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The Lady of Lyons by Baron Edward Bulwer Lytton Lytton
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the incidents were rendered most probable, in which the probationary
career of the hero could well be made sufficiently rapid for
dramatic effect, and in which the character of the time itself was
depicted by the agencies necessary to the conduct of the narrative.
For during the early years of the first and most brilliant successes
of the French Republic, in the general ferment of society,
and the brief equalization of ranks, Claude's high-placed love;
his ardent feelings, his unsettled principles (the struggle between
which makes the passion of this drama), his ambition, and his career,
were phenomena that characterized the age, and in which the spirit
of the nation went along with the extravagance of the individual.

The play itself was composed with a twofold object.
In the first place, sympathizing with the enterprise of Mr. Macready,
as Manager of Covent Garden, and believing that many of the higher
interests of the Drama were involved in the success or failure
of an enterprise equally hazardous and disinterested, I felt, if I
may so presume to express myself, something of the Brotherhood of Art;
and it was only for Mr. Macready to think it possible that I might
serve him in order to induce me to make the attempt.

Secondly, in that attempt I was mainly anxious to see whether
or not, after the comparative failure on the stage of "The Duchess
de la Valliere," certain critics had truly declared that it
was not in my power to attain the art of dramatic construction
and theatrical effect. I felt, indeed, that it was in this
that a writer, accustomed to the narrative class of composition,
would have the most both to learn and unlearn. Accordingly, it was
to the development of the plot and the arrangement of the incidents
that I directed my chief attention;--and I sought to throw whatever