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Title: Shakespearean Playhouses - A History of English Theatres from the Beginnings to the Restoration
Author: Adams, Joseph Quincy, 1881-1946
Language: English
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      The original book cites Holland's _Her[Greek: ô]ologia_ in several
      places, but consistently misspells it _Hero[Greek: ô]logia_. This
      has been corrected based on the image of the original title page
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A History of English Theatres from the Beginnings to the Restoration


Cornell University


Gloucester, Mass.
Peter Smith

Copyright, 1917, by
Joseph Quincy Adams

Reprinted, 1960,
by Permission of
Houghton Mifflin Co.


CURTAIN, 1577-after 1627.
FORTUNE, (FIRST) 1600-1621.
FORTUNE, (SECOND) 1623-1661.
GLOBE, (FIRST) 1599-1613.
GLOBE, (SECOND) 1614-1645.
HOPE, 1613-after 1682.
PHOENIX OR COCKPIT, 1617-after 1664.
RED BULL, about 1605-after 1663.
ROSE, 1587-1605.
SWAN, 1595-after 1632.
THEATRE, 1576-1598.
WHITEFRIARS, about 1605-1614(?).]





The method of dramatic representation in the time of Shakespeare has
long received close study. Among those who have more recently devoted
their energies to the subject may be mentioned W.J. Lawrence, T.S.
Graves, G.F. Reynolds, V.E. Albright, A.H. Thorndike, and B.
Neuendorff, each of whom has embodied the results of his
investigations in one or more noteworthy volumes. But the history of
the playhouses themselves, a topic equally important, has not hitherto
been attempted. If we omit the brief notices of the theatres in Edmond
Malone's _The Plays and Poems of William Shakespeare_ (1790) and John
Payne Collier's _The History of English Dramatic Poetry_ (1831), the
sole book dealing even in part with the topic is T.F. Ordish's _The
Early London Theatres in the Fields_. This book, however, though good
for its time, was written a quarter of a century ago, before most of
the documents relating to early theatrical history were discovered,
and it discusses only six playhouses. The present volume takes
advantage of all the materials made available by the industry of later
scholars, and records the history of seventeen regular, and five
temporary or projected, theatres. The book is throughout the result of
a first-hand examination of original sources, and represents an
independent interpretation of the historical evidences. As a
consequence of this, as well as of a comparison (now for the first
time possible) of the detailed records of the several playhouses, many
conclusions long held by scholars have been set aside. I have made no
systematic attempt to point out the cases in which I depart from
previously accepted opinions, for the scholar will discover them for
himself; but I believe I have never thus departed without being aware
of it, and without having carefully weighed the entire evidence.
Sometimes the evidence has been too voluminous or complex for detailed
presentation; in these instances I have had to content myself with
reference by footnotes to the more significant documents bearing on
the point.

In a task involving so many details I cannot hope to have escaped
errors--errors due not only to oversight, but also to the limitations
of my knowledge or to mistaken interpretation. For such I can offer no
excuse, though I may request from my readers the same degree of
tolerance which I have tried to show other laborers in the field. In
reproducing old documents I have as a rule modernized the spelling and
the punctuation, for in a work of this character there seems to be no
advantage in preserving the accidents and perversities of early
scribes and printers. I have also consistently altered the dates when
the Old Style conflicted with our present usage.

I desire especially to record my indebtedness to the researches of
Professor C.W. Wallace, the extent of whose services to the study of
the Tudor-Stuart drama has not yet been generally realized, and has
sometimes been grudgingly acknowledged; and to the labors of Mr. E.K.
Chambers and Mr. W.W. Greg, who, in the _Collections_ of The Malone
Society, and elsewhere, have rendered accessible a wealth of important
material dealing with the early history of the stage.

Finally, I desire to express my gratitude to Mr. Hamilton Bell and the
editor of _The Architectural Record_ for permission to reproduce the
illustration and description of Inigo Jones's plan of the Cockpit; to
the Governors of Dulwich College for permission to reproduce three
portraits from the Dulwich Picture Gallery, one of which, that of Joan
Alleyn, has not previously been reproduced; to Mr. C.W. Redwood,
formerly technical artist at Cornell University, for expert assistance
in making the large map of London showing the sites of the playhouses,
and for other help generously rendered; and to my colleagues,
Professor Lane Cooper and Professor Clark S. Northup, for their
kindness in reading the proofs.




    I. THE INN-YARDS                                                 1

   II. THE HOSTILITY OF THE CITY                                    18

  III. THE THEATRE                                                  27

   IV. THE CURTAIN                                                  75

    V. THE FIRST BLACKFRIARS                                        91

   VI. ST. PAUL'S                                                  111

  VII. THE BANKSIDE AND THE BEAR GARDEN                            119

 VIII. NEWINGTON BUTTS                                             134

   IX. THE ROSE                                                    142

    X. THE SWAN                                                    161

   XI. THE SECOND BLACKFRIARS                                      182

  XII. THE GLOBE                                                   234

 XIII. THE FORTUNE                                                 267

  XIV. THE RED BULL                                                294

   XV. WHITEFRIARS                                                 310

  XVI. THE HOPE                                                    324


XVIII. THE PHOENIX, OR COCKPIT IN DRURY LANE                       348

  XIX. SALISBURY COURT                                             368



       BIBLIOGRAPHY                                                433

       MAPS AND VIEWS OF LONDON                                    457

       INDEX                                                       461


MAP OF LONDON SHOWING THE PLAYHOUSES                    _Frontispiece_

AN INN-YARD                                                          4

MAP OF LONDON SHOWING THE INN-PLAYHOUSES                             9

THE SITE OF THE FIRST PLAYHOUSES                                    27

THE SITE OF THE FIRST PLAYHOUSES                                    31

A PLAN OF BURBAGE'S HOLYWELL PROPERTY                               33

THE SITE OF THE CURTAIN PLAYHOUSE                                   79

BLACKFRIARS MONASTERY                                               93


A PLAN OF FARRANT'S PLAYHOUSE                                       97

THE BANKSIDE                                                       120

THE BANKSIDE                                                       121

THE BEAR- AND BULL-BAITING RINGS                                   123

THE BEAR GARDEN                                                    127

THE BEAR GARDEN AND THE ROSE                                       147

THE BEAR GARDEN AND THE ROSE                                       149

JOAN WOODWARD ALLEYN                                               152


THE SWAN PLAYHOUSE                                                 165

THE INTERIOR OF THE SWAN PLAYHOUSE                                 169


REMAINS OF BLACKFRIARS                                             196

RICHARD BURBAGE                                                    234

WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE                                                238

A PLAN OF THE GLOBE PROPERTY                                       242



THE FIRST GLOBE                                                    248

THE FIRST GLOBE                                                    253

MERIAN'S VIEW OF LONDON                                            256

THE SECOND GLOBE                                                   260

THE TRADITIONAL SITE OF THE GLOBE                                  262

THE SITE OF THE FORTUNE PLAYHOUSE                                  270

THE FORTUNE PLAYHOUSE?                                             278

EDWARD ALLEYN                                                      282

THE SITE OF THE RED BULL PLAYHOUSE                                 294

A PLAN OF WHITEFRIARS                                              312

MICHAEL DRAYTON                                                    314


THE HOPE PLAYHOUSE, OR SECOND BEAR GARDEN                          326

THE HOPE PLAYHOUSE, OR SECOND BEAR GARDEN                          331

THE SITE OF THE COCKPIT IN DRURY LANE                              350

A PLAN OF THE SALISBURY COURT PROPERTY                             371

THE COCKPIT AT WHITEHALL                                           390



THE THEATRO OLYMPICO AT VICENZA                                    399

THE COCKPIT-IN-COURT                                               407




Before the building of regular playhouses the itinerant troupes of
actors were accustomed, except when received into private homes, to
give their performances in any place that chance provided, such as
open street-squares, barns, town-halls, moot-courts, schoolhouses,
churches, and--most frequently of all, perhaps--the yards of inns.
These yards, especially those of carriers' inns, were admirably suited
to dramatic representations, consisting as they did of a large open
court surrounded by two or more galleries. Many examples of such
inn-yards are still to be seen in various parts of England; a picture
of the famous White Hart, in Southwark, is given opposite page 4 by
way of illustration. In the yard a temporary platform--a few boards,
it may be, set on barrel-heads[1]--could be erected for a stage; in
the adjacent stables a dressing-room could be provided for the actors;
the rabble--always the larger and more enthusiastic part of the
audience--could be accommodated with standing-room about the stage;
while the more aristocratic members of the audience could be
comfortably seated in the galleries overhead. Thus a ready-made and
very serviceable theatre was always at the command of the players; and
it seems to have been frequently made use of from the very beginning
of professionalism in acting.

[Footnote 1: "Thou shalt not need to travel with thy pumps full of
gravel any more, after a blind jade and a hamper, and stalk upon
boards and barrel-heads." (_Poetaster_, III, i.)]

One of the earliest extant moralities, _Mankind_, acted by strollers
in the latter half of the fifteenth century, gives us an interesting
glimpse of an inn-yard performance. The opening speech makes distinct
reference to the two classes of the audience described above as
occupying the galleries and the yard:

     O ye sovereigns that sit, and ye brothers that stand right

The "brothers," indeed, seem to have stood up so closely about the
stage that the actors had great difficulty in passing to and from
their dressing-room. Thus, Nowadays leaves the stage with the request:

     Make space, sirs, let me go out!

New Gyse enters with the threat:

     Out of my way, sirs, for dread of a beating!

While Nought, with even less respect, shouts:

     Avaunt, knaves! Let me go by!

Language such as this would hardly be appropriate if addressed to the
"sovereigns" who sat in the galleries above; but, as addressed to the
"brothers," it probably served to create a general feeling of good
nature. And a feeling of good nature was desirable, for the actors
were facing the difficult problem of inducing the audience to pay for
its entertainment.

This problem they met by taking advantage of the most thrilling moment
of the plot. The Vice and his wicked though jolly companions, having
wholly failed to overcome the hero, Mankind, decide to call to their
assistance no less a person than the great Devil himself; and
accordingly they summon him with a "Walsingham wystyle." Immediately
he roars in the dressing-room, and shouts:

     I come, with my legs under me!

There is a flash of powder, and an explosion of fireworks, while the
eager spectators crane their necks to view the entrance of this
"abhomynabull" personage. But nothing appears; and in the expectant
silence that follows the actors calmly announce a collection of money,
facetiously making the appearance of the Devil dependent on the
liberality of the audience:

     _New Gyse._ Now ghostly to our purpose, worshipful sovereigns,
     We intend to gather money, if it please your negligence.
     For a man with a head that of great omnipotence--

     _Nowadays_ [_interrupting_]. Keep your tale, in goodness, I
     pray you, good brother!

     [_Addressing the audience, and pointing towards the
     dressing-room, where the Devil roars again._]

     He is a worshipful man, sirs, saving your reverence.
     He loveth no groats, nor pence, or two-pence;
     Give us red royals, if ye will see his abominable presence.

     _New Gyse._ Not so! Ye that may not pay the one, pay the other.

And with such phrases as "God bless you, master," "Ye will not say
nay," "Let us go by," "Do them all pay," "Well mote ye fare," they
pass through the audience gathering their groats, pence, and twopence;
after which they remount the stage, fetch in the Devil, and continue
their play without further interruption.

[Illustration: AN INN-YARD

The famous White Hart, in Southwark. The ground-plan shows the
arrangement of a carriers' inn with the stabling below; the guest
rooms were on the upper floors.]

In the smaller towns the itinerant players might, through a letter of
recommendation from their noble patron, or through the good-will of
some local dignitary, secure the use of the town-hall, of the
schoolhouse, or even of the village church. In such buildings, of
course, they could give their performances more advantageously, for
they could place money-takers at the doors, and exact adequate payment
from all who entered. In the great city of London, however, the
players were necessarily forced to make use almost entirely of public
inn-yards--an arrangement which, we may well believe, they found far
from satisfactory. Not being masters of the inns, they were merely
tolerated; they had to content themselves with hastily provided and
inadequate stage facilities; and, worst of all, for their recompense
they had to trust to a hat collection, at best a poor means of
securing money. Often too, no doubt, they could not get the use of a
given inn-yard when they most needed it, as on holidays and festive
occasions; and at all times they had to leave the public in
uncertainty as to where or when plays were to be seen. Their street
parade, with the noise of trumpets and drums, might gather a motley
crowd for the yard, but in so large a place as London it was
inadequate for advertisement among the better classes. And as the
troupes of the city increased in wealth and dignity, and as the
playgoing public grew in size and importance, the old makeshift
arrangement became more and more unsatisfactory.

At last the unsatisfactory situation was relieved by the specific
dedication of certain large inns to dramatic purposes; that is, the
proprietors of certain inns found it to their advantage to subordinate
their ordinary business to the urgent demands of the actors and the
playgoing public. Accordingly they erected in their yards permanent
stages adequately equipped for dramatic representations, constructed
in their galleries wooden benches to accommodate as many spectators as
possible, and were ready to let the use of their buildings to the
actors on an agreement by which the proprietor shared with the troupe
in the "takings" at the door. Thus there came into existence a number
of inn-playhouses, where the actors, as masters of the place, could
make themselves quite at home, and where the public without special
notification could be sure of always finding dramatic entertainment.

Richard Flecknoe, in his _Discourse of the English Stage_ (1664), goes
so far as to dignify these reconstructed inns with the name
"theatres." At first, says he, the players acted "without any certain
theatres or set companions, till about the beginning of Queen
Elizabeth's reign they began here to assemble into companies, and set
up theatres, first in the city (as in the inn-yards of the Cross Keys
and Bull in Grace and Bishop's Gate Street at this day to be seen),
till that fanatic spirit [i.e., Puritanism], which then began with the
stage and after ended with the throne, banished them thence into the
suburbs"--that is, into Shoreditch and the Bankside, where, outside
the jurisdiction of the puritanical city fathers, they erected their
first regular playhouses.

The "banishment" referred to by Flecknoe was the Order of the Common
Council issued on December 6, 1574. This famous document described
public acting as then taking place "in great inns, having chambers and
secret places adjoining to their open stages and galleries"; and it
ordered that henceforth "no inn-keeper, tavern-keeper, nor other
person whatsoever within the liberties of this city shall openly
show, or play, nor cause or suffer to be openly showed or played
within the house yard or any other place within the liberties of this
city, any play," etc.

How many inns were let on special occasions for dramatic purposes we
cannot say; but there were five "great inns," more famous than the
rest, which were regularly used by the best London troupes. Thus
Howes, in his continuation of Stow's _Annals_ (p. 1004), in attempting
to give a list of the playhouses which had been erected "within London
and the suburbs," begins with the statement, "Five inns, or common
osteryes, turned to playhouses." These five were the Bell and the
Cross Keys, hard by each other in Gracechurch Street, the Bull, in
Bishopsgate Street, the Bell Savage, on Ludgate Hill, and the Boar's
Head, in Whitechapel Street without Aldgate.[2]

[Footnote 2: All historians of the drama have confused this great
carriers' inn with the Boar's Head in Eastcheap made famous by
Falstaff. The error seems to have come from the _Analytical Index of
the Remembrancia_, which (p. 355) incorrectly catalogues the letter of
March 31, 1602, as referring to the "Boar's Head in Eastcheap." The
letter itself, however, when examined, gives no indication whatever of
Eastcheap, and other evidence shows conclusively that the inn was
situated in Whitechapel just outside of Aldgate.]

Although Flecknoe referred to the Order of the Common Council as a
"banishment," it did not actually drive the players from the city.
They were able, through the intervention of the Privy Council, and on
the old excuse of rehearsing plays for the Queen's entertainment, to
occupy the inns for a large part of each year.[3] John Stockwood, in a
sermon preached at Paul's Cross, August 24, 1578, bitterly complains
of the "eight ordinary places" used regularly for plays, referring, it
seems, to the five inns and the three playhouses--the Theatre,
Curtain, and Blackfriars--recently opened to the public.

[Footnote 3: See especially _The Acts of the Privy Council_ and _The
Remembrancia_ of the City of London.]

Richard Reulidge, in _A Monster Lately Found Out and Discovered_
(1628), writes that "soon after 1580" the authorities of London
received permission from Queen Elizabeth and her Privy Council "to
thrust the players out of the city, and to pull down all playhouses
and dicing-houses within their liberties: which accordingly was
effected; and the playhouses in Gracious Street [i.e., the Bell and
the Cross Keys], Bishopsgate Street [i.e., the Bull], that nigh Paul's
[i.e., Paul's singing school?], that on Ludgate Hill [i.e., the Bell
Savage], and the Whitefriars[4] were quite put down and suppressed by
the care of these religious senators."

[Footnote 4: There is some error here. The city had no jurisdiction
over Whitefriars, or Blackfriars either; but there was a playhouse in
Blackfriars at the time, and it was suppressed in 1584, though not by
the city authorities. Possibly Reulidge should have written


1. The Bell Savage; 2. The Cross Keys; 3. The Bell; 4. The Bull; 5.
The Boar's Head.]

Yet, in spite of what Reulidge says, these five inns continued to be
used by the players for many years.[5] No doubt they were often used
surreptitiously. In _Martin's Month's Mind_ (1589), we read that a
person "for a penie may have farre better [entertainment] by oddes at
the Theatre and Curtaine, and _any blind playing house_ everie
day."[6] But the more important troupes were commonly able, through
the interference of the Privy Council, to get official permission to
use the inns during a large part of each year.

[Footnote 5: _The Remembrancia_ shows that the inn-playhouses remained
for many years as sharp thorns in the side of the puritanical city

[Footnote 6: Grosart, _Nash_, I, 179.]

There is not enough material about these early inn-playhouses to
enable one to write their separate histories. Below, however, I have
recorded in chronological order the more important references to them
which have come under my observation.

1557. On September 5 the Privy Council instructed the Lord Mayor of
London "that some of his officers do forthwith repair to the Boar's
Head without Aldgate, where, the Lords are informed, a lewd play
called _A Sackful of News_ shall be played this day," to arrest the
players, and send their playbook to the Council.[7]

[Footnote 7: Dasent, _Acts of the Privy Council_, VI, 168.]

1573. During this year there were various fencing contests held at the
Bull in Bishopsgate.[8]

[Footnote 8: W. Rendle, _The Inns of Old Southwark_, p. 235.]

1577. In February the Office of the Revels made a payment of 10_d._
"ffor the cariadge of the parts of ye well counterfeit from the Bell
in gracious strete to St. Johns, to be performed for the play of

[Footnote 9: A. Feuillerat, _Documents Relating to the Office of the
Revels in the Time of Queen Elizabeth_, p. 277.]

1579. On June 23 James Burbage was arrested for the sum of £5 13_d._
"as he came down Gracious Street towards the Cross Keys there to a
play." The name of the proprietor of this inn-playhouse is preserved
in one of the interrogatories connected with the case: "Item. Whether
did you, John Hynde, about xiii years past, in _anno_ 1579, the xxiii
of June, about two of the clock in the afternoon, send the sheriff's
officer unto the Cross Keys in Gratious Street, being then the
dwelling house of Richard Ibotson, citizen and brewer of London,"
etc.[10] Nothing more, I believe, is known of this person.

[Footnote 10: Burbage _v._ Brayne, printed in C.W. Wallace, _The First
London Theatre_, pp. 82, 90. Whether Burbage was going to the Cross
Keys as a spectator or as an actor is not indicated; but the
presumption is that he was then playing at the inn, although he was
proprietor of the Theatre.]

1579. Stephen Gosson, in _The Schoole of Abuse_, writes favorably of
"the two prose books played at the Bell Savage, where you shall find
never a word without wit, never a line without pith, never a letter
placed in vain; the _Jew_ and _Ptolome_, shown at the Bull ... neither
with amorous gesture wounding the eye, nor with slovenly talk hurting
the ears of the chast hearers."[11]

[Footnote 11: Arber's _English Reprints_, p. 40.]

1582. On July 1 the Earl of Warwick wrote to the Lord Mayor requesting
the city authorities to "give license to my servant, John David, this
bearer, to play his profest prizes in his science and profession of
defence at the Bull in Bishopsgate, or some other convenient place to
be assigned within the liberties of London." The Lord Mayor refused to
allow David to give his fencing contest "in an inn, which was somewhat
too close for infection, and appointed him to play in an open place of
the Leaden Hall," which, it may be added, was near the Bull.[12]

[Footnote 12: See The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 55-57.]

1583. William Rendle, in _The Inns of Old Southwark_, p. 235, states
that in this year "Tarleton, Wilson, and others note the stay of the
plague, and ask leave to play at the Bull in Bishopsgate, or the Bell
in Gracechurch Street," citing as his authority merely "City MS." The
Privy Council on November 26, 1583, addressed to the Lord Mayor a
letter requesting "that Her Majesty's Players [i.e., Tarleton, Wilson,
etc.] may be suffered to play within the liberties as heretofore they
have done."[13] And on November 28 the Lord Mayor issued to them a
license to play "at the sign of the Bull in Bishopsgate Street, and
the sign of the Bell in Gracious Street, and nowhere else within this

[Footnote 13: See _The Remembrancia_, in The Malone Society's
_Collections_, I, 66.]

[Footnote 14: C.W. Wallace, _The First London Theatre_, p. 11.]

1587. "James Cranydge played his master's prize the 21 of November,
1587, at the Bellsavage without Ludgate, at iiij sundry kinds of
weapons.... There played with him nine masters."[15]

[Footnote 15: _MS. Sloane_, 2530, f. 6-7, quoted by J.O. Halliwell in
his edition of _Tarlton's Jests_, p. xi. The Bell Savage seems to have
been especially patronized by fencers. George Silver, in his _Paradoxe
of Defence_ (1599), tells how he and his brother once challenged two
Italian fencers to a contest "to be played at the Bell Savage upon the
scaffold, when he that went in his fight faster back than he ought,
should be in danger to break his neck off the scaffold."]

Before 1588. In _Tarlton's Jests_[16] we find a number of references
to that famous actor's pleasantries in the London inns used by the
Queen's Players. It is impossible to date these exactly, but Tarleton
became a member of the Queen's Players in 1583, and he died in 1588.

[Footnote 16: First printed in 1611; reprinted by J.O. Halliwell for
The Shakespeare Society in 1844.]

     At the Bull in Bishops-gate-street, where the Queen's
     Players oftentimes played, Tarleton coming on the stage, one
     from the gallery threw a pippin at him.

     There was one Banks, in the time of Tarleton, who served the
     Earl of Essex, and had a horse of strange qualities; and
     being at the Cross Keys in Gracious Street getting money
     with him, as he was mightily resorted to. Tarleton then,
     with his fellows playing at the Bell by, came into the Cross
     Keys, amongst many people, to see fashions.

     At the Bull at Bishops-gate was a play of Henry the Fifth.

The several "jests" which follow these introductory sentences indicate
that the inn-yards differed in no essential way from the early public

1588. "John Mathews played his master's prize the 31 day of January,
1588, at the Bell Savage without Ludgate."[17]

[Footnote 17: _MS. Sloane_, 2530, f. 6-7, quoted by Halliwell in his
edition of _Tarlton's Jests_, p. xi. There is some difficulty with the
date. One of the "masters" before whom the prize was played was
"Rycharde Tarlton," whom Halliwell takes to be the famous actor of
that name; but Tarleton the actor died on September 3, 1588. Probably
Halliwell in transcribing the manuscript silently modernized the date
from the Old Style.]

1589. In November Lord Burghley directed the Lord Mayor to "give order
for the stay of all plays within the city." In reply the Lord Mayor

     According to which your Lordship's good pleasure, I
     presently sent for such players as I could hear of; so as
     there appeared yesterday before me the Lord Strange's
     Players, to whom I specially gave in charge and required
     them in Her Majesty's name to forbear playing until further
     order might be given for their allowance in that respect.
     Whereupon the Lord Admiral's Players very dutifully obeyed;
     but the others, in very contemptuous manner departing from
     me, went to the Cross Keys and played that afternoon.[18]

[Footnote 18: _Lansdowne MSS._ 60, quoted by Collier, _History of
English Dramatic Poetry_ (1879), I, 265.]

1594. On October 8, Henry, Lord Hunsdon, the Lord Chamberlain and the
patron of Shakespeare's company, wrote to the Lord Mayor:

     After my hearty commendations. Where my now company of
     players have been accustomed for the better exercise of
     their quality, and for the service of Her Majesty if need so
     require, to play this winter time within the city at the
     Cross Keys in Gracious Street, these are to require and pray
     your Lordship (the time being such as, thanks to God, there
     is now no danger of the sickness) to permit and suffer them
     so to do.[19]

[Footnote 19: _The Remembrancia_, The Malone Society's _Collections_,
I, 73.]

By such devices as this the players were usually able to secure
permission to act "within the city" during the disagreeable months of
the winter when the large playhouses in the suburbs were difficult of

1594. Anthony Bacon, the elder brother of Francis, came to lodge in
Bishopsgate Street. This fact very much disturbed his good mother, who
feared lest his servants might be corrupted by the plays to be seen at
the Bull near by.[20]

[Footnote 20: See W. Rendle, _The Inns of Old Southwark_, p. 236.]

1596. William Lambarde, in his _Perambulation of Kent_,[21] observes
that none of those who go "to Paris Garden, the Bell Savage, or
Theatre, to behold bear-baiting, interludes, or fence play, can
account of any pleasant spectacle unless they first pay one penny at
the gate, another at the entry of the scaffold, and the third for a
quiet standing."

[Footnote 21: The passage does not appear in the earlier edition of
1576, though it was probably written shortly after the erection of the
Theatre in the autumn of 1576.]

1602. On March 31 the Privy Council wrote to the Lord Mayor that the
players of the Earl of Oxford and of the Earl of Worcester had been
"joined by agreement together in one company, to whom, upon notice of
Her Majesty's pleasure, at the suit of the Earl of Oxford, toleration
hath been thought meet to be granted." The letter concludes:

     And as the other companies that are allowed, namely of me
     the Lord Admiral, and the Lord Chamberlain, be appointed
     their certain houses, and one and no more to each company,
     so we do straightly require that this third company be
     likewise [appointed] to one place. And because we are
     informed the house called the Boar's Head is the place they
     have especially used and do best like of, we do pray and
     require you that the said house, namely the Boar's Head, may
     be assigned unto them.[22]

[Footnote 22: _The Remembrancia_, The Malone Society's _Collections_,
I, 85.]

That the strong Oxford-Worcester combination should prefer the Boar's
Head to the Curtain or the Rose Playhouse,[23] indicates that the
inn-yard was not only large, but also well-equipped for acting.

[Footnote 23: They had to use the Rose nevertheless; see page 158.]

1604. In a draft of a license to be issued to Queen Anne's Company,
those players are allowed to act "as well within their now usual
houses, called the Curtain and the Boar's Head, within our County of
Middlesex, as in any other playhouse not used by others."[24]

[Footnote 24: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 265.]

In 1608 the Boar's Head seems to have been occupied by the newly
organized Prince Charles's Company. In William Kelly's extracts from
the payments of the city of Leicester we find the entry: "Itm. Given
to the Prince's Players, of Whitechapel, London, xx _s._"

In 1664, as Flecknoe tells us, the Cross Keys and the Bull still gave
evidence of their former use as playhouses; perhaps even then they
were occasionally let for fencing and other contests. In 1666 the
great fire completely destroyed the Bell, the Cross Keys, and the Bell
Savage; the Bull, however, escaped, and enjoyed a prosperous career
for many years after. Samuel Pepys was numbered among its patrons, and
writers of the Restoration make frequent reference to it. What became
of the Boar's Head without Aldgate I am unable to learn; its memory,
however, is perpetuated to-day in Boar's Head Yard, between Middlesex
Street and Goulston Street, Whitechapel.



As the actors rapidly increased in number and importance, and as
Londoners flocked in ever larger crowds to witness plays, the
animosity of two forces was aroused, Puritanism and Civic
Government,--forces which opposed the drama for different reasons, but
with almost equal fervor. And when in the course of time the Governors
of the city themselves became Puritans, the combined animosity thus
produced was sufficient to drive the players out of London into the

The Puritans attacked the drama as contrary to Holy Writ, as
destructive of religion, and as a menace to public morality. Against
plays, players, and playgoers they waged in pulpit and pamphlet a
warfare characterized by the most intense fanaticism. The charges they
made--of ungodliness, idolatrousness, lewdness, profanity, evil
practices, enormities, and "abuses" of all kinds--are far too numerous
to be noted here; they are interesting chiefly for their
unreasonableness and for the violence with which they were urged.

And, after all, however much the Puritans might rage, they were
helpless; authority to restrain acting was vested in the Lord Mayor,
his brethren the Aldermen, and the Common Council. The attitude of
these city officials towards the drama was unmistakable: they had no
more love for the actors than had the Puritans. They found that "plays
and players" gave them more trouble than anything else in the entire
administration of municipal affairs. The dedication of certain "great
inns" to the use of actors and to the entertainment of the
pleasure-loving element of the city created new and serious problems
for those charged with the preservation of civic law and order. The
presence in these inns of private rooms adjoining the yard and
balconies gave opportunity for immorality, gambling, fleecing, and
various other "evil practices"--an opportunity which, if we may
believe the Common Council, was not wasted. Moreover, the proprietors
of these inns made a large share of their profits from the beer, ale,
and other drinks dispensed to the crowds before, during, and after
performances (the proprietor of the Cross Keys, it will be recalled,
was described as "citizen and brewer of London"); and the resultant
intemperance among "such as frequented the said plays, being the
ordinary place of meeting for all vagrant persons, and masterless men
that hang about the city, theeves, horse-stealers, whoremongers,
cozeners, cony-catching persons, practicers of treason, and such other
like,"[25] led to drunkenness, frays, bloodshed, and often to general
disorder. Sometimes, as we know, turbulent apprentices and other
factions met by appointment at plays for the sole purpose of starting
riots or breaking open jails. "Upon Whitsunday," writes the Recorder
to Lord Burghley, "by reason no plays were the same day, all the city
was quiet."[26]

[Footnote 25: So the Lord Mayor characterized playgoers; see _The
Remembrancia_, in The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 75.]

[Footnote 26: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 164.]

Trouble of an entirely different kind arose when in the hot months of
the summer the plague was threatening. The meeting together at plays
of "great multitudes of the basest sort of people" served to spread
the infection throughout the city more quickly and effectively than
could anything else. On such occasions it was exceedingly difficult
for the municipal authorities to control the actors, who were at best
a stubborn and unruly lot; and often the pestilence had secured a full
start before acting could be suppressed.

These troubles, and others which cannot here be mentioned, made one of
the Lord Mayors exclaim in despair: "The Politique State and
Government of this City by no one thing is so greatly annoyed and
disquieted as by players and plays, and the disorders which follow

[Footnote 27: _The Remembrancia_, in The Malone Society's
_Collections_, I, 69.]

This annoyance, serious enough in itself, was aggravated by the fact
that most of the troupes were under the patronage of great noblemen,
and some were even high in favor with the Queen. As a result, the
attempts on the part of the Lord Mayor and his Aldermen to regulate
the players were often interfered with by other or higher authority.
Sometimes it was a particular nobleman, whose request was not to be
ignored, who intervened in behalf of his troupe; most often, however,
it was the Privy Council, representing the Queen and the nobility in
general, which championed the cause of the actors and countermanded
the decrees of the Lord Mayor and his brethren. One of the most
notable things in the City's _Remembrancia_ is this long conflict of
authority between the Common Council and the Privy Council over actors
and acting.

In 1573 the situation seems to have approached a crisis. The Lord
Mayor had become strongly puritanical, and in his efforts to suppress
"stage-plays" was placing more and more obstacles in the way of the
actors. The temper of the Mayor is revealed in two entries in the
records of the Privy Council. On July 13, 1573, the Lords of the
Council sent a letter to him requesting him "to permit liberty to
certain Italian players"; six days later they sent a second letter,
repeating the request, and "marveling that he did it not at their
first request."[28] His continued efforts to suppress the drama
finally led the troupes to appeal for relief to the Privy Council. On
March 22, 1574, the Lords of the Council dispatched "a letter to the
Lord Mayor to advertise their Lordships what causes he hath to
restrain plays." His answer has not been preserved, but that he
persisted in his hostility to the drama is indicated by the fact that
in May the Queen openly took sides with the players. To the Earl of
Leicester's troupe she issued a special royal license, authorizing
them to act "as well within our city of London and liberties of the
same, as also within the liberties and freedoms of any our cities,
towns, boroughs, etc., whatsoever"; and to the mayors and other
officers she gave strict orders not to interfere with such
performances: "Willing and commanding you, and every of you, as ye
tender our pleasure, to permit and suffer them herein without any your
lets, hindrances, or molestation during the term aforesaid, any act,
statute, proclamation, or commandment heretofore made, or hereafter to
be made, to the contrary notwithstanding."

[Footnote 28: Dasent, _Acts of the Privy Council_, VIII, 131, 132.]

This license was a direct challenge to the authority of the Lord
Mayor. He dared not answer it as directly; but on December 6, 1574, he
secured from the Common Council the passage of an ordinance which
placed such heavy restrictions upon acting as virtually to nullify the
license issued by the Queen, and to regain for the Mayor complete
control of the drama within the city. The Preamble of this remarkable
ordinance clearly reveals the puritanical character of the City

     Whereas heretofore sundry great disorders and inconveniences
     have been found to ensue to this city by the inordinate
     haunting of great multitudes of people, specially youths, to
     plays, interludes, and shews: namely, occasion of frays and
     quarrels; evil practises of incontinency in great inns
     having chambers and secret places adjoining to their open
     stages and galleries; inveigling and alluring of maids,
     specially orphans and good citizens' children under age, to
     privy and unmeet contracts; the publishing of unchaste,
     uncomly, and unshamefaced speeches and doings; withdrawing
     of the Queen's Majesty's subjects from divine service on
     Sundays and holy days, at which times such plays were
     chiefly used; unthrifty waste of the money of the poor and
     fond persons; sundry robberies by picking and cutting of
     purses; uttering of popular, busy, and seditious matters;
     and many other corruptions of youth, and other enormities;
     besides that also sundry slaughters and maimings of the
     Queen's subjects have happened by ruins of scaffolds,
     frames, and stages, and by engines, weapons, and powder used
     in plays. And whereas in time of God's visitation by the
     plague such assemblies of the people in throng and press
     have been very dangerous for spreading of infection.... And
     for that the Lord Mayor and his brethren the Aldermen,
     together with the grave and discreet citizens in the Common
     Council assembled, do doubt and fear lest upon God's
     merciful withdrawing his hand of sickness from us (which God
     grant), the people, specially the meaner and most unruly
     sort, should with sudden forgetting of His visitation,
     without fear of God's wrath, and without due respect of the
     good and politique means that He hath ordained for the
     preservation of common weals and peoples in health and good
     order, return to the undue use of such enormities, to the
     great offense of God....[29]

[Footnote 29: For the complete document see W.C. Hazlitt, _The English
Drama and Stage_, p. 27.]

The restrictions on playing imposed by the ordinance may be briefly

1. Only such plays should be acted as were free from all unchastity,
seditiousness, and "uncomely matter."

2. Before being acted all plays should be "first perused and allowed
in such order and form, and by such persons as by the Lord Mayor and
Court of Aldermen for the time being shall be appointed."

3. Inns or other buildings used for acting, and their proprietors,
should both be licensed by the Lord Mayor and the Aldermen.

4. The proprietors of such buildings should be "bound to the
Chamberlain of London" by a sufficient bond to guarantee "the keeping
of good order, and avoiding of" the inconveniences noted in the

5. No plays should be given during the time of sickness, or during any
inhibition ordered at any time by the city authorities.

6. No plays should be given during "any usual time of divine service,"
and no persons should be admitted into playing places until after
divine services were over.

7. The proprietors of such places should pay towards the support of
the poor a sum to be agreed upon by the city authorities.

In order, however, to avoid trouble with the Queen, or those noblemen
who were accustomed to have plays given in their homes for the private
entertainment of themselves and their guests, the Common Council
added, rather grudgingly, the following proviso:

     Provided alway that this act (otherwise than touching the
     publishing of unchaste, seditious, and unmeet matters) shall
     not extend to any plays, interludes, comedies, tragedies, or
     shews to be played or shewed in the private house, dwelling,
     or lodging of any nobleman, citizen, or gentleman, which
     shall or will then have the same there so played or shewed
     in his presence for the festivity of any marriage, assembly
     of friends, or other like cause, without public or common
     collections of money of the auditory or beholders thereof.

Such regulations if strictly enforced would prove very annoying to the
players. But, as the Common Council itself informs us, "these orders
were not then observed." The troupes continued to play in the city,
protected against any violent action on the part of the municipal
authorities by the known favor of the Queen and the frequent
interference of the Privy Council. This state of affairs was not, of
course, comfortable for the actors; but it was by no means desperate,
and for several years after the passage of the ordinance of 1574 they
continued without serious interruption to occupy their inn-playhouses.

The long-continued hostility of the city authorities, however, of
which the ordinance of 1574 was an ominous expression, led more or
less directly to the construction of special buildings devoted to
plays and situated beyond the jurisdiction of the Common Council. As
the Reverend John Stockwood, in _A Sermon Preached at Paules Crosse,
1578_, indignantly puts it:

     Have we not _houses of purpose_, built with great charges
     for the maintenance of plays, and that _without the
     liberties_, as who would say "_There, let them say what they
     will say, we will play!_"

Thus came into existence playhouses; and with them dawned a new era in
the history of the English drama.


Finsbury Field and Holywell. The man walking from the Field towards
Shoreditch is just entering Holywell Lane.

(From Agas's _Map of London_, representing the city as it was about



The hostility of the city to the drama was unquestionably the main
cause of the erection of the first playhouse; yet combined with this
were two other important causes, usually overlooked. The first was the
need of a building specially designed to meet the requirements of the
players and of the public, a need yearly growing more urgent as plays
became more complex, acting developed into a finer art, and audiences
increased in dignity as well as in size. The second and the more
immediate cause was the appearance of a man with business insight
enough to see that such a building would pay. The first playhouse, we
should remember, was not erected by a troupe of actors, but by a
money-seeking individual.[30] Although he was himself an actor, and
the manager of a troupe, he did not, it seems, take the troupe into
his confidence. In complete independence of any theatrical
organization he proceeded with the erection of his building as a
private speculation; and, we are told, he dreamed of the "continual
great profit and commodity through plays that should be used there
every week."

[Footnote 30: I emphasize this point because the opposite is the
accepted opinion. We find it expressed in _The Cambridge History of
English Literature_, VI, 431, as follows: "Certain players, finding
the city obdurate, and unwilling to submit to its severe regulations,
began to look about them for some means of carrying on their business
out of reach of the mayor's authority," etc.]

This man, "the first builder of playhouses,"--and, it might have been
added, the pioneer in a new field of business,--was James Burbage,
originally, as we are told by one who knew him well, "by occupation a
joiner; and reaping but a small living by the same, gave it over and
became a common player in plays."[31] As an actor he was more
successful, for as early as 1572 we find him at the head of
Leicester's excellent troupe.

[Footnote 31: Deposition by Robert Myles, 1592, printed in Wallace's
_The First London Theatre_, p. 141.]

Having in 1575 conceived the notion of erecting a building specially
designed for dramatic entertainments, he was at once confronted with
the problem of a suitable location. Two conditions narrowed his
choice: first, the site had to be outside the jurisdiction of the
Common Council; secondly, it had to be as near as possible to the

No doubt he at once thought of the two suburbs that were specially
devoted to recreation, the Bankside to the south, and Finsbury Field
to the north of the city. The Bankside had for many years been
associated in the minds of Londoners with "sports and pastimes."
Thither the citizens were accustomed to go to witness bear-baiting
and bull-baiting, to practice archery, and to engage in various
athletic sports. Thither, too, for many years the actors had gone to
present their plays. In 1545 King Henry VIII had issued a proclamation
against vagabonds, ruffians, idle persons, and common players,[32] in
which he referred to their "fashions commonly used at the Bank." The
Bankside, however, was associated with the lowest and most vicious
pleasures of London, for here were situated the stews, bordering the
river's edge. Since the players were at this time subject to the
bitterest attacks from the London preachers, Burbage wisely decided
not to erect the first permanent home of the drama in a locality
already a common target for puritan invective.

[Footnote 32: See page 134.]

The second locality, Finsbury Field, had nearly all the advantages,
and none of the disadvantages, of the Bankside. Since 1315 the Field
had been in the possession of the city,[33] and had been used as a
public playground, where families could hold picnics, falconers could
fly their hawks, archers could exercise their sport, and the militia
on holidays could drill with all "the pomp and circumstance of
glorious war." In short, the Field was eminently respectable, was
accessible to the city, and was definitely associated with the idea of
entertainment. The locality, therefore, was almost ideal for the
purpose Burbage had in mind.[34]

[Footnote 33: See _The Remembrancia_, p. 274; Stow, _Survey_. The
Corporation of London held the manor on lease from St. Paul's
Cathedral until 1867.]

[Footnote 34: Doubtless, too, Burbage was influenced in his choice by
the fact that he had already made his home in the Liberty of
Shoreditch, near Finsbury Field.]

The new playhouse, of course, could not be erected in the Field
itself, which was under the control of the city; but just to the east
of the Field certain vacant land, part of the dissolved Priory of
Holywell, offered a site in every way suitable to the purpose. The
Holywell property, at the dissolution of the Priory, had passed under
the jurisdiction of the Crown, and hence the Lord Mayor and the
Aldermen could not enforce municipal ordinances there. Moreover, it
was distant from the city wall not much more than half a mile. The old
conventual church had been demolished, the Priory buildings had been
converted into residences, and the land near the Shoreditch highway
had been built up with numerous houses. The land next to the Field,
however, was for the most part undeveloped. It contained some
dilapidated tenements, a few old barns formerly belonging to the
Priory, and small garden plots, conspicuous objects in the early maps.


Finsbury Field lies to the north (beyond Moor Field, the small
rectangular space next to the city wall), and the Holywell Property
lies to the right of Finsbury Field, between the Field and the
highway. Holywell Lane divides the garden plots; the Theatre was
erected just to the north, and the Curtain just to the south of this
lane, facing the Field. (From the _Map of London_ by Braun and
Hogenbergius representing the city as it was in 1554-1558.)]

Burbage learned that a large portion of this land lying next to the
Field was in the possession of a well-to-do gentleman named Gyles
Alleyn,[35] and that Alleyn was willing to lease a part of his
holding on the conditions of development customary in this section of
London. These conditions are clearly revealed in a chancery suit of

     The ground there was for the most part converted first into
     garden plots, and then leasing the same to diverse tenants
     caused them to covenant or promise to build upon the same,
     by occasion whereof the buildings which are there were for
     the most part erected and the rents increased.[36]

[Footnote 35: For a detailed history of the property from the year
1128, and for the changes in the ownership of Alleyn's portion after
the dissolution, see Braines, _Holywell Priory_.]

[Footnote 36: Halliwell-Phillipps, _Outlines_, I, 365. The suit
concerns the Curtain property, somewhat south of the Alleyn property,
but a part of the Priory.]

The part of Alleyn's property on which Burbage had his eye was in sore
need of improvement. It consisted of five "paltry tenements,"
described as "old, decayed, and ruinated for want of reparation, and
the best of them was but of two stories high," and a long barn "very
ruinous and decayed and ready to have fallen down," one half of which
was used as a storage-room, the other half as a slaughter-house. Three
of the tenements had small gardens extending back to the Field, and
just north of the barn was a bit of "void ground," also adjoining the
Field. It was this bit of "void ground" that Burbage had selected as a
suitable location for his proposed playhouse. The accompanying map of
the property[37] will make clear the position of this "void ground"
and of the barns and tenements about it. Moreover, it will serve to
indicate the exact site of the Theatre. If one will bear in mind the
fact that in the London of to-day Curtain Road marks the eastern
boundary of Finsbury Field, and New Inn Yard cuts off the lower half
of the Great Barn, he will be able to place Burbage's structure within
a few yards.[38]

[Footnote 37: I have based this map in large measure on the documents
presented by Braines in his excellent pamphlet, _Holywell Priory_.]

[Footnote 38: For proof see Braines, _op. cit._]


Based on the lease, and on the miscellaneous documents printed by
Halliwell-Phillipps and by Braines. The "common sewer" is now marked
by Curtain Road, and the "ditch from the horse-pond" by New Inn Yard.]

The property is carefully described in the lease--quoted below--which
Burbage secured from Alleyn, but the reader will need to refer to the
map in order to follow with ease the several paragraphs of

     All those two houses or tenements, with appurtenances, which
     at the time of the said former demise made were in the
     several tenures or occupations of Joan Harrison, widow, and
     John Dragon.

     And also all that house or tenement with the appurtenances,
     together with the garden ground lying behind part of the
     same, being then likewise in the occupation of William
     Gardiner; which said garden plot doth extend in breadth from
     a great stone wall there which doth enclose part of the
     garden then or lately being in the occupation of the said
     Gyles, unto the garden there then in the occupation of Edwin
     Colefox, weaver, and in length from the same house or
     tenement unto a brick wall there next unto the fields
     commonly called Finsbury Fields.

     And also all that house or tenement, with the appurtenances,
     at the time of the said former demise made called or known
     by the name of the Mill-house; together with the garden
     ground lying behind part of the same, also at the time of
     the said former demise made being in the tenure or
     occupation of the aforesaid Edwin Colefox, or of his
     assigns; which said garden ground doth extend in length from
     the same house or tenement unto the aforesaid brick wall
     next unto the aforesaid Fields.

     And also all those three upper rooms, with the
     appurtenances, next adjoining to the aforesaid Mill-house,
     also being at the time of the said former demise made in the
     occupation of Thomas Dancaster, shoemaker, or of his
     assigns; and also all the nether rooms, with the
     appurtenances, lying under the same three upper rooms, and
     next adjoining also to the aforesaid house or tenement
     called the Mill-house, then also being in the several
     tenures or occupations of Alice Dotridge, widow, and Richard
     Brockenbury, or of their assigns; together with the garden
     ground lying behind the same, extending in length from the
     same nether rooms down unto the aforesaid brick wall next
     unto the aforesaid Fields, and then or late being also in
     the tenure or occupation of the aforesaid Alice Dotridge.

     And also so much of the ground and soil lying and being
     afore all the tenements or houses before granted, as
     extendeth in length from the outward part of the aforesaid
     tenements being at the time of the making of the said former
     demise in the occupation of the aforesaid Joan Harrison and
     John Dragon, unto a pond there being next unto the barn or
     stable then in the occupation of the right honorable the
     Earl of Rutland or of his assigns, and in breadth from the
     aforesaid tenement or Mill-house to the midst of the well
     being afore the same tenements.

     And also all that Great Barn, with the appurtenances, at the
     time of the making of the said former demise made being in
     the several occupations of Hugh Richards, innholder, and
     Robert Stoughton, butcher; and also a little piece of ground
     then inclosed with a pale and next adjoining to the
     aforesaid barn, and then or late before that in the
     occupation of the said Robert Stoughton; together also with
     all the ground and soil lying and being between the said
     nether rooms last before expressed, and the aforesaid Great
     Barn, and the aforesaid pond; that is to say, extending in
     length from the aforesaid pond unto a ditch beyond the brick
     wall next the aforesaid Fields.

     And also the said Gyles Alleyn and Sara his wife do by these
     presents demise, grant, and to farm lett unto the said James
     Burbage all the right, title, and interest which the said
     Gyles and Sara have or ought to have in or to all the
     grounds and soil lying between the aforesaid Great Barn and
     the barn being at the time of the said former demise in the
     occupation of the Earl of Rutland or of his assigns,
     extending in length from the aforesaid pond and from the
     aforesaid stable or barn then in the occupation of the
     aforesaid Earl of Rutland or of his assigns, down to the
     aforesaid brick wall next the aforesaid Fields.[40]

     And also the said Gyles and Sara do by these presents
     demise, grant, and to farm lett to the said James all the
     said void ground lying and being betwixt the aforesaid ditch
     and the aforesaid brick wall, extending in length from the
     aforesaid [great stone] wall[41] which encloseth part of the
     aforesaid garden being at the time of the making of the said
     former demise or late before that in the occupation of the
     said Gyles Allen, unto the aforesaid barn then in the
     occupation of the aforesaid Earl or of his assigns.

[Footnote 39: The original lease may be found incorporated in Alleyn
_v._ Street, Coram Rege, 1599-1600, printed in full by Wallace, _The
First London Theatre_, pp. 163-80, and again in Alleyn _v._ Burbage,
Queen's Bench, 1602, Wallace, _op. cit._, pp. 267-75. The lease, I
think, was in English not Latin, and hence is more correctly given in
the first document; in the second document the scrivener has
translated it into Latin. The lease is also given in part on page

[Footnote 40: This part of the property was claimed by the Earl of
Rutland, and was being used by him. For a long time it was the subject
of dispute. Ultimately, it seems, the Earl secured the title, as he
had always had the use of the property. This probably explains why
Burbage did not attempt to erect his playhouse there.]

[Footnote 41: The document by error reads "brick wall" but the mistake
is obvious, and the second version of the lease does not repeat the
error. This clause merely means that the ditch, not the brick wall,
constituted the western boundary of the property.]

The lease was formally signed on April 13, 1576, and Burbage entered
into the possession of his property. Since the terms of the lease are
important for an understanding of the subsequent history of the
playhouse, I shall set these forth briefly:

First, the lease was to run for twenty-one years from April 13, 1576,
at an annual rental of £14.

Secondly, Burbage was to spend before the expiration of ten years the
sum of £200 in rebuilding and improving the decayed tenements.

Thirdly, in view of this expenditure of £200, Burbage was to have at
the end of the ten years the right to renew the lease at the same
rental of £14 a year for twenty-one years, thus making the lease good
in all for thirty-one years:

     And the said Gyles Alleyn and Sara his wife did thereby
     covenant with the said James Burbage that they should and
     would at any time within the ten years next ensuing at or
     upon the lawful request or demand of the said James Burbage
     make or cause to be made to the said James Burbage a new
     lease or grant like to the same presents for the term of one
     and twenty years more, to begin from the date of making the
     same lease, yielding therefor the rent reserved in the
     former indenture.[42]

[Footnote 42: Quoted from Burbage _v._ Alleyn, Court of Requests,
1600, Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 182. I have stripped the passage of some
of its legal verbiage.]

Fourthly, it was agreed that at any time before the expiration of the
lease, Burbage might take down and carry away to his own use any
building that in the mean time he might have erected on the vacant
ground for the purpose of a playhouse:

     And farther, the said Gyles Alleyn and Sara his wife did
     covenant and grant to the said James Burbage that it should
     and might be lawful to the said James Burbage (in
     consideration of the imploying and bestowing the foresaid
     two hundred pounds in forme aforesaid) at any time or times
     before the end of the said term of one and twenty years, to
     have, take down, and carry away to his own proper use for
     ever all such buildings and other things as should be
     builded, erected, or set up in or upon the gardens and void
     grounds by the said James, either for a theatre or playing
     place, or for any other lawful use, without any stop, claim,
     let, trouble, or interruption of the said Gyles Alleyn and
     Sara his wife.[43]

[Footnote 43: Quoted from Burbage _v._ Alleyn, Court of Requests,
1600, Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 182.]

Protected by these specific terms, Burbage proceeded to the erection
of his playhouse. He must have had faith and abundant courage, for he
was a poor man, quite unequal to the large expenditures called for by
his plans. A person who had known him for many years, deposed in 1592
that "James Burbage was not at the time of the first beginning of the
building of the premises worth above one hundred marks[44] in all his
substance, for he and this deponent were familiarly acquainted long
before that time and ever since."[45] We are not surprised to learn,
therefore, that he was "constrained to borrow diverse sums of money,"
and that he actually pawned the lease itself to a money-lender.[46]
Even so, without assistance, we are told, he "should never be able to
build it, for it would cost five times as much as he was worth."

[Footnote 44: That is, about £80.]

[Footnote 45: Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 134; cf. p. 153.]

[Footnote 46: Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 151. Cuthbert Burbage declared
in 1635: "The Theatre he built with many hundred pounds taken up at
interest." (Halliwell-Phillipps, _Outlines_, I, 317.)]

Fortunately he had a wealthy brother-in-law, John Brayne,[47] a London
grocer, described as "worth five hundred pounds at the least, and by
common fame worth a thousand marks."[48] In some way Brayne became
interested in the new venture. Like Burbage, he believed that large
profits would flow from such a novel undertaking; and as a result he
readily agreed to share the expense of erecting and maintaining the
building. Years later members of the Brayne faction asserted that
James Burbage "induced" his brother-in-law to venture upon the
enterprise by unfairly representing the great profits to ensue;[49]
but the evidence, I think, shows that Brayne eagerly sought the
partnership. Burbage himself asserted in 1588 that Brayne "practiced
to obtain some interest therein," and presumed "that he might easily
compass the same by reason that he was natural brother"; and that he
voluntarily offered to "bear and pay half the charges of the said
building then bestowed and thereafter to be bestowed" in order "that
he might have the moiety[50] of the above named Theatre."[51] As a
further inducement, so the Burbages asserted, he promised that "for
that he had no children," the moiety at his death should go to the
children of James Burbage, "whose advancement he then seemed greatly
to tender."

[Footnote 47: The name is often spelled "Braynes."]

[Footnote 48: Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 109.]

[Footnote 49: See Wallace, _op. cit._, pp. 139 _seq._]

[Footnote 50: That is, half-interest.]

[Footnote 51: Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 40.]

Whatever caused Brayne to interest himself in the venture, he quickly
became fired with such hopes of great gain that he not only spent upon
the building all the money he could gather or borrow, but sold his
stock of groceries for £146, disposed of his house for £100, even
pawned his clothes, and put his all into the new structure. The spirit
in which he worked to make the venture a success, and the personal
sacrifices that he and his wife made, fully deserve the quotation
here of two legal depositions bearing on the subject:

     This deponent, being servant, in Bucklersbury, aforesaid, to
     one Robert Kenningham, grocer, in which street the said John
     Brayne dwelled also, and of the same trade, he, the said
     Brayne, at the time he joined with the said James Burbage in
     the aforesaid lease, was reputed among his neighbors to be
     worth one thousand pounds at the least, and that after he
     had joined with the said Burbage in the matter of the
     building of the said Theatre, he began to slack his own
     trade, and gave himself to the building thereof, and the
     chief care thereof he took upon him, and hired workmen of
     all sorts for that purpose, bought timber and all other
     things belonging thereunto, and paid all. So as, in this
     deponent's conscience, he bestowed thereupon for his owne
     part the sum of one thousand marks at the least, in so much
     as his affection was given so greatly to the finishing
     thereof, in hope of great wealth and profit during their
     lease, that at the last he was driven to sell to this
     deponent's father his lease of the house wherein he dwelled
     for £100, and to this deponent all such wares as he had left
     and all that belonged thereunto remaining in the same, for
     the sum of £146 and odd money, whereof this deponent did pay
     for him to one Kymbre, an ironmonger in London, for iron
     work which the said Brayne bestowed upon the said Theatre,
     the sum of £40. And afterwards the said Brayne took the
     matter of the said building so upon him as he was driven to
     borrow money to supply the same, saying to this deponent
     that his brother Burbage was not able to help the same, and
     that he found not towards it above the value of fifty
     pounds, some part in mony and the rest in stuff.[52]

[Footnote 52: Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 136.]

In reading the next deposition, one should bear in mind the fact that
the deponent, Robert Myles, was closely identified with the Brayne
faction, and was, therefore, a bitter enemy to the Burbages. Yet his
testimony, though prejudiced, gives us a vivid picture of Brayne's
activity in the building of the Theatre:

     So the said John Brayne made a great sum of money of purpose
     and intent to go to the building of the said playhouse, and
     thereupon did provide timber and other stuff needful for the
     building thereof, and hired carpenters and plasterers for
     the same purpose, and paid the workmen continually. So as he
     for his part laid out of his own purse and what upon credit
     about the same to the sum of £600 or £700 at the least. And
     in the same time, seeing the said James Burbage nothing able
     either of himself or by his credit to contribute any like
     sum towards the building thereof, being then to be finished
     or else to be lost that had been bestowed upon it already,
     the said Brayne was driven to sell his house he dwelled in
     in Bucklersbury, and all his stock that was left, and give
     up his trade, yea in the end to pawn and sell both his own
     garments and his wife's, and to run in debt to many for
     money, to finish the said playhouse, and so to employ
     himself only upon that matter, and all whatsoever he could
     make, to his utter undoing, for he saieth that in the latter
     end of the finishing thereof, the said Brayne and his wife,
     the now complainants, were driven to labor in the said work
     for saving of some of the charge in place of two laborers,
     whereas the said James Burbage went about his own business,
     and at sometimes when he did take upon him to do some thing
     in the said work, he would be and was allowed a workman's
     hire as other the workman there had.[53]

[Footnote 53: Brayne _v._ Burbage, 1592. Printed in full by Wallace,
_op cit._ p. 141.]

The last fling at Burbage is quite gratuitous; yet it is probably true
that the main costs of erecting the playhouse fell upon the shoulders
of Brayne. The evidence is contradictory; some persons assert that
Burbage paid half the cost of the building,[54] others that Brayne
paid nearly all,[55] and still others content themselves with saying
that Brayne paid considerably more than half. The last statement may
be accepted as true. The assertion of Gyles Alleyn in 1601, that the
Theatre was "erected at the costs and charges of one Brayne and not of
the said James Burbage, to the value of one thousand marks,"[56] is
doubtless incorrect; more correct is the assertion of Robert Myles,
executor of the Widow Brayne's will, in 1597: "The said John Brayne
did join with the said James [Burbage] in the building aforesaid, and
did expend thereupon greater sums than the said James, that is to say,
at least five or six hundred pounds."[57] Since there is evidence
that the playhouse ultimately cost about £700,[58] we might hazard the
guess that of this sum Brayne furnished about £500,[59] and Burbage
about £200. To equalize the expenditure it was later agreed that "the
said Brayne should take and receive all the rents and profits of the
said Theatre to his own use until he should be answered such sums of
money which he had laid out for and upon the same Theatre more than
the said Burbage had done."[60]

[Footnote 54: Wallace, _op. cit._, pp. 213, 217, 263, 265, _et al._]

[Footnote 55: Wallace, _op. cit._, pp. 137, 141, 142, 148, 153.]

[Footnote 56: Alleyn _v._ Burbage, Star Chamber Proceedings, 1601-02;
printed by Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 277.]

[Footnote 57: Myles _v._ Burbage and Alleyn, 1597; printed by Wallace,
_op. cit._, p. 159; cf. pp. 263, 106, 152.]

[Footnote 58: See Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 277.]

[Footnote 59: This agrees with the claim of Brayne's widow.]

[Footnote 60: Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 120.]

But if Burbage at the outset was "nothing able to contribute any"
great sum of ready money towards the building of the first playhouse,
he did contribute other things equally if not more important. In the
first place, he conceived the idea, and he carried it as far towards
realization as his means allowed. In the second place, he planned the
building--its stage as well as its auditorium--to meet the special
demands of the actors and the comfort of the audience. This called for
bold originality and for ingenuity of a high order, for, it must be
remembered, he had no model to study--he was designing the first
structure of its kind in England.[61] For this task he was well
prepared. In the first place, he was an actor of experience; in the
second place, he was the manager of one of the most important troupes
in England; and, in the third place, he was by training and early
practice a carpenter and builder. In other words, he had exact
knowledge of what was needed, and the practical skill to meet those

[Footnote 61: Mr. E.K. Chambers (_The Mediæval Stage_, I, 383, note 2;
II, 190, note 4) calls attention to a "theatre" belonging to the city
of Essex as early as 1548. Possibly the Latin document he cites
referred to an amphitheatre of some sort near the city which was used
for dramatic performances; at any rate "in theatro" does not
necessarily imply the existence of a playhouse (cf., for example, _op.
cit._, I, 81-82). There is also a reference (quoted by Chambers, _op.
cit._, II, 191, note 1, from _Norfolk Archæology_, XI, 336) to a
"game-house" built by the corporation of Yarmouth in 1538 for dramatic
performances. What kind of house this was we do not know, but the
corporation leased it for other purposes, with the proviso that it
should be available "at all such times as any interludes or plays
should be ministered or played." Howes, in his continuation of Stow's
_Annals_ (1631), p. 1004, declares that before Burbage's time he
"neither knew, heard, nor read of any such theatres, set stages, or
playhouses as have been purposely built, within man's memory"; and
Cuthbert Burbage confidently asserted that his father "was the first
builder of playhouses"--an assertion which, I think, cannot well be

The building that he designed and erected he named--as by virtue of
priority he had a right to do--"The Theatre."

Of the Theatre, unfortunately, we have no pictorial representation,
and no formal description, so that our knowledge of its size, shape,
and general arrangement must be derived from scattered and
miscellaneous sources. That the building was large we may feel sure;
the cost of its erection indicates as much. The Fortune, one of the
largest and handsomest of the later playhouses, cost only £520, and
the Hope, also very large, cost £360. The Theatre, therefore, built at
a cost of £700, could not have been small. It is commonly referred to,
even so late as 1601, as "the great house called the Theatre," and the
author of _Skialetheia_ (1598) applied to it the significant adjective
"vast." Burbage, no doubt, had learned from his experience as manager
of a troupe the pecuniary advantage of having an auditorium large
enough to receive all who might come. Exactly how many people his
building could accommodate we cannot say. The Reverend John Stockwood,
in 1578, exclaims bitterly: "Will not a filthy play, with the blast of
a trumpet, sooner call thither a thousand than an hour's tolling of
the bell bring to the sermon a hundred?"[62] And Fleetwood, the City
Recorder, in describing a quarrel which took place in 1584 "at Theatre
door," states that "near a thousand people" quickly assembled when the
quarrel began.

[Footnote 62: The rest of his speech indicates that he had the Theatre
in mind. The passage, of course, is rhetorical.]

In shape the building was probably polygonal, or circular. I see no
good reason for supposing that it was square; Johannes de Witt
referred to it as an "amphitheatre," and the Curtain, erected the
following year in imitation, was probably polygonal.[63] It was built
of timber, and its exterior, no doubt, was--as in the case of
subsequent playhouses--of lime and plaster. The interior consisted of
three galleries surrounding an open space called the "yard." The
German traveler, Samuel Kiechel, who visited London in the autumn of
1585, described the playhouses--i.e., the Theatre and the Curtain--as
"singular [_sonderbare_] houses, which are so constructed that they
have about three galleries, one above the other."[64] And Stephen
Gosson, in _Plays Confuted_ (_c._ 1581) writes: "In the playhouses at
London, it is the fashion for youths to go first into the yard, and to
carry their eye through every gallery; then, like unto ravens, where
they spy the carrion, thither they fly, and press as near to the
fairest as they can." The "yard" was unroofed, and all persons there
had to stand during the entire performance. The galleries, however,
were protected by a roof, were divided into "rooms," and were provided
for the most part with seats. Gyles Alleyn inserted in the lease he
granted to Burbage the following condition:

     And further, that it shall or may [be] lawful for the said
     Gyles and for his wife and family, upon lawful request
     therefor made to the said James Burbage, his executors or
     assigns, to enter or come into the premises, and there in
     some one of the upper rooms to have such convenient place to
     sit or stand to see such plays as shall be there played,
     freely without anything therefor paying.[65]

[Footnote 63: One cannot be absolutely sure, yet the whole history of
early playhouses indicates that the Theatre was polygonal (or
circular) in shape. The only reason for suspecting that it might have
been square, doubtfully presented by T.S. Graves in "The Shape of the
First London Theatre" (_The South Atlantic Quarterly_, July, 1914),
seems to me to deserve no serious consideration.]

[Footnote 64: Quoted by W.B. Rye, _England as Seen by Foreigners_, p.

[Footnote 65: Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 177.]

The stage was a platform, projecting into the yard, with a
tiring-house at the rear, and a balcony overhead. The details of the
stage, no doubt, were subject to alteration as experience suggested,
for its materials were of wood, and histrionic and dramatic art were
both undergoing rapid development.[66] The furnishings and
decorations, as in the case of modern playhouses, seem to have been
ornate. Thus T[homas] W[hite], in _A Sermon Preached at Pawles Crosse,
on Sunday the Thirde of November, 1577_, exclaims: "Behold the
sumptuous Theatre houses, a continual monument of London's
prodigality"; John Stockwood, in _A Sermon Preached at Paules Cross,
1578_, refers to it as "the gorgeous playing place erected in the
Fields"; and Gabriel Harvey could think of no more appropriate epithet
for it than "painted"--"painted theatres," "painted stage."

[Footnote 66: There is no reason whatever to suppose, with Ordish,
Mantzius, Lawrence, and others, that the stage of the Theatre was
removable; for although the building was frequently used by fencers,
tumblers, etc., it was never, so far as I can discover, used for

The building was doubtless used for dramatic performances in the
autumn of 1576, although it was not completed until later; John
Grigges, one of the carpenters, deposed that Burbage and Brayne
"finished the same with the help of the profits that grew by plays
used there before it was fully finished."[67] Access to the playhouse
was had chiefly by way of Finsbury Field and a passage made by Burbage
through the brick wall mentioned in the lease.[68]

[Footnote 67: Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 135.]

[Footnote 68: For depositions to this effect see Halliwell-Phillipps,
_Outlines_, I, 350 ff.]

The terms under which the owners let it to the actors were simple: the
actors retained as their share the pennies paid at the outer doors for
general admission, and the proprietors received as their share the
money paid for seats or standings in the galleries.[69] Cuthbert
Burbage states in 1635: "The players that lived in those first times
had only the profits arising from the doors, but now the players
receive all the comings in at the doors to themselves, and half the

[Footnote 69: I suspect that the same terms were made with the actors
by the proprietors of the inn-playhouses.]

[Footnote 70: Halliwell-Phillipps, _Outlines_, I, 317.]

Before the expiration of two years, or in the early summer of 1578,
Burbage and Brayne began to quarrel about the division of the money
which fell to their share. Brayne apparently thought that he should at
once be indemnified for all the money he had expended on the playhouse
in excess of Burbage; and he accused Burbage of "indirect
dealing"--there were even whispers of "a secret key" to the "common
box" in which the money was kept.[71] Finally they agreed to "submit
themselves to the order and arbitrament of certain persons for the
pacification thereof," and together they went to the shop of a notary
public to sign a bond agreeing to abide by the decision of the
arbitrators. There they "fell a reasoning together," in the course of
which Brayne asserted that he had disbursed in the Theatre "three
times at the least as much more as the sum then disbursed by the said
James Burbage." In the end Brayne unwisely hinted at "ill dealing" on
the part of Burbage, whereupon "Burbage did there strike him with his
fist, and so they went together by the ears, in so much," says the
notary, "that this deponent could hardly part them." After they were
parted, they signed a bond of £200 to abide by the decision of the
arbitrators. The arbitrators, John Hill and Richard Turnor, "men of
great honesty and credit," held their sessions "in the Temple church,"
whither they summoned witnesses. Finally, on July 12, 1578, after
"having thoroughly heard" both sides, they awarded that the profits
from the Theatre should be used first to pay the debts upon the
building, then to pay Brayne the money he had expended in excess of
Burbage, and thereafter to be shared "in divident equally between
them."[72] These conditions, however, were not observed, and the
failure to observe them led to much subsequent discord.

[Footnote 71: Wallace, _op. cit._, pp. 142, 148.]

[Footnote 72: For the history of this quarrel, and for other details
of the award see Wallace, _op. cit._, pp. 102, 119, 138, 142, 143,
148, 152.]

The arbitrators also decided that "if occasion should move them
[Burbage and Brayne] to borrow any sum of money for the payment of
their debts owing for any necessary use and thing concerning the said
Theatre, that then the said James Burbage and the said John Brayne
should _join_ in pawning or mortgageing of their estate and interest
of and in the same."[73] An occasion for borrowing money soon arose.
So on September 26, 1579, the two partners mortgaged the Theatre to
John Hide for the sum of £125 8_s._ 11_d._ At the end of a year, by
non-payment, they forfeited the mortgage, and the legal title to the
property passed to Hide. It seems, however, that because of some
special clause in the mortgage Hide was unable to expel Burbage and
Brayne, or to dispose of the property to others. Hence he took no
steps to seize the Theatre; but he constantly annoyed the occupants by
arrest and otherwise. This unfortunate transference of the title to
Hide was the cause of serious quarreling between the Burbages and the
Braynes, and finally led to much litigation.

[Footnote 73: Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 103.]

In 1582 a more immediate disaster threatened the owners of the
Theatre. One Edmund Peckham laid claim to the land on which the
playhouse had been built, and brought suit against Alleyn for
recovery. More than that, Peckham tried to take actual possession of
the playhouse, so that Burbage "was fain to find men at his own charge
to keep the possession thereof from the said Peckham and his
servants," and was even "once in danger of his own life by keeping
possession thereof." As a result of this state of affairs, Burbage
"was much disturbed and troubled in his possession of the Theatre, and
could not quietly and peaceably enjoy the same. And therefore the
players forsook the said Theatre, to his great loss."[74] In order to
reimburse himself in some measure for this loss Burbage retained £30
of the rental due to Alleyn. The act led to a bitter quarrel with
Alleyn, and figured conspicuously in the subsequent litigation that
came near overwhelming the Theatre.

[Footnote 74: See Wallace, _op. cit._, pp. 201, 239, 240, 242.]

In 1585 Burbage, having spent the stipulated £200 in repairing and
rebuilding the tenements on the premises, sought to renew the lease,
according to the original agreement, for the extended period of
twenty-one years. On November 20, 1585, he engaged three skilled
workmen to view the buildings and estimate the sum he had disbursed in
improvements. They signed a formal statement to the effect that in
their opinion at least £220 had been thus expended on the premises.
Burbage then "tendered unto the said Alleyn a new lease devised by his
counsel, ready written and engrossed, with labels and wax thereunto
affixed, agreeable to the covenant." But Alleyn refused to sign the
document. He maintained that the new lease was not a verbatim copy of
the old lease, that £200 had not been expended on the buildings, and
that Burbage was a bad tenant and owed him rent. In reality, Alleyn
wanted to extort a larger rental than £14 for the property, which had
greatly increased in value.

On July 18, 1586, Burbage engaged six men, all expert laborers, to
view the buildings again and estimate the cost of the improvements.
They expressed the opinion in writing that Burbage had expended at
least £240 in developing the property.[75] Still Alleyn refused to
sign an extension of the lease. His conduct must have been very
exasperating to the owner of the Theatre. Cuthbert Burbage tells us
that his father "did often in gentle manner solicit and require the
said Gyles Alleyn for making a new lease of the said premises
according to the purporte and effect of the said covenant." But
invariably Alleyn found some excuse for delay.

[Footnote 75: Wallace, _op. cit._, pp. 229, 234, 228, 233.]

The death of Brayne, in August, 1586, led John Hide, who by reason of
the defaulted mortgage was legally the owner of the Theatre, to
redouble his efforts to collect his debt. He "gave it out in speech
that he had set over and assigned the said lease and bonds to one
George Clough, his ... father-in-law (but in truth he did not so),"
and "the said Clough, his father-in-law, did go about to put the said
defendant [Burbage] out of the Theatre, or at least did threaten to
put him out." As we have seen, there was a clause in the mortgage
which prevented Hide from ejecting Burbage;[76] yet Clough was able to
make so much trouble, "divers and sundry times" visiting the Theatre,
that at last Burbage undertook to settle the debt out of the profits
of the playhouse. As Robert Myles deposed in 1592, Burbage allowed the
widow of Brayne for "a certain time to take and receive the one-half
of the profits of the galleries of the said Theatre ... then on a
sudden he would not suffer her to receive any more of the profits
there, saying that he must take and receive all till he had paid the
debts. And then she was constrained, as his servant, to gather the
money and to deliver it unto him."[77]

[Footnote 76: Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 55.]

[Footnote 77: _Ibid._, p. 105.]

For some reason, however, the debt was not settled, and Hide continued
his futile demands. Several times Burbage offered to pay the sum in
full if the title of the Theatre were made over to his son Cuthbert
Burbage; and Brayne's widow made similar offers in an endeavor to gain
the entire property for herself. But Hide, who seems to have been an
honest man, always declared that since Burbage and Brayne "did jointly
mortgage it unto him" he was honor-bound to assign the property back
to Burbage and the widow of Brayne jointly. So matters stood for a

At last, however, in 1589, Hide declared that "since he had forborne
his money so long, he could do it no more, so as they that came first
should have it of him." Thereupon Cuthbert Burbage came bringing not
only the money in hand, but also a letter from his master and patron,
Walter Cape, gentleman usher to the Lord High Treasurer, requesting
Hide to make over the Theatre to Cuthbert, and promising in return to
assist Hide with the Lord Treasurer when occasion arose. Under this
pressure, Hide accepted full payment of his mortgage, and made over
the title of the property to Cuthbert Burbage. Thus Brayne's widow was
legally excluded from any share in the ownership of the Theatre. Myles
deposed, in 1592, that henceforth Burbage "would not suffer her to
meddle in the premises, but thrust her out of all."

This led at once to a suit, in which Robert Myles acted for the widow.
He received an order from the Court of Chancery in her favor, and
armed with this, and accompanied by two other persons, he came on
November 16, 1590, to Burbage's "dwelling house near the Theatre,"
called to the door Cuthbert Burbage, and in "rude and exclamable sort"
demanded "the moiety of the said Theatre." James Burbage "being within
the house, hearing a noise at the door, went to the door, and there
found his son, the said Cuthbert, and the said Myles speaking loud
together." Words were bandied, until finally Burbage, "dared by the
same Myles with great threats and words that he would do this and
could do that," lost his temper, and threatened to beat Myles off the

[Footnote 78: Wallace, _op. cit._, pp. 57, 60, 62.]

Next the widow, attended by Robert Myles and others, visited the home
of the Burbages "to require them to perform the said award" of the
court. They were met by James Burbage's wife, who "charged them to go
out of her grounds, or else she would make her son break their knaves'
heads." Aroused by this noise, "James Burbage, her husband, looking
out a window upon them, called the complainant [Widow Brayne]
murdering whore, and ... the others villaines, rascals, and knaves."
And when Mistress Brayne spoke of the order of the court, "he cryed
unto her, 'Go, go. A cart, a cart for you! I will obey no such order,
nor I care not for any such orders, and therefore it were best for you
and your companions to be packing betimes, for if my son [Cuthbert]
come he will thump you hence!'" Just then Cuthbert did "come home, and
in very hot sort bid them get thence, or else he would set them
forwards, saying 'I care for no such order. The Chancery shall not
give away what I have paid for.'" And so, after "great and horrible
oathes" by James Burbage and his son, the widow and her attendants
"went their ways."[79]

[Footnote 79: _Ibid._, p. 121.]

Receiving thus no satisfaction from these visits to the home of James
Burbage, the widow and Robert Myles came several times to the Theatre,
bearing the order of the court in their hands; but each time they were
railed upon and driven out. Finally, the widow, with her ever-faithful
adjutant Robert Myles, his son Ralph, and his business partner,
Nicholas Bishop, went "to the Theatre upon a play-day to stand at the
door that goeth up to the galleries of the said Theatre to take and
receive for the use of the said Margaret half of the money that should
be given to come up into the said gallery." In the Theatre they were
met by Richard Burbage, then about nineteen years old, and his mother,
who "fell upon the said Robert Myles and beat him with a broom staff,
calling him murdering knave." When Myles's partner, Bishop, ventured
to protest at this contemptuous treatment of the order of the court,
"the said Richard Burbage," so Bishop deposed, "scornfully and
disdainfully playing with this deponent's nose, said that if he dealt
in the matter, he would beat him also, and did challenge the field of
him at that time." One of the actors then coming in, John
Alleyn--brother of the immortal Edward Alleyn--"found the foresaid
Richard Burbage, the youngest son of the said James Burbage, there
with a broom staff in his hand; of whom when this deponent Alleyn
asked what stir was there, he answered in laughing phrase how they
came for a moiety, 'But,' quod he (holding up the said broom staff)
'I have, I think, delivered him a moiety with this, and sent them
packing.'" Alleyn thereupon warned the Burbages that Myles could bring
an action of assault and battery against them. "'Tush,' quod the
father, 'no, I warrant you; but where my son hath now beat him hence,
my sons, if they will be ruled by me, shall at their next coming
provide charged pistols, with powder and hempseed, to shoot them in
the legs.'"[80]

[Footnote 80: Wallace, _op. cit._, pp. 63, 97, 100, 101, 114.]

But if the Burbages could laugh at the efforts of Myles and the widow
to secure a moiety of the Theatre from Cuthbert, they were seriously
troubled by the continued refusal of Gyles Alleyn to renew the lease.
James Burbage many times urged his landlord to fulfill the original
agreement, but in vain. At last, Alleyn, "according to his own will
and discretion, did cause a draft of a lease to be drawn, wherein were
inserted many unreasonable covenants." The new conditions imposed by
Alleyn were: (1) that Burbage should pay a rental of £24 instead of
£14 a year; (2) that he should use the Theatre as a place for acting
for only five years after the expiration of the original
twenty-one-year lease, and should then convert the building to other
uses; (3) that he should ultimately leave the building in the
possession of Alleyn.[81] The first and third conditions, though
unjust, Burbage was willing to accept, but the second condition--that
he should cease to use the Theatre for plays--he "utterly refused" to

[Footnote 81: See Wallace, _op. cit._, pp. 195, 212, 216, 250, 258,
_et al._]

Finally, perceiving that it was useless to deal further with Alleyn,
he made plans to secure a new playhouse in the district of
Blackfriars, a district which, although within the city walls, was not
under the jurisdiction of the city authorities. He purchased there the
old Blackfriars refectory for £600, and then at great expense made the
refectory into a playhouse. But certain influential noblemen and
others living near by protested against this, and the Privy Council
ordered that the building should not be used as a public playhouse.
All this belongs mainly to the history of the Second Blackfriars
Playhouse, and for further details the reader is referred to the
chapter dealing with that theatre.

Shortly after the order of the Privy Council cited above, Burbage
died, just two months before the expiration of his lease from Alleyn;
and the Theatre with all its troubles passed to his son Cuthbert. By
every means in his power Cuthbert sought to induce Alleyn to renew the
lease: "Your said subject was thereof possessed, and being so
possessed, your said servant did often require the said Alleyn and
Sara his wife to make unto him the said new lease of the premises,
according to the agreement of the said indenture." Cuthbert's
importunity in the matter is clearly set forth in a deposition by
Henry Johnson, one of Alleyn's tenants. It was Alleyn's custom to come
to London at each of the four pay terms of the year, and stop at the
George Inn in Shoreditch to receive his rents; and on such occasions
Johnson often observed Cuthbert's entreaties with Alleyn. In his
deposition he says that he "knoweth that the said complainant
[Cuthbert Burbage] hath many times labored and entreated the defendant
[Gyles Alleyn] to make him a new lease of the premises in question,
for this deponent sayeth that many times when the defendant hath come
up to London to receive his rents, he, this deponent, hath been with
him paying him certain rent; and then he hath seen the plaintiff with
his landlord, paying his rent likewise; and then, finding opportunity,
the plaintiff would be intreating the defendant to make him a new
lease of the premises in question; and sayeth that it is at least
three years since [i.e., in 1597] he, this deponent, first heard the
plaintiff labor and entreat the defendant for a new lease."[82]
Cuthbert tells us that Alleyn did not positively refuse to renew the
lease, "but for some causes, which he feigned, did defer the same from
time to time, but yet gave hope to your subject, and affirmed that he
would make him such a lease."[83]

[Footnote 82: Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 246.]

[Footnote 83: _Ibid._, p. 184.]

Cuthbert's anxiety in this matter is explained by the fact that the
old lease gave him the right to tear down the Theatre and carry away
the timber and other materials to his own use, provided he did so
before the expiration of the twenty-one years. Yet, relying on
Alleyn's promises to renew the lease, he "did forbear to pull downe
and carry away the timber and stuff employed for the said Theatre and
playing-house at the end of the said first term of one and twenty
years." A failure to renew the lease would mean, of course, the loss
of the building.

Alleyn, though deferring to sign a new lease, allowed Burbage to
continue in possession of the property at "the old rent of £14." Yet
the Theatre seems not to have been used for plays after the original
lease expired.[84] The Lord Chamberlain's Company, which had been
occupying the Theatre, and of which Richard Burbage was the chief
actor, had moved to the Curtain; and the author of _Skialetheia_,
printed in 1598, refers to the old playhouse as empty: "But see,
yonder, one, like the unfrequented Theatre, walks in dark silence and
vast solitude."[85]

[Footnote 84: The lease expired on April 13, 1597; on July 28 the
Privy Council closed all playhouses until November. The references to
the Theatre in _The Remembrancia_ (see The Malone Society's
_Collections_, I, 78) do not necessarily imply that the building was
then actually used by the players.]

[Footnote 85: The same fact is revealed in the author's remark, "If my
dispose persuade me to a play, I'le to the Rose or Curtain," for at
this time only the Chamberlain's Men and the Admiral's Men were
allowed to play.]

To Cuthbert Burbage such a state of affairs was intolerable, and on
September 29, 1598, he made a new appeal to Alleyn. Alleyn proffered a
lease already drawn up, but Cuthbert would not "accept thereof"
because of the "very unreasonable covenants therein contained."[86]

[Footnote 86: Wallace, _op. cit._, pp. 216, 249.]

Shortly after this fruitless interview, or late in 1598, Gyles Alleyn
resolved to take advantage of the fact that Cuthbert Burbage had not
removed the Theatre before the expiration of the first twenty-one
years. He contended that since Cuthbert had "suffered the same there
to continue till the expiration of the said term ... the right and
interest of the said Theatre was both in law and conscience absolutely
vested" now in himself; accordingly he planned "to pull down the same,
and to convert the wood and timber thereof to some better use for the
benefit" of himself.[87]

[Footnote 87: _Ibid._, pp. 277, 288.]

But, unfortunately for Alleyn, Cuthbert Burbage "got intelligence" of
this purpose, and at once set himself to the task of saving his
property. He and his brother Richard, the great actor, took into their
confidence the chief members of the Lord Chamberlain's Company, then
performing at the Curtain Playhouse, namely William Shakespeare, John
Heminges, Augustine Phillips, Thomas Pope, and William Kempe. These
men agreed to form with the Burbages a syndicate to finance the
erection of a new playhouse. The two Burbages agreed to bear one-half
the expense, including the timber and other materials of the old
Theatre, and the five actors promised to supply the other half.
Together they leased a suitable plot of land on the Bankside near
Henslowe's Rose, the lease dating from December 25, 1598. These
details having been arranged, it remained only for the Burbages to
save their building from the covetousness of Alleyn.

On the night of December 28, 1598,[88] Alleyn being absent in the
country, Cuthbert Burbage, his brother Richard, his friend William
Smith, "of Waltham Cross, in the County of Hartford, gentleman," Peter
Street, "cheefe carpenter," and twelve others described as "laborers
such as wrought for wages," gathered at the Theatre and began to tear
down the building. We learn that the widow of James Burbage "was
there, and did see the doing thereof, and liked well of it";[89] and
we may suspect that at some time during the day Shakespeare and the
other actors were present as interested spectators.

[Footnote 88: The date, January 20, 1599, seems to be an error.]

[Footnote 89: Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 238.]

The episode is thus vividly described by the indignant Gyles Allen:

     The said Cuthbert Burbage, having intelligence of your
     subject's purpose herein, and unlawfully combining and
     confederating himself with the said Richard Burbage and one
     Peter Street, William Smith, and diverse other persons to
     the number of twelve, to your subject unknown, did about
     the eight and twentieth day of December, in the one and
     fortieth year of your highness reign, and sithence your
     highness last and general pardon, by the confederacy
     aforesaid, riotously assembled themselves together, and then
     and there armed themselves with diverse and many unlawful
     and offensive weapons, as namely swords, daggers, bills,
     axes, and such like, and so armed did then repair unto the
     said Theatre, and then and there armed as aforesaid, in very
     riotous, outrageous, and forceable manner, and contrary to
     the laws of your highness realm, attempted to pull down the
     said Theatre. Whereupon, diverse of your subjects, servants
     and farmers, then going about in peaceable manner to procure
     them to desist from that unlawful enterprise, they, the said
     riotous persons aforesaid, notwithstanding procured then
     therein with great violence, not only then and there
     forcibly and riotously resisting your subjects, servants,
     and farmers, but also then and there pulling, breaking, and
     throwing down the said Theatre in very outrageous, violent,
     and riotous sort.[90]

[Footnote 90: Wallace, _op. cit._, pp. 278-79. This document was
discovered by J.O. Halliwell-Phillipps, who printed extracts in his
_Outlines_. See also Ordish, _Early London Theatres_, pp. 75-76.]

The workmen, under the expert direction of Peter Street, carried the
timber and other materials of the old Theatre to the tract of land on
the Bankside recently leased by the new syndicate--as Gyles Alleyn
puts it, "did then also in most forcible and riotous manner take and
carry away from thence all the wood and timber thereof unto the
Bankside, in the Parish of St. Mary Overies, and there erected a new
playhouse with the said timber and wood."

The playhouse thus erected was, of course, an entirely new structure.
Nearly a quarter of a century had elapsed since James Burbage designed
the old Theatre, during which time a great development had taken place
both in histrionic art and in play writing; and, no doubt, many
improvements were possible in the stage and in the auditorium to
provide better facilities for the actors and greater comfort for the
spectators. In designing such improvements the architect had the
advice and help of the actors, including Shakespeare; and he succeeded
in producing a playhouse that was a model of excellence. The name
selected by the syndicate for their new building was "The Globe." For
further details as to its construction, and for its subsequent
history, the reader is referred to the chapter dealing with that

When Gyles Alleyn learned that the Burbages had demolished the Theatre
and removed the timber to the Bankside, he was deeply incensed, not
only at the loss of the building, but also, no doubt, at being
completely outwitted. At once he instituted suit against Cuthbert
Burbage; but he was so intemperate in his language and so reckless in
his charges that he weakened his case. The suit dragged for a few
years, was in part referred to Francis Bacon, and finally in the
summer of 1601 was dismissed. Thus the history of the first London
playhouse, which is chiefly the history of quarrels and litigation,
came to a close.

It is not possible now to indicate exactly the stay of the different
troupes at the Theatre; the evidence is scattered and incomplete, and
the inferences to be drawn are often uncertain.

When the building was opened in 1576, it was, no doubt, occupied by
the Earl of Leicester's troupe, of which Burbage was the manager, and
for which, presumably, the structure had been designed. Yet other
troupes of players may also have been allowed to use the
building--when Leicester's Men were touring the provinces, or,
possibly, on days when Leicester's Men did not act. This arrangement
lasted about six years.

In 1582 the use of the Theatre was interrupted by the interference of
Peckham. For a long time the actors "could not enjoy the premises,"
and Burbage was forced to keep Peckham's servants out of the building
with an armed guard night and day. As a result of this state of
affairs, Leicester's troupe was dissolved; "many of the players," we
are told, were driven away, and the rest "forsook the said Theatre."
The last notice of these famous players is a record of their
performance at Court on February 10, 1583.

Shortly after this, in March, 1583, Tilney, the Master of the Revels,
organized under royal patronage a new company called the Queen's Men.
For this purpose he selected twelve of the best actors of the realm,
including some of the members of Leicester's company.[91] The two
best-known actors in the new organization were the Queen's favorite
comedian, Richard Tarleton, the immortal "Lord of Mirth," and John
Lanham, the leader and apparently the manager of the troupe. James
Burbage, who may by this time, if not before, have retired from
acting, was not included.

[Footnote 91: For a list of the Queen's Men see Wallace, _op. cit._,
p. 11.]

The newly organized Queen's Men in all probability occupied the
Theatre which had been left vacant by the dissolution of Leicester's
company. Mr. Wallace denies this, mainly on the evidence of a permit
issued by the Lord Mayor, November 28, 1583, granting the Queen's Men
the privilege of acting "at the sign of the Bull [Inn] in Bishopgate
Street, and the sign of the Bell [Inn] in Gracious Street, and nowhere
else within this city." But this permit, I think, lends scant support
to Mr. Wallace's contention. The Lord Mayor had no authority to issue
a license for the Queen's Men to play at the Theatre, for that
structure was outside the jurisdiction of the city. The Privy Council
itself, no doubt, had issued such a general license when the company
was organized under royal patronage.[92] And now, ten months later,
on November 26, 1583, the Council sends to the Lord Mayor a request
"that Her Majesty's players may be suffered to play ... within the
city and liberties _between this and shrovetide next_"[93]--in other
words, during the winter season when access to the Theatre was
difficult. It was customary for troupes to seek permission to act
within the city during the winter months.[94] Thus the Queen's Men, in
a petition written probably in the autumn of the following year, 1584,
requested the Privy Council to dispatch "favorable letters unto the
Lord Mayor of London to permit us to exercise within the city," and
the Lord Mayor refused, with the significant remark that "if in winter
... the foulness of season do hinder the passage into the fields to
play, the remedy is ill conceived to bring them into London."[95]
Obviously the Queen's Men were seeking permission to play in the city
only during the cold winter months; during the balmy spring, summer,
and autumn months--for actors the best season of the year--they
occupied their commodious playhouse in "the fields."

[Footnote 92: Such a license would include also permission to act in
the provinces. This latter was soon needed, for shortly after their
organization the Queen's Men were driven by the plague to tour the
provinces. They were in Cambridge on July 9, and probably returned to
London shortly after. See Murray, _English Dramatic Companies_, I, 8.]

[Footnote 93: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 66.]

[Footnote 94: Lord Hunsdon, on October 8, 1594, requested the Lord
Mayor to permit the Chamberlain's Men "to play this winter time within
the city at the Cross Keys in Gracious Street." See The Malone
Society's _Collections_, I, 67.]

[Footnote 95: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 170, 172.]

That this playhouse for a time, at least, was the Theatre is indicated
by several bits of evidence. Thus the author of _Martin's Month's
Mind_ (1589) speaks of "twittle-twattles that I had learned in
ale-houses and at the Theatre of Lanham and his fellows." Again, Nash,
in _Pierce Penniless_ (1592), writes: "Tarleton at the Theatre made
jests of him"; Harrington, in _The Metamorphosis of Ajax_ (1596):
"Which word was after admitted into the Theatre with great applause,
by the mouth of Master Tarleton"; and the author of _Tarlton's Newes
out of Purgatory_ (_c._ 1589) represents Tarleton as connected with
the Theatre. Now, unless Lanham, Tarleton, and their "fellows" usually
or sometimes acted at the Theatre, it is hard to understand these and
other similar passages.

The following episode tends to prove the same thing. On June 18, 1584,
William Fleetwood, Recorder, wrote to Lord Burghley:[96]

     Right honorable and my very good lord. Upon Whitsunday there
     was a very good sermon preached at the new churchyard near
     Bethelem, whereat my Lord Mayor was with his brethren; and
     by reason no plays were the same day, all the city was
     quiet. Upon Monday I was at the Court.... That night I
     returned to London and found all the wards full of watchers;
     the cause thereof was for that very near the Theatre or
     Curtain, at the time of the plays, there lay a prentice
     sleeping upon the grass; and one Challes, at Grostock, did
     turn upon the toe upon the belly of the same prentice.
     Whereupon the apprentice start up.

[Footnote 96: The letter is printed in full in The Malone Society's
_Collections_, I, 164.]

In the altercation that followed, Challes remarked that "prentices
were but the scum of the world." This led to a general rising of
apprentices, and much disorder throughout the city. Fleetwood records
the upshot thus:

     Upon Sunday my Lord [Mayor] sent two aldermen to the court
     for the suppressing and pulling down of the Theatre and
     Curtain. All the Lords [of the Privy Council] agreed
     thereunto saving my Lord Chamberlain and Mr.
     Vice-Chamberlain. But we obtained a letter to suppress them
     all. Upon the same night I sent for the Queen's Players [at
     the Theatre?] and my Lord Arundel's Players [at the
     Curtain?] and they all willingly obeyed the Lords's letters.
     The chiefest of Her Highness's Players advised me to send
     for the owner of the Theatre [James Burbage[97]], who was a
     stubborn fellow, and to bind him. I did so. He sent me word
     he was my Lord of Hundson's man, and that he would not come
     at me; but he would in the morning ride to my lord.

[Footnote 97: This could not have been Hide, as usually stated. Hide
had nothing to do with the management of the Theatre, and was not "my
Lord of Hunsdon's man." Hide's connection with the Theatre as sketched
in this chapter shows the absurdity of such an interpretation of the

The natural inference from all this is that the Queen's Men and Lord
Arundel's Men were then playing _outside the city_ where they could be
controlled only by "the Lords's Letters"; that the Queen's Men were
occupying the Theatre, and that James Burbage was (as we know) not a
member of that company, but merely stood to them in the relation of
"owner of the Theatre."

What Burbage meant by calling himself "my Lord of Hunsdon's man" is
not clear. Mr. Wallace contends that when Leicester's Men were
dissolved, Burbage organized "around the remnants of Leicester's
Company" a troupe under the patronage of Lord Hunsdon, and that this
troupe, and not the Queen's Men, occupied the Theatre thereafter.[98]
But we hear of Hunsdon's Men at Ludlow in July, 1582; and we find them
presenting a play at Court on December 27, 1582. Since Leicester's
troupe is recorded as acting at Court as late as February 10, 1583, it
seems unlikely that Mr. Wallace's theory as to the origin of Hunsdon's
Men is true. It may be, however, that after the dissolution of
Leicester's Men, Burbage associated himself with Hunsdon's Men, and it
may be that he allowed that relatively unimportant company to occupy
the Theatre for a short time. Hunsdon's Men seem to have been mainly a
traveling troupe; Mr. Murray states that notices of them "occur
frequently in the provinces," but we hear almost nothing of them in
London. Indeed, at the time of the trouble described by Fleetwood,
Hunsdon's Men were in Bath.[99] If Burbage was a member of the troupe,
he certainly did not accompany them on their extended tours; and when
they played in London, if they used the Theatre, they must have used
it jointly with the Queen's Men.

[Footnote 98: Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 11.]

[Footnote 99: Murray, _English Dramatic Companies_, I, 321.]

Late in 1585 the Theatre was affiliated with the adjacent Curtain.
Burbage and Brayne made an agreement with the proprietor of that
playhouse whereby the Curtain might be used "as an easore" [easer?] to
the Theatre, and "the profits of the said two playhouses might for
seven years space be in divident between them." This agreement, we
know, was carried out, but whether it led to an exchange of companies,
or what effect it had upon the players, we cannot say. Possibly to
this period of joint management may be assigned the witticism of Dick
Tarleton recorded as having been uttered "at the Curtain" where the
Queen's Men were then playing.[100] It may even be that as one result
of the affiliation of the two houses the Queen's Men were transferred
to the Curtain.

[Footnote 100: _Tarlton's Jests_, ed. by J.O. Halliwell, p. 16.
Tarleton died in 1588.]

In 1590, as we learn from the deposition of John Alleyn, the Theatre
was being used by the Admiral's Men.[101] This excellent company had
been formed early in 1589 by the separation of certain leading players
from Worcester's Men, and it had probably occupied the Theatre since
its organization. Its star actor, Edward Alleyn, was then at the
height of his powers, and was producing with great success Marlowe's
splendid plays. We may suppose that the following passage refers to
the performance of the Admiral's Men at the Theatre:

     He had a head of hair like one of my devils in _Dr.
     Faustus_, when the old Theatre crackt and frightened the

[Footnote 101: Wallace, _op. cit._, pp. 101, 126.]

[Footnote 102: _The Black Booke_, 1604.]

Late in 1590 the Admiral's Men seem to have been on bad terms with
Burbage,[103] and when John Alleyn made his deposition, February 6,
1592, they had certainly left the Theatre. Mr. Greg, from entirely
different evidence, has concluded that they were dispersed in
1591,[104] and this conclusion is borne out by the legal document
cited above.

[Footnote 103: Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 101.]

[Footnote 104: Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_, II, 83. The Admiral's Men
were reorganized in 1594, and occupied the Rose under Henslowe's

The next company that we can definitely associate with the Theatre was
the famous Lord Chamberlain's Men. On April 16, 1594, Lord Strange,
the Earl of Derby, died, and the chief members of his troupe--William
Shakespeare, Richard Burbage, John Heminges, William Kempe, Thomas
Pope, George Bryan, and Augustine Phillips--organized a new company
under the patronage of the Lord Chamberlain. For ten days, in June,
1594, they acted at Newington Butts under the management of Philip
Henslowe, then went, probably at once, to the Theatre, which they made
their home until the Burbage lease of the property expired in the
spring of 1597. Here, among other famous plays, they produced the
original _Hamlet_, thus referred to by Lodge in _Wit's Miserie_, 1596:

     He looks as pale as the visard of the ghost which cries so
     miserably at the Theatre, like an oyster-wife, "Hamlet,

And here, too, they presented all of Shakespeare's early masterpieces.

Their connection with the building ceased in 1597 at the expiration of
the Burbage lease; but their association with the proprietors of the
Theatre was permanent. Their subsequent history, as also the history
of the Burbage brothers, will be found in the chapters dealing with
the Globe and the Second Blackfriars.[105]

[Footnote 105: For other but unimportant references to the Theatre see
The Malone Society's _Collections_, vol. I: disorder at, October,
1577, p. 153; disorder at, on Sunday, April, 1580, p. 46; fencing
allowed at, July, 1582, p. 57; fencing forbidden at, May, 1583, p. 62;
to be closed during infection, May, 1583, p. 63; complaint against, by
the Lord Mayor, September, 1594, p. 76. And see Halliwell-Phillipps,
_Outlines_, I, 363, for a special performance there by a "virgin,"
February 22, 1582.]



Although James Burbage was, as his son asserted, "the first builder of
playhouses," a second public playhouse followed hard on the Theatre,
probably within twelve months. It was erected a short distance to the
south of the Theatre,--that is, nearer the city,--and, like that
building, it adjoined Finsbury Field.[106] To the two playhouses the
audiences came trooping over the meadows, in "great multidudes," the
Lord Mayor tells us; and the author of _Tarlton's Newes out of
Purgatory_ (_c._ 1589) describes their return to London thus: "With
that I waked, and saw such concourse of people through the fields that
I knew the play was done."[107]

[Footnote 106: The site is probably marked by Curtain Court in
Chasserau's survey of 1745, reproduced on page 79.]

[Footnote 107: Ed. by J.O. Halliwell, for The Shakespeare Society
(1844), p. 105.]

The new playhouse derived its name from the Curtain estate, on which
it was erected.[108] This estate was formerly the property of the
Priory of Holywell, and was described in 1538 as "scituata et
existentia extra portas ejusdem nuper monasterii prope pasturam dicte
nuper Priorisse, vocatam _the Curteine_."[109] Why it was so called
is not clear. The name may have been derived from some previous owner
of the property; it may, as Collier thought, have come from some early
association with the walls (_curtains_) or defenses of the city; or,
it may have come, as Tomlins suggests, from the mediæval Latin
_cortina_, meaning a court, a close, a farm enclosure.[110] Whatever
its origin--the last explanation seems the most plausible--the
interesting point is that it had no connection whatever with a stage

[Footnote 108: The Rose and the Red Bull derived their names in a
similar way from the estates on which they were erected.]

[Footnote 109: Halliwell-Phillipps, _Outlines_, I, 364.]

[Footnote 110: Tomlins, _Origin of the Curtain Theatre, and Mistakes
Regarding It_, in The Shakespeare Society's Papers (1844), p. 29.]

The building was probably opened to the London public in the summer or
autumn of 1577. The first reference to it is found in T[homas]
W[hite]'s _Sermon Preached at Pawles Crosse on Sunday the Thirde of
November, 1577_: "Behold the sumptuous theatre houses, a continual
monument of London's prodigality and folly";[111] and a reference to
it by name appears in Northbrooke's _A Treatise_, licensed December,
1577: "Those places, also, which are made up and builded for such
plays and interludes, as the Theatre and Curtain."[112]

[Footnote 111: J.D. Wilson, _The Cambridge History of English
Literature_, VI, 435, says that this sermon was "delivered at Paul's
cross on 9 December, 1576 and, apparently, repeated on 3 November in
the following year." This is incorrect; White did preach a sermon at
Paul's Cross on December 9, but not the sermon from which this
quotation is drawn.]

[Footnote 112: Ed. by J.P. Collier, for The Shakespeare Society
(1843), p. 85.]

Like the Theatre, the Curtain was a peculiarly shaped building,
specially designed for acting; "those playhouses that are erected and
built _only for such purposes_ ... namely the Curtain and the
Theatre,"[113] writes the Privy Council; and the German traveler,
Samuel Kiechel, who visited London in 1585, describes them as
"_sonderbare_" structures. They are usually mentioned together, and in
such a way as to suggest similarity of shape as well as of purpose. We
may, I think, reasonably suppose that the Curtain was in all essential
details a copy of Burbage's Theatre.[114] Presumably, then, it was
polygonal (or circular) in shape,[115] was constructed of timber, and
was finished on the outside with lime and plaster. The interior, as
the evidence already cited in the chapter on the Theatre shows,
consisted of three galleries surrounding an open yard. There was a
platform projecting into the middle of the yard, with dressing-rooms
at the rear, "heavens" overhead, and a flagpole rising above the
"heavens." That some sign was displayed in front of the door is
likely. Malone writes: "The original sign hung out at this playhouse
(as Mr. Steevens has observed) was the painting of a curtain
striped."[116] Aubrey records that Ben Jonson "acted and wrote, but
both ill, at the Green Curtain, a kind of nursery or obscure playhouse
somewhere in the suburbs, I think towards Shoreditch or
Clerkenwell."[117] By "at the Green Curtain" Aubrey means, of course,
"at the sign of the Green Curtain"; but the evidence of Steevens and
of Aubrey is too vague and uncertain to warrant any definite

[Footnote 113: Dasent, _Acts of the Privy Council_, XXVII, 313.]

[Footnote 114: It seems, however, to have been smaller than the

[Footnote 115: Johannes de Witt describes the Theatre and the Curtain
along with the Swan and the Rose as "amphitheatra" (see page 167). It
is quite possible that Shakespeare refers to the Curtain in the
Prologue to _Henry V_ as "this wooden O," though the reference may be
to the Globe.]

[Footnote 116: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 54; cf. also Ellis, _The
Parish of St. Leonard_.]

[Footnote 117: Did Steevens base his statement on this passage in

Of the early history of the Curtain we know little, mainly because it
was not, like certain other playhouses, the subject of extensive
litigation. We do not even know who planned and built it. The first
evidence of its ownership appears fifteen years after its erection, in
some legal documents connected with the Theatre.[118] In July, 1592,
Henry Lanman, described as "of London, gentleman, of the age of 54
years," deposed: "That true it is about 7 years now shall be this next
winter, they, the said Burbage and Brayne, having the profits of plays
made at the Theatre, and this deponent having the profits of the plays
done at the house called the Curtain near to the same, the said
Burbage and Brayne, taking the Curtain as an esore[119] to their
playhouse, did of their own motion move this deponent that he would
agree that the profits of the said two playhouses might for seven
years space be in divident between them."[120]

[Footnote 118: Brayne _v._ Burbage, 1592, printed in full by Wallace,
_The First London Theatre_, pp. 109-52. See especially pp. 126, 148.]

[Footnote 119: Easer?]

[Footnote 120: Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 148; cf. p. 126.]


From _An Actual Survey of the Parish of St Leonard in Shoreditch taken
in the year 1745_ by Peter Chasserau, Surveyor. The key to the map
gives "93" as Curtain Court, probably the site of the old playhouse,
"87" as New Inn Yard, and "94" as Holywell Court, both interesting in
connection with Burbage's Theatre. (Redrawn from the original for this

From this statement it is evident that Henry Lanman was the sole
proprietor of the Curtain as far back as 1585, and the presumption is
that his proprietorship was of still earlier date. This presumption is
strengthened by the fact that in a sale of the Curtain estate early in
1582, he is specifically mentioned as having a tenure of an "edifice
or building" erected in the Curtain Close, that is, that section of
the estate next to the Field, on which the playhouse was built.[121]
Since Lanman is not mentioned as having any other property on the
estate, the "edifice or building" referred to was probably the
playhouse. The document gives no indication as to how long he had held
possession of the "edifice," but the date of sale, March, 1582,
carries us back to within four years of the erection of the Curtain,
and it seems reasonable to suppose, though of course we cannot be
sure, that Lanman had been proprietor of the building from the very

[Footnote 121: Tomlins, _op. cit._, pp. 29-31.]

[Footnote 122: Of this Henry Lanman we know nothing beyond the facts
here revealed. Possibly he was a brother of the distinguished actor
John Lanman (the name is variously spelled Lanman, Laneman, Lenmann,
Laneham, Laynman, Lanham), one of the chief members of Leicester's
troupe, and one of the twelve men selected in 1583 to form the Queen's
Men. But speculation of this sort is vain. It is to be hoped that in
the future some student will investigate the life of this obscure
theatrical manager, and trace his connection with the early history of
the drama.]

Certain records of the sale of the Curtain estate shortly before and
shortly after the erection of the playhouse are preserved, but these
throw very little light upon the playhouse itself. We learn that on
February 20, 1567, Lord Mountjoy and his wife sold the estate to
Maurice Longe, clothworker, and his son William Longe, for the sum of
£60; and that on August 23, 1571, Maurice Longe and his wife sold it
to the then Lord Mayor, Sir William Allyn, for the sum of £200. In
both documents the property is described in the same words: "All that
house, tenement or lodge commonly called the _Curtain_, and all that
parcel of ground and close, walled and enclosed with a brick wall on
the west and north parts, called also the _Curtain Close_." The lodge
here referred to, generally known as "Curtain House," was on, or very
near, Holywell Lane;[123] the playhouse, as already stated, was
erected in the close near the Field.[124]

[Footnote 123: Halliwell-Phillipps, _Outlines_, I, 365.]

[Footnote 124: The Privy Council on March 10, 1601, refers to it as
"The Curtaine in Moorefeildes"; in ancient times, says Stow,
Moorefields extended to Holywell. See Halliwell-Phillipps, _Outlines_,
I, 364.]

How long Sir William Allyn held the property, or why it reverted to
the Longe family, we do not know. But on March 18, 1582, we find
William Longe, the son of "Maurice Longe, citizen and clothworker, of
London, deceased," selling the same property, described in the same
words, to one "Thomas Harberte, citizen and girdler, of London." In
the meantime, of course, the playhouse had been erected, but no clear
or direct mention of the building is made in the deed of sale.
Possibly it was included in the conventionally worded phrase: "and all
and singular other messuages, tenements, edifices, and buildings, with
all and singular their appurtenances, erected and builded upon the
said close called the Curtain."[125] Among the persons named as
holding tenures of the above-mentioned "edifices and buildings" in the
close was Henry Lanman. It seems not improbable, therefore, that the
Curtain, like the Theatre, was erected on leased ground.

[Footnote 125: Tomlins, _op. cit._, p. 31.]

It is impossible to give a connected history of the Curtain. Most of
the references to it that we now possess are invectives in early
puritanical writings, or bare mention, along with other playhouses, in
letters or ordinances of the Privy Council and the Lord Mayor. Such
references as these do not much help us in determining what companies
successively occupied the building, or what varying fortunes marked
its ownership and management. Yet a few scattered facts have sifted
down to us, and these I have arranged in chronological order.

On the afternoon of April 6, 1580, an earthquake, especially severe in
Holywell, shook the building during the performance of a play, and
greatly frightened the audience. Munday says merely: "at the
playhouses the people came running forth, surprised with great
astonishment";[126] but Stubbes, the Puritan, who saw in the event a
"fearful judgment of God," writes with fervor: "The like judgment
almost did the Lord show unto them a little before, being assembled at
their theatres to see their bawdy interludes and other trumperies
practised, for He caused the earth mightily to shake and quaver, as
though all would have fallen down; whereat the people, sore amazed,
some leapt down from the top of the turrets, pinnacles, and towers
where they stood, to the ground, whereof some had their legs broke,
some their arms, some their backs, some hurt one where, some another,
and many score crushed and bruised."[127]

[Footnote 126: _View of Sundry Examples_, 1580.]

[Footnote 127: _The Anatomy of Abuses_, ed. F.J. Furnivall, New
Shakspere Society, p. 180. For other descriptions of this earthquake
see Halliwell-Phillipps, _Outlines_, I, 369.]

The disturbance at the Theatre and the Curtain in 1584, when one
Challes "did turn upon the toe upon the belly of" an apprentice
"sleeping upon the grass" in the Field near by, has been mentioned in
the preceding chapter. If the interpretation of the facts there given
is correct, Lord Arundel's Players were then occupying the Curtain.

In the winter of 1585 Lanman entered into his seven years' agreement
with Burbage and Brayne by which the Theatre and the Curtain were
placed under one management, and the profits shared "in divident
between them." This agreement was faithfully kept by both parties, but
there is no evidence that after the expiration of the seven years, in
the winter of 1592, the affiliation was continued. What effect the
arrangement had upon the companies of players occupying the two
theatres we cannot now determine. To this period, however, I would
assign the appearance of the Queen's Men at the Curtain.[128]

[Footnote 128: _Tarlton's Jests_, ed. by J.O. Halliwell for the
Shakespeare Society (1844), p. 16. For a discussion see the preceding
chapter on the Theatre, p. 72.]

On July 28, 1597, as a result of the performance of Thomas Nashe's
_The Isle of Dogs_, by Pembroke's Men at the Swan,[129] the Privy
Council ordered the plucking down of "the Curtain and the
Theatre."[130] The order, however, was not carried out, and in October
plays were allowed again as before.

[Footnote 129: For details see the chapter on the Swan.]

[Footnote 130: Dasent, _Acts of the Privy Council_, XXVII, 313.]

At this time the Lord Chamberlain's men were at the Curtain, having
recently moved thither in consequence of the difficulties Cuthbert
Burbage was having with Gyles Alleyn over the Theatre property. During
the stay of the Chamberlain's Company, which numbered among its
members William Shakespeare, Richard Burbage, William Kempe (who had
succeeded Tarleton in popular favor as a clown), John Heminges, Thomas
Pope, and Augustine Phillips, the playhouse probably attained its
greatest distinction. Both Shakespeare and Jonson wrote plays for the
troupe; _Romeo and Juliet_, we are told, "won Curtain plaudities," as
no doubt did many other of Shakespeare's early masterpieces; and
Jonson's _Every Man in His Humour_ created such enthusiasm here on its
first performance as to make its author famous.[131]

[Footnote 131: Marston, _The Scourge of Villainy_ (1598); Bullen, _The
Works of John Marston_, III, 372.]

In the summer of 1599 the Chamberlain's Men moved into their splendid
new home, the Globe, on the Bankside, and the Curtain thus abandoned
fell on hard times. Perhaps it was let occasionally to traveling
troupes; in Jeaffreson's _Middlesex County Records_, under the date of
March 11, 1600, is a notice of the arrest of one William Haukins
"charged with a purse taken at a play at the Curtain." But shortly
after, in April, 1600, when Henslowe and Alleyn began to erect their
splendid new Fortune Playhouse, they were able to give the impression
to Tilney, the Master of the Revels, and to the Privy Council, that
the Curtain was to be torn down. Thus in the Council's warrant for the
building of the Fortune, dated April 8, 1600, we read that "another
house is [to be] pulled down instead of it";[132] and when the
Puritans later made vigorous protests against the erection of the
Fortune, the Council defended itself by stating that "their Lordships
have been informed by Edmund Tilney, Esquire, Her Majesty's servant,
and Master of the Revels, that the house now in hand to be built by
the said Edward Alleyn is not intended to increase the number of the
playhouses, but to be instead of another, namely the Curtain, which is
either to be ruined and plucked down, or to be put to some other good

[Footnote 132: Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 52.]

[Footnote 133: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 82.]

All this talk of the Curtain's being plucked down or devoted to other
uses suggests a contemplated change in the ownership or management of
the building. We do not know when Lanman died (in 1592 he described
himself as fifty-four years of age),[134] but we do know that at some
date prior to 1603 the Curtain had passed into the hands of a
syndicate. When this syndicate was organized, or who constituted its
members, we cannot say. Thomas Pope, in his will, dated July 22, 1603,
mentions his share "of, in, and to all that playhouse, with the
appurtenances, called the Curtain";[135] and John Underwood, in his
will, dated October 4, 1624, mentions his "part or share ... in the
said playhouses called the Blackfriars, the Globe on the Bankside, and
the Curtain."[136] It may be significant that both Pope and Underwood
were sharers also in the Globe. Since, however, further information
is wanting, it is useless to speculate. We can only say that at some
time after the period of Lanman's sole proprietorship, the Curtain
passed into the hands of a group of sharers; and that after a
discussion in 1600 of demolishing the building or devoting it to other
uses, it entered upon a long and successful career.

[Footnote 134: Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 148.]

[Footnote 135: J.P. Collier, _Lives of the Original Actors in
Shakespeare's Plays_, p. 127. In exactly the same words Pope disposed
of his share in the Globe.]

[Footnote 136: _Ibid._, p. 230.]

On May 10, 1601, "the actors at the Curtain"[137] gave serious offense
by representing on the stage persons "of good desert and quality, that
are yet alive, under obscure manner, but yet in such sort as all the
hearers may take notice both of the matter and the persons that are
meant thereby." The Privy Council ordered the Justices of the Peace to
examine into the case and to punish the offenders.[138]

[Footnote 137: Possibly Derby's Men.]

[Footnote 138: See Dasent, _Acts of the Privy Council_, XXXI, 346.]

Early in 1604 a draft of a royal patent for Queen Anne's Players--who
had hitherto been under the patronage of Worcester[139]--gives those
players permission to act "within their now usual houses, called the
Curtain, and the Boar's Head."[140] On April 9, 1604, the Privy
Council authorized the three companies of players that had been taken
under royal patronage "to exercise their plays in their several and
usual houses for that purpose, and no other, viz., the Globe,
scituate in Maiden Lane on the Bankside in the County of Surrey, the
Fortune in Golding Lane, and the Curtain in Holywell."[141] The King's
Men (the Burbage-Shakespeare troupe) occupied the Globe; Prince
Henry's Men (the Henslowe-Alleyn troupe), the Fortune; and Queen
Anne's Men, the Curtain.

[Footnote 139: The company was formed by an amalgamation of Oxford's
and Worcester's Men in 1602. See The Malone Society's _Collections_,
I, 85.]

[Footnote 140: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 266.]

[Footnote 141: Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 61; Dasent, _Acts of the
Privy Council_, XXXII, 511.]

But the Queen's Men were probably dissatisfied with the Curtain. It
was small and antiquated, and it must have suffered by comparison with
the more splendid Globe and Fortune. So the Queen's players had built
for themselves a new and larger playhouse, called "The Red Bull." This
was probably ready for occupancy in 1605, yet it is impossible to say
exactly when the Queen's Men left the Curtain; their patent of April
15, 1609, gives them permission to act "within their now usual houses
called the Red Bull, in Clerkenwell, and the Curtain in
Holywell."[142] It may be that they retained control of the Curtain in
order to prevent competition.

[Footnote 142: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 270.]

What company occupied the Curtain after Queen Anne's Men finally
surrendered it is not clear. Mr. Murray is of the opinion that Prince
Charles's Men moved into the Curtain "about December, 1609, or early
in 1610."[143]

[Footnote 143: _English Dramatic Companies_, I, 230.]

In 1613 "a company of young men" acted _The Hector of Germany_ "at
the Red Bull and at the Curtain." Such plays, however, written and
acted by amateurs, were not uncommon, and no significance can be
attached to the event.

In 1622, as we learn from the Herbert Manuscripts, the Curtain was
being occupied by Prince Charles's Servants.[144] In the same year the
author of _Vox Graculi, or The Jack Daw's Prognostication for 1623_,
refers to it thus: "If company come current to the Bull and Curtain,
there will be more money gathered in one afternoon than will be given
to Kingsland Spittle in a whole month; also, if at this time about the
hours of four and five it wax cloudy and then rain downright, they
shall sit dryer in the galleries than those who are the understanding
men in the yard."

[Footnote 144: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 59; cf. Chalmers's
_Supplemental Apology_, p. 213, note _y_. Murray gives the date
incorrectly as 1623.]

Prince Charles's Men did not remain long at the Curtain. At some date
between June 10 and August 19, 1623, they moved to the larger and more
handsome Red Bull.[145] After this, so far as I can discover, there is
no evidence to connect the playhouse with dramatic performances.
Malone, who presumably bases his statements on the now lost records of
Herbert, says that shortly after the accession of King Charles I it
"seems to have been used only by prize-fighters."[146]

[Footnote 145: Murray, _English Dramatic Companies_, I, 237, note 1.]

[Footnote 146: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 54, note 2.]

The last mention of the Curtain is found in the _Middlesex County
Records_ under the date February 21, 1627.[147] It is merely a passing
reference to "the common shoare near the Curtain playhouse," yet it is
significant as indicating that the building was then still standing.
What ultimately became of it we do not know. For a time, however, its
memory survived in Curtain Court (see page 79), and to-day its fame is
perpetuated in Curtain Road.

[Footnote 147: See Jeaffreson, _Middlesex County Records_, III, 164,
from which the notice was quoted by Ordish, _Early London Theatres_,
p. 106.]



The choir boys of the Chapel Royal, of Windsor, and of Paul's were all
engaged in presenting dramatic entertainments before Queen Elizabeth.
Each organization expected to be called upon one or more times a
year--at Christmas, New Year's, and other like occasions--to furnish
recreation to Her Majesty; and in return for its efforts each received
a liberal "reward" in money. Richard Farrant, Master of the Windsor
Chapel, was especially active in devising plays for the Queen's
entertainment. But having a large family, he was poor in spite of his
regular salary and the occasional "rewards" he received for the
performances of his Boys at Court; and doubtless he often cast about
in his mind for some way in which to increase his meagre income.

In the spring of 1576 James Burbage, having conceived the idea of a
building devoted solely to plays, had leased a plot of ground for the
purpose, and had begun the erection of the Theatre. By the autumn, no
doubt, the building was nearing completion, if, indeed, it was not
actually open to the public; and the experiment, we may suppose, was
exciting much interest in the dramatic circles of London. It seems to
have set Farrant to thinking. The professional actors, he observed,
had one important advantage over the child actors: not only could they
present their plays before the Queen and receive the usual court
reward, but in addition they could present their plays before the
public and thus reap a second and richer harvest. Since the child
actors had, as a rule, more excellent plays than the professional
troupes, and were better equipped with properties and costumes, and
since they expended just as much energy in devising plays and in
memorizing and rehearsing their parts, Farrant saw no reason why they,
too, should not be allowed to perform before the public. This, he
thought, might be done under the guise of rehearsals for the Court.
Possibly the Queen might even wink at regular performances before the
general public when she understood that this would train the Boys to
be more skilful actors, would provide Her Majesty with more numerous
and possibly more excellent plays, and would enable the Master and his
assistants to live in greater comfort without affecting the royal


A plan of the various buildings as they appeared before the
dissolution, based on the Loseley Manuscripts and other documents,
surveys, and maps. The Buttery became Farrant's, the Frater Burbage's
playhouse. (Drawn by the author.)]

For Farrant to build a playhouse specifically for the use of the
Children was out of the question. In the first place, it would be too
conspicuously a capitalization of the royal choristers for private
gain; and in the second place, it would be far too hazardous a
business venture for so poor a man as he to undertake. The more
sensible thing for him to do was to rent somewhere a large hall which
could at small expense be converted into a place suitable for training
the Children in their plays, and for the entertainment of
select--possibly at first invited--audiences. The performances, of
course, were not to be heralded by a trumpet-and-drum procession
through the street, by the flying of a flag, and by such-like vulgar
advertising as of a public show; instead, they were to be quiet,
presumably "private," and were to attract only noblemen and those
citizens of the better class who were interested in the drama.[148]

[Footnote 148: From this notion of privacy, I take it, arose the term
"private" theatre as distinguished from "common" or "public" theatre.
The interpretation of the term suggested by Mr. W.J. Lawrence, and
approved by Mr. William Archer, namely, that it was a legal device to
escape the city ordinance of 1574, cannot be accepted. The city had no
jurisdiction over the precinct of Blackfriars, nor did Farrant live in
the building.]


The smaller rectangle at the north represents the Buttery, later
Farrant's playhouse, the larger rectangle represents the Frater, later
Burbage's playhouse. (From Ogilby and Morgan's _Map of London_, 1677,
the sites marked by the author.)]

Such was Farrant's scheme. In searching for a hall suitable for his
purpose, his mind at once turned to the precinct of Blackfriars, where
in former years the Office of the Revels had been kept, and where the
Children had often rehearsed their plays. The precinct had once, as
the name indicates, been in the possession of the Dominican or "Black"
Friars. The Priory buildings had consisted chiefly of a great church
two hundred and twenty feet long and sixty-six feet broad, with a
cloister on the south side of the church forming a square of one
hundred and ten feet, and a smaller cloister to the south of this. At
the dissolution of the religious orders, the property had passed into
the possession of the Crown; hence, though within the city walls, it
was not under the jurisdiction of the city authorities. Farrant
probably did not anticipate any interference on the part of the Common
Council with the royal choristers "practicing" their plays in order
"to yield Her Majesty recreation and delight," yet the absolute
certainty of being free from the adverse legislation of the London
authorities was not to be ignored. Moreover, the precinct was now the
home of many noblemen and wealthy gentlemen, and Farrant probably
thought that, as one of the most fashionable residential districts in
London, it was suitable for "private" performances to be given by
members of Her Majesty's household.

In furthering his project he sought the counsel and aid of his "very
friend" Sir Henry Neville, Lieutenant of Windsor, who, it is to be
presumed, was interested in the Windsor Boys. It happened that Neville
knew of exactly such rooms as were desired, rooms in the old monastery
of Blackfriars which he himself had once leased as a residence, and
which, he heard, were "to be let either presently, or very shortly."
These rooms were in the southwestern corner of the monastery, on the
upper floor of two adjoining buildings formerly used by the monks as a
buttery and a frater. A history of the rooms up to the time of their
use as a theatre may be briefly sketched.

In 1548 the buttery and frater, with certain other buildings, were let
by King Edward to Sir Thomas Cawarden, Master of the Revels; and in
1550 they were granted to him outright. In 1554 Cawarden sold the
northern section of the buttery, fifty-two feet in length, to Lord
Cobham, whose mansion it adjoined. The rest of the buttery, forty-six
feet in length, and the frater, he converted into lodgings. Since the
frater was of exceptional breadth--fifty-two feet on the outside,
forty-six feet on the inside--he ran a partition through its length,
dividing it into two parts. The section of the frater on the west of
this partition he let to Sir Richard Frith; the section on the east,
with the remainder of the buttery not sold to Lord Cobham, he let to
Sir John Cheeke. It is with the Cheeke Lodgings that we are especially

About September, 1554, Cheeke went to travel abroad, and surrendered
his rooms in the Blackfriars. Sir Thomas Cawarden thereupon made use
of them "for the Office of the Queen's Majesty's Revells"; thus for a
time the Cheeke Lodgings were intimately connected with dramatic
activities. But at the death of Cawarden, in 1559, the Queen
transferred the Office of the Revels to St. John's, and the
Blackfriars property belonging to Cawarden passed into the possession
of Sir William More.


Frith's Lodging and the four southern rooms of Farrant's Lodging were
on the upper floor of the Frater; the two northern rooms of Farrant's
Lodging were on the upper floor of the Buttery. The playhouse was
erected in the two rooms last mentioned.]

In 1560 the new proprietor let the Cheeke Lodgings to Sir Henry
Neville, with the addition of "a void piece of ground" eighteen feet
wide extending west to Water Lane.[149] During his tenancy Neville
erected certain partitions, built a kitchen in the "void piece of
ground," and a large stairway leading to the rooms overhead. In 1568
he surrendered his lease, and More let the rooms first to some "sylk
dyers," and then in 1571 to Lord Cobham. In 1576 Cobham gave up the
rooms, and More was seeking a tenant. It was at this auspicious moment
that Farrant planned a private theatre, and enlisted the aid of Sir
Henry Neville.

[Footnote 149: This was enclosed with brick walls, and the greater
part used as a wood-yard. This yard was later purchased by James
Burbage when he secured the frater for his playhouse. The kitchen,
shed, and stairs, built on the eastern part, were sold to Cobham.]

On August 27 Farrant and Neville separately wrote letters to Sir
William More about the matter. Farrant respectfully solicited the
lease, and made the significant request that he might "pull down one
partition, and so make two rooms--one." Neville, in a friendly letter
beginning with "hearty commendations unto you and to Mrs. More," and
ending with light gossip, urged Sir William to let the rooms to
Farrant, and recommended Farrant as a desirable tenant ("I dare answer
for him"). Neither letter mentioned the purpose for which the rooms,
especially the large room referred to by Farrant, were to be used; but
More doubtless understood that the Windsor Children were to practice
their plays there, with occasional private rehearsals. Largely as a
result of Neville's recommendation, More decided to let the rooms to
Farrant. The progress of the negotiations is marked by a letter from
Farrant to More, dated September 17, 1576, requesting that there be
granted him also a certain "little dark room," which he found would be

The lease as finally signed describes the property thus:

     Sir William More hath demised, granted, and to ferm letten,
     and by these presents doth demise, grant, and to ferm let
     unto the said Richard Farrant all those his six upper
     chambers, lofts, lodgings, or rooms, lying together within
     the precinct of the late dissolved house or priory of the
     Blackfriars, otherwise called the friars preachers, in
     London; which said six upper chambers, lofts, lodgings, or
     rooms, were lately, amongst others, in the tenure and
     occupation of the right honourable Sir William Brooke,
     Knight, Lord Cobham; and do contain in length from the north
     end thereof to the south end of the same one hundred fifty
     and six foot and a half of assize; whereof two of the said
     six upper chambers, lofts, lodgings, or rooms in the north
     end of the premises, together with the breadth of the little
     room under granted, do contain in length forty[150] and six
     foot and a half, and from the east to the west part thereof
     in breadth twenty and five foot of assize;[151] and the
     four other chambers, or rooms, residue of the said six upper
     chambers, do contain in length one hundred and ten foot, and
     in breadth from the east to the west part thereof twenty-two
     foot of assize.... And also ... the great stairs lately
     erected and made by the said Sir Henry Neville upon part of
     the said void ground and way.

[Footnote 150: By an error in the manuscript this reads "fifty"; but
the rooms are often described and always as "forty-six" feet in
length; moreover, the error is made obvious by the rest of the lease.]

[Footnote 151: The breadth is elsewhere given as twenty-six, and
twenty-seven feet.]

It was agreed that the lease should run for twenty-one years, and that
the rental should be £14 per annum. But Sir William More, being a most
careful and exacting landlord, with the interest of his adjacent
lodgings to care for, inserted in the lease the following important
proviso, which was destined to make trouble, and ultimately to wreck
the theatre:

     Provided also that the said Richard Farrant, his executors
     or assigns, or any of them, shall not in any wise demise,
     let, grant, assign, set over, or by any ways or means put
     away his or their interest or term of years, or any part of
     the same years, of or in the said premises before letten, or
     any part, parcel, or member thereof to any person, or
     persons, at any time hereafter during this present lease and
     term of twenty-one years, without the special license,
     consent, and agreement of the said Sir William More, his
     heirs and assigns, first had, and obtained in writing under
     his and their hands and seals.

The penalty affixed to a violation of this provision was the immediate
forfeiture of the lease.

Apparently Farrant entered into possession of the rooms on September
29[152] (although the formal lease was not signed until December 20),
and we may suppose that he at once set about converting the two upper
rooms at the north end of the lodgings into a suitable theatre.[153]
Naturally he took for his model the halls at Court in which the
Children had been accustomed to act. First, we are told, he "pulled
down partitions to make that place apt for that purpose"; next, he
"spoiled" the windows--by which is meant, no doubt, that he stopped up
the windows, for the performances were to be by candle-light. At one
end of the hall he erected a platform to serve as a stage, and in the
auditorium he placed benches or chairs. There was, presumably, no room
for a gallery; if such had been erected, the indignant More would
certainly have mentioned it in his bill of complaints.[154]
Chandeliers over the stage, and, possibly, footlights, completed the
necessary arrangements. For these alterations Farrant, we are told,
became "greatly indebted," and he died three or four years later with
the debt still unpaid. More complained that the alterations had put
the rooms into a state of "great ruin," which meant, of course, from
the point of view of a landlord desiring to let them again for
residential purposes. Just how costly or how extensive the alterations
were we cannot now determine; but we may reasonably conclude that
Farrant made the hall not only "commodious for his purpose," but also
attractive to the aristocratic audiences he intended to gather there
to see his plays.

[Footnote 152: The date from which the lease was made to run.]

[Footnote 153: It is usually said that he converted the entire seven
rooms into his theatre, but that seems highly unlikely. The northern
section was 46 x 26 feet, the southern section 110 x 22--absurd
dimensions for an auditorium. Moreover, that Farrant originally
planned to use only the northern section is indicated by his request
to be allowed to "pull down one partition and so make two rooms--one."
The portion not used for the playhouse he rented; in 1580, we are
told, he let "two parcels thereof to two several persons."]

[Footnote 154: M. Feuillerat, I think, is wrong in supposing that
there was a gallery. He deduces no proof for his contention, and the
evidence is against him.]

To reach the hall, playgoers had to come first into Water Lane, thence
through "a way leading from the said way called Water Lane" to "a
certain void ground" before the building. Here "upon part of the said
void ground" they found a "great stairs, which said great stairs do
serve and lead into" the upper rooms--or, as we may now say,
Blackfriars Playhouse.[155]

[Footnote 155: There must have been two stairways leading to the upper
rooms; I have assumed that playgoers used Neville's stairs to reach
the theatre.]

Having thus provided a playhouse, Farrant next provided an adequate
company of boy actors. To do this, he combined the Children of Windsor
with the Children of the Chapel Royal, of which William Hunnis was
master. What arrangement he made with Hunnis we do not know, but the
Court records show that Farrant was regarded as the manager of the new
organization; he is actually referred to in the payments as "Master of
the Children of Her Majesty's Chapel," and Hunnis's official
connection with the Children is ignored.

Farrant may have been able to open his playhouse before the close of
the year; or he may have first begun performances there in the early
months of 1577. He would certainly be anxious to make use of the new
play he was preparing for presentation at Court on Twelfth Day,
January 6, 1577.

For four years, 1576-1580, the playhouse was operated without trouble.
Sir William More, however, was not pleased at the success with which
the actors were meeting. He asserted that when he made the lease he
was given to understand that the building was to be used "only for the
teaching of the Children of the Chapel"--with, no doubt, a few
rehearsals to which certain persons would be _privately_ invited. But,
now, to his grief, he discovered that Farrant had "made it a continual
house for plays." He asserted that the playhouse had become offensive
to the precinct; and doubtless some complaints had been made to him,
as landlord, by the more aristocratic inhabitants.[156] At any rate,
he became anxious to regain possession of the building.

[Footnote 156: I suspect that the theatre gave greater offense to More
himself than it did to any one else, for it adjoined his home, and the
audience made use of the private passage which led from Water Lane to
his mansion. Unquestionably he suffered worse than any one else both
from the noise and the crowds.]

In the autumn of 1580 he saw an opportunity to break the lease and
close the playhouse. Farrant made the mistake of letting "two parcels
thereof to two severall persons" without first gaining the written
consent of More, and at once More "charged him with forfeiture of his
lease." But before More could "take remedy against him" Farrant died,
November 30, 1580. More, however, "entered upon the house, and refused
to receive any rent but conditionally."

By his will, proved March 1, 1581, Farrant left the lease of the
Blackfriars to his widow, Anne Farrant. But she had no authority over
the royal choristers, nor was she qualified to manage a company of
actors, even if she had had the time to do so after caring for her
"ten little ones." What use, if any, was made of the playhouse during
the succeeding winter we do not know. The widow writes that she,
"being a sole woman, unable of herself to use the said rooms to such
purpose as her said husband late used them, nor having any need or
occasion to occupy them to such commodity as would discharge the rents
due for the said rooms in the bill alledged, nor being able to
sustain, repair, and amend the said rooms," etc.;[157] the natural
inference from which is that for a time the playhouse stood unused.
The widow, of course, was anxious to sublet the building to some one
who could make use of it as a playhouse; and on December 25, 1580, she
addressed a letter to Sir William More asking his written permission
to make such a disposal of the lease. The letter has a pathetic
interest that justifies its insertion here:

     _To the right worshipful Sir William More, Knight, at his
     house near Guilford, give these with speed._

     _Right worshipful Sir:_

     After my humble commendations, and my duty also
     remembered--where it hath pleased your worship to grant unto
     my husband in his life time one lease of your house within
     the Blackfriars, for the term of twenty-one years, with a
     proviso in the end thereof that he cannot neither let nor
     set the same without your worship's consent under your hand
     in writing. And now for that it hath pleased God to call my
     said husband unto His mercy, having left behind him the
     charge of ten small children upon my hand, and my husband
     besides greatly indebted, not having the revenue of one
     groat any way coming in, but by making the best I may of
     such things as he hath left behind him, to relieve my little
     ones. May it therefore please your worship, of your abundant
     clemency and accustomed goodness, to consider a poor widow's
     distressed estate, and for God's cause to comfort her with
     your worship's warrant under your hand to let and set the
     same to my best comodity during the term of years in the
     said lease contained, not doing any waste. In all which
     doing, I shall evermore most abundantly pray unto God for
     the preservation of your worship's long continuance. From
     Grenwich, the twenty-fifth of December,

     By a poor and sorrowful widow,

     ANNE FARRANT.[158]

[Footnote 157: Wallace, _The Evolution of the English Drama_, p. 163.]

[Footnote 158: Wallace, _The Evolution of the English Drama_, p.

Whether she secured in writing the permission she requested we do not
know. Four years later More said that she did not. Possibly, however,
she was orally given to understand that she might transfer the lease
to her husband's former partner in the enterprise, William
Hunnis.[159] Hunnis naturally was eager to make use of the building in
preparation for the Christmas plays at Court. At some date before
September 19, he secured the use of the playhouse on a temporary
agreement with the widow; but in order to avoid any difficulty with
More, he interviewed the latter, and presented a letter of
recommendation from the Earl of Leicester. This letter has been
preserved among Sir William's papers:

     _Sir William More:_

     Whereas my friend, Mr. Hunnis, this bearer, informeth me
     that he hath of late bought of Farrant's widow her lease of
     that house in Blackfriars which you made to her husband,
     deceased, and means there to practice the Queen's Children
     of the Chapel, being now in his charge, in like sort as his
     predecessor did, for the better training them to do Her
     Majesty's service; he is now a suitor to me to recommend him
     to your good favour--which I do very heartily, as one that I
     wish right well unto, and will give you thanks for any
     continuance or friendship you shall show him for the
     furtherance of this his honest request. And thus, with my
     hearty commendations, I wish you right heartily well to
     fare. From the Court, this nineteenth of September, 1581.

     Your very friend,

     R. LEICESTER.[160]

[Footnote 159: More had "refused to accept any rent but
conditionally." Probably he refused written consent to the sublease
for the same reason.]

[Footnote 160: Wallace, _The Evolution of the English Drama_, p. 154.]

The result of this interview we do not know. But on December 20
following, the widow made a formal lease of the property to William
Hunnis and John Newman, at a rental of £20 13_s._ 4_d._ a year, an
increase of £6 13_s._ 4_d._ over the rental she had to pay More. She
required of them a bond of £100 to guarantee their performance of all
the covenants of the lease. Thereupon the theatre under Hunnis and
Newman resumed its career--if, indeed, this had ever been seriously

In the course of time, More's anxiety to recover possession of the
hall seems to have increased. The quarterly payments were not promptly
met by the widow, and the repairs on the building were not made to his
satisfaction. Probably through fear of the increasing dissatisfaction
on the part of More, Hunnis and Newman transferred their lease, in
1583, to a young Welsh scrivener, Henry Evans, who had become
interested in dramatic affairs. This transfer of the lease without
More's written consent was a second clear breach of the original
contract, and it gave More exactly the opportunity he sought.
Accordingly, he declared the original lease to Farrant void, and made
a new lease of the house "unto his own man, Thomas Smallpiece, to try
the said Evans his right." But Evans, being a lawyer, knew how to take
care of himself. He "demurred in law," and "kept the same in his hands
with long delays."

The widow, alarmed at the prospect of losing her lease, brought suit,
in December, 1583, against Hunnis and Newman separately for the
forfeiture of their several bonds of £100, contending that they had
not paid promptly according to their agreement, and had not kept the
building in proper repair. Hunnis and Newman separately brought suit
in the Court of Requests for relief against the widow's suits.
Meanwhile More was demanding judgment against Evans. Hunnis, it seems,
carried his troubles to the Court and there sought help. Queen
Elizabeth could take no direct action, because Sir William More was a
good friend of hers, who had entertained her in his home. But she
might enlist the aid of one of her noblemen who were interested in the
drama. However this was, the young Earl of Oxford, himself a
playwright and the patron of a troupe of boy-actors, came to the
rescue of the theatre. He bought the lease of the building from Evans,
and undertook to reorganize its affairs. To Hunnis's twelve Children
of the Chapel he added the Children of St. Paul's Cathedral, making
thus a company of adequate size. He retained Hunnis, no doubt, as one
of the trainers of the Boys, and he kept Evans as manager of the
troupe. Moreover, shortly after the purchase, probably in June, 1583,
he made a free gift of the lease to his private secretary, John Lyly,
a young man who had recently won fame with the first English novel,
_Euphues_. The object of this, like the preceding transfers of title,
it seems, was to put as many legal blocks in the path of Sir William
More as possible. More realized this, and complained specifically that
"the title was posted from one to another"; yet he had firmly made up
his mind to recover the property, and in spite of Oxford's
interference, he instructed his "learned council" to "demand

Meanwhile the dramatic organization at Blackfriars continued under the
direction of Hunnis, Evans, and Lyly, with the Earl of Oxford as
patron. Not only was Lyly the proprietor of the theatre, but he
attempted to supply it with the necessary plays. He had already shown
his power to tell in effective prose a pleasing love romance. That
power he now turned to the production of his first play, written in
haste for the Christmas festivities. The play, _Alexander and
Campaspe_, was presented before Her Majesty on January 1, 1584, and at
Blackfriars, with great applause. Lyly's second play, _Sapho and
Phao_, was produced at Court on March 3, following, and also at
Blackfriars before the general public.

But at the Easter term, 1584, Sir William More got judgment in his
favor. The widow begged Sir Francis Walsingham to intercede in her
behalf, declaring that the loss of the lease "might be her utter
undoing."[161] Walsingham sent the letter to More, and apparently
urged a consideration of her case. More, however, refused to yield. He
banished Lyly, Hunnis, Evans, and the Children from the "great upper
hall," and reconverted the building into tenements.

[Footnote 161: The letter is printed in full by Mr. Wallace in _The
Evolution of the English Drama_, p. 158. Mr. Wallace, however,
misdates it. It was not written until after More had "recovered it
[the lease] against Evans."]



As shown in the preceding chapter, not only were the Children of the
Chapel Royal and of Windsor called upon to entertain the Queen with
dramatic performances, but the Children of St. Paul's were also
expected to amuse their sovereign on occasion. And following the
example of the Children of the Chapel and of Windsor in giving
performances before the public in Blackfriars, the Paul's Boys soon
began to give such performances in a building near the Cathedral.[162]
The building so employed was doubtless one of the structures owned by
the Church. Burbage and Heminges refer to it as "the said house near
St. Paul's Church."[163] Richard Flecknoe, in _A Discourse of the
English Stage_ (1664), places it "behind the Convocation-house in
Paul's";[164] and Howes, in his continuation of Stow's _Annals_
(1631), says that it was the "singing-school" of the Cathedral.[165]
That the auditorium was small we may well believe. So was the stage.
Certain speakers in the Induction to _What You Will_, acted at Paul's
in 1600, say: "Let's place ourselves within the curtains, for, good
faith, the stage is so very little, we shall wrong the general eye
else very much." Both Fleay and Lawrence[166] contend that the
building was "round, like the Globe," and as evidence they cite the
Prologue to Marston's _Antonio's Revenge_, acted at Paul's in 1600, in
which the phrases "within this round" and "within this ring" are
applied to the theatre. The phrases, however, may have reference
merely to the circular disposition of the benches about the stage.
That high prices of admission to the little theatre were charged we
learn from a marginal note in _Pappe with an Hatchet_ (1589), which
states that if a tragedy "be showed at Paul's, it will cost you four
pence; at the Theatre two pence."[167] The Children, indeed, catered
to a very select public. Persons who went thither were gentle by birth
and by behavior as well; and playwrights, we are told, could always
feel sure there of the "calm attention of a choice audience."[168]
Lyly, in the Prologue to _Midas_, acted at Paul's in 1589, says: "Only
this doth encourage us, that presenting our studies before
_Gentlemen_, though they receive an inward dislike, we shall not be
hissed with an open disgrace." Things were quite otherwise in the
public theatres of Shoreditch and the Bankside.

[Footnote 162: Murray, _English Dramatic Companies_, I, 325,
erroneously says: "Their public place was, probably, from the first,
the courtyard of St. Paul's Cathedral."]

[Footnote 163: Wallace, _Shakespeare and his London Associates_, p.

[Footnote 164: That is, in or near Pater Noster Row.]

[Footnote 165: _Annales, or A Generall Chronicle of England_, 1631,
signature liii 1, verso.]

[Footnote 166: F.G. Fleay, _A Biographical Chronicle of the English
Drama_, II, 76; W.J. Lawrence, _The Elizabethan Playhouse_, p. 17.]

[Footnote 167: R.W. Bond, _The Complete Works of John Lyly_, III, 408.
Higher prices of admission were charged to all the private

[Footnote 168: John Marston, _Antonio's Revenge_, acted at Paul's in

Under the direction of their master, Sebastian Westcott, the Boys
acted before the public at least as early as 1578,[169] for in
December of that year the Privy Council ordered the Lord Mayor to
permit them to "exercise plays" within the city;[170] and Stephen
Gosson, in his _Plays Confuted_, written soon afterwards, mentions
_Cupid and Psyche_ as having been recently "plaid at Paules."

[Footnote 169: There is a record of a play by the Paul's Boys in 1527
before ambassadors from France, dealing with the heretic Luther; but
exactly when they began to give public performances for money we do
not know.]

[Footnote 170: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 432.]

Westcott died in 1582, and was succeeded by Thomas Gyles. Shortly
after this we find the Children of Paul's acting publicly with the
Children of the Chapel Royal at the little theatre in Blackfriars. For
them John Lyly wrote his two earliest plays, _Campaspe_ and _Sapho and
Phao_, as the title-pages clearly state. But their stay at Blackfriars
was short. When in 1584 Sir William More closed up the theatre there,
they fell back upon their singing-school as the place for their public

At the same time the Queen became greatly interested in promoting
their dramatic activities. To their master, Thomas Gyles, she issued,
in April, 1585, a special commission "to take up apt and meet
children" wherever he could find them. It was customary for the Queen
to issue such a commission to the masters of her two private chapels,
but never before, or afterwards, had this power to impress children
been conferred upon a person not directly connected with the royal
choristers. Its issuance to Gyles in 1585 clearly indicates the
Queen's interest in the Paul's Boys as actors, and her expectation of
being frequently entertained by them. And to promote her plans still
further, she appointed the successful playwright John Lyly as their
vice-master, with the understanding, no doubt, that he was to keep
them--and her--supplied with plays. This he did, for all his comedies,
except the two just mentioned, were written for the Cathedral
Children, and were acted by them at Court, and in their little theatre
"behind the Convocation House."

Unfortunately under Lyly's leadership the Boys became involved in the
bitter Martin Marprelate controversy, for which they were suppressed
near the end of 1590. The printer of Lyly's _Endimion_, in 1591, says
to the reader: "Since the plays in Paul's were dissolved, there are
certain comedies come to my hands by chance, which were presented
before Her Majesty at several times by the Children of Paul's."

Exactly how long the Children were restrained it is hard to determine.
In 1596 Thomas Nash, in _Have With You to Saffron Walden_, expressed
a desire to see "the plays at Paul's up again." Mr. Wallace thinks
they may have been allowed "up again" in 1598;[171] Fleay, in 1599 or
1600;[172] the evidence, however, points, I think, to the spring or
early summer of 1600. The Children began, naturally, with old plays,
"musty fopperies of antiquity"; the first, or one of the first, new
plays they presented was Marston's _Jack Drum's Entertainment_, the
date of which can be determined within narrow limits. References to
Kempe's Morris, which was danced in February, 1600, as being still a
common topic of conversation, and the entry of the play in the
Stationers' Registers on September 8, 1600, point to the spring or
early summer of 1600 as the date of composition. This makes very
significant the following passage in the play referring to the Paul's
Boys as just beginning to act again after their long inhibition:

     _Sir Ed._ I saw the Children of Paul's last night,
     And troth they pleas'd me pretty, pretty well.
     The Apes in time will do it handsomely.

     _Plan._ S'faith, I like the audience that frequenteth there
     With much applause. A man shall not be choak't
     With the stench of garlic, nor be pasted
     To the barmy jacket of a beer-brewer.

     _Bra. Ju._ 'Tis a good, gentle audience; and I hope the Boys
     Will come one day into the Court of Requests.

[Footnote 171: _The Children of the Chapel_, p. 153.]

[Footnote 172: _A Chronicle History of the London Stage_, p. 152.]

Shortly after this the Boys were indeed called "into the Court of
Requests," for on New Year's Day, 1601, they were summoned to present
a play before Her Majesty.

Their master now was Edward Pierce, who had succeeded Thomas Gyles. In
1605 the experienced Edward Kirkham, driven from the management of the
Blackfriars Theatre, became an assistant to Pierce in the management
of Paul's. In this capacity we find him in 1606 receiving the payment
for the two performances of the Boys at Court that year.[173]

[Footnote 173: Cunningham, _Extracts from the Accounts of the Revels_,

Among the playwrights engaged by Pierce to write for Paul's were
Marston, Middleton, Chapman, Dekker, Webster, and Beaumont; and, as a
result, some of the most interesting dramas of the period were first
acted on the small stage of the singing-school. Details in the history
of the Children, however, are few. We find an occasional notice of
their appearance at Court, but our record of them is mainly secured
from the title-pages of their plays.

The last notice of a performance by them is as follows: "On the 30th
of July, 1606, the youths of Paul's, commonly called the Children of
Paul's, played before the two Kings [of England and of Denmark] a play
called _Abuses_, containing both a comedy and a tragedy, at which the
Kings seemed to take great delight and be much pleased."[174]

[Footnote 174: Nichols, _The Progresses of James_, IV, 1073.]

The reason why the Children ceased to act is made clear in the lawsuit
of Keysar _v._ Burbage _et al._, recently discovered and printed by
Mr. Wallace.[175] From this we learn that when Rosseter became manager
of the Children of the Queen's Revels at the private playhouse of
Whitefriars in 1609, he undertook to increase his profits by securing
a monopoly both of child-acting and of private theatres. Blackfriars
had been deserted, and the only other private theatre then in
existence was Paul's. So Rosseter agreed to pay Pierce a dead rent of
£20 a year to keep the Paul's playhouse closed:

     One Mr. Rosseter, a partner of the said complainant, dealt
     for and compounded with the said Mr. Pierce to the only
     benefit of him, the said Mr. Rosseter, the now complainant,
     the rest of their partners and Company [at the Whitefriars]
     ... that thereby they might ... advance their gains and
     profit to be had and made in their said house in the
     Whitefriars, that there might be a cessation of playing and
     plays to be acted in the said house near St. Paul's Church
     aforesaid, for which the said Rosseter compounded with the
     said Pierce to give him the said Pierce twenty pounds per

[Footnote 175: _Shakespeare and his London Associates_, p. 80.]

[Footnote 176: _Ibid._, p. 95.]

In this attempt to secure a monopoly in private playhouses Rosseter
was foiled by the coming of Shakespeare's troupe to the Blackfriars;
but the King's Men readily agreed to join in the payment of the dead
rent to Pierce, for it was to their advantage also to eliminate

The agreement which Rosseter secured from Pierce was binding "for one
whole year"; whether it was renewed we do not know, but the Children
never again acted in "their house near St. Paul's Church."



From time out of mind the suburb of London known as "the
Bankside"--the term was loosely applied to all the region south of the
river and west of the bridge--had been identified with sports and
pastimes. On Sundays, holidays, and other festive occasions, the
citizens, their wives, and their apprentices were accustomed to seek
outdoor entertainment across the river, going thither in boats (of
which there was an incredible number, converting "the silver sliding
Thames" almost into a Venetian Grand Canal), or strolling on foot over
old London Bridge. On the Bankside the visitors could find maypoles
for dancing, butts for the practice of archery, and broad fields for
athletic games; or, if so disposed, they could visit bull-baitings,
bear-baitings, fairs, stage-plays, shows, motions, and other
amusements of a similar sort.

Not all the attractions of the Bankside, however, were so innocent.
For here, in a long row bordering the river's edge, were situated the
famous stews of the city, licensed by authority of the Bishop of
Winchester; and along with the stews, of course, such places as thrive
in a district devoted to vice--houses for gambling, for
coney-catching, and for evil practices of various sorts. The less said
of this feature of the Bankside the better.

More needs to be said of the bull- and bear-baiting, which probably
constituted the chief amusement of the crowds from the city, and which
was later closely associated with the drama and with playhouses. This
sport, now surviving in the bull-fights of Spain and of certain
Spanish-American countries, was in former times one of the most
popular species of entertainment cultivated by the English. Even so
early as 1174, William Fitz-Stephen, in his _Descriptio Nobilissimæ
Ciuitatis Londoniæ_, under the heading _De Ludis_, records that the
London citizens diverted themselves on holiday occasions with the
baiting of beasts, when "strong horn-goring bulls, or immense bears,
contend fiercely with dogs that are pitted against them."[177] In some
towns the law required that bulls intended for the butcher-shop should
first be baited for the amusement of the public before being led to
the slaughter-house. Erasmus speaks of the "many herds of bears" which
he saw in England "maintained for the purpose of baiting." The baiting
was accomplished by tying the bulls or bears to stakes, or when
possible releasing them in an amphitheatre, and pitting against them
bull-dogs, bred through centuries for strength and ferocity.
Occasionally other animals, as ponies and apes, were brought into the
fight, and the sport was varied in miscellaneous ways. Some of the
animals, by unusual courage or success, endeared themselves to the
heart of the sporting public. Harry Hunks, George Stone, and Sacarson
were famous bears in Shakespeare's time; and the names of many of the
"game bulls" and "mastiff dogs" became household words throughout

[Footnote 177: "Pingues tauri cornupetæ, seu vrsi immanes, cum
obiectis depugnant canibus."]

[Illustration: THE BANKSIDE

Showing the Bear- and Bull-baiting Rings. (From the _Map of London_ by
Braun and Hogenbergius, representing the city in 1554-1558.)]

[Illustration: THE BANKSIDE

This was the second district of London used for public playhouses.
Notice the amphitheatres for animal-baiting. (From William Smith's MS.
of the Description of England, _c._ 1580.)]

The home of this popular sport was the Bankside. The earliest extant
map of Southwark,[178] drawn about 1542, shows in the very centre of
High Street, just opposite London Bridge, a circular amphitheatre
marked "The Bull Ring"; and doubtless there were other places along
the river devoted to the same purpose. The baiting of bears was more
closely identified with the Manor of Paris Garden,[179] that section
of the Bank lying to the west of the Clink, over towards the marshes
of Lambeth. The association of bear-baiting with this particular
section was probably due to the fact that in early days the butchers
of London used a part of the Manor of Paris Garden for the disposal
of their offal,[180] and the entrails and other refuse from the
slaughtered beasts furnished cheap and abundant food for the bears and
dogs. The Earl of Manchester wrote to the Lord Mayor and the Common
Council, in 1664, that he had been informed by the master of His
Majesty's Game of Bears and Bulls, and others, that "the Butcher's
Company had formerly caused all their offal in Eastcheap and Newgate
Market to be conveyed by the beadle of the Company unto two barrow
houses, conveniently placed on the river side, for the provision and
feeding of the King's Game of Bears."

[Footnote 178: The map is reproduced in facsimile by Rendle as a
frontispiece to _Old Southwark and its People_.]

[Footnote 179: Or Parish Garden, possibly the more correct form. For
the early history of the Manor see William Bray, _The History and
Antiquities of the County of Surrey_, III, 530; Wallace, in _Englische
Studien_ (1911), XLIII, 341, note 3; Ordish, _Early London Theatres_,
p. 125.]

[Footnote 180: Blount, in his _Glossographia_ (1681), p. 473, says of
Paris Garden: "So called from Robert de Paris, who had a house and
garden there in Richard II.'s time; who by proclamation, ordained that
the butchers of London should buy that garden for receipt of their
garbage and entrails of beasts, to the end the city might not be
annoyed thereby."]


These "rings" later gave place to the Bear Garden. (From Agas's _Map
of London_, representing the city as it was about 1560.)]

At first, apparently, the baiting of bears was held in open
places,[181] with the bear tied to a stake and the spectators crowding
around, or at best standing on temporary scaffolds. But later,
permanent amphitheatres were provided. In Braun and Hogenberg's _Map
of London_, drawn between 1554 and 1558, and printed in 1572, we find
two well-appointed amphitheatres, with stables and kennels attached,
labeled respectively "The Bear Baiting" and "The Bull Baiting." When
these amphitheatres were erected we do not know, but probably they do
not antedate by much the middle of the century.[182]

[Footnote 181: See Gilpin's _Life of Cranmer_ for a description of a
bear-baiting before the King held on or near the river's edge. See
also the proclamation of Henry VIII in 1546 against the stews, which
implies the non-existence of regular amphitheatres.]

[Footnote 182: Sir Sidney Lee (_Shakespeare's England_, II, 428) says
that one of the amphitheatres was erected in 1526. I do not know his
authority; he was apparently misled by one of Rendle's statements.
Neither of the amphitheatres is shown in Wyngaerde's careful _Map of
London_ made about 1530-1540; possibly they are referred to in the
_Diary_ of Henry Machyn under the date of May 26, 1554. The old "Bull
Ring" in High Street had then disappeared, and the baiting of bulls
was henceforth more or less closely associated, as was natural, with
the baiting of bears.]

It is to be noted that at this time neither "The Bull Baiting" nor
"The Bear Baiting" is in the Manor of Paris Garden, but close by in
the Liberty of the Clink. Yet the name "Paris Garden" continued to be
used of the animal-baiting place for a century and more. Possibly the
identification of bear-baiting with Paris Garden was of such long
standing that Londoners could not readily adjust themselves to the
change; they at first confused the terms "Bear Garden" and "Paris
Garden," and later extended the term "Paris Garden" to include that
section of the Clink devoted to the baiting of animals.

The two amphitheatres, it seems, were used until 1583, when a serious
catastrophe put an end to one if not both of them. Stow, in his
_Annals_, gives the following account of the accident:

     The same thirteenth day of January, being Sunday, about four
     of the clock in the afternoon, the old and underpropped
     scaffolds round about the Bear Garden, commonly called Paris
     Garden, on the south side of the river of Thamis over
     against the city of London, overcharged with people, fell
     suddenly down, whereby to the number of eight persons, men
     and women, were slain, and many others sore hurt and bruised
     to the shortening of their lives.[183]

[Footnote 183: Stow, _Annals_ (ed. 1631), p. 696.]

Stubbes, the Puritan, writes in his more heightened style:

     Upon the 13 day of January last, being the Saboth day,
     _Anno_ 1583, the people, men, women, and children, both
     young and old, an infinite number, flocking to those
     infamous places where these wicked exercises are usually
     practised (for they have their courts, gardens, and yards
     for the same purpose), when they were all come together and
     mounted aloft upon their scaffolds and galleries, and in the
     midst of all their jolity and pastime, all the whole
     building (not one stick standing) fell down with a most
     wonderful and fearful confusion. So that either two or three
     hundred men, women, and children (by estimation), whereof
     seven were killed dead, some were wounded, some lamed, and
     otherwise bruised and crushed almost to death. Some had
     their brains dashed out, some their heads all to-squashed,
     some their legs broken, some their arms, some their backs,
     some their shoulders, some one hurt, some another.[184]

[Footnote 184: Philip Stubbes, _The Anatomie of Abuses_ (ed.
Furnivall), p. 179.]

The building, which the Reverend John Field described as "old and
rotten,"[185] was a complete ruin; "not a stick was left so high as
the bear was fastened to." The Puritan preachers loudly denounced the
unholy spectacles, pointing to the catastrophe as a clear warning from
the Almighty; and the city authorities earnestly besought the Privy
Council to put an end to such performances. Yet the owners of the
building set to work at once, and soon had erected a new house,
stronger and larger and more pretentious than before. The Lord Mayor,
in some indignation, wrote to the Privy Council on July 3, 1583, that
"the scaffolds are new builded, and the multitudes on the Saboth day
called together in most excessive number."[186]

[Footnote 185: _A Godly Exhortation by Occasion of the Late Judgement
of God, Shewed at Paris-Garden_ (London, 1583). Another account of the
disaster may be found in Vaughan's _Golden Grove_ (1600).]

[Footnote 186: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 65.]

The New Bear Garden, octagonal in form, was probably modeled after the
playhouses in Shoreditch, and made in all respects superior to the old
amphitheatre which it supplanted.[187] We find that it was reckoned
among the sights of the city, and was exhibited to distinguished
foreign visitors. For example, when Sir Walter Raleigh undertook to
entertain the French Ambassador, he carried him to view the monuments
in Westminster Abbey and to see the new Bear Garden.

[Footnote 187: What became of the other amphitheatre labeled "The Bull
Baiting" I do not know. Stow, in his _Survey_, 1598, says: "Now to
return to the west bank, there be two bear gardens, the old and new
places, wherein be kept bears, bulls, and other beasts to be baited."]

[Illustration: THE BEAR GARDEN

From Visscher's _Map of London_, published in 1616, but representing
the city as it was several years earlier.]

A picture of the building is to be seen in the Hondius _View of
London_, 1610 (see page 149), and in the small inset views from the
title-pages of Holland's _Her[Greek: ô]ologia_, 1620, and Baker's
_Chronicle_, 1643 (see page 147), all three of which probably go back
to a view of London made between 1587 and 1597, and now lost. Another
representation of the structure is to be seen in the Delaram portrait
of King James, along with the Rose and the Globe (see opposite page
246). The best representation of the building, however, is in
Visscher's _View of London_ (see page 127), printed in 1616, but drawn
several years earlier.[188]

[Footnote 188: For a fuller discussion of these various maps and views
see pages 146, 248, and 328. Norden's map of 1594 (see page 147)
merely indicates the site of the building.]

Although we are not directly concerned with the history of the Bear
Garden,[189] a few descriptions of "the royal game of bears, bulls,
and dogs" drawn from contemporary sources will be of interest and of
specific value for the discussion of the Hope Playhouse--itself both a
bear garden and a theatre.

[Footnote 189: For such a history the reader is referred to Ordish,
_Early London Theatres_; Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_, II, and _Henslowe
Papers_; Young, _The History of Dulwich College_; Rendle, _The
Bankside_, and _The Playhouses at Bankside_.]

Robert Laneham, in his _Description of the Entertainment at
Kenilworth_ (1575), writes thus of a baiting of bears before the

     Well, syr, the Bearz wear brought foorth intoo the Coourt,
     the dogs set too them.... It was a Sport very pleazaunt of
     theez beastz; to see the bear with his pink nyez leering
     after hiz enemiez approoch, the nimbleness & wayt of ye dog
     to take his auauntage, and the fors & experiens of the bear
     agayn to auoyd the assauts: if he war bitten in one place,
     how he woold pynch in an oother to get free: that if he wear
     taken onez, then what shyft, with byting, with clawing, with
     rooring, tossing, & tumbling he woold woork to wynd hym self
     from them: and when he waz lose, to shake his earz tywse or
     thryse, wyth the blud and the slauer aboout his fiznomy, waz
     a matter of a goodly releef.

John Houghton, in his _Collection for Improvement of Husbandry and
Trade_,[190] gives a vivid account of the baiting of the bull. He

     The bull takes great care to watch his enemy, which is a
     mastiff dog (commonly used to the sport) with a short nose
     that his teeth may take the better hold; this dog, if right,
     will creep upon his belly that he may, if possible, get the
     bull by the nose; which the bull as carefully strives to
     defend by laying it close to the ground, where his horns are
     also ready to do what in them lies to toss the dog; and this
     is the true sport. But if more dogs than one come at once,
     or they are cowardly and come under his legs, he will, if he
     can, stamp their guts out. I believe I have seen a dog
     tossed by a bull thirty, if not forty foot high; and when
     they are tossed, either higher or lower, the men above
     strive to catch them on their shoulders, lest the fall might
     mischief the dogs. They commonly lay sand about that if they
     fall upon the ground it may be the easier. Notwithstanding
     this care a great many dogs are killed, more have their
     limbs broke, and some hold so fast that, by the bull's
     swinging them, their teeth are often broken out.... The true
     courage and art is to hold the bull by the nose 'till he
     roars, which a courageous bull scorns to do.... This is a
     sport the English much delight in; and not only the baser
     sort, but the greatest lords and ladies.

[Footnote 190: No. 108, August, 1694. Quoted by J.P. Malcolm,
_Anecdotes of the Manners and Customs of London from the Roman
Invasion to the Year 1700_ (London, 1811), p. 433.]

An attendant upon the Duke of Nexara, who visited England in 1544,
wrote the following account of a bear-baiting witnessed in London:

     In another part of the city we saw seven bears, some of them
     of great size. They were led out every day to an enclosure,
     where being tied with a long rope, large and intrepid dogs
     are thrown to them, in order that they may bite and make
     them furious. It is no bad sport to see them fight, and the
     assaults they give each other. To each of the large bears
     are matched three or four dogs, which sometimes get the
     better and sometimes are worsted, for besides the fierceness
     and great strength of the bears to defend themselves with
     their teeth, they hug the dogs with their paws so tightly,
     that, unless the masters came to assist them, they would be
     strangled by such soft embraces. Into the same place they
     brought a pony with an ape fastened on its back, and to see
     the animal kicking amongst the dogs, with the screams of the
     ape, beholding the curs hanging from the ears and neck of
     the pony, is very laughable.[191]

[Footnote 191: The original manuscript of this narrative, in Spanish,
is preserved in the British Museum. I quote the translation by
Frederick Madden, in _Archæologia_, XIII, 354-55.]

Orazio Busino, the chaplain of the Venetian Embassy in London, writes
in his _Anglipotrida_ (1618):

     The dogs are detached from the bear by inserting between the
     teeth ... certain iron spattles with a wooden handle; whilst
     they take them off the bull (keeping at a greater distance)
     with certain flat iron hooks which they apply to the thighs
     or even to the neck of the dog, whose tail is simultaneously
     dexterously seized by another of these rufflers. The bull
     can hardly get at anybody, as he wears a collar round his
     neck with only fifteen feet of rope, which is fastened to a
     stake deeply planted in the middle of the theatre. Other
     rufflers are at hand with long poles to put under the dog so
     as to break his fall after he has been tossed by the bull;
     the tips of these [poles] are covered with thick leather to
     prevent them from disembowelling the dogs. The most spirited
     stroke is considered to be that of the dog who seizes the
     bull's lip, clinging to it and pinning the animal for some
     time; the second best hit is to seize the eyebrows; the
     third, but far inferior, consists in seizing the bull's

[Footnote 192: _The Calendar of State Papers_, Venetian, XV, 258.]

Paul Hentzner, the German traveler who visited London in 1598, wrote
thus of the Bear Garden:

     There is still another place, built in the form of a
     theatre, which serves for the baiting of bulls and bears;
     they are fastened behind, and then worried by great English
     bull-dogs, but not without great risk to the dogs, from the
     horns of the one, and the teeth of the other; and it
     sometimes happens they are killed upon the spot; fresh ones
     are immediately supplied in the places of those that are
     wounded or tired. To this entertainment there often follows
     that of whipping a blinded bear, which is performed by five
     or six men standing circularly with whips, which they
     exercise upon him without any mercy, as he cannot escape
     from them because of his chain; he defends himself with all
     his force and skill, throwing down all who come within his
     reach, and are not active enough to get out of it, and
     tearing the whips out of their hands and breaking them.

The following passage is taken from the diary of the Duke of
Wirtemberg (who visited London in 1592), "noted down daily in the most
concise manner possible, at his Highness's gracious command, by his
private secretary":[193]

     On the 1st of September his Highness was shown in London the
     English dogs, of which there were about 120, all kept in the
     same enclosure, but each in separate kennel. In order to
     gratify his Highness, and at his desire, two bears and a
     bull were baited; at such times you can perceive the breed
     and mettle of the dogs, for although they receive serious
     injuries from the bears, and are caught by the horns of the
     bull and tossed into the air so as frequently to fall down
     again upon the horns, they do not give in, [but fasten on
     the bull so firmly] that one is obliged to pull them back by
     the tails and force open their jaws. Four dogs at once were
     set on the bull; they however could not gain any advantage
     over him, for he so artfully contrived to ward off their
     attacks that they could not well get at him; on the
     contrary, the bull served them very scurvily by striking and
     beating at them.

[Footnote 193: The secretary was named Jacob Rathgeb, and the diary
was published at Tübingen in 1602 with a long title beginning: _A True
and Faithful Narrative of the Bathing Excursion which His Serene
Highness_, etc. A translation will be found in Rye, _England as Seen
by Foreigners_, pp. 3-53.]

The following is a letter from one William Faunte to Edward Alleyn,
then proprietor of the Bear Garden, regarding the sale of some game

     I understood by a man which came with two bears from the
     garden, that you have a desire to buy one of my bulls. I
     have three western bulls at this time, but I have had very
     ill luck with them, for one of them hath lost his horn to
     the quick, that I think he will never be able to fight
     again; that is my old Star of the West: he was a very easy
     bull. And my bull Bevis, he hath lost one of his eyes, but I
     think if you had him he would do you more hurt than good,
     for I protest I think he would either throw up your dogs
     into the lofts, or else ding out their brains against the

[Footnote 194: Collier, _The Alleyn Papers_, p. 31.]

Finally, among the Alleyn papers of Dulwich College is an interesting
bill, or advertisement, of an afternoon's performance at the Bear

     To-morrow being Thursday shall be seen at the Bear Garden on
     the Bankside a great match played by the gamesters of Essex,
     who hath challenged all comers whatsoever to play five dogs
     at the single bear for five pounds, and also to weary a bull
     dead at the stake; and for your better content [you] shall
     have pleasant sport with the horse and ape and whipping of
     the blind bear. _Vivat Rex!_

In 1613 the Bear Garden was torn down, and a new and handsomer
structure erected in its place. For the history of this building the
reader is referred to the chapter on "The Hope."



The Bankside, as the preceding chapter indicates, offered unusual
attractions to the actors. It had, indeed, long been associated with
the drama: in 1545 King Henry VIII, in a proclamation against
vagabonds, players,[195] etc., noted their "fashions commonly used at
the Bank, and such like naughty places, where they much haunt"; and in
1547 the Bishop of Winchester made complaint that at a time when he
intended to have a dirge and mass for the late King, the actors in
Southwark planned to exhibit "a solemn play, to try who shall have the
most resort, they in game or I in earnest."[196] The players,
therefore, were no strangers to "the Bank." And when later in the
century the hostility of the Common Council drove them to seek homes
in localities not under the jurisdiction of the city, the suburb
across the river offered them a suitable refuge. For, although a large
portion of Southwark was under the jurisdiction of London, certain
parts were not, notably the Liberty of the Clink and the Manor of
Paris Garden, two sections bordering the river's edge, and the
district of Newington lying farther back to the southwest. In these
places the actors could erect their houses and entertain the public
without fear of the ordinances of the Corporation, and without danger
of interruption by puritanical Lord Mayors.

[Footnote 195: It is just possible--but, I think, improbable--that the
term "common players" as used in this proclamation referred to
gamblers. The term is regularly used in law to designate actors.]

[Footnote 196: _The Calendar of State Papers, Domestic, 1547_,
February 5, p. 1; cf. Tytler's _Edward VI and Mary_, I, 20.]

Yet, as we have seen, the first public playhouses were erected not on
the Bankside--a "naughty" place,--but near Finsbury Field to the north
of the city; and the reasons which led to the selection of such a
quiet and respectable district have been pointed out.[197] It was
inevitable, however, that sooner or later a playhouse should make its
appearance in the region to the south of the city. And at an early
date--how early it is impossible to say, but probably not long after
the erection of the Theatre and the Curtain--there appeared in
Southwark a building specially devoted to the use of players. Whether
it was a new structure modeled after the theatres of Shoreditch, or
merely an old building converted into a playhouse, we cannot say. It
seems to have been something more than an inn-yard fitted up for
dramatic purposes, and yet something less than the "sumptuous theatre
houses" erected "on purpose" for plays to the north of the city.

[Footnote 197: See page 29.]

Whatever the building was, it was situated at Newington Butts (a
place so called from the butts for archery anciently erected there),
and, unfortunately, at a considerable distance from the river. Exactly
how far playgoers from London had to walk to reach the theatre after
crossing over the river we do not know; but the Privy Council speaks
of "the tediousness of the way" thither,[198] and Stow notes that the
parish church of Newington was "distant one mile from London Bridge."
Further information about the building--its exact situation, its size,
its exterior shape, its interior arrangement, and such-like
details--is wholly lacking.

[Footnote 198: The Council again refers to the building in the phrase
"in any of these remote places." (Dasent, _Acts of the Privy Council_,
XII, 15.)]

Nor are we much better off in regard to its ownership, management, and
general history. This seems to be due to the fact that it was not
intimately associated with any of the more important London troupes;
and to the fact that after a few unsuccessful years it ceased to
exist. Below I have recorded the few and scattered references which
constitute our meagre knowledge of its history.

The first passage cited may refer to the playhouse at Newington Butts.
It is an order of the Privy Council, May 13, 1580, thus summarized by
the clerk:

     A letter to the Justices of Peace of the County of Surrey,
     that whereas their Lordships do understand that
     notwithstanding their late order given to the Lord Mayor to
     forbid all plays within and about the city until Michaelmas
     next for avoiding of infection, nevertheless certain players
     do play sundry days every week at Newington Butts in that
     part of Surrey without the jurisdiction of the said Lord
     Mayor, contrary to their Lordship's order; their Lordships
     require the Justices not only to inquire who they be that
     disobey their commandment in that behalf, and not only to
     forbid them expressly for playing in any of these remote
     places near unto the city until Michaelmas, but to have
     regard that within the precinct of Surrey none be permitted
     to play; if any do, to commit them and to advertise them,

[Footnote 199: Dasent, _Acts of the Privy Council_, XII, 15.]

The next passage clearly refers to "the theatre" at Newington Butts.
On May 11, 1586, the Privy Council dispatched a letter to the Lord
Mayor, which the clerk thus summarized:

     A letter to the Lord Mayor: his Lordship is desired,
     according to his request made to their Lordships by his
     letters of the vii th of this present, to give order for the
     restraining of plays and interludes within and about the
     city of London, for the avoiding of infection feared to grow
     and increase this time of summer by the common assemblies of
     people at those places; and that their Lordships have taken
     the like order for the prohibiting of the use of plays at
     the theatre, and the other places about Newington, out of
     his charge.[200]

[Footnote 200: _Ibid._, XIV, 102.]

Chalmers[201] thought the word "theatre" was used of the Newington
Playhouse, and for this he was taken to task by Collier,[202] who
says: "He confounds it with the playhouse emphatically called 'the
Theatre' in Shoreditch; and on consulting the Register, we find that
no such playhouse as the Newington Theatre is there spoken of." But
Chalmers was right; for if we consult the "Registers" we find the
following letter, dispatched to the Justices of Surrey on the very
same day that the letter just quoted was sent to the Lord Mayor:

     A letter to the Justices of Surrey, that according to such
     direction as hath been given by their Lordships to the Lord
     Mayor to restrain and inhibit the use of plays and
     interludes in public places in and about the City of London,
     in respect of the heat of the year now drawing on, for the
     avoiding of the infection like to grow and increase by the
     ordinary assemblies of the people to those places, they are
     also required in like sort to take order that the plays and
     assemblies of the people at the theatre or any other places
     about Newington be forthwith restrained and forborn as
     aforesaid, &c.[203]

[Footnote 201: _Apology_, p. 403.]

[Footnote 202: _History of English Dramatic Poetry_ (1879), III, 131.]

[Footnote 203: Dasent, _Acts of the Privy Council_, XIV, 99.]

The phrase, "the theatre or any other places about Newington," when
addressed to the "Justices of the Peace of Surrey" could refer only to
the Newington Butts Playhouse.

On June 23, 1592, because of a riot in Southwark, the Privy Council
closed all the playhouses in and about London.[204] Shortly after this
the Lord Strange's Men, who were then occupying the Rose, petitioned
the Council to be allowed to resume acting in their playhouse. The
Council granted them instead permission to act three times a week at
Newington Butts; but the players, not relishing this proposal, chose
rather to travel in the provinces. Soon finding that they could not
make their expenses in the country, they returned to London, and again
appealed to the Privy Council to be allowed to perform at the
Rose.[205] The warrant issued by the Council in reply to this second
petition tells us for the first time something definite about the
Newington Butts Theatre:

     To the Justices, Bailiffs, Constables, and Others to Whom it
     Shall Appertain:

     Whereas not long since, upon some considerations, we did
     restrain the Lord Strange his servants from playing at the
     Rose on the Bankside, and enjoyned them to play three days
     [a week] at Newington Butts; now forasmuch as we are
     satisfied that by reason of the tediousness of the way, and
     that of long time plays have not there been used on working
     days, and for that a number of poor watermen are thereby
     relieved, you shall permit and suffer them, or any other,
     there [at the Rose] to exercise themselves in such sort as
     they have done heretofore, and that the Rose may be at
     liberty without any restraint so long as it shall be free
     from infection, any commandment from us heretofore to the
     contrary notwithstanding.[206]

[Footnote 204: Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_, II, 50, 73.]

[Footnote 205: Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 42.]

[Footnote 206: _Ibid._, pp. 43-44.]

From this warrant we learn that so early as 1592 the Newington house
was almost deserted, and that "of long time" plays had been given
there only occasionally.

Two years later, on June 3, 1594, Henslowe sent the Admiral's and the
Chamberlain's Men to play temporarily at the half-deserted old
playhouse, probably in order to give opportunity for needed repairs at
the Rose.[207] The section of his _Diary_, under the heading, "In the
name of god Amen begininge at newington my Lord Admeralle men & my
Lord Chamberlen men As followethe 1594," constitutes the fullest and
clearest--and, one may add, the most illustrious--chapter in the
history of this obscure building; for although it extends over only
ten days, it tells us that Edward Alleyn, Richard Burbage, and William
Shakespeare then trod the Newington stage, and it records the
performance there of such plays as _The Jew of Malta_, _Andronicus_,
_The Taming of a Shrew_, and _Hamlet_.

[Footnote 207: There is no evidence that Henslowe owned the house at
Newington; he might very well have rented it for this particular

We next hear of the building near the end of the century: in 1599,
says Mr. Wallace, it was "only a memory, as shown by a contemporary
record to be published later."[208]

[Footnote 208: Wallace, _The First London Theatre_, p. 2.]

Two other references close the history. In _A Woman is a Weathercock_,
III, iii, printed in 1612, but written earlier, one of the actors
exclaims of an insufferable pun: "O Newington Conceit!" The fact that
this sneer is the only reference to the Newington Playhouse found in
contemporary literature is a commentary on the low esteem in which the
building was held by the Elizabethans, and its relative unimportance
for the history of the drama.

The last notice is in Howe's continuation of Stow's _Annals_
(1631).[209] After enumerating all the theatres built in London and
the suburbs "within the space of three-score years," he adds vaguely,
"besides one in former time at Newington Butts."

[Footnote 209: Page 1004.]



Doubtless one reason for the obscure rôle which the theatre at
Newington played in the history of the drama was "the tediousness of
the way" thither. The Rose, the second theatre to make its appearance
in Surrey, was much more conveniently situated with respect to the
city, for it was erected in the Liberty of the Clink and very near the
river's edge. As a result, it quickly attained popularity with London
playgoers, and before the end of the century had caused the centre of
dramatic activity to be shifted from Finsbury Field to the Bank.

The builder of the Rose was one Philip Henslowe, then, so far as our
evidence goes, unknown to the dramatic world, but destined soon to
become the greatest theatrical proprietor and manager of the
Tudor-Stuart age. We find him living on the Bankside and in the
Liberty of the Clink at least as early as 1577. At first, so we are
told, he was "but a poor man," described as "servant ... unto one Mr.
Woodward." Upon the death of his employer, Woodward, he married the
widow, Agnes Woodward, and thus came into the possession of
considerable property. "All his wealth came by her," swore the
charwoman Joan Horton. This, however, simply means that Henslowe
obtained his original capital by his marriage; for, although very
illiterate, he was shrewd in handling money, and he quickly amassed
"his wealth" through innumerable business ventures.

As one of these ventures, no doubt, he leased from the Parish of St.
Mildred, on March 24, 1585, a small piece of property on the Bankside
known as "The Little Rose." "Among the early surveys, 1 Edward VI,"
says Rendle, "we see that this was not merely a name--the place was a
veritable Rose Garden."[210] At the time of the lease the property is
described as consisting of a dwelling-house called "The Rose," "two
gardens adjoining the same" consisting of "void ground," and at least
one other small building. The dwelling-house Henslowe probably leased
as a brothel--for this was the district of the stews; and the small
building mentioned above, situated at the south end of one of the
gardens, he let to a London grocer named John Cholmley, who used it
"to keep victualing in."[211]

[Footnote 210: W. Rendle, in _The Antiquarian Magazine and
Bibliographer_, VIII, 60.]

[Footnote 211: For the earlier history of the Rose estate see Rendle,
_The Bankside_, p. xv, and Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_, II, 43. "The plan
of the Rose estate in the vestry of St. Mildred's Church in London
marks the estate exactly, but not the precise site of the Rose
Playhouse. The estate consisted of three rods, and was east of Rose
Alley." (Rendle, _The Bankside_, p. xxx.)]

Not satisfied, however, with the income from these two buildings,
Henslowe a year and a half later was planning to utilize a part of the
"void ground" for the erection of a theatre. What interested him in
the drama we do not know, but we may suppose that the same reason
which led Burbage, Brayne, Lanman, and others to build playhouses
influenced him, namely, the prospect of "great gains to ensue

[Footnote 212: Possibly the fact that Burbage had just secured control
of the Curtain, and hence had a monopoly of playhouses, was one of the
reasons for a new playhouse.]

For the site of his proposed playhouse he allotted a small parcel of
ground ninety-four feet square and lying in the corner formed by Rose
Alley and Maiden Lane (see page 245). Then he interested in the
enterprise his tenant Cholmley, for, it seems, he did not wish to
undertake so expensive and precarious a venture without sharing the
risk with another. On January 10, 1587, he and Cholmley signed a
formal deed of partnership, according to which the playhouse was to be
erected at once and at the sole cost of Henslowe; Cholmley, however,
was to have from the beginning a half-interest in the building, paying
for his share by installments of £25 10_s._ a quarter for a period of
eight years and three months.[213] The total sum to be paid by
Cholmley, £816, possibly represents the estimated cost of the
building and its full equipment, plus rental on the land.

[Footnote 213: The deed of partnership is preserved among the Henslowe
papers at Dulwich College. For an abstract of the deed see Greg,
_Henslowe Papers_, p. 2. Henslowe seems to have driven a good bargain
with Cholmley.]

The building is referred to in the deed of January 10 as "a playhouse
now in framing and shortly to be erected and set up." Doubtless it was
ready for occupancy early in the summer. That performances were given
there before the close of the year is at least indicated by an order
of the Privy Council dated October 29, 1587:

     A letter to the Justices of Surrey, that whereas the
     inhabitants of Southwark had complained unto their Lordships
     declaring that the order by their Lordships set down for the
     restraining of plays and interludes within that county on
     the Sabbath Days is not observed, and especially within the
     Liberty of the Clink, and in the Parish of St.

[Footnote 214: Dasent, _Acts of the Privy Council_, XV, 271.]

The Rose was in "the Liberty of the Clink and in the Parish of St.
Saviours," and so far as we have any evidence it was the only place
there devoted to plays. Moreover, a distinct reference to it by name
appears in the Sewer Records in April, 1588, at which date the
building is described as "new."[215]

[Footnote 215: Discovered by Mr. Wallace and printed in the London
_Times_, April 30, 1914.]

In Norden's _Map of London_ (1593), the Rose and the adjacent Bear
Garden are correctly placed with respect to each other, but are
crudely drawn (see page 147). The representation of both as
circular--the Bear Garden, we know, was polygonal--was due merely to
this crudeness; yet the Rose seems to have been indeed circular in
shape, "the Bankside's round-house" referred to in _Tom Tell Troth's
Message_. The building is so pictured in the Hondius map of 1610 (see
page 149), and in the inset maps on the title-pages of Holland's
_Her[Greek: ô]ologia_, 1620, and Baker's _Chronicle_, 1643 (see page
147), all three of which apparently go back to an early map of London
now lost. The building is again pictured as circular, with the Bear
Garden at the left and the Globe at the right, in the Delaram portrait
of King James (opposite page 246).[216]

[Footnote 216: The circular building pictured in these maps has been
widely heralded as the First Globe, but without reason; all the
evidence shows that it was the Rose. For further discussion see the
chapters dealing with the Bear Garden, the Globe, and the Hope. In the
Merian _View_, issued in Frankfort in 1638, the Bear Garden and the
Globe, each named, are shown conspicuously in the foreground; in the
background is vaguely represented an unnamed playhouse polygonal in
shape. This could not possibly be the Rose. Merian's _View_ was a
compilation from Visscher's _View_ of 1616 and some other view of
London not yet identified; it has no independent authority, and no
value whatever so far as the Rose is concerned.]

From Henslowe's _Diary_ we learn that the playhouse was of timber, the
exterior of lath and plaster, the roof of thatch; and that it had a
yard, galleries, a stage, a tiring-house, heavens, and a flagpole.
Thus it differed in no essential way from the playhouses already
erected in Shoreditch or subsequently erected on the Bank.[217]

[Footnote 217: If we may believe Johannes de Witt, the Rose was "more
magnificent" than the theatres in Shoreditch. See page 167.]


The upper view, from Norden's _Map of London_, 1593, shows the
relative position of the Bear Garden and Rose. The lower view, an
inset from the title-page of Baker's _Chronicle_, 1643, also shows the
relative position, and gives a more detailed picture of the two
structures. The Bear Garden is represented as polygonal, the Rose as

What troupes of actors used the Rose during the first five years of
its existence we do not know; indeed, until 1592 we hear nothing
further of the playhouse. As a result, some scholars have wrongly
inferred that the building was not erected until the spring of
1592.[218] It seems likely, as Mr. Greg suggests, that Henslowe and
Cholmley let the house to some company of players at a stipulated
annual rent, and so had nothing to do with the management of its
finances. This would explain the complete absence of references to the
playhouse in Henslowe's accounts.

[Footnote 218: Ordish, _Early London Theatres_, p. 155; Mantzius, _A
History of Theatrical Art_, p. 58. Mr. Wallace's discovery of a
reference to the Rose in the Sewer Records for April, 1588, quite
overthrows this hypothesis.]

During this obscure period of five years Cholmley disappears from the
history of the Rose. It may be that he withdrew from the undertaking
at the outset;[219] it may be that he failed to meet his payments, and
so forfeited his moiety; or it may be that, becoming dissatisfied with
his bargain, he sold out to Henslowe. Whatever the cause, his interest
in the playhouse passed over to Henslowe, who appears henceforth as
the sole proprietor.

[Footnote 219: This seems unlikely. At the beginning of Henslowe's
_Diary_ we find the scrawl "Chomley when" (Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_ I,
217); this was written not earlier than 1592, and it shows that
Cholmley was at that time in Henslowe's mind.]


A small inset view of London, from the map entitled "The Kingdome of
Great Britaine and Ireland," printed in Speed's _Atlas_ (1611). The
map is dated 1610, but the inset view of London was copied, like the
inset views to Baker's _Chronicle_ (1643) and to Holland's _Her[Greek:
ô]ologia_ (1620), from a lost map of London drawn about 1589-1599.]

In the spring of 1592 the building was in need of repairs, and
Henslowe spent a large sum of money in thoroughly overhauling it.[220]
The lathing and plastering of the exterior were done over, the roof
was re-thatched, new rafters were put in, and much heavy timber was
used, indicating important structural alterations. In addition, the
stage was painted, the lord's room and the tiring-house were provided
with ceilings, a new flagpole was erected, and other improvements were
introduced. Clearly an attempt was made to render the building not
only stronger, but also more attractive in appearance and more modern
in equipment.

[Footnote 220: Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_, I, 7.]

The immediate occasion for these extensive alterations and repairs was
the engagement of Lord Strange's Men to occupy the playhouse under
Henslowe's management. This excellent troupe, with Edward Alleyn at
its head, was perhaps the best company of actors then in London. It
later became the Lord Chamberlain's Company, with which Shakespeare
was identified; even at this early date, although documentary proof is
lacking, he may have been numbered among its obscure members. The
troupe opened the Rose on February 19, 1592, with a performance of
Robert Greene's _Friar Bacon and Friar Bungay_, and followed this with
many famous plays, such as _The Spanish Tragedy_, _The Jew of Malta_,
_Orlando Furioso_, and _Henry VI_.[221]

[Footnote 221: For a list of their plays see Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_,
I, 13 ff.]

The coming of Lord Strange's Men to the Rose led to a close friendship
between Henslowe and Edward Alleyn, then twenty-six years of age, and
at the height of his fame as an actor, a friendship which was cemented
in the autumn by Alleyn's marriage to Henslowe's stepdaughter (and
only child) Joan Woodward. The two men, it seems, were thoroughly
congenial, and their common interests led to the formation of a
business partnership which soon became the most important single force
in the theatrical life of the time.

Lord Strange's Men continued to act at the Rose from February 19 until
June 23, 1592, when the Privy Council, because of a serious riot in
Southwark, ordered the closing of all playhouses in and about London
until Michaelmas following. Strange's Men very soon petitioned the
Council to be allowed to reopen their playhouse; the Council, in
reply, compromised by granting them permission to act three days a
week at Newington Butts. This, however, did not please the actors, and
they started on a tour of the provinces. In a short time, discovering
that they could not pay their expenses on the road, they again
petitioned for permission to open the Rose, complaining that "our
company is great, and thereby our charge intolerable in traveling the
country," and calling attention to the fact that "the use of our
playhouse on the Bankside, by reason of the passage to and from the
same by water, is a great relief to the poor watermen there."[222] The
petition was accompanied by a supporting petition from the watermen
asking the Council "for God's sake and in the way of charity to
respect us your poor watermen." As a result of these petitions the
Council gave permission, probably late in August, 1592, for the
reopening of the playhouse.[223] But before Strange's Men could take
advantage of this permission, a severe outbreak of the plague caused a
general inhibition of acting, and not until December 29, 1592, were
they able to resume their performances at the Rose. A month later the
plague broke out again with unusual severity, and on February 1, 1593,
playing was again inhibited. The year rapidly developed into one of
the worst plague-years in the history of the city; between ten and
fifteen thousand persons died of the epidemic, and most of the London
companies, including Strange's Men, went on an extended tour of the

[Footnote 222: Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 42.]

[Footnote 223: See Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 43. For a general
discussion of various problems involved, see Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_,
II, 51-2.]

Near the close of the year, and while Strange's Men were still
traveling, the plague temporarily subsided, and Sussex's Men, who were
then in London, secured the use of the Rose. They began to act there
on December 27, 1593; but on February 6, 1594, the plague having again
become threatening, acting was once more inhibited. This brief
occupation of the Rose by Sussex's Men was notable only for the first
performance of _Titus Andronicus_.[224]

[Footnote 224: Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_, I, 16.]


The stepdaughter and only child of Philip Henslowe, whose marriage to
the great actor Edward Alleyn led to the Henslowe-Alleyn theatrical
enterprises. The portrait is here reproduced for the first time. (From
the Dulwich Picture Gallery, by permission.)]

At Easter, April 1, Strange's Men being still absent, Henslowe allowed
the Rose to be used for eight days by "the Queen's Men and my Lord of
Sussex's together." This second brief chapter in the long and varied
history of the playhouse is interesting only for two performances of
the old _King Leir_.[225]

[Footnote 225: Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_, I, 17.]

As a result of the severe plague and the long continued inhibition of
acting, there was a general confusion and subsequent reorganization of
the various London troupes. The Admiral's Men, who had been dispersed
in 1591, some joining Strange's Men, some going to travel in Germany,
were brought together again; and Edward Alleyn, who had formerly been
their leader, and who even after he became one of Strange's Men
continued to describe himself as "servant to the right honorable the
Lord Admiral,"[226] was induced to rejoin them. Alleyn thereupon
brought them to the Rose, where they began to perform on May 14, 1594.
After three days, however, they ceased, probably to allow Henslowe to
make repairs or improvements on the building.

[Footnote 226: He is so described, for example, in the warrant issued
by the Privy Council on May 6, 1593, to Strange's Men.]

Strange's Men also had undergone reorganization. On April 16, 1594,
they lost by death their patron, the Earl of Derby. Shortly afterwards
they secured the patronage of the Lord Chamberlain, and before June
3, 1594, they had arrived in London and reported to their former
manager, Henslowe.

At this time, apparently, the Rose was still undergoing repairs; so
Henslowe sent both the Admiral's and the Chamberlain's Men to act at
Newington Butts, where they remained from June 3 to June 13, 1594. On
June 15 the Admiral's Men moved back to the Rose, which henceforth
they occupied alone; and the Chamberlain's Men, thus robbed of their
playhouse, went to the Theatre in Shoreditch.

During the period of Lent, 1595, Henslowe took occasion to make
further repairs on his playhouse, putting in new pales, patching the
exterior with new lath and plaster, repainting the woodwork, and
otherwise furbishing up the building. The total cost of this work was
£108 10_s._ And shortly after, as a part of these improvements, no
doubt, he paid £7 2_s._ for "making the throne in the heavens."[227]

[Footnote 227: Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_, I, 4.]

Near the close of July, 1597, Pembroke's Men at the Swan acted Nashe's
satirical play, _The Isle of Dogs_, containing, it seems, a burlesque
on certain persons high in authority. As a result the Privy Council on
July 28 ordered all acting in and about London to cease until November
1, and all public playhouses to be plucked down and ruined.[228]

[Footnote 228: For the details of this episode see the chapter on the

The latter part of the order, happily, was not put into effect, and on
October 11 the Rose was allowed to open again. The Privy Council,
however, punished the Swan and Pembroke's Company by ordering that
only the Admiral's Men at the Rose and the Chamberlain's Men at the
Curtain should henceforth be "allowed." As a consequence of this
trouble with the authorities the best actors of Pembroke's Company
joined the Admiral's Men under Henslowe. This explains the entry in
the _Diary_: "In the name of God, amen. The xi of October began my
Lord Admiral's and my Lord Pembroke's Men to play at my house,
1597."[229] The two companies were very soon amalgamated, and the
strong troupe thus formed continued to act at the Rose under the name
of the Admiral's Men.

[Footnote 229: Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_, I, 54.]

The Chamberlain's Men, who in 1594 had been forced to surrender the
Rose to the Admiral's Men and move to the Theatre, and who in 1597 had
been driven from the Theatre to the Curtain, at last, in 1599, built
for themselves a permanent home, the Globe, situated on the Bankside
and close to the Rose. Henslowe's ancient structure[230] was eclipsed
by this new and handsome building, "the glory of the Bank"; and the
Admiral's Men, no doubt, felt themselves placed at a serious
disadvantage. As a result, in the spring of 1600, Henslowe and Alleyn
began the erection of a splendid new playhouse, the Fortune, designed
to surpass the Globe in magnificence, and to furnish a suitable and
permanent home for the Admiral's Men. The building was situated in the
suburb to the north of the city, far away from the Bankside and the

[Footnote 230: In January, 1600, the Earl of Nottingham refers to "the
dangerous decay" of the Rose. See Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 45; cf.
p. 52.]

The erection of this handsome new playhouse led to violent outbursts
from the Puritans, and vigorous protests from the city fathers.
Accordingly the Privy Council on June 22, 1600, issued the following

     Whereas divers complaints have heretofore been made unto the
     Lords and other of Her Majesty's Privy Council of the
     manifold abuses and disorders that have grown and do
     continue by occasion of many houses erected and employed in
     and about London for common stage-plays; and now very lately
     by reason of some complaint exhibited by sundry persons
     against the building of the like house [the Fortune] in or
     near Golding Lane ... the Lords and the rest of Her
     Majesty's Privy Council with one and full consent have
     ordered in manner and form as follows. First, that there
     shall be about the city two houses, and no more, allowed to
     serve for the use of the common stage-plays; of the which
     houses, one [the Globe] shall be in Surrey, in that place
     which is commonly called the Bankside, or thereabouts; and
     the other [the Fortune], in Middlesex.

[Footnote 231: Dasent, _Acts of the Privy Council_, XXX, 395.]

This sealed the fate of the Rose.

In July the Admiral's Men had a reckoning with Henslowe, and prepared
to abandon the Bankside. After they had gone, but before they had
opened the Fortune, Henslowe, on October 28, 1600, let the Rose to
Pembroke's Men for two days.[232] Possibly the troupe had secured
special permission to use the playhouse for this limited time;
possibly Henslowe thought that since the Fortune was not yet open to
the public, no objection would be made. Of course, after the Admiral's
Men opened the Fortune--in November or early in December, 1600--the
Rose, according to the order of the Privy Council just quoted, had to
stand empty.

[Footnote 232: Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_, I, 131.]

Its career, however, was not absolutely run. In the spring of 1602
Worcester's Men and Oxford's Men were "joined by agreement together in
one company," and the Queen, "at the suit of the Earl of Oxford,"
ordered that this company be "allowed." Accordingly the Privy Council
wrote to the Lord Mayor on March 31, 1602, informing him of the fact,
and adding: "And as the other companies that are allowed, namely of me
the Lord Admiral and the Lord Chamberlain, be appointed their certain
houses, and one and no more to each company, so we do straightly
require that this company be likewise [appointed] to one place. And
because we are informed the house called the Boar's Head is the place
they have especially used and do best like of, we do pray and require
you that that said house, namely the Boar's Head, may be assigned unto
them."[233] But the Lord Mayor seems to have opposed the use of the
Boar's Head, and the upshot was that the Council gave permission for
this "third company" to open the Rose. In Henslowe's _Diary_, we read:
"Lent unto my Lord of Worcester's Players as followeth, beginning the
17 day of August, 1602."

[Footnote 233: _The Remembrancia_, II, 189; The Malone Society's
_Collections_, I, 85.]

This excellent company, destined to become the Queen's Company after
the accession of King James, included such important actors as William
Kempe, John Lowin, Christopher Beeston, John Duke, Robert Pallant, and
Richard Perkins; and it employed such well-known playwrights as Thomas
Heywood (the "prose Shakespeare," who was also one of the troupe),
Henry Chettle, Thomas Dekker, John Day, Wentworth Smith, Richard
Hathway, and John Webster. The company continued to act at the Rose
until March 16, 1603, when it had a reckoning with Henslowe and left
the playhouse.[234] In May, however, after the coming of King James,
it returned to the Rose, and we find Henslowe opening a new account:
"In the name of God, amen. Beginning to play again by the King's
license, and laid out since for my Lord of Worcester's Men, as
followeth, 1603, 9 of May."[235] Since only one entry follows, it is
probable that the company did not remain long at the Rose. No doubt,
the outbreak of the plague quickly drove them into the country; and on
their return to London in the spring of 1604 they occupied the Boar's
Head and the Curtain.

[Footnote 234: On March 19 the Privy Council formally ordered the
suppression of all plays. This was five days before the death of Queen

[Footnote 235: Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_, I, 190.]

After this there is no evidence to connect the playhouse with dramatic

Henslowe's lease of the Little Rose property, on which his playhouse
stood, expired in 1605, and the Parish of St. Mildred's demanded an
increase in rental. The following note in the _Diary_ refers to a
renewal of the lease:

     _Memorandum_, that the 25 of June, 1603, I talked with Mr.
     Pope at the scrivener's shop where he lies,[236] concerning
     the taking of the lease anew of the little Rose, and he
     shewed me a writing betwixt the parish and himself which
     was to pay twenty pound a year rent,[237] and to bestow a
     hundred marks upon building, which I said I would rather
     pull down the playhouse than I would do so, and he bad me
     do, and said he gave me leave, and would bear me out, for it
     was in him to do it.[238]

[Footnote 236: Some scholars have supposed that this was Morgan Pope,
a part owner of the Bear Garden; but he is last heard of in 1585, and
by 1605 was probably dead. Mr. Greg is of the opinion that Thomas
Pope, the well-known member of the King's Men at the Globe, is
referred to. From this has been developed the theory that Pope, acting
for the Globe players, had rented the Rose and closed it in order to
prevent competition with the Globe on the Bankside. I believe,
however, that the "Mr. Pope" here referred to was neither of these
men, but merely the agent of the Parish of St. Mildred. It is said
that he lived at a scrivener's shop. This could not apply to the actor
Thomas Pope, for we learn from his will, made less than a month later,
that he lived in a house of his own, furnished with plate and
household goods, and cared for by a housekeeper; and with him lived
Susan Gasquine, whom he had "brought up ever since she was born."]

[Footnote 237: The old rental was £7 a year.]

[Footnote 238: Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_, I, 178.]

Henslowe did not renew his lease of the property. On October 4, 1605,
the Commissioners of the Sewers amerced him for the Rose, but return
was made that it was then "out of his hands."[239] From a later entry
in the Sewer Records, February 14, 1606, we learn that the new owner
of the Rose was one Edward Box, of Bread Street, London. Box, it
seems, either tore down the building, or converted it into tenements.
The last reference to it in the Sewer Records is on April 25, 1606,
when it is referred to as "the late playhouse."[240]

[Footnote 239: Wallace in the London _Times_, April 30, 1914, p. 10.
In view of these records it seems unnecessary to refute those persons
who assert that the Rose was standing so late as 1622. I may add,
however, that before Mr. Wallace published the Sewer Records I had
successfully disposed of all the evidence which has been collected to
show the existence of the Rose after 1605. The chief source of this
error is a footnote by Malone in _Variorum_, III, 56; the source of
Malone's error is probably to be seen in his footnote, _ibid._, p.

[Footnote 240: For the tourist the memory of the old playhouse to-day
lingers about Rose Alley on the Bank.]



The Manor of Paris Garden,[241] situated on the Bankside just to the
west of the Liberty of the Clink and to the east of the Lambeth
marshes, had once been in the possession of the Monastery of
Bermondsey. At the dissolution of the monasteries by Henry VIII, the
property passed into the possession of the Crown; hence it was free
from the jurisdiction of the Lord Mayor and Aldermen of London, and
was on this account suitable for the erection of a playhouse. From the
Crown the property passed through several hands, until finally, in
1589, the entire "lordship and manor of Paris Garden" was sold for
£850 to Francis Langley, goldsmith and citizen of London.[242]

[Footnote 241: Or "Parish Garden." See the note on page 121.]

[Footnote 242: The sale took the form of a lease for one thousand

Langley had purchased the Manor as an investment, and was ready to
make thereon such improvements as seemed to offer profitable returns.
Burbage and Henslowe were reputed to be growing wealthy from their
playhouses, and Langley was tempted to erect a similar building on his
newly acquired property. Accordingly at some date before November,
1594, he secured a license to erect a theatre in Paris Garden. The
license was promptly opposed by the Lord Mayor of London, who
addressed to the Lord High Treasurer on November 3, 1594, the
following letter:

     I understand that one Francis Langley ... intendeth to erect
     a new stage or theatre (as they call it) for the exercising
     of plays upon the Bankside. And forasmuch as we find by
     daily experience the great inconvenience that groweth to
     this city and the government thereof by the said plays, I
     have emboldened myself to be an humble suitor to your good
     Lordship to be a means for us rather to suppress all such
     places built for that kind of exercise, than to erect any
     more of the same sort.[243]

[Footnote 243: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 74-76.]

The protest of the Lord Mayor, however, went unheeded, and Langley
proceeded with the erection of his building. Presumably it was
finished and ready for the actors in the earlier half of 1595.


A survey executed in 1627 by royal command.

(Printed from Rendle's _The Bankside_.)]

The name given to the new playhouse was "The Swan." What caused
Langley to adopt this name we do not know;[244] but we may suppose
that it was suggested to him by the large number of swans which
beautified the Thames. Foreigners on their first visit to London were
usually very much impressed by the number and the beauty of these
birds. Hentzner, in 1598, stated that the river "abounds in swans,
swimming in flocks; the sight of them and their noise is vastly
agreeable to the boats that meet them in their course"; and the
Italian Francesco Ferretti observed that the "broad river of Thames"
was "most charming, and quite full of swans white as the very

[Footnote 244: The swan was not uncommon as a sign, especially along
the river; for example, it was the sign of one of the famous brothels
on the Bankside, as Stow informs us.]

[Footnote 245: Quoted in Rye, _England as Seen by Foreigners_, p.

From a map of the Manor of Paris Garden carefully surveyed by order of
the King in 1627[246] (see page 163), we learn the exact situation of
the building. It was set twenty-six poles, or four hundred and
twenty-six feet, from the bank of the river, in that corner of the
estate nearest London Bridge. Most of the playgoers from London,
however, came not over the Bridge, but by water, landing at the Paris
Garden Stairs, or at the near-by Falcon Stairs, and then walking the
short distance to the theatre.

[Footnote 246: Reproduced by Rendle, _The Bankside, Southwark, and the
Globe Playhouse_.]


(From Visscher's _View of London_, 1616).]

An excellent picture of the exterior of the Swan is furnished by
Visscher's _View of London_, 1616, (see page 165). From this, as well
as from the survey of 1627 just mentioned, we discover that the
building was duodecahedral--at least on the outside, for the interior
probably was circular. At the time of its erection it was, so we are
told, "the largest and the most magnificent playhouse" in London. It
contained three galleries surrounding an open pit, with a stage
projecting into the pit; and probably it differed in no essential
respect from the playhouses already built. In one point, however, it
may have differed--although of this I cannot feel sure: it may have
been provided with a stage that could be removed so as to allow the
building to be used on occasions for animal-baiting. The De Witt
drawing shows such a stage; and possibly Stow in his _Survey_ (1598)
gives evidence that the Swan was in early times employed for

     And to begin at the west bank as afore, thus it followeth.
     On this bank is the bear gardens, in number twain; to wit,
     the old bear garden [i.e., the one built in 1583?] and the
     new [i.e., the Swan?], places wherein be kept bears, bulls,
     and other beasts, to be baited at stakes for pleasure; also
     mastiffs to bait them in several kennels are there

[Footnote 247: Stow's original manuscript (Harl. MSS., 544), quoted by
Collier, _History of English Dramatic Poetry_ (1879), III, 96, note 3.
The text of the edition of 1598 differs very slightly.]

Moreover, in 1613 Henslowe used the Swan as the model for the Hope, a
building designed for both acting and animal-baiting. It should be
noted, however, that in all documents the Swan is invariably referred
to as a _playhouse_, and there is no evidence--beyond that cited
above--to indicate that the building was ever employed for the baiting
of bears and bulls.

In the summer of 1596 a Dutch traveler named Johannes de Witt, a
priest of St. Mary's in Utrecht, visited London, and saw, as one of
the most interesting sights of the city, a dramatic performance at the
Swan. Later he communicated a description of the building to his
friend Arend van Buchell,[248] who recorded the description in his
commonplace-book, along with a crude and inexact drawing of the
interior (see page 169), showing the stage, the three galleries, and
the pit.[249] The description is headed: "Ex Observationibus
Londinensibus Johannis de Witt." After a brief notice of St. Paul's,
and a briefer reference to Westminster Cathedral, the traveler begins
to describe what obviously interested him far more. I give below a
translation of that portion relating to the playhouses:

     There are four amphitheatres in London [the Theatre,
     Curtain, Rose, and Swan] of notable beauty, which from their
     diverse signs bear diverse names. In each of them a
     different play is daily exhibited to the populace. The two
     more magnificent of these are situated to the southward
     beyond the Thames, and from the signs suspended before them
     are called the Rose and the Swan. The two others are outside
     the city towards the north on the highway which issues
     through the Episcopal Gate, called in the vernacular
     Bishopgate.[250] There is also a fifth [the Bear Garden],
     but of dissimilar structure, devoted to the baiting of
     beasts, where are maintained in separate cages and
     enclosures many bears and dogs of stupendous size, which are
     kept for fighting, furnishing thereby a most delightful
     spectacle to men. Of all the theatres,[251] however, the
     largest and the most magnificent is that one of which the
     sign is a swan, called in the vernacular the Swan
     Theatre;[252] for it accommodates in its seats three
     thousand persons, and is built of a mass of flint stones (of
     which there is a prodigious supply in Britain),[253] and
     supported by wooden columns painted in such excellent
     imitation of marble that it is able to deceive even the most
     cunning. Since its form resembles that of a Roman work, I
     have made a sketch of it above.

[Footnote 248: Apparently he allowed Van Buchell to transcribe the
description and the rough pen-sketch from his notebook or traveler's

[Footnote 249: This interesting document was discovered by Dr. Karl T.
Gaedertz, and published in full in _Zur Kenntnis der altenglischen
Bühne_ (Bremen, 1888).]

[Footnote 250: "Viâ quâ itur per Episcopalem portam vulgariter
Biscopgate nuncupatam."]

[Footnote 251: "Theatrorum."]

[Footnote 252: "Id cuius intersignium est cygnus (vulgo te theatre off
te cijn)." Mr. Wallace proposes to emend the last clause to read: "te
theatre off te cijn off te Swan," thus making "cijn" mean "sign"; but
is not this Flemish, and does not "cijn" mean "Swan"?]

[Footnote 253: It is commonly thought that De Witt was wrong in
stating that the Swan was built of flint stones. Possibly the plaster
exterior deceived him; or possibly in his memory he confused this
detail of the building with the exterior of the church of St. Mary
Overies, which was indeed built of "a mass of flint stones." On the
other hand, the long life of the building after it had ceased to be of
use might indicate that it was built of stones.]

Exactly when the Swan was opened to the public, or what troupes of
actors first made use of it, we do not know. The visit of Johannes de
Witt, however, shows that the playhouse was occupied in 1596; and this
fact is confirmed by a statement in the lawsuit of Shaw _v._
Langley.[254] We may reasonably suppose that not only in 1596, but
also in 1595 the building was used by the players.

[Footnote 254: Discovered by Mr. Wallace and printed in _Englische
Studien_ (1911), XLIII, 340-95. These documents have done much to
clear up the history of the Swan and the Rose in the year 1597.]


Sketched by Johannes de Witt in 1596.]

Our definite history of the Swan, however, begins with 1597. In
February of that year eight distinguished actors, among whom were
Robert Shaw, Richard Jones, Gabriel Spencer, William Bird, and
Thomas Downton, "servants to the right honorable the Earl of
Pembroke," entered into negotiations with Langley, or, as the legal
document puts it, "fell into conference with the said Langley for and
about the hireing and taking a playhouse of the said Langley, situate
in the old Paris Garden, in the Parish of St. Saviours, in the County
of Surrey, commonly called and known by the name of the sign of the
Swan." The result of this conference was that the members of
Pembroke's Company[255] became each severally bound for the sum of
£100 to play at the Swan for one year, beginning on February 21, 1597.

[Footnote 255: I cannot agree with Mr. Wallace that Langley induced
these players to desert Henslowe, secured for them the patronage of
Pembroke, and thus was himself responsible for the organization of the
Pembroke Company.]

This troupe contained some of the best actors in London; and Langley,
in anticipation of a successful year, "disbursed and laid out for
making of the said house ready, and providing of apparel fit and
necessary for their playing, the sum of £300 and upwards." Since he
was at very little cost in making the Swan ready, "for the said house
was then lately afore used to have plays in it," most of this sum went
for the purchase of "sundry sort of rich attire and apparel for them
to play withall."

Everything seems to have gone well until near the end of July, when
the company presented _The Isle of Dogs_, a satirical play written in
part by the "young Juvenal" of the age, Thomas Nashe, and in part by
certain "inferior players," chief of whom seems to have been Ben
Jonson.[256] The play apparently attacked under a thin disguise some
persons high in authority. The exact nature of the offense cannot now
be determined, but Nashe himself informs us that "the troublesome stir
which happened about it is a general rumour that hath filled all
England,"[257] and the Queen herself seems to have been greatly
angered. On July 28, 1597, the Privy Council sent a letter to the
Justices of Middlesex and of Surrey informing them that Her Majesty
"hath given direction that not only no plays shall be used within
London or about the city or in any public place during this time of
summer, but that also those playhouses that are erected and built only
for such purposes shall be plucked down." Accordingly the Council
ordered the Justices to see to it that "there be no more plays used in
any public place within three miles of the city until Allhallows
[i.e., November 1] next"; and, furthermore, to send for the owners of
the various playhouses "and enjoin them by vertue hereof forthwith to
pluck down quite the stages, galleries, and rooms that are made for
people to stand in, and so to deface the same as they may not be
employed again to such use."[258]

[Footnote 256: For an account of _The Isle of Dogs_ see E.K. Chambers,
_Modern Language Review_ (1909), IV, 407, 511; R.B. McKerrow, _The
Works of Thomas Nashe_, V, 29; and especially the important article by
Mr. Wallace in _Englische Studien_ already referred to.]

[Footnote 257: _Nashes Lenten Stuffe_ (1599), ed. McKerrow, III, 153.]

[Footnote 258: Dasent, _Acts of the Privy Council_, XXVII, 313.
Possibly the other public playhouses were suppressed along with the
Swan in response to the petition presented to the Council on July 28,
(i.e. on the same day) by the Lord Mayor and Aldermen requesting the
"final suppressing of the said stage plays, as well at the Theatre,
Curtain, and Bankside as in all other places in and about the city."
See The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 78.]

The Council, however, did not stop with this. It ordered the arrest of
the authors of the play and also of the chief actors who took part in
its performance. Nashe saved himself by precipitate flight, but his
lodgings were searched and his private papers were turned over to the
authorities. Robert Shaw and Gabriel Spencer, as leaders of the
troupe, and Ben Jonson, as one of the "inferior players" who had a
part in writing the play,[259] were thrown into prison. The rest of
the company hurried into the country, their speed being indicated by
the fact that we find them acting in Bristol before the end of July.

[Footnote 259: In a marginal gloss to _Nashes Lenten Stuffe_ (1599),
ed. McKerrow, III, 154, Nashe says: "I having begun but the induction
and first act of it, the other four acts without my consent or the
best guess of my drift or scope, by the players were supplied, which
bred both their trouble and mine too."]

Some of these events are referred to in the following letter,
addressed by the Privy Council "to Richard Topclyfe, Thomas Fowler,
and Richard Skevington, esquires, Doctor Fletcher, and Mr.

     Upon information given us of a lewd play that was played in
     one of the playhouses on the Bankside, containing very
     seditious and slanderous matter, we caused some of the
     players [Robert Shaw, Gabriel Spencer, and Ben Jonson[260]]
     to be apprehended and committed to prison, whereof one of
     them [Ben Jonson] was not only an actor but a maker of part
     of the said play. Forasmuch as it is thought meet that the
     rest of the players or actors in that matter shall be
     apprehended to receive such punishment as their lewd and
     mutinous behaviour doth deserve, these shall be therefore to
     require you to examine those of the players that are
     committed (whose names are known to you, Mr. Topclyfe), what
     is become of the rest of their fellows that either had their
     parts in the devising of that seditious matter, or that were
     actors or players in the same, what copies they have given
     forth[261] of the said play, and to whom, and such other
     points as you shall think meet to be demanded of them,
     wherein you shall require them to deal truly, as they will
     look to receive any favour. We pray you also to peruse such
     papers as were found in Nashe his lodgings, which Ferrys, a
     messenger of the Chamber, shall deliver unto you, and to
     certify us the examinations you take.[262]

[Footnote 260: The identity of the three players is revealed in an
order of the Privy Council dated October 8, 1597: "A warrant to the
Keeper of the Marshalsea to release Gabriel Spencer and Robert Shaw,
stage-players, out of prison, who were of late committed to his
custody. The like warrant for the releasing of Benjamin Jonson."
(Dasent, _Acts of the Privy Council_, XXVIII, 33.)]

[Footnote 261: Such a copy was formerly preserved in a volume of
miscellaneous manuscripts at Alnwick Castle, but has not come down to
modern times. See F.J. Burgoyne, _Northumberland Manuscripts_ (London,

[Footnote 262: Dasent, _Acts of the Privy Council_, XXVII, 338.]

This unfortunate occurrence destroyed Langley's dream of a successful
year. It also destroyed the splendid Pembroke organization, for
several of its chief members, even before the inhibition was raised,
joined the Admiral's Men. On August 6 Richard Jones went to Henslowe
and bound himself to play for two years at the Rose, and at the same
time he bound his friend Robert Shaw, who was still in prison; on
August 10 William Bird came and made a similar agreement; on October 6
Thomas Downton did likewise. Their leader, Gabriel Spencer, also
probably had an understanding with Henslowe, although he signed no
bond; and upon his release from the Marshalsea he joined his friends
at the Rose.[263]

[Footnote 263: Langley sued these actors on their bond to him of £100
to play only at the Swan; see the documents printed by Mr. Wallace.
Ben Jonson also joined Henslowe's forces at the Rose, as did Anthony
and Humphrey Jeffes, who were doubtless members of the Pembroke

In the meantime the Queen's anger was abating, and the trouble was
blowing over. The order to pluck down all the public playhouses was
not taken seriously by the officers of the law, and Henslowe actually
secured permission to reopen the Rose on October 11. The inhibition
itself expired on November 1, but the Swan was singled out for further
punishment. The Privy Council ordered that henceforth license should
be granted to two companies only: namely, the Admiral's at the Rose,
and the Chamberlain's at the Curtain. This meant, of course, the
closing of the Swan.

In spite of this order, however, the members of Pembroke's Company
remaining after the chief actors had joined Henslowe, taking on
recruits and organizing themselves into a company, began to act at the
Swan without a license. For some time they continued unmolested, but
at last the two licensed companies called the attention of the Privy
Council to the fact, and on February 19, 1598, the Council issued the
following order to the Master of the Revels and the Justices of both
Middlesex and Surrey:

     Whereas license hath been granted unto two companies of
     stage players retayned unto us, the Lord Admiral and Lord
     Chamberlain ... and whereas there is also a third company
     who of late (as we are informed) have by way of intrusion
     used likewise to play ... we have therefore thought good to
     require you upon receipt hereof to take order that the
     aforesaid third company may be suppressed, and none suffered
     hereafter to play but those two formerly named, belonging to
     us, the Lord Admiral and Lord Chamberlain.[264]

[Footnote 264: Dasent, _Acts of the Privy Council_, XXVIII, 327.]

Thus, after February 19, 1598, the Swan stood empty, so far as plays
were concerned, and we hear very little of it during the next few
years. Indeed, it never again assumed an important part in the history
of the drama.

In the summer of 1598[265] it was used by Robert Wilson for a contest
in extempore versification. Francis Meres, in his _Palladis Tamia_,
writes: "And so is now our witty Wilson, who for learning and
extemporall wit in this faculty is without compare or compeere, as, to
his great and eternal commendations, he manifested in his challenge at
the Swan on the Bankside."

[Footnote 265: After the order of February 19, when the "intruding
company" was driven out, and before September 7 when Meres's _Palladis
Tamia_ was entered in the Stationers' Registers.]

On May 15, 1600, Peter Bromvill was licensed to use the Swan "to show
his feats of activity at convenient times in that place without let or
interruption."[266] The Privy Council in issuing the license observed
that Bromvill "hath been recommended unto Her Majesty from her good
brother the French King, and hath shewed some feats of great activity
before Her Highness."

[Footnote 266: Dasent, _Acts of the Privy Council_, XXX, 327.]

On June 22, 1600, the Privy Council "with one and full consent"
ordered "that there shall be about the city two houses, and no more,
allowed to serve for the use of the common stage plays; of the which
houses, one [the Globe] shall be in Surrey ... and the other [the
Fortune] in Middlesex."[267] This order in effect merely confirmed the
order of 1598 which limited the companies to two, the Admiral's and
the Chamberlain's.

[Footnote 267: _Ibid._, 395.]

Early in 1601 Langley died; and in January, 1602, his widow, as
administratrix, sold the Manor of Paris Garden, including the Swan
Playhouse, to Hugh Browker, a prothonotary of the Court of Common
Pleas. The property remained in the possession of the Browker family
until 1655.[268]

[Footnote 268: For this and other details as to the subsequent history
of the property see Wallace, _Englische Studien_, XLIII, 342; Rendle,
_The Antiquarian Magazine_, VII, 207; and cf. the map on page 163.]

On November 6, 1602, the building was the scene of the famous hoax
known as _England's Joy_, perpetrated upon the patriotic citizens of
London by one Richard Vennar.[269] Vennar scattered hand-bills over
the city announcing that at the Swan Playhouse, on Saturday, November
6, a company of "gentlemen and gentlewomen of account" would present
with unusual magnificence a play entitled _England's Joy_, celebrating
Queen Elizabeth. It was proposed to show the coronation of Elizabeth,
the victory of the Armada, and various other events in the life of
"England's Joy," with the following conclusion: "And so with music,
both with voice and instruments, she is taken up into heaven; when
presently appears a throne of blessed souls; and beneath, under the
stage, set forth with strange fire-works, diverse black and damned
souls, wonderfully described in their several torments."[270] The
price of admission to the performance was to be "two shillings, or
eighteen pence at least." In spite of this unusually high price, an
enormous audience, including a "great store of good company and many
noblemen," passed into the building. Whereupon Vennar seized the money
paid for admission, and showed his victims "a fair pair of heels." The
members of the audience, when they found themselves thus duped,
"revenged themselves upon the hangings, curtains, chairs, stools,
walls, and whatsoever came in their way, very outrageously, and made
great spoil."[271]

[Footnote 269: Many writers, including Mr. Wallace, have confused this
Richard Vennar with William Fennor, who later challenged Kendall to a
contest of wit at the Fortune. For a correct account, see T.S. Graves,
"Tricks of Elizabethan Showmen" (in _The South Atlantic Quarterly_,
April, 1915, XIV) and "A Note on the Swan Theatre" (in _Modern
Philology_, January, 1912, IX, 431).]

[Footnote 270: From the broadside printed in _The Harleian
Miscellany_, X, 198. For a photographic facsimile, see Lawrence, _The
Elizabethan Playhouse_ (Second Series), p. 68.]

[Footnote 271: _Letters Written by John Chamberlain_, Camden Society
(1861), p. 163; _The Calendar of State Papers, Domestic, 1601-1603_,
p. 264. See also Manningham's _Diary_, pp. 82, 93.]

On February 8, 1603, John Manningham recorded in his _Diary_: "Turner
and Dun, two famous fencers, playd their prizes this day at the
Bankside, but Turner at last run Dun so far in the brain at the eye,
that he fell down presently stone dead; a goodly sport in a Christian
state, to see one man kill another!" The place where the contest was
held is not specifically mentioned, but in all probability it was the

[Footnote 272: This seems to be the source of the statement by Mr.
Wallace (_Englische Studien_, XLIII, 388), quoting Rendle (_The
Antiquarian Magazine_, VII, 210): "In 1604, a man named Turner, in a
contest for a prize at the Swan, was killed by a thrust in the eye."
Rendle cites no authority for his statement.]

For the next eight years all is silence, but we may suppose that the
building was occasionally let for special entertainments such as those
just enumerated.

In 1611 Henslowe undertook to manage the Lady Elizabeth's Men,
promising among other things to furnish them with a suitable
playhouse. Having disposed of the Rose in 1605, he rented the Swan and
established his company there. In 1613, however, he built the Hope,
and transferred the Lady Elizabeth's Men thither.

The Swan seems thereafter to have been occupied for a time by Prince
Charles's Men. But the history of this company and its intimate
connection with the Lady Elizabeth's Company is too vague to admit of
definite conclusions. So far as we can judge, the Prince's Men
continued at the Swan until 1615, when Henslowe transferred them to
the Hope.[273]

[Footnote 273: These dates are in a measure verified by the records of
the Overseers of the Poor for the Liberty of Paris Garden, printed by
Mr. Wallace (_Englische Studien_, XLIII, 390, note 1). Mr. Wallace
seems to labor under the impression that this chapter in the history
of the Swan (1611-1615) was unknown before, but it was adequately
treated by Fleay and later by Mr. Greg.]

After 1615 the Swan was deserted for five years so far as any records
show. But in 1621 the old playhouse seems to have been again used by
the actors. The Overseers of the Poor in the Liberty of Paris Garden
record in their Account Book: "Monday, April the 9th, 1621, received
of the players £5 3_s._ 6_d._"[274] From this it is evident that in
the spring of 1621 some company of players, the name of which has not
yet been discovered, was occupying the Swan. Apparently, however, the
company did not remain there long, for the Account Book records no
payment the following year; nor, although it extends to the year 1671,
does it again record any payments from actors at the Swan. There is,
indeed, no evidence to connect the playhouse with dramatic
performances after 1621.[275] In the map of 1627 it is represented as
still standing, but is labeled "the _old_ playhouse," and is not even

[Footnote 274: Wallace, _op. cit._, p. 390, note 1.]

[Footnote 275: Rendle quotes a license of 1623 for "T.B. and three
assistants to make shows of Italian motions at the Princes Arms or the
Swan." (_The Antiquarian Magazine_, 1885, VII, 211.) But this may be a
reference to an inn rather than to the large playhouse.]

Five years later it is referred to in Nicolas Goodman's _Holland's
Leaguer_ (1632), a pamphlet celebrating one of the most notorious
houses of ill fame on the Bankside.[276] Dona Britannica Hollandia,
the proprietress of this house, is represented as having been much
pleased with its situation:

     Especially, and above all the rest, she was most taken with
     the report of three famous amphitheatres, which stood so
     near situated that her eye might take view of them from the
     lowest turret. One was the _Continent of the World_ [i.e.,
     the Globe], because half the year a world of beauties and
     brave spirits resorted unto it; the other was a building of
     excellent _Hope_, and though wild beasts and gladiators did
     most possess it, yet the gallants that came to behold those
     combats, though they were of a mixt society, yet were many
     noble worthies amongst them; the last which stood, and, as
     it were, shak'd hands with this fortress, being in times
     past as famous as any of the other, was now fallen to decay,
     and like a dying _Swanne_, hanging down her head, seemed to
     sing her own dirge.

[Footnote 276: What seems to be a picture of this famous house may be
seen in Merian's _View of London_, 1638 (see opposite page 256), with
a turret, and standing just to the right of the Swan.]

This is the last that we hear of the playhouse, that was "in times
past as famous as any of the other." What finally became of the
building we do not know. It is not shown in Hollar's _View of London_,
in 1647, and probably it had ceased to exist before the outbreak of
the Civil War.



In 1596 Burbage's lease of the plot of ground on which he had erected
the Theatre was drawing to a close, and all his efforts at a renewal
had failed. The owner of the land, Gyles Alleyn, having, in spite of
the terms of the original contract, refused to extend the lease until
1606, was craftily plotting for a substantial increase in the rental;
moreover, having become puritanical in his attitude towards the drama,
he was insisting that if the lease were renewed, the Theatre should be
used as a playhouse for five years only, and then should either be
torn down, or be converted into tenements. Burbage tentatively agreed
to pay the increased rental, but, of course, he could not possibly
agree to the second demand; and when all negotiations on this point
proved futile, he realized that he must do something at once to meet
the awkward situation.

In the twenty years that had elapsed since the erection of the Theatre
and the Curtain in Holywell, the Bankside had been developed as a
theatrical district, and the Rose and the Swan, not to mention the
Bear Garden, had made the south side of the river the popular place
for entertainments. Naturally, therefore, any one contemplating the
erection of a playhouse would immediately think of this locality.
Burbage, however, was a man of ideas. He believed that he could
improve on the Bankside as a site for his theatre. He remembered how,
at the outset of his career as a theatrical manager, he had had to
face competition with Richard Farrant who had opened a small "private"
playhouse in Blackfriars. Although that building had not been used as
a "public" playhouse, and had been closed up after a few years of sore
tribulation, it had revealed to Burbage the possibilities of the
Blackfriars precinct for theatrical purposes. In the first place, the
precinct was not under the jurisdiction of the city, so that actors
would not there be subject to the interference of the Lord Mayor and
his Aldermen. As Stevens writes in his _History of Ancient Abbeys,
Monasteries, etc._: "All the inhabitants within it were subject to
none but the King ... neither the Mayor, nor the sheriffs, nor any
other officers of the City of London had the least jurisdiction or
authority therein." Blackfriars, therefore, in this fundamental
respect, was just as desirable a location for theatres as was Holywell
to the north of the city, or the Bankside to the south. In the second
place, Blackfriars had a decided advantage over those two suburban
localities in that it was "scituated in the bosome of the
Cittie,"[277] near St. Paul's Cathedral, the centre of London life,
and hence was readily accessible to playgoers, even during the
disagreeable winter season. In the third place, the locality was
distinctly fashionable. To give some notion of the character of its
inhabitants, I record below the names of a few of those who lived in
or near the conventual buildings at various times after the
dissolution: George Brooke, Lord Cobham; William Brooke, Lord Cobham,
Lord Chamberlain of the Queen's Household; Henry Brooke, Lord Cobham,
Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports; Sir Thomas Cheney, Treasurer of the
Queen's Household, and Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports; Henry Carey,
Lord Hunsdon, Lord Chamberlain of the Queen's Household; George Carey,
Lord Hunsdon, who as Lord Chamberlain was the patron of Shakespeare's
troupe; Sir Thomas Cawarden, Master of the Revels; Sir Henry
Jerningham, Fee Chamberlain to the Queen's Highness; Sir Willam More,
Chamberlain of the Exchequer; Lord Zanche; Sir John Portynary; Sir
William Kingston; Sir Francis Bryan; Sir John Cheeke; Sir George
Harper; Sir Philip Hoby, Lady Anne Gray; Sir Robert Kyrkham; Lady
Perrin; Sir Christopher More; Sir Henry Neville; Sir Thomas Saunders;
Sir Jerome Bowes; and Lady Jane Guildford.[278] Obviously the
locality was free from the odium which the public always associated
with Shoreditch and the Bankside, the recognized homes of the London

[Footnote 277: The Petition of 1619, in The Malone Society's
_Collections_, I, 93.]

[Footnote 278: It is true that poor people also, feather-dealers and
such-like, lived in certain parts of Blackfriars, but this, of course,
did not affect the reputation of the precinct as the residence of

[Footnote 279: In Samuel Rowlands's _Humors Looking Glass_ (1608), a
rich country gull is represented as filling his pockets with money and
coming to London. Here a servant "of the Newgate variety" shows him
the sights of the city:

     Brought him to the Bankside where bears do dwell,
     And unto Shoreditch where the whores keep hell.]

Thus, a playhouse erected in the precinct of Blackfriars would escape
all the grave disadvantages of situation which attached to the
existing playhouses in the suburbs, and, on the other hand, would gain
several very important advantages.

Burbage's originality, however, did not stop with the choice of
Blackfriars as the site of his new theatre; he determined to improve
on the form of building as well. The open-air structure which he had
designed in 1576, and which had since been copied in all public
theatres, had serious disadvantages in that it offered no protection
from the weather. Burbage now resolved to provide a large "public"
playhouse, fully roofed in, with the entire audience and the actors
protected against the inclemency of the sky and the cold of winter. In
short, his dream was of a theatre centrally located, comfortably
heated, and, for its age, luxuriously appointed.

With characteristic energy and courage he at once set about the task
of realizing this dream. He found in the Blackfriars precinct a large
building which, he thought, would admirably serve his purpose. This
building was none other than the old Frater of the Monastery, a
structure one hundred and ten feet long and fifty-two feet wide, with
stone walls three feet thick, and a flat roof covered with lead. From
the Loseley documents, which M. Feuillerat has placed at the disposal
of scholars,[280] we are now able to reconstruct the old Frater
building, and to point out exactly that portion which was made into a

[Footnote 280: _Blackfriars Records_, in The Malone Society's
_Collections_, (1913).]

[Footnote 281: For a reconstruction of the Priory buildings and
grounds, and for specific evidence of statements made in the following
paragraphs, the reader is referred to J.Q. Adams, _The Conventual
Buildings of Blackfriars, London_, in the University of North Carolina
_Studies in Philology_, XIV, 64.]

At the time of the dissolution, the top story consisted of a single
large room known as the "Upper Frater," and also as the "Parliament
Chamber" from the fact that the English Parliament met here on several
occasions; here, also, was held the trial before Cardinals Campeggio
and Wolsey for the divorce of the unhappy Queen Catherine and Henry
VIII--a scene destined to be reënacted in the same building by
Shakespeare and his fellows many years later. In 1550 the room was
granted, with various other properties in Blackfriars, to Sir Thomas

[Footnote 282: Feuillerat, _Blackfriars Records_, pp. 7, 12.]


The Playhouse was made by combining the Hall and the Parlor.]

The space below the Parliament Chamber was divided into three units.
At the northern end was a "Hall" extending the width of the building.
It is mentioned in the Survey[283] of 1548 as "a Hall ... under the
said Frater"; and again in the side-note: "Memorandum, my Lorde Warden
claimeth the said Hall." Just to the south of the Hall was a "Parlor,"
or dining-chamber, "where commonly the friars did use to break their
fast." It is described in the Survey as being "under the said Frater,
of the same length and breadth." The room could not have been of the
"same length and breadth" as the great Parliament Chamber, for not
only would such dimensions be absurd for an informal dining-room, but,
as we are clearly told, the "Infirmary" was also under the Parliament
Chamber, and was approximately one-third the size of the latter.[284]
Accordingly I have interpreted the phrase, "of the same length and
breadth," to mean that the Parlor was square. When the room was sold
to Burbage it was said to be fifty-two feet in length from north to
south, which is exactly the breadth of the building from east to west.
The Parlor, as well as the Hall, was claimed by the Lord Warden; and
both were granted to Sir Thomas Cawarden in 1550.

[Footnote 283: Feuillerat, _Blackfriars Records_, p. 7.]

[Footnote 284: Feuillerat, _Blackfriars Records_, pp. 105-06.]

South of the Parlor was the Infirmary, described as being "at the
western corner of the Inner Cloister" (of which the Frater building
constituted the western side), as being under the Parliament Chamber,
and as being approximately one-third the size of the Parliament
Chamber. The Infirmary seems to have been structurally distinct from
the Hall and Parlor.[285] It was three stories high, consisting of a
"room beneath the Fermary," the Infirmary itself, a "room above the
same";[286] while the Parliament Chamber, extending itself "over the
room above the Fermary," constituted a fourth story. Furthermore, not
only was the Infirmary a structural unit distinct from the Hall and
the Parlor at the north, but it never belonged to Cawarden or More,
and hence was not included in the sale to Burbage. It was granted in
1545 to Lady Mary Kingston,[287] from whom it passed to her son, Sir
Henry Jerningham, then to Anthony Kempe, who later sold it to Lord
Hunsdon;[288] and at the time the playhouse was built, the Infirmary
was still in the occupation of Hunsdon.

[Footnote 285: In all probability it was separated from the Hall and
Parlor by a passage leading through the Infirmary into the Inner
Cloister yard.]

[Footnote 286: One reason for the greater height may have been the
slope of the ground towards the river; a second reason was the unusual
height of the Parlor.]

[Footnote 287: Feuillerat, _Blackfriars Records_, p. 105.]

[Footnote 288: _Ibid._, p. 124.]

At the northern end of the Frater building, and extending westward,
was a narrow structure fifty feet in length, sixteen feet in breadth,
and three stories in height, regarded as a "part of the frater
parcel." The middle story, which was on the same level with the
Parliament Chamber, was known as the "Duchy Chamber," possibly because
of its use in connection with the sittings of Parliament, or with the
meetings of the Privy Council there. The building was granted to
Cawarden in 1550.[289]

[Footnote 289: Feuillerat, _Blackfriars Records_, p. 8.]

Upon the death of Cawarden all his Blackfriars holdings passed into
the possession of Sir William More. From More, in 1596, James Burbage
purchased those sections of the Frater building which had originally
been granted to Cawarden[290]--that is, all the Frater building except
the Infirmary--for the sum of £600, in modern valuation about
$25,000.[291] Evidently he had profited by Farrant's experience with
More and by his own experience with Gyles Alleyn, and had determined
to risk no more leases, but in the future to be his own landlord, cost
what it might.

[Footnote 290: For the deed of sale see _ibid._, p. 60.]

[Footnote 291: It should be observed, however, that Burbage paid only
£100 down, and that he immediately mortgaged the property for more
than £200. The playhouse was not free from debt until 1605. See
Wallace, _The First London Theatre_, p. 23.]

The properties which he thus secured were:

(1) The Parliament Chamber, extending over the Hall, Parlor, and
Infirmary. This great chamber, it will be recalled, had previously
been divided by Cawarden into the Frith and Cheeke Lodgings;[292] but
now it was arranged as a single tenement of seven rooms, and was
occupied by the eminent physician William de Lawne:[293] "All those
seven great upper rooms as they are now divided, being all upon one
floor, and sometime being one great and entire room, with the roof
over the same, covered with lead." Up into this tenement led a special
pair of stairs which made it wholly independent of the rest of the

[Footnote 292: The northern section of the Cheeke Lodging (a portion
of the old Buttery) which had constituted Farrant's private theatre,
and which was no real part of the Frater building, had been converted
by More into the Pipe Office.]

[Footnote 293: A prosperous physician. His son was one of the
illustrious founders of the Society of Apothecaries, and one of its
chief benefactors. His portrait may be seen to-day in Apothecaries'
Hall. See C.R.B. Barrett, _The History of the Society of Apothecaries
of London_.]

(2) The friar's "Parlor," now made into a tenement occupied by Thomas
Bruskett, and called "the Middle Rooms, or Middle Stories"--possibly
from the fact that it was the middle of three tenements, possibly from
the fact that having two cellars under its northern end it was the
middle of three stories. It is described as being fifty-two feet in
length north and south, and thirty-seven feet in width. Why a strip of
nine feet should have been detached on the eastern side is not clear;
but that this strip was also included in the sale to Burbage is shown
by later documents.

(3) The ancient "Hall" adjoining the "Parlor" on the north, and now
made into two rooms. These rooms were combined with the ground floor
of the Duchy Chamber building to constitute a tenement occupied by
Peter Johnson: "All those two lower rooms now in the occupation of the
said Peter Johnson, lying directly under part of the said seven great
upper rooms." The dimensions are not given, but doubtless the two
rooms together extended the entire width of the building and were
approximately as broad as the Duchy Chamber building, with which they
were united.

(4) The Duchy Chamber building "at the north end of the said seven
great upper rooms, and at the west side thereof." At the time of the
sale the ground floor of this building was occupied by Peter Johnson,
who had also the Hall adjoining it on the west; the middle story was
occupied by Charles Bradshaw; and the top story by Edward Merry.[294]

[Footnote 294: Mr. Wallace's description of the building and the way
in which it was converted into a playhouse (_The Children of the
Chapel at Blackfriars_, pp. 37-41) is incorrect. For the various
details cited above see the deed of sale to Burbage.]

Out of this heterogeneous property Burbage was confronted with the
problem of making a playhouse. Apparently he regarded the Parliament
Chamber as too low, or too inaccessible for the purposes of a theatre;
this part of his property, therefore, he kept as a lodging, and for
many years it served as a dormitory for the child-actors. The Duchy
Chamber building, being small and detached from the Frater building,
he reserved also as a lodging.[295] In the Hall and the Parlor,
however, he saw the possibility of a satisfactory auditorium. Let us
therefore examine this section of the Frater building more in detail,
and trace its history up to the time of the purchase.

[Footnote 295: This may have contained the two rooms in which Evans
lived, and "the schoolhouse and the chamber over the same," which are
described (see the documents in Fleay's _A Chronicle History of the
London Stage_, p. 210 ff.) as being "severed from the said great
hall." In another document this schoolhouse is described as "schola,
anglice _schoolhouse_, ad borealem finem Aulæ prædictæ." (Wallace,
_The Children of the Chapel at Blackfriars_, p. 40.)]

The Parlor was described as "a great room, paved," and was said to
have been "used and occupied by the friars themselves to their own
proper use as a parlor to dine and sup in."[296] Sir John Portynary,
whose house adjoined the Duchy Chamber, tells us that in 1550, when
King Edward granted the Blackfriars property to Cawarden, "Sir Thomas
Cawarden, knight, entered into the same house in the name of all that
which the King had given him within the said friars, and made his
lodging there; and about that time did invite this examinant and his
wife to supper there, together with diverse other gentlemen; and they
all supped together with the said Sir Thomas Cawarden, in the same
room [the Parlor] where the said school of fence is now kept, and did
there see a play."[297]

[Footnote 296: Feuillerat, _Blackfriars Records_, pp. 43, 47, 48.]

[Footnote 297: _Ibid._, p. 52.]

Later Cawarden leased the Parlor to a keeper of an ordinary: "One
Woodman did hold the said house where the said school of fence is
kept, and another house thereby of Sir Thomas Cawarden, and in the
other room kept an ordinary table, and had his way to the same through
the said house where the said school of fence is kept."[298]

[Footnote 298: _Ibid._, p. 51.]

In 1563 William Joyner established in the rooms the school of fence
mentioned above, which was still flourishing in 1576.[299]

[Footnote 299: Feuillerat, _Blackfriars Records_, p. 121.]

When in 1583 John Lyly became interested in the First Blackfriars
Playhouse, he obtained a lease of the rooms, but it is not clear for
what purpose. Later he sold the lease to Rocho Bonetti, the Italian
fencing-master, who established there his famous school of fence.[300]
In George Silver's _Paradoxes of Defence_, 1599, is a description of
Bonetti's school, which will, I think, help us to reconstruct in our
imagination the "great room, paved" which was destined to become
Shakespeare's playhouse:

     He caused to be fairely drawne and set round about the
     schoole all the Noblemen's and Gentlemen's Armes that were
     his schollers, and, hanging right under their Armes, their
     Rapiers, Daggers, Gloves of Male, and Gantlets. Also he had
     benches and stooles, the roome being verie large, for
     Gentlemen to sit about his schoole to behold his teaching.

     He taught none commonly under twentie, fortie, fifty, or an
     hundred pounds. And because all things should be verie
     necessary for the Noblemen and Gentlemen, he had in his
     schoole a large square table, with a green carpet, done
     round with a verie brode rich fringe of gold; alwaies
     standing upon it a verie faire standish covered with crimson
     velvet, with inke, pens, pen-dust, and sealing-waxe, and
     quiers of verie excellent fine paper, gilded, readie for the
     Noblemen and Gentlemen (upon occasion) to write their
     letters, being then desirous to follow their fight, to send
     their men to dispatch their businesse.

     And to know how the time passed, he had in one corner of his
     Schoole, a Clocke, with a verie faire large diall; he had
     within that Schoole a roome the which he called his privie
     schoole, with manie weapons therein, where he did teach his
     schollers his secret fight, after he had perfectly taught
     them their rules. He was verie much loved in the Court.

[Footnote 300: _Ibid._, p. 122.]

We are further told by Silver that Bonetti took it upon himself "to
hit anie Englishman with a thrust upon anie button." It is no wonder
that Shakespeare ridiculed him in _Romeo and Juliet_ as "the very
butcher of a silk button," and laughed at his school and his fantastic

     _Mercutio._ Ah! the immortal "passado"! the "punto reverso"!
     the "hay"!

     _Benvolio._ The what?

     _Mercutio._ The pox of such antick, lisping, affecting
     fantasticoes! These new tuners of accents!--"By Jesu, a very
     good blade!"

At the date of the sale to Burbage, February 4, 1596, the fencing
school of Bonetti, had become "those rooms and lodgings, with the
kitchen thereunto adjoining, called the Middle Rooms or Middle
Stories, late being in the tenure or occupation of Rocco Bonetti, and
now being in the tenure or occupation of Thomas Bruskett, gentleman."

To make his playhouse Burbage removed all the partitions in the Middle
Rooms, and restored the Parlor to its original form--a great room
covering the entire breadth of the building, and extending fifty-two
feet in length from north to south. To this he added the Hall at the
north, which then existed as two rooms in the occupation of Peter
Johnson. The Hall and Parlor when combined made an auditorium
described as "per estimacionem in longitudine ab australe ad borealem
partem eiusdem sexaginta et sex pedes assissæ sit plus sive minus, et
in latitudine ab occidentale ad orientalem partem eiusdem quadraginto
et sex pedes assissæ sit plus sive minus."[301] The forty-six feet of
width corresponds to the interior width of the Frater building, for
although it was fifty-two feet wide in outside measurement, the stone
walls were three feet thick. The sixty-six feet of length probably
represents the fifty-two feet of the Parlor plus the breadth of the

[Footnote 301: Wallace, _The Children of the Chapel at Blackfriars_,
p. 39, note 1.]

The ceiling of these two rooms must have been of unusual height. The
Infirmary, which was below the Parliament Chamber at the south, was
three stories high; and the windows of the Parlor, if we may believe
Pierce the Ploughman, were "wrought as a chirche":

     An halle for an heygh kinge · an household to holden,
     With brode bordes abouten · y-benched well clene,
     With windowes of glas · wrought as a chirche.


This remnant of the old monastery was discovered in 1872 on the
rebuilding of the offices of _The Times_. It illustrates the
substantial character of the Blackfriars buildings, and may even be a
part of the old Frater, for _The Times_ occupies that portion of the
monastery. The windows of the Frater, according to Pierce the
Ploughman, were "wrought as a chirche." (From a painting in the
Guildhall Museum.)]

As a result Burbage was able to construct within the auditorium at
least two galleries,[302] after the manner of the public theatres.
The Parliament Chamber above was kept, as I have stated, for
residential purposes. This is why the various legal documents almost
invariably refer to the playhouse as "that great hall or room, with
the rooms over the same."[303]

[Footnote 302: Mr. Wallace, _The Children of the Chapel at
Blackfriars_, p. 42, quotes from the Epilogue to Marston's _The Dutch
Courtesan_, acted at Blackfriars, "And now, my fine Heliconian
gallants, and you, my worshipful friends in the middle region," and
adds that the "reference to 'the middle region' makes it clear there
were three" galleries. Does it not, however, indicate that there were
only two galleries?]

[Footnote 303: See the documents printed in Fleay's _A Chronicle
History of the London Stage_, pp. 211, 215, 240, etc. Mr. Wallace,
however (_The Children of the Chapel at Blackfriars_, p. 40 ff.),
would have us believe that an additional story was added: "the roof
was changed, and rooms, probably of the usual dormer sort, were built
above." I am quite sure he is mistaken.]

The main entrance to the playhouse was at the north, over the "great
yard" which extended from the Pipe Office to Water Lane.[304] The
stage was opposite this entrance, or at the southern end of the hall,
as is shown by one of the documents printed by Mr. Wallace.[305] Since
the building was not, like the other playhouses of London, open to the
sky, the illumination was supplied by candles, hung in branches over
the stage; as Gerschow noted, after visiting Blackfriars, "alle bey
Lichte agiret, welches ein gross Ansehen macht."[306] The obvious
advantage of artificial light for producing beautiful stage effects
must have added not a little to the popularity of the Blackfriars

[Footnote 304: Cf. Playhouse Yard in the London of to-day.]

[Footnote 305: _The Children of the Chapel at Blackfriars_, p. 43,
note 3.]

[Footnote 306: _The Diary of the Duke of Stettin-Pomerania_, in
_Transactions of the Royal Historical Society_ (1892), VI, 26.]

The cost of all the alterations and the equipment could hardly have
been less than £300, so that the total cost of the property was at
least £900, or in modern valuation approximately $35,000. Burbage's
sons, in referring to the building years later, declared that their
father had "made it into a playhouse with great charge."

"And," they added significantly, "with great trouble." The
aristocratic inhabitants of the Blackfriars precinct did not welcome
the appearance in their midst of a "public," or, as some more
scornfully designated it, a "common," playhouse; and when they
discovered the intentions of Burbage, they wrote a strong petition to
the Privy Council against the undertaking. This petition, presented to
the Council in November, 1596, I quote below in part:

     To the right honorable the Lords and others of Her Majesty's
     most honorable Privy Council.--Humbly shewing and beseeching
     your honors, the inhabitants of the precinct of the
     Blackfriars, London, that whereas one Burbage hath lately
     bought certain rooms in the same precinct near adjoining
     unto the dwelling houses of the right honorable the Lord
     Chamberlaine [Lord Cobham] and the Lord of Hunsdon, which
     rooms the said Burbage is now altering, and meaneth very
     shortly to convert and turn the same into a common
     playhouse, which will grow to be a very great annoyance and
     trouble, not only to all the noblemen and gentlemen
     thereabout inhabiting, but also a general inconvenience to
     all the inhabitants of the same precinct, both by reason of
     the great resort and gathering together of all manner of
     vagrant and lewd persons ... as also for that there hath not
     at any time heretofore been used any common playhouse within
     the same precinct, but that now all players being banished
     by the Lord Mayor from playing within the city ... they now
     think to plant themselves in liberties, etc.[307]

[Footnote 307: For the full document see Halliwell-Phillipps,
_Outlines_, I, 304. For the date, see The Malone Society's
_Collections_, I, 91.]

The first person to sign the petition was the Dowager Lady Elizabeth
Russell; the second was none other than George Cary, Lord Hunsdon, at
the time the patron of Burbage's company of actors.[308] It is not
surprising, therefore, that as a result of this petition the Lords of
the Privy Council (of which Lord Cobham was a conspicuous member)
issued an order in which they "forbad the use of the said house for
plays."[309] This order wrecked the plans of Burbage quite as
effectively as did the stubbornness of Gyles Alleyn.

[Footnote 308: Shortly after this he was appointed Lord Chamberlain,
under which name his troupe was subsequently known.]

[Footnote 309: Petition of 1619, The Malone Society's _Collections_,
I, 91.]

Possibly the mental distress Burbage suffered at the hands of the
Privy Council and of Gyles Alleyn affected his health; at least he did
not long survive this last sling of fortune. In February, 1597, just
before the expiration of the Alleyn lease, he died, leaving the
Theatre to his son Cuthbert, the bookseller, Blackfriars to his
actor-son, Richard, the star of Shakespeare's troupe, and his troubles
to both. With good reason Cuthbert declared many years later that the
ultimate success of London theatres had "been purchased by the
infinite cost and pains of the family of Burbages."

When later in 1597 the Lord Chamberlain's Players were forced to leave
Cuthbert's Theatre, Richard Burbage was not able to establish them in
his comfortable Blackfriars house; instead, they first went to the old
Curtain in Shoreditch, and then, under the leadership of the Burbage
sons, erected for themselves a brand-new home on the Bankside, called
"The Globe."

The order of the Privy Council had summarily forbidden the use of
Blackfriars as a "public" playhouse. Its proprietor, however, Richard
Burbage, might take advantage of the precedent established in the days
of Farrant, and let the building for use as a "private" theatre.[310]
Exactly when he was first able to lease the building as a "private"
house we do not know, for the history of the building between 1597
(when it was completed) and 1600 (when it was certainly occupied by
the Children of the Chapel) is very indistinct. We have no definite
evidence to connect the Chapel Children, or, indeed, any specific
troupe, with Blackfriars during these years. Yet prior to 1600 the
building seems to have been used for acting. Richard Burbage himself
seems to say so. In leasing the building to Evans, in 1600, he says
that he considered "with himself that" Evans could not pay the rent
"except the said Evans could erect and keep a company of playing-boys
or others to play plays and interludes in the said playhouse in such
sort _as before time had been there used_."[311] Now, unless this
refers to Farrant's management of the Chapel Boys in Blackfriars--nearly
a quarter of a century earlier--it means that before 1600 some actors,
presumably "playing-boys," had used Burbage's theatre. Moreover, there
seems to be evidence to show that the troupe thus vaguely referred to
was under the management of Evans; for, in referring to his lease of
Blackfriars in 1600, Evans describes the playhouse as "then or late in
the tenure or occupation of your said oratour."[312] What these vague
references mean we cannot now with our limited knowledge determine.
But there is not sufficient evidence to warrant the usual assumption
that Evans and Giles had opened the Blackfriars with the Children of
the Chapel in 1597.[313]

[Footnote 310: The constables and other officers in the Petition of
1619 say: "The owner of the said playhouse, doth under the name of a
private house ... convert the said house to a public playhouse." (The
Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 91.)]

[Footnote 311: Fleay, _A Chronicle History of the London Stage_, p.

[Footnote 312: _Ibid._, p. 211.]

[Footnote 313: This theory has been urged by Fleay, by Mr. Wallace in
_The Children of the Chapel at Blackfriars_, and by others.]

The known history of Blackfriars as a regular theatre may be said to
begin in the autumn of 1600. On September 2 of that year, Henry Evans
signed a lease of the playhouse for a period of twenty-one years, at
an annual rental of £40. This interesting step on the part of Evans
calls for a word of explanation as to his plans.

The Children of the Chapel Royal, who had attained such glory at
Blackfriars during the Farrant-Hunnis-Evans-Oxford-Lyly régime, had
thereafter sunk into dramatic insignificance. Since 1584, when Lyly
was forced to give up his playhouse, they had not presented a play at
Court. Probably they did not entirely cease to act, for they can be
vaguely traced in the provinces during a part of this period; but
their dramatic glory was almost wholly eclipsed. Evans, who had
managed the Boys under Hunnis, Oxford, and Lyly, hoped now to
reëstablish the Children of the Chapel at Blackfriars as they had been
in his younger days. Like James Burbage, he was a man of ideas. His
plan was to interest in his undertaking the Master of the Chapel,
Nathaniel Giles, who had succeeded to the office at the death of
Hunnis in 1597, and then to make practical use of the patent granted
to the Masters of the Children to take up boys for Her Majesty's
service. Such a patent, in the normal course of events, had been
granted to Giles, as it had been to his predecessors. It read in part
as follows:

     Elizabeth, by the grace of God, &c., to all mayors,
     sheriffs, bailiffs, constables, and all other our officers,
     greeting. For that it is meet that our Chapel Royal should
     be furnished with well-singing children from time to time,
     we have, and by these presents do authorize our
     well-beloved servant, Nathaniel Giles, Master of our
     Children of our said Chapel, or his deputy, being by his
     bill subscribed and sealed, so authorized, and having this
     our present commission with him, to take such and so many
     children as he, or his sufficient deputy, shall think meet,
     in all cathedral, collegiate, parish churches, chapels, or
     any other place or places, as well within liberty as
     without, within this our realm of England, whatsoever they

[Footnote 314: The full commission is printed in Wallace, _The
Children of the Chapel at Blackfriars_, p. 61.]

In such a commission Evans saw wonderful possibilities. He reasoned
that since the Queen had forced upon the Chapel Children the twofold
service of singing at royal worship and of acting plays for royal
entertainment, this twofold service should be met by a twofold
organization, the one part designed mainly to furnish sacred music,
the other designed mainly to furnish plays. Such a dual organization,
it seemed to him, was now more or less necessary, since the number of
boy choristers in the Chapel Royal was limited to twelve, whereas the
acting of plays demanded at least twice as many. Once the principle
that the Chapel Royal should supply the Queen with plays was granted,
the commission could be used to furnish the necessary actors; and the
old fiction, established by Farrant and Hunnis, of using a "private"
playhouse as a means of exercising or training the boys for Court
service, would enable the promoters to give public performances and
thus handsomely reimburse themselves for their trouble.

Such was Evans's scheme, based upon his former experience with the
Children at Farrant's Blackfriars, and suggested, perhaps, by the
existence of Burbage's Blackfriars now forbidden to the "common"
players. He presented his scheme to Giles, the Master of the Children;
and Giles, no doubt, presented it at Court; for he would hardly dare
thus abuse the Queen's commission, or thus make a public spectacle of
the royal choristers, without in some way first consulting Her
Majesty, and securing at least her tacit consent. That Giles and Evans
did secure royal permission to put their scheme into operation is
certain, although the exact nature of this permission is not clear.
Later, for misdemeanors on the part of the management, the Star
Chamber ordered "that all assurances made to the said Evans concerning
the said house, or plays, or interludes, should be utterly void, and
to be delivered up to be cancelled."[315]

[Footnote 315: Fleay, _A Chronicle History of the London Stage_, p.

Armed with these written "assurances," and with the royal commission
to take up children, Evans and Giles began to form their company. This
explains the language used by Heminges and Burbage: "let the said
playhouse unto Henry Evans ... who intended then presently to erect or
set up a company of boys."[316] Their method of recruiting players
may best be told by Henry Clifton, in his complaint to the Queen:

     But so it is, most excellent Sovereign, that the said
     Nathaniel Giles, confederating himself with one James
     Robinson, Henry Evans, and others,[317] yet unto Your
     Majesty's said subject unknown how [many], by color of Your
     Majesty's said letters patents, and the trust by Your
     Highness thereby to him, the said Nathaniel Giles,
     committed, endeavoring, conspiring, and complotting how to
     oppress diverse of Your Majesty's humble and faithful
     subjects, and thereby to make unto themselves an unlawful
     gain and benefit, they, the said confederates, devised,
     conspired, and concluded, for their own corrupt gain and
     lucre, to erect, set up, furnish, and maintain a playhouse,
     or place in the Blackfriars, within Your Majesty's city of
     London; and to the end they might the better furnish their
     said plays and interludes with children, whom they thought
     most fittest to act and furnish the said plays, they, the
     said confederates, abusing the authority and trust by Your
     Highness to him, the said Nathaniel Giles, and his deputy or
     deputies, by Your Highness's said letters patents given and
     reposed, hath, sithence Your Majesty's last free and general
     pardon, most wrongfully, unduly, and unjustly taken diverse
     and several children from diverse and sundry schools of
     learning and other places, and apprentices to men of trade
     from their masters, no way fitting for Your Majesty's
     service in or for your Chapel Royal, but the children have
     so taken and employed in acting and furnishing of the said
     plays and interludes, so by them complotted and agreed to
     be erected, furnished, and maintained, against the wills of
     the said children, their parents, tutors, masters, and
     governors, and to the no small grief and oppressions [of]
     Your Majesty's true and faithful subjects. Amongst which
     numbers, so by the persons aforesaid and their agents so
     unjustly taken, used and employed, they have unduly taken
     and so employed one John Chappell, a grammar school scholar
     of one Mr. Spykes School near Cripplegate, London; John
     Motteram, a grammar scholar in the free school at
     Westminster; Nathaniel Field, a scholar of a grammar school
     in London kept by one Mr. Monkaster;[318] Alvery Trussell,
     an apprentice to one Thomas Gyles; one Phillipp Pykman and
     [one] Thomas Grymes, apprentices to Richard and George
     Chambers; Salmon Pavy,[319] apprentice to one Peerce; being
     children no way able or fit for singing, nor by any the said
     confederates endeavoured to be taught to sing, but by them,
     the said confederates, abusively employed, as aforesaid,
     only in plays and interludes.[320]

[Footnote 316: _Ibid._, p. 234. Note that Evans is not to "continue" a
troupe there, as Fleay and Wallace believe, but to "erect" one.]

[Footnote 317: Possibly Robinson and the "others" were merely

[Footnote 318: Field became later famous both as an actor and
playwright. His portrait is preserved at Dulwich College.]

[Footnote 319: Salathiel Pavy, whose excellent acting is celebrated in
Jonson's tender elegy, quoted in part below.]

[Footnote 320: Star Chamber Proceedings, printed in full by Fleay,
_op. cit._, p. 127.]

In spite of the obvious animosity inspiring Clifton's words, we get
from his complaint a clear notion of how Evans and Giles supplemented
the Children of the Chapel proper with actors. In a short time they
brought together at Blackfriars a remarkable troupe of boy-players,
who, with Jonson and Chapman as their poets, began to astonish London.
For, in spite of certain limitations, "the children" could act with a
charm and a grace that often made them more attractive than their
grown-up rivals. Middleton advises the London gallant "to call in at
the Blackfriars, where he should see a nest of boys able to ravish a
man."[321] Jonson gives eloquent testimony to the power of little
Salathiel Pavy to portray the character of old age:

     Years he numbered scarce thirteen
       When Fates turned cruel,
     Yet three filled zodiacs had he been
       The stage's jewel;
     And did act, what now we moan,
       Old men so duly,
     As, sooth, the Parcae thought him one,
       He played so truly.[322]

[Footnote 321: _Father Hubbard's Tales_ (ed. Bullen, VIII, 77).]

[Footnote 322: Jonson, _Epigrams_, CXX, _An Epitaph on Salathiel Pavy,
a Child of Queen Elizabeth's Chapel_.]

And Samuel Pepys records the effectiveness of a child-actor in the
rôle of women: "One Kinaston, a boy, acted the Duke's sister, but made
the loveliest lady that ever I saw in my life."[323]

[Footnote 323: _Diary_, August 18, 1660.]

Moreover, to expert acting these Boys of the Chapel Royal added the
charms of vocal and instrumental music, for which many of them had
been specially trained. The Duke of Stettin-Pomerania, who upon his
grand tour of the European countries in 1602 attended a play at
Blackfriars, bears eloquent testimony to the musical powers of the
children: "For a whole hour before the play begins, one listens to
charming [_köstliche_] instrumental music played on organs, lutes,
pandorins, mandolins, violins, and flutes; as, indeed, on this
occasion, a boy sang _cum voce tremula_ to the accompaniment of a
bass-viol, so delightfully [_lieblich_] that, if the Nuns at Milan did
not excel him, we had not heard his equal in our travels."[324] In
addition, the Children were provided with splendid apparel--though not
at the cost of the Queen, as Mr. Wallace contends.[325] Naturally they
became popular. On January 6, 1601, they were summoned to Court to
entertain Her Majesty--the first recorded performance of the Children
of the Chapel at Court since the year 1584, when Sir William More
closed the first Blackfriars.

[Footnote 324: _The Diary of the Duke of Stettin-Pomerania_, printed
in _Transactions of the Royal Historical Society_ (1890). The diary
was written by the Duke's tutor, Gerschow, at the express command of
the Duke.]

[Footnote 325: It is hard to believe Mr. Wallace's novel theory that
the Children of the Chapel were subsidized by Elizabeth, as presented
in his otherwise valuable _The Children of the Chapel at Blackfriars_.
Burbage and Heminges knew nothing of such a royal patronage at
Blackfriars (see Fleay, _op. cit._, p. 236), nor did Kirkham, the
Yeoman of the Revels (_ibid._, p. 248). Kirkham and his partners spent
£600 on apparel, etc., according to Kirkham's statement.]

Perhaps the most interesting testimony to the success of the Chapel
Children in their new playhouse is that uttered by Shakespeare in
_Hamlet_ (1601), in which he speaks of the performances by the "little
eyases" as a "late innovation." The success of the "innovation" had
driven Shakespeare and his troupe of grown-up actors to close the
Globe and travel in the country, even though they had _Hamlet_ as an
attraction. The good-natured way in which Shakespeare treats the
situation is worthy of special observation:

     _Ham._ What players are they?

     _Ros._ Even those you were wont to take delight in, the
     tragedians of the city.[326]

     _Ham._ How chances it they travel? their residence, both in
     reputation and profit, was better both ways.[327]

     _Ros._ I think their inhibition comes by means of the late

     _Ham._ Do they hold the same estimation they did when I was
     in the city? are they so followed?

     _Ros._ No, indeed, they are not!

     _Ham._ How comes it? do they grow rusty?

     _Ros._ Nay, their endeavour keeps in the wonted pace; but
     there is, sir, an aerie of children,[328] little eyases,
     that cry out on the top of question, and are most
     tyrannically clapped for 't. These are now the fashion, and
     so berattle the "common stages"--so they call them--that
     many wearing rapiers [i.e., gallants] are afraid of
     goose-quills, and dare scarce come thither.

     _Ham._ What! are they children? who maintains 'em? how are
     they escoted? Will they pursue the quality no longer than
     they can sing?

[Footnote 326: The Children were acting light comedies such as
_Cynthia's Revels_; the Lord Chamberlain's Men were acting _Hamlet_.]

[Footnote 327: Shakespeare's troupe is known to have been traveling in
the spring of 1601.]

[Footnote 328: Cf. Middleton's _Father Hubbard's Tales_, already
quoted, "a nest of boys." Possibly the idea was suggested by the fact
that the children were lodged and fed in the building.]

The passage ends with the question from Hamlet: "Do the boys carry it
away?" which gives Rosencrantz an opportunity to pun on the sign of
the Globe Playhouse: "Ay, that they do, my lord; Hercules and his
load, too."

Shortly after the great dramatist had penned these words, the
management of Blackfriars met with disaster. The cause, however, went
back to December 13, 1600, when Giles and Evans were gathering their
players. In their overweening confidence they made a stupid blunder in
"taking up" for their troupe the only son and heir of Henry Clifton, a
well-to-do gentleman of Norfolk, who had come to London for the
purpose of educating the boy. Clifton says in his complaint that
Giles, Evans, and their confederates, "well knowing that your
subject's said son had no manner of sight in song, nor skill in
music," on the 13th day of December, 1600, did "waylay the said Thomas
Clifton" as he was "walking quietly from your subject's said house
towards the said school," and "with great force and violence did seize
and surprise, and him with like force and violence did, to the great
terror and hurt of him, the said Thomas Clifton, haul, pull, drag, and
carry away to the said playhouse." As soon as the father learned of
this, he hurried to the playhouse and "made request to have his said
son released." But Giles and Evans "utterly and scornfully refused to
do" this. Whereupon Clifton threatened to complain to the Privy
Council. But Evans and Giles "in very scornful manner willed your said
subject to complain to whom he would." Clifton suggested that "it was
not fit that a gentleman of his sort should have his son and heir
(and that his only son) to be so basely used." Giles and Evans "most
arrogantly then and there answered that they had authority sufficient
so to take any nobleman's son in this land"; and further to irritate
the father, they immediately put into young Thomas's hand "a scroll of
paper, containing part of one of their said plays or interludes, and
him, the said Thomas Clifton, commanded to learn the same by heart,"
with the admonition that "if he did not obey the said Evans, he should
be surely whipped."[329]

[Footnote 329: The full complaint is printed by Fleay, _op. cit._, p.

Clifton at once appealed to his friend, Sir John Fortescue, a member
of the Privy Council, at whose order young Thomas was released and
sent back to his studies. Apparently this ended the episode. But
Clifton, nourishing his animosity, began to investigate the management
of Blackfriars, and to collect evidence of similar abuses of the
Queen's commission, with the object of making complaint to the Star
Chamber. In October, 1601, Evans, it seems, learned of Clifton's
purpose, for on the 21st of that month he deeded all his property to
his son-in-law, Alexander Hawkins.[330] Clifton finally presented his
complaint to the Star Chamber on December 15, 1601,[331] but his
complaint was probably not acted on until early in 1602, for during
the Christmas holidays the Children were summoned as usual to present
their play before the Queen.[332]

[Footnote 330: _Ibid._, pp. 244-45.]

[Footnote 331: Wallace, _The Children of the Chapel at Blackfriars_,
p. 84, note 4.]

[Footnote 332: On December 29, 1601, Sir Dudley Carleton wrote to his
friend John Chamberlain: "The Queen dined this day privately at My
Lord Chamberlain's. I came even now from the Blackfriars, where I saw
her at the play with all her _candidæ auditrices_." From this it has
been generally assumed that Elizabeth visited the playhouse in
Blackfriars to see the Children act there; and Mr. Wallace, in his
_The Children of the Chapel at Blackfriars_, pp. 26, 87, 95-97, lays
great emphasis upon it to show that the Queen was directly responsible
for establishing and managing the Children at Blackfriars. But the
assumption that the Queen attended a performance at the Blackfriars
Playhouse is, I think, unwarranted. The Lord Chamberlain at this time
was Lord Hunsdon, who lived "in the Blackfriars." No doubt on this
Christmas occasion he entertained the Queen with a great dinner, and
after the dinner with a play given, not in a playhouse, but in his
mansion. (Lord Cobham, who was formerly Lord Chamberlain, and who also
lived in Blackfriars, had similarly entertained the Queen with plays
"in Blackfriars"; cf. also The Malone Society's _Collections_, II,
52.) Furthermore, the actors on this occasion were probably not the
Children of the Chapel, as Mr. Wallace thinks, but Lord Hunsdon's own
troupe. Possibly one of Shakespeare's new plays (_Hamlet_?) was then
presented before the Queen for the first time.]

Shortly after this, however, the Star Chamber passed on Clifton's
complaint. The decree itself is lost, but the following reference to
it is made in a subsequent lawsuit: "The said Evans ... was censured
by the right honorable Court of Star Chamber for his unorderly
carriage and behaviour in taking up of gentlemen's children against
their wills and to employ them for players, and for other misdemeanors
in the said Decree contained; and further that all assurances made to
the said Evans concerning the said house or plays or interludes
should be utterly void, and to be delivered up to be canceled."[333]
Doubtless the decree fell with equal force upon Giles and the others
connected with the enterprise, for after the Star Chamber decree Giles
and Robinson disappear from the management of the playhouse. Evans was
forbidden to have any connection with plays there; and for a time, no
doubt, the building was closed.

[Footnote 333: Fleay, _op. cit._, p. 248.]

Evans, however, still held the lease, and was under the necessity of
paying the rent as before. Then came forward Edward Kirkham, who, in
his official capacity as Yeoman of the Revels, had become acquainted
with the dramatic activities of the Children of the Chapel. He saw an
opportunity to take over the Blackfriars venture now that Evans and
probably Giles had been forbidden by the Star Chamber to have any
connection with plays in that building. Having associated with him
William Rastell, a merchant, and Thomas Kendall,[334] a haberdasher,
he made overtures to Evans, the owner of the lease. Evans, however,
was determined to retain a half-interest in the playhouse, and to
evade the order of the Star Chamber by using his son-in-law, Alexander
Hawkins, as his agent. Accordingly, on April 20, 1602, "Articles of
Agreement" were signed between Evans and Hawkins on the one part, and
Kirkham, Rastell, and Kendall on the other part, whereby the latter
were admitted to a half-interest in the playhouse and in the troupe of
child-actors. Kirkham, Rastell, and Kendall agreed to pay one-half of
the annual rent of £40,[335] to pay one-half of the repairs on the
building, and in addition to spend £400 on apparel and furnishings for
the troupe. Under this reorganization--with Evans as a secret
partner--the Children continued to act with their customary success.

[Footnote 334: We find in Henslowe's _Diary_ a player named William
Kendall, but we do not know that he was related to Thomas.]

[Footnote 335: The agreements remind one of the organization of the
Globe. It seems clear that Kirkham, Rastell, and Kendall held their
moiety in joint tenancy.]

About a month later, however, Lord Hunsdon, the Lord Chamberlain,
whose house adjoined Blackfriars, seems to have inquired into the
affairs of the new organization.[336] What Kirkham told him led him to
order Evans off the premises. Evans informs us that he was "commanded
by his Lordship to avoid and leave the same; for fear of whose
displeasure, the complainant [Evans] was forced to leave the
country."[337] He felt it prudent to remain away from London "for a
long space and time"; yet he "lost nothing," for "he left the said
Alexander Hawkins to deal for him and to take such benefit of the said
house as should belong unto him in his absence."[338]

[Footnote 336: Fleay, _op. cit._, pp. 211-13; 216; 220.]

[Footnote 337: _Ibid._, p. 220.]

[Footnote 338: _Ibid._, p. 217.]

If we may judge from the enthusiastic account given by the Duke of
Stettin-Pomerania, who visited Blackfriars in the September
following, the Children were just as effective under Kirkham's
management as they had been under the management of Giles and Evans.
It is to be noted, however, that Elizabeth did not again invite the
Blackfriars troupe to the Court.

The death of the Queen in 1603 led to the closing of all playhouses.
This was followed by a long attack of the plague, so that for many
months Blackfriars was closed, and "by reason thereof no such profit
and commodity was raised and made of and by the said playhouse as was
hoped for."[339] Evans actually "treated" with Richard Burbage "about
the surrendering and giving up the said lease," but Burbage declined
to consider the matter.

[Footnote 339: Fleay, _op. cit._, p. 235.]

Shortly after this the plague ceased, and acting, stimulated by King
James's patronage, was resumed with fervor. The Blackfriars Company
was reorganized under Edward Kirkham, Alexander Hawkins (acting for
Evans), Thomas Kendall, and Robert Payne: and on February 4, 1604, it
secured a royal patent to play under the title "The Children of the
Queen's Revels."[340] According to this patent, the poet Samuel
Daniel was specially appointed to license their plays: "Provided
always that no such plays or shows shall be presented before the said
Queen our wife by the said Children, or by them anywhere publicly
acted, but by the approbation and allowance of Samuel Daniel, whom her
pleasure is to appoint for that purpose." At this time, too, or not
long after, John Marston was allowed a share in the organization, and
thus was retained as one of its regular playwrights.

[Footnote 340: For the patent, commonly misdated January 30, see The
Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 267. Mr. Wallace, in _The Century
Magazine_ (September, 1910, p. 747), says that the company secured its
patent "through the intercessions of the poet Samuel Daniel." It is
true that the Children of Her Majesty's Royal Chamber of Bristol
secured their patent in 1615 at the intercession of Daniel, but I know
of no evidence that he intervened in behalf of the Blackfriars

The success of the new company is indicated by the fact that it was
summoned to present a play at Court in February, 1604, and again two
plays in January, 1605. Evans's activity in the management of the
troupe in spite of the order of the Star Chamber is evident from the
fact that the payment for the last two court performances was made
directly to him.

In the spring of 1604 the company gave serious offense by acting
Samuel Daniel's _Philotas_, which was supposed to relate to the
unfortunate Earl of Essex; but the blame must have fallen largely on
Daniel, who not only wrote the play, but also licensed its
performance. He was summoned before the Privy Council to explain, and
seems to have fully proved his innocence. Shortly after this he
published the play with an apology affixed.[341]

[Footnote 341: A letter from Daniel to the Earl of Devonshire
vindicating the play is printed in Grosart's _Daniel_, I, xxii.]

The following year the Children gave much more serious offense by
acting _Eastward Hoe_, a comedy in which Marston, Chapman, and Jonson
collaborated. Not only did the play ridicule the Scots in general, and
King James's creation of innumerable knights in particular, but one of
the little actors was actually made, it seems, to mimic the royal
brogue: "I ken the man weel; he is one of my thirty pound Knights."
Marston escaped by timely flight, but Jonson and Chapman were arrested
and lodged in jail, and were for a time in some danger of having their
nostrils slit and their ears cropped. Both Chapman and Jonson asserted
that they were wholly innocent, and Chapman openly put the blame of
the offensive passages on Marston.[342] Marston, however, was beyond
the reach of the King's wrath, so His Majesty punished instead the men
in control of Blackfriars. It was discovered that the manager,
Kirkham, had presented the play without securing the Lord
Chamberlain's allowance. As a result, he and the others in charge of
the Children were prohibited from any further connection with the
playhouse. This doubtless explains the fact that Kirkham shortly after
appears as one of the managers of Paul's Boys.[343] It explains, also,
the following statement made by Evans in the course of one of the
later legal documents: "After the King's most excellent Majesty, upon
some misdemeanors committed in or about the plays there, _and
specially upon the defendant's_ [Kirkham's] _acts and doings there_,
had prohibited that no plays should be more used there," etc.[344] Not
only was Kirkham driven from the management of the troupe and the
playhouse closed for a time, but the Children were denied the Queen's
patronage. No longer were they allowed to use the high-sounding title
"The Children of the Queen's Majesty's Revels"; instead, we find them
described merely as "The Children of the Revels," or as "The Children
of Blackfriars."[345]

[Footnote 342: See Dobell, "Newly Discovered Documents," in _The
Athenæum_, March 30, 1901.]

[Footnote 343: Cunningham, _Revels_, p. xxxviii.]

[Footnote 344: Fleay, _op. cit._, p. 221.]

[Footnote 345: Except carelessly, as when sometimes called "The
Children of the Chapel."]

For a time, no doubt, affairs at the playhouse were at a standstill.
Evans again sought to surrender his lease to Burbage, but without
success.[346] Marston, having escaped the wrath of the King by flight,
decided to end his career as a playwright and turn country parson. It
was shortly after this, in all probability, that he sold his share in
the Blackfriars organization to one Robert Keysar, a goldsmith of
London, for the sum of £100.[347]

[Footnote 346: Wallace, _Shakespeare and his London Associates_, p.

[Footnote 347: _Ibid._, pp. 81, 86, 89, 93.]

Keysar, it seems, undertook to reopen the playhouse, and to continue
the Children there at his own expense.[348] From the proprietors he
rented the playhouse, the stock of apparel, the furnishings, and
playbooks. This, I take it, explains the puzzling statement made by
Kirkham some years later:

     This repliant [Kirkham] and his said partners [Rastell and
     Kendall] have had and received the sum of one hundred pounds
     per annum for their part and moiety in the premises without
     any manner of charges whatsoever [i.e., during Kirkham's
     management of the troupe prior to 1605].[349] And after that
     this replyant and his said partners had received the
     foresaid profits [i.e., after Kirkham and his partners had
     to give up the management of the Children in 1605], the said
     Children, which the said Evans in his answer affirmeth to be
     the Queen's Children [i.e., they are no longer the Queen's
     Children, for after 1605 they had been deprived of the
     Queen's patronage; but Kirkham was in error, for Evans with
     legal precision had referred to the company as 'The Queen's
     Majesty's Children of the Revels (for so it was often
     called)'] were masters themselves [i.e., their own
     managers], and this complainant and his said partners
     received of them, and of one Keysar who was interest with
     them, above the sum of one hundred and fifty pounds per
     annum only for the use of the said great hall, without all
     manner of charges, as this replyant will make it manifest to
     this honorable court.[350]

[Footnote 348: Wallace, _Shakespeare and his London Associates_, p. 80

[Footnote 349: That is, £33, more or less, a share. We have
documentary evidence to show that a share in the Red Bull produced
£30, and a share in the Globe £30 to £40 per annum.]

[Footnote 350: Fleay, _op. cit._, p. 249. The yearly rental must have
included not only the playhouse and its equipment, but the playbooks,
apparel, properties, etc., belonging to the Children. These were on
July 26, 1608, divided up among the sharers, Kirkham, Rastell,
Kendall, and Evans.]

Under Keysar's management the Blackfriars troupe continued to act as
the Children of the Revels. But, unfortunately, they had not learned
wisdom from their recent experience, and in the very following year we
find them again in serious trouble. John Day's _Isle of Guls_, acted
in February, 1606, gave great offense to the Court. Sir Edward Hoby,
in a letter to Sir Thomas Edwards,[351] writes: "At this time was much
speech of a play in the Blackfriars, where, in the _Isle of Guls_,
from the highest to the lowest, all men's parts were acted of two
diverse nations. As I understand, sundry were committed to

[Footnote 351: Birch, _Court and Times of James the First_, I, 60;
quoted by E.K. Chambers, in _Modern Language Review_, IV, 158.]

[Footnote 352: Possibly an aftermath of the King's displeasure is to
be found in the cancellation of Giles's long-standing commission to
take up boys for the Chapel, and the issuance of a new commission to
him, November 7, 1606, with the distinct proviso that "none of the
said choristers or children of the Chapel so to be taken by force of
this commission shall be used or employed as commedians or stage
players." (The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 357.)]

The Children, however, were soon allowed to resume playing, and they
continued for a time without mishap. But in the early spring of 1608
they committed the most serious offense of all by acting Chapman's
_Conspiracy and Tragedy of Charles, Duke of Byron_. The French
Ambassador took umbrage at the uncomplimentary representation of the
contemporary French Court, and had an order made forbidding them to
act the play. But the Children, "voyant toute la Cour dehors, ne
laisserent de la faire, et non seulement cela, mais y introduiserent
la Reine et Madame de Verneuil, traitant celle-ci fort mal de
paroles, et lui donnant un soufflet." Whereupon the French Ambassador
made special complaint to Salisbury, who ordered the arrest of the
author and the actors. "Toutefois il ne s'en trouva que trois, qui
aussi-tôt furent menés à la prison où ils sont encore; mais le
principal, qui est le compositeur, échapa."[353] The Ambassador
observes also that a few days before the Children of the Revels had
given offense by a play on King James: "Un jour ou deux avant, ils
avoient dépêché leur Roi, sa mine d'Ecosse, et tous ses Favoris d'une
étrange sorte; car aprés lui avoir fait dépiter le Ciel sur le vol
d'un oisseau, et fait battre un Gentilhomme pour avoir rompu ses
chiens, ils le dépeignoient ivre pour le moins une fois le jour."[354]
As a result of these two offenses, coming as a climax to a long series
of such offenses, the King was "extrêmement irrité contre ces
marauds-là," and gave order for their immediate suppression. This
marked the end of the child-actors at Blackfriars.

[Footnote 353: From the report of the French Ambassador, M. de la
Boderie, to M. de Puisieux at Paris, _Ambassades de Monsieur de la
Boderie en Angleterre_, 1750, III, 196; quoted by E.K. Chambers in
_Modern Language Review_, IV, 158.]

[Footnote 354: The name of this play is not known; probably the King
was satirized in a comic scene foisted upon an otherwise innocent
piece. Mr. Wallace, in _The Century Magazine_ (September, 1910, p.
747), says: "From a document I have found in France the Blackfriars
boys now satirized the King's efforts to raise money, made local jokes
on the recent discovery of his silver mine in Scotland, brought him on
the stage as drunk, and showed such to be his condition at least three
times a day, caricatured him in his favorite pastime of hawking, and
represented him as swearing and cursing at a gentleman for losing a
bird." I do not know what document Mr. Wallace has found; the French
document quoted above has been known for a long time.]

Naturally Kirkham, Rastell, and Kendall, since there was "no profit
made of the said house, but a continual rent of forty pounds to be
paid for the same," became sick of their bargain with Evans. An
additional reason for their wishing to withdraw finally from the
enterprise was the rapid increase of the plague, which about July 25
closed all playhouses. So Kirkham, "at or about the 26 of July, 1608,
caused the apparrels, properties, and goods belonging to the
copartners, sharers, and masters" to be divided. Kirkham and his
associates took away their portions, and "quit the place," the
one-time manager using to Evans some unkind words: "said he would deal
no more with it, 'for,' quod he, 'it is a base thing,' or used words
to such or very like effect."[355] Evans, thus deserted by Kirkham,
Rastell, and Kendall, regarded the organization of the Blackfriars as
dissolved; he "delivered up their commission which he had under the
Great Seal authorizing them to play, and discharged diverse of the
partners and poets."

[Footnote 355: Fleay, _op. cit._, pp. 221-22.]

Robert Keysar, however, the old manager, laid plans to keep the
Children together, and continue them as a troupe after the cessation
of the plague. For a while, we are told, he maintained them at his own
expense, "in hope to have enjoyed his said bargain ... upon the
ceasing of the general sickness."[356] And he expected, by virtue of
the share he had purchased from John Marston, to be able to use the
Blackfriars Playhouse for his purpose.

[Footnote 356: Wallace, _Shakespeare and his London Associates_, pp.
83, 97.]

In the meanwhile Evans began negotiations with Burbage for the
surrender of the lease: "By reason the said premises lay then and had
long lyen void and without use for plays, whereby the same became not
only burthensome and unprofitable unto the said Evans, but also ran
far into decay for want of reparations ... the said Evans began to
treat with the said Richard Burbage about a surrender of the said
Evans his said lease."[357] This time Burbage listened to the
proposal, for he and his fellow-actors at the Globe "considered that
the house would be fit for themselves." So in August, 1608, he agreed
to take over the building for the use of the King's Men.

[Footnote 357: _Ibid._, p. 87.]

Even after Evans's surrender of the lease, Keysar, it seems, made an
effort to keep the Children together. On the following Christmas,
1608-09, we find a record of payment to him for performances at Court,
by "The Children of Blackfriars." But soon after this the troupe must
have been disbanded. Keysar says that they were "enforced to be
dispersed and turned away to the abundant hurt of the said young
men";[358] and the Burbages and Heminges declare that the children
"were dispersed and driven each of them to provide for himself by
reason that the plays ceasing in the City of London, either through
sickness, or for some other cause, he, the said complainant [Keysar],
was no longer able to maintain them together."[359] In the autumn of
1609, however, Keysar assembled the Children again, reorganized them
with the assistance of Philip Rosseter, and placed them in Whitefriars
Playhouse, recently left vacant by the disruption of the Children of
His Majesty's Revels. Their subsequent history will be found related
in the chapter dealing with that theatre.

[Footnote 358: _Ibid._, p. 90.]

[Footnote 359: Wallace, _Shakespeare and his London Associates_, p.

When in August, 1608, Richard Burbage secured from Evans the surrender
of the Blackfriars lease, he at once proceeded to organize from the
Globe Company a syndicate to operate the building as a playhouse. He
admitted to partnership in the new enterprise all of the then sharers
in the Globe except Witter and Nichols, outsiders who had secured
their interest through marriage with the heirs of Pope and Phillips,
and who, therefore, were not entitled to any consideration. In
addition, he admitted Henry Evans, doubtless in fulfillment of a
condition in the surrender of the lease. The syndicate thus formed was
made up of seven equal sharers, as follows: Richard Burbage, Cuthbert
Burbage, Henry Evans, William Shakespeare, John Heminges, Henry
Condell, and William Slye. These sharers leased the building from
Richard Burbage for a period of twenty-one years,[360] at the old
rental of £40 per annum, each binding himself to pay annually the sum
of £5 14_s._ 4_d._[361] The method of distributing the profits between
the sharers (known as "housekeepers") and the actors (known as the
"company") was to be the same as that practiced at the Globe.[362]

[Footnote 360: Twenty-one years was a very common term for a lease to
run; but in this case, no doubt, it was intended that the lease of
Blackfriars should last as long as the lease of the Globe, which then
had exactly twenty-one years to run.]

[Footnote 361: Shortly after this agreement had been made William Slye
died, and his executrix delivered up his share to Richard Burbage "to
be cancelled and made void." See the Heminges-Osteler documents
printed by Mr. Wallace in the London _Times_, October 4, 1909. In 1611
Burbage let William Osteler have this share.]

[Footnote 362: The method is clearly explained in the documents of
1635 printed by Halliwell-Phillipps, in _Outlines_, I, 312.]

Soon after this organization was completed, the King's Men moved from
the Globe to the Blackfriars. They did not, of course, intend to
abandon the Globe. Their plan was to use the Blackfriars as a "winter
home," and the Globe as a "summer house."[363] Malone observed from
the Herbert Manuscript that "the King's Company usually began to play
at the Globe in the month of May";[364] although he failed to state at
what time in the autumn they usually moved to the Blackfriars, the
evidence points to the first of November.

[Footnote 363: See Wright, _Historia Histrionica_, Hazlitt's Dodsley,
XV, 406.]

[Footnote 364: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 71.]

Such a plan had many advantages. For one thing, it would prevent the
pecuniary losses often caused by a severe winter. In the _Poetaster_
(1601), Jonson makes Histrio, representing the Globe Players, say: "O,
it will get us a huge deal of money, and we have need on't, for this
winter has made us all poorer than so many starved snakes; nobody
comes at us."[365] This could not be said of the King's Men after they
moved to the Blackfriars. Edward Kirkham, a man experienced in
theatrical finances, offered to prove to the court in 1612 that the
King's Men "got, and as yet doth, more in one winter in the said great
hall by a thousand pounds than they were used to get on the

[Footnote 365: Act III, scene iv. Cf. also Webster's Preface to _The
White Devil_, acted at the Red Bull about 1610.]

[Footnote 366: Fleay, _A Chronicle History of the London Stage_, p.

Kirkham's testimony as to the popularity of the King's Men in their
winter home is borne out by a petition to the city authorities made by
"the constables and other officers and inhabitants of Blackfriars" in
January, 1619. They declared that to the playhouse "there is daily
such resort of people, and such multitudes of coaches (whereof many
are hackney-coaches, bringing people of all sorts), that sometimes all
our streets cannot contain them, but that they clog up Ludgate also,
in such sort that both they endanger the one the other, break down
stalls, throw down men's goods from their shops, and the inhabitants
there cannot come to their houses, nor bring in their necessary
provisions of beer, wood, coal, or hay, nor the tradesmen or
shopkeepers utter their wares, nor the passenger go to the common
water stairs without danger of their lives and limbs." "These
inconveniences" were said to last "every day in the winter time from
one or two of the clock till six at night."[367]

[Footnote 367: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 91.]

As a result of this petition the London Common Council ordered,
January 21, 1619, that "the said playhouses be suppressed, and that
the players shall from thenceforth forbear and desist from playing in
that house."[368] But the players had at Court many influential
friends, and these apparently came to their rescue. The order of the
Common Council was not put into effect; and so far as we know the only
result of this agitation was that King James on March 27 issued to his
actors a new patent specifically giving them--described as his
"well-beloved servants"--the right henceforth to play unmolested in
Blackfriars. The new clause in the patent runs: "as well within their
two their now usual houses called the Globe, within our County of
Surrey, and their private house situate in the precinct of the
Blackfriars, within our city of London."[369] At the accession of King
Charles I, the patent was renewed, June 24, 1625, with the same clause
regarding the use of Blackfriars.[370]

[Footnote 368: Halliwell-Phillipps, _Outlines_, I, 311.]

[Footnote 369: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 281.]

[Footnote 370: _Ibid._, I, 282.]

In 1631, however, the agitation was renewed, this time in the form of
a petition from the churchwardens and constables of the precinct of
Blackfriars to William Laud, then Bishop of London. The document gives
such eloquent testimony to the popularity of the playhouse that I have
inserted it below in full:

     To the Right Honorable and Right Reverend Father in God,
     William, Lord Bishop of London, one of His Majesty's
     Honorable Privy Council. The humble petition of the
     churchwardens and constables of Blackfriars, on the behalf
     of the whole Parish, showing that by reason of a playhouse,
     exceedingly frequented, in the precinct of the said
     Blackfriars, the inhabitants there suffer many grievances
     upon the inconveniences hereunto annexed, and many other.

     May it therefore please your Lordship to take the said
     grievances into your honorable consideration for the
     redressing thereof. And for the reviving the order, which
     hath been heretofore made by the Lords of the Council, and
     the Lord Mayor and the Court of Aldermen, for the removal of
     them. And they shall, according to their duties, ever pray
     for your Lordship.

     Reasons and Inconveniences Inducing the Inhabitants of
     Blackfriars, London, to Become Humble Suitors to Your
     Lordship for Removing the Playhouse in the Said Blackfriars:

     1. The shopkeepers in divers places suffer much, being
     hindered by the great recourse to the plays (especially of
     coaches) from selling their commodities, and having their
     wares many times broken and beaten off their stalls.

     2. The recourse of coaches is many times so great that the
     inhabitants cannot in an afternoon take in any provision of
     beer, coals, wood, or hay, the streets being known to be so
     exceeding straight and narrow.

     3. The passage through Ludgate to the water [i.e., Water
     Lane] is many times stopped up, people in their ordinary
     going much endangered, quarrels and bloodshed many times
     occasioned, and many disorderly people towards night
     gathered thither, under pretense of attending and waiting
     for those at the plays.

     4. If there should happen any misfortune of fire, there is
     not likely any present order could possibly be taken, for
     the disorder and number of the coaches, since there could be
     no speedy passage made for quenching the fire, to the
     endangering of the parish and city.

     5. Christenings and burials, which usually are in the
     afternoon, are many times disturbed, and persons endangered
     in that part, which is the greatest part of the parish.

     6. Persons of honor and quality that dwell in the parish are
     restrained by the number of coaches from going out, or
     coming home in seasonable time, to the prejudice of their
     occasions. And some persons of honor have left, and others
     have refused houses for this very inconvenience, to the
     prejudice and loss of the parish.

     7. The Lords of the Council in former times have by order
     directed that there shall be but two playhouses tolerated,
     and those _without the city_, the one at the Bankside, the
     other near Golding Lane (which these players still have and
     use all summer), which the Lords did signify by their
     letters to the Lord Mayor; and in performance thereof the
     Lord Mayor and the Court of Aldermen did give order that
     they should forbear to play any longer there, which the
     players promised to the Lord Chief Justice of the Common
     Pleas (while he was Recorder of London) to observe,
     entreating only a little time to provide themselves

[Footnote 371: Collier, _History of English Dramatic Poetry_ (1879),
I, 455.]

Bishop Laud endorsed the petition with his own hand "To the Coun.
Table," and in all probability he submitted it to the consideration of
the Privy Council. If so, the Council took no action.

But in 1633, as a result of further complaints about the crowding of
coaches, the Privy Council appointed a committee to estimate the value
of the Blackfriars Theatre and "the buildings thereunto belonging,"
with the idea of removing the playhouse and paying the owners
therefor. The committee reported that "the players demanded £21,000.
The commissioners [Sir Henry Spiller, Sir William Beecher, and
Laurence Whitaker] valued it at near £3000. The Parishioners offered
towards the removing of them £100."[372] Obviously the plan of removal
was not feasible, if indeed the Privy Council seriously contemplated
such action. The only result of this second agitation was the
issuance on November 20 of special instructions to coachmen: "If any
persons, men or women, of what condition soever, repair to the
aforesaid playhouse in coach, as soon as they are gone out of their
coaches, the coachmen shall depart thence and not return till the end
of the play."[373] Garrard, in a letter to the Lord Deputy dated
January 9, 1633, says: "Here hath been an order of the Lords of the
Council hung up in a table near Paul's and the Blackfriars to command
all that resort to the playhouse there to send away their coaches, and
to disperse abroad in Paul's Churchyard, Carter Lane, the Conduit in
Fleet Street, and other places, and not to return to fetch their
company, but they must trot afoot to find their coaches. 'Twas kept
very strictly for two or three weeks, but now I think it is disordered
again."[374] The truth is that certain distinguished patrons of the
theatre did not care "to trot afoot to find their coaches," and so
made complaint at Court. As a result it was ordered, at a sitting of
the Council, December 29, 1633 (the King being present): "Upon
information this day given to the Board of the discommodity that
diverse persons of great quality, especially Ladies and Gentlewomen,
did receive in going to the playhouse of Blackfriars by reason that no
coaches may stand ... the Board ... think fit to explain the said
order in such manner that as many coaches as may stand within the
Blackfriars Gate may enter and stay there."[375]

[Footnote 372: The _Calendar of State Papers, Domestic, 1633_, p. 293.
The report of the commissioners in full, as printed by Collier in _New
Facts_ (1835), p. 27, and again in _History of English Dramatic
Poetry_ (1879), I, 477, is not above suspicion, although Mr. E.K.
Chambers is inclined to think it genuine. According to this document
the actors estimated the property to be worth £21,990, but the
committee thought that the actors might be persuaded to accept £2900
13_s._ 4_d._]

[Footnote 373: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 99; 387.]

[Footnote 374: _The Earl of Strafforde's Letters_ (Dublin, 1740), I,

[Footnote 375: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 388.]

All this agitation about coaches implies a fashionable and wealthy
patronage of the Blackfriars. An interesting glimpse of high society
at the theatre is given in a letter written by Garrard, January 25,
1636: "A little pique happened betwixt the Duke of Lenox and the Lord
Chamberlain about a box at a new play in the Blackfriars, of which the
Duke had got the key, which, if it had come to be debated betwixt
them, as it was once intended, some heat or perhaps other
inconvenience might have happened."[376] The Queen herself also
sometimes went thither. Herbert records, without any comment, her
presence there on the 13 of May, 1634.[377] It has been generally
assumed that she attended a regular afternoon performance; but this, I
am sure, was not the case. The Queen engaged the entire building for
the private entertainment of herself and her specially invited guests,
and the performance was at night. In a bill presented by the King's
Men for plays acted before the members of the royal family during the
year 1636 occurs the entry: "The 5th of May, at the Blackfryers, for
the Queene and the Prince Elector ... _Alfonso_." Again, in a similar
bill for the year 1638 (see the bill on page 404) is the entry: "At
the Blackfryers, the 23 of Aprill, for the Queene ... _The
Unfortunate Lovers_." The fact that the actors did not record the loss
of their "day" at their house, and made their charge accordingly,
shows that the plays were given at night and did not interfere with
the usual afternoon performances before the public.

[Footnote 376: _The Earl of Strafforde's Letters_ (Dublin, 1740), I,

[Footnote 377: The Herbert MS., Malone, _Variorum_, III, 167.]

The King's Men continued to occupy the Blackfriars as their winter
home until the closing of the theatres in 1642. Thereafter the
building must have stood empty for a number of years. In 1653 Sir
Aston Cokaine, in a poem prefixed to Richard Brome's _Plays_, looked
forward prophetically to the happy day when

     Black, and White Friars too, shall flourish again.

But the prophecy was not to be fulfilled; for although Whitefriars
(i.e., Salisbury Court) did flourish as a Restoration playhouse, the
more famous Blackfriars had ceased to exist before acting was allowed
again. The manuscript note in the Phillipps copy of Stow's _Annals_
(1631) informs us that "the Blackfriars players' playhouse in
Blackfriars, London, which had stood many years, was pulled down to
the ground on Monday the 6 day of August, 1655, and tenements built in
the room."[378]

[Footnote 378: See _The Academy_, 1882, XXII, 314. Exactly the same
fate had overtaken the Globe ten years earlier.]



As related more fully in the chapter on "The Theatre," when Cuthbert
and Richard Burbage discovered that Gyles Alleyn not only refused to
renew the lease for the land on which their playhouse stood, but was
actually planning to seize the building and devote it to his private
uses, they took immediate steps to thwart him. And in doing so they
evolved a new and admirable scheme of theatrical management. They
planned to bring together into a syndicate or stock-company some of
the best actors of the day, and allow these actors to share in the
ownership of the building. Hitherto playhouses had been erected merely
as pecuniary investments by profit-seeking business men,--Burbage,[379]
Brayne, Lanman, Henslowe, Cholmley, Langley,--and had been conducted
in the interests of the proprietors rather than of the actors.[380] As
a result, these proprietors had long reaped an unduly rich harvest
from the efforts of the players, taking all or a large share of the
income from the galleries. The new scheme was designed to remedy these

[Footnote 379: That even James Burbage is to be put in this class
cannot be disputed.]

[Footnote 380: Cuthbert Burbage in 1635 says: "The players that lived
in those first times had only the profits arising from the doors, but
now the players receive all the comings-in at the doors to themselves
and half the galleries from the housekeepers." (Halliwell-Phillipps,
_Outlines_, I, 317.)]

[Illustration: RICHARD BURBAGE

(Reproduced by permission from a painting in the Dulwich Picture
Gallery; photograph by Emery Walker, Ltd.)]

For participation in this scheme the Burbages selected the following
men: William Shakespeare, not only a successful actor, but a poet who
had already made his reputation as a writer of plays, and who gave
promise of greater attainments; John Heminges, a good actor and an
exceptionally shrewd man of business, who until his death managed the
pecuniary affairs of the company with distinguished success; Augustine
Phillips and Thomas Pope, both ranked with the best actors of the
day;[381] and William Kempe, the greatest comedian since Tarleton,
described in 1600 as "a player in interludes, and partly the Queen's
Majesty's jester." When to this group we add Richard Burbage himself,
the Roscius of his age, we have an organization of business,
histrionic, and poetic ability that could not be surpassed. It was
carefully planned, and it deserved the remarkable success which it
attained. The superiority of the Globe Company over all others was
acknowledged in the days of James and Charles, and to-day stands out
as one of the most impressive facts in the history of the early drama.

[Footnote 381: See, for example, Thomas Heywood's _Apology for Actors_
(1612). In enumerating the greatest actors of England he says:
"Gabriel, Singer, Pope, Phillips, Sly--all the right I can do them is
but this, that though they be dead, their deserts yet live in the
remembrance of many."]

According to the original plan there were to be ten shares in the new
enterprise, the Burbage brothers holding between them one-half the
stock, or two and a half shares each, and the five actors holding the
other half, or one share each. All the expenses of leasing a site,
erecting a building, and subsequently operating the building as a
playhouse, and likewise all the profits to accrue therefrom, were to
be divided among the sharers according to their several holdings.

This organization, it should be understood, merely concerned the
ownership of the building. Its members stood in the relation of
landlords to the players, and were known by the technical name of
"housekeepers." Wholly distinct was the organization of the players,
known as the "company." The company, too, was divided into shares for
the purpose of distributing its profits. The "housekeepers," in return
for providing the building, received one-half of the income from the
galleries; the company, for entertaining the public, received the
other half of the income from the galleries, plus the takings at the
doors. Those actors who were also "housekeepers" shared twice in the
profits of the playhouse; and it was a part of the plan of the
"housekeepers" to admit actors to be sharers in the building as soon
as they attained eminence, or otherwise made their permanent
connection with the playhouse desirable. Thus the two organizations,
though entirely distinct, were interlocking.

Such a scheme had many advantages. In the first place, it prevented
the company from shifting from one playhouse to another, as was
frequently the case with other troupes. In the second place, it
guaranteed both the excellence and the permanency of the company. Too
often good companies were dissolved by the desertion of a few
important members; as every student of the drama knows, the constant
reorganization of troupes is one of the most exasperating features of
Elizabethan theatrical history. In the third place, the plan, like all
profit-sharing schemes, tended to elicit from each member of the
organization his best powers. The opportunity offered to a young actor
ultimately to be admitted as a sharer in the ownership of the building
was a constant source of inspiration,[382] and the power to admit at
any time a new sharer enabled the company to recruit from other
troupes brilliant actors when such appeared; as, for example, William
Osteler and Nathaniel Field, who had attained fame with the Children
at Blackfriars and elsewhere. Finally, the plan brought the actors
together in a close bond of friendship that lasted for life. Heminges
was loved and trusted by them all. Shakespeare was admired and
revered; three members of the troupe seem to have named their sons
for him. Indeed, there is nothing more inspiring in a close study of
all the documents relating to the Globe than the mutual loyalty and
devotion of the original sharers. The publication of Shakespeare's
plays by Heminges and Condell is merely one out of many expressions of
this splendid comradeship.

[Footnote 382: "The petitioners have a long time with much patience
expected to be admitted sharers in the playhouses of the Globe and the
Blackfriars, whereby they might reap some better fruit of their labour
than hitherto they have done, and be encouraged to proceed therein
with cheerfulness." (The Young Players' Petition, 1635, printed by
Halliwell-Phillipps, _Outlines_, I, 312.)]

The plan of organization having been evolved, and the original members
having been selected, the first question presenting itself was, Where
should the new playhouse be erected? Burbage, Heminges, and the
rest--including Shakespeare--probably gave the question much thought.
Their experience in Holywell had not been pleasant; the precinct of
Blackfriars, they now well realized, was out of the question; so they
turned their eyes to the Bankside. That section had recently become
the theatrical centre of London. There were situated the Rose, the
Swan, and the Bear Garden, and thither each day thousands of persons
flocked in search of entertainment. Clearly the Bankside was best
suited to their purpose. Near the fine old church of St. Mary Overies,
and not far from the Rose and the Bear Garden, they found a plot of
land that met their approval. Its owner, Sir Nicholas Brend, was
willing to lease it for a long term of years, and at a very reasonable
rate. They made a verbal contract with Brend, according to which the
lease was to begin on December 25, 1598.


Shakespeare seems to have been equally with Burbage a leader in erecting
the Globe. In 1599 the building is officially described as "vna domo de
novo edificata ... in occupacione Willielmi Shakespeare et aliorum."]

Three days later, on December 28, Richard and Cuthbert Burbage, having
secured the services of the carpenter, Peter Street, and his workmen,
tore down the old Theatre and transported the timber and other
materials to this new site across the river; and shortly after the
Globe began to lift itself above the houses of the Bankside--a
handsome theatre surpassing anything then known to London playgoers.

In the meantime the lawyers had drawn up the lease, and this was
formally signed on February 21, 1599. The company had arranged a
"tripartite lease," the three parties being Sir Nicholas Brend, the
Burbage brothers, and the five actors.[383] To the Burbages Sir
Nicholas leased one-half of the property at a yearly rental of £7
5_s._; and to the five actors, he leased the other half, at the same
rate. Thus the total rent paid for the land was £14 10_s._ The lease
was to run for a period of thirty-one years.

[Footnote 383: Exact information about the lease and the organization
of the company is derived from the Heminges-Osteler and the
Witter-Heminges documents, both discovered and printed by Mr. Wallace.
And with these one should compare the article by the same author in
the London _Times_, April 30, May 1, 1914.]

The five actors, not satisfied with tying up the property in the
"tripartite lease," proceeded at once to arrange their holdings in the
form of a "joint tenancy." This they accomplished by the following

     William Shakespeare, Augustine Phillips, Thomas Pope, John
     Heminges, and William Kempe did shortly after grant and
     assign all the said moiety of and in the said gardens and
     grounds unto William Levison and Thomas Savage, who
     regranted and reassigned to every one of them severally a
     fifth part of the said moiety of the said gardens and

[Footnote 384: Wallace, _Shakespeare and his London Associates_, p.
53. Shakespeare's leadership in the erection of the Globe is indicated
in several documents; for example, the post-mortem inquisition of the
estate of Sir Thomas Brend, May 16, 1599.]

The object of the "joint tenancy" was to prevent any member of the
organization from disposing of his share to an outsider. Legally at
the death of a member his share passed into the possession of the
other members, so that the last survivor would receive the whole. In
reality, however, the members used the "joint tenancy" merely to
control the disposition of the shares, and they always allowed the
heirs-at-law to receive the share of a deceased member.

The wisdom of this arrangement was quickly shown, for "about the time
of the building of said playhouse and galleries, or shortly after,"
William Kempe decided to withdraw from the enterprise. He had to
dispose of his share to the other parties in the "joint tenancy,"
Shakespeare, Heminges, Phillips, and Pope, who at once divided it
equally among themselves, and again went through the process necessary
to place that share in "joint tenancy." After the retirement of Kempe,
the organization, it will be observed, consisted of six men, and the
shares were eight in number, owned as follows: Richard Burbage and
Cuthbert Burbage, each two shares, Shakespeare, Heminges, Phillips,
and Pope, each one share.


Based on the lease and on other documents and references to the

The tract of land on which the new playhouse was to be erected is
minutely described in the lease[385] as follows:

     All that parcel of ground just recently before enclosed and
     made into four separate garden plots, recently in the tenure
     and occupation of Thomas Burt and Isbrand Morris, diers, and
     Lactantius Roper, salter, citizen of London, containing in
     length from east to west two hundred and twenty feet in
     assize or thereabouts, lying and adjoining upon a way or
     lane there on one [the south] side, and abutting upon a
     piece of land called The Park[386] upon the north, and upon
     a garden then or recently in the tenure or occupation of one
     John Cornishe toward the west, and upon another garden plot
     then or recently in the tenure or occupation of one John
     Knowles toward the east, with all the houses, buildings,
     structures, ways, easements, commodities, and appurtenances
     thereunto belonging.... And also all that parcel of land
     just recently before enclosed and made into three separate
     garden plots, whereof two of the same [were] recently in the
     tenure or occupation of John Roberts, carpenter, and another
     recently in the occupation of one Thomas Ditcher, citizen
     and merchant tailor of London ... containing in length from
     east to west by estimation one hundred fifty and six feet of
     assize or thereabouts, and in breadth from the north to the
     south one hundred feet of assize by estimation or
     thereabouts, lying and adjoining upon the other side of the
     way or lane aforesaid, and abutting upon a garden plot there
     then or recently just before in the occupation of William
     Sellers toward the east, and upon one other garden plot
     there, then or recently just before, in the tenure of John
     Burgram, sadler, toward the west, and upon a lane there
     called Maiden Lane towards the south, with all the

[Footnote 385: The lease is incorporated in the Heminges-Osteler
documents, which Mr. Wallace has translated from the Anglicized Latin.
The original Latin text may be found in Martin, _The Site of the Globe
Playhouse of Shakespeare_, pp. 161-62. Since, however, that text is
faultily reproduced, I quote Mr. Wallace's translation.]

[Footnote 386: What is meant by "The Park" is a matter of dispute.
Some contend that the Park of the Bishop of Winchester is meant; it
may be, however, that some small estate is referred to. In support of
the latter contention, one might cite Collier's _Memoirs of Edward
Alleyn_, p. 91. Part of the document printed by Collier may have been
tampered with, but there is no reason to suspect the two references to
"The Parke."]

This document clearly states that the Globe property was situated to
the north of Maiden Lane, and consequently near the river. Virtually
all the contemporary maps of London show the Globe as so situated. Mr.
Wallace has produced some very specific evidence to support the
document cited above, and he claims to have additional evidence as yet
unpublished. On the other hand, there is at least some evidence to
indicate that the Globe was situated to the south of Maiden Lane.[387]

[Footnote 387: For the discussions of the subject, see the

For the purposes of this book it is sufficient to know that the Globe
was "situate in Maiden Lane"; whether on the north side or the south
side is of less importance. More important is the nature of the site.
Strype, in his edition of Stow's _Survey_, gives this description:
"Maiden Lane, a long straggling place, with ditches on each side, the
passage to the houses being over little bridges, with little garden
plots before them, especially on the north side, which is best both
for houses and inhabitants." In Maiden Lane, near one of these ditches
or "sewers," the Globe was erected; and like the other houses there
situated, it was approached over a bridge.[388] In February, 1606,
the Sewer Commission ordered that "the owners of the playhouse called
the Globe, in Maid Lane, shall before the 20 day of April next pull up
and take clean out of the sewer the props or posts which stand under
their bridge on the north side of Maid Lane."[389] The ground on which
the building was erected was marshy, and the foundations were made by
driving piles deep into the soil. Ben Jonson tersely writes:[390]

     The Globe, the glory of the Bank.... Flanked with a ditch,
     and forced out of a marish.

[Footnote 388: This was probably not the only means of approach.]

[Footnote 389: Wallace, in the London _Times_, April 30, 1914, p. 10;
_Notes and Queries_ (XI series), XI, 448.]

[Footnote 390: _An Execration upon Vulcan._]

Into the construction of the new playhouse went the timber and other
materials secured from the old Theatre; but much new material, of
course, had to be added. It is a mistake to believe that the Globe was
merely the old "Theatre" newly set up on the Bankside, and perhaps
strengthened here and there. When it was completed, it was regarded as
the last word in theatrical architecture. Dekker seems to have had the
Globe in mind in the following passage: "How wonderfully is the world
altered! and no marvel, for it has lyein sick almost five thousand
years: so that it is no more like the old _Theater du munde_, than old
Paris Garden is like the King's garden at Paris. What an excellent
workman therefore were he, that could cast the _Globe_ of it into a
new mould."[391] In 1600 Henslowe and Alleyn used the Globe as
the model of their new and splendid Fortune. They sought, indeed, to
show some originality by making their playhouse square instead of
round; but this, the one instance in which they departed from the
Globe, was a mistake; and when the Fortune was rebuilt in 1623 it was
made circular in shape.

[Footnote 391: _The Guls Hornbook_, published in 1609, but written


Marked by the author on a plan of the Bankside printed in Strype's
_Survey of London_, 1720.]


Compare this view of the Bankside with the preceding map. (From an
equestrian portrait of King James I, by Delaram. The city is
represented as it was when James came to the throne in 1603.)]

A few quotations from the Fortune contract will throw some light upon
the Globe:

     With such-like stairs, conveyances, and divisions [to the
     galleries], without and within, as are made and contrived in
     and to the late-erected playhouse ... called the Globe.

     And the said stage to be in all other proportions contrived
     and fashioned like unto the stage of the said playhouse
     called the Globe.

     And the said house, and other things before mentioned to be
     made and done, to be in all other contrivations,
     conveyances, fashions, thing, and things, effected, finished
     and done according to the manner and fashion of the said
     house called the Globe, saving only that all the principal
     and main posts ... shall be square and wrought pilasterwise,
     with carved proportions called satyrs to be placed and set
     on the top of every of the said posts.

What kind of columns were used in the Globe and how they were
ornamented, we do not know, but presumably they were round. Jonson, in
_Every Man Out of His Humour_, presented on the occasion of, or
shortly after, the opening of the Globe in 1599, says of one of his
characters: "A well-timbered fellow! he would have made a good column
an he had been thought on when the house was abuilding."[392] That
Jonson thought well of the new playhouse is revealed in several
places; he speaks with some enthusiasm of "this fair-fitted
Globe,"[393] and in the passage already quoted he calls it "the glory
of the Bank."

[Footnote 392: _Jonson's Works_, ed. Cunningham, I, 71.]

[Footnote 393: In the first quarto edition of _Every Man Out of His

In shape the building was unquestionably polygonal or circular, most
probably polygonal on the outside and circular within. Mr. E.K.
Chambers thinks it possible that it was square;[394] but there is
abundant evidence to show that it was not. The very name, Globe, would
hardly be suitable to a square building; Jonson describes the interior
as a "round";[395] the ballad on the burning of the house refers to
the roof as being "round as a tailor's clew"; and the New Globe, which
certainly was not square, was erected on the old foundation.[396] The
frame, we know, was of timber, and the roof of thatch. In front of
the main door was suspended a sign of Hercules bearing the globe upon
his shoulders,[397] under which was written, says Malone, the old
motto, _Totus mundus agit histrionem_.[398]

[Footnote 394: _The Stage of the Globe_, p. 356.]

[Footnote 395: Induction to _Every Man Out of His Humour_ (ed.
Cunningham, I, 66).]

[Footnote 396: I have not space to discuss the question further. The
foreign traveler who visited a Bankside theatre, probably the Globe,
on July 3, 1600, described it as "Theatrum ad morem antiquorum
Romanorum constructum ex lignis" (London _Times_, April 11, 1914).
Thomas Heywood, in his _Apology for Actors_ (1612), describing the
Roman playhouses, says: "After these they composed others, but
differing in form from the theatre or amphitheatre, and every such was
called _Circus_, the frame _globe_-like and merely round." The
evidence is cumulative, and almost inexhaustible.]

[Footnote 397: See _Hamlet_, II, ii, 378.]

[Footnote 398: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 67.]

The earliest representation of the building is probably to be found in
the Delaram _View of London_ (opposite page 246), set in the
background of an engraving of King James on horseback. This view,
which presents the city as it was in 1603 when James came to the
throne, shows the Bear Garden at the left, polygonal in shape, the
Rose in the centre, circular in shape, and the Globe at the right,
polygonal in shape. It is again represented in Visscher's magnificent
_View of London_, which, though printed in 1616, presents the city as
it was several years earlier (see page 253). The Merian _View_ of 1638
(opposite page 256) is copied from Visscher, and the _View_ in
Howell's _Londinopolis_ (1657) is merely a slavish copy of Merian;
these two views, therefore, so far as the Globe is concerned, have no
special value.[399]

[Footnote 399: The circular playhouse in Delaram's _View_ is commonly
accepted as a representation of the First Globe, but without reason.
The evidence which establishes the identity of the several playhouses
pictured in the various maps of the Bankside comes from a careful
study of the Bear Garden, the Hope, the Rose, the First Globe, the
Second Globe, and their sites, together with a study of all the maps
and views of London, considered separately and in relation to one
another. Such evidence is too complicated to be given here in full,
but it is quite conclusive.]

[Illustration: THE FIRST GLOBE

From an old drawing in an extra-illustrated copy of Pennant's _London_
now in the British Museum. Apparently the drawing is based on Visscher's

The cost of the finished building is not exactly known. Mr. Wallace
observes that it was erected "at an original cost, according to a
later statement, of £600, but upon better evidence approximately
£400."[400] I am not aware of the "better evidence" to which Mr.
Wallace refers,[401] nor do I know whether the estimate of £400
includes the timber and materials of the old Theatre furnished by the
Burbages. If the Theatre of 1576 cost nearly £700, and the second
Globe cost £1400, the sum of £400 seems too small.

[Footnote 400: The London _Times_, October 2, 1909.]

[Footnote 401: Possibly he gives this evidence in his _The Children of
the Chapel at Blackfriars_, p. 29, note 4.]

Nor do we know exactly when the Globe was finished and opened to the
public. On May 16, 1599, a post-mortem inquisition of the estate of
Sir Thomas Brend, father of Sir Nicholas, was taken. Among his other
properties in Southwark was listed the Globe playhouse, described as
"vna domo de novo edificata ... in occupacione Willielmi Shakespeare
et aliorum."[402] From this statement Mr. Wallace infers that the
Globe was finished and opened before May 16, 1599. Though this is
possible, the words used seem hardly to warrant the conclusion.
However, we may feel sure that the actors, the Lord Chamberlain's Men,
had moved into the building before the end of the summer.

[Footnote 402: Wallace, in the London _Times_, May 1, 1914.]

Almost at once they rose to the position of leadership in the drama,
for both Shakespeare and Burbage were now at the height of their
powers. It is true that in 1601 the popularity of the Children at
Blackfriars, and the subsequent "War of the Theatres" interfered
somewhat with their success; but the interference was temporary, and
from this time on until the closing of the playhouses in 1642, the
supremacy of the Globe players was never really challenged. When James
came to the throne, he recognized this supremacy by taking them under
his royal patronage. On May 19, 1603, he issued to them a patent to
play as the King's Men[403]--an honor that was as well deserved as it
was signal.

[Footnote 403: Printed in The Malone Society _Collections_, I, 264.]

In the autumn of 1608 the proprietors of the Globe acquired the
Blackfriars Theatre for the use of their company during the severe
winter months. This splendid building, situated in the very heart of
the city, was entirely roofed in, and could be comfortably heated in
cold weather. Henceforth the open-air Globe was used only during the
pleasant season of the year; that is, according to the evidence of the
Herbert Manuscript, from about the first of May until the first of

On June 29, 1613, the Globe caught fire during the performance of a
play, and was burned to the ground--the first disaster of the sort
recorded in English theatrical history. The event aroused great
interest in London, and as a result we have numerous accounts of the
catastrophe supplying us with full details. We learn that on a warm
"sunne-shine" afternoon the large building was "filled with
people"--among whom were Ben Jonson, John Taylor (the Water-Poet), and
Sir Henry Wotton--to witness a new play by William Shakespeare and
John Fletcher, called _All is True_, or, as we now know it, _Henry
VIII_, produced with unusual magnificence. Upon the entrance of the
King in the fourth scene of the first act, two cannon were discharged
in a royal salute. One of the cannon hurled a bit of its wadding upon
the roof and set fire to the thatch; but persons in the audience were
so interested in the play that for a time they paid no attention to
the fire overhead. As a result they were soon fleeing for their lives;
and within "one short hour" nothing was left of the "stately" Globe.

I quote below some of the more interesting contemporary accounts of
this notable event. Howes, the chronicler, thus records the fact in
his continuation of Stow's _Annals_:

     Upon St. Peter's Day last, the playhouse or theatre called
     the Globe, upon the Bankside, near London, by negligent
     discharge of a peal of ordnance, close to the south side
     thereof, the thatch took fire, and the wind suddenly
     dispersed the flames round about, and in a very short space
     the whole building was quite consumed; and no man hurt: the
     house being filled with people to behold the play, _viz._ of
     Henry the Eight.[404]

[Footnote 404: Howes's continuation of Stow's _Annals_ (1631), p.

Sir Henry Wotton, in a letter to a friend, gives the following gossipy

     Now to let matters of state sleep. I will entertain you at
     the present with what happened this week at the Bankside.
     The King's Players had a new play, called _All is True_,
     representing some principal pieces of the reign of Henry the
     Eighth, which was set forth with many extraordinary
     circumstances of pomp and majesty, even to the matting of
     the stage; the Knights of the Order with their Georges and
     Garter, the guards with their embroidered coats, and the
     like--sufficient in truth within awhile to make greatness
     very familiar, if not ridiculous. Now King Henry, making a
     masque at the Cardinal Wolsey's house, and certain cannons
     being shot off at his entry, some of the paper or other
     stuff wherewith one of them was stopped, did light on the
     thatch, where being thought at first but an idle smoke, and
     their eyes more attentive to the show, it kindled inwardly,
     and ran round like a train, consuming within less than an
     hour the whole house to the very ground. This was the fatal
     period of that virtuous fabrick; wherein yet nothing did
     perish but wood and straw, and a few forsaken cloaks; only
     one man had his breeches set on fire, that would perhaps
     have broiled him, if he had not, by the benefit of a
     provident wit, put it out with bottle ale.[405]

[Footnote 405: _Reliquiæ Wottonianæ_ (ed. 1672), p. 425.]

John Chamberlain, writing to Sir Ralph Winwood, July 8, 1613, refers
to the accident thus:

     The burning of the Globe or playhouse on the Bankside on St.
     Peter's Day cannot escape you; which fell out by a peal of
     chambers (that I know not upon what occasion were to be used
     in the play), the tampin or stopple of one of them lighting
     in the thatch that cover'd the house, burn'd it down to the
     ground in less than two hours, with a dwelling house
     adjoining; and it was a great marvel and fair grace of God
     that the people had so little harm, having but two narrow
     doors to get out.[406]

[Footnote 406: Ralph Winwood, _Memorials of Affairs of State_ (ed.
1725), III, 469.]

[Illustration: THE FIRST GLOBE

From Visscher's _View of London_, published in 1616, but representing
the city as it was several years earlier.]

The Reverend Thomas Lorkin writes from London to Sir Thomas Puckering
under the date of June 30, 1613:

     No longer since than yesterday, while Burbage's company were
     acting at the Globe the play of _Henry VIII_, and there
     shooting off certain chambers in way of triumph, the fire
     catched and fastened upon the thatch of the house, and there
     burned so furiously, as it consumed the whole house, all in
     less than two hours, the people having enough to do to save

[Footnote 407: Printed in Birch, _The Court and Times of James the
First_ (1849), I, 251.]

A contemporary ballad[408] gives a vivid and amusing account of the

     _A Sonnet upon the Pitiful Burning of the Globe
     Playhouse in London_

     Now sit thee down, Melpomene,
     Wrapt in a sea-coal robe,
     And tell the dolefull tragedy
     That late was played at Globe;
     For no man that can sing and say
     Was scared on St. Peter's day.
       _Oh sorrow, pitiful sorrow, and yet all this is true._[409]

     All you that please to understand,
     Come listen to my story;
     To see Death with his raking brand
     Mongst such an auditory;
     Regarding neither Cardinall's might,
     Nor yet the rugged face of Henry the eight.
       _Oh sorrow_, etc.

     This fearful fire began above,
     A wonder strange and _true_,
     And to the stage-house did remove,
     As round as taylor's clew,
     And burnt down both beam and snagg,
     And did not spare the silken flagg.
       _Oh sorrow_, etc.

     Out run the Knights, out run the lords,
     And there was great ado;
     Some lost their hats, and some their swords;
     Then out run Burbage, too.
     The reprobates, though drunk on Monday,
     Prayd for the fool and Henry Condy.
       _Oh sorrow_, etc.

     The periwigs and drum-heads fry
     Like to a butter firkin;
     A woeful burning did betide
     To many a good buff jerkin.
     Then with swolen eyes, like drunken Flemminges
     Distressed stood old stuttering Heminges.
       _Oh sorrow_, etc.

[Footnote 408: Printed by Haslewood in _The Gentleman's Magazine_
(1816), from an old manuscript volume of poems. Printed also by
Halliwell-Phillipps (_Outlines_, I, 310) "from a manuscript of the
early part of the seventeenth century of unquestionable authenticity."
Perhaps it is the same as the "Doleful Ballad" entered in the
Stationers' Register, 1613. I follow Halliwell-Phillipps's text, but
omit the last three stanzas.]

[Footnote 409: Punning on the title _All is True_.]

Ben Jonson, who saw the disaster, left us the following brief account:

                   The Globe, the glory of the Bank,
     Which, though it were the fort of the whole parish,
     Flanked with a ditch, and forced out of a marish,
     I saw with two poor chambers taken in,
     And razed ere thought could urge this might have been!
     See the world's ruins! nothing but the piles
     Left--and wit since to cover it with tiles.[410]

[Footnote 410: _An Execration upon Vulcan._]

The players were not seriously inconvenienced, for they could shift to
their other house, the Blackfriars, in the city. The owners of the
building, however, suffered a not inconsiderable pecuniary loss. For a
time they hesitated about rebuilding, one cause of their hesitation
being the short term that their lease of the ground had to run.
Possibly a second cause was a doubt as to the ownership of the ground,
arising from certain transactions recorded below. In October, 1600,
Sir Nicholas Brend had been forced to transfer the Globe estate, with
other adjacent property, to Sir Matthew Brown and John Collett as
security for a debt of £2500; and a few days after he died. Since the
son and heir, Matthew Brend, was a child less than two years old, an
uncle, Sir John Bodley, was appointed trustee. In 1608 Bodley, by
unfair means, it seems, purchased from Collett the Globe property, and
thus became the landlord of the actors. But young Matthew Brend was
still under age, and Bodley's title to the property was not regarded
as above suspicion.[411]

[Footnote 411: These interesting facts were revealed by Mr. Wallace in
the London _Times_, April 30 and May 1, 1914.]


A section from Merian's _View_, showing the Bankside playhouses. This
_View_, printed in Ludvig Gottfried's _Neuwe Archontologia Cosmica_
(Frankfurt am Mayn, 1638), represents London as it was about the year
1612, and was mainly based on Visscher's _View_, with some additions
from other sources.]

Four months after the burning of the Globe, on October 26, 1613, Sir
John Bodley granted the proprietors of the building a renewal of the
lease with an extension of the term until December 25, 1635.[412] But
a lease from Bodley alone, in view of the facts just indicated, was
not deemed sufficient; so on February 14, 1614, Heminges, the two
Burbages, and Condell visited the country-seat of the Brends, and
secured the signature of the young Matthew Brend, and of his mother as
guardian, to a lease of the Globe site with a term ending on December
25, 1644.

[Footnote 412: Did he increase the amount of the rental to £25 per
annum? The rent paid for the Blackfriars was £40 per annum; in 1635
the young actors state that the housekeepers paid for both playhouses
"not above £65."]

Protected by these two leases, the Globe sharers felt secure; and they
went forward apace with the erection of their new playhouse. They made
an assessment of "£50 or £60" upon each share.[413] Since at this time
there were fourteen shares, the amount thus raised was £700 or £840.
This would probably be enough to erect a building as large and as well
equipped as the old Globe. But the proprietors determined upon a
larger and a very much handsomer building. As Howes, the continuer of
Stow's _Annals_, writes, "it was new builded in far fairer manner than
before"; or as John Taylor, the Water-Poet, puts it:

     As gold is better that's in fire tried,
     So is the Bankside _Globe_ that late was burn'd.[414]

[Footnote 413: Wallace, _Shakespeare and his London Associates_, p.

[Footnote 414: _Works_ (1630), p. 31; The Spenser Society reprint, p.

Naturally the cost of rebuilding exceeded the original estimate.
Heminges tells us that on one share, or one-fourteenth, he was
required to pay for "the re-edifying about the sum of £120."[415]
This would indicate a total cost of "about" £1680. Heminges should
know, for he was the business manager of the organization; and his
truthfulness cannot be questioned. Since, however, the adjective
"about," especially when multiplied by fourteen, leaves a generous
margin of uncertainty, it is gratifying to have a specific statement
from one of the sharers in 1635 that the owners had "been at the
charge of £1400 in building of the said house upon the burning down of
the former."[416] Heminges tells us that "he found that the
re-edifying of the said playhouse would be a very great charge," and
that he so "doubted what benefit would arise thereby" that he actually
gave away half of one share "to Henry Condell, _gratis_."[417] But his
fears were unfounded. We learn from Witter that after the rebuilding
of the Globe the "yearly value" of a share was greater "by much" than
it had been before.[418]

[Footnote 415: Wallace, _Shakespeare and his London Associates_, p.

[Footnote 416: Halliwell-Phillipps, _Outlines_, I, 316. This evidence
seems to me unimpeachable. I should add, however, that Mr. Wallace
considers the estimate "excessive," and says that he has "other
contemporary documents showing the cost was far less than £1400." (The
London _Times_, October 2, 1909.)]

[Footnote 417: Wallace, _Shakespeare and his London Associates_, p.
61. There is, I think, no truth in the statement made by the
inaccurate annotator of the Phillipps copy of Stow's _Annals_, that
the Globe was built "at the great charge of King James and many
noblemen and others." (See _The Academy_, October 28, 1882, p. 314.)
The Witter-Heminges documents sufficiently disprove that. We may well
believe, however, that the King and his noblemen were interested in
the new building, and encouraged the actors in many ways.]

[Footnote 418: Wallace, _Shakespeare and his London Associates_, p.

The New Globe, like its predecessor, was built of timber,[419] and on
the same site--indeed the carpenters made use of the old foundation,
which seems not to have been seriously injured. In a "return" of 1634,
preserved at St. Saviour's, we read: "The Globe playhouse, near Maid
Lane, built by the company of players, with a dwelling house thereto
adjoining, built with timber, about 20 years past, upon an old
foundation."[420] In spite of the use made of the old foundation, the
new structure was unquestionably larger than the First Globe; Marmion,
in the Prologue to _Holland's Leaguer_, acted at Salisbury Court in
1634, speaks of "the vastness of the Globe," and Shirley, in the
Prologue to _Rosania_, applies the adjective "vast" to the building.
Moreover, the builders had "the wit," as Jonson tells us, "to cover it
with tiles." John Taylor, the Water-Poet, writes:

     For where before it had a thatched hide,
     Now to a stately theatre is turn'd.

[Footnote 419: I see no reason to accept Mr. Wallace's suggestion
(_The Children of the Chapel at Blackfriars_, p. 34, note 7) that "it
seems questionable, but not unlikely, that the timber framework was
brick-veneered and plastered over." Mr. Wallace mistakenly accepts
Wilkinson's view of the second Fortune as genuine.]

[Footnote 420: Rendle, _Bankside_, p. xvii.]

The Second Globe is represented, but unsatisfactorily, in Hollar's
_View of London_, dated 1647 (opposite page 260). It should be noted
that the artist was in banishment from 1643 (at which time the Globe
was still standing) until 1652, and hence, in drawing certain
buildings, especially those not reproduced in earlier views of London,
he may have had to rely upon his memory. This would explain the
general vagueness of his representation of the Globe.

The construction was not hurried, for the players had Blackfriars as a
home. Under normal conditions they did not move from the city to the
Bankside until some time in May; and shortly after that date, in the
early summer of 1614, the New Globe was ready for them. John
Chamberlain writes to Mrs. Alice Carleton on June 30, 1614:

     I have not seen your sister Williams since I came to town,
     though I have been there twice. The first time she was at a
     neighbor's house at cards, and the next she was gone to the
     New Globe to a play. Indeed, I hear much speech of this new
     playhouse, which is said to be the fairest that ever was in

[Footnote 421: Birch, _The Court and Times of James the First_, I,
329; quoted by Wallace, _The Children of the Chapel at Blackfriars_,
p. 35.]

[Illustration: THE SECOND GLOBE

From Hollar's _View of London_ (1647).]

With this New Globe Shakespeare had little to do, for his career as a
playwright had been run, and probably he had already retired from
acting. Time, indeed, was beginning to thin out the little band of
friends who had initiated and made famous the Globe organization.
Thomas Pope had died in 1603, Augustine Phillips in 1605, William Slye
in 1608, and, just a few months after the opening of the new
playhouse, William Osteler, who had been admitted to the
partnership in 1611. He had begun his career as a child-actor at
Blackfriars, had later joined the King's Men, and had married
Heminges's daughter Thomasine.

A more serious blow to the company, however, fell in April, 1616, when
Shakespeare himself died. To the world he had been "the applause,
delight, the wonder" of the stage; but to the members of the Globe
Company he had been for many years a "friend and fellow." Only Burbage
and Heminges (described in 1614 as "old Heminges"), now remained of
the original venturers. And Burbage passed away on March 13, 1619:

     He's gone! and with him what a world are dead
     Which he reviv'd--to be revived so
     No more. Young Hamlet, old Hieronimo,
     Kind Lear, the grieved Moor, and more beside
     That lived in him have now for ever died![422]

[Footnote 422: From a folio MS. in the Huth Library, printed by J.P.
Collier in _The History of English Dramatic Poetry_ (1879), I, 411,
and by various others.]

Many elegies in a similar vein were written celebrating his wonderful
powers as an actor; yet the tribute that perhaps affects us most deals
with him merely as a man. The Earl of Pembroke, writing to the
Ambassador to Germany, gives the court news about the mighty ones of
the kingdom: "My Lord of Lenox made a great supper to the French
Ambassador this night here, and even now all the company are at a
play; which I, being tender-hearted, could not endure to see so soon
after the loss of my old acquaintance Burbage."[423]

[Footnote 423: Printed by Mrs. Stopes, _Burbage and Shakespeare's
Stage_, p. 117, with many other interesting references to the great


From Wilkinson's _Theatrum Illustrata_ (1825). This site is still
advocated by some scholars. Compare page 245.]

In 1623 Heminges and Condell, with great "care and paine," collected
and published the plays of Shakespeare, "onely to keep the memory of
so worthy a Friend and Fellow alive"; and shortly after, they too
died, Condell in 1627 and Heminges in 1630.

After the passing of this group of men, whose names are so familiar to
us, the history of the playhouse seems less important, and may be
chronicled briefly.

When young Matthew Brend came of age he recovered possession of the
Globe property by a decree of the Court of Wards. Apparently he
accepted the lease executed by his uncle and guardian, Bodley, by
which the actors were to remain in possession of the Globe until
December 25, 1635; but in 1633 he sought to cancel the lease he
himself had executed as a minor, by which the actors were to remain in
possession until 1644. His purpose in thus seeking to gain possession
of the Globe was to lease it to other actors at a material increase in
his profits.[424] Naturally the owners of the Globe were alarmed, and
they brought suit in the Court of Requests. In 1635, one of the
sharers, John Shanks, declares that he "is without any hope to renew"
the lease; and he refers thus to the suit against Brend: "When your
suppliant purchased his parts [in 1634] he had no certainty thereof
more than for one year in the Globe, and there was a chargeable suit
then pending in the Court of Requests between Sir Mathew Brend,
Knight, and the lessees of the Globe and their assigns, for the adding
of nine years to their lease in consideration that their predecessors
had formerly been at the charge of £1400 in building of the said
house."[425] The lessees ultimately won their contention, and thus
secured the right to occupy the Globe until December 25, 1644--a term
which, as it happened, was quite long enough, for the Puritans closed
all playhouses in 1642.

[Footnote 424: Wallace, "Shakespeare and the Globe," in the London
_Times_, April 30 and May 1, 1914.]

[Footnote 425: The Petition of the Young Actors, printed by
Halliwell-Phillipps, _Outlines_, I, 312. Mrs. Stopes, in _Burbage and
Shakespeare's Stage_, p. 129, refers to a record of the suit mentioned
by Shanks, dated February 6, 1634.]

What disposition, if any, the sharers made of the Globe between 1642
and 1644 we do not know. But before the lease expired, it seems, Brend
demolished the playhouse and erected tenements on its site. In the
manuscript notes to the Phillipps copy of Stow's _Annals_, we find the
statement that the Globe was "pulled down to the ground by Sir Mathew
Brend, on Monday the 15 of April, 1644, to make tenements in the room
of it";[426] and the statement is verified by a mortgage, executed in
1706, between Elizabeth, the surviving daughter and heir of Thomas
Brend, and one William James, citizen of London. The mortgage concerns
"all those messuages or tenements ... most of which ... were erected
and built where the late playhouse called the Globe stood, and upon
the ground thereunto belonging."[427]

[Footnote 426: Printed in _The Academy_, October 28, 1882, p. 314.
Should we read the date as 1644/5?]

[Footnote 427: William Martin, _The Site of the Globe_, p. 171.]

After this the history of the property becomes obscure. Mrs. Thrale
(later Mrs. Piozzi), the friend of Samuel Johnson, whose residence was
near by in Deadman's Place, thought that she saw certain "remains of
the Globe" discovered by workmen in the employ of her husband:[428]
"For a long time, then,--or I thought it such,--my fate was bound up
with the old Globe Theatre, upon the Bankside, Southwark; the alley it
had occupied having been purchased and [the tenements] thrown down by
Mr. Thrale to make an opening before the windows of our
dwelling-house. When it lay desolate in a black heap of rubbish, my
mother one day in a joke called it the Ruins of Palmyra; and after
that they had laid it down in a grass-plot Palmyra was the name it
went by.... But there were really curious remains of the old Globe
Playhouse, which though hexagonal in form without, was round within."
In spite of serious difficulties in this narrative it is possible that
the workmen, in digging the ground preparatory to laying out the
garden, uncovered the foundation of the Globe, which, it will be
recalled, was formed of piles driven deep into the soil, and so well
made that it resisted the fire of 1613.[429]

[Footnote 428: Printed in _The Builder_, March 26, 1910, from the
Conway MSS. in Mrs. Thrale's handwriting.]

[Footnote 429: For later discoveries of supposed Globe relics, all
very doubtful, see the London _Times_, October 8, 1909; George
Hubbard, _The Site of the Globe Theatre_; and William Martin, _The
Site of the Globe_, p. 201.]

At the present time the site of the Globe is covered by the extensive
brewery of Messrs. Barclay, Perkins, and Company. Upon one of the
walls of the brewery, on the south side of Park Street, which was
formerly Maiden Lane, has been placed a bronze memorial tablet[430]
showing in relief the Bankside, with what is intended to be the Globe
Playhouse conspicuously displayed in the foreground. This is a
circular building designed after the circular playhouse in the
Speed-Hondius _View of London_, and represents, as I have tried to
show, not the Globe, but the Rose. At the left side of the tablet is
a bust of the poet modeled after the Droeshout portrait. At the right
is the simple inscription:


[Footnote 430: The tablet was designed by Dr. William Martin and
executed by Professor Lanteri. For photographs of it and of the place
in which it is erected, see _The London Illustrated News_, October 9,
1909, CXXXV, 500.]

Yet it is very doubtful whether the Globe really stood there. Mr.
Wallace has produced good evidence to show that the building was on
the north side of Park Street near the river; and in the course of the
present study I have found that site generally confirmed.



The erection of the Globe on the Bankside within a few hundred yards
of the Rose was hardly gratifying to the Admiral's Men. Not only did
it put them in close competition with the excellent Burbage-Shakespeare
organization, but it caused their playhouse (now nearly a quarter of a
century old, and said to be in a state of "dangerous decay") to suffer
in comparison with the new and far handsomer Globe, "the glory of the
Bank." Accordingly, before the Globe had been in operation much more
than half a year, Henslowe and Alleyn decided to move to another
section of London, and to erect there a playhouse that should surpass
the Globe both in size and in magnificence. To the authorities,
however, they gave as reasons for abandoning the Rose, first, "the
dangerous decay" of the building, and secondly, "for that the same
standeth very noisome for resort of people in the winter time."

The new playhouse was undertaken by Henslowe and Alleyn jointly,
although the exact arrangement between them is not now clear. Alleyn
seems to have advanced the money and to have held the titles of
ownership; but on April 4, 1601, he leased to Henslowe a moiety (or
one-half interest) in the playhouse and other properties connected
with it for a period of twenty-four years at an annual rental of £8--a
sum far below the real value of the moiety.[431]

[Footnote 431: Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 25; Wallace, _Three London
Theatres_, p. 53. Later, Alleyn rented to the actors the playhouse
alone for £200 per annum. In the document, Alleyn _v._ William
Henslowe, published by Mr. Wallace in _Three London Theatres_, p. 52,
it is revealed that this annual rental of £8 was canceled by Alleyn's
rental of a house from Henslowe on the Bankside; hence no actual
payments by Henslowe appear in the Henslowe-Alleyn papers.]

Whatever the details of the arrangement between the two partners, the
main outlines of their procedure are clear. On December 22, 1599,
Alleyn purchased for £240 a thirty-three-year lease[432] of a plot of
ground situated to the north of the city, in the Parish of St. Giles
without Cripplegate. This plot of ground, we are told, stood "very
tolerable, near unto the Fields, and so far distant and remote from
any person or place of account as that none can be annoyed
thereby";[433] and yet, as the Earl of Nottingham wrote, it was "very
convenient for the ease of people."[434]

[Footnote 432: Later, by a series of negotiations ending in 1610,
Alleyn secured the freehold of the property. The total cost to him was
£800. See Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, pp. 14, 17, 108.]

[Footnote 433: _Ibid._, p. 50.]

[Footnote 434: _Ibid._, p. 49; cf. p. 51.]

The property thus acquired lay between Golding Lane and Whitecross
Street, two parallel thoroughfares running north and south. There were
tenements on the edge of the property facing Whitecross Street,
tenements on the edge facing Golding Lane, and an open space between.
Alleyn and Henslowe planned to erect their new playhouse in this open
space "between Whitecross Street and Golding Lane," and to make "a way
leading to it" from Golding Lane. The ground set aside for the
playhouse is described as "containing in length from east to west one
hundred twenty and seven feet and a half, a little more or less, and
in breadth, from north to south, one hundred twenty and nine feet, a
little more or less."[435]

[Footnote 435: Collier, _The Alleyn Papers_, p. 98. For a slightly
different measurement of the plot see Collier, _Memoirs of Edward
Alleyn_, p. 167.]

The lease of this property having been consummated on December 22,
1599, on January 8, 1600, Henslowe and Alleyn signed a contract with
the carpenter, Peter Street (who had recently gained valuable
experience in building the Globe), to erect the new playhouse. The
contract called for the completion of the building by July 25, 1600,
provided, however, the workmen were "not by any authority restrained."

The latter clause may indicate that Peter Street anticipated
difficulties. If so, he was not mistaken, for when early in January
his workmen began to assemble material for the erection of the
building, the authorities, especially those of the Parish of St.
Giles, promptly interfered. Alleyn thereupon appealed to the patron of
the troupe, the Earl of Nottingham, the Lord Admiral. On January 12,
1600, Nottingham issued a warrant to the officers of the county "to
permit and suffer my said servant [Edward Alleyn] to proceed in the
effecting and furnishing of the said new house, without any your let
or molestation toward him or any of his workmen."[436] This warrant,
however, seems not to have prevented the authorities of St. Giles from
continuing their restraint. Alleyn was then forced to play his trump
card--through his great patron to secure from the Privy Council itself
a warrant for the construction of the building. First, however, by
offering "to give a very liberal portion of money weekly" towards the
relief of "the poor in the parish of St. Giles," he persuaded many of
the inhabitants to sign a document addressed to the Privy Council, in
which they not only gave their full consent to the erection of the
playhouse, but actually urged "that the same might proceed."[437] This
document he placed in the hands of Nottingham to use in influencing
the Council. The effort was successful. On April 8 the Council issued
a warrant "to the Justices of the Peace of the County of Middlesex,
especially of St. Giles without Cripplegate, and to all others whom it
shall concern," that they should permit Henslowe and Alleyn "to
proceed in the effecting and finishing of the same new house."[438]

[Footnote 436: Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 49.]

[Footnote 437: _Ibid._, p. 50.]

[Footnote 438: _Ibid._, p. 51.]


The site of the Fortune is marked by Playhouse Yard, connecting Golden
Lane and Whitecross Street. (From Ogilby and Morgan's _Map of London_,

This warrant, of course, put an end to all interference by local
authorities. But as the playhouse reared itself high above the walls
of the city to the north, the Puritans were aroused to action. They
made this the occasion for a most violent attack on actors and
theatres in general, and on the Fortune in particular. With this
attack the city authorities, for reasons of their own, heartily
sympathized, but they had no jurisdiction over the Parish of St.
Giles, or over the other localities in which playhouses were situated.
Since the Privy Council had specially authorized the erection of the
Fortune, the Lord Mayor shifted the attack to that body, and himself
dispatched an urgent request to the Lords for reformation. In response
to all this agitation the Lords of the Privy Council on June 22, 1600,
issued the following order:

     Whereas divers complaints have heretofore been made unto the
     Lords and other of Her Majesty's Privy Council of the
     manifold abuses and disorders that have grown and do
     continue by occasion of many houses erected and employed in
     and about London for common stage-plays; and now very lately
     by reason of some complaint exhibited by sundry persons
     against the building of the like house in or near Golding
     Lane ... the Lords and the rest of Her Majesty's Privy
     Council with one and full consent have ordered in manner and
     form as follows. First, that there shall be about the city
     two houses, and no more, allowed to serve for the use of the
     common stage-plays; of the which houses, one [the Globe]
     shall be in Surrey, in that place which is commonly called
     the Bankside or thereabouts, and the other [the Fortune] in
     Middlesex. Secondly, ... it is likewise ordered that the two
     several companies of players assigned unto the two houses
     allowed may play each of them in their several houses twice
     a week and no oftener; and especially that they shall
     refrain to play on the Sabbath day ... and that they shall
     forbear altogether in the time of Lent.

The first part of this order, limiting the playhouses and companies to
two, was merely a repetition of the order of 1598.[439] It meant that
the Lords of the Privy Council formally licensed the Admiral's and the
Lord Chamberlain's Companies to play in London (of course the Lords
might, when they saw fit, license other companies for specific
periods). The second part of the order, limiting the number of
performances, was more serious, for no troupe could afford to act only
twice a week. The order if carried out would mean the ruin of the
Fortune and the Globe Companies. But it was not carried out. The
actors, as we learn from Henslowe's _Diary_, did not restrict
themselves to two plays a week. Why, then, did the Lords issue this
order, and why was it not put into effect? A study of the clever way
in which Alleyn, Nottingham, and the Privy Council overcame the
opposition of the puritanical officers of St. Giles who were
interfering with the erection of the Fortune will suggest the
explanation. The Lords were making a shrewd move to quiet the noisy
enemies of the drama. They did not intend that the Admiral's and the
Chamberlain's Men should be driven out of existence; they were merely
meeting fanaticism with craft.

[Footnote 439: See page 174.]

Alleyn and Henslowe must have understood this,--possibly they learned
it directly from their patron Nottingham,--for they proceeded with the
erection of their expensive building. The work, however, had been so
seriously delayed by the restraints of the local authorities that the
foundations were not completed until May 8.[440] On that day
carpenters were brought from Windsor, and set to the task of erecting
the frame. Since the materials had been accumulating on the site since
January 17, the work of erection must have proceeded rapidly. The
daily progress of this work is marked in Henslowe's _Diary_ by the
dinners of Henslowe with the contractor, Peter Street. On August 8,
these dinners ceased, so that on that date, or shortly after, we may
assume, the building proper was finished.[441]

[Footnote 440: Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 10.]

[Footnote 441: Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_, I, 158-59.]

For erecting the building Street received £440. But this did not
include the painting of the woodwork (which, if we may judge from De
Witt's description of the Swan, must have been costly), or the
equipment of the stage. We learn from Alleyn's memoranda that the
final cost of the playhouse was £520.[442] Hence, after Street's work
of erection was finished in August, the entire building had to be
painted, and the stage properly equipped with curtains, hangings,
machines, etc. This must have occupied at least two months. From
Henslowe's _Diary_ it appears that the playhouse was first used about
the end of November or the early part of December, 1600.[443]

[Footnote 442: Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 108.]

[Footnote 443: Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_, I, 124.]

The original contract of Henslowe and Alleyn with Peter Street for the
erection of the Fortune, preserved among the papers at Dulwich
College, supplies us with some very exact details of the size and
shape of the building. Although the document is long, and is couched
in the legal verbiage of the day, it will repay careful study. For the
convenience of the reader I quote below its main specifications:[444]

     _Foundation._ A good, sure, and strong foundation, of piles,
     brick, lime, and sand, both without and within, to be
     wrought one foot of assize at the least above the ground.

     _Frame._ The frame of the said house to be set square, and
     to contain fourscore foot of lawful assize every way square
     without, and fifty-five foot of like assize square every way

     _Materials._ And shall also make all the said frame in every
     point for scantlings larger and bigger in assize than the
     scantlings of the said new-erected house called the Globe.

     _Exterior._ To be sufficiently enclosed without with lath,
     lime, and hair.

     _Stairs._ With such like stairs, conveyances, and divisions,
     without and within, as are made and contrived in and to the
     late erected playhouse ... called the Globe.... And the
     staircases thereof to be sufficiently enclosed without with
     lath, lime, and hair.

     _Height of galleries._ And the said frame to contain three
     stories in height; the first, or lower story to contain
     twelve foot of lawful assize in height; the second story
     eleven foot of lawful assize in height; and the third, or
     upper story, to contain nine foot of lawful assize in

     _Breadth of galleries._ All which stories shall contain
     twelve foot of lawful assize in breadth throughout. Besides
     a jutty forward in either of the said two upper stories of
     ten inches of lawful assize.

     _Protection of lowest gallery._ The lower story of the said
     frame withinside ... [to be] paled in below with good,
     strong, and sufficient new oaken boards.... And the said
     lower story to be also laid over and fenced with strong iron

     _Divisions of galleries._ With four convenient divisions for
     gentlemen's rooms, and other sufficient and convenient
     divisions for two-penny rooms.... And the gentlemen's rooms
     and two-penny rooms to be ceiled with lath, lime, and hair.

     _Seats._ With necessary seats to be placed and set, as well
     in those rooms as throughout all the rest of the galleries.

     _Stage._ With a stage and tiring-house to be made, erected,
     and set up within the said frame; with a shadow or cover
     over the said stage. Which stage shall be placed and set (as
     also the staircases of the said frame) in such sort as is
     prefigured in a plot thereof drawn. [The plot has been
     lost.] And which stage shall contain in length forty and
     three foot of lawful assize, and in breadth to extend to
     the middle of the yard of the said house. The same stage to
     be paled in below with good, strong, and sufficient new
     oaken boards.... And the said stage to be in all other
     proportions contrived and fashioned like unto the stage of
     the said playhouse called the Globe.... And the said ...
     stage ... to be covered with tile, and to have a sufficient
     gutter of lead to carry and convey the water from the
     covering of the said stage to fall backwards.

     _Tiring-house._ With convenient windows and lights, glazed,
     to the said tiring-house.

     _Flooring._ And all the floors of the said galleries,
     stories, and stage to be boarded with good and sufficient
     new deal boards, of the whole thickness where need shall be.

     _Columns._ All the principal and main posts of the said
     frame and stage forward shall be square, and wrought
     pilaster-wise, with carved proportions called satyrs to be
     placed and set on the top of every of the said posts.

     _Roof._ And the said frame, stage, and staircases to be
     covered with tile.

     _Miscellaneous._ To be in all other contrivations,
     conveyances, fashions, thing and things, effected, finished,
     and done, according to the manner and fashion of the said
     house called the Globe.

[Footnote 444: For the full document see Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p.

It is rather unfortunate for us that the building was to be in so many
respects a copy of the Globe, for that deprives us of further detailed
specifications; and it is unfortunate, too, that the plan or drawing
showing the arrangement of the stage was not preserved with the rest
of the document. Yet we are able to derive much exact information
from the contract; and with this information, at least two modern
architects have made reconstructions of the building.[445]

[Footnote 445: See the Bibliography. A model of the Fortune by Mr.
W.H. Godfrey is preserved in the Dramatic Museum of Columbia
University in New York City, and a duplicate is in the Museum of
European Culture at the University of Illinois. For a description of
the model see the _Architect and Builders' Journal_ (London), August
16, 1911.]

No representation of the exterior of the Fortune has come down to us.
In the so-called Ryther _Map of London_, there is, to be sure, what
seems to be a crude representation of the playhouse (see page 278);
but if this is really intended for the Fortune, it does little more
than mark the location. Yet one can readily picture in his imagination
the playhouse--a plastered structure, eighty feet square and
approximately forty feet high,[446] with small windows marking the
galleries, a turret and flagpole surmounting the red-tiled roof, and
over the main entrance a sign representing Dame Fortune:

     I'le rather stand here,
     Like a statue in the fore-front of your house,
     For ever, like the picture of Dame Fortune
     Before the Fortune Playhouse.[447]

[Footnote 446: The three galleries (twelve, eleven, and nine feet,
respectively) were thirty-two feet in height; but to this must be
added the elevation of the first gallery above the yard, the space
occupied by the ceiling and flooring of the several galleries, and,
finally, the roof.]

[Footnote 447: Thomas Heywood, _The English Traveller_ (1633), ed.
Pearson, IV, 84. We do not know when the play was written, but the
reference is probably to the New Fortune, built in 1623. Heywood
generally uses "picture" in the sense of "statue."]

[Illustration: THE FORTUNE PLAYHOUSE (?)

The curious structure with the flag may be intended to mark the site
of the Fortune. (From the so-called Ryther _Map of London_, drawn
about 1630-40.)]

Nor is there any pictorial representation of the interior of the
playhouse. In the absence of such, I offer the reader a verbal picture
of the interior as seen from the stage during the performance of a
play. In Middleton and Dekker's _The Roaring Girl_, acted at the
Fortune, Sir Alexander shows to his friends his magnificent house.
Advancing to the middle of the stage, and pointing out over the
building, he asks them how they like it:

     _Goshawk._ I like the prospect best.

     _Laxton._                           See how 't is furnished!

     _Sir Davy._ A very fair sweet room.

     _Sir Alex._                         Sir Davy Dapper,
     The furniture that doth adorn this room
     Cost many a fair grey groat ere it came here;
     But good things are most cheap when they're most dear.
     Nay, when you look into my galleries,
     How bravely they're trimm'd up, you all shall swear
     You're highly pleas'd to see what's set down there:
     Stories of men and women, mix'd together,
     Fair ones with foul, like sunshine in wet weather;
     Within one square a thousand heads are laid,
     So close that all of heads the room seems made;
     As many faces there, fill'd with blithe looks
     Shew like the promising titles of new books
     Writ merrily, the readers being their own eyes,
     Which seem to move and to give plaudities;
     And here and there, whilst with obsequious ears
     Throng'd heaps do listen, a cut-purse thrusts and leers
     With hawk's eyes for his prey; I need not shew him;
     By a hanging, villainous look yourselves may know him,
     The face is drawn so rarely: then, sir, below,
     The very floor, as 't were, waves to and fro,
     And, like a floating island, seems to move
     Upon a sea bound in with shores above.

     _All._ These sights are excellent![448]

[Footnote 448: _The Roaring Girl_, I, i. Pointed out by M.W. Sampson,
_Modern Language Notes_, June, 1915.]

A closer view of this audience--"men and women, mix'd together, fair
ones with foul"--is furnished by one of the letters of Orazio
Busino,[449] the chaplain of the Venetian Embassy, who visited the
Fortune playhouse shortly after his arrival in London in 1617:

     The other day, therefore, they determined on taking me to
     one of the many theatres where plays are performed, and we
     saw a tragedy, which diverted me very little, especially as
     I cannot understand a word of English, though some little
     amusement may be derived from gazing at the very costly
     dresses of the actors, and from the various interludes of
     instrumental music and dancing and singing; but the best
     treat was to see such a crowd of nobility so very well
     arrayed that they looked like so many princes, listening as
     silently and soberly as possible. These theatres are
     frequented by a number of respectable and handsome ladies,
     who come freely and seat themselves among the men without
     the slightest hesitation. On the evening in question his
     Excellency [the Venetian Ambassador] and the Secretary were
     pleased to play me a trick by placing me amongst a bevy of
     young women. Scarcely was I seated ere a very elegant dame,
     but in a mask, came and placed herself beside me.... She
     asked me for my address, both in French and English; and on
     my turning a deaf ear, she determined to honour me by
     showing me some fine diamonds on her fingers, repeatedly
     taking off no fewer than three gloves, which were worn one
     over the other.... This lady's bodice was of yellow satin
     richly embroidered, her petticoat of gold tissue with
     stripes, her robe of red velvet with a raised pile, lined
     with yellow muslin, with broad stripes of pure gold. She
     wore an apron of point lace of various patterns; her
     head-tire was highly perfumed, and the collar of white satin
     beneath the delicately-wrought ruff struck me as extremely

[Footnote 449: "Diaries and Despatches of the Venetian Embassy at the
Court of King James I, in the Years 1617, 1618. Translated by Rawdon
Brown." (_The Quarterly Review_, CII, 416.) It is true that the notice
of this letter in _The Calendar of State Papers, Venetian_, XV, 67,
makes no mention of the Fortune; but the writer in _The Quarterly
Review_, who had before him the entire manuscript, states positively
that the Fortune was the playhouse visited. I have not been able to
examine the manuscript itself, which is preserved in Venice.]

That the players were prepared to entertain distinguished visitors
both during the performance and after is shown by a letter from John
Chamberlain, July 21, 1621, to Sir Dudley Carleton. "The Spanish
Ambassador," he writes, "is grown so affable and familiar, that on
Monday, with his whole train, he went to a common play at the Fortune
in Golding Lane; and the players (not to be overcome with courtesy)
made him a banquet, when the play was done, in the garden

[Footnote 450: Nichols, _The Progresses of King James_, IV, 67.]

Upon its completion the new building was occupied by the Admiral's
Men, for whom it had been erected. This troupe of players, long famous
under the leadership of Edward Alleyn, was now one of the two
companies authorized by the Privy Council, and the chief rival of the
Chamberlain's Men at the Globe. Henslowe was managing their affairs,
and numerous poets were writing plays for them. They continued to act
at the Fortune under the name, "The Admiral's Men," until May 5, 1603,
when, as Henslowe put it, they "left off play now at the King's

[Footnote 451: Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_, I, 174.]

After a short interruption on account of the plague, during a part of
which time they traveled in the provinces, the Admiral's Men were
taken under the patronage of the youthful Henry, Prince of Wales, and
in the early spring of 1604 they resumed playing at the Fortune under
their new name, "The Prince's Servants."

[Illustration: EDWARD ALLEYN

(Reproduced by permission from a painting in the Dulwich Picture
Gallery; photograph by Emery Walker, Ltd.)]

For a time all went well. But from July, 1607, until December, 1609,
the plague was severe in London, and acting was seriously interrupted.
During this long period of hardship for the players, Henslowe and
Alleyn seem to have made an attempt to hold the troupe together by
admitting its chief members to a partnership in the building, just as
the Burbages had formerly admitted their chief players to a
partnership in the Globe. At this time there were in the troupe eight
sharers, or chief actors.[452] Henslowe and Alleyn, it seems, proposed
to allot to these eight actors one-fourth of the Fortune property. In
other words, according to this scheme, there were to be thirty-two
sharers in the new Fortune organization, Alleyn and Henslowe together
holding three-fourths of the stock, or twelve shares each, and the
eight actors together holding one-fourth of the stock, or one share
each. A document was actually drawn up by Henslowe and Alleyn, with
the name of the leader of the Fortune troupe, Thomas Downton,
inserted;[453] but since the document was not executed, the scheme,
it is to be presumed, was unsuccessful--at least, we hear nothing
further about it.[454]

[Footnote 452: See the Company's Patent of 1606, in The Malone
Society's _Collections_, I, 268.]

[Footnote 453: Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 13.]

[Footnote 454: For an ordinance concerning "lewd jiggs" at the Fortune
in 1612, see _Middlesex County Records_, II, 83.]

On November 6, 1612, the death of the young Prince of Wales left the
company without a "service." On January 4, 1613, however, a new patent
was issued to the players, placing them under the protection of the
Palsgrave, or Elector Palatine, after which date they are known as
"The Palsgrave's Men."

On January 9, 1616, Henslowe, so long associated with the company and
the Fortune, died; and a year later his widow, Agnes, followed him. As
a result the entire Fortune property passed into the hands of Alleyn.
But Alleyn, apparently, did not care to be worried with the management
of the playhouse; so on October 31, 1618, he leased it to the
Palsgrave's Men for a period of thirty-one years, at an annual rental
of £200 and two rundlets of wine at Christmas.[455]

[Footnote 455: Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 27; Young, _The History of
Dulwich College_, II, 260.]

On April 24, 1620, Alleyn executed a deed of grant of lands by which
he transferred the Fortune, along with various other properties, to
Dulwich College.[456] But he retained during his lifetime the whole of
the revenues therefrom, and he specifically reserved to himself the
right to grant leases for any length of years. The transference of
the title, therefore, in no way affected the playhouse, and Alleyn
continued to manage the property as he had been accustomed to do in
the past.

[Footnote 456: The deed is printed by Young, _op. cit._, I, 50. The
Fortune property, I believe, is still a part of the endowment of the

His services in this capacity were soon needed, for on December 9,
1621, the Fortune was burned to the ground. Alleyn records the event
in his _Diary_ thus: "_Memorandum._ This night at 12 of the clock the
Fortune was burnt." In a less laconic fashion John Chamberlain writes
to Sir Dudley Carleton: "On Sunday night here was a great fire at the
Fortune in Golding-Lane, the fairest playhouse in this town. It was
quite burnt down in two hours, and all their apparel and playbooks
lost, whereby those poor companions are quite undone."[457]

[Footnote 457: Birch, _The Court and Times of James the First_, II,
280. Howes, in his continuation of Stow's _Annals_ (1631), p. 1004,
attributes the fire to "negligence of a candle," but gives no

The "poor companions" thus referred to were, of course, the players,
who lost not only their stock of apparel, playbooks, and stage
furniture, but also their lease, which assured them of a home. Alleyn,
however, was quite able and ready to reconstruct the building for
them; and we find him on May 20, 1621, already organizing a syndicate
to finance "a new playhouse" which "there is intended to be erected
and set up." The stock of the new enterprise he divided into twelve
equal shares, which he disposed of, as the custom was, in the form of
whole and half shares, reserving for himself only one share.[458] The
plot of ground on which the old playhouse stood he leased to the
several sharers for a period of fifty-one years at an annual rental of
£10 13_s._ 10_d._ a share, with the express condition that the
building to be erected thereon should never be used for any purpose
other than the acting of stage-plays. The sharers then proceeded to
the task of constructing their playhouse. It was proposed to make the
new building larger[459] and handsomer than the old one, and to build
it of brick[460] with a tiled roof--possibly an attempt at fireproof
construction. It was decided, also, to abandon the square shape in
favor of the older and more logical circular shape. Wright, in his
_Historia Histrionica_, describes the New Fortune as "a large, round,
brick building,"[461] and Howes assures us that it was "farre fairer"
than the old playhouse.[462] We do not know how much the building
cost. At the outset each sharer was assessed £83 6_s._ 8_d._ towards
the cost of construction,[463] which would produce exactly £1000; but
the first assessment was not necessarily all that the sharers were
called upon to pay. For example, when the Globe was rebuilt each
sharer was at first assessed "£50 or £60," but before the building was
finished each had paid more than £100. So the Fortune may well have
cost more than the original estimate of £1000. In 1656 two expert
assessors appointed by the authorities of Dulwich College to examine
the playhouse declared that "the said building did in our opinions
cost building about two thousand pound."[464] This estimate is
probably not far wrong. The playhouse was completed in June or July of
1623, and was again occupied by the Palsgrave's Men.[465]

[Footnote 458: Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, pp. 28-30; 112. The names of
the sharers are not inspiring: Thomas Sparks, merchant tailor; William
Gwalter, innholder; John Fisher, barber-surgeon; Thomas Wigpitt,
bricklayer; etc.]

[Footnote 459: Prynne, _Histriomastix_, Epistle Dedicatory.]

[Footnote 460: The writer of the manuscript notes in the Phillipps
copy of Stow's _Annals_ (see _The Academy_, October 28, 1882, p. 314),
who is not trustworthy, says that the Fortune was burned down in 1618,
and "built again with brick work on the outside," from which Mr.
Wallace assumed that he meant that the building was merely
brick-veneered. If the writer meant this he was in error. See the
report of the commission appointed by Dulwich College to examine the
building (Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 95).]

[Footnote 461: Hazlitt's Dodsley, XV, 408.]

[Footnote 462: Stow, _Annals_, 1631.]

[Footnote 463: Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 29. Half-shares were £41
13_s._ 4_d._, which Murray (_English Dramatic Companies_) confuses
with whole shares.]

[Footnote 464: Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 95. This estimate was made
after the interior of the building had been "pulled down," and hence
refers merely to the cost of erection.]

[Footnote 465: For an account of "a dangerous and great riot committed
in Whitecross Street at the Fortune Playhouse" in May, 1626, see
Jeaffreson, _Middlesex County Records_, III, 161-63.]

On November 25, 1626, Edward Alleyn died, and the Fortune property
came into the full possession of Dulwich College. This, however, did
not in any way affect the syndicate of the Fortune housekeepers, who
held from Alleyn a lease of the property until 1672. According to the
terms of this lease each of the twelve sharers had to pay a yearly
rental of £10 13_s._ 10_d._; this rental now merely went to the
College instead of to Alleyn.

In 1631 the Palsgrave's Men seem to have fallen on hard times; at any
rate, they had to give up the Fortune, and the playhouse was taken
over, about December, by the King's Revels, who had been playing at
the small private playhouse of Salisbury Court.[466] The Palsgrave's
Men were reorganized, taken under the patronage of the infant Prince
Charles, and placed in the Salisbury Court Playhouse just vacated by
the King's Revels.

[Footnote 466: For details of this move see the chapter on the
Salisbury Court Playhouse.]

In 1635 there was a general shifting of houses on the part of the
London companies. The King's Revels left the Fortune and returned to
their old quarters at Salisbury Court; the Prince Charles's Men, who
had been at Salisbury Court, moved to the Red Bull; and the Red Bull
Company transferred itself to the Fortune.

The stay of the Red Bull Company at the Fortune was not happy. Towards
the end of 1635 the plague was seriously interfering with their
performance of plays;[467] and on May 10, 1636, the Privy Council
closed all theatres, and kept them closed, except for a few days,
until October 2, 1637.[468] This long inhibition not only impoverished
the actors and drove them into the country, but came near ruining the
lessees of the Fortune, who, having no revenue from the playhouse,
could not make their quarterly payments to the College. On September
4, 1637, the Court of Assistants at Dulwich noted that the lessees
were behind in their rent to the extent of £132 12_s._ 11_d._; "and,"
the court adds, "there will be a quarter's rent more at Michaelmas
next [i.e., in twenty-five days], which is doubted will be also
unpaid, amounting to £33 1_s._ 4_d._"[469] The excuse of the lessees
for their failure to pay was the "restraint from playing."[470]

[Footnote 467: Young, _The History of Dulwich College_, I, 114.]

[Footnote 468: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 391, 392;
Malone, _Variorum_, III, 239.]

[Footnote 469: Young, _The History of Dulwich College_, I, 114.]

[Footnote 470: The College appealed to the Lord Keeper, who on January
26 ordered the payment of the sum. But two years later, February,
1640, we find the College again petitioning the Lord Keeper to order
the lessees of the Fortune property to pay an arrearage of £104 14_s._
5_d._ See Collier, _The Alleyn Papers_, pp. 95-98.]

This "restraint" was removed on October 2, 1637, and the players
resumed their performances at the Fortune. But in the early summer of
1639 they fell victims to another bit of ill luck even more serious
than their long inhibition. In a letter of Edmond Rossingham, dated
May 8, 1639, we read: "Thursday last the players of the Fortune were
fined £1000 for setting up an altar, a bason, and two candlesticks,
and bowing down before it upon the stage; and although they allege it
was an old play revived, and an altar to the heathen gods, yet it was
apparent that this play was revived on purpose in contempt of the
ceremonies of the Church."[471]

[Footnote 471: Printed in _The Calendar of State Papers, Domestic,
1639_, p. 140.]

During the Easter period, 1640, the players returned to their old
quarters at the Red Bull. After their unhappy experiences at the
Fortune they were apparently glad to occupy again their former home.
The event is celebrated in a Prologue entitled _Upon the Removing of
the Late Fortune Players to the Bull_, written by John Tatham, and
printed in _Fancies Theatre_ (1640):[472]

     Here, gentlemen, our anchor's fixt; and we
     Disdaining _Fortune's_ mutability,
     Expect your kind acceptance.

[Footnote 472: The Prologue is printed in full by Malone, _Variorum_,
III, 79.]

The writer then hurls some uncomplimentary remarks at the Fortune,
observing complacently: "We have ne'er an actor here has mouth enough
to tear language by the ears." It is true that during these later
years the Fortune had fallen into ill repute with persons of good
taste. But so had the Red Bull, and the actors there had no right to
throw stones. Apparently the large numbers that could be accommodated
in the great public theatres, and the quality of the audience
attracted by the low price of admission, made noise and rant
inevitable.[473] As chief sinners in this respect the Fortune and the
Red Bull are usually mentioned together.

[Footnote 473: Not even the Globe was entirely free from this; see the
Prologue to _The Doubtful Heir_.]

Upon the departure of the Red Bull Company, the Prince Charles's Men
(originally the Admiral's, and later the Palsgrave's Men), who had
been occupying the Red Bull, came to the Fortune.[474] Thus after an
absence of nearly nine years, the old company (though sadly altered in
personnel), for which the Fortune had been built, returned to its home
to remain there until the end.

[Footnote 474: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 79.]

On September 2, 1642, the Long Parliament passed an ordinance
suppressing all stage-plays; but for a time the actors at the Fortune
seem to have continued their performances. In the fifth number of _The
Weekly Account_, September 27-October 4, 1643, we find among other
entries: "The players' misfortune at the Fortune in Golding Lane,
their players' clothes being seized upon in the time of a play by
authority from the Parliament."[475] This, doubtless, led to the
closing of the playhouse.

[Footnote 475: _The Calendar of State Papers, Domestic, 1643_, p.

After the Fortune was thus closed, the lessees were in a predicament.
By a specific clause in their lease they were prevented from using the
building for any purpose other than the acting of stage-plays, and now
Parliament by a specific ordinance had forbidden the acting of
stage-plays. Hence the lessees, some of whom were poor persons, being
unable to make any profit from the building, refused to pay any rent.
The College entered suit against them, and exhausted all legal means
to make them pay, but without success.[476]

[Footnote 476: For an interesting comment on the situation, especially
in the year 1649, see _Notes and Queries_ (series X), I, 85.]

When the ordinance prohibiting plays expired in January, 1648, the
actors promptly reopened the Fortune, and we learn from _The Kingdom's
Weekly Intelligencer_ that on January 27 no fewer than one hundred and
twenty coaches were crowded about the building. But on February 9
Parliament passed a new and even more stringent ordinance against
dramatic performances, placing penalties not only upon the players,
but also upon the spectators. This for ever put an end to acting at
the Fortune.

In 1649 the arrears of the lessees having reached the sum of £974
5_s._ 8_d._, the authorities of the College took formal possession of
the playhouse.

From certain manuscript notes[477] entered in the Phillipps copy of
Stow's _Annals_ (1631), we learn that "a company of soldiers, set on
by the sectaries of these sad times, on Saturday, the 24 day of March,
1649," sacked the Salisbury Court Playhouse, the Phoenix, and the
Fortune. The note states that the Fortune was "pulled down on the
inside by the soldiers"; that is, the stage and the seats were
dismantled[478] so as to render the building unusable for dramatic

[Footnote 477: Printed in _The Academy_, October 28, 1882, p. 314.]

[Footnote 478: See _The Journals of the House of Commons_, July 26,

In the following year, 1650, the inhabitants of the Parish of St.
Giles "represent that they are poor, and unable to build a place of
worship for themselves, but think it would be convenient if that large
building commonly known by the name of the Fortune Playhouse might be
allotted and set apart for that purpose." The request was not

[Footnote 479: Warner, _Catalogue_, XXXI; Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_,
II, 65.]

By July, 1656, the condition of the old playhouse was such that the
Masters and Wardens of the College appointed two experts to view the
building and make recommendations. They reported "that by reason the
lead hath been taken from the said building, the tiling not secured,
and the foundation of the said playhouse not kept in good repair,
great part of the said playhouse is fallen to the ground, the timber
thereof much decayed and rotten, and the brick walls so rent and torn
that the whole structure is in no condition capable of repair, but in
great danger of falling, to the hazard of passengers' lives"; and they
add: "The charge for demolishing the same will be chargeable and
dangerous. Upon these considerations our opinion is that the said
materials may not be more worth than eighty pound."[480]

[Footnote 480: The entire report is printed in Greg, _Henslowe
Papers_, p. 95.]

The authorities of Dulwich took no action on this report. However, on
March 5, 1660, they ordered that the property be leased, making a
casual reference to the playhouse as "at present so ruinous that part
thereof is already fallen down, and the rest will suddenly follow."
Accordingly, they inserted in the _Mercurius Politicus_ of February
14-21, 1661, the following advertisement: "The Fortune Playhouse,
situate between Whitecross Street and Golding Lane, in the parish of
St. Giles, Cripplegate, with the ground thereto belonging, is to be
let to be built upon."[481]

[Footnote 481: Discovered by Stevens, and printed in Malone,
_Variorum_, III, 55, note 5. Mr. W.J. Lawrence, _Archiv für das
Studium der Neueren Sprachen und Literaturen_ (1914), p. 314, says
that the date of this advertisement is 1660. But the same
advertisement is reprinted by H.R. Plomer in _Notes and Queries_
(series X), VI, 107, from _The Kingdom's Intelligencer_ of March 18,

No one seems to have cared to lease the property; so on March 16,
following, the materials of the building were sold to one William
Beaven for the sum of £75;[482] and in the records of the College,
March 4, 1662, we read that "the said playhouse ... is since totally

[Footnote 482: Young, _The History of Dulwich College_, II, 265.]

[Footnote 483: Collier, _The Alleyn Papers_, p. 101. I am aware of the
fact that there are references to later incidents at the Fortune (for
example, the statement that it was visited by officers in November,
1682, in an attempt to suppress secret conventicles that had long been
held there), but in view of the unimpeachable documentary evidence
cited above (in 1662 the College authorities again refer to it as "the
late ruinous and now demolished Fortune playhouse"), we must regard
these later references either as inaccurate, or as referring to
another building later erected in the same neighborhood. The so-called
picture of the Fortune, printed in Wilkinson's _Londina Illustrata_,
and often reproduced by modern scholars, cannot possibly be that of
the playhouse erected by Alleyn. For an interesting surmise as to the
history of this later building see W.J. Lawrence, _Restoration Stage
Nurseries_, in _Archiv für das Studium der Neueren Sprachen und
Literaturen_ (1914), p. 301.]



The builder of the Red Bull Playhouse[484] was "one Aaron Holland,
yeoman," of whom we know little more than that he "was utterly
unlearned and illiterate, not being able to read."[485] He had leased
"for many years" from Anne Beddingfield, "wife and administratrix of
the goods and chattles of Christopher Beddingfield, deceased," a small
plot of land, known by the name of "The Red Bull." This plot of land,
which contained one house, was situated "at the upper end of St.
John's Street" in the Parish of St. James, Clerkenwell, the exact
location being marked by "Red Bull Yard" in Ogilby and Morgan's _Map
of London_, printed in 1677. The property was not much more distant
from the heart of the city than the Fortune property, and since it
could be easily reached through St. John's Gate, it was quite as well
situated for dramatic purposes as was the Fortune.

[Footnote 484: This playhouse is not to be confused with the famous
Bull Tavern in Bishopsgate Street, for many years used as a theatre.]

[Footnote 485: These statements are based upon the Woodford _v._
Holland documents, first discovered by Collier, later by Greenstreet,
and finally printed in full by Wallace, _Three London Theatres_.]


The site is indicated by Red Bull Yard. (From Ogilby and Morgan's _Map
of London_, 1677.)]

In or before 1605[486] Holland erected on this plot of ground "a
playhouse for acting and setting forth plays, comedies, and
tragedies." We may suspect that he did this at the instigation of the
Earl of Worcester's Men, who had just been taken under the patronage
of the Queen, and had been selected by the Privy Council as one of
three companies to be "allowed." The warrant of the Privy Council,
April 9, 1604, orders the Lord Mayor to "permit and suffer the three
companies of players to the King, Queen, and Prince publickly to
exercise their plays in their several and usual houses for that
purpose, and no other, viz. the Globe, situate in Maiden Lane on the
Bankside in the county of Surrey, the Fortune in Golding Lane, and the
Curtain, in Holywell."[487] Among these three companies, as Dekker
tells us, there was much rivalry.[488] No doubt the Queen's Men,
forced to occupy the old Curtain Playhouse, suffered by comparison
with the King's Men at the handsome Globe, and the Prince's Men at the
new and magnificent Fortune; and this, I suspect, furnished the
immediate cause for the erection of the Red Bull. In a draft of a
license to the Queen's Men, made late in 1603 or early in 1604, the
fact is disclosed that the actors, of whom Thomas Greene was the
leader, were contemplating a new playhouse. The company was licensed
to use any "playhouse not used by others, by the said Thomas Greene
elected, _or by him hereafter to be built_."[489] Whether or no Greene
and his fellows had some understanding with Holland, we cannot say.
But in 1605 we find Holland disposing of one share in the new
playhouse to Thomas Swynnerton, a member of Queen Anne's Troupe; and
he may at the same time have disposed of other shares to other
members, for his transaction with Swynnerton comes to our notice only
through a subsequent lawsuit. The words used in the documents
connected with the suit clearly suggest that the playhouse was
completed at the time of the purchase. From the fact that Holland
granted "a seventh part of the said playhouse and galleries, with a
gatherer's place thereto belonging or appertaining, unto the said
Thomas Swynnerton for diverse years,"[490] it appears that the
ownership of the playhouse had been divided into seven shares, some of
which, according to custom, may have been subdivided into half-shares.

[Footnote 486: Sir Sidney Lee (_A Life of William Shakespeare_, p. 60)
says that the Red Bull was "built about 1600." He gives no evidence,
and the statement seems to be merely a repetition from earlier and
unauthoritative writers.]

[Footnote 487: The original warrant is preserved at Dulwich, and
printed by Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 61. Cf. also Dasent, _Acts of
the Privy Council_, XXXII, 511.]

[Footnote 488: _Raven's Almanack_ (1609); Dekker's _Works_ (ed.
Grosart), IV, 210.]

[Footnote 489: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 265.]

[Footnote 490: Wallace, _Three London Theatres_, p. 18.]

The name of the playhouse, as in the case of the Rose and the Curtain,
was taken from the name of the estate on which it was erected. Of the
building we have no pictorial representation; the picture in Kirkman's
_The Wits_ (1672), so often reproduced by scholars as "The Interior
of the Red Bull," has nothing whatever to do with that building. The
Kirkman picture shows a small enclosed room, with a narrow stage
illuminated by chandeliers and footlights; the Red Bull, on the
contrary, was a large, open-air building, with its stage illuminated
by the sun. It is thus described in Wright's _Historia Histrionica_
(1699): "The Globe, Fortune, and Bull were large houses, and lay
partly open to the weather."[491] Before its door was displayed a sign
on which was painted a red bull; hence the playhouse is sometimes
referred to simply as "at the sign of the Red Bull."

[Footnote 491: Hazlitt's Dodsley, XV, 408. If the Kirkham picture
represents the interior of any playhouse, it more likely represents
the Cockpit, which was standing at the time of the Restoration.]

The building, as I have indicated, seems to have been completed in or
before 1605; but exactly when the Queen's Men moved thither from the
Curtain is not clear. The patent issued to the company on April 15,
1609, gives them license to play "within their now usual houses,
called the Red Bull in Clerkenwell, and the Curtain in Holywell."[492]
Since they would hardly make use of two big public playhouses at the
same time, we might suspect that they were then arranging for the
transfer. Moreover, Heath, in his _Epigrams_, printed in 1610 but
probably written a year or two earlier, refers to the three important
public playhouses of the day as the Globe, the Fortune, and the
Curtain. Yet, that the Queen's Men were playing regularly at the Red
Bull in 1609 is clear from Dekker's _Raven's Almanack_,[493] and they
may have been playing there at intervals after 1605.

[Footnote 492: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 270.]

[Footnote 493: Dekker's _Works_ (ed. Grosart), IV, 210-11. I cannot
understand why Murray (_English Dramatic Companies_, I, 152-53) and
others say that Dekker refers to the Fortune, the Globe, and the
Curtain. His puns are clear: "_Fortune_ must favour some ... the
_whole world_ must stick to others ... and a third faction must fight
like _Bulls_."]

Dekker, in the pamphlet just mentioned, predicted "a deadly war"
between the Globe, the Fortune, and the Red Bull. And he had good
reasons for believing that the Queen's Men could successfully compete
with the two other companies, for it numbered among its players some
of the best actors of the day. The leader of the troupe was Thomas
Greene, now chiefly known for the amusing comedy named, after him,
_Greene's Tu Quoque_, but then known to all Londoners as the cleverest
comedian since Tarleton and Kempe:

     _Scat._ Yes, faith, brother, if it please you; let's go see
     a play at the Globe.

     _But._ I care not; any whither, so the clown have a part;
     for, i' faith, I am nobody without a fool.

     _Gera._ Why, then, we'll go to the Red Bull; they say
     Green's a good clown.[494]

[Footnote 494: _Greene's Tu Quoque_, Hazlitt's Dodsley, XI, 240. In
May, 1610, there was "a notable outrage at the Playhouse called the
Red Bull"; see _Middlesex County Records_, II, 64-65.]

The chief playwright for the troupe was the learned and industrious
Thomas Heywood, who, like Shakespeare, was also an actor and full
sharer in his company. Charles Lamb, who was an ardent admirer of
Heywood's plays, enthusiastically styled him "a prose Shakespeare";
and Wordsworth, with hardly less enthusiasm, declared him to have been
"a great man."

In 1612 Thomas Greene died, and the leadership of the troupe was taken
over by Christopher Beeston, a man well known in the theatrical life
of the time. Late in February, 1617, Beeston transferred the Queen's
Men to his new playhouse in Drury Lane, the Cockpit; in little more
than a week the sacking of the Cockpit drove them back to their old
quarters, where they remained until the following June. But even after
this they seem not to have abandoned the Red Bull entirely.

Edward Alleyn, in his _Account Book_, writes: "Oct. 1, 1617, I came to
London in the coach and went to the Red Bull"; and again under the
date of October 3: "I went to the Red Bull, and received for _The
Younger Brother_ but £3 6_s._ 4_d._"[495] What these two passages mean
it is hard to say, for they constitute the only references to the Red
Bull in all the Alleyn papers; but they do not necessarily imply, as
some have thought, that Alleyn was part owner of the playhouse;
possibly he was merely selling to the Red Bull Company the manuscript
of an old play.[496]

[Footnote 495: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 223; Young, _The History of
Dulwich College_, II, 51; Warner, _Catalogue_, p. 165; Collier,
_Memoirs of Edward Alleyn_, p. 107.]

[Footnote 496: The play is not otherwise known; a play with this
title, however, was entered on the Stationers' Register in 1653.]

At the death of Queen Anne, March 2, 1619, the company was deprived of
its "service," and after attending her funeral on May 13, was
dissolved. Christopher Beeston joined Prince Charles's Men, and
established that troupe at the Cockpit;[497] the other leading members
of Queen Anne's Men seem to have continued at the Red Bull under the
simple title "The Red Bull Company."

[Footnote 497: For details of this change, and of the quarrels that
followed, see the chapter on the Cockpit.]

In April, 1622, a feltmaker's apprentice named John Gill,[498] while
seated on the Red Bull stage, was accidentally injured by a sword in
the hands of one of the actors, Richard Baxter. A few days later Gill
called upon his fellow-apprentices to help him secure damages. In the
forenoon he sent the following letter, now somewhat defaced by time,
to Baxter:

     Mr. Blackster [_sic_]. So it is that upon Monday last it ...
     to be upon your stage, intending no hurt to any one, where I
     was grievously wounded in the head, as may appear; and in
     the surgeon's hands, who is to have x_s._ for the cure; and
     in the meantime my Master to give me maintenance ... [to my]
     great loss and hindrance; and therefore in kindness I desire
     you to give me satisfaction, seeing I was wounded by your
     own hand ... weapon. If you refuse, then look to yourself
     and avoid the danger which shall this day ensue upon your
     company and house. For ... as you can, for I am a
     feltmaker's prentice, and have made it known to at least one
     hundred and forty of our ... who are all here present, ready
     to take revenge upon you unless willingly you will give
     present satisfaction. Consider there ... think fitting. And
     as you have a care for your own safeties, so let me have
     answer forthwith.[499]

[Footnote 498: The name is also given, incorrectly, as Richard Gill.]

[Footnote 499: Jeaffreson, _Middlesex County Records_, II, 165-66;

Baxter turned the letter over to the authorities of Middlesex (hence
its preservation), who took steps to guard the playhouse and actors.
The only result was that prentices "to the number of one hundred
persons on the said day riotously assembled at Clerkenwell, to the
terror and disquiet of persons dwelling there."

On July 8, 1622, the Red Bull Company secured a license "to bring up
children in the quality and exercise of playing comedies, histories,
interludes, morals, pastorals, stage-plays and such like ... to be
called by the name of the Children of the Revels."[500] The Children
of the Revels occupied the Red Bull until the summer of the following
year, 1623, when they were dissolved. The last reference to them is in
the Herbert Manuscript under the date of May 10, 1623.[501]

[Footnote 500: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 62; The Malone Society's
_Collections_, I, 284.]

[Footnote 501: Chalmers, _Supplemental Apology_, p. 213.]

In August, 1623, we find the Red Bull occupied by Prince Charles's
Men,[502] who, after the dissolution of the Revels Company, had moved
thither from the less desirable Curtain.

[Footnote 502: _Ibid._, pp. 213-14.]

Two years later, in 1625, Prince Charles became King, and took under
his patronage his father's troupe, the King's Men. Some of the
members of the Prince Charles Troupe were transferred to the King's
Men, and the rest constituted a nucleus about which a new company was
organized, known simply as "The Red Bull Company."

About this time, it seems, the playhouse was rebuilt and enlarged. The
Fortune had been destroyed by fire in 1621, and had just been rebuilt
in a larger and handsomer form. In 1625 one W.C., in _London's
Lamentation for her Sins_, writes: "Yet even then, Oh Lord, were the
theatres magnified and enlarged."[503] This doubtless refers to the
rebuilding of the Fortune and the Red Bull. Prynne specifically states
in his _Histriomastix_ (1633) that the Fortune and Red Bull had been
"lately reedified [and] enlarged." But nothing further is known of the
"re-edification and enlargement" of the Red Bull.

[Footnote 503: Quoted by Collier, _The History of English Dramatic
Poetry_ (1879), III, 121.]

After its enlargement the playhouse seems to have acquired a
reputation for noise and vulgarity. Carew, in 1630, speaks of it as a
place where "noise prevails" and a "drowth of wit," and yet as always
crowded with people while the better playhouses stood empty. In _The
Careless Shepherdess_, acted at Salisbury Court, we read:

     And I will hasten to the money-box,
     And take my shilling out again;
     I'll go to the Bull, or Fortune, and there see
     A play for two-pence, and a jig to boot.[504]

[Footnote 504: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 70.]

In 1638, a writer of verses prefixed to Randolph's _Poems_ speaks of
the "base plots" acted with great applause at the Red Bull.[505] James
Wright informs us, in his _Historia Histrionica_, that the Red Bull
and the Fortune were "mostly frequented by citizens and the meaner
sort of people."[506] And Edmund Gayton, in his _Pleasant Notes_,
wittily remarks: "I have heard that the poets of the Fortune and Red
Bull had always a mouth-measure for their actors (who were terrible
tear-throats) and made their lines proportionable to their compass,
which were sesquipedales, a foot and a half."[507] Probably the ill
repute of the large public playhouses at this time was chiefly due to
the rise of private playhouses in the city.

[Footnote 505: Randolph's _Works_ (ed. Hazlitt), p. 504.]

[Footnote 506: Hazlitt's Dodsley, XV, 407.]

[Footnote 507: _Pleasant Notes on Don Quixote_, p. 24.]

In 1635 the Red Bull Company moved to the Fortune, and Prince
Charles's Men occupied the Red Bull.

Five years later, at Easter, 1640, Prince Charles's Men moved back to
the Fortune, and the Red Bull Company returned to its old home. In a
prologue written to celebrate the event,[508] the members of the
company declared:

     Here, gentlemen, our anchor's fix't.

[Footnote 508: J. Tatham, _Fancies Theatre_. For a fuller discussion
of the shifting of companies in 1635 and 1640 see the chapter on "The

This proved true, for the company remained at the Red Bull until
Parliament passed the ordinance of 1642 closing the playhouses and
forbidding all dramatic performances. The ordinance, which was to hold
good during the continuance of the civil war, was renewed in 1647,
with January 1, 1648, set as the date of its expiration. Through some
oversight a new ordinance was not immediately passed, and the actors
were prompt to take advantage of the fact. They threw open the
playhouses, and the Londoners flocked in great crowds to hear plays
again. At the Red Bull, so we learn from the newspaper called _Perfect
Occurrences_, was given a performance of Beaumont and Fletcher's _Wit
Without Money_.

But on February 9, 1648, Parliament made up for its oversight by
passing an exceptionally severe ordinance against dramatic
exhibitions, directing that actors be publicly flogged, and that each
spectator be fined the sum of five shillings.

During the dark years that followed, the Red Bull, in spite of this
ordinance, was occasionally used by venturous actors. James Wright, in
his _Historia Histrionica_, tells us that upon the outbreak of the war
the various London actors had gone "into the King's army, and, like
good men and true, served their old master, though in a different, yet
more honourable capacity. Robinson was killed at the taking of a place
(I think Basing House) by Harrison.... Mohun was a captain.... Hart
was cornet of the same troop, and Shatterel quartermaster. Allen, of
the Cockpit, was a major.... The rest either lost or exposed their
lives for their king."[509] He concludes the narrative by saying that
when the wars were over, those actors who were left alive gathered to
London, "and for a subsistence endeavoured to revive their old trade
privately." They organized themselves into a company in 1648 and
attempted "to act some plays with as much caution and privacy as could
be at the Cockpit"; but after three or four days they were stopped by
soldiers. Thereafter, on special occasions "they used to bribe the
officer who commanded the guard at Whitehall, and were thereupon
connived at to act for a few days at the Red Bull, but were sometimes,
notwithstanding, disturbed by soldiers."[510] To such clandestine
performances Kirkman refers in his Preface to _The Wits, or Sport upon
Sport_ (1672): "I have seen the Red Bull Playhouse, which was a large
one, so full that as many went back for want of room as had entered;
and as meanly as you may now think of these drolls, they were then
acted by the best comedians then and now in being." Not, however,
without occasional trouble. In Whitelocke's _Memorials_, p. 435, we
read: "20 Dec., 1649. Some stage-players in St. John's Street were
apprehended by troopers, their clothes taken away, and themselves
carried to prison"; again, in _The Perfect Account_, December
27-January 3, 1654-1655: "Dec. 30, 1654.--This day the players at the
Red Bull, being gotten into all their borrowed gallantry and ready to
act, were by some of the soldiery despoiled of all their bravery; but
the soldiery carried themselves very civilly towards the
audience."[511] In the _Weekly Intelligencer_, September 11-18, 1655,
we find recorded still another sad experience for the actors: "Friday,
September 11, 1655.--This day proved tragicall to the players at the
Red Bull; their acting being against the Act of Parliament, the
soldiers secured the persons of some of them who were upon the stage,
and in the tiring-house they seized also upon their clothes in which
they acted, a great part whereof was very rich."[512]

[Footnote 509: Hazlitt's Dodsley, XV, 409.]

[Footnote 510: _Ibid._, 409-10.]

[Footnote 511: Cited by C.H. Firth, in _Notes and Queries_, August 18,
1888, series VII, vol. VI, p. 122.]

[Footnote 512: _Ibid._]

On this occasion, however, the soldiers, instead of carrying
themselves "very civilly" towards the audience, undertook to exact
from each of the spectators the fine of five shillings. The ordinance
of Parliament, passed February 9, 1648, read: "And it is hereby
further ordered and ordained, that every person or persons which shall
be present and a spectator at such stage-play or interlude, hereby
prohibited, shall for every time he shall be present, forfeit and pay
the sum of five shillings to the use of the poor of the parish."[513]
But the spectators did not submit to this fine without a struggle.
Jeremiah Banks wrote to Williamson on September 16, 1655: "At the
playhouse this week many were put to rout by the soldiers and had
broken crowns; the corporal would have been entrapped had he not been
vigilant."[514] And in the _Weekly Intelligencer_, September 11-18, we
read: "It never fared worse with the spectators than at this present,
for those who had monies paid their five shillings apiece; those who
had none, to satisfy their forfeits, did leave their cloaks behind
them. The Tragedy of the spectators was the Comedy of the soldiers.
There was abundance of the female sex, who, not able to pay five
shillings, did leave some gage or other behind them, insomuch that
although the next day after the Fair was expected to be a new fair of
hoods, of aprons, and of scarfs; all which, their poverty being made
known, and after some check for their trespass, were civilly again
restored to the owners."[515]

[Footnote 513: Hazlitt, _The English Drama and Stage_, p. 69.]

[Footnote 514: _The Calendar of State Papers, Domestic, 1655_, p.

[Footnote 515: For a further account of this episode see _Mercurius
Fumigosus_, No. 69.]

At the period of the Restoration the Red Bull was among the first
playhouses to reopen. John Downes, in his _Roscius Anglicanus_,
writes: "The scattered remnant of several of these houses, upon King
Charles' Restoration, framed a company, who acted again at the
Bull."[516] Apparently the company was brought together by the famous
old Elizabethan actor, Anthony Turner. From the _Middlesex County
Records_ (III, 279) we learn that at first the players were
interrupted by the authorities:

     12 May, 1659.--Recognizances, taken before Ra: Hall, esq.
     J.P., of William Wintershall and Henry Eaton, both of
     Clerkenwell, gentlemen, in the sum of fifty pounds each;
     "Upon condition that Antony Turner shall personally appear
     at the next Quarter Sessions of the Peace to be holden at
     Hicks Hall for the said County of Middlesex; for the
     unlawful maintaining of stage-plays and interludes at the
     Red Bull in St. John's Street, which house he affirms that
     they hire of the parishioners of Clerkenwell at the rate of
     twenty shillings a day over and above what they have agreed
     to pay towards the relief of their poor and repairing their
     highways, and in the meantime to be of good behaviour and
     not to depart the Court without license.--Ra: Hall." Also
     similar Recognizances, taken on the same day, before the
     same J.P., of the same William Wintershall and Henry Eaton,
     gentlemen, in the same sum of fifty pounds each; for the
     appearance of Edward Shatterall at the next. Q.S.P. for
     Middlesex at Hicks Hall, "to answer for the unlawful
     maintaining of stage-plays and interludes at the Red Bull in
     St. John's Street &c." S.P.R., 17, May, 1659.

[Footnote 516: Cf. Wright, _Historia Histrionica_, p. 412; and for the
general history of the actors at the Red Bull during this period see
the Herbert records in Halliwell-Phillipps, _A Collection of Ancient

Later, it seems, they secured a license from the authorities, and
thenceforth acted without interruption. Samuel Pepys made plans "to go
to the Red Bull Playhouse" with Mrs. Pierce and her husband on August
3, 1660, but was prevented by business. An account of his visit there
on March 23, 1661, is thus given in his _Diary_:

     All the morning at home putting papers in order; dined at
     home, and then out to the Red Bull (where I had not been
     since plays came up again), but coming too soon I went out
     again and walked up and down the Charterhouse Yard and
     Aldersgate Street. At last came back again and went in,
     where I was led by a seaman that knew me, but is here as a
     servant, up to the tiring-room, where strange the confusion
     and disorder that there is among them in fitting themselves,
     especially here, where the clothes are very poor and the
     actors but common fellows. At last into the pit, where I
     think there was not above ten more than myself, and not one
     hundred in the whole house. And the play, which is called
     _All's Lost by Lust_, poorly done; and with so much
     disorder, among others, that in the musique-room, the boy
     that was to sing a song not singing it right, his master
     fell about his ears and beat him so, that it put the whole
     house in an uproar.

The actors, however, did not remain long at the Red Bull. They built
for themselves a new theatre in Drury Lane, whither they moved on
April 8, 1663;[517] and after this the old playhouse was deserted. In
Davenant's _The Play-House to Be Let_ (1663), I, i, we read:

     Tell 'em the Red Bull stands empty for fencers:[518]
     There are no tenants in it but old spiders.

[Footnote 517: After November 8, 1660, they acted also in Gibbon's
Tennis Court in Clare Market, which they had fitted up as a theatre;
see Halliwell-Phillipps, _A Collection of Ancient Documents_, p. 34.]

[Footnote 518: See Pepys' _Diary_, April 25, 1664.]



The district of Whitefriars, lying just outside the city wall to the
west, and extending from Fleet Street to the Thames, was once in the
possession of the order of White Friars, and the site of an important
monastery; but in Elizabeth's time the church had disappeared, most of
the ancient buildings had been dismantled, and in their place, as Stow
tells us, were "many fair houses builded, lodgings for noblemen and
others." Since at the dissolution of the monasteries the property had
come into the possession of the Crown, it was not under the
jurisdiction of the London Common Council--a fact which made
Whitefriars, like Blackfriars, a desirable refuge for players seeking
to escape the hostility of the city authorities.[519] One might
naturally expect the appearance of playing here at an early date, but
the evidence is slight.[520]

[Footnote 519: Whitefriars passed under city control in 1608 by grant
of King James I, but certain rights remained, notably that of
sanctuary. This has been celebrated in Shadwell's play, _The Squire of
Alsatia_, and in Scott's romance, _The Fortunes of Nigel_.]

[Footnote 520: Prynne, in _Histriomastix_ (1633), p. 491, quotes a
passage from Richard Reulidge's _Monster Lately Found Out and
Discovered_ (1628), in which there is a reference to a playhouse as
existing in Whitefriars "not long after" 1580. By "playhouse" Reulidge
possibly meant an inn used for acting; but the whole passage, written
by a Puritan after the lapse of nearly half a century, is open to
grave suspicion, especially in its details. Again Richard Flecknoe, in
_A Short Discourse of the English Stage_ (1664), states that the
Children of the Chapel Royal acted in Whitefriars. But that he
confused the word "Whitefriars" with "Blackfriars" is shown by the
rest of his statement.]

The first appearance of a regular playhouse in Whitefriars dates from
the early years of King James's reign. With our present knowledge we
cannot fix the date exactly, yet we can feel reasonably certain that
it was not long before 1607--probably about 1605.

The chief spirit in the organization of the new playhouse seems to
have been the poet Michael Drayton, who had secured a patent from King
James to "erect" a company of child actors, to be known as "The
Children of His Majesty's Revels."[521] Obviously his hope was to make
the Children of His Majesty's Revels at Whitefriars rival the
successful Children of Her Majesty's Revels at Blackfriars. In this
ambitious enterprise he associated with himself a wealthy London
merchant, Thomas Woodford, whom we know as having been interested in
various theatrical investments.[522] These two men leased from Lord
Buckhurst for a short period of time a building described as a
"mansion house" formerly a part of the Whitefriars monastery: "the
rooms of which are thirteen in number, three below, and ten above;
that is to say, the great hall, the kitchen by the yard, and a cellar,
with all the rooms from the Master of the Revells' office as the same
are now severed and divided."[523] The "great hall" here mentioned,
once the refectory of the monks, was made into the playhouse. Its
"great" size may be inferred from the fact that there were ten rooms
"above"; and its general excellence may be inferred from the fact that
it was leased at £50 per annum, whereas Blackfriars, in a more
desirable location and fully equipped as a theatre, was rented for
only £40.

[Footnote 521: Fleay, Murray, and others are wrong in assuming that
this troupe was merely a continuation of the Paul's Boys. So far as I
can discover, there is no official record of the patent issued to
Drayton; but that such a patent was issued is clear from the lawsuits
of 1609, printed by Greenstreet in _The New Shakspere Society's
Transactions_ (1887-90), p. 269.]

[Footnote 522: He was part proprietor of the Red Bull. In the case of
Witter _v._ Heminges and Condell he was examined as a witness (see
Wallace, _Shakespeare and his London Associates_, p. 74), but what
connection, if any, he had with the Globe does not appear.]

[Footnote 523: Greenstreet, _The New Shakspere Society's Transactions_
(1887-90), p. 275.]

From an early seventeenth-century survey of the Whitefriars property
(see the opposite page), we are able to place the building very
exactly. The part of the monastery used as a playhouse--the
Frater--was the southern cloister, marked in the plan, "My Lords
Cloyster." The "kitchen by the yard" mentioned in the document just
quoted is clearly represented in the survey by the "Scullere." The
size of the playhouse is hard to ascertain, but it was approximately
thirty-five feet in width and eighty-five feet in length.[524] In the
London of to-day it extended roughly from Bouverie Street to
Ashen-tree Court, and lay just north of George Yard.

[Footnote 524: The stipple walls, in the original survey colored gray,
were of stone; the thinner walls of the adjoining "tenements," in the
original colored red, were of brick.]


A portion of an early seventeenth-century survey of the Whitefriars
property. The playhouse adjoined the "Scullere" on the south. (This
survey was discovered in the Print Room of the British Museum by Mr.
A.W. Clapham, and reproduced in _The Journal of the British
Archæological Association_, 1910.)]

Of the career of the Children under the joint management of Drayton
and Woodford we know almost nothing. But in March, 1608, a new
management assumed charge of the troupe, and from this point on the
history of the playhouse is reasonably clear.

The original lease of the building, it seems, expired on March 5,
1608. But before the expiration--in the latter part of 1607 or in the
early part of 1608--Drayton and Woodford secured a new lease on the
property for six years, eight months, and twenty days, or until
December 25 (one of the four regular feasts of the year), 1614. In
February, 1608, after having secured this renewal of the lease, Thomas
Woodford suddenly determined to retire from the enterprise; and he
sold his moiety to one David Lording Barry,[525] author of the play
_Ram Alley_. Barry and Drayton at once made plans to divide the
property into six shares, so as to distribute the expenses and the
risks as well as the hoped-for profits. Barry induced his friend,
George Androwes, to purchase one share, and hence the lawsuit from
which we derive most of our knowledge of the playhouse. From this suit
I quote below the more significant part relating to the new

     Humbly complaining, sheweth unto your honorable lordship,
     your daily orator, George Androwes, of London, silkweaver,
     that whereas one Lordinge Barry, about February which was in
     the year of our Lord 1607 [i.e., 1608], pretending himself
     to be lawfully possessed of one moiety of a messuage or
     mansion house, parcel of the late dissolved monastery called
     the Whitefriars, in Fleet Street, in the suburbs of London,
     by and under a lease made thereof, about March then next
     following, from the right honorable Robert, Lord Buckhurst,
     unto one Michael Drayton and Thomas Woodford, for the term
     of six years, eight months, and twenty days then following,
     for and under the yearly rent of fifty pounds reserved
     thereupon; the moiety of which said lease and premisses, by
     mean assignment from the said Thomas Woodford, was lawfully
     settled in the said Lordinge Barry, as he did pretend,
     together with the moiety of diverse play-books, apparel, and
     other furnitures and necessaries used and employed in and
     about the said messuage and the Children of the Revels,[526]
     there being, in making and setting forth plays, shows, and
     interludes, and such like. And the said Lordinge Barry ...
     being desirous to join others with him in the interest of
     the same, who might be contributory to such future charges
     as should arise in setting forth of plays and shows there,
     did thereupon ... solicit and persuade your orator to
     take from the said Barry an assignment of a sixth part of
     the messuage, premisses, and profits aforesaid.

[Footnote 525: By a stupid error often called Lodowick Barry. For an
explanation of the error see an article by the present writer in
_Modern Philology_, April, 1912, IX, 567. Mr. W.J. Lawrence has
recently shown (_Studies in Philology_, University of North Carolina,
April, 1917) that David Barry was the eldest son of the ninth Viscount
Buttevant, and was called "Lording" by courtesy. At the time he became
interested in the Whitefriars Playhouse he was twenty-two years old.
He died in 1610.]

[Footnote 526: At this time the Children of Blackfriars had lost their
patent, so that the Children at Whitefriars were the only Revels

[Illustration: MICHAEL DRAYTON

(From a painting in the National Portrait Gallery, London: photograph
copyrighted by Emery Walker, Ltd.)]

This passage gives us an interesting glimpse of Drayton and Barry in
their efforts to organize a syndicate for exploiting the Children of
His Majesty's Revels. They induced several other persons to buy
half-shares; and then they engaged, as manager of the Children, Martin
Slaiter,[527] a well-known and thoroughly experienced actor. For his
services as manager, Slaiter was to receive one whole share in the
organization, and lodgings for himself and his family of ten in the
building. The syndicate thus formed was made up of four whole-sharers,
Michael Drayton, Lordinge Barry, George Androwes, and Martin Slaiter,
and four half-sharers, William Trevell, William Cooke, Edward
Sibthorpe, and John Mason.[528]

[Footnote 527: Also spelled Slater, Slaughter, Slather, Slawghter.
Henslowe often refers to him as "Martin."]

[Footnote 528: Mr. Wallace (_The Century Magazine_, 1910, LXXX, 511)
incorrectly says that Whitefriars was held by "six equal sharers."]

The "great hall" had, of course, already been fitted up for the acting
of plays, and the new lessees did not at first contemplate any
expenditure on the building. Later, however,--if we can believe
Androwes,--they spent a not inconsiderable sum for improvements. The
Children already had certain plays, and to these were added some new
ones. Among the plays in their repertoire were Day's _Humour Out of
Breath_, Middleton's _Family of Love_, Armin's _The Two Maids of
Moreclacke_, Sharpham's _Cupid's Whirligig_, Markham and Machin's _The
Dumb Knight_, Barry's _Ram Alley_, and Mason's _The Turk_. The last
two writers were sharers, and it seems likely that Drayton, also a
sharer and experienced as a dramatist, contributed some plays towards
the stock of the company.

The new organization, with bright prospects for success, was launched
in March, 1608. Almost at once, however, it began to suffer from ill
luck. In April the Children at Blackfriars, by their performance of
_Byron_, caused King James to close all playhouses in London. How long
he kept them closed we do not know, but we find the lessees of
Whitefriars joining with the three other London companies in seeking
to have the inhibition raised. As the French Ambassador informed his
Government: "Pour lever cette défense, quatres autres compagnies, qui
y sont encore, offrent déjà cent mille francs, lesquels pourront bien
leur en ordonner la permission."[529]

[Footnote 529: Letter of M. De La Boderie, the French Ambassador to
England; quoted by E.K. Chambers, _Modern Language Review_, IV, 159.]

Even if this inhibition was shortly raised, the Whitefriars
organization was not much better off, for in July the plague set in
with unusual violence, and acting was seriously if not wholly
interrupted for the next twelve months and more. As a result, the
profits from the theatre did not come up to the "fair and false
flattering speeches" which at the outset Barry had made to prospective
investors, and this led to bad feeling among the sharers.

The company at Blackfriars, of course, was suffering in a similar way.
On August 8, 1608, their playhouse was surrendered to the owner,
Richard Burbage, and the Children being thus left without a home were
dispersed. Early in 1609, probably in February, Robert Keysar (the
manager of the Blackfriars troupe), Philip Rosseter, and others
secured the lease of the Whitefriars Playhouse from Drayton and the
rest of the discontented sharers, and reassembled there the Children
of Blackfriars. What became of the Whitefriars troupe we do not know;
but it is highly likely that the new organization took over the better
actors from Drayton's company. At any rate, we do not hear again of
the Children of His Majesty's Revels.

When Keysar and this new troupe of child-actors moved into
Whitefriars, Slaiter and his family of ten were expelled from the
building. This led to a lawsuit, and explains much in the legal
documents printed by Greenstreet. Slaiter complained with no little
feeling that he had been "riotously, willfully, violently, and
unlawfully, contrary to the said articles and pretended agreement [by
which he had been not only engaged as a manager, but also guaranteed a
home for the period of "all the term of years in the lease"], put and
kept out of his said rooms of habitation for him, this defendant, and
his family, and all other his means of livelihood, thereby leaving
this defendant and his whole family, being ten in number, to the world
to seek for bread and other means to live by."[530]

[Footnote 530: Greenstreet, _The New Shakspere Society's Transactions_
(1887-90), p. 283.]

The new Whitefriars troupe acted five plays at Court during the winter
of 1609-10. Payments therefor were made to Robert Keysar, and the
company was referred to merely as "The Children of the Whitefriars."
But on January 4, 1610, the company secured a royal patent authorizing
the use of the title "The Children of the Queen's Revels."[531] The
patent was granted to Robert Daborne, Philip Rosseter, John Tarbock,
Richard Jones, and Robert Browne; but Keysar, though not named in the
grant, was still one of the important sharers.[532]

[Footnote 531: Printed in The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 271.]

[Footnote 532: See Keysar _v._ Burbage _et al._, printed by Mr.
Wallace, in his _Shakespeare and his London Associates_, pp. 80 ff.]

The troupe well deserved the patronage of the Queen. Keysar described
the Blackfriars Children whom he had reorganized as "a company of the
most expert and skillful actors within the realm of England, to the
number of eighteen or twenty persons, all or most of them, trained up
in that service in the reign of the late Queen Elizabeth for ten years
together."[533] And to these, as I have pointed out, it seems likely
that the best members of the bankrupt Children of His Majesty's Revels
had been added. The chief actor of the new organization was
Nathaniel Field, whose histrionic ability placed him beside Edward
Alleyn and Richard Burbage. One of the first plays he was called upon
to act in his new theatre was Jonson's brilliant comedy, _Epicoene_,
in which he took the leading rôle.

[Footnote 533: _Ibid._, p. 90.]


The Whitefriars Playhouse was just north of "K. 46"; the Salisbury
Court Playhouse was just south of the court of that name. (From Ogilby
and Morgan's _Map of London_, 1677.)]

The idea then occurred to Rosseter to secure a monopoly on
child-acting and on private playhouses. The Children of His Majesty's
Revels had ceased to exist. The Blackfriars Playhouse had been closed
by royal command, and its lease had been surrendered to its owner,
Richard Burbage. The only rival to the Children at Whitefriars was the
troupe of Paul's Boys acting in their singing-school behind the
Cathedral. How Rosseter attempted to buy them off is thus recorded by
Richard Burbage and John Heminges:

     There being, as these defendants verily think, but only
     three private playhouses in the city of London, the one of
     which being in the Blackfriars and in the hands of these
     defendants or of their assigns, one other being in the
     Whitefriars in the hands or occupation of the said
     complainant himself [Keysar], his partners [Rosseter, _et
     al._], or assigns, and the third near St. Paul's Church,
     then being in the hands of one Mr. Pierce, but then unused
     for a playhouse. One Mr. Rosseter, a partner of the said
     complainant [Keysar] dealt for and compounded with the said
     Mr. Pierce [Master of the Paul's Boys] to the only benefit
     of him, the said Rosseter, the now complainant [Keysar], the
     rest of their partners and company, and without the privity,
     knowledge, or consent of these defendants [the King's
     Company], or any of them, and that thereby they, the said
     complainant [Keysar] and the said Rosseter and their
     partners and company might advance their gains and profit to
     be had and made in their said house in Whitefriars, that
     there might be a cessation of playing and plays to be acted
     in the said house near St. Paul's Church aforesaid, for
     which the said Rosseter compounded with the said Pierce to
     give him, the said Pierce, twenty pounds per annum.[534]

[Footnote 534: Wallace, _Shakespeare and his London Associates_, p.

By this means Rosseter disposed of the competition of the Paul's Boys.
But, although he secured a monopoly on child-acting, he failed to
secure a monopoly on private playhouses, for shortly after he had
sealed this bargain with Pierce, the powerful King's Men opened up at
Blackfriars. Rosseter promptly requested them to pay half the "dead
rent" to Pierce, which they good-naturedly agreed to do.

In 1613 Whitefriars was rented by certain London apprentices for the
performance "at night" of Robert Taylor's _The Hog Hath Lost His
Pearl_. The episode is narrated by Sir Henry Wotton in a letter to Sir
Edmund Bacon:

     On Sunday last, at night, and no longer, some sixteen
     apprentices (of what sort you shall guess by the rest of the
     story) having secretly learnt a new play without book,[535]
     entitled _The Hog Hath Lost His Pearl_, took up the
     Whitefriars for their theatre, and having invited thither
     (as it should seem) rather their mistresses than their
     masters, who were all to enter _per buletini_ for a note of
     distinction from ordinary comedians. Towards the end of the
     play the sheriffs (who by chance had heard of it) came in
     (as they say) and carried some six or seven of them to
     perform the last act at Bridewell. The rest are fled. Now it
     is strange to hear how sharp-witted the city is, for they
     will needs have Sir John Swinerton, the Lord Mayor, be meant
     by the Hog, and the late Lord Treasurer by the Pearl.[536]

[Footnote 535: Miss Gildersleeve, in her valuable _Government
Regulation of the Elizabethan Drama_, p. 112, says: "Just what is the
meaning of 'a new Play without Book' no one seems to have
conjectured." And she develops the theory that "it refers to the
absence of a licensed play-book," etc. The phrase "to learn without
book" meant simply "to memorize."]

[Footnote 536: _Reliquiæ Wottonianæ_ (ed. 1672), p. 402. The letter is
dated merely 1612-13. In connection with the play one should study
_The Hector of Germany_, 1615.]

Apparently the Children of the Queen's Revels continued successfully
at Whitefriars until March, 1613. On that date Rosseter agreed with
Henslowe to join the Revels with the Lady Elizabeth's Men then acting
at the Swan. The new organization, following the example of the King's
Men, used Whitefriars as a winter, and the Swan as a summer, house.
Thus for a time at least Whitefriars came under the management of

Rosseter's lease of the building was to expire in the following year.
He seems to have made plans--possibly with the assistance of
Henslowe--to erect in Whitefriars a more suitable playhouse for the
newly organized company; at least that is a plausible interpretation
of the following curious entry in Sir George Buc's Office Book: "July
13, 1613, for a license to erect a new playhouse in Whitefriars, &c.
£20."[537] But the new playhouse thus projected never was built,
doubtless because of strong local opposition. Instead, Henslowe
erected for the company a public playhouse on the Bankside, known as
"The Hope."

[Footnote 537: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 52.]

In March, 1614, at the expiration of one year, Rosseter withdrew from
his partnership with Henslowe. On December 25, 1614, his lease of the
Whitefriars expired, and he was apparently unable to renew it.
Thereupon he attempted to fit up a private playhouse in the district
of Blackfriars, and on June 3, 1615, he actually secured a royal
license to do so. But in this effort, too, he was foiled.[538]

[Footnote 538: See the chapter on "Rosseter's Blackfriars." The
documents concerned in this venture are printed in The Malone
Society's _Collections_, I, 277.]

After this we hear little or nothing of the Whitefriars Playhouse. Yet
the building may occasionally have been used for dramatic purposes.
Cunningham says: "The case of Trevill _v._ Woodford, in the Court of
Requests, informs us that plays were performed at the Whitefriars
Theatre as late as 1621; Sir Anthony Ashley, the then landlord of the
house, entering the theatre in that year, and turning the players out
of doors, on pretense that half a year's rent was yet unpaid to
him."[539] I have not been able to examine this document. Neither
Fleay nor Murray has found any trace of a company at Whitefriars after
Rosseter's departure; hence for all practical purposes we may regard
the Whitefriars Playhouse as having come to the end of its career in

[Footnote 539: _The Shakespeare Society's Papers_, IV, 90. The
document printed by Collier in _New Facts Regarding the Life of
Shakespeare_ (1835), p. 44, as from a manuscript in his possession,
is, I think, an obvious forgery.]



On August 29, 1611, Henslowe became manager of the Lady Elizabeth's
Men. Having agreed among other things to furnish them with a
playhouse,[540] and no longer being in possession of the Rose, he
rented the old Swan and maintained them there throughout the year

[Footnote 540: The agreement has been lost, but for a probably similar
agreement, made with the actor Nathaniel Field, see Greg, _Henslowe
Papers_, p. 23.]

In March of the following year, 1613, he entered into a partnership
with Philip Rosseter (the manager of the private playhouse of
Whitefriars), and "joined" the Lady Elizabeth's Men with Rosseter's
excellent troupe of the Queen's Revels. Apparently the intention of
Henslowe and Rosseter was to form a company strong enough to compete
on equal terms with the King's Men. In imitation of the King's Men,
who used the Globe as a summer and the Blackfriars as a winter home,
the newly amalgamated company was to use the Swan and the
Whitefriars.[541] And the chief actor of the troupe, corresponding to
Richard Burbage of the King's Men, was to be Nathaniel Field, then at
the height of his powers:

     _Cokes._ Which is your Burbage now?

     _Leatherhead._ What mean you by that, sir?

     _Cokes._ Your best actor, your Field.

     _Littlewit._ Good, i' faith! you are even with me, sir.[542]

[Footnote 541: Daborne writes to Henslowe on June 5, 1613: "The
company told me you were expected there yesterday to conclude about
their coming over ... my own play which shall be ready before they
come over." This, I suspect, refers to the moving of the company to
the Swan for the summer. (See Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 72.) That
Henslowe was manager of a "private" house in 1613 is revealed by
another letter from Daborne, dated December 9, 1613. (See Greg,
_ibid._, p. 79.)]

[Footnote 542: _Bartholomew Fair_, V, iii. The part of Littlewit was
presumably taken by Field himself.]

Among their playwrights were Ben Jonson, Philip Massinger, John
Fletcher, and Robert Daborne, not to mention Field, who in addition to
acting wrote excellent plays.

If it was the purpose of Henslowe and Rosseter to compete with the
Globe Company in a winter as well as in a summer house, that purpose
was endangered by the fact that Rosseter's lease of his private
theatre expired within a year and a half, and could not be renewed.
Rosseter and Henslowe, as pointed out in the preceding chapter, seem
to have attempted to erect in Whitefriars a winter home for their
troupe; so, at least, I have interpreted the curious entry in Sir
George Buc's Office Book: "July 13, 1613, for a license to erect a new
playhouse in the Whitefriars, &c. £20."[543] The attempt, however, was
foiled, probably by the strong opposition of the inhabitants of the

[Footnote 543: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 52.]

Shortly after this, Henslowe made plans to provide the company with a
new and better public playhouse on the Bankside, more conveniently
situated than the Swan. The old Bear Garden was beginning to show
signs of decay, and, doubtless, would soon have to be rebuilt. This
suggested to Henslowe the idea of tearing down that ancient structure
and erecting in its place a larger and handsomer building to serve
both for the performance of plays and for the baiting of animals. To
this plan Jacob Meade, Henslowe's partner in the ownership of the Bear
Garden, agreed.


From Hollar's _View of London_ (1647).]

Accordingly, on August 29, 1613, Henslowe and Meade signed a contract
with a carpenter named Katherens to pull down the Bear Garden and
erect in its place a new structure. The original contract, preserved
among the Henslowe Papers, is one of the most valuable documents we
have relating to the early theatres. It is too long and verbose for
insertion here, but I give below a summary of its contents.[544]
Katherens agreed:

     1. To "pull down" the Bear Garden and "the stable wherein
     the bulls and horses" had been kept; and "near or upon the
     said place where the said game-place did heretofore stand,"
     to "newly erect, build, and set up" a "playhouse, fit and
     convenient in all things both for players to play in, and
     for the game of bears and bulls to be baited in."

     2. "To build the same of such large compass, form, wideness,
     and height as the playhouse called the Swan."

     3. To provide for the building "a good sure, and sufficient
     foundation of bricks ... thirteen inches at the least above
     the ground."

     4. To make three galleries: "the inner principal posts of
     the first story to be twelve feet in height, and ten inches
     square; in the middle story ... eight inches square; in the
     upper story ... seven inches square."[545]

     5. To "make two boxes in the lowermost story, fit and decent
     for gentlemen to sit in," and in the rest of the galleries
     "partitions between the rooms as they are in the said
     playhouse called the Swan."

     6. To construct "a stage, to be carried and taken away, and
     to stand upon tressels, good, substantial, and sufficient
     for the carrying and bearing of such a stage."

     7. To "build the heavens all over the said stage, to be
     borne or carried without any posts or supporters to be fixed
     or set upon the said stage."

     8. To equip the stage with "a fit and convenient

     9. To "build two staircases without and adjoining to the
     said playhouse ... of such largeness and height as the
     staircases of the said playhouse called the Swan."

     10. "To new build, erect, and set up the said bull-house and
     stable ... of that largeness and fitness as shall be
     sufficient to keep and hold six bulls and three horses."

     11. "To new tyle with English tyles all the upper roof of
     the said playhouse ... and stable."

     12. To have the playhouse finished "upon or before the last
     day of November," 1613.

[Footnote 544: The contract is printed in full in Greg, _Henslowe
Papers_, p. 19.]

[Footnote 545: The height is given for the first story only. We may
assume that the middle and uppermost stories were of diminishing
heights, as in the case of the Fortune Playhouse, in which the
galleries were respectively twelve, eleven, and nine feet in height.]

For all this Katherens was to receive the sum of £360; but since
Henslowe and Meade supplied a large share of the lumber and other
materials, the total cost of the building may be estimated as not less
than £600.

When completed, the new playhouse was appropriately christened "The

It has been generally assumed that a picture of the Hope is given in
Visscher's _View of London_, published in 1616; but this, I think, is
exceedingly doubtful. In drawing the Bankside, Visscher rather
slavishly copied the Agas map of 1560, inserting a few new
buildings,--notably the playhouses,--and it is virtually certain that
he represented the "Bear Garden" (so he distinctly calls it) and the
Globe as they were before their reconstruction.[546] The first
representation of the Hope is to be found in Hollar's splendid _View
of London_ published in 1647 (see page 326). At this time the
building, which had for many years been devoted wholly to the royal
sports of bull- and bear-baiting, was still standing. It is hard to
believe that an artist who so carefully represented the famous
edifices of the city should have greatly erred in drawing the "Bear
Baiting House,"--a structure more curious than they, and quite as

[Footnote 546: The Merian _View of London_, published in 1638 at
Frankfort-am-Main, is merely a copy of the Visscher view with the
addition of certain details from another and earlier view not yet
identified. It has no independent value. The _View of London_ printed
in Howell's _Londinopolis_ (1657), is merely a slavish copy of the
Merian view. Visscher's representation of the Bear Garden does not
differ in any essential way from the representation in Hondius's
_View_ of 1610. For a fuller discussion see pages 126, 146, 248.]

Hollar represents the Hope as circular. According to the contract
Katherens was "to build the same of such large compass, form,
wideness, and height as the playhouse called the Swan." Whether the
word "form" was intended to apply to the exterior of the building we
do not know. The Swan was decahedral; Visscher represents the "Bear
Garden" as octagonal (which is correct for the Bear Garden that
preceded the Hope). But since the exterior was of lime and plaster,
and a decahedral form had no advantage, Katherens may well have
constructed a circular building as Hollar indicates. Perhaps it is
significant in this connection that John Taylor, the Water-Poet, in
his _Bull, Bear, and Horse_, refers to the Hope as a "sweet,
_rotuntious_ college." Significant also, perhaps, is the clause in
the contract by which Katherens was required to "build the heavens all
over the stage," for this exactly describes the heavens as drawn by
Hollar. I see no reason to doubt that in the _View_ of 1647 we have a
reasonably faithful representation of the Hope.


The upper view is from Hollar's Post-conflagration map in the Crace
Collection of the British Museum; the lower view is from Faithorne's
Map of London (1658).]

The Hope was probably opened shortly after November 30, 1613, the date
at which Katherens had bound himself to have the building "fully
finished," and it was occupied, of course, by the Henslowe and
Rosseter troupe of actors. The arrangement of the movable stage
enabled Henslowe and Meade to use the building also for
animal-baiting. According to the contract with the actors, the latter
were to "lie still one day in fourteen" for the baiting.[547] This may
not have been a serious interruption for the players; but the presence
of the stable, the bear dens, and the kennels for the dogs must have
rendered the playhouse far from pleasant to the audiences. Ben Jonson,
in the Induction to his _Bartholomew Fair_, acted at the Hope in
October, 1614, remarks: "And though the Fair be not kept in the same
region that some here perhaps would have it, yet think that therein
the author hath observed a special decorum, the place being as dirty
as Smithfield, and as stinking every whit."[548]

[Footnote 547: Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 88; cf. p. 125, where
animal-baiting is said to be used "one day of every four days"--a
possible error for "fourteen days." In the manuscript notes to the
Phillipps copy of Stow's _Survey_ (1631), we are told that baiting was
used at the Hope on Tuesdays and Thursdays; but the anonymous
commentator is very inaccurate.]

[Footnote 548: The Rose Playhouse was likewise affected. Dekker, in
_Satiromastix_, III, iv, says: "Th'ast a breath as sweet as the Rose
that grows by the Bear Garden."]

In March, 1614,--that is, at the completion of one full year under the
joint management of Henslowe and Rosseter,--the amalgamated company
was "broken," and Rosseter withdrew, selling his interest in the
company's apparel to Henslowe and Meade for £63. The latter at once
reorganized the actors under the patent of the Lady Elizabeth's Men,
and continued them at the Hope.[549] The general excellence of the
troupe thus formed is referred to by John Taylor, the Water-Poet, in
the lines:

     And such a company (I'll boldly say)
     That better (nor the like) e'er play'd a play.[550]

[Footnote 549: Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 87. The articles of
agreement between Henslowe and Meade and the company, are printed by
Greg on page 23.]

[Footnote 550: _Works_, Folio of 1630; The Spenser Society's reprint,
p. 307.]

But this encomium may have been in large measure due to gratitude, for
the company had just saved the Water-Poet from a very embarrassing
situation. The amusing episode which gave occasion to this deserves to
be chronicled in some detail.

With "a thousand bills posted over the city" Taylor had advertised to
the public that at the Hope Playhouse on October 7, 1614, he would
engage in a contest of wit with one William Fennor, who proudly styled
himself "The King's Majesty's Riming Poet."[551] On the appointed day
the house was "fill'd with a great audience" that had paid extra money
to hear the contest between two such well-known extemporal wits. But
Fennor did not appear. The result may best be told by Taylor himself:

     I then stept out, their angers to appease;
     But they all raging, like tempestuous seas,
     Cry'd out, their expectations were defeated,
     And how they all were cony-catch'd and cheated.
     Some laught, some swore, some star'd and stamp'd and curst,
     And in confusèd humors all out burst.
     I (as I could) did stand the desp'rate shock,
     And bid the brunt of many dang'rous knock.
     For now the stinkards, in their ireful wraths,
     Bepelted me with lome, with stones, with laths.
     One madly sits like bottle-ale and hisses;
     Another throws a stone, and 'cause he misses,
     He yawnes and bawles, ...
     Some run to th' door to get again their coin ...
     One valiantly stepped upon the stage,
     And would tear down the hangings in his rage ...
     What I endur'd upon that earthly hell
     My tongue or pen cannot describe it well.[552]

[Footnote 551: Fennor is not to be confused (as is commonly done) with
Vennar (see p. 177). Such wit-contests were popular; Fennor had
recently challenged Kendall, on the Fortune Stage.]

[Footnote 552: John Taylor's _Works_, Folio of 1630, p. 142; The
Spenser Society's reprint, p. 304.]

At this point the actors came to his rescue and presented a play that
mollified the audience. Taylor had to content himself with a printed
justification. The bitter invective of Taylor against Fennor,
Fennor's reply, and Taylor's several answers are to be found in the
folio edition of the Water-Poet's works. The episode doubtless
furnished much amusement to the city.

Some three weeks after this event, on October 31, 1614, the Lady
Elizabeth's Men produced with great success Jonson's _Bartholomew
Fair_; and on November 1 they were called upon to give the play at
Court. But the career of the company was in the main unhappy. Henslowe
managed their affairs on the theory that "should these fellows come
out of my debt, I should have no rule with them."[553] Accordingly in
three years he "broke" and again reorganized them no fewer than five

[Footnote 553: Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 89.]

At last, in February, 1615, he not only "broke" the company, but
severed his connection with them for ever. He turned the hired men
over to other troupes, and sold the stock of apparel "to strangers"
for £400. The indignant actors, in June, 1615, drew up "Articles of
Grievance" in which they charged Henslowe with having extorted from
the company by unjust means the sum of £567; and also "Articles of
Oppression" in which they accused him of various dishonorable
practices in his dealings with them.[554]

[Footnote 554: _Ibid._, pp. 86, 89.]

Shortly after severing his connection with the Lady Elizabeth's Men,
Henslowe, in March, 1615, seems to have taken over Prince Charles's
Men, who, it appears, had been acting at the Swan. To this new
company--the "strangers" referred to, I think--he had already
transferred some of the hirelings, and had sold the Hope stock of
apparel for £400.

Henslowe died early in January of the following year, 1616, and his
interest in the theatre passed to Edward Alleyn. On March 20, 1616,
Alleyn and Meade engaged Prince Charles's Men to continue at the Hope
"according to the former articles of agreement had and made with the
said Philip [Henslowe] and Jacob [Meade]."[555] The actors
acknowledged themselves indebted to Henslowe "for a stock of apparel
used for playing apparel, to the value of £400, heretofore delivered
unto them by the said Philip,"[556]--the stock formerly used by the
Lady Elizabeth's Men; and Alleyn and Meade agreed to accept £200 in
full discharge of that debt.[557]

[Footnote 555: Collier, _Memoirs of Edward Alleyn_, p. 127; Greg,
_Henslowe Papers_, p. 91.]

[Footnote 556: Collier, _Memoirs of Edward Alleyn_, p. 127.]

[Footnote 557: My interpretation of the relation of Henslowe to Prince
Charles's Men differs from the interpretation given by Fleay and
adopted by Greg and others. For the evidence bearing on the case see
Fleay, _Stage_, pp. 188, 262; Greg, _Henslowe's Diary_, II, 138; Greg,
_Henslowe Papers_, p. 90, note; Chambers, _Modern Language Review_,
IV, 165; Cunningham, _Revels_, p. xliv; Wallace, _Englische Studien_,
XLIII, 390; Murray, _English Dramatic Companies_.]

In the winter of 1616-17, Prince Charles's Men quarreled with Meade,
who had appropriated an extra day for his bear-baiting. Rosseter had
just completed a new private theatre in Porter's Hall, Blackfriars,
and that stood invitingly open. So about February they abandoned the
Hope, and wrote a letter of explanation to Edward Alleyn: "I hope you
mistake not our removal from the Bankside. We stood the intemperate
weather, 'till more intemperate Mr. Meade thrust us over, taking the
day from us which by course was ours."[558]

[Footnote 558: Greg, _Henslowe Papers_, p. 93. Cf. also the chapter on
"Rosseter's Blackfriars."]

After the company quarreled with Meade and deserted the Hope, there is
no evidence that the building was again used for plays. It became
associated almost entirely with animal-baiting, fencing, feats of
activity, and such-like performances; and gradually the very name
"Hope," which was identified with acting, gave way to the earlier
designation "Bear Garden." In 1632 the author of _Holland's Leaguer_
remarks that "wild beasts and gladiators did most possess it"; and
such must have been the chief use of the building down to 1642, when
animal-baiting was prohibited by Parliament.[559]

[Footnote 559: Collier, _The History of English Dramatic Poetry_
(1879), III, 102; Ordish, _Early London Theatres_, p. 237.]

On January 14, 1647, at the disposition of the Church lands, the Hope
was sold for £1783 15_s._[560]

[Footnote 560: Arthur Tiler, _St. Saviour's_, p. 51; Reed's Dodsley,
IX, 175.]

In certain manuscript notes entered in the Phillipps copy of Stow's
_Annals_ (1631), we read:

     The Hope, on the Bankside, in Southwarke, commonly called
     the Bear Garden, a playhouse for stage-plays on Mondays,
     Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays, and for the baiting of
     Bears on Tuesdays and Thursdays, the stage being made to
     take up and down when they please. It was built in the year
     1610, and now pulled down to make tenements, by Thomas
     Walker, a petticoat-maker in Cannon Street, on Tuesday, the
     25 day of March, 1656. Seven of Mr. Godfrey's bears, by the
     command of Thomas Pride, then high sheriff of Surrey, were
     then shot to death on Saturday the 9 day of February, 1655
     [i.e. 1656], by a company of soldiers.[561]

[Footnote 561: Printed in _The Academy_, October 28, 1882, p. 314. As
to "Mr. Godfrey" see Collier, _The History of English Dramatic Poetry_
(1879), III, 102.]

The mistakes in the earlier part of this note are obvious, yet the
latter part is so circumstantial that we cannot well doubt its general
accuracy. The building, however, was not pulled down "to the ground,"
though its interior may have been converted into tenements.

At the Restoration, when the royal sport of bear-baiting was revived,
the Hope was again fitted up as an amphitheatre and opened to the
public. The Earl of Manchester, on September 29, 1664, wrote to the
city authorities, requesting that the butchers be required, as of old,
to provide food for the dogs and bears:

     He had been informed by the Master of His Majesty's Game of
     Bears and Bulls, and others, that the Butchers' Company had
     formerly caused all their offal in Eastcheap and Newgate
     Market to be conveyed by the beadle of that Company unto
     two barrow houses, conveniently placed on the river side,
     for the provision and feeding of the King's Game of Bears,
     which custom had been interrupted in the late troubles when
     the bears were killed. His Majesty's game being now removed
     to the usual place on the Bankside, by Order of the Council,
     he recommended the Court of Aldermen to direct the Master
     and Wardens of the Butchers' Company to have their offal
     conveyed as formerly for the feeding of the bears, &c.[562]

[Footnote 562: _The Remembrancia_, p. 478. Quoted by Ordish, _Early
London Theatres_, p. 241.]

For some years the Bear Garden flourished as it had in the days of
Elizabeth and James. It was frequently visited by Samuel Pepys, who
has left vivid accounts of several performances there. In his _Diary_,
August 14, 1666, he writes:

     After dinner with my wife and Mercer to the Bear-garden;
     where I have not been, I think, of many years, and saw some
     good sport of the bull's tossing of the dogs: one into the
     very boxes. But it is a very rude and nasty pleasure. We had
     a great many hectors in the same box with us (and one, very
     fine, went into the pit, and played his dog for a wager,
     which was a strange sport for a gentleman), where they drank
     wine, and drank Mercer's health first; which I pledged with
     my hat off.

John Evelyn, likewise, in his _Diary_, June 16, 1670, records a visit
to the Bear Garden:

     I went with some friends to the Bear Garden, where was
     cock-fighting, dog-fighting, bear- and bull-baiting, it
     being a famous day for all these butcherly sports, or rather
     barbarous cruelties. The bulls did exceeding well; but the
     Irish wolf-dog exceeded, which was a tall greyhound, a
     stately creature indeed, who beat a cruel mastiff. One of
     the bulls tossed a dog full into a lady's lap as she sat in
     one of the boxes at a considerable height from the arena.
     Two poor dogs were killed; and so all ended with the ape on
     horseback, and I most heartily weary of the rude and dirty
     pastime, which I had not seen, I think, in twenty years

On January 7, 1676, the Spanish Ambassador was entertained at the Bear
Garden, as we learn from a warrant, dated March 28, 1676, for the
payment of £10 "to James Davies, Esq., Master of His Majesty's Bears,
Bulls, and Dogs, for making ready the rooms at the Bear Garden, and
baiting of the bears before the Spanish Ambassador, the 7 January
last, 1675 {6}."[563]

[Footnote 563: British Museum Additional MSS. 5750; quoted by
Cunningham, _Handbook of London_ (1849), I, 67.]

Rendle[564] quotes from _The Loyal Protestant_ an advertisement of an
entertainment to be given so late as 1682 "at the Hope on the
Bankside, being His Majesty's Bear Garden." And Malcolm writes the
following account of the baiting of a horse there in April of the same

     Notice was given in the papers that on the twelfth of April
     a horse, of uncommon strength, and between 18 and 19 hands
     high, would be _baited to death at his Majesty's
     Bear-Garden_ at the Hope on the Bankside, for the amusement
     of the Morocco ambassador, many of the nobility who knew the
     horse, and any others who would pay the price of admission.
     It seems this animal originally belonged to the Earl of
     Rochester, and being of a ferocious disposition, had killed
     several of his brethren; for which misdeed he was sold to
     the Earl of Dorchester; in whose service, committing several
     similar offenses, he was transferred to the worse than
     savages who kept the Bear-Garden. On the day appointed
     several dogs were set upon the vindictive steed, which he
     destroyed or drove from the arena; at this instant his
     owners determined to preserve him for a future day's sport,
     and directed a person to lead him away; but before the horse
     had reached London Bridge the spectators demanded the
     fulfilment of the promise of baiting him to death, and began
     to destroy the building: to conclude, the poor beast was
     brought back, and other dogs set upon him, without effect,
     when he was stabbed to death with a sword.[565]

[Footnote 564: _The Antiquarian Magazine and Bibliographer_, VIII,

[Footnote 565: James Peller Malcolm, _Anecdotes of the Manners and
Customs of London from the Roman Invasion to the Year 1700_ (London,
1811), p. 425.]

This is the last reference to the Hope that I have been able to
discover. Soon after this date the "royal sport of bulls, bears, and
dogs" was moved to Hockley-in-the-hole, Clerkenwell, where, as the
advertisements inform us, at "His Majesty's Bear Garden" the baiting
of animals was to be frequently seen.[566] Strype, in his _Survey of
London_, thus describes Bear Garden Alley on the Bankside:

     Bear Alley runs into Maiden Lane. Here is a Glass House; and
     about the middle is a new-built Court, well inhabited,
     called Bear Garden Square, so called as built in the place
     where the _Bear Garden_ formerly stood, until removed to the
     other side of the water: which is more convenient for the
     butchers, and such like who are taken with such rustic
     sports as the baiting of bears and bulls.[567]

[Footnote 566: The earliest advertisement of the Bear Garden at
Hockley-in-the-hole that I have come upon is dated 1700. For a
discussion of the sports there see J.P. Malcolm, _Anecdotes of the
Manners and Customs of London during the Eighteenth Century_ (1808),
p. 321; Cunningham, _Handbook of London_, under "Hockley"; W.B.
Boulton, _Amusements of Old London_, vol. I, chap. I.]

[Footnote 567: Ordish (_Early London Theatres_, p. 242) is mistaken in
thinking that the old building was converted into a glass house. He
says: "The last reference to the Hope shows that it had declined to
the point of extinction," and he quotes an advertisement from the
_Gazette_, June 18, 1681, as follows: "There is now made at the Bear
Garden glass-house, on the Bankside, crown window-glass, much
exceeding French glass in all its qualifications, which may be squared
into all sizes of sashes for windows, and other uses, and may be had
at most glaziers in London." From Strype's _Survey_ it is evident that
the glass house was in Bear Garden Alley, but not on the site of the
old Bear Garden.]

In the map which he gives of this region (reproduced on page 245) the
position of the Hope is clearly marked by the square near the middle
of Bear Alley.



Philip Rosseter, the poet and musician, first appears as a theatrical
manager in 1610, when he secured a royal patent for the Children of
the Queen's Revels to act at Whitefriars. This company performed there
successfully under his management until March, 1613, when, for some
unknown reason, he formed a partnership with Philip Henslowe, who was
managing the Lady Elizabeth's Men at the Swan. The two companies were
combined, and the new organization, under the name of "The Lady
Elizabeth's Men," made use of both playhouses, the Swan as a summer
and the Whitefriars as a winter home.

As already explained in the preceding chapters, Rosseter's lease on
the Whitefriars Playhouse was to expire in 1614, and apparently he was
unable to renew the lease.[568] Naturally he and his partner Henslowe
were anxious to secure a private playhouse in the city to serve as a
winter home for their troupe, especially since the Swan was poorly
situated for winter patronage. This may explain the following entry in
Sir George Buc's Office-Book: "July 13, 1613, for a license to erect a
new playhouse in Whitefriars &c. £20."[569] The new playhouse,
however, was not built. Probably the opposition of the inhabitants of
the district led to its prohibition.

[Footnote 568: Nathaniel Field, the leading actor at Whitefriars,
published _A Woman is a Weathercock_ in 1612, with the statement to
the reader: "If thou hast anything to say to me, thou know'st where to
hear of me for a year or two, and no more, I assure thee." Possibly
this reflects the failure of the managers to renew the lease; after
1614 Field did not know where he would be acting. But editors have
generally regarded it as meaning that Field intended to withdraw from

[Footnote 569: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 52.]

At the expiration of one year, in March, 1614, Rosseter withdrew from
his partnership with Henslowe, and on the old patent of the Children
of the Queen's Revels (which he had retained) organized a new company
to travel in the country.

In the following year, 1615, he and certain others, Philip Kingman,
Robert Jones, and Ralph Reeve, secured a lease of "diverse buildings,
cellars, sollars, chambers, and yards for the building of a playhouse
thereupon for the better practising and exercise of the said Children
of the Revels; all which premises are situate and being within the
precinct of the Blackfriars, near Puddlewharf, in the suburbs of
London, called by the name of the Lady Saunders's House, or otherwise
Porter's Hall."[570] It was their purpose to convert this hall into a
playhouse to rival the near-by Blackfriars; and in accordance with
this purpose, on June 3, 1615, Rosseter secured a royal license under
the Great Seal of England "to erect, build, and set up in and upon the
said premises before mentioned one convenient playhouse for the said
Children of the Revels, the same playhouse to be used by the Children
of the Revels for the time being of the Queene's Majesty, and for the
Prince's Players, and for the Lady Elizabeth's Players."[571]

[Footnote 570: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 277. For the
location of Puddlewharf see the map of the Blackfriars precinct on
page 94.]

[Footnote 571: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 277.]

The work of converting Porter's Hall into a playhouse seems to have
begun at once. On September 26, 1615, the Privy Council records "that
one Rosseter, and others, having obtained license under the Great Seal
of England for the building of a playhouse, have pulled down [i.e.,
stripped the interior of] a great messuage in Puddlewharf, which was
sometimes the house of the Lady Saunders, within the precinct of the
Blackfriars, and are now erecting a new playhouse in that place."[572]

[Footnote 572: _Ibid._, p. 373.]

The city authorities, always hostile to the actors and jealous of any
new theatres, made so vigorous a complaint to the Privy Council that
the Lords of the Council "thought fit to send for Rosseter." He came,
bringing his royal license. This document was carefully "perused by
the Lord Chief Justice of England," who succeeded in discovering in
the wording of one of its clauses a trivial flaw that would enable the
Privy Council, on a technicality, to prohibit the building: "The Lord
Chief Justice did deliver to their Lordships that the license granted
to the said Rosseter did extend to the building of a playhouse without
the liberties of London, and not within the city."[573] Now, in 1608
the liberty of Blackfriars had by a special royal grant been placed
within the jurisdiction of the city. Rosseter's license unluckily had
described the Lady Saunders's house as being "in the suburbs," though,
of course, the description was otherwise specific enough: "all which
premises are situate and being within the precinct of the Blackfriars,
near Puddlewharf, in the suburbs of London, called by the name of the
Lady Saunders's House, or otherwise Porter's Hall."

[Footnote 573: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 373.]

Since "the inconveniences urged by the Lord Mayor and Aldermen were
many," the Lords of the Privy Council decided to take advantage of the
flaw discovered by the Lord Chief Justice, and prohibit the erection
of the playhouse. Their order, issued September 26, 1615, reads as

     It was this day ordered by their Lordships that there shall
     be no playhouse erected in that place, and that the Lord
     Mayor of London shall straightly prohibit the said Rosseter
     and the rest of the patentees, and their workmen to proceed
     in the making and converting the said building into a
     playhouse. And if any of the patentees or their workmen
     shall proceed in their intended building contrary to this
     their Lordships' inhibition, that then the Lord Mayor shall
     commit him or them so offending unto prison and certify
     their Lordships of their contempt in that behalf.[574]

[Footnote 574: _Ibid._]

This order, for the time being, halted work on the new playhouse. The
Children of the Revels were forced to spend the next year traveling in
the provinces; and the Lady Elizabeth's Men and Prince Charles's Men
had to remain on the Bankside and endure the oppressions of Henslowe
and later of Meade. Possibly their sufferings at the hands of Meade
led them to urge Rosseter to complete at once the much desired house
in the city. At any rate, in the winter of 1616, Rosseter, believing
himself strongly enough entrenched behind his royal patent, resumed
work on converting Porter's Hall into a theatre. The city authorities
issued "diverse commandments and prohibitions," but he paid no
attention to these, and pushed the work to completion. The building
seems to have been ready for the actors about the first of January,
1617. Thereupon the company which had been occupying the Hope deserted
that playhouse and "came over" to Rosseter's Blackfriars.[575] In the
new playhouse they presented Nathaniel Field's comedy, _Amends for
Ladies_, which was printed the following year "as it was acted at the
Blackfriars both by the Prince's Servants and the Lady Elizabeth's."

[Footnote 575: See the chapter on "The Hope."]

The actors, however, were not allowed to enjoy their new home very
long. On January 27, 1617, the Privy Council dispatched the following
letter to the Lord Mayor:

     Whereas His Majesty is informed that notwithstanding diverse
     commandments and prohibitions to the contrary, there be
     certain persons that go about to set up a playhouse in the
     Blackfriars near unto His Majesty's Wardrobe, and for that
     purpose have lately erected and made fit a building, which
     is almost if not fully finished. You shall understand that
     His Majesty hath this day expressly signified his pleasure
     that the same shall be pulled down, so as it be made unfit
     for any such use; whereof we require your Lordship to take
     notice and to cause it to be performed accordingly, with all
     speed, and thereupon to certify us of your proceeding.

There can be no doubt that an order so peremptory, carrying the
authority both of the Privy Council and of the King, and requiring an
immediate report, was performed "with all speed." After this we hear
nothing more of the playhouse in Puddlewharf.[576]

[Footnote 576: I can find no further reference to the Puddlewharf
Theatre either in the _Records_ of the Privy Council or in the
_Remembrancia_ of the City. Collier, however, in his _History of
English Dramatic Poetry_ (1879), I, 384, says: "The city authorities
proceeded immediately to the work, and before three days had elapsed,
the Privy Council was duly and formally made acquainted with the fact
that Rosseter's theatre had been 'made unfit for any such use' as that
for which it had been constructed." Collier fails to cite his
authority for the statement; the passage he quotes may be found in the
order of the Privy Council printed above.]



The private playhouse opened in Drury Lane[577] in 1617 seems to have
been officially named "The Phoenix"; but to the players and the
public alike it was more commonly known as "The Cockpit." This implies
some earlier connection of the site or of the building with
cock-fighting, from time out of mind a favorite sport in England.
Stowe writes in his _Survey_: "Cocks of the game are yet cherished by
diverse men for their pleasures, much money being laid on their heads,
when they fight in pits, whereof some be costly made for that
purpose." These pits, it seems, were circular in shape, and if large
enough might well be used for dramatic purposes. Shakespeare, in
_Henry V_ (1599), likens his playhouse to a cockpit:

                           Can this cockpit hold
     The vasty fields of France? or may we cram
     Within this wooden O the very casques
     That did affright the air at Agincourt?

[Footnote 577: Its exact position in Drury Lane is indicated by an
order of the Privy Council, June 8, 1623, concerning the paving of a
street at the rear of the theatre: "Whereas the highway leading along
the backside of the Cockpit Playhouse near Lincolns Inn Fields, and
the street called Queens Street adjoining to the same, are become very
foul," etc. (See The Malone Society _Collections_, I, 383. Queens
Street may be readily found in Faithorne's _Map of London_.) Malone
(_Variorum_, III, 53) states that "it was situated opposite the Castle
Tavern." The site is said to be marked by Pit Court.]

It is possible, then, that the building was an old cockpit made into a
playhouse. Howes,[578] in enumerating the London theatres, says: "Five
inns or common hostelries turned into playhouses, one cockpit, St.
Paul's singing-school," etc. And Thomas Randolph, in verses prefixed
to James Shirley's _Grateful Servant_ (printed in 1630 as it was acted
"in the private house in Drury Lane"), suggests the same

     When thy intelligence on the Cockpit stage
     Gives it a soul from her immortal rage,
     I hear the Muse's birds with full delight
     Sing where the birds of Mars were wont to fight.

[Footnote 578: Stow's _Annals_ (1631), p. 1004.]

But in this fantastic conceit Randolph may have been thinking simply
of the name of the theatre; possibly he knew nothing of its early
history. On the whole it seems more likely that the playhouse was
newly erected in 1617 upon the site of an old cockpit. The name
"Phoenix" suggests that possibly the old cockpit had been destroyed
by fire, and that from its ashes had arisen a new building.[579]
Howes describes the Phoenix as being in 1617 "a new playhouse,"[580]
and Camden, who is usually accurate in such matters, refers to it in
the same year as "nuper erectum."[581]

[Footnote 579: Some scholars have supposed that the playhouse, when
attacked by the apprentices in 1617, was burned, and that the name
"Phoenix" was given to the building after its reconstruction. But
the building was not burned; it was merely wrecked on the inside by

[Footnote 580: Continuation of Stow's _Annals_ (1631), p. 1026.]

[Footnote 581: William Camden, _Annals_, under the date of March 4,
1617. Yet Sir Sidney Lee (_A Life of William Shakespeare_, p. 60)
says, "built about 1610."]

Of its size and shape all our information comes from James Wright, who
in his _Historia Histrionica_[582] tells us that the Cockpit differed
in no essential feature from Blackfriars and Salisbury Court, "for
they were all three built almost exactly alike for form and bigness."
Since we know that Blackfriars and Salisbury Court were small
rectangular theatres, the former constructed in a hall forty-six feet
broad and sixty-six feet long, the latter erected on a plot of ground
forty-two feet broad and one hundred and forty feet long, we are not
left entirely ignorant of the shape and the approximate size of the
Cockpit.[583] And from Middleton's _Inner Temple Masque_ (1618) we
learn that it was constructed of brick. Its sign, presumably, was that
of a phoenix rising out of flames.

[Footnote 582: Hazlitt's Dodsley, XV, 408.]

[Footnote 583: Fleay and Lawrence are wrong in supposing that the
Cockpit was circular.]


The site is marked by Cockpit Court. (From Rocque's _Map of London_,

The playhouse was erected and managed by Christopher Beeston,[584] one
of the most important actors and theatrical managers of the
Elizabethan period. We first hear of him as a member of Shakespeare's
troupe. In 1602 he joined Worcester's Company. In 1612 he became the
manager of Queen Anne's Company at the Red Bull. He is described at
that time as "a thriving man, and one that was of ability and
means."[585] He continued as manager of the Queen Anne's Men at the
Red Bull until 1617, when he transferred them to his new playhouse in
Drury Lane.

[Footnote 584: _Alias_ Christopher Hutchinson. Several actors of the
day employed _aliases_: Nicholas Wilkinson, _alias_ Tooley; Theophilus
Bourne, _alias_ Bird; James Dunstan, _alias_ Tunstall, etc. Whether
Beeston admitted other persons to a share in the building I cannot
learn. In a passage quoted by Malone (_Variorum_, III, 121) from the
Herbert Manuscript, dated February 20, 1635, there is a reference to
"housekeepers," indicating that Beeston had then admitted "sharers" in
the proprietorship of the building. And in an order of the Privy
Council, May 12, 1637 (The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 392), we
read: "Command the keepers of the playhouse called the Cockpit in
Drury Lane, who either live in it or have relation to it, not to
permit plays to be acted there till further order."]

[Footnote 585: Wallace, _Three London Theatres_, p. 35.]

The playhouse seems to have been ready to receive the players about
the end of February, 1617. We know that they were still performing at
the Red Bull as late as February 23;[586] but by March 4 they had
certainly moved to the Cockpit.

[Footnote 586: Wallace, _ibid._, pp. 32, 46. John Smith was delivering
silk and other clothes to the Queen Anne's Men at the Red Bull from
1612 until February 23, 1617.]

On the latter date, during the performance of a play, the Cockpit was
entered by a mob of disorderly persons, who proceeded to demolish the
interior. The occasion for the wrecking of the new playhouse was the
Shrove Tuesday saturnalia of the London apprentices, who from time
immemorial had employed this holiday to pull down houses of ill-fame
in the suburbs. That the Cockpit was situated in the neighborhood of
such houses cannot be doubted. We may suppose that the mob, fresh from
sacking buildings, had crowded into the playhouse in the afternoon,
and before the play was over had wrecked that building too.

The event created a great stir at the time. William Camden, in his
_Annals_, wrote under the date of March 4, 1617:

     Theatrum ludiorum, nuper erectum in Drury Lane, a furente
     multitudine diruitur, et apparatus dilaceratur.

Howes, in his continuation of Stow's _Annals_, writes:

     Shrove-Tuesday, the fourth of March, many disordered persons
     of sundry kinds, amongst whom were very many young boys and
     lads, that assembled themselves in Lincolnes Inn Field,
     Finsbury Field, in Ratcliffe, and Stepney Field, where in
     riotous manner they did beat down the walls and windows of
     many victualing houses and of all other houses which they
     suspected to be bawdy houses. And that afternoon they
     spoiled a new playhouse, and did likewise more hurt in
     diverse other places.[587]

[Footnote 587: _Annals_ (1631), p. 1026.]

That several persons were killed, and many injured, is disclosed by a
letter from the Privy Council to the Lord Mayor, dated March 5, 1617:

     It is not unknown unto you what tumultuous outrages were
     yesterday committed near unto the city of London in diverse
     places by a rowt of lewd and loose persons, apprentices and
     others, especially in Lincolns Inn Fields and Drury Lane,
     where in attempting to pull down a playhouse belonging to
     the Queen's Majesty's Servants, there were diverse persons
     slain, and others hurt and wounded, the multitude there
     assembled being to the number of many thousands, as we are
     credibly informed.[588]

[Footnote 588: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 374. Collier, in
_The History of English Dramatic Poetry_ (1879), I, 386, prints a long
ballad on the event; but he does not give its source, and its
genuineness has been questioned. The following year threats to pull
down the Fortune, the Red Bull, and the Cockpit led to the setting of
special watches. See The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 377.]

The Queen's Men returned to the Red Bull and acted there until their
ruined playhouse could be repaired. Three months later, on June 3,
they again occupied the Cockpit,[589] and continued there until the
death of Queen Anne on March 2, 1619.[590]

[Footnote 589: Greenstreet, Documents, _The New Shakspere Society's
Transactions_ (1880-86), p. 504.]

[Footnote 590: Mr. Wallace (_Three London Theatres_, p. 29) says that
the documents he prints make it "as certain as circumstances
unsupported by contemporary declaration can make it, that Queen Anne's
company occupied the Red Bull continuously from the time of its
erection ... till their dissolution, 1619." His documents make it
certain only that Queen Anne's Men occupied the Red Bull until
February 23, 1617. Other documents prove that they occupied the
Cockpit from 1617 until 1619. (Note the letter of the Privy Council
quoted above.) The documents printed by Greenstreet show that Queen
Anne's Men moved to the Cockpit on June 3, 1617, and continued there.]

This event led to the dissolution of the company. For a year or more
its members had been "falling at variance and strife amongst
themselves," and when the death of the Queen deprived them of a
"service," they "separated and divided themselves into other
companies."[591] As a result of the quarrels certain members of the
company made charges against their former manager, Beeston: "The said
Beeston having from the beginning a greater care for his own private
gain, and not respecting the good of these defendants and the rest of
his fellows and companions, hath in the place and trust aforesaid much
enriched himself, and hath of late given over his coat and
condition,[592] and separated and divided himself from these
defendants, carrying away not only all the furniture and apparel,"
etc.[593] The charges against Beeston's honesty may be dismissed; but
it seems clear that he had withdrawn from his former companions, and
was preparing to entertain a new troupe of actors at his playhouse.
And Beeston himself tells us, on November 23, 1619, that "after Her
Majesty's decease, he entered into the service of the most noble
Prince Charles."[594] Thus Prince Charles's Men, after their
unfortunate experiences at the Hope and at Rosseter's Blackfriars,
came to Beeston's playhouse, where they remained until 1622. In the
spring of that year, however, they moved to the Curtain, and the
Princess Elizabeth's Men occupied the Cockpit.[595] Under their
tenancy, the playhouse seems to have attained an enviable reputation.
Heminges and Condell, in the epistle to the readers, prefixed to the
Folio of Shakespeare (1623), bear testimony to this in the following
terms: "And though you be a Magistrate of Wit, and sit on the stage at
Blackfriars, or the Cockpit, to arraign plays daily." A further
indication of their prosperity is to be found in the records of St.
Giles's Church; for when in 1623 the parish undertook the erection of
a new church building, "the players of the Cockpit," we are informed,
contributed the large sum of £20, and the proprietors, represented by
Christopher Beeston, gave £19 1_s._ 5_d._[596]

[Footnote 591: Wallace, _Three London Theatres_, p. 33.]

[Footnote 592: He had joined Prince Charles's Men.]

[Footnote 593: Wallace, _Three London Theatres_, p. 38.]

[Footnote 594: _Ibid._, p. 40. Fleay, Murray, and others have
contended that the Princess Elizabeth's Men came to the Cockpit in
1619, and have denied the accuracy of the title-page of _The Witch of
Edmonton_ (1658), which declares that play to have been "acted by the
Prince's Servants at the Cockpit often." (See Fleay, _A Chronicle
History of the London Stage_, p. 299.)]

[Footnote 595: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 59.]

[Footnote 596: John Parton, _Some Account of the Hospital and Parish
of St. Giles in the Fields_, p. 235. From a parish entry in 1660 we
learn that the players had to contribute 2_d._ to the parish poor for
each day that there was acting at the Cockpit. (See _ibid._, p. 236.)]

The Princess Elizabeth's Men continued to act at the Cockpit until
May, 1625, when all theatres were closed on account of the plague.
Beeston made this the occasion to organize a new company called "Queen
Henrietta's Men"; and when the theatres were allowed to reopen, about
December, 1625,[597] this new company was in possession of the
Cockpit. But the reputation of the playhouse seems not to have been
enhanced by the performances of this troupe. In 1629, Lenton, in _The
Young Gallant's Whirligig_, writes sneeringly:

     The Cockpit heretofore would serve his wit,
     But now upon the Friars' Stage he'll sit.

[Footnote 597: In the _Middlesex County Records_, III, 6, we find that
on December 6, 1625, because "the drawing of people together to places
was a great means of spreading and continuing the infection ... this
Court doth prohibit the players of the house at the Cockpit, being
next to His Majesty's Court at Whitehall, commanding them to surcease
all such their proceedings until His Majesty's pleasure be further
signified." Apparently the playhouses in general had been allowed to
resume performances; and since by December 24 there had been no deaths
from the plague for a week, the special inhibition of the Cockpit
Playhouse was soon lifted.]

And in the following year, 1630, Thomas Carew in verses prefixed to
Davenport's _Just Italian_, attacks the Red Bull and the Cockpit as
"adulterate" stages where "noise prevails," and "not a tongue of th'
untun'd kennel can a line repeat of serious sense." Queen Henrietta's
Men probably continued to occupy the building until May 12, 1636, when
the theatres were again closed on account of a serious outbreak of the
plague. The plague continued for nearly a year and a half, and during
this time the company was dissolved.[598]

[Footnote 598: "When Her Majesty's Servants were at the Cockpit, being
all at liberty, they dispersed themselves to several companies."
(Heton's Patent, 1639, _The Shakespeare Society Papers_, IV, 96.)]

Before the plague had ceased, early in 1637, "Mr. Beeston was
commanded to make a company of boys."[599] In the Office-Book of the
Lord Chamberlain we find, under the date of February 21, 1637:
"Warrant to swear Mr. Christopher Beeston His Majesty's Servant in the
place of Governor of the new company of The King's and Queen's
Boys."[600] The first recorded performance by this new company was at
Court on February 7, 1637.[601] On February 23, the number of deaths
from the plague having diminished, acting was again permitted; but at
the expiration of one week, on March 2, the number of deaths having
increased, all playhouses were again closed. During this single week
the King's and Queen's Boys, we may suppose, acted at the

[Footnote 599: Herbert Manuscript, Malone, _Variorum_, III, 240.]

[Footnote 600: Stopes, "Shakespeare's Fellows and Followers,"
Shakespeare _Jahrbuch_, XLVI, 99. In 1639 Heton applied for a patent
as "Governor" of the company at Salisbury Court.]

[Footnote 601: On May 10 Beeston was paid for "two plays acted by the
New Company." See Stopes, "Shakespeare's Fellows and Followers," in
the Shakespeare _Jahrbuch_, XLVI, 99.]

[Footnote 602: Herbert Manuscript, Malone, _Variorum_, III, 240.]

On May 12, Beeston was arrested and brought before the Privy Council
for having allowed his Boys to act a play at the Cockpit during the
inhibition.[603] In his apology he explains this as follows:
"Petitioner being commanded to erect and prepare a company of young
actors for Their Majesties's service, and being desirous to know how
they profited by his instructions, invited some noblemen and
gentlemen to see them act at his house, the Cockpit. For which, since
he perceives it is imputed as a fault, he is very sorry, and craves

[Footnote 603: The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 392.]

[Footnote 604: _The Calendar of State Papers, Domestic, 1636-1637_, p.

On September 17, 1637, "Christopher Beeston, His Majesty's servant, by
petition to the Board, showed that he hath many young actors lying
unpractised by reason of the restraint occasioned by infection of the
plague, whereby they are much disabled to perform their service, and
besought that they might have leave to practise. It was ordered that
Beeston should be at liberty to practise his actors at Michaelmas next
[September 29], if there be no considerable increase of the sickness,
nor that there die more than died last week."[605]

[Footnote 605: _Ibid._, _1637_, p. 420.]

On October 2, 1637, the plague having abated, all playhouses were
opened, and the King's and Queen's Boys, Herbert tells us, began to
play at the Cockpit "the same day."[606] Here, under the popular name
of "Beeston's Boys," they enjoyed a long and successful career, which
ended only with the prohibition of acting in 1642.

[Footnote 606: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 240.]

In 1639 Christopher Beeston died, and the position of Governor of the
Boys was conferred upon his son, William Beeston, who had long been
associated in the management of the company,[607] and who, if we may
believe Francis Kirkman, was admirably qualified for the position. In
dedicating to him _The Loves and Adventures of Clerico and Lozia_,
Kirkman says:

     Divers times in my hearing, to the admiration of the whole
     company, you have most judiciously discoursed of Poesie:
     which is the cause I presume to choose you for my patron and
     protector, who are the happiest interpreter and judge of our
     English stage-plays this nation ever produced; which the
     poets and actors of these times cannot (without ingratitude)
     deny; for I have heard the chief and most ingenious
     acknowledge their fames and profits essentially sprung from
     your instruction, judgment, and fancy.

[Footnote 607: He is referred to as their Governor on August 10, 1639;
see Malone, _Variorum_, III, 159.]

But in spite of all this, William Beeston's career as Governor was of
short duration. About the first of May, 1640, he allowed the Boys to
act without license a play that gave great offense to the King.
Herbert, the Master of the Revels, writes of this play that it "had
relation to the passages of the King's journey into the north, and was
complained of by His Majesty to me, with command to punish the
offenders."[608] In the Office-Book of the Lord Chamberlain, under the
date of May 3, 1640, we read:

     Whereas William Beeston and the company of the players of
     the Cockpit, in Drury Lane, have lately acted a new play
     without any license from the Master of His Majesty's Revels,
     and being commanded to forbear playing or acting of the same
     play by the said Master of the Revels, and commanded
     likewise to forbear all manner of playing, have
     notwithstanding, in contempt of the authority of the said
     Master of the Revels, and the power granted unto him under
     the Great Seal of England, acted the said play, and others,
     to the prejudice of His Majesty's service, and in contempt
     of the Office of the Revels, [whereby] he and they and all
     other companies ever have been and ought to be governed and
     regulated: These are therefore in His Majesty's name, and
     signification of his royal pleasure, to command the said
     William Beeston and the rest of that company of the Cockpit
     players from henceforth and upon sight hereof, to forbear to
     act any plays whatsoever until they shall be restored by the
     said Master of the Revels unto their former liberty. Whereof
     all parties concernable are to take notice, and conform
     accordingly, as they and every one of them will answer it at
     their peril.[609]

[Footnote 608: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 241.]

[Footnote 609: Collier, _The History of English Dramatic Poetry_
(1879), II, 32; Stopes, _op. cit._, p. 102.]

Herbert records in his Office-Book:

     On Monday the 4 May, 1640, William Beeston was taken by a
     messenger and committed to the Marshalsea by my Lord
     Chamberlain's warrant, for playing a play without license.
     The same day the company at the Cockpit was commanded by my
     Lord Chamberlain's warrant to forbear playing, for playing
     when they were forbidden by me, and for other disobedience,
     and lay still Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. On Thursday,
     at my Lord Chamberlain's entreaty, I gave them their
     liberty, and upon their petition of submission subscribed by
     the players, I restored them to their liberty on

[Footnote 610: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 241. Herbert did not forget
Beeston's insubordination, and in 1660, in issuing to Beeston a
license to use the Salisbury Court Playhouse, he inserted clauses to
prevent further difficulty of this kind (see _Variorum_, III, 243).]

To this period of Beeston's imprisonment I should refer the puzzling
Epilogue of Brome's _The Court Beggar_:

     There's wit in that now. But this small Poet vents none but
     his own, and his by whose care and directions this Stage is
     govern'd, who has for many years, both in his father's days,
     and since, directed Poets to write and Players to speak,
     till he trained up these youths here to what they are now.
     Aye, some of 'em from before they were able to say a grace
     of two lines long to have more parts in their pates than
     would fill so many Dry-vats. And to be serious with you, if
     after all this, by the venomous practice of some, who study
     nothing more than his destruction, he should fail us, both
     Poets and Players would be at loss in reputation.

His "destruction" was wrought, nevertheless, for as a result of his
indiscretion he was deposed from his position as Governor of the
King's and Queen's Company, and William Davenant was appointed in his
place. In the Office-Book of the Lord Chamberlain under the date of
June 27, 1640,[611] appears the following entry with the heading, "Mr.
Davenant Governor of the Cockpit Players":

     Whereas in the playhouse or theatre commonly called the
     Cockpit, in Drury Lane, there are a company of players
     authorized by me (as Lord Chamberlain to His Majesty) to
     play or act under the title of The King's and Queen's
     Servants, and that by reason of some disorders lately
     amongst them committed they are disabled in their service
     and quality: These are therefore to signify that by the same
     authority I do authorize and appoint William Davenant,
     Gent., one of Her Majesty's servants, for me and in my name
     to take into his government and care the said company of
     players, to govern, order, and dispose of them for action
     and presentments, and all their affairs in the said house,
     as in his discretion shall seem best to conduce to His
     Majesty's service in that quality. And I do hereby enjoin
     and command them, all and every of them, that are so
     authorized to play in the said house under the privilege of
     His or Her Majesty's Servants, and every one belonging as
     prentices or servants to those actors to play under the same
     privilege, that they obey the said Mr. Davenant and follow
     his orders and directions, as they will answer the contrary;
     which power and privilege he is to continue and enjoy during
     that lease which Mrs. Elizabeth Beeston, _alias_ Hucheson,
     hath or doth hold in the said playhouse, provided he be
     still accountable to me for his care and well ordering the
     said company.[612]

[Footnote 611: Stopes (_op. cit._) dates this June 5, but Collier,
Malone, and Chalmers all give June 27, and Mrs. Stopes is not always
quite accurate in such matters.]

[Footnote 612: Collier, _The History of English Dramatic Poetry_
(1879), II, 32, note 1.]

Under the direction of Davenant the company acted at the Cockpit until
the closing of the theatres two years later.

The history of the playhouse during the troubled years that followed
is varied. In the churchwarden's account of St. Giles's Parish is
found the entry: "1646. Paid and given to the teacher at the Cockpit
of the children, 6_d._"[613] Apparently the old playhouse was then
being temporarily used as a school.

[Footnote 613: John Parton, _Some Account of the Hospital and Parish
of St. Giles in the Fields_, p. 235.]

Wright, in his _Historia Histrionica_, tells us that at the outbreak
of the civil war most of the actors had joined the royal army and
served His Majesty, "though in a different, yet more honorable
capacity." Some were killed, many won distinction; and "when the wars
were over, and the royalists totally subdued, most of 'em who were
left alive gathered to London, and for a subsistence endeavored to
revive their old trade privately. They made up one company out of all
the scattered members of several, and in the winter before the King's
murder, 1648, they ventured to act some plays, with as much caution
and privacy as could be, at the Cockpit." John Evelyn records in his
_Diary_, under the date of February 5, 1648: "Saw a tragicomedy acted
in the Cockpit after there had been none of these diversions for many
years during the war." Trouble, however, was brewing for these daring
actors. As Wright records: "They continued undisturbed for three or
four days, but at last, as they were presenting the tragedy of _The
Bloody Brother_ (in which Lowin acted Aubery; Taylor, Rollo; Pollard,
the Cook; Burt, Latorch; and, I think, Hart, Otto), a party of
foot-soldiers beset the house, surprised 'em about the middle of the
play, and carried 'em away in their habits, not admitting them to
shift, to Hatton House, then a prison, where, having detained them
some time, they plundered them of their clothes, and let 'em loose

[Footnote 614: Hazlitt's Dodsley, XV, 409.]

In 1649 the interior of the building was sacked, if we may trust the
manuscript note entered in the Phillipps copy of Stow's _Annals_
(1631): "The playhouse in Salisbury Court, in Fleet Street, was pulled
down by a company of soldiers set on by the sectaries of these sad
times, on Saturday the 24 day of March, 1649. The Phoenix, in Drury
Lane, was pulled down also this day, being Saturday the 24 day of
March, 1649, by the same soldiers."[615] In the passage quoted,
"pulled-down" merely means that the stage and its equipment, and
possibly a part of the galleries and the seats, were wrecked, not that
the walls of the building itself were thrown down.

[Footnote 615: See _The Academy_, October 28, 1882, p. 314. The
soldiers here mentioned also "pulled down on the inside" the Fortune

In 1656 Sir William Davenant undertook to create a form of dramatic
entertainment which would be tolerated by the authorities. The Lord
Protector was known to be a lover of music. Sir William, therefore,
applied for permission to give operatic entertainments, "after the
manner of the antients," the "story sung in recitative music," and the
representation made "by the art of perspective in scenes." To such
entertainments, he thought, no one could object. He was wise enough to
give his first performances at Rutland House; but in 1658 he moved to
the Cockpit, where, says Aubrey, "were acted very well, _stylo
recitativo_, _Sir Francis Drake_ and _The Siege of Rhodes_ (1st and 2d
parts). It did affect the eye and ear extremely. This first brought
scenes in fashion in England; before at plays was only a hanging."
Thus the Cockpit had the distinction of being the first English
playhouse in which scenery was employed, and, one should add, the
first English home of the opera.[616]

[Footnote 616: For a discussion of Davenant's attempts to introduce
the opera into England, see W.J. Lawrence, _The Elizabethan Playhouse_
(Second Series), pp. 129 ff.]

Later in the same year, 1658, Davenant exhibited at the Cockpit _The
Cruelty of the Spaniards in Peru_; but this performance excited the
suspicion of the authorities, who on December 23 sent for "the poet
and the actors" to explain "by what authority the same is exposed to
public view."[617]

[Footnote 617: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 93; Collier, _The History of
English Dramatic Poetry_ (1879), II, 48.]

"In the year 1659," writes John Downes in his _Roscius Anglicanus_,
"General Monk marching then his army out of Scotland to London, Mr.
Rhodes, a bookseller, being wardrobe-keeper formerly (as I am
informed) to King Charles the First's company of commedians in
Blackfriars, getting a license from the then governing state,[618]
fitted up a house then for acting, called the _Cockpit_, in Drury
Lane, and in a short time completed his company." If this statement is
correct, the time must have been early in the year 1659-60, and the
company must have attempted at first to play without a proper license.
From the _Middlesex County Records_ (III, 282), we learn that one of
their important actors, Thomas Lilleston, was held under bond for
having performed "a public stage-play this present 4th of February
[1659-60] in the Cockpit in Drury Lane in the parish of St.
Giles-in-the-Fields, contrary to the law in that case made"; and in
the Parish Book[619] of St. Giles we find the entry: "1659. Received
of Isack Smith, which he received at the Cockpit playhouse of several
offenders, by order of the justices, £3 8_s._ 6_d._" Shortly after
this, it is to be presumed, the company under Rhodes's management
secured the "license of the then governing state" mentioned by Downes,
and continued thereafter without interruption. The star of this
company was Betterton, whose splendid acting at once captivated
London. Pepys went often to the theatre, and has left us some
interesting notes of his experiences there. On August 18, 1660, he

     Captain Ferrers, my Lord's Cornet, comes to us, who after
     dinner took me and Creed to the Cockpit play, the first that
     I have had time to see since my coming from sea, _The Loyall
     Subject_, where one Kinaston, a boy, acted the Duke's
     sister, but made the loveliest lady that ever I saw in my
     life, only her voice not very good.

[Footnote 618: For his troubles with the Master of the Revels see
Halliwell-Phillipps, _A Collection of Ancient Documents_, p. 26.]

[Footnote 619: Parton, _op. cit._, p. 236.]

Again on October 11, 1660, he writes:

     Here in the Park we met with Mr. Salisbury, who took Mr.
     Creed and me to the Cockpit to see _The Moor of Venice_,
     which was well done. Burt acted the Moor, by the same token
     a very pretty lady that sat by me called out to see
     Desdemona smothered.

The subsequent history of the Cockpit falls outside the scope of the
present treatise. The reader who desires to trace the part the
building played in the Restoration would do well to consult the
numerous documents printed by Malone from the Herbert Manuscript.[620]

[Footnote 620: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 244 ff.]



The Salisbury Court Playhouse[621] was projected and built by two men
whose very names are unfamiliar to most students of the drama--Richard
Gunnell and William Blagrove. Yet Gunnell was a distinguished actor,
and was associated with the ownership and management of at least two
theatres. Even so early as 1613 his reputation as a player was
sufficient to warrant his inclusion as a full sharer in the
Palsgrave's Company, then acting at the Fortune. When the Fortune was
rebuilt after its destruction by fire in 1621, he purchased one of the
twelve shares in the new building, and rose to be manager of the
company.[622] In addition to managing the company he also, as we learn
from the Herbert Manuscript, supplied the actors with plays. In 1623
he composed _The Hungarian Lion_, obviously a comedy, and in the
following year _The Way to Content all Women, or How a Man May Please
his Wife_.[623] Of William Blagrove I can learn little more than that
he was Deputy to the Master of the Revels. In this capacity he signed
the license for Glapthorne's _Lady Mother_, October 15, 1635; and his
name appears several times in the Herbert Manuscript in connection
with the payments of various companies.[624] Possibly he was related
to Thomas Blagrove who during the reign of Elizabeth was an important
member of the Revels Office, and who for a time served as Master of
the Revels.

[Footnote 621: The playhouse discussed in this chapter was officially
known as "The Salisbury Court Playhouse," and it should always be
referred to by that name. Unfortunately, owing to its situation near
the district of Whitefriars, it was sometimes loosely, though
incorrectly, called "Whitefriars." Since it had no relation whatever
to the theatre formerly in the Manor-House of Whitefriars, a
perpetuation of this false nomenclature is highly undesirable.]

[Footnote 622: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 66.]

[Footnote 623: Chalmers's _Supplemental Apology_, pp. 216-17. He may
also have been the author of a play called _The Masque_, which Herbert
in 1624 licensed: "For the Palsgrave's Company, a new play called _The
Masque_." In the list of manuscript plays collected by Warburton we
find the title _A Mask_, and the authorship ascribed to R. Govell.
Since "R. Govell" is not otherwise heard of, we may reasonably suppose
that this was Warburton's reading of "R. Gunell." Gunnell also
prefixed a poem to the Works of Captain John Smith, 1626.]

[Footnote 624: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 66, 122, 176, 177.]

What threw these two men together in a theatrical partnership we do
not know. But in the summer of 1629 they decided to build a private
playhouse to compete with the successful Blackfriars and Cockpit; and
for this purpose they leased from the Earl of Dorset a plot of ground
situated to the east of the precinct of Whitefriars. The ground thus
leased opened on Salisbury Court; hence the name, "The Salisbury Court
Playhouse." In the words of the legal document, the Earl of Dorset "in
consideration that Richard Gunnell and William Blagrove should at
their costs and charges erect a playhouse and other buildings at the
lower end of Salisbury Court, in the parish of St. Bridges, in the
ward of Farringdon Without, did demise to the said Gunnell and
Blagrove a piece of ground at the same lower end of Salisbury Court,
containing one hundred and forty foot in length and forty-two in
breadth ... for forty-one years and a half." The lease was signed on
July 6, 1629. Nine days later, on July 15, the Earl of Dorset, "in
consideration of nine hundred and fifty pounds paid to the said late
Earl by John Herne, of Lincoln's Inn, Esquire, did demise to hire the
said piece of ground and [the] building [i.e., the playhouse]
thereupon to be erected, and the rent reserved upon the said lease
made to Gunnell and Blagrove." Herne's lease was for a term of
sixty-one years. The effect of this second lease was merely to make
Herne, instead of the Earl of Dorset, the landlord of the players.


To illustrate the lease. (Drawn by the author.)]

The plot of ground selected for the playhouse is described with
exactness in the lease printed below. The letters inserted in brackets
refer to the accompanying diagram (see page 371):

     All that soil and ground whereupon the Barn {A}, at the
     lower end of the great back court, or yard of Salisbury
     Court, now stands; and so much of the soil whereupon the
     whole south end of the great stable in the said court or
     yard stands, or contains, from that end of that stable
     towards the north end thereof sixteen foot of assize, and
     the whole breadth of the said stable {B}; and all the ground
     and soil on the east and west side of that stable lying
     directly against the said sixteen foot of ground at the
     south end thereof between the wall of the great garden
     belonging to the mansion called Dorset House and the wall
     that severs the said Court from the lane called Water Lane
     {C and D}; and all the ground and soil being between the
     said walls on the east and west part thereof, and the said
     barn, stable, and ground on both side the same on the south
     and north parts thereof {E}. Which said several parcells of
     soil and ground ... contain, in the whole length ... one
     hundred and forty foot of assize, and in breadth ... forty
     and two foot of assize, and lies together at the lower end
     of the said Court.

This plot, one hundred and forty feet in length by forty-two in
breadth, was small for its purpose, and the playhouse must have
covered all the breadth and most of the length of the leased
ground;[625] there was no actual need of leaving any part of the plot
vacant, for the theatre adjoined the Court, and "free ingress, egress,
and regress" to the building were stipulated in the lease "by,
through, and on any part of the Court called Salisbury Court."

[Footnote 625: The Blackfriars auditorium was sixty-six feet in length
and forty-six feet in breadth.]

At once Gunnell and Blagrove set about the erection of their
playhouse. They may have utilized in some way the "great barn" which
occupied most of their property; one of the legal documents printed by
Cunningham contains the phrase: "and the great barn, which was
afterwards the playhouse."[626] If this be true--I think it very
doubtful--the reconstruction must have been thorough, for Howes, in
his continuation of Stow's _Annals_ (1631), speaks of Salisbury Court
as "a new, fair playhouse";[627] and in all respects it seems to have
ranked with the best.

[Footnote 626: Cunningham, _The Shakespeare Society's Papers_, IV,
104. In his _Handbook for London_ Cunningham says that the Salisbury
Court Playhouse "was originally the 'barn.'"]

[Footnote 627: _Annals_ (1631), p. 1004. In 1633 Prynne
(_Histriomastix_) refers to it as a "new theatre erected."]

We know very little of the building. But Wright, in his _Historia
Histrionica_, informs us that it was "almost exactly like" the two
other private houses, the Blackfriars and the Cockpit:

     _True._ The Blackfriars, Cockpit, and Salisbury Court were
     called private houses, and were very small to what we see
     now. The Cockpit was standing since the Restoration, and
     Rhodes' company acted there for some time.

     _Love._ I have seen that.

     _True._ Then you have seen the other two in effect, for they
     were all three built almost exactly alike for form and

[Footnote 628: Collier, _The History of English Dramatic Literature_
(1879), III, 106, thought that Salisbury Court was a round playhouse,
basing his opinion on a line in Sharpe's _Noble Stranger_ acted at
"the private house in Salisbury Court": "Thy Stranger to the
Globe-like theatre."]

In spite of what Wright says, however, there is some reason for
believing that Salisbury Court was smaller than the other two private
houses. The Epilogue to _Totenham Court_ refers to it as "my little
house"; and the Epistle affixed to the second edition of _Sir Giles
Goosecappe_ is said to convey the same impression of smallness.[629]

[Footnote 629: I have not been able to examine this. In the only copy
of the second edition accessible to me the Epistle is missing.]

According to Malone, Sir Henry Herbert, the Master of the Revels, was
"one of the proprietors" of the house, and held a "ninth share" in the
profits.[630] This, however, is not strictly accurate. Sir Henry, by
virtue of his power to license playhouses, demanded from each
organization of players an annual fee. The King's Men gave him two
benefit performances a year; Christopher Beeston, on behalf of the
Cockpit in Drury Lane, paid him £60 a year; as for the rest, Herbert
tells us that he had "a share paid by the Fortune Players, and a share
by the Bull Players, and a share by the Salisbury Court Players."[631]
It seems, therefore, that the Salisbury Court organization was divided
into eight shares, and that of the profits an extra, or ninth, share
was set aside as a fee for the Master of the Revels.

[Footnote 630: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 178.]

[Footnote 631: Halliwell-Phillipps, _A Collection of Ancient
Documents_, p. 27.]

The playhouse was ready for use in all probability in the autumn of
1629; and to occupy it a new company of actors was organized, known as
"The King's Revels." The chief members of this company were George
Stutville, John Young, William Cartwright, William Wilbraham, and
Christopher Goad; Gunnell and Blagrove probably acted as managers. In
the books of the Lord Chamberlain we find a warrant for the payment of
£30 to William Blagrove "and the rest of his company" for three plays
acted by the Children of the Revels, at Whitehall, 1631.[632] The
Children continued at Salisbury Court until about December, 1631, when
they abandoned the playhouse in favor of the much larger Fortune,
surrendered by the Palsgrave's Men.

[Footnote 632: See Mrs. Stopes's extracts from the Lord Chamberlain's
books, in the Shakespeare _Jahrbuch_ (1910), XLVI, 97. This entry
probably led Cunningham to say (_The Shakespeare Society's Papers_,
IV, 92) that Blagrove was "Master of the Children of the Revels in the
reign of Charles I."]

The Palsgrave's Men, who for many years had occupied the Fortune, seem
to have fallen on bad times and to have disbanded. They were
reorganized, however, possibly by their old manager, Richard Gunnell,
and established in Salisbury Court. The Earl of Dorset, who took a
special interest in Salisbury Court, obtained for the troupe a patent
to play under the name of the infant Prince Charles, then little more
than a year old.[633] The patent bears the date of December 7, 1631;
and "The Servants of the High and Mighty Prince Charles" opened at
Salisbury Court very soon after[634] with a play by Marmion entitled
_Holland's Leaguer_. The Prologue refers to the going of the King's
Revels to the Fortune, and the coming of the new troupe to Salisbury

     Gentle spectators, that with graceful eye
     Come to behold the Muses' colony
     New planted in this soil, forsook of late
     By the inhabitants, since made _Fortunate_.

[Footnote 633: For Dorset's interest in the matter see Cunningham,
_The Shakespeare Society's Papers_, IV, 96.]

[Footnote 634: In December, 1631; see Malone, _Variorum_, III, 178.]

The Prologue closes thus:

     That on our branches now new poets sing;
     And when with joy he shall see this resort
     Phoebus shall not disdain to styl't his _Court_.

But the audiences at Salisbury Court were not large. For six
performances of the play, says Malone, Sir Henry Herbert received
"but one pound nineteen shillings, in virtue of the ninth share which
he possessed as one of the proprietors of the house."[635]

[Footnote 635: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 178.]

Of the "new poets" referred to by the Prologue, one, of course, was
Marmion himself. Another, I venture to say, was James Shirley, who, as
I think, had been engaged to write the company's second play. This was
_The Changes_, brought out at Salisbury Court on January 10. The
Prologue is full of allusions to the company, its recent misfortunes,
and its present attempt to establish itself in its new quarters:

     That Muse, whose song within another sphere[636]
     Hath pleased some, and of the best, whose ear
     Is able to distinguish strains that are
     Clear and Phoebean from the popular
     And sinful dregs of the adulterate brain,
     By me salutes your candour once again;
     And begs this noble favour, that this place,
     And weak performances, may not disgrace
     His fresh Thalia.[637] 'Las, our poet knows
     We have no name; a torrent overflows
     Our little island;[638] miserable we
     Do every day play our own Tragedy.
     But 't is more noble to create than kill,
     He says; and if but with his flame, your will
     Would join, we may obtain some warmth, and prove
     Next them that now do surfeit with your love.
     Encourage our beginning. Nothing grew
     Famous at first. And, gentlemen, if you
     Smile on this barren mountain, soon it will
     Become both fruitful and the Muses hill.

[Footnote 636: The Cockpit, for which Shirley had been writing.]

[Footnote 637: Cf. "new poets" of Marmion's Prologue.]

[Footnote 638: An allusion to the smallness of the Salisbury Court

The similarity of this to the Prologue of _Holland's Leaguer_ is
striking; and the Epilogue is written in the same vein:

     Comes hither but on crutches yet; the sun
     Hath lent no beam to warm us. If this play
     Proceed more fortunate, we shall bless the day
     And love that brought you hither. 'T is in you
     To make a little sprig of laurel grow,
     And spread into a grove.

All scholars who have written on the subject--Collier, Fleay, Greg,
Murray, etc.--have contended that the King's Revels Company did not
leave Salisbury Court until after January 10, 1632, because Herbert
licensed Shirley's _The Changes_ on that date,[639] and the title-page
of the only edition of _The Changes_ states that it was acted at
Salisbury Court by His Majesty's Revels. But Herbert records payments
for six representations of Marmion's _Leaguer_ by Prince Charles's Men
at Salisbury Court "in December, 1631."[640] This latter date must be
correct, for on January 26 _Holland's Leaguer_ was entered on the
Stationers' Register "as it hath been lately and often acted with
great applause ... at the private house in Salisbury Court."
According to the generally accepted theory, however, the King's Men
were still at Salisbury Court, and actually bringing out a new play
there so late as January 10. This error has led to much confusion, and
to no little difficulty for historians of the stage; for example, Mr.
Murray is forced to suppose that two royal patents were granted to
Prince Charles's Company.[641] It seems to me likely that the
title-page of _The Changes_ is incorrect in stating that the play was
acted by the King's Revels. The play must have been acted by the new
and as yet unpopular Prince Charles's Men, who had occupied Salisbury
Court as early as December, and, as Herbert tells us, with poor
success. The various dates cited clearly indicate this; and the
Prologue and the Epilogue are both wholly unsuited for utterance by
the successful Revels Company which had just been "made Fortunate,"
but are quite in keeping with the condition of the newly organized and
struggling Prince Charles's Men, who might naturally ask the public to
"encourage our beginning."

[Footnote 639: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 232. But Malone was a careless
transcriber, and Herbert himself sometimes made errors. Possibly the
correct date is January 10, 1631.]

[Footnote 640: _Ibid._, III, 178.]

[Footnote 641: _English Dramatic Companies_, I, 221.]

Whether Prince Charles's Men ultimately succeeded in winning the favor
of the public we do not know. Presumably they did, for at some date
before 1635 they moved to the large Red Bull Playhouse. Richard Heton
wrote: "And whereas my Lord of Dorset had gotten for a former company
at Salisbury Court the Prince's service, they, being left at liberty,
took their opportunity of another house, and left the house in
Salisbury Court destitute both of a service and company."[642]

[Footnote 642: Richard Heton, "Instructions for my Pattent," _The
Shakespeare Society's Papers_, IV, 96.]

This person, Richard Heton, who describes himself as "one of the
Sewers of Her Majesty's Chamber Extraordinary," had now obtained
control of Salisbury Court, and had become manager of its
affairs.[643] He apparently induced the Company of His Majesty's
Revels to leave the Fortune and return to Salisbury Court, for in 1635
they acted there Richard Brome's _The Sparagus Garden_. But their
career at Salisbury Court was short; on May 12 of the following year
all playhouses were closed by the plague, and acting was not allowed
again for nearly a year and a half. During this long period of
inactivity, the Company of His Majesty's Revels was largely dispersed.

[Footnote 643: We find a payment to Richard Heton, "for himself and
the rest of the company of the players at Salisbury Court," for
performing a play before his Majesty at Court, October, 1635.
(Chalmers's _Apology_, p. 509.) Exactly when he took charge of
Salisbury Court I am unable to learn.]

When at last, on October 2, 1637, the playhouses were allowed to open,
Heton found himself with a crippled troupe of actors. Again the Earl
of Dorset interested himself in the theatre. Queen Henrietta's
Company, which had been at the Cockpit since 1625, having "disperst
themselves," Dorset took "care to make up a new company for the
Queen";[644] and he placed this new company under Heton at Salisbury
Court. Heton writes: "How much I have done for the upbuilding of this
Company, I gave you some particulars of in a petition to my Lord of
Dorset." This reorganization of the Queen's Men explains, perhaps, the
puzzling entry in Herbert's Office-Book, October 2, 1637: "I disposed
of Perkins, Sumner, Sherlock, and Turner, to Salisbury Court, and
joyned them with the best of that company."[645] Doubtless Herbert,
like Dorset, was anxious for the Queen to have a good troupe of
players. This new organization of the Queen's Men continued at
Salisbury Court without interruption, it seems, until the closing of
the playhouses in 1642.[646]

[Footnote 644: Cunningham, _The Shakespeare Society's Papers_, IV,

[Footnote 645: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 240.]

[Footnote 646: For certain troubles at Salisbury Court in 1644 and
1648, see Collier, _The History of English Dramatic Poetry_ (1879),
II, 37, 40, 47.]

In 1649 John Herne, son of the John Herne who in 1629 had secured a
lease on the property for sixty-one years, made out a deed of sale of
the playhouse to William Beeston,[647] for the sum of £600. But the
document was not signed. The reason for this is probably revealed in
the following passage: "The playhouse in Salisbury Court, in Fleet
Street, was pulled down[648] by a company of soldiers set on by the
sectaries of these sad times, on Saturday, the 24 day of March,

[Footnote 647: William Beeston was the son of the famous actor
Christopher Beeston, who was once a member of the Lord Chamberlain's
Men, later manager of the Fortune, and finally proprietor of the
Cockpit. In 1639 William had been appointed manager of the Cockpit
Company. (See pages 358 ff.)]

[Footnote 648: That is, stripped of its benches, stage-hangings, and
other appliances for dramatic performances.]

[Footnote 649: The manuscript entry in Stow's _Annals_. See _The
Academy_, October 28, 1882, p. 314. On the same date the soldiers
"pulled down on the inside" also the Phoenix and the Fortune.]

Three years later, however, Beeston, through his agent Theophilus
Bird, secured the property from Herne at the reduced price of £408:
"John Herne, by indenture dated the five and twentieth day of May,
1652, for £408, to him paid by Theophilus Bird, did assign the
premises and all his estate therein in trust for the said William

[Footnote 650: Cunningham, _The Shakespeare Society's Papers_, IV,

Early in 1660 Beeston, anticipating the return of King Charles, and
the reëstablishment of the drama, decided to put his building back
into condition to serve as a playhouse; and he secured from Herbert,
the Master of the Revels, a license to do so.[651] On April 5, 1660,
he contracted with two carpenters, Fisher and Silver, "for the
rebuilding the premises"; and to secure them he mortgaged the
property. The carpenters later swore that they "expended in the same
work £329 9_s._ 4_d._"[652]

[Footnote 651: Printed in Malone, _Variorum_, III, 243, and
Halliwell-Phillipps, _A Collection of Ancient Documents_, p. 85. The
language clearly indicates that Beeston was to _reconvert_ the
building into a theatre.]

[Footnote 652: Cunningham, _The Shakespeare Society's Papers_, IV,

The reconstructed playhouse was opened in 1660, probably as early as
June, with a performance of _The Rump_, by Tatham. It was engaged by
Sir William Davenant for his company of actors until his "new theatre
with scenes" could be erected in Lincoln's Inn Fields.[653] The
ubiquitous Pepys often went thither, and in his _Diary_ gives us some
interesting accounts of the performances he saw there. On March 2,
1661, he witnessed a revival of Thomas Heywood's _Love's Mistress, or
The Queen's Masque_ before a large audience:

     After dinner I went to the Theatre [i.e., Killigrew's
     playhouse] where I found so few people (which is strange,
     and the reason I did not know) that I went out again; and so
     to Salisbury Court, where the house as full as could be; and
     it seems it was a new play, _The Queen's Masque_, wherein
     are some good humours: among others a good jeer to the old
     story of the Siege of Troy, making it to be a common country
     tale. But above all it was strange to see so little a boy as
     that was to act Cupid, which is one of the greatest parts in

[Footnote 653: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 257; Halliwell-Phillipps, _A
Collection of Ancient Documents_, p. 27.]

Again, on March 26, he found Salisbury Court crowded:

     After dinner Mrs. Pierce and her husband, and I and my wife,
     to Salisbury Court, where coming late, he and she light of
     Col. Boone, that made room for them; and I and my wife sat
     in the pit, and there met with Mr. Lewes and Tom Whitton,
     and saw _The_ _Bondman_[654] done to admiration.

[Footnote 654: By Philip Massinger.]

The history of the playhouse during these years falls outside the
scope of this volume. Suffice it to say that before Beeston finished
paying the carpenters for their work of reconstruction, the great fire
of 1666 swept the building out of existence; as Fisher and Silver
declared: "The mortgaged premises by the late dreadful fire in London
were totally burned down and consumed."[655]

[Footnote 655: The subsequent history of Salisbury Court is traced in
the legal documents printed by Cunningham. Beeston lost the property,
and Fisher and Silver erected nearer the river a handsome new
playhouse, known as "The Duke's Theatre," at an estimated cost of



On birthdays, holidays, and festive occasions in general the
sovereigns of England and the members of the royal family were wont to
summon the professional actors to present plays at Court. For the
accommodation of the players and of the audience, the larger halls at
Hampton, Windsor, Greenwich, St. James, Whitehall, or wherever the
sovereign happened to be at the time, were specially fitted up, often
at great expense. At one end of the hall was erected a temporary stage
equipped with a "music-room," "players' houses of canvas," painted
properties, and such other things as were necessary to the actors. In
the centre of the hall, on an elevated dais, were provided seats for
the royal family, and around and behind the dais, stools for the more
distinguished guests; a large part of the audience was allowed to
stand on platforms raised in tiers at the rear of the room. Since the
plays were almost invariably given at night, the stage was illuminated
by special "branches" hung on wires overhead, and carrying many
lights. In the accounts of the Office of the Revels one may find
interesting records of plays presented in this manner, with the
miscellaneous items of expense for making the halls ready.

Usually the Court performances, like the masques, were important,
almost official occasions, and many guests, including the members of
the diplomatic corps, were invited. To provide accommodation for so
numerous an audience, a large room was needed. Hampton Court possessed
a splendid room for the purpose in the Great Banqueting Hall, one
hundred and six feet in length and forty feet in breadth. But the
palace at Whitehall for many years had no room of a similar character.
For the performance of a masque there in 1559 the Queen erected a
temporary "Banqueting House." Again, in 1572, to entertain the Duke of
Montmorency, Ambassador from France, she had a large "Banketting House
made at Whitehall," covered with canvas and decorated with ivy and
flowers gathered fresh from the fields. An account of the structure
may be found in the records of the Office of the Revels. Perhaps,
however, the most elaborate and substantial of these "banqueting
houses" was that erected in 1581, to entertain the ambassadors from
France who came to treat of a marriage between Elizabeth and the Duc
d'Anjou. The structure is thus described by Holinshed in his

     This year (against the coming of certain commissioners out
     of France into England), by Her Majesty's appointment, on
     the sixth and twentieth day of March, in the morning (being
     Easter Day), a Banqueting House was begun at Westminster, on
     the south-west side of Her Majesty's palace of Whitehall,
     made in manner and form of a long square, three hundred
     thirty and two foot in measure about; thirty principals made
     of great masts, being forty foot in length apiece, standing
     upright; between every one of these masts ten foot asunder
     and more. The walls of this house were closed with canvas,
     and painted all the outsides of the same most artificially,
     with a work called rustic, much like stone. This house had
     two hundred ninety and two lights of glass. The sides within
     the same house was made with ten heights of degrees for
     people to stand upon; and in the top of this house was
     wrought most cunningly upon canvas works of ivy and holly,
     with pendants made of wicker rods, garnished with bay, rue,
     and all manner of strange flowers garnished with spangles of
     gold; as also beautified with hanging toseans made of holly
     and ivy, with all manner of strange fruits, as pomegranates,
     oranges, pompions, cucumbers, grapes, carrots, with such
     other like, spangled with gold, and most richly hanged.
     Betwixt these works of bays and ivy were great spaces of
     canvas, which was most cunningly painted, the clouds with
     stars, the sun and sun-beams, with diverse other coats of
     sundry sorts belonging to the Queen's Majesty, most richly
     garnished with gold. There were of all manner of persons
     working on this house to the number of three hundred seventy
     and five: two men had mischances, the one broke his leg, and
     so did the other. This house was made in three weeks and
     three days, and was ended the eighteenth day of April, and
     cost one thousand seven hundred forty and four pounds,
     nineteen shillings, and od mony, as I was credibly informed
     by the worshipful master Thomas Grave, surveyor unto Her
     Majesty's works, who served and gave order for the same.

[Footnote 656: Edition of 1808, IV, 434. See also Stow's _Chronicle_,
under the year 1581.]

Although built in such a short time, and of such flimsy material, this
expensive Banqueting House seems to have been allowed to stand, and to
have been used thereafter for masques and plays. Thus, when King James
came to the throne, he ordered plays to be given there in November,
1604. We find the following entry in the Treasurer's accounts:

     For making ready the Banqueting House at Whitehall for the
     King's Majesty against the plays, by the space of four days
     ... 78_s._ 7_d._

And the accounts of the Revels' Office inform us:

     Hallomas Day, being the first of November, a play in the
     Banqueting House at Whitehall, called _The Moor of Venice_.

Apparently, however, the King was not pleased with the Banqueting
House as a place for dramatic performances, for he promptly ordered
the Great Hall of the palace--a room approximately ninety feet in
length and forty feet in breadth[657]--to be made ready for the next

     For making ready the Great Chamber at Whitehall for the
     King's Majesty to see the play, by the space of two days ...
     39_s._ 4_d._

[Footnote 657: This had once already, on Shrove Tuesday, 1604, been
used for a play. The situation and ground-plan of the "Great Hall" are
clearly shown in Fisher's _Survey_ of the palace, made about 1670, and
engraved by Vertue, 1747.]

The work was completed with dispatch, for on the Sunday following the
performance of _Othello_ in the Banqueting House, _The Merry Wives of
Windsor_ was acted in the Great Hall. The next play to be given at
Court was also presented in the same room:

     On St. Stephen's Night, in the Hall, a play called _Measure
     for Measure_.

And from this time on the Great Hall was the usual place for Court
performances. The abandonment of the Banqueting House was probably due
to the facts that the Hall was smaller in size, could be more easily
heated in the winter, and was in general better adapted to dramatic
performances. Possibly the change was due also to the decayed
condition of the old structure and to preparations for its removal.
Stow, in his _Annals_ under the date of 1607, writes:

     The last year the King pulled down the old, rotten,
     slight-builded Banqueting House at Whitehall, and
     new-builded the same this year very strong and stately,
     being every way larger than the first.[658]

[Footnote 658: Stow's _Annals_, continued by Edmund Howes (1631), p.

This new Banqueting House was completed in the early part of 1608.
John Chamberlain writes to Sir Dudley Carleton on January 5, 1608:
"The masque goes forward at Court for Twelfth Day, tho' I doubt the
New Room will be scant ready."[659] Thereafter the Banqueting House,
"every way larger than the first," was regularly used for the
presentation of masques. But it was rarely if ever used for plays.
Throughout the reign of James, the ordinary place for dramatic
performances, as has been observed, was the Great Hall.

[Footnote 659: John Nichols, _The Progresses of James_, II, 162.]

On January 12, 1619, as a result of negligence during the preparations
for a masque, the Banqueting House caught fire and was burned to the
ground. The Reverend Thomas Lorkin writes to Sir Thomas Puckering on
January 19, 1619:

     The unhappy accident that chanced at Whitehall last week by
     fire you cannot but have heard of; but haply not the manner
     how, which was this. A joiner was appointed to mend some
     things that were out of order in the device of the masque,
     which the King meant to have repeated at Shrovetide, who,
     having kindled a fire upon a false hearth to heat his
     glue-pot, the force thereof pierced soon, it seems, the
     single brick, and in a short time that he absented himself
     upon some occasion, fastened upon the basis, which was of
     dry deal board, underneath; which suddenly conceiving flame,
     gave fire to the device of the masque, all of oiled paper,
     and dry fir, etc. And so, in a moment, disposed itself among
     the rest of that combustible matter that it was past any
     man's approach before it was almost discovered. Two hours
     begun and ended that woful sight.

[Illustration: THE COCKPIT

Probably as built by Henry VIII. (From Faithorne's _Map of London_,
1658. The Whitehall district is represented as it was many years
earlier, compare Agas's _Map_, 1560).]

Inigo Jones, who had dreamed of a magnificent palace at Whitehall, and
who had drawn elaborate plans for a royal residence which should
surpass anything in Europe, now took charge of building a new
Banqueting House as a first step in the realization of his scheme.
The noble structure which he erected is to-day one of his chief
monuments, and the sole relic of the once famous royal palace. It was
completed in the spring of 1622; but, as in the case of its
predecessor, it was not commonly used for dramatic entertainments.
Though masques might be given there, the regular place for plays
continued to be the Great Hall.

In the meanwhile, however, there had been developed at Court the
custom of having small private performances in the Cockpit, in
addition to the more elaborate performances in the Great Hall. Since
this ultimately led to the establishment of a theatre royal, known as
"The Cockpit-in-Court," it will be necessary to trace in some detail
the history of that structure.

The palace of Whitehall, anciently called York House, and the home of
thirty successive Archbishops of York, was seized by King Henry VIII
at the fall of Wolsey and converted into a royal residence.[660] The
new proprietor at once made improvements after his own taste, among
which were tennis-courts, bowling-alleys, and an amphitheatre for the
"royal sport" of cock-fighting. In Stow's description of the palace we

     On the right hand be diverse fair tennis courts, bowling
     alleys, and a Cockpit, all built by King Henry the Eight.

[Footnote 660: Shakespeare writes (_Henry VIII_, IV, i, 94-97):

                          Sir you
     Must no more call it York-place, that is past;
     For since the Cardinal fell, that title's lost:
     'Tis now the King's, and called Whitehall.]

Strype, in his edition of Stow's _Survey_ (1720), adds the information
that the Cockpit was made "out of certain old tenements."[661] It is
pictured in Agas's _Map of London_ (1570), and more clearly in
Faithorne's _Map_ (see page 390), printed in 1658, but apparently
representing the city at an earlier date.

[Footnote 661: Book VI, page 6.]

During the reign of Elizabeth the Cockpit, so far as I can ascertain,
was never used for plays. In the voluminous documents relating to the
Office of the Revels there is only one reference to the building: in
1572 flowers were temporarily stored there that were to be used for
decking the "Banketting House."

It was during the reign of King James that the Cockpit began to be
used for dramatic representations. John Chamberlain writes from London
to Sir Ralph Winwood, December 18, 1604: "Here is great provision for
Cockpit to entertain him [the King] at home, and of masques and revels
against the marriage of Sir Herbert and Lady Susan Vere."[662] Since,
however, King James was very fond of cock-fighting, it may be that
Chamberlain was referring to that royal entertainment rather than to
plays. The small Cockpit was certainly a very unusual place for the
formal presentation of plays before His Majesty and the Court.

[Footnote 662: _Winwood State Papers_ (1725), II, 41.]

But the young Prince Henry, whose official residence was in St.
James's Palace, often had private or semi-private performances of
plays in the Cockpit. In the rolls of the expenses of the Prince we
find the following records:[663]

     For making ready the Cockpit four several times for plays,
     by the space of four days, in the month of December, 1610,
     £2 10_s._ 8_d._

     For making ready the Cockpit for plays two several times, by
     the space of four days, in the months of January and
     February, 1611, 70_s._ 8_d._

     For making ready the Cockpit for a play, by the space of two
     days, in the month of December, 1611, 30_s._ 4_d._

[Footnote 663: See Cunningham, _Extracts from the Accounts of the
Revels_, pp. xiii-xiv.]

The building obviously, was devoted for the most part to other
purposes, and had to be "made ready" for plays at a considerable
expense. Nor was the Prince the only one who took advantage of its
small amphitheatre. John Chamberlain, in a letter to Sir Dudley
Carleton on September 22, 1612, describing the reception accorded to
the Count Palatine by the Lady Elizabeth, writes: "On Tuesday she sent
to invite him as he sat at supper to a play of her own servants in the

[Footnote 664: John Nichols, _The Progresses of James_, II, 466.]

It is clear, then, that at times throughout the reign of James
dramatic performances were given in the Cockpit; but the auditorium
was small, and the performances must have been of a semi-private
nature. The important Court performances, to which many guests were
invited, were held in the Great Hall.

In the reign of the next sovereign, however, a change came about. In
the year 1632 or 1633, as well as I am able to judge with the evidence
at command, King Charles reconstructed the old Cockpit into a "new
theatre at Whitehall," which from henceforth was almost exclusively
used for Court performances. The opening of this "new theatre royal"
is celebrated by a _Speech_ from the pen of Thomas Heywood:

     _A Speech Spoken to Their Two Excellent Majesties at the
     First Play Play'd by the Queen's Servants in the New Theatre
     at Whitehall._

     When Greece, the chief priority might claim
     For arts and arms, and held the eminent name
     Of Monarchy, they erected divers places,
     Some to the Muses, others to the Graces,
     Where actors strove, and poets did devise,
     With tongue and pen to please the ears and eyes
     Of Princely auditors. The time was, when
     To hear the rapture of one poet's pen
     A Theatre hath been built.

     By the Fates' doom,
     When th' Empire was removed from thence to Rome,
     The Potent Cæsars had their _circi_, and
     Large amphitheatres, in which might stand
     And sit full fourscore thousand, all in view
     And touch of voice. This great Augustus knew,
     Nay Rome its wealth and potency enjoyed,
     Till by the barbarous Goths these were destroy'd.

     But may this structure last, and you be seen
     Here a spectator, with your princely Queen,
     In your old age, as in your flourishing prime,
     To outstrip Augustus both in fame and time.

The exact date of this _Speech_ is not given, but it was printed[665]
in 1637 along with "The Prologue to the Famous Tragedy of _The Rich
Jew of Malta_, as it Was Played Before the King and Queen in His
Majesty's Theatre at Whitehall"; and this Prologue Heywood had already
published with the play itself in 1633. He dedicated the play to Mr.
Thomas Hammon, saying, "I had no better a New-Year's gift to present
you with." Apparently, then, the play had been acted at Court shortly
before New Year's, 1633; and this sets a forward date to Heywood's
_Speech_. Other evidence combines with this to show that "His
Majesty's Theatre at Whitehall" was "new" at the Christmas season of

[Footnote 665: See _The Dramatic Works of Thomas Heywood_ (1874), VI,

In erecting this, the first "theatre royal," King Charles would
naturally call for the aid of the great Court architect Inigo
Jones,[666] and by good luck we have preserved for us Jones's original
sketches for the little playhouse (see page 396). These were
discovered a few years ago by Mr. Hamilton Bell in the Library of
Worcester College (where many valuable relics of the great architect
are stored), and printed in _The Architectural Record_ of New York,
March, 1913. Mr. Bell accompanied the plans with a valuable
discussion, but he was unable to discover their purpose. He writes:

     We have still no clue as to what purpose this curiously
     anomalous and most interesting structure was to
     serve--whether the plan was ever carried out, or whether it
     remained part of a lordly pleasure-house which its prolific
     designer planned for the delectation of his own soul.

[Footnote 666: Whether he merely made over the old Cockpit which Henry
VIII had constructed "out of certain old tenements," or erected an
entirely new building, I have not been able to ascertain. Heywood's
_Speech_ indicates a "new" and "lasting" structure.]

That the plan actually was carried out, at least in part, is shown by
a sketch of the Whitehall buildings made by John Fisher at some date
before 1670, and engraved by Vertue in 1747, (see page 398).[667]
Here, in the northeast corner of the palace, we find a little theatre,
labeled "The Cockpit." Its identity with the building sketched by
Inigo Jones is obvious at a glance; even the exterior measurements,
which are ascertainable from the scales of feet given on the two
plans, are the same.

[Footnote 667: Vertue conservatively dates the survey "about 1680";
but the names of the occupants of the various parts of the palace show
that it was drawn before 1670, and nearer 1660 than 1680.]


Now preserved in the Worcester College Library at Oxford; discovered
by Mr. Hamilton Bell, and reproduced in _The Architectural Record_, of
New York, 1913.]


A section from Vertue's engraving, 1747, of a survey of Whitehall made
by John Fisher, 1660-1670. Compare "The Cockpit" with Inigo Jones's


Which probably inspired Inigo Jones's plans for the Cockpit-in-Court.]

Mr. Bell describes the plan he discovered as follows:[668]

     It represents within a square building, windowed on three
     sides and on one seemingly attached to another building, an
     auditorium occupying five sides of an octagon, on the floor
     of which are shown the benches of a pit, or the steps, five
     in number, on which they could be set. These are curiously
     arranged at an angle of forty-five degrees on either side of
     a central aisle, so that the spectators occupying them
     could never have directly faced the stage. Surrounding this
     pit on five sides is a balcony ten feet deep, with, it would
     seem, two rows of benches on four of its sides; the fifth
     side in the centre, directly opposite the stage, being
     partitioned off into a room or box, in the middle of which
     is indicated a platform about five feet by seven, presumably
     for the Royal State. Three steps descend from this box to
     the centre aisle of the pit. To the left of and behind this
     royal box appears another enclosure or box, partitioned off
     from the rest of the balcony.

     The staircases of access to this auditorium are clearly
     indicated; one small door at the rear of the _salle_ with
     its own private stairway, communicating with the adjoining
     building, opens directly into the royal box; as in the Royal
     Opera House in Berlin to-day.

     There is another door, with a triangular lobby, into the
     rear of the left-hand balcony. Two windows are shown on each
     side of the house, opening directly into the theatre from
     the outer air.

     The stage runs clear across the width of the pit, about
     thirty-five feet, projecting in an "apron" or _avant scène_
     five feet beyond the proscenium wall, and is surrounded on
     the three outward sides by a low railing of classic design
     about eighteen inches in height, just as in many Elizabethan

     If one may trust an elevation of the stage, drawn on the
     same sheet to twice the scale of the general plan, the stage
     was four feet six inches above the floor of the pit. This
     elevation exhibits the surprising feature of a classic
     façade, Palladian in treatment, on the stage of what so far
     we have regarded as a late modification of a playhouse of
     Shakespeare's day. Evidently Inigo Jones contemplated the
     erection of a permanent architectural _proscenium_, as the
     ancients called it, of the type, though far more modest,
     both in scale and ornamentation, of Palladio's Theatro
     Olimpico at Vicenza, which we know he visited in about 1600,
     some twenty years after its erection. This _proscenium_,
     given in plan and elevation, shows a semi-circular structure
     with a radius of fifteen feet, two stories in height, of the
     Corinthian or Composite order. In the lower story are five
     doorways, the centre of which is a large archway flanked by
     pedestals, on which are inscribed in Greek characters,
     Melpomene--Thalia; over these and over the smaller doors are

     The second story contains between its lighter engaged
     columns, over the four side doors, niches with corbels
     below, destined to carry statues as their inscribed bases
     indicate. So far as these inscriptions are legible,--the
     clearest reading "phocles," probably Sophocles,--these were
     to represent Greek dramatists, most likely Æschylus,
     Euripides, Sophocles and Aristophanes.

     The curved pediment of the central archway runs up into this
     story and is broken in the middle by a tablet bearing the
     inscription "Prodesse et Delectare," which is flanked by two
     reclining genii holding garlands.

     Above these are two busts on brackets, Thespis and Epicurus,
     or possibly Epicharmus. The space directly above this
     pediment is occupied by a window-like opening five by four
     feet, the traditional Elizabethan music-room, in all
     probability, which, Mr. W.J. Lawrence has shown us, occupied
     this position both in Shakespeare's day and for some time
     after the Restoration; an arrangement which was revived by
     Mr. Steele Mackaye in the Madison Square Theatre, and
     originally in the first little Lyceum, New York, both now
     pulled down. The pyramidal pediment above this opening
     projects above the upper cornice into a coved ceiling, which
     would appear from the rendering of the drawing to form an
     apse above the semi-circular stage. Behind the _proscenium_
     is a large space with staircases of approach, two windows at
     the rear, and apparently a fireplace for the comfort of the
     waiting players. Communication with the front of the house
     is provided by a door in the proscenium wall opening into
     the stage door lobby, whence the outside of the building may
     be reached.

     There is no indication of galleries, unless some marks on
     the angles of the front wall of the balcony may be
     interpreted without too much license into the footings of
     piers or posts to carry one; the total interior height shown
     in the elevation from what I have assumed to be the floor of
     the pit to the ceiling being only twenty-eight feet, there
     would hardly have been room for more than one. The only
     staircases which could have served it are at the rear of the
     building in the corners behind the stage wall....

     The general dimensions would appear to be:

     Total width of the auditorium                   58 ft.
     Total width of the pit                          36 ft.
     Total width of the front stage or "apron"       35 ft.
     Total depth of the stage from the railing to
       the centre of the _proscenium_                16 ft.
         The entire building is 58 feet square inside, cut to
         an octagon of 28 feet each side.
     Height from floor to ceiling                    28 ft.
     Height from stage to ceiling              about 23 ft. 6 in.
     The lower order of the _proscenium_             10 ft. 6 in.
     The upper order of the _proscenium_              9 ft. 6 in.

     The scale on the drawing may not be absolutely correct, as
     measured by it the side doors of the _proscenium_ are only
     five feet high and two feet nine inches wide: this, however,
     may be an error in the drawing, since we have it on very
     good authority that Inigo Jones designed without the use of
     a scale, proportioning his various members by his
     exquisitely critical eye alone, subsequently adding the
     dimensions in writing.

[Footnote 668: Reprinted here by the kind permission of Mr. Bell and
the editors of _The Architectural Record_.]

I record below some of the references to the Cockpit which I have
gathered from the Herbert Manuscript and the Office-Books of the Lord
Chamberlain. The earliest payment for plays there, it will be
observed, is dated March 16, 1633. Abundant evidence shows that the
actors gave their performance in the Cockpit at night without
interfering with their regular afternoon performance at their
playhouses, and for their pains received the sum of £10. If, however,
for any reason they "lost their day" at their house they were paid

     1633. March 16. Warrant to pay £270 to John Lowen, Joseph
     Taylor, and Eilliard Swanston, His Majesty's Comedians, for
     plays by them acted before His Majesty, viz.--£20 for the
     rehearsal of one at the Cockpit, by which means they lost
     their afternoon at their house....[669]

     1634. _Bussy d'Amboise_ was played by the King's Players on
     Easter-Monday night, at the Cockpit-in-Court.[670]

     1634. The _Pastorall_ was played by the King's Players on
     Easter-Tuesday night, at the Cockpit-in-Court.[671]

     1635. 10 May. A warrant for £30 unto Mons. Josias Floridor,
     for himself and the rest of the French players for three
     plays acted by them at the Cockpit.[672]

     1635. 10 Decemr.--A warrant for £100 to the Prince's
     Comedians,--viz. £60 for three plays acted at Hampton Court,
     at £20 for each play, in September and October, 1634. And
     £40 for four plays at Whitehall and [_query_ "at"] the
     Cockpit in January, February, and May following, at £10 for
     each play.[673]

     1636. The first and second part of _Arviragus and Philicia_
     were acted at the Cockpit before the King and Queen, the
     Prince, and Prince Elector, the 18 and 19 April, 1636, being
     Monday and Tuesday in Easter week.[674]

[Footnote 669: Lord Chamberlain's Office-Book, C.C. Stopes,
"Shakespeare's Fellows and Followers," Shakespeare _Jahrbuch_, XLVI,

[Footnote 670: Herbert MS., Malone, _Variorum_, III, 237.]

[Footnote 671: Herbert MS., Malone, _Variorum_, III, 237.]

[Footnote 672: Lord Chamberlain's Office-Book, Chalmers's _Apology_,
p. 508.]

[Footnote 673: _Ibid._, p. 509.]

[Footnote 674: The Herbert MS., Malone, _Variorum_, III, 238.]

Other similar allusions to performance in the Cockpit might be cited
from the Court records. One more will suffice--the most interesting of
all, since it shows how frequently the little theatre was employed for
the entertainment of the royal family. It is a bill presented by the
Blackfriars Company, the King's Men, for Court performances during the
year 1637. This bill was discovered and reproduced in facsimile by
George R. Wright, F.S.A., in _The Journal of the British
Archæological Association_ for 1860; but it was wholly misunderstood
by its discoverer, who regarded it as drawn up by the company of
players that "performed at the Cockpit in Drury Lane." He was indeed
somewhat puzzled by the reference to the Blackfriars Playhouse, but
met the difficulty by saying: "There can be little doubt that the
last-named theatre was lent for the occasion to the Cockpit Company,"
although he suggests no reason for this strange borrowing of a theatre
by a troupe that possessed a house of its own, and much nearer the
Court, too. It did not even occur to him, it seems, to inquire how the
Cockpit Company secured the plays which we know belonged to
Shakespeare's old company. Because of these obvious difficulties
scholars have looked upon the document with suspicion, and apparently
have treated it as a forgery.[675] But that it is genuine is indicated
by the history of "The Cockpit-in-Court" as sketched above, and is
proved beyond any question by the fact that the Office-Book of the
Lord Chamberlain shows that the bill was paid:

     12th March 1638 {9}.--Forasmuch as His Majesty's Servants,
     the company at the Blackfriars, have by special command, at
     divers times within the space of this present year 1638,
     acted 24 plays before His Majesty, six whereof have been
     performed at Hampton-court and Richmond, by means whereof
     they were not only at the loss of their day at home, but at
     extraordinary charges by traveling and carriage of their
     goods, in consideration whereof they are to have £20 apiece
     for those plays, and £10 apiece for the other 18 acted at
     Whitehall, which in the whole amounted to the sum of
     £300.--These are therefore to pray and require you out of
     His Majesty's treasure in your charge to pay....[676]

[Footnote 675: Fleay in his elaborate studies of performances at Court
ignores it entirely, as do subsequent scholars.]

[Footnote 676: Chalmers, _Apology_, p. 510.]

A photographic facsimile of this interesting document may be seen in
_The Journal of the British Archæological Association_, already
referred to; but for the convenience of those who do not read
Elizabethan script with ease, I have reproduced it in type facsimile
on page 404.

[Illustration: [Transcriber's Note: The dashes below represent
handwritten check-marks in the facsimile.]

before the king & queene this
yeare of our lord 1638

At the Cocpit the 26th of march               The lost ladie

At the Cocpit the 27th of march               Damboyes

At the Cocpit the 3d of Aprill                Aglaura

At the blackfryers the 23 of Aprill
for the queene                                the vnfortunate lou[ers]

At the Cocpit the 29th of may
the princes berthnight                        ould Castel

At the Cocpit the last of may agayne the      vnfortunate louers

At Sumerset-house the 10th of July & our day

-- lost at our house mr Carlels play the first part of the pasionate louers

-- At Hamton Court the 30th of September      The vnfortunate louer[s]

-- At Richmount the 6th of november for the ladie }  The mery divell
   maries berthnight & the day lost at our house  }  of Edmonto[n]

At the Cocpit the 8th of november             The fox

At the Cocpit the 13th of november            Ceaser

At the Cocpit the 15th of november            The mery wifes of winser

At the Cocpit the 20th of november            The fayre favorett

At the Cocpit the 22th of november            Chances

At the Cocpit the 27th of november            The Costome of the C[ountry]

At the Cocpit the 29th of november            The northen las

At the Cocpit the 6th of desember             The spanish Curatt

At the Cocpit the 11th of desember agayne     The fayre favorett

At the Cocpit the 18th of desember m Carlels
play agayne the first part of                 The pasionate louers

At the Cocpit the 20th of desember
the 2d part of                                The pasionate louers

At the Cocpit the 27 of desember the 2d part agayne of the pasionate louers

-- At Richmount the 28 of desember the ladie        }
   Elsabeths berthnight & our day lost at our house }  The northen las

-- At Richmount on newyeares day }
   and our day lost at our house }  beggers bush

-- At Richmount the 7th of Janeuarye }
   and our day lost at our house     }  The spanish Cura[tt]]

The check-marks at the left were probably made by the clerk in the
Chamberlain's office to ascertain how many times the players "lost
their day" at their house, and hence were entitled to £20 in payment.
For the play given "at the blackfriars the 23 of Aprill for the
queene" (presumably the general public was excluded) only the usual
£10 was allowed.

With the approach of the civil war, the Cockpit, like the public
theatres, suffered an eclipse. Sir Henry Herbert writes: "On Twelfth
Night, 1642, the Prince had a play called _The Scornful Lady_ at the
Cockpit; but the King and Queen were not there, and it was the only
play acted at court in the whole Christmas."[677] During the dark days
that followed we hear nothing of plays in the Cockpit. Later
Cromwell himself occupied this section of the palace, and naturally
saw to it that no dramatic exhibitions were held there. But at the
Restoration "the Prince," now become the King, could have his plays
again; and he did not wait long. On November 20, 1660, Edward Gower
wrote to Sir Richard Leveson: "Yesternight the King, Queen, Princess,
etc., supped at the Duke d'Albemarle's, where they had _The Silent
Woman_ acted in the Cockpit."[678] From this time on the theatre royal
was in constant use for the entertainment of the Court.

[Footnote 677: Herbert MS., Malone, _Variorum_, III, 241.]

[Footnote 678: Historical Manuscripts Commission, Fifth Report, p.
200. Pepys, under the date November 20, 1660, gives an anecdote about
the King's behavior on this occasion.]

Samuel Pepys, as he rose in the world, became a frequent visitor
there.[679] In the absence of other descriptions of the building, I
subjoin a few of the entries from his _Diary_. Under the date of
October 2, 1662, he writes:

     At night by coach towards Whitehall, took up Mr. Moore and
     set him at my Lord's, and myself, hearing that there was a
     play at the Cockpit (and my Lord Sandwich, who came to town
     last night, at it), I do go thither, and by very great
     fortune did follow four or five gentlemen who were carried
     to a little private door in a wall, and so crept through a
     narrow place and come into one of the boxes next the King's,
     but so as I could not see the King or Queen, but many of the
     fine ladies, who yet are really not so handsome generally
     as I used to take them to be, but that they are finely
     dressed. Here we saw _The Cardinal_,[680] a tragedy I had
     never seen before, nor is there any great matter in it. The
     company that came in with me into the box were all Frenchmen
     that could speak no English, but Lord! what sport they made
     to ask a pretty lady that they got among them that
     understood both French and English to make her tell them
     what the actors said.

[Footnote 679: He first "got in" on April 20, 1661, "by the favour of
one Mr. Bowman." John Evelyn also visited the Cockpit; see his
_Diary_, January 16 and February 11, 1662.]

[Footnote 680: By James Shirley, licensed 1641.]

The next time he went to the Cockpit, on November 17, 1662, he did not
have to creep in by stealth. He writes:

     At Whitehall by appointment, Mr. Crew carried my wife and I
     to the Cockpit, and we had excellent places, and saw the
     King, Queen, Duke of Monmouth, his son, and my Lady
     Castlemaine, and all the fine ladies; and _The Scornful
     Lady_, well performed. They had done by eleven o'clock.

The fine ladies, as usual, made a deep impression on him, as did the
"greatness and gallantry" of the audience. On December 1, 1662, he

     This done we broke up, and I to the Cockpit, with much
     crowding and waiting, where I saw _The Valiant Cid_[681]
     acted, a play I have read with great delight, but is a most
     dull thing acted, which I never understood before, there
     being no pleasure in it, though done by Betterton and by
     Ianthe,[682] and another fine wench that is come in the room
     of Roxalana; nor did the King or Queen once smile all the
     whole play, nor any of the company seem to take any pleasure
     but what was in the greatness and gallantry of the company.
     Thence ... home, and got thither by 12 o'clock, knocked up
     my boy, and put myself to bed.

[Footnote 681: By Corneille.]

[Footnote 682: Mrs. Betterton.]


From an engraving by Mazell in Pennant's _London_. Mr. W.L. Spiers,
who reproduces this engraving in the _London Topographical Record_
(1903), says that it is "undated, but probably copied from a
contemporary drawing of the seventeenth century."]

Two entries, from an entirely different source, must suffice for this
history of the Cockpit. In the Paper-Office Chalmers discovered a
record of the following payments, made in 1667:

     To the Keeper of the theatre at Whitehall, £30. To the same
     for Keeping clean that place, _p. ann._ £6.[683]

[Footnote 683: Chalmers, _Apology_, p. 530. Cunningham says, in his
_Handbook of London_: "I find in the records of the Audit Office a
payment of £30 per annum 'to the Keeper of our Playhouse called the
Cockpit in St. James Park'"; but he does not state the year in which
the payment was made.]

And in the Lord Chamberlain's Accounts is preserved the following

     1674, March 27. Warrant to deliver to Monsieur Grabu, or to
     such as he shall appoint, such of the scenes remaining in
     the theatre at Whitehall as shall be useful for the French
     Opera at the theatre in Bridges Street, and the said
     Monsieur to return them again safely after 14 days' time to
     the theatre at Whitehall.[684]

[Footnote 684: I quote from W.J. Lawrence, _The Elizabethan Playhouse_
(First Series), p. 144.]

What became of the theatre at Whitehall I have not been able to
ascertain.[685] Presumably, after the fire of January, 1698, which
destroyed the greater part of the palace and drove the royal family to
seek quarters elsewhere, the building along with the rest of the
Cockpit section was made over into the Privy Council offices.

[Footnote 685: The reasons why the Cockpit at Whitehall has remained
so long in obscurity (its history is here attempted for the first
time) are obvious. Some scholars have confused it with the public
playhouse of the same name, a confusion which persons in the days of
Charles avoided by invariably saying "The Cockpit in Drury Lane."
Other scholars have confused it with the residential section of
Whitehall which bore the same name. During the reign of James several
large buildings which had been erected either on the site of the old
cockpit of Henry VIII, or around it, were converted into lodgings for
members of the royal family or favorites of the King, and were
commonly referred to as "the Cockpit." Other scholars have assumed
that all plays during the reigns of Elizabeth, James, and Charles were
given either in the Banqueting House or in the Great Hall. Finally,
still other scholars (e.g., Sir Sidney Lee, in _Shakespeare's
England_, 1916) have confused the Cockpit at Whitehall with the Royal
Cockpit in St. James's Park. Exactly when the latter was built I have
not been able to discover, but it was probably erected near the close
of the seventeenth century. It stood at the end of Dartmouth Street,
adjacent to Birdcage Walk, but not in the Park itself. John Strype, in
his edition of Stow's _Survey_ (1720), bk. VI, p. 64, says of
Dartmouth Street: "And here is a very fine Cockpit, called the King's
Cockpit, well resorted unto." A picture of the building is given by
Strype on page 62, and a still better picture may be found in J.T.
Smith's _The Antiquities of Westminster_. The Royal Cockpit in
Dartmouth Street survived until 1816, when it was torn down. Hogarth,
in his famous representation of a cock-fight, shows its interior as
circular, and as embellished with the royal coat of arms. Another
interesting picture of the interior will be found in Ackermann's _The
Microcosm of London_ (1808). It is needless to add that this building
had nothing whatever to do with the theatre royal of the days of King





In Jeaffreson's _Middlesex County Records_ (I, 260), we find the
following entry, dated April 1, 1600:

     1 April, 42 Elizabeth.--Recognizance, taken before Sir John
     Peyton knt., Lieutenant of the Tower of London, and Thomas
     Fowler, Tobias Woode, Edward Vaghan and Henry Thoresby
     esqs., Justices of the Peace, of John Wolf, of
     Eastsmithfield, co. Midd., stationer, in the sum of forty
     pounds; The condition of the recognizance being "that,
     whereas the above-bounden John Wolf hath begun to erect and
     build a playhouse in Nightingale Lane near East Smithfield
     aforesaid, contrary to Her Majesty's proclamation and orders
     set down in Her Highness's Court of Starchamber. If
     therefore the said John Wolf do not proceed any further in
     building or erecting of the same playhouse, unless he shall
     procure sufficient warrant from the Rt. Honourable the Lords
     of Her Majesty's most honourable Privy Council for further
     ... then this recognizance to be void, or else to remain in
     full force."

The only stationer in London named John Wolf was the printer and
publisher who at this time had his shop in Pope's Head Alley, Lombard
Street. For several reasons he is well known to bibliographers; and
his strong personality and tireless energy might easily have led him
into the field of the theatre. For many years he was a member of the
Fishmongers' Company, to which also, in all probability, his father
had belonged. After a ten years' apprenticeship with the eminent
printer, John Day, he spent several years abroad "gadding from country
to country," but learning the printing trade from the best
establishments on the Continent. His longest stay was in Italy, where
he was connected with the printing-office of the Giunti, and also, it
seems, of Gabriel Giolito. In 1576 he printed two _Rappresentazioni_,
"ad instanzia di Giovanni Vuolfio, Inglese." About the year 1579 he
established himself in London (where he was dubbed by his fellows
"Machiavel"), and began an energetic warfare on the monopolies secured
by certain favored printers. The fact that he was for a time
"committed to the Clink" failed to deter him. We are told that he
"affirmed openly in the Stationers' Hall that it was lawful for all
men to print all lawful books, what commandment soever Her Majesty
gave to the contrary." And being "admonished that he, being but one,
so mean a man, should not presume to contrary Her Highness'
government: 'Tush,' said he, 'Luther was but one man, and reformed all
the world for religion, and I am _that one man_ that must and will
reform the government in this trade.'" The courage and energy here
revealed characterized his entire life. In 1583 he was admitted a
freeman of the Company of Stationers. In 1593 he was elected Printer
to the City. In the spring of 1600 he was in serious difficulties with
the authorities over the printing of John Hayward's _Life and Raigne
of King Henrie IV_, and was forced to spend two weeks in jail. He died
in 1601.[686]

[Footnote 686: For the life of John Wolf see the following: Edward
Arber, _A Transcript of the Stationers' Registers_, especially II,
779-93; _The Calendar of State Papers, Domestic, 1598-1601_, pp. 405,
449, 450; A. Gerber, _All of the Five Fictitious Italian Editions_,
etc. (in _Modern Language Notes_, XXII (1907), 2, 129, 201); H.R.
Plomer, _An Examination of Some Existing Copies of Hayward's "Life and
Raigne of King Henrie IV_" (in _The Library_, N.S., III (1902), 13);
R.B. McKerrow, _A Dictionary of Printers and Booksellers ...
1557-1640_; S. Bongi, _Annali di Gabriel Giolito de' Ferrari_.]

If this "John Wolf, stationer," be the man who started to erect a
playhouse in East Smithfield, it is to be regretted that we do not
know more about the causes which led him into the undertaking.



In 1620 John Cotton, John Williams, and Thomas Dixon[687] secured from
King James a license to build an amphitheatre[688] "intended
principally for martiall exercises, and extraordinary shows and
solemnities for ambassadors, and persons of honor and quality," with
the power granted to the owners to order "a cessation from other shows
and sports, for one day in a month only, upon fourteen days' warning."

[Footnote 687: Of these men nothing is known; something, however, may
be inferred from the following entries in Sir Henry Herbert's
Office-Book: "On the 20th August, 1623, a license _gratis_, to John
Williams and four others, to make _show_ of _an Elephant_, for a year;
on the 5th of September to make show of a _live Beaver_; on the 9th of
June, 1638, to make show of an outlandish creature, called a
_Possum_." (George Chalmers, _Supplemental Apology_, p. 208.)]

[Footnote 688: The place is not indicated, but it was probably outside
the city.]

But for some reason the King suddenly changed his mind, and on
September 29, 1620, he addressed a letter to the Privy Council
directing them to cancel the license:[689]

     Right trusty and right well-beloved Cousins and Councellors,
     and right trusty and well-beloved Councellors, we greet you
     well. Whereas at the humble suit of our servants John
     Cotton, John Williams, and Thomas Dixon, and in recompence
     of their services, we have been pleased to license them to
     build an Amphitheatre, which hath passed our Signet and is
     stayed at our Privy Seal; and finding therein contained some
     such words and clauses, as may, in some constructions, seem
     to give them greater liberty both in point of building and
     using of exercises than is any way to be permitted, or was
     ever by us intended, we have thought fit to command and give
     authority unto you, or any four of you, to cause that
     already passed to be cancelled, and to give order unto our
     Solicitor General for the drawing up of a new warrant for
     our signature to the same parties, according to such
     directions and reservations as herewith we send you. Wherein
     we are more particular, both in the affirmative and the
     negative, to the end that, as on one side we would have
     nothing pass us to remain upon record which either for the
     form might not become us or for the substance might cross
     our many proclamations (pursued with good success) for
     buildings, or, on the other side, might give them cause to
     importune us after they had been at charges; to which end we
     wish that you call them before you and let them know our
     pleasure and resolution therein.

[Footnote 689: See _State Papers, Domestic, 1619-1623_, p. 181. I have
quoted the letter from Collier, _The History of English Dramatic
Poetry_ (1879), I, 408.]

Accordingly the license was canceled, and no new license was issued.

In 1626, however, John Williams and Thomas Dixon (what had become of
John Cotton we do not know) made an attempt to secure a license from
King Charles, then newly come to the throne, to erect an amphitheatre
in Lincoln's Inn Fields. Apparently they so worded the proposed grant
as to authorize them to present in their amphitheatre not only
spectacles, but dramatic performances and animal-baitings as well,
with the power to restrain all other places of amusement for one day
in each week, on giving two days' warning.

A "bill" to this effect was drawn up and submitted to Thomas Coventry,
the Lord Keeper, who examined it hastily, and dispatched it to Lord
Conway with the following letter:[690]

     _My very good Lord_,--I have perused this Bill, and do call
     to mind that about three or four years past when I was
     Attorney General, a patent for an Amphitheatre was in hand
     to have passed; but upon this sudden, without search of my
     papers, I cannot give your lordship any account of the true
     cause wherefore it did not pass, nor whether that and this
     do vary in substance: neither am I apt upon a sudden to take
     impertinent exceptions to anything that is to pass, much
     less to a thing that is recommended by so good a friend. But
     if upon perusal of my papers which I had while I was
     Attorney, or upon more serious thoughts, I shall observe
     anything worthy to be represented to His Majesty, or to the
     Council, I shall then acquaint your lordship; and in the
     meantime I would be loath to be the author of a motion to
     His Majesty to stay it: but if you find His Majesty at
     fitting leisure, to move him that he will give leave to
     think of it in this sort as I have written, it may do well;
     and I assure your lordship, unless I find matter of more
     consequence than I observe on this sudden, it is not like to
     be stayed. And so I rest your lordship's very assured to do
     you service,


     CANBURY, 12 _August_, 1626.

[Footnote 690: Collier, _op. cit._, I, 443.]

Apparently some very influential person was urging the passage of the
bill. But the scheme soon evoked the bitter opposition of the various
troupes of players, and of the owners of the various theatres and
other places of amusement. An echo of the quarrel is found in
Marmion's _Holland's Leaguer_, II, iii:

     Twill dead all my device in making matches,
     My plots of architecture, and erecting
     New amphitheatres to draw custom
     From playhouses once a week, and so pull
     A curse upon my head from the poor scoundrels.[691]

[Footnote 691: _The Dramatic Works of Shackerley Marmion_, in
_Dramatists of the Restoration_, p. 37. Fleay (_A Biographical
Chronicle of the English Drama_, II, 66) suggests that the impostors
Agurtes and Autolichus are meant to satirize Williams and Dixon

The "poor scoundrels"--i.e., the players--seem to have caused the
authorities to examine the bill more closely; and on September 28,
1626, the Lord Keeper sent to Lord Conway a second letter in which he
condemned the measure in strong terms:[692]

     _My Lord_,--According to His Majesty's good pleasure, which
     I received from your lordship, I have considered of the
     grant desired by John Williams and Thomas Dixon for building
     an Amphitheatre in Lincoln's Inn Fields; and comparing it
     with that which was propounded in King James his time, do
     find much difference between them: for that former was
     intended principally for martiall exercises, and
     extraordinary shows, and solemnities for ambassadors and
     persons of honor and quality, with a cessation from other
     shows and sports for one day in a month only, upon 14 days'
     warning: whereas by this new grant I see little probability
     of anything to be used but common plays, or ordinary sports
     now used or showed at the Bear Garden or the common
     playhouses about London, for all sorts of beholders, with a
     restraint to all other plays and shows for one day in the
     week upon two days' warning: with liberty to erect their
     buildings in Lincoln's Inn Fields, where there are too many
     buildings already; and which place in the late King's time
     upon a petition exhibited by the Prince's comedians for
     setting up a playhouse there, was certified by eleven
     Justices of Peace under their hands to be very inconvenient.
     And therefore, not holding this new grant fit to pass, as
     being no other in effect but to translate the playhouses and
     Bear Garden from the Bankside to a place much more unfit, I
     thought fit to give your lordship these reasons for it;
     wherewithal you may please to acquaint His Majesty, if there
     shall be cause. And so remain your lordship's very assured
     friend to do you service,


     CANBURY, 28 _Sept._, 1626.
       LO. CONWAY.

[Footnote 692: I quote the letter from Collier, _The History of
English Dramatic Poetry_ (1879), I, 444.]

On the letter Lord Conway has written the indorsement: "That it is
unfit the grant for the Amphitheatre should passe." And such, no
doubt, was the ultimate decision of the Privy Council, for we hear
nothing more of the project.



In 1635 a playhouse was opened in Dublin by John
Ogilby,--dancing-master, theatrical manager, playwright, scholar,
translator, poet,--now best known, perhaps, for the ridicule he
inspired in Dryden's _MacFlecknoe_ and Pope's _Dunciad_. At the
beginning of his versatile career he was a successful London
dancing-master, popular with "the nobility and gentry." When Thomas
Earl of Strafford was appointed Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, he took
Ogilby with him to Dublin, to teach his wife and children the art of
dancing, and also to help with the secretarial duties. Under
Strafford's patronage, Ogilby was appointed to the post of Master of
the Revels for Ireland; and in this capacity he built a small
playhouse in Dublin and began to cultivate dramatic representations
after the manner of London. Anthony à Wood in _Athenæ Oxonienses_,

     He built a little theatre to act plays in, in St. Warburg's
     street in Dublin, and was then and there valued by all
     ingenious men for his great industry in promoting morality
     and ingenuity.[693]

[Footnote 693: Bliss's edition, III, 741.]

Aubrey writes:

     He had a warrant from the Lord Lieutenant to be Master of
     the Ceremonies for that kingdom; and built a pretty[694]
     little theatre in St. Warburgh Street in Dublin.

[Footnote 694: "Pretty little theatre" is the reading of _MS. Aubr.
7_, folio 20; _MS. Aubr. 8_ omits the adjective "pretty." For Aubrey's
full account of Ogilby see Andrew Clark's _Brief Lives_ (1898), 2

The history of this "little theatre" is not known in detail. For its
actors Ogilby himself wrote at least one play, entitled _The Merchant
of Dublin_,[695] and Henry Burnell a tragi-comedy entitled
_Landgartha_, printed in 1641 "as it was presented in the new theatre
in Dublin with good applause." But its chief playwright was James
Shirley, who came to Dublin in 1636 under the patronage of the Earl of
Kildare. For the Irish stage he wrote _The Royal Master_, published in
1638 as "acted in the new theatre in Dublin"; _Rosania, or Love's
Victory_, now known as _The Doubtful Heir_, under which title it was
later printed; _St. Patrick for Ireland_;[696] and in all probability
_The Constant Maid_.[697] The actors, however, had little need to buy
original plays, for they were free, no doubt, to take any of the
numerous London successes. From Shirley's _Poems_ we learn that they
were presenting Jonson's _Alchemist_, Middleton's _No Wit_, two of
Fletcher's plays, unnamed, and two anonymous plays entitled _The Toy_
and _The General_; and we may fairly assume that they honored several
of Shirley's early plays in the same way.

[Footnote 695: Aubrey mentions this as having been "written in Dublin,
and never printed."]

[Footnote 696: Published in 1640 as "the first part," and both the
Prologue and the Epilogue speak of a second part; but no second part
was printed, and in all probability it never was written.]

[Footnote 697: Never licensed for England; reprinted in 1657 with _St.
Patrick for Ireland_.]

The theatre came to a sudden end with the outbreak of the rebellion in
1641. In October the Lords Justices prohibited playing there; and
shortly after, we are told, the building was "ruined and spoiled, and
a cow-house made of the stage."[698]

[Footnote 698: _MS. Aubr. 7_, folio 20 v. Ogilby's second theatre in
Dublin, built after the Restoration, does not fall within the scope of
the present work.]



In February, 1635, a company of French players, under the leadership
of the eminent actor, Josias de Soulas, better known by his stage-name
of Floridor,[699] appeared in London, and won such favor at Court that
they were ultimately allowed to fit up a house in Drury Lane for a
temporary theatre. The history of these players is mainly found in the
records of the Master of the Revels and of the Lord Chamberlain. From
the former, Malone has preserved the following entries by Herbert:

     On Tuesday night the 17 of February, 1634 [i.e., 1635], a
     French company of players, being approved of by the Queen at
     her house two nights before, and commended by Her Majesty to
     the King, were admitted to the Cockpitt in Whitehall, and
     there presented the King and Queen with a French comedy
     called _Melise_,[700] with good approbation: for which play
     the King gave them ten pounds.

     This day being Friday, and the 20 of the same month, the
     King told me his pleasure, and commanded me to give order
     that this French company should play the two sermon days in
     the week during their time of playing in Lent [i.e.,
     Wednesdays and Fridays, on which days during Lent the
     English companies were not allowed to play], and in the
     house of Drury Lane [i.e., the Cockpit Playhouse], where the
     Queen's Players usually play. The King's pleasure I
     signified to Mr. Beeston [the manager of the Cockpit] the
     same day, who obeyed readily. The housekeepers are to give
     them by promise the benefit of their interest[701] for the
     two days of the first week. They had the benefit of playing
     on the sermon days, and got two hundred pounds at least;
     besides many rich clothes were given them. They had freely
     to themselves the whole week before the week before
     Easter,[702] which I obtained of the King for them.

[Footnote 699: See Frederick Hawkins, _Annals of the French Stage_
(1884), I, 148 ff., for the career of this player on the French stage.
"Every gift required by the actor," says Hawkins, "was possessed by

[Footnote 700: _La Melise, ou Les Princes Reconnus_, by Du Rocher,
first acted in Paris in 1633; see _The Athenæum_, July 11, 1891, p.
73; and cf. _ibid._, p. 139.]

[Footnote 701: "Housekeepers" were owners, who always demanded of the
players as rental for the building a certain part of each day's
takings. The passage quoted means that the housekeepers allowed the
French players to receive _all_ money taken on the two sermon days of
the _first_ week, and after that exacted their usual share as rental
for the building.]

[Footnote 702: That is, Passion Week, during which time the English
companies were never allowed to give performances.]

The use of the Cockpit in Drury Lane came to an end at Easter, for the
Queen's own troupe, under Beeston's management, regularly occupied
that building. But the King summoned the French players to act at
Court on several occasions. Thus Herbert records:

     The 4 April, on Easter Monday,[703] they played the
     _Trompeur Puny_[704] with better approbation than the

     On Wednesday night, the 16 April,[705] 1635, the French
     played _Alcimedor_[706] with good approbation.[707]

[Footnote 703: This must be an error, for Easter Monday fell on March

[Footnote 704: _Le Trompeur Puni, ou Histoire Septentrionale_, by

[Footnote 705: Wednesday was the 15th.]

[Footnote 706: _Alcimedon_, by Duryer.]

[Footnote 707: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 121, note.]

Clearly these actors were in high favor at Court. Sir Henry, who did
not as a rule show any hesitancy in accepting fees, notes in the
margin of his book: "The French offered me a present of £10; but I
refused it, and did them many other courtesies gratis to render the
Queen my mistress an acceptable service." In view of this royal favor,
it is not surprising to find that, after they were driven from the
Cockpit, they received permission to fit up a temporary playhouse in
the manage, or riding-school, of one M. Le Febure, in Drury Lane. The
Lord Chamberlain's Office-Book contains the following entry on the

     18 April, 1635: His Majesty hath commanded me to signify his
     royal pleasure that the French comedians (having agreed with
     Mons. le Febure) may erect a stage, scaffolds, and seats,
     and all other accommodations which shall be convenient, and
     act and present interludes and stage plays at his house [and
     manage[708]] in Drury Lane, during His Majesty's pleasure,
     without any disturbance, hindrance, or interruption. And
     this shall be to them, and Mr. le Febure, and to all others,
     a sufficient discharge, &c.[709]

[Footnote 708: This clause I insert from Mrs. Stopes's notes on the
Lord Chamberlain's records, in the Shakespeare _Jahrbuch_, XLVI, 97.]

[Footnote 709: I have chosen to reproduce the record from Chalmers's
_Apology_, p. 506, note _s_, rather than from Mrs. Stopes's apparently
less accurate notes in the Shakespeare _Jahrbuch_, XLVI, 97.]

Apparently the players lost little time in fitting up the building,
for we read in Herbert's Office-Book:

     A warrant granted to Josias D'Aunay,[710] Hurfries de Lau,
     and others, for to act plays at a new house in Drury Lane,
     during pleasure, the 5 May, 1635.

     The King was pleased to command my Lord Chamberlain to
     direct his warrant to Monsieur Le Fevure, to give him a
     power to contract with the Frenchmen for to build a
     playhouse in the manage-house, which was done accordingly by
     my advice and allowance.[711]

[Footnote 710: Should we place a comma after "Josias"? That "Josias
Floridor" was the leader of the troupe we know from two separate
entries; cf. Chalmers, _Apology_, pp. 508, 509.]

[Footnote 711: Malone, _Variorum_, III, 122, note.]

In Glapthorne's _The Ladies' Priviledge_ is a good-natured allusion to
the French Company and their vivacious style of acting:[712]

     _La._ But, Adorni,
     What think you of the French?

     _Ador._ Very airy people, who participate
     More fire than earth; yet generally good,
     And nobly disposition'd, something inclining
     To over-weening fancy. This lady
     Tells my remembrance of a comic scene
     I once saw in their Theatre.

     _Bon._ Add it to
     Your former courtesies, and express it.

[Footnote 712: Act II, Scene i. This passage is pointed out by
Lawrence, _The Elizabethan Playhouse_, p. 137.]

Whereupon, according to the stage direction, Adorni "acts furiously."

In the margin of his Office-Book Sir Henry Herbert writes
complacently: "These Frenchmen were commended unto me by the Queen,
and have passed through my hands gratis." This was indeed a rare favor
from Herbert; but they did not so easily escape his deputy, William
Blagrove, who accepted from them the sum of "three pounds for his

How long the French actors occupied their temporary playhouse in Drury
Lane is not clear. In the Lord Chamberlain's book we find an entry
showing that they presented a play at Court in December, 1635:
"Warrant to pay £10 to Josias Floridor for himself and the rest of the
French players for a tragedy by them played before His Majesty Dec.
last."[713] The entry is dated January 8, 1636, and, so far as I can
discover, this is the last reference to the French players in London.
We may suppose that shortly after this they returned to Paris.

[Footnote 713: Stopes, _op. cit._, p. 98, Chalmers, _Apology_, p.



On March 26, 1639, William Davenant, who had succeeded Ben Jonson as
Poet Laureate, secured from King Charles a royal patent under the
Great Seal of England to erect a playhouse in Fleet Street, to be used
not only for regular plays, but also for "musical entertainments" and
"scenic representations." Davenant, as we know, was especially
interested in "the art of perspective in scenes," and also in the
Italian _opera musicale_. The royal patent--unusually verbose even for
a patent--is printed in full in Rymer's _Foedera_, XX, 377; I cite
below all the essential passages:

     [_The Building._] Know ye, that we, of our especial grace,
     certain knowledge, and meere motion, and upon the humble
     petition of our servant William Davenant, gentleman, have
     given and granted, and by these presents, for us, our heirs,
     and successors, do give and grant unto the said William
     Davenant, his heirs, executors, administrators, and assigns,
     full power, license, and authority ... to frame, new-build,
     and set up ... a Theatre or Playhouse, with necessary tiring
     and retiring rooms, and other places convenient, containing
     in the whole forty yards square at the most,[714] wherein
     plays, musical entertainments, scenes, or other like
     presentments may be presented ... so as the outwalls of the
     said Theatre or Playhouse, tiring or retiring rooms, be made
     or built of brick or stone, according to the tenor of our
     proclamations in that behalf.

     [_Its Location._] Upon a parcel of ground lying near unto or
     behind the Three Kings Ordinary in Fleet Street, in the
     parishes of Saint Dunstan's in the West, London, or in Saint
     Bride's, London, or in either of them; or in any other
     ground in or about that place, or in the whole street
     aforesaid, already allotted to him for that use, or in any
     other place that is or hereafter shall be assigned or
     allotted out to the said William Davenant by our right
     trusty and right well-beloved cousin and counsellor Thomas,
     Earl of Arundel and Surrey, Earl Marshall of England, or any
     other of our commissioners for building for that time being
     in that behalf.

     [_Its Uses._] And we do hereby, for us, our heirs, and
     successors, grant to the said William Davenant, his heirs,
     executors, administrators, and assigns, that it shall and
     may be lawful to and for him, the said William Davenant, his
     heirs, executors, administrators, and assigns, from time to
     time to gather together, entertain, govern, privilege, and
     keep, such and so many players and persons, to exercise
     action, musical presentments, scenes, dancing, and the like,
     as he, the said William Davenant, his heirs, executors,
     administrators, and assigns shall think fit and approve for
     the said house; and such persons to permit and continue at
     and during the pleasure of the said William Davenant, his
     heirs, executors, administrators, and assigns, from time to
     time to act plays in such house so to be by him or them
     erected; and exercise music, musical presentments, scenes,
     dancing, or other the like, at the same, or other, hours, or
     times, or after plays are ended,[715] peaceably and quietly,
     without the impeachment or impediment of any person or
     persons whatsoever, for the honest recreation of such as
     shall desire to see the same. And that it shall and may be
     lawful to and for the said William Davenant, his heirs,
     executors, administrators, and assigns, to take and receive
     of such our subjects as shall resort to see or hear any such
     plays, scenes, and entertainments whatsoever, such sum or
     sums of money as is, are, or hereafter from time to time
     shall be accustomed to be given or taken in other playhouses
     and places for the like plays, scenes, presentments, and

[Footnote 714: The Fortune was only eighty feet square, but the stage
projected to the middle of the yard. Davenant probably wished to
provide for an alcove stage of sufficient depth to accommodate his

[Footnote 715: That is, he may give his "musical presentments," etc.,
either at the hours when he was accustomed to give plays, or after his
plays are ended. This does not necessarily imply evening

The novelty of the scheme and the great size of the proposed building
must have alarmed the owners of playhouses. That the established
theatrical proprietors were hostile is clearly indicated by the
attitude of Richard Heton, one of the Sewers of the Chamber to Queen
Henrietta, and at the time manager of the Salisbury Court Playhouse.
In September, 1639, he wrote out a document entitled "Instructions for
my Patent," in which he advanced reasons why he should receive the
sole power to elect the members of the Queen's Company of Players. He
observes that under the existing arrangement the company was free to
leave the Salisbury Court Playhouse at their pleasure, "as in one year
and a half of their being here they have many times threatened"; and
he concludes by adding: "and one now of the chief fellows [i.e.,
sharers of the company], an agent for one [William Davenant] that hath
got a grant from the King for the building of a new playhouse which
was intended to be in Fleet Street, which no man can judge that a
fellow of our Company, and a well-wisher to those that own the house,
would ever be an actor in."[716] Doubtless the owners of other houses
had the same sentiments, and exercised what influence they possessed
against the scheme. But the most serious opposition in all probability
came from the citizens and merchants living in the neighborhood. We
know how bitterly they complained about the coaches that brought
playgoers to the small Blackfriars Theatre, and how strenuously from
year to year they sought the expulsion of the King's Men from the
precinct.[717] They certainly would not have regarded with complacency
the erection in their midst of a still larger theatre.

[Footnote 716: Cunningham, _The Whitefriars Theatre_, in _The
Shakespeare Society's Papers_, IV, 96.]

[Footnote 717: See the chapter on the Second Blackfriars.]

Whatever the opposition, it was so powerful that on October 2 Davenant
was compelled to make an indenture by which he virtually
renounced[718] for himself and his heirs for ever the right to build a
theatre in Fleet Street, or in any other place "in or near the cities,
or suburbs of the cities, of London or Westminster," without further
and special permission granted. This document, first printed by
Chalmers in his _Supplemental Apology_, is as follows:

     This indenture made the second day of October, in the
     fifteenth year of the reign of our Sovereign Lord Charles,
     by the grace of God, of England, Scotland, France, and
     Ireland King, Defender of the Faith, &c. _Anno Domini_ 1639.
     Between the said King's most excellent Majesty of the first
     part, and William Davenant of London, Gent., of the other
     part. Whereas the said King's most excellent Majesty, by His
     Highness's letters patents under the Great Seal of England
     bearing date the six and twentieth day of March last past
     before the date of these presents, did give and grant unto
     the said William Davenant, his heirs, executors,
     administrators, and assigns full power, license, and
     authority that he, they, and every of them, by him and
     themselves and by all and every such person or persons as he
     or they shall depute or appoint, and his and their laborers,
     servants, and workmen, shall and may lawfully, quietly, and
     peaceably frame, erect, new build, and set up upon a parcel
     of ground lying near unto or behind the Three Kings Ordinary
     in Fleet Street in the Parish of St. Dunstan's in the West,
     London, or in St. Bride's London, or in either of them, or
     in any other ground in or about that place, or in the whole
     street aforesaid, already allotted to him for that use, or
     in any other place that is or hereafter shall be assigned
     and allotted out to the said William Davenant by the Right
     Honorable Thomas, Earl of Arundel and Surrey, Earl Marshall
     of England, or any other His Majesty's Commissioners for
     Building, for the time being in that behalf, a theatre or
     playhouse with necessary tiring and retiring rooms and other
     places convenient, containing in the whole forty yards
     square at the most, wherein plays, musical entertainments,
     scenes, or other the like presentments may be presented by
     and under certain provisors or conditions in the same
     contained, as in and by the said letters patents, whereunto
     relation being had more fully and at large, it doth and may

     Now this indenture witnesseth, and the said William Davenant
     doth by these presents declare, His Majesty's intent,
     meaning at and upon the granting of the said license was and
     is that he, the said William Davenant, his heirs,
     executors, administrators nor assigns should not frame,
     build, or set up the said theatre or playhouse in any place
     inconvenient, and that the said parcel of ground lying near
     unto or behind the Three Kings Ordinary in Fleet Street in
     the said Parish of St. Dunstan's in the West, London, or in
     St. Bride's, London, or in either of them, or in any other
     ground in or about that place, or in the whole street
     aforesaid, and is sithence found inconvenient and unfit for
     that purpose, therefore the said William Davenant doth for
     himself his heirs, executors, administrators, and assigns,
     and every of them, covenant, promise, and agree to and with
     our said Sovereign Lord the King, his heirs and successors,
     that he, the said William Davenant, his heirs, executors,
     administrators, nor assigns shall not, nor will not, by
     virtue of the said license and authority to him granted as
     aforesaid, frame, erect, new build, or set up upon the said
     parcel of ground in Fleet Street aforesaid, or in any other
     part of Fleet Street, a theatre or playhouse, nor will not
     frame, erect, new build, or set up upon any other parcel of
     ground lying in or near the cities, or suburbs of the
     cities, of London or Westminster any theatre or playhouse,
     unless the said place shall be first approved and allowed by
     warrant under His Majesty's sign manual, or by writing under
     the hand and seal of the said Right Honorable Thomas, Earl
     of Arundel and Surrey. In witness whereof to the one part of
     this indenture the said William Davenant hath set his hand
     and seal the day and year first above written.


     Signed sealed and delivered
       in the presence of
       Edw. Penruddoks.
       Michael Baker.

[Footnote 718: That he did not actually surrender the patent is shown
by the fact that he claimed privileges by virtue of it after the
Restoration; see Halliwell-Phillipps, _A Collection of Ancient
Documents_, p. 48.]

Possibly as a recompense for this surrender of his rights, Davenant
was made Governor of the King's and Queen's Servants at the Cockpit in
June of the following year; and from this time until the suppression
of acting in 1642, he expended his energies in managing the affairs of
this important playhouse.


[In the following list are included the books and articles
constituting the main authorities upon which the present study is
based. The list is not intended to be an exhaustive bibliography,
though from the nature of the case it is fairly complete. For the
guidance of scholars the more important titles are marked with
asterisks. It will be seen that not all the works are included which
are cited in the text, or referred to in footnotes; the list, in fact,
is strictly confined to works bearing upon the history of the
pre-Restoration playhouses. Considerations of space have led to the
omission of a large number of books dealing with the topography of
London, and of the counties of Middlesex and Surrey, although a
knowledge of these is essential to any thorough study of the
playhouses. Furthermore, titles of contemporary plays, pamphlets, and
treatises are excluded, except a few of unusual and general value.
Finally, discussions of the structure of the early stage, of the
manner of dramatic performances in the time of Shakespeare, and of the
travels of English actors on the Continent are omitted, except when
these contain also material important for the study of the theatres.
At the close is appended a select list of early maps and views of

[Transcriber's Note: In the original book, the numbers of the entries
below are at the end of the entry at the right margin, preceded by a
single square bracket. For the sake of clarity, in this e-book the
entries below are numbered at the left margin without the bracket.]

*1. _Actors Remonstrance, or Complaint for the Silencing of their
Profession._ London, 1643. (Reprinted in W.C. Hazlitt's _The English
Drama and Stage_, and in E.W. Ashbee's _Facsimile Reprints_.)

*2. ADAMS, J.Q. The Conventual Buildings of Blackfriars, London, and
the Playhouses Constructed Therein. (The University of North Carolina
_Studies in Philology_, XIV, 64.)

3. ---- The Four Pictorial Representations of the Elizabethan Stage.
_(The Journal of English and Germanic Philology_, X, 329.)

*4. ---- _The Dramatic Records of Sir Henry Herbert, Master of the
Revels 1623-1673._ New Haven, 1917.

5. ---- Lordinge (_alias_ "Lodowick") Barry. (_Modern Philology_, IX,
567. See No. 189.)

6. ALBRECHT, H.A. _Das englische Kindertheater._ Halle, 1883.

7. ARCHER, T. _The Highway of Letters._ London, 1893. (Chap. XV,
"Whitefriars and the Playhouses.")

8. ARCHER, W. The Fortune Theatre. (The London _Tribune_, October 12,
1907; reprinted in _New Shakespeariana_, October, 1908, and in the
Shakespeare _Jahrbuch_, XLIV, 159. See also Nos. 8, 38, 61, 129.)

9. ---- A Sixteenth Century Playhouse. (_The Universal Review_, June,
1888, p. 281. Deals with the De Witt drawing of the Swan.)

10. ARONSTEIN, P. Die Organisation des englischen Schauspiels im
Zeitalter Shakespeares. (_Germanisch-Romanische Monatsschrift_, II,
165, 216.)

11. AUDI ALTERAM PARTEM. Cunningham's Extracts from the Revels' Books.
(_The Athenæum_, 1911, II, 101, 130, 421; 1912, I, 469, 654; II, 143.
See Nos. 80, 179, 180, 183.)

12. BAKER, G.P. The Children of Powles. (_The Harvard Monthly_, May,

13. ---- _The Development of Shakespeare as a Dramatist._ New York,

14. BAKER, H.B. _History of the London Stage and its Famous Players._
London and New York, 1904. (A new and rewritten edition of _The London
Stage_. 2 vols. London, 1889.)

15. ---- _Our Old Actors._ 2 vols. London, 1881. (There was an earlier
edition, London, 1878, printed in New York, 1879, with the title,
_English Actors from Shakespeare to Macready_.)

16. BAPST, C.G. _Essai sur l'Histoire du Théâtre._ Paris, 1893.

17. BARRETT, C.R.B. _The History of the Society of Apothecaries of
London._ London, 1905.

BEAR GARDEN AND HOPE. See Nos. 27, 72, 99, 119, 143, 144, 147, 152,
157, 198, 221, 222, 223, 228, 236, 238, 239, 240, 241, 274, 281, 303,
304, 316.

*18. BELL, H. Contributions to the History of the English Playhouse.
(_The Architectural Record_, March and April, 1913.)

19. BELL, W.G. _Fleet Street in Seven Centuries._ London, 1912. (Chap.
XIV, "The Whitefriars Playhouses.")

20. BESANT, SIR W. _Mediæval London._ _London in the Time of the
Tudors._ _London in the Time of the Stuarts._ 4 vols. London, 1903-06.

21. BINZ, G. Deutsche Besucher im Shakespeare'schen London. (_Beilage
zur Allgemeinen Zeitung._ München, August, 1902.)

22. ---- Londoner Theater und Schauspiele im Jahre 1599. (_Anglia_,
XXII, 456.)

*23. BIRCH, T. AND R.F. WILLIAMS. _The Court and Times of James the
First._ 2 vols. London, 1849.

BLACKFRIARS, FIRST AND SECOND. See Nos. 2, 6, 17, 20, 26, 34, 41, 42,
43, 59, 61, 72, 90, 97, 100, 101, 105, 106, 108, 119, 136, 137, 146,
150, 163, 178, 179, 191, 196, 201, 214, 218, 223, 244, 248, 287, 288,
289, 293, 296, 297, 298.

24. BLANCH, W.H. _Dulwich College and Edward Alleyn._ London, 1877.

25. BOLINGBROKE, L.G. Pre-Elizabethan Plays and Players in Norfolk.
(_Norfolk Archæology_, XI, 336.)

26. BOND, R.W. _The Complete Works of John Lyly._ 3 vols. Oxford,

27. BOULTON, W.B. _The Amusements of Old London._ 2 vols. London,

*28. BRAINES, W.W. _Holywell Priory and the Site of the Theatre,
Shoreditch._ London, 1915. (Part XLIII of _Indications of Houses of
Historical Interest in London_, issued by the London County Council.)

BRAND, J. See No. 157.

29. BRANDES, G. _William Shakespeare._ Translated by William Archer. 2
vols. London, 1898.

30. BRAYLEY, E.W. _Historical and Descriptive Accounts of the Theatres
of London._ London, 1826. (Brief notice of the Cockpit in Drury Lane;
relates chiefly to Restoration theatres.)

31. BRERETON, J. LE G. De Witt at the Swan. (_A Book of Homage to
Shakespeare._ Oxford, 1916, p. 204.)

32. BRUCE, J. Who was "Will, my lord of Leycester's jesting player"?
(_The Shakespeare Society's Papers_, I, 88.)

33. BULLEN, G. The Cockpit or Phoenix Theatre in 1660. (_The
Athenæum_, May 21, 1881, p. 699.)

*34. BÜLOW, G. VON AND W. POWELL. _Diary of the Journey of Philip
Julius, Duke of Stettin-Pomerania, through England in the year 1602._
(_Transactions of the Royal Historical Society_, New Series, VI. See
No. 146.)

*35. _Calendar of State Papers, Domestic Series, 1547-1660._ London,
1856-. (See also No. 192.)

36. _Calendar of the Patent Rolls._ London, 1891-1908.

37. CALMOUR, A.C. _Fact and Fiction about Shakespeare, with Some
Account of the Playhouses, Players, and Playwrights of His Period._
Stratford-on-Avon, 1894.

38. _A Catalogue of Models and of Stage-Sets in the Dramatic Museum of
Columbia University._ New York, 1916. (See also Nos. 129, 211.)

*39. CHALMERS, GEORGE. _An Apology for the Believers in the
Shakspeare-Papers._ London, 1797.

*40. ---- _A Supplemental Apology._ London, 1799.

*41. CHAMBERS, E.K. Commissions for the Chapel. (The Malone Society's
_Collections_, I, 357.)

*42. ---- Court Performances Before Queen Elizabeth. (_The Modern
Language Review_, II, 1.)

*43. ---- Court Performances Under James the First. (_Ibid._, IV,

*44. ---- Dramatic Records from the Lansdowne Manuscripts. (The Malone
Society's _Collections_, I, 143.)

45. ---- The Elizabethan Lords Chamberlain. (_Ibid._, I, 31.)

46. ---- [Review of] _Henslowe's Diary_, Edited by Walter W. Greg.
(_The Modern Language Review_, IV, 407, 511.)

*47. ---- A Jotting by John Aubrey. (The Malone Society's
_Collections_, I, 341. Concerns Beeston and the Cockpit in Drury

*48. ---- _The Mediæval Stage._ Oxford, 1903.

49. ---- Nathaniel Field and Joseph Taylor. (_The Modern Language
Review_, IV, 395.)

50. ---- _Notes on the History of the Revels Office under the Tudors._
London, 1906.

51. ---- The Stage of the Globe. (_The Works of William Shakespeare._
Stratford-Town Edition. Stratford-on-Avon, 1904-07, X, 351.)

52. ---- Two Early Player-Lists. (The Malone Society's _Collections_,
I, 348.)

53. ---- William Kempe. (_The Modern Language Review_, IV, 88.)

*54. CHAMBERS, E.K. AND W.W. GREG. Dramatic Records from the Privy
Council Register, 1603-1642. (The Malone Society's _Collections_, I,
370. For the records prior to 1603 see No. 87. Cf. also No. 260.)

*55. ---- Dramatic Records of the City of London. The Remembrancia.
(The Malone Society's _Collections_, I, 43. See also No. 224.)

*56. ---- Royal Patents for Players. (The Malone Society's
_Collections_, I, 260.)

57. CHARLANNE, L. _L'Influence Française en Angleterre au xviie
Siecle, Le Théâtre et la Critique._ Paris, 1906.

*58. CHILD, H. The Elizabethan Theatre. (_The Cambridge History of
English Literature_, vol. VI, chap. X.)

59. CLAPHAM, A.W. On the Topography of the Dominican Priory of London.
(_Archæologia_, LXIII, 57. See also Nos. 2, 61.)

*60. ---- The Topography of the Carmelite Priory of London. (_The
Journal of the British Archæological Association_, New Series, XVI,
15. See also No. 61.)

61. CLAPHAM, A.W. AND W.H. GODFREY. _Some Famous Buildings and their
Story._ Westminster, [1913]. (Contains Godfrey's study of the Fortune
contract, and, in abbreviated form, the two articles by Clapham noted
above, Nos. 59, 60. See also Nos. 8, 38, 116, 129.)

62. CLARK, A. Players or Companies on Tour 1548-1630. (_Notes and
Queries_, X Series, XII, 41.)

COCKPIT-IN-COURT. See Nos. 18, 80, 81, 82, 83, 89, 99, 180, 181, 182,
183, 184, 197, 228, 250, 253, 305, 313.

COCKPIT-IN-DRURY LANE. See Nos. 4, 30, 33, 47, 72, 88, 91, 99, 119,
138, 139, 142, 147, 159, 197, 223, 227, 228, 303.

*63. COLLIER, J.P. _The Alleyn Papers._ London. Printed for The
Shakespeare Society, 1843. (See No. 161.)

64. ---- _The Diary of Philip Henslowe._ London. Printed for The
Shakespeare Society, 1845. (See No. 143.)

*65. ---- _The History of English Dramatic Poetry._ 3 vols. 1831.
Second edition, London, 1879.

66. ---- _Lives of the Original Actors._ (See No. 68.)

*67. ---- _Memoirs of Edward Alleyn._ London. Printed for The
Shakespeare Society, 1841. (See No. 316.)

68. ---- _Memoirs of the Principal Actors in the Plays of
Shakespeare._ London. Printed for The Shakespeare Society, 1846.
(Reprinted with some corrections in No. 65.)

69. ---- On Players and Dramatic Performances in the Reign of Edward
IV. (_The Shakespeare Society's Papers_, II, 87.)

*70. ---- Original History of "The Theatre" in Shoreditch, and
Connexion of the Burbadge Family with it. (_Ibid._, IV, 63.)

71. ---- Richard Field, Nathaniel Field, Anthony Munday, and Henry
Chettle. (_Ibid._, IV, 36.)

*72. ---- _The Works of Shakespeare_, London, 1844. (Vol. I, p. ccxli,
reprints a record of the end of certain early playhouses from "some
manuscript notes to a copy of Stowe's _Annales_, by Howes, folio,
1631, in the possession of Mr. Pickering." See No. 119.)

73. CONRAD, H. Robert Greene als Dramatiker. (The Shakespeare
_Jahrbuch_, XXIX-XXX, 210.)

74. CORBIN, J. Shakspere his own Stage-Manager. (_The Century
Magazine_, LXXXIII, 260.)

75. CREIGHTON, C. _A History of Epidemics in Britain._ 2 vols.
Cambridge, 1891-94.

76. CREIZENACH, W. _Geschichte des neueren Dramas._ Vol. IV, Part I,
Book viii. Halle, 1909. (English translation by Cécile Hugon, London,

77. ---- Die Schauspiele der englischen Komödianten. (_Deutsche
National-Litteratur_, XXIII.)

78. CULLEN, C. Puritanism and the Stage. (_Proceedings of the Royal
Philosophical Society of Glasgow_, XLIII, 153.)

79. CUNNINGHAM. P. Did General Harrison Kill "Dick Robinson" the
Player? (_The Shakespeare Society's Papers_, II, 11.)

*80. ---- _Extracts from the Accounts of the Revels at the Court in
the Reigns of Queen Elizabeth and King James I._ London. Printed for
The Shakespeare Society, 1842. (See Nos. 11, 180, 181, 184.)

81. ---- _A Handbook of London._ 2 vols. London, 1849. (A new edition,
"corrected and enlarged," London, 1850. See also No. 305.)

82. ---- _Inigo Jones. A Life of the Architect._ London. Printed for
The Shakespeare Society, 1848.

83. ---- Inigo Jones, and his Office under the Crown. (_The
Shakespeare Society's Papers_, I, 103.)

84. ---- Plays at Court, Anno 1613. (_Ibid._, II, 123.)

85. ---- Sir George Buc and the Office of the Revels. (_Ibid._, IV,

*86. ---- The Whitefriars Theatre, the Salisbury Court Theatre, and
the Duke's Theatre in Dorset Gardens. (_Ibid._, IV, 89.)

CURTAIN. See Nos. 96, 150, 151, 222, 223, 284.

*87. DASENT, J.R. _Acts of the Privy Council of England._ New Series.
London, 1890-. (This contains the Acts to the end of Elizabeth's
reign; for those Acts relating to the drama from 1603 to 1642, see No.
54. Cf. No. 260.)

88. _Description of the Great Machines of the Descent of Orpheus into
Hell. Presented by the French Comedians at the Cockpit in Drury Lane._
London, 1661.

89. Diaries and Despatches of the Venetian Embassy at the Court of
King James I., in the Years 1617, 1618. Translated by Rawdon Brown.
(_The Quarterly Review_, CII, 398.)

_Diary_, of the Duke of Stettin-Pomerania. (See Nos. 34, 146.)

90. DOBELL, B. Newly Discovered Documents. (_The Athenæum_, March 30,
1901, p. 403. Of value for Blackfriars.)

*91. DOWNES, J. _Roscius Anglicanus._ London, 1708.

92. DRAMATICUS. On the Profits of Old Actors. (_The Shakespeare
Society's Papers_, I, 21.)

93. ---- The Players Who Acted in _The Shoemaker's Holiday_, 1600.
(_Ibid._, IV, 110.)

94. DURAND, W.Y. Notes on Richard Edwards. (_The Journal of Germanic
Philology_, IV, 348.)

95. ---- _Palæmon and Arcyte_, _Progne_, _Marcus Geminus_, and the
Theatre in Which They Were Acted, 1566. (_Publications of the Modern
Language Association of America_, XX, 502.)

96. ELLIS, H. _The History and Antiquities of the Parish of Saint
Leonard, Shoreditch._ London, 1798.

97. ELTON, C.I. _William Shakespeare, His Family and Friends._ London,
1904. (Chap. IV deals with Blackfriars and the Globe.)

98. EVANS, M.B. An Early Type of Stage. (_Modern Philology_, IX, 421.)

99. EVELYN, J. _Diary and Correspondence._ Edited by William Bray and
H.B. Wheatley. 4 vols. London, 1906.

*100. FEUILLERAT, A. Blackfriars Records. (The Malone Society's
_Collections_, II, 1.)

101. ---- _John Lyly._ Cambridge, 1910.

102. ---- _Le Bureau des Menus-Plaisirs (Office of the Revels) et la
Mise en Scène a la Cour D'Élizabeth._ Louvain, 1910.

*103. ---- _Documents Relating to the Office of the Revels in the Time
of Queen Elizabeth._ Louvain, 1908.

104. ---- _Documents Relating to the Revels at Court in the Time of
King Edward VI and Queen Mary._ (_The Loseley Manuscripts._) Louvain,

*105. ---- The Origin of Shakespeare's Blackfriars Theatre. (The
Shakespeare _Jahrbuch_, XLVIII, 81.)

106. ---- Shakespeare's Blackfriars. (The London _Daily Chronicle_,
December 22, 1911.)

*107. FIRTH, C.H. The Suppression of the Drama during the Protectorate
and Commonwealth. (_Notes and Queries_, VII Series, VI, 122.)

108. FITZJEFFREY, H. _Notes from Black-fryers._ London, 1620.

*109. FLEAY, F.G. _A Biographical Chronicle of the English Drama,
1559-1642._ 2 vols. London, 1891.

110. ---- _A Chronicle History of the Life and Work of William
Shakespeare._ London, 1886.

*111. ---- _A Chronicle History of the London Stage, 1559-1642._
London, 1890.

112. ---- History of the Theatres in London from their First Opening
in 1576 to their Closing in 1642. (_Transactions of the Royal
Historical Society_, X, 114. Also privately issued.)

113. ---- On the Actor Lists, 1578-1642. (_Ibid._, IX, 44.)

114. ---- _A Shakespeare Manual._ London, 1878.

115. FLECKNOE, R. A Short Discourse of the English Stage. (Attached to
_Love's Kingdom_, 1664; reprinted in No. 158.)

116. FORESTIER, A. The Fortune Theatre Reconstructed. (_The
Illustrated London News_, August 12, 1911, p. 276.)

117. ---- Origins of the English Stage (_Ibid._, CXXXV, 934; CXXXVI,
57, 169, 225, 344, 423.)

FORTUNE. See Nos. 8, 24, 38, 46, 61, 63, 64, 67, 72, 89, 116, 119,
120, 126, 129, 143, 144, 161, 190, 211, 223, 231, 234, 235, 239, 303,
304, 316.

118. FOWELL, F. AND F. PALMER. _Censorship in England._ London,

*119. FURNIVALL, F.J. The End of Shakespeare's Theatres. (_The
Academy_, XXII, 314. Manuscript notes from the Phillipps copy of
Stow's _Annals_, 1631. Previously printed by Collier. See No. 72.)

120. ---- The Fortune Theatre in 1649. (_Notes and Queries_, X Series,
I, 85.)

*121. ---- _Harrison's Description of England._ The New Shakspere
Society. London, 1877-78. (See No. 154.)

122. G., G.M. _The Stage Censor, an Historical Sketch: 1544-1907._
London, 1908.

*123. GAEDERTZ, K.T. _Zur Kenntnis der altenglischen Bühne._ Bremen,
1888. (On the De Witt drawing of the Swan. See Nos. 31, 193, 306.)

124. GAEHDE, C. _Das Theater; Schauspielhaus und Schauspielkunst vom
griechischen Altertum bis auf die Gegenwart._ Leipzig, 1908.

125. GARDNER, A.E. The Site of the Globe Playhouse of Shakespeare.
(_The Athenæum_, December 5, 1914.)

126. GAYTON, E. _Pleasant Notes on Don Quixot._ London, 1654. (The
second edition, 1768, is of no value.)

127. GENEST, J. _Some Account of the English Stage from the
Restoration in 1660 to 1830._ 10 vols. Bath, 1832.

*128. GILDERSLEEVE, V.C. _Government Regulation of the Elizabethan
Drama._ New York, 1908.

GLOBE. See Nos. 38, 49, 51, 72, 97, 117, 119, 125, 150, 152, 165, 166,
167, 171, 176, 191, 205, 206, 207, 208, 211, 212, 213, 223, 233, 236,
237, 240, 241, 251, 257, 266, 292, 297, 299, 300, 301.

129. GODFREY, W.H. An Elizabethan Playhouse. (_The Architectural
Review_, London, April, 1908; reprinted in No. 61. See also the
_Architect and Builder's Journal_, London, August 16, 1911, and _The
Architectural Review_, London, January, 1912, for descriptions of Mr.
Godfrey's model of the Fortune. This model is now in the Dramatic
Museum at Columbia University, and a duplicate is in the Museum of
European Culture at the University of Illinois. See also Nos. 8, 38,
61, 116, 211.)

130. GOODWIN, A.T. Court Revels in the Reign of Henry VII. (_The
Shakespeare Society's Papers_, I, 47.)

131. GRABO, C.H. Theatres of Elizabeth's London. (_Chautauquan_,
November, 1906.)

*132. GRAVES, T.S. _The Court and the London Theatres During the Reign
of Elizabeth._ Menasha, Wis., 1913.

*133. ---- A Note on the Swan Theatre. (_Modern Philology_, IX, 431.
See No. 135.)

134. ---- The Shape of the First London Theatre. (_The South Atlantic
Quarterly_, July, 1914.)

135. ---- Tricks of Elizabethan Showmen. (_Ibid._, April, 1915. Deals
with The Swan. See No. 133.)

*136. GREENSTREET, J. The Blackfriars Playhouse: Its Antecedents.
(_The Athenæum_, July 17, 1886, p. 91, January 7, 1888, p. 25.)

*137. ---- Blackfriars Theatre in the Time of Shakespeare. (_Ibid._,
April 7, 1888, p. 445; April 21, 1888, p. 509; August 10, 1889, p.
203. These documents are reprinted by Fleay, No. 111.)

*138. ---- Documents Relating to the Players at the Red Bull,
Clerkenwell, and the Cockpit in Drury Lane, in the Time of James I.
(_The New Shakspere Society Transactions_, 1880-86, p. 489. Also in
_The Athenæum_, February 21, 1885. Reprinted by Fleay, No. 111.)

*139. ---- Drury Lane Theatre in the Reign of James I. (_The
Athenæum_, 1885, February 21, p. 258; August 29, p. 282. Reprinted by
Fleay, No. 111.)

*140. ---- The Red Bull Playhouse in the Reign of James I. (_The
Athenæum_, November 28, 1885, p. 709. Reprinted by Fleay, No. 111; and
by Wallace, in completer form, No. 303.)

*141. ---- The Whitefriars Theatre in the Time of Shakespeare. (_The
New Shakspere Society Transactions_, 1887-90, p. 269.)

*142. ---- The Will of Thomas Greene, with Particulars as to the Red
Bull. (_The Athenæum_, August 29, 1885. Reprinted by Fleay, No. 111.)

*143. GREG, W.W. _Henslowe's Diary._ 2 vols. London, 1904-1908. (See
No. 46.)

*144. ---- _Henslowe Papers._ London, 1907.

---- See also under CHAMBERS, E.K. AND W.W. GREG.

145. GROTE, W. Das London zur Zeit der Königin Elisabeth in deutscher
Beleuchtung. (_Neueren Sprachen_, XIV, 633.)

*146. HAGER, H. Diary of the Journey of Philip Julius, Duke of
Stettin-Pomerania, through England in the Year 1602. (_Englische
Studien_, XVIII, 315. See No. 34.)

*147. HALLIWELL-PHILLIPPS, J.O. _A Collection of Ancient Documents
Respecting the Office of the Master of the Revels, and Other Papers
Relating to the Early Theatre._ London, 1870. (Only eleven copies
printed. The documents, with others, have been reprinted by Adams in
No. 4.)

148. ---- Dispute between the Earl of Worcester's Players and the
Corporation of Leicester in 1586. (_The Shakespeare Society's Papers_,
IV, 145.)

149. ---- _Illustrations of the Life of Shakespeare._ London, 1874.
(The material of this book has been embodied in No. 150.)

*150. ---- _Outlines of the Life of Shakespeare._ 2 vols. The eleventh
edition. London, 1907. (The page numbers have not been changed since
the seventh edition, 1887.)

151. ---- _Tarlton's Jests, and News out of Purgatory._ London.
Printed for The Shakespeare Society, 1844.

152. ---- _Two Old Theatres. Views of the Globe and Bear Garden._
Privately printed. Brighton, 1884.

153. ---- _The Visits of Shakespeare's Company of Actors to the
Provincial Cities and Towns of England, Illustrated by Extracts
Gathered from Corporate Records._ Privately printed. Brighton, 1887.

*154. HARRISON, WILLIAM. _Harrison's Description of England._ Edited
by F.J. Furnivall. The New Shakspere Society, London, 1877-78.
(Additions by Mrs. C.C. Stopes, _The Shakespeare Library_, 1908.
Edited also by L. Withington, London, 1902.)

155. HASLEWOOD, JOSEPH. _Account of the Old London Theatres._
(_Roxburghe Revels_, Edinburgh, 1837, p. 85. Fifty copies only

156. HATCHER, O.L. _A Book for Shakespeare Plays and Pageants._ New
York, 1916. ("Theatres," p. 133.)

157. HAZLITT, W.C. _Brand's Popular Antiquities of Great Britain.
Faiths and Folklore._ 2 vols. London, 1905.

*158. ---- _The English Drama and Stage under the Tudor and Stuart
Princes, 1543-1664._ Printed for the Roxburghe Library, 1869.

159. HECKETHORN, C.W. _Lincoln's Inn Fields, and the Localities
Adjacent._ London, 1896.

160. HENTZNER, P. _Itinerarium Germaniæ; Galliæ; Angliæ; Italiæ._
Nüremberg, 1612.

161. HERBERT, J.F. Additions to "The Alleyn Papers." (_The Shakespeare
Society's Papers_, I, 16. See No. 63.)

162. HEYWOOD, T. _An Apology for Actors._ London, 1612. (London:
Reprinted for The Shakespeare Society, 1841.)

*163. HISTORICAL MANUSCRIPTS COMMISSION. _Calendars_ and _Reports_.
London, 1870-.

164. HITCHCOCK, R. _An Historical View of the Irish Stage._ 2 vols.
Dublin, 1788.

HOPE. See Bear Garden and Hope.

*165. HUBBARD, G. On the Exact Site of the Globe Playhouse of
Shakespeare. (_Transactions of the London and Middlesex Archæological
Society_, New Series, vol. II, part iii, 1912.)

*166. ---- The Site of the Globe Theatre of Shakespeare on Bankside as
Shown by Maps of the Period. (_Journal of the Royal Institute of
British Architects_, London, 1909, Third Series, XVII, 26.)

167. ---- The Site of the Globe. (_Notes and Queries_, XII Series,
XII, 11, 50, 70, 201, 224.)

168. HUGHSON, D. _An Epitome of the Privileges of London, Including
Southwark, as Granted by Royal Charters._ London, 1812.

169. ---- _Multum in Parvo. The Privileges of Southwark._ London, [c.

170. INGLEBY, C.M. _A Complete View of the Shakespeare Controversy._
London, 1861. (A discussion of the inaccuracies and forgeries of J.P.

171. JACKSON, R.C. _The Site of Shakespeare's Globe Playhouse._ (_The
Athenæum_, October 30, 1909, p. 525.)

*172. JEAFFRESON, J.C. _Middlesex County Records._ 4 vols. London,

173. JENKINSON, W. The Early Playhouses and the Drama as Referred to
in Tudor and Stuart Literature. (_The Contemporary Review_, CV, 847.)

174. JUSSERAND, J.J. Les Théâtres de Londres au Temps de Shakespeare.
(_La Revue de Paris_, VI, 713.)

175. ---- _A Literary History of the English People From the
Renaissance to the Civil War._ 2 vols. London, 1906-09. (Vol. II, bk.
V, chap. V.)

176. K., L.L. Site of the Globe Theatre (_Notes and Queries_, XI
Series, X, 290, 335.)

*177. KELLY, W. _Notices Illustrative of the Drama and Other Popular
Amusements._ London, 1865.

*178. KEMPE, A.J. _The Loseley Manuscripts._ London, 1836.

*179. LA FÈVRE DE LA BODERIE, ANTOINE. _Ambassades de Monsieur de La
Boderie en Angleterre ... depuis les années 1606 jusq' en 1611._ 5
vols. [Paris], 1750.

180. LAW, E. Cunningham's Extracts from the Revels' Books, 1842. (_The
Athenæum_, 1911, vol. II, pp. 297, 324, 388; 1912, vol. I, pp. 390,
469. See Nos. 11, 80, 181, 184.)

181. ---- _More About Shakespeare "Forgeries."_ London, 1913. (See
Nos. 11, 80, 180, 184.)

182. ---- Shakespeare at Whitehall. (The London _Times_, October 31,
1910, p. 10.)

183. ---- Shakespeare's Christmas, St. Stephen's Day, 1604. (_Ibid._,
December 26, 1910, p. 10.)

184. ---- _Some Supposed Shakespeare Forgeries._ London, 1911. (See
Nos. 11, 80, 180, 181.)

*185. LAWRENCE, W.J. _The Elizabethan Playhouse and Other Studies._
Stratford-upon-Avon, 1912. Second Series, 1913. (I do not record
separately the numerous articles by Mr. Lawrence which appeared first
in periodicals, and which are reprinted in these two volumes.)

*186. ---- The Evolution and Influence of the Elizabethan Playhouse.
(The Shakespeare _Jahrbuch_, XLVII, 18.)

*187. ---- A Forgotten Restoration Playhouse. (_Englische Studien_,
XXXV, 279.)

188. ---- Ireland's First Theatrical Manager. (_The Weekly Freeman_,
St. Patrick's Day Number, March 11, 1916.)

*189. ---- The Mystery of Lodowick Barry. (The University of North
Carolina _Studies in Philology_, XIV, 52.)

*190. ---- Restoration Stage Nurseries. (_Archiv für das Studium der
Neueren Sprachen und Literaturen_, 1914, p. 301.)

191. LEE, SIR S. _A Life of William Shakespeare._ New York, 1916.
(Chap. VI.)

*192. _Letters and Papers, Foreign and Domestic, of the Reign of Henry
VIII._ London, 1862-1905. (_Calendar of State Papers_; see No. 35.)

193. LOGEMAN, H. Johannes de Witt's Visit to the Swan Theatre.
(_Anglia_, XIX, 117. Cf. _The Academy_, December 26, 1896. See No. 31,
123, 306.)

194. LONDON TOPOGRAPHICAL SOCIETY. _London Topographical Record._
London, 1901-.

195. MAAS, H. _Äussere Geschichte der Englischen Theatertruppen in dem
Zeitraum von 1559 bis 1642._ Louvain, 1907.

196. ---- _Die Kindertruppen._ Göttingen, 1901.

*197. MCAFEE, H. _Pepys on the Restoration Stage._ New Haven, 1916.

198. MALCOLM, J.P. _Anecdotes of the Manners and Customs of London
during the Eighteenth Century._ London, 1808.

199. ---- _Anecdotes of the Manners and Customs of London from the
Roman Invasion to the Year 1700._ London, 1811.

*200. MALONE, E. _The Plays and Poems of William Shakespeare._ 21
vols. London, 1821. (The Variorum edition, edited by Boswell.)

201. MANLY, J.M. The Children of the Chapel Royal and their Masters.
(_The Cambridge History of English Literature_, vol. VI, chap. xi.)

202. MANNING, O. AND W. BRAY. _The History and Antiquities of the
County of Surrey._ 3 vols. London, 1804-14.

203. MANTZIUS, K. _Engelske Theaterforhold i Shakespeare-tiden._
Khvn., 1901. (See No. 204.)

204. ---- _A History of Theatrical Art in Ancient and Modern Times._
Authorised Translation by Louise von Cossel. Vol. III, "The
Shakespearean Period in England." London, 1904.

205. MARTIN, W. _Shakespeare in London._ (The London _Times_, October
8, 1909, p. 10.)

206. ---- The Site of Shakespeare's Globe Playhouse. (_The Athenæum_,
October 9, 1909, p. 425.)

207. ---- The Site of the Globe. (_Notes and Queries_, XI Series, X,
209, XII, 10, 121, 143, 161.)

*208. ---- The Site of the Globe Playhouse of Shakespeare. (_Surrey
Archæological Collections_, London, 1910, XXIII, 149. Also separately

209. MEMBER FROM THE BEGINNING. Accounts of Performances and Revels at
Court in the Reign of Henry VIII. (_The Shakespeare Society's Papers_,
III, 87.)

210. MEYMOTT, W.J. _The Manor of Old Paris Garden; an Historical
Account of Christ Church, Surrey._ London, 1881. (Printed for private
circulation. Inaccurate. See _Notes and Queries_, VII Series, III,

211. MILES, D.H. The Dramatic Museum at Columbia University. (_The
American Review of Reviews_, XLVI, 67. Illustrations of models of
early playhouses. See No. 38, 129.)

212. MILLS, C.A. Shakespeare and the Globe Theatre. (The London
_Times_, April 11, 1914.)

213. Model of the Globe Playhouse. (_The Graphic_, London, LXXXII,
579; _Illustrated London News_, CXXXVI, 423.)

214. MORGAN, A. The Children's Companies. (_Shakesperiana_, IX, 131.)

215. MURRAY, J.T. English Dramatic Companies in the Towns Outside of
London, 1550-1600. (_Modern Philology_, II, 539.)

*216. ---- _English Dramatic Companies._ 2 vols. London, 1910.

217. N., T.C. The Old Bridge at Newington. (_Notes and Queries_, II
Series, XII, 323.)

218. NAIRN, J.A. Boy-Actors under the Tudors and Stuarts.
(_Transactions of the Royal Society of Literature_, II Series, XXXII,

*219. NICHOLS, J. _The Progresses and Public Processions of Queen
Elizabeth._ 4 vols. London, 1823.

*220. ---- _The Progresses, Processions, and Magnificent Festivities
of King James the First._ 4 vols. London, 1828.

221. ONIONS, C.T. _Shakespeare's England._ 2 vols. Oxford, 1916.
(Chap. XXIV, "Actors and Acting," by Percy Simpson; chap. XXV, "The
Playhouse," by William Archer and W.J. Lawrence; chap. XXVII, section
7, "Bearbaiting, Bull Baiting, and Cockfighting," by Sir Sidney Lee. A
popular treatise.)

*222. ORDISH, T.F. _Early London Theatres._ London, 1894. (For an
important review, see E.K. Chambers in _The Academy_, August 24, 1895,
p. 139.)

*223. ---- London Theatres. (_The Antiquary_, XI-XVI. "Theatre and
Curtain," XI, 89; "Rose," XI, 212; "Bear Garden," XI, 243; "Globe,"
XII, 41; "Elizabethan Stage," XII, 193; "Swan," XII, 245;
"Blackfriars," XIV, 22, 55, 108; "Fortune," XIV, 205; "Red Bull," XIV,
236, "Cockpit," XV, 93; "Whitefriars," XV, 262; "Salisbury Court,"
XVI, 244.)

*224. OVERALL, W.H. AND H.C. _Analytical Index to the Series of
Records Known as the Remembrancia. Preserved among the Archives of the
City of London. 1579-1664._ London, 1878. (See No. 55.)

225. OVEREND, G.H. On the Dispute between George Maller, Glazier and
Trainer of Players to Henry VIII, and Thomas Arthur, his Pupil. (_The
New Shakspere Society's Transactions_, 1877-79, p. 425.)

226. PAGET, A.H. _The Elizabethan Playhouses._ London, 1891.
(Privately printed, 8vo, 14 pp.)

*227. PARTON, J. _Some Account of the Hospital and Parish of St. Giles
in the Fields, Middlesex._ London, 1822. (Contains parish records
relating to the Cockpit in Drury Lane.)

PAUL'S. See Nos. 6, 12, 26, 101, 196, 201, 214, 218, 297.

*228. PEPYS, S. _The Diary of Samuel Pepys._ Edited by Henry B.
Wheatley. 9 vols. London, 1893.

PHOENIX. See Cockpit in Drury Lane.

229. PINKS, W.J. _The History of Clerkenwell._ Second edition. London,
1880. (The Red Bull Playhouse, p. 190.)

230. Pleadings in Rastell _v._ Walton, a Theatrical Lawsuit, temp.
Henry VIII. (Arber, _An English Garner, Fifteenth Century Prose and
Verse_, 1903, p. 305.)

231. PLOMER, H.R. Fortune Playhouse (_Notes and Queries_, X Series,
VI, 107.)

232. POLLOCK, A. The Evolution of the Actor. (_The Drama_, August and
November, 1915, and November, 1916.)

233. PORTER, C. Playing Hamlet as Shakespeare Staged It in 1601.
(_Ibid._, August and November, 1915.)

234. PRYNNE, W. _Histriomastix._ London, 1633.

235. RANKIN, G. Early London Theatres. (_Notes and Queries_, IV
Series, VI, 306; cf. p. 423.)

RED BULL. See Nos. 4, 91, 107, 126, 138, 139, 140, 142, 147, 197, 223,
228, 229, 234, 303.

_Remembrancia._ See Nos. 55, 224.

*236. RENDLE, W. The Bankside, Southwark, and the Globe Playhouse. (In
Furnivall's edition of Harrison's _Description of England_, Part II,
Book iii. See No. 121. Deals with the Swan, Bear Garden, Hope, Rose,
and Globe.)

*237. ---- The Globe Playhouse. (_Walford's Antiquarian_, VIII, 209.)

238. ---- Paris Garden and Christ Church, Blackfriars. (_Notes and
Queries_, VII Series, III, 241, 343, 442.)

239. ---- Philip Henslowe. (_The Genealogist_, IV, 149.)

*240. ---- The Playhouses at Bankside in the Time of Shakespeare.
(_The Antiquarian Magazine and Bibliographer_, VII, 207, 274; VIII,

241. ---- _Old Southwark and its People._ London, 1878.

242. ---- The Swan Playhouse, Bankside, _circa_ 1596. (_Notes and
Queries_, VII Series, VI, 221.)

*243. RENDLE, W. AND P. NORMAN. _The Inns of Old Southwark and Their
Associations._ London, 1888.

*244. _Report of the Royal Commission on Historical Manuscripts._
London, 1870-. (See No. 163.)

245. RIMBAULT, E.F. _The Old Cheque-Book, or Book of Remembrance, of
the Chapel Royal from 1561 to 1744._ (_The Camden Society_, 1872.)

246. ---- _Who was "Jack Wilson" the Singer of Shakespeare's Stage?_
London, 1846. (Cf. _The Shakespeare Society's Papers_, II, 33.)

ROSE. See Nos. 24, 46, 63, 64, 67, 143, 144, 161, 222, 223, 236, 239,
240, 241, 257, 263, 300, 302, 304, 316.

*247. RYE, W.B. _England as Seen by Foreigners in the Days of
Elizabeth and James I._ London, 1865.

SALISBURY COURT. See Nos. 4, 7, 19, 72, 86, 91, 99, 119, 147, 197,
223, 228.

248. SCHELLING, F.E. "An Aery of Children, Little Eyases." (_The
Queen's Progress and Other Elizabethan Sketches_, Boston and New York,
1904, chap. V.)

249. ---- The Elizabethan Theatre. (_Lippincott's Monthly Magazine_,
LXIX, 309.)

_Shakespeare's England._ See No. 221.

250. SHEPPARD, E. _The Old Royal Palace of Whitehall._ London and New
York, 1902.

251. The Site of the Globe Theatre, Bankside. (_The Builder_, March
26, 1910, p. 353.)

252. SMITH, W.H. _Bacon and Shakespeare. An Inquiry Touching Players,
Playhouses, and Play-Writers in the Days of Elizabeth._ London, 1857.

253. SPIERS, W.L. An Autograph Plan by Wren. (_The London
Topographical Record_, 1903. Concerns Whitehall Palace and the

_State Papers._ See Nos. 35, 192.

254. _Statutes of the Realm._ Record Commission. 9 vols. London,

255. STEPHENSON, H.T. _Shakespeare's London._ New York, 1905. (Chap.
XIV, "The Theatres.")

256. ---- _The Study of Shakespeare._ New York, 1915. (Chap. III, "The

*257. STOPES, C.C. _Burbage and Shakespeare's Stage._ London, 1913.

258. ---- The Burbages and the Transportation of "The Theatre." (_The
Athenæum_, October 16, 1909, p. 470.)

259. ---- Burbage's "Theatre." (_The Fortnightly Review_, XCII, 149.)

260. ---- Dramatic Records from the Privy Council Register, James I
and Charles I. (The Shakespeare _Jahrbuch_, XLVIII, 103. See No. 54.)

261. ---- Giles and Christopher Alleyn of Holywell. (_Notes and
Queries_, X Series, XII, 341.)

262. ---- "The Queen's Players" in 1536. (_The Athenæum_, July 24,

263. ---- The Rose and the Swan, 1597. (_The Stage_, January 6, 1910.
The documents here summarized are printed in full in No. 257 and again
in No. 302.)

264. ---- _Shakespeare's Environment._ London, 1914. (Chapters on
William Hunnis, Burbage's "Theatre," and The Transportation of
Burbage's "Theatre.")

*265. ---- Shakespeare's Fellows and Followers. (The Shakespeare
_Jahrbuch_, XLVI, 92.)

266. ---- The Site of the Globe. (_Notes and Queries_, XI Series, XI,

267. ---- "The Theatre." (_Archiv für das Studium der Neueren Sprachen
und Literaturen_, CXXIV, 129.)

268. ---- William Hunnis. (The Shakespeare _Jahrbuch_, XXVII, 200.)

269. ---- William Hunnis. (_The Athenæum_, March 31, 1900.)

270. ---- _William Hunnis and the Revels of the Chapel Royal._
Louvain, 1910.

*271. STOW, J. _A Survey of London._ Edited by C.L. Kingsford. 2 vols.
Oxford, 1908.

*272. ---- _A Survey of the Cities of London and Westminster ...
Corrected, Improved, and Very Much Enlarged ... by John Strype._ 2
vols. London, 1720.

*273. ---- _Annales, or A Generall Chronicle of England, Continued by
Edmund Howes._ London, 1631.

274. STRUTT, J. _Sports and Pastimes of the People of England._
London, 1801.

STRYPE, J. See No. 272.

275. ---- _The Anatomy of Abuses._ Edited by F.J. Furnivall, for The
New Shakspere Society. London, 1877-79. (There is an earlier edition
by J.P. Collier, 1870.)

SWAN. See Nos. 9, 31, 46, 123, 133, 135, 144, 193, 210, 214, 222, 223,
236, 238, 240, 241, 242, 257, 263, 302, 306.

276. SYMONDS, J.A. _Shakespeare's Predecessors._ London, 1883. (Chap.
VIII, "Theatres, Playwrights, Actors, and Playgoers.")

THEATRE, BURBAGE'S. See Nos. 28, 70, 96, 134, 150, 151, 222, 223, 257,
258, 259, 261, 264, 267, 277, 290.

277. The Theater; a Middlesex Sessions Record Touching James Burbage's
"Theater." (_The Athenæum_, February 12, 1887, p. 233.)

*278. THOMPSON, E.N.S. _The Controversy between the Puritans and the
Stage._ New York, 1903.

279. THORNBURY, G.W. Shakespeare's England. 2 vols. London, 1856.
(Vol. II, chap. X, "The Theatre.")

*280. THORNDIKE, A.H. _Shakespeare's Theatre._ New York, 1916. (Chap.
III, "The Playhouses.")

281. TILER, A. _The History and Antiquities of St. Saviours._ London,

282. TOMLINS, T.E. A New Document Regarding the Authority of the
Master of the Revels. (_The Shakespeare Society's Papers_, III, 1. The
document is reprinted in No. 103.)

283. ---- The Original Patent for the Nursery of Actors and Actresses
in the Reign of Charles II. (_Ibid._, III, 162.)

*284. ---- Origin of the Curtain Theatre, and Mistakes Regarding It.
(_The Shakespeare Society's Papers_, I, 29.)

285. ---- Three New Privy Seals for Players in the Time of
Shakespeare. (_Ibid._, IV, 41.)

286. TYSON, W. Heming's Players at Bristol in the Reign of Henry VIII.
(_Ibid._, III, 13.)

287. _Victoria History of London._ London, 1909.

*288. WALLACE, C.W. _The Children of the Chapel at Blackfriars
1597-1603._ Lincoln [Nebraska], 1908. (Originally printed in
_University Studies_, University of Nebraska, 1908.)

*289. ---- _The Evolution of the English Drama up to Shakespeare, with
a History of the First Blackfriars Theatre._ (_Schriften der Deutschen
Shakespeare-Gesellschaft_, Band IV. Berlin, 1912.)

*290. ---- _The First London Theatre, Materials for a History._
(_University Studies_, University of Nebraska, vol. XII. Lincoln,
Nebraska, 1913.)

291. ---- Gervase Markham, Dramatist. (The Shakespeare _Jahrbuch_,
XLVI, 345. Cf. J.Q. Adams, in _Modern Philology_, X, 426.)

*292. ---- _Globe Theatre Apparel._ [London.] Privately printed,
August, 1909. (For the nature of the contents see the London _Times_,
November 30, 1909, p. 12; and the Shakespeare _Jahrbuch_, XLVI, 239.)

293. ---- _Keysar_ v. _Burbage and Others._ Privately printed, 1910.
(These documents are included in the author's _Shakespeare and his
London Associates_, No. 297.)

294. ---- A London Pageant of Shakespeare's Time. (The London _Times_,
March 28, 1913.)

295. ---- New Shakespeare Discoveries. (_Harper's Monthly Magazine_,
CXX, 489. See No. 297.)

296. ---- Old Blackfriars Theatre. (The London _Times_, September 12,
1906; the New York _Evening Post_, September 24, 1906.)

*297. ---- Shakespeare and His London Associates as Revealed in
Recently Discovered Documents. (_University Studies_, University of
Nebraska, X, 261.)

298. ---- Shakespeare and the Blackfriars Theatre. (_The Century
Magazine_, September, 1910. The documents on which this popular
article is based may be found in Nos. 289 and 297.)

*299. ---- Shakespeare and the Globe. (The London _Times_, October 2
and 4, 1909. Deals with the Osteler-Heminges documents, and the site
of the Globe. These documents Mr. Wallace has privately printed in
_Advance Sheets from Shakespeare, The Globe, and Blackfriars_, The
Shakespeare Head Press, 1909, whence they were printed in the
Shakespeare _Jahrbuch_, XLVI, 235.)

*300. ---- Shakespeare and the Globe. (The London _Times_, April 30
and May 1, 1914.)

301. ---- Shakspere's Money Interest in the Globe Theatre. (_The
Century Magazine_, August, 1910. The documents on which this popular
article is based may be found in No. 297.)

*302. ---- The Swan Theatre and the Earl of Pembroke's Servants.
(_Englische Studien_, XLIII, 340. See Nos. 257, 263.)

*303. ---- Three London Theatres of Shakespeare's Time. (_University
Studies_, University of Nebraska, IX, 287.)

*304. WARNER, G.F. _Catalogue of the Manuscripts and Muniments of
Alleyn's College of God's Gift at Dulwich._ [London], 1881.

305. WHEATLEY, H.B. _London, Past and Present.... Based upon the
Handbook of London by the late Peter Cunningham._ London and New York,
1891. (See No. 81.)

*306. ---- On a Contemporary Drawing of the Interior of the Swan
Theatre, 1596. (_The New Shakspere Society's Transactions_, 1887-90,
p. 213.)

WHITEFRIARS. See Nos. 5, 6, 7, 19, 43, 60, 61, 86, 141, 144, 189, 196,
201, 214, 218, 223, 239, 287, 293, 297.

*307. WILKINSON, R. _Londina Illustrata._ 2 vols. London, 1819-25.
(The second volume is entitled _Theatrum Illustrata_.)

308. WILSON, J.D. _Life in Shakespeare's England._ Cambridge, 1911.
(Chap. VII, "The Theatre.")

*309. ---- The Puritan Attack upon the Stage. (_The Cambridge History
of English Literature_, vol. VI.)

*310. WINWOOD, R. _Memorials of Affairs of State._ 3 vols. London,

311. WOOLF, A.H. _Shakespeare and the Old Southwark Playhouses: a
Lecture._ London, 1903. (20 pp., 8vo, privately printed.)

312. WOTTON, SIR H. _Reliquiæ Wottonianæ._ London, 1651.

313. WRIGHT, G.R. The English Stage in the Year 1638. (_The Journal of
the British Archæological Association_, XVI, 275; reprinted in the
author's _Archæologic and Historic Fragments_, London, 1887.)

*314. WRIGHT, J. _Historia Histrionica_, London, 1699. (Reprinted in
Hazlitt's Dodsley, vol. XV.)

315. WRIGHT, T. _Queen Elizabeth and Her Times._ 2 vols. London, 1838.

*316. YOUNG, W. _The History of Dulwich College, with a Life of the
Founder, Edward Alleyn, and an Accurate Transcript of his Diary,
1617-1622._ 2 vols. London, 1889. (Edition limited to 250 copies,
privately printed for the author.)



CRACE, J.G. _A Catalogue of Maps, Plans, and Views of London,
Westminster, and Southwark, Collected and Arranged by Frederick
Crace._ London, 1878. (This collection of maps is now in the British
Museum. The Catalogue is not always trustworthy.)

GOMME, L. The Story of London Maps. (_The Geographical Journal_,
London, 1908, XXXI, 489, 616.)

MARTIN, W. A Study of Early Map-Views of London. (_The Antiquary_,
London, 1909, XLV, 337, 406. See also _Home Counties Magazine_, IX.)


VAN DEN WYNGAERDE, A. View of London, Westminster, and Southwark. (The
original drawing, made about 1530, is now preserved in the Sutherland
Collection in the Bodleian Library. A reproduction in three sections
will be found in Besant's _London in the Time of the Tudors_.)

BRAUN, G., AND F. HOGENBERGIUS. _Londinum Feracissimi Angliæ Regni
Metropolis._ (In _Civitates Orbis Terrarum_, Cologne, 1572. The map is
based on an original, now lost, drawn between 1554 and 1558; see
Alfred Marks, _The Athenæum_, March 31, 1906.)

AGAS, R. _Civitas Londinum._ (This map, executed about 1570, is based
on the same original map, 1554-58, made use of by Braun and
Hogenbergius, although Agas has introduced a few changes. The two
earliest copies are in Guildhall, London, and in the Pepysian Library
at Cambridge. The student should be warned against Vertue's
reproduction, often met with. The best reproduction is that by The
London Topographical Society, 1905.)

NORDEN, J. _London._ (In _Speculum Britanniæ, an Historical and
Chorographical Description of Middlesex. By the Travaile and View of
John Norden_. London, 1593. The map was engraved by Pieter Vanden

DELARAM, F. View of London. (In the background of an engraving, made
about 1603, representing King James on horseback.)

HONDIUS, J. _London._ (A small view of the city set in the large map
of "The Kingdome of Great Britaine and Ireland" printed in John
Speed's _Theatre of the Empire of Great Britaine_, London, 1611. The
plate is dated 1610, but the inset view of London seems to have been
based on an earlier view, now lost, representing the city as it was in
or before 1605. Apparently the views, in the Delaram portrait of King
James, and on the title-pages of Henry Holland's _Her[Greek:
ô]ologia_, 1620, and Sir Richard Baker's _Chronicle_, 1643, were based
also on this lost view.)

VISSCHER, C.J. _London._ (This splendid view was printed in 1616; but
it was drawn several years earlier, and represents the city as it was
in or before 1613.)

MERIAN, M. _London._ (In J.L. Gottfried's _Neuwe Archontologia
Cosmica_, Frankfurt am Mayn, 1638. Based mainly on Visscher's View,
but with additions from some other earlier view not yet identified.)

[RYTHER, A.] _The Cittie of London._ (This map, erroneously attributed
to Ryther in the Catalogue of the Crace Collection, is often misdated
1604. It was made between 1630 and 1640; see _Notes and Queries_, IV
Series, IX, 95; VI Series, XII, 361, 393; VII Series, III, 110, 297,

HOLLAR, W. View of London. (The View is dated 1647; Hollar was in
banishment from England between the years 1643 and 1652. Excellently
reproduced by The London Topographical Society, 1907.)

[? HOLLAR, W.] _London._ (In James Howell's _Londinopolis_, London,
1657. This view is a poor copy of Merian's splendid view, 1638. Though
generally attributed to Hollar, it is unsigned.)

FAITHORNE, W., AND R. NEWCOURT. _An Exact Delineation of the Cities of
London and Westminster, and the Suburbs Thereof._ London, 1658.
(Reproduced by The London Topographical Society, 1905.)

PORTER, T. Map of London and Westminster. (About 1660. Probably based
on the earlier map, 1630-40, mistakenly ascribed to Ryther. Reproduced
by The London Topographical Society, 1898.)

MOORE, J. Map of London, Westminster, and Southwark. (Drawn in 1662.
Reproduced by The London Topographical Society, 1912.)

OGILBY, J., AND W. MORGAN. _A Large and Accurate Map of the City of
London, 1677._ (Reproduced by The London and Middlesex Archæological
Society, 1895, with Ogilby's description of the map, entitled _London

MORDEN, R., AND P. LEA. _London &c. Actually Survey'd, 1682._
(Reproduced by The London Topographical Society, 1904.)

ROCQUE, J. _An Exact Survey of the Cities of London and Westminster,
the Borough of Southwark.... Begun in 1741, Finished in 1745, and
published in 1746._ London, 1746. (An excellent reproduction of this
large map is now being issued in parts by The London Topographical
Society, 1913-.)


_Abuses_, 116.

Admiral--Prince Henry--1 Palsgrave--3 Prince Charles's Company:
  Admiral's Company, 14, 16, 61 _n._, 72-73, 153-57, 174-75, 176, 267,
    269, 272, 281-82, 289-90.
  Prince Henry's Company, 88, 282-83, 295.
  Palsgrave's Company, 283-87, 290, 368, 369 _n._, 375.
  Prince Charles II's Company, 287, 289-90, 303, 375-79, 401.

Æschylus, 398.

Agas, Ralph, 328, 392.

_Aglaura_, 404.

Albemarle, George Monck, I Duke of, 365, 405.

Albright, V.E., vii.

_Alchemist, The_, 419.

_Alcimedon_, 422.

Aldgate, 7, 10.

_Alexander and Campaspe_, 109, 113.

_Alfonso_, 232.

Allen, William, 305.

Alleyn, Edward, 57, 72, 85, 86, 133, 140, 150-51, 153, 156, 246, 267-74,
  281-87, 299, 319, 335-36.

Alleyn, Gyles, 30-38, 43, 47, 52, 53, 58-65, 84, 182, 190, 199, 234.

Alleyn, Joan Woodward, ix, 151.

Alleyn, John, 57-58, 72, 73.

Alleyn, Sara. _See_ Gyles Alleyn.

_All is True_, 251-55. _See Henry VIII._

_All's Lost by Lust_, 309.

Allyn, Sir William, 81.

Alnwick Castle, 173 _n._

_Amends for Ladies_, 346.

Amphitheatre, the projected, 411-17.

_Andronicus_, 140, 152.

Androwes, George, 313, 314, 315.

Anjou, Duke of, 385.

Anne of Denmark, Queen of England, 300, 353.
  Her players, _see under_ Worcester, Children of the Chapel, and
    Children of Her Majesty's Royal Chamber.

_Antonio's Revenge_, 112.

Apothecaries, Society of, 191 _n._

_Architectural Record, The_, ix, 395.

Aristophanes, 398.

Armin, Robert, 316.

Arundel and Surrey, Thomas Howard, 2 Earl of, 426, 429, 430.

Arundel's Company, 70, 83.

_Arviragus and Philicia_, 401.

Ashen-tree Court, 313.

Ashley, Sir Anthony, 322.

Aubrey, John, 78, 364.

Aunay, Josias d', 423.

Bacon, Anthony, 15.

Bacon, Sir Edmund, 320.

Bacon, Francis, 15, 65.

Baker, Michael, 430.

Baker, Sir Richard, 127, 146.

Banks, Jeremiah, 306.

Banks's horse, 13.

Bankside, 28-29, 63, 64, 119 f., 134 f., 142 f., 161 f., 182-83, 185,
  238 f., 267, 326 f.

Banqueting-House at Whitehall, 385-89.

Barclay, Perkins, and Company, 265.

Barry, David Lording, 313, 314-15, 316, 317.

Barry, Lodowick. _See_ David Barry.

_Bartholomew Fair_, 325 _n._, 330, 334.

Bath, 71.

Baxter, Richard, 300-01.

Bear Alley, 340, 341.

Bear Garden (First), 15, 119-33, 145, 146, 146 _n._, 159 _n._, 167, 182,
  238, 244, 248, 326, 328, 329, 332 _n._, 336, 416.

Bear Garden (Second). _See_ Hope Playhouse.

Bear Garden Alley, 340, 341.

Bear Garden Glass House, 341 _n._

Bear Garden Square, 341.

Beaumont, Francis, 116, 304, 404.

Beaven, William, 293.

Beddingfield, Anne, 294.

Beddingfield, Christopher, 294.

Beecher, Sir William, 230.

Beeston, Christopher, 158, 299-300, 350-58, 374, 421.

Beeston, Mrs. Elizabeth, 362.

Beeston, William, 358-61, 380-83.

Beeston's Boys. _See_ King's and Queen's Company.

_Beggar's Bush_, 404.

Bell, Hamilton, ix, 395-400.

Bell Inn, 1-17, 67.

Bell Savage Inn, 1-17.

Bermondsey, Monastery of, 161.

Bethelem, 69.

Betterton, Thomas, 366, 406.

Betterton, Mrs. Thomas, 406 _n._

Bevis, 133.

Bird, Theophilus, 350 _n._, 381.

Bird, William, 170, 174.

Bishop, Nicholas, 57.

Bishopsgate Street, 7 f., 67.

_Black Book, The_, 73 _n._

Blackfriars Playhouse (First), 8, 91-110, 113, 183, 194, 201, 202, 204,
  208, 311 _n._

Blackfriars Playhouse (Second), 59, 74, 86, 93, 98 _n._, 116, 117, 118,
  182-233, 250, 256, 260, 261, 311, 312, 317, 319, 320, 324, 343, 350,
  355, 356, 365, 369, 372 _n._, 373, 402, 403, 404, 428.

Blackfriars Playhouse (Rosseter's). _See_ Rosseter's Blackfriars.

Blagrove, Thomas, 369.

Blagrove, William, 368-72, 374, 424.

_Bloody Brother, The_, 363.

Blount, Thomas, 122.

Boar's Head Inn, Eastcheap, 7 _n._

Boar's Head Inn, Whitechapel, 1-17, 87, 157-58, 159.

Boar's Head Yard, 17.

Bodley, Sir John, 256-57, 262.

_Bondman, The_, 382.

Bonetti, Rocho, 194-95.

Boone, Colonel, 382.

Bourne, Theophilus, 350 _n._

Bouverie Street, 313.

Bowes, Sir Jerome, 184.

Bowman (the actor), 405 _n._

Box, Edward, 160.

Bradshaw, Charles, 192.

Braun, G., and F. Hogenbergius, 122.

Brayne, John, 39-58, 72, 78, 83, 144, 234.

Brayne, Mrs. Margaret, 43, 44 _n._, 54-58.

Brend, Elizabeth, 264.

Brend, Matthew, 257, 262-63.

Brend, Sir Nicholas, 238-39, 249, 256.

Brend, Sir Thomas, 240 _n._, 249.

Brend, Thomas (the younger), 264.

Bridges Street, 408.

Bristol, 172.

Brockenbury, Richard, 35.

Brome, Richard, 233, 361, 379.

Bromvill, Peter, 176.

Brooke. _See_ Cobham.

Browker, Hugh, 176-77.

Brown, Sir Matthew, 256.

Brown, Rawdon, 279 _n._

Browne, Robert, 318.

Bruskett, Thomas, 191, 195.

Bryan, Sir Francis, 184.

Bryan, George, 73.

Buc, Sir George, 321, 325, 343.

Buchell, Arend van, 166.

Buckhurst, Robert, Lord, 311-12, 314.

Bull Inn, 1-17, 67, 294 _n._

Burbage, Cuthbert, 39 _n._, 40, 45 _n._, 49, 52, 54-65, 74, 84, 198,
  199-200, 223, 224, 234-41, 249, 257, 282.

Burbage, James, 11, 27-59, 65, 66, 67, 70-74, 75, 78, 83, 91, 98 _n._,
  144, 161, 182-99, 202, 234.

Burbage, Mrs. James, 56, 57, 63.

Burbage, Richard, 40, 57, 61, 62, 63, 73, 74, 84, 111, 117, 140, 198,
  199, 200-01, 204, 208 _n._, 215, 218, 223-25, 234-41, 249, 255, 257,
  261, 282, 317, 319, 325.

Burghley, William Cecil, Lord, 14, 20, 69.

Burgram, John, 242-43.

Burnell, Henry, 418.

Burt, Nicholas, 363, 367.

Burt, Thomas, 241-42.

Busino, Orazio, 130, 279.

_Bussy D'Ambois_, 400, 404.

Buttevant, Viscount, 313 _n._

_Byron_, 220, 316.

C., W., 302.

Cambridge, 67.

Camden, William, 350, 352.

_Campaspe_, 109, 113.

Campeggio, Cardinal Lorenzo, 186.

Cape, Walter, 55.

_Cardinal, The_, 406.

_Careless Shepherdess, The_, 302.

Carew, Thomas, 302, 356.

Carey. _See_ Hunsdon.

Carlell, Lodowick, 404.

Carleton, Mrs. Alice, 260.

Carleton, Sir Dudley, 212 _n._, 281, 284, 388, 393.

Carter, Lane, 231.

Cartwright, William, 374.

Castle, Tavern, 348 _n._

Castlemaine, Lady, 406.

Catherine of Aragon, Queen, 186.

Cawarden, Sir Thomas, 96, 184, 186-90, 193.

Challes, 69-70, 83.

Chalmers, George, 137-38, 428.

Chamberlain, John, 212 _n._, 252, 260, 281, 284, 388, 392, 393.

Chamberlain's Company. _See_ Strange-Derby, etc., company.

Chambers, E.K., ix, 44 _n._, 230 _n._, 247.

Chambers, George, 206.

Chambers, Richard, 206.

_Chances, The_, 404.

_Changes, The_, 376-78.

Chapel Royal, 91 f. _See also_ Children of the Chapel.

Chapman, George, 116, 206, 217, 220.

Chappell, John, 206.

Charles I, 227, 231, 301-02, 359, 394, 395, 414, 424.
  His players, _see_ King's and Queen's Company, King's Revels Company,
  Prince Charles's Company, Strange-Derby, etc., Company.

Charles II, 287, 405.
  His players, _see under_ Admiral.

Chasserau, Peter, 75 _n._, 79.

Cheeke, Sir John, 96, 184, 190.

Chettle, Henry, 158.

Cheyney, Sir Thomas, the Lord Warden, 184, 188.

Children of Blackfriars. _See_ Children of the Chapel, etc.

Children of Her Majesty's (Queen Anne's) Royal Chamber of Bristol, 215 _n._

Children of His Majesty's (James I's) Revels (at Whitefriars), 224.

Children of St. Paul's, 91, 108-10, 111-18, 217, 311 _n._, 319.

Children of the Chapel--1 Queen's Revels--Revels--Whitefriars--2 Queen's
  Revels Company:
  Children of the Chapel (at First Blackfriars), 91-110, 111, 113.
  Children of the Chapel (at Second Blackfriars), 200-15, 237, 249-50.
  1 Children of the Queen's (Anne's) Revels, 215-18, 219, 311.
  Children of the Revels (or of Blackfriars), 218-24, 314 _n._, 316-17.
  Children of Whitefriars, 318.
  2 Children of the Queen's (Anne's) Revels, 117, 318-21, 324, 342-46.

Children of the Queen's Revels. _See under_ Children of the Chapel, etc.,
  _and under_ Worcester-Queen, etc.

Children of Whitefriars. _See under_ Children of the Chapel, etc.

Children of Windsor Chapel, 91-108, 111, 201.

Cholmley, John, 143-44, 148, 148 _n._, 234.

Clerkenwell, 78, 88, 301, 294 f.

Clifton, Henry, 205-13.

Clifton, Thomas, 210-13.

Clink, the Liberty of the, 124 f., 135, 142, 145, 161.

Clough, George, 53-54.

Cobham, George Brooke, Lord, 96, 184.

Cobham, Henry Brooke, Lord, 184.

Cobham, William Brooke, Lord, 98, 99, 184, 198, 199, 212 _n._

Cockpit-in-Court, 384-409, 420.

Cockpit in Dartmouth Street, 408 _n._

Cockpit Playhouse in Drury Lane, 291, 297 _n._, 299, 300, 305, 348-67,
  369, 373, 376 _n._, 381 _n._, 408 _n._, 421-22, 431.

Cokaine, Sir Aston, 233.

Colefox, Edwin, 34-35.

Collett, John, 256.

Collier, J.P., vii, 76, 138, 230 _n._, 322 _n._, 337, 347 _n._, 353 _n._,
  373 _n._

Columbia University, 277.

Condell, Henry, 224, 238, 255, 257, 258, 262, 355.

_Conspiracy and Tragedy of Charles, Duke of Byron, The_, 220, 316.

_Constant Maid, The_, 419.

Conway, Edward, Lord, 414-17.

Cooke, William, 315.

Cooper, Lane, ix.

Corneille, Pierre, 406 _n._

Cornishe, John, 241-42.

Cotton, John, 412-14.

_Court Beggar, The_, 361.

Coventry, Thomas, 414-17.

Cranydge, James, 13.

Creed, John, 366.

Crew, John, 406.

Cromwell, Oliver, 364, 405.

Cross Keys Inn, 1-17, 68.

_Cruelty of the Spaniards in Peru, The_, 365.

Cunningham, Peter, 322, 372, 374 _n._, 407 _n._

_Cupid and Psyche_, 113.

_Cupid's Whirligig_, 316.

Curtain Court, 79, 90.

Curtain Playhouse, 8, 10, 16, 26, 32 _n._, 46, 47, 61, 62, 69, 70, 72,
  75-90, 135, 144 _n._, 155, 159, 167, 172 _n._, 174, 182, 200, 295,
  296, 297, 298 _n._, 301, 355.

Curtain Road, 34, 90.

_Custom of the Country, The_, 404.

_Cutwell_, 11.

_Cynthia's Revels_, 209 _n._

Daborne, Robert, 318, 324 _n._, 325.

Dancaster, Thomas, 35.

Daniel, Samuel, 215 _n._, 216.

Davenant, William, 309, 361-65, 382, 424-31.

Davenant's Projected Theatre, 424-31.

Davenport, Robert, 356.

David, John, 12.

Davies, James, 339.

Day, John (playwright), 158, 220, 315.

Day, John (printer), 411.

Deadman's Place, 264.

Dekker, Thomas, 116, 158, 244, 278, 298, 332 _n._

Delaram, F., 128, 146, 248, 248 _n._

De Lawne, William, 190.

Derby, Ferdinando Stanley, Earl of, 73, 153.

Derby's Company. _See under_ Strange-Derby, etc.

Devonshire, Charles Blount, Earl of, 216 _n._

De Witt, Johannes, 46, 77 _n._, 146 _n._, 165-68, 273.

Ditcher, Thomas, 242.

Dixon, Thomas, 412-17.

_Doctor Faustus_, 73.

Dorchester, Evelyn Pierrepont, Marquis of, 340.

Dorset, Edward Sackville, Earl of, 369-70, 375, 378-80.

Dorset House, 371.

Dotridge, Alice, 35.

_Doubtful Heir, The_, 289, 419.

Downes, John, 307, 365, 366.

Downton, Thomas, 170, 174, 282.

Dragon, John, 34-35.

Drayton, Michael, 311-17.

Droeshout, Martin, 266.

Drury Lane, 309, 348 f., 420 f.

Dryden, John, 417.

Dublin Theatre, 417-19.

Duchy Chamber, 189 f.

Dudley, Robert, _See_ Leicester.

Duke, John, 158.

Duke's Theatre, 383 _n._

Dulwich College, ix, 133, 144 _n._, 274, 283, 285 _n._, 286-93.

_Dumb Knight, The_, 316.

Dun, 178.

Dunstan, James, 350 _n._

Du Rocher, R.M., 420 _n._

Duryer, Pierre, 422 _n._

_Dutch Courtesan, The_, 196 _n._

Earthquake, 82-83.

Eastcheap, 7 _n._, 122.

East Smithfield, 410 f.

_Eastward Hoe_, 217.

Eaton, Henry, 308.

Elizabeth, Princess (daughter of James I), 393.
  Her players, _see_ Princess Elizabeth's Company.

Elizabeth, Queen of England, 91, 108, 113-14, 158 _n._, 171, 212 _n._,
  215, 385.
  Her players, _see_ Queen's Company.

_Endimion_, 114.

_England's Joy_, 177-78.

_English Traveller, The_, 277.

Epicharmus, 398.

_Epicoene_, 319, 405.

Epicurus, 398.

Erasmus, Desiderius, 120.

Essex, 44 _n._

Essex, Robert Devereux, Earl of, 13, 216.

Euripides, 398.

Evans, Henry, 107, 110, 192-225.

Evelyn, John, 338, 363, 405 _n._

_Every Man in His Humour_, 85.

_Every Man out of his Humour_, 246, 247 _n._

_Fair Favourite, The_, 404.

Faithorne, W., 348 _n._, 392.

Falcon Stairs, 164.

_Family of Love, The_, 315.

Farrant, Anne, 104-10.

Farrant, Richard, 91-110, 183, 200, 201, 202, 203, 204.

Faunte, William, 133.

Fennor, William, 177 _n._, 332-34.

Ferrers, Captain, 366.

Ferretti, Francesco, 164.

Ferrys, 173.

Feuillerat, A., 101 _n._, 186.

Field, John, 125.

Field, Nathaniel, 206, 237, 319, 324 _n._, 325, 342 _n._, 346.

Finsbury Field, 28-38, 75, 81, 135, 142, 268, 352.

Fisher, Edward, 381, 383.

Fisher, John, 285 _n._, 387 _n._, 396.

Fitz-Stephen, William, 120.

Fleay, F.G., 112, 115, 179 _n._, 201 _n._, 311 _n._, 323, 335 _n._,
  350 _n._, 354 _n._, 377, 402 _n._, 416 _n._

Flecknoe, Richard, 6, 7, 17, 111, 311 _n._

Fleet Street, 231, 314, 424 f.

Fleetwood, William, 20, 46, 69-70, 71.

Fletcher, Dr., 172.

Fletcher, John, 251, 304, 325, 419.

Floridor, Josias, 401, 420-24.

Fortescue, Sir John, 211.

Fortune Playhouse, 45, 85, 88, 156-57, 176, 177 _n._, 229, 246, 259 _n._,
  267-93, 295, 297, 298, 302, 303, 327 _n._, 333 _n._, 353 _n._, 364 _n._,
  368, 374, 375, 379, 381 _n._, 425 _n._

_Fortunes of Nigel, The_, 310 _n._

Fowler, Thomas, 172, 410.

_Fox, The_, 404.

Frederick V, Elector Palatine of Palsgrave, 393.

French Ambassador, 113 _n._, 220-21, 261, 316.

French players, 401, 420-24.

French Players' Theatre, 420-24.

_Friar Bacon and Friar Bungay_, 150.

Frith, Sir Richard, 96, 190.

Gabriel. _See_ Spencer.

Gaedertz, Karl T., 167.

Gardiner, William, 34.

Garrard, G., 231, 232.

Gasquine, Susan, 159 _n._

Gayton, Edmund, 303.

_Gazette, The_, 341 _n._

_General, The_, 419.

George Yard, 313.

Gerschow, Frederic, 197, 208.

Gibbon's Tennis-Court Playhouse, 309 _n._

Gildersleeve, Virginia C., 320 _n._

Giles, Nathaniel, 201-13, 220 _n._

Gill, John, 300.

Gill, Richard, 300 _n._

Giolito, Gabriel, 411.

Giunti, 411.

Glapthorne, Henry, 369, 423.

Globe Playhouse, 65, 74, 85, 86, 86 _n._, 88, 112, 128, 146, 146 _n._,
  155, 156, 159 _n._, 176, 180, 200, 209, 210, 214 _n._, 219 _n._, 223,
  224, 227, 229, 233 _n._, 234-66, 267, 274-76, 282, 286, 289 _n._, 295,
  297, 298, 311 _n._, 324, 328.

Goad, Christopher, 374.

Godfrey (Master of the Bear Garden), 337.

Godfrey, W.H., 277 _n._

Golding Lane, 88, 268 f.

Goodman, Nicholas, 180-81, 336.

Gosson, Stephen, 11, 47, 113.

Goulston Street, 17.

Govell, R., 369 _n._

Gower, Edward, 405.

Grabu, M., 408.

Grace Church Street, 7 f., 67, 68.

_Grateful Servant, The_, 349.

Grave, Thomas, 387.

Graves, T.S., vii, 47 _n._, 177 _n._

Gray, Lady Anne, 184.

Greene, Robert, 150.

Greene, Thomas, 296, 298-99.

_Greene's Tu Quoque_, 298.

Greenstreet, J., 317.

Greenwich, 384.

Greg, W.W., ix, 73, 148, 159 _n._, 179 _n._, 335 _n._, 377.

Grigges, John, 48.

Grymes, Thomas, 206.

Guildford, Lady Jane, 184.

Gunnell, Richard, 368-72, 374, 375.

Gwalter, William, 285 _n._

Gyles, Thomas, 113-15, 206.

Hall, Ralph, 308.

_Hamlet_ (Pre-Shakespearean), 74, 140.

_Hamlet_ (Shakespeare), 208-10, 212 _n._, 248 _n._, 261.

Hammon, Thomas, 395.

Hampton Court, 384, 385, 401, 402, 404.

Harberte, Thomas, 81.

Harington, Sir John, 69.

Harper, Sir George, 184.

Harrison, Joan, 34-35.

Harrison, Thomas (Colonel), 304.

Hart, William, 304, 363.

Harvey, Gabriel, 48.

Hathaway, Richard, 158.

Hatton, Sir Christopher (Vice-Chamberlain), 70.

Hatton House, 363.

Haukins, William, 85.

Hawkins, Alexander, 211, 213, 214, 215.

Hayward, John, 411.

Heath, John, 297.

_Hector of Germany, The_, 89, 321 _n._

Heminges, John, 62, 73, 84, 204, 208 _n._, 223, 224, 235-41, 255, 257,
  258, 261-62, 319, 355.

Heminges, Thomasine, 261.

Henrietta Maria, Queen of England, 232-33, 420-22.
  Her players, _see_ Queen's Company, King's and Queen's Company.

_Henry IV_, 7 _n._, 404.

_Henry V_ (not Shakespeare's), 13.

_Henry V_ (Shakespeare), 77 _n._, 348.

_Henry VI_, 150.

_Henry VIII_, 251-55, 391 _n._

Henry VIII, 29, 186, 391.

Henry, Prince of Wales, 282-83, 392-93.
  His players, _see under_ Admiral.

Henslowe, Agnes, 283.

Henslowe, Philip, 73, 85, 140, 140 _n._, 142-60, 161, 166, 174-75, 179,
  213 _n._, 234, 244-46, 267-74, 281-83, 321-22, 324-35, 342-43, 346.

Henslowe, William, 268 _n._

Hentzner, Paul, 131, 162.

Herbert, Sir Henry, 89, 225, 232, 250, 301, 307 _n._, 351 _n._, 357 _n._,
  358, 359, 360, 360 _n._, 367, 368, 369, 373, 374, 376, 377, 377 _n._,
  378, 380, 381, 400, 401 _n._, 403, 412 _n._, 420-24.

Herbert, Sir Philip, 392.

Herbert, Thomas, 81.

Herne, John, 370, 380.

Herne, John (the younger), 380-81.

Heton, Richard, 356 _n._, 357 _n._, 378-80, 427.

Heywood, Thomas, 158, 235 _n._, 247 _n._, 277 _n._, 298-99, 382, 394-95.

Hide, John, 51, 53-55, 70 _n._

High Street, Southwark, 121.

Hill, John, 50.

Hoby, Sir Edward, 220.

Hoby, Sir Philip, 184.

Hockley-in-the-hole, Clerkenwell, 340.

Hogarth, William, 409 _n._

_Hog Hath Lost His Pearl, The_, 320.

Holinshed, Raphael, 385.

Holland, Aaron, 294-96.

Holland, Henry, 127, 146.

Hollandia, Dona Britannica, 180.

_Holland's Leaguer_ (Goodman), 180, 336.

_Holland's Leaguer_ (Marmion), 259, 375, 377, 415.

Hollar, W., 181, 259, 329-30.

Hollywell Lane, 81.

Holywell Priory, 30 f., 75 f., 88, 182, 183.

Honduis, J., 127, 146, 265, 329 _n._

Hope Playhouse, 46, 128, 133, 146 _n._, 166, 179, 180, 248 _n._, 322,
  324-41, 346, 355.

Horton, Joan, 143.

Houghton, John, 129.

Housekeepers, 225, 234 _n._, 236, 237 _n._, 351 _n._, 421 _n._

Howard, Charles, the Lord Admiral. _See_ Nottingham.

Howell, James, 248, 329 _n._

Howes, Edmund, 7, 45 _n._, 111, 141, 251, 257, 285, 349, 350, 352, 372.
  _See also_ Phillipps.

_Humour Out of Breath_, 315.

_Hungarian Lion, The_, 368.

Hunks, Harry, 121.

Hunnis, William, 102-10, 202, 203.

Hunsdon, George Carey, Lord, 184, 189, 198, 199, 212 _n._, 214.

Hunsdon, Henry Carey, Lord, 14, 68 _n._, 71, 184.

Hunsdon's Company (not the Strange-Derby, etc. Company), 69-71.

Hunsdon's Company. _See under_ Strange-Derby, etc. Company.

Hutchinson, Christopher, 350 _n._, 362.

Hynde, John, 11.

Ianthe, 406.

Ibotson, Richard, 11.

_Inner Temple Masque, The_, 350.

_Isle of Dogs, The_, 84, 154, 170-75.

_Isle of Guls, The_, 220.

Italian players, 21.

_Jack Drum's Entertainment_, 115.

James I, 215, 217, 218, 221, 227, 250, 258, 281, 310 _n._, 316, 387,
  392, 413, 416.
  His players, _see_ Children of His Majesty's Revels, King's Revels
    Company, Strange-Derby, etc. Company.

James, William, 264.

Jeaffreson, J.C., 85, 410.

Jeffes, Anthony, 174 _n._

Jeffes, Humphrey, 174 _n._

Jerningham, Sir Henry, 184, 189.

_Jew, The_, 11.

_Jew of Malta, The_, 140, 150, 395.

Johnson, Henry, 60.

Johnson, Peter, 191-92, 196.

Johnson, Samuel, 264.

Jones, Inigo, 389, 395-400.

Jones, Richard, 168, 174, 318.

Jones, Robert, 343.

Jonson, Ben, 78, 84, 85, 171-73, 174 _n._, 206, 207, 217, 226, 244, 246,
  247, 251, 255, 259, 319, 325, 330, 334, 419, 424.

Joyner, William, 194.

_Julius Cæsar_, 404.

_Just Italian, The_, 356.

Katherens, Gilbert, 326-30.

Kempe, Anthony, 189.

Kempe, William, 62, 73, 84, 115, 158, 235-40, 298.

Kelly, William, 17.

Kendall, Richard, 177 _n._, 333 _n._

Kendall, Thomas, 213-22.

Kendall, William, 213 _n._

Kenningham, Robert, 41.

Keysar, Robert, 117, 218-19, 222-24, 317-20.

Kiechel, Samuel, 47, 77.

Kildare, Earl of, 419.

Killigrew's playhouse, 382.

Kinaston, Edward, 207, 366.

_Kingdom's Weekly Intelligencer, The_, 291, 293 _n._

_King Lear_, 261.

_King Leir_, 153.

Kingman, Philip, 343.

King's and Queen's Company (or Beeston's Boys), 357-62.

King's Company. _See under_ Strange-Derby, etc.

King's (James I's) Revels Company, 311-18.

King's (Charles I's) Revels Company, 287, 374, 377-79.

Kingsland Spittle, 89.

Kingston, Lady Mary, 189.

Kingston, Sir William, 184.

Kirkham, Edward, 116, 208 _n._, 213-22, 226.

Kirkman, Francis, 296-97, 305, 358-59.

Knowles, John, 241-42.

Kymbre, 41.

Kynaston, Edward, 207, 366.

Kyrkham, Sir Robert, 184.

_Ladies' Priviledge, The_, 423.

Lady Elizabeth's Company. _See_ Princess Elizabeth's Company.

_Lady Mother, The_, 369.

La Fèvre de la Boderie, Antoine, 220-22, 316 _n._

Lamb, Charles, 299.

Lambarde, William, 15.

Lambeth, 121, 161.

_Landgartha_, 418.

Laneham, Robert, 128.

Langley, Francis, 161, 170-76, 234.

Lanham, John, 67, 69, 80 _n._

Lanman, Henry, 78-82, 83, 86, 87, 144, 234.

Lanteri, Edward, 265 _n._

Lau, Hurfries de, 423.

Laud, William, 228-30.

Lawrence, W.J., vii, 48 _n._, 112, 177 _n._, 293 _n._, 313 _n._, 350 _n._,
  365 _n._, 398, 408, 423 _n._

Leaden Hall, 12.

Lee, Sir Sidney, 124 _n._, 294 _n._, 350 _n._, 408 _n._

Le Febure (or Fevure), 422-23.

Leicester, Robert Dudley, Earl of, 106-07.

Leicester's Company, 22, 66, 67, 71, 80 _n._

Lennox, James Stuart, 4 Duke of, 232.

Lennox, Ludovick Stuart, 2 Duke of, 261.

Lenton, Francis, 356.

Leveson, Sir Richard, 405.

Levison, William, 240.

Lewes, Thomas, 382.

Lilleston, Thomas, 366.

Lincoln's Inn Fields, 348 _n._, 352, 382, 414 f.

Lodge, Thomas, 74.

_London's Lamentation for her Sins_, 302.

Long, Maurice, 81.

Lorkin, Thomas, 254, 389.

_Lost Lady, The_, 404.

_Loves and Adventures of Clerico and Lozia, The_, 359.

_Love's Mistress, or the Queen's Masque_, 382.

Lowin, John, 158, 363, 400.

_Loyal Protestant, The_, 339.

_Loyal Subject, The_, 366.

Ludgate, 7 f., 226.

Ludlow, 71.

Luther, Martin, 113 _n._, 411.

Lyly, John, 109-10, 112, 113-14, 194, 202.

Machiavel, 411.

Machin, Lewis, 316.

Machyn, Henry, 124 _n._

Mackaye, Steele, 398.

Madden, Sir Frederick, 130.

Madison Square Theatre, 398.

Maiden Lane, 88, 144, 243 f., 341.

Malcolm, J.P., 339.

Malone, Edmund, vii, 77, 89, 160 _n._, 225, 248, 367, 373, 375-76, 420.

Manchester, Edward Montagu, Earl of, 122, 337.

_Mankind_, 2-4.

Manningham, John, 178.

Mantzius, Karl, 48 _n._

Markham, Gervais, 316.

Marlowe, Christopher, 73.

Marmion, Shackerley, 259, 375, 376, 377, 415.

Marston, John, 85 _n._, 112, 115, 116, 196 _n._, 216, 217-18, 223.

Martin, William, 265 _n._

Martin Marprelate Controversy, 114.

_Martin's Month's Mind_, 10, 69.

Mason, John, 315, 316.

_Masque, The_, 369 _n._

Massinger, Philip, 325, 382 _n._

Mathews, John, 14.

Meade, Jacob, 326-36, 346.

_Measure for Measure_, 388.

_Melise, ou Les Princes Reconnus, La_, 420.

Mercer, Will, 338.

_Merchant of Dublin, The_, 418.

_Mercurius Fumigosus_, 307 _n._

_Mercurius Politicus_, 292.

Meres, Francis, 175 _n._, 176.

Merian, M., 146 _n._, 180 _n._, 248, 328 _n._

Merry, Edward, 192.

_Merry Devil of Edmonton, The_, 404.

_Merry Wives of Windsor, The_, 388, 404.

_Midas_, 112.

Middlesex Street, 17.

Middleton, Thomas, 116, 207, 209 _n._, 278, 315, 350, 419.

Mohun, Michael, 304.

Monk, General. _See_ Albemarle.

Monkaster. _See_ Mulcaster.

Montmorency, Duke of, 385.

Moore, Mr. (of Pepy's _Diary_), 405.

Moor Field, 81.

_Moor of Venice, The_, 367, 387.

More, Sir Christopher, 184.

More, Sir William, 96-110, 113, 184, 189-90, 208.

Morocco Ambassador, 339.

Morris, Isbrand, 241-42.

Motteram, John, 206.

Mountjoy, Lord, 81.

Mulcaster, Richard, 206.

Munday, Anthony, 82.

Murray, J.T., 71, 88, 89 _n._, 111 _n._, 286 _n._, 298 _n._, 311 _n._,
  323, 354 _n._, 377, 378.

Myles, Ralph, 57.

Myles, Robert, 28 _n._, 42, 43, 54-58.

Nash, Thomas, 10 _n._, 69, 84, 114-15, 154, 171-73.

Neuendorf, B., vii.

Neville, Sir Henry, 95-100, 102 _n._, 184.

Newgate Market, 122.

Newington Butts Playhouse, 73, 134-41, 151, 154.

New Inn Yard, 34, 79.

Newman, John, 107-08.

Nexara, Duke of, 130.

Nicholas, Basilius, 224.

Nightingale Lane, 410-12.

_Noble Stranger, The_, 373 _n._

Norden, John, 128 _n._, 145.

Northbrooke, John, 76.

_Northern Lass, The_, 404.

Northup, Clark S., ix.

Nottingham, Charles Howard, Earl of, 155 _n._, 268-70, 272-73.
  His players, _see_ Admiral.

_No Wit, No Help like a Woman's_, 419.

Ogilby, John, 294, 417-19.

Ogilby, John, and William Morgan, 294.

Ogilby's Dublin Theatre, 417-19.

_Oldcastle_, 404.

Opera, 365, 425.

Ordish, T.F., vii, 48 _n._, 341 _n._

_Orlando Furioso_, 150.

Osteler, William, 225 _n._, 237, 260.

_Othello_, 367, 387, 388.

Oxford, Edward de Vere, Earl of, 16, 108-10, 157, 202.

Oxford's Company, 16, 87 _n._, 157-59.

Palatine. _See_ Frederick V.

Palladio, Andrea, 398.

Pallant, Robert, 158.

Palmyra, 265.

Palsgrave. _See_ Frederick V.

Palsgrave's Company. _See under_ Admiral.

_Pappe with an Hatchet_, 112.

Paris, Robert de, 122.

Paris Garden. _See_ Bear Garden.

Paris Garden, Manor of, 121 f., 135, 161 f.

Park, The, 241.

Park Street, 265.

Parliament Chamber, 186 f.

_Passionate Lovers, The_, 404.

_Pastorall, The_, 401.

Pavy, Salmon (or Salathiel), 206, 207.

Payne, Robert, 215.

Peckam, Edmund, 51-52, 66.

Pembroke, William Herbert, Earl of, 261.

Pembroke and Montgomery, Philip Herbert, Earl of, 232.

Pembroke's Company, 84, 154-55, 157, 170-75.

Penruddoks, Edward, 430.

Pepys, Samuel, 17, 207, 308, 338, 366, 382, 405.

_Perfect Account, The_, 305.

_Perfect Occurrences_, 304.

Perkins, Richard, 158, 380.

Perrin, Lady, 184.

Peyton, Sir John, 410.

Phillips, Augustine, 62, 73, 84, 224, 235-41, 260.

Phillipps, Sir Thomas (his copy of Stow's _Annals_), 233, 258 _n._, 264,
  285 _n._, 291, 330 _n._, 336, 364, 381 _n._

_Philotas_, 216.

Phoenix Playhouse. _See_ Cockpit Playhouse in Drury Lane.

Pierce, Edward, 116, 117, 319-20.

Pierce, James, 382.

Pierce, Mrs. James, 308, 382.

_Pierce the Ploughman's Creed_, 196.

Piozzi, Hester Lynch, 264.

Pipe Office, 190 _n._, 197.

Pit Court, 348 _n._

Plague, 12, 15, 20, 23, 24, 67 _n._, 74 _n._, 152-53, 159, 215, 222, 223,
  224, 281, 282, 287-88, 316, 355, 356, 357, 358, 379.

_Playhouse to be Let_, 309.

Playhouse Yard, 197.

Plomer, H.R., 293 _n._

_Poetaster_, 1 _n._, 226.

Pollard, Thomas, 363.

Pope (a scrivener?), 159.

Pope, Alexander, 417.

Pope, Morgan, 159 _n._

Pope, Thomas, 62, 73, 84, 86, 159 _n._, 224, 235-41, 260.

Porter's Hall. _See_ Rosseter's Blackfriars Playhouse.

Portynary, Sir John, 184, 193.

Pride, Thomas, 337.

Prince Charles--2 Red Bull Company:
  Prince Charles I's Company, 17, 88, 89, 179, 300, 301-02, 334-35, 344,
    346, 354-55, 417.
  2 Red Bull Company, 301-04.

Prince Charles's (Charles II's) Company. _See under_ Admiral, etc.

Prince Henry's Company. _See under_ Admiral, etc.

Prince's Arms Inn, 180 _n._

Princess Elizabeth's Company, 179, 321, 324, 332-35, 342, 344, 346,
  354 _n._, 355.

Prynne, William, 302, 310 _n._, 372 _n._

_Ptolome_, 11.

Puckering, Sir Thomas, 254, 389.

Puddlewharf, 343 f.

Puiseux, M. de, 221 _n._

Puritans, 6, 18-19, 29, 85, 126, 156.

Pykman, Phillipp, 206.

Queen Anne's Company. _See under_ Worcester, etc.

Queen's (Elizabeth's) Company, 12, 13, 66-72, 80 _n._, 84, 153.

Queen's (Henrietta's) Company, 355-56, 379-80, 394, 421, 427.

Queen's Revels. _See under_ Children of the Chapel, etc.

Queen's Street, 348 _n._

Raleigh, Sir Walter, 126.

_Ram Alley_, 313, 316.

Randolph, Thomas, 303, 349.

Rastell, William, 213-22.

Ratcliffe, 352.

Rathgeb, Jacob, 132.

1 Red Bull Company. _See under_ Worcester, etc.

2 Red Bull Company. _See under_ Prince Charles, etc.

Red Bull Playhouse, 75 _n._, 88, 89, 219 _n._, 226 _n._, 287, 294-309,
  311 _n._, 351, 353, 353 _n._, 356, 374, 378.

Red Bull Yard, 294.

Redwood, C.W., ix.

Reeve, Ralph, 343.

Rendle, William, 12, 124 _n._, 143, 178 _n._, 180 _n._, 339.

Reulidge, Richard, 8, 310 _n._

Revels Office, 94, 96.

Reynolds, G.F., vii.

Rhodes, John, 365, 366.

Richards, Hugh, 36.

Richmond, 402, 404.

_Roaring Girl, The_, 278.

Roberts, John, 242.

Robinson, James, 205, 213.

Robinson, Richard, 304.

Rochester, John Wilmot, Earl of, 340.

_Romeo and Juliet_, 85.

Roper, Lactantius, 241-42.

_Rosania_, 259, 419.

Rose Alley, 144, 160 _n._

Rose Playhouse, 16, 16 _n._, 61 _n._, 63, 73 _n._, 75 _n._, 77 _n._, 128,
  139, 140, 142-60, 167, 168 _n._, 174, 179, 182, 238, 248, 265, 267,
  296, 324, 332 _n._

Rosseter, Philip, 117, 118, 224, 317-23, 324-25, 330-32, 335, 342-47.

Rosseter's Blackfriars Playhouse, 322, 336, 342-47, 355.

Rossingham, Edmond, 288.

Rowlands, Samuel, 185 _n._

Roxalana, 406.

_Royal Master, The_, 419.

_Rump, The_, 382.

Russell, Dowager Lady Elizabeth, 199.

Rutland, Edward Manners, Earl of, 36, 36 _n._, 37.

Rutland House, 364.

Ryther, Augustine, 277.

Sacarson, 121.

_Sackful of News, A._, 10.

St. Bride's, Parish of, 425 f.

St. Dunstan's, Parish of, 425 f.

St. Giles, Cripplegate, 268 f.

St. Giles in the Fields, 355, 362.

St. James, Palace of, 384, 392.

St. James, Parish of, 294 f.

St. John's Gate, 294.

St. John's Street, 11, 96, 294 f., 305.

St. Mary Overies, 64-65, 168 _n._, 238.

St. Mildred, Parish of, 143, 159.

_St. Patrick for Ireland_, 419.

St. Paul's Boys. _See_ Children of St. Paul's.

St. Paul's Cathedral, 29 _n._, 167.

St. Paul's Playhouse, 8, 111-18, 349.

St. Saviours, Parish of, 145, 170, 259.

St. Warburg's Street, Dublin, 418.

Salisbury, Mr. (portrait painter), 366.

Salisbury, Robert Cecil, Earl of, 221.

Salisbury Court Playhouse, 233, 259, 287, 291, 302, 350, 357 _n._,
  360 _n._, 364, 368-83, 427.

Sampson, M.W., 279 _n._

Sandwich, Edward Montagu, Earl of, 405.

_Sapho and Phao_, 109, 113.

_Satiromastix_, 332.

Saunders, Lady, 343 f.

Saunders, Sir Thomas, 184.

Savage, Thomas, 240.

_Scornful Lady, The_, 403, 406.

Scott, Sir Walter, 310 _n._

Scuderi, Georges de, 421 _n._

Sellers, William, 242.

Shadwell, Thomas, 310 _n._

Shakespeare, William, 62, 63, 65, 73, 84, 85, 140, 150, 186, 208-10,
  212 _n._, 224, 235-41, 249, 251, 261-62, 298, 348, 391 _n._

Shanks, John, 263.

Sharp, Lewis, 373 _n._

Sharpham, Edward, 316.

Shatterel, Edward, 304-05, 308.

Shaw, Robert, 168, 172-74.

Sherlock, William, 380.

Shirley, James, 259, 349, 376, 377, 406 _n._, 419.

Shoreditch, 30, 78, 185.

Sibthorpe, Edward, 315.

_Siege of Rhodes, The_, 364.

_Silent Woman, The_, 319, 405.

Silver, George, 13 _n._, 194-95.

Silver, Thomas, 381, 383.

Singer, John, 235 _n._

_Sir Francis Drake_, 364.

_Sir Giles Goosecappe_, 373.

Skevington, Richard, 172.

_Skialetheia_, 46, 61.

Slaiter, Martin, 315, 317-18.

Slye, William, 224, 225 _n._, 235 _n._, 260.

Smallpiece, Thomas, 108.

Smith, Isack, 366.

Smith, John, 351 _n._

Smith, Captain John, 369 _n._

Smith, Wentworth, 158.

Smith, William, 63.

Smithfield, 332.

Somerset House, 404.

Sophocles, 398.

Soulas, Josias de, 420-24.

Spanish Ambassador, 281, 339.

_Spanish Curate, The_, 404.

_Spanish Tragedy, The_, 150, 261.

_Sparagus Garden, The_, 379.

Sparks, Thomas, 285 _n._

Speed, John, 265.

Spencer, Gabriel, 168, 172-74, 235 _n._

Spiller, Sir Henry, 230.

Spykes School, 206.

_Squire of Alsatia, The_, 310 _n._

Stanley, Ferdinando, Lord Strange. _See_ Derby.

Star of the West, 133.

Steevens, George, 77-78.

Stepney Field, 352.

Stettin-Pomerania, Philip Julius, Duke of, 207, 214-15.

Stevens, John, 183.

Stockwood, John, 8, 26, 46, 48.

Stone, George, 121.

Stopes, Charlotte C., 361 _n._

Stoughton, Robert, 36.

Stow, John, 124, 136, 166, 348, 388, 391.
  _See also_ Howes, Phillipps, and Strype.

Strafford, Thomas Wentworth, Earl of, 417-18.

Strange, Lord. _See_ Derby.

Strange--Derby--1 Chamberlain--Hunsdon--2 Chamberlain--King James I--King
  Charles I's Company:
  Strange's Company, 14, 139, 150-54.
  Derby's Company, 73, 87 _n._, 153.
  1 Chamberlain's Company, 14-15, 150, 153-54.
  Hunsdon's Company, 199, 199 _n._
  2 Chamberlain's Company, 16, 61, 61 _n._, 62, 68 _n._, 73-74, 84, 85,
    150, 154-55, 159 _n._, 174-75, 176, 200, 209 _n._, 212 _n._, 235-38,
    249, 267, 272-73, 351.
  King James I's Company, 88, 118, 223-27, 250-62, 295, 320-21, 324,
    325, 374.
  King Charles I's Company, 227-33, 262-63, 302, 365, 374, 378, 400,
    401, 402.

Street, Peter, 63, 64, 239, 269, 273-74.

Strype, John, 243, 340, 391, 408 _n._

Stubbes, Philip, 83, 125.

Stutville, George, 374.

Summer playhouse, 67-68, 225, 250, 321, 324, 325, 342.

Sumner, John, 380.

Sussex's Company, 152.

Swan Inn, 180 _n._

Swan Playhouse, 77 _n._, 84, 154-55, 161-81, 182, 238, 273, 321, 324,
  326, 327, 329, 334, 342-43.

Swanston, Eilliard, 400.

Swinerton, Sir John, 321.

Swynnerton, Thomas, 296.

_Taming of a Shrew, The_, 140.

Tarbock, John, 318.

Tarleton, Richard, 12, 13, 14 _n._, 67, 69, 72, 72 _n._, 235, 298.

_Tarlton's Jests_, 13.

_Tarlton's News out of Purgatory_, 69, 75.

Tatham, John, 289, 303 _n._, 382.

Taylor, John (the Water Poet), 251, 257, 259, 329, 332-34.

Taylor, Joseph, 363, 400.

Taylor, Robert, 320.

Theatre Playhouse, 8, 10, 11 _n._, 15, 26, 27-74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 83,
  84, 91, 112, 135, 138, 154, 155, 167, 172 _n._, 182, 199, 200, 234-35,
  239, 244, 249.

Thespis, 398.

Thoresby, Henry, 410.

Thorndike, A.H., vii.

Thrale, Mrs. Henry, 264.

Three Kings Ordinary, 425, 429, 430.

Tilney, Edmund, 66, 85.

_Titus Andronicus_, 140, 152.

Tomlins, T.E., 76.

_Tom Tell Troth's Message_, 146.

Tooley, Nicholas, 350 _n._

Topclyfe, Richard, 172-73.

_Totenham Court_, 373.

_Toy, The_, 419.

Trevell, William, 315.

_Trompeur Puni, Le_, 421.

Trussell, Alvery, 206.

Tunstall, James, 350 _n._

_Turk, The_, 316.

Turner, 178.

Turner, Anthony, 308, 380.

Turnor, Richard, 50.

_Two Maids of Moreclacke, The_, 316.

Underwood, John, 86.

_Unfortunate Lovers, The_, 233, 404.

University of Illinois, 277 _n._

Vaghan, Edward, 410.

_Valient Cid, The_, 406.

Vaughan, Sir William, 125.

Venetian Ambassador, 280.

Vennar, Richard, 177-78, 333 _n._

Vere, Lady Susan, 392.

Verneuil, Madame de, 220-21.

Vertue, George, 387 _n._, 396.

Virgin, performance by a, 74 _n._

Visscher, C.J., 127, 128, 146 _n._, 164-65, 248, 253, 328, 328 _n._, 329.

_Volpone_, 404.

_Vox Graculi_, 89.

Vuolfio, Giovanni. _See_ John Wolf.

Walker, Thomas, 337.

Wallace, C.W., ix, 67, 71, 110 _n._, 115, 117, 140, 148 _n._, 160 _n._,
  168 _n._, 170 _n._, 177 _n._, 178 _n._, 179 _n._, 192 _n._, 196 _n._,
  197, 197 _n._, 201 _n._, 204 _n._, 208, 212 _n._, 215 _n._, 221 _n._,
  243, 248-49, 258 _n._, 259 _n._, 266, 285 _n._, 353 _n._

Walsingham, Sir Francis, 110.

Warburton, John, 369 _n._

War of the Theatres, 250.

Warwick, Ambrose Dudley, Earl of, 12.

Water Lane, Blackfriars, 98, 102.

Water Lane, Whitefriars, 371.

_Way to Content all Women, or How a Man May Please his Wife_, 368-69.

Webster, John, 116, 158, 226 _n._

_Weekly Account, The_, 290.

_Weekly Intelligencer, The_, 306, 307.

Westcott, Sebastian, 113.

Westminster Cathedral, 126, 167.

Westminster School, 206.

_What You Will_, 112.

Whitaker, Laurence, 230.

White, Thomas, 48, 76.

Whitechapel, 8 _n._, 17.

Whitechapel Street, 7.

Whitecross Street, 268 f.

_White Devil, The_, 226 _n._

Whitefriars Playhouse, 8, 117, 224, 310-23, 324, 342-43, 368 _n._

Whitehall, 356 _n._, 374, 384 f., 387-91, 403.

White Hart Inn, 1.

Whitelock, Bulstrode, 305.

Whitton, Tom, 382.

Wigpitt, Thomas, 285 _n._

Wilbraham, 172.

Wilbraham, William, 374.

Wilkinson, Nicholas, 350 _n._

Wilkinson, R., 259 _n._, 293 _n._

Williams, John, 412-17.

Williamson, Joseph, 306.

Wilson, J.D., 76 _n._

Wilson, Robert, 12, 176.

Winchester, Bishop of, 119, 134, 241 _n._

Windsor, 384.
  _See also_ Children of Windsor Chapel.

Winter playhouse, 67-68, 225, 233, 250, 321, 324, 325, 342.

Wintershall, William, 308.

Winwood, Sir Ralph, 252, 392.

Wirtemberg, Duke of, 132.

_Witch of Edmonton, The_, 354 _n._

Witt, Johannes de, 77 _n._, 146 _n._, 165-68, 273.

Witter, John, 224, 258.

_Wit Without Money_, 304.

Wolf, John, 410-12.

Wolf's Theatre, 410-12.

Wolsey, Cardinal, 186, 252, 391.

_Woman is a Weathercock, A_, 140, 342 _n._

Wood, Anthony à, 418.

Woode, Tobias, 410.

Woodford, Thomas, 311, 313, 314, 322.

Woodman, 193.

Woodward, 142.

Woodward, Agnes, 142-43, 283.

Woodward Joan, ix, 151.

Worcester College, 395.

Worcester--Queen--1 Red Bull--Children of the Revels Company:
  Worcester's Company, 16, 72, 87, 157-59, 295, 351.
  Queen Anne's Company, 16, 87, 88, 158, 295-300, 351, 353.
  1 Red Bull Company, 300-01.
  Children of the Revels, 301.

Wordsworth, William, 299.

Wotton, Sir Henry, 251, 320.

Wright, George R., 401.

Wright, James, 285, 297, 303, 304, 350, 363, 373.

Wyngaerde, A. van den, 124.

Yarmouth, 45 _n._

York House, 391.

Young, John, 374.

_Younger Brother, The_, 299.

_Young Gallant's Whirligig, The_, 356.

Zanche, Lord, 184.

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Shakespearean Playhouses - A History of English Theatres from the Beginnings to the Restoration" ***

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