The Rover is an unrestrained comedy about sexual exploration, set during Carnival in Naples, Italy. Masks, cross-dressing, mistaken identities, prostitutes, Spanish grandees, and English dolts—the play has a wide variety of characters who engage in fast-paced physical comedy.
Playwright Aphra Behn is the first woman to be a professional writer in England, possibly in the world. Her 19 plays made her the second-most produced playwright during the Restoration (1660–1700), a period famous for women on stage, sexual liberty, and extravagant dress. Virginia Woolf said all women should let flowers fall upon her tomb "for it was she who earned them the right to speak their minds."