The sparkling plays about the scoundrelly valet Figaro, used as the basis of operas by Mozart and Roissini
A highly engaging comedy of intrigue, The Barber of Seville portrays the resourceful Figaro foiling a jealous old man's attempts to keep his beautiful ward from her lover. And The Marriage of Figaro—condemned by Louis XVI for its daring satire of nobility and privilege—depicts a master and servant set in opposition by their desire for the same woman. With characteristic lightness of touch, Beaumarchais—a French courtier, secret agent, libertine, and adventurer—created an audacious farce of disguise and mistaken identity that balances wit, frivolity and seriousness in equal measure.
For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
On the basis of these two plays alone, Beaumarchais can be placed alongside Voltaire as a truly great satirist. It is a shame that they are now known, outside France, merely as providing the libretti for two famous operas - but three or four pages into the scripts, in an excellent translation, and one realizes that they deserve to stand on their own merits as anti-aristocratic comedies at the centre of which stand a major comic creation: Figaro, the scheming and resourceful valet of Count Almaviva. Perhaps especially for the lovers of the operas, for whom it is a pleasure to know more about the lovely Countess, the beautiful Rosine, the cheeky Cherubin, these plays are a real pleasure to read, and come to life, as the greatest plays do, with the reader playing all the parts. (Kirkus UK)
Series: Classics S
For Ages: 18+ years old
Number Of Pages: 224
Published: 1st December 1976
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 20.1 x 13.0 x 1.4
Weight (kg): 0.17
Edition Number: 1