Definitions

Otway

Otway

[ot-wey]
Burns, Otway, c.1775-1850, American privateer, b. Onslow co., N.C. At the outbreak of the War of 1812, he outfitted the Baltimore clipper Snap-Dragon as a privateer and began one of the most spectacular privateering careers in American history. He destroyed and captured millions of dollars worth of British shipping and had a $50,000 price set on his head by the British. After the war Burns turned to shipbuilding and later served (1821-35) in the North Carolina legislature.

See biography by W. F. Burns (1905).

Otway, Thomas, 1652-85, English dramatist, educated at Winchester and at Oxford. After failing as an actor, Otway wrote his first play, Alcibiades, produced in 1675. Later plays include the rhymed heroic tragedy Don Carlos (1672); an adaptation of Racine, called Titus and Berenice, (1676); and an adaptation of Molière, called The Cheats of Scapin. (1676). His two greatest plays are the blank-verse tragedies The Orphan (1680) and Venice Preserved (1682). Otway brought a sentimental pathos and romantic beauty to the formal manner of the Restoration heroic tragedy. He died in poverty at age 33.

See biography by R. G. Ham (1931, repr. 1969); studies by H. M. B. Pollard (1974) and D. P. Warner (1982).

(born March 3, 1652, Trotton, near Midhurst, Sussex, Eng.—died April 14, 1685, London) English dramatist and poet. A failed actor, he turned to writing and had immense success with Don Carlos (produced 1676), considered the best of his rhymed heroic plays. His other plays include The Orphan (1680), a blank-verse domestic tragedy; The Souldier's Fortune (1680), a comedy; and his masterpiece, Venice Preserv'd (1682), one of the greatest theatrical successes of the period. A forerunner of sentimental drama, he is outstanding for his convincing presentations of human emotions in an age of heroic but artificial tragedies. The Poet's Complaint of His Muse (1680) is a powerful, gloomy autobiographical poem.

Learn more about Otway, Thomas with a free trial on Britannica.com.

(born March 3, 1652, Trotton, near Midhurst, Sussex, Eng.—died April 14, 1685, London) English dramatist and poet. A failed actor, he turned to writing and had immense success with Don Carlos (produced 1676), considered the best of his rhymed heroic plays. His other plays include The Orphan (1680), a blank-verse domestic tragedy; The Souldier's Fortune (1680), a comedy; and his masterpiece, Venice Preserv'd (1682), one of the greatest theatrical successes of the period. A forerunner of sentimental drama, he is outstanding for his convincing presentations of human emotions in an age of heroic but artificial tragedies. The Poet's Complaint of His Muse (1680) is a powerful, gloomy autobiographical poem.

Learn more about Otway, Thomas with a free trial on Britannica.com.

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