Budapest, Leipzig: Dr. Georg Vajna & Co., 1933. First German Edition. Hardcover. Inscribed by Mohácsi on half title. 54/100 numbered by hand. Octavo. 207 (1)pp. Rebound in three quarter Morocco over decorative paper retaining original cover bound in; spine with gilt tooling and lettering, raised bands. Decorative endpapers.
"The Tragedy of Man" is a dramatic poem echoing ideas from the "Book of Job," Byron's "Cain" and maybe Shelley, most prominently though Goethe's Faust. This dramatic poem is Madách's major and most enduring piece of writing. Today it is the central piece of Hungarian theaters' repertoire and is mandatory reading for students in secondary school. Initially the piece was published in printed form only, not staged. Due to the many changes of scenery (15 scenes) it was too difficult to stage with the technical standards of the time.
The main characters are Adam, Eve and Lucifer. The three travel through time to visit different turning-points in human history and Lucifer tries to convince Adam that life is (will be) meaningless and mankind is doomed. Adam and Lucifer are featured at the beginning of each scene, with Adam assuming various important historical roles and Lucifer usually acting as a servant or confidant. Eve enters later in each scene.
Madách's classical poem is monumental in its structure as much as it is unique. The German translation by Mohácsi is the eight's translation published as a book, not withstanding many potential handwritten translations. The most acclaimed translation maybe the one by the poet Ludwig Dóczi, writes Mohácsi in his introduction, and most like Goethe's own words and phrases. Madách's writing is dry and edgy. 'His stammering tears itself from the depths. Madách's struggle with the angel of language is heroic.'
One page of publisher's ads at rear. Text in German. Binding with wear along edges, small chips and spine cracked at joints with three of four raised bands missing. Binding in overall good-, original cover and interior in very good condition. g- to vg. Item #43768