The Fugitive: a Comedy. As it is performed at the King’s Theatre, Haymarket …

London: Printed for J. Debrett … 1792.

8vo, pp. [12], 84, [4], with a half-title and a terminal blank (both dusty); scattered foxing, but a good copy in modern wrappers.


US $140€114

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First edition of the first play by Sheridan’s friend, the writer and politican Joseph Richardson, proprietor of the Morning Post and later of the Drury Lane Theatre (by 1796 he had a £12,000 stake); this is the second issue, with sheets K-M reset to add extra dialogue to Act V, scene I.

‘Lampooing the absurdities of the value system based on birth and title … the play elicited criticism from the duke of Portland for “vilifying the aristocracy”’(The House of Commons, 1790-1820). But, ‘the dialogue throughout is remarkably elegant, the wit chaste and the characters ably delineated’ (London Review), and it ran for seven nights in 1792-3.

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