by Marcu Beza




Early renderings from Shakespeare, such as Hamlet, Othello, The Merry Wives of Windsor, which served for acting purposes, are still preserved in manuscript form at the National Theatre in Bucharest. Out of the six translations made by Scarlat and Dumitru Ghica between the years 1882-96, Romeo and Juliet, The Merchant of Venice, Antony and Cleopatra, and Julius Csar have been used for the stage. Other translations:

Midsummer Night's Dream

Un Vis n Noaptea de Sanziene, by G. P. Sterian. It was produced in 1893 on the occasion of the marriage of Prince Ferdinand and Princess Marie of Roumania.

Visul unci Nopţi de Vară, by the well-known poet St. O. Josif, Jassy, 1913, being the best translation as yet of Shakespeare into Roumanian.

Visul unci Nopţi de Vară, by the poet G. Toprceanu, Jassy, 1921.

Taming of the Shrew

Femea Indărtnică, by Haralamb G. Lecca, in the periodical Convcrbiri Literare, vol. xxx, 1896.

Romeo and Juliet

Romeo şi Julieta, by Haralamb G. Lecca, 1907, Bucharest.

Romeo şi Julieta, by Mihail Dragomirescu, Bucharest, 1922.


King Lear

Regele Lear, by Margarita Miller-Verghi, Bucharest, 1910. Version used on the stage.


Twelfth Night

Noaptea Regilor, by I. Peretz, Bucharest, 1910. The title wrongly given, corresponding to the French La Nuit des Rois.



Macbeth, by Const. Al. Ştefănescu, Bucharest, 1912.



One in a periodical Floarea Darurilor, vol. ii; others in a book by Henry Marcus, 1923.

In 1922 Mr. Adolph Stern brought out Hamlet, Julius Csar, Antony and Cleopatra, Merchant of Venice, and Coriolanus, some of them being but revised editions of translations made long before. They gave rise in the Press to long discussions, which will be of help to future translators of Shakespeare.

A popular library called the Biblioteca pentru Toţi contains three more renderings: King Lear, by Ludovic Dauş; Macbeth, by V. Demetrius; and Julius Csar, by I. Constantinescu.



Cteva Păreri, an article by the great Roumanian dramatist, I. L. Carageale in his Notiţe şi Fragmente Literare. He compares Victor Hugo's Hernani with Othello and Schiller's Die Ruber with King Lear, enhancing in both cases Shakespeare's superiority in character drawing.

Hamlet, a pamphlet by Ion Botez, Professor of English Literature at the University of Jassy, 1925. At the beginning he surveys the interpretations of the most noteworthy British and foreign scholars. He holds them all wrong, asserting that there is no flaw in Hamlet, no diseased will. He is conceived on the same lines as the other tragic Shakespearean heroes, with an excess of vitality. And, of course, Professor Botez brings forward a number of quotations to justify his contention, which appears also to be that of Dr. Elmer Stoll of the Minnesota University, as far as I can gather from an article by Desmond MacCarthy in The New Statesman, p. 703, 8 March, 1930.

Dramă şj Teatru, by Ion Marin Sadoveanu, Arad, 1925. The author, a distinguished dramatic critic, deals here most competently with King Lear, Macbeth, Merchant of Venice, Taming of the Shrew, and Midsummer Night's Dream.

A Book of Homage to Shakespeare, 1916, London, containing an article by N. Mişu, the ablest of Roumania's representatives at the Court of St. James's. He says among other things: "In April 1914, on the occasion of the annual festivities at Stratford-on-Avon, I was desired by Carmen Sylva to present to the Shakespearean Society at that place the following simple homage in the handwriting of the poetess: 'Oh! happy England, that gave birth to the world's greatest poet.'"

Critica Dramatică, by Mihail Dragomirescu, Bucharest, 1904. There are special references to the interpretation of Hamlet and Romeo and Juliet.

Traduceri din Literatura Engleză, by Petre Grimm, in Daco-romnia, the year-book of the University of Cluj, 1924. A detailed and critical account of Roumanian translations from Shakespeare, to which I am much indebted.

La Casa şi Mormntul lui Shakespeare, a chapter of impressions in my book Din Anglia, Bucharest.



Besides the works mentioned in the footnotes I add a few more of special interest:

Epic and Romance, by W. P. Ker, London, 1926; the chapter on "Romance and the Old French Romantic Schools."

Livres populaires dans le Sud-est de I'Europe et surtout chez les Roumains, by Professor N. Iorga, in the Bulletin de la Section historique de l'Academic Roumaine, vol. xiv, Bucharest, 1928.

Fiore di Virt, by N. Cartojan, Roumanian Academy, Series III, vol. iv, Bucharest, 1928.

By the same author, Cărţile Populare in Literatura Romnească, vol. i, Bucharest, 1929.