Not currently on display at the V&A

Account Sheet

June 1716 (written)
Artist/Maker
Place of origin

This account sheet is a fascinating record of the expenses of stage properties incurred for three productions at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane in 1761. It is signed by the three managers of the theatre, all of whom were also actors - Robert Wilks (1665-1732), Colley Cibber (1671-1757) and Barton Booth (1681-1733). The actor Thomas Doggett (1670-1721), a former partner, had retired in disgust when his enemy Booth was allowed a share in the theatre.

The bill relates to the plays The Country Wake, The Rover and King Lear, presented respectively on Wednesday 30th May, Thursday 31st May and Friday 1st June. The stage blood cost tuppence for each performance of The Country Wake and King Lear, while a ballad sheet was bought for threepence on Wednesday, and 'a truss of straw' for a shilling on Friday. The lightning for King Lear is noted as costing sixpence - presumably some powder for a pyrotechnic effect in the storm scene. Two of the most intriguing expenses were for The Rover - two and sixpence for the loan of 'a great picture' and a shilling for 'a quarter pound of counters.' This appears to be a copy of a bill prepared for accounting purposes since it is one of a similar group of items.


Object details
Categories
Object type
Materials and techniques
Ink on paper
Brief description
MS Property Bill or account sheet for stage properties at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, 1716, dated 2 June, signed by Robert Wilks, Colley Cibber and Barton Booth. Ink on paper.
Physical description
MS account sheet in brown ink for the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, 1716, headed 'Property Bill, Saturday June the 2nd', noting the expenses for properties including blood, straw and the loan of a 'great picture' for The Country Wake, The Rover and King Lear on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Signed by the managers Robert Wilks, Colley Cibber and Barton Booth. MS heading verso 'Property Bill Saturday June the 2nd'. Added in pencil: 'June 1st 1716 Thurmond's Benfit.'
Dimensions
  • Height: 16.6cm
  • Width: 18.7cm
Marks and inscriptions
June 1st 1716 Thurmond's Benefit (Added in pencil. The document is otherwise in ink.)
Credit line
Gabrielle Enthoven Collection
Summary
This account sheet is a fascinating record of the expenses of stage properties incurred for three productions at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane in 1761. It is signed by the three managers of the theatre, all of whom were also actors - Robert Wilks (1665-1732), Colley Cibber (1671-1757) and Barton Booth (1681-1733). The actor Thomas Doggett (1670-1721), a former partner, had retired in disgust when his enemy Booth was allowed a share in the theatre.



The bill relates to the plays The Country Wake, The Rover and King Lear, presented respectively on Wednesday 30th May, Thursday 31st May and Friday 1st June. The stage blood cost tuppence for each performance of The Country Wake and King Lear, while a ballad sheet was bought for threepence on Wednesday, and 'a truss of straw' for a shilling on Friday. The lightning for King Lear is noted as costing sixpence - presumably some powder for a pyrotechnic effect in the storm scene. Two of the most intriguing expenses were for The Rover - two and sixpence for the loan of 'a great picture' and a shilling for 'a quarter pound of counters.' This appears to be a copy of a bill prepared for accounting purposes since it is one of a similar group of items.
Associated objects
Collection
Accession number
S.2-2007

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Record createdJanuary 25, 2007
Record URL
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