Victor Hugo, Le Roi s'amuse [The Prince's Play]

Abigail RayAlexander (Johns Hopkins University)
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Two years after the Battle of


, Victor Hugo’s play

Le roi s’amuse

debuted at the Comédie-Française on November 22, 1832. Hugo began writing this play about a courtly Renaissance fool on June 3, 1832, two days before General Lamarque’s funeral procession, which evolved into a protest and which Hugo later incorporated in

Les Misérables

. The first performance of this play sparked impassioned reactions within its diverse Parisian audience. Supporters of Hugo sang revolutionary songs, cheered Romantic audience members such as Gautier, and booed conservative audience members, including Talleyrand. At times, the audience was so boisterous that the actors were inaudible. A controversial line within the play led to conservative protests, to which the revolutionaries responded by…

2083 words

Citation: RayAlexander, Abigail. "Le Roi s'amuse". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 27 July 2015 [, accessed 22 April 2024.]

11220 Le Roi s'amuse 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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