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The Works of John Dryden, Volume XI

The Works of John Dryden, Volume XI: Plays: The Conquest of Granada, Part I and Part II; Marriage-à-la-Mode and The Assignation: Or, Love in a Nunnery

John Dryden
Copyright Date: 1978
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  • Book Info
    The Works of John Dryden, Volume XI
    Book Description:

    Volume XI contains three of Dryden's Plays, along with accompanying scholarly appartus: The Conquest of Granada, Marriage A-la-Mode, and The Assignation.

    eISBN: 978-0-520-90528-3
    Subjects: Language & Literature

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-viii)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. ix-xii)
    (pp. 1-100)


    Heroique Poesie has alwayes been sacred to Princes and to Heroes. ThusVirgilinscrib’d hisÆneidstoAugustus Cæsar; and, of latter Ages,TassoandAriostodedicated their Poems to the house ofEst. ‘Tis, indeed, but justice, that the most excellent and most profitable kind of writing, should be addressed by Poets to such persons whose Characters have, for the most part, been the guides and patterns of their imitation. And Poets, while they imitate, instruct. The feign’d Heroe inflames the true: and the dead vertue animates the living. Since, therefore, the World is govern’d by precept and...

    (pp. 101-220)

    Theywho write Ill, and they who ne’r durst write,

    Turn Critiques, out of meer Revenge and Spight:

    A Play-house gives’em Fame; and up there starts,

    From a mean Fifth-rate Wit, a Man of Parts.

    (So Common Faces on the Stage appear:

    We take ‘em in; and they turn Beauties here.)

    Our Authour fears those Critiques as his Fate:

    And those he Fears, by consequence, must Hate.

    For they the Trafficque of all Wit, invade;

    As Scriv’ners draw away the Bankers Trade.

    Howe’re, the Poet’s safe enough to day:

    They cannot censure an unfinish’d Play.

    But, as when Vizard Masque...

  5. Marriage A-la-Mode
    (pp. 221-318)

    My Lord,

    I humbly Dedicate to Your Lordship that Poem, of which you were pleas’d to appear an early Patron, before it was Acted on the Stage. I may yet go farther, with your permission, and say, That it receiv’d amendment from your noble hands, e’re it was fit to be presented. You may please likewise to remember, with how much favour to the Authour, and indulgence to the Play, you commended it to the view of His Majesty, then atWindsor, and by His Approbation of it in Writing, made way for its kind reception on the Theatre. In...

  6. The Assignation: or, Love in a Nunnery
    (pp. 319-406)


    The Design of Dedicating Playes, is as common and unjust, as that of desiring Seconds in a Duel. ‘Tis engaging our Friends (it may be) in a senceless quarrel, where they have much to venture, without any concernment of their own. I have declar’d thus much before-hand, to prevent you from suspicion, that I intend to interest either your judgment or your kindness, in defending the Errours of this Comedy. It succeeded ill in the representation, against the opinion of many the best Judges of our Age, to whom you know I read it e’re it was presented publickly....

    (pp. 407-544)

    Lady Mary Bertie wrote to Katherine Noel on 2 January 1671 telling her “there is letely come out a new play writ by Mr. Dreyden who made theIndian Emperor. It is caled theConquest of Grenada. My brother Norreys tooke a box and carryed my Lady Rochester and his mistresse and all us to, and on Tuestay wee are to goe see the second part of it which is then the first tim acted.”¹ This testimony—the earliest that is reasonably precise—dates the first performance of Part I to December 1670 and sets the first performance of Part...

    (pp. 545-558)

    We do not know how the plays in this volume were first interpreted on the stages of Bridges Street and Lincoln’s Inn Fields. But the survival of cast lists in first editions of the plays can help us to guess, however unreliably, at aspects of early interpretations. Something, indeed, can be gleaned from comparing the roles assigned to players in each of the three new dramas by Dryden in the seasons of 1670–1673.

    We can see from the table that eight of the twenty-four actors named appeared in all three plays, four appeared in two, and twelve in only...

    (pp. 559-622)

    The copy text is normally the first printing, on the theory that its accidentals are likely to be closest to the author’s practice; but a manuscript or a subsequent printing may be chosen where there is reasonable evidence either that it represents more accurately the original manuscript as finally revised by the author or that the author revised the accidentals.

    The copy text is normally reprintedliteratim, but there are certain classes of exceptions. In the first place, apparently authoritative variants found in other texts are introduced as they occur, except that their purely accidental features are made to conform...

  10. Appendix: Vaughan’s Commendatory Poem on The Conquest of Granada
    (pp. 623-626)
    (pp. 627-639)