ZAIRE, a name by which the river Congo was formerly known.
Zaire is a Portuguese variant of a Bantu word (nzari) meaning river.
Until, however, the last quarter of the 19th century "Zaire" was frequently used to designate the stream.
But at last, on the 13th of August 1732, he produced Zaire, the best (with Merope) of all his plays, and one of the ten or twelve best plays of the whole French classical school.
Zaire, among those where love is admitted as a principal motive, and Merope, among those where this motive is excluded and kept in subordination, yield to no plays of their classe in such interest as is possible on the model, in stage effect and in uniform literary merit.
He sold his share in the property in 1776 for £35,000, and took leave of the stage by playing a round of his favourite characters - Hamlet, Lear, Richard and Benedick, among Shakespearian parts; Lusignan in Zara, Aaron Hill's adaptation of Voltaire's Zaire; and Kitely in his own adaptation of Ben Jonson's Archer in Farquhar's Beaux' Stratagem; Abel Drugger in Ben Jonson's Alchemist; Sir John Brute in Vanbrugh's Provoked Wife; Leon in Fletcher's Rule a Wife and have a Wife.