In three acts by ALBERT LORTZING.
Text by himself.
Though this opera does not equal in value Lortzing's "Czar and
Zimmermann", it has nevertheless proved an admirable addition to the
operatic repertory. It is attractive both on account of the freshness
of its melodies and the popular character of its music and text.
The scene is located in Worms, in the 16th century. The Count of
Liebenau has fallen in love with Mary, the daughter of a celebrated
armorer, named Stadinger, and in order to win her, he woos her at first
in his own rank as Count, then in the guise of a smith-journeyman,
named Conrad. Mary, who cannot permit herself to think of love in
connection with a person of such a position as a Count, nevertheless
pities him and at last confesses blushing, that she loves the poor
smith Conrad. Inwardly triumphant, the Count pretends to be jealous.
But father Stadinger, who more than once showed the door to the Count,
will not accept either of the suitors, the Count standing too high
above him, and his journeyman, Conrad, being too bad a laborer, though
he has once saved Mary's life.
In order to withdraw her from the reach of her lovers, the armorer
resolves to wed his daughter to his second journeyman George, who is no
other than the Count's valet. Stadinger is determined to present
him as Mary's bridegroom on the occasion of a festival, which is to
take place in the course of the afternoon, and on which Stadinger's
jubilee as master of armorers is to be celebrated. In vain George
refuses his consent to this proposal. He is at length obliged to
inform the Count and the latter feigns to assault Stadinger's house.
But it is of no avail; the old citizen, more firm than ever, denies him
his child again, and as George decidedly refuses to marry his daughter,
he gives her at last to Conrad. Great is Mary's surprise and her
father's wrath, when they discover that the Count and simple Conrad are
one and the same person, but at last the old father yields, and the
lovers receive his benediction.
Next: Gustavus The Third