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HENRY ARTHUR JONES - MANUSCRIPT LETTER SIGNED 02/26/1891 - HFSID 190100

HENRY ARTHUR JONES Two-page letter expressing succinctly his philosophy as a playwright: "... the English drama should be a representation of English life, and not a series of acts out of the 'Illustrated Police News'. Manuscript Letter signed: "Henry Arthur Jones", 2 pages (front and verso), 4½x7.

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Reg. $360.00

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HENRY ARTHUR JONES
Two-page letter expressing succinctly his philosophy as a playwright: "... the English drama should be a representation of English life, and not a series of acts out of the 'Illustrated Police News'.
Manuscript Letter signed: "Henry Arthur Jones", 2 pages (front and verso), 4½x7. Townshend House, North Gate, Regents Park [London], 1891 February 26. To "Charles M. Skinner Esq.", in full: "I am very glad to receive the cutting from the Brooklyn Daily Eagle with its references to 'Iridah' and 'The Middleman' and to know that the two plays have impressed you so favorably. I found a great difficulty for a number of years in persuading my countrymen that the English drama should be a representation of English life, and not a series of acts out of the 'Illustrated Police News'. And I have no doubt that American dramatists with higher aims than immediate popularity will also have difficulty in leading American dramatic opinion. I believe, however, that there are better signs visible on both sides of the Atlantic and that in the end the victory will not rest with the buntline-mongers. With very sincere regards I am yours faithfully". Accompanied by captioned newspaper photo of Jones. English playwright Henry Arthur Jones (1851-1929) was only 27 when his first play, Only Round the Corner, was produced in London. The great success of The Silver King (1882), a melodrama, gave him the financial freedom to write thereafter "to please himself." What followed, beginning with Saints and Sinners (1884) were mostly realistic plays reflecting unflinchingly on middle class life. His realism resembled Ibsen's, except that Jones was socially conservative. He quipped that when Nora departs at the end of A Doll's House, Helmer should have poured himself a whiskey and declared, "Thank God I'm well rid of her." Oscar Wilde declared that the first three rules of writing were all the same: "Don't write like Henry Arthur Jones." Jones also wrote essays criticizing the politics of H. G. Wells and George Bernard Shaw. Normal mailing folds. Creased and toned. Otherwise, fine condition.

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