The Rover, or, The Banished Cavaliers
- Transcription, correction, editorial commentary, and markup by Staff and Research Assistants at the University of Virginia, Sara Brunstetter, John O'Brien
SourcesLondon : Printed for John Amery ,
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The Banish't Cavaliers.
As it is ACTED
His Royal Highness
Licensed July 2d 1677.
ROGER L'ESTRANGE.n001an001aRoger L'Estrange had the title of "Licensor of the Press" in England at this time; he was in effect the official government censor for all printed material. He had the right to inspect printing presses and to intercept any printed matter that he suspected of being seditious, libellous, or blasphemous. The presence of his name here on the title page indicates that he had read through the play and found nothing objectionable in it. It's interesting to note that while L'Estrange's name is here in the place where we might expect to find the name of the author, Behn's is not. It was actually typical of printed playtexts in this period that they did not identify the author of the play; the success of a play was seen to lie much more in the skill of the performers and the theater company than of the author (much as in modern Hollywood movies, where the names of stars are well known, but the screenwriters are usually obscure.) L'Estrange was not the "author" of this play in a modern sense, but the prominence of his name here "authorizes" its publication in another sense, as a play approved by the state authorities. Moreover, this play was, as the title page also announces, staged in one of the two official state-licensed theaters, in this case the one sponsored by the Duke of York, the brother of King Charles, who was the sponsor of the other state-licensed theater in London. - [UVAstudstaff]
Printed FOR John Amery, at the Peacock, against
St. Dunstan's Church in Fleet-street. 1677