Prologue and Epilogue to The Jew of Venice

Scope and Content

Manuscript item bound in a volume of printed pamphlets.

Copies, in the hand of Thomas Bowdler (1661-1738), of the Prologue and Epilogue from George Granville, Baron Lansdowne'sThe Jew of Venice . The first page, containing the Epilogue, has the date '1701' written in Bowdler's hand at the top inner margin and 'May 1701' is written in Bowdler's hand against the Prologue.

Incipit of the Prologue [spoken by 'Dryden' ]: 'This radiant Circle, reverend Shakespear view ; / An Audience only to thy buskin due'. Explicit of Epilogue: 'Tis Shakespeare's play and if the scenes miscarry / Let Gorman take the stage & Lady Mary'. .

Summary : The Prologue and Epilogue from Lansdowne's The Jew of Venice, an adaptation of Shakespeare's Merchant of Venice. The Prologue is spoken by the 'Ghosts of Shakespeare and Dryden, who rise crown'd with laurell, the one represented by Mr. Betterton the other by Mr. Verbruggen'. The Epilogue is an address to the audience on the moral to be drawn from the play.

Listed in the Bowdler Manuscript Catalogue: Bundle 122, Item 38, where it is indexed as 'A Prologue & Epilogue. 1701'.