By J A Downie
Most sensible identified at the present time because the writer of 3 seminal novels, Joseph Andrews, Tom Jones and Amelia, Henry Fielding (1707-1754) was once the main profitable playwright of his day until eventually Walpole positioned an finish to politics at the level via passing the theatrical Licensing Act of 1737 - 'the maximum dramatist, with the only exception of Shakespeare, produced by way of England among the center a while and the 19th century', based on George Bernard Shaw. Turning to political journalism, Fielding wrote the lead essays for periodicals reminiscent of The Champion (1739-1741), the real Patriot (1745-1746) and The Jacobite's magazine (1747-1748), in addition to swingeing political satire in prose and verse. even if students agree that Fielding subscribed to Revolution rules, current bills of his political rules are insufficiently conscious not just of the constitution of politics within the first half the eighteenth century, yet of the ways that some of the strands of Whig political ideology constructed in the course of the sixty years following the Revolution of 1688. This political biography explains and illustrates what 'being a Whig' intended to Fielding.
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Extra resources for A Political Biography of Henry Fielding
29 26 A Political Biography of Henry Fielding Given the political atmosphere generated by Gulliver’s Travels, it is tempting to interpret the self-conscious dedication to Heidegger as a covert dig at the brazen politician Walpole. ‘Another gift of nature, which you seem to enjoy in no small degree, is that modest confidence supporting you in every act of your life. Certainly, a great blessing! 32 Perhaps the most striking of these occurs in an exchange between Marplay senior and Marplay junior in the revised version of The Author’s Farce: Mar.
79 Be that as it may, on his return to England he offered the ‘Sketch’ of a play called Don Quixote in England to the managers of the theatre in Drury Lane where Love in Several Masques had been premièred in February 1728. According to the preface 36 A Political Biography of Henry Fielding to the 1734 edition: ‘This Comedy was begun at Leyden in the Year 1728, and after it had been sketched out into a few loose Scenes, was thrown by, and for a long while no more thought of ’. 80 Whether, after this rebuff, he even bothered offering them the draft of The Wedding Day, ‘the third Dramatic Performance I ever attempted’, the play was not staged until 1743.
17 The next we hear of Fielding is on 21 September 1725 when evidently he was ‘violently assaulted’ in Lyme Regis by a certain Joseph Channon who, ‘without any provocation’ gave him ‘two several blows in the face and other part of his body’. Presumably Channon had been incited to offer violence to Fielding by one Andrew Tucker, who was the uncle and joint-trustee of the estate of a fifteenyear-old beauty called Sarah Andrew, to whom Fielding was paying ‘the most assiduous attention’. Tucker was reportedly ‘opposed to a connection with so dissipated, though well born and well-educated a youth’.
A Political Biography of Henry Fielding by J A Downie