Éléonore de Rosalba, ou Le Confessionnal des Pénitens Noirs

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Éléonore de Rosalba, ou Le Confessionnal des Pénitens Noirs ("Éléonore of Rosalba, or the confessionnal of the black penitants") is a French tragedy in four acts by C.C. Pujos and Joachim-Emmanuel Dabaytua (1773-??)[1] .

The original text

Described as a "drame nouveau en quatre actes" ("new drama in 4 acts"), it was based on the novel The Italian by Anne Radcliffe, (translated into French as Élénore de Rosalba, L'Italian, ou Le Confessionnal des Pénitens Noirs by Mary Gay and published in Paris by Lepetit and in Genève by J.J. Paschoud in 1797).

The play first performed at the Théâtre du Cité-Variétés et de la Pantomime Nationale in Paris on 5 June 1798. Published in Paris in 1798 by Jean-Nicolas Barba in Paris in 1798.

Translations and adaptations

Translated into Dutch by Johannes Kisselius as Eleonore van Rosalba, of De Puinhopen van Paluzzi ("Eleonore of Rosalba, or the Ruins of Paluzzi") by Johannes Kisselius and published in Amsterdam by Pieter Johannes Uylenbroek, 1799, 2nd edition 1809. (Altenrate title also found in some adverts and books: Eleonora van Rosalba, of De Puinhopen van Paluzzi)

Kisselius has the authors' names in Dutch form as Pujos and Dabaijtua, though F.C.L. Bosman (1928, p. 243) has the correct Spanish spelling , but he writes the title as "Eleonora(e) van Rosalba", to accommodate the two versions of the text.)

Performance history in South Africa

1830: Performed in Dutch by Tot Nut en Vermaak in the African Theatre Cape Town on 17 July, with as afterpiece 't Zal laat Worden (J.C. Meijer).

1836: Performed in Dutch by Door Yver Vruchtbaar, in the "Schouwburg" (theatre) in Stellenbosch on 23 July, with as afterpiece 't Zal laat Worden (J.C. Meijer).

1838: Performed in Dutch by Door Yver Vruchtbaar, in collaboration with the Music Society , in the "Schouwburg" (theatre) in Stellenbosch on Wednesday 24 October, 17 July 1838, with as afterpiece Uilenspiegel (Von Kotzebue). According to Bosman (1928: p. 255) it was attributed to the translator, Kisselius, on this occasion.

1844: Performed in Dutch by the joint company Tot Nut en Vermaak en Door Yver Vruchtbaar in Cape Town on 2 August, with as afterpiece De Kalkoen van Breda, of Menig Voordeel Komt Onverwacht (Van Ray).

1853: Performed in Dutch by Door Yver Bloeit de Kunst in Cape Town on 8 September, with as afterpiece De Nachtmerrie, of De Vampyr (Perinet - based on the German Das Neue Sonntagskind) as afterpiece.

1876: Performed in Dutch by De Eendracht in the Athenaeum Hall, Cape Town with De Twee Vrijers, of Liefde en List (Anon.) as afterpiece.



Mary Ellen Snodgrass. 2009. Encyclopedia of Gothic Literature: p.193[2]

Facsimile version of the original French text, Google eBook[3]

Emmet Kennedy , 1996, Theatre, Opera, and Audiences in Revolutionary Paris: Analysis and Repertory: p. 132[4]




F.C.L. Bosman, 1928. Drama en Toneel in Suid-Afrika, Deel I: 1652-1855. Pretoria: J.H. de Bussy. [5]: pp. 243, 255, 447, 458.

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