14 April 2004
SOUTHERNE, Thomas (1660-1746). Oroonoko: A Tragedy. As it is Acted at the Theatre-Royal, By His Majesty's Servants. London: Printed for H. Playford, B. Tooke and S. Buckley, 1696.
4o (215 x 157 mm). (Lacking final blank, some browning and spotting.) 20th-century blue half morocco, by MacDonald. Provenance: A.B. Spingarn (signature on flyleaf); Cornelius Paine (signature on flyleaf); Frederick Spiegelberg (bookplate; sold Anderson Galleries, 3 November 1937, lot 604).
FIRST EDITION, with the unnumbered leaf at end with the epilogue by William Congreve. Based on Aphra Behn's novel History of the Royal Slave, Oroonoko was a very popular play of the late 17th-century and was a prototype of a host of popular melodramas. "According to Cibber, the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, subsisted for several years on the success of this and two or three other plays" (Pforzheimer 959). Wing S-4761.
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