Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Phillips, Edward (fl.1730-1740)

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PHILLIPS, EDWARD (fl. 1730–1740), dramatist, stated by Baker to be of Cambridge, was the author of the following pieces: 1. ‘The Chambermaid,’ a ballad opera in one act, based upon the ‘Village Opera’ of Charles Johnson (1679–1748) [q. v.], and produced as an after-piece at Drury Lane on 10 Feb. 1729–30, London, 1730, 8vo. 2. ‘The Livery Rake and Country Lass.’ This comic opera, with sprightly songs, was repeated several times at the Haymarket and Drury Lane, where ‘first Phillis’ was played by Mrs. Pritchard, London, 1732. 3. ‘The Mock Lawer,’ a musical farce produced at Covent Garden on 27 April 1733. The libretto, printed at Dublin in 1737, is scarce. 4. ‘Britons strike Home, or Sailors' Rehearsal,’ London, 1739, 8vo. This musical piece was, according to Genest, devoid of unity and ‘full of claptraps.’ Nevertheless, Macklin and Mrs. Clive appeared in it when produced at Drury Lane on 31 Dec. 1739, and it was revived on 27 March 1779. A scarce satirical poem on the condition of the stage, with a prose introduction, entitled ‘The Players’ (London, 1733, 4to), is doubtfully attributed to Phillips (Lowe, Bibl. Account of Theatrical Lit. p. 266; cf. Introduction to The Players, ad fin.)

[Baker's Biographia Dramatica, 1812, i. 571; Thespian Dict. 1805; Genest's Hist. of the Stage, vol. iii. passim; Brit. Mus. Cat.]

T. S.