The New Student's Reference Work/Modjeska, Helena
Modjeska (mŏd-jĕs'kȧ), Helena, a Polish actress, was born at Cracow, Austria, Oct. 12, 1844. From 1868 to 1876 she was the first actress of Warsaw, where she made the plays of Shakespeare popular. She tried farming in California, but, failing in her enterprise, returned to the stage in 1877 and won a complete success in San Francisco, though she acted in English, a language she had used for only seven months. She was acknowledged to be one of the best of modern actresses, especially as Juliet, Rosalind, Mary Stuart, Camille, Cleopatra and Adrienne Lecouvreur, in which characters she obtained her greatest reputation in the United States and in Great Britain. She died April 8, 1909.