Centlivre, Mrs. Susanna

   Dramatist and actress, was the dau. of a gentleman of the name of either Rawkins or Freeman, who appears to have belonged either to Lincolnshire or Ireland, or was perhaps connected with both, and who suffered at the hands of the Stuarts. She m. at 16, lost her husband in a year, then m. an officer, who fell in a duel in 18 months, and finally, in 1706, m. Joseph C., cook to Queen Anne, with whom she lived happily for the rest of her days. She wrote 18 or 19 plays, well constructed and amusing, among which may be mentioned The Perjured Husband (1700), The Busybody (1709), The Warder (1714), and A Bold Stroke for a Wife (1717). She was a strong Whig, and sometimes made her plays the medium of expressing her political opinions.

Short biographical dictionary of English literature . . 2011.

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