Richard Cumberland, grandson of Richard Bentley and great-grandson of Richard Cumberland, Bishop of Peterborough, attended Trinity College Cambridge (B.A. 1751, Fellow, 1752, M.A. 1754). There he composed imitations of Spenser, and Caractarus, a drama modeled on William Mason's Elfrida. In the course of his long career Cumberland held a variety of government positions though his chief employment was as a playwright — he composed over 50 dramatic productions of various kinds. The long-lived and irascible Cumberland published his Memoirs in 1806; he is buried in Westminster Abbey.
An elegy written on Saint Mark's eve. 1754.
Lucani Pharsalia. Ed. Cumberland, 1760.
The summer's tale. 1765.
A letter to the Bishop of O—d, containing some animadversions upon a character of the late Dr. Bentley. 1767.
The brothers. 1770.
The West Indian. 1771.
Timon of Athens. 1771.
The fashionable lover. 1772.
The note of hand. 1774.
The choleric man. 1775.
The battle of Hastings. 1778.
Miscellaneous poems: consisting of elegies, odes, pastorals; together with Calypso: a masque. 1778.
Anecdotes of eminent painters in Spain. 2 vols, 1782.
A letter to Richard, Lord Bishop of Llandaff. 1783.
The mysterious husband. 1783.
The Carmelite. 1784.
The observer [with essays by Cumberland]. 1785.
The character of the late Viscount Sackville. 1785.
The natural son. 1785.
An accurate catalogue of the paintings in the King of Spain's palace at Madrid. 1787.
Arundel: a novel. 1789.
The impostors. 1789.
Curtius rescued from the gulph: or the retort courteous to the Rev. Dr. Parr.
Calvary or the death of Christ: a poem. 1792.
The box-lobby challenge. 1794.
The Jew. 1794.
Henry: a novel. 1795.
First love. 1795.
The wheel of fortune. 1795.
The days of yore. 1796.
False impressions. 1796.
The clouds of Aristophanes. 1798.
A few plain reasons why we should believe in Christ. 1801.
A poetical version of the psalms of David. 1801.
The sailor's daughter. 1804.
A hint to husbands. 1806.
Memoirs of Richard Cumberland written by himself. 2 vols, 1806, 1807.
The exodiad: a poem, by the authors of Calvary and Richard the First [with James Bland Burges]. 1807.
The London review. Ed. Cumberland, 2 vols, 1809.
John de Lancaster: a novel. 3 vols, 1809.
Retrospection: a poem in familiar verse. 1811.
Posthumous dramatic works. 2 vols, 1813.
The British Drama. Ed. Cumberland, 14 vols, 1817.
Letters of Richard Cumberland, ed. Richard J. Dircks. 1988.