The Philanthropist


Christopher Hampton

Published by Samuel French Ltd

4 Male 3 Female

A singular play that begins with a resounding shock in the parlor of a professor of philology where two men are watching are listening to a dramatic reading of a third man's play. One is kind in his remarks: the other, however, asserts that he found the play incredible, especially at the point where the man commits suicide

Arguing for credibility, the playwright reenacts the scene again, this time with a live gun, and accidentally blows his brains out. This sets the scene for the party which follows with the philologist's fiancee, a trollop who lives nearby and a vulgar, supercilious novelist who is contemptuous of everything but his own work

The party ends with the novelist captivating the fiancee, and the philologist and even the philanthropist obliging the trollop by going to bed with her. The dawn brings an end to the engagement

"A very witty comedy. A good evening of high class theatrical high jinks" ~ N.Y. Times

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