The Tragedy of Chrononhotonthologos

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The Tragedy of Chrononhotonthologos is a musical burlesque (or burlesque opera) in verse written and composed by Henry Carey (1687–1743)[1]

Sometimes apparently also referred to simply as Chrononhotonthologos, and even billed wrongly as Chronomoholonthologus in South Africa once.

The original text

It first appeared under its full title of The Tragedy of Chrononhotonthologos: being the most tragical tragedy, that ever was tragediz'd by any company of tragedians and was first acted at the Theatre-Royal in Drury-Lane by Benjamin Bounce, Esq. The text was published in 1734 by London and Edinburgh, and apparently often afterwards.

Translations and adaptations

Performance history in South Africa

1818: Performed in South Africa by the Gentlemen Amateurs in the African Theatre, Cape Town on 27 June 1818, with the help of Mr Cooke and his company of ladies. Played as the afterpiece to Sheridan's The School for Scandal.

1838: It was apparently performed in Grahamstown as Chronomoholonthologus in this year by the Grahamstown Amateur Company, performing under the motto Honi Soit Qui Mal Y Pense (Though there is some difference of opinion between F.C.L. Bosman and P.W. Laidler on whether it was not perhaps a performance in Cape Town - see Bosman, 1928: pp. 388-9).


The Tragedy of Chrononhotonthologos: Bibliographic details of the 1734 edition, Worldcat[2]

Opening Night! Opera & Oratorio Premieres, Standford University Libraries[3]

F.C.L. Bosman, 1928. Drama en Toneel in Suid-Afrika, Deel I: 1652-1855. Pretoria: J.H. de Bussy. [4]: pp. 154, 389.

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