The Country Wife


Writers: William Wycherley


Show Information

Number of Acts
First Produced
Time & Place
London, 17th Century
Cast Size
Ideal for
College/University, Community Theatre, Regional Theatre
Casting Notes

Includes young adult, adult, elderly, mature adult characters


Mr. Horner is the most renowned Ladies Man in town and has ruined his chances of getting close to any more women. He couldn’t possibly give up on his desires, so he decides to get a doctor to spread the rumor in town that he has become a Eunuch and is no longer a threat to men’s wives. The Doctor is sure that this scheme will backfire, but Horner’s plan works and he begins to get access to the wives of the wealthy men in town. A man named Pinchwife, however, who was recently married to a woman from the country, hasn’t heard the rumors of Horner’s impotency and becomes so paranoid and jealous that he keeps his new country wife locked away at home. This jealousy backfires and eventually leads his wife right into the arms of the man he’s scared of: Mr. Horner. Through a series of miscommunications, lies, disguises and more, we watch men filled with jealousy, men duping other men, men oblivious to infidelity, and women just looking for attention while preserving their reputations. It turns out that pleasure isn’t as easy to come by as it seems.

Lead Characters

The Country Wife guide sections