The Miser by Molière

The Miser's plot, involving a rich money-lender called Harpagon, whose feisty children long to escape from his penny-pinching household and marry their respective lovers, is a comedy of manners to which the 17th-century French upper classes presumably objected. It is less savage, however, and somewhat less realistic than Molière's earlier play, Tartuffe, which attracted a storm of criticism on its first performance. The play is also notable for the way in which it sends up certain theatrical conventions. Many comedies from the Elizabethan period and onwards contain asides which are delivered by characters to the audience and which the other actors ignore. In L'Avare, however, characters generally demand to know who exactly these asides are being delivered to. The play's ending is also self-consciously ridiculous, mocking the French idea of comedy to better the comical effect of the play and its parts, while still taking in hand the tragedy of Harpagon and his life. Fortunately, this joke is preserved for modern audiences of a certain age because the conclusion of the play is now rather reminiscent of the emotional climax of the Star Wars trilogy, namely that an unexpected character turns out to be everyone's Father.

The 210th greatest fiction book of all time


This book is on the following lists:

  1. - Great Books of the Western World (Great Books Foundation)

Buy This Book

Name Binding Sales Rank Lowest New Lowest Used Published
The Miser and Other Plays Mass Market Paperback 5336627 $1.95
The Miser and Other Plays (Penguin Classics) Kindle Edition 749872 $8.26 2004
The Miser and Other Plays (Penguin Classics) Paperback 3119073 $2.19 $0.01 1953
The Miser Paperback 183343 $6.29 2014
The Miser Paperback 12437672 $65.29 $50.00 1973
El avaro / The Miser (Letras Universales) (Spanish Edition) Paperback 1111762 $13.29 $31.00 2004
El avaro & El Enfermo Imaginario / The Miser & The Imaginary Invalid (Literatura / Literature) (Spanish Edition) Paperback 9564229 $12.91 $35.29 2005
L'Avare : The Miser (Bilingual Edition - French and English) (French Edition) (English and French Edition) Paperback 1490393 $13.22 $6.45 1968
El avaro / The Miser: De Moliere / By Moliere (Spanish Edition) Hardcover 1932538 $8.89 $27.41 2009
The Miser and Other Plays Paperback 2447896 $6.34 $3.41 2010
Molière, Anthology (The Imaginary Invalid, The Miser, The Learned Women, The Flying Doctor, The Impostures of Scapin, Psyche, The Jealousy of le Barbouillé, The Countess of Escarbagnas and more) Kindle Edition 681177 $4.20 2013
The Miser Paperback 3876446 $11.74 $30.85 2009
The Miser [with Biographical Introduction] (Drama Classics) Kindle Edition 1595508 2004
The Miser & George Dandin: The Actor's Moliere - Volume 1: 001 Kindle Edition 1362548 2000
The Miser (Dodo Press) Paperback 8358534 $8.98 $11.75 2007
The Miser Kindle Edition 476427 2015
The Miser Paperback 4974118 $10.00 $9.00 2008
L'avare: The miser (FEP bilingual series) (English and French Edition) Paperback 9692881 $16.95 $14.71 1969
L'Avare (Petits Classiques Larousse Texte Integral) (French Edition) Mass Market Paperback 197240 $4.25 $0.83 2007
L'Avare (French Edition) Paperback 2119609 $10.44 $9.00 2013
L'Avare (Dodo Press) (French Edition) Paperback 3669221 $8.99 $4.99 2008
The Miser & George Dandin: The Actor's Moliere - Volume 1 Paperback 2600303 $1.95 $0.01 2000
The Miser Paperback 1229745 $9.95 $2.74 2006
The Miser Paperback 5325871 $49.31 $48.50
El avaro [The Miser] Audible Audio Edition 107939 $2.44 2017
Moliere Bilingual 6 Vols : Learned Ladies (Femmes Savantes) ; Misanthrope (Misanthrope) ; Rogueries of Scapin (Fourberies de Scapin ; The Miser ... Invalid (Malade (French and English Edition) Paperback 2037529 $65.00 $638.19 1972
L'Avare - Livre & CD-Audio (French Edition) Paperback 3908211 $12.76 2004
The Miser/The Idiot (Absolute Classics) Paperback 4335299 $2.42 $0.81 2002
The Miser (Magruder) - Acting Edition Paperback 3011453 $9.00 $4.53 2005
Moliere--Four Plays (The Bourgois Gentleman, The Doctor In Spite of Himself, The Affected Damsels, The Miser--regular edtition, and, The Miser--short edition (International Pocket Library) Paperback 4083289 $12.25 $3.49 1999
The Miser and Other Plays: A New Selection (Penguin Classics) Paperback 685432 $8.11 $1.39 2000