As one of the most earnest dramatic writers of the present century he is entitled to a little corner in our memory. Worse work of the past has lasted longer than the plays of Sheridan Knowles are likely to last through the future.
m the part of Virginius in Sheridan Knowles's play lately produced there. He agreed unwillingly to look at it, and says that in April, 1820, the parcel containing the MS. came as he was going out. He hesitated, then sat down to read it that he might get a wearisome job over. As he read, he says, "The freshness and simplicity of the dialogue fixed my attention; I read on and on, and was soon absorbed in the interest of the story and the passion of its scenes, till at its close I found myself in such a state of excitement that for a time I was undecided what step to take. Impulse was in the ascendant, and snatching up my pen I hurriedly wrote, as my agitated feelings prompted, a letter to the author, to me then a perfect stranger." Bryan Procter (Barry Cornwall) read the play next day with Macready, and confirmed him in his admiration of it.
Macready at once got it accepted at the theatre, where nothing was spent on scenery, but there was a good cast, and the enthusiasm of Macready as stage manager for t
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