How did a theatre in this time measure its success? There weren’t newspapers, no written reviews. You didn’t get public critics. I doubt someone stood on the box in the center of the square proclaiming opinions on theatrical productions. Samuel Pepys had his opinions, of course, but those were in his diary. It really must have all been word of mouth. Actual, literal word of mouth to actual ear. And your box office numbers were likely the only real barometer. Well, that and royal commendations and such.