Álvaro Cuéllar deposited Chronology and Stylometry: Automatic Dating of Lope de Vega’s Comedies in the group Global DH on Humanities Commons 4 months, 2 weeks ago
Finding the accurate date of texts is one of the most puzzling challenges in the study of Spanish aurisecular theater. Stylometry, the computer technique centered on the comparison of texts based on their writing, which has been successfully used in recent years to solve authorship questions, can also serve to shed light on this issue. In this article I present a first approach to verify such idea. I apply stylometric analysis to a controlled corpus of Lopean autographs using three basic elements: words, lemmas and parts of speech. The results seem to show a correlation between style and dating, obtaining mean absolute errors around ± 5 years, a fairly narrow range if we take into account the long production of Lope de Vega. Secondly, I apply the test with words to a broader set of Lopean plays of approximate date with positive results, close to mean absolute errors of ± 4 years.