The Happy Man

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The Happy Man is a play in one act by Samuel Lover (1797-1868)[1]

The original text

Described as "an extravaganza in one act" and performed in the Haymarket Theatre, London in 1839 and The National Theatre, Boston 1846.

Published in J. Dicks Standard Plays (1883) and W. V. Spencer, Boston in Spencer's Boston Theatre XLIII (18**).

Translations and adaptations

Performance history in South Africa

1859: Performed by Sefton Parry and his company in the Harrington Street Theatre on 5 December. Billed as a one act burlesque acts, with a Spanish dance as interlude and Agnes de Vere, or A Wife’s Revenge (Buckstone), it is strangely listed by Bosman (1980, pp.78 and 514) as The Happy Man, or the Legend of the -. (This may possibly be intended to refer to an alternative title, such as "The Legend of the Happy Man"?)

1860: Performed by the Alfred Dramatic Club, in the Theatre Royal, Cape Town, on 27 December, with Dido, the Queen of Carthage (Burnand).

1871: Performed to some acclaim in Cape Town in November by an unnamed (garrison?) company, featuring a star turn by a Mr Searle and accompanied by the brass band of the 86th Regiment.

1872: Performed in Cape Town some time in October, by an unnamed (garrison?) company, as part of an evening of musical and dramatic entertainment in aid of a new bell for St Mary's Cathedral. Probably taking place in the Catholic Hall (formerly known as the St Aloysius Hall), the programme for the evening also included The Toothaches (Anon.) and The Nervous Cures (Brown and Norton).


Frederick Wilse Bateson (ed). 1969The Cambridge Bibliography of English literature. 2. 1660-1800, Volume 3. CUP Archive: p. 407[2]

F.C.L. Bosman. 1980. Drama en Toneel in Suid-Afrika, Deel II, 1856-1916. Pretoria: J.L. van Schaik: pp. 78, 158, 281, 514.

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