chapter  4
40 Pages

‘Forth from the closet to the improving stage’?: Sterneana on

ByStage and Page

John Henderson’s performances for the ‘Shandean society’, which we encountered in Chapter 1, offered one means by which Sternean fragments could be disseminated and reiterated among a group of like-minded readers, and even inspire new creative enterprises.1 Private gatherings, however, were not the only context in which they could be performed during our period of interest: public recitations of passages taken from popular works, Sterne’s prominent among them, were a regular source of amusement in London and beyond.