Rachel


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Rachel,

pseud. of Rachel Bluwstein, 1890–1931, Russian poet who wrote in Hebrew. She moved to Palestine in 1909 where she worked as a laborer. Her verse is simple and relates to the experience of Jewish settlement in Palestine and to the countryside itself.

Rachel

(räshĕl`), stage name of

Élisa Félix

(ālē`zä fālēks`), 1821–58, French actress, b. Switzerland. Exploited by her father in her childhood, she sang in the streets with her sister Sarah. In Paris, showing great promise at the Théâtre Molière school, she entered the Gymnase (1833) and in 1838 made her debut with great success at the Comédie Française in Corneille's Horace. In 1841–42, after a sensational success in London, Rachel gained acclaim throughout Europe. She was applauded in all the major works of Racine and Corneille, Phèdre (1843) being her best role. She created the title role in Scribe's Adrienne Lecouvreur in 1849. Rachel appeared in the United States with fair success in 1855 (she knew little English) and on this visit aggravated the tuberculosis that led to her death three years later. Regarded as the greatest actress of her day, her clear diction, rhythmic speech, and economy of gesture contrasted with the exaggerated style of the time.

Bibliography

See M. Cost, I, Rachel (1957).


Rachel

(rā`chəl), in the Bible, wife of JacobJacob
, in the Bible, ancestor of the Hebrews, the younger of Isaac and Rebecca's twin sons; the older was Esau. In exchange for a bowl of lentil soup, Jacob obtained Esau's birthright and, with his mother's help, received the blessing that the dying Isaac had intended for his
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 and mother of JosephJoseph,
one of the heroes of the patriarchal narratives of the Book of Genesis. He is presented as the favored son of Jacob and Rachel, sold as a boy into slavery by his brothers, who were jealous of Joseph's dreams and of his coat of many colors given him by Jacob.
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 and BenjaminBenjamin
[Heb.,=son of fortune], younger son of Jacob and Rachel, eponymous ancestor of one of the 12 tribes of Israel. His mother, dying, named him Benoni [Heb.,=son of my sorrow].
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. She is one of the four Jewish matriarchs. An alternate form is Rahel.

Rachel

 

(stage name of Élisa Félix). Born Feb. 28, 1821, in Mumpf, Switzerland; died Jan. 3 or 4, 1858, in Le Cannet, Maritime Alps. French actress.

The daughter of a fruit peddler, Rachel sang on the streets of Paris as a child. She took acting lessons from the actor and teacher J.-I. Samson. In 1837 she made her debut at the Gymnase Theater, and in 1838 at the Comédie Française.

Rachel helped revive the classical tragedy of the French stage. She acted mainly in plays by P. Corneille and J. Racine. Her chief roles in Corneille’s works were Camille in Horace, Ae-milie in Cinna, and the title role in Phèdre. Her main roles in the works of Racine were Hermione in Andromaque, Roxane in Bajazet, and the title roles in Esther and Athalie. The heroines portrayed by Rachel fearlessly opposed coercion and the injustices of despots. During the Revolution of 1848, she performed the “Marseillaise.” Rachel’s acting was marked by precision, versatility, great expressiveness, and immediacy. Beginning in the 1850’s, during the Second Empire, when bourgeois drama of everyday life was established, Rachel’s tragic gifts became outmoded. In the second half of the 1840’s she toured in Europe and North America; in 1853 and 1854 she performed in Russia. Her acting was praised by M. S. Shchepkin and A. I. Herzen. Rachel left the stage in 1855.

REFERENCE

Istoriia zapadnoevropeiskogo teatra, vol. 3. Moscow, 1963.

Rachel

massacre of innocents fulfills prophecy that she will weep. [N.T.: Matthew 2:18; Jeremiah 31:15]
See: Grief

Rachel

executed as Jewess; revealed to be Christian clergy-man’s daughter. [Fr. Opera: Halevy, The Jewess, Westerman, 168]
See: Irony

Rachel

1
1. Old Testament the second and best-loved wife of Jacob; mother of Joseph and Benjamin (Genesis 29--35)
2. original name Elisa F?lix. 1820--58, French tragic actress, famous for her roles in the plays of Racine and Corneille

Rachel

2
Old Testament the second and best-loved wife of Jacob; mother of Joseph and Benjamin (Genesis 29--35)
References in classic literature ?
His heart's a piece of old shoe leather," Rachel declared, dropping the fish.
Oh, no--of course she wouldn't," said Rachel with a sigh.
Pepper was a bore; Rachel was an unlicked girl, no doubt prolific of confidences, the very first of which would be: "You see, I don't get on with my father.
Rachel stepped out of the lane into the backyard of Green Gables.
Rachel rapped smartly at the kitchen door and stepped in when bidden to do so.
Rachel was getting fairly dizzy with this unusual mystery about quiet, unmysterious Green Gables.
Rachel, in spite of--or perhaps because of--their dissimilarity.
This evening, when I had given Rachel all the assistance I could, and had nothing left me but to wait, and wish and tremble, I became so greatly agitated that I knew not what to do.
More words followed these, providing if my lady was dead, or if Miss Rachel was dead, at the time of the testator's decease, for the Diamond being sent to Holland, in accordance with the sealed instructions originally deposited with it.
How did he know that Rachel might not refuse to accept it, too?
How are we to explain his only giving Rachel her birthday present conditionally on her mother being alive?
Miss Rachel used to remark that the Italian side of him was uppermost, on those occasions when he unexpectedly gave in, and asked you in his nice sweet-tempered way to take his own responsibilities on your shoulders.