Characters Discussed

(Great Characters in Literature)


Esteban (ehs-TEH-bahn), a well-to-do peasant and the second husband of Raimunda. Faustino, the fiancé of Acacia, his stepdaughter, is shot and killed. When the chief suspect, Norbert, is acquitted, Rubio, Esteban’s servant, becomes increasingly impudent. His drunken talk causes Raimunda to suspect Esteban of loving his stepdaughter. When Esteban offers to leave because of the trouble he has caused, Acacia declares her love for him. In the confusion following Raimunda’s screaming denunciation, the cornered Esteban shoots his wife.


Acacia (ah-KAH-syah), the daughter of Raimunda and Esteban’s stepdaughter. Although she repeatedly declares her resentment of Esteban for marrying Raimunda so soon after her father’s death, her mother eventually suspects that she is in love with her stepfather. When Esteban announces his intention of leaving, she breaks down and declares her love for him.


Raimunda (rri-MEWN-dah), Esteban’s wife and Acacia’s mother. After the murder of Acacia’s fiancé, Faustino, she is led, by the drunken talk of Rubio, to suspect her husband and her daughter of being in love. When she is shot by Esteban, she dies in peace because, at the end, Acacia turns to her. She feels that she has saved her daughter from her stepfather, that Esteban can never have her now.


Faustino (fows-TEE-noh), Acacia’s fiancé, who is shot by an unknown person.

Tio Eusebio

Tio Eusebio (TEE-oh eh-ew-SEH-bee-oh), Faustino’s father and Esteban’s friend. His sons shoot and wound Norbert, thinking that he is their brother’s murderer.


Rubio (RREW-bee-oh), Esteban’s servant, whose drunken talk leads Raimunda to suspect Esteban and Acacia of being in love with each other. He declares that his master had never told him to murder Faustino but had expressed hope that no one would take Acacia away.


Norbert, Acacia’s former fiancé, who is cleared in the shooting of Faustino.


Juliana (hew-lee-AH-nah) and


Bernabé (behr-nah-BEH), family servants.


Fidelia (fee-DEH-lee-ah),


Engracia (ehn-GRAH-see-ah), and


Milagros (mee-LAH-grohs), family friends.


(Great Characters in Literature)

Goldberg, Isaac. The Drama of Transition. Cincinnati: Stewart Kidd, 1922. Lengthy discussion of Benavente’s achievement; provides insight into the critical reception of The Passion Flower both in Spain and throughout Europe. Also includes summaries of critical commentaries on Benavente by several early twentieth century scholars and artists.

Jameson, Storm. “The Drama of Italy and Spain.” In Modern Drama in Europe. London: Collins, 1920. Places Benavente in the context of twentieth century Spanish drama; links him with the earlier dramatist Lope de Vega Carpio as one of the country’s major playwrights. Discusses formal qualities of the plays and provides insight into the dramatist’s method for re-creating the pathos of human existence.

Peñuelas, Marcelino C. Jacinto Benavente. Translated by Kay Engler. New York: Twayne, 1968. Introductory summary of a writer Peñuelas considers the most popular Spanish playwright of the first half of the twentieth century. Establishes the relationship of this play to the social and literary climate in which it was written.

Starkie, Walter. Jacinto Benavente. London: H. Milford, 1924. Includes commentary on The Passion Flower in a general discussion of Benavente’s dialect plays; analyzes character development and compares the work to similar dramas by other European playwrights.

Underhill, John Garrett. Introduction to The Plays of Jacinto Benavente. Vol. 1. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1921. Discusses the work as one of Benavente’s “peasant dramas,” in which the playwright dramatizes “the struggle of the individual conscience against the conscience of the masses.”