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Writing and Reading Royal EntertainmentsFrom George Gascoigne to Ben Jonson$
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Gabriel Heaton

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199213115

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199213115.001.0001

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Revision and Sociability: The 1607 Entertainment at Theobalds

Revision and Sociability: The 1607 Entertainment at Theobalds

(p.163) 5 Revision and Sociability: The 1607 Entertainment at Theobalds
Writing and Reading Royal Entertainments

Gabriel Heaton

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the Entertainment at Theobalds, written by Ben Jonson and performed before King James in 1607. The occasion of the entertainment was Robert Cecil, Earl of Salisbury's gift of Theobalds – one of the most magnificent houses in England – to the King. There was a distinguished history of entertainments at Theobalds and it can be shown (primarily through the surviving manuscripts) that Salisbury had always taken an active role in their development, and he did so again in 1607. The text circulated in manuscript in a somewhat different form from the later printed text and the chapter looks in detail at the various surviving manusripts, allowing a picture to be built up of the text's earliest readership of well‐connected wits including Lord North and Henry Goodyer.

Keywords:   entertainment at Theobalds, Robert Cecil, Earl of Salisbury, Lord North, Henry Goodyer

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