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KELLY, HUGH. - The Romance of An Hour, a comedy of two acts, as it is performed, with universal applause, at the Theatre Royal in Covent-Garden.

London, for Kearsley 1774. Octavo modern plain wrapper; [4,8],44pp with publisher's advert on the last page for four other Kelly plays. A rather good copy. ¶ First edition of this up to the minute Anglo-Indian farce by the literary hack, virulent anti-American independence critic and ministry mouthpiece. Kelly's biographer, Robert Bataille, was surprised that Kelly announced his authorship so early - the first production was on December 2 and this printed edition was on the street by the 17th - given that an earlier play had been disrupted by rioting Wilkites. I suggest it was hope for riotous publicity that made Kelly put his name on the title. The play got a lot of poor, a few warm reviews and not much attention despite being, as I said, filled with current fads. The only truly admirable character is the Indian servant who is made, poor thing, to sound to us more like an American Indian in an old cowboy film than any Indian. He says everything but "heap big wampum". The heroine is a charming Anglo Indian aristocrat who has two well bred Englishmen competing for her hand despite her tint and Tahiti is thrown in - the latest chart is introduced and Bataille suggests that Kelly was capitalising with his noble native servant, on Omai, then in England.
AUD 800.00 [Appr.: EURO 506.75 US$ 594.25 | £UK 452.5 | JP¥ 66176] Book number 10151

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