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Adrienne Lecouvreur, as Cornelia in The Death of Pompey
First publication of The Death of Pompey

The Death of Pompey (La Mort de Pompée) is a tragedy by the French playwright Pierre Corneille on the death of Pompey the Great. It was first performed in 1642, with Julius Caesar played by Molière. Like many of Corneille's plays, it is noted for the high tones of its heroine, Cornelia, who admits that her enemy is noble and generous but warns him when he releases her that she will continue to seek his death.[1]

In 1724 Colley Cibber wrote an English-language play Caesar in Egypt inspired by Corneille's original. It was staged at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane with Barton Booth as Julius Caesar and Anne Oldfield as Cleopatra.


2 Annotations

First Reading

Michael Robinson  •  Link

Pompey the Great· A tragedy. As it was acted by the Servants of His Royal Highness the Duke of York. Translated out of French by certain persons of honour.
London : printed [by William Wilson] for Henry Herringman, and are to be sold at his shop at the sign of the Anchor in the Lower-Walk of the New-Exchange, 1664.

[4], 54, [4] p. ; 4⁰. Wing (2nd ed., 1994), C6319, Pforzheimer, 1044
A verse translation, by Edmund Waller, the Earl of Dorset, Sir Charles Sedley, Sidney Godolphin and perhaps others, of: Pierre Corneille, 'La mort de Pompée.' A translation by Katherine Philips had been printed in London and Dublin in 1663.

PL 1604.2 -- bound with and behind Wilson, John 'Andronicus Commenius, A Tragedy'. (1664)

Second Reading

Terry Foreman  •  Link

Pompey the Great a tragedy as it was acted by the servants of His Royal Highness the Duke of York / translated out of French by certain persons of honour.
Corneille, Pierre, 1606-1684., Waller, Edmund, 1606-1687., Dorset, Charles Sackville, Earl of, 1638?-1706., Sedley, Charles, Sir, 1639?-1701.
London: Printed for Henry Herringman ..., 1664.
Early English Books Online (full text)…

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Chart showing the number of references in each month of the diary’s entries.