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Moir Collection of Comedias Sueltas, Special Collections, Hartley Library: Home

Moir Collection

This collection of Spanish plays consists primarily of examples of ‘comedias sueltas’, short dramatic works published cheaply as pamphlets from the late seventeenth century to the end of the nineteenth century. The collection includes some examples of the early and undated sueltas, but the greater part of the collection dates from the mid to the late nineteenth century.

Over 280 writers are represented, with multiple titles by many of the best known dramatists of the period, including Manuel Bretón de los Herreros (1796-1873), Ventura de la Vega (1807-1865), Ramón de Navarrete (1822-1897), Ramón de Valladares y Saavedra (1824-1901), José Echegaray (1832-1916) and Euesebio Blasco (1844-1903). There are also seventeenth and eighteenth-century editions of works by Lope de Vega (1562-1635), Calderón de la Barca (1600-1681) and Agustín Moreto y Cabaña (1618-1669).

Extent: Over 900 plays, ranging in date from the late 17th century to the late 19th century.

Location and Access


The Moir Collection is part of Special Collections on level 4 of the Hartley Library and items are fetched for use in the Archives, Manuscripts and Rare Books Search Room.


The Search Room is open Tuesday-Thursday 1000-1600. All visits are by prior appointment and all visitors will be required to book their visit and to order their material at least 1 working day in advance. 

Bookings are made by emailing providing details of name, University ID number (members of the University of Southampton only), permanent residential address and contact details, date of visit and list of items to be consulted.

If you do not have a University I.D. Card, you will need to show photographic I.D. and a form of I.D. which includes your permanent residential address when you enter the Hartley Library and also when you arrive at the Search Room.


Library Search includes records for all Moir Collection books. It enables you to search the Library's printed books, journals and electronic resources at the same time. Access to e-resources is limited to staff and students of the University.

Basic Search

Enter keywords / author surname / significant title words in the search box and then refine the Results List using the filters on the left e.g. by book / date  / subject. You can re-sort the Results List to your preferred order using the drop-down menu at the top of the list. 

Library Search groups print copies, e-books and different editions of the same work under one record in the Results List. To see the separate records, select the 'Show all' filter.

Advanced Search

Using Advanced Search, you can undertake a more targeted search by selecting search indexes from drop-down lists and by presetting filters for format and date.

See Moir Collection for a list of titles.


For general enquiries about the Moir Collection contact: Jenny Ruthven email: or tel. 023 80593335

Search Room Bookings: email: or tel. 023 80592721

Address: Special Collections, Hartley Library, University of Southampton, Highfield, Southampton SO17 1BJ

Reprographics Service

Bound volumes cannot be photocopied but you can request photographic or microfilm copies, subject to the age and condition of the item.

See Reprographics Service for a list of the types of copy available and charges.

Collection History

The collection was acquired in the early 1980s to support the work of the Spanish Department and in particular the research of Duncan Moir (1930-1983). Moir had graduated from the University of Aberdeen in 1954 and went on to undertake research at King's College, Cambridge before joining the University of Southampton in 1960. Specialising in Spanish drama, his interest in the genre extended from plays of the Golden Age to those of the late 19th century, but his untimely death in 1983 cut short his work on the collection. With E.M. Wilson he published The Golden Age: Drama 1492-1700 (London, 1971).

Plays from the Collection

play covers

Related E-Book Collections