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The Lady from the Sea

Henrik Ibsen

Book Overview: 

The title character in Ibsen's drama, Ellida Wangel, is married to a prosperous doctor, but feels stifled by her roles as wife and stepmother to her husband's two daughters by a previous marriage, Hilde and Bolette. Ten years earlier she had promised to marry another man - and on a sultry summer day, he comes back to her. Ellida must decide whether to choose the safety of her life with Wangel, or to yield to the siren song of the sea.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . . home; and that was very fortunate for me.

Arnholm. What do you mean?

Lyngstrand. Yes, for it was in the shipwreck that I got this little weakness—of my chest. I was so long in the ice-cold water before they picked me up; and so I had to give up the sea. Yes, that was very fortunate.

Arnholm. Indeed! Do you think so?

Lyngstrand. Yes, for the weakness isn't dangerous; and now I can be a sculptor, as I so dearly want to be. Just think; to model in that delicious clay, that yields so caressingly to your fingers!

Ellida. And what are you going to model? Is it to be mermen and mermaids? Or is it to be old Vikings?

Lyngstrand. No, not that. As soon as I can set about it, I am going to try if I can produce a great work—a group, as they call it.

Ellida. Yes; but what's the group to be?

Lyngstrand. Oh! something I've experienced myself.

Arnholm. Yes, yes; always stick . . . Read More

Community Reviews

There's a point near the end of this play that I really like. Ellida has married nice, sensible Dr. Wangel, but her heart still belongs to the sailor she knew all those years ago, who mysteriously disappeared. She can feel his presence through these strange signs. The strangest of them all was the c

”Adio doamnă; de acum încolo, ești doar un naufragiu în viața mea.”

Femeia mării mi-a lăsat o umbră de melancolie în gând; tristețea se ascunde undeva în cuvintele marinarului pierdut în valurile vieții.

A lost love returns
15 March 2015

Okay, I have mentioned before that reading a play can be somewhat more difficult that watching it performed; one of the reasons being that sometimes it is difficult to differentiate the characters. However, after being forced to put this play down after reading the f

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