- A poetic tragedy by Federico García Lorca,first performed in 1933 in Madrid. It opened in New York in 1935 asBitter Oleander and in London in 1939 as The Marriage ofBlood; it was translated as Blood Wedding by the poet RoyCampbell for revivals in London in 1947 and New York two years later.The play was the first of Lorca's great trilogy of folk tragedies,being followed in 1934 by Yerma and in 1945 by The Houseof Bernarda Alba.
Based on a true news story, the play explores the conflictbetween love and duty. It opens on the eve of an arranged weddingbetween Andalusian gypsies, as the bridegroom's mother recalls toher son how her husband and other son were murdered. She is fearfulbecause the bride was once engaged to Leonardo (the only named character),a member of the family who committed the murder. Leonardo still lovesthe bride although his wife is now pregnant. The next day, the coupleare married but the bride then flees with Leonardo; as they declaretheir doomed love a beggar gives them the 'eye of death'. Leonardoand the bridegroom kill each other; the bride then offers herselfto the mother to be killed.