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the performance of the evening made such a sensible impression on his mind, as to determine his inclination in favour of the Drama. And perhaps our own darling Shakespeare would have been known to us only as a sonnetteer, if the genius of Britain had not placed him within the sphere of a theatre, and exposed the unfolded germ of his mighty mind to the vivifying influence of scenic splendour. It is to be presumed, that the same cause, which animated these great masters, imparted a ray of inspiration to the humble professors of the sock. Opportunity may be called the stepmother of genius; and the theatre, by affording a ready and advantageous display to the productions of dramatic talent, has encouraged the race of dramatic authors; as the royal academical exhibition has certainly multiplied the number, and probably increased the energies, of British artists.-With regard to farces in particular, as it is their object to exhibit the drollery of character and laughable scenes of common life, they may be compared to the humorous pictures of a Teniers, or a Smirke: and it must be confessed, that the British theatre is the first school in the world for this species of painting. It is to the excellence of modern performers, to the lavish decorations of the theatre, and to the improved art of stage effect, that Farce acknowledges the highest obligations. Tragedy and Comedy may find in the theatric band a powerful auxiliary ; but Farce must be allowed to owe almost its existence to it.
It remains only for the Editor to repeat what he has said in the former volumes, as to the plan of this work. The collections of this kind have hitherto been without any arrangement; but as Tragedy, Comedy, and Farce, possess each a distinction of character, he flattered himself, that a separate and systematic arrangement would be acceptable to the lovers of the Drama. Such a plan exhibits, at one view, the full force of a nation's genius in each respective line; and, while each of these volumes may be had separately, according to the taste of the individual, the whole work may be considered as the full and undivided essence of the BRITISH DRAMA.
370 396 407
High Life Below Stairs.....
1761 • DITTO
1761 . Foote
1763 • BICKERSTAFF
1763 .. Foote
1763 . Ditto
1764 .. ANONYMOUS
1765 • Foote
1766 · DITTO
1767 . Foote
1768 BICKERSTAFF & FOOTE 1769 · FOOTE
1770 .. Ditto
572 580 592
CHEATS OF SCAPIN.
Sly, servant to LEANDER.
WOMEN. OCTAVIAN, son to TuriFTY, and privately married Lucia, in love with Leander. to Clara.
CLARA, in love with OCTAVIAN.
Oct. I am ruined and undone ! prithee advise Enter Octavian and Shift.
Shift. Advise you? Oct. This is unbappy news! I did not expect Oct. Yes, advise me. Thou art as surly, as if my father in two months, and yet you say he is thou really couidst do me no good. Speak'! Hlas returned already.
necessity taught thee no wit? Hast thou no shift? Shift. 'Tis but too true.
Shift. Lord, sir, I am at present very busy in Oct. That he arrived this morning?
contriving some trick to save myself! I am first Shift. This very morning.
prudent, and then good-natured. Oct. And that he is come with a resolution to Oct. How will my father rage and storm, when marry me?
he understands what things have happened in his Shift. Yes, sir, to marry you.
absence! I dread his anger and reproaches. VOL. II.