Colley Cibber

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Colley Cibber
BirthplaceSouthampton Street, London, England
actor, theatre manager, playwright, poet
Known for Works include his autobiography and several comedies of historical interest. Appointed Poet Laureate in 1730

Cibber, Colley

Cibber, Colley (sĭbˈər), 1671–1757, English dramatist and actor-manager. Joining the company at the Theatre Royal in 1690, Cibber became successful as a comedian, playing the fops of Restoration comedy. His first play, Love's Last Shift (1696), is a landmark in the history of the theater and is regarded as the first sentimental comedy. Of his 30 dramas, She Wou'd and She Wou'd Not (1702), The Careless Husband (1704), and The Nonjuror (1717) are the most notable. From 1710 to 1740 he was the manager of Drury Lane. He was appointed poet laureate in 1730. An extremely unpopular, social-climbing, and insolent man, he was ridiculed by the critics and bitterly attacked by Pope, who made him the hero of the final version of The Dunciad. Cibber's Apology (1740) is a mine of information about the theater of this period.


See R. H. Barker, Mr. Cibber of Drury Lane (1939); L. Ashley, Colley Cibber (1965).

Both his son, Theophilus Cibber, 1703–58, and his daughter, Charlotte (Cibber) Clarke, d. 1760?, went on the stage with some success, earning wild and eccentric reputations in the tradition of the family. The wife of Theophilus, Susannah Maria (Arne) Cibber, 1714–66, sister of the composer Thomas Augustine Arne, sang in opera and appeared with great success in tragic roles.
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References in periodicals archive ?
To which is prefix'd, a sketch of the author's life, written by himseff, (17317: Eighteenth Century Collections Online) and "A Brief Supplement to Colley Cibber, Esq; His Lives of the late Famous Actors and Actresses," (1747), Colley Cibber, An Apology for the Life of Mr.
Professor Stephanson's account of Pope's late, unsought conflict with Colley Cibber is especially good, sensitively evoking Pope's embarrassment at a personal medical condition (a strangury) being made known and mocked in print, and at his being ridiculed in the salacious disclosure of an earlier sexual misadventure.
Under the umbrella subtitle "History, Teaching, Performance," the essays consider topics ranging from Colley Cibber's Richard III to Shakespeare in prisons, from Bianca's education in The Taming of the Shrew to Shakespeare resources on the web.
Day, "Determination and Proof: Colley Cibber and the Materialization of Shakespeare's Richard III in the Twentieth Century"; Philippa Kelly, "New Faces for Shakespeare in Contemporary Australia"; Ian Maclennan, "Materialist Shakespeare and Ideological Performance: Michael Bogdanov and Shakespeare in Production"; and R.S.
In Colley Cibber's Richard III, the title character appears as celebrity-actor of his own evil role in history.
These three actors ushered in various poets including Robert Southey and Colley Cibber and occasionally muttered their disbelief when unknown poets were flashed up ('Nahum Tate - never heard of him!').
They present him in the rather surprising role of court poet, trying his hand at the sort of fulsome royal ode Colley Cibber was to make notorious.
The portrait of Colley Cibber as Lord Foppington was painted by Giuseppe Grisoni, not Sir Godfrey Kneller (p.
The Founding, as Amberg tell us, `has been generally accepted by literary historians as the bridge between the comedies of Colley Cibber and Richard Steele in the first part of the century and those of Hugh Kelly and Richard Cumberland in the last' (pp.11-12).
In 1737 Amhurst published in it a letter purporting to come from Colley Cibber, then poet laureate, attacking the new (censorship) act for licensing plays; for this "suspected libel," Amhurst and the printer of the journal were imprisoned.
This is a curious book for Theatre Journal to review: the only play it treats is Colley Cibber's afterpiece The School Boy; it never touches the practice of theatre, and it is only occasionally concerned with actors as (once) living people.