Jean De Rotrou

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Rotrou, Jean De


Born Aug. 21, 1609, in Dreux; died there June 27, 1650. French dramatist and poet.

Rotrou was one of the literary secretaries of A. J. Richelieu. His first plays were tragicomedies with complex intrigues, lofty emotions, and many stage effects; they included The Hypochondriac (1631), Diana (1635), and The Innocent Infidelity (1637). In the late 1630’s, influenced by Corneille and the achievements of classicist dramaturgy, Rotrou wrote dramas derived from classical sources, including the tragedies Antigone (1639) and Belisarius (1644) and the comedy The Doubles (1638). Rotrou’s most important plays are The True Saint Genesius (1647), Wenceslaus (1648), and Cosroès (1649), which exalt self-denial and the triumph of duty over emotion. His works influenced Molière and other writers.


Oeuvres, vols. 1–5. Paris, 1820.
Théâtre choisi, vols. 1–2. Paris, 1882.
In Russian translation:
In Russkaia Taliia. St. Petersburg, 1824.


Istoriia frantsuzskoi literatury, vol. 1. Moscow-Leningrad, 1946. Pages 435–36.
Jarry, J. Essai sur les oeuvres dramatiques de J. Rotrou. Lille, 1968.
Knutson, H. C. The Ironic Game: A Study of Rotrou’s Comic Theater. Berkeley-Los Angeles, 1966.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.