By J A Downie
Top 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 profitable playwright of his day until eventually Walpole placed an finish to politics at the level by way of passing the theatrical Licensing Act of 1737 - 'the maximum dramatist, with the one exception of Shakespeare, produced by way of England among the center a while and the 19th century', in response to George Bernard Shaw. Turning to political journalism, Fielding wrote the lead essays for periodicals similar to The Champion (1739-1741), the genuine Patriot (1745-1746) and The Jacobite's magazine (1747-1748), in addition to swingeing political satire in prose and verse. even supposing students agree that Fielding subscribed to Revolution rules, present bills of his political rules 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 through 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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Additional resources for A Political Biography of Henry Fielding
In particular, it throws into doubt the suggestion that, throughout his adult life, Fielding’s politics were indebted to ‘the great theoretician of Broad Bottom’,78 Henry St John, Viscount Bolingbroke. 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 ’.
42 28 A Political Biography of Henry Fielding The attitude of country squires such as Sir Positive, whose abhorrence of innovation extends to disparaging the pretensions of the peerage on the grounds that ‘a Lord’ is ‘A Title of Yesterday! ’,43 offers a useful gloss on Fielding’s observation. However ludicrous they may seem, such remarks are not entirely innocent. In Tom Jones, Squire Western ‘hate[s] all Lords’ because ‘they are a Parcel of Courtiers and Hannoverians, and [he] will have nothing to do with them’ (XVI.
Book. 87 As Bertrand A. 88 On the contrary, dialogue such as this could just as easily be read as a satire on the opposition press along the lines of Fielding’s unpublished mock-Dunciad, and of course ‘[t]he idea for a dramatized scene at the Court of Nonsense was 38 A Political Biography of Henry Fielding unquestionably prompted by the Court of Dulness in The Dunciad’. 89 Fielding’s satire was largely at the expense of those contemporaries who figured in the puppet-show, ‘The Pleasures of Town’, such as ‘Don Tragedio’ (Lewis Theobald), ‘Sir Farcical Comick’ (Colley Cibber), ‘Dr.
A Political Biography of Henry Fielding by J A Downie