Maria Magdalena

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A German domestic tragedy by Friedrich Hebbel (1813-63)[1]

Original Text

Described as "ein bürgerliches Trauerspiel in drei Akten", it is a model "tragedy of common life" and possibly Hebbel's best drama. Written in Paris in 1843, after Hebbel had received a grant from the Danish king to spend a year in Paris and one in Italy, it was published with a critical and philosophical preface in 1844, and had its first production in Leipzig in 1846.

Translations and adaptations

Translated into Afrikaans as Maria Magdalena by Jocelyn de Bruyn.

The play was also adapted into Afrikaans by Eitemal as So praat die ou rivier in 1954, published in Cape Town by Nasionale boekhandel in 1956. In some sources (e.g. in the Wikipedia entry on the author) it is listed as an "original work" by Eitemal.

South African performances

1954: Performed in Afrikaans as So Praat die Ou Rivier by the National Theatre Organisation.


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