This short, one-act play, or “dramatic satire”, as Robert Dodsley entitles it on the title page, was first produced at Covent Garden, as an “afterpiece”, by John Rich on 3 February 1735. The play was an immediate success, running to at least thirty-four performances and ten published editions before the end of the year. This enormous vogue is difficult to account for today, for it seems a slight work, lacking plot or satiric edge. It is more of a vignette, or dramatised episode, than a one-act play, with its appeal at the time probably lying as much in its performance as in its content.
What action there is takes place in a toy-shop. The master of the shop, the only character developed in any detail, is described as a �…
Gordon, Ian. "The Toy-Shop". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 14 December 2005
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=16871, accessed 26 July 2017.]