Reading Experience Database

Basic Search

Advanced Search

Record 19405

Reading Experience:

'I am to act Orsino (the Duke) in "Twelfth Night" at the Jenkins’. I could not resist that; it is such a delightful part; and I got them to put off my rehearsals to the last moment, so that I may get a fortnight with you in London and a fortnight with Bob in France: for that must be done this time, [italics]couteque coute [end italics]. I am not altogether satisfied that I shall do Orsino [italics]comme il faut[end italics]; but the Jenkins are pleased, and that is the great affair.'
Century: 1850-1899
Date: Until: 6 Feb 1875
Country: Probably Scotland
Time: n/a
Place: city: Probably Edinburgh.
county: Lothian
Type of Experience (Reader):
silent aloud unknown
solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown
Type of Experience (Listener):
solitary reactive unknown
single serial unknown

Reader/Listener/Reading Group:

Reader:Robert Louis Stevenson
Age Unknown
Gender Male
Date of Birth 13 Nov 1850
Socio-economic group: Professional / academic / merchant / farmer
Occupation: Aspiring writer and intermittent law student
Religion: Uncommitted
Country of origin: Scotland
Country of experience: Probably Scotland
Listeners present if any:
(e.g. family, servants, friends, workmates)
Possibly schoolfellows.
Additional comments: n/a


Text Being Read:

Author: William Shakespeare
Title: Twelfth Night, Or What You Will.
Genre: Drama, Poetry
Form of Text: Print: Book
Publication details: First printed in the Folio of 1623.
Provenance: unknown


Source Information:

Record ID: 19405  
Source - Print  
  Author: Robert Louis Stevenson
  Editor: Bradford A. Booth
  Title: The Letters of Robert Louis Stevenson, April 1874-July 1879
  Place of Publication: New Haven and London
  Date of Publication: 1994
  Vol: 2
  Page: 115
  Additional comments: Section headed Saturday [6 February] in Letter 362, To Frances Sitwell, Friday [5 February 1875] [17 Heriot Row]. Co-editor Ernest Mehew. Dates in square brackets have been added by the editors.

Citation: Robert Louis Stevenson, Bradford A. Booth (ed.), The Letters of Robert Louis Stevenson, April 1874-July 1879 (New Haven and London, 1994), 2, p. 115,, accessed: 21 February 2024

Additional comments:

Before undertaking to rehearse and act the part of Orsino for the Jenkins, RLS could have read the text of the play in one or more modern editions, at school and/or on his own. Henry Charles Leeming Jenkin had been RLS’s Professor of Engineering and he and his family and circle were now friends of the young man.



Reading Experience Database version 2.0.  Page updated: 27th Apr 2016  3:15pm (GMT)