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Monsieur de Pourceaugnac par Horace Vernet (theatre-documentation.com)

Our dramatis personæ is

MONSIEUR DE POURCEAUGNAC.
ORONTE. JULIE, (daughter of) fille d’Oronte.
NÉRINE, (a schemer) femme d’intrigue, (false) feinte Picarde.
LUCETTE, (false) feinte Gasconne.
ÉRASTE, (in love with) amant de Julie.
SBRIGANI, Napolitain, (a schemer) homme d’intrigue.
PREMIER MÉDECIN (doctor). SECOND MÉDECIN. L’APOTHICAIRE. UN PAYSAN (peasant). UNE PAYSANNE. PREMIER MUSICIEN (musician). SECOND MUSICIEN. PREMIER AVOCAT (lawyer). SECOND AVOCAT. PREMIER SUISSE (Swiss). SECOND SUISSE. UN EXEMPT. DEUX ARCHERS. PLUSIEURS MUSICIENS, JOUEURS D’INSTRUMENTS, ET DANSEURS.

La scène est à Paris

Act Two

SCENE ONE / Scène première
ORONTE, PREMIER MÉDECIN.

Monsieur de Pourceaugnac escapes the doctor’s house carrying a chair. The first doctor thinks that Monsieur de Pourceaugnac must be treated:

Marque d’un cerveau démonté, et d’une raison dépravée, que de ne vouloir pas guérir.
Premier médecin à Sbrigani (II. i)
[It is a sign of a disordered brain, and of a corrupted reason, not to wish to be cured.]
1st doctor to Sbrigani (II. 1)

Sbrigani tells the 1st doctor that M de Pourceaugnac may be at Oronto’s house. He, Sbrigani, will prepare a new batterie a trick:

Je vais de mon côté dresser une autre batterie, et le beau-père est aussi dupe que le gendre.
Sbrigani au premier médecin (II. i)
I, on my part, will go and bring another battery into play; and the father-in-law shall be duped as much as the son-in-law.
Sbribani to 1st doctor (II. 1, p. 114)

SCENE TWO
ORONTE, PREMIER MÉDECIN.

According to the 1st doctor, Monsieur de Pourceaugnac belongs to him.

Votre prétendu gendre a été constitué mon malade: sa maladie qu’on m’adonné à guérir, est un meuble qui m’appartient, et que je compte entre mes effets; et je vous déclare que je ne prétends point qu’il se marie, qu’au préalable il n’ait satisfait à la médecine, et subi les remèdes que je lui ai ordonnés.
Premier médecin à Oronte (II. ii)
[Your intended son-in-law has been constituted my patient; his disease, which I have been told to cure, is property which belongs to me, and which I reckon among my possessions; and I declare to you that I will not suffer him to marry before he has given satisfaction to the medical Faculty, and taken the remedies which I have prescribed for him.]
1st doctor to Oronte (II. 2, p. 114)

If Monsieur de Pourceaugnac is ill, Oronte will cancel the wedding.

Je n’ai garde, si cela est, de faire le mariage.
Oronte au premier médecin (II. ii)
[If that is the case, I do not intend to conclude this match.]
Pourceaugnac to 1st doctor (II. 2, p. 115)

SCENE THREE
SBRIGANI, en marchand flamand, ORONTE.

Sbrigani goes to Oronte’s house wearing Flemish clothes and says that Monsieur de Pourceaugnac owes a great deal of money:

Et sti Montsir de Pourcegnac, Montsir, l’est un homme que doivre beaucoup grandement à dix ou douze marchanne flamane qui estre venu ici.
Sbrigani to Oronte (II. iii)
[And this Monsieur de Pourceaugnac, Sir, is a man who owes a great deal to ten or twelve Flemish merchants who have come hither.]
Sbrigani to Oronte (II. 3, p. 116)

This Flemish gentleman is awaiting the wedding because Oronte will pay his creditors (ses créanciers).

Oui, Montsir obtenir, et depuis huite mois, nous afoir obtenir une petite sentence contre lui, et lui à remettre à payer tou ce créanciers de sti mariage que sti Montsir Oronte donne pour son fille.
Sbrigani (II. iii)
[Yes, Sir; and eight months ago, we have obtained a little judgment against him; and he has put off paying all his creditors until this marriage, if this Mr.  Oronte gives him his daughter.]
Sbrigani dressed in Flemish clothes to Oronte (II. 3, p. 116)
Sbrigani habillé en marchand flamand à Oronte (II. iii).

Oronte thinks that this information is not bad.

L’avis n’est pas mauvais. Je vous donne le bonjour.
Oronte (II. iii)
(Aside). This is not a bad warning. (Aloud). I wish you good day.
Oronte (II. 3, p. 116)

Monsieur de Pourceaugnac par Maurice Sand (theatre-documentation.com)

SCENE FOUR
SBRIGANI, POURCEAUGNAC.

Sbrigani bumps into Monsieur de Pourceaugnac who tells him that he thought he would dine and sleep, but fell into the hands of doctors. He escaped carrying a chair.

Tout ce que je vois, me semble lavement.
Pourceaugnac à Sbrigani (II. iv)
Everything which I see appears an enemy [enema] to me.
Pourceaugnac to Sbrigani (II. 4, p. 117)

Monsieur de Pourceaugnac remembers his being handed over to doctors and apothecaries. He repeats their words and Sbrigani’s.

Je vous laisse entre les mains de Monsieur. Des médecins habillés de noir. Dans une chaise. Tâter le pouls. Comme ainsi soit. Il est fou. Deux gros joufflus. Grands chapeaux. Bon di, bon di. Six pantalons. Ta, ra, ta, ta: Ta, ra, ta, ta.
Alegramente Monsu Pourceaugnac. Apothicaire. Lavement. Prenez, Monsieur, prenez, prenez. Il est bénin, bénin, bénin. C’est pour déterger, pour déterger, déterger. Piglia-lo sù, Signor Monsu, piglia-lo, piglia-lo, piglia-lo sù. Jamais je n’ai été si soûl de sottises.
Pourceaugnac à Sbrigani (II. iv)
[I leave you in the hands of this gentleman. Doctors dressed in black. In a chair. Feel the pulse. That it be so. He is mad. Two stout boobies. Big hats. Buon di. buon di. Six pantaloons. Ta, ra, ta, ta ; ta, ra, ta, ta. Allegramente, monsu Pourceaugnac. An apothecary. Injection. Take it, Sir; take it, take it. It is gentle, gentle, gentle. It is to loosen, to loosen, loosen. Piglialo su, signor Monsu; piglialo, piglialo, pigliao su. Never have I been so crammed with silliness.]
Pourceaugnac to Sbrigani (II. 4,  p. 117)

Ironically, Monsieur de Pourceaugnac tells his woes to the confidence trickster who is engineering his demise. One is reminded of Horace confiding in Arnolphe (The School for Wives). Sbrigani’s next trick is to question Julie’s virtue. She would be a coquette.

SCENE FIVE
ORONTE, POURCEAUGNAC.

When they first meet, Oronte and Pourceaugnac behave like enemies.

Croyez-vous, Monsieur Oronte, que les Limosins soient des sots?
Pourceaugnac (II. v)
Croyez-vous, Monsieur de Pourceaugnac, que les Parisiens soient des bêtes?
Oronte (II. v)
Vous imaginez-vous, Monsieur Oronte, qu’un homme comme moi soit affamé de femme? 
Pourceaugnac (II. v)
Vous imaginez-vous, Monsieur de Pourceaugnac, qu’une fille comme la mienne
soit si affamée de mari?
Oronte (II. v)
[Think you, Mr. Oronte, that the Limousins are fools?
Pourceaugnac (II. 5, p.119-120)
Think you, Monsieur de Pourceaugnac, that the Parisians are idiots.
Oronte (II. 5, p. 120)
Do you imagine, Mr. Oronte, that a man like me is so hungry after a woman ?
Pourceaugnac (II. 5, p. 120)
Do you imagine, Monsieur de Pourceaugnac, that a girl like mine is so hungry after a husband ?]
Oronte (II. 5, p. 120)

SCENE SIX
JULIE, ORONTE, MONSIEUR DE POURCEAUGNAC.

Julie joins her father and Monsieur de Pourceaugnac. She makes believe that she can’t wait to be Monsieur de Pourceaugnac’s wife.

On vient de me dire, mon père, que Monsieur de Pourceaugnac est arrivé. Ah le voilà sans doute, et mon cœur me le dit. Qu’il est bien fait! qu’il a bon air! et que je suis contente d’avoir un tel époux! Souffrez que je l’embrasse, et que je lui témoigne…
Julie (II. vi)
[They have just told me, father, that Monsieur de Pourceaugnac has arrived. Ah! this is he no doubt, and my heart tells me so. How well he is built! how well he looks! and how glad I am to have such a husband! Permit me to embrace him, and to show him that . . .]
Julie (II. 6, p. 120)

She would like to caress him, but Oronte will not allow her to touch Pourceaugnac.

Ne voulez-vous pas que je caresse l’époux que vous m’avez choisi?
Julie (II. vi)
[May I not caress the husband whom you have chosen for me?]
Julie (II. 6, p. 120)

Oronte tells Monsieur de Pourceaugnac that he has debts to repay that he is expected to pay debts, which eliminates Monsieur de Pourceaugnac.

La feinte ici est inutile, et j’ai vu le marchand flamand, qui, avec les autres créanciers, a obtenu depuis huit mois sentence contre vous.
Oronte (II. vi)
[The pretence is useless; and I have seen the Flemish merchant, who, with other creditors, obtained judgment against you eight months ago.]
Oronte to Pourceaugnac (II. 7)

Quel marchand flamand? quels créanciers? quelle sentence obtenue contre moi?
Pourceaugnac (II. vi)
[What Flemish merchant? What creditors? What judgment obtained against me?]
Pourceaugnac (II. 7, p. 122)

 

 

(theatre-documentation.com)

SCENE  SEVEN
LUCETTE, ORONTE, MONSIEUR DE POURCEAUGNAC.

Next, Monsieur de Pourceaugnac is confronted by two women, Lucette and Nérine, both of whom claim they were married to Pourceaugnac and that he abandoned them. Beware, Nérine is a trickster, or femme d’intrigue. As for Lucette, she is learning the craft quickly. Lucette says she married in Pézenas and Nérine, in Chin-Quentin. Everyone was in attendance

Ah! tu es assy, et à la fy yeu te trobi aprés abé fait tant de passés. Podes-tu, scélérat, podes tu sousteni ma bisto?
Lucette à Pourceaugnac (II. vii)
[Ah! you are here, and I find you at last, after my many journeys in search of you. Can you bear to look me in the face, you scoundrel?]
Lucette to Pourceaugnac (II. 8, p. 122)

Qu’est-ce veut cette femme-là?
Pourceaugnac (II. vii)
[What does this woman want?]
Pourceaugnac (II. 8, p. 122)

Que te boli, infame! Tu fas semblan de nou me pas connouysse, et nou
rougisses pas, impudent que tu sios, tu ne rougisses pas de me beyre? Nou sabi pas, Moussur, saquos bous dont m’an dit que bouillo espousa la fillo; may yeu bous declari que yeu soun safenno, et que y a set ans, Moussur, qu’en passan à Pezenas el auguet l’adresse dambé sas mignardisos, commo sap tapla fayre, de me gaigna lou cor, et m’oubligel praquel mouyen à y douna la man per l’espousa.
Lucette à Pourceaugnac (II. vii)
[What do I want, you infamous wretch! You pretend not to know me; and you do not blush, rogue that you are, you do not blush to see me. (To Oronte). I do not know, Sir, whether it is you, as I have been told, whose daughter he wants to marry; but I declare to you that I am his wife, and that seven years ago, when he was passing through Pézenas,[1] he was artful enough, with his pretty speeches in which he is so clever, to gain my heart, and, by these means, persuaded me to give him my hand in marriage.
Lucette to Pourceaugnac (II. 8, p. 122)

Oh ! Oh !
Oronte (II. vii)

Que diable est-ce ci ?
[What the devil is this [the syringe]?
Pourceaugnac (II. 8, p. 123)

Lou trayté me quitel trés ans aprés, sul preteste de qualques affayres que l’apelabon dins soun païs, et despey noun ly resçauput quaso de noubelo ; may dins lou tens qui soungeabi lou mens, m’an dounat abist, que begnio dins aquesto bilo, per se remarida danbé un autro jouena fillo, que sous parens ly an proucurado, sensse saupré res  de sou prumié mariatge. Yeu ay tout quitat en diligensso, et me souy rendudo dins aqueste loc lou pu leau qu’ay pouscut , per m’oupousa en aquel criminel mariatge, et confondre as elys de tout le mounde lou plus méchant day homme.
Lucette à Pourceaugnac (I. vii)
[The wretch left me three years afterwards, under the pretext of some business which took him to his country; and since then I have had no tidings from him ; but when I was least thinking about it, they warned me that he was coming into this town to marry again another young girl which her parents had promised him, without knowing anything of his first marriage. I immediately left everything, and I have come hither as quickly as I could, to oppose this criminal union, and to unmask the most wicked of men before the eyes of the world.]
Lucette to Pourceaugnac (II. 8, p. 152)

SCENE EIGHT
NÉRINE en Picarde, LUCETTE, ORONTE, MONSIEUR DE POURCEAUGNAC.

At first, Scene Eight seems a copy of Scene Seven, because a second woman, Nérine, claims that she married Monsieur de Pourceaugnac. She is from Picardy and speak a dialectical French. Both women quarrel.

Quaign’inpudensso! Et coussy, miserable, nou te soubenes plus de la pauro Françon, et del paure Jeanet, que soun lous fruits de nostre mariatge? 
Lucette à Pourceaugnac (II. viii)
[What impudence! How now, you wretch, you remember no longer poor little Francois, and poor Jeannette, who are the fruits of our union?]
Lucette à Pourceaugnac (II. 9, p. 155)

Bayez un peu l’insolence. Quoy? tu ne te souviens mie de chette pauvre ainfain, no petite Madelaine, que tu m’as laichée pour gaige de ta foy?
Nérine à Pourceaugnac (II. viii)
[Just look at the insolence! What! you do not remember that poor child, our little Madelaine, which you left me as a pledge of your fidelity?]
Nérine to Pourceaugnac (II. ix, p. 155)

Beny Françon, beny, Jeanet, beny, toustou, beny, toustoune, benre à un payre dénaturat la duretat qu’el a per nautres.
Lucette aux enfants (II. viii)
[Come here Francois, come here Jeannette, come all of you, come and show an unnatural father his want of feeling for us all.]
Lucette to the children (II. ix, p. 124)
Ah, papa ! papa ! papa !

Les enfants [the children] (II. viii) 

Diantre soit des petits fils de putains !
Pourceaugnac (II. viii)
[The devil take the strumpet’s brats!]
Pourceaugnac (II. 10, p. 125)

Lucette says that everyone in Pézenas saw her marry Pourceaugnac and Nérine reports that all Chin-Quentin saw her wed Pourceaugnac.
Tout Pézenas a bist nostre mariatge.
Lucette (II. viii)
Tout Chin-Quentin [St-Quentin] a assisté à no noche.
Nérine (II. viii)

Monsieur de Pourceaugnac is exhausted and screams for help.

Au secours ! au secours ! où fuirai-je ? Je n’en puis plus.
Pourceaugnac (II. viii)
[Help! help! where shall fly? I can bear this no longer]
Pourceaugnac (II. 10, 125)

As Monsieur de Pourceaugnac leaves, frightened, Oronte says that he should be hanged. That is our “cas pendable.” This expression is a favourite among students of Molière and moliéristes.  Pendable comes from pendre, to hang.

SCENE NINE
MONSIEUR DE POURCEAUGNAC, SBRIGANI.

Sbrigani emerges victorious. He has orchestrated all of Monsieur de Pourceaugnac’s setbacks, while asking that no one go too far. Sbrigani can fool anyone. He is one of French literature’s finest tricksters, after Renart (Reynard the Fox).

Je conduis de l’œil toutes choses, et tout ceci ne va pas mal. Nous fatiguerons tant notre provincial, qu’il faudra, ma foi, qu’il déguerpisse.
Sbrigani (II. ix)
[I am managing these things very nicely, and everything goes well as yet. We shall tire our provincial to such an extent that upon my word, he will be obliged to decamp.]
Sbrigani (II. 11, p. 125)

SCENE TEN
MONSIEUR DE POURCEAUGNAC, SBRIGANI.

Monsieur de Pourceaugnac continues to believe Sbrigani is a friend, which is not altogether wrong, yet wrong. Above all, Sbrigani is a consummate con-man, or confidence trickster.

Pourceaugnac tells Sbrigani that it rains women and enema in this land.

Oui. Il pleut en ce pays des femmes et des lavements.
Pourceaugnac (II. x)
[Yes. It rains syringes and women in this country.]
Pourceaugnac (II. 12, p. 124)

Afterwards, they discuss legal help. He could be arrested for polygamy. Sbrigani knows exactly whom to pick.

Je le veux, et vais vous conduire chez deux hommes fort habiles; mais j’ai auparavant à vous avertir de n’être point surpris de leur manière de parler; ils ont contracté du barreau certaine habitude de déclamation, qui fait que l’on dirait qu’ils chantent, et vous prendrez pour musique tout ce qu’ils vous diront.
Sbrigani à Pourceaugnac
(II. x)
I shall do so, and shall take you to two very able men; but I must warn you beforehand not to be surprised at their way of speaking. They have contracted from the bar a certain habit of declamation which would lead one to suppose that they were singing, and you might mistake everything they say for music.
Sbrigani to Pourceaugnac (II. 12, p. 126)

SCENE ELEVEN
SBRIGANI, MONSIEUR DE POURCEAUGNAC, DEUX AVOCATS musiciens, dont l’un parle fort lentement, et l’autre fort vite, accompagnés de DEUX PROCUREURS et de DEUX SERGENTS.

Scene eleven is an interlude. Two lawyers recite or sing that Monsieur de Pourceaugnac will pay for his “crimes.” Two public prosecutors (procureurs) and sergeants beat them up.

La polygamie est un cas pendable,
Est un cas pendable. 
Lawyers (II. xi)
Polygamy is a business,
Is a hanging business.
Lawyers (II.12, p. 126)

1312747-Molière_Monsieur_de_Pourceaugnac

Monsieur de Pourceaugnac

http://litteratureiiifr.blogspot.com/2016/04/les-procedes-comiques-chez-moliere.html

ACT THREE

In Act Three, Scene One, Sbrigani describes justice as it is carried out in Paris. The trial takes place after the man who has been arrested was been hanged. There is no trial. That country is one where one likes to see a Limosin, hanged.

N’importe, ils ne s’enquêtent point de cela; et puis ils ont en cette ville une haine effroyable pour les gens de votre pays, et ils ne sont point plus ravis que de voir pendre un Limosin.
Sbrigani à Pourceaugnac (III. ii)
[It matters not; they do not inquire into that; and besides, they have got a terrible hatres in this town for people from your country; and nothing gives them greater delight than to see a Limousin hanged.]
Scribani to Pourceaugnac (III. 2, p. 161)

Pourceaugnac, disguised as a woman, meets two Suisses (guards) who want to make love to Monsieur de Pourceaugnac who seems une femme de qualité. They are stopped by police officers.

In Scene III, Pourceaugnac is arrested by an Exempt, a police officer whom Sbrigani will bribe using Monsieur de Pourceaugnac’s money. The Exempt leads Monsieur de Pourceaugnac out of Paris.

In Scene Six, Sbrigani has news for Oronte. Julie followed Monsieur de Pourceaugnac. In Scene Seven, Éraste takes her back to her father. Oronte is so pleased that he gives his daughter in marriage to Éraste

Je vous suis beaucoup obligé; et j’augmente de dix mille écus le mariage de ma fille. Allons, qu’on fasse venir le notaire pour dresser le contrat.
Oronte (III. ix)
[I am much obliged to you, and I add ten thousand crowns to the marriage portion of my daughter. Come, let them a notary to draw up the contract.]
(III. 9, p. 169)

In Scene Eight, as all wait for the the lawyer, an interlude entertains everyone.

—ooo—

I will close here because of fatigue. However, I will attempt to publish a short conclusion tomorrow, if possible. My first post has commentaries. Monsieur de Pourceaugnac is a pharmakós, a scapegoat. Although it has many shades, comedy is comedy. It is home to laughter. Our young lovers will marry, but I doubt Monsieur de Pourceaugnac will ever return to Paris. Sbrigani is the zanni of the commedia dell’arte.

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Sources and Resources

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[1] During the years he toured the provinces, Molière’s base was Pézenas.

 

Love to everyone 💕

DeTroy (2)

Lecture de Molière par François de Troy

© Micheline Walker
22 January 2020
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