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THE FIRST SCENE
1776. Patiomkin in his bureau in the Winter Palace, St.
Petersburgh. Huge palatial apartment: style, Russia in the
eighteenth century imitating the Versailles du Roi Soleil.
Extravagant luxury. Also dirt and disorder.
Patiomkin, gigantic in stature and build, his face marred by the
loss of one eye and a marked squint in the other, sits at the end
of a table littered with papers and the remains of three or four
successive breakfasts. He has supplies of coffee and brandy at
hand sufficient for a party of ten. His coat, encrusted with
diamonds, is on the floor. It has fallen off a chair placed near
the other end of the table for the convenience of visitors. His
court sword, with its attachments, is on the chair. His
three-cornered hat, also bejewelled, is on the table. He himself
is half dressed in an unfastened shirt and an immense
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