By J A Downie
Most sensible identified this day because the writer of 3 seminal novels, Joseph Andrews, Tom Jones and Amelia, Henry Fielding (1707-1754) used to be the main winning playwright of his day till Walpole positioned an finish to politics at the degree via passing the theatrical Licensing Act of 1737 - 'the maximum dramatist, with the one exception of Shakespeare, produced via 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 equivalent to 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 though students agree that Fielding subscribed to Revolution rules, present money owed of his political principles are insufficiently conscious not just of the constitution of politics within the first 1/2 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 info for A Political Biography of Henry Fielding
Spelling out how, ‘should the Star of Popery arise / The star of Liberty must quit the Skies’, Caleb (Bolingbroke) concedes that this will not be allowed to happen: But ah! ]70 34 A Political Biography of Henry Fielding Yet by insinuating that British liberty is providentially protected, Fielding gives credence to his earlier (otherwise unconvincing) celebration of ‘That hated Sun arisen in the West:’ Look up, my Son, and see it’s [sic] Glories shine See Pallas boast the Smile of Caroline While George and She Wit’s brightest Patrons reign Vain all our Efforts!
Which nobody should deny. The danger is that our interpretation of his subsequent relations with Walpole might be conditioned by attributing the poem to Fielding. His reconciliation in 1741 ‘to ye great Man, & as He says upon very advantageous Terms’,57 is unlikely to have been the first time he received money from Walpole, and Fielding was sufficiently embarrassed by the accusation of ingratitude to feel obliged to respond in print. ’ 31 it, never should have been published. 58 ‘Marforio’ had clearly touched a raw nerve, although it is not entirely clear whether Fielding is actually accusing Walpole of wrongly injuring his reputation here.
On 23 September 1727, the British Journal carried a notice announcing new plays to be produced during the coming winter season: We are assur’d, that the Town will be oblig’d with Four new Plays this Winter; Polyxena, written by Mr. Smith; the Provok’d Husband, by the late Sir John Vanbrug[h]; Love in Several Masks, by Mr. Fielding; and a Comedy of Shakespear[e]’s, never yet publish’d. 20 Love in Several Masques, as I have already noted, opened on 16 February 1728 and ran for four nights, appearing in print a week later.
A Political Biography of Henry Fielding by J A Downie