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A Metabiological Pentateuch


  • Playwright

    George Bernard (GB) Shaw 

  • Setting

    (i) Garden of Eden, 4004 BC (ii) A study overlooking Hampstead Heath, 1920 (iii)Official parlour of the President of the British Isles, 2170 AD (iv) Burrin pier on the south shore of Galway Bay, Ireland, 30,000 AD. Later: an ornate temple. (v) A sunlit glade with an altar, 31920 AD.

  • Synopsis

    A series of five short plays on the subject of the evolution of man: (i) In the Beginning (ii) Gospel of Brothers Barnabas (iii)The Thing Happens (iv) Tragedy of an Elderly Gentleman (v) As Far as Thought Can Reach

  • Play Type

    Plays General

    Number Of Acts

    Series of short individual plays

  • Cast Size Male


  • Cast Size Female


  • Cast Notes

    Cast doubling required. Numbers here are from 1924 Royal Court production.


  • Date of First Production

    20 February 1923

  • Producer

    Produced by Theatre Guild

  • Original Venue

    Garrick Theatre

  • Irish Premiere Notes

    The play was performed in a cycle, with the first third performed for a week from February 20, and the subsequent sections over the following two weeks.

Original Cast  
Cain Dennis King
Lubin Claude King
Adam George Gaul
Eve Ernita Lascelles
Serpent Margaret Wycherley
Parlourmaid Margaret Wycherley
Franklyn Barnabas Albert Bruning
Conrad Barnabas Moffat Johnston
The Rev. William Haslam Stanley Howlett
Savvy Barnabas Eleanor Woodruff
Joyce Burge AP Kaye




Information here is from a preview and a review (of the first two parts only) published in the New York Times, February 28, 1922.