Pastoral Tragedy, A

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George Chapman (1599)

Historical Records

Payments to Playwrights (Henslowe's Diary)

F. 63v (Greg I.110)

Lent vnto Thomas downton the 17 of
July 1599 [in ear] to lend vnto mr chapman
in earneste of a pastrall tragedie the
some of ... xxxxs

British Museum MS. Add. 30262, f. 66

Foakes, 266:

Receaued by me George Chapman for a Pastorall
ending in a Tragedye in part payment the
Sum[me] of fortye shilling[es], this xvijth of July
Anno 1599 ... [sum cut away]
By me George Chapman

Theatrical Provenance

The Admiral's Men, through their player-sharer Thomas Downton, paid George Chapman in earnest toward a pastoral tragedy in the summer of 1599, as the company played at the Rose and anticipated the arrival of the Chamberlain's Men across Main Lane at the Globe, which presumably was open for business by August.

Probable Genre(s)

Tragedy (Harbage)

Possible Narrative and Dramatic Sources or Analogues

None known.

References to the Play

None known.

Critical Commentary

Greg assumes the play was never finished; he notes that this instance is Chapman's last mention in Henslowe's diary (II.204 Item #177). He transcribes the receipt in Chapman's hand, including "x [ ]" as payment (II.xlix).

Foakes does not see the "x" of the payment on the receipt in Chapman's hand. He refers readers to Greg's essay on the fragment, cited below.

For What It's Worth

The receipt signed by Chapman is in Chapman's hand, as is his signature.

Works Cited

Foakes, R. A. Henslowe's Diary. 2nd ed. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2002.

Greg, W. W. "A Fragment from Henslowe's Diary," The Library, 4th series, xix (1938-9), 180-4.

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