Jean Racine: Iphigénie [Iphigenia]

(2674 words)
  • Jennifer Row (Boston University )

Iphigénie, Jean Racine’s eighth tragedy,was given a unique honour: rather than being staged at Versailles after preliminary performances in Paris, it debuted directly at the king’s court. Designed to be part of a week of festivities celebrating the French re-annexation of the Franche-Comté region, the play premiered on 18 August 1674 in the Orangerie of Versailles to high acclaim. In his Les Divertissements de Versailles, André Félibien gives an eyewitness account of the play’s lavish garden setting: crystal candelabras interspersed with orange trees, marble fountains, gilded statutes, greenery and flowers in porcelain vases. The play, featuring Racine’s own mistress and muse, La Champmeslé (Marie Desmares) in …

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Row, Jennifer. "Iphigénie". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 11 March 2016
[, accessed 26 September 2016.]