Thomas William Robertson (2076 words)

Though now largely forgotten, playwright T. W. Robertson was in his own day widely credited with helping to revolutionize British drama. Inventor of the so-called “cup-and-saucer” comedy and inspiration for the character Tom Wrench in playwright Arthur Wing Pinero’s Trelawny of the “Wells” (1898), Robertson helped bring a new kind of realism to the English stage.

Like many writers before and since, however, Robertson became an overnight sensation only after a lifetime of hard work. Born in 1829, he descended from a long line of provincial theater folk: his mother was an actress; both his grandfather and an uncle were lead comedic actors in the York Circuit Company, while the Lincoln Circuit Company was …

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Mays, Kelly J.. "Thomas William Robertson". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 22 February 2012
[, accessed 16 December 2018.]

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