The original text
Based on Hal Caine's own 1890 best-selling novel of the same name, which was set in the Isle of Man and Iceland, the play was written by Caien himself, having made a few changes, inter alia to the ending, and moved the setting from Iceland to Sicily. After a few readings and informal try-outs of various versions, final version of the play, entitled The Bondman Play, opened on Friday 21 September 1906, in the Drury Lane Theatre, in a production by Arthur Collins, with Mrs Patrick Campbell in one of the leads. Though poorly received by the critics, the play was highly successful with the general public.
First published as The Bondman Play by The Daily Mail, London, in 1906.
Translations and adaptations
The play was translated into a number of languages over the years.
The novel was twice filmed, by Edgar Lewis in 1916 and by Herbert Wilcox in 1929.
Performance history in South Africa
Facsimile version of the 1906 text, The Internet Archive
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