At the time Henrik Ibsen wrote and published Hedda Gabler (1890) he was sixty-two and a well-established but highly controversial dramatist, but the road to that success had been paved with deprivation and hardship. Although he was born in a well-to-do family in Skien, Norway, on March 20, 1828, financial reversals led to poverty, making Henrik's youth a dismal one. At sixteen, he began a lonely and unhappy six-year apprenticeship to an apothecary (a pharmacist). He found his principal solace in the theater and writing, which he hoped would provide a means of escaping from his...
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