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AS ALTERED FROM BEN JONSON.
AS PERFORMED AT THE
THEATRE-ROYAL, IN DRURY LANE.
REGULATED FROM THE PROMPT-BOOKS,
By Permission of tbe Managers.
“ The Lines distinguished by inverted Commas, are omitted in the Representation.”
Printed for the Proprietors, under the Direction of
John Bell, British Library, STRAND,
The alterations and additions in this Play (as performed at the Theatres) on comparing it with the oriáginal, were judged so necessary and judicious, and py che omissions so numerous and intricate, that it was
impracticable to give the Original intire, without greatly embarrassing the Reader ; such Lines as could be restored (though omitted on the stage) are printed with Inverted Commas, those in Italics are added in the Representation.
The life of this great Poet is not a subject of pleasurable retrospect—it was darkened by envý, it was saddened by necessity and as if his suffering were never to have an end, his Wit is disparaged and Genius undervalued, even by that Posterity to which he might be supposed to refer his claims with assurance of justice.
SHAKSPERE is the man before whose contempotary excellence Jonson fades away-To whose injured friendship his fame, both as a man and as a writer, is sacrificed for propitiation.
The Commentators upon our greatest Poet seem, with infinite industry, to have raked up
the ashes of forgotten aspersions, and to have violated that Grave in which all injuries are permitted to enjoy oblivion-Jonson has written dispraisingly of their Idol, it therefore follows in their idea, that wanting gratitude, he has wanted all--and they wish to deny that excellence