John Banks (playwright)

John Banks (c.1650–1706) was an English playwright of the Restoration era. His works concentrated on historical dramas, and his plays were twice suppressed because of their implications, or supposed implications, for the contemporaneous political situation.

Virtually nothing is known about Banks's early life; his date of birth has been estimated on the basis of his later biography. He studied law at the New Inn, one of the minor Inns of Chancery attached to the Middle Temple. Banks's first play was ''The Rival Kings'' of 1677, written in imitation of Nathaniel Lee's ''The Rival Queens'' of the same year. Banks followed this with ''The Destruction of Troy'', which was staged by the Duke's Company at their Dorset Garden Theatre in November 1678 and printed the following year. His ''The Unhappy Favourite, or the Earl of Essex'' (1682) was his first major success. (John Dryden provided a Prologue and Epilogue.) Banks was considered a crude writer who could nonetheless, at his best, create powerful drama. His other 1682 play ''Virtue Betrayed, or Anna Bullen'' proved to be his most popular play, and was acted as late as 1766.

His next play, however, was judged more crude than powerful: ''The Innocent Usurper'', based on the life of Lady Jane Grey, was disliked by both the King's Company and the Duke's Company. And his subsequent attempt, ''The Island Queens, or the Death of Mary Queen of Scotland'' (1684), was banned on political grounds. (Banks published the play in 1686. It would eventually be staged as ''The Albion Queens'', twenty years after its creation — and would be a hit with its audience.)

He tried to stage ''The Innocent Usurper'' again in 1693, but on this second attempt the play was banned for political reasons. Yet he did get the play published in 1694. His last drama was his ''Cyrus the Great'' (inspired by ''Le Grand Cyrus'' of Madeleine de Scudéry). The acting companies resisted this work, because of its perceived low quality; but the play proved to be another success once staged, by the King's Company at their Lincoln's Inn Fields theatre. Provided by Wikipedia
1
by Banks, John, -1706.
Published 1981
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by Banks, John, -1706.
Published 1995
Other Authors: '; ...Banks, John, -1706....
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5
by Banks, John, -1706.
Published 1799
(CARLI) (Other Sources: (NBYdb)213449)
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6
by Banks, John, -1706.
Published 1696
Book
7
by Banks, John, -1706.
Published 1679
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by Banks, John, -1706.
Published 1767
(CARLI) (Other Sources: (NBYdb)213452)
Book
9
by Banks, John, -1706.
Published 1694
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10
by Banks, John, -1706.
Published 1677
(CARLI) (Other Sources: (NBYdb)213456)
Book
11
15
by Banks, John, -1706.
Published 1763
(CARLI) (Other Sources: (NBYdb)213465)
Book
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by Banks, John, -1706,
Published 1791
Book
19
by Banks, John, -1706.
Published 1739
(CARLI) (Other Sources: (UIUdb)4354461)
Book
20
by Banks, John, -1706.
Published 1684
(CARLI) (Other Sources: (NBYdb)213454)
Book
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