Beatrice

Beatrice, also called Joanna, is the young, beautiful daughter of Vermandero. When the plays begins, she is engaged to marry Alonzo, and it appears that she has some affection for him. But as soon as Alsemero declares his love for her, she switches her affections to the new man. Not wanting to be thwarted in her desires, and without a thought for the possible consequences, she employs De Flores, a man whom she loathes and despises, to murder Alonzo. But she completely misjudges De Flores. She thinks she can pay him for his services and get him to leave the country; instead, he demands sex from her. She is forced to submit to him, since he makes her realize that they are partners in crime and she cannot escape from him. But this creates another problem for her. Although she is now free to marry Alsemero, she cannot allow him to detect on their wedding night that she is not a virgin, so she employs Diaphanta to go to Alsemero's bed in her place. De Flores then efficiently disposes of Diaphanta in a house fire, before the truth can come out, and Beatrice decides that she is now in love with him. Her crimes catch up with her when Jasperino overhears incriminating conversations between her and De Flores and reports them to Alsemero. When challenged by her husband, she confesses her role in the murder, but omits the substitution of Diaphanta in the marriage bed. After being rejected by her husband, she is stabbed by De Flores. Wounded, she is shamed in front of her father, and finally admits the full truth to Alsemero just before she dies.

Beatrice Joanna's names are ironic. Beatrice means "Bringer of Joy," of "Blessed" and Joanna means "The Grace of God" Beatrice does bring Joy to De Flores, but on the whole she is the opposite of her names' meanings.

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