The Critic: or, a Tragedy Rehearsed is a satire by Richard Brinsley Sheridan. It was first staged at Drury Lane Theatre in 1779. It is a burlesque on stage acting and play production conventions, and Sheridan considered the first act to be his finest piece of writing. One of its major roles, Sir Fretful Plagiary, is a comment on the vanity of authors, and in particular a caricature of the dramatist Richard Cumberland who was a contemporary of Sheridan.
Based on George Villiers' The Rehearsal, it concerns misadventures that arise when an author, Mr Puff, invites Sir Fretful Plagiary and the theatre critics Dangle and Sneer to a rehearsal of his play The Spanish Armada, Sheridan's parody of the then-fashionable tragic drama.