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Molière Books In Order

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Publication Order of Plays

The Flying Doctor (1645)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Jealousy of le Barbouillé (1650)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Bungler (1655)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Blunderer, or, the Counterplots (1655)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Love-Tiff (1656)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Doctor in Love (1658)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Affected Young Ladies (1659)Description / Buy at Amazon
Sganarelle, or the Imaginary Cuckold (1660)Description / Buy at Amazon
Don Garcia of Navarre or, The Jealous Prince (1661)Description / Buy at Amazon
The School for Husbands (1661)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Bores / The Mad (1661)Description / Buy at Amazon
The School for Wives (1662)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Jealousy of Gros-René (1663)Description / Buy at Amazon
Critique of the School for Wives (1663)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Versailles Impromptu (1663)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Forced Marriage (1664)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Princess of Elid (1664)Description / Buy at Amazon
Tartuffe (1664)Description / Buy at Amazon
Don Juan, or the Stone Banquet / The Stone Guest / The Feast with the Statue (1665)Description / Buy at Amazon
Doctor Love / Love is the Doctor (1665)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Misanthrope, or, the Cantankerous Lover (1666)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Doctor in Spite of Himself (1666)Description / Buy at Amazon
Mélicerte (1666)Description / Buy at Amazon
Comic Pastoral (1667)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Sicilian, or Love the Painter (1667)Description / Buy at Amazon
Amphitryon (1668)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Miser, or, the School for Lies (1668)Description / Buy at Amazon
George Dandin (1668)Description / Buy at Amazon
Monsieur de Pourceaugnac (1669)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Magnificent Lovers (1670)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Bourgeois Gentleman (1670)Description / Buy at Amazon
Psyche (1671)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Countess of Escarbagnas (1671)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Impostures of Scapin (1671)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Learned Ladies (1672)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Hypochondriac / The Imaginary Invalid (1673)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Anthologies

Writers: Their Lives and Works(2018)Description / Buy at Amazon

Moliere real name Jean-Baptiste Poquelin was a French thespian and playwright who is deemed one the best masters of comedy in Western literature. While his actual birth date remains unclear he was born to an upper-middle-class family in the year 1622.
He was just 10 when he lost his mother and was left to live with his father in a wealthy Parisian suburb.

For his high school studies, Moliere went to “College de Clermont,” a prestigious Jesuit university, where he made contacts with nobility, got deep into a rigorous school environment, and began performing in plays.

During his life and years after his death, he is named one of the greatest geniuses in the comic literary world. Almost singlehandedly, he made French social comedy very popular across the world and made it one of the more long-lasting types of comedy.
In his plays, he did a deep dive into many aspects of his society as he characterized the behavior and attitudes of different people.

Moliere’s insights into human nature as he characterized people such as misanthropes, hypocrites, and misers are just as popular today as they were when he first penned his stories.

As for his earlier beginnings, Moliere’s father worked for the royal household and was a furnisher charged with maintaining the upholstery and carpets.

Even though he was neither a male servant nor a valet, he was a respected appointee who worked for the royal court for many years.

Given how prestigious and well-paying his job was, Moliere’s father expected him to take after him when he retired. But aged 21, he decided to become a thespian rather than chase after social status.
In 1643, he founded the “Illustre Theatre,” a theater company alongside Madeleine Bejart the actress. He poured his heart and soul into theatre for about three decades of his life.

However, it was never smooth sailing as the theatre company struggled to stay afloat and went bankrupt several times. In 1645, he was sent to jail for a day since he failed to pay the debts of his theatre company.
Despite Madeleine Bejart’s and Moliere’s extreme fortitude and talent, the company struggled to compete with older theaters in Paris.

Instead, they toured the provincial areas of France for more than a decade, visiting places such as Beziers, Montpellier, and Lyon. The years they spent traveling as a troupe would be critical to the development of Moliere as a troupe manager and actor.

Moliere first tasted theatrical success in 1658 when they performed for King Louis VIV at the “Louvre Museum.” The troupe performed Pierre Corneille’s 1651 play “Nicomede” followed by the 1658 original play “The Amorous Doctor” by Moliere.
The Duke of Orleans Philippe I who was the king’s brother loved the latter so much that he became a patron for the “Illustre Theatre.”

The royal recognition granted them celebrity status and access to high social circles, even though Moliere still had to work hard against competition and criticism to publicize his work.
In 1661, Moliere started producing comedic ballets that were a combination of professional theatre and traditional ballet.

The performances made use of acting and dance to tell a story and Moliere used to work with Jean-Baptise Lully the dancer, composer, and choreographer to bring opera and ballet into the Paris Opera.
He died in 1673 from pulmonary tuberculosis at age 51. He collapsed on stage while performing “The Imaginary Invalid,” which was the last written play he had penned in the same year.

Moliere’s “Tartuffe” has to be his most popular and also most controversial work.

At the opening of the story, we are introduced to Tartuffe and his wife Elmira who have arrived at the house of Orgon. Tartuffe is a man who is known for his charitable acts, immense piety, and irreproachable manners which paint him as a good Catholic.
Nonetheless, the man is nothing like what he portrays himself to the world as he is a hypocrite who pretends to be a devoted Christian when he is just a hypocrite.

With his fake piety, he is accepted as an honored guest but starts plotting to get power and influence under Orgon’s nose. However, Mariana and Damis who are Orgon’s children do everything they can to expose him for who he truly is.
But the man is a master of accusation and deception and turns his indiscretions into a source of punishment and remorse for another person.

Tartuffe is an intense fellow with a perverse mind who could not have been any more evil, even as he pretended to be a good Catholic.

It is in these situations of ridicule and contradiction where the laughter comes out and the real fun of the story is.

“L’avare” known in English as “The Miser” by Moliere is a five-act comedy in prose that was first performed at the “Palais Royal Theatre” in Paris in 1668.

The lead in the work is Harpagon, a vital but aging man who has been hoarding every franc he gets to ensure dandy Cleante and the virginal Elise his two kids never leave his house, which he rules with an iron fist.
Further complicating matters, his daughter Elise has fallen for Valere, a handsome young man who is noble-born but is pretending to be a lowly servant.

To make things even worse, Harpagon and Cleante have both fallen for Marianne, a somewhat dim though gorgeous woman.

As all this is happening, assorted hustlers and scheming servants are angling for the incredible wealth that Harpagon has accumulated. Much of this wealth has been buried in the compound and is protected by a pair of very dangerous Dobermans.
The plot spirals into a wild and delirious comic finish full of outrageous revelations and masterful plot twists that is one of the best plays Moliere ever produced.

“The Misanthrope” is an interesting and easy-to-read French classic by Moliere.

The lead in the novel is a bitter and sullen man named Alcestes who criticizes everything and everyone. He has criticized aristocracy, men, women, fashion, society, etiquette, politics, manners, and sometimes even the planet.
Even though he has rejected everything in the world, he has hopelessly fallen for Celimena who is a representation of everything he hates. She is funny, beautiful, pretentious, rich, seductive, intelligent and happy.
She has several suitors and this makes Alcestes very jealous but his warped sense of the world results in his constant change of heart and displeasure.
It is a funny and entertaining work that has stood the test of time.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Molière

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