There is a true story, in which Ibsen himself was involved, behind A Doll’s House. It is the story of Laura Kieler, who had written a novel in the 1860s, Brand’s Daughters, and got to know the Ibsens - Ibsen called her his “skylark”. In 1878 she sent the manuscript of another novel, hoping Ibsen would recommend it. He thought it was very bad and said so. She needed money because she had borrowed - as Nora does in the play - to take her tubercular husband to Italy to “save his life”. On receiving Ibsen’s letter she forged a cheque, was discovered, and treated like a criminal by her husband, who committed her to a lunatic asylum, taking her back only grudgingly.

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