Licensing Act

The Licensing Act is a defunct Act of Parliament. Its purpose was to control and censor what was being said about the British government through theatre. The Lord Chamberlain was the official censor and the office of Examiner of Plays was created under the Act. The Examiner assisted the Lord Chamberlain in the task of censoring all plays from 1737 to 1968. The Examiner read all plays which were to be publicly performed, produced a synopsis and recommended them for licence, consulting the Lord Chamberlain in cases of doubt.

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