The Broadview Anthology of Romantic Drama
  • Publication Date: February 5, 2003
  • ISBN: 9781551112985 / 1551112981
  • 456 pages; 7¾" x 9¼"

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The Broadview Anthology of Romantic Drama

  • Publication Date: February 5, 2003
  • ISBN: 9781551112985 / 1551112981
  • 456 pages; 7¾" x 9¼"

The London theatres arguably were the central cultural institutions in England during the Romantic period, and certainly were arenas in which key issues of the time were contested. While existing anthologies of Romantic drama have focused almost exclusively on “closet dramas” rarely performed on stage, The Broadview Anthology of Romantic Drama instead provides a broad sampling of works representative of the full range of the drama of the period. It includes the dramatic work of canonical Romantic poets (Samuel Coleridge’s Remorse, Percy Shelley’s The Cenci, and Lord Byron’s Sardanapalus) and important plays by women dramatists (Hannah Cowley’s A Bold Stroke for a Husband, Elizabeth Inchbald’s Every One Has His Fault, and Joanna Baillie’s Orra). It also provides a selection of popular theatrical genres—from melodrama and pantomime to hippodrama and parody—most popular in the period, featuring plays by George Colman the Younger, Thomas John Dibdin, and Matthew Gregory Lewis. In short, this is the most wide-ranging and comprehensive anthology of Romantic drama ever published.

The introduction by the editors provides an informative overview of the drama and stage practices of the Romantic Period. The anthology also provides copious supplementary materials, including an Appendix of reviews and contemporary essays on the theater, a Glossary of Actors and Actresses, and a guide to further reading. Each of the ten plays has been fully edited and annotated.


A Note on the Text


A Bold Stroke for a Husband
Hannah Cowley

Every One Has His Fault
Elizabeth Inchbald

George Colman the Younger

Timour the Tartar
Matthew Lewis

The Quadrupeds of Quedlinburgh
George Colman the Younger

Joanna Baillie

Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Harlequin and Humpo
Thomas John Dibdin

The Cenci
Percy B. Shelley

Lord Byron

Appendix: Contemporary Reviews and Commentary

Glossary of Actors and Actresses

Suggested Readings

Jeffrey N. Cox is Professor of English and of Comparative Literature and Humanities at the University of Colorado at Boulder, where he also directs the Center for Humanities and the Arts. His other work includes In the Shadows of Romance: Romantic Tragic Drama in Germany, England, and France (1987), Seven Gothic Dramas, 1789-1825 (1992), and Poetry and Politics in the Cockney School: Keats, Shelley, Hunt, and Their Circle (1998).

Michael Gamer is Associate Professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania. He is the author of Romanticism and the Gothic: Genre, Reception, and Canon Formation (2000), and the editor of the Penguin edition of The Castle of Otranto (2002).