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New Edition of Katherine Philips's translation of Corneille's The Death of Pompey
By: John R Pierce
The Death of Pompey (La Mort de Pompée) is a tragedy by the French playwright Pierre Corneille on events surrounding the death of Pompey the Great in Egypt after the battle of Pharsalus. It was first performed in 1642, with the role of Julius Caesar played by Molière.
Born in London on or about 1 January 1631/2, Katherine Philips attended a boarding school where she developed an appreciation of French literature. In 1662 in Dublin, where she had gone in connection with her husband's claim to certain Irish estates, she completed her translation of Corneille's Pompée. To the play she added songs to be performed after each act. It was produced with success at the Smock Alley Theatre in Dublin in 1663, and was printed that year in both Dublin and London. Her translation is considered the first English play written by a woman to be performed on the professional stage.
John R. Pierece