Metcalfe, John. Yorkshire Dialect Plays
Metcalfe, John. Yorkshire Dialect Plays [The Bunderley Boggard etc.].
London: Heath Cranton, .
First edition. 8vo. 160pp. Publisher’s blue paper covered boards, a shade rubbed here and there, but a very good clean copy. Internally clean. From the library of Richard Dalby, with a small sheaf of his ephemera laid in. Not the John Metcalfe of “The Feasting Dead” fame, although I’m pretty sure that’s why Richard bought it, but the work of a wool merchant from Baildon, a rather scintillating linguist and someone whose work was admired by the noted academic F.W. Moorman, who wrote the introduction. This slim volume contains a number of plays, written in the Yorkshire dialect of the West Riding with the intent of preserving a dialect and a way of life which, even at the opening of the 20th century, people felt was in danger of dying out. Moorman’s foreword states “...men and women thought and spoke and acted with less constraint and less regard for public opinion than is now the case.” I mean, he says it like it’s a good thing, so there’s that, but it does rather serve to point out that nothing ever really changes. It’s a rather fascinating little volume, plus it mentions Boggards, and I’m a sucker for a Boggard.