The Beggar's Opera

Front Cover
Echo Library, Feb 1, 2007 - Design - 84 pages
BEGGAR. If Poverty be a Title to Poetry, I am sure no-body can dispute mine. I own myself of the Company of Beggars; and I make one at their Weekly Festivals at St. Giles's. I have a small Yearly Salary for my Catches, and am welcome to a Dinner there whenever I please, which is more than most Poets can say. PLAYER. As we live by the Muses, it is but Gratitude in us to encourage Poetical Merit wherever we find it. The Muses, contrary to all other Ladies, pay no Distinction to Dress, and never partially mistake the Pertness of Embroidery for Wit, nor the Modesty of Want for Dulness. Be the Author who he will, we push his Play as far as it will go. So (though you are in Want) I wish you success heartily.

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User Review  - REINADECOPIAYPEGA - www.librarything.com

Meh. I wanted to like it more than I actually did, perhaps I didn't because generally plays and books that are from that time period I rarely find easy reads. I did however love everything by Moliere ... Read full review

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User Review  - David.Alfred.Sarkies - www.librarything.com

I want to give this play a high score simply because of it's context and content, and as it is one of the only satirical operas that has survived from the early 18th Century should also give this play ... Read full review

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About the author (2007)

Gay is a highly original poet and dramatist who experimented in various forms and genres. His The What D'Ye Call It: A Tragi-Comical Pastoral Farce (1715) is a burlesque of high seriousness, as is Three Hours after Marriage, which he wrote with his fellow members of the Scriblerus Club Alexander Pope and Dr. John Arbuthnot. The Beggar's Opera (1728) is his best-known work; it started the vogue for ballad operas, with tunes drawn from popular airs (Gay's are mostly from Thomas D'Urfey's Pills to Purge Melancholy, a popular sourcebook for ribald songs). The Beggar's Opera satirizes gentility and vulgarity alike, and its topical political allusions are so direct that the government forbade its' sequel, Polly. Bertolt Brecht caught the spirit of the work in his Threepenny Opera.

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