: A Typology 34 Chapter III: Royal Entries, Princely Visits, Triumphal Celebrations in Spain, c. 1327-1640 68 Chapter IV: The Structure of the Late Medieval and Early Modern Royal Entry: Change and Continuity 113 Chapter V: A King Goes Traveling: Philip II in the Crown of Aragon, 1585-86 and 1592 146 Chapter VI: Martial Festivals and the Chivalrous Imaginary 193 Chapter VII: Kings and Knights at Play in Late Medieval and Early Modern Spain 210 Chapter VIII: From Carnival to Corpus Christi 246 Chapter IX: Noncalendrical Festivals: Life Cycles and Power 293 Conclusion 331 Appendix: The Feasts of May 1428 at Valladolid 335 Bibliography 339 Index 345