Dion Boucicault's Dot, an adaptation of Charles Dickens's second Christmas Book, The Cricket on the Hearth (December 1845), was first produced in New York City at the Winter Garden Theatre on 14 Sept ember 1859, a production in which Agnes Robertson, Boucicault's young wife, played the eponymous role. The first British performance appears to have been on 14 April 1862 at London's Adelphi Theatre, a production in which Louise Keeley had the leading role. Although the holographic manuscript is still available in the Lord Chamberlain's Collection [Reference: British Library MSS Add. 53013E], it has yet to be published.
In the following transcription, the names of speakers have been bolded. Minor punctuation such as the colon in "Speaker:" has been added; anything else is given with the notation [ ...] Page breaks in original manuscript are indicated in the following form: [1/2].
A drama in Three Acts.
Licencer's copy/ Mr. B. Webster/ New Adelphi Theatre/ Strand/ 1862/ Received April 10/ License is[su]ed--11/ W. B. Donne/ [Large blotted signature--illegible]/ Acting Manager
Scene 1st. A Wood. [1/2]
The wind is cold--it bites me through and through.
My rosy wings are frozen till they're blue.
Oberon, why Oberon, he comes, the lazy thing.
Here's a condition for a fairy King!
Reduced to gather faggots in this wood
Where just two hundred years ago I stood
the centre of a fairy court. My Duck,
And where's Puck?
Enter Puck: Here.
My faithful ones, Sad remnant of the past.
Of all the ancient fairies we're the last.
I always said that Modern education
Would be of fairy land the ruination.
We've no more woods where we by night can roam.
They have improved us out of house and home.
We're not believed in--
I fear our race is run. Oberon,
Is then the fairies' occupation gone?
Not quite, King Oberon, you're but dethroned.
Your kingdom by another Monarch's owned.
Pray, who are you?
Queen of New fairyland,
O'er all the household Elves I hold command,
My Home the chimney corner, my Scepter this
A Knitting Needle, emblem of Cheerfulness.
My Name is Home, what ho! My Merry Elves,
Come from your Cozy Nooks and Shew yourselves.
Kettle [Kettle appears], Cradle, [Cradle appears]
And now my little Cricket, quick come forth;
Leave for awhile your corner on the hearth [Cricket appears] My prince.