Francesco Andreini

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Francesco Andreini, c. 1612

Francesco Andreini (c. 1548 – 1624) was an Italian actor mainly of commedia dell'arte plays. He began his career playing the role of the unsophisticated love-stricken young man. Later he played the role of Capitan Spavento ("Captain Fright"), a Pickwickian character of excessive fatigue[1]

He published his dialogue as Captain Spavento as "La bravura del capitano Spavento." This dialogue takes place between the captain and his servant, Trappola.[2]


Andreini was born at Pistoia. He was a member of the company of i Gelosi which Henry IV of France summoned to Paris to his bride, the young queen Marie de Medici, thus introducing the commedia dell'arte style to France.[3]

Andreini married sixteen-year-old Isabella Andreini in 1578, when he was 30.[4] She and their son, Giambattista Andreini, were also distinguished in the arts.[3]


  1. ^ Boni, F., page 9
  2. ^ Boughner, Daniel C. (1940). "Don Armado and the "Commedia Dell'Arte"". Studies in Philology. 37 (2): 201–224. JSTOR 4172484.
  3. ^ a b Chisholm 1911.
  4. ^ Jordan, Peter (2010). "In Search of Pantalone and the Origins of the Commedia Dell'Arte". Revue Internationale de Philosophie. 64 (252 (2)): 209. JSTOR 23961163.