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Ronald Duncan

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Category: Literature
Reference No: 9389
Status: Available
Price: £20.00
  Ronald Duncan

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Rhodesian-born writer, poet and playwright, now best known for preparing the libretto for Benjamin Britten's opera The Rape of Lucretia, first performed in 1946.

A pacifist in the 1930s, Duncan’s first involvement with Britten came in 1937 when he wrote the words for his Pacifist March, a work that was soon withdrawn..

In 1942-43 he helped Britten with the last scene of the opera Peter Grimes, and wrote the whole of the libretto for The Rape of Lucretia in 1945-46.

Duncan wrote a number of plays and was instrumental in setting up and naming the English Stage Company at London's Royal Court Theatre, which opened in 1956.

Duncan was also a writer of short stories and a journalist. He wrote the film script for Girl on a Motorcycle (1968), directed by Jack Cardiff and starring Marianne Faithfull. His poetry was published at Faber and Faber by T. S. Eliot, who became a friend.

This is an interesting philosophical quotation, signed and dated (1980) in black ink on an 8" x 7.5" sheet of notepaper. It reads (in full):

To revenge: cause those to suffer
as they have made us suffer
Is an impulse which rebounds
perpetuating the original pain
on ourselves by adding their sorrow to our own

One light vertical crease down the left edge and one horizontal correspondence fold but in good overall condition.