transpontine melodrama



  • A derogatory term for a crudely sensational play. In 19th-centuryLondon the word transpontine, meaning 'across a bridge', was appliedto the melodramas produced on the south side of the Thamesat such theaters as the Old Vic and the Surrey. By the turn of thecentury, the label was applied to any sensational work; in 1901 areviewer in The Scotsman wrote of "a new drama stronglyseasoned with transpontine flavour".