Donizetti so dominated the preparation of the libretto that Ruffini refused to allow his name to be put on the score. This resulted in confusion over the identity of the librettist for more than half a century, but as Herbert Weinstock establishes, it was largely Ruffini's work and, in withholding his name from it as librettist, "Donizetti or Accursi may have thought that, lacking Ruffini's name, the authorship might as well be assigned to Accursi's initials as to a pseudonym".
The opera was first performed on 3 January 1843 by the Théâtre-Italien at the Salle Ventadour in Paris with great success and it is generally regarded as being the high point of the 19th century opera buffa tradition and, in fact, marking its ending.
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