American literature on the London stage

Posted on 15th July 2021 by simonbeattie

I wrote once, years ago, about Washington Irving in Germany. I’ve always been interested in finding material that connects two different countries, two different cultures, through literature. Here’s another, and with an added theatrical dimension:

This double bill from 1844 features Shakespeare alongside Irving on the London stage, The Miser’s Well being based on a tale from Bracebridge Hall, by Richard Brinsley Peake (1792–1847) and featuring the husband-and-wife team of Robert and Mary Anne KeeleyThe Spectator thought the production ‘nicely got up, and very well played.  Mrs Keeley, the hero, looks the merry, adventurous boy to admiration, and acts the part capitally; and her husband, a rustic lout frightened out of his wits, is extremely amusing’ (3 Feb. 1844, p. 107).

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