“Gamesters and Highwaymen are generally very good to their Whores, but they are very Devils to their Wives.”Raucous, lyrical, witty, ironic and tragic by turns, John Gay’s The Beggar’s Opera and Polly (published together here for the first time by Oxford World’s Classics) offer a scathing and ebullient portrait of a society in which statesmen and outlaws, colonialists and pirates, are impossible to tell apart.
18th century English literature and culture scholar and the Oxford World’s Classics edition editor Hal Gladfelder described The Beggar’s Opera as ”Gay’s odd, hybrid work” and it proved to be “the hit not just of the year but of the century, running for a record-breaking sixty-two performances in its first season, and revived countless times since, including performances by a troupe of child actors, ‘The Lilliputians,’ in season two.”
And we totally adore this colourful cover too! Get more from the Oxford World’s Classics series over on Facebook and Twitter.

“Gamesters and Highwaymen are generally very good to their Whores, but they are very Devils to their Wives.”

Raucous, lyrical, witty, ironic and tragic by turns, John Gay’s The Beggar’s Opera and Polly (published together here for the first time by Oxford World’s Classics) offer a scathing and ebullient portrait of a society in which statesmen and outlaws, colonialists and pirates, are impossible to tell apart.

18th century English literature and culture scholar and the Oxford World’s Classics edition editor Hal Gladfelder described The Beggar’s Opera as ”Gay’s odd, hybrid work” and it proved to be “the hit not just of the year but of the century, running for a record-breaking sixty-two performances in its first season, and revived countless times since, including performances by a troupe of child actors, ‘The Lilliputians,’ in season two.”

And we totally adore this colourful cover too! Get more from the Oxford World’s Classics series over on Facebook and Twitter.