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


For general enquiries about the Moir Collection contact:

Jenny Ruthven

email: or tel. 023 80593335

Search Room Bookings:

email: or tel. 023 80592721


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

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Rafael García y Santisteban La Caza del Gallo (1859)

play cover

Rare Books PQ 6217 A213

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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.

Catalogues / Library Resources Search

  • WebCat includes records for all the Moir Collection plays (call number Rare Books PQ 6217). 
  • DelphiS enables you to search across WebCat and the Library's electronic databases and is especially useful for subject searches. You will need a University login to access full-text resources.

See Moir Collection for a complete list of titles. A printed catalogue is available in the Search Room.

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

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.