Crommelynck, Fernand, 1885?-1970, Belgian dramatist, b. Paris. Crommelynck's first great success was a tragic farce about jealousy, Le Cocu magnifique (1921, tr. The Magnificent Cuckold, 1966). Other plays that reveal his expert craftsmanship and strong lyric power include Le Sculpteur de masques [The Sculptor of Masks] (1908), Le Marchand de regrets [The Puerile Lovers] (1913), and Carine (1930).

See study by B. Knapp (1978).

Fernand Crommelynck (b. Nov. 19, 1886, Paris, France; d. March 17, 1970, Saint-Germaine-en-Laye) was a Belgian dramatist. He was born into a family of actors, the child of a French mother and a Belgian father and he himself was also an actor. His work is known for farces in which commonplace weaknesses are developed into monumental obsessions.

In his earliest works Crommelynck already demonstrated the grasp of style and content that in his maturity culminated in works of great poetic force. The dramatic structure in Nous n'irons plus au bois" (1906), Le sculpteur de masques (1908) and Le marchand de regrets'' (1913), was already based on the logical development of an absurd premise.

Crommelynck's masterpiece was Le cocu magnifique in 1920, a 'lyrical farce' on the theme of a lover's jealousy. Staged with constuctivist sets by Vselvolod Meyerhold -the first of their kind- the theatre play was such a hit that Crommelynck was able to give up acting and devote himself to writing. In Tripes d'or (1926) he satirized the passion for money and the spurious prestige it confers, while in Carine, ou la jeune fille folle de son âme (1929) he contrasted love and sensuality in the story of a chaste young girl who is faithful to her ideals of love to the bitter end.

Both in language and dramatic technique, Crommelynck has been one of the most lyrical and original writers of the 20th centry theatre.

Select Works

  • Le Sculpteur des masques (1908)
  • L'Histoire de Minna Claessens (Alfred Machin, 1912)
  • L'agent Rigolo et son chien policier (Alfred Machin, 1912)
  • Le Marchand de regrets (1913)
  • Maudite soit la guerre (Alfred Machin, 1914)
  • Le Cocu magnifique (drama)' (1921)
  • Les Amants puérils (1921)
  • Tripes d'or (1930)
  • Le Cadavre n° 5 (Gaston Schoukens, 1932)
  • Une Femme qu'a le cœur trop petit (1934)
  • Chaud et froid (1936)

References and External Links

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