David Roberts, | James green, | John Bulgin, | the workmen’s committee Henry Thomas, | George rous, |
Henry rous, | Lewis, | Jago, | Evans, | workman at the Trenartha Tin Plate Works A blacksmith, | Davies, | A red-haired youth. | Brown |
Frost, valet to John Anthony
Enid Underwood, Wife of Francis Underwood, daughter of John Anthony
Annie Roberts, wife of David Roberts
Madge Thomas, daughter of Henry Thomas
Mrs. Rous, mother of George and Henry Rous
Mrs. Bulgin, wife of John Bulgin
Mrs. Yeo, wife of a workman
A parlourmaid to the Underwoods
Jan, Madge’s brother, a boy of ten
A crowd of men on strike
Act I. The dining-room of the Manager’s house.
scene I. The kitchen of the Roberts’s cottage near the works.
Scene II. A space outside the works.
Act III. The drawing-room of the Manager’s house.
The action takes place on February 7th between the hours of noon and six in the afternoon, close to the Trenartha Tin Plate Works, on the borders of England and Wales, where a strike has been in progress throughout the winter.
It is noon. In the Underwoods’ dining-room a bright fire is burning. On one side of the fireplace are double-doors leading to the drawing-room, on the other side a door leading to the hall. In the centre of the room a long dining-table without a cloth is set out as a Board table. At the head of it, in the Chairman’s seat, sits John Anthony, an old man, big, clean-shaven, and high-coloured, with thick white hair, and thick dark eyebrows. His movements are rather slow and feeble, but his eyes are very much alive. There is a glass of water by his side. On his right sits his son Edgar, an earnest-looking man of thirty, reading a newspaper. Next him Wanklin, a man with jutting eyebrows, and silver-streaked light hair, is bending over transfer papers. Tench, the Secretary, a short and rather humble, nervous man, with side whiskers, stands helping him. On WANKLIN’S right sits Underwood, the Manager, a quiet man, with along, stiff jaw, and steady eyes. Back to the fire is Scantlebury, a very large, pale, sleepy man, with grey hair, rather bald. Between him and the Chairman are two empty chairs.
Wilder. [Who is lean, cadaverous, and complaining, with drooping grey moustaches, stands before the fire.] I say, this fire’s the devil! Can I have a screen, Tench?