Зображення сторінки

ways is a misfortune,) to write for bread; and, in reply to the salutary admonition of his benevolent visitor, he might have said, Bien obligé, Monsieur, mais il faut vivre.—“ Many thanks for your kindness, sir, but I cannot live without eating.”

TOOTE AND QUIN. This celebrated mimic had signified, in his advertisement, while he was exhibiting his imitations at one of the Theatres Royal, that he would, on a particular evening, take off Quin ; who, being desirous of seeing his own picture, took a place in the stage-box, and, when the audience had ceased applauding Foote, for the justness of the representation, Quin bawls out, with a loud horse-laugh, “I'm glad on't; the poor fellow will get a clean shirt by it." When Foote immediately retorted, from the stage, “A clean shirt, master Quin 1-a shirt of any kind was a very novel thing in your family, some few years ago."


The famous Baron was both an author and an actor; he wrote a comedy in five acts, called “Les Adelphes," taken from the “Adelphi" of

Terence; and, a few days before it was performed, the Duke de Roquelaure, addressing him, said, “Will you show me your piece, Baron? You know that I am a connoisseur: I bave promised three women of wit, who are to dine with me, the feast of hearing it. Come, and dine with us ; bring it in your pocket, and read it yourself. I am desirous to know whether you are less dull than Terence.” Baron accepted the invitation, and found two Countesses, and a Marchioness, at table, who testified the most impatient desire to hear the piece. They were, however, in no haste to rise from table; and, when their long repast was ended, instead of thinking of Baron, they. called for cards. “Cards ?" cried the Duke;

surely, ladies, you have no such intention? You forget that Baron is here, to read you his new comedy?”—“Oh, no; we have not forgotten that,” replied one of them ; “he may read, while we are at play; and we shall have two pleasures, instead of one.” Baron immediately rose, walked to the door, and, with great indignation, replied, “ his comedy should not be read to cardplayers." This incident was brought on the stage by Poincinet, in his comedy of the " Cercle."


A DRAMATIST of this name was the author of a comedy called “ Technogamia, or, the Marriage of the Arts," which was performed at Christ-Church Hall, Oxford, in 1617. Antony Wood relates the following anecdote of subsequent representation of the same piece. “The wits of these times being minded to show themselves before the King, (James I.) were resolved, with leave, to act the same comedy at Woodstock. Whereupon, the author making some foolish alterations in it, it was accordingly acted on a Sunday night, August 26, 1621; but it being too grave for the King, and too scholastic for the auditory; or, as some have said, the actors having taken too much wine before they began, his majesty, after two acts, offered several times to withdraw. At length, being persuaded, by some one near him, to stay till it was ended, lest the young men should be discouraged, he sat down, though much against his will; whereupon, these verses were made by a certain scho

lar :

“ At Christ Church Marriage; done before the King,

Lest that these mates should want an offering,

The King himself did offer—what, I pray ?
He offer'd, ewice or thrice—to go away."


When Dancourt ġave a new piece, if it were unsuccessful, to console himself, he was accustomed to go and sup with two or three of his friends, at the sign of “the Bag-pipes,” kept by Cherit. One morning, after the rehearsal of his comedy called “Les Agioteurs, or Stock-brokers,” which was to be performed, for the first time, that evening, he asked one of his daughters, not ten years of age, how she liked the piece; “ Ah, papa," said the girl, “ you'll go to night, and sup at the sign of “The Bag-pipes.”

" RECRUITING OFFICER." Foote relates that the characters of this play were taken, by Farquhar, from the following originals :

Justice Balance was a Mr. Beverley, a gentleman of strict honour and independence, then Recorder of Shrewsbury.

Another of the Justices was a Mr. Hill, inhabitant of Shrewsbury.

Worthy was a Mr. Owen, who lived on the borders of Shropshire.

Captain Plume was Farquhar himself.


Captain Brazen, unknown.

Sylvia was Miss Beverley, the daughter of the gentleman of that name, above mentioned.

Melinda was a Miss Harnale, of Belsadine, near the Wrekin.

The plot is supposed to be the author's own invention.


Corneille wrote a tragedy called " Andromeda," with machinery, to divert Louis XIV. when a boy; the decorations of which were so grand, that they were engraved. The piece was revived, in 1682, with great success, and with the addition of a living horse, to represent Pegasus. The horse played his part admirably, and pranced as much in the air, as he could have done on terra-firma. The Italians have often brought on living horses in their grand operas, but they bound with such precaution, as to produce little effect. Other means were taken, in the tragedy of “ Andromeda,” to give the horse a warlike ardour : before he was hoisted, by machinery, up in the air, he was kept fasting so long that his appetite was extreme; and when he appeared, a groom, behind the scenes, stood shaking oats in a sieve.

« НазадПродовжити »