[Christopher Fry makes directorial suggestions.] Autograph Letter Signed ('Christopher') to 'Dear George', giving detailed comments on a production of Congreve's 'Way of the World', with reference to Joan Plowright and John Moffatt.

Christopher Fry (1907-2005), playwright [Joan Plowright; John Moffatt; William Gaskill; Chichester Festival]
Publication details: 
[From the 1984 Chichester Festival?]

The item would appear to relate to William Gaskill's 1984 Chichester Festival production of Congreve's 'Way of the World', in which Joan Plowright played Lady Wishford, and John Moffatt played Witwoud, although it is not clear why Fry should have been making directorial suggestions in this case. 2pp, 8vo. Written in pencil. In fair condition, aged and worn. Folded twice. From the Fry papers, and so possibly either a draft or not sent. The identity of the recipient is not clear.

[ John Moffatt, Lancashire poet. ] Nine unpublished Autograph Poems (six signed 'J. M.'), including abolitionist poem titled 'Lords and Slaves'. Eight contained in two Autograph Letters Signed to Elijah Ridings, the ninth annotated by Ridings.

John Moffatt (d.1830) of Failsworth [ now in Oldham ], Lancashire poet, Jacobin and tailor [ Elijah Ridings (1802-1872), poet and reformer; Henry 'Orator' Hunt (1773-1835), radical politician ]
Publication details: 
One of the letters from Failsworth, Lancashire. The other without place, dated 7 April 1825. 'Poems dating from 1824, 1825 and 1826.

Moffatt is an interesting minor figure. In a 1924 piece titled 'Brief History of the Failsworth Pole', Rev. James Smith writes: 'The Jacobins' Club Library was kept in a room next to that in which Ben Brierley was born, and old John Moffatt, tailor, of "Crockey Hall," opposite the Pole, had charge of the Library'. Smith quotes lines which he considers 'remarkable for their patriotism', noting: 'He must have been a mild sort of Jacobin.' A total of sixteen pages, on eight leaves. On aged and worn paper, with loss at head of the first leaf of the second letter, resulting in some loss of text.

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