It's 1805 England, specifically on Quality Street, where a gentleman passerby is an event, not only for the lady being called upon, but also for the ever watching nosy female neighbors. Based on recent events, twenty year old Phoebe Throssel believes that a proposal of marriage from Dr. Valentine Brown is imminent. However, what Dr. Brown has come to tell Phoebe is that he has enlisted in the army to fight in the Napoleonic Wars, with no mention of any romantic feeling for her from his side. Fast forward ten years. Phoebe and her similarly older spinster sister Susan now run a school. The years and situation have not been kind to Phoebe, now thirty, drab and thus considered an unmarriable spinster. Upon Captain Brown's arrival back to Quality Street, he, by his immediate reaction to seeing Phoebe, too has noticed how Phoebe has changed from what he previously knew as a pretty young thing. Heartbroken, Phoebe, if only for herself, decides to regain some of her youth by paying attention... Written by
Did You Know?
The original Broadway play starred legendary actress Maude Adams. It opened at the Knickerbocker Theatre in New York on November 11, 1901 and ran for 64 performances. See more
[Goes to the window and looks out
It's that impertinent recruiting sergeant. I passed him on the street yesterday. He closed one of his eyes at me, then quickly opened it again.
[She demonstrates to the other ladies in the room
I knew what he meant.
[She looks out again and sees the recruiting officer wink at her. She quickly closes the window curtain