EESE 6/1996

Thorsten Unger (Göttingen)

English Plays on the Gotha Stage:
Friedrich Wilhelm Gotter's Translation of
Benjamin Hoadly's Comedy The Suspicious Husband (1747).

In 1775, the setting up of the court theatre at Gotha, the Thuringian residential city, brought about new constellations in the history of theatre as well as in social history.1 At this permanent court theatre, the first of its kind in any of the German particular states,2 actors of a touring company, whose rank in the social hierarchy was traditionally very low, were given the status of court employees. Thus at Gotha the theatre became an institution of the late absolutist state. While the principles of repertoire and ensemble were retained from the business structure of the touring company, the entrepreneurial principle was abandoned,3 as the theatre was now financed through court subsidies. Civil experts were entrusted with the task of management, though, of course, under the court's control and proviso. Thus, under the conditions of enlightened absolutism, certain demands were fulfilled stemming from the discussion about the institution of a state-subsidized national theatre in Germany.4

From the point of view of a theory of translation focussing on cultural transfer and cultural contact, the question arises as to what kind of picture emerges from foreign literatures presented in the translations and stage adaptations under the new institutional conditions at Gotha.5 It can be said at the outset that the change in cultural orientation which took place at that time from French drama towards English drama is most striking in comedy. The attached table shows how the proportion of French comedies, initially very large, decreases considerably over the following four theatre seasons. The highest growth rates in the comic repertoire are to be found in translations from the English and from the Italian. German plays hold a relatively constant proportion of about 40 per cent. (See Appendix I)

The programme of the Gothaer Hoftheater (1775-1779) (see Appendix II) circumscribes the scope of the target cultural background for drama translations from the English. In the following part, I shall analyse Friedrich Wilhelm Gotter's translation of Benjamin Hoadly's comedy success, The Suspicious Husband. In doing this, I shall concentrate particularly upon the translator's treatment of intertextuality. It will become clear that Gotter makes use of intertextual allusion as a reservoir for specific German accentuations. He thus presents to the Gotha public a text that is wholly embedded in the context of the target culture but still conveys an image of English literature, even though it might be quite different from the original text.

The Suspicious Husband6 is a good example of these adaptations of English comedies, which had sometimes been considerably altered for several reasons. Not only was it a great success at Gotha and subsequently at other German theatres, but also in London, where it had had a long run at Drury Lane and been very often on the programme of both privileged theatres since its first performance in 1747. Richard Bevis calls it "the most popular comedy of the Garrick era at Drury Lane."7 Secondly, and most importantly, the play shows the traits of several different types of 18th-century comedy. It is linked to the Restoration comedy of manners by the character of the rake, a libertinous "gentleman of the town", and by some parts of the plot such as in certain flirting scenes and in the masquerade of a coquette. Such scenes always maintain a certain innocence, however; nobody is actually seduced or cheated, and this kind of behaviour is presented in a moralizing manner. Then there are elements typical of sentimental comedies: emotional gestures like kneeling and weeping, by which even the rake is moved. It is therefore difficult to classify the play according to one of the usual categories -- Bevis classifies it as a laughing comedy --8, but perhaps it can be regarded as typical of English 18th-century comedy for this very reason.

Who, to begin with, is this Benjamin Hoadly, whose name is not or, at best only marginally mentioned, in most literary encyclopaedias and works on literary history?9 The Suspicious Husband is, in fact, the only literary text by this author which had been printed. Apart from this there are several medical works, e.g. Three letters on the Organs of Respiration10 or Observations on a Series of Electrical experiments:11 Hoadly was a physician. Born in 1706, the bishop of Winchester's son had a distinguished career in his profession. He was appointed member of the Royal Society just after obtaining his doctorate in 1728, became physician to the Royal family in 1742 and, in January 1746, "physician to the household of the Prince of Wales". Hoadly took a great interest in the theatre. He was a friend of Garrick's, who wrote a prologue to The Suspicious Husband and played the part of Ranger at the first Covent Garden performance on February 12, 1747, and also later at Drury Lane. The play was printed the same year and dedicated to George II, who rewarded the author with the sum of £ 100. Another comedy by Hoadly, The Tatler, is mentioned; it was never printed, however, and not staged until 1797,12 when Hoadly had been dead for forty years. He died on August 10, 1757.

What is Hoadly's successful comedy about? There is indeed a "suspicious husband" at its centre; his name is Mr. Strictland and he is suspicious of the young and charming Mrs. Strictland, whose virtuousness is beyond doubt for the audience and all the other characters in the play. His suspicion is generally raised by the most far-fetched motives, except for those provided by two other young ladies who are living at the Strictlands' house by the time the plot starts. The young and beautiful Jacintha, Mr. Strictland's rich ward, threatens to dishonour the family by an unpropitious marriage. Clarinda, a pleasure-seeking and likewise young and beautiful woman full of joie de vivre, has just returned from a journey to Bath with Mrs. Strictland, and it is from her that Mr. Strictland particularly fears a harmful influence on his wife. It is true that the presence of Jacintha and Clarinda causes two young gentlemen, Carl Frankly and John Bellamy, to take an interest in the Strictlands' house. Frankly had had the pleasure of meeting Clarinda at a Bath ball - the virtuous Mrs. Strictland, we are told in the exposition, had only been watching the dancers. On this occasion, Frankly fell in love with Clarinda and is now looking for her in London. Clarinda, who also cannot get him out of her mind, does not fail to bring him home to the Strictlands' house. Bellamy, who had been rejected once in the past, now makes a second attempt by asking Strictland for Jacintha's hand. Their union, we learn, had almost been approved by Jacintha's father shortly before his death, but is now flatly refused by Strictland. Jacintha, who has long been ready to accept Bellamy, therefore decides to escape by means of a rope ladder. This nocturnal escape is at the centre of the very eventful third act. Like many times before and after, Mr. Strictland is given ample cause for suspicion: he believes, for instance, that all the letters to Jacintha and Clarinda, which are carried to his house by servants, as well as all visits by Bellamy and Frankly, are really addressed to his wife.

In the confusion caused by the rope ladder escape, another gentleman appears on stage, who actually threatens Mrs. Strictland's virtuousness: Ranger, a hedonist and confirmed single, whose sexual permissiveness sometimes stretches good taste to its limits and who is a regular visitor at the notorious gambling houses in town and probably at even more disreputable places. Ranger is the rake already referred to in Restoration comedy. By coincidence he passes the Strictlands' house at night, just as the rope ladder is hanging down from a window. Fancying an amorous adventure, he climbs in and courts first Mrs. Strictland, then Jacintha, and finally the masked Clarinda, who leads him on but then, laughing, reveals herself to be his cousin. Ranger's hat, which he has lost in Mrs. Strictland's room, is found by Mr. Strictland, of all people and does not fail to rouse the latter's suspicions. The hat is thus attributed a crucial function for the remaining plot, which offers more opportunity for paradigms of situational humour such as the mixing-up of letters, mistaken identities, and eavesdropping. In the end, there are two weddings: Frankly and Clarinda, Bellamy and Jacintha; the Strictlands' marriage, which very nearly dissolved because of sheer mistrust, is fortunately saved, the husband is healed of his suspicious nature. Ranger, however, who, unlike his predecessors in Restoration comedy,13 escapes marriage, has a key function in all this: he also helps Jacintha climb down the rope ladder and meet Bellamy. With his assistance, also, Frankly and Clarinda can confess their love to each other and finally, he even explains the presence of a stranger's hat in Mrs. Strictland's bedroom.

The first translation of The Suspicious Husband appeared as early as 1754, together with a translation of Moore's Gamester, in Neueste Proben der englischen Schaubühne. The author of both translations is Johann Joachim Christoph Bode (1730-1793),14 who was to become editor of the Hamburgischer Korrespondent and was a friend of Lessing. Bode sticks to the original, keeping the English personal and place names and avoiding any dramaturgical alterations. The five acts are, according to the original, divided into scenes ("Szenen"). Gotter, following French conventions, which had been adopted in German drama also, later divides them into entries ("Auftritte"). Bode's method of translating, which requires the reader to deal with a considerable amount of unfamiliarity and otherness, can be regarded as typical of the early period of comedy translations from the English. In fact, these plays were first received by a reading public. They took a long time to be staged in Germany, but it was felt that the public at least had to be informed about what was being performed at the theatres of the world's greatest power. Gerd Nover has defined this early phase of translations of plays from the English based on ample documentary material beginning in 1748 and ending in 1768.15 In 1772 Bode himself, under the influence of Friedrich Ludwig Schröder (1744-1816), wrote a first nationalizing translation, of Cumberland's The West Indian, which was to be performed at the Gothaer Hoftheater.16 From 1774 on, according to Nover, the adaptations which are sometimes considerably altered and nationalized are predominant and mark the "heyday of English comedy translations and of their popularity on stage in Germany".17

Gotter's Der argwöhnische Ehemann also belongs to this phase of nationalizing translations: written in 1777 and first performed at Hamburg on July 28, 1777, at the occasion of a visit by Gotter, it was also published at Hamburg, in 1778.18 There was a lively correspondence at that time between Gotter and Schröder, who tried to win the former as a permanent author and dramaturgist at Hamburg and who staged a considerable number of his plays and adaptations.19

In order to nationalize Hoadly's play, Gotter changes the personal and place names into German names. Thus London becomes Frankfurt am Main, and instead of a trip to Bath we are told about a voyage to Schwalbach.20 Mr. Strictland's name is Herr Bruno in the Gotter version, his wife's is Klara Bruno. Jacintha, the ward, is named Angelika, her beloved Bellamy Herr Roland. Clarinda is raised to nobility, perhaps because of her happy-go-lucky way of life; Gotter calls her Hedwig von Aue, and Carl Frankly, her lover, is called Karl Reinald.

Ranger, the lawyer, turns into the licentiate Frank, who, ever since his student days, has been notorious to the authorities, to the "Häscher in Marpurg und Giessen" (Go 75).21 He actually says "Marpurg", and "klotzt [instead of glotzt] mich nur an" (Go 70).22 This allusion to the Hessian problem in pronouncing the voiced plosives in initial position shows that Gotter uses dialectical characteristics to add local colour to the play. These characteristics are not used consistently in Frank's, the learned licentiate's, speech, but the method becomes more evident if we look at a socially inferior character, a waiter, who confronts Frank as the latter is trying to approach Hedwig von Aue, his cousin as yet unknown to him:

I shall only briefly mention some further aspects of the translation and then discuss at greater length Gotter's use of intertextuality in the play. There are a few dramaturgical alterations to adjust the play to German conventions. Gotter changes the order of certain scenes in the first and second acts, thus avoiding two changes of place unnecessary to the plot. He also takes care not to have a scene begin on an empty stage after a change of place. The numerous "asides" of the English text, translated almost in their entirety by Bode as "bey Seite", are cut down to only a few by Gotter, who translates them as "für sich", which signalizes greater psychological probability. Gotter also abridges long parts of monologue and makes use of interruptions and elliptical phrases to convey an impression of spontaneous, ad-hoc speech. The dialogue parts also are more pointed in the Gotter version; and they are more colloquial in style, too. On the other hand, Gotter does not refrain from making frequent use of Latin (Frank) and of French words and phrases (Hedwig). The licentiate Frank, when courting his masked and silent cousin, whose identity and nationality are as yet unknown to him, tries to communicate with her in French, Italian and English (Go 139-141). These foreign phrases, which are skilfully employed for the purpose of characterization, surpass the scraps of general knowledge of these languages and sometimes take the length of a whole rejoinder. Thus, unlike the original, the Gotter text demands a certain knowledge of foreign languages on the part of the audience. This is a remarkable fact, even though it has to be admitted that familiarity with the French language was customary at court in the 18th century.

Moreover, Gotter takes up several key topics of the 1770s throughout the whole play. There is a lively discussion on friendship, which increases the sentimental effect. Then Frankly/Reinald is given the characteristics of a romantic poetaster, and Frank's, the licentiate's, reaction to Reinald's "Grüß euch, Amor und Eythere, lieben Freunde!" (Go 12)24 shows a satirical treatment of anacreontic poetry and sentimentalism:

Frank's song shall be discussed at a later stage. For the moment, it should be noted that his critique of rationally construed descriptions of feelings, as articulated in the "fashionable rubbish" of "zephyrettes", as well as his quite frank expression of "warm-blooded" desires directed at "Eve's daughters", which is to be found also in Hoadly's text but is updated here by means of allusions to anacreontic poetry and to sentimentalism, are rooted in the context of an 'emancipation of desire' ('Emanzipation des Begehrens'), which was claimed by authors of the Sturm und Drang movement.26

This brings us to the subject of intertextuality in Der argwöhnische Ehemann, which offers particular insight into Gotter's method of translation, and the close study of which will provide the opportunity to make some general remarks on the translation of intertextual references. My theses on the interpretation of the evidence to be discussed in this context are the following: in the original, Hoadly sets The Suspicious Husband by marked system references in a critical relation to the Restoration comedy, intertexuality thus serving to situate the text in the context of the history of genres. Gotter eliminates these references and instead introduces referential texts that relate Der argwöhnische Ehemann to the literature of the '70s, thus using a new intertextuality on the German side to set his version of the play in the context of a history of epochs. In addition to this, however, certain texts of English literature are referred to, by direct or indirect allusion, so that, in spite of its meticulously effectuated nationalization, this adaptation still transports a specific image of English literature by way of intertextuality.

At first I shall take a look at the original: at the very beginning of the plot, Hoadly has Ranger, who suffers from lack of sleep and a hangover, quote some lines of Congreve, his servant having left the stage:

Now, William Congreve, whom Ranger feels to be a man after his own heart, is an important author of Restoration comedies, and the quoted passage is typical of a "gentleman of the town" in this tradition. Bode, in translating these lines, remains close to the original; the quotation is likewise interrupted by a short dialogue with the servant, which I omit: The content of the quoted lines as well as the explicit reference to Congreve provide a self-characterization of Ranger's. The audience is shown in this expository scene, by means of literary allusion, not only the motives of his conduct but also the origin of this character in the Restoration comedy. Most importantly, however, this serves to gradually demonstrate the differences in conduct betweem the traditional rake and Ranger, who, in fact, does not only take interest in the body, but also somewhat in the mind of the female part of humanity. In Garrick's production of the play at the Drury Lane Theatre, this divergence from the traditional concept of the rake is made explicit by the insertion of a self-reflective remark made by Ranger, set in italics in the Bell edition: This sentimentalism distinguishes Ranger from his predecessors on the stage; a real rake would of course take utmost "pleasure" in the favours of a beautiful woman. Thus, in the original, the character is on the one hand based on the stock of characters of the Restoration comedy by intertextual reference, on the other hand it diverges from this tradition by his emotional susceptibility. The Gotter translation maintains Ranger's sentimental traits, but not the system reference to the Restoration comedy: the name of Congreve is eliminated. The lines in question, moreover, are not read out from a book in the servant's absence, but sung, while Hans, the servant, is present and Frank is having a cup of coffee: As regards the rake's self-characterization, the libertine tendency has been maintained, but in this song it is qualified by describing both extreme interests - only in the mind, only in the body - as "delusion". What is most important for my thesis here, however, is the fact that the poem is presented, as it were, like a popular song, without any reference to its author. This is of course Gotter's way of solving a translational problem, for even though the reference to Congreve can be easily translated into German, as can be seen in Bode's translation, it is at the very least questionable whether the audience could be expected to associate it with a specific literary tradition in a German context. Still, Gotter could have chosen a translation closer to the original and put in an allusion to a stock character more familiar to German dramatic traditions; perhaps the subject of Don Juan would have been suitable. Had his main interest been to make sure the allusions to English literary genres were understood, he might have thought of giving an explanatory translation, which would at least have been helpful to a reader, if less so in a stage performance. But Gotter chooses a principally different approach in that he does not treat intertextual relations as a translational problem of conveying meaning from the context of the source text, but as creative leeway for accentuations on the target side. He thus does not use intertextual allusions in his translation for references to the history of characters or genres, but to epoch history. Insofar as the quoted lines are presented by Gotter as a popular song, they fit in well with the trend towards popular tradition, which became fashionable in the wake of Herder's thoughts on Ossian (1773).28

That the text is rooted in the German contemporary literary system becomes even more evident if we look at a reference, introduced by Gotter, to a text which was of great importance in the '70s: the ballad Lenore (1773) by Gottfried August Bürger.29 At their first appearance on stage in the Strictlands' house, Mrs. Strictland and Jacintha talk about Clarinda, who is still asleep. In the context of the exposition it has to be made clear to the audience that Clarinda is a very agreeable companion to both of them and that her friendship is dear to them. For later on Mr. Strictland, who does not think much of female friendship in general, will try to banish Clarinda from his house because of an unfounded suspicion, and this seems all the more ruthless since we know how much his wife thinks of her. The dialogue runs as follows:

Bode translates quite literally: As to Gotter, he specifies what kind of pleasurable pastime the three women had enjoyed the night before; according to his version they had read Bürger's Lenore together. He also takes advantage of this dialogue for a much more detailed characterization of Mrs. Strictland, resp. Klara: Klara is in raptures; the elliptical speech which expresses her enthusiasm about the ballad shows her intense feeling, her fascination, and her sensitivity, from which Bruno's later suspiciousness differs the more markedly. At the same time, the spectator or reader is shown the effect of solidarity provided by a literary text as a modern way of reception of poetry: Read out in a small circle of friends, literature can create a sense of community.31 The listeners a re supposed to allow themselves both to be carried away by and to give in to their phantasies; Klara's uneasy yet sweet sleep evokes the co-existence of fright and pleasure. This effect would be made impossible by a more distanced reception of the ballad from the perspective of reason. Angelika's reaction shows how Klara's attitude is idealized as the expression of a 'beautiful soul': The conversation turns back to its original subject, Hedwig, only after Klara has had the opportunity to give evidence of her modesty, combined with a fair portion of melancholy and world-weariness, so that in Gotter's version she proves a character typic al of her time, a fact also emphasized by the choice of Lenore, the famous Hainbund poet's ballad.

This reference will be of dramaturgical use later on. Her suspicious huband has not failed to take notice of Klara's uneasy yet sweet sleep, and he believes himself to be justified in confronting her:

Compared to the rather awkward manner in which the husband's suspicious nature is introduced in the original, Gotter solves the problem of exposition very skilfully. To the reader or spectator the message becomes as clear on the external level of communication as it is amusing by the intertextual reference. As the reader may remember, Wilhelm is the name of the soldier whom Lenore expects in vain to return home after the war is over. Despairing of her love, she quarrels with God and, in a discussion with her pious mother, takes a rather liberal and intellectually independent view. Wilhelm then turns up to take her on a ghostly night ride on his black horse and carries her to his grave.34 The spectator is in no doubt as to Klara telling the truth because he was told the reasons for her sweet uneasy sleep in the course of her dialogue with Angelika. Klara even explains to her husband why she slept uneasily and appeals to his humour. This may also be seen as a reminder of how the audience are to respond to the scene: not by laughing at Bruno but by laughing at the situation, as Bruno himself is supposed to, with her, as it were in an affirmative manner.35 Bruno, however, shows that he lacks humour and insinuates, with caustic irony, that he does not believe her explanations.

Now, what is the significance of the introduction of Lenore by Bürger in terms of cultural politics? First, the play is situated, by way of intertextual reference, in the specific context of German literature of the 1770s. There is another reference to an individual text, which supports the ballad in this function: Die Leiden des jungen Werther, by Goethe. The text is alluded to indirectly by Reinald, who has just met his beloved Hedwig von Aue and wants to describe her in a poem as a very beautiful woman and chooses to compare her to Werther's Lotte:36

Now, Bürger's Lenore and Goethe's Werther both are texts of a great power of integration for the young literary movement of the '70s ('cult texts', one could put it). With regard to that, intertextuality in Der argwöhnische Ehemann is used to the effect of connecting it to a specific literary taste, which, seen from the historical distance, forms an 'epoch'. At the same time, both texts are regarded as highly original for their time.38 In terms of cultural politics, the reference to these texts in a translation of an English dramatic text also calls attention to the fact that German literature, too, can boast great original achievements, namely in the novel and the ballad.

By referring to Lenore, at least, the German text indirectly alludes to a specific image of English literature as well, for Bürger's ballad, like traditional balladry in general, which was flowering in the German-speaking area at that time, depends on English models. Especially the collected Reliques of Ancient Poetry, edited by Thomas Percy in 1765, were of great influence. Johann Gottfried Herder's remarks in Auszug aus einem Briefwechsel über Ossian und die Lieder alter Völker39, among others, are based on Percy's collection. It is evident that the translation given there of the ballad "Sweet William's Ghost" was one of Bürger's models.40 By mentioning Lenore, Gotter's translation thus evokes an English literature marked by deep melancholy, popular superstitiousness and sweet terror.

This in turn evokes another two English authors who are also, moreover, explicitly referred to in the play, so that all in all a rather faithful image of the English literature of the 1770s is conveyed: Shakespeare and Young. Shakespeare is called upon as an authority by Frank when Roland criticizes him for visiting disreputable casinos:

Shakespeare here is referred to as a painter of lower-class characters true to life. This correponds to the image of Shakespeare in the Sturm und Drang movement.42

Finally, by allusion to Edward Young at the end of the second act, an important text of English sentimentalism is referred to. Bellamy is in a mood of excited anticipation, because Jacintha has let him know that she is planning to run away from Strictland's house that very night. The passage which concerns us here runs as follows:

Bode's translation, as usual, remains close to the original: Gotter takes the opportunity to work in a more up-to-date and specifically English intertext. Plutarch and Seneca may be known to the more educated among the spectators, but he only retains the reference to the suicidal Stoic and substitutes Young for Plutarch: The substitution is chosen skilfully. Young's dark, melancholy Klagen oder Nachtgedanken über Leben, Tod und Unsterblichkeit44 is widely discussed throughout the German-speaking area as one of the most important basic texts of the sentimental tradition. The fact that Reinald regards Young as inappropriate for the situation may be interpreted as a mockery at sentimentalism, a gentle criticism of the sentimentalist fashion.45

Thus Gotter makes use of intertextual allusions to convey in his, albeit nationalizing, translation of an English comedy an image of English literature to the Gotha stage.46 His main interest does not lie in specific characteristics ot this play itself, but in the reference to English texts which have already been widely discussed in the German literary system of the time. With Shakespeare, Young and the English tradition of balladry the contemporary public is not given any new impressions, instead well-known stereotypes about England are confirmed. Components of these are the tendencies towards dark melancholy, towards popular traditions (also to be seen in the use of language), and towards the presence of the supernatural.


1 This essay is an abridged version of "Friedrich Wilhelm Gotter's Hoadly-Übersetzung Der argwöhnische Ehemann im Kontext des englischen Spielplananteils am Gothaer Hoftheater" in: Anke Detken, Brigitte Schulze, Horst Turk, Thorsten Unger (eds.), Theaterinstitution und Kulturtransfer II. Fremdsprachiges Repertoire am Gothaer Hoftheater und an anderen Bühnen. Tübingen, 1998 (Forum Modernes Theater. Schriftenreihe 22). Translated by Anke Bruns.

2 Cf. Ute Daniel, Hoftheater. Zur Geschichte des Theaters und der Höfe im 18. und 19. Jahrhundert. Stuttgart, 1995, pp. 189 f.

3 For the business structure and especially the development of the actors' social situation cf. Peter Schmitt, Schauspieler und Theaterbetrieb. Studien zur Sozialgeschichte des Schauspielerstandes im deutschsprachigen Raum 1700-1900. Tübingen 1990 (Theatron 5), esp. pp. 21-23.

4 For a general study of this constellation cf. Reinhart Meyer, "Das Nationaltheater in Deutschland als höfisches Institut: Versuch einer Begriffs- und Funktionsbestimmung" in: Roger Bauer, Jürgen Wertheimer, Das Ende des Stegreifspiels - Die Geburt des Nationaltheaters. Ein Wendepunkt in der Geschichte des europäischen Dramas. Munich 1983, pp. 124-152; cf. Lenz Prütting, "Überlegungen zur normativen und faktischen Genese eines Nationaltheaters" in: Bauer/Wertheimer, Das Ende des Stegreifspiels, pp. 153-164; Reinhart Meyer, "Von der Wanderbühne zum Hof- und Nationaltheater" in: Rolf Grimminger (ed.), Hansers Sozialgeschichte der deutschen Literatur, Bd. 3. Munich 1980, pp. 186-216.

5 For a history of the institution and a more detailed analysis of the foreign plays in the programme cf. Thorsten Unger, "Das Gothaer Hoftheater als Ort des Kulturkontakts. Institutionelle Rahmenbedingungen für Übersetzung und Spielplangestaltung" in: Bärbel Fritz, Brigitte Schulze, Horst Turk (eds.), Theaterinstitution und Kulturtransfer I. Fremdsprachiges Repertoire am Wiener Burgtheater und auf anderen europäischen Bühnen. Tübingen 1997 (Forum Modernes Theater. Schriftenreihe 21), pp. 373-400. The following table is taken from this essay.

6 I shall use the abbreviation "Hoadly" and give the page reference in the text. I quote from the following edition: The Suspicious Husband; A Comedy, as written by Dr. Hoadly: Distinguishing also the Variations of the Theatre as performed at the Theatre-Royal in Drury Lane. London: Printed for John Bell, 1776 [ Bell's Edition].

7 Richard Bevis, The Laughing Tradition: Stage Comedy in Garrick's Day. London 1981, p. 60, cf. p. 89.

8 Cf. Bevis, Laughing Tradition, p. 89-94.

9 Even Erwin Wolff in his very thorough chapter "Der Klassizismus" (in: Walter F. Schirmer, Geschichte der englischen und amerikanischen Literatur, vol. II, 6th newly rev. ed. Tübingen 1983, pp. 453-556) only accords it one sentence, which, though whetting the readers' appetite, provides only the information that Benjamin Hoadly's recklessly funny play 'The Suspicious Husband' (1747), Edward Moore's comedy of intrigue, 'Gil Blas' (1751), Bickerstaffe's 'The Hypocrite' (1769), and others of the kind still make good reading (ibid. p. 546). - For the following and for additional biographical information cf. Dictionary of National Biography, vol. XXVII. London 1891, p. 16; A. Chelmers, The General Biographical Dictionary, 32, London 1812-1817, in: Laureen Baille, Paul Sieveking (eds.): British Biographical Archive. London, Munich, New York 1984.

10 Three letters on the Organs of Respiration, read at the Royal College of Physicians. London 1737.

11 Observations on a Series of Electrical experiments, by Dr. Hoadly and Mr. Wilson, F.R.S. 1756.

12 Even the reliable 18th Century Short-Title Catalogue (ESTC) (CD-Database, The British Library Board 1992) does not list The Tatler, but thirty different editions of the successful The Suspicious Husband.

13 Cf. Lehmann, 'Not Merely Sentimental'. Studien zu Goldsmiths Komödien. Munich 1974, p. 31.

14 Der argwöhnische Ehemann ein Lustspiel von D. Benjamin Hoadly aus dem Englischen übersetzt [von Bode], in: Neueste Proben der englischen Schaubühne. Hamburg 1754. I quote from the reprint publ. Hamburg, bey Christian Herolds Wittwe, 1766, which has the original paging. Under the abbreviation "Bode" I shall give the page references in the text. A discussion of the translation is to be found in Jacob N. Beam, Die ersten deutschen Übersetzungen englischer Lustspiele im achtzehnten Jahrhundert. Hamburg/Leipzig 1906.

15 Cf. Nover, Die deutschen Übersetzungen, pp. 20-22.

16 Cf. Beam, Übersetzungen englischer Lustspiele, p. 57.

17 Nover, Die deutschen Übersetzungen, p. 20. Nover continues: "After 1790 there was a radical decrease in stage adaptations. Translations were now made mostly out of a literary interest, which was widespread from the 1780s onward. By the turn of the century English comedies had nearly lost their relevance for German theatre" (ibid., pp. 20-22).

18 Der argwöhnische Ehemann. Ein Lustspiel in fünf Aufzügen. Nach dem Engländischen des Hoadly [von Gotter]. Hamburg 1778. I use the abbreviation "Go" and quote from the copy at the Herzog-August-Bibliothek Wolfenbüttel: Lo Sammelbd. 50. The translation was published in the same year with a reference to Leipzig as place of publication.

19 Cf. Rudolf Schlösser, Friedrich Wilhelm Gotter. Sein Leben und seine Werke. Ein Beitrag zur Geschichte der Bühne und Bühnendichtung im 18. Jahrhundert. Hamburg/Leipzig 1895 (Theatergeschichtliche Forschungen 10), pp. 101-106; Berthold Litzmann, Schröder und Gotter. Eine Episode aus der deutschen Theatergeschichte. Briefe Friedrich Ludwig Schröders an Friedrich Wilhelm Gotter 1777 und 1778. Hamburg und Leipzig 1887.

20 Frankfurt was perhaps chosen because it was a stronghold of the Sturm und Drang movement, and because the local dialect provided adequate translations for Ranger's often suggestive remarks. Bad Schwalbach (Taunus) was already a well-known holiday resort in the 18th century. Gotter knew the region around Frankfurt well ever since he had been a secretary at the legation council at Wetzlar. By setting the play in this region, however, he chose a background with an unfamiliar local colour, which may have been of special significance to the court at Gotha, since it kept up intense diplomatic relations with Wetzlar.

21 Marburg had been a university town since 1527. In the 18th century it belonged to the county (Landgrafschaft) of Hessen-Kassel. Gießen, university town since 1607, belonged to the Landgrafschaft Hessen-Darmstadt.

22 "Come on, stare at me".

23 "The waiter (at the door): By your leave, Sir, in this house it is not the custom to enter a strange lady's room [...] He won't take no for an answer." - [nit (instead of nicht) and the missing final -n in fremde, Dame and the infinitives laufe, abweise, lasse characterize the Hessian dialect; A.B.]

24 "Hello, Amor and Eythere, dear friends!"

25 "Frank: You brought nothing [from Schwalbach, T.U.]? No Sentimental Journey? No humorous epistle? No new ballad, 200 years old? Not even a little fountain song? [...] And your sentiment! - It makes one fly into a rage. What does a poetaster like you know about sentiment? You take it all from the concave mirror of illusion - the brain is on fire - the heart stays cold. [...] Frank prefers warm blood. At qui, I find it in all daughters of Eve - Ergo all Eve's daughters are the same to me. [...] Do you want a little song, Reinald, full of power, of nature and truth? Not of amorettes, zephyrettes and all this fashionable rubbish! Ipse fecit. (singing).
You look for sentiment, I want pastime etc."

26 For a recent discussion cf. Gerhard Sauder, "Empfindsamkeit - sublimierte Sexualität", in: Klaus P. Hansen (ed.), Empfindsamkeiten. Passau 1990, pp. 167-177; Matthias Luserke, Reiner Marx, "Die Anti-Läuffer. Thesen zur SuD-Forschung oder Gedanken neben dem Totenkopf auf der Toilette des Denkers", in: Lenz-Jahrbuch. Sturm-und-Drang-Studien 2 (1992), pp. 126-150.

27 "Frank (sits down, pours himself some coffee, and sings.)
You think that Susie deceives me,
That she gives in to other lovers' pleas?
You fool, I've known for long
That she is doing just what every girl does.
She lies in my arms with such devotion,
Responds so warmly to my kisses;
Is not this the best that a man
Can ask of his love?
You look for sentiment, I want pastime,
So take the spirit and give me the body
And each of us in his delusion
Will make the best bargain."

28 cf. ann. 39 [A.B.]

29 Lenore was first published in the Göttinger Musenalmanach auf das Jahr 1774, pp. 214-226. Gotter had already received Lenore from Heinrich Christian Boie, the publisher of this magazine, already at the end of 1773, before its publication in print. Cf. Schlösser, Gotter, pp. 38-40 and 82. For the genesis of Lenore cf. the annotation in Gottfried August Bürger, Sämtliche Werke, ed. by Günter and Hiltrud Häntzschel, Munich 1987, pp. 178-188 and 1210-1216.

30 "Klara. It was one of the most pleasant evenings I can remember. Hedwig's cheerful entertainment - your singing, dear Angelika - the charming things you both read to me - I was delighted. - Bürger's Lenore - All the night I had her in mind - I slept uneasily but still so sweetly - O you've got to know it to understand me."

31 Oral recital in a group of friends is one of the modes of literary reception which were idealized at that time. Bürger himself, quite confident as to the uniqueness of his work, had seized the opportunity to read out Lenore at an assembly of the Göttinger Hainbund. Cf. Bürger, Sämtliche Werke, p. 1212.

32 "Angelika. Best of all women, (taking her in her arms) why couldn't you be completely happy, with your emotional, beautiful soul?
Klara. Completely happy! Who can say that of himself? (with emotion) But believe me, Angelika - the cheerful and the sad moments in life would be balanced, if ingratitude did not weigh down the scale towards the latter.
Angelika. A truth, which shall be written into my diary - Hedwig has to be told it, too."

33 "Bruno. [...] You were up early today, Madam?
Klara. Against my habit. I had tea with Angelika.
Bruno. And talked about your Wilhelm?
Klara. About my Wilhelm?
Bruno. Whom you even call in your sleep.
Klara (laughing) Did I? Really? Did I call him?
Bruno. You are laughing? Who is this good friend of yours?
Klara (laughing) A ghost, dear friend, but do laugh with me at my silly imagination! The girls read Bürger's Lenore to me last night - I suppose you know it -
Bruno (ironically) Imagination and presence of mind, I admire both in you. The latter will always help you out when the former has got you in too deep.
Klara. What do you mean by that? Bruno. O, nothing [...]"

34 For an interpretation of Lenore, with a summing-up of the most important research studies, cf. Gunter E. Grimm, "Bestrafte Hybris? Zum Normenkonflikt in Gottfried August Bürgers Lenore", in: Gunter E. Grimm (ed.), Gedichte und Interpretationen. Deutsche Balladen. Stuttgart 1988, pp. 77-91.

35 For affirmative laughter as an affirmation of the outsider's belonging to existence cf. Joachim Ritter, "Über das Lachen" [1940], in: Subjektivität. Sechs Aufsätze. Frankfurt 1974, pp. 62-92.

36 It may be interesting to note that Friedrich Wilhelm Gotter was personally acquainted with Charlotte Buff, on whom the character of Lotte in Werther was modeled. He had met her as early as 1767, when he was a legation secretary at Wetzlar, and seems to have taken some part in the courting of Charlotte by Johann Christian Kestner, her future husband. Goethe only met her later. Cf. Schlösser, Gotter, pp. 20f., 63f. Schlösser even hints at a possible connection between Gotter's hasty depart from Wetzlar and Charlotte Buff (ibid., p. 69).

37 "Reinald (skipping in full of enthusiasm)
As gentle and gay as the chamois,
As cheerful as May,
Neither Venus Anadyomene,
Nor Petrarch's much-praised fair lady
Nor even Lotte equal her.
(Singing and dancing) Tal de ral la."
The concrete references are Gotter's. The original text runs as follows: "Fran. 'Buxom and lively as the bounding doe--Fair as painting can express, or youthful poets fancy when they love.' Tol, de rol lol! [Singing and dancing." (Hoadly 27); Bode translates: "Frank. Lustig und fröhlich, als springende Ziegen--/Schön, als Maler malen können, / Oder junge Dichter träumen, / Die in Liebesflammen brennen--Tol de rol lol! (Er singet und tanzet.)" (Bode 43).

38 It can only be mentioned in passing that, following new approaches to intertextuality, the traditional view of Werther as an original creation in terms of genius aesthetics has been revised in recent research by pointing to a whole network of literary and iconographical reference texts. Cf. the thoughts on interpretation and the thorough annotations in the edition of the Deutscher Klassiker Verlag: Johann Wolfgang Goethe, Die Leiden des jungen Werthers, Die Wahlverwandtschaften, Kleine Prosa, Epen, ed. by Waltraud Wiethölter, Frankfurt 1994, esp. pp. 947-958.

39 In: Von deutscher Art und Kunst. Einige fliegende Blätter. (1773) The correspondence had already ended in 1771 and had been published separately at Hamburg, by Bode, in 1772. Cf. the annotation in Johann Gottfried Herder, Werke, Bd. 1: Herder und der Sturm und Drang 1764-1774, ed. by Wolfgang Pross. Munich and Darmstadt 1984, pp. 821f.

40 Cf. Herder, Werke. Bd. 1, pp. 506-508. The subject of the return of the dead was also inspired by Shakespeare's ghost scenes. For contemporary models of Bürger's cf. Evelyn B. Jolles, G.A. Bürgers Ballade 'Lenore' in England. Regensburg 1974, esp. pp. 9-28. Jolles' study moreover shows the great success, which was by no means coincidental, of the ballad in England.

41 "Frank. If Shakespeare hadn't gone to beer houses and seen the people there, he wouldn't have known mankind as he did."

42 J.M.R. Lenz, for instance, points to Shakespeare as a creator of characters true to life. Cf. Thorsten Unger, "Omnia vincit Amor zum Mitlachen. Funktionen der Komik in frühen Übersetzungen von Love's Labour's Lost (Lenz, Eschenburg)", in: Differente Lachkulturen? Fremde Komik und ihre Übersetzung, ed. by Thorsten Unger, Brigitte Schulze and Horst Turk. Tübingen 1995 (Forum Modernes Theater. Schriftenreihe 18), pp. 209-242, here: p. 211.

43 "Roland. Give me your hand, Reinald. It's a critical moment, the future is uncertain.
Reinald. Another one of your musty reflections? To quote Seneca - or the melancolic graveyard poet Young on the threshold of the bridal chamber! - It makes me shudder!"

44 Original title: The complaint. Or, Night-thoughts on life, death and immortality (9 parts, 1742-1745).

45 This tendency also shows elsewhere in the Gotter translation; it becomes evident in the use of of sentimental discourse and gestures. An example of mock-sentimentalism is to be seen in Mettler's words when he urges Roland to join Angelika and emphasizes the importance of the situation: "Schon ein paarmal hat sie in Ohnmacht fallen wollen." (Go 123) ["She nearly fainted more than once."] Elsewhere in the Gotter translation, however, sentimental discourse is employed without irony (cf. p. 34: Bruno and Klara; p. 48: Reinald; pp. 90f.: Klara). Gotter in general emphasizes the sentimental rather than mitigating it.

46 It remains quite unclear why Rudolf Schlösser thinks none of the alterations made by Gotter to be of any importance (Schlösser, Gotter, p. 237).