Die Zerstreuten

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Die Zerstreuten ("The scattered") is a German one act comedy by August Friedrich Ferdinand Von Kotzebue (1761-1819)[1].

The original text

Written in 1809, published in Neueste deutsche Schaubühne by Bolling, 1810.

Translations and adaptations

Translated into Dutch numerous times, under various titles.

The first Dutch version was De Verstrooiden ("the distracted") by J.S. van Esveldt Holtrop (1809). This sometimes appears with the subtitle "of het door verstrooidheid bewerkt huwelijk".

Others include Verstrooid ("distracted") by an unnamed author (1875); De Twee Verstrooide Militairen ("two distracted soldiers") by W.C. Royaards (1876) and Twee Verstrooide Invaliden ("two distracted invalids") by H.E. Capadose (1895).

Performance history in South Africa

1824: Performed in Dutch as De Verstrooiden by Honi Soit qui Mal y Pense in the African Theatre, Cape Town on 18 September June, with De Oost-Indien Varer (Arresto).

1829: Performed by an local amateur group (possibly using the motto Door Yver Vruchtbaar) in Stellenbosch on 25 April with the title wrongly given by the company as De Verstrooying ("the scattering"), though internal evidence (e.g. the names of the characters) indicates that it was indeed De Verstrooiden, the Dutch version of Von Kotzebue's play. According to Bosman (1928: p.254) this was possibly one of the first signs of theatrical activity in Stellenbosch.

1877: Performed in Dutch as De Verstrooiden by Aurora II in the Athenaeum Hall, Cape Town on 17 July, with De Offers der Vrijheid, of De Slagers van Ghent (Brink).

1887: Performed in Dutch as De Verstrooiden by Aurora II in the Drill Hall, Cape Town, on 12 July, with Moederliefde en Heldenmoed, of De Gevangenis op het Slot 's Gravensteen te Antwerpen (Ruysch).

1910: Performed in Dutch as De Twee Verstrooide Militairen by Aurora III in the ANV Saal, Cape Town, at the end of July or beginning of August.


Facsimile of the 1820 German text, in the Neueste deutsche Schaubühne(Google E-Book)[2]


Facsimile of the Dutch translation (Google E-Book)[3]

Gerd Aage Gillhoff. 2013. The Royal Dutch Theatre at the Hague 1804–1876. Amsterdam: Springer.[4]

J.A. Worp. 1972. Geschiedenis van het Drama en van het Tooneel in Nederland. Deel 2, Digitale Bibliotheek voor de Nederlandse Letteren (DBNL)[5]

F.C.L. Bosman, 1928. Drama en Toneel in Suid-Afrika, Deel I: 1652-1855. Pretoria: J.H. de Bussy.[6]: pp. 254, 280

F.C.L. Bosman. 1980. Drama en Toneel in Suid-Afrika, Deel II, 1856-1912. Pretoria: J.L. van Schaik: pp. 471, 474. 477

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