THE DRUMMER OF HERSTMONCEUX. 187
of success is not acknowledged : " As it is not in the common way of writing, the approbation was at first doubtful, but has risen every time it has been acted, and has given an opportunity in several of its parts for as just and good action as ever I saw on the stage." This is not precisely the manner in which it might be expected to hear a Patentee speaking of a play that, according to Geneste, had only a three nights' run. Steele regarded the play as the work of his friend Addison, and imparted this impression to Tonson when selling the copyright. Whether he conveyed the same impression elsewhere is not known, but after Addison's death on the 17th June, 1719, he explicitly informed the publisher that The Drummer was the work of Addison.
The first collection of Addison's writings was made by Thomas Tickell, and published by Tonson in 1721. In this edition The Drummer is omitted. Sir Richard Steele re-issued it in its pamphlet form with a second preface in the shape of a letter to Congreve. In this he complains severely of the ungenerous manner in which he held that he had been treated by Tickell. As to The Drummer, he says that he would not have written the first preface had he thought that with it any other