A Domestic Tragedy in Three Acts
Translated by R. Farquharson Sharp
A Penn State Electronic Classics Series Publication
Ghosts: A Domestic Tragedy in Three Acts by Henrik Ibsen, trans. Farquharson Sharp is a publication of the Pennsylvania State University. This Portable Document file is furnished free and without any charge of any kind. Any person using this document file, for any purpose, and in any way does so at his or her own risk. Neither the Pennsylvania State University nor Jim Manis, Faculty Editor, nor anyone associated with the Pennsylvania State University assumes any responsibility for the material contained within the document or for the file as an electronic transmission, in any way. Ghosts: A Domestic Tragedy in Three Acts by Henrik Ibsen, trans. Farquharson Sharp, the Pennsylvania State University, Electronic Classics Series, Jim Manis, Faculty Editor, Hazleton, PA 18201-1291 is a Portable Document File produced as part of an ongoing student publication project to bring classical works of literature, in English, to free and easy access of those wishing to make use of them. Cover Design: Jim Manis Copyright © 2001 The Pennsylvania State University
The Pennsylvania State University is an equal opportunity university.
A Domestic Tragedy in Three Acts
(SCENE.—A large room looking upon a garden door in the left-hand wall, and two in the right. In the middle of the room, a round table with chairs set about it, and books, magazines and newspapers upon it. In the foreground on the left, a window, by which is a small sofa with a work-table in front of it. At the back the room opens into a conservatory rather smaller than the room. From the right-hand side of this, a door leads to the garden. Through the large panes of glass that form the outer wall of the conservatory, a gloomy fjord landscape can be discerned, half-obscured by steady rain. ENGSTRAND is standing close to the garden door. His left leg is slightly deformed, and he wears a boot with a clump of wood under the sole. REGINA, with an empty gardensyringe in her hand, is trying to prevent his coming in.) Regina (below her breath). What is it you want? Stay where you are. The rain is dripping off you. 3
Translated by R. Farquharson Sharp DRAMATIS PERSONAE
Mrs. Alving (a widow). Oswald Alving (her son, an artist). Manders (the Pastor of the parish). Engstrand (a carpenter). Regina Engstrand (his daughter, in Mrs Alving’s service). The action takes place at Mrs Alving’s house on one of the larger fjords of Western Norway.
Engstrand. God’s good rain, my girl. Regina. The Devil’s own rain, that’s what it is!
Ghosts going to stand here as if I had a rendezvous with you. Engstrand. As if you had a what? Regina. I am not going to have anyone find you here; so now you know, and you can go. Engstrand (coming a few steps nearer). Not a bit of it! Not before we have had a little chat. This afternoon I shall have finished my job down at the school house, and I shall be off home to town by tonight’s boat. Regina (mutters). Pleasant journey to you! Engstrand. Thanks, my girl. Tomorrow is the opening of the Orphanage, and I expect there will be a fine kick-up here and plenty of good strong drink, don’t you know. And no one shall say of Jacob Engstrand that be can’t hold off when temptation comes in his way. Regina. Oho! Engstrand. Yes, because there will be a lot of fine folk here tomorrow. Parson Manders is expected from town, too. Regina: What’s more, he’s coming today. 4
Engstrand. Lord, how you talk, Regina. (Takes a few limping steps forward.) What I wanted to tell you was this— Regina. Don’t clump about like that, stupid! The young master is lying asleep upstairs. Engstrand. Asleep still? In the middle of the day? Regina. Well, it’s no business of yours. Engstrand. I was out on a spree last night— Regina. I don’t doubt it. Engstrand. Yes, we are poor...