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Douglas is a blank verse tragedy by John Home 1722–1808)[1]

Also called The Tragedy of Douglas in some programmes and sources.

The original text

It was first performed on 14 December 1756 in Edinburgh and at Covent Garden on 14 March 1757. It went on to become a big success in both Scotland and England for decades, attracting many notable actors of the period.

Translations and adaptations

Performance history in South Africa

1807: Performed by Officers of the Garrison in the African Theatre on 15 August, with The Mayor of Garratt (Foote), Performers included Captain Collins, Mr Morgan, Captain Frazer and Mr Napier.

1818: Performed on 22 August by Mr Cooke and company, assisted by local Amateurs, in the African Theatre with The Romp (Bickerstaffe).

1818: Performed on 19 September by Mr Cooke and company, assisted by local Amateurs, in the African Theatre with Silvester Daggerwood (Colman).

1823: Performed in the African Theatre on 12 August by the Amateur Company of the Cape Town garrison.

1823: Performed on 20 September by English Theatricals in the African Theatre with The Sleeping Draught (Penley).

1825: Performed on 16 July as "The Tragedy of Douglas" by English Theatrical Amateur Company in the African Theatre with The Weathercock (Forrest)

1825: Performed among others by "a young gentleman named Dring, only 14 years of age" before the Governor of the Island of St Helena. (see Theatre on St Helena)

1831: Performed on 4 June by All the World's a Stage in the African Theatre as a benefit for Mrs Black, with the "farcetta" Where Shall I Dine?, or No Dinner Yet (Rodwell and Rodwell).

1846: Performed as part of the opening production in the Victoria Theatre (the renamed Garrison Theatre) in Pietermaritzburg, on 21st August 1846, along with Annimal Magnetism (sic, Inchbald).


Original advert in The Cape Town Gazette and African Advertiser, July 8, 1825.

F.C.L. Bosman, 1928. Drama en Toneel in Suid-Afrika, Deel I: 1652-1855. Pretoria: J.H. de Bussy. [2]: pp. 73, 109, 154-55, 197-200, 216, 391

Schauffer, Dennis 1978. The Establishment of a Theatrical Tradition in Pietermaritzburg, Prior to the Opening of the First Civilian Playhouse. Unpublished doctoral dissertation. Pietermaritzburg: University of Natal.

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