She Stoops to Conquer

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Nick Hern, 1999 - Drama - 102 pages
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Drama Classics: The World's Great Plays at a Great Little Price

The best-loved English comedy of the 18th century.

Hardcastle hopes to marry his daughter Kate to Marlowe, the son of his old friend. Mrs. Hardcastle wants her son to marry her niece, the wealthy Constance. Marlowe and Hastings, admirer of Constance, arrive at the Hardcastle household mistaking it for an inn. Marlowe, mistaking Kate for a barmaid, attempts to seduce her. Hastings and Constance are thwarted in their attempt to elope. With the arrival of Marlowe's father, the truth gradually begins to reveal itself, and the play closes with the joining of the two young couples.

She Stoops to Conquer is a set text for OCR Drama GCSE, OCR English Literature GCSE, EdExcel Drama GCSE and for AQA English Literaure A/AS-Level.

Edited and introduced by Trevor R. Griffiths.

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About the author (1999)

As Samuel Johnson said in his famous epitaph on his Irish-born and educated friend, Goldsmith ornamented whatever he touched with his pen. A professional writer who died in his prime, Goldsmith wrote the best comedy of his day, She Stoops to Conquer (1773). Amongst a plethora of other fine works, he also wrote The Vicar of Wakefield (1766), which, despite major plot inconsistencies and the intrusion of poems, essays, tales, and lectures apparently foreign to its central concerns, remains one of the most engaging fictional works in English. One reason for its appeal is the character of the narrator, Dr. Primrose, who is at once a slightly absurd pedant, an impatient traditional father of teenagers, a Job-like figure heroically facing life's blows, and an alertly curious, helpful, loving person. Another reason is Goldsmith's own mixture of delight and amused condescension (analogous to, though not identical with, Laurence Sterne's in Tristram Shandy and Johnson's in Rasselas, both contemporaneous) as he looks at the vicar and his domestic group, fit representatives of a ludicrous but workable world. Never married and always facing financial problems, he died in London and was buried in Temple Churchyard.

Griffiths is a doctor practising in Ivybridge, Devon

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