THE LAST OF CONGREVE'S PLAYS TO BE PERFORMED
CONGREVE, William. THE WAY OF THE WORLD, a Comedy. As it is acted at the Theatre in Lincoln's-Inn-Fields,by His Majesty's Servants. London: Jacob Tonson, 1700. First edition, with the catchword "Lady" on p. 80. (ESTC notes at least two states for this edition, but no preference is given.) Small quarto. [ ]4,a2,B-M4,N2. 21 x 16 cm. ,89, pp. Half-title page present. The last page is a publisher's list. Bound in full black morocco with gilt title on spine and gilt inner dentelles. Binding shows light wear at joints and fore-edges of boards. Text is age browned with some occasional light spotting. Very good plus. This is the most finished of Congreve's comedies. However, as it wasn't written to suit the prevailing taste, it wasn't very well received. Not that Congreve had been expecting better, he said as much in the preface. It is said that he also told the audience to their faces that they need not take the trouble to disapprove, as he meant to write no more. And he didn't. `The Way of the World' was the last of Congreve's plays to be performed upon the stage. (ESTC R8381; Tinker 734; Grolier 100, no. 37; DNB).