Two excellent Plays: the Wits, a Comedie: the Platonick Lovers, a Tragi-Comedie. Both presented at the private House in Black-Friers, by his Majesties Servants …

London, Printed for G. Bedel, and T. Collins … 1665

8vo, pp. [10], 182, with a general title-page and two individual title-pages dated 1665, all with borders of printer’s tools; general title slightly dusty else a very good copy in contemporary sheep, rubbed.

£950

Approximately:
US $1229€1128

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Two excellent Plays: the Wits, a Comedie: the Platonick Lovers, a Tragi-Comedie. Both presented at the private House in Black-Friers, by his Majesties Servants …

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First collected edition of two plays first published in 1636, probably published to fill the revenue gap after the temporary closure of the theatres in 1665 because of the Plague.

Davenant’s new theatre for the Duke’s Company at Lincoln’s Inn Fields was completed in June 1661 and had the first moveable scenery on the British scenery. He obtained the sole right to certain old plays including nine Shakespearian dramas. ‘In addition, apart from new plays … the company presented the manager’s own The Wits, Love and Honour, The Unfortunate Lovers, and The Siege of Rhodes’ (Nicoll, A History of English Drama 1660-1900). Pepys found The Wits ‘excellent’ and the new scenery ‘admirable’ when it ran for 8 successive days in August 1661 – the King also attended with Duke of York.

The Platonick Lovers did not receive a Restoration revival – a play more of its time, it was written at the request of Queen Henrietta Maria following the current French fashion for the medieval cult of Platonic love.

Wing D347; Pforzheimer 262.

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