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Molière’s Les Femmes savantes (26 Octobre 2019)

A revised Les Femmes savantes has been published. I hope you will not be taken back to ealier drafts, which the computer does. I think it will work. If it does’nt, I will reinsert the article in a new post. The post is in Word, but my computer is not working well.

A reference to Martine, the kitchen-maid, is missing. Martine is fired because she has made a grammar mistake. She is told she should know Vaugelas, a grammarian. Philaminte rules the household.

My posts will be used in the book. The book however is more analytical and scholarly. Writing posts is nevertheless extremely helpful. I can see how the plays work. In Molière, the plot is not as significant as manners, but there has to be a plot that brings about the marriage that takes place as the curtain falls. Ariste brings letters that tell of the family’s financial demise and Trissotin, three times a fool, leaves.

For instance, Armande combines two functions: the young lover and the blocking character, as does Alceste in the MisanthropeBélise is sottise itself. She thinks Clitandre loves her until the very end of the play, when she condemns haste.

Qu’il prenne garde au moins que je suis dans son cœur.
Par un prompt désespoir souvent on se marie,
Qu’on s’en repent après tout le temps de sa vie.
Bélise à tous (V. scène dernière, p. 74)
[Let him take care, for I still retain my place in his heart. Despair often leads people to conclude a hasty marriage, of which they repent ever after.]
Bélise to all (V. last scene)

This is information we can add to the post. In Molière’s comedies, people are what they are. Clitandre was rejected by Armande, but when he decides to marry Henriette, it is because he is what he is and Henriette will accept him as he is.

Our next play is Le Malade imaginaire, translated by Charles Heron Wall.

Let’s hope I can hang in there…

The picture that adorns the Poème Harmonique’s video of Le Roi a fait battre tambour is by Charles Coypel, who also illustrated Les Femmes savantes. I love combining the play, the music, and the illustrations.

French Baroque Song: Le Roi a fait battre tambour (1750 c.) / Le Poème Harmonique

Charles-Antoine_Coypel (2)

Charles-Antoine Coypel  (Wiki2.org.)

© Micheline Walker
29 March 2019