La tradición de los libros de aventuras en el primer Lope de Vega
La construcción del personaje de Juan Tomás, El caballero de Illescas
The latest criticism on Lope de Vega, when reflecting on the plays that are usually known as comedias de pícaros, has highlighted the inadequacy of El caballero de Illescas in relation to the other works because it features a character whose honorable disposition and noble origin give him a status different from the other protagonists. In light of these considerations, this article focuses on the character of Juan Tomás, the Caballero de Illescas, and aims at clarifying one of the possible sources from which Lope seems to start drawing his protagonist: the motifs that derive from the tradition of the adventure books, with specific reference to the popular tale of Roberto el diablo. The comparative analysis shows how, throughout the first act, anti-chivalric ideals embodied by the medieval character come to life again in the Caballero de Illescas.