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The Pleasures of the Enchanted Island

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Frontispiece to the 1664 commemorative booklet, engraved by Israël Silvestre
Frontispiece to the 1664 commemorative booklet, engraved by Israël Silvestre
The theatre installed for the première of La Princesse d'Elide, engraved by Silvestre
The theatre installed for the première of La Princesse d'Elide, engraved by Silvestre

The Pleasures of the Enchanted Island (French: Les plaisirs de l’Île enchantée) was a multi-day performance presented from 7 to 13 May 1664 to the court of King Louis XIV of France at Versailles.[1] At the king's request, it was organized by the Duke of Saint-Aignan, who took the title from a popular episode in cantos 6–8 and 10 of the 1516 Italian epic Orlando furioso by Ludovico Ariosto, in which the knight Ruggiero (in French, Roger) becomes a prisoner of love at the sorceress Alcina's court.[1]

It was staged to celebrate the beginning of the building campaigns for the Chateau de Versailles with the intention to acquaint those involved in its construction—the King's wife, mother, lovers, mistresses, and family in general—to cotillon style ball and overall culture.[citation needed] In addition, there were about 600 invited guests.[1]

Molière played a large role in the organisation of festivities, which featured the premières of La Princesse d'Élide and Tartuffe.[2][3]


  1. ^ a b c Kathleen Wine (2002), "Plaisirs de l'Isle enchantée, Les", pp. 371–373, in The Molière Encyclopedia, edited by James F. Gaines. Westport, Connecticut/London: Greenwood Press. ISBN 9780313312557.
  2. ^ Nevile, Jennifer (2008). Dance, Spectacle, and the Body Politick, 1250–1750. Indiana University Press. p. 122. ISBN 9780253219855.
  3. ^ Fischer-Lichte, Erika (2001). History of European Drama and Theatre. Routledge. p. 104. ISBN 9780415180597.

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This page was last edited on 14 June 2020, at 23:14
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