Download Les Enfants Terribles by Jean Cocteau PDF

By Jean Cocteau

Written in a French type that lengthy defied profitable translation—Cocteau was once regularly a poet it doesn't matter what we used to be writing—the booklet got here into its personal for English-language readers in 1955 while this translation used to be accomplished via Rosamund Lehmann. it's a masterpiece of the artwork of translation of which the days Literary complement acknowledged: "It has the infrequent advantage of examining as if it have been an English original." Lehrmann was once in a position to catch the essence of Cocteau's unusual, necromantic mind's eye and to convey totally to lifestyles in English his tale of a brother and sister, orphaned in formative years, who construct themselves a personal global out of 1 shared room and their very own unbridled fantasies. What begun in video games and laughter simply because for Paul and Elisabeth a drug too magical to withstand. The crime which ultimately destroys them has the inevitability of Greek tragedy.

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Sample text

Shoes in hand; whereupon, with a shrug. Paul would resume the Game. In April he got up. He could no longer stand. His new-born legs collapsed beneath him. To Elisabeth's extreme annoyance, he was now half a head taller than herself: she retaliated by adopting the demeanour of a saint. rushing to support him. to lower him into his chair, covering him with wraps - in short. reducing him to the status of a gouty old dotard. Although disconcerted by this new thrust of hers. he controlled an overwhelming impulse to fight back, and took no notice.

Louder, louder? .. She panics. Surely if this goes on it must mean death. Wake up! She must wake him up. " "Mm? " He stretches himself; her haggard face confronts him. " "Yes. you. What a nuisance you are. " "Some people could do with a bit of sleep themselves. but oh dear no! " "I was going to tell you something - some very exciting news. But as I'm an idiot. " He pricked up his ears. Exciting news? . But he smelt a rat. He wasn't going to let himself be caught so easily. " he said. " She undressed.

To refrain from leaving the taps turned on, from trying to breathe under water. from chasing one another and brandishing chairs and emitting cries for help. Laughter and blows merged inextricably: for however conditioned an onlooker might be to their emotional somersaults, no one could foresee the moment when these two sundered portions of a single being would cease from strife and become one again: a phenomenon [ 48] ~~ 't"'-"' ) ' r,-~-<"°"~ "I c;" l . I . ' - - I ~~r.! ' ~ ~ \~.. ,· ~ ~ \ (l.

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