Thomas Otway, The History and Fall of Caius Marius

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First Performance and Publication

The History and Fall of Caius Marius by Thomas Otway was first performed at the Duke’s Theatre, Dorset Garden in 1679, probably in the late summer or early fall. In February, 1678, Otway was appointed ensign in the Duke of Monmouth’s new regiment, and it is possible that he started writing the play while serving in Flanders. He returned to London in early 1679 and possibly completed his work then. The cast included the renowned Thomas Betterton in the title role of Caius Marius, and Elizabeth Barry as Lavinia, the daughter of Marius’ rival, Metellus. James Nokes, the leading comedian of the company, played Lavinia’s nurse, earning him the nickname of “Nurse Nokes”. The play’s early success was in fact largely due to his spirited performance.

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Citation: Calvi, Lisanna. "The History and Fall of Caius Marius". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 27 December 2012 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=611, accessed 12 June 2024.]

611 The History and Fall of Caius Marius 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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