BROME (RICHARD) The Antipodes: a Comedie. Acted in the Yeare 1638, by the Queenes Majesties Servants, at Salisbury Court in Fleet-street, FIRST EDITION, J. Okes for Francis Constable, 1640
Lot 48
BROME (RICHARD)
The Antipodes: a Comedie. Acted in the Yeare 1638, by the Queenes Majesties Servants, at Salisbury Court in Fleet-street, FIRST EDITION, J. Okes for Francis Constable, 1640
Sold for £ 25,000 (US$ 32,105) inc. premium

Lot Details
BROME (RICHARD) The Antipodes: a Comedie. Acted in the Yeare 1638, by the Queenes Majesties Servants, at Salisbury Court in Fleet-street, FIRST EDITION, J. Okes for Francis Constable, 1640
BROME (RICHARD)
The Antipodes: a Comedie. Acted in the Yeare 1638, by the Queenes Majesties Servants, at Salisbury Court in Fleet-street, FIRST EDITION, WITH PLAYERS' NAMES SUPPLIED IN MANUSCRIPT, a few signatures and catchwords shaved, ink pagination throughout and pen trials on A2v, red crushed morocco by Riviere [STC 3818; Greg II 586; Pforzheimer 106], 4to (180 x 130mm.), J. Okes for Francis Constable, 1640

Footnotes

  • AN IMPORTANT RECENTLY-DISCOVERED CAST LIST, which "helps to illuminate the state of the Salisbury Court players in 1638, directly following the reopening of the theatres after several months of closures due to outbreaks of plague" (Joshua J. McEvilla, 'The Original Salisbury Court Players of Richard Brome's The Antipodes', Notes and Queries, 2012, p.171).

    A protégé of Jonson, Brome developed his own career as a jobbing dramatist, but spent part of the 1630s embroiled in contractual disputes between the Salisbury Court and the Cockpit (alluded to in a note at the end of the play). "In The Antipodes, his most ambitious play, a clan of sexually frustrated Londoners are cured by the performance of a play set in a fantasy Anti-London that provocatively inverts all the hierarchies of the normal world... The play leaves open the question of whether London or Anti-London is to be preferred" (ODNB). The work mentions the Bard - "These lads can act the Emperors lives all over, / And Shakespeares Chronicled histories, to boot" (Act 1, Scene 5) - and was revived at the Globe in 2000.

    Manuscript notes in a 17th or 18th century hand, alongside the printed character list on A4v, provide the names of 14 players. Many of these are already known to have been members of the Salisbury Court company (in part thanks to the contract lawsuits), but three "have not previously been associated with the company" (McEvilla): 'Ambrose', 'Chamberlain' and 'Watt'. In addition, the appearance twice of the name 'Turner', in roles that would be impossible to double, suggests that two Turners worked for the troupe. The cast list authenticates a claim made in James Wright's 1699 Historical Account of the English Stage that Cartwright the younger and Wintershall "belong'd to the private House at Salisbury-Court" and were colleagues. Finally, this 17th century reader has identified that "Scænæ / Antipodes = London."

    Provenance: "Charles Hunees His Booke" (ownership inscription on D3v), and date "1687" on F4r; manuscript pagination "in a comparable hand [to that in the present copy] appears in a British Library copy of The Sparagus Garden (London, 1640) owned formerly by W.W. Greg" and purchased by him from P.J. Dobell (McEvilla). Loosely inserted is a slip from Maggs catalogue 517 (1929), ostensibly describing this copy.
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