The Greatest Story Ever Told

The Story of Jesus

as told by
Claude Rains

Play Time – 20.58 Minutes

Claude Rains (10 November 1889 – 30 May 1967) was an English stage and film actor whose career spanned 66 years. He was known for many roles in Hollywood films, among them the title role in The Invisible Man (1933), a corrupt senator in Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939), Mr. Dryden in Lawrence of Arabia (1962), and, perhaps his most notable performance, as Captain Renault in Casablanca (1942).

Rains made several audio recordings, narrating a few Bible stories for children on Capitol Records, and reciting Richard Strauss’s setting for narrator and piano of Tennyson’s poem Enoch Arden, with the piano solos played by Glenn Gould. This recording was made by Columbia Masterworks Records.\

Rains became a naturalized citizen of the United States in 1939. He married six times, the first five of which ended in divorce: Isabel Jeans (1913–1915); Marie Hemingway (1920, for less than a year); Beatrix Thomson (1924 – April 8, 1935); Frances Proper (April 9, 1935–1956); and to classic pianist Agi Jambor (November 4, 1959–1960). He married Rosemary Clark Schrode in 1960, and stayed with her until her death on December 31, 1964. His only child, Jessica Rains, was born to him and Proper on January 24, 1938.

He acquired the 380-acre (1.5 km2) Stock Grange Farm in West Bradford Township, Pennsylvania just outside Coatesville in 1941, and spent much of his time between takes reading up on agricultural techniques. He eventually sold the farm when his marriage to Proper ended in 1956.

Rains died from an abdominal haemorrhage in Laconia, New Hampshire on May 30, 1967 at the age of 77. He is interred in the Red Hill Cemetery, Moultonborough, New Hampshire.

Claude Rains: An Actor’s Voice, a biography by David J. Skal and Rains’ daughter Jessica Rains, was published in 2008.

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