Devereux, Roberto, Earl of Essex

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1 (Donizetti: Roberto Devereux). Ten. Roberto has returned after a failed military mission in Ireland and has been accused by his enemies of treason. He awaits trial and fears he will be condemned to death and that only the Queen's intervention can save him. Roberto is still loved by Elisabetta (Elizabeth I), but he is in love with Sara who, while he was abroad, has been pushed into marriage with his friend the Duke of Nottingham. He gives Sara the ring once given to him by the Queen, who promised that if he returned it to her she would guarantee his safety. Sara gives him a scarf, which is found next to his heart when he is searched. He waits in the Tower for the Queen's pardon. The Queen waits for him to send the ring to her so that she can reprieve him. But it is brought by Sara, too late—Roberto has been executed. Aria: Come uno spirito angelico (‘Like an angelic spirit’). Created (1837) by Giovanni Basadonna.

2 (Britten: Gloriana). See Essex, Earl of.

Subjects: Opera.

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