Finally available, a high quality book of the original classic edition of Esther.
This is a new and freshly published edition of this culturally important work by Jean Racine, which is now, at last, again available to you.
Enjoy this classic work today. These selected paragraphs distill the contents and give you a quick look inside Esther:
He died in 1699, after a few years devoted to his Histoire du Règne de Louis XIV., his death being hastened by grief at having incurred the Kings displeasure on account of a memoir on the misery of the people, which he wrote at the request of Mme. de Maintenon.
...Before these poets, French tragedy had not reached such a degree of perfection as to be entitled to an identity of its own; after them and their few feeble imitators, it was merged into a new form, and, as classical French tragedy, ceased altogether to be.
...Cyr, and objecting to the love-making that held such a large place in the works written for the public stage, Mme. de Maintenon applied to Racine, requesting him to write a play that should be entirely suitable for performance by very young ladies.
...The lyrics of the chorus, far from being a relapse into the pernicious practice, prevalent before the time of Corneille, of providing such passages for the mere display of the actors ability, are pure chants and hymns, like the Cantiques Spirituels which Racine composed subsequently in detached form, and are a highly appropriate ornament to religious plays such as Esther and Athalie.
...Nor should the constructive skill be unnoticed with which the dramatist has filled in the characters sketched by the Bible; the humility and grace of Esthers account of her own triumph (ll. 31-80), the art with which Haman betrays his cruel nature by the very offer of services he makes to the queen (ll. 1151-4), the adroitness of the court he pays to the king (ll. 593-7), and his readiness of resource in adversity (ll.