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Congreve, William. The Mourning Bride, a Tragedy. as it is acted at the theatre in Lincoln’s Inn-Fields, by His Majesty’s Servants. London: J. Tonson, 1697. Second Edition. Scarce.

A very good second edition of Mr. Congreve’s famous work. [WING C5858] Blue three quarter cloth over maroon and blue marbled boards. Appears to be missing the first free endpaper, otherwise complete and collated. Loss to page 1, not affecting text. Pencilled marginalia and previous owner’s bookplate on front pastedown. Soft cotton paper. Toning to pages and pastedowns. Contents: 11′”1: half-title (verso blank). 11′”2: title (verso blank). Al: dedicatory epistle (om. initial4). A3V: prologue (cap2). A4V; dramatis personae (with cast). Bl: HT with text (cap4). K2: epilogue (cap2). 6 /2 x 8 3/4 inches tall, octavo. Very good. Three quarter cloth.

“The Mourning Bride is a tragedy written by British playwright William Congreve. It premiered in 1697 at Betterton’s Co., Lincoln’s Inn Fields. The play centers on Zara, a queen held captive by Manuel, King of Granada, and a web of love and deception which results in the mistaken murder of Manuel who is in disguise, and Zara’s also mistaken suicide in response. There are two very widely known quotations in the play; from the opening to the play:

Music has charms to soothe a savage breast,
The word “breast” is often misquoted as “beast” and “has” sometimes appears as “hath”.

Also often repeated is a quotation of Zara in Act III, Scene VIII:
Heav’n has no rage, like love to hatred turn’d,
Nor hell a fury, like a woman scorn’d.

This is usually paraphrased as “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.” — Wikipedia


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