The Duchess of Padua
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A young man known as Guido is set upon revenge, planning to murder the duke of Padua, who murdered Guido’s father years before. However, Guido soon finds that he has fallen in love with the duke’s wife, the duchess of Padua , and their romance complicates Guido’s intentions.
Originally composed for a particular actress, Mary Anderson, who eventually rejected the play, The Duchess of Padua was not performed on the stage until years after its composition. Written in blank verse, The Duchess of Padua is one of Oscar Wilde’s only true tragedies.
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THE DUCHESS OF PADUA Oscar Wilde CONTENTS The Duchess of Padua About the Author About the Series Copyright About the Publisher THE DUCHESS OF PADUA The Persons of the Play SIMONE GESSO, Duke of Padua BEATRICE, his Wife ANDREAS POLLAJUOLO, Cardinal of Padua MAFFIO PETRUCCI, JEPPO VITELLOZZO, } Gentlemen of the Duke’s Household TADDEO BARDI, GUIDO FERRANTI, a Young Man ASCANIO CRISTOFANO, his Friend COUNT MORANZONE, an Old Man BERNARDO CALVALCANTI, Lord Justice of Padua HUGO,
life, You for whose sake my soul has wrecked itself Beyond all hope of pardon. GUIDO: Get thee gone: The dead man is a ghost, and our love too, Flits like a ghost about its desolate tomb, And wanders through this charnel house, and weeps That when you slew your lord you slew it also. Do you not see? DUCHESS: I see when men love women They give them but a little of their lives, But women when they love give everything; I see that, Guido, now. GUIDO: Away, away, And come not back till you have
here! Noise of SOLDIERS in the passage. A VOICE OUTSIDE: Room for the Lord Justice of Padua! The LORD JUSTICE is seen through the grated window passing down the corridor preceded by men bearing torches. DUCHESS: It is too late. A VOICE OUTSIDE: Room for the headsman. DUCHESS (sinks down): Oh! The HEADSMAN with his axe on his shoulder is seen passing the corridor, followed by Monks bearing candles. GUIDO: Farewell, dear love, for I must drink this poison. I do not fear the headsman, but I
Guido, To rear you worthy of him, so I have reared you To revenge his death upon the friend who sold him. GUIDO: Thou hast done well; I for my father thank you. And now his name? MORANZONE: How you remind me of him, You have each gesture that your father had. GUIDO: The traitor’s name? MORANZONE: Thou wilt hear that anon; The Duke and other nobles at the Court Are coming hither. GUIDO: What of that? his name? MORANZONE: Do they not seem a valiant company Of honourable, honest gentlemen?
Who is that? A CITIZEN: The Duchess of Padua! ACT DROP ACT TWO SCENE: A state room in the Ducal Palace, hung with tapestries representing the Masque of Venus; a large door in the centre opens into a corridor of red marble, through which one can see a view of Padua; a large canopy is set (R.C.) with three thrones, one a little lower than the others; the ceiling is made of long gilded beams; furniture of the period, chairs covered with gilt leather, and buffets set with gold and silver plate,