Eleonora Duse - Later Life

Later Life

Duse suffered from ill health (largely pulmonary) throughout most of her adult life, and the many years of touring had taken their toll.

She retired from acting in 1909, but returned to the stage in 1921 in a series of engagements in both Europe and America. During this interval, in 1916, she made one film Cenere ("Ashes"), prints of which still survive. There was also a certain amount of professional correspondence between Duse and D. W. Griffith, though ultimately nothing came of this.

On 30 July 1923 Duse became the first woman (and Italian) to be featured on the cover of the nascent Time magazine.

Duse died of pneumonia at the age of 65 in Pittsburgh in Suite 524 of the Hotel Schenley, while on the eastward return leg of a tour of the United States. (The Hotel Schenley is now the William Pitt Union at the University of Pittsburgh) A bronze plaque in the lobby commemorates her death. After being moved to New York City, where she lay in state for four days before her funeral service, her body was returned to Italy (where another service was performed). She is buried in Asolo – where she had made her home for the last four years of her life – at the cemetery of Sant' Anna.

Read more about this topic:  Eleonora Duse

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