Your cart is empty.

The Rivals

(Les Corrivaus)

By Jean de La Taille
Translated by H. Peter Clive
Subjects Fiction, Performing Arts
Hide Details
Paperback : 9780889201200, 90 pages, May 1982
Ebook (PDF) : 9780889205871, 90 pages, January 2006


Jean de La Taille's play Les Corrivaus is the comical story of the rivalry between Filadelfe and Euverte for the lovely Fleurdelys. Difficulties are resolved symmetrically, and matrimony is the order at the end of the day—though, in the best Renaissance tradition, the difficulties had appeared grave indeed. The play should appeal to anyone interested in the theatre, but it is of considerable importance to historians of Renaissance drama, since it is generally accepted as the earliest surviving French humanist comedy written in prose, and the first to be based on Italian models. In particular, La Taille draws heavily upon Le Maçon's translation of Boccaccio's Decameron. The play also amplifies understanding of numerous conventions of Renaissance drama—especially those related to stagecraft, plot, and thematic treatment—yet La Taille transcends mere conventionality in his skilled treatment of character and plot. He also manages to accomplish his didactic purpose, informing his audience of the foibles of lovers, with a minimum of sententious moralizing.