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Born Feb. 4, 1693, in London; died there Sept. 3, 1739. English playwright. Son of a Dutch jeweler.
Lillo’s major plays were The London Merchant, or The History of George Barnwell (1731; Russian translation 1764) and The Fatal Curiosity (1736). His works solidified the position on the English stage of the domestic tragedy, or tragedie bourgeoise, which combined realistic character portrayal with moral edification. His dramas influenced literature in both Great Britain (H. Fielding, E. Moore) and France, where D. Diderot and J.-J. Rousseau were among those who esteemed Lillo highly. In the 19th century, W. Thackeray parodied Lillo’s style in his play George de Barnwell.
WORKSDramatic Works, 2nd ed., vols. 1–2. London, 1810.
REFERENCESIstoriia angliiskoi literatury, vol. 1, issue 2. Moscow-Leningrad, 1945. Pages 485–89.
Hoffmann, L. George Lillo. Marburg, 1888.