"Your Agrippina that dies from not dying every evening".

Charvin, Marie Léonide (known as Agar), French actress (1832-1891). Two autograph letters signed "Agar".

Paris and n. p. o. d., 4. VII. 1877.

8vo and 12mo. Together 6 pp. on bifolia.


The dated letter was sent to a M. Nègre with an order of "six litres of lavender water. 3 litres of very good rose water. 4° a small tinplate pot with good jasmin-pomade. 5° a larger flacon of jasmine essence" and an apology for charging Nègre "always with a thousand annoyances" (transl.). Agar apparently knew this perfume merchant well, as the letter is very personal in nature: "I do not know if I will have the pleasure to see you this winter, my return to the Comédie-Française will most likely keep me from going so far. Voilà, my regrets because I had so much sympathy for your admirable country that it is not without sadness that I have to renounce it". In closing, she invites the recipient to dinner in Paris and sends greetings to his wife.

The second letter probably dates to 1877/78, as it bears a reference to the role of Agrippina in Racine's "Britannicus", which Agar successfully performed at the Comédie-Française upon her return in 1878. The short letter was written to her "Cher et Illustre Maître", possibly the director of the Comédie, with an ultimatum for her return to the stage: "Alas! I cannot see it coming!! and I will not leave you alone so that you torment them, because time passes and we do not rehearse and we will play in the heat and we will not make money and we will be kicked out and and and... I would have committed [?] to the 4 volumes. Our minister is too good [...], finally I want to play, arrange yourself as you wish. This is my ultimatum!! - I am forever devoted and grateful to you. Your Agrippina that dies from not dying every evening".

Agar was ostracized from the stage of the Comédie for over six years because of her participation in a concert that had been organized by the government of the Paris Commune on 6 May 1871. Her return was triumphant; however, when she was not named Sociétaire by the end of 1878, Agar turned her back on the Comédie-Française until 1885. The not entirely clear reference to a minister in the letter might be in connection with the political aspect of the affair.

The letter to Nègre on stationery of a theatre or theatre school "Représentations du répertoire classique - (5e année)". The undated letter with an embossed monogram "A". The letter to Nègre with tears to the fold, pinholes, and some browning to the margins. The undated letter with minor stains.

Stock Code: BN#58350 Tag: