On The Man Of Mode
Note from the critique On The Man Of Mode by Richard Steele

Steele's attack in 1711 upon The Man of Mode, by then a well-known play of the previous generation, was part of his extensive effort to establish a new mode of comedy which would present virtuous behavior as a pattern for imitation. His earlier plays, such as The Lying Lover (1703) and The Tender Husband (1705), had already indicated his interest in moral drama, and not long after his essay on The Man of Mode he began work on a play intended to serve as the complete formulation of the new comic mode. This was The Conscious Lovers (1722), and it was preceded by a sly publicity campaign, largely of Steele's own composition and represented here by the selections from his periodical The Theatre.

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