The Momentous Question

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The Momentous Question is a domestic drama, in two acts, by Edward Fitzball (1792-1873)[1].

Also found as The Momentous Question, or Woman's Devotion

The original text

Based on a story from George Crabbe's Tales of the Hall (1820), the play was first performed as The Momentous Question in the Lyceum Theatre, London , in 1844 and later in the Federal Street Theatre in Boston in 1847.

Published in Boston by W.V. Spencer, 1856.

Translations and adaptations

Performance history in South Africa

1861: Performed as The Momentous Question by the Sefton Parry and his company in the Theatre Royal, Cape Town, on 14 November, with Dominique the Deserter, or The Gentleman in Black (Murray). The evening a Benefit for Mr Bland.

1866: Performed as The Momentous Question, or Woman's Devotion by the Le Roy-Duret Company in the Harrington Street Theatre, Cape Town, on 29th March, with Captain Charlotte, or Hearts and Trumps (Stirling).


Facsimile version of the 1856 Spencer text, HathiTrust Digital Library[2]

The New Monthly Belle Assemblée, "A Magazine of Literature and Fashion"Volume 21, July-December, 1844: p. 60, Google E-Book[3].

F.C.L. Bosman. 1980. Drama en Toneel in Suid-Afrika, Deel II, 1856-1912. Pretoria: J.L. van Schaik: pp.100, 203-205

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