Edmond Rostand(redirected from E Rostand)
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Born Apr. 1, 1868, in Marseille; died Dec. 2, 1918, in Paris. French poet and playwright. Member of the Académie Française (1901).
Rostand was educated as a lawyer. In his first play, the comedy The Romantics (staged and published 1894), Rostand affirms the beauty of natural feelings. The drama The Far-off Princess (staged and published 1895) glorifies lofty chivalrous love and presents motifs from medieval legends.
Turning to progressive national traditions, Rostand wrote his best play, Cyrano de Bergerac (staged 1897, published 1898). The playwright endowed his protagonist, the poet Cyrano de Bergerac, with strong emotions expressed in an elevated romantic manner; exalted love for a woman merges with love for one’s country. The plot centers on Cyrano’s conflict with his mean, philistine environment. Rostand’s chief literary device is romantic antithesis. His verse is light, graceful, and witty. Cyrano de Bergerac was translated into many languages and brought Rostand world renown. It was first performed in Russia in 1898 in St. Petersburg, in T. L. Shchepkina-Kupernik’s translation, and has been performed in Russian and Soviet theaters since that time.
Rostand also wrote the Bonapartist drama The Eaglet (staged and published 1900). The play Chanticleer (staged and published 1910) glorified an enthusiastic idealist. Rostand’s last plays are mannered and are marked by verbal ostentation.
WORKSOeuvres complètes illustrées, vols. 1–6. Paris, 1910–25.
In Russian translation:
Poln. sobr. soch., vols. 1–2. St. Petersburg, 1914.
Sirano de Berzherak. Moscow-Leningrad, 1938. P’esy. Moscow, 1958.
REFERENCESIstoriia frantsuzskoi literatury, vol. 3. Moscow, 1959.
Gorky, M. “’Sirano de Berzherak’: Geroicheskaia komediia E. Rostana.” Sobr. soch., vol. 23. Moscow, 1953.
Lunacharskii, A. V. “Sirano pervyi i Sirano vtoroi.” Sobr. soch., vol. 6. Moscow, 1965.
Shchepkina-Kupernik, T. L. Teatr ν moei zhizni. Moscow-Leningrad, 1948.
Lautier, A., and F. Keller. E. Rostand: son oeuvre. Paris, 1924.
Ripert, E. E. Rostand. [Paris, 1968.]
Dabadie, M. Lettre à ma nièce sur E. Rostand. [Toulouse, 1970.]
F. S. NARKIR’ER