Poor Man’s Paradise, The
To playwrights in Philip Henslowe's diary
Fol. 63v (Greg I.110)
Lent vnto Thomas downton the 20 aguste } 1599 to lend vnto hawghton in earnest of a } xiijs Boocke called the poore manes paradice the some of }
Fol. 64 (Greg I.111)
Lent vnto Thomas downton the 25 aguste } 1599 to paye [harey chettell] Thomas hawton for his Boocke } xvijs called the poore manes paradice the some of ... }
The Admiral's Men began payments to William Haughton on "The Poor Man's Paradise" in August 1599 early in their fall season at the Rose; across the way on Maid Lane, the Chamberlain's Men were underway with their fall season at the newly opened Globe.
Comedy (?) (Harbage)
Possible Narrative and Dramatic Sources or Analogues
Wiggins, Catalogue (#1201) raises a connection with the Homilies on Luke and St. Jerome's use of "the phrase paradisus pauperis in reference to 'Abraham's bosom' in the biblical parable of Dives and Lazarus."
References to the Play
- Greg II says that "[n]othing is known of this play" (#181, p. 205).
- Wiggins, Catalogue (#1201) queries a couple of points. For one, he thinks it is "remotely possible" that the name "Thomas" is not a mistake for the familiar "William" Haughton. For another, he weighs whether the play offered "the biblical parable of Dives and Lazarus" or "some unlikely earthly paradise."
For What It's Worth
Knutson considers Henslowe's wording "for his Boocke" in the payment on 25 August 1599 to be a clue that the play was completed (p. 37, n.33).
Site created and maintained by Roslyn L. Knutson, Professor Emerita, University of Arkansas at Little Rock; updated 7 November 2009.