Often hailed as the father of French tragedy, PIERRE CORNEILLE made his name with the tragicomedy Le Cid in 1637. His best-known works include the tragedies Horace (1640) and Cinna (1640). MOLIÈRE founded the 'Illustre Théâtre' troupe and wrote numerous comedies, including Tartuffe (1664), which was banned, Le Misanthrope (1666) and L'Avare (1668). JEAN RACINE became known as one of the period's leading playwrights, with such tragedies as Andromaque (1667), Britannicus (1669) and Phèdre (1677). After a varied career as an actor, teacher, and BBC TV national newsreader, JOHN EDMUNDS became the founder-director of Aberystwyth university's department of Theatre, Film and Television Studies. JOSEPH HARRIS is Senior Lecturer at Royal Holloway, University of London and author of Hidden Agendas: Cross-Dressing in Seventeenth-Century France (2005).