A product of the golden age of Spanish drama, Life Is a Dream (La vida es sueño) is the masterpiece of Pedro Calderón de la Barca (1600–1681), a contemporary of Lope de Vega and one of Spain's greatest literary figures. Acclaimed for his superb dramatic instincts and philosophical seriousness as well as his extraordinary imagination, Calderón exercised his best qualities in this allegorical play, an exploration of the mysteries of human destiny, the illusory nature of earthly existence, and the struggle between predestination and free will. The story revolves around the moral dilemmas of a Polish prince, unjustly imprisoned by his suspicious father. Against a background of revolution, Calderón builds a dramatic edifice of outstanding theatricality, rich in symbolism and metaphor, expressed in magnificent poetry. This excellent new English translation is absolutely complete, and as close and direct as possible. Ample footnotes and an informative introductory Publisher's Note enhance the value of its modest price.