Arlequin roi de Serendib

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Arlequin roi de Serendib
Arlequin roi de serendib lesage.jpg
Title plate from 1720 edition of Arlequin roi de Serendib
Written by Alain-René Lesage
Characters Arlequin
the Grand Visir
the Grand Sacrificer
harem girls
Date premiered 1713
Original language French
Genre farce
Setting Serendib

Arlequin roi de Serendib is a three-act farce by Alain-René Lesage. It was first performed at the Foire Saint-Germain in 1713.

Plot summary[edit]

After being marooned on the island of Serendib, Pierrot and Mezzetin are separated from Arlequin. Pierrot and Mezzetin, being familiar with the customs of the island, disguise themselves as women to avoid being killed and are appointed priestesses by the natives. Arlequin, on the other hand, allows himself to be captured, and the natives crown him king. Arlequin enjoys some of the perks of kingship, including fancy meals, a formal portrait sitting, concubines, and a personal physician, before he discovers that the natives sacrifice their kings to their gods.

Before the sacrifice, however, Mezzetin creates a diversion, as he too would like to escape from Serendib where he is being courted by the Grand Visir. Mezzetin, Pierrot, and Arlequin escape to Paris.


  • Arlequin, king of Serendib
  • Mezzetin, disguised as the grand priestess
  • Pierrot, disguised as her confidente
  • The Grand Visir
  • The Grand Sacrificer
  • A Painter
  • A Doctor
  • Harem girls
  • A Greek girl

External links[edit]