It attests to Farquhar's stature as a man that he composed this warm-hearted and vibrant play while he was dying. Like The Recruiting Officer, the play is set in a provincial town and its plot is slight: Aimwell and Archer, two impecunious London gentlemen, arrive in Lichfield looking for an heiress to marry. Aimwell, posing as his elder brother, falls in love with his 'prey' Dorinda and confesses his imposture to her; his 'man-servant' Archer arouses the wistful interest of the unhappily married Mrs Sullen. The introduction to this edition discusses the play for its theatrical merits and argues that it dramatises the ills of marriage in early modern England, shown by Farquhar to be more injurious to the wife than to the husband, and calls for a reform of the divorce laws.
Buy The Beaux' Stratagem book by George Farquhar from Australia's Online Independent Bookstore, Boomerang Books.
(198mm x 129mm x 15mm)
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
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Author Biography - George Farquhar
Ann Blake is Honorary Fellow at the School of Communication, Arts and Critical Enquiry, La Trobe University, Victoria, Australia