Susanna Centlivre’s The Busie Body, A Comedy

Among our Stockton Axson Collection of 18th Century Drama, are many editions of Susanna Centlivre‘s The Busie Body, A Comedy. Her most successful play was performed for King George I and II and had 40 different editions by 1884.

That fact brings us back to Axson’s collection. The Rice English professor was unable to collect all 40 editions, but he did find 19. While not all of the editions have frontispieces, many do and some even showcase the actors who played the main character, Marplot.

3rd Edition, 1714

3rd edition, 1714

6th edition, 1737

6th edition, 1737

1765, Theatres Royal

T. Lowndes, etc. edition, 1765

Theatre Royal in Covent Garden, 1776

T. Lowndes, etc., edition, 1776

J. Wenman edition, 1777

J. Wenman edition, 1777

W. Oxlade edition, 1777

W. Oxlade edition, 1777

Bell's Characteristical edition, 1782

Bell’s Characteristical edition, 1782

John Bell, British Library, Strand edition, 1791

John Bell, British Library, Strand edition, 1791

John Cumberland edition, 1824

John Cumberland edition, 1824, with an illustration by Robert Cruikshank

Sources used: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Susanna_Centlivre

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