It may seem that nothing much happens during the first three scenes. People wander in and out, we are given snatches of conversations, and in Scenes 2 and 3 Christian and Lignière come and go, as does Ragueneau. Actually, these characters are giving us information that we will need later in order to understand the play. As in Scene 1, there is a variety of characters introduced. The marquis who comments that Christian is handsome enough, but not really in the latest fashion, is an excellent example of the précieuse attitude (an attitude, prevalent in seventeenth-century France, that what a person appeared to be was more important than what he really was). Our knowledge of the marquis — he is vain, and affected in language, manners, and dress — will help us to understand that of Roxane, since she is also one of the précieuse. We are told of the political climate in France and of the worsening relationship with Spain, which
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This note was uploaded on 12/08/2011 for the course ENG 101 taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '11 term at University of Houston.