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Cyrano de Bergerac: Le chef-d'oeuvre d'Edmond Rostand en texte intégral

Cyrano de Bergerac: Le chef-d'oeuvre d'Edmond Rostand en texte intégral

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Cyrano de Bergerac: Le chef-d'oeuvre d'Edmond Rostand en texte intégral

ratings:
4/5 (1,029 ratings)
Length:
390 pages
1 hour
Publisher:
Released:
Feb 11, 2019
ISBN:
9782322135493
Format:
Book

Description

Dans la France du 17ème siècle, Cyrano de Bergerac, intrépide capitaine de la compagnie des Cadets de Gascogne, est éperdument amoureux de sa cousine Roxane. Malheureusement, affublé d'un nez qui le rend très vilain, il n'ose lui déclarer sa flamme. Par amour pour elle, il accepte de protéger son rival, le beau Christian de Neuvillette, et va jusqu'à écrire des lettres pour l'aider à séduire la belle Roxane...

Cet ouvrage trouve naturellement sa place dans une bibliothèque scolaire et offre une excellente opportunité de découvrir ou de redécouvrir ce grand classique.(www.choisirunlivre.com)
Âge : Dès 11 ans
Publisher:
Released:
Feb 11, 2019
ISBN:
9782322135493
Format:
Book

About the author

Edmond Eugène Alexis Rostand (1868-1918) was a French poet and dramatist. He is associated with neo-romanticism and is known best for his play Cyrano de Bergerac. Rostand's plays contrasted with the naturalistic theatre popular during the late nineteenth century and provided a final, very belated example of Romantic drama in France.


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Cyrano de Bergerac - Edmond Rostand

C'est à l'âme de CYRANO que je voulais dédier ce poème.

Mais puisqu'elle a passé en vous, COQUELIN, c'est à vous que je le dédie.

E. R.

Les Personnages

CYRANO DE BERGERAC

CHRISTIAN DE NEUVILLETTE

COMTE DE GUICHE

RAGUENEAU

LE BRET

CARBON DE CASTEL-JALOUX

LES CADETS

LIGNIÈRE

DE VALVERT

UN MARQUIS

DEUXIÈME MARQUIS

TROISIÈME MARQUIS

MONTFLEURY

BELLEROSE

JODELET

CUIGY

BRISSAILLE

UN FÂCHEUX

UN MOUSQUETAIRE

UN AUTRE

UN OFFICIER ESPAGNOL

UN CHEVAU-LÉGER

LE PORTIER

UN BOURGEOIS

SON FILS

UN TIRE-LAINE

UN SPECTATEUR

UN GARDE

BERTRANDOU LE FIFRE

LE CAPUCIN

DEUX MUSICIENS

LES POÈTES

LES PÂTISSIERS

ROXANE

SŒUR MARTHE

LISE

LA DISTRIBUTRICE

MÈRE MARGUERITE DE JÈSUS

LA DUÈGNE

SŒUR CLAIRE

UNE COMÉDIENNE

LA SOUBRETTE

LES PAGES

LA BOUQUETIÈRE

La foule, bourgeois, marquis, mousquetaires, tire-laine, pâtissiers, poètes, cadets gascons, comédiens, violons, pages, enfants, soldats, espagnols, spectateurs, spectatrices, précieuses, comédiennes, bourgeoises, religieuses, etc.

(Les quatre premiers actes en 1640, le cinquième en 1655.)

Sommaire

Acte I - Une Représentation à l'Hôtel de Bourgogne

Scène I

Scène II

Scène III

Scène IV

Scène V

Scène VI

Scène VII

Acte II - La Rôtisserie des Poètes

Scène I

Scène II

Scène III

Scène IV

Scène V

Scène VI

Scène VII

Scène VIII

Scène IX

Scène X

Scène XI

Acte III - Le Baiser de Roxane

Scène I

Scène II

Scène III

Scène IV

Scène V

Scène VI

Scène VII

Scène VIII

Scène IX

Scène X

Scène XI

Scène XII

Scène XIII

Scène XIV

Acte IV - Les Cadets de Gascogne

Scène I

Scène II

Scène III

Scène IV

Scène V

Scène VI

Scène VII

Scène VIII

Scène IX

Scène X

Acte V - La Gazette de Cyrano

Scène I

Scène II

Scène III

Scène IV

Scène V

Scène VI

Acte I - Une Représentation à l'Hôtel de Bourgogne

La salle de l'Hôtel de Bourgogne, en 1640. Sorte de hangar de jeu de paume aménagé et embelli pour des représentations.

La salle est un carré long ; on la voit en biais, de sorte qu'un de ses côtés forme le fond qui part du premier plan, à droite, et va au dernier plan, à gauche, faire angle avec la scène, qu'on aperçoit en pan coupé.

Cette scène est encombrée, des deux côtés, le long des coulisses, par des banquettes. Le rideau est formé par deux tapisseries qui peuvent s'écarter. Au-dessus du manteau d'Arlequin, les armes royales. On descend de l'estrade dans la salle par de larges marches. De chaque côté de ces marches, la place des violons. Rampe de chandelles.

Deux rangs superposés de galeries latérales : le rang supérieur est divisé en loges. Pas de sièges au parterre, qui est la scène même du théâtre ; au fond de ce parterre, c'est-à-dire à droite, premier plan, quelques bancs formant gradins et, sous un escalier qui monte vers des places supérieures, et dont on ne voit que le départ, une sorte de buffet orné de petits lustres, de vases fleuris, de verres de cristal, d'assiettes de gâteaux, de flacons, etc.

Au fond, au milieu, sous la galerie de loges, l'entrée du théâtre. Grande porte qui s'entre-bâille pour laisser passer les spectateurs. Sur les battants de cette porte, ainsi que dans plusieurs coins et au-dessus du buffet, des affiches rouges sur lesquelles on lit : La Clorise.

Au lever du rideau, la salle est dans une demi-obscurité, vide encore. Les lustres sont baissés au milieu du parterre, attendant d'être allumés.

Scène I

Le public, qui arrive peu à peu. Cavaliers, bourgeois, laquais, pages, tire-laine, le portier, etc., puis les marquis, Cuigy, Brissaille, la distributrice, les violons, etc.

(On entend derrière la porte un tumulte de voix, puis un cavalier entre brusquement. )

LE PORTIER, le poursuivant.

Holà ! vos quinze sols !

LE CAVALIER.

J'entre gratis !

LE PORTIER.

Pourquoi ?

LE CAVALIER.

Je suis chevau-léger de la maison du Roi !

LE PORTIER, à un autre cavalier qui vient d'entrer.

Vous?

DEUXIÈME CAVALIER.

Je ne paye pas !

LE PORTIER.

Mais...

DEUXIÈME CAVALIER.

Je suis mousquetaire.

PREMIER CAVALIER, au deuxième.

On ne commence qu'à deux heures. Le parterre

Est vide. Exerçons-nous au fleuret.

(Ils font des armes avec des fleurets qu'ils ont apportés.)

UN LAQUAIS, entrant.

Pst... Flanquin !...

UN AUTRE, déjà arrivé.

Champagne ?...

LE PREMIER, lui montrant des jeux qu'il sort de son pourpoint.

Cartes. Dés.

(Il s'assied par terre.)

Jouons.

LE DEUXIÈME, même jeu.

Oui, mon coquin.

PREMIER LAQUAIS, tirant de sa poche un bout de chandelle qu'il allume et colle par terre.

J'ai soustrait à mon maître un peu de luminaire.

UN GARDE, à une bouquetière qui s'avance.

C'est gentil de venir avant que l'on n'éclaire !...

(Il lui prend la taille.)

UN DES BRETTEURS, recevant un coup de fleuret.

Touche !

UN DES JOUEURS.

Trèfle !

LE GARDE, poursuivant la fille.

Un baiser !

LA BOUQUETIÈRE, se dégageant.

On voit !...

LE GARDE, l'entraînant dans les coins sombres.

Pas de danger !

UN HOMME, s'asseyant par terre avec d'autres porteurs de provisions de

bouche.

Lorsqu'on vient en avance, on est bien pour manger.

UN BOURGEOIS, conduisant son fils.

Plaçons-nous là, mon fils.

UN JOUEUR.

Brelan d'as !

UN HOMME, tirant une bouteille de sous son manteau et s'asseyant aussi.

Un ivrogne

Doit boire son bourgogne...

(Il boit.)

à l'hôtel de Bourgogne !

LE BOURGEOIS, à son fils.

Ne se croirait-on pas en quelque mauvais lieu ?

(Il montre l'ivrogne du bout de sa canne.)

Buveurs...

(En rompant, un des cavaliers le bouscule.)

Bretteurs !

(Il tombe au milieu des joueurs.)

Joueurs !

LE GARDE, derrière lui, lutinant toujours la femme.

Un baiser !

LE BOURGEOIS, éloignant vivement son fils.

Jour de Dieu !

– Et penser que c'est dans une salle pareille

Qu'on joua du Rotrou, mon fils !

LE JEUNE HOMME.

Et du Corneille !

UNE BANDE DE PAGES, se tenant par la main, entre en farandole et

chante.

Tra la la la la la la la la la la lère...

LE PORTIER, sévèrement aux pages.

Les pages, pas de farce !...

PREMIER PAGE, avec une dignité blessée.

Oh ! Monsieur ! ce soupçon !...

(Vivement au deuxième, dès que le portier a tourné le dos.)

As-tu de la ficelle ?

LE DEUXIÈME.

Avec un hameçon.

PREMIER PAGE.

On pourra de là-haut pêcher quelque perruque.

UN TIRE-LAINE, groupant autour de lui plusieurs hommes de mauvaise mine.

Or çà, jeunes escrocs, venez qu'on vous éduque.

Puis donc que vous volez pour la première fois...

DEUXIÈME PAGE, criant à d'autres pages déjà placés aux galeries supérieures.

Hep ! Avez-vous des sarbacanes ?

TROISIÈME PAGE, d'en haut.

Et des pois !

(Il souffle et les crible de pois.)

LE JEUNE HOMME, à son père.

Que va-t-on nous jouer ?

LE BOURGEOIS.

Clorise.

LE JEUNE HOMME.

De qui est-ce ?

LE BOURGEOIS.

De monsieur Balthazar Baro. C'est une pièce !...

(Il remonte au bras de son fils.)

LE TIRE-LAINE, à ses acolytes.

... La dentelle surtout des canons, coupez-la !

UN SPECTATEUR, à un autre, lui montrant une encoignure élevée.

Tenez, à la première du Cid, j'étais là !

LE TIRE-LAINE, faisant avec ses doigts le geste de subtiliser.

Les montres...

LE BOURGEOIS, redescendant, à son fils.

Vous verrez des acteurs très illustres...

LE TIRE-LAINE, faisant le geste de tirer par petites secousses furtives.

Les mouchoirs...

LE BOURGEOIS.

Montfleury...

QUELQU'UN, criant de la galerie supérieure.

Allumez donc les lustres !

LE BOURGEOIS.

... Bellerose, L'Épy, la Beaupré, Jodelet !

UN PAGE, au parterre.

Ah ! voici la distributrice !...

LA DISTRIBUTRICE, paraissant derrière le buffet.

Oranges, lait,

Eau de framboise, aigre de cèdre...

(Brouhaha à la porte.)

UNE VOIX DE FAUSSET.

Place, brutes !

UN LAQUAIS, s’étonnant.

Les marquis !... au parterre ?...

UN AUTRE LAQUAIS.

Oh ! pour quelques minutes.

(Entre une bande de petits marquis.)

UN MARQUIS, voyant la salle à moitié vide.

Hé quoi ! Nous arrivons ainsi que les drapiers,

Sans déranger les gens ? sans marcher sur les pieds ?

Ah ! fi ! fi ! fi !

(Il se trouve devant d'autres gentilshommes entrés peu avant.)

Cuigy ! Brissaille !

(Grandes embrassades.)

CUIGY.

Des fidèles !...

Mais oui, nous arrivons devant que les chandelles...

LE MARQUIS.

Ah ! ne m'en parlez pas ! Je suis dans une humeur...

UN AUTRE.

Console-toi, marquis, car voici l'allumeur !

LA SALLE, saluant l'entrée de l'allumeur.

Ah !...

(On se groupe autour des lustres qu'il allume. Quelques personnes ont pris place aux galeries. Lignière entre au parterre, donnant le bras à Christian de Neuvillette. Lignière, un peu débraillé, figure d'ivrogne distingué. Christian, vêtu élégamment, mais d'une façon un peu démodée, paraît préoccupé et regarde les loges.)

Scène II

Les mêmes, Christian, Lignière, puis Ragueneau et Le Bret.

CUIGY.

Lignière !

BRISSAILLE, riant.

Pas encor gris !...

LIGNIÈRE, bas à Christian.

Je vous présente ?

(Signe d'assentiment de Christian.)

Baron de Neuvillette.

(Saluts.)

LA SALLE, acclamant l'ascension du premier lustre allumé.

Ah !

CUIGY, à Brissaille, en regardant Christian.

La tête est charmante.

PREMIER MARQUIS, qui a entendu.

Peuh !...

LIGNIÈRE, présentant à Christian.

Messieurs de Cuigy, de Brissaille...

CHRISTIAN, s'inclinant.

Enchanté !...

PREMIER MARQUIS, au deuxième.

Il est assez joli, mais n'est pas ajusté

Au dernier goût.

LIGNIÈRE, à Cuigy.

Monsieur débarque de Touraine.

CHRISTIAN.

Oui, je suis à Paris depuis vingt jours à peine.

J'entre aux gardes demain, dans les Cadets.

PREMIER MARQUIS, regardant les personnes qui entrent dans les loges.

Voilà

La présidente Aubry !

LA DISTRIBUTRICE.

Oranges, lait...

LES VIOLONS, s'accordant.

La... la...

CUIGY, à Christian, lui désignant la salle qui se garnit.

Du monde !

CHRISTIAN.

Eh, oui, beaucoup.

PREMIER MARQUIS.

Tout le bel air !

(Ils nomment les femmes à mesure qu'elles entrent, très parées, dans les leges. Envois de saluts, réponses de sourires.)

DEUXIEME MARQUIS.

Mesdames

De Guéméné...

CUIGY.

De Bois-Dauphin...

PREMIER MARQUIS.

Que nous aimâmes...

BRISSAILLE.

De Chavigny...

DEUXIÈME MARQUIS.

Qui de nos cœurs va se jouant !

LIGNIÈRE.

Tiens, monsieur de Corneille est arrivé de Rouen.

LE JEUNE HOMME, à son père.

L'Académie est là ?

LE BOURGEOIS.

Mais... j'en vois plus d'un membre ;

Voici Boudu, Boissat, et Cureau de la Chambre ;

Porchères, Colomby, Bourzeys, Bourdon, Arbaud...

Tous ces noms dont pas un ne mourra, que c'est beau !

PREMIER MARQUIS.

Attention ! nos précieuses prennent place.

Barthénoïde, Urimédonte, Cassandace.

Félixérie...

DEUXIÈME MARQUIS, se pâmant.

Ah ! Dieu ! leurs surnoms sont exquis !

Marquis, tu les sais tous ?

PREMIER MARQUIS.

Je les sais tous, marquis !

LIGNIÈRE, prenant Christian à part.

Mon cher, je suis entré pour vous rendre service.

La dame ne vient pas. Je

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Reviews

What people think about Cyrano de Bergerac

4.0
1029 ratings / 24 Reviews
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  • (5/5)
    This is a review of two full-cast audio productions: Caedmon 1965, and LA Theatre Works 2015. Cyrano de Bergerac is an 1897 neo-romantic heroic-comedy by a 29-year-old French playwright, characterized by witty dialogue and the concept of panache. It is based on two real people from the 17th century. Cyrano de Bergerac actually existed sans the big nose, but was indeed a poetic warrior and charmer. Roxane was also a lover of poetry and Chivalric love. The era when the play was released, realism was making inroads and most plays were heavy, dark, somewhat depressing. Into this atmosphere stepped a lighthearted and witty story that made no sacrifice to realism. It was an immediate and stunning success striking a chord with the French people who appreciated the glory of French Chivalry framed in a way that was acceptable (humor) and admirable. It is also a classic love story ensuring enduring appeal. The 3-record Caedmon production stars Sir Ralph Richardson and was produced by The Theatre Recording Society with a translation by Brian Hooker. It is a faithful translation of the original French text, and therein is the problem - it is hard to follow, at least in audio and for a first-timer to the story. This is not the best introduction, but it is close to the original.The LA Theatre Works radio play is based on the translation and adaption by Anthony Burgess which was then adapted for radio. This is an excellent introduction, there is no problem following the plot, characters and dialogue. The radio adaptation is about half the length of the Hooker version so a lot has been dropped but all the scenes are there and it retains the same spirit of the original.
  • (3/5)
    The classic play that follows the adventures of the titular credit as he fights to defend his strong sense of honour, succumbs to love, and takes on anyone who makes even the slightest disparaging comment about his large nose.I think my first exposure to this play was probably in an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation and while I've always known the outline of the plot, I had never read it. I've now fixed that and while the play was enjoyable, I don't think it's one I'll revisit. That said, the complex stage descriptions leave me in awe of how it would have been staged in the 19th century.
  • (5/5)
    Brilliant. Well crafted, intelligent, and romantic. Rostand’s stage instructions, larger than life characters, and tale of panache and heartbreak must have made for an incredible theater experience when it premiered in 1897, and perhaps it still does today. The main story that most are probably aware of has memorable scenes – Cyrano in the bushes feeding lines to Christian as he stands below Roxane’s balcony of course, and also Cyrano pointing out just how banal someone’s attempts at humor are, by rattling off a long string of clever jokes about a big nose. “How darling of you to have built a little perch for little birds to rest their tiny claws,” he says, among many others. However, there is so much more to this play than that: the universality of insecurity, the depth and sacrifice of true love, the transience of life, and having a certain brio while alive. I was surprised by how many of the characters and their actions were historically accurate, outside the love story anyway, including Cyrano himself talking about creative ways of getting to the moon in a wonderful passage that reflects the real de Bergerac’s writing in 1657. Definitely recommended.Quotes:On death, perhaps a fantastic epitaph:Excuse me, friends, I mustn’t keep her waiting:The moon has come to fetch me.On a kiss:Cyrano: A kiss! What is a kiss? A confessionMade from a little closer at hand, a promiseDelivered as soon as it’s made,A secret whispered close, with a mouth to hear it:Eternity held in a moment that stings like a bee.Passed like communion, a host with the scent of flowers,A way to breathe the breath of the heart of anotherAnd with one’s lips to sip the beloved one’s soul.On love:Roxane: What words will you use to tell it?Cyrano: All of them.Each word that comes to me. I’ll throw them allIn sheaves at your feet, no time to make a bouquet:I love you, I’m stifling, I love you, I’m crazy, it’s moreThan I can bear. Your name’s like a bell in my heart,Dearest, a little bell, and as I keep trembling,The bell keeps ringing and ringing and saying your name.The tiniest things about you live in my memory.I’ve loved them all, always. Last year, I remember,On the twelfth of May, you changed the style of your hair!You know what you look too long at the sun, the discOf fire that floats on everything afterwards? Well,Your hair was my sunlight, and after I looked awayThere were patches of blonde light all over the world.On success in life:De Guiche: There’s such a thing as too complete success,And even when one has done nothing wrong – Not really wrong – a certain slight uneaseThat isn’t quite remorse will come to haunt oneWhen rising to great office. As one climbs,The ducal ermine trails along a wakeOf rustling dead illusions and regrets,Just as these autumn leaves catch in your train.
  • (3/5)
    What Rostand gives you with this play can, I think, be boiled down to two things: the language he uses and the titular character of Cyrano de Bergerac. No other characters are given much depth, and the plot of the play is a love triangle of the type you've seen a thousand times before. However, with the language of the play and the character of Cyrano, Rostand was not just adhering to old ideas. Even in translation (Hooker for my edition), the language holds up, not impressing in every instance but impressing often enough to establish that Rostand was a masterful writer. Unfortunately, the character of Cyrano left me wanting.

    Cyrano struck me, repeatedly, as a calculated attempt by Rostand to make as popular a character as possible, meaning that, despite his historical roots, there's never an attempt to make him a flesh and blood character. Instead, Cyrano is over-the-top and theatrical. There's nothing wrong with having a theatrical character (this was written for the theater, after all), and there's nothing wrong with having it be your goal for the character to be popular, but if you notice that is occurring then the author has failed- coming off as trying too hard is never a good thing in this context. Cyrano is the finest swordsman in Paris, and he's likewise got not only a rapier wit but formidable poetic chops as well. He's also adored by all the good people of France, who cheer him on and consider him a hero in the first act of this play, even after he ruined a night out at the theater for all of them. De Guiche even complements Cyrano for distracting him long enough for the target of his affections to elope. The only people who don't like Cyrano are obvious villains and people never seen on-stage. The only flaw that our protagonist has is his lack of self-confidence concerning members of the fairer sex. It's a flaw tailor-made to make him as likable a character as possible, since who hasn't lacked confidence at least once, especially in matters of the heart? And with Cyrano, there's no question that this lack of self-confidence is unfounded. With Cyrano, Rostand can give us a character who's the bravest, smartest, funniest, most romantic of everyone, but who isn't absolutely without flaw and therefore not boring in his perfection. I get why this character is popular with many people. But he didn't resonate with me. I found him lacking in depth, and the only insight you can take from his character are platitudes. Be brave! Be smart! Stand up for what you believe in! Don't hide your feelings, be honest about them! There's no real insight here, because there's no real struggle- the only struggle that plays out on stage is Cyrano's romantic struggle (we never see his descent into poverty), and the solution to that struggle is an obvious one. Rostand gives us a character who is brave, but who never has to fight a fight he can't win. He's a romantic, but he never has to deal with an actual relationship. There's none of the mess of real life here, it's all clean melodrama, and that's fine as theatrical entertainment, but as a work of literature it can't rise above mediocrity for me.

    I expect that I shall forever think of bottles of red wine as flasks of ruby, and bottles of white as flasks of topaz. That's more of an effect than many books have had on me. When I remember Cyrano, though, I expect I shall remember him as a failed attempt, at least in my experience.
  • (5/5)
    I should get a bigger nose.
  • (4/5)
    I really enjoyed this! It was funny, but poor Cyrano :'(
  • (5/5)
    Best enjoyed in its superior French version, Cyrano is as “classy” as it gets. Simple, yet most effective, full of humor yet very sad. It is both a touching love story, and the horrible testimony of a flawed human nature constantly fooled by appearances.
  • (3/5)
    I will admit that my choice of this book was influenced by my daughter. She got to see this play performed at the Utah Shakepeare Festival and just loved it. She said all the girls thought it was great. Since I had a play category, I chose to read this one.I am not quite as crazy about the play as she was, but I did enjoy it. I loved the first part of the play. Cyrano is a great character. What I didn't enjoy as much was the whole selfless adoration involved. I don't want to spoil it, but let me say that I felt Cyrano should have spoken up sooner.
  • (5/5)
    One of my absolute favourites! A beautiful romantic story set in one of my favourite time periods and told in one of my favourite languages - I mean, really, what's NOT to love?? It is truly exquisite.
  • (5/5)
    Amazing story written in gorgeous verse -- it was all worth muddling through irregular verbs in French class to be able to read this drama in Rostand's language! The heartstopping climax of Cyrano's words to Roxane on the balcony are the epitome of romance expressed so beautifully and sincere. His definition of a kiss is one of the most memorable scenes in theater. The drama is cleverly written, with flowing tempo and rhyme that doesn't feel forced. As for the story, many have imitated it since: Ugly, but intelligent, Cyrano is in love with his cousin, Roxane, but is too ashamed of his long nose to tell her. In every other area of his life his is confident and is excellent at swordplay and wit (and can perform both at once!). Also enamoured with the lady is Christian, a handsome man with little brain to match. Roxane is a "Precieuse," a woman who values poetry and beautiful words, and Christian knows that his looks alone won't win her over. He enlists the help of Cyrano, and together, with Christian's looks and Cyrano's words, Roxane is led to believe that Christian is her dream man. Yet, Cyrano must suffer until his secret is revealed years later, too late: Roxane has holed herself up in a nunnery after Christian died in war, and Cyrano suffers a fatal head wound. The tragedy of the revelation is a true tearjerker. For romantics, this is a must-read. But like Cyrano's words, the drama offers much more than romance. The theme of bravery and spirit, the "panache" that Cyrano holds dear, is important to the story. If only Cyrano had his famous courage when it came to confessing his love, he would have surely had his Roxane for himself. But then, we wouldn't have such a beautiful tragedy.
  • (4/5)
    Fell in love with the play and Jose Ferrer's BW version. Over the top romanticism, but truly a lot of fun.
  • (5/5)
    Cyrano de Bergerac is as amazing a character study as it is a romance. Brian Hooker's translation is classic, and was the basis of the screenplay of the version starring Jose Ferrer, who is surely as much Cyrano for English-speaking audiences since then as Coquelin was for Rostand when it was written (note that the screenplay was cut somewhat from the original).
  • (5/5)
    Absolutely loved this as a teenager, it was probably my favorite book of all time until sometime well into my late 20s
  • (4/5)
    Great play, but there were parts of this translation that maybe could have been better. Then again, I do not speak French, so who am I to judge.
  • (5/5)
    I love this play beyond the telling. It's one of the few single plays I own. The plays I keep on my shelves are complete plays of Shakespeare, Marlowe and Oscar Wilde, some Moliere, a collection of Spanish classics such as de Barca's La Vida Es Un Sueno and this--one of the few French plays that Americans are likely to see in production or film. Even Steve Martin did a modernized adaptation of it in Roxanne. The thing is that I do agree with the LibraryThing reviewer that counts Cyrano as not someone to admire, rather than the other reviewer on LibraryThing who saw this as a beautiful "unselfish" love. Indeed, Cyrano causes misery all around him because he's unselfish--or too cowardly--to woo his love in his own right. That's the tragedy. But, at least in the translation by Anthony Burgess, so much delights. The back cover says that what this translation has that so many lack is "panache." And yes, this is so witty and sparkling and funny for so much of its length--and poignant and heartbreaking. I have to count as great a playwright who can make me laugh and then cry within the same play.
  • (3/5)
    While the play is well written and features some very memorable scenes, I just can't bring myself to enjoy it. I don't see anything to be admired in Cyrano's character; he may have many talents both martial and societal, but at heart he is a weak man hiding behind extreme conceptions of honor. Not only does this weakness bring suffering on himself, but everyone around him. I don't appreciate when fiction extols harmful character traits as something to be emulated.I do however appreciate beautiful language and the poetic moments such as the balcony scene, so I can still give this work 3 stars.
  • (4/5)
    'Cyrano de Bergerac' is a masterful character study of a man who lets one feature shape his life. Complex and mercurial, Cyrano may be remembered as gallant and honourable, a talanted poet and unsurpassed swordsman, but he is also brash and arrogant and yet so afraid of rejection that he hides behind the identity of his handsome friend. He presents himself as a series of characters, and even at the end of his life will not admit the realities of his situation to those who care about him. He will not compromise in anything except the realisation of his own desires.I read a fairly pedestrian prose translation, and as such feel that I missed the flair and pace of the play. However, there remained glimpses of Rostand's mastery of language, most notably in some of Cyrano's soliloquies and the balcony scene with Roxane which, in a work touched by hyperbole - the duel with one hundred men at the Porte de Nesle, and the feast disguised in Roxane's carriage especially spring to mind - crystalises the deep emotion at the heart of the drama. The narrative may sometimes be ridiculous, but Rostand effectively conveys the vividness and reality of a complicated character, as well as some expert creation of atmosphere in ensemble scenes, the opening at the theatre of the Hôtel de Bourgogne and the military encampment at Arras.The final act serves as a kind of epilogue and, I feel, is the weak point of the play. I am generally not fond of the device and often prefer when something is left to the imagination and the author does not feel the need to tie up all loose ends, but here it seems especially gratuitous, ratcheting up the melodrama to demostrate the tragedy of love, devotion and obstinacy. The construction of the rest of the play was skilful enough to show that there was no way this could have a comforting resolution.
  • (4/5)
    I've always enjoyed the character of Cyrano. Braggart, lover, arrogant, powerful. His flair for the romance and devotion to the arts makes every early scene one of great fun. The idea of being the true soul of another man's voice is also entertaining, if the drama weren't so pathetic. Here is a man so true to himself and his nature that he can brave anything... except the fact that there could be a woman who can love him despite his enormous nose. Therein lies the tragedy which concludes the tale on a very sour note. I don't believe it is noble to suffer love in silence. I believe love should be shouted from the rooftops. A fatal flaw in the charm of the book, but one I can easily ignore.
  • (5/5)
    In Cyrano de Bergerac, Edmond Rostand creates a tale of unconquerable love, and unquenchable pride in the form of a living, vibrant poem running within the play. Cyrano de Bergerac is a philosopher, knight errand, poet, playwright and above all, a gentleman from Gascony, which means he owns enormous pride and vanity along with undying bravery. The play follows his star-crossed love, Roxanne, and comrade-in-arms Christian. Rostand crafts Cyrano as the perfect knight of ages past, as skilled with poetry and philosophy as he is with his sword. For example, in the first act Cyrano duels an opponent and composes a ballad as he duels, to commemorate the duel and as he promises before he even draws his sword, in the last verse strikes home and covers himself in glory before all in the crowded playhouse. It is this dashing nerve, and Cyrano’s, or rather, Rostand’s eloquence that makes this play a classic. Cyrano is too proud to function in modern society though, to use his triumph at arms to gain favor with superiors is against his nature. The soul of Cyrano is that of fire and passion, imagination and pride that will never surrender to his old foes “falsehood, prejudice, compromise, cowardice, and vanity” Cyrano de Bergerac has a slightly rocky start, as Cyrano is not immediately introduced, but when Cyrano is the play takes on a whole new dimension. The play flies by on the wings of lyrical genius and philosophy of what it means to be noble, brave and pure of spirit, along with the folly of pride. I would highly recommend this to everyone out of high school and anyone is not forced to read it. Dan
  • (5/5)
    One of my favorite plays of of all time which has turned into the basis for innumerable current "romantic comedies". A fable to prove that appearances can be decieving
  • (5/5)
    Cyrano de Bergerac by Edmond RostandTranslated into English by Brian HookerBittersweet tale of unrequited love, nobility and honor. This play is set in France in 1640, during the reign of Louis XIII. Cyrano de Bergerac is known as the best swordsman in France, and is equally revered as a wordsmith and a quick wit. His pride comes out in displays of courage and bravado and is only diminished by his insecurity about his appearance. He hides his insecurity using his sword and when necessary, in witty verbal sparring where he beats others to the punch in mocking his large nose. Cyrano denies his own happiness by refusing to admit his love for his distant cousin, Madeleine Robin, the lovely Roxane, and admits his reason for doing so to his good friend, Le Bret, who encourages him to speak to Roxane and give her the benefit of the doubt. When Roxane requests Cyrano's presence in a private meeting, his hopes are raised but then dashed when he learns that the purpose of the meeting is that Roxane wants Cyrano's help in romancing another. She admits to loving Baron Christian de Neuvillette, a soldier in Cyrano's regiment, a man she doesn't really know but is enamored by partly because of his physical good looks and partly by the fact that she has heard that he is besotted with her as well. Through his stunned disappointment, Cyrano agrees to befriend Christian and keep him from harm.Their first meeting proves Christian to be rather unlikable as he uses every opportunity to make rude references to Cyrano's nose. Normally this would be the cause of a duel, but because of Cyrano's promise to Roxane, he must rein in his temper and befriend the lout instead. He makes Christian aware of Roxane's feelings and agrees to help Christian when he admits that he wouldn't be able to impress her with his inept writing skills if he sent her a letter. Christian wishes for Cyrano's wit; and Cyrano laments that he doesn't have Christian's good looks. He ponders the fact that if the two men could be combined, they would make 'one hero of romance'. He agrees to write the letters for Christian and feed him flowery and poetic phrases to use in conversation. This is how their deception begins.After they are ordered to join up with their regiment in the Siege of Arras against the Cardinal Prince of Spain, Roxane arranges a hasty marriage to Christian. They are separated by necessity before there is a wedding night (which Cyrano admits to himself doesn't bother him much). As they are rushing off to war, Roxane begs Cyrano to watch over her new husband and to encourage Christian to write her every day. Cyrano promises that she will receive letters every day, although he cannot promise the rest. This promise is kept in a very heart-tugging way.The rest of the play deals with that war and the aftermath, and how both Christian and Cyrano prove their integrity and mutual love for Roxane, even after she discovers their perfidy. Wonderful.
  • (4/5)
    The Burgess translation is certainly bouncier than the older Hooker but, in his desire to insert rhyming couplets and make the rest of the prose flow, some of the jokes get trampled on and lost. I won't say it's better, but merely different.
  • (3/5)
    3.5

    This play has an electrifying final act that brings the play to a satisfying conclusion.
  • (5/5)
    I consider this among my favorite plays for both its romantic air of the grand opera and the poetic monologues of its eponymous hero. An unconventional love story, it is more a fable for the importance of virtue, loyalty and friendship. What more magnanimous man in literature is there than Cyrano de Bergerac? I am sure that I will return to this play again and again as it reminds me of the best that is possible for man and mankind.