E v e r y critic of Webster's plays has been struck by the marked difference between Appius and Virginia and his other dramatic pieces. Firmly constructed, lucid in style, and with a simple, coherent plot, it is utterly unlike The White Devil and The Duchess of Malfy, those profounder and more poetic Italian tragedies of passion and intrigue. Its simpler structure and more regular versification have usually been held to be sufficiently accounted for by its classical theme and by the supposition that it is a work of Webster’s later years. Recently, however, Webster’s authorship has been altogether denied. In an article con­ tributed to The Modern Language Review1 by the late Rupert Brooke it is contended that the play has been wrongly assigned to him. The hypothesis here submitted is that it is substantially the work of Thomas Heywood, and that if Webster had a hand in it at all, the possibility of which is grudgingly admitted, his share is confined to a slight revision of two scenes-Act I, sc. i, and Act IV, sc. i.