"his annual lecture on Racine"
Jean Racine by Jean-Baptiste Santerre - Credit: Descendance
(1639-1699) was a hugely influential seventeenth century French playwright, known for tragedies such as Phèdre
He wrote in the dodecasyllabic alexandrine, which makes his plays notoriously difficult to translate. Alongside Molière and Corneille he is known as one of the 'Big Three' French dramatists.