Ion Luca Caragiale’s life and work were closely related. The writer did not shun publicity and enjoyed success while it lasted. When the envy and moral turpitude of his contemporaries forced him to leave his native land, Caragiale did not completely divorce himself from society but became more philosophical about his expectations.
Caragiale was born in Haimanale (now Caragiale), a small village near the Romanian city of Ploieti, on January 30, 1852. He was the son of Luca Caragiale and Ecaterina Caragiale, née Karaba. Interest in the theater was a family tradition: Before becoming administrator of an estate, an attorney, and a magistrate, Ion Luca’s father had been an actor. Two of his uncles, Costache Caragiale and Iorgu Caragiale, were actors, playwrights, and directors of their own theater companies.
Ion Luca Caragiale attended grammar school from 1860 to 1864, and the Ploieti Gymnasium from 1864 to 1867. He also attended his uncle Costache’s recitation and mime courses at the Bucharest Drama Conservatory. After graduation, he held a number of menial jobs, such as serving as a copyist for the Prahova County Court House and a prompter for the Bucharest National Theatre. In 1873, he wrote his first article in the satiric magazine, Ghimpele (the thorn). He also became administrator and chief editor for a variety of publications, alone or in cooperation with other writers: Alegǎtorul liber (the free voter), Unirea democraticǎ (the democratic unity), Claponul (the capon), and Naiunea Românǎ (the Romanian nation). Between 1878 and...
(The entire section is 657 words.)