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Title: An Apology for the Life of Mr. Colley Cibber, Volume II (of 2) - Written by Himself. A New Edition with Notes and Supplement
Author: Cibber, Colley
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "An Apology for the Life of Mr. Colley Cibber, Volume II (of 2) - Written by Himself. A New Edition with Notes and Supplement" ***

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COLLEY CIBBER, VOLUME II (OF 2)***


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      Internet Archive. See
      https://archive.org/details/anapologyforlife02cibbuoft


Transcriber's note:

      Text enclosed by underscores is in italics (_italics_).

      A carat character is used to denote superscription. A
      single character following the carat is superscripted
      (example: y^m). Multiple superscripted characters are
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      represented by the notation {c~o}.



                    AN APOLOGY FOR THE LIFE OF

                        MR. COLLEY CIBBER.

                       _VOLUME THE SECOND._



                              _NOTE._

       _510 copies printed on this fine deckle-edge demy 8vo
       paper for England and America, with the portraits as
                   India proofs after letters._

         _Each copy is numbered, and the type distributed._

                             _No._ 368

          [Illustration: COLLEY CIBBER AS LORD FOPPINGTON.]



                    AN APOLOGY FOR THE LIFE OF

                        MR. COLLEY CIBBER

                       _WRITTEN BY HIMSELF_



              A NEW EDITION WITH NOTES AND SUPPLEMENT

                                BY

                          ROBERT W. LOWE

          _WITH TWENTY-SIX ORIGINAL MEZZOTINT PORTRAITS BY
               R. B. PARKES, AND EIGHTEEN ETCHINGS
                       BY ADOLPHE LALAUZE_


                        _IN TWO VOLUMES_
                        VOLUME THE SECOND


                              LONDON
                           JOHN C. NIMMO
                  14, KING WILLIAM STREET, STRAND
                           MDCCCLXXXIX



                         Chiswick Press

               PRINTED BY CHARLES WHITTINGHAM AND CO.
              TOOKS COURT, CHANCERY LANE, LONDON, E.C.



                            CONTENTS.


                            CHAPTER X.

                                                                PAGE
  THE RECRUITED ACTORS IN THE HAY-MARKET ENCOURAG'D BY A
  SUBSCRIPTION, ETC.                                               1


                            CHAPTER XI.

  SOME CHIMÆRICAL THOUGHTS OF MAKING THE STAGE USEFUL, ETC.       24


                            CHAPTER XII.

  A SHORT VIEW OF THE OPERA WHEN FIRST DIVIDED FROM THE
  COMEDY, ETC.                                                    50


                            CHAPTER XIII.

  THE PATENTEE, HAVING NOW NO ACTORS, REBUILDS THE NEW THEATRE
  IN LINCOLNS-INN-FIELDS, ETC.                                    97


                             CHAPTER XIV.

  THE STAGE IN ITS HIGHEST PROSPERITY, ETC.                      117


                             CHAPTER XV.

  SIR RICHARD STEELE SUCCEEDS COLLIER IN THE THEATRE-ROYAL,
  ETC.                                                           161


                             CHAPTER XVI.

  THE AUTHOR STEPS OUT OF HIS WAY. PLEADS HIS THEATRICAL CAUSE
  IN CHANCERY, ETC.                                              192


  SUPPLEMENTARY CHAPTER                                          257

  BIBLIOGRAPHY OF COLLEY CIBBER                                  289

  A BRIEF SUPPLEMENT TO COLLEY CIBBER, ESQ; HIS LIVES OF THE
  LATE FAMOUS ACTORS AND ACTRESSES                               299

  MEMOIRS OF ACTORS AND ACTRESSES                                319



                   LIST OF MEZZOTINT PORTRAITS.

                  NEWLY ENGRAVED BY R. B. PARKES.

                        VOLUME THE SECOND.


                                                                PAGE
      I. COLLEY CIBBER, in the character of "Sir Novelty
         Fashion, newley created Lord Foppington," in
         Vanbrugh's play of "The Relapse; or, Virtue in
         Danger." From the painting by J. Grisoni. The
         property of the Garrick Club.                _Frontispiece_

     II. OWEN SWINEY. After the painting by John Baptist
         Vanloo.                                                  54

    III. ANNE OLDFIELD. From the picture by Jonathan
         Richardson.                                              70

     IV. THEOPHILUS CIBBER, in the character of "Antient
         Pistol."                                                 86

      V. HESTER SANTLOW (Mrs. Barton Booth). After an
         original picture from the life.                         104

     VI. ROBERT WILKS. After the painting by John Ellys,
         1732.                                                   122

    VII. RICHARD STEELE. From the painting by Jonathan
         Richardson, 1712.                                       172

   VIII. BARTON BOOTH. From the picture by George White.         206

     IX. SUSANNA MARIA CIBBER. After a painting by Thomas
         Hudson.                                                 222

      X. CHARLES FLEETWOOD. "Sir Fopling Flutter Arrested."
         "Drawn from a real Scene." John Dixon _ad vivum del
         et fect_.                                               254

     XI. ALEXANDER POPE, at the age of 28. After the
         picture by Sir Godfrey Kneller, painted in 1716.        272

    XII. SUSANNA MARIA CIBBER, in the character of
         Cordelia, "King Lear," act iii. After the
         picture by Peter Van Bleeck.                            288

   XIII. CAVE UNDERHILL, in the character of Obadiah,
         "The Fanatic Elder." After the picture by Robert
         Bing, 1712.                                             306



                     LIST OF CHAPTER HEADINGS.

             NEWLY ETCHED FROM CONTEMPORARY DRAWINGS BY
                         ADOLPHE LALAUZE.

                        VOLUME THE SECOND.


      X. SCENE ILLUSTRATING CIBBER'S "CARELESS HUSBAND."
         After the picture by Philip Mercier.

     XI. COFFEE-HOUSE SCENE OF CIBBER'S DAY, "drawn from
         the life" by G. Vander Gucht.

    XII. SCENE ILLUSTRATING "THE ITALIAN OPERA," WITH
         SENESINO, CUZZONI, &C. From a contemporary design.

   XIII. SCENE ILLUSTRATING FARQUHAR'S "RECRUITING OFFICER."
         After the picture by Philip Mercier.

    XIV. SCENE ILLUSTRATING ADDISON'S "CATO." After the
         contemporary design by Lud. du Guernier.

     XV. SCENE ILLUSTRATING VANBRUGH AND CIBBER'S "PROVOKED
         HUSBAND." After the contemporary design by
         J. Vanderbank.

    XVI. SCENE ILLUSTRATING VANBRUGH'S "PROVOKED WIFE."
         After the contemporary design by Arnold Vanhaecken.

   XVII. "THE STAGE MUTINY," with portraits of Theophilus
         Cibber as "Antient Pistol," Mrs. Wilks, and others,
         in character; Colley Cibber as Poet Laureate, with
         his lap filled with bags of money. From a pictorial
         satire of the time.

  XVIII. ANTHONY ASTON'S "THE FOOL'S OPERA."



AN APOLOGY FOR THE LIFE OF MR. COLLEY CIBBER, &c.



CHAPTER X.


[Illustration: Ad Lalauze, sc]

     _The recruited Actors in the_ Hay-Market _encourag'd by a
     Subscription_. Drury-Lane _under a particular Management_.
     _The Power of a Lord-Chamberlain over the Theatres consider'd.
     How it had been formerly exercis'd. A Digression to Tragick
     Authors._

Having shewn the particular Conduct of the Patentee in refusing so fair
an Opportunity of securing to himself both Companies under his sole
Power and Interest, I shall now lead the Reader, after a short View of
what pass'd in this new Establishment of the _Hay-Market_ Theatre, to
the Accidents that the Year following compell'd the same Patentee to
receive both Companies, united, into the _Drury-Lane_ Theatre,
notwithstanding his Disinclination to it.

It may now be imagin'd that such a Detachment of Actors from
_Drury-Lane_ could not but give a new Spirit to those in the
_Hay-Market_; not only by enabling them to act each others Plays to
better Advantage, but by an emulous Industry which had lain too long
inactive among them, and without which they plainly saw they could not
be sure of Subsistence. Plays by this means began to recover a good
Share of their former Esteem and Favour; and the Profits of them in
about a Month enabled our new Menager to discharge his Debt (of
something more than Two hundred Pounds) to his old Friend the Patentee,
who had now left him and his Troop in trust to fight their own Battles.
The greatest Inconvenience they still laboured under was the immoderate
Wideness of their House, in which, as I have observ'd, the Difficulty of
Hearing may be said to have bury'd half the Auditors Entertainment. This
Defect seem'd evident from the much better Reception several new Plays
(first acted there) met with when they afterwards came to be play'd by
the same Actors in _Drury-Lane_: Of this Number were the _Stratagem_[1]
and the _Wife's Resentment_;[2] to which I may add the _Double
Gallant_.[3] This last was a Play made up of what little was tolerable
in two or three others that had no Success, and were laid aside as so
much Poetical Lumber; but by collecting and adapting the best Parts of
them all into one Play, the _Double Gallant_ has had a Place every
Winter amongst the Publick Entertainments these Thirty Years. As I was
only the Compiler of this Piece I did not publish it in my own Name;
but as my having but a Hand in it could not be long a Secret, I have
been often treated as a Plagiary on that Account: Not that I think I
have any right to complain of whatever would detract from the Merit of
that sort of Labour, yet a Cobler may be allow'd to be useful though he
is not famous:[4] And I hope a Man is not blameable for doing a little
Good, tho' he cannot do as much as another? But so it is--Twopenny
Criticks must live as well as Eighteenpenny Authors![5]

While the Stage was thus recovering its former Strength, a more
honourable Mark of Favour was shewn to it than it was ever known before
or since to have receiv'd. The then Lord _Hallifax_ was not only the
Patron of the Men of Genius of this Time, but had likewise a generous
Concern for the Reputation and Prosperity of the Theatre, from whence
the most elegant Dramatick Labours of the Learned, he knew, had often
shone in their brightest Lustre. A Proposal therefore was drawn up and
addressed to that Noble Lord for his Approbation and Assistance to raise
a publick Subscription for Reviving Three Plays of the best Authors,
with the full Strength of the Company; every Subscriber to have Three
Tickets for the first Day of each Play for his single Payment of Three
Guineas. This Subscription his Lordship so zealously encouraged, that
from his Recommendation chiefly, in a very little time it was
compleated. The Plays were _Julius Cæsar_ of _Shakespear_; the _King and
no King_ of _Fletcher_, and the Comic Scenes of _Drydens Marriage à la
mode_ and of his _Maiden Queen_ put together;[6] for it was judg'd that,
as these comic Episodes were utterly independent of the serious Scenes
they were originally written to, they might on this occasion be as well
Episodes either to the other, and so make up five livelier Acts between
them: At least the Project so well succeeded, that those comic Parts
have never since been replaced, but were continued to be jointly acted
as one Play several Years after.

By the Aid of this Subscription, which happen'd in 1707, and by the
additional Strength and Industry of this Company, not only the Actors
(several of which were handsomely advanc'd in their Sallaries) were duly
paid, but the Menager himself, too, at the Foot of his Account, stood a
considerable Gainer.

At the same time the Patentee of _Drury-Lane_ went on in his usual Method
of paying extraordinary Prices to Singers, Dancers, and other exotick
Performers, which were as constantly deducted out of the sinking Sallaries
of his Actors: 'Tis true his Actors perhaps might not deserve much more
than he gave them; yet, by what I have related, it is plain he chose not
to be troubled with such as visibly had deserv'd more: For it seems he had
not purchas'd his Share of the Patent to mend the Stage, but to make Money
of it: And to say Truth, his Sense of every thing to be shewn there was
much upon a Level with the Taste of the Multitude, whose Opinion and whose
Money weigh'd with him full as much as that of the best Judges. His Point
was to please the Majority, who could more easily comprehend any thing
they _saw_ than the daintiest things that could be said to them. But in
this Notion he kept no medium; for in my Memory he carry'd it so far that
he was (some few Years before this time) actually dealing for an
extraordinary large Elephant at a certain Sum for every Day he might think
fit to shew the tractable Genius of that vast quiet Creature in any Play
or Farce in the Theatre (then standing) in _Dorset-Garden_. But from the
Jealousy which so formidable a Rival had rais'd in his Dancers, and by his
Bricklayer's assuring him that if the Walls were to be open'd wide enough
for its Entrance it might endanger the fall of the House, he gave up his
Project, and with it so hopeful a Prospect of making the Receipts of the
Stage run higher than all the Wit and Force of the best Writers had ever
yet rais'd them to.[7]

About the same time of his being under this Disappointment he put in
Practice another Project of as new, though not of so bold a Nature;
which was his introducing a Set of Rope-dancers into the same Theatre;
for the first Day of whose Performance he had given out some Play in
which I had a material Part: But I was hardy enough to go into the Pit
and acquaint the Spectators near me, that I hop'd they would not think
it a Mark of my Disrespect to them, if I declin'd acting upon any Stage
that was brought to so low a Disgrace as ours was like to be by that
Day's Entertainment. My Excuse was so well taken that I never after
found any ill Consequences, or heard of the least Disapprobation of it:
And the whole Body of Actors, too, protesting against such an Abuse of
their Profession, our cautious Master was too much alarm'd and
intimidated to repeat it.

After what I have said, it will be no wonder that all due Regards to the
original Use and Institution of the Stage should be utterly lost or
neglected: Nor was the Conduct of this Menager easily to be alter'd
while he had found the Secret of making Money out of Disorder and
Confusion: For however strange it may seem, I have often observ'd him
inclin'd to be cheerful in the Distresses of his Theatrical Affairs, and
equally reserv'd and pensive when they went smoothly forward with a
visible Profit. Upon a Run of good Audiences he was more frighted to be
thought a Gainer, which might make him accountable to others, than he
was dejected with bad Houses, which at worst he knew would make others
accountable to him: And as, upon a moderate Computation, it cannot be
supposed that the contested Accounts of a twenty Year's Wear and Tear in
a Play-house could be fairly adjusted by a Master in Chancery under
four-score Years more, it will be no Surprize that by the Neglect, or
rather the Discretion, of other Proprietors in not throwing away good
Money after bad, this Hero of a Menager, who alone supported the War,
should in time so fortify himself by Delay, and so tire his Enemies,
that he became sole Monarch of his Theatrical Empire, and left the quiet
Possession of it to his Successors.

If these Facts seem too trivial for the Attention of a sensible Reader,
let it be consider'd that they are not chosen Fictions to _entertain_,
but Truths necessary to _inform_ him under what low Shifts and
Disgraces, what Disorders and Revolutions, the Stage labour'd before it
could recover that Strength and Reputation wherewith it began to
flourish towards the latter End of Queen _Anne_'s Reign; and which it
continued to enjoy for a Course of twenty Years following. But let us
resume our Account of the new Settlement in the _Hay-Market_.

It may be a natural Question why the Actors whom _Swiney_ brought over
to his Undertaking in the _Hay-Market_ would tie themselves down to
limited Sallaries? for though he as their Menager was obliged to make
them certain Payments, it was not certain that the Receipts would enable
him to do it; and since their own Industry was the only visible Fund
they had to depend upon, why would they not for that Reason insist upon
their being Sharers as well of possible Profits as Losses? How far in
this Point they acted right or wrong will appear from the following
State of their Case.

It must first be consider'd that this Scheme of their Desertion was all
concerted and put in Execution in a Week's Time, which short Warning
might make them overlook that Circumstance, and the sudden Prospect of
being deliver'd from having seldom more than half their Pay was a
Contentment that had bounded all their farther Views. Besides, as there
could be no room to doubt of their receiving their full Pay previous to
any Profits that might be reap'd by their Labour, and as they had no
great Reason to apprehend those Profits could exceed their respective
Sallaries so far as to make them repine at them, they might think it but
reasonable to let the Chance of any extraordinary Gain be on the Side of
their Leader and Director. But farther, as this Scheme had the
Approbation of the Court, these Actors in reality had it not in their
Power to alter any Part of it: And what induced the Court to encourage
it was, that by having the Theatre and its Menager more immediately
dependent on the Power of the Lord Chamberlain, it was not doubted but
the Stage would be recover'd into such a Reputation as might now do
Honour to that absolute Command which the Court or its Officers seem'd
always fond of having over it.

Here, to set the Constitution of the Stage in a clearer Light, it may
not be amiss to look back a little on the Power of a Lord Chamberlain,
which, as may have been observ'd in all Changes of the Theatrical
Government, has been the main Spring without which no Scheme of what
kind soever could be set in Motion. My Intent is not to enquire how far
by Law this Power has been limited or extended; but merely as an
Historian to relate Facts to gratify the Curious, and then leave them to
their own Reflections: This, too, I am the more inclin'd to, because
there is no one Circumstance which has affected the Stage wherein so
many Spectators, from those of the highest Rank to the Vulgar, have
seem'd more positively knowing or less inform'd in.

Though in all the Letters Patent for acting Plays, _&c._ since King
_Charles_ the _First_'s Time there has been no mention of the Lord
Chamberlain, or of any Subordination to his Command or Authority, yet it
was still taken for granted that no Letters Patent, by the bare Omission
of such a great Officer's Name, could have superseded or taken out of
his Hands that Power which Time out of Mind he always had exercised over
the Theatre.[8] The common Opinions then abroad were, that if the
Profession of Actors was unlawful, it was not in the Power of the Crown
to license it; and if it were not unlawful, it ought to be free and
independent as other Professions; and that a Patent to exercise it was
only an honorary Favour from the Crown to give it a better Grace of
Recommendation to the Publick. But as the Truth of this Question seem'd
to be wrapt in a great deal of Obscurity, in the old Laws made in former
Reigns relating to Players, _&c._ it may be no Wonder that the best
Companies of Actors should be desirous of taking Shelter under the
visible Power of a Lord Chamberlain who they knew had at his Pleasure
favoured and protected or born hard upon them: But be all this as it
may, a Lord Chamberlain (from whencesoever his Power might be derived)
had till of later Years had always an implicit Obedience paid to it: I
shall now give some few Instances in what manner it was exercised.

What appear'd to be most reasonably under his Cognizance was the
licensing or refusing new Plays, or striking out what might be thought
offensive in them: Which Province had been for many Years assign'd to
his inferior Officer, the Master of the Revels; yet was not this License
irrevocable; for several Plays, though acted by that Permission, had
been silenced afterwards. The first Instance of this kind that common
Fame has deliver'd down to us, is that of the _Maid's Tragedy_ of
_Beaumont_ and _Fletcher_, which was forbid in King _Charles_ the
_Second_'s time, by an Order from the Lord Chamberlain. For what Reason
this Interdiction was laid upon it the Politicks of those Days have only
left us to guess. Some said that the killing of the King in that Play,
while the tragical Death of King _Charles_ the _First_ was then so fresh
in People's Memory, was an Object too horribly impious for a publick
Entertainment. What makes this Conjecture seem to have some Foundation,
is that the celebrated _Waller_, in Compliment to that Court, alter'd
the last Act of this Play (which is printed at the End of his Works) and
gave it a new Catastrophe, wherein the Life of the King is loyally
saved, and the Lady's Matter made up with a less terrible Reparation.
Others have given out, that a repenting Mistress, in a romantick Revenge
of her Dishonour, killing the King in the very Bed he expected her to
come into, was shewing a too dangerous Example to other _Evadnes_ then
shining at Court in the same Rank of royal Distinction; who, if ever
their Consciences should have run equally mad, might have had frequent
Opportunities of putting the Expiation of their Frailty into the like
Execution. But this I doubt is too deep a Speculation, or too ludicrous
a Reason, to be relied on; it being well known that the Ladies then in
favour were not so nice in their Notions as to think their Preferment
their Dishonour, or their Lover a Tyrant: Besides, that easy Monarch
loved his Roses without Thorns; nor do we hear that he much chose to be
himself the first Gatherer of them.[9]

The _Lucius Junius Brutus_ of _Nat. Lee_[10] was in the same Reign
silenced after the third Day of Acting it; it being objected that the
Plan and Sentiments of it had too boldly vindicated, and might enflame
republican Principles.

A Prologue (by _Dryden_) to the _Prophetess_ was forbid by the Lord
_Dorset_ after the first Day of its being spoken.[11] This happen'd when
King _William_ was prosecuting the War in _Ireland_. It must be
confess'd that this Prologue had some familiar, metaphorical Sneers at
the Revolution itself; and as the Poetry of it was good, the Offence of
it was less pardonable.

The Tragedy of _Mary_ Queen of _Scotland_[12] had been offer'd to the
Stage twenty Years before it was acted: But from the profound
Penetration of the Master of the Revels, who saw political Spectres in
it that never appear'd in the Presentation, it had lain so long upon the
Hands of the Author; who had at last the good Fortune to prevail with a
Nobleman to favour his Petition to Queen _Anne_ for Permission to have
it acted: The Queen had the Goodness to refer the Merit of his Play to
the Opinion of that noble Person, although he was not her Majesty's Lord
Chamberlain; upon whose Report of its being every way an innocent Piece,
it was soon after acted with Success.

Reader, by your Leave----I will but just speak a Word or two to any
Author that has not yet writ one Line of his next Play, and then I will
come to my Point again----What I would say to him is this--Sir, before
you set Pen to Paper, think well and principally of your Design or chief
Action, towards which every Line you write ought to be drawn, as to its
Centre: If we can say of your finest Sentiments, This or That might be
left out without maiming the Story, you would tell us, depend upon it,
that fine thing is said in a wrong Place; and though you may urge that a
bright Thought is not to be resisted, you will not be able to deny that
those very fine Lines would be much finer if you could find a proper
Occasion for them: Otherwise you will be thought to take less Advice
from _Aristotle_ or _Horace_ than from Poet _Bays_ in the _Rehearsal_,
who very smartly says--_What the Devil is the Plot good for but to bring
in fine things?_ Compliment the Taste of your Hearers as much as you
please with them, provided they belong to your Subject, but don't, like
a dainty Preacher who has his Eye more upon this World than the next,
leave your Text for them. When your Fable is good, every Part of it will
cost you much less Labour to keep your Narration alive, than you will be
forced to bestow upon those elegant Discourses that are not absolutely
conducive to your Catastrophe or main Purpose: Scenes of that kind shew
but at best the unprofitable or injudicious Spirit of a Genius. It is
but a melancholy Commendation of a fine Thought to say, when we have
heard it, _Well! but what's all this to the Purpose?_ Take, therefore,
in some part, Example by the Author last mention'd! There are three
Plays of his, The _Earl_ of _Essex_,[13] _Anna Bullen_,[14] and _Mary
Queen of Scots_, which, tho' they are all written in the most barren,
barbarous Stile that was ever able to keep Possession of the Stage, have
all interested the Hearts of his Auditors. To what then could this
Success be owing, but to the intrinsick and naked Value of the
well-conducted Tales he has simply told us? There is something so happy
in the Disposition of all his Fables; all his chief Characters are
thrown into such natural Circumstances of Distress, that their Misery or
Affliction wants very little Assistance from the Ornaments of Stile or
Words to speak them. When a skilful Actor is so situated, his bare
plaintive Tone of Voice, the Cast of Sorrow from his Eye, his slowly
graceful Gesture, his humble Sighs of Resignation under his Calamities:
All these, I say, are sometimes without a Tongue equal to the strongest
Eloquence. At such a time the attentive Auditor supplies from his own
Heart whatever the Poet's Language may fall short of in Expression, and
melts himself into every Pang of Humanity which the like Misfortunes in
real Life could have inspir'd.

After what I have observ'd, whenever I see a Tragedy defective in its
Fable, let there be never so many fine Lines in it; I hope I shall be
forgiven if I impute that Defect to the Idleness, the weak Judgment, or
barren Invention of the Author.

If I should be ask'd why I have not always my self follow'd the Rules I
would impose upon others; I can only answer, that whenever I have not,
I lie equally open to the same critical Censure. But having often
observ'd a better than ordinary Stile thrown away upon the loose and
wandering Scenes of an ill-chosen Story, I imagin'd these Observations
might convince some future Author of how great Advantage a Fable well
plann'd must be to a Man of any tolerable Genius.

All this I own is leading my Reader out of the way; but if he has as
much Time upon his Hands as I have, (provided we are neither of us
tir'd) it may be equally to the Purpose what he reads or what I write
of. But as I have no Objection to Method when it is not troublesome, I
return to my Subject.

Hitherto we have seen no very unreasonable Instance of this absolute
Power of a Lord Chamberlain, though we were to admit that no one knew of
any real Law, or Construction of Law, by which this Power was given him.
I shall now offer some Facts relating to it of a more extraordinary
Nature, which I leave my Reader to give a Name to.

About the middle of King _William_'s Reign an Order of the Lord
Chamberlain was then subsisting that no Actor of either Company should
presume to go from one to the other without a Discharge from their
respective Menagers[15] and the Permission of the Lord Chamberlain.
Notwithstanding such Order, _Powel_, being uneasy at the Favour _Wilks_
was then rising into, had without such Discharge left the _Drury-Lane_
Theatre and engag'd himself to that of _Lincolns-Inn-Fields_: But by
what follows it will appear that this Order was not so much intended to
do both of them _good_, as to do that which the Court chiefly favour'd
(_Lincolns-Inn-Fields_) no harm.[16] For when _Powel_ grew dissatisfy'd
at his Station there too, he return'd to _Drury-Lane_ (as he had before
gone from it) without a Discharge: But halt a little! here, on this Side
of the Question, the Order was to stand in force, and the same Offence
against it now was not to be equally pass'd over. He was the next Day
taken up by a Messenger and confin'd to the Porter's-Lodge, where, to
the best of my Remembrance, he remain'd about two Days; when the
Menagers of _Lincolns-Inn-Fields_, not thinking an Actor of his loose
Character worth their farther Trouble, gave him up; though perhaps he
was releas'd for some better Reason.[17] Upon this occasion, the next
Day, behind the Scenes at _Drury-Lane_, a Person of great Quality in my
hearing enquiring of _Powel_ into the Nature of his Offence, after he
had heard it, told him, That if he had had Patience or Spirit enough to
have staid in his Confinement till he had given him Notice of it, he
would have found him a handsomer way of coming out of it.

Another time the same Actor, _Powel_, was provok'd at _Will_'s
Coffee-house, in a Dispute about the Playhouse Affairs, to strike a
Gentleman whose Family had been sometimes Masters of it; a Complaint of
this Insolence was, in the Absence of the Lord-Chamberlain, immediately
made to the Vice-Chamberlain, who so highly resented it that he thought
himself bound in Honour to carry his Power of redressing it as far as it
could possibly go: For _Powel_ having a Part in the Play that was acted
the Day after, the Vice-Chamberlain sent an Order to silence the whole
Company for having suffer'd _Powel_ to appear upon the Stage before he
had made that Gentleman Satisfaction, although the Masters of the
Theatre had had no Notice of _Powel_'s Misbehaviour: However, this Order
was obey'd, and remain'd in force for two or three Days, 'till the same
Authority was pleas'd or advis'd to revoke it.[18] From the Measures
this injur'd Gentleman took for his Redress, it may be judg'd how far it
was taken for granted that a Lord-Chamberlain had an absolute Power over
the Theatre.

I shall now give an Instance of an Actor who had the Resolution to stand
upon the Defence of his Liberty against the same Authority, and was
reliev'd by it.

In the same King's Reign, _Dogget_, who tho', from a severe Exactness in
his Nature, he could be seldom long easy in any Theatre, where
Irregularity, not to say Injustice, too often prevail'd, yet in the
private Conduct of his Affairs he was a prudent, honest Man. He
therefore took an unusual Care, when he return'd to act under the Patent
in _Drury-Lane_, to have his Articles drawn firm and binding: But having
some Reason to think the Patentee had not dealt fairly with him, he
quitted the Stage and would act no more, rather chusing to lose his
whatever unsatisfy'd Demands than go through the chargeable and tedious
Course of the Law to recover it. But the Patentee, who (from other
People's Judgment) knew the Value of him, and who wanted, too, to have
him sooner back than the Law could possibly bring him, thought the surer
way would be to desire a shorter Redress from the Authority of the
Lord-Chamberlain.[19] Accordingly, upon his Complaint a Messenger was
immediately dispatch'd to _Norwich_, where _Dogget_ then was, to bring
him up in Custody: But doughty _Dogget_, who had Money in his Pocket and
the Cause of Liberty at his Heart, was not in the least intimidated by
this formidable Summons. He was observ'd to obey it with a particular
Chearfulness, entertaining his Fellow-traveller, the Messenger, all the
way in the Coach (for he had protested against Riding) with as much
Humour as a Man of his Business might be capable of tasting. And as he
found his Charges were to be defray'd, he, at every Inn, call'd for the
best Dainties the Country could afford or a pretended weak Appetite
could digest. At this rate they jollily roll'd on, more with the Air of
a Jaunt than a Journey, or a Party of Pleasure than of a poor Devil in
Durance. Upon his Arrival in Town he immediately apply'd to the Lord
Chief Justice _Holt_ for his _Habeas Corpus_. As his Case was something
particular, that eminent and learned Minister of the Law took a
particular Notice of it: For _Dogget_ was not only discharg'd, but the
Process of his Confinement (according to common Fame) had a Censure
pass'd upon it in Court, which I doubt I am not Lawyer enough to repeat!
To conclude, the officious Agents in this Affair, finding that in
_Dogget_ they had mistaken their Man, were mollify'd into milder
Proceedings, and (as he afterwards told me) whisper'd something in his
Ear that took away _Dogget_'s farther Uneasiness about it.

By these Instances we see how naturally Power only founded on Custom is
apt, where the Law is silent, to run into Excesses, and while it
laudably pretends to govern others, how hard it is to govern itself. But
since the Law has lately open'd its Mouth, and has said plainly that
some Part of this Power to govern the Theatre shall be, and is plac'd in
a proper Person; and as it is evident that the Power of that white
Staff, ever since it has been in the noble Hand that now holds it, has
been us'd with the utmost Lenity, I would beg leave of the murmuring
Multitude who frequent the Theatre to offer them a simple Question or
two, _viz._ Pray, Gentlemen, how came you, or rather your Fore-fathers,
never to be mutinous upon any of the occasional Facts I have related?
And why have you been so often tumultuous upon a Law's being made that
only confirms a less Power than was formerly exercis'd without any Law
to support it? You cannot, sure, say such Discontent is either just or
natural, unless you allow it a Maxim in your Politicks that Power
exercis'd _without_ Law is a less Grievance than the same Power
exercis'd _according_ to Law!

Having thus given the clearest View I was able of the usual Regard paid
to the Power of a Lord-Chamberlain, the Reader will more easily conceive
what Influence and Operation that Power must naturally have in all
Theatrical Revolutions, and particularly in the complete Re-union of
both Companies, which happen'd in the Year following.



CHAPTER XI.


[Illustration: Ad Lalauze, sc]

     _Some Chimærical Thoughts of making the Stage useful: Some, to
     its Reputation. The Patent unprofitable to all the Proprietors
     but one. A fourth Part of it given away to Colonel_ Brett. _A
     Digression to his Memory. The two Companies of Actors reunited
     by his Interest and Menagement. The first Direction of Operas
     only given to Mr._ Swiney.

From the Time that the Company of Actors in the _Hay-Market_ was
recruited with those from _Drury-Lane_, and came into the Hands of their
new Director, _Swiney_, the Theatre for three or four Years following
suffer'd so many Convulsions, and was thrown every other Winter under
such different Interests and Menagement before it came to a firm and
lasting Settlement, that I am doubtful if the most candid Reader will
have Patience to go through a full and fair Account of it: And yet I
would fain flatter my self that those who are not too wise to frequent
the Theatre (or have Wit enough to distinguish what sort of Sights there
either do Honour or Disgrace to it) may think their national Diversion
no contemptible Subject for a more able Historian than I pretend to be:
If I have any particular Qualification for the Task more than another it
is that I have been an ocular Witness of the several Facts that are to
fill up the rest of my Volume, and am perhaps the only Person living
(however unworthy) from whom the same Materials can be collected; but
let them come from whom they may, whether at best they will be worth
reading, perhaps a Judgment may be better form'd after a patient Perusal
of the following Digression.

In whatever cold Esteem the Stage may be among the Wise and Powerful, it
is not so much a Reproach to those who contentedly enjoy it in its
lowest Condition, as that Condition of it is to those who (though they
cannot but know to how valuable a publick Use a Theatre, well
establish'd, might be rais'd) yet in so many civiliz'd Nations have
neglected it. This perhaps will be call'd thinking my own wiser than all
the wise Heads in _Europe_. But I hope a more humble Sense will be given
to it; at least I only mean, that if so many Governments have their
Reasons for their Disregard of their Theatres, those Reasons may be
deeper than my Capacity has yet been able to dive into: If therefore my
simple Opinion is a wrong one, let the Singularity of it expose me: And
tho' I am only building a Theatre in the Air, it is there, however, at
so little Expence and in so much better a Taste than any I have yet
seen, that I cannot help saying of it, as a wiser Man did (it may be)
upon a wiser Occasion:

  --_Si quid novisti rectius istis,
  Candidus imperti; si non_--     Hor.[20]

Give me leave to play with my Project in Fancy.

I say, then, that as I allow nothing is more liable to debase and
corrupt the Minds of a People than a licentious Theatre, so under a just
and proper Establishment it were possible to make it as apparently the
School of Manners and of Virtue. Were I to collect all the Arguments
that might be given for my Opinion, or to inforce it by exemplary
Proofs, it might swell this short Digression to a Volume; I shall
therefore trust the Validity of what I have laid down to a single Fact
that may be still fresh in the Memory of many living Spectators. When
the Tragedy of _Cato_ was first acted,[21] let us call to mind the noble
Spirit of Patriotism which that Play then infus'd into the Breasts of a
free People that crowded to it; with what affecting Force was that most
elevated of Human Virtues recommended? Even the false Pretenders to it
felt an unwilling Conviction, and made it a Point of Honour to be
foremost in their Approbation; and this, too, at a time when the
fermented Nation had their different Views of Government. Yet the
sublime Sentiments of Liberty in that venerable Character rais'd in
every sensible Hearer such conscious Admiration, such compell'd Assent
to the Conduct of a suffering Virtue, as even _demanded_ two almost
irreconcileable Parties to embrace and join in their equal Applauses of
it.[22] Now, not to take from the Merit of the Writer, had that Play
never come to the Stage, how much of this valuable Effect of it must
have been lost? It then could have had no more immediate weight with the
Publick than our poring upon the many ancient Authors thro' whose Works
the same Sentiments have been perhaps less profitably dispers'd, tho'
amongst Millions of Readers; but by bringing such Sentiments to the
Theatre and into Action, what a superior Lustre did they shine with?
There _Cato_ breath'd again in Life; and though he perish'd in the Cause
of Liberty, his Virtue was victorious, and left the Triumph of it in the
Heart of every melting Spectator. If Effects like these are laudable, if
the Representation of such Plays can carry Conviction with so much
Pleasure to the Understanding, have they not vastly the Advantage of
any other Human Helps to Eloquence? What equal Method can be found to
lead or stimulate the Mind to a quicker Sense of Truth and Virtue, or
warm a People into the Love and Practice of such Principles as might be
at once a Defence and Honour to their Country? In what Shape could we
listen to Virtue with equal Delight or Appetite of Instruction? The Mind
of Man is naturally free, and when he is compell'd or menac'd into any
Opinion that he does not readily conceive, he is more apt to doubt the
Truth of it than when his Capacity is led by Delight into Evidence and
Reason. To preserve a Theatre in this Strength and Purity of Morals is,
I grant, what the wisest Nations have not been able to perpetuate or to
transmit long to their Posterity: But this Difficulty will rather
heighten than take from the Honour of the Theatre: The greatest Empires
have decay'd for want of proper Heads to guide them, and the Ruins of
them sometimes have been the Subject of Theatres that could not be
themselves exempt from as various Revolutions: Yet may not the most
natural Inference from all this be, That the Talents requisite to form
good Actors, great Writers, and true Judges were, like those of wise and
memorable Ministers, as well the Gifts of Fortune as of Nature, and not
always to be found in all Climes or Ages. Or can there be a stronger
modern Evidence of the Value of Dramatick Performances than that in many
Countries where the Papal Religion prevails the Holy Policy (though it
allows not to an Actor Christian Burial) is so conscious of the
Usefulness of his Art that it will frequently take in the Assistance of
the Theatre to give even Sacred History, in a Tragedy, a Recommendation
to the more pathetick Regard of their People. How can such Principles,
in the Face of the World, refuse the Bones of a Wretch the lowest
Benefit of Christian Charity after having admitted his Profession (for
which they deprive him of that Charity) to serve the solemn Purposes of
Religion? How far then is this Religious Inhumanity short of that famous
Painter's, who, to make his _Crucifix_ a Master-piece of Nature, stabb'd
the Innocent Hireling from whose Body he drew it; and having heighten'd
the holy Portrait with his last Agonies of Life, then sent it to be the
consecrated Ornament of an Altar? Though we have only the Authority of
common Fame for this Story, yet be it true or false the Comparison will
still be just. Or let me ask another Question more humanly political.

How came the _Athenians_ to lay out an Hundred Thousand Pounds upon the
Decorations of one single Tragedy of _Sophocles_?[23] Not, sure, as it
was merely a Spectacle for Idleness or Vacancy of Thought to gape at,
but because it was the most rational, most instructive and delightful
Composition that Human Wit had yet arrived at, and consequently the most
worthy to be the Entertainment of a wise and warlike Nation: And it may
be still a Question whether the _Sophocles_ inspir'd this Publick
Spirit, or this Publick Spirit inspir'd the _Sophocles_?[24]

But alas! as the Power of giving or receiving such Inspirations from
either of these Causes seems pretty well at an End, now I have shot my
Bolt I shall descend to talk more like a Man of the Age I live in: For,
indeed, what is all this to a common _English_ Reader? Why truly, as
_Shakespear_ terms it--_Caviare to the Multitude!_[25] Honest _John
Trott_ will tell you, that if he were to believe what I have said of the
_Athenians_, he is at most but astonish'd at it; but that if the
twentieth Part of the Sum I have mentioned were to be apply'd out of the
Publick money to the Setting off the best Tragedy the nicest Noddle in
the Nation could produce, it would probably raise the Passions higher in
those that did Not like it than in those that did; it might as likely
meet with an Insurrection as the Applause of the People, and so, mayhap,
be fitter for the Subject of a Tragedy than for a publick Fund to
support it.----Truly, Mr. _Trott_, I cannot but own that I am very much
of your Opinion: I am only concerned that the Theatre has not a better
Pretence to the Care and further Consideration of those Governments
where it is tolerated; but as what I have said will not probably do it
any great Harm, I hope I have not put you out of Patience by throwing a
few good Wishes after an old Acquaintance.

To conclude this Digression. If for the Support of the Stage what is
generally shewn there must be lower'd to the Taste of common Spectators;
or if it is inconsistent with Liberty to mend that Vulgar Taste by making
the Multitude less merry there; or by abolishing every low and senseless
Jollity in which the Understanding can have no Share; whenever, I say,
such is the State of the Stage, it will be as often liable to unanswerable
Censure and manifest Disgraces. Yet there _was_ a Time, not yet out of
many People's Memory, when it subsisted upon its own rational Labours;
when even Success attended an Attempt to reduce it to Decency; and when
Actors themselves were hardy enough to hazard their Interest in pursuit of
so dangerous a Reformation. And this Crisis I am my self as impatient as
any tir'd Reader can be to arrive at. I shall therefore endeavour to lead
him the shortest way to it. But as I am a little jealous of the badness of
the Road, I must reserve to myself the Liberty of calling upon any Matter
in my way, for a little Refreshment to whatever Company may have the
Curiosity or Goodness to go along with me.

When the sole Menaging Patentee at _Drury-Lane_ for several Years could
never be persuaded or driven to any Account with the Adventurers, Sir
_Thomas Skipwith_ (who, if I am rightly inform'd, had an equal Share
with him[26]) grew so weary of the Affair that he actually made a
Present of his entire Interest in it upon the following Occasion.

Sir _Thomas_ happen'd in the Summer preceding the Re-union of the
Companies to make a Visit to an intimate Friend of his, Colonel _Brett_,
of _Sandywell_, in _Gloucestershire_; where the Pleasantness of the
Place, and the agreeable manner of passing his Time there, had raised
him to such a Gallantry of Heart, that in return to the Civilities of
his Friend the Colonel he made him an Offer of his whole Right in the
Patent; but not to overrate the Value of his Present, told him he
himself had made nothing of it these ten Years: But the Colonel (he
said) being a greater Favourite of the People in Power, and (as he
believ'd) among the Actors too, than himself was, might think of some
Scheme to turn it to Advantage, and in that Light, if he lik'd it, it
was at his Service. After a great deal of Raillery on both sides of
what Sir _Thomas_ had _not_ made of it, and the particular Advantages
the Colonel was likely to make of it, they came to a laughing Resolution
That an Instrument should be drawn the next Morning of an Absolute
Conveyance of the Premises. A Gentleman of the Law well known to them
both happening to be a Guest there at the same time, the next Day
produced the Deed according to his Instructions, in the Presence of whom
and of others it was sign'd, seal'd, and deliver'd to the Purposes
therein contain'd.[27]

This Transaction may be another Instance (as I have elsewhere observed)
at how low a Value the Interests in a Theatrical License were then held,
tho' it was visible from the Success of _Swiney_ in that very Year that
with tolerable Menagement they could at no time have fail'd of being a
profitable Purchase.

The next Thing to be consider'd was what the Colonel should do with his
new Theatrical Commission, which in another's Possession had been of so
little Importance. Here it may be necessary to premise that this
Gentleman was the first of any Consideration since my coming to the
Stage with whom I had contracted a Personal Intimacy; which might be the
Reason why in this Debate my Opinion had some Weight with him: Of this
Intimacy, too, I am the more tempted to talk from the natural Pleasure
of calling back in Age the Pursuits and happy Ardours of Youth long
past, which, like the Ideas of a delightful Spring in a Winter's
Rumination, are sometimes equal to the former Enjoyment of them. I
shall, therefore, rather chuse in this Place to gratify my self than my
Reader, by setting the fairest Side of this Gentleman in view, and by
indulging a little conscious Vanity in shewing how early in Life I fell
into the Possession of so agreeable a Companion: Whatever Failings he
might have to others, he had none to me; nor was he, where he had them,
without his valuable Qualities to balance or soften them. Let, then,
what was not to be commended in him rest with his Ashes, never to be
rak'd into: But the friendly Favours I received from him while living
give me still a Pleasure in paying this only Mite of my Acknowledgment
in my Power to his Memory. And if my taking this Liberty may find Pardon
from several of his fair Relations still living, for whom I profess the
utmost Respect, it will give me but little Concern tho' my critical
Readers should think it all Impertinence.

This Gentleman, then, _Henry_, was the eldest Son of _Henry Brett_, Esq;
of _Cowley_, in _Gloucestershire_, who coming early to his Estate of about
Two Thousand a Year, by the usual Negligences of young Heirs had, before
this his eldest Son came of age, sunk it to about half that Value, and
that not wholly free from Incumbrances. Mr. _Brett_, whom I am speaking
of, had his Education, and I might say, ended it, at the University of
_Oxford_; for tho' he was settled some time after at the _Temple_, he so
little followed the Law there that his Neglect of it made the Law (like
some of his fair and frail Admirers) very often follow _him_. As he had an
uncommon Share of Social Wit and a handsom Person, with a sanguine Bloom
in his Complexion, no wonder they persuaded him that he might have a
better Chance of Fortune by throwing such Accomplishments into the gayer
World than by shutting them up in a Study. The first View that fires the
Head of a young Gentleman of this modish Ambition just broke loose from
Business, is to cut a Figure (as they call it) in a Side-box at the Play,
from whence their next Step is to the _Green Room_ behind the Scenes,
sometimes their _Non ultra_. Hither at last, then, in this hopeful Quest
of his Fortune, came this Gentleman-Errant, not doubting but the fickle
Dame, while he was thus qualified to receive her, might be tempted to fall
into his Lap. And though possibly the Charms of our Theatrical Nymphs
might have their Share in drawing him thither, yet in my Observation the
most visible Cause of his first coming was a more sincere Passion he had
conceived for a fair full-bottom'd Perriwig which I then wore in my first
Play of the _Fool in Fashion_ in the Year 1695.[28] For it is to be noted
that the _Beaux_ of those Days were of a quite different Cast from the
modern Stamp, and had more of the Stateliness of the Peacock in their
Mien than (which now seems to be their highest Emulation) the pert Air of
a Lapwing. Now, whatever Contempt Philosophers may have for a fine
Perriwig, my Friend, who was not to despise the World, but to live in it,
knew very well that so material an Article of Dress upon the Head of a Man
of Sense, if it became him, could never fail of drawing to him a more
partial Regard and Benevolence than could possibly be hoped for in an
ill-made one.[29] This perhaps may soften the grave Censure which so
youthful a Purchase might otherwise have laid upon him: In a Word, he made
his Attack upon this Perriwig, as your young Fellows generally do upon a
Lady of Pleasure, first by a few familiar Praises of her Person, and then
a civil Enquiry into the Price of it. But upon his observing me a little
surprized at the Levity of his Question about a Fop's Perriwig, he began
to railly himself with so much Wit and Humour upon the Folly of his
Fondness for it, that he struck me with an equal Desire of granting any
thing in my Power to oblige so facetious a Customer. This singular
Beginning of our Conversation, and the mutual Laughs that ensued upon it,
ended in an Agreement to finish our Bargain that Night over a Bottle.

If it were possible the Relation of the happy Indiscretions which passed
between us that Night could give the tenth Part of the Pleasure I then
received from them, I could still repeat them with Delight: But as it
may be doubtful whether the Patience of a Reader may be quite so strong
as the Vanity of an Author, I shall cut it short by only saying that
single Bottle was the Sire of many a jolly Dozen that for some Years
following, like orderly Children, whenever they were call'd for, came
into the same Company. Nor, indeed, did I think from that time, whenever
he was to be had, any Evening could be agreeably enjoy'd without
him.[30] But the long continuance of our Intimacy perhaps may be thus
accounted for.

He who can taste Wit in another may in some sort be said to have it
himself: Now, as I always had, and (I bless my self for the Folly)
still have a quick Relish of whatever did or can give me Delight: This
Gentleman could not but see the youthful Joy I was generally raised to
whenever I had the Happiness of a _Tête à tête_ with him; and it may be
a moot Point whether Wit is not as often inspired by a proper Attention
as by the brightest Reply to it. Therefore, as he had Wit enough for any
two People, and I had Attention enough for any four, there could not
well be wanting a sociable Delight on either side. And tho' it may be
true that a Man of a handsome Person is apt to draw a partial Ear to
every thing he says; yet this Gentleman seldom said any thing that might
not have made a Man of the plainest Person agreeable. Such a continual
Desire to please, it may be imagined, could not but sometimes lead him
into a little venial Flattery rather than not succeed in it. And I,
perhaps, might be one of those Flies that was caught in this Honey. As I
was then a young successful Author and an Actor in some unexpected
Favour, whether deservedly or not imports not; yet such Appearances at
least were plausible Pretences enough for an amicable Adulation to
enlarge upon, and the Sallies of it a less Vanity than mine might not
have been able to resist. Whatever this Weakness on my side might be, I
was not alone in it; for I have heard a Gentleman of Condition say, who
knew the World as well as most Men that live in it, that let his
Discretion be ever so much upon its Guard, he never fell into Mr.
_Brett_'s Company without being loth to leave it or carrying away a
better Opinion of himself from it. If his Conversation had this Effect
among the Men; what must we suppose to have been the Consequence when he
gave it a yet softer turn among the Fair Sex? Here, now, a _French_
Novellist would tell you fifty pretty Lies of him; but as I chuse to be
tender of Secrets of that sort, I shall only borrow the good Breeding of
that Language, and tell you in a Word, that I knew several Instances of
his being _un Homme à bonne Fortune_. But though his frequent Successes
might generally keep him from the usual Disquiets of a Lover, he knew
this was a Life too liquorish to last; and therefore had Reflexion
enough to be govern'd by the Advice of his Friends to turn these his
Advantages of Nature to a better use.

Among the many Men of Condition with whom his Conversation had
recommended him to an Intimacy, Sir _Thomas Skipwith_ had taken a
particular Inclination to him; and as he had the Advancement of his
Fortune at Heart, introduced him where there was a Lady[31] who had
enough in her Power to disencumber him of the World and make him every
way easy for Life.

While he was in pursuit of this Affair, which no time was to be lost in
(for the Lady was to be in Town but for three Weeks) I one Day found
him idling behind the Scenes before the Play was begun. Upon sight of
him I took the usual Freedom he allow'd me, to rate him roundly for the
Madness of not improving every Moment in his Power in what was of such
consequence to him. Why are you not (said I) where you know you only
should be? If your Design should once get Wind in the Town, the Ill-will
of your Enemies or the Sincerity of the Lady's Friends may soon blow up
your Hopes, which in your Circumstances of Life cannot be long supported
by the bare Appearance of a Gentleman.----But it is impossible to
proceed without some Apology for the very familiar Circumstance that is
to follow----Yet, as it might not be so trivial in its Effect as I fear
it may be in the Narration, and is a Mark of that Intimacy which is
necessary should be known had been between us, I will honestly make bold
with my Scruples and let the plain Truth of my Story take its Chance for
Contempt or Approbation.

After twenty Excuses to clear himself of the Neglect I had so warmly
charged him with, he concluded them with telling me he had been out all
the Morning upon Business, and that his Linnen was too much soil'd to be
seen in Company. Oh, ho! said I, is that all? Come along with me, we
will soon get over that dainty Difficulty: Upon which I haul'd him by
the Sleeve into my Shifting-Room, he either staring, laughing, or
hanging back all the way. There, when I had lock'd him in, I began to
strip off my upper Cloaths, and bad him do the same; still he either
did not, or would not seem to understand me, and continuing his Laugh,
cry'd, What! is the Puppy mad? No, no, only positive, said I; for look
you, in short, the Play is ready to begin, and the Parts that you and I
are to act to Day are not of equal consequence; mine of young _Reveller_
(in _Greenwich-Park_[32]) is but a Rake; but whatever you may be, you
are not to appear so; therefore take my Shirt and give me yours; for
depend upon't, stay here you shall not, and so go about your Business.
To conclude, we fairly chang'd Linnen, nor could his Mother's have
wrap'd him up more fortunately; for in about ten Days he marry'd the
Lady.[33] In a Year or two after his Marriage he was chosen a Member of
that Parliament which was sitting when King _William_ dy'd. And, upon
raising of some new Regiments, was made Lieutenant-Colonel to that of
Sir _Charles Hotham_. But as his Ambition extended not beyond the Bounds
of a Park Wall and a pleasant Retreat in the Corner of it, which with
too much Expence he had just finish'd, he, within another Year, had
leave to resign his Company to a younger Brother.

This was the Figure in Life he made when Sir _Thomas Skipwith_ thought
him the most proper Person to oblige (if it could be an Obligation) with
the Present of his Interest in the Patent. And from these Anecdotes of
my Intimacy with him, it may be less a Surprise, when he came to Town
invested with this new Theatrical Power, that I should be the first
Person to whom he took any Notice of it. And notwithstanding he knew I
was then engag'd, in another Interest, at the _Hay-Market_, he desired
we might consider together of the best Use he could make of it, assuring
me at the same time he should think it of none to himself unless
it could in some Shape be turn'd to my Advantage. This friendly
Declaration, though it might be generous in him to make, was not needful
to incline me in whatever might be honestly in my Power, whether by
Interest or Negotiation, to serve him. My first Advice, therefore, was,
That he should produce his Deed to the other Menaging Patentee of
_Drury-Lane_, and demand immediate Entrance to a joint Possession of all
Effects and Powers to which that Deed had given him an equal Title.
After which, if he met with no Opposition to this Demand (as upon sight
of it he did not) that he should be watchful against any Contradiction
from his Collegue in whatever he might propose in carrying on the
Affair, but to let him see that he was determin'd in all his Measures.
Yet to heighten that Resolution with an Ease and Temper in his manner,
as if he took it for granted there could be no Opposition made to
whatever he had a mind to. For that this Method, added to his natural
Talent of Persuading, would imperceptibly lead his Collegue into a
Reliance on his superior Understanding, That however little he car'd for
Business he should give himself the Air at least of Enquiry into what
_had_ been done, that what he intended to do might be thought more
considerable and be the readier comply'd with: For if he once suffer'd
his Collegue to seem wiser than himself, there would be no end of his
perplexing him with absurd and dilatory Measures; direct and plain
Dealing being a Quality his natural Diffidence would never suffer him to
be Master of; of which his not complying with his Verbal Agreement with
_Swiney_, when the _Hay-Market_ House was taken for both their Uses, was
an Evidence. And though some People thought it Depth and Policy in him
to keep things often in Confusion, it was ever my Opinion they
over-rated his Skill, and that, in reality, his Parts were too weak for
his Post, in which he had always acted to the best of his Knowledge.
That his late Collegue, Sir _Thomas Skipwith_, had trusted too much to
his Capacity for this sort of Business, and was treated by him
accordingly, without ever receiving any Profits from it for several
Years: Insomuch that when he found his Interest in such desperate Hands
he thought the best thing he could do with it was (as he saw) to give it
away. Therefore if he (Mr. _Brett_) could once fix himself, as I had
advis'd, upon a different Foot with this hitherto untractable Menager,
the Business would soon run through whatever Channel he might have a
mind to lead it. And though I allow'd the greatest Difficulty he would
meet with would be in getting his Consent to a Union of the two
Companies, which was the only Scheme that could raise the Patent to its
former Value, and which I knew this close Menager would secretly lay all
possible Rubs in the way to; yet it was visible there was a way of
reducing him to Compliance: For though it was true his Caution would
never part with a Straw by way of Concession, yet to a high Hand he
would give up any thing, provided he were suffer'd to keep his Title to
it: If his Hat were taken from his Head in the Street, he would make no
farther Resistance than to say, I _am not willing to part with it_. Much
less would he have the Resolution openly to oppose any just Measures,
when he should find one, who with an equal Right to his and with a known
Interest to bring them about, was resolv'd to go thro' with them.

Now though I knew my Friend was as thoroughly acquainted with this
Patentee's Temper as myself, yet I thought it not amiss to quicken and
support his Resolution, by confirming to him the little Trouble he would
meet with, in pursuit of the Union I had advis'd him to; for it must be
known that on our side Trouble was a sort of Physick we did not much
care to take: But as the Fatigue of this Affair was likely to be lower'd
by a good deal of Entertainment and Humour, which would naturally engage
him in his dealing with so exotick a Partner, I knew that this softening
the Business into a Diversion would lessen every Difficulty that lay in
our way to it.

However copiously I may have indulg'd my self in this Commemoration of a
Gentleman with whom I had pass'd so many of my younger Days with Pleasure,
yet the Reader may by this Insight into his Character, and by that of the
other Patentee, be better able to judge of the secret Springs that gave
Motion to or obstructed so considerable an Event as that of the Re-union
of the two Companies of Actors in 1708.[34] In Histories of more weight,
for want of such Particulars we are often deceiv'd in the true Causes of
Facts that most concern us to be let into; which sometimes makes us
ascribe to Policy, or false Appearances of Wisdom, what perhaps in
reality was the mere Effect of Chance or Humour.

Immediately after Mr. _Brett_ was admitted as a joint Patentee, he made
use of the Intimacy he had with the Vice-Chamberlain to assist his
Scheme of this intended Union, in which he so far prevail'd that it was
soon after left to the particular Care of the same Vice-Chamberlain to
give him all the Aid and Power necessary to the bringing what he desired
to Perfection. The Scheme was, to have but one Theatre for Plays and
another for Operas, under separate Interests. And this the generality of
Spectators, as well as the most approv'd Actors, had been some time
calling for as the only Expedient to recover the Credit of the Stage and
the valuable Interests of its Menagers.

As the Condition of the Comedians at this time is taken notice of in my
_Dedication_ of the _Wife's Resentment_ to the Marquis (now Duke) of
_Kent_, and then Lord-Chamberlain, which was publish'd above thirty Years
ago,[35] when I had no thought of ever troubling the World with this
Theatrical History, I see no Reason why it may not pass as a Voucher of
the Facts I am now speaking of; I shall therefore give them in the very
Light I then saw them. After some Acknowledgment for his Lordship's
Protection of our (_Hay-Market_) Theatre, it is further said----

     "The Stage has, for many Years, 'till of late, groan'd under
     the greatest Discouragements, which have been very much, if
     not wholly, owing to the Mismenagement of those that have
     aukwardly govern'd it. Great Sums have been ventur'd upon
     empty Projects and Hopes of immoderate Gains, and when those
     Hopes have fail'd, the Loss has been tyrannically deducted out
     of the Actors Sallary. And if your Lordship had not redeem'd
     them--_This is meant of our being suffer'd to come over_ to
     Swiney----they were very near being wholly laid aside, or, at
     least, the Use of their Labour was to be swallow'd up in the
     pretended Merit of Singing and Dancing."

What follows relates to the Difficulties in dealing with the then
impracticable Menager, _viz._

     "--And though your Lordship's Tenderness of oppressing is so
     very just that you have rather staid to convince a Man of your
     good Intentions to him than to do him even a Service against
     his Will; yet since your Lordship has so happily begun the
     Establishment of the separate Diversions, we live in hope that
     the same Justice and Resolution will still persuade you to go
     as successfully through with it. But while any Man is suffer'd
     to confound the Industry and Use of them by acting publickly
     in opposition to your Lordship's equal Intentions, under a
     false and intricate Pretence of not being able to comply with
     them, the Town is likely to be more entertain'd with the
     private Dissensions than the publick Performance of either,
     and the Actors in a perpetual Fear and Necessity of
     petitioning your Lordship every Season for new Relief."

Such was the State of the Stage immediately preceding the time of Mr.
_Brett_'s being admitted a joint Patentee, who, as he saw with clearer
Eyes what was its evident Interest, left no proper Measures unattempted
to make this so long despair'd-of Union practicable. The most apparent
Difficulty to be got over in this Affair was, what could be done for
_Swiney_ in consideration of his being oblig'd to give up those Actors
whom the Power and Choice of the Lord-Chamberlain had the Year before
set him at the Head of, and by whose Menagement those Actors had found
themselves in a prosperous Condition. But an Accident at this time
happily contributed to make that Matter easy. The Inclination of our
People of Quality for foreign Operas had now reach'd the Ears of
_Italy_, and the Credit of their Taste had drawn over from thence,
without any more particular Invitation, one of their capital Singers,
the famous Signior _Cavaliero Nicolini_: From whose Arrival, and
the Impatience of the Town to hear him, it was concluded that Operas
being now so completely provided could not fail of Success, and that
by making _Swiney_ sole Director of them the Profits must be an ample
Compensation for his Resignation of the Actors. This Matter being thus
adjusted by _Swiney_'s Acceptance of the Opera only to be perform'd at
the _Hay-Market_ House, the Actors were all order'd to return to
_Drury-Lane_, there to remain (under the Patentees) her Majesty's only
Company of Comedians.[36]



CHAPTER XII.


[Illustration: Ad Lalauze, sc]

     _A short View of the Opera when first divided from the Comedy.
     Plays recover their Credit. The old Patentee uneasy at their
     Success. Why. The Occasion of Colonel_ Brett'_s throwing up
     his Share in the Patent. The Consequences of it. Anecdotes
     of_ Goodman _the Actor. The Rate of favourite Actors in his
     Time. The Patentees, by endeavouring to reduce their Price,
     lose them all a second time. The principal Comedians return to
     the_ Hay-Market _in Shares with_ Swiney. _They alter that
     Theatre. The original and present Form of the Theatre in_
     Drury-Lane _compar'd. Operas fall off. The Occasion of it.
     Farther Observations upon them. The Patentee dispossess'd of_
     Drury-Lane _Theatre. Mr._ Collier, _with a new License,
     heads the Remains of that Company_.

Plays and Operas being thus established upon separate Interests,[37]
they were now left to make the best of their way into Favour by their
different Merit. Although the Opera is not a Plant of our Native Growth,
nor what our plainer Appetites are fond of, and is of so delicate a
Nature that without excessive Charge it cannot live long among us;
especially while the nicest _Connoisseurs_ in Musick fall into such
various Heresies in Taste, every Sect pretending to be the true one:
Yet, as it is call'd a Theatrical Entertainment, and by its Alliance or
Neutrality has more or less affected our Domestick Theatre, a short View
of its Progress may be allow'd a Place in our History.

After this new Regulation the first Opera that appear'd was _Pyrrhus_.
Subscriptions at that time were not extended, as of late, to the whole
Season, but were limited to the first Six Days only of a new Opera. The
chief Performers in this were _Nicolini_, _Valentini_, and Mrs.
_Tofts_;[38] and for the inferior Parts the best that were then to be
found. Whatever Praises may have been given to the most famous Voices that
have been heard since _Nicolini_, upon the whole I cannot but come into
the Opinion that still prevails among several Persons of Condition who are
able to give a Reason for their liking, that no Singer since his Time has
so justly and gracefully acquitted himself in whatever Character he
appear'd as _Nicolini_. At most the Difference between him and the
greatest Favourite of the Ladies, _Farinelli_, amounted but to this, that
he might sometimes more exquisitely surprize us, but _Nicolini_ (by
pleasing the Eye as well as the Ear) fill'd us with a more various and
_rational_ Delight. Whether in this Excellence he has since had any
Competitor, perhaps will be better judg'd by what the Critical Censor of
_Great Britain_ says of him in his 115th _Tatler_, _viz._

"_Nicolini_ sets off the Character he bears in an Opera by his Action,
as much as he does the Words of it by his Voice; every Limb and Finger
contributes to the Part he acts, insomuch that a deaf Man might go along
with him in the Sense of it. There is scarce a beautiful Posture in an
old Statue which he does not plant himself in, as the different
Circumstances of the Story give occasion for it--He performs the most
ordinary Action in a manner suitable to the Greatness of his Character,
and shews the Prince even in the giving of a Letter or dispatching of a
Message, _&c._"[39]

His Voice at this first time of being among us (for he made us a second
Visit when it was impair'd) had all that strong, clear Sweetness of
Tone so lately admir'd in _Senesino_. A blind Man could scarce have
distinguish'd them; but in Volubility of Throat the former had much the
Superiority. This so excellent Performer's Agreement was Eight Hundred
Guineas for the Year, which is but an eighth Part more than half the Sum
that has since been given to several that could never totally surpass
him: The Consequence of which is, that the Losses by Operas, for several
Seasons, to the End of the Year 1738, have been so great, that those
Gentlemen of Quality who last undertook the Direction of them, found it
ridiculous any longer to entertain the Publick at so extravagant an
Expence, while no one particular Person thought himself oblig'd by it.

Mrs. _Tofts_,[40] who took her first Grounds of Musick here in her own
Country, before the _Italian_ Taste had so highly prevail'd, was then
not an Adept in it:[41] Yet whatever Defect the fashionably Skilful
might find in her manner, she had, in the general Sense of her
Spectators, Charms that few of the most learned Singers ever arrive at.
The Beauty of her fine proportion'd Figure, and exquisitely sweet,
silver Tone of her Voice, with that peculiar, rapid Swiftness of her
Throat, were Perfections not to be imitated by Art or Labour.
_Valentini_ I have already mention'd, therefore need only say farther of
him, that though he was every way inferior to _Nicolini_,[42] yet, as he
had the Advantage of giving us our first Impression of a good Opera
Singer, he had still his Admirers, and was of great Service in being so
skilful a Second to his Superior.

[Illustration: OWEN SWINEY.]

Three such excellent Performers in the same kind of Entertainment at
once, _England_ till this Time had never seen: Without any farther
Comparison, then, with the much dearer bought who have succeeded them,
their Novelty at least was a Charm that drew vast Audiences of the fine
World after them. _Swiney_, their sole Director, was prosperous, and in
one Winter a Gainer by them of a moderate younger Brother's Fortune. But
as Musick, by so profuse a Dispensation of her Beauties, could not
always supply our dainty Appetites with equal Variety, nor for ever
please us with the same Objects, the Opera, after one luxurious Season,
like the fine Wife of a roving Husband, began to loose its Charms, and
every Day discover'd to our Satiety Imperfections which our former
Fondness had been blind to: But of this I shall observe more in its
Place: in the mean time, let us enquire into the Productions of our
native Theatre.

It may easily be conceiv'd, that by this entire Re-union of the two
Companies Plays must generally have been perform'd to a more than usual
Advantage and Exactness: For now every chief Actor, according to his
particular Capacity, piqued himself upon rectifying those Errors which
during their divided State were almost unavoidable. Such a Choice of
Actors added a Richness to every good Play as it was then serv'd up to the
publick Entertainment: The common People crowded to them with a more
joyous Expectation, and those of the higher Taste return'd to them as to
old Acquaintances, with new Desires after a long Absence. In a Word, all
Parties seem'd better pleas'd but he who one might imagine had most Reason
to be so, the (lately) sole menaging Patentee. He, indeed, saw his Power
daily mould'ring from his own Hands into those of Mr. _Brett_,[43] whose
Gentlemanly manner of making every one's Business easy to him, threw their
old Master under a Disregard which he had not been us'd to, nor could with
all his happy Change of Affairs support. Although this grave Theatrical
Minister of whom I have been oblig'd to make such frequent mention, had
acquired the Reputation of a most profound Politician by being often
incomprehensible, yet I am not sure that his Conduct at this Juncture gave
us not an evident Proof that he was, like other frail Mortals, more a
Slave to his Passions than his Interest; for no Creature ever seem'd more
fond of Power that so little knew how to use it to his Profit and
Reputation; otherwise he could not possibly have been so discontented, in
his secure and prosperous State of the Theatre, as to resolve at all
Hazards to destroy it. We shall now see what infallible Measures he took
to bring this laudable Scheme to Perfection.

He plainly saw that, as this disagreeable Prosperity was chiefly owing
to the Conduct of Mr. _Brett_, there could be no hope of recovering the
Stage to its former Confusion but by finding some effectual Means to
make Mr. _Brett_ weary of his Charge: The most probable he could for the
Present think of, in this Distress, was to call in the Adventurers (whom
for many Years, by his Defence in Law, he had kept out) now to take care
of their visibly improving Interests.[44] This fair Appearance of Equity
being known to be his own Proposal, he rightly guess'd would incline
these Adventurers to form a Majority of Votes on his Side in all
Theatrical Questions, and consequently become a Check upon the Power of
Mr. _Brett_, who had so visibly alienated the Hearts of his Theatrical
Subjects, and now began to govern without him. When the Adventurers,
therefore, were re-admitted to their old Government, after having
recommended himself to them by proposing to make some small Dividend of
the Profits (though he did not design that Jest should be repeated)
he took care that the Creditors of the Patent, who were then no
inconsiderable Body, should carry off the every Weeks clear Profits in
proportion to their several Dues and Demands. This Conduct, so
speciously just, he had Hopes would let Mr. _Brett_ see that his Share
in the Patent was not so valuable an Acquisition as perhaps he might
think it; and probably make a Man of his Turn to Pleasure soon weary of
the little Profit and great Plague it gave him. Now, though these might
be all notable Expedients, yet I cannot say they would have wholly
contributed to Mr. _Brett_'s quitting his Post, had not a Matter of much
stronger Moment, an unexpected Dispute between him and Sir _Thomas
Skipwith_, prevailed with him to lay it down: For in the midst of this
flourishing State of the Patent, Mr. _Brett_ was surpriz'd with a
Subpoe into Chancery from Sir _Thomas Skipwith_, who alledg'd in his
Bill that the Conveyance he had made of his Interest in the Patent to
Mr. _Brett_ was only intended in Trust. (Whatever the Intent might be,
the Deed it self, which I then read, made no mention of any Trust
whatever.) But whether Mr. _Brett_, as Sir _Thomas_ farther asserted,
had previously, or after the Deed was sign'd, given his Word of Honour
that if he should ever make the Stage turn to any Account or Profit, he
would certainly restore it: That, indeed, I can say nothing to; but be
the Deed valid or void, the Facts that apparently follow'd were, that
tho' Mr. _Brett_ in his Answer to this Bill absolutely deny'd his
receiving this Assignment either in Trust or upon any limited Condition
of what kind soever, yet he made no farther Defence in the Cause. But
since he found Sir _Thomas_ had thought fit on any Account to sue for
the Restitution of it, and Mr. _Brett_ being himself conscious that, as
the World knew he had paid no Consideration for it, his keeping it might
be misconstrued, or not favourably spoken of; or perhaps finding, tho'
the Profits were great, they were constantly swallowed up (as has been
observ'd) by the previous Satisfaction of old Debts, he grew so tir'd of
the Plague and Trouble the whole Affair had given him, and was likely
still to engage him in, that in a few Weeks after he withdrew himself
from all Concern with the Theatre, and quietly left Sir _Thomas_ to
find his better Account in it. And thus stood this undecided Right till,
upon the Demise of Sir _Thomas_, Mr. _Brett_ being allow'd the Charges
he had been at in this Attendance and Prosecution of the Union,
reconvey'd this Share of the Patent to Sir _George Skipwith_, the Son
and Heir of Sir _Thomas_.[45]

Our Politician, the old Patentee, having thus fortunately got rid of Mr.
_Brett_, who had so rashly brought the Patent once more to be a
profitable Tenure, was now again at Liberty to chuse rather to lose all
than not to have it all to himself.

I have elsewhere observ'd that nothing can so effectually secure the
Strength, or contribute to the Prosperity of a good Company, as the
Directors of it having always, as near as possible, an amicable
Understanding with three or four of their best Actors, whose good or
ill-will must naturally make a wide Difference in their profitable or
useless manner of serving them: While the Principal are kept reasonably
easy the lower Class can never be troublesome without hurting
themselves: But when a valuable Actor is hardly treated, the Master must
be a very cunning Man that finds his Account in it. We shall now see how
far Experience will verify this Observation.

The Patentees thinking themselves secure in being restor'd to their
former absolute Power over this now only Company, chose rather to govern
it by the Reverse of the Method I have recommended: For tho' the daily
Charge of their united Company amounted not, by a good deal, to what
either of the two Companies now in _Drury-Lane_ or _Covent-Garden_
singly arises, they notwithstanding fell into their former Politicks of
thinking every Shilling taken from a hired Actor so much clear Gain to
the Proprietor: Many of their People, therefore, were actually, if not
injudiciously, reduced in their Pay, and others given to understand the
same Fate was design'd them; of which last Number I my self was one;
which occurs to my Memory by the Answer I made to one of the
Adventurers, who, in Justification of their intended Proceeding,[46]
told me that my Sallary, tho' it should be less than it was by ten
Shillings a Week, would still be more than ever _Goodman_ had, who was a
better Actor than I could pretend to be: To which I reply'd, This may be
true, but then you know, Sir, it is as true that _Goodman_ was forced to
go upon the High-way for a Livelihood. As this was a known Fact of
_Goodman_, my mentioning it on that Occasion I believe was of Service to
me; at least my Sallary was not reduced after it. To say a Word or two
more of _Goodman_, so celebrated an Actor in his Time, perhaps may set
the Conduct of the Patentees in a clearer Light. Tho' _Goodman_ had left
the Stage before I came to it, I had some slight Acquaintance with him.
About the Time of his being expected to be an Evidence against Sir _John
Fenwick_ in the Assassination-Plot,[47] in 1696, I happen'd to meet him
at Dinner at Sir _Thomas Skipwith_'s, who, as he was an agreeable
Companion himself, liked _Goodman_ for the same Quality. Here it was
that _Goodman_, without Disguise or sparing himself, fell into a
laughing Account of several loose Passages of _his_ younger Life; as his
being expell'd the University of _Cambridge_ for being one of the
hot-headed Sparks who were concern'd in the cutting and defacing the
Duke of _Monmouth_'s Picture, then Chancellor of that Place. But this
Disgrace, it seems, had not disqualified him for the Stage, which, like
the Sea-Service, refuses no Man for his Morals that is able-bodied:
There, as an Actor, he soon grew into a different Reputation; but
whatever his Merit might be, the Pay of a hired Hero in those Days was
so very low that he was forced, it seems, to take the Air (as he call'd
it) and borrow what Money the first Man he met had about him. But this
being his first Exploit of that kind which the Scantiness of his
Theatrical Fortune had reduced him to, King _James_ was prevail'd upon
to pardon him: Which _Goodman_ said was doing him so particular an
Honour that no Man could wonder if his Acknowledgment had carried him a
little farther than ordinary into the Interest of that Prince: But as he
had lately been out of Luck in backing his old Master, he had now no way
to get home the Life he was out upon his Account but by being under the
same Obligations to King _William_.

Another Anecdote of him, though not quite so dishonourably enterprizing,
which I had from his own Mouth at a different Time, will equally shew to
what low Shifts in Life the poor Provision for good Actors, under the
early Government of the Patent, reduced them. In the younger Days of
their Heroism, Captain _Griffin_ and _Goodman_ were confined by their
moderate Sallaries to the Oeconomy of lying together in the same Bed
and having but one whole Shirt between them: One of them being under the
Obligation of a Rendezvous with a fair Lady, insisted upon his wearing
it out of his Turn, which occasion'd so high a Dispute that the Combat
was immediately demanded, and accordingly their Pretensions to it were
decided by a fair Tilt upon the Spot, in the Room where they lay: But
whether _Clytus_ or _Alexander_ was obliged to see no Company till a
worse could be wash'd for him, seems not to be a material Point in their
History, or to my Purpose.[48]

By this Rate of _Goodman_, who, 'till the Time of his quitting the Stage
never had more than what is call'd forty Shillings a Week, it may be
judg'd how cheap the Labour of Actors had been formerly; and the
Patentees thought it a Folly to continue the higher Price, (which their
Divisions had since raised them to) now there was but one Market for
them; but alas! they had forgot their former fatal Mistake of squabbling
with their Actors in 1695;[49] nor did they make any Allowance for the
Changes and Operations of Time, or enough consider the Interest the
Actors had in the Lord Chamberlain, on whose Protection they might
always rely, and whose Decrees had been less restrain'd by Precedent
than those of a Lord Chancellor.

In this mistaken View of their Interest, the Patentees, by treating their
Actors as Enemies, really made them so: And when once the Masters of a
hired Company think not their Actors Hearts as necessary as their Hands,
they cannot be said to have agreed for above half the Work they are able
to do in a Day: Or, if an unexpected Success should, notwithstanding,
make the Profits in any gross Disproportion greater than the Wages, the
Wages will always have something worse than a Murmur at the Head of them,
that will not only measure the Merit of the Actor by the Gains of the
Proprietor, but will never naturally be quiet till every Scheme of getting
into Property has been tried to make the Servant his own Master: And this,
as far as Experience can make me judge, will always be in either of these
Cases the State of our _English_ Theatre. What Truth there may be in this
Observation we are now coming to a Proof of.

To enumerate all the particular Acts of Power in which the Patentees
daily bore hard upon _this_ now only Company of Actors, might be as
tedious as unnecessary; I shall therefore come at once to their most
material Grievance, upon which they grounded their Complaint to the Lord
Chamberlain, who, in the Year following, 1709, took effectual Measures
for their Relief.

The Patentees observing that the Benefit-Plays of the Actors towards the
latter End of the Season brought the most crowded Audiences in the Year,
began to think their own Interests too much neglected by these partial
Favours of the Town to their Actors; and therefore judg'd it would not
be impolitick in such wholesome annual Profits to have a Fellow-feeling
with them. Accordingly an _Indulto_[50] was laid of one Third out of the
Profits of every Benefit for the proper Use and Behoof of the
Patent.[51] But that a clear Judgment may be form'd of the Equity or
Hardship of this Imposition, it will be necessary to shew from whence
and from what Causes the Actors Claim to Benefits originally proceeded.

During the Reign of King _Charles_ an Actor's Benefit had never been
heard of. The first Indulgence of this kind was given to Mrs. _Barry_
(as has been formerly observed[52]) in King _James_'s Time, in
Consideration of the extraordinary Applause that had followed her
Performance: But there this Favour rested to her alone, 'till after the
Division of the only Company in 1695, at which time the Patentees were
soon reduced to pay their Actors half in good Words and half in ready
Money. In this precarious Condition some particular Actors (however
binding their Agreements might be) were too poor or too wise to go to
Law with a Lawyer, and therefore rather chose to compound their Arrears
for their being admitted to the Chance of having them made up by the
Profits of a Benefit-Play. This Expedient had this Consequence; that the
Patentees, tho' their daily Audiences might, and did sometimes mend,
still kept the short Subsistance of their Actors at a stand, and grew
more steady in their Resolution so to keep them, as they found them less
apt to mutiny while their Hopes of being clear'd off by a Benefit were
depending. In a Year or two these Benefits grew so advantageous that
they became at last the chief Article in every Actor's Agreement.

Now though the Agreements of these united Actors I am speaking of in
1708 were as yet only Verbal, yet that made no difference in the honest
Obligation to keep them: But as Honour at that time happen'd to have but
a loose hold of their Consciences, the Patentees rather chose to give it
the slip, and went on with their Work without it. No Actor, therefore,
could have his Benefit fix'd 'till he had first sign'd a Paper
signifying his voluntary Acceptance of it upon the above Conditions, any
Claims from Custom to the contrary notwithstanding. Several at first
refus'd to sign this Paper; upon which the next in Rank were offer'd on
the same Conditions to come before the Refusers; this smart Expedient
got some few of the Fearful the Preference to their Seniors; who, at
last, seeing the Time was too short for a present Remedy, and that they
must either come into the Boat or lose their Tide, were forc'd to comply
with what they as yet silently resented as the severest Injury. In this
Situation, therefore, they chose to let the principal Benefits be over,
that their Grievances might swell into some bulk before they made any
Application for Redress to the Lord-Chamberlain; who, upon hearing their
general Complaint, order'd the Patentees to shew cause why their
Benefits had been diminish'd one Third, contrary to the common Usage?
The Patentees pleaded the sign'd Agreement, and the Actors Receipts of
the other two Thirds, in Full Satisfaction. But these were prov'd to
have been exacted from them by the Methods already mentioned. They
notwithstanding insist upon them as lawful. But as Law and Equity do not
always agree, they were look'd upon as unjust and arbitrary. Whereupon
the Patentees were warn'd at their Peril to refuse the Actors full
Satisfaction.[53] But here it was thought necessary that Judgment should
be for some time respited, 'till the Actors, who had leave so to do,
could form a Body strong enough to make the Inclination of the
Lord-Chamberlain to relieve them practicable.

Accordingly _Swiney_ (who was then sole Director of the Opera only) had
Permission to enter into a private Treaty with such of the united Actors
in _Drury-Lane_ as might be thought fit to head a Company under their
own Menagement, and to be Sharers with him in the _Hay-Market_. The
Actors chosen for this Charge were _Wilks_, _Dogget_, Mrs. _Oldfield_,
and Myself. But before I proceed, lest it should seem surprizing that
neither _Betterton_, Mrs. _Barry_, Mrs. _Bracegirdle_, or _Booth_ were
Parties in this Treaty, it must be observ'd that _Betterton_ was now
Seventy-three, and rather chose, with the Infirmities of Age upon him,
to rely on such Sallary as might be appointed him, than to involve
himself in the Cares and Hurry that must unavoidably attend the
Regulation of a new Company. As to the two celebrated Actresses I have
named, this has been my first proper Occasion of making it known that
they had both quitted the Stage the Year before this Transaction was
thought of.[54] And _Booth_ as yet was scarce out of his Minority as an
Actor, or only in the Promise of that Reputation which, in about four
or five Years after, he happily arriv'd at. However, at this Juncture
he was not so far overlook'd as not to be offer'd a valuable Addition
to his Sallary: But this he declin'd, being, while the Patentees were
under this Distress, as much, if not more, in favour with their chief
Menager as a Schematist than as an Actor: And indeed he appear'd, to
my Judgment, more inclin'd to risque his Fortune in _Drury-Lane_,
where he should have no Rival in Parts or Power, than on any Terms to
embark in the _Hay-Market_, where he was sure to meet with Opponents
in both.[55] However, this his Separation from our Interest when our
All was at stake, afterwards kept his Advancement to a Share with us
in our more successful Days longer postpon'd than otherwise it probably
might have been.

When Mrs. _Oldfield_ was nominated as a joint Sharer in our new
Agreement to be made with _Swiney_, _Dogget_, who had no Objection to
her Merit, insisted that our Affairs could never be upon a secure
Foundation if there was more than one Sex admitted to the Menagement of
them. He therefore hop'd that if we offer'd Mrs. _Oldfield_ a _Carte
Blanche_ instead of a Share, she would not think herself slighted. This
was instantly agreed to, and Mrs. _Oldfield_ receiv'd it rather as a
Favour than a Disobligation: Her Demands therefore were Two Hundred
Pounds a Year certain, and a Benefit clear of all Charges, which were
readily sign'd to. Her Easiness on this Occasion, some Years after, when
our Establishment was in Prosperity, made us with less Reluctancy
advance her Two Hundred Pounds to Three Hundred Guineas _per Annum_,
with her usual Benefit, which, upon an Average, for several Years at
least doubled that Sum.

[Illustration: ANNE OLDFIELD.]

When a sufficient number of Actors were engag'd under our Confederacy with
_Swiney_, it was then judg'd a proper time for the Lord-Chamberlain's
Power to operate, which, by lying above a Month dormant, had so far
recover'd the Patentees from any Apprehensions of what might fall upon
them from their late Usurpations on the Benefits of the Actors, that they
began to set their Marks upon those who had distinguish'd themselves in
the Application for Redress. Several little Disgraces were put upon them,
particularly in the Disposal of Parts in Plays to be reviv'd, and as
visible a Partiality was shewn in the Promotion of those in their
Interest, though their Endeavours to serve them could be of no
extraordinary use. How often does History shew us, in the same State of
Courts, the same Politicks have been practis'd? All this while the other
Party were passively silent, 'till one Day the Actor who particularly
solicited their Cause at the Lord-Chamberlain's Office, being shewn there
the Order sign'd for absolutely silencing the Patentees, and ready to be
serv'd, flew back with the News to his Companions, then at a Rehearsal in
which he had been wanted; when being call'd to his Part, and something
hastily question'd by the Patentee for his Neglect of Business: This
Actor, I say, with an erected Look and a Theatrical Spirit, at once threw
off the Mask and roundly told him----_Sir, I have now no more Business
Here than you have; in half an Hour you will neither have Actors to
command nor Authority to employ them._----The Patentee, who though he
could not readily comprehend his mysterious manner of Speaking, had just a
Glimpse of Terror enough from the Words to soften his Reproof into a cold
formal Declaration, That _if he would not do his Work he should not be
paid_.--But now, to complete the Catastrophe of these Theatrical
Commotions, enters the Messenger with the Order of Silence in his Hand,
whom the same Actor officiously introduc'd, telling the Patentee that the
Gentleman wanted to speak with him from the Lord-Chamberlain. When the
Messenger had delivered the Order, the Actor, throwing his Head over his
Shoulder towards the Patentee, in the manner of _Shakespear_'s _Harry the
Eighth_ to Cardinal _Wolsey_, cry'd--_Read o'er that! and now--to
Breakfast, with what Appetite you may_. Tho' these Words might be spoken
in too vindictive and insulting a manner to be commended, yet, from the
Fulness of a Heart injuriously treated and now reliev'd by that instant
Occasion, why might they not be pardon'd?[56]

The Authority of the Patent now no longer subsisting, all the confederated
Actors immediately walk'd out of the House, to which they never return'd
'till they became themselves the Tenants and Masters of it.

Here agen we see an higher Instance of the Authority of a
Lord-Chamberlain than any of those I have elsewhere mentioned: From
whence that Power might be deriv'd, as I have already said, I am not
Lawyer enough to know; however, it is evident that a Lawyer obey'd it,
though to his Cost; which might incline one to think that the Law was
not clearly against it: Be that as it may, since the Law has lately made
it no longer a Question, let us drop the Enquiry and proceed to the
Facts which follow'd this Order that silenc'd the Patent.

From this last injudicious Disagreement of the Patentees with their
principal Actors, and from what they had suffered on the same Occasion
in the Division of their only Company in 1695, might we not imagine
there was something of Infatuation in their Menagement? For though I
allow Actors in general, when they are too much indulg'd, or govern'd by
an unsteady Head, to be as unruly a Multitude as Power can be plagued
with; yet there is a Medium which, if cautiously observed by a candid
use of Power, making them always know, without feeling, their Superior,
neither suffering their Encroachments nor invading their Rights, with an
immoveable Adherence to the accepted Laws they are to walk by; such a
Regulation, I say, has never fail'd, in my Observation, to have made
them a tractable and profitable Society. If the Government of a
well-establish'd Theatre were to be compar'd to that of a Nation, there
is no one Act of Policy or Misconduct in the one or the other in which
the Menager might not, in some parallel Case, (laugh, if you please) be
equally applauded or condemned with the Statesman. Perhaps this will not
be found so wild a Conceit if you look into the 193d _Tatler_, Vol. 4.
where the Affairs of the State and those of the very Stage which I am
now treating of, are, in a Letter from _Downs_ the Promptor,[57]
compar'd, and with a great deal of Wit and Humour, set upon an equal
Foot of Policy. The Letter is suppos'd to have been written in the last
Change of the Ministry in Queen _Anne_'s Time. I will therefore venture,
upon the Authority of that Author's Imagination, to carry the
Comparison as high as it can possibly go, and say, That as I remember
one of our Princes in the last Century to have lost his Crown by too
arbitrary a Use of his Power, though he knew how fatal the same Measures
had been to his unhappy Father before him, why should we wonder that the
same Passions taking Possession of Men in lower Life, by an equally
impolitick Usage of their Theatrical Subjects, should have involved the
Patentees in proportionable Calamities.

During the Vacation, which immediately follow'd the Silence of the
Patent, both Parties were at leisure to form their Schemes for the
Winter: For the Patentee would still hold out, notwithstanding his
being so miserably maim'd or over-match'd: He had no more Regard to
Blows than a blind Cock of the Game; he might be beaten, but would never
yield; the Patent was still in his Possession, and the Broad-Seal to it
visibly as fresh as ever: Besides, he had yet some Actors in his
Service,[58] at a much cheaper Rate than those who had left him, the
Sallaries of which last, now they would not work for him, he was not
oblig'd to pay.[59] In this way of thinking, he still kept together such
as had not been invited over to the _Hay-Market_, or had been
influenc'd by _Booth_ to follow his Fortune in _Drury-Lane_.

By the Patentee's keeping these Remains of his broken Forces together,
it is plain that he imagin'd this Order of Silence, like others of the
same Kind, would be recall'd, of course, after a reasonable time of
Obedience had been paid to it: But, it seems, he had rely'd too much
upon former Precedents; nor had his Politicks yet div'd into the Secret
that the Court Power, with which the Patent had been so long and often
at variance, had now a mind to take the publick Diversions more
absolutely into their own Hands: Not that I have any stronger Reasons
for this Conjecture than that the Patent never after this Order of
Silence got leave to play during the Queen's Reign. But upon the
Accession of his late Majesty, Power having then a different Aspect, the
Patent found no Difficulty in being permitted to exercise its former
Authority for acting Plays, _&c._ which, however, from this time of
their lying still, in 1709, did not happen 'till 1714, which the old
Patentee never liv'd to see: For he dy'd about six weeks before the
new-built Theatre in _Lincoln's-Inn-Fields_ was open'd,[60] where the
first Play acted was the _Recruiting Officer_, under the Menagement of
his Heirs and Successors. But of that Theatre it is not yet time to give
any further Account.

The first Point resolv'd on by the Comedians now re-established in the
_Hay-Market_,[61] was to alter the Auditory Part of their Theatre, the
Inconveniencies of which have been fully enlarged upon in a former
Chapter. What embarrass'd them most in this Design, was their want of
Time to do it in a more complete manner than it now remains in,
otherwise they had brought it to the original Model of that in
_Drury-Lane_, only in a larger Proportion, as the wider Walls of it
would require; as there are not many Spectators who may remember what
Form the _Drury-Lane_ Theatre stood in about forty Years ago, before
the old Patentee, to make it hold more Money, took it in his Head to
alter it, it were but Justice to lay the original Figure which Sir
_Christopher Wren_ first gave it, and the Alterations of it now
standing, in a fair Light; that equal Spectators may see, if they were
at their choice, which of the Structures would incline them to a
Preference. But in this Appeal I only speak to such Spectators as allow
a good Play well acted to be the most valuable Entertainment of the
Stage. Whether such Plays (leaving the Skill of the dead or living
Actors equally out of the Question) have been more or less recommended
in their Presentation by either of these different Forms of that
Theatre, is our present Matter of Enquiry.

It must be observ'd, then,[62] that the Area or Platform of the old Stage
projected about four Foot forwarder, in a Semi-oval Figure, parallel to
the Benches of the Pit; and that the former lower Doors of Entrance for
the Actors were brought down between the two foremost (and then only)
Pilasters; in the Place of which Doors now the two Stage-Boxes are fixt.
That where the Doors of Entrance now are, there formerly stood two
additional Side-Wings, in front to a full Set of Scenes, which had then
almost a double Effect in their Loftiness and Magnificence.

By this Original Form, the usual Station of the Actors, in almost every
Scene, was advanc'd at least ten Foot nearer to the Audience than they
now can be; because, not only from the Stage's being shorten'd in front,
but likewise from the additional Interposition of those Stage-Boxes, the
Actors (in respect to the Spectators that fill them) are kept so much
more backward from the main Audience than they us'd to be: But when the
Actors were in Possession of that forwarder Space to advance upon, the
Voice was then more in the Centre of the House, so that the most distant
Ear had scarce the least Doubt or Difficulty in hearing what fell from
the weakest Utterance: All Objects were thus drawn nearer to the Sense;
every painted Scene was stronger; every grand Scene and Dance more
extended; every rich or fine-coloured Habit had a more lively Lustre:
Nor was the minutest Motion of a Feature (properly changing with the
Passion or Humour it suited) ever lost, as they frequently must be in
the Obscurity of too great a Distance: And how valuable an Advantage the
Facility of hearing distinctly is to every well-acted Scene, every
common Spectator is a Judge. A Voice scarce raised above the Tone of a
Whisper, either in Tenderness, Resignation, innocent Distress, or
Jealousy suppress'd, often have as much concern with the Heart as the
most clamorous Passions; and when on any of these Occasions such
affecting Speeches are plainly heard, or lost, how wide is the
Difference from the great or little Satisfaction received from them? To
all this a Master of a Company may say, I now receive Ten Pounds more
than could have been taken formerly in every full House! Not unlikely.
But might not his House be oftener full if the Auditors were oftener
pleas'd? Might not every bad House too, by a Possibility of being made
every Day better, add as much to one Side of his Account as it could
take from the other? If what I have said carries any Truth in it, why
might not the original Form of this Theatre be restor'd? but let this
Digression avail what it may, the Actors now return'd to the
_Hay-Market_, as I have observ'd, wanting nothing but length of Time to
have govern'd their Alteration of that Theatre by this original Model of
_Drury-Lane_ which I have recommended. As their time therefore was
short, they made their best use of it; they did something to it: They
contracted its Wideness by three Ranges of Boxes on each side, and
brought down its enormous high Ceiling within so proportionable a
Compass that it effectually cur'd those hollow Undulations of the Voice
formerly complain'd of. The Remedy had its Effect; their Audiences
exceeded their Expectation. There was now no other Theatre open
against them;[63] they had the Town to themselves; they were their own
Masters, and the Profits of their Industry came into their own Pockets.

[Illustration: THEOPHILUS CIBBER AS ANTIENT PISTOL.]

Yet with all this fair Weather, the Season of their uninterrupted
Prosperity was not yet arriv'd; for the great Expence and thinner
Audiences of the Opera (of which they then were equally Directors) was a
constant Drawback upon their Gains, yet not so far but that their Income
this Year was better than in their late Station at _Drury-Lane_. But by
the short Experience we had then had of Operas; by the high Reputation
they seem'd to have been arriv'd at the Year before; by their Power of
drawing the whole Body of Nobility as by Enchantment to their
Solemnities; by that Prodigality of Expence at which they were so
willing to support them; and from the late extraordinary Profits
_Swiney_ had made of them, what Mountains did we not hope from this
Molehill? But alas! the fairy Vision was vanish'd; this bridal Beauty
was grown familiar to the general Taste, and Satiety began to make
Excuses for its want of Appetite: Or, what is still stranger, its late
Admirers now as much valued their Judgment in being able to find out the
Faults of the Performers, as they had before in discovering their
Excellencies. The Truth is, that this kind of Entertainment being so
entirely sensual, it had no Possibility of getting the better of our
Reason but by its Novelty; and that Novelty could never be supported but
by an annual Change of the best Voices, which, like the finest Flowers,
bloom but for a Season, and when that is over are only dead Nose-gays.
From this Natural Cause we have seen within these two Years even
_Farinelli_ singing to an Audience of five and thirty Pounds, and yet,
if common Fame may be credited, the same Voice, so neglected in one
Country, has in another had Charms sufficient to make that Crown sit
easy on the Head of a Monarch, which the Jealousy of Politicians
(who had their Views in his keeping it) fear'd, without some such
extraordinary Amusement, his Satiety of Empire might tempt him a second
time to resign.[64]

There is, too, in the very Species of an _Italian_ Singer such an
innate, fantastical Pride and Caprice, that the Government of them (here
at least) is almost impracticable. This Distemper, as we were not
sufficiently warn'd or apprized of, threw our musical Affairs into
Perplexities we knew not easily how to get out of. There is scarce a
sensible Auditor in the Kingdom that has not since that Time had
Occasion to laugh at the several Instances of it: But what is still more
ridiculous, these costly Canary-Birds have sometimes infested the whole
Body of our dignified Lovers of Musick with the same childish
Animosities: Ladies have been known to decline their Visits upon account
of their being of a different musical Party. _Cæsar_ and _Pompey_ made
not a warmer Division in the _Roman_ Republick than those Heroines,
their Country Women, the _Faustina_ and _Cuzzoni_, blew up in our
Common-wealth of Academical Musick by their implacable Pretensions to
Superiority.[65] And while this Greatness of Soul is their unalterable
Virtue, it will never be practicable to make two capital Singers of the
same Sex do as they should do in one Opera at the same time! no, not
tho' _England_ were to double the Sums it has already thrown after them:
For even in their own Country, where an extraordinary Occasion has
called a greater Number of their best to sing together, the Mischief
they have made has been proportionable; an Instance of which, if I am
rightly inform'd, happen'd at _Parma_, where, upon the Celebration of
the Marriage of that Duke, a Collection was made of the most eminent
Voices that Expence or Interest could purchase, to give as complete an
Opera as the whole vocal Power of _Italy_ could form. But when it came
to the Proof of this musical Project, behold! what woful Work they made
of it! every Performer would be a _Cæsar_ or Nothing; their several
Pretensions to Preference were not to be limited within the Laws of
Harmony; they would all choose their own Songs, but not more to set off
themselves than to oppose or deprive another of an Occasion to shine:
Yet any one would sing a bad Song, provided no body else had a good one,
till at last they were thrown together, like so many feather'd Warriors,
for a Battle-royal in a Cock-pit, where every one was oblig'd to kill
another to save himself! What Pity it was these froward Misses and
Masters of Musick had not been engag'd to entertain the Court of some
King of _Morocco_, that could have known a good Opera from a bad one!
with how much Ease would such a Director have brought them to better
Order? But alas! as it has been said of greater Things,

  _Suis et ipsa Roma viribus ruit._
                            Hor.[66]

Imperial _Rome_ fell by the too great Strength of its own Citizens! So
fell this mighty Opera, ruin'd by the too great Excellency of its
Singers! For, upon the whole, it proved to be as barbarously bad as if
Malice it self had composed it.

Now though something of this kind, equally provoking, has generally
embarrass'd the State of Operas these thirty Years, yet it was the
Misfortune of the menaging Actors at the _Hay-Market_ to have felt the
first Effects of it: The Honour of the Singer and the Interest of the
Undertaker were so often at Variance, that the latter began to have but
a bad Bargain of it. But not to impute more to the Caprice of those
Performers than was really true, there were two different Accidents that
drew Numbers from our Audiences before the Season was ended; which were
another Company permitted to act in _Drury-Lane_,[67] and the long Trial
of Doctor _Sacheverel_ in _Westminster-Hall_:[68] By the way, it must be
observed that this Company was not under the Direction of the Patent
(which continued still silenced) but was set up by a third Interest,
with a License from Court. The Person to whom this new License was
granted was _William Collier_, Esq., a Lawyer of an enterprizing Head
and a jovial Heart; what sort of Favour he was in with the People then
in Power may be judg'd from his being often admitted to partake with
them those detach'd Hours of Life when Business was to give way to
Pleasure: But this was not all his Merit, he was at the same time a
Member of Parliament for _Truro_ in _Cornwall_, and we cannot suppose a
Person so qualified could be refused such a Trifle as a License to head
a broken Company of Actors. This sagacious Lawyer, then, who had a
Lawyer to deal with, observing that his Antagonist kept Possession of a
Theatre without making use of it, and for which he was not obliged to
pay Rent unless he actually _did_ use it, wisely conceived it might be
the Interest of the joint Landlords, since their Tenement was in so
precarious a Condition, to grant a Lease to one who had an undisputed
Authority to be liable, by acting Plays in it, to pay the Rent of it;
especially when he tempted them with an Offer of raising it from three
to four Pounds _per Diem_. His Project succeeded, the Lease was sign'd;
but the Means of getting into Possession were to be left to his own Cost
and Discretion. This took him up but little Time; he immediately laid
Siege to it with a sufficient Number of Forces, whether lawless or
lawful I forget, but they were such as obliged the old Governor to give
it up; who, notwithstanding, had got Intelligence of his Approaches and
Design time enough to carry off every thing that was worth moving,
except a great Number of old Scenes and new Actors that could not easily
follow him.[69]

A ludicrous Account of this Transaction, under fictitious Names, may be
found in the 99th _Tatler_, Vol. 2. which this Explanation may now
render more intelligible to the Readers of that agreeable Author.[70]

This other new License being now in Possession of the _Drury-Lane_
Theatre, those Actors whom the Patentee ever since the Order of Silence
had retain'd in a State of Inaction, all to a Man came over to the
Service of _Collier_. Of these _Booth_ was then the chief.[71] The Merit
of the rest had as yet made no considerable Appearance, and as the
Patentee had not left a Rag of their Cloathing behind him, they were but
poorly equip'd for a publick Review; consequently at their first Opening
they were very little able to annoy us. But during the Trial of
_Sacheverel_ our Audiences were extremely weaken'd by the better Rank of
People's daily attending it: While, at the same time, the lower Sort,
who were not equally admitted to that grand Spectacle, as eagerly
crowded into _Drury-Lane_ to a new Comedy call'd _The fair Quaker of
Deal_. This Play having some low Strokes of natural Humour in it, was
rightly calculated for the Capacity of the Actors who play'd it, and to
the Taste of the Multitude who were now more disposed and at leisure to
see it:[72] But the most happy Incident in its Fortune was the Charm of
the fair Quaker which was acted by Miss _Santlow_, (afterwards Mrs.
_Booth_) whose Person was then in the full Bloom of what Beauty she
might pretend to: Before this she had only been admired as the most
excellent Dancer, which perhaps might not a little contribute to the
favourable Reception she now met with as an Actress, in this Character
which so happily suited her Figure and Capacity: The gentle Softness of
her Voice, the composed Innocence of her Aspect, the Modesty of her
Dress, the reserv'd Decency of her Gesture, and the Simplicity of the
Sentiments that naturally fell from her, made her seem the amiable Maid
she represented: In a Word, not the enthusiastick Maid of _Orleans_ was
more serviceable of old to the _French_ Army when the _English_ had
distressed them, than this fair Quaker was at the Head of that dramatick
Attempt upon which the Support of their weak Society depended.[73]

But when the Trial I have mention'd and the Run of this Play was over,
the Tide of the Town beginning to turn again in our Favour, _Collier_
was reduced to give his Theatrical Affairs a different Scheme; which
advanced the Stage another Step towards that Settlement which, in my
Time, was of the longest Duration.



CHAPTER XIII.


[Illustration: Ad Lalauze, sc]

     _The Patentee, having now no Actors, rebuilds the new Theatre
     in _Lincolns-Inn-Fields_. A Guess at his Reasons for it. More
     Changes in the State of the Stage. The Beginning of its better
     Days under the _Triumvirate_ of Actors. A Sketch of their
     governing Characters._

As coarse Mothers may have comely Children, so Anarchy has been the
Parent of many a good Government; and by a Parity of possible
Consequences, we shall find that from the frequent Convulsions of the
Stage arose at last its longest Settlement and Prosperity; which many of
my Readers (or if I should happen to have but few of them, many of my
Spectators at least) who I hope have not yet liv'd half their Time, will
be able to remember.

Though the Patent had been often under Distresses, it had never felt
any Blow equal to this unrevoked Order of Silence; which it is not easy
to conceive could have fallen upon any other Person's Conduct than that
of the old Patentee: For if he was conscious of his being under the
Subjection of that Power which had silenc'd him, why would he incur
the Danger of a Suspension by his so obstinate and impolitick Treatment
of his Actors? If he thought such Power over him illegal, how came he
to obey it now more than before, when he slighted a former Order
that injoin'd him to give his Actors their Benefits on their usual
Conditions?[74] But to do him Justice, the same Obstinacy that involv'd
him in these Difficulties, at last preserv'd to his Heirs the Property
of the Patent in its full Force and Value;[75] yet to suppose that he
foresaw a milder use of Power in some future Prince's Reign might be
more favourable to him, is begging at best but a cold Question. But
whether he knew that this broken Condition of the Patent would not make
his troublesome Friends the Adventurers fly from it as from a falling
House, seems not so difficult a Question. However, let the Reader form
his own Judgment of them from the Facts that follow'd: It must
therefore be observ'd, that the Adventurers seldom came near the House
but when there was some visible Appearance of a Dividend: But I could
never hear that upon an ill Run of Audiences they had ever returned or
brought in a single Shilling, to make good the Deficiencies of their
daily Receipts. Therefore, as the Patentee in Possession had alone, for
several Years, supported and stood against this Uncertainty of Fortune,
it may be imagin'd that his Accounts were under so voluminous a
Perplexity that few of those Adventurers would have Leisure or Capacity
enough to unravel them: And as they had formerly thrown away their
Time and Money at law in a fruitless Enquiry into them, they now seem'd
to have intirely given up their Right and Interest: And, according
to my best Information, notwithstanding the subsequent Gains of the
Patent have been sometimes extraordinary, the farther Demands or Claims
of Right of the Adventurers have lain dormant above these five and
twenty Years.[76]

Having shewn by what means _Collier_ had dispossess'd this Patentee, not
only of the _Drury-Lane_ House, but likewise of those few Actors which
he had kept for some time unemploy'd in it, we are now led to consider
another Project of the same Patentee, which, if we are to judge of it by
the Event, has shewn him more a Wise than a Weak Man; which I confess at
the time he put it in Execution seem'd not so clear a Point: For
notwithstanding he now saw the Authority and Power of his Patent was
superseded, or was at best but precarious, and that he had not one Actor
left in his Service, yet, under all these Dilemma's and Distresses, he
resolv'd upon rebuilding the New Theatre in _Lincolns-Inn-Fields_, of
which he had taken a Lease, at a low Rent, ever since _Betterton_'s
Company had first left it.[77] This Conduct seem'd too deep for my
Comprehension! What are we to think of his taking this Lease in the
height of his Prosperity, when he could have no Occasion for it? Was he
a Prophet? Could he then foresee he should, one time or other, be turn'd
out of _Drury-Lane_? Or did his mere Appetite of Architecture urge him
to build a House, while he could not be sure he should ever have leave
to make use of it? But of all this we may think as we please; whatever
was his Motive, he, at his own Expence, in this Interval of his having
nothing else to do, rebuilt that Theatre from the Ground, as it is now
standing.[78] As for the Order of Silence, he seem'd little concern'd at
it while it gave him so much uninterrupted Leisure to supervise a Work
which he naturally took Delight in.

After this Defeat of the Patentee, the Theatrical Forces of _Collier_ in
_Drury-Lane_, notwithstanding their having drawn the Multitude after
them for about three Weeks during the Trial of _Sacheverel_, had made
but an indifferent Campaign at the end of the Season. _Collier_ at least
found so little Account in it, that it obliged him to push his
Court-Interest (which, wherever the Stage was concern'd, was not
inconsiderable) to support him in another Scheme; which was, that in
consideration of his giving up the _Drury-Lane_, Cloaths, Scenes, and
Actors, to _Swiney_ and his joint Sharers in the _Hay-Market_, he
(_Collier_) might be put into an equal Possession of the _Hay-Market_
Theatre, with all the Singers, _&c._ and be made sole Director of the
Opera. Accordingly, by Permission of the Lord Chamberlain, a Treaty was
enter'd into, and in a few Days ratified by all Parties, conformable to
the said Preliminaries.[79] This was that happy Crisis of Theatrical
Liberty which the labouring Comedians had long sigh'd for, and which,
for above twenty Years following, was so memorably fortunate to them.

However, there were two hard Articles in this Treaty, which, though it
might be Policy in the Actors to comply with, yet the Imposition of them
seem'd little less despotick than a Tax upon the Poor when a Government
did not want it.

The first of these Articles was, That whereas the sole License for
acting Plays was presum'd to be a more profitable Authority than that
for acting Operas only, that therefore Two Hundred Pounds a Year should
be paid to _Collier_, while Master of the Opera, by the Comedians; to
whom a verbal Assurance was given by the _Plenipo'_s on the Court-side,
that while such Payment subsisted no other Company should be permitted
to act Plays against them within the Liberties, _&c._ The other Article
was, That on every _Wednesday_ whereon an Opera could be perform'd, the
Plays should, _toties quoties_, be silent at _Drury-Lane_, to give the
Opera a fairer Chance for a full House.

This last Article, however partial in the Intention, was in its Effect
of great Advantage to the sharing Actors: For in all publick
Entertainments a Day's Abstinence naturally increases the Appetite to
them: Our every _Thursday_'s Audience, therefore, was visibly the better
by thus making the Day before it a Fast. But as this was not a Favour
design'd us, this Prohibition of a Day, methinks, deserves a little
farther Notice, because it evidently took a sixth Part of their Income
from all the hired Actors, who were only paid in proportion to the
Number of acting Days. This extraordinary Regard to Operas was, in
effect, making the Day-labouring Actors the principal Subscribers to
them, and the shutting out People from the Play every _Wednesday_ many
murmur'd at as an Abridgment of their usual Liberty. And tho' I was one
of those who profited by that Order, it ought not to bribe me into a
Concealment of what was then said and thought of it. I remember a
Nobleman of the first Rank, then in a high Post, and not out of
Court-Favour, said openly behind the Scenes----_It was shameful to take
part of the Actors Bread from them to support the silly Diversion of
People of Quality_. But alas! what was all this Grievance when weighed
against the Qualifications of so grave and staunch a Senator as
_Collier_? Such visible Merit, it seems, was to be made easy, tho' at
the Expence of the--I had almost said, _Honour_ of the Court, whose
gracious Intention for the Theatrical Common-wealth might have shone
with thrice the Lustre if such a paltry Price had not been paid for it.
But as the Government of the Stage is but that of the World in
Miniature, we ought not to have wonder'd that _Collier_ had Interest
enough to quarter the Weakness of the Opera upon the Strength of the
Comedy. General good Intentions are not always practicable to a
Perfection. The most necessary Law can hardly pass, but a Tenderness to
some private Interest shall often hang such Exceptions upon particular
Clauses, 'till at last it comes out lame and lifeless, with the Loss of
half its Force, Purpose, and Dignity. As, for Instance, how many
fruitless Motions have been made in Parliaments to moderate the enormous
Exactions in the Practice of the Law? And what sort of Justice must that
be call'd, which, when a Man has not a mind to pay you a Debt of Ten
Pounds, it shall cost you Fifty before you can get it? How long, too,
has the Publick been labouring for a Bridge at _Westminster_? But the
Wonder that it was not built a Hundred Years ago ceases when we are
told, That the Fear of making one End of _London_ as rich as the other
has been so long an Obstruction to it:[80] And though it might seem a
still greater Wonder, when a new Law for building one had at last got
over that Apprehension, that it should meet with any farther Delay; yet
Experience has shewn us that the Structure of this useful Ornament to
our Metropolis has been so clogg'd by private Jobs that were to be
pick'd out of the Undertaking, and the Progress of the Work so
disconcerted by a tedious Contention of private Interests and Endeavours
to impose upon the Publick abominable Bargains, that a whole Year was
lost before a single Stone could be laid to its Foundation. But
Posterity will owe its Praises to the Zeal and Resolution of a truly
Noble Commissioner, whose distinguish'd Impatience has broke thro' those
narrow Artifices, those false and frivolous Objections that delay'd it,
and has already began to raise above the Tide that future Monument of
his Publick Spirit.[81]

[Illustration: HESTER SANTLOW.]

How far all this may be allow'd applicable to the State of the Stage is
not of so great Importance, nor so much my Concern, as that what is
observ'd upon it should always remain a memorable Truth, to the Honour
of that Nobleman. But now I go on: _Collier_ being thus possess'd of his
Musical Government, thought his best way would be to farm it out to a
Gentleman, _Aaron Hill_, Esq.[82] (who he had reason to suppose knew
something more of Theatrical Matters than himself) at a Rent, if I
mistake not, of Six Hundred Pounds _per Annum_: But before the Season
was ended (upon what occasion, if I could remember, it might not be
material to say) took it into his Hands again: But all his Skill and
Interest could not raise the Direction of the Opera to so good a Post as
he thought due to a Person of his Consideration: He therefore, the Year
following, enter'd upon another high-handed Scheme, which, 'till the
Demise of the Queen, turn'd to his better Account.

After the Comedians were in Possession of _Drury-Lane_, from whence
during my time upon the Stage they never departed, their Swarm of
Audiences exceeded all that had been seen in thirty Years before; which,
however, I do not impute so much to the Excellence of their Acting as to
their indefatigable Industry and good Menagement; for, as I have often
said, I never thought in the general that we stood in any Place of
Comparison with the eminent Actors before us; perhaps, too, by there
being now an End of the frequent Divisions and Disorders that had from
time to time broke in upon and frustrated their Labours, not a little
might be contributed to their Success.

_Collier_, then, like a true liquorish Courtier, observing the
Prosperity of a Theatre, which he the Year before had parted with for a
worse, began to meditate an Exchange of Theatrical Posts with _Swiney_,
who had visibly very fair Pretensions to that he was in, by his being
first chosen by the Court to regulate and rescue the Stage from the
Disorders it had suffer'd under its former Menagers:[83] Yet _Collier_
knew that sort of Merit could stand in no Competition with his being a
Member of Parliament: He therefore had recourse to his Court-Interest
(where meer Will and Pleasure at that time was the only Law that
dispos'd of all Theatrical Rights) to oblige Swiney to let him be off
from his bad Bargain for a better. To this it may be imagin'd _Swiney_
demurred, and as he had Reason, strongly remonstrated against it: But as
_Collier_ had listed his Conscience under the Command of Interest, he
kept it to strict Duty, and was immoveable; insomuch that Sir _John
Vanbrugh_, who was a Friend to _Swiney_, and who, by his Intimacy with
the People in Power, better knew the Motive of their Actions, advis'd
_Swiney_ rather to accept of the Change, than by a Non-compliance to
hazard his being excluded from any Post or Concern in either of the
Theatres: To conclude, it was not long before _Collier_ had procured a
new License for acting Plays, _&c._ for himself, _Wilks_, _Dogget_, and
_Cibber_, exclusive of _Swiney_, who by this new Regulation was reduc'd
to his _Hobson_'s Choice of the Opera.[84]

_Swiney_ being thus transferr'd to the Opera[85] in the sinking
Condition _Collier_ had left it, found the Receipts of it in the Winter
following, 1711, so far short of the Expences, that he was driven to
attend his Fortune in some more favourable Climate, where he remain'd
twenty Years an Exile from his Friends and Country, tho' there has been
scarce an _English_ Gentleman who in his _Tour_ of _France_ or _Italy_
has not renew'd or created an Acquaintance with him. As this is a
Circumstance that many People may have forgot, I cannot remember it
without that Regard and Concern it deserves from all that know him: Yet
it is some Mitigation of his Misfortune that since his Return to
_England_, his grey Hairs and cheerful Disposition have still found a
general Welcome among his foreign and former domestick Acquaintance.

_Collier_ being now first-commission'd Menager with the Comedians, drove
them, too, to the last Inch of a hard Bargain (the natural Consequence
of all Treaties between Power and Necessity.) He not only demanded six
hundred a Year neat Money, the Price at which he had farm'd out his
Opera, and to make the Business a _Sine-cure_ to him, but likewise
insisted upon a Moiety of the Two hundred that had been levied upon us
the Year before in Aid of the Operas; in all 700_l._ These large and
ample Conditions, considering in what Hands we were, we resolv'd to
swallow without wry Faces; rather chusing to run any Hazard than contend
with a formidable Power against which we had no Remedy: But so it
happen'd that Fortune took better care of our Interest than we ourselves
had like to have done: For had _Collier_ accepted of our first Offer, of
an equal Share with us, he had got three hundred Pounds a Year more by
complying with it than by the Sum he imposed upon us, our Shares being
never less than a thousand annually to each of us, 'till the End of the
Queen's Reign in 1714. After which _Collier_'s Commission was
superseded, his Theatrical Post, upon the Accession of his late Majesty,
being given to Sir _Richard Steele_.[86]

From these various Revolutions in the Government of the Theatre, all
owing to the Patentees mistaken Principle of increasing their Profits by
too far enslaving their People, and keeping down the Price of good
Actors (and I could almost insist that giving large Sallaries to bad
Ones could not have had a worse Consequence) I say, when it is
consider'd that the Authority for acting Plays, _&c._ was thought of so
little worth that (as has been observ'd) Sir _Thomas Skipwith_ gave away
his Share of it, and the Adventurers had fled from it; that Mr.
_Congreve_, at another time, had voluntarily resign'd it; and Sir _John
Vanbrugh_ (meerly to get the Rent of his new House paid) had, by Leave
of the Court, farm'd out his License to _Swiney_, who not without some
Hesitation had ventur'd upon it; let me say again, out of this low
Condition of the Theatre, was it not owing to the Industry of three or
four Comedians that a new Place was now created for the Crown to give
away, without any Expence attending it, well worth the Acceptance of any
Gentleman whose Merit or Services had no higher Claim to Preferment, and
which _Collier_ and Sir _Richard Steele_, in the two last Reigns,
successively enjoy'd? Tho' I believe I may have said something like this
in a former Chapter,[87] I am not unwilling it should be twice taken
notice of.

We are now come to that firm Establishment of the Theatre, which, except
the Admittance of _Booth_ into a Share and _Dogget_'s retiring from it,
met with no Change or Alteration for above twenty Years after.

_Collier_, as has been said, having accepted of a certain Appointment of
seven hundred _per Annum_, _Wilks_, _Dogget_, and Myself were now the
only acting Menagers under the Queen's License; which being a Grant but
during Pleasure oblig'd us to a Conduct that might not undeserve that
Favour. At this Time we were All in the Vigour of our Capacities as
Actors, and our Prosperity enabled us to pay at least double the
Sallaries to what the same Actors had usually receiv'd, or could have
hoped for under the Government of the Patentees. _Dogget_, who was
naturally an Oeconomist, kept our Expences and Accounts to the best of
his Power within regulated Bounds and Moderation. _Wilks_, who had a
stronger Passion for Glory than Lucre, was a little apt to be lavish in
what was not always as necessary for the Profit as the Honour of the
Theatre: For example, at the Beginning of almost every Season, he would
order two or three Suits to be made or refresh'd for Actors of moderate
Consequence, that his having constantly a new one for himself might seem
less particular, tho' he had as yet no new Part for it. This expeditious
Care of doing us good without waiting for our Consent to it, _Dogget_
always look'd upon with the Eye of a Man in Pain: But I, who hated Pain,
(tho' I as little liked the Favour as _Dogget_ himself) rather chose to
laugh at the Circumstance, than complain of what I knew was not to be
cured but by a Remedy worse than the Evil. Upon these Occasions,
therefore, whenever I saw him and his Followers so prettily dress'd out
for an old Play, I only commended his Fancy; or at most but whisper'd
him not to give himself so much trouble about others, upon whose
Performance it would but be thrown away: To which, with a smiling Air of
Triumph over my want of Penetration, he has reply'd--Why, now, that was
what I really did it for! to shew others that I love to take care of
them as well as of myself. Thus, whenever he made himself easy, he had
not the least Conception, let the Expence be what it would, that we
could possibly dislike it. And from the same Principle, provided a
thinner Audience were liberal of their Applause, he gave himself little
Concern about the Receipt of it. As in these different Tempers of my
Brother-Menagers there might be equally something right and wrong, it
was equally my Business to keep well with them both: And tho' of the two
I was rather inclin'd to _Dogget_'s way of thinking, yet I was always
under the disagreeable Restraint of not letting _Wilks_ see it:
Therefore, when in any material Point of Menagement they were ready to
come to a Rupture, I found it adviseable to think neither of them
absolutely in the wrong; but by giving to one as much of the Right in
his Opinion this way as I took from the other in that, their Differences
were sometimes soft'ned into Concessions, that I have reason to think
prevented many ill Consequences in our Affairs that otherwise might have
attended them. But this was always to be done with a very gentle Hand;
for as _Wilks_ was apt to be easily hurt by Opposition, so when he felt
it he was as apt to be insupportable. However, there were some Points in
which we were always unanimous. In the twenty Years while we were our
own Directors, we never had a Creditor that had occasion to come twice
for his Bill; every _Monday_ Morning discharged us of all Demands before
we took a Shilling for our own Use. And from this time we neither ask'd
any Actor, nor were desired by them, to sign any written Agreement (to
the best of my Memory) whatsoever: The Rate of their respective
Sallaries were only enter'd in our daily Pay-Roll; which plain Record
every one look'd upon as good as City-Security: For where an honest
Meaning is mutual, the mutual Confidence will be Bond enough in
Conscience on both sides: But that I may not ascribe more to our Conduct
than was really its Due, I ought to give Fortune her Share of the
Commendation; for had not our Success exceeded our Expectation, it might
not have been in our Power so thoroughly to have observ'd those laudable
Rules of Oeconomy, Justice, and Lenity, which so happily supported us:
But the Severities and Oppression we had suffer'd under our former
Masters made us incapable of imposing them on others; which gave
our whole Society the cheerful Looks of a rescued People. But
notwithstanding this general Cause of Content, it was not above a Year
or two before the Imperfection of human Nature began to shew itself in
contrary Symptoms. The Merit of the Hazards which the Menagers had run,
and the Difficulties they had combated in bringing to Perfection that
Revolution by which they had all so amply profited in the Amendment of
their general Income, began now to be forgotten; their Acknowledgments
and thankful Promises of Fidelity were no more repeated, or scarce
thought obligatory: Ease and Plenty by an habitual Enjoyment had lost
their Novelty, and the Largeness of their Sallaries seem'd rather
lessen'd than advanc'd by the extraordinary Gains of the Undertakers;
for that is the Scale in which the hired Actor will always weigh his
Performance; but whatever Reason there may seem to be in his Case, yet,
as he is frequently apt to throw a little Self-partiality into the
Balance, that Consideration may a good deal alter the Justness of it.
While the Actors, therefore, had this way of thinking, happy was it for
the Menagers that their united Interest was so inseparably the same, and
that their Skill and Power in Acting stood in a Rank so far above the
rest, that if the whole Body of private Men had deserted them, it would
yet have been an easier matter for the Menagers to have pick'd up
Recruits, than for the Deserters to have found proper Officers to head
them. Here, then, in this Distinction lay our Security: Our being Actors
ourselves was an Advantage to our Government which all former Menagers,
who were only idle Gentlemen, wanted: Nor was our Establishment easily
to be broken, while our Health and Limbs enabled us to be
Joint-labourers in the Work we were Masters of.

The only Actor who, in the Opinion of the Publick, seem'd to have had a
Pretence of being advanc'd to a Share with us was certainly _Booth_: But
when it is consider'd how strongly he had oppos'd the Measures that had
made us Menagers, by setting himself (as has been observ'd) at the Head
of an opposite Interest,[88] he could not as yet have much to complain
of: Beside, if the Court had thought him, now, an equal Object of
Favour, it could not have been in our Power to have oppos'd his
Preferment: This I mention, not to take from his Merit, but to shew from
what Cause it was not as yet better provided for. Therefore it may be no
Vanity to say, our having at that time no visible Competitors on the
Stage was the only Interest that rais'd us to be the Menagers of it.

But here let me rest a while, and since at my time of Day our best
Possessions are but Ease and Quiet, I must be content, if I will have
Sallies of Pleasure, to take up with those only that are to be found in
Imagination. When I look back, therefore, on the Storms of the Stage we
had been toss'd in; when I consider that various Vicissitude of Hopes
and Fears we had for twenty Years struggled with, and found ourselves at
last thus safely set on Shore to enjoy the Produce of our own Labours,
and to have rais'd those Labours by our Skill and Industry to a much
fairer Profit, than our Task-masters by all their severe and griping
Government had ever reap'd from them, a good-natur'd Reader, that is not
offended at the Comparison of great things with small, will allow was a
Triumph in proportion equal to those that have attended the most heroick
Enterprizes for Liberty! What Transport could the first _Brutus_ feel
upon his Expulsion of the _Tarquins_ greater than that which now danc'd
in the Heart of a poor Actor, who, from an injur'd Labourer, unpaid his
Hire, had made himself, without Guilt, a legal Menager of his own
Fortune? Let the Grave and Great contemn or yawn at these low Conceits,
but let me be happy in the Enjoyment of them! To this Hour my Memory
runs o'er that pleasing Prospect of Life past with little less Delight
than when I was first in the real Possession of it. This is the natural
Temper of my Mind, which my Acquaintance are frequently Witnesses of:
And as this was all the Ambition Providence had made my obscure
Condition capable of, I am thankful that Means were given me to enjoy
the Fruits of it.

  ----_Hoc est
  Vivere bìs, vitâ; posse priore frui._[89]

Something like the Meaning of this the less learned Reader may find in
my Title Page.



CHAPTER XIV.


[Illustration: Ad Lalauze, sc]

     _The Stage in its highest Prosperity. The Menagers not without
     Errors. Of what Kind._ Cato _first acted. What brought it to
     the Stage. The Company go to _Oxford_. Their Success and
     different Auditors there. _Booth_ made a Sharer. _Dogget_
     objects to him. Quits the Stage upon his Admittance. That not
     his true Reason. What was. _Dogget_'s Theatrical Character._

Notwithstanding the Menaging Actors were now in a happier Situation
than their utmost Pretensions could have expected, yet it is not to
be suppos'd but wiser Men might have mended it. As we could not all
govern our selves, there were Seasons when we were not all fit to
govern others. Our Passions and our Interest drew not always the same
way. _Self_ had a great Sway in our Debates: We had our Partialities;
our Prejudices; our Favourites of less Merit; and our Jealousies of
those who came too near us; Frailties which Societies of higher
Consideration, while they are compos'd of Men, will not always be free
from. To have been constantly capable of Unanimity had been a Blessing
too great for our Station: One Mind among three People were to have had
three Masters to one Servant; but when that one Servant is called three
different ways at the same time, whose Business is to be done first? For
my own Part, I was forced almost all my Life to give up my Share of him.
And if I could, by Art or Persuasion, hinder others from making what I
thought a wrong use of their Power, it was the All and utmost I desired.
Yet, whatever might be our Personal Errors, I shall think I have no
Right to speak of them farther than where the Publick Entertainment was
affected by them. If therefore, among so many, some particular Actors
were remarkable in any part of their private Lives, that might sometimes
make the World merry without Doors, I hope my laughing Friends will
excuse me if I do not so far comply with their Desires or Curiosity as
to give them a Place in my History. I can only recommend such Anecdotes
to the Amusement of a Noble Person, who (in case I conceal them) does me
the flattering Honour to threaten my Work with a Supplement. 'Tis enough
for me that such Actors had their Merits to the Publick: Let those
recite their Imperfections who are themselves without them: It is my
Misfortune not to have that Qualification. Let us see then (whatever was
amiss in it) how our Administration went forward.

When we were first invested with this Power, the Joy of our so
unexpectedly coming into it kept us for some time in Amity and
Good-Humour with one another: And the Pleasure of reforming the many
false Measures, Absurdities, and Abuses, that, like Weeds, had suck'd up
the due Nourishment from the Fruits of the Theatre, gave us as yet no
leisure for private Dissentions. Our daily Receipts exceeded our
Imagination: And we seldom met as a Board to settle our weekly Accounts
without the Satisfaction of Joint-Heirs just in Possession of an
unexpected Estate that had been distantly intail'd upon them. Such a
sudden Change of our Condition it may be imagin'd could not but throw
out of us a new Spirit in almost every Play we appear'd in: Nor did
we ever sink into that common Negligence which is apt to follow
Good-fortune: Industry we knew was the Life of our Business; that
it not only conceal'd Faults, but was of equal Value to greater Talents
without it; which the Decadence once of _Betterton_'s Company in
_Lincoln's-Inn-Fields_ had lately shewn us a Proof of.

This then was that happy Period, when both Actors and Menagers were
in their highest Enjoyment of general Content and Prosperity. Now it
was that the politer World, too, by their decent Attention, their
sensible Taste, and their generous Encouragements to Authors and
Actors, once more saw that the Stage, under a due Regulation, was
capable of being what the wisest Ages thought it _might_ be, The
most rational Scheme that Human Wit could form to dissipate with
Innocence the Cares of Life, to allure even the Turbulent or
Ill-disposed from worse Meditations, and to give the leisure Hours
of Business and Virtue an instructive Recreation.

If this grave Assertion is less recommended by falling from the Pen of a
Comedian, I must appeal for the Truth of it to the Tragedy of _Cato_,
which was first acted in 1712.[90] I submit to the Judgment of those who
were then the sensible Spectators of it, if the Success and Merit of
that Play was not an Evidence of every Article of that Value which I
have given to a decent Theatre? But (as I was observing) it could not be
expected the Summer Days I am speaking of could be the constant Weather
of the Year; we had our clouded Hours as well as our sun-shine, and were
not always in the same Good-Humour with one another: Fire, Air, and
Water could not be more vexatiously opposite than the different Tempers
of the Three Menagers, though they might equally have their useful as
well as their destructive Qualities. How variously these Elements in our
several Dispositions operated may be judged from the following single
Instance, as well as a thousand others, which, if they were all to be
told, might possibly make my Reader wish I had forgot them.

Much about this time, then, there came over from _Dublin_ Theatre two
uncelebrated Actors to pick up a few Pence among us in the Winter, as
_Wilks_ had a Year or two before done on their side the Water in the
Summer.[91] But it was not so clear to _Dogget_ and myself that it was
in their Power to do us the same Service in _Drury-Lane_ as _Wilks_
might have done them in _Dublin_. However, _Wilks_ was so much a Man of
Honour that he scorned to be outdone in the least Point of it, let the
Cost be what it would to his Fellow-Menagers, who had no particular
Accounts of Honour open with them. To acquit himself therefore with a
better Grace, _Wilks_ so order'd it, that his _Hibernian_ Friends were
got upon our Stage before any other Menager had well heard of their
Arrival. This so generous Dispatch of their Affair gave _Wilks_ a very
good Chance of convincing his Friends that Himself was sole Master of
the Masters of the Company. Here, now, the different Elements in our
Tempers began to work with us. While _Wilks_ was only animated by a
grateful Hospitality to his Friends, _Dogget_ was ruffled into a Storm,
and look'd upon this Generosity as so much Insult and Injustice upon
himself and the Fraternity. During this Disorder I stood by, a seeming
quiet Passenger, and, since talking to the Winds I knew could be to no
great Purpose (whatever Weakness it might be call'd) could not help
smiling to observe with what officious Ease and Delight _Wilks_ was
treating his Friends at our Expence, who were scarce acquainted with
them: For it seems all this was to end in their having a Benefit-Play in
the Height of the Season, for the unprofitable Service they had done us
without our Consent or Desire to employ them. Upon this _Dogget_ bounc'd
and grew almost as untractable as _Wilks_ himself. Here, again, I was
forc'd to clap my Patience to the Helm to weather this difficult Point
between them: Applying myself therefore to the Person I imagin'd was
most likely to hear me, I desired _Dogget_ "to consider that I must
naturally be as much hurt by this vain and over-bearing Behaviour in
_Wilks_ as he could be; and that tho' it was true these Actors had no
Pretence to the Favour design'd them, yet we could not say they had
done us any farther Harm, than letting the Town see the Parts they had
been shewn in, had been better done by those to whom they properly
belong'd: Yet as we had greatly profited by the extraordinary Labour of
_Wilks_, who acted long Parts almost every Day, and at least twice to
_Dogget_'s once;[92] and that I granted it might not be so much his
Consideration of our common Interest, as his Fondness for Applause, that
set him to Work, yet even that Vanity, if he supposed it such, had its
Merit to us; and as we had found our Account in it, it would be Folly
upon a Punctilio to tempt the Rashness of a Man, who was capable to undo
all he had done, by any Act of Extravagance that might fly into his
Head: That admitting this Benefit might be some little Loss to us, yet
to break with him upon it could not but be ten times of worse
Consequence, than our overlooking his disagreeable manner of making the
Demand upon us."

[Illustration: ROBERT WILKS]

Though I found this had made _Dogget_ drop the Severity of his Features,
yet he endeavoured still to seem uneasy, by his starting a new
Objection, which was, That we could not be sure even of the Charge they
were to pay for it: For _Wilks_, said he, you know, will go any Lengths
to make it a good Day to them, and may whisper the Door-keepers to give
them the Ready-money taken, and return the Account in such Tickets only
as these Actors have not themselves disposed of. To make this easy too,
I gave him my Word to be answerable for the Charge my self. Upon this he
acceded, and accordingly they had the Benefit-Play. But so it happen'd
(whether as _Dogget_ had suspected or not, I cannot say) the Ready-money
receiv'd fell Ten Pounds short of the Sum they had agreed to pay for it.
Upon the _Saturday_ following, (the Day on which we constantly made up
our Accounts) I went early to the Office, and inquired if the Ten Pounds
had yet been paid in; but not hearing that one Shilling of it had found
its way thither, I immediately supply'd the Sum out of my own Pocket,
and directed the Treasurer to charge it received from me in the
deficient Receipt of the Benefit-Day. Here, now, it might be imagined,
all this silly Matter was accommodated, and that no one could so
properly say he was aggrieved as myself: But let us observe what the
Consequence says--why, the Effect of my insolent interposing honesty
prov'd to be this: That the Party most oblig'd was the most offended;
and the Offence was imputed to me who had been Ten Pounds out of Pocket
to be able to commit it: For when _Wilks_ found in the Account how
spitefully the Ten Pounds had been paid in, he took me aside into the
adjacent Stone-Passage, and with some Warmth ask'd me, What I meant by
pretending to pay in this Ten Pounds? And that, for his part, he did not
understand such Treatment. To which I reply'd, That tho' I was amaz'd
at his thinking himself ill-treated, I would give him a plain,
justifiable Answer.----That I had given my Word to _Dogget_ the Charge
of the Benefit should be fully paid, and since his Friends had neglected
it, I found myself bound to make it good. Upon which he told me I was
mistaken if I thought he did not see into the bottom of all this--That
_Dogget_ and I were always endeavouring to thwart and make him uneasy;
but he was able to stand upon his own Legs, and we should find he would
not be used so: That he took this Payment of the Ten Pounds as an Insult
upon him and a Slight to his Friends; but rather than suffer it he would
tear the whole Business to pieces: That I knew it was in his Power to do
it; and if he could not do a civil thing to a Friend without all this
senseless Rout about it, he could be received in _Ireland_ upon his own
Terms, and could as easily mend a Company there as he had done here:
That if he were gone, _Dogget_ and I would not be able to keep the Doors
open a Week; and, by G--, he would not be a Drudge for nothing. As I
knew all this was but the Foam of the high Value he had set upon
himself, I thought it not amiss to seem a little silently concerned, for
the helpless Condition to which his Resentment of the Injury I have
related was going to reduce us: For I knew I had a Friend in his Heart
that, if I gave him a little time to cool, would soon bring him to
Reason: The sweet Morsel of a Thousand Pounds a Year was not to be met
with at every Table, and might tempt a nicer Palate than his own to
swallow it, when he was not out of Humour. This I knew would always be
of weight with him, when the best Arguments I could use would be of
none. I therefore gave him no farther Provocation than by gravely
telling him, We all had it in our Power to do one another a Mischief;
but I believed none of us much cared to hurt ourselves; that if he was
not of my Opinion, it would not be in my Power to hinder whatever new
Scheme he might resolve upon; that _London_ would always have a
Play-house, and I should have some Chance in it, tho' it might not be so
good as it had been; that he might be sure, if I had thought my paying
in the Ten Pounds could have been so ill received, I should have been
glad to have saved it. Upon this he seem'd to mutter something to
himself, and walk'd off as if he had a mind to be alone. I took the
Occasion, and return'd to _Dogget_ to finish our Accounts. In about six
Minutes _Wilks_ came in to us, not in the best Humour, it may be
imagined; yet not in so ill a one but that he took his Share of the Ten
Pounds without shewing the least Contempt of it; which, had he been
proud enough to have refused, or to have paid in himself, I might have
thought he intended to make good his Menaces, and that the Injury I had
done him would never have been forgiven; but it seems we had different
ways of thinking.

Of this kind, more or less delightful, was the Life I led with this
impatient Man for full twenty Years. _Dogget_, as we shall find, could
not hold it so long; but as he had more Money than I, he had not
Occasion for so much Philosophy. And thus were our Theatrical Affairs
frequently disconcerted by this irascible Commander, this _Achilles_ of
our Confederacy, who, I may be bold to say, came very little short of
the Spirit _Horace_ gives to that Hero in his--

  _Impiger, iracundus, inexorabilis, acer._[93]

This, then, is one of those Personal Anecdotes of our Variances, which,
as our publick Performances were affected by it, could not, with regard
to Truth and Justice, be omitted.

From this time to the Year 1712 my Memory (from which Repository alone
every Article of what I write is collected) has nothing worth
mentioning, 'till the first acting of the Tragedy of _Cato_.[94] As to
the Play itself, it might be enough to say, That the Author and the
Actors had their different Hopes of Fame and Profit amply answer'd by
the Performance; but as its Success was attended with remarkable
Consequences, it may not be amiss to trace it from its several Years
Concealment in the Closet, to the Stage.

In 1703, nine Years before it was acted, I had the Pleasure of reading
the first four Acts (which was all of it then written) privately with
Sir _Richard Steele_: It may be needless to say it was impossible to lay
them out of my Hand 'till I had gone thro' them, or to dwell upon the
Delight his Friendship to the Author receiv'd upon my being so warmly
pleas'd with them: But my Satisfaction was as highly disappointed when
he told me, Whatever Spirit Mr. _Addison_ had shewn in his writing it,
he doubted he would never have Courage enough to let his _Cato_ stand
the Censure of an _English_ Audience; that it had only been the
Amusement of his leisure Hours in _Italy_, and was never intended for
the Stage. This Poetical Diffidence[95] Sir _Richard_ himself spoke of
with some Concern, and in the Transport of his Imagination could not
help saying, _Good God!_ what a Part would _Betterton_ make of _Cato!_
But this was seven Years before _Betterton_ died, and when _Booth_ (who
afterwards made his Fortune by acting it) was in his Theatrical
Minority. In the latter end of Queen _Anne_'s Reign, when our National
Politicks had changed Hands, the Friends of Mr. _Addison_ then thought
it a proper time to animate the Publick with the Sentiments of _Cato_;
in a word, their Importunities were too warm to be resisted; and it was
no sooner finish'd than hurried to the Stage, in _April_, 1712,[96] at a
time when three Days a Week were usually appointed for the Benefit Plays
of particular Actors: But a Work of that critical Importance was to make
its way through all private Considerations; nor could it possibly give
place to a Custom, which the Breach of could very little prejudice the
Benefits, that on so unavoidable an Occasion were (in part, tho' not
wholly) postpon'd; it was therefore (_Mondays_ excepted) acted every Day
for a Month to constantly crowded Houses.[97] As the Author had made us
a Present of whatever Profits he might have claim'd from it, we thought
our selves oblig'd to spare no Cost in the proper Decorations of it. Its
coming so late in the Season to the Stage prov'd of particular Advantage
to the sharing Actors, because the Harvest of our annual Gains was
generally over before the middle of _March_, many select Audiences being
then usually reserv'd in favour to the Benefits of private Actors; which
fixt Engagements naturally abated the Receipts of the Days before and
after them: But this unexpected Aftercrop of _Cato_ largely supplied to
us those Deficiencies, and was almost equal to two fruitful Seasons in
the same Year; at the Close of which the three menaging Actors found
themselves each a Gainer of thirteen hundred and fifty Pounds: But to
return to the first Reception of this Play from the Publick.

Although _Cato_ seems plainly written upon what are called _Whig_
Principles, yet the _Torys_ of that time had Sense enough not to take it
as the least Reflection upon their Administration; but, on the contrary,
they seem'd to brandish and vaunt their Approbation of every Sentiment
in favour of Liberty, which, by a publick Act of their Generosity, was
carried so high, that one Day, while the Play was acting, they collected
fifty Guineas in the Boxes, and made a Present of them to _Booth_, with
this Compliment----_For his honest Opposition to a perpetual Dictator,
and his dying so bravely in the Cause of Liberty_: What was insinuated
by any Part of these Words is not my Affair;[98] but so publick a Reward
had the Appearance of a laudable Spirit, which only such a Play as
_Cato_ could have inspired; nor could _Booth_ be blam'd if, upon so
particular a Distinction of his Merit, he began himself to set more
Value upon it: How far he might carry it, in making use of the Favour he
stood in with a certain Nobleman[99] then in Power at Court, was not
difficult to penetrate, and indeed ought always to have been expected by
the menaging Actors: For which of them (making the Case every way his
own) could with such Advantages have contented himself in the humble
Station of an hired Actor? But let us see how the Menagers stood
severally affected upon this Occasion.

_Dogget_, who expected, though he fear'd not, the Attempt of what after
happen'd, imagin'd he had thought of an Expedient to prevent it: And to
cover his Design with all the Art of a Statesman, he insinuated to us
(for he was a staunch _Whig_) that this Present of fifty Guineas was a
sort of a _Tory_ Triumph which they had no Pretence to; and that for his
Part he could not bear that so redoubted a Champion for Liberty as
_Cato_ should be bought off to the Cause of a Contrary Party: He
therefore, in the seeming Zeal of his Heart, proposed that the Menagers
themselves should make the same Present to _Booth_ which had been made
him from the Boxes the Day before. This, he said, would recommend the
Equality and liberal Spirit of our Menagement to the Town, and might be
a Means to secure _Booth_ more firmly in our Interest, it never having
been known that the Skill of the best Actor had receiv'd so round a
Reward or Gratuity in one Day before. _Wilks_, who wanted nothing but
Abilities to be as cunning as _Dogget_, was so charm'd with the Proposal
that he long'd that Moment to make _Booth_ the Present with his own
Hands; and though he knew he had no Right to do it without my Consent,
had no Patience to ask it; upon which I turned to _Dogget_ with a cold
Smile, and told him, that if _Booth_ could be purchas'd at so cheap a
Rate, it would be one of the best Proofs of his Oeconomy we had ever
been beholden to: I therefore desired we might have a little Patience;
that our doing it too hastily might be only making sure of an Occasion
to throw the fifty Guineas away; for if we should be obliged to do
better for him, we could never expect that _Booth_ would think himself
bound in Honour to refund them. This seem'd so absurd an Argument to
_Wilks_ that he began, with his usual Freedom of Speech, to treat it as
a pitiful Evasion of their intended Generosity: But _Dogget_, who was
not so wide of my Meaning, clapping his Hand upon mine, said, with an
Air of Security, O! don't trouble yourself! there must be two Words to
that Bargain; let me alone to menage that Matter. _Wilks_, upon this
dark Discourse, grew uneasy, as if there were some Secret between us
that he was to be left out of. Therefore, to avoid the Shock of his
Intemperance, I was reduc'd to tell him that it was my Opinion, that
_Booth_ would never be made easy by any thing we could do for him, 'till
he had a Share in the Profits and Menagement; and that, as he did not
want Friends to assist him, whatever his Merit might be before, every
one would think, since his acting of _Cato_, he had now enough to back
his Pretensions to it. To which _Dogget_ reply'd, that nobody could
think his Merit was slighted by so handsome a Present as fifty Guineas;
and that, for his farther Pretensions, whatever the License might avail,
our Property of House, Scenes, and Cloaths were our own, and not in the
Power of the Crown to dispose of. To conclude, my Objections that the
Money would be only thrown away, _&c._ were over-rul'd, and the same
Night _Booth_ had the fifty Guineas, which he receiv'd with a
Thankfulness that made _Wilks_ and _Dogget_ perfectly easy, insomuch
that they seem'd for some time to triumph in their Conduct, and often
endeavour'd to laugh my Jealousy out of Countenance: But in the
following Winter the Game happen'd to take a different Turn; and then,
if it had been a laughing Matter, I had as strong an Occasion to smile
at their former Security. But before I make an End of this Matter, I
cannot pass over the good Fortune of the Company that followed us to the
Act at _Oxford_, which was held in the intervening Summer: Perhaps, too,
a short View of the Stage in that different Situation may not be
unacceptable to the Curious.

After the Restoration of King _Charles_, before the _Cavalier_ and
_Round-head_ Parties, under their new Denomination of _Whig_ and _Tory_,
began again to be politically troublesome, publick Acts at _Oxford_ (as
I find by the Date of several Prologues written by _Dryden_[100] for
_Hart_ on those Occasions) had been more frequently held than in later
Reigns. Whether the same Party-Dissentions may have occasion'd the
Discontinuance of them, is a Speculation not necessary to be enter'd
into. But these Academical Jubilees have usually been look'd upon as a
kind of congratulatory Compliment to the Accession of every new Prince
to the Throne, and generally, as such, have attended them. King
_James_,[101] notwithstanding his Religion, had the Honour of it; at
which the Players, as usual, assisted. This I have only mention'd to
give the Reader a Theatrical Anecdote of a Liberty which _Tony Leigh_
the Comedian took with the Character of the well known _Obadiah
Walker_,[102] then Head of _University College_, who in that Prince's
Reign had turn'd _Roman Catholick_: The Circumstance is this.

In the latter End of the Comedy call'd the _Committee_, _Leigh_, who
acted the Part of _Teague_, hauling in _Obadiah_ with an Halter about
his Neck, whom, according to his written Part, he was to threaten to
hang for no better Reason than his refusing to drink the King's Health,
(but here _Leigh_) to justify his Purpose with a stronger Provocation,
put himself into a more than ordinary Heat with his Captive _Obadiah_,
which having heightened his Master's Curiosity to know what _Obadiah_
had done to deserve such Usage, _Leigh_, folding his Arms, with a
ridiculous Stare of Astonishment, reply'd--_Upon my Shoule, he has
shange his Religion_. As the Merit of this Jest lay chiefly in the
Auditors' sudden Application of it to the _Obadiah_ of _Oxford_, it was
received with all the Triumph of Applause which the Zeal of a different
Religion could inspire. But _Leigh_ was given to understand that the
King was highly displeased at it, inasmuch as it had shewn him that the
University was in a Temper to make a Jest of his Proselyte. But to
return to the Conduct of our own Affairs there in 1712.[103]

It had been a Custom for the Comedians while at _Oxford_ to act twice a
Day; the first Play ending every Morning before the College Hours of
dining, and the other never to break into the time of shutting their
Gates in the Evening. This extraordinary Labour gave all the hired
Actors a Title to double Pay, which, at the Act in King _William_'s
Time, I had myself accordingly received there. But the present Menagers
considering that, by acting only once a Day, their Spirits might be
fresher for every single Performance, and that by this Means they might
be able to fill up the Term of their Residence, without the Repetition
of their best and strongest Plays; and as their Theatre was contrived to
hold a full third more than the usual Form of it had done, one House
well fill'd might answer the Profits of two but moderately taken up:
Being enabled, too, by their late Success at _London_, to make the
Journey pleasant and profitable to the rest of their Society, they
resolved to continue to them their double Pay, notwithstanding this new
Abatement of half their Labour. This Conduct of the Menagers more than
answered their Intention, which was rather to get nothing themselves
than not let their Fraternity be the better for the Expedition. Thus
they laid an Obligation upon their Company, and were themselves
considerably, though unexpected, Gainers by it. But my chief Reason for
bringing the Reader to _Oxford_ was to shew the different Taste of Plays
there from that which prevail'd at _London_. A great deal of that false,
flashy Wit and forc'd Humour, which had been the Delight of our
Metropolitan Multitude, was only rated there at its bare intrinsick
Value;[104] Applause was not to be purchased there but by the true
Sterling, the _Sal Atticum_ of a Genius, unless where the Skill of the
Actor pass'd it upon them with some extraordinary Strokes of Nature.
_Shakespear_ and _Johnson_ had there a sort of classical Authority; for
whose masterly Scenes they seem'd to have as implicit a Reverence as
formerly for the Ethicks of _Aristotle_; and were as incapable of
allowing Moderns to be their Competitors, as of changing their
Academical Habits for gaudy Colours or Embroidery. Whatever Merit,
therefore, some few of our more politely-written Comedies might pretend
to, they had not the same Effect upon the Imagination there, nor were
received with that extraordinary Applause they had met with from the
People of Mode and Pleasure in _London_, whose vain Accomplishments did
not dislike themselves in the Glass that was held to them: The elegant
Follies of higher Life were not at _Oxford_ among their Acquaintance,
and consequently might not be so good Company to a learned Audience as
Nature, in her plain Dress and unornamented, in her Pursuits and
Inclinations seem'd to be.

The only distinguish'd Merit allow'd to any modern Writer[105] was to
the Author of _Cato_, which Play being the Flower of a Plant raised in
that learned Garden, (for there Mr. _Addison_ had his Education) what
favour may we not suppose was due to him from an Audience of Brethren,
who from that local Relation to him might naturally have a warmer
Pleasure in their Benevolence to his Fame? But not to give more Weight
to this imaginary Circumstance than it may bear, the Fact was, that on
our first Day of acting it our House was in a manner invested, and
Entrance demanded by twelve a Clock at Noon, and before one it was not
wide enough for many who came too late for Places. The same Crowds
continued for three Days together, (an uncommon Curiosity in that Place)
and the Death of _Cato_ triumph'd over the Injuries of _Cæsar_ every
where. To conclude, our Reception at _Oxford_, whatever our Merit might
be, exceeded our Expectation. At our taking Leave we had the Thanks of
the Vice-Chancellor for the Decency and Order observ'd by our whole
Society, an Honour which had not always been paid upon the same
Occasions; for at the Act in King _William_'s Time I remember some
Pranks of a different Nature had been complain'd of. Our Receipts had
not only enabled us (as I have observ'd) to double the Pay of every
Actor, but to afford out of them towards the Repair of St _Mary_'s
Church the Contribution of fifty Pounds: Besides which, each of the
three Menagers had to his respective Share, clear of all Charges, one
hundred and fifty more for his one and twenty Day's Labour, which being
added to his thirteen hundred and fifty shared in the Winter preceding,
amounted in the whole to fifteen hundred, the greatest Sum ever known to
have been shared in one Year to that Time: And to the Honour of our
Auditors here and elsewhere be it spoken, all this was rais'd without
the Aid of those barbarous Entertainments with which, some few Years
after (upon the Re-establishment of two contending Companies) we were
forc'd to disgrace the Stage to support it.

This, therefore, is that remarkable Period when the Stage, during my
Time upon it, was the least reproachable: And it may be worth the
publick Observation (if any thing I have said of it can be so) that
_One_ Stage may, as I have prov'd it has done, very laudably support it
self by such Spectacles only as are fit to delight a sensible People;
but the equal Prosperity of _Two_ Stages has always been of a very short
Duration. If therefore the Publick should ever recover into the true
Taste of that Time, and stick to it, the Stage must come into it, or
_starve_; as, whenever the general Taste is vulgar, the Stage must come
down to it to _live_.----But I ask Pardon of the Multitude, who, in all
Regulations of the Stage, may expect to be a little indulg'd in what
they like: If therefore they _will_ have a May-pole, why, the Players
must _give_ them a May-pole; but I only speak in case they should keep
an old Custom of changing their Minds, and by their Privilege of being
in the _wrong_, should take a Fancy, by way of Variety, of being in the
_right_----Then, in such a Case, what I have said may appear to have
been no intended Design against their Liberty of judging for themselves.

After our Return from _Oxford_, _Booth_ was at full Leisure to solicit
his Admission to a Share in the Menagement,[106] in which he succeeded
about the Beginning of the following Winter: Accordingly a new License
(recalling all former Licenses) was issued, wherein _Booth_'s Name was
added to those of the other Menagers.[107] But still there was a
Difficulty in his Qualification to be adjusted; what Consideration he
should allow for an equal Title to our Stock of Cloaths, Scenes, _&c._
without which the License was of no more use than the Stock was without
the License; or, at least, if there were any Difference, the former
Menagers seem'd to have the Advantage in it; the Stock being intirely
theirs, and three Parts in four of the License; for _Collier_, though
now but a fifth Menager, still insisted on his former Appointment of
700_l._ a Year, which in Equity ought certainly to have been
proportionably abated: But Court-Favour was not always measur'd by
_that_ Yard; _Collier's_ Matter was soon out of the Question; his
Pretensions were too visible to be contested; but the Affair of _Booth_
was not so clear a Point: The Lord Chamberlain, therefore, only
recommended it to be adjusted among our selves; which, to say the Truth,
at that Time was a greater Indulgence than I expected. Let us see, then,
how this critical Case was handled.

_Wilks_ was of Opinion, that to set a good round Value upon our Stock,
was the only way to come near an Equivalent for the Diminution of our
Shares, which the Admission of _Booth_ must occasion: But _Dogget_
insisted that he had no mind to dispose of any Part of his Property, and
therefore would set no Price upon it at all. Though I allow'd that Both
these Opinions might be grounded on a good deal of Equity, yet I was not
sure that either of them was practicable; and therefore told them, that
when they could Both agree which of them could be made so, they might
rely on my Consent in any Shape. In the mean time I desired they would
consider, that as our License subsisted only during Pleasure, we could
not pretend that the Queen might not recall or alter it: But that to
speak out, without mincing the matter on either Side, the Truth was
plainly this: That _Booth_ had a manifest Merit as an Actor; and as he
was not supposed to be a _Whig_, it was as evident that a good deal for
that Reason a Secretary of State had taken him into his Protection,
which I was afraid the weak Pretence of our invaded Property would not
be able to contend with: That his having signaliz'd himself in the
Character of _Cato_ (whose Principles the _Tories_ had affected to have
taken into their own Possession) was a very popular Pretence of making
him free of the Stage, by advancing him to the Profits of it. And, as we
had seen that the Stage was frequently treated as if it was not suppos'd
to have any Property at all, this Favour intended to _Booth_ was thought
a right Occasion to avow that Opinion by disposing of its Property at
Pleasure: But be that as it might, I own'd it was not so much my
Apprehensions of what the _Court_ might do, that sway'd me into an
Accommodation with _Booth_, as what the _Town_, (in whose Favour he now
apparently stood) might think _ought_ to be done: That there might be
more danger in contesting their arbitrary Will and Pleasure than in
disputing this less terrible Strain of the Prerogative. That if _Booth_
were only impos'd upon us from his Merit to the Court, we were then in
the Condition of other Subjects: Then, indeed, Law, Right, and
Possession might have a tolerable Tug for our Property: But as the Town
would always look upon his Merit to _them_ in a stronger Light, and be
Judges of it themselves, it would be a weak and idle Endeavour in us not
to sail with the Stream, when we might possibly make a Merit of our
cheerfully admitting him: That though his former Opposition to our
Interest might, between Man and Man, a good deal justify our not making
an earlier Friend of him; yet that was a Disobligation out of the Town's
Regard, and consequently would be of no weight against so approv'd an
Actor's being preferr'd. But all this notwithstanding, if they could
both agree in a different Opinion, I would, at the Hazard of any
Consequence, be guided by it.

Here, now, will be shewn another Instance of our different Tempers:
_Dogget_ (who, in all Matters that concern'd our common Weal and
Interest, little regarded our Opinion, and even to an Obstinacy walk'd
by his own) look'd only out of Humour at what I had said, and, without
thinking himself oblig'd to give any Reason for it, declar'd he would
maintain his Property. _Wilks_ (who, upon the same Occasions, was as
remarkably ductile, as when his Superiority on the Stage was in question
he was assuming and intractable) said, for his Part, provided our
Business of acting was not interrupted, he did not care what we did:
But, in short, he was for playing on, come what would of it. This last
Part of his Declaration I did not dislike, and therefore I desir'd we
might all enter into an immediate Treaty with _Booth_, upon the Terms of
his Admission. _Dogget_ still sullenly reply'd, that he had no Occasion
to enter into any Treaty. _Wilks_ then, to soften him, propos'd that,
if I liked it, _Dogget_ might undertake it himself. I agreed. No! he
would not be concern'd in it. I then offer'd the same Trust to _Wilks_,
if _Dogget_ approv'd of it. _Wilks_ said he was not good at making of
Bargains, but if I was willing, he would rather leave it to me. _Dogget_
at this rose up and said, we might both do as we pleas'd, but that
nothing but the Law should make him part with his Property--and so went
out of the Room. After which he never came among us more, either as an
Actor or Menager.[108]

By his having in this abrupt manner abdicated his Post in our
Government, what he left of it naturally devolv'd upon _Wilks_ and
myself. However, this did not so much distress our Affair as I have
Reason to believe _Dogget_ thought it would: For though by our
Indentures tripartite we could not dispose of his Property without his
Consent; Yet those Indentures could not oblige us to fast because he had
no Appetite; and if the Mill did not grind, we could have no Bread: We
therefore determin'd, at any Hazard, to keep our Business still going,
and that our safest way would be to make the best Bargain we could with
_Booth_; one Article of which was to be, That _Booth_ should stand
equally answerable with us to _Dogget_ for the Consequence: To which
_Booth_ made no Objection, and the rest of his Agreement was to allow us
Six Hundred Pounds for his Share in our Property, which was to be paid
by such Sums as should arise from half his Profits of Acting, 'till the
whole was discharg'd: Yet so cautious were we in this Affair, that this
Agreement was only Verbal on our Part, tho' written and sign'd by
_Booth_ as what intirely contented him: However, Bond and Judgment could
not have made it more secure to him; for he had his Share, and was able
to discharge the Incumbrance upon it by his Income of that Year only.
Let us see what _Dogget_ did in this Affair after he had left us.

Might it not be imagin'd that _Wilks_ and Myself, by having made this
Matter easy to _Booth_, should have deserv'd the Approbation at least,
if not the Favour of the Court that had exerted so much Power to prefer
him? But shall I be believed when I affirm that _Dogget_, who had so
strongly oppos'd the Court in his Admission to a Share, was very near
getting the better of us both upon that Account, and for some time
appeared to have more Favour there than either of us? Let me tell out my
Story, and then think what you please of it.

_Dogget_, who was equally oblig'd with us to act upon the Stage, as to
assist in the Menagement of it, tho' he had refus'd to do either, still
demanded of us his whole Share of the Profits, without considering what
Part of them _Booth_ might pretend to from our late Concessions. After
many fruitless Endeavours to bring him back to us, _Booth_ join'd with
us in making him an Offer of half a Share if he had a mind totally to
quit the Stage, and make it a _Sine-cure_. No! he wanted the whole, and
to sit still himself, while we (if we pleased) might work for him or let
it alone, and none of us all, neither he nor we, be the better for it.
What we imagin'd encourag'd him to hold us at this short Defiance was,
that he had laid up enough to live upon without the Stage (for he was
one of those close Oeconomists whom Prodigals call a Miser) and
therefore, partly from an Inclination as an invincible _Whig_ to
signalize himself in defence of his Property, and as much presuming that
our Necessities would oblige us to come to his own Terms, he was
determin'd (even against the Opinion of his Friends) to make no other
Peace with us. But not being able by this inflexible Perseverance to
have his wicked Will of us, he was resolv'd to go to the Fountain-head
of his own Distress, and try if from thence he could turn the Current
against us. He appeal'd to the Vice-Chamberlain,[109] to whose Direction
the adjusting of all these Theatrical Difficulties was then committed:
But there, I dare say, the Reader does not expect he should meet with
much Favour: However, be that as it may; for whether any regard was had
to his having some Thousands in his Pocket; or that he was consider'd as
a Man who would or could make more Noise in the Matter than Courtiers
might care for: Or what Charms, Spells, or Conjurations he might make
use of, is all Darkness to me; yet so it was, he one way or other play'd
his part so well, that in a few Days after we received an Order from
the Vice-Chamberlain, positively commanding us to pay _Dogget_ his whole
Share, notwithstanding we had complain'd before of his having withdrawn
himself from acting on the Stage, and from the Menagement of it. This I
thought was a dainty Distinction, indeed! that _Dogget_'s Defiance of
the Commands in favour of _Booth_ should be rewarded with so ample a
_Sine-cure_, and that we for our Obedience should be condemn'd to dig in
the Mine to pay it him! This bitter Pill, I confess, was more than I
could down with, and therefore soon determin'd at all Events never to
take it. But as I had a Man in Power to deal with, it was not my
business to speak _out_ to him, or to set forth our Treatment in its
proper Colours. My only Doubt was, Whether I could bring _Wilks_ into
the same Sentiments (for he never car'd to litigate any thing that did
not affect his Figure upon the Stage.) But I had the good Fortune to lay
our Condition in so precarious and disagreeable a Light to him, if we
submitted to this Order, that he fir'd before I could get thro' half the
Consequences of it; and I began now to find it more difficult to keep
him within Bounds than I had before to alarm him. I then propos'd to him
this Expedient: That we should draw up a Remonstrance, neither seeming
to refuse or comply with this Order; but to start such Objections and
perplexing Difficulties that should make the whole impracticable: That
under such Distractions as this would raise in our Affairs we could not
be answerable to keep open our Doors, which consequently would destroy
the Fruit of the Favour lately granted to _Booth_, as well as of This
intended to _Dogget_ himself. To this Remonstrance we received an Answer
in Writing, which varied something in the Measures to accommodate
Matters with _Dogget_. This was all I desir'd; when I found the Style of
_Sic jubeo_ was alter'd, when this formidable Power began to _parley_
with us, we knew there could not be much to be fear'd from it: For I
would have remonstrated 'till I had died, rather than have yielded to
the roughest or smoothest Persuasion, that could intimidate or deceive
us. By this Conduct we made the Affair at last too troublesome for the
Ease of a Courtier to go thro' with. For when it was consider'd that the
principal Point, the Admission of _Booth_, was got over, _Dogget_ was
fairly left to the Law for Relief.[110]

Upon this Disappointment _Dogget_ accordingly preferred a Bill in
_Chancery_ against us. _Wilks_, who hated all Business but that of
entertaining the Publick, left the Conduct of our Cause to me; in which
we had, at our first setting out, this Advantage of _Dogget_, that we
had three Pockets to support our Expence, where he had but One. My first
Direction to our Solicitor was, to use all possible Delay that the Law
would admit of, a Direction that Lawyers seldom neglect; by this means
we hung up our Plaintiff about two Years in _Chancery_, 'till we were at
full Leisure to come to a Hearing before the Lord-Chancellor _Cooper_,
which did not happen 'till after the Accession of his late Majesty. The
Issue of it was this. _Dogget_ had about fourteen Days allow'd him to
make his Election whether he would return to act as usual: But he
declaring, by his Counsel, That he rather chose to quit the Stage, he
was decreed Six Hundred Pounds for his Share in our Property, with 15
_per Cent._ Interest from the Date of the last License: Upon the
Receipt of which both Parties were to sign General-Releases, and
severally to pay their own Costs. By this Decree, _Dogget_, when his
Lawyer's Bill was paid, scarce got one Year's Purchase of what we had
offer'd him without Law, which (as he surviv'd but seven Years after it)
would have been an Annuity of Five Hundred Pounds and a _Sine Cure_ for
Life.[111]

Tho' there are many Persons living who know every Article of these Facts
to be true: Yet it will be found that the strongest of them was not the
strongest Occasion of _Dogget_'s quitting the Stage. If therefore the
Reader should not have Curiosity enough to know how the Publick came to
be depriv'd of so valuable an Actor, let him consider that he is not
obliged to go through the rest of this Chapter, which I fairly tell him
before-hand will only be fill'd up with a few idle Anecdotes leading to
that Discovery.

After our Law-suit was ended, _Dogget_ for some few Years could scarce
bear the Sight of _Wilks_ or myself; tho' (as shall be shewn) for
different Reasons: Yet it was his Misfortune to meet with us almost
every Day. _Button_'s Coffee-house, so celebrated in the _Tatlers_ for
the Good-Company that came there, was at this time in its highest
Request. _Addison_, _Steele_, _Pope_, and several other Gentlemen of
different Merit, then made it their constant _Rendezvous_. Nor could
_Dogget_ decline the agreeable Conversation there, tho' he was daily
sure to find _Wilks_ or myself in the same Place to sour his Share of
it: For as _Wilks_ and He were differently Proud, the one rejoicing in a
captious, over-bearing, valiant Pride, and the other in a stiff, sullen,
Purse-Pride, it may be easily conceiv'd, when two such Tempers met, how
agreeable the Sight of one was to the other. And as _Dogget_ knew I
had been the Conductor of our Defence against his Law-suit, which
had hurt him more for the Loss he had sustain'd in his Reputation
of understanding Business, which he valued himself upon, than his
Disappointment had of getting so little by it; it was no wonder if I was
intirely out of his good Graces, which I confess I was inclin'd upon any
reasonable Terms to have recover'd; he being of all my Theatrical
Brethren the Man I most delighted in: For when he was not in a Fit of
Wisdom, or not over-concerned about his Interest, he had a great deal of
entertaining Humour: I therefore, notwithstanding his Reserve, always
left the Door open to our former Intimacy, if he were inclined to come
into it. I never failed to give him my Hat and _Your Servant_ wherever I
met him; neither of which he would ever return for above a Year after;
but I still persisted in my usual Salutation, without observing whether
it was civilly received or not. This ridiculous Silence between two
Comedians, that had so lately liv'd in a constant Course of Raillery
with one another, was often smil'd at by our Acquaintance who
frequented the same Coffee-house: And one of them carried his Jest upon
it so far, that when I was at some Distance from Town he wrote me a
formal Account that _Dogget_ was actually dead. After the first Surprize
his Letter gave me was over, I began to consider, that this coming from
a droll Friend to both of us, might possibly be written to extract some
Merriment out of my real belief of it: In this I was not unwilling to
gratify him, and returned an Answer as if I had taken the Truth of his
News for granted; and was not a little pleas'd that I had so fair an
Opportunity of speaking my Mind freely of _Dogget_, which I did, in some
Favour of his Character; I excused his Faults, and was just to his
Merit. His Law-suit with us I only imputed to his having naturally
deceived himself in the Justice of his Cause. What I most complain'd of
was, his irreconcilable Disaffection to me upon it, whom he could not
reasonably blame for standing in my own Defence; that not to endure me
after it was a Reflection upon his Sense, when all our Acquaintance had
been Witnesses of our former Intimacy, which my Behaviour in his
Life-time had plainly shewn him I had a mind to renew. But since he was
now gone (however great a Churl he was to me) I was sorry my
Correspondent had lost him.

This Part of my Letter I was sure, if _Dogget_'s Eyes were still open,
would be shewn to him; if not, I had only writ it to no Purpose. But
about a Month after, when I came to Town, I had some little Reason to
imagine it had the Effect I wish'd from it: For one Day, sitting
over-against him at the same Coffee-house where we often mixt at the
same Table, tho' we never exchanged a single Syllable, he graciously
extended his Hand for a Pinch of my Snuff: As this seem'd from him a
sort of breaking the Ice of his Temper, I took Courage upon it to break
Silence on my Side, and ask'd him how he lik'd it? To which, with a slow
Hesitation naturally assisted by the Action of his taking the Snuff, he
reply'd--_Umh! the best--Umh!--I have tasted a great while!_--If the
Reader, who may possibly think all this extremely trifling, will
consider that Trifles sometimes shew Characters in as strong a Light as
Facts of more serious Importance, I am in hopes he may allow that my
Matter less needs an Excuse than the Excuse itself does; if not, I must
stand condemn'd at the end of my Story.----But let me go on.

After a few Days of these coy, Lady-like Compliances on his Side, we
grew into a more conversable Temper: At last I took a proper Occasion,
and desired he would be so frank with me as to let me know what was his
real Dislike, or Motive, that made him throw up so good an Income as his
Share with us annually brought him in? For though by our Admission of
_Booth_, it might not probably amount to so much by a Hundred or two a
Year as formerly, yet the Remainder was too considerable to be quarrel'd
with, and was likely to continue more than the best Actors before us had
ever got by the Stage. And farther, to encourage him to be open, I told
him, If I had done any thing that had particularly disobliged him, I was
ready, if he could put me in the way, to make him any Amends in my
Power; if not, I desired he would be so just to himself as to let me
know the real Truth without Reserve: But Reserve he could not, from his
natural Temper, easily shake off. All he said came from him by half
Sentences and _Inuendos_, as--No, he had not taken any thing
particularly ill--for his Part, he was very easy as he was; but where
others were to dispose of his Property as they pleas'd--if you had stood
it out as I did, _Booth_ might have paid a better Price for it.--You
were too much afraid of the Court--but that's all over.--There were
other things in the Play-house.--No Man of Spirit.--In short, to be
always pester'd and provok'd by a trifling Wasp--a--vain--shallow!--A
Man would sooner beg his Bread than bear it--(Here it was easy to
understand him: I therefore ask'd him what he had to bear that I had not
my Share of?) No! it was not the same thing, he said.--You can play with
a Bear, or let him alone and do what he would, but I could not let him
lay his Paws upon me without being hurt; you did not feel him as I
did.--And for a Man to be cutting of Throats upon every Trifle at my
time of Day!--If I had been as covetous as he thought me, may be I might
have born it as well as you--but I would not be a Lord of the Treasury
if such a Temper as _Wilks_'s were to be at the Head of it.--

Here, then, the whole Secret was out. The rest of our Conversation was
but explaining upon it. In a Word, the painful Behaviour of _Wilks_ had
hurt him so sorely that the Affair of _Booth_ was look'd upon as much a
Relief as a Grievance, in giving him so plausible a Pretence to get rid
of us all with a better Grace.

_Booth_ too, in a little time, had his Share of the same Uneasiness, and
often complain'd of it to me: Yet as we neither of us could then afford
to pay _Dogget_'s Price for our Remedy, all we could do was to avoid
every Occasion in our Power of inflaming the Distemper: So that we both
agreed, tho' _Wilks_'s Nature was not to be changed, it was a less Evil
to live with him than without him.

Tho' I had often suspected, from what I had felt myself, that the Temper
of _Wilks_ was _Dogget_'s real Quarrel to the Stage, yet I could never
thoroughly believe it 'till I had it from his own Mouth. And I then
thought the Concern he had shewn at it was a good deal inconsistent with
that Understanding which was generally allow'd him. When I give my
Reasons for it, perhaps the Reader will not have a better Opinion of my
own: Be that as it may, I cannot help wondering that he who was so much
more capable of Reflexion than _Wilks_, could sacrifice so valuable an
Income to his Impatience of another's natural Frailty! And though my
Stoical way of thinking may be no Rule for a wiser Man's Opinion, yet,
if it should happen to be right, the Reader may make his Use of it. Why
then should we not always consider that the Rashness of Abuse is but the
false Reason of a weak Man? and that offensive Terms are only used to
supply the want of Strength in Argument? Which, as to the common
Practice of the sober World, we do not find every Man in Business is
oblig'd to resent with a military Sense of Honour: Or if he should,
would not the Conclusion amount to this? Because another wants Sense and
Manners I am obliged to be a Madman: For such every Man is, more or
less, while the Passion of Anger is in Possession of him. And what less
can we call that proud Man who would put another out of the World only
for putting him out of Humour? If Accounts of the Tongue were always to
be made up with the Sword, all the Wisemen in the World might be brought
in Debtors to Blockheads. And when Honour pretends to be Witness, Judge,
and Executioner in its own Cause, if Honour were a Man, would it be an
Untruth to say Honour is a very impudent Fellow? But in _Dogget_'s Case
it may be ask'd, How was he to behave himself? Were passionate Insults
to be born for Years together? To these Questions I can only answer with
two or three more, Was he to punish himself because another was in the
wrong? How many sensible Husbands endure the teizing Tongue of a froward
Wife only because she is the weaker Vessel? And why should not a weak
Man have the same Indulgence? Daily Experience will tell us that the
fretful Temper of a Friend, like the Personal Beauty of a fine Lady, by
Use and Cohabitation may be brought down to give us neither Pain nor
Pleasure. Such, at least, and no more, was the Distress I found myself
in upon the same Provocations, which I generally return'd with humming
an Air to myself; or if the Storm grew very high, it might perhaps
sometimes ruffle me enough to sing a little out of Tune. Thus too (if I
had any ill Nature to gratify) I often saw the unruly Passion of the
Aggressor's Mind punish itself by a restless Disorder of the Body.

What inclines me, therefore, to think the Conduct of _Dogget_ was as rash
as the Provocations he complain'd of, is that in some time after he had
left us he plainly discover'd he had repented it. His Acquaintance
observ'd to us, that he sent many a long Look after his Share in the still
prosperous State of the Stage: But as his Heart was too high to declare
(what we saw too) his shy Inclination to return, he made us no direct
Overtures. Nor, indeed, did we care (though he was a golden Actor) to pay
too dear for him: For as most of his Parts had been pretty well supply'd,
he could not now be of his former Value to us. However, to shew the Town
at least that he had not forsworn the Stage, he one Day condescended to
play for the Benefit of Mrs. _Porter_,[112] in the _Wanton Wife_, at which
he knew his late Majesty was to be present.[113] Now (tho' I speak it not
of my own Knowledge) yet it was not likely Mrs. _Porter_ would have ask'd
that Favour of him without some previous Hint that it would be granted.
His coming among us for that Day only had a strong Appearance of his
laying it in our way to make him Proposals, or that he hoped the Court or
Town might intimate to us their Desire of seeing him oftener: But as he
acted only to do a particular Favour, the Menagers ow'd him no Compliment
for it beyond Common Civilities. And, as that might not be all he proposed
by it, his farther Views (if he had any) came to nothing. For after this
Attempt he never returned to the Stage.

To speak of him as an Actor: He was the most an Original, and the
strictest Observer of Nature, of all his Contemporaries.[114] He
borrow'd from none of them: His Manner was his own: He was a Pattern to
others, whose greatest Merit was that they had sometimes tolerably
imitated him. In dressing a Character to the greatest Exactness he was
remarkably skilful; the least Article of whatever Habit he wore seem'd
in some degree to speak and mark the different Humour he presented; a
necessary Care in a Comedian, in which many have been too remiss or
ignorant. He could be extremely ridiculous without stepping into the
least Impropriety to make him so. His greatest Success was in Characters
of lower Life, which he improv'd from the Delight he took in his
Observations of that Kind in the real World. In Songs, and particular
Dances, too, of Humour, he had no Competitor. _Congreve_ was a great
Admirer of him, and found his Account in the Characters he expressly
wrote for him. In those of _Fondlewife_, in his _Old Batchelor_, and
_Ben_, in _Love for Love_, no Author and Actor could be more obliged to
their mutual masterly Performances. He was very acceptable to several
Persons of high Rank and Taste: Tho' he seldom car'd to be the Comedian
but among his more intimate Acquaintance.

And now let me ask the World a Question. When Men have any valuable
Qualities, why are the generality of our modern Wits so fond of exposing
their Failings only, which the wisest of Mankind will never wholly be
free from? Is it of more use to the Publick to know their Errors than
their Perfections? Why is the Account of Life to be so unequally stated?
Though a Man may be sometimes Debtor to Sense or Morality, is it not
doing him Wrong not to let the World see, at the same time, how far he
may be Creditor to both? Are Defects and Disproportions to be the only
labour'd Features in a Portrait? But perhaps such Authors may know how
to please the World better than I do, and may naturally suppose that
what is delightful to themselves may not be disagreeable to others. For
my own part, I confess myself a little touch'd in Conscience at what I
have just now observ'd to the Disadvantage of my other Brother-Menager.

If, therefore, in discovering the true Cause of the Publick's losing so
valuable an Actor as _Dogget_, I have been obliged to shew the Temper of
_Wilks_ in its natural Complexion, ought I not, in amends and Balance of
his Imperfections, to say at the same time of him, That if he was not
the most Correct or Judicious, yet (as _Hamlet_ says of the King his
Father) _Take him_ for _All in All_, &c. he was certainly the most
diligent, most laborious, and most useful Actor that I have seen upon
the Stage in Fifty Years.[115]



CHAPTER XV.


[Illustration: Ad Lalauze, sc]

     _Sir_ Richard Steele _succeeds_ Collier _in the
     Theatre-Royal_. Lincoln's-Inn-Fields _House rebuilt_. _The
     Patent restored. Eight Actors at once desert from the King's
     Company. Why. A new Patent obtain'd by Sir_ Richard Steele,
     _and assign'd in Shares to the menaging Actors of_ Drury-Lane.
     _Of modern Pantomimes. The Rise of them. Vanity invincible and
     asham'd. The_ Non-juror _acted_. _The Author not forgiven, and
     rewarded for it._

Upon the Death of the Queen, Plays (as they always had been on the like
Occasions) were silenc'd for six Weeks. But this happening on the first
of _August_,[116] in the long Vacation of the Theatre, the Observance of
that Ceremony, which at another Juncture would have fallen like wet
Weather upon their Harvest, did them now no particular Damage. Their
License, however, being of course to be renewed, that Vacation gave the
Menagers Time to cast about for the better Alteration of it: And since
they knew the Pension of seven hundred a Year, which had been levied
upon them for _Collier_, must still be paid to somebody, they imagined
the Merit of a _Whig_ might now have as good a Chance for getting into
it, as that of a _Tory_ had for being continued in it: Having no
Obligations, therefore, to _Collier_, who had made the last Penny of
them, they apply'd themselves to Sir _Richard Steele_, who had
distinguished himself by his Zeal for the House of _Hanover_, and had
been expell'd the House of Commons for carrying it (as was judg'd at a
certain Crisis) into a Reproach of the Government. This we knew was his
Pretension to that Favour in which he now stood at Court: We knew, too,
the Obligations the Stage had to his Writings; there being scarce a
Comedian of Merit in our whole Company whom his _Tatlers_ had not made
better by his publick Recommendation of them. And many Days had our
House been particularly fill'd by the Influence and Credit of his Pen.
Obligations of this kind from a Gentleman with whom they all had the
Pleasure of a personal Intimacy, the Menagers thought could not be more
justly return'd than by shewing him some warm Instance of their Desire
to have him at the Head of them. We therefore beg'd him to use his
Interest for the Renewal of our License, and that he would do us the
Honour of getting our Names to stand with His in the same Commission.
This, we told him, would put it still farther into his Power of
supporting the Stage in that Reputation, to which his Lucubrations had
already so much contributed; and that therefore we thought no Man had
better Pretences to partake of its Success.[117]

Though it may be no Addition to the favourable Part of this Gentleman's
Character to say with what Pleasure he receiv'd this Mark of our
Inclination to him, yet my Vanity longs to tell you that it surpriz'd
him into an Acknowledgment that People who are shy of Obligations are
cautious of confessing. His Spirits took such a lively turn upon it,
that had we been all his own Sons, no unexpected Act of filial Duty
could have more endear'd us to him.

It must be observ'd, then, that as _Collier_ had no Share in any Part of
our Property, no Difficulties from that Quarter could obstruct this
Proposal. And the usual Time of our beginning to act for the Winter-Season
now drawing near, we press'd him not to lose any Time in his Solicitation
of this new License. Accordingly Sir _Richard_ apply'd himself to the Duke
of _Marlborough_, the Hero of his Heart, who, upon the first mention of
it, obtain'd it of his Majesty for Sir _Richard_ and the former Menagers
who were Actors. _Collier_ we heard no more of.[118]

The Court and Town being crowded very early in the Winter-Season, upon
the critical Turn of Affairs so much expected from the _Hanover_
Succession, the Theatre had its particular Share of that general
Blessing by a more than ordinary Concourse of Spectators.

About this Time the Patentee, having very near finish'd his House in
_Lincoln's-Inn Fields_, began to think of forming a new Company; and in
the mean time found it necessary to apply for Leave to employ them. By the
weak Defence he had always made against the several Attacks upon his
Interest and former Government of the Theatre, it might be a Question, if
his House had been ready in the Queen's Time, whether he would then have
had the Spirit to ask, or Interest enough to obtain Leave to use it: But
in the following Reign, as it did not appear he had done any thing to
forfeit the Right of his Patent, he prevail'd with Mr. _Craggs_ the
Younger (afterwards Secretary of State) to lay his Case before the King,
which he did in so effectual a manner that (as Mr. _Craggs_ himself told
me) his Majesty was pleas'd to say upon it, "That he remember'd when he
had been in _England_ before, in King _Charles_ his Time, there had been
two Theatres in _London_; and as the Patent seem'd to be a lawful Grant,
he saw no Reason why Two Play-houses might not be continued."[119]

The Suspension of the Patent being thus taken off, the younger Multitude
seem'd to call aloud for two Play-houses! Many desired another, from the
common Notion that _Two_ would always create Emulation in the Actors (an
Opinion which I have consider'd in a former Chapter). Others, too, were as
eager for them, from the natural Ill-will that follows the Fortunate or
Prosperous in any Undertaking. Of this low Malevolence we had, now and
then, had remarkable Instances; we had been forced to dismiss an Audience
of a hundred and fifty Pounds, from a Disturbance spirited up by obscure
People, who never gave any better Reason for it, than that it was their
Fancy to support the idle Complaint of one rival Actress against another,
in their several Pretensions to the chief Part in a new Tragedy. But as
this Tumult seem'd only to be the Wantonness of _English_ Liberty, I shall
not presume to lay any farther Censure upon it.[120]

Now, notwithstanding this publick Desire of reestablishing two Houses;
and though I have allow'd the former Actors greatly our Superiors; and
the Menagers I am speaking of not to have been without their private
Errors: Yet under all these Disadvantages, it is certain the Stage, for
twenty Years before this time, had never been in so flourishing a
Condition: And it was as evident to all sensible Spectators that this
Prosperity could be only owing to that better Order and closer Industry
now daily observ'd, and which had formerly been neglected by our
Predecessors. But that I may not impose upon the Reader a Merit which
was not generally allow'd us, I ought honestly to let him know, that
about this time the publick Papers, particularly _Mist_'s Journal, took
upon them very often to censure our Menagement, with the same Freedom
and Severity as if we had been so many Ministers of State: But so it
happen'd, that these unfortunate Reformers of the World, these
self-appointed _Censors_, hardly ever hit upon what was really wrong in
us; but taking up Facts upon Trust, or Hear-say, piled up many a pompous
Paragraph that they had ingeniously conceiv'd was sufficient to demolish
our Administration, or at least to make us very uneasy in it; which,
indeed, had so far its Effect, that my equally-injur'd Brethren, _Wilks_
and _Booth_, often complain'd to me of these disagreeable Aspersions,
and propos'd that some publick Answer might be made to them, which I
always oppos'd by, perhaps, too secure a Contempt of what such Writers
could do to hurt us; and my Reason for it was, that I knew but of one
way to silence Authors of that Stamp; which was, to grow insignificant
and good for nothing, and then we should hear no more of them: But while
we continued in the Prosperity of pleasing others, and were not
conscious of having deserv'd what they said of us, why should we gratify
the little Spleen of our Enemies by wincing at it,[121] or give them
fresh Opportunities to dine upon any Reply they might make to our
publickly taking Notice of them? And though Silence might in some Cases
be a sign of Guilt or Error confess'd, our Accusers were so low in their
Credit and Sense, that the Content we gave the Publick almost every Day
from the Stage ought to be our only Answer to them.

However (as I have observ'd) we made many Blots, which these unskilful
Gamesters never hit: But the Fidelity of an Historian cannot be excus'd
the Omission of any Truth which might make for the other Side of the
Question. I shall therefore confess a Fact, which, if a happy Accident
had not intervened, had brought our Affairs into a very tottering
Condition. This, too, is that Fact which in a former Chapter I promis'd
to set forth as a Sea-Mark of Danger to future Menagers in their
Theatrical Course of Government.[122]

When the new-built Theatre in _Lincoln's-Inn Fields_ was ready to be
open'd, seven or eight Actors in one Day deserted from us to the Service
of the Enemy,[123] which oblig'd us to postpone many of our best Plays
for want of some inferior Part in them which these Deserters had been
used to fill: But the Indulgence of the Royal Family, who then
frequently honour'd us by their Presence, was pleas'd to accept of
whatever could be hastily got ready for their Entertainment. And tho'
this critical good Fortune prevented, in some measure, our Audiences
falling so low as otherwise they might have done, yet it was not
sufficient to keep us in our former Prosperity: For that Year our
Profits amounted not to above a third Part of our usual Dividends; tho'
in the following Year we intirely recover'd them. The Chief of these
Deserters were _Keene_, _Bullock_, _Pack_,[124] _Leigh_, Son of the
famous _Tony Leigh_,[125] and others of less note. 'Tis true, they none
of them had more than a negative Merit, in being only able to do us more
Harm by their leaving us without Notice, than they could do us Good by
remaining with us: For though the best of them could not support a Play,
the worst of them by their Absence could maim it; as the Loss of the
least Pin in a Watch may obstruct its Motion. But to come to the true
Cause of their Desertion: After my having discover'd the (long unknown)
Occasion that drove _Dogget_ from the Stage before his settled
Inclination to leave it, it will be less incredible that these Actors,
upon the first Opportunity to relieve themselves, should all in one Day
have left us from the same Cause of Uneasiness. For, in a little time
after, upon not finding their Expectations answer'd in _Lincoln's-Inn
Fields_, some of them, who seem'd to answer for the rest, told me the
greatest Grievance they had in our Company was the shocking Temper of
_Wilks_, who, upon every, almost no Occasion, let loose the unlimited
Language of Passion upon them in such a manner as their Patience was
not longer able to support. This, indeed, was what we could not justify!
This was a Secret that might have made a wholesome Paragraph in a
critical News-Paper! But as it was our good Fortune that it came not to
the Ears of our Enemies, the Town was not entertain'd with their publick
Remarks upon it.[126]

After this new Theatre had enjoy'd that short Run of Favour which is apt
to follow Novelty, their Audiences began to flag: But whatever good
Opinion we had of our own Merit, we had not so good a one of the
Multitude as to depend too much upon the Delicacy of their Taste: We
knew, too, that this Company, being so much nearer to the City than we
were, would intercept many an honest Customer that might not know a good
Market from a bad one; and that the thinnest of their Audiences must be
always taking something from the Measure of our Profits. All these
Disadvantages, with many others, we were forced to lay before Sir
_Richard Steele_, and farther to remonstrate to him, that as he now
stood in _Collier_'s Place, his Pension of 700_l._ was liable to the
same Conditions that _Collier_ had receiv'd it upon; which were, that it
should be only payable during our being the only Company permitted to
act, but in case another should be set up against us, that then this
Pension was to be liquidated into an equal Share with us; and which we
now hoped he would be contented with. While we were offering to proceed,
Sir _Richard_ stopt us short by assuring us, that as he came among us by
our own Invitation, he should always think himself oblig'd to come into
any Measures for our Ease and Service: That to be a Burthen to our
Industry would be more disagreeable to him than it could be to us; and
as he had always taken a Delight in his Endeavours for our Prosperity,
he should be still ready on our own Terms to continue them. Every one
who knew Sir _Richard Steele_ in his Prosperity (before the Effects of
his Good-nature had brought him to Distresses) knew that this was his
manner of dealing with his Friends in Business: Another Instance of the
same nature will immediately fall in my way.

[Illustration: RICHARD STEELE.]

When we proposed to put this Agreement into Writing, he desired us not to
hurry ourselves; for that he was advised, upon the late Desertion of our
Actors, to get our License (which only subsisted during Pleasure) enlarg'd
into a more ample and durable Authority, and which he said he had Reason
to think would be more easily obtain'd, if we were willing that a Patent
for the same Purpose might be granted to him only, for his Life and three
Years after, which he would then assign over to us. This was a Prospect
beyond our Hopes; and what we had long wish'd for; for though I cannot
say we had ever Reason to grieve at the Personal Severities or Behaviour
of any one Lord-Chamberlain in my Time, yet the several Officers under
them who had not the Hearts of Noblemen, often treated us (to use
_Shakespear_'s Expression) with all the _Insolence_ of _Office_ that
narrow Minds are apt to be elated with; but a Patent, we knew, would free
us from so abject a State of Dependency. Accordingly, we desired Sir
_Richard_ to lose no time; he was immediately promised it: In the Interim,
we sounded the Inclination of the Actors remaining with us; who had all
Sense enough to know, that the Credit and Reputation we stood in with the
Town, could not but be a better Security for their Sallaries, than the
Promise of any other Stage put into Bonds could make good to them. In a
few Days after, Sir _Richard_ told us, that his Majesty being apprised
that others had a joint Power with him in the License, it was expected we
should, under our Hands, signify that his Petition for a Patent was
preferr'd by the Consent of us all. Such an Acknowledgment was immediately
sign'd, and the Patent thereupon pass'd the Great Seal; for which I
remember the Lord Chancellor _Cooper_, in Compliment to Sir _Richard_,
would receive no Fee.

We receiv'd the Patent _January 19, 1715_,[127] and (Sir _Richard_ being
obliged the next Morning to set out for _Burrowbridge_ in _Yorkshire_,
where he was soon after elected Member of Parliament) we were forced
that very Night to draw up in a hurry ('till our Counsel might more
adviseably perfect it) his Assignment to us of equal Shares in the
Patent, with farther Conditions of Partnership:[128] But here I ought to
take Shame to myself, and at the same time to give this second Instance
of the Equity and Honour of Sir _Richard_: For this Assignment (which I
had myself the hasty Penning of) was so worded, that it gave Sir
_Richard_ as equal a Title to our Property as it had given us to his
Authority in the Patent: But Sir _Richard_, notwithstanding, when he
return'd to Town, took no Advantage of the Mistake, and consented in our
second Agreement to pay us Twelve Hundred Pounds to be equally intitled
to our Property, which at his Death we were obliged to repay (as we
afterwards did) to his Executors; and which, in case any of us had died
before him, the Survivors were equally obliged to have paid to the
Executors of such deceased Person upon the same Account. But Sir
_Richard_'s Moderation with us was rewarded with the Reverse of
_Collier_'s Stiffness: _Collier_, by insisting on his Pension, lost
Three Hundred Pounds a Year; and Sir _Richard_, by his accepting a Share
in lieu of it, was, one Year with another, as much a Gainer.

The Grant of this Patent having assured us of a competent Term to be
relied on, we were now emboldened to lay out larger Sums in the
Decorations of our Plays:[129] Upon the Revival of _Dryden_'s _All for
Love_, the Habits of that Tragedy amounted to an Expence of near Six
Hundred Pounds; a Sum unheard of, for many Years before, on the like
Occasions.[130] But we thought such extraordinary Marks of our
Acknowledgment were due to the Favours which the Publick were now again
pouring in upon us. About this time we were so much in fashion, and
follow'd, that our Enemies (who they were it would not be fair to guess,
for we never knew them) made their Push of a good round Lye upon us, to
terrify those Auditors from our Support whom they could not mislead by
their private Arts or publick Invectives. A current Report that the
Walls and Roof of our House were liable to fall, had got such Ground in
the Town, that on a sudden we found our Audiences unusually decreased by
it: _Wilks_ was immediately for denouncing War and Vengeance on the
Author of this Falshood, and for offering a Reward to whoever could
discover him. But it was thought more necessary first to disprove the
Falshood, and then to pay what Compliments might be thought adviseable
to the Author. Accordingly an Order from the King was obtained, to have
our Tenement surveyed by Sir _Thomas Hewet_, then the proper Officer;
whose Report of its being in a safe and sound Condition, and sign'd by
him, was publish'd in every News-Paper.[131] This had so immediate an
Effect, that our Spectators, whose Apprehensions had lately kept them
absent, now made up our Losses by returning to us with a fresh
Inclination and in greater Numbers.

When it was first publickly known that the New Theatre would be open'd
against us; I cannot help going a little back to remember the Concern
that my Brother-Menagers express'd at what might be the Consequences of
it. They imagined that now all those who wish'd Ill to us, and
particularly a great Party who had been disobliged by our shutting them
out from behind our Scenes, even to the Refusal of their Money,[132]
would now exert themselves in any partial or extravagant Measures that
might either hurt us or support our Competitors: These, too, were some
of those farther Reasons which had discouraged them from running the
hazard of continuing to Sir _Richard Steele_ the same Pension which had
been paid to _Collier_. Upon all which I observed to them, that, for my
own Part, I had not the same Apprehensions; but that I foresaw as many
good as bad Consequences from two Houses: That tho' the Novelty might
possibly at first abate a little of our Profits; yet, if we slacken'd
not our Industry, that Loss would be amply balanced by an equal Increase
of our Ease and Quiet: That those turbulent Spirits which were always
molesting us, would now have other Employment: That the question'd Merit
of our Acting would now stand in a clearer Light when others were
faintly compared to us: That though Faults might be found with the best
Actors that ever were, yet the egregious Defects that would appear in
others would now be the effectual means to make our Superiority shine,
if we had any Pretence to it: And that what some People hoped might ruin
us, would in the end reduce them to give up the Dispute, and reconcile
them to those who could best entertain them.

In every Article of this Opinion they afterwards found I had not been
deceived; and the Truth of it may be so well remember'd by many living
Spectators, that it would be too frivolous and needless a Boast to give
it any farther Observation.

But in what I have said I would not be understood to be an Advocate for
two Play-houses: For we shall soon find that two Sets of Actors
tolerated in the same Place have constantly ended in the Corruption of
the Theatre; of which the auxiliary Entertainments that have so
barbarously supply'd the Defects of weak Action have, for some Years
past, been a flagrant Instance; it may not, therefore, be here improper
to shew how our childish Pantomimes first came to take so gross a
Possession of the Stage.

I have upon several occasions already observ'd, that when one Company is
too hard for another, the lower in Reputation has always been forced to
exhibit some new-fangled Foppery to draw the Multitude after them: Of
these Expedients, Singing and Dancing had formerly been the most
effectual;[133] but, at the Time I am speaking of, our _English_ Musick
had been so discountenanced since the Taste of _Italian_ Operas
prevail'd, that it was to no purpose to pretend to it.[134] Dancing
therefore was now the only Weight in the opposite Scale, and as the New
Theatre sometimes found their Account in it, it could not be safe for
us wholly to neglect it. To give even Dancing therefore some
Improvement, and to make it something more than Motion without Meaning,
the Fable of _Mars_ and _Venus_[135] was form'd into a connected
Presentation of Dances in Character, wherein the Passions were so
happily expressed, and the whole Story so intelligibly told by a mute
Narration of Gesture only, that even thinking Spectators allow'd it both
a pleasing and a rational Entertainment; though, at the same time, from
our Distrust of its Reception, we durst not venture to decorate it with
any extraordinary Expence of Scenes or Habits; but upon the Success of
this Attempt it was rightly concluded, that if a visible Expence in both
were added to something of the same Nature, it could not fail of drawing
the Town proportionably after it. From this original Hint then (but
every way unequal to it) sprung forth that Succession of monstrous
Medlies that have so long infested the Stage, and which arose upon one
another alternately, at both Houses outvying in Expence, like contending
Bribes on both sides at an Election, to secure a Majority of the
Multitude. But so it is, Truth may complain and Merit murmur with what
Justice it may, the Few will never be a Match for the Many, unless
Authority should think fit to interpose and put down these Poetical
Drams, these Gin-shops of the Stage, that intoxicate its Auditors and
dishonour their Understanding with a Levity for which I want a
Name.[136]

If I am ask'd (after my condemning these Fooleries myself) how I came to
assent or continue my Share of Expence to them? I have no better Excuse
for my Error than confessing it. I did it against my Conscience! and had
not Virtue enough to starve by opposing a Multitude that would have been
too hard for me.[137] Now let me ask an odd Question: Had _Harry the
Fourth_ of _France_ a better Excuse for changing his Religion?[138] I
was still, in my Heart, as much as he could be, on the side of Truth and
Sense, but with this difference, that I had their leave to quit them
when they could not support me: For what Equivalent could I have found
for my falling a Martyr to them? How far the Heroe or the Comedian was
in the wrong, let the Clergy and the Criticks decide. Necessity will be
as good a Plea for the one as the other. But let the Question go which
way it will, _Harry_ IV. has always been allow'd a great Man: And what I
want of his Grandeur, you see by the Inference, Nature has amply
supply'd to me in Vanity; a Pleasure which neither the Pertness of Wit
or the Gravity of Wisdom will ever persuade me to part with. And why is
there not as much Honesty in owning as in concealing it? For though to
hide it may be Wisdom, to be without it is impossible; and where is the
Merit of keeping a Secret which every Body is let into? To say we have
no Vanity, then, is shewing a great deal of it; as to say we _have_ a
great deal cannot be shewing so much: And tho' there may be Art in a
Man's accusing himself, even then it will be more pardonable than
Self-commendation. Do not we find that even good Actions have their
Share of it? that it is as inseparable from our Being as our Nakedness?
And though it may be equally decent to cover it, yet the wisest Man can
no more be without it, than the weakest can believe he was born in his
Cloaths. If then what we say of ourselves be true, and not prejudicial
to others, to be called vain upon it is no more a Reproach than to be
called a brown or a fair Man. Vanity is of all Complexions; 'tis the
growth of every Clime and Capacity; Authors of all Ages have had a
Tincture of it; and yet you read _Horace_, _Montaign_, and Sir _William
Temple_, with Pleasure. Nor am I sure, if it were curable by Precept,
that Mankind would be mended by it! Could Vanity be eradicated from our
Nature, I am afraid that the Reward of most human Virtues would not be
found in this World! And happy is he who has no greater Sin to answer
for in the next!

But what is all this to the Theatrical Follies I was talking of? Perhaps
not a great deal; but it is to my Purpose; for though I am an Historian,
I do not write to the Wise and Learned only; I hope to have Readers of no
more Judgment than some of my _quondam_ Auditors; and I am afraid they
will be as hardly contented with dry Matters of Fact, as with a plain
Play without Entertainments: This Rhapsody, therefore, has been thrown
in as a Dance between the Acts, to make up for the Dullness of what would
have been by itself only proper. But I now come to my Story again.

Notwithstanding, then, this our Compliance with the vulgar Taste, we
generally made use of these Pantomimes but as Crutches to our weakest
Plays: Nor were we so lost to all Sense of what was valuable as to
dishonour our best Authors in such bad Company: We had still a due
Respect to several select Plays that were able to be their own Support;
and in which we found our constant Account, without painting and
patching them out, like Prostitutes, with these Follies in fashion: If
therefore we were not so strictly chaste in the other part of our
Conduct, let the Error of it stand among the silly Consequences of Two
Stages. Could the Interest of both Companies have been united in one
only Theatre, I had been one of the Few that would have us'd my utmost
Endeavour of never admitting to the Stage any Spectacle that ought not
to have been seen there; the Errors of my own Plays, which I could not
see, excepted. And though probably the Majority of Spectators would not
have been so well pleas'd with a Theatre so regulated; yet Sense and
Reason cannot lose their intrinsick Value because the Giddy and the
Ignorant are blind and deaf, or numerous; and I cannot help saying, it
is a Reproach to a sensible People to let Folly so publickly govern
their Pleasures.

While I am making this grave Declaration of what I _would_ have done had
One only Stage been continued; to obtain an easier Belief of my
Sincerity I ought to put my Reader in mind of what I _did_ do, even
after Two Companies were again establish'd.

About this Time _Jacobitism_ had lately exerted itself by the most
unprovoked Rebellion that our Histories have handed down to us since the
_Norman_ Conquest:[139] I therefore thought that to set the Authors and
Principles of that desperate Folly in a fair Light, by allowing the
mistaken Consciences of some their best Excuse, and by making the artful
Pretenders to Conscience as ridiculous as they were ungratefully wicked,
was a Subject fit for the honest Satire of Comedy, and what might, if it
succeeded, do Honour to the Stage by shewing the valuable Use of
it.[140] And considering what Numbers at that time might come to it as
prejudic'd Spectators, it may be allow'd that the Undertaking was not
less hazardous than laudable.

To give Life, therefore, to this Design, I borrow'd the _Tartuffe_ of
_Moliere_, and turn'd him into a modern _Nonjuror_:[141] Upon the
Hypocrisy of the _French_ Character I ingrafted a stronger Wickedness,
that of an _English_ Popish Priest lurking under the Doctrine of our own
Church to raise his Fortune upon the Ruin of a worthy Gentleman, whom
his dissembled Sanctity had seduc'd into the treasonable Cause of a
_Roman Catholick_ Out-law. How this Design, in the Play, was executed, I
refer to the Readers of it; it cannot be mended by any critical Remarks
I can make in its favour: Let it speak for itself. All the Reason I had
to think it no bad Performance was, that it was acted eighteen Days
running,[142] and that the Party that were hurt by it (as I have been
told) have not been the smallest Number of my back Friends ever since.
But happy was it for this Play that the very Subject was its Protection;
a few Smiles of silent Contempt were the utmost Disgrace that on the
first Day of its Appearance it was thought safe to throw upon it; as the
Satire was chiefly employ'd on the Enemies of the Government, they were
not so hardy as to own themselves such by any higher Disapprobation or
Resentment. But as it was then probable I might write again, they knew
it would not be long before they might with more Security give a Loose
to their Spleen, and make up Accounts with me. And to do them Justice,
in every Play I afterwards produced they paid me the Balance to a
Tittle.[143] But to none was I more beholden than that celebrated Author
Mr. _Mist_, whose _Weekly Journal_,[144] for about fifteen Years
following, scarce ever fail'd of passing some of his Party Compliments
upon me: The State and the Stage were his frequent Parallels, and the
Minister and _Minheer Keiber_ the Menager were as constantly droll'd
upon: Now, for my own Part, though I could never persuade my Wit to have
an open Account with him (for as he had no Effects of his own, I did not
think myself oblig'd to answer his Bills;) notwithstanding, I will be so
charitable to his real _Manes_, and to the Ashes of his Paper, as to
mention one particular Civility he paid to my Memory, after he thought
he had ingeniously kill'd me. Soon after the _Nonjuror_ had receiv'd
the Favour of the Town, I read in one of his Journals the following
short Paragraph, _viz._ _Yesterday died Mr._ Colley Cibber, _late
Comedian of the Theatre-Royal, notorious for writing the_ Nonjuror. The
Compliment in the latter part I confess I did not dislike, because it
came from so impartial a Judge; and it really so happen'd that the
former part of it was very near being true; for I had that very Day just
crawled out, after having been some Weeks laid up by a Fever: However, I
saw no use in being thought to be thoroughly dead before my Time, and
therefore had a mind to see whether the Town cared to have me alive
again: So the Play of the _Orphan_ being to be acted that Day, I quietly
stole myself into the Part of the _Chaplain_, which I had not been seen
in for many Years before. The Surprize of the Audience at my unexpected
Appearance on the very Day I had been dead in the News, and the Paleness
of my Looks, seem'd to make it a Doubt whether I was not the Ghost of my
real Self departed: But when I spoke, their Wonder eas'd itself by an
Applause; which convinc'd me they were then satisfied that my Friend
_Mist_ had told a _Fib_ of me. Now, if simply to have shown myself in
broad Life, and about my Business, after he had _notoriously_ reported
me dead, can be called a Reply, it was the only one which his Paper
while alive ever drew from me. How far I may be vain, then, in supposing
that this Play brought me into the Disfavour of so many Wits[145] and
valiant Auditors as afterwards appear'd against me, let those who may
think it worth their Notice judge. In the mean time, 'till I can find a
better Excuse for their sometimes particular Treatment of me, I cannot
easily give up my Suspicion: And if I add a more remarkable Fact, that
afterwards confirm'd me in it, perhaps it may incline others to join
in my Opinion.

On the first Day of the _Provok'd Husband_, ten Years after the _Nonjuror_
had appear'd,[146] a powerful Party, not having the Fear of publick
Offence or private Injury before their Eyes, appear'd most impetuously
concern'd for the Demolition of it; in which they so far succeeded, that
for some Time I gave it up for lost; and to follow their Blows, in the
publick Papers of the next Day it was attack'd and triumph'd over as a
dead and damn'd Piece; a swinging Criticism was made upon it in general
invective Terms, for they disdain'd to trouble the World with Particulars;
their Sentence, it seems, was Proof enough of its deserving the Fate it
had met with. But this damn'd Play was, notwithstanding, acted
twenty-eight Nights together, and left off at a Receipt of upwards of a
hundred and forty Pounds; which happen'd to be more than in fifty Years
before could be then said of any one Play whatsoever.

Now, if such notable Behaviour could break out upon so successful a Play
(which too, upon the Share Sir _John Vanbrugh_ had in it, I will venture
to call a good one) what shall we impute it to? Why may not I plainly
say, it was not the Play, but Me, who had a Hand in it, they did not
like? And for what Reason? if they were not asham'd of it, why did not
they publish it? No! the Reason had publish'd itself, I was the Author
of the _Nonjuror_! But, perhaps, of all Authors, I ought not to make
this sort of Complaint, because I have Reason to think that that
particular Offence has made me more honourable Friends than Enemies; the
latter of which I am not unwilling should know (however unequal the
Merit may be to the Reward) that Part of the Bread I now eat was given
me for having writ the _Nonjuror_.[147]

And yet I cannot but lament, with many quiet Spectators, the helpless
Misfortune that has so many Years attended the Stage! That no Law has had
Force enough to give it absolute Protection! for 'till we can civilize its
Auditors, the Authors that write for it will seldom have a greater Call to
it than Necessity; and how unlikely is the Imagination of the Needy to
inform or delight the Many in Affluence? or how often does Necessity make
many unhappy Gentlemen turn Authors in spite of Nature?

What a Blessing, therefore, is it! what an enjoy'd Deliverance! after a
Wretch has been driven by Fortune to stand so many wanton Buffets of
unmanly Fierceness, to find himself at last quietly lifted above the
Reach of them!

But let not this Reflection fall upon my Auditors without Distinction;
for though Candour and Benevolence are silent Virtues, they are as
visible as the most vociferous Ill-nature; and I confess the Publick has
given me more frequently Reason to be thankful than to complain.



CHAPTER XVI.


[Illustration: Ad Lalauze, sc]

     _The Author steps out of his Way. Pleads his Theatrical Cause
     in Chancery. Carries it. Plays acted at_ Hampton-Court.
     _Theatrical Anecdotes in former Reigns. Ministers and Menagers
     always censur'd. The Difficulty of supplying the Stage with
     good Actors consider'd. Courtiers and Comedians govern'd by
     the same Passions. Examples of both. The Author quits the
     Stage. Why._

Having brought the Government of the Stage through such various Changes
and Revolutions, to this settled State in which it continued to almost
the Time of my leaving it;[148] it cannot be suppos'd that a Period of
so much Quiet and so long a Train of Success (though happy for those who
enjoy'd it) can afford such Matter of Surprize or Amusement, as might
arise from Times of more Distress and Disorder. A quiet Time in History,
like a Calm in a Voyage, leaves us but in an indolent Station: To talk
of our Affairs when they were no longer ruffled by Misfortunes, would be
a Picture without Shade, a flat Performance at best. As I might,
therefore, throw all that tedious Time of our Tranquillity into one
Chasm in my History, and cut my Way short at once to my last Exit from
the Stage, I shall at least fill it up with such Matter only as I have a
mind should be known,[149] how few soever may have Patience to read it:
Yet, as I despair not of some Readers who may be most awake when they
think others have most occasion to sleep; who may be more pleas'd to
find me languid than lively, or in the wrong than in the right; why
should I scruple (when it is so easy a Matter too) to gratify their
particular Taste by venturing upon any Error that I like, or the
Weakness of my Judgment misleads me to commit? I think, too, I have a
very good Chance for my Success in this passive Ambition, by shewing
myself in a Light I have not been seen in.

By your Leave then, Gentlemen! let the Scene open, and at once discover
your Comedian at the Bar! There you will find him a Defendant, and
pleading his own Theatrical Cause in a Court of _Chancery_: But, as I
chuse to have a Chance of pleasing others as well as of indulging you,
Gentlemen; I must first beg leave to open my Case to them; after which
my whole Speech upon that Occasion shall be at your Mercy.

In all the Transactions of Life, there cannot be a more painful
Circumstance, than a Dispute at Law with a Man with whom we have long
liv'd in an agreeable Amity: But when Sir _Richard Steele_, to get
himself out of Difficulties, was oblig'd to throw his Affairs into the
Hands of Lawyers and Trustees, that Consideration, then, could be of no
weight: The Friend, or the Gentleman, had no more to do in the Matter!
Thus, while Sir _Richard_ no longer acted from himself, it may be no
Wonder if a Flaw was found in our Conduct for the Law to make Work with.
It must be observed, then, that about two or three Years before this
Suit was commenc'd, upon Sir _Richard_'s totally absenting himself from
all Care and Menagement of the Stage (which by our Articles of
Partnership he was equally and jointly oblig'd with us to attend) we
were reduc'd to let him know that we could not go on at that Rate; but
that if he expected to make the Business a _sine-Cure_, we had as much
Reason to expect a Consideration for our extraordinary Care of it; and
that during his Absence we therefore intended to charge our selves at a
Sallary of 1_l._ 13_s._ 4_d._ every acting Day (unless he could shew us
Cause to the contrary) for our Menagement: To which, in his compos'd
manner, he only answer'd; That to be sure we knew what was fitter to be
done than he did; that he had always taken a Delight in making us easy,
and had no Reason to doubt of our doing him Justice. Now whether, under
this easy Stile of Approbation, he conceal'd any Dislike of our
Resolution, I cannot say. But, if I may speak my private Opinion, I
really believe, from his natural Negligence of his Affairs, he was glad,
at any rate, to be excus'd an Attendance which he was now grown weary
of. But, whether I am deceiv'd or right in my Opinion, the Fact was
truly this, that he never once, directly nor indirectly, complain'd or
objected to our being paid the above-mention'd daily Sum in near three
Years together; and yet still continued to absent himself from us and
our Affairs. But notwithstanding he had seen and done all this with his
Eyes open; his Lawyer thought here was still a fair Field for a Battle
in Chancery, in which, though his Client might be beaten, he was sure
his Bill must be paid for it: Accordingly, to work with us he went.
But, not to be so long as the Lawyers were in bringing this Cause to an
Issue, I shall at once let you know, that it came to a Hearing before
the late Sir _Joseph Jekyll_, then Master of the Rolls, in the Year
1726.[150] Now, as the chief Point in dispute was, of what Kind or
Importance the Business of a Menager was, or in what it principally
consisted; it could not be suppos'd that the most learned Council could
be so well appriz'd of the Nature of it, as one who had himself gone
through the Care and Fatigue of it. I was therefore encourag'd by our
Council to speak to that particular Head myself; which I confess I was
glad he suffer'd me to undertake; but when I tell you that two of the
learned Council against us came afterwards to be successively
Lord-Chancellors, it sets my Presumption in a Light that I still tremble
to shew it in: But however, not to assume more Merit from its Success
than was really its Due, I ought fairly to let you know, that I was not
so hardy as to deliver my Pleading without Notes, in my Hand, of the
Heads I intended to enlarge upon; for though I thought I could conquer
my Fear, I could not be so sure of my Memory: But when it came to the
critical Moment, the Dread and Apprehension of what I had undertaken so
disconcerted my Courage, that though I had been us'd to talk to above
Fifty Thousand different People every Winter, for upwards of Thirty
Years together; an involuntary and unaffected Proof of my Confusion fell
from my Eyes; and, as I found myself quite out of my Element, I seem'd
rather gasping for Life than in a condition to cope with the eminent
Orators against me. But, however, I soon found, from the favourable
Attention of my Hearers, that my Diffidence had done me no Disservice:
And as the Truth I was to speak to needed no Ornament of Words, I
delivered it in the plain manner following, _viz._

In this Cause, Sir, I humbly conceive there are but two Points that
admit of any material Dispute. The first is, Whether Sir _Richard
Steele_ is as much obliged to do the Duty and Business of a Menager as
either _Wilks_, _Booth_, or _Cibber_: And the second is, Whether by Sir
_Richard_'s totally withdrawing himself from the Business of a Menager,
the Defendants are justifiable in charging to each of themselves the
1_l._ 13_s._ 4_d._ _per Diem_ for their particular Pains and Care in
carrying on the whole Affairs of the Stage without any Assistance from
Sir _Richard Steele_.

As to the First, if I don't mistake the Words of the Assignment, there
is a Clause in it that says, All Matters relating to the Government or
Menagement of the Theatre shall be concluded by a Majority of Voices.
Now I presume, Sir, there is no room left to alledge that Sir _Richard_
was ever refused his Voice, though in above three Years he never desir'd
to give it: And I believe there will be as little room to say, that he
could have a Voice if he were not a Menager. But, Sir, his being a
Menager is so self-evident, that it is amazing how he could conceive
that he was to take the Profits and Advantages of a Menager without
doing the Duty of it. And I will be bold to say, Sir, that his
Assignment of the Patent to _Wilks_, _Booth_, and _Cibber_, in no one
Part of it, by the severest Construction in the World, can be wrested to
throw the heavy Burthen of the Menagement only upon their Shoulders. Nor
does it appear, Sir, that either in his Bill, or in his Answer to our
Cross-Bill, he has offer'd any Hint, or Glimpse of a Reason, for his
withdrawing from the Menagement at all; or so much as pretend, from the
time complained of, that he ever took the least Part of his Share of it.
Now, Sir, however unaccountable this Conduct of Sir _Richard_ may seem,
we will still allow that he had some Cause for it; but whether or no
that Cause was a reasonable one your Honour will the better judge, if I
may be indulged in the Liberty of explaining it.

Sir, the Case, in plain Truth and Reality, stands thus: Sir _Richard_,
though no Man alive can write better of Oeconomy than himself, yet,
perhaps, he is above the Drudgery of practising it: Sir _Richard_, then,
was often in want of Money; and while we were in Friendship with him, we
often assisted his Occasions: But those Compliances had so unfortunate
an Effect, that they only heightened his Importunity to borrow more, and
the more we lent, the less he minded us, or shew'd any Concern for our
Welfare. Upon this, Sir, we stopt our Hands at once, and peremptorily
refus'd to advance another Shilling 'till by the Balance of our Accounts
it became due to him. And this Treatment (though, we hope, not in the
least unjustifiable) we have Reason to believe so ruffled his Temper,
that he at once was as short with us as we had been with him; for, from
that Day, he never more came near us: Nay, Sir, he not only continued to
neglect what he _should_ have done, but actually did what he ought _not_
to have done: He made an Assignment of his Share without our Consent, in
a manifest Breach of our Agreement: For, Sir, we did not lay that
Restriction upon ourselves for no Reason: We knew, before-hand, what
Trouble and Inconvenience it would be to unravel and expose our Accounts
to Strangers, who, if they were to do us no hurt by divulging our
Secrets, we were sure could do us no good by keeping them. If Sir
_Richard_ had had our common Interest at heart, he would have been as
warm in it as we were, and as tender of hurting it: But supposing his
assigning his Share to others may have done us no great Injury, it is,
at least, a shrewd Proof that he did not care whether it did us any or
no. And if the Clause was not strong enough to restrain him from it in
Law, there was enough in it to have restrain'd him in Honour from
breaking it. But take it in its best Light, it shews him as remiss a
Menager in our Affairs as he naturally was in his own. Suppose, Sir, we
had all been as careless as himself, which I can't find he has any more
Right to be than we have, must not our whole Affair have fallen to Ruin?
And may we not, by a parity of Reason, suppose, that by his Neglect a
fourth Part of it _does_ fall to Ruin? But, Sir, there is a particular
Reason to believe, that, from our want of Sir _Richard_, more than a
fourth Part _does_ suffer by it: His Rank and Figure in the World, while
he gave us the Assistance of them, were of extraordinary Service to us:
He had an easier Access, and a more regarded Audience at Court, than our
low Station of Life could pretend to, when our Interest wanted (as
it often did) a particular Solicitation there. But since we have been
deprived of him, the very End, the very Consideration of his Share
in our Profits is not perform'd on his Part. And will Sir _Richard_,
then, make us no Compensation for so valuable a Loss in our Interests,
and so palpable an Addition to our Labour? I am afraid, Sir, if we were
all to be as indolent in the Menaging-Part as Sir _Richard_ presumes he
has a Right to be; our Patent would soon run us as many Hundreds in
Debt, as he had (and still seems willing to have) his Share of, for
doing of nothing.

Sir, our next Point in question is whether _Wilks_, _Booth_, and
_Cibber_ are justifiable in charging the 1_l._ 13_s._ 4_d._ _per diem_
for their extraordinary Menagement in the Absence of Sir _Richard
Steele_. I doubt, Sir, it will be hard to come to the Solution of this
Point, unless we may be a little indulg'd in setting forth what is the
daily and necessary Business and Duty of a Menager. But, Sir, we will
endeavour to be as short as the Circumstances will admit of.

Sir, by our Books it is apparent that the Menagers have under their Care
no less than One Hundred and Forty Persons in constant daily Pay: And
among such Numbers, it will be no wonder if a great many of them are
unskilful, idle, and sometimes untractable; all which Tempers are to be
led, or driven, watch'd, and restrain'd by the continual Skill, Care,
and Patience of the Menagers. Every Menager is oblig'd, in his turn, to
attend two or three Hours every Morning at the Rehearsal of Plays and
other Entertainments for the Stage, or else every Rehearsal would be but
a rude Meeting of Mirth and Jollity. The same Attendance is as necessary
at every Play during the time of its publick Action, in which one or
more of us have constantly been punctual, whether we have had any part
in the Play then acted or not. A Menager ought to be at the Reading of
every new Play when it is first offer'd to the Stage, though there are
seldom one of those Plays in twenty which, upon hearing, proves to be
fit for it; and upon such Occasions the Attendance must be allow'd to be
as painfully tedious as the getting rid of the Authors of such Plays
must be disagreeable and difficult. Besides this, Sir, a Menager is to
order all new Cloaths, to assist in the Fancy and Propriety of them, to
limit the Expence, and to withstand the unreasonable Importunities of
some that are apt to think themselves injur'd if they are not finer than
their Fellows. A Menager is to direct and oversee the Painters,
Machinists, Musicians, Singers, and Dancers; to have an Eye upon the
Door-keepers, Under-Servants, and Officers that, without such Care, are
too often apt to defraud us, or neglect their Duty.

And all this, Sir, and more, much more, which we hope will be needless
to trouble you with, have we done every Day, without the least
Assistance from Sir _Richard_, even at times when the Concern and Labour
of our Parts upon the Stage have made it very difficult and irksome to
go through with it.

In this Place, Sir, it may be worth observing that Sir _Richard_, in his
Answer to our Cross-Bill, seems to value himself upon _Cibber_'s
confessing, in the Dedication of a Play which he made to Sir _Richard_,
that he (Sir _Richard_) had done the Stage very considerable Service by
leading the Town to our Plays, and filling our Houses by the Force and
Influence of his _Tatlers_.[151] But Sir _Richard_ forgets that those
_Tatlers_ were written in the late Queen's Reign, long before he was
admitted to a Share in the Play-house: And in truth, Sir, it was our
real Sense of those Obligations, and Sir _Richard_'s assuring us they
should be continued, that first and chiefly inclin'd us to invite him to
share the Profits of our Labours, upon such farther Conditions as in his
Assignment of the Patent to us are specified. And, Sir, as _Cibber_'s
publick Acknowledgment of those Favours is at the same time an equal
Proof of Sir _Richard_'s _Power_ to continue them; so, Sir, we hope it
carries an equal Probability that, without his Promise to _use_ that
Power, he would never have been thought on, much less have been invited
by us into a Joint-Menagement of the Stage, and into a Share of the
Profits: And, indeed, what Pretence could he have form'd for asking a
Patent from the Crown, had he been possess'd of no eminent Qualities but
in common with other Men? But, Sir, all these Advantages, all these
Hopes, nay, Certainties of greater Profits from those great Qualities,
have we been utterly depriv'd of by the wilful and unexpected Neglect of
Sir _Richard_. But we find, Sir, it is a common thing in the Practice of
Mankind to justify one Error by committing another: For Sir _Richard_
has not only refused us the extraordinary Assistance which he is able
and bound to give us; but, on the contrary, to our great Expence and
Loss of Time, now calls us to account, in this honourable Court, for the
Wrong we have done him, in not doing his Business of a Menager for
nothing. But, Sir, Sir _Richard_ has not met with such Treatment from
us: He has not writ Plays for us for _Nothing_, we paid him very well,
and in an extraordinary manner, for his late Comedy of the _Conscious
Lovers_: And though, in writing that Play, he had more Assistance from
one of the Menagers[152] than becomes me to enlarge upon, of which
Evidence has been given upon Oath by several of our Actors; yet, Sir, he
was allow'd the full and particular Profits of that Play as an Author,
which amounted to Three Hundred Pounds, besides about Three Hundred more
which he received as a Joint-Sharer of the general Profits that arose
from it. Now, Sir, though the Menagers are not all of them able to write
Plays, yet they have all of them been able to do (I won't say as good,
but at least) as profitable a thing. They have invented and adorn'd a
Spectacle that for Forty Days together has brought more Money to the
House than the best Play that ever was writ. The Spectacle I mean, Sir,
is that of the Coronation-Ceremony of _Anna Bullen_:[153] And though we
allow a good Play to be the more laudable Performance, yet, Sir, in the
profitable Part of it there is no Comparison. If, therefore, our
Spectacle brought in as much, or more Money than Sir _Richard_'s Comedy,
what is there on his Side but Usage that intitles him to be paid for
one, more than we are for t'other? But then, Sir, if he is so profitably
distinguish'd for his Play, if we yield him up the Preference, and pay
him for his extraordinary Composition, and take nothing for our own,
though it turn'd out more to our common Profit; sure, Sir, while we do
such extraordinary Duty as Menagers, and while he neglects his Share of
that Duty, he cannot grudge us the moderate Demand we make for our
separate Labour?

[Illustration: BARTON BOOTH.]

To conclude, Sir, if by our constant Attendance, our Care, our Anxiety
(not to mention the disagreeable Contests we sometimes meet with, both
within and without Doors, in the Menagement of our Theatre) we have not
only saved the whole from Ruin, which, if we had all follow'd Sir
_Richard_'s Example, could not have been avoided; I say, Sir, if we have
still made it so valuable an Income to him, without his giving us the
least Assistance for several Years past; we hope, Sir, that the poor
Labourers that have done all this for Sir _Richard_ will not be thought
unworthy of their Hire.

How far our Affairs, being set in this particular Light, might assist
our Cause, may be of no great Importance to guess; but the Issue
of it was this: That Sir _Richard_ not having made any Objection to
what we had charged for Menagement for three Years together; and as
our Proceedings had been all transacted in open Day, without any
clandestine Intention of Fraud; we were allow'd the Sums in dispute
above-mention'd; and Sir _Richard_ not being advised to appeal to the
Lord-Chancellor, both Parties paid their own Costs, and thought it their
mutual Interest to let this be the last of their Law-suits.

And now, gentle Reader, I ask Pardon for so long an Imposition on your
Patience: For tho' I may have no ill Opinion of this Matter myself; yet
to you I can very easily conceive it may have been tedious. You are,
therefore, at your own Liberty of charging the whole Impertinence of it,
either to the Weakness of my Judgment, or the Strength of my Vanity; and
I will so far join in your Censure, that I farther confess I have been
so impatient to give it you, that you have had it out of its Turn: For,
some Years before this Suit was commenced, there were other Facts that
ought to have had a Precedence in my History: But that, I dare say, is
an Oversight you will easily excuse, provided you afterwards find them
worth reading. However, as to that Point I must take my Chance, and
shall therefore proceed to speak of the Theatre which was order'd by his
late Majesty to be erected in the Great old Hall at _Hampton-Court_;
where Plays were intended to have been acted twice a Week during the
Summer-Season. But before the Theatre could be finish'd, above half the
Month of _September_ being elapsed, there were but seven Plays acted
before the Court returned to _London_.[154] This throwing open a Theatre
in a Royal Palace seem'd to be reviving the Old _English_ hospitable
Grandeur, where the lowest Rank of neighbouring Subjects might make
themselves merry at Court without being laugh'd at themselves. In former
Reigns, Theatrical Entertainments at the Royal Palaces had been
perform'd at vast Expence, as appears by the Description of the
Decorations in several of _Ben. Johnson_'s Masques in King _James_ and
_Charles the First_'s Time;[155] many curious and original Draughts of
which, by Sir _Inigo Jones_, I have seen in the _Musæum_ of our greatest
Master and Patron of Arts and Architecture, whom it would be a needless
Liberty to name.[156] But when our Civil Wars ended in the Decadence of
Monarchy, it was then an Honour to the Stage to have fallen with it:
Yet, after the Restoration of _Charles_ II. some faint Attempts were
made to revive these Theatrical Spectacles at Court; but I have met with
no Account of above one Masque acted there by the Nobility; which was
that of _Calisto_, written by _Crown_, the Author of Sir _Courtly Nice_.
For what Reason _Crown_ was chosen to that Honour rather than _Dryden_,
who was then Poet-Laureat and out of all Comparison his Superior in
Poetry, may seem surprizing: But if we consider the Offence which the
then Duke of _Buckingham_ took at the Character of _Zimri_ in
_Dryden_'s _Absalom_, &c. (which might probably be a Return to his
Grace's _Drawcansir_ in the _Rehearsal_) we may suppose the Prejudice
and Recommendation of so illustrious a Pretender to Poetry might prevail
at Court to give Crown this Preference.[157] In the same Reign the King
had his Comedians at _Windsor_, but upon a particular Establishment; for
tho' they acted in St. _George_'s Hall, within the Royal Palace, yet (as
I have been inform'd by an Eye-witness) they were permitted to take
Money at the Door of every Spectator; whether this was an Indulgence, in
Conscience I cannot say; but it was a common Report among the principal
Actors, when I first came into the _Theatre-Royal_, in 1690, that there
was then due to the Company from that Court about One Thousand Five
Hundred Pounds for Plays commanded, _&c._ and yet it was the general
Complaint, in that Prince's Reign, that he paid too much Ready-money for
his Pleasures: But these Assertions I only give as I received them,
without being answerable for their Reality. This Theatrical Anecdote,
however, puts me in mind of one of a more private nature, which I had
from old solemn _Boman_, the late Actor of venerable Memory.[158]
_Boman_, then a Youth, and fam'd for his Voice, was appointed to sing
some Part in a Concert of Musick at the private Lodgings of Mrs. _Gwin_;
at which were only present the King, the Duke of _York_, and one or two
more who were usually admitted upon those detach'd Parties of Pleasure.
When the Performance was ended, the King express'd himself highly
pleased, and gave it extraordinary Commendations: Then, Sir, said the
Lady, to shew you don't speak like a Courtier, I hope you will make the
Performers a handsome Present: The King said he had no Money about him,
and ask'd the Duke if he had any? To which the Duke reply'd, I believe,
Sir, not above a Guinea or two. Upon which the laughing Lady, turning to
the People about her, and making bold with the King's common Expression,
cry'd, _Od's Fish! what Company am I got into!_

Whether the reverend Historian of his _Own Time_,[159] among the many
other Reasons of the same Kind he might have for stiling this Fair One
the _indiscreetest and wildest Creature that ever was in a Court_, might
know this to be one of them, I can't say: But if we consider her in all
the Disadvantages of her Rank and Education, she does not appear to have
had any criminal Errors more remarkable than her Sex's Frailty to answer
for: And if the same Author, in his latter End of that Prince's Life,
seems to reproach his Memory with too kind a Concern for her Support, we
may allow that it becomes a Bishop to have had no Eyes or Taste for the
frivolous Charms or playful _Badinage_ of a King's Mistress: Yet, if the
common Fame of her may be believ'd, which in my Memory was not doubted,
she had less to be laid to her Charge than any other of those Ladies
who were in the same State of Preferment: She never meddled in Matters
of serious Moment, or was the Tool of working Politicians: Never broke
into those amorous Infidelities which others in that grave Author are
accus'd of; but was as visibly distinguish'd by her particular Personal
Inclination to the King, as her Rivals were by their Titles and
Grandeur. Give me leave to carry (perhaps the Partiality of) my
Observation a little farther. The same Author, in the same Page,
263,[160] tells us, That "Another of the King's Mistresses, the Daughter
of a Clergyman, Mrs. _Roberts_, in whom her first Education had so deep
a Root, that though she fell into many scandalous Disorders, with very
dismal Adventures in them all, yet a Principle of Religion was so deep
laid in her, that tho' it did not restrain her, yet it kept alive in
her such a constant Horror of Sin, that she was never easy in an ill
course, and died with a great Sense of her former ill Life."

To all this let us give an implicit Credit: Here is the Account of a frail
Sinner made up with a Reverend Witness! Yet I cannot but lament that this
Mitred Historian, who seems to know more Personal Secrets than any that
ever writ before him, should not have been as inquisitive after the last
Hours of our other Fair Offender, whose Repentance I have been
unquestionably inform'd, appear'd in all the contrite Symptoms of a
Christian Sincerity. If therefore you find I am so much concern'd to make
this favourable mention of the one, because she was a Sister of the
_Theatre_, why may not--But I dare not be so presumptuous, so uncharitably
bold, as to suppose the other was spoken better of merely because she was
the Daughter of a _Clergyman_. Well, and what then? What's all this idle
Prate, you may say, to the matter in hand? Why, I say your Question is a
little too critical; and if you won't give an Author leave, now and then,
to embellish his Work by a natural Reflexion, you are an ungentle Reader.
But I have done with my Digression, and return to our Theatre at
_Hampton-Court_, where I am not sure the Reader, be he ever so wise, will
meet with any thing more worth his notice: However, if he happens to read,
as I write, for want of something better to do, he will go on; and perhaps
wonder when I tell him that:

A Play presented at Court, or acted on a publick Stage, seem to their
different Auditors a different Entertainment. Now hear my Reason for it.
In the common Theatre the Guests are at home, where the politer Forms of
Good-breeding are not so nicely regarded: Every one there falls to, and
likes or finds fault according to his natural Taste or Appetite. At
Court, where the Prince gives the Treat, and honours the Table with his
own Presence, the Audience is under the Restraint of a Circle, where
Laughter or Applause rais'd higher than a Whisper would be star'd at. At
a publick Play they are both let loose, even 'till the Actor is
sometimes pleas'd with his not being able to be heard for the Clamour of
them. But this Coldness or Decency of Attention at Court I observ'd had
but a melancholy Effect upon the impatient Vanity of some of our Actors,
who seem'd inconsolable when their flashy Endeavours to please had
pass'd unheeded: Their not considering where they were quite
disconcerted them; nor could they recover their Spirits 'till from the
lowest Rank of the Audience some gaping _John_ or _Joan_, in the
fullness of their Hearts, roar'd out their Approbation: And, indeed,
such a natural Instance of honest Simplicity a Prince himself, whose
Indulgence knows where to make Allowances, might reasonably smile at,
and perhaps not think it the worst part of his Entertainment. Yet it
must be own'd, that an Audience may be as well too much reserv'd, as
too profuse of their Applause: For though it is possible a _Betterton_
would not have been discourag'd from throwing out an Excellence, or
elated into an Error, by his Auditors being too little or too much
pleas'd, yet, as Actors of his Judgment are Rarities, those of less
Judgment may sink into a Flatness in their Performance for want of that
Applause, which from the generality of Judges they might perhaps have
some Pretence to: And the Auditor, when not seeming to feel what ought
to affect him, may rob himself of something more that he might have had
by giving the Actor his Due, who measures out his Power to please
according to the Value he sets upon his Hearer's Taste or Capacity. But,
however, as we were not here itinerant Adventurers, and had properly but
one Royal Auditor to please; after that Honour was attain'd to, the rest
of our Ambition had little to look after: And that the King was often
pleas'd, we were not only assur'd by those who had the Honour to be near
him; but could see it, from the frequent Satisfaction in his Looks at
particular Scenes and Passages: One Instance of which I am tempted to
relate, because it was at a Speech that might more naturally affect a
Sovereign Prince than any private Spectator. In _Shakespear_'s _Harry
the Eighth_, that King commands the Cardinal to write circular Letters
of Indemnity into every County where the Payment of certain heavy Taxes
had been disputed: Upon which the Cardinal whispers the following
Directions to his Secretary _Cromwell_:

  _----A Word with you:
  Let there be Letters writ to every Shire
  Of the King's Grace and Pardon: The griev'd Commons
  Hardly conceive of me. Let it be nois'd
  That through our Intercession this Revokement
  And Pardon comes.--I shall anon advise you
  Farther in the Proceeding----_

The Solicitude of this Spiritual Minister, in filching from his Master
the Grace and Merit of a good Action, and dressing up himself in it,
while himself had been Author of the Evil complain'd of, was so easy a
Stroke of his Temporal Conscience, that it seem'd to raise the King into
something more than a Smile whenever that Play came before him: And I
had a more distinct Occasion to observe this Effect; because my proper
Stand on the Stage when I spoke the Lines required me to be near the Box
where the King usually sate:[161] In a Word, this Play is so true a
Dramatick Chronicle of an old _English_ Court, and where the Character
of _Harry the Eighth_ is so exactly drawn, even to a humourous Likeness,
that it may be no wonder why his Majesty's particular Taste for it
should have commanded it three several times in one Winter.

This, too, calls to my Memory an extravagant Pleasantry of Sir _Richard
Steele_, who being ask'd by a grave Nobleman, after the same Play had
been presented at _Hampton-Court_, how the King lik'd it, reply'd, _So
terribly well, my Lord, that I was afraid I should have lost all my
Actors_! _For I was not sure the King would not keep them to fill the
Posts at Court that he saw them so fit for in the Play._

It may be imagin'd that giving Plays to the People at such a distance
from _London_ could not but be attended with an extraordinary Expence;
and it was some Difficulty, when they were first talk'd of, to bring
them under a moderate Sum; I shall therefore, in as few Words as
possible, give a Particular of what Establishment they were then brought
to, that in case the same Entertainments should at any time hereafter be
call'd to the same Place, future Courts may judge how far the Precedent
may stand good, or need an Alteration.

Though the stated Fee for a Play acted at _Whitehall_ had been formerly
but Twenty Pounds;[162] yet, as that hinder'd not the Company's acting on
the same Day at the Publick Theatre, that Sum was almost all clear Profits
to them: But this Circumstance not being practicable when they were
commanded to _Hampton-Court_, a new and extraordinary Charge was
unavoidable: The Menagers, therefore, not to inflame it, desired no
Consideration for their own Labour, farther than the Honour of being
employ'd in his Majesty's Commands; and, if the other Actors might be
allow'd each their Day's Pay and travelling Charges, they should hold
themselves ready to act any Play there at a Day's Warning: And that the
Trouble might be less by being divided, the Lord-Chamberlain was pleas'd
to let us know that the Houshold-Musick, the Wax Lights, and a
_Chaise-Marine_ to carry our moving Wardrobe to every different Play,
should be under the Charge of the proper Officers. Notwithstanding these
Assistances, the Expence of every Play amounted to Fifty Pounds: Which
Account, when all was over, was not only allow'd us, but his Majesty was
graciously pleas'd to give the Menagers Two Hundred Pounds more for their
particular Performance and Trouble in only seven times acting.[163] Which
last Sum, though it might not be too much for a Sovereign Prince to give,
it was certainly more than our utmost Merit ought to have hop'd for: And I
confess, when I receiv'd the Order for the Money from his Grace the Duke
of _Newcastle_, then Lord-Chamberlain, I was so surpris'd, that I imagin'd
his Grace's Favour, or Recommendation of our Readiness or Diligence, must
have contributed to so high a Consideration of it, and was offering my
Acknowledgments as I thought them due; but was soon stopt short by his
Grace's Declaration, That we had no Obligations for it but to the King
himself, who had given it from no other Motive than his own Bounty. Now
whether we may suppose that Cardinal _Wolsey_ (as you see _Shakespear_ has
drawn him) would silently have taken such low Acknowledgments to himself,
perhaps may be as little worth consideration as my mentioning this
Circumstance has been necessary: But if it is due to the Honour and
Integrity of the (then) Lord-Chamberlain, I cannot think it wholly
impertinent.

Since that time there has been but one Play given at _Hampton-Court_,
which was for the Entertainment of the Duke of _Lorrain_; and for which
his present Majesty was pleased to order us a Hundred Pounds.

The Reader may now plainly see that I am ransacking my Memory for such
remaining Scraps of Theatrical History as may not perhaps be worth his
Notice: But if they are such as tempt me to write them, why may I not
hope that in this wide World there may be many an idle Soul, no wiser
than my self, who may be equally tempted to read them?

I have so often had occasion to compare the State of the Stage to the
State of a Nation, that I yet feel a Reluctancy to drop the Comparison,
or speak of the one without some Application to the other. How many
Reigns, then, do I remember, from that of _Charles_ the Second, through
all which there has been, from one half of the People or the other, a
Succession of Clamour against every different Ministry for the time
being? And yet, let the Cause of this Clamour have been never so well
grounded, it is impossible but that some of those Ministers must have
been wiser and honester Men than others: If this be true, as true I
believe it is, why may I not then say, as some Fool in a _French_ Play
does upon a like Occasion--_Justement, comme chez nous!_ 'Twas exactly
the same with our Menagement! let us have done never so well, we could
not please every body: All I can say in our Defence is, that though many
good Judges might possibly conceive how the State of the Stage might
have been mended, yet the best of them never pretended to remember the
Time when it was better! or could shew us the way to make their
imaginary Amendments practicable.

For though I have often allow'd that our best Merit as Actors was never
equal to that of our Predecessors, yet I will venture to say, that in
all its Branches the Stage had never been under so just, so prosperous,
and so settled a Regulation, for forty Years before, as it was at
the Time I am speaking of. The most plausible Objection to our
Administration seemed to be, that we took no Care to breed up young
Actors to succeed us;[164] and this was imputed as the greater Fault,
because it was taken for granted that it was a Matter as easy as
planting so many Cabbages: Now, might not a Court as well be reproached
for not breeding up a Succession of complete Ministers? And yet it is
evident, that if Providence or Nature don't supply us with both, the
State and the Stage will be but poorly supported. If a Man of an ample
Fortune should take it into his Head to give a younger Son an
extraordinary Allowance in order to breed him a great Poet, what might
we suppose would be the Odds that his Trouble and Money would be all
thrown away? Not more than it would be against the Master of a Theatre
who should say, this or that young Man I will take care shall be an
excellent Actor! Let it be our Excuse, then, for that mistaken Charge
against us; that since there was no Garden or Market where accomplished
Actors grew or were to be sold, we could only pick them up, as we do
Pebbles of Value, by Chance: We may polish a thousand before we can
find one fit to make a Figure in the Lid of a Snuff-Box. And how few
soever we were able to produce, it is no Proof that we were not always
in search of them: Yet, at worst, it was allow'd that our Deficiency of
Men Actors was not so visible as our Scarcity of tolerable Women: But
when it is consider'd, that the Life of Youth and Beauty is too short
for the bringing an Actress to her Perfection; were I to mention, too,
the many frail fair Ones I remember who, before they could arrive to
their Theatrical Maturity, were feloniously stolen from the Tree, it
would rather be thought our Misfortune than our Fault that we were not
better provided.[165]

Even the Laws of a Nunnery, we find, are thought no sufficient Security
against Temptations without Iron Grates and high Walls to inforce them;
which the Architecture of a Theatre will not so properly admit of: And
yet, methinks, Beauty that has not those artificial Fortresses about it,
that has no Defence but its natural Virtue (which upon the Stage has
more than once been met with) makes a much more meritorious Figure in
Life than that immur'd Virtue which could never be try'd. But alas! as
the poor Stage is but the Show-glass to a Toy-shop, we must not
wonder if now and then some of the Bawbles should find a Purchaser.

[Illustration: SUSANNA MARIA CIBBER.]

However, as to say more or less than Truth are equally unfaithful in an
Historian, I cannot but own that, in the Government of the Theatre, I have
known many Instances where the Merit of promising Actors has not always
been brought forward, with the Regard or Favour it had a Claim to: And if
I put my Reader in mind, that in the early Part of this Work I have shewn
thro' what continued Difficulties and Discouragements I myself made my way
up the Hill of Preferment, he may justly call it too strong a Glare of my
Vanity: I am afraid he is in the right; but I pretend not to be one of
those chaste Authors that know how to write without it: When Truth is to
be told, it may be as much Chance as Choice if it happens to turn out in
my Favour: But to shew that this was true of others as well as myself,
_Booth_ shall be another Instance. In 1707, when _Swiney_ was the only
Master of the Company in the _Hay-Market_; _Wilks_, tho' he was then but
an hired Actor himself, rather chose to govern and give Orders than to
receive them; and was so jealous of _Booth_'s rising, that with a high
Hand he gave the Part of _Pierre_, in _Venice Preserv'd_, to _Mills_ the
elder, who (not to undervalue him) was out of Sight in the Pretensions
that _Booth_, then young as he was, had to the same Part:[166] and this
very Discouragement so strongly affected him, that not long after, when
several of us became Sharers with _Swiney_, _Booth_ rather chose to
risque his Fortune with the old Patentee in _Drury-Lane_, than come into
our Interest, where he saw he was like to meet with more of those
Partialities.[167] And yet, again, _Booth_ himself, when he came to be a
Menager, would sometimes suffer his Judgment to be blinded by his
Inclination to Actors whom the Town seem'd to have but an indifferent
Opinion of. This again inclines me to ask another of my odd Questions,
_viz._ Have we never seen the same passions govern a Court! How many white
Staffs and great Places do we find, in our Histories, have been laid at
the Feet of a Monarch, because they chose not to give way to a Rival in
Power, or hold a second Place in his Favour? How many _Whigs_ and _Tories_
have chang'd their Parties, when their good or bad Pretensions have met
with a Check to their higher Preferment?

Thus we see, let the Degrees and Rank of Men be ever so unequal, Nature
throws out their Passions from the same Motives; 'tis not the Eminence
or Lowliness of either that makes the one, when provok'd, more or less
a reasonable Creature than the other: The Courtier and the Comedian,
when their Ambition is out of Humour, take just the same Measures to
right themselves.

If this familiar Stile of talking should, in the Nostrils of Gravity and
Wisdom, smell a little too much of the Presumptuous or the Pragmatical,
I will at least descend lower in my Apology for it, by calling to my
Assistance the old, humble Proverb, _viz._ _'Tis an ill Bird that, &c._
Why then should I debase my Profession by setting it in vulgar Lights,
when I may shew it to more favourable Advantages? And when I speak of
our Errors, why may I not extenuate them by illustrious Examples? or by
not allowing them greater than the greatest Men have been subject to? Or
why, indeed, may I not suppose that a sensible Reader will rather laugh
than look grave at the Pomp of my Parallels?

Now, as I am tied down to the Veracity of an Historian whose Facts
cannot be supposed, like those in a Romance, to be in the Choice of the
Author to make them more marvellous by Invention; if I should happen to
sink into a little farther Insignificancy, let the simple Truth of what
I have farther to say, be my Excuse for it. I am obliged, therefore, to
make the Experiment, by shewing you the Conduct of our Theatrical
Ministry in such Lights as on various Occasions it appear'd in.

Though _Wilks_ had more Industry and Application than any Actor I had
ever known, yet we found it possible that those necessary Qualities
might sometimes be so misconducted as not only to make them useless, but
hurtful to our Common-wealth;[168] for while he was impatient to be
foremost in every thing, he frequently shock'd the honest Ambition of
others, whose Measures might have been more serviceable, could his
Jealousy have given way to them. His own Regards for himself, therefore,
were, to avoid a disagreeable Dispute with him, too often complied with:
But this leaving his Diligence to his own Conduct, made us, in some
Instances, pay dearly for it: For Example; he would take as much, or
more Pains, in forwarding to the Stage the Water-gruel Work of some
insipid Author that happen'd rightly to make his Court to him,[169] than
he would for the best Play wherein it was not his Fortune to be chosen
for the best Character. So great was his Impatience to be employ'd, that
I scarce remember, in twenty Years, above one profitable Play we could
get to be reviv'd, wherein he found he was to make no considerable
Figure, independent of him: But the _Tempest_ having done Wonders
formerly, he could not form any Pretensions to let it lie longer
dormant: However, his Coldness to it was so visible, that he took all
Occasions to postpone and discourage its Progress, by frequently taking
up the morning-Stage with something more to his Mind. Having been myself
particularly solicitous for the reviving this Play, _Dogget_ (for this
was before Booth came into the Menagement) consented that the
extraordinary Decorations and Habits should be left to my Care and
Direction, as the fittest Person whose Temper could jossle through the
petulant Opposition that he knew _Wilks_ would be always offering to it,
because he had but a middling Part in it, that of _Ferdinand_:
Notwithstanding which, so it happen'd, that the Success of it shew'd
(not to take from the Merit of _Wilks_) that it was possible to have
good Audiences without his extraordinary Assistance. In the first six
Days of acting it we paid all our constant and incidental Expence, and
shar'd each of us a hundred Pounds: The greatest Profit that in so
little a Time had yet been known within my Memory! But, alas! what was
paltry Pelf to Glory? That was the darling Passion of _Wilks_'s Heart!
and not to advance in it was, to so jealous an Ambition, a painful
Retreat, a mere Shade to his Laurels! and the common Benefit was but a
poor Equivalent to his want of particular Applause! To conclude, not
Prince _Lewis_ of _Baden_, though a Confederate General with the Duke
of _Marlborough_, was more inconsolable upon the memorable Victory
at _Blenheim_, at which he was not present, than our Theatrical Hero
was to see any Action prosperous that he was not himself at the Head of.
If this, then, was an Infirmity in _Wilks_, why may not my shewing the
same Weakness in so great a Man mollify the Imputation, and keep his
Memory in Countenance.

This laudable Appetite for Fame in _Wilks_ was not, however, to be fed
without that constant Labour which only himself was able to come up to:
He therefore bethought him of the means to lessen the Fatigue, and at
the same time to heighten his Reputation; which was, by giving up now
and then a Part to some raw Actor who he was sure would disgrace it, and
consequently put the Audience in mind of his superior Performance: Among
this sort of Indulgences to young Actors he happen'd once to make a
Mistake that set his Views in a clear Light. The best Criticks, I
believe, will allow that in _Shakespear_'s _Macbeth_ there are, in the
Part of _Macduff_, two Scenes, the one of Terror, in the second Act, and
the other of Compassion, in the fourth, equal to any that dramatick
Poetry has produc'd: These Scenes _Wilks_ had acted with Success, tho'
far short of that happier Skill and Grace which _Monfort_ had formerly
shewn in them.[170] Such a Part, however, one might imagine would be one
of the last a good Actor would chuse to part with: But _Wilks_ was of a
different Opinion; for _Macbeth_ was thrice as long, had more great
Scenes of Action, and bore the Name of the Play: Now, to be a second in
any Play was what he did not much care for, and had been seldom us'd to:
This Part of _Macduff_, therefore, he had given to one _Williams_, as
yet no extraordinary, though a promising Actor.[171] _Williams_, in the
Simplicity of his Heart, immediately told _Booth_ what a Favour _Wilks_
had done him. _Booth_, as he had Reason, thought _Wilks_ had here
carried his Indulgence and his Authority a little too far; for as
_Booth_ had no better a Part in the same Play than that of _Banquo_, he
found himself too much disregarded in letting so young an Actor take
Place of him: _Booth_, therefore, who knew the Value of _Macduff_,
proposed to do it himself, and to give _Banquo_ to _Williams_; and to
make him farther amends, offer'd him any other of his Parts that he
thought might be of Service to him. _Williams_ was content with the
Exchange, and thankful for the Promise. This Scheme, indeed, (had it
taken Effect) might have been an Ease to _Wilks_, and possibly no
Disadvantage to the Play; but softly----That was not quite what we had a
Mind to! No sooner, then, came this Proposal to _Wilks_, but off went
the Masque and out came the Secret! For though _Wilks_ wanted to be
eas'd of the Part, he did not desire to be _excell'd_ in it; and as he
was not sure but that might be the case if _Booth_ were to act it,[172]
he wisely retracted his own Project, took _Macduff_ again to himself,
and while he liv'd never had a Thought of running the same Hazard by any
farther Offer to resign it.

Here I confess I am at a Loss for a Fact in History to which this can be
a Parallel! To be weary of a Post, even to a real Desire of resigning
it; and yet to chuse rather to drudge on in it than suffer it to be well
supplied (though to share in that Advantage) is a Delicacy of Ambition
that _Machiavil_ himself has made no mention of: Or if in old _Rome_,
the Jealousy of any pretended Patriot equally inclin'd to abdicate his
Office may have come up to it, 'tis more than my reading remembers.

As nothing can be more impertinent than shewing too frequent a Fear to
be thought so, I will, without farther Apology, rather risque that
Imputation than not tell you another Story much to the same purpose, and
of no more consequence than my last. To make you understand it, however,
a little Preface will be necessary.

If the Merit of an Actor (as it certainly does) consists more in the
Quality than the Quantity of his Labour; the other Menagers had no
visible Reason to think this needless Ambition of _Wilks_, in being so
often and sometimes so unnecessarily employ'd, gave him any Title to a
Superiority; especially when our Articles of Agreement had allow'd us
all to be equal. But what are narrow Contracts to great Souls with
growing Desires? _Wilks_, therefore, who thought himself lessen'd in
appealing to any Judgment but his own, plainly discovered by his
restless Behaviour (though he did not care to speak out) that he thought
he had a Right to some higher Consideration for his Performance: This
was often _Booth_'s Opinion, as well as my own. It must be farther
observ'd, that he actually had a separate Allowance of Fifty Pounds a
Year for writing our daily Play-Bills for the Printer: Which Province,
to say the Truth, was the only one we car'd to trust to his particular
Intendance, or could find out for a Pretence to distinguish him. But, to
speak a plainer Truth, this Pension, which was no part of our original
Agreement, was merely paid to keep him quiet, and not that we thought it
due to so insignificant a Charge as what a Prompter had formerly
executed. This being really the Case, his frequent Complaints of being a
Drudge to the Company grew something more than disagreeable to us: For
we could not digest the Imposition of a Man's setting himself to work,
and then bringing in his own Bill for it. _Booth_, therefore, who was
less easy than I was to see him so often setting a Merit upon this
Quantity of his Labour, which neither could be our Interest or his own
to lay upon him, proposed to me that we might remove this pretended
Grievance by reviving some Play that might be likely to live, and be
easily acted, without _Wilks_'s having any Part in it. About this time
an unexpected Occasion offer'd itself to put our Project in practice:
What follow'd our Attempt will be all (if any thing be) worth
Observation in my Story.

In 1725 we were call'd upon, in a manner that could not be resisted, to
revive the _Provok'd Wife_,[173] a Comedy which, while we found our
Account in keeping the Stage clear of those loose Liberties it had
formerly too justly been charg'd with, we had laid aside for some
Years.[174] The Author, Sir _John Vanbrugh_, who was conscious of what
it had too much of, was prevail'd upon[175] to substitute a new-written
Scene in the Place of one in the fourth Act, where the Wantonness of his
Wit and Humour had (originally) made a Rake[176] talk like a Rake in the
borrow'd Habit of a Clergyman: To avoid which Offence, he clapt the same
Debauchee into the Undress of a Woman of Quality: Now the Character and
Profession of a Fine Lady not being so indelibly sacred as that of a
Churchman, whatever Follies he expos'd in the Petticoat kept him at
least clear of his former Prophaneness, and were now innocently
ridiculous to the Spectator.

This Play being thus refitted for the Stage, was, as I have observ'd,
call'd for from Court and by many of the Nobility.[177] Now, then, we
thought, was a proper time to come to an Explanation with _Wilks_:
Accordingly, when the Actors were summon'd to hear the Play read and
receive their Parts, I address'd myself to _Wilks_, before them all, and
told him, That as the Part of _Constant_, which he seem'd to chuse, was
a Character of less Action than he generally appear'd in, we thought
this might be a good Occasion to ease himself by giving it to
another.--Here he look'd grave.--That the Love-Scenes of it were rather
serious than gay or humourous, and therefore might sit very well upon
_Booth_.----Down dropt his Brow, and furl'd were his Features.--That if
we were never to revive a tolerable Play without him, what would become
of us in case of his Indisposition?----Here he pretended to stir the
Fire.--That as he could have no farther Advantage or Advancement in his
Station to hope for, his acting in this Play was but giving himself an
unprofitable Trouble, which neither _Booth_ or I desired to impose upon
him.--Softly.--Now the Pill began to gripe him.----In a Word, this
provoking Civility plung'd him into a Passion which he was no longer
able to contain; out it came, with all the Equipage of unlimited
Language that on such Occasions his Displeasure usually set out with;
but when his Reply was stript of those Ornaments, it was plainly this:
That he look'd upon all I had said as a concerted Design, not only to
signalize our selves by laying him aside, but a Contrivance to draw him
into the Disfavour of the Nobility, by making it suppos'd his own Choice
that he did not act in a Play so particularly ask'd for; but we should
find he could stand upon his own Bottom, and it was not all our little
caballing should get our Ends of him: To which I answer'd with some
Warmth, That he was mistaken in our Ends; for Those, Sir, said I, you
have answer'd already by shewing the Company you cannot bear to be left
out of any Play. Are not you every Day complaining of your being
over-labour'd? And now, upon our first offering to ease you, you fly
into a Passion, and pretend to make that a greater Grievance than
t'other: But, Sir, if your being In or Out of the Play is a Hardship,
you shall impose it upon yourself: The Part is in your Hand, and to us
it is a Matter of Indifference now whether you take it or leave it. Upon
this he threw down the Part upon the Table, cross'd his Arms, and sate
knocking his Heel upon the Floor, as seeming to threaten most when he
said least; but when no body persuaded him to take it up again, _Booth_,
not chusing to push the matter too far, but rather to split the
difference of our Dispute, said, That, for his Part, he saw no such
great matter in acting every Day; for he believed it the wholsomest
Exercise in the World; it kept the Spirits in motion, and always gave
him a good Stomach. Though this was, in a manner, giving up the Part to
_Wilks_, yet it did not allow he did us any Favour in receiving it. Here
I observ'd Mrs. _Oldfield_ began to titter behind her Fan: But _Wilks_
being more intent upon what _Booth_ had said, reply'd, Every one could
best feel for himself, but he did not pretend to the Strength of a
Pack-horse; therefore if Mrs. _Oldfield_ would chuse any body else to
play with her,[178] he should be very glad to be excus'd: This throwing
the Negative upon Mrs. _Oldfield_ was, indeed, a sure way to save
himself; which I could not help taking notice of, by saying, It was
making but an ill Compliment to the Company to suppose there was but one
Man in it fit to play an ordinary Part with her. Here Mrs. _Oldfield_
got up, and turning me half round to come forward, said with her usual
Frankness, Pooh! you are all a Parcel of Fools, to make such a rout
about nothing! Rightly judging that the Person most out of humour would
not be more displeas'd at her calling us all by the same Name. As she
knew, too, the best way of ending the Debate would be to help the Weak;
she said, she hop'd Mr. _Wilks_ would not so far mind what had past as
to refuse his acting the Part with her; for tho' it might not be so good
as he had been us'd to, yet she believed those who had bespoke the Play
would expect to have it done to the best Advantage, and it would make
but an odd Story abroad if it were known there had been any Difficulty
in that point among ourselves. To conclude, _Wilks_ had the Part, and we
had all we wanted; which was an Occasion to let him see, that the
Accident or Choice of one Menager's being more employ'd than another
would never be allow'd a Pretence for altering our Indentures, or his
having an extraordinary Consideration for it.[179]

However disagreeable it might be to have this unsociable Temper daily to
deal with; yet I cannot but say, that from the same impatient Spirit
that had so often hurt us, we still drew valuable Advantages: For as
_Wilks_ seem'd to have no Joy in Life beyond his being distinguish'd on
the Stage, we were not only sure of his always doing his best there
himself, but of making others more careful than without the Rod of so
irascible a Temper over them they would have been. And I much question
if a more temperate or better Usage of the hired Actors could have so
effectually kept them to Order. Not even _Betterton_ (as we have seen)
with all his good Sense, his great Fame and Experience, could, by being
only a quiet Example of Industry himself, save his Company from falling,
while neither Gentleness could govern or the Consideration of their
common Interest reform them.[180] Diligence, with much the inferior
Skill or Capacity, will beat the best negligent Company that ever came
upon a Stage. But when a certain dreaming Idleness or jolly Negligence
of Rehearsals gets into a Body of the Ignorant and Incapable (which
before _Wilks_ came into _Drury-Lane_, when _Powel_ was at the Head of
them, was the Case of that Company) then, I say, a sensible Spectator
might have look'd upon the fallen Stage as _Portius_ in the Play of
_Cato_ does upon his ruin'd Country, and have lamented it in (something
near) the same Exclamation, _viz._

  _--O ye Immortal Bards!
  What Havock do these Blockheads make among your Works!
  How are the boasted Labours of an Age
  Defac'd and tortured by Ungracious Action?_[181]

Of this wicked Doings _Dryden_, too, complains in one of his Prologues
at that time, where, speaking of such lewd Actors, he closes a Couplet
with the following Line, _viz._

  _And murder Plays, which they miscall Reviving._[182]

The great Share, therefore, that _Wilks_, by his exemplary Diligence and
Impatience of Neglect in others, had in the Reformation of this Evil,
ought in Justice to be remember'd; and let my own Vanity here take Shame
to itself when I confess, That had I had half his Application, I still
think I might have shewn myself twice the Actor that in my highest State
of Favour I appear'd to be. But if I have any Excuse for that Neglect (a
Fault which, if I loved not Truth, I need not have mentioned) it is that
so much of my Attention was taken up in an incessant Labour to guard
against our private Animosities, and preserve a Harmony in our Menagement,
that I hope and believe it made ample Amends for whatever Omission my
Auditors might sometimes know it cost me some pains to conceal. But Nature
takes care to bestow her Blessings with a more equal Hand than Fortune
does, and is seldom known to heap too many upon one Man: One tolerable
Talent in an Individual is enough to preserve him from being good for
nothing; and, if that was not laid to my Charge as an Actor, I have in
this Light too, less to complain of than to be thankful for.

Before I conclude my History, it may be expected I should give some
further View of these my last Cotemporaries of the Theatre, _Wilks_ and
_Booth_, in their different acting Capacities. If I were to paint them in
the Colours they laid upon one another, their Talents would not be shewn
with half the Commendation I am inclined to bestow upon them, when they
are left to my own Opinion. But People of the same Profession are apt to
see themselves in their own clear Glass of Partiality, and look upon their
Equals through a Mist of Prejudice. It might be imagin'd, too, from the
difference of their natural Tempers, that _Wilks_ should have been more
blind to the Excellencies of _Booth_ than _Booth_ was to those of _Wilks_;
but it was not so: _Wilks_ would sometimes commend _Booth_ to me; but when
_Wilks_ excell'd, the other was silent:[183] _Booth_ seem'd to think
nothing valuable that was not tragically Great or Marvellous: Let that be
as true as it may; yet I have often thought that, from his having no Taste
of Humour himself,[184] he might be too much inclin'd to depreciate the
Acting of it in others. The very slight Opinion which in private
Conversation with me he had of _Wilks_'s acting Sir _Harry Wildair_, was
certainly more than could be justified; not only from the general Applause
that was against that Opinion (tho' Applause is not always infallible)
but from the visible Capacity which must be allow'd to an Actor, that
could carry such slight Materials to such a height of Approbation: For,
though the Character of _Wildair_ scarce in any one Scene will stand
against a just Criticism; yet in the Whole there are so many gay and false
Colours of the fine Gentleman, that nothing but a Vivacity in the
Performance proportionably extravagant could have made them so happily
glare upon a common Audience.

_Wilks_, from his first setting out, certainly form'd his manner of
Acting upon the Model of _Monfort_;[185] as _Booth_ did his on that of
_Betterton_. But----_Haud passibus æquis_: I cannot say either of them
came up to their Original. _Wilks_ had not that easy regulated Behaviour,
or the harmonious Elocution of the One, nor _Booth_ that Conscious Aspect
of Intelligence nor requisite Variation of Voice that made every Line the
Other spoke seem his own natural self-deliver'd Sentiment: Yet there is
still room for great Commendation of Both the first mentioned; which will
not be so much diminish'd in my having said they were only excell'd by
such Predecessors, as it will be rais'd in venturing to affirm it will be
a longer time before any Successors will come near them. Thus one of the
greatest Praises given to _Virgil_ is, that no Successor in Poetry came
so near _Him_ as _He_ himself did to _Homer_.

Though the Majority of Publick Auditors are but bad judges of Theatrical
Action, and are often deceiv'd into their Approbation of what has no solid
Pretence to it; yet, as there are no other appointed Judges to appeal to,
and as every single Spectator has a Right to be one of them, their
Sentence will be definitive, and the Merit of an Actor must, in some
degree, be weigh'd by it: By this Law, then, _Wilks_ was pronounced an
Excellent Actor; which, if the few true Judges did not allow him to be,
they were at least too candid to slight or discourage him. _Booth_ and he
were Actors so directly opposite in their Manner, that if either of them
could have borrowed a little of the other's Fault, they would Both have
been improv'd by it: If _Wilks_ had sometimes too violent a Vivacity;
_Booth_ as often contented himself with too grave a Dignity: The Latter
seem'd too much to heave up his Words, as the other to dart them to the
Ear with too quick and sharp a Vehemence: Thus _Wilks_ would too
frequently break into the Time and Measure of the Harmony by too many
spirited Accents in one Line; and _Booth_, by too solemn a Regard to
Harmony, would as often lose the necessary Spirit of it: So that (as I
have observ'd) could we have sometimes rais'd the one and sunk the other,
they had both been nearer to the mark. Yet this could not be always
objected to them: They had their Intervals of unexceptionable Excellence,
that more than balanc'd their Errors. The Master-piece of _Booth_ was
_Othello_: There he was most in Character, and seemed not more to animate
or please himself in it than his Spectators. 'Tis true he owed his last
and highest Advancement to his acting _Cato_: But it was the Novelty and
critical Appearance of that Character that chiefly swell'd the Torrent of
his Applause: For let the Sentiments of a declaiming Patriot have all the
Sublimity that Poetry can raise them to; let them be deliver'd, too, with
the utmost Grace and Dignity of Elocution that can recommend them to the
Auditor: Yet this is but one Light wherein the Excellence of an Actor can
shine: But in _Othello_ we may see him in the Variety of Nature: There the
Actor is carried through the different Accidents of domestick Happiness
and Misery, occasionally torn and tortur'd by the most distracting Passion
that can raise Terror or Compassion in the Spectator. Such are the
Characters that a Master Actor would delight in; and therefore in
_Othello_ I may safely aver that _Booth_ shew'd himself thrice the Actor
that he could in _Cato_. And yet his Merit in acting _Cato_ need not be
diminish'd by this Comparison.

_Wilks_ often regretted that in Tragedy he had not the full and strong
Voice of _Booth_ to command and grace his Periods with: But _Booth_ us'd
to say, That if his Ear had been equal to it, _Wilks_ had Voice enough to
have shewn himself a much better Tragedian. Now, though there might be
some Truth in this; yet these two Actors were of so mixt a Merit, that
even in Tragedy the Superiority was not always on the same side: In
Sorrow, Tenderness, or Resignation, _Wilks_ plainly had the Advantage,
and seem'd more pathetically to feel, look, and express his Calamity:
But in the more turbulent Transports of the Heart, _Booth_ again bore
the Palm, and left all Competitors behind him. A Fact perhaps will set
this Difference in a clearer Light. I have formerly seen _Wilks_ act
_Othello_,[186] and _Booth_ the _Earl of Essex_,[187] in which they both
miscarried: Neither the exclamatory Rage or Jealousy of the one, or the
plaintive Distresses of the other, were happily executed, or became either
of them; though in the contrary Characters they were both excellent.

When an Actor becomes and naturally Looks the Character he stands in, I
have often observ'd it to have had as fortunate an Effect, and as much
recommended him to the Approbation of the common Auditors, as the most
correct or judicious Utterance of the Sentiments: This was strongly
visible in the favourable Reception _Wilks_ met with in _Hamlet_, where
I own the Half of what he spoke was as painful to my Ear as every Line
that came from _Betterton_ was charming;[188] and yet it is not
impossible, could they have come to a Poll, but _Wilks_ might have had a
Majority of Admirers: However, such a Division had been no Proof that
the Præeminence had not still remain'd in _Betterton_; and if I should
add that _Booth_, too, was behind _Betterton_ in _Othello_, it would be
saying no more than _Booth_ himself had Judgment and Candour enough to
know and confess. And if both he and _Wilks_ are allow'd, in the two
above-mention'd Characters, a second Place to so great a Master as
_Betterton_, it will be a Rank of Praise that the best Actors since my
Time might have been proud of.

I am now come towards the End of that Time through which our Affairs had
long gone forward in a settled Course of Prosperity. From the Visible
Errors of former Menagements we had at last found the necessary Means to
bring our private Laws and Orders into the general Observance and
Approbation of our Society: Diligence and Neglect were under an equal
Eye; the one never fail'd of its Reward, and the other, by being very
rarely excus'd, was less frequently committed. You are now to consider
us in our height of Favour, and so much in fashion with the politer Part
of the Town, that our House every _Saturday_ seem'd to be the appointed
Assembly of the First Ladies of Quality: Of this, too, the common
Spectators were so well appriz'd, that for twenty Years successively, on
that Day, we scarce ever fail'd of a crowded Audience; for which
Occasion we particularly reserv'd our best Plays, acted in the best
Manner we could give them.[189]

Among our many necessary Reformations; what not a little preserv'd to us
the Regard of our Auditors, was the Decency of our clear Stage;[190]
from whence we had now, for many Years, shut out those idle Gentlemen,
who seem'd more delighted to be pretty Objects themselves, than capable
of any Pleasure from the Play: Who took their daily Stands where they
might best elbow the Actor, and come in for their Share of the Auditor's
Attention. In many a labour'd Scene of the warmest Humour and of the
most affecting Passion have I seen the best Actors disconcerted, while
these buzzing Muscatos have been fluttering round their Eyes and Ears.
How was it possible an Actor, so embarrass'd, should keep his Impatience
from entering into that different Temper which his personated Character
might require him to be Master of?

Future Actors may perhaps wish I would set this Grievance in a stronger
Light; and, to say the Truth, where Auditors are ill-bred, it cannot
well be expected that Actors should be polite. Let me therefore shew how
far an Artist in any Science is apt to be hurt by any sort of
Inattention to his Performance.

While the famous _Corelli_,[191] at _Rome_, was playing some Musical
Composition of his own to a select Company in the private Apartment of
his Patron-Cardinal, he observed, in the height of his Harmony, his
Eminence was engaging in a detach'd Conversation; upon which he suddenly
stopt short, and gently laid down his Instrument: The Cardinal,
surpriz'd at the unexpected Cessation, ask'd him if a String was broke?
To which _Corelli_, in an honest Conscience of what was due to his
Musick, reply'd, No, Sir, I was only afraid I interrupted Business. His
Eminence, who knew that a Genius could never shew itself to Advantage
where it had not its proper Regards, took this Reproof in good Part, and
broke off his Conversation to hear the whole _Concerto_ play'd over
again.

Another Story will let us see what Effect a mistaken Offence of this
kind had upon the _French_ Theatre; which was told me by a Gentleman of
the long Robe, then at _Paris_, and who was himself the innocent Author
of it. At the Tragedy of _Zaire_, while the celebrated Mademoiselle
_Gossin_[192] was delivering a Soliloquy, this Gentleman was seiz'd
with a sudden Fit of Coughing, which gave the Actress some Surprize and
Interruption; and his Fit increasing, she was forced to stand silent so
long, that it drew the Eyes of the uneasy Audience upon him; when a
_French_ Gentleman, leaning forward to him, ask'd him, If this Actress
had given him any particular Offence, that he took so publick an
Occasion to resent it? The _English_ Gentleman, in the utmost Surprize,
assured him, So far from it, that he was a particular Admirer of her
Performance; that his Malady was his real Misfortune, and if he
apprehended any Return of it, he would rather quit his Seat than
disoblige either the Actress or the Audience.

This publick Decency in their Theatre I have myself seen carried so far,
that a Gentleman in their _second Loge_, or Middle-Gallery, being
observ'd to sit forward himself while a Lady sate behind him, a loud
Number of Voices call'd out to him from the Pit, _Place à la Dame!_
_Place à la Dame!_ When the Person so offending, either not apprehending
the Meaning of the Clamour, or possibly being some _John Trott_ who
fear'd no Man alive; the Noise was continued for several Minutes; nor
were the Actors, though ready on the Stage, suffer'd to begin the Play
'till this unbred Person was laugh'd out of his Seat, and had placed the
Lady before him.

Whether this Politeness observ'd at Plays may be owing to their Clime,
their Complexion, or their Government, is of no great Consequence; but
if it is to be acquired, methinks it is pity our accomplish'd
Countrymen, who every Year import so much of this Nation's gawdy
Garniture, should not, in this long Course of our Commerce with them,
have brought over a little of their Theatrical Good-breeding too.

I have been the more copious upon this Head, that it might be judg'd how
much it stood us upon to have got rid of those improper Spectators I
have been speaking of: For whatever Regard we might draw by keeping them
at a Distance from our Stage, I had observed, while they were admitted
behind our Scenes, we but too often shew'd them the wrong Side of our
Tapestry; and that many a tolerable Actor was the less valued when it
was known what ordinary Stuff he was made of.

Among the many more disagreeable Distresses that are almost unavoidable in
the Government of a Theatre, those we so often met with from the
Persecution of bad Authors were what we could never intirely get rid of.
But let us state both our Cases, and then see where the Justice of the
Complaint lies. 'Tis true, when an ingenious Indigent had taken perhaps a
whole Summer's Pains, _invitâ Minervâ_, to heap up a Pile of Poetry into
the Likeness of a Play, and found, at last, the gay Promise of his
Winter's Support was rejected and abortive, a Man almost ought to be a
Poet himself to be justly sensible of his Distress! Then, indeed, great
Allowances ought to be made for the severe Reflections he might naturally
throw upon those pragmatical Actors, who had no Sense or Taste of good
Writing. And yet, if his Relief was only to be had by his imposing a bad
Play upon a good Set of Actors, methinks the Charity that first looks at
home has as good an Excuse for its Coldness as the unhappy Object of it
had a Plea for his being reliev'd at their Expence. But immediate Want was
not always confess'd their Motive for Writing; Fame, Honour, and
_Parnassian_ Glory had sometimes taken a romantick Turn in their Heads;
and then they gave themselves the Air of talking to us in a higher
Strain--Gentlemen were not to be so treated! the Stage was like to be
finely govern'd when Actors pretended to be Judges of Authors, &_c._ But,
dear Gentlemen! if they were good Actors, why not? How should they have
been able to act, or rise to any Excellence, if you supposed them not to
feel or understand what you offer'd them? Would you have reduc'd them to
the meer Mimickry of Parrots and Monkies, that can only prate, and play a
great many pretty Tricks, without Reflection? Or how are you sure your
Friend, the infallible Judge to whom you read your fine Piece, might be
sincere in the Praises he gave it? Or, indeed, might not you have thought
the best Judge a bad one if he had disliked it? Consider, too, how
possible it might be that a Man of Sense would not care to tell you a
Truth he was sure you would not believe! And if neither _Dryden_,
_Congreve_, _Steele_, _Addison_, nor _Farquhar_, (if you please) ever made
any Complaint of their Incapacity to judge, why is the World to believe
the Slights you have met with from them are either undeserved or
particular? Indeed! indeed, I am not conscious that we ever did you or any
of your Fraternity the least Injustice![193] Yet this was not all we had
to struggle with; to supersede our Right of rejecting, the Recommendation,
or rather Imposition, of some great Persons (whom it was not Prudence to
disoblige) sometimes came in with a high Hand to support their
Pretensions; and then, _cout que cout_, acted it must be! So when the
short Life of this wonderful Nothing was over, the Actors were perhaps
abus'd in a Preface for obstructing the Success of it, and the Town
publickly damn'd us for our private Civility.[194]

I cannot part with these fine Gentlemen Authors without mentioning a
ridiculous _Disgraccia_ that befel one of them many Years ago: This
solemn Bard, who, like _Bays_, only writ for Fame and Reputation; on the
second Day's publick Triumph of his Muse, marching in a stately
full-bottom'd Perriwig into the Lobby of the House, with a Lady of
Condition in his Hand, when raising his Voice to the Sir _Fopling_
Sound, that _became the Mouth of a Man of Quality_, and calling
out--Hey! Box-keeper, where is my Lady such-a-one's Servant, was
unfortunately answer'd by honest _John Trott_, (which then happen'd to
be the Box-keeper's real Name) Sir, we have dismiss'd, there was not
Company enough to pay Candles. In which mortal Astonishment it may be
sufficient to leave him. And yet had the Actors refus'd this Play, what
Resentment might have been thought too severe for them?

Thus was our Administration often censured for Accidents which were not
in our Power to prevent: A possible Case in the wisest Governments. If,
therefore, some Plays have been preferr'd to the Stage that were never
fit to have been seen there, let this be our best Excuse for it. And
yet, if the Merit of our rejecting the many bad Plays that press'd hard
upon us were weigh'd against the few that were thus imposed upon us, our
Conduct in general might have more Amendments of the Stage to boast of
than Errors to answer for. But it is now Time to drop the Curtain.

During our four last Years there happen'd so very little unlike what
has been said before, that I shall conclude with barely mentioning
those unavoidable Accidents that drew on our Dissolution. The first,
that for some Years had led the way to greater, was the continued ill
State of Health that render'd _Booth_[195] incapable of appearing on
the Stage. The next was the Death of Mrs. _Oldfield_,[196] which
happen'd on the 23d of _October_, 1730. About the same Time, too,
Mrs. _Porter_, then in her highest Reputation for Tragedy, was lost
to us by the Misfortune of a dislocated Limb from the overturning of
a _Chaise_.[197] And our last Stroke was the Death of _Wilks_, in
_September_ the Year following, 1731.[198]

[Illustration: CHARLES FLEETWOOD.]

Notwithstanding such irreparable Losses; whether, when these favourite
Actors were no more to be had, their Successors might not be better born
with than they could possibly have hop'd while the former were in
being; or that the generality of Spectators, from their want of Taste,
were easier to be pleas'd than the few that knew better: Or that, at
worst, our Actors were still preferable to any other Company of the
several then subsisting: Or to whatever Cause it might be imputed, our
Audiences were far less abated than our Apprehensions had suggested. So
that, though it began to grow late in Life with me; having still Health
and Strength enough to have been as useful on the Stage as ever, I was
under no visible Necessity of quitting it: But so it happen'd that our
surviving Fraternity having got some chimærical, and, as I thought,
unjust Notions into their Heads, which, though I knew they were without
much Difficulty to be surmounted; I chose not, at my time of Day, to
enter into new Contentions; and as I found an Inclination in some of
them to purchase the whole Power of the Patent into their own Hands; I
did my best while I staid with them to make it worth their while to come
up to my Price; and then patiently sold out my Share to the first
Bidder, wishing the Crew I had left in the Vessel a good Voyage.[199]

What Commotions the Stage fell into the Year following, or from what
Provocations the greatest Part of the Actors revolted, and set up for
themselves in the little House in the _Hay-Market_, lies not within the
Promise of my Title Page to relate: Or, as it might set some Persons
living in a Light they possibly might not chuse to be seen in, I will
rather be thankful for the involuntary Favour they have done me, than
trouble the Publick with private Complaints of fancied or real Injuries.


_FINIS_.



SUPPLEMENTARY CHAPTER.

BY ROBERT W. LOWE.


[Illustration: Ad Lalauze, sc]

The transaction to which Cibber alludes in his last paragraph is one
with regard to which he probably felt that his conduct required some
explanation. After the death of Steele, a Patent was granted to Cibber,
Wilks, and Booth, empowering them to give plays at Drury Lane, or
elsewhere, for a period of twenty-one years from 1st September,
1732.[200] Just after it came into operation Wilks died, and his share
in the Patent became the property of his wife. Booth, shortly before his
death, which occurred in May, 1733, sold half of his share for £2,500,
to John Highmore, a gentleman who seems to have been a typical amateur
manager, being possessed of some money, no judgment, and unbounded
vanity. In making this purchase Highmore stipulated that, with half of
Booth's share, he should receive the whole of his authority; and he
accordingly exercised the same power of control as had belonged to
Booth. Mrs. Wilks deputed Mr. John Ellys, the painter, to be her
representative, so that Cibber had to manage the affairs of the theatre
in conjunction with a couple of amateurs, both ignorant, and one
certainly presumptuous also. He delegated his authority for a time to
his scapegrace son, Theophilus, who probably made himself so
objectionable that Highmore was glad to buy the father's share in the
Patent also.[201] He paid three thousand guineas for it, thus purchasing
a whole share for a sum not much exceeding that which he had paid for
one-half. Highmore's first purchase took place in the autumn of 1732,
his second somewhere about May, 1733; so that, when Drury Lane opened
for the season 1733-34, he possessed one-half of the three shares into
which the Patent was divided. Mrs. Wilks retained her share, but Mrs.
Booth had sold her remaining half-share to Henry Giffard,[202] the
manager of Goodman's Fields Theatre, at which, eight years later,
Garrick made his first appearance. Highmore had scarcely entered upon
his fuller authority when a revolt was spirited up among his actors, the
chief of whom left him in a body to open the little theatre in the
Haymarket. Shameful to relate, the ringleader in this mutiny was
Theophilus Cibber; and, what is still more disgraceful, Colley Cibber
lent them his active countenance. Benjamin Victor, though a devoted
friend of Colley Cibber, characterizes the transaction as most
dishonest,[203] and there is no reason to doubt the accuracy of his
information or the soundness of his judgment. Davies ("Life of Garrick,"
i. 76) states that Colley Cibber applied to the Duke of Grafton, then
Lord Chamberlain, for a new License or Patent in favour of his son; but
the Duke, on inquiring into the matter, was so disgusted at Cibber's
conduct that he refused the application with strong expressions of
disapprobation. The seceders had of course no Patent or License under
which to act; but, from the circumstance that they took the name of
Comedians of His Majesty's Revels, it is probable that they received a
License from the Master of the Revels, Charles Henry Lee. Highmore,
deserted by every actor of any importance except Miss Raftor (Mrs.
Clive), Mrs. Horton, and Bridgwater, was at his wits' end. He summoned
the seceders for an infringement of his Patent, but his case, tried on
5th November, 1733, was dismissed, apparently on some technical plea. He
could not prevail upon the Lord Chamberlain to exert his authority to
close the Haymarket, so he determined to try the efficacy of the Vagrant
Act (12 Queen Anne) against the irregular performers. John Harper
accordingly was arrested on 12th November, 1733, and committed to
Bridewell. On the 20th of the same month he was tried before the Court
of King's Bench as a rogue and vagabond; but, whether from the
circumstance that Harper was a householder, or from a decision that
playing at the Haymarket was not an act of vagrancy,[204] he was
discharged upon his own recognizance, and the manager's action failed.
He had therefore to bring actors from the country to make up his
company; but of these Macklin was the only one who proved of any
assistance, and the unfortunate Highmore, after meeting deficiencies of
fifty or sixty pounds each week for some months, was forced to give up
the struggle.[205] Another amateur then stepped into the breach--Charles
Fleetwood, who purchased the shares of Highmore and Mrs. Wilks for
little more than the former had paid for his own portion. Giffard seems
to have retained his sixth of the Patent. Fleetwood first set about
regaining the services of the seceders, and, as the majority of them
were probably ashamed of following the leadership of Theophilus Cibber,
he succeeded at once. The last performance at the Haymarket took place
on 9th March, 1734, and on the 12th the deserters reappeared on Drury
Lane stage. This transaction ended Colley Cibber's direct interference
in the affairs of the theatre, and his only subsequent connection with
the stage was as an actor. His first appearance after his retirement was
on 31st October, 1734, when he played his great character of Bayes.
During the season he acted Lord Foppington, Sir John Brute, Sir Courtly
Nice, and Sir Fopling Flutter; and on 26th February, 1735, he appeared
as Fondlewife for the benefit of his old friend and partner, Owen
Swiney.[206] At the end of the season 1734-5, an arrangement was under
consideration by which a committee of actors, including Mills, Johnson,
Miller, Theo. Cibber, Mrs. Heron, Mrs. Butler, and others, were to rent
Drury Lane from Fleetwood, for fifteen years, at £920 per annum; but the
arrangement does not appear to have been carried out, and Fleetwood
continued Patentee of Drury Lane until 1744-5.

The rival company, under the control of John Rich, acted at Lincoln's Inn
Fields from 18th December, 1714, to 5th December, 1732; then they removed
to the new Covent Garden Theatre, which was opened on 7th December with
"The Way of the World." For several seasons both companies dragged along
very uneventfully, so far as the artistic advancement of the stage was
concerned, although the passing of the Licensing Act of 1737, already
fully commented on, was an event of great historical importance.
Artistically the period was one of rest, if not of retrogression; the
methods of the older time were losing their meaning and vitality, and were
becoming mere dry bones of tradition. The high priest of the stage was
James Quin, a great actor, though not of the first order; and among the
younger players perhaps the most notable was Charles Macklin, rough in
manner as in person, but full of genius and a thorough reformer. Garrick
was the direct means of revolutionizing the methods of the theatre, and it
was his genius that swept away the formality and dulness of the old
school; but it ought to be remembered that the way was prepared for him by
Charles Macklin, whose rescue of Shylock from low comedy was an
achievement scarcely inferior to Garrick's greatest. During this dull
period Cibber's appearances must have had an importance and interest,
which, after Garrick's advent, they lacked.

In the season 1735-6 he acted Sir Courtly Nice and Bayes, and in the
next season his play of "Papal Tyranny in the Reign of King John," a
miserable mutilation of Shakespeare's "King John," was put in rehearsal
at Drury Lane. But such a storm of ridicule and abuse arose when this
play was announced, that Cibber withdrew it,[207] and it was not seen
till 1745, when, the nation being in fear of a Popish Pretender, it was
produced at Covent Garden from patriotic motives.

Cibber's implacable foe, Fielding, was one of the ringleaders in the
attack on him for mutilating Shakespeare; and in his "Historical Register
for 1736,"[208] in which Colley is introduced as "Ground-Ivy,"[209] gives
him the following excellent rebuke:--

"_Medley._ As _Shakspear_ is already good enough for People of Taste,
he must be alter'd to the Palates of those who have none; and if you
will grant that, who can be properer to alter him for the worse?"

In 1738, having, as Victor says ("History," ii. 48), "Health and
Strength enough to be as useful as ever," he agreed with Fleetwood to
perform a round of his favourite characters. He was successful in
comedy, but in tragedy he felt that his strength was no longer
sufficient; and Victor relates that, going behind the scenes while the
third act of "Richard III." was on, he was told in a whisper by the old
man, "That he would give fifty Guineas to be then sitting in his easy
Chair by his own Fire-side." Probably he never played in tragedy again
until the production of his own "Papal Tyranny"--at least I cannot
discover that he did. In 1740-1 he acted Fondlewife for the benefit of
Chetwood, late prompter at Drury Lane, who was then imprisoned in the
King's Bench for debt; and his reception was so favourable that he
repeated the character a second and third time for his own profit.[210]
Upon these occasions he spoke an "Epilogue upon Himself," which is given
in "The Egotist" (p. 57 _et seq._), and forms so good an epitome of
Cibber's philosophy, besides giving an excellent specimen of his style,
that I quote it at length:--

  "Now worn with Years, and yet in Folly strong,
  Now to act Parts, your Grandsires saw when Young!
  What could provoke me!--I was always wrong.
  To hope, with Age, I could advance in Merit!
  Even Age well acted, asks a youthful Spirit:
  To feel my Wants, yet shew 'em thus detected,
  Is living to the Dotage, I have acted!
  T' have acted only Once excus'd might be,
  When I but play'd the Fool for Charity!
  But fondly to repeat it!--Senseless Ninny!
  --No--now--as Doctors do--I touch the Guinea!
  And while I find my Doses can affect you,
  'Twere greater Folly still, should I neglect you.
  Though this Excuse, at _White'_s they'll not allow me;
  The Ralliers There, in Diff'rent Lights will shew me.
  They'll tell you There: I only act--sly Rogue!
  To play with _Cocky_![211]--O! the doting Dog!
  And howsoe'er an Audience might regard me,
  One--_tiss ye Nykin_,[212] amply might reward me!
  Let them enjoy the Jest, with Laugh incessant!
  For True, or False, or Right, or Wrong, 'tis pleasant!
  Mixt, in the wisest Heads, we find some Folly;
  Yet I find few such happy Fools--as _Colley_!
  So long t'have liv'd the daily Satire's Stroke,        }
  Unmov'd by Blows, that might have fell'd an Oak,       }
  And yet have laugh'd the labour'd Libel to a Joke.     }
  Suppose such want of Feeling prove me dull!
  What's my Aggressor then--a peevish Fool!
  The strongest Satire's on a Blockhead lost;
  For none but Fools or Madmen strike a Post.
  If for my Folly's larger List you call,
  My Life has lump'd 'em! There you'll read 'em all.
  There you'll find Vanity, wild Hopes pursuing;
  A wide Attempt: to save the Stage from Ruin!
  There I confess, I have _out-done_ my _own out-doing_![213]
  As for what's left of Life, if still 'twill do;
  'Tis at your Service, pleas'd while pleasing you:
  But then, mistake me not! when you've enough;
  One slender House declares both Parties off:
  Or Truth in homely Proverb to advance,
  I pipe no longer than you care to dance."

The representative of Lætitia (or _Cocky_) alluded to in this Epilogue
was Mrs. Woffington, with whom stage-history has identified the
"Susannah" of the following well-known anecdote, which I quote from an
attack upon Cibber, published in 1742, entitled "A Blast upon _Bays_;
or, A New Lick at the Laureat." The author writes: "No longer ago than
when the _Bedford Coffee house_ was in Vogue, and Mr. _Cibber_ was
writing _An Apology for his own Life_, there was one Mr. S---- (the
Importer of an expensive _Haymarket_ Comedy) an old Acquaintance of Mr.
_Cibber_, who, as well as he, retain'd a Smack of his antient Taste. In
those Days there was also a fair smirking Damsel, whose name was
_Susannah-Maria_ * * *, who happen'd to have Charms sufficient to revive
the decay'd Vigour of these two Friends. They equally pursued her, even
to the _Hazard of their Health_, and were frequently seen dangling after
her, with tottering Knees, at one and the same Time. You have heard,
Sir, what a witty Friend of your own said once on this Occasion: _Lo!
yonder goes_ Susannah _and the two Elders._" Even Genest has applied
this anecdote to Mrs. Woffington, but the only circumstance that lends
confirmation to this view is the fact that Swiney (who is Mr. S----)
left her his estate. Against this must be set the important points that
Susannah Maria was not Mrs. Woffington's name, and that the joke
depended for its neatness and applicability on the name Susannah. The
narrator of the story, also, gives no hint that the damsel was the
famous actress, as he certainly would have done; and, most important of
all, it must be pointed out that at the period mentioned, that is, while
Cibber was writing his "Apology," Mrs. Woffington had not appeared in
London. The "Apology" was published in April, 1740, and had probably
been completed in the preceding November; while Mrs. Woffington made her
London _débût_ on 6th November, 1740.[214]

During the season 1741-2, "At the particular desire of several persons
of Quality," Cibber made a few appearances at Covent Garden; the
purpose being, in all probability, to oppose the extraordinary
attraction of Garrick at Goodman's Fields. In 1743-4 he played at the
same theatre as Garrick, being engaged at Drury Lane for a round of his
famous characters; but there is no record that Garrick and he appeared
in the same play. For the new actor Cibber had, naturally enough, no
great admiration. He must have resented deeply the alteration in the
method of acting tragedy which Garrick introduced, and is always
reported as having lost no opportunity of expressing his low opinion of
the new school.[215]

His last appearances on the stage were in direct rivalry with his young
opponent. As has been related, Cibber's alteration of "King John," which
had been "burked" in 1736-7, was produced, from patriotic motives, in
1745. As the principal purpose of the alteration was to make King John
resent the insolence of the Pope's Nuncio in a much more emphatic manner
than he does in Shakespeare, it may easily be imagined how wretched a
production Cibber's play is. Genest's criticism is not too strong when
he says (iv. 161): "In a word, Cibber has on this occasion shown himself
utterly void of taste, judgment and modesty--well might Fielding call
him Ground-Ivy, and say that no man was better calculated to alter
Shakspeare for the worse ... in the Epilogue (which was spoken by Mrs.
Clive) Cibber speaks of himself with modesty, but in the dedication,
being emboldened by the favourable reception of his Tragedy, he has the
insolence to say '_I have endeavoured to make it more like a play than I
found it in Shakspeare._'" "Papal Tyranny" was produced at Covent Garden
on 15th February, 1745,[216] and, in opposition to it, Shakespeare's
play was put up at Drury Lane, with Garrick as King John, Macklin as
Pandulph, and Mrs. Cibber (the great Mrs. Cibber, wife of Theophilus) as
Constance. Cibber's play was, nevertheless, successful; the profit
resulting to the author being, according to Victor, four hundred pounds,
which he wisely laid out in a profitable annuity with Lord Mountford. In
this play Cibber made his last appearance on the stage, on 26th
February, 1745, on which day "Papal Tyranny" was played for the tenth
time. "After which," says Victor ("History," ii. 49) "he retired to his
easy Chair and his Chariot, to waste the Remains of Life with a
chearful, contented Mind, without the least bodily Complaint, but that
of a slow, unavoidable Decay."

His state of mind was probably the more "chearful and contented" because
of his unquestionable success in his tilt with the formidable author of
"The Dunciad;" a success none the less certain at the time, that the
enduring fame of Pope has caused Cibber's triumph over him to be lost
sight of now. The progress of the quarrel between these enemies has
already been related up to the publication of Cibber's "Apology" (see
vol. i. p. 36), and on pages 21, 35, and 36 of the first volume of this
edition will be found Cibber's perfectly good-natured and proper remarks
on Pope's attacks on him. Whether the very fact that Cibber did not show
temper irritated his opponent, I do not know; but it probably did so,
for in the fourth book of "The Dunciad," published in 1742, Pope had
another fling at his opponent (line 17):--

  "She mounts the throne: her head a cloud conceal'd,
  In broad effulgence all below reveal'd;
  ('Tis thus aspiring Dulness ever shines:)
  Soft on her lap her laureate son reclines."

And in line 532 he talks of "Cibberian forehead" as typical of
unblushing impudence.

It is not surprising that this last attack exhausted Cibber's patience.
He had hitherto received his punishment with good temper and good
humour; but his powerful enemy had not therefore held his hand. He now
determined to retaliate. Conscious of the diseased susceptibility of
Pope to ridicule, he felt himself quite capable of replying, not with
equal literary power, but with much superior practical effect.
Accordingly in 1742 there appeared a pamphlet entitled "A Letter from
Mr. Cibber, to Mr. Pope, inquiring into the motives that might induce
him in his Satyrical Works, to be so frequently fond of Mr. Cibber's
name." To it was prefixed the motto: "_Out of thy own Mouth will I judge
thee._ Pref. to the _Dunciad_."

Cibber commences by stating that he had been persuaded to reply to Pope
by his friends; who insisted that for him to treat his attacker any
longer with silent disdain might be thought a confession of Dulness
indeed. This is a highly probable statement; for an encounter between
the vivacious Cibber and the thin-skinned Pope promised a wealth of
amusement for those who looked on--a promise which was amply fulfilled.
Cibber proceeds to assure Pope that, having entered the lists, he will
not in future avoid the fray, but reply to every attack made on
him.[217] He confesses his vast inferiority to Pope, but adds: "I own
myself so contented a Dunce, that I would not have even your merited
Fame in Poetry, if it were to be attended with half the fretful
Solicitude you seem to have lain under to maintain it; of which the
laborious Rout you make about it, in those Loads of Prose Rubbish,
wherewith you have almost smother'd your _Dunciad_, is so sore a Proof."
On page 17 of his "Letter" Cibber gives an interesting account of a
quarrel between Pope and himself, to which he, with sufficient
probability, attributes much of Pope's enmity. The passage is curious
and important, so I quote it in full:--

[Illustration: ALEXANDER POPE.]

"The Play of the _Rehearsal_, which had lain some few Years dormant,
being by his present Majesty (then Prince of _Wales_) commanded to be
revived, the Part of _Bays_ fell to my share. To this Character there
had always been allow'd such ludicrous Liberties of Observation, upon
any thing new, or remarkable, in the state of the Stage, as Mr. _Bays_
might think proper to take. Much about this time, then, _The Three Hours
after Marriage_ had been acted without Success;[218] when Mr. _Bays_, as
usual, had a fling at it, which, in itself, was no Jest, unless the
Audience would please to make it one: But however, flat as it was, Mr.
_Pope_ was mortally sore upon it. This was the Offence. In this Play,
two Coxcombs, being in love with a learned Virtuoso's Wife, to get
unsuspected Access to her, ingeniously send themselves, as two presented
Rarities, to the Husband, the one curiously swath'd up like an
_Egyptian_ Mummy, and the other slily cover'd in the Pasteboard Skin of
a Crocodile: upon which poetical Expedient, I, Mr. _Bays_, when the two
Kings of _Brentford_ came from the Clouds into the Throne again, instead
of what my Part directed me to say, made use of these Words, viz. 'Now,
Sir, this Revolution, I had some Thoughts of introducing, by a quite
different Contrivance; but my Design taking air, some of your sharp
Wits, I found, had made use of it before me; otherwise I intended to
have stolen one of them in, in the Shape of a _Mummy_, and t'other, in
that of a _Crocodile_.' Upon which, I doubt, the Audience by the Roar of
their Applause shew'd their proportionable Contempt of the Play they
belong'd to. But why am I answerable for that? I did not lead them, by
any Reflection of my own, into that Contempt: Surely to have used the
bare Word _Mummy_, and _Crocodile_, was neither unjust, or unmannerly;
Where then was the Crime of simply saying there had been two such
things in a former Play? But this, it seems, was so heinously taken by
Mr. _Pope_, that, in the swelling of his Heart, after the Play was over,
he came behind the Scenes, with his Lips pale and his Voice trembling,
to call me to account for the Insult: And accordingly fell upon me with
all the foul Language, that a Wit out of his Senses could be capable
of----How durst I have the Impudence to treat any Gentleman in that
manner? _&c. &c. &c._ Now let the Reader judge by this Concern, who
was the true Mother of the Child! When he was almost choked with the
foam of his Passion, I was enough recover'd from my Amazement to make
him (as near as I can remember) this Reply, _viz._ 'Mr. _Pope_----You
are so particular a Man, that I must be asham'd to return your Language
as I ought to do: but since you have attacked me in so monstrous a
Manner; This you may depend upon, that so long as the Play continues to
be acted, I will never fail to repeat the same Words over and over
again.' Now, as he accordingly found I kept my Word, for several Days
following, I am afraid he has since thought, that his Pen was a sharper
Weapon than his Tongue to trust his Revenge with. And however just Cause
this may be for his so doing, it is, at least, the only Cause my
Conscience can charge me with. Now, as I might have concealed this Fact
if my Conscience would have suffered me, may we not suppose, Mr. _Pope_
would certainly have mention'd it in his _Dunciad_, had he thought it
could have been of service to him?"

Cibber afterwards proceeds to criticise and reply to allusions to
himself in Pope's works, some of which are in conspicuously bad taste.
Cibber, of course, does not miss the obvious point that to attack his
successful plays was a foolish proceeding on Pope's part, whose own
endeavours as a dramatist had been completely unsuccessful, and who thus
laid himself open to the charge of envy. Nor is this accusation so
ridiculous as it may seem to readers of to-day, for a successful
playwright was a notable public figure, and the delicious applause of
the crowded theatre was eagerly sought by even the most eminent men. And
again, it must be remembered that Pope's fame was not then the perfectly
assured matter that it is now.

But Cibber's great point, which made his opponent writhe with fury, was
a little anecdote--Dr. Johnson terms it "an idle story of Pope's
behaviour at a tavern"--which raised a universal shout of merriment at
Pope's expense. The excuse for its introduction was found in these lines
from the "Epistle to Dr. Arbuthnot":--

  "Whom have I hurt? has poet yet or peer
  Lost the arch'd eyebrow or Parnassian sneer?
  And has not Colley still his lord and whore?
  His butchers Henley? his freemasons Moore?"

Cibber's anecdote cannot be defended on the ground of decency, but it is
extremely ludicrous, and in the state of society then existing it must
have been a knock-down blow to the unhappy subject of it. There can be
little doubt that it was this pamphlet which Pope received on the
occasion when the Richardsons visited him, as related by Johnson in his
Life of the poet: "I have heard Mr. Richardson relate that he attended
his father the painter on a visit, when one of Cibber's pamphlets came
into the hands of Pope, who said, 'These things are my diversion.' They
sat by him while he perused it, and saw his features writhing with
anguish: and young Richardson said to his father, when they returned,
that he hoped to be preserved from such diversion as had been that day
the lot of Pope." How deeply Pope was galled by Cibber's ludicrous
picture of him is manifested by the extraordinary revenge he took. And
even now we can realize the bitterness of the provocation when we read
the maliciously comic story of the vivacious Colley:--

"As to the first Part of the Charge, the _Lord_; Why--we have both had
him, and sometimes the _same_ Lord; but as there is neither Vice nor
Folly in keeping our Betters Company; the Wit or Satyr of the Verse! can
only point at my Lord for keeping such _ordinary_ Company. Well, but if
so! then _why_ so, good Mr. _Pope_? If either of us could be _good_
Company, our being professed Poets, I hope would be no Objection to my
Lord's sometimes making one with us? and though I don't pretend to write
like you, yet all the Requisites to make a good Companion are not
confined to Poetry! No, Sir, even a Man's inoffensive Follies and
Blunders may sometimes have their Merits at the best Table; and in
those, I am sure, you won't pretend to vie with me: Why then may not my
Lord be as much in the Right, in his sometimes choosing _Colley_ to
laugh at, as at other times in his picking up _Sawney_, whom he can only
admire?

"Thus far, then, I hope we are upon a par; for the Lord, you see, will
fit either of us.

"As to the latter Charge, the _Whore_, there indeed, I doubt you will
have the better of me; for I must own, that I believe I know more of
_your_ whoring than you do of _mine_; because I don't recollect that
ever I made you the least Confidence of _my_ Amours, though I have been
very near an Eye-Witness of _Yours_----By the way, gentle Reader, don't
you think, to say only, _a Man has his Whore_, without some particular
Circumstances to aggravate the Vice, is the flattest Piece of Satyr that
ever fell from the formidable Pen of Mr. _Pope_? because (_defendit
numerus_) take the first ten thousand Men you meet, and I believe, you
would be no Loser, if you betted ten to one that every single Sinner of
them, one with another, had been guilty of the same Frailty. But as Mr.
_Pope_ has so particularly picked me out of the Number to make an
Example of: Why may I not take the same Liberty, and even single him out
for another to keep me in Countenance? He must excuse me, then, if in
what I am going to relate, I am reduced to make bold with a little
private Conversation: But as he has shewn no Mercy to _Colley_, why
should so unprovok'd an Aggressor expect any for himself? And if Truth
hurts him, I can't help it. He may remember, then (or if he won't I
will) when _Button_'s Coffee-house was in vogue, and so long ago, as
when he had not translated above two or three Books of _Homer_; there
was a late young Nobleman (as much his _Lord_ as mine) who had a good
deal of wicked Humour, and who, though he was fond of having Wits in his
Company, was not so restrained by his Conscience, but that he lov'd to
laugh at any merry Mischief he could do them: This noble Wag, I say, in
his usual _Gayetè de Coeur_, with another Gentleman still in
Being,[219] one Evening slily seduced the celebrated Mr. _Pope_ as a
Wit, and myself as a Laugher, to a certain House of Carnal Recreation,
near the _Hay-Market_; where his Lordship's Frolick propos'd was to slip
his little _Homer_, as he call'd him, at a Girl of the Game, that he
might see what sort of Figure a Man of his Size, Sobriety, and Vigour
(in Verse) would make, when the frail Fit of Love had got into him; in
which he so far succeeded, that the smirking Damsel, who serv'd us with
Tea, happen'd to have Charms sufficient to tempt the little-tiny Manhood
of Mr. _Pope_ into the next Room with her: at which you may imagine, his
Lordship was in as much Joy, at what might happen within, as our small
Friend could probably be in Possession of it: But I (forgive me all ye
mortified Mortals whom his fell Satyr has since fallen upon) observing
he had staid as long as without hazard of his Health he might, I,

  _Prick'd to it by foolish Honesty and Love,_

As _Shakespear_ says, without Ceremony, threw open the Door upon him,
where I found this little hasty Hero, like a terrible _Tom Tit_, pertly
perching upon the Mount of Love! But such was my Surprize, that I fairly
laid hold of his Heels, and actually drew him down safe and sound from
his Danger. My Lord, who staid tittering without, in hopes the sweet
Mischief he came for would have been compleated, upon my giving an
Account of the Action within, began to curse, and call me an hundred
silly Puppies, for my impertinently spoiling the Sport; to which with
great Gravity I reply'd; pray, my Lord, consider what I have done was,
in regard to the Honour of our Nation! For would you have had so
glorious a Work as that of making _Homer_ speak elegant _English_, cut
short by laying up our little Gentleman of a Malady, which his thin Body
might never have been cured of? No, my Lord! _Homer_ would have been too
serious a Sacrifice to our Evening Merriment. Now as his _Homer_ has
since been so happily compleated, who can say, that the World may not
have been obliged to the kindly Care of _Colley_ that so great a Work
ever came to Perfection?

"And now again, gentle Reader, let it be judged, whether the _Lord_ and
the _Whore_ above-mentioned might not, with equal Justice, have been
apply'd to sober _Sawney_ the Satyrist, as to _Colley_ the Criminal?

"Though I confess Recrimination to be but a poor Defence for one's own
Faults; yet when the Guilty are Accusers, it seems but just, to make use
of any Truth, that may invalidate their Evidence: I therefore hope,
whatever the serious Reader may think amiss in this Story, will be
excused, by my being so hardly driven to tell it."

In the remainder of Cibber's pamphlet there is not much that is of any
importance, though an allusion to one of Pope's victims having hung up a
birch in Button's Coffee House, wherewith to chastise his satirist, was
skilfully calculated to rouse Pope's temper. Cibber thoroughly succeeded
in this object,[220] perhaps to a degree that he rather regretted. Pope
made no direct reply to his banter, but in the following year (1743) a
new edition of "The Dunciad" appeared, in which Theobald was deposed
from the throne of Dulness, and Cibber elevated in his place. By doing
this Pope gratified his vengeance, but injured his poem, for the
carefully painted peculiarities of Theobald, a slow and pedantic
scholar, sat ill on the pert and vivacious Colley.[221] To this
retaliation Cibber, as he had promised,[222] replied with another
pamphlet, entitled "Another Occasional Letter from Mr. Cibber to Mr.
Pope. Wherein the New Hero's Preferment to his Throne, in the _Dunciad_,
seems not to be Accepted. And the Author of that Poem His more rightful
Claim to it, is Asserted. With An Expostulatory Address to the Reverend
Mr. _W. W----n_, Author of the new Preface, and Adviser in the curious
Improvements of that Satire." The motto on the title-page was:--

  "----_Remember_ Sauney's _Fate!_
  _Bang'd by the Blockhead, whom he strove to beat._
                        Parodie on Lord _Roscommon_."


There is little that is of any note in this production, which is
characterized by the same real or affected good-nature as marked the
former pamphlet. The most interesting passages to us are those alluding
to the effect of Cibber's previous attack, and exulting over Pope's
distress at it. For instance (on page 7):--

"And now, Sir, give me leave to be a little surpriz'd at the
impenetrable Skull of your Courage, that (after I had in my first
Letter) so heartily teiz'd, and toss'd, and tumbled you through all the
Mire, and Dirt, the madness of your Muse had been throwing at other
People, it could still, so Vixen like, sprawl out the same feeble Paw of
its Satyr, to have t'other Scratch at my Nose: But as I know the Vulgar
(with whose Applause I humbly content my self) are apt to laugh when
they see a curst Cat in a Kennel; so whenever I observe your _Grimalkin_
Spirit shew but the least grinning Gasp of Life, I shall take the honest
liberty of old _Towser_ the House-dog, and merrily lift up my Leg to
have a little more Game with you.

"Well Sir, in plainer Terms, I am now, you see, once more willing to
bring Matters to an Issue, or (as the Boxers say) to answer your
Challenge, and come to a Trial of Manhood with you; though by our slow
Proceedings, we seem rather to be at _Law_, than at _Loggerheads_ with
one another; and if you had not been a blinder Booby, than my self, you
would have sate down quietly, with the last black Eye I gave you: For so
loath was I to squabble with you, that though you had been snapping, and
snarling at me for twenty Years together, you saw, I never so much as
gave you a single Growl, or took any notice of you. At last, 'tis true,
in meer Sport for others, rather than from the least Tincture of Concern
for my self, I was inticed to be a little wanton, not to say waggish,
with your Character; by which having (you know) got the strong Laugh on
my Side, I doubt I have so offended the Gravity, and Greatness of your
Soul, that to secure your more ample Revenge, you have prudently taken
the full Term of thirteen Months Consideration, before you would pour
it, upon me! But at last, it seems, we have it, and now Souse! out comes
your old _Dunciad_, in a new Dress, like fresh Gold, upon stale
Gingerbread, sold out in Penny-worth's of shining King _Colley_, crown'd
the Hero of Immortal Stupidity!"

And again (on page 15): "At your Peril be it, little Gentleman, for I
shall have t'other Frisk with you, and don't despair that the very
Notice I am now taking of you, will once more make your Fame fly, like a
yelping Cur with a Bottle at his Tail, the Jest and Joy of every
Bookseller's Prentice between _Wapping_ and _Westminster_!"

To this pamphlet Pope, whose infirmities were very great, made no reply,
and Cibber had, as he had vowed, the last word. Round the central
articles of this quarrel a crowd of supplementary productions had
gathered, a list of which will be found in the Bibliography of Cibber a
few pages on.

Cibber's position of Poet Laureate furnished him with a steady income
during his declining years, and his Odes were turned out as required,
with mechanical precision and most unpoetic spirit. They were the
standing joke of the pamphleteers and news-sheet writers, and were
always accompanied with a running fire of banter and parody. Those
curious in the matter will find excellent specimens, both of the Odes
and the burlesques, in the early volumes of the "Gentleman's Magazine."

After the termination of his quarrel with Pope, Cibber's life was very
uneventful; and, although it extended far beyond the allotted span, he
continued to enjoy it to the very end. Horace Walpole greeted him one
day, saying, "I am glad, Sir, to see you looking so well." "Egad, Sir,"
replied the old man, "at eighty-four it is well for a man that he can
look at all." On 11th December, 1757, he died, having attained the great
age of eighty-six.[223] Dr. Doran "Their Majesties' Servants," (1888
edition, ii. 235) says: "I read in contemporary publications that there
'died at his house in Berkeley Square, Colley Cibber, Esq., Poet
Laureate;'" and although it has been stated that he died at Islington, I
see no reason to doubt Dr. Doran's explicit statement. Cibber was buried
in the Danish Church, Wellclose Square.[224]

So far as we know, only two of Cibber's children survived him, his
ne'er-do-well son Theophilus, and his equally scapegrace daughter
Charlotte, who married Charke the musician. The former was born in 1703,
and was drowned in the winter of 1758, while crossing to Ireland to
fulfil an engagement in Dublin. As an actor he was chiefly famous for
playing Ancient Pistol, but he was also excellent in some of his
father's characters, such as Lord Foppington, Bayes, and Sir Francis
Wronghead. His private life was in the last degree disreputable, and
especially so in his relations with his second wife, Susanna Maria
Arne--the great Mrs. Cibber. The literature regarding Theophilus Cibber
is considerable in quantity and curious in quality. Some account of it
will be found in my "Bibliographical Account of English Theatrical
Literature," pp. 52-55. Charlotte Charke, who was born about 1710, and
died in April, 1760, was of no note as an actress. Her private life,
however, was madly eccentric, and her autobiography, published in 1755,
is a curious and scarce work.

Cibber's principal plays have been noted in the course of his "Apology;"
but, for the sake of convenience, I give here a complete list of his
regular dramatic productions:--

Love's Last Shift--Comedy--Produced at Drury Lane, 1696.

Woman's Wit--Comedy--Drury Lane, 1697.

Xerxes--Tragedy--Lincoln's Inn Fields, 1699.

Richard III.--Tragedy (alteration of Shakespeare's play)--Drury Lane,
1700.

Love Makes a Man--Comedy--Drury Lane, 1701.

The School Boy--Comedy--Drury Lane, 26th October, 1702.

She Would and She Would Not--Comedy--Drury Lane, 26th November, 1702.

The Careless Husband--Comedy--Drury Lane, 7th December, 1704.

Perolla and Izadora--Tragedy--Drury Lane, 3rd December, 1705.

The Comical Lovers--Comedy--Haymarket, 4th February, 1707.

The Double Gallant--Comedy--Haymarket, 1st November, 1707.

The Lady's Last Stake--Comedy--Haymarket, 13th December, 1707.

The Rival Fools--Comedy--Drury Lane, 11th January, 1709.

The Rival Queans--Comical-Tragedy--Haymarket, 29th June, 1710.

Ximena--Tragedy--Drury Lane, 28th November, 1712.

Venus and Adonis--Masque--Drury Lane, 1715.

Bulls and Bears--Farce--Drury Lane, 1st December, 1715.

Myrtillo--Pastoral Interlude--Drury Lane, 1716.

The Nonjuror--Comedy--Drury Lane, 6th December, 1717.

The Refusal--Comedy--Drury Lane, 14th February, 1721.

Cæsar in Egypt--Tragedy--Drury Lane, 9th December, 1724.

The Provoked Husband--Comedy (in conjunction with Vanbrugh)--Drury Lane,
10th January, 1728.

Love in a Riddle--Pastoral--Drury Lane, 7th January, 1729.

Damon and Phillida--Pastoral Farce--Haymarket, 1729.

Papal Tyranny in the Reign of King John--Tragedy (alteration of
Shakespeare's "King John")--Covent Garden, 15th February, 1745.

Of these, his alteration of "Richard III." had practically undisputed
possession of the stage, until the taste and judgment of Mr. Henry
Irving gave us back the original play.[225] But in the provinces, when
stars of the old school play a round of legitimate parts, the
adulterated version still reigns triumphant, and the great effect of the
night is got in Cibber's famous line:--

  "Off with his head! So much for Buckingham!"

In "The Hypocrite," a comedy still played at intervals, Cibber's
"Nonjuror" survives. Bickerstaffe, who was the author of the alteration,
retained a very large portion of the original play, his chief change
being the addition of the inimitable Mawworm.

That another of Cibber's plays survives is owing to the taste of an
American manager and to the genius of an American company of comedians.
Mr. Augustin Daly's company includes among its repertory Cibber's
comedy of "She Would and She Would Not," and has shown in London as well
as in New York how admirable a comedy it is. It goes without saying to
those who have seen this company, that much of the success was due to
Miss Ada Rehan, who showed in Hypolita, as she has done in Katharine
("Taming of the Shrew"), that she is mistress of classical comedy as of
modern touch-and-go farce.[226]

[Illustration: SUSANNA MARIA CIBBER AS CORDELIA.]

Cibber was the cause of quite a considerable literature, mostly abusive.
The following list, taken from my "Bibliographical Account of English
Theatrical Literature" (1888), is, I believe, a complete catalogue of
all separate publications by, or relating to, Colley Cibber:--

A clue to the comedy of the Non-Juror. With some hints of consequence
relating to that play. In a letter to N. Rowe, Esq; Poet Laureat to His
Majesty. London (Curll): 1718. 8vo. 6d.

     Cibber's "Non-Juror," produced at Drury-Lane, December 6,
     1717, was written in favour of the Hanoverian succession. Rowe
     wrote the prologue, which was very abusive of Nonjurors. This
     tract is not an attack on the play, but a satire on, it is
     said, Bishop Hoadly.

A lash for the Laureat: or an address by way of Satyr; most humbly
inscrib'd to the unparallel'd Mr. Rowe, on occasion of a late insolent
Prologue to the Non-Juror. London (J. Morphew): 1718. folio. Title, 1
leaf: Pref. 1 leaf. pp. 8. 6d.

     A furious attack on Rowe on account of his Prologue. A tract
     of extreme rarity.

A compleat key to the Non-Juror. Explaining the characters in that play,
with observations thereon. By Mr. Joseph Gay. The second edioion
(_sic_). London (Curll): 1718. 8vo. pp. 24 including title and
half-title.

     3rd edition: 1718. Joseph Gay is a pseudonym. Pope is said to
     be the author of the pamphlet, which is very unfriendly to
     Cibber.

The Theatre-Royal turn'd into a mountebank's stage. In some remarks upon
Mr. Cibber's quack-dramatical performance, called the Non-Juror. By a
Non-Juror. London (Morphew): 1718. 8vo. Title 1 leaf. pp. 38. 6d.

The Comedy call'd the Non-Juror. Shewing the particular scenes wherein
that hypocrite is concern'd. With remarks, and a key, explaining the
characters of that excellent play. London (printed for J. L.): 1718.
8vo. pp. 24, including title. 2d.

Some cursory remarks on the play call'd the Non-Juror, written by Mr.
Cibber. In a letter to a friend. London (Chetwood): 1718. 8vo.

     Dated from Button's Coffee-House and signed "H. S." Very
     laudatory.

A journey to London. Being part of a comedy written by the late Sir John
Vanbrugh, Knt. and printed after his own copy: which (since his
decease) has been made an intire play, by Mr. Cibber, and call'd The
provok'd husband, &c. London (Watts): 1728. 8vo. pp. 51, including
title.

     "The Provok'd Husband," by Vanbrugh and Cibber, was produced
     at Drury Lane, January 10, 1728; and though Cibber's Nonjuror
     enemies tried to condemn it, was very successful. This tract
     shows how much of the play was written by Vanbrugh.

Reflections on the principal characters in the Provoked Husband. London:
1728. 8vo.

An apology for the life of Mr. Colley Cibber, comedian, and late
patentee of the Theatre-Royal. With an historical view of the stage
during his own time. Written by himself. London (Printed by John Watts
for the author): 1740. 4to. Port.

     Second edition, London, 1740, 8vo., no portrait; third
     edition, London, 1750, 8vo., portrait; fourth edition, 1756, 2
     vols. 12mo., portrait. A good edition was published, London,
     1822, 8vo., with notes by E. Bellchambers and a portrait. The
     "Apology" forms one of Hunt's series of autobiographies,
     London, 1826. One of the most famous and valuable of
     theatrical books.

An apology for the life of Mr. T---- C----, comedian. Being a proper
sequel to the Apology for the life of Mr. Colley Cibber, comedian. With
an historical view of the stage to the present year. Supposed to be
written by himself. In the stile and manner of the Poet Laureat. London
(Mechell): 1740. 8vo. 2s.

     The object of this pamphlet, ascribed to Fielding, is chiefly
     to ridicule Colley Cibber's "Apology." Herman, 22s.

A brief supplement to Colley Cibber, Esq; his lives of the late famous
Actors and Actresses. _Si tu scis, melior ego._ By Anthony, Vulgò Tony
Aston. Printed for the Author, N.P. (London): N.D. (1747-8). 8vo. pp. 24
including title.

     A pamphlet of extreme rarity. Isaac Reed purchased a copy in
     1769; and in 1795 he notes on it that, though he has had it
     twenty-six years, he has never seen another copy. Reed's copy
     was bought by Field for 65s., at whose sale, in 1827, Genest
     bought it for 36s.

The tryal of Colley Cibber, comedian, &c. for writing a book intitled An
apology for his life, &c. Being a thorough examination thereof; wherein
he is proved guilty of High Crimes and Misdemeanors against the English
language, and in characterising many persons of distinction.... Together
with an indictment exhibited against Alexander Pope of Twickenham, Esq;
for not exerting his talents at this juncture: and the arraignment of
George Cheyne, Physician at Bath, for the Philosophical, Physical, and
Theological heresies, uttered in his last book on Regimen. London (for
the author): 1740. 8vo. pp. vii. 40. 1s.

     With motto--"Lo! He hath written a Book!" The Dedication is
     signed "T. Johnson."

The Laureat: or, the right side of Colley Cibber, Esq; containing
explanations, amendments, and observations, on a book intituled, An
apology for the life, and writings of Mr. Colley Cibber. Not written by
himself. With some anecdotes of the Laureat, which he (thro' an excess
of modesty) omitted. To which is added, The history of the life,
manners and writings of Æsopus the tragedian, from a fragment of a Greek
manuscript found in the Library of the Vatican; interspers'd with
observations of the translator. London (Roberts): 1740. 8vo. 1s. 6d.

     A furious attack on Cibber. The Life of Æsopus is a burlesque
     Life of Cibber. Daniel. 7s. 6d.

The history of the stage. In which is included, the theatrical
characters of the most celebrated actors who have adorn'd the theatre.
Among many others are the following, _viz._ Mr. Betterton, Mr. Montfort,
Mr. Dogget, Mr. Booth, Mr. Wilks, Mr. Nokes. Mrs. Barry, Mrs. Montfort,
Mrs. Gwin, Mrs. Bracegirdle, Mrs. Porter, Mrs. Oldfield. Together with,
the theatrical life of Mr. Colly Cibber. London (Miller): 1742. 8vo.

     A "boil-down" of Cibber's Apology.

A letter from Mr. Cibber, to Mr. Pope, inquiring into the motives that
might induce him in his satyrical works, to be so frequently fond of Mr.
Cibber's name. London (Lewis): 1742. 8vo. 1s.

     Second edition, London, 1744, 8vo.; reprinted, London, 1777,
     8vo. The sting of this pamphlet lies in an anecdote told of
     Pope at a house of ill-fame, in retaliation for his line:

          "And has not Colley still his lord and whore?"

A letter to Mr. C--b--r, on his letter to Mr. P---- London (Roberts):
1742. 8vo. 26 pp. 6d.

     Very scarce. Abusive of Pope--laudatory towards Cibber.

Difference between verbal and practical virtue. With a prefatory epistle
from Mr. C--b--r to Mr. P. London (Roberts): 1742. Folio. Title 1
leaf: Epistle 1 leaf: pp. 7.

     Very rare. A rhymed attack on Pope.

A blast upon Bays; or, a new lick at the Laureat. Containing, remarks
upon a late tatling performance, entitled, A letter from Mr. Cibber to
Mr. Pope, &c. _And lo there appeared an old woman!_ Vide the Letter
throughout. London (Robbins): 1742. 8vo. pp. 26. 6d.

     A bitter attack on Cibber.

Sawney and Colley, a poetical dialogue: occasioned by a late letter from
the Laureat of St. James's, to the Homer of Twickenham. Something in the
manner of Dr. Swift. London (for J. H.): n.d. (1742). Folio. Title 1
leaf: pp. 21. 1s.

     Very scarce. A coarse and ferocious attack on Pope in rhyme.

The egotist: or, Colley upon Cibber. Being his own picture retouch'd, to
so _plain_ a likeness, that no one, _now_, would have the face to own
it, but himself. London (Lewis): 1743. 8vo. pp. 78 including title. 1s.

     Anonymous, but undoubtedly by Cibber himself.

Another occasional letter from Mr. Cibber to Mr. Pope. Wherein the new
hero's preferment to his throne, in the Dunciad, seems not to be
accepted. And the author of that poem his more rightful claim to it, is
asserted. With an expostulatory address to the Reverend Mr. W. W----n,
author of the new preface, and adviser in the curious improvements of
that satire. By Mr. Colley Cibber. London (Lewis): 1744. 8vo. 1s.

     The Rev. W. W----n is Warburton. This tract was reprinted,
     Glasgow, n. d., 8vo. The two "Letters" were reprinted, London,
     1777, with, I believe, a curious frontispiece representing
     the adventure related by Cibber at Pope's expense in the
     first "Letter." I am not certain whether the frontispiece was
     issued with the London or Glasgow reprint, having seen it in
     copies of both. In Bonn's "Lowndes" (1865) is mentioned a
     parody on this first "Letter," with the same title, except that
     "Mrs. Cibber's name" is substituted for "Mr. Cibber's name."
     Lowndes says: "A copy is described in Mr. Thorpe's catalogue,
     p. iv, 1832, 'with the frontispiece of Pope surprized with Mrs.
     Cibber.'" I gravely doubt the existence of any such work, and
     fancy that this frontispiece is the one just mentioned, but
     wrongly described. Herman (two Letters, with scarce front.), 40s.

A letter to Colley Cibber, Esq; on his transformation of King John.
London. 1745. 8vo.

     Cibber's mangling of "King John," entitled "Papal Tyranny in
     the Reign of King John," was produced at Covent Garden,
     February 15, 1745.

A new book of the Dunciad: occasion'd by Mr. Warburton's new edition of
the Dunciad complete. By a gentleman of one of the Inns of Court. With
several of Mr. Warburton's own notes, and likewise Notes _Variorum_.
London (J. Payne & J. Bouquet): 1750. 4to. 1s.

     Cibber dethroned and Warburton elevated to the throne of
     Dulness.

Shakspere's tragedy of Richard III., considered dramatically and
historically; and in comparison with Cibber's alteration as at present
in use on the stage, in a lecture delivered to the members of the
Liverpool Literary, Scientific and Commercial Institution, by Thos.
Stuart, of the Theatre Royal. (Liverpool): n. d. (about 1850). 12mo.

     Cibber published in 1747 a work entitled "The Character and
     Conduct of Cicero, considered from the history of his life by
     Dr. Middleton;" but it is of little value or interest.



                               A BRIEF

                              SUPPLEMENT

                                 TO

                        _Colley Cibber_, Esq;

                                 HIS

                                LIVES

                         Of the late FAMOUS

                        ACTORS and ACTRESSES.


                      _Si tu scis, melior ego._

                       By _ANTHONY_, }
                         Vulgò _TONY_} _ASTON_.


                           [Illustration]

                        Printed for the AUTHOR.



                  *       *       *       *       *

                  Mr. Cibber _is guilty of Omission,
              that he hath not given us any Description
                     of the several Personages'
            Beauties, or Faults----Faults (I say) of the
                     several_ ACTORS, &c. _for_


                       Nemo sine crimine vivit.

            _Or, as the late Duke of_ Buckingham _says of_
            Characters, _that, to shew a Man not defective,_
            ------------------------------------were to draw
            A faultless Monster, that the World ne'er saw.


                  *       *       *       *       *



A BRIEF SUPPLEMENT TO COLLEY CIBBER, ESQ; HIS LIVES OF THE LATE FAMOUS
ACTORS AND ACTRESSES.


[Illustration]

Mr. _Betterton_ (although a superlative good Actor) labour'd under ill
Figure, being clumsily made, having a great Head, a short thick Neck,
stoop'd in the Shoulders, and had fat short Arms, which he rarely lifted
higher than his Stomach.--His Left Hand frequently lodg'd in his Breast,
between his Coat and Waist-coat, while, with his Right, he prepar'd his
Speech.--His Actions were few, but just.--He had little Eyes, and a
broad Face, a little Pock-fretten, a corpulent Body, and thick Legs,
with large Feet.--He was better to meet, than to follow; for his Aspect
was serious, venerable, and majestic; in his latter Time a little
paralytic.--His Voice was low and grumbling; yet he could Tune it by an
artful _Climax_, which enforc'd universal Attention, even from the
_Fops_ and _Orange-Girls_.--He was incapable of dancing, even in a
Country-Dance; as was Mrs. _BARRY_: But their good Qualities were more
than equal to their Deficiencies.--While Mrs. _BRACEGIRDLE_ sung very
agreeably in the LOVES of _Mars_ and _Venus_, and danced in a
Country-Dance, as well as Mr. _WILKS_, though not with so much Art and
Foppery, but like a well-bred Gentlewoman.--Mr. _Betterton_ was the most
extensive Actor, from _Alexander_ to Sir _John Falstaff_; but, in _that_
last Character, he wanted the Waggery of _ESTCOURT_, the Drollery of
_HARPER_, the Sallaciousness of _JACK EVANS_.--But, then, _Estcourt_ was
too trifling; _Harper_ had too much of the _Bartholomew-Fair_; and
_Evans_ misplac'd his Humour.--Thus, you see what _Flaws_ are in _bright
Diamonds_:--And I have often wish'd that Mr. _Betterton_ would have
resign'd the Part of HAMLET to some young Actor, (who might have
Personated, though not have Acted, it better) for, when he threw himself
at _Ophelia's_ Feet, he appear'd a little too grave for a young Student,
lately come from the University of _Wirtemberg_; and his _Repartees_
seem'd rather as _Apopthegms_ from a _sage Philosopher_, than the
_sporting Flashes_ of a Young HAMLET; and no one else could have pleas'd
the Town, he was so rooted in their Opinion.--His younger Cotemporary,
(_Betterton_ 63, _Powel_ 40, Years old) _POWEL_, attempted several of
_Betterton's_ Parts, as _Alexander_, _Jaffier_, &c. but lost his Credit;
as, in _Alexander_, he maintain'd not the Dignity of a King, but
_Out-Heroded_ HEROD; and in his poison'd, mad Scene, _out-rav'd all
Probability_; while _Betterton_ kept his Passion under, and shew'd it
most (as Fume smoaks most, when stifled). _Betterton_, from the Time he
was dress'd, to the End of the Play, kept his Mind in the same
Temperament and Adaptness, as the present Character required.--If I was
to write of him all Day, I should still remember fresh Matter in his
Behalf; and, before I part with him, suffer this facetious Story of him,
and a Country Tenant of his.

Mr. _Betterton_ had a small Farm near _Reading_, in the County of _Berks_;
and the Countryman came, in the Time of _Bartholomew-Fair_, to pay his
Rent.--Mr. _Betterton_ took him to the Fair, and going to one _Crawley's_
Puppet-Shew, offer'd _Two Shillings_ for himself and _Roger_, his
Tenant.--_No, no, Sir_, said _Crawley_; _we never take Money of one
another_. This affronted Mr. _Betterton_ who threw down the Money, and
they enter'd.--_Roger_ was hugeously diverted with _Punch_, and bred a
great Noise, saying, that he would drink with him, for he was a merry
Fellow.--Mr. _Betterton_ told him, he was only a Puppet, made up of
_Sticks and Rags_: However, _Roger_ still cried out, that he would go and
drink with _Punch_.--When Master took him behind, where the Puppets hung
up, he swore, he thought _Punch_ had been alive.--_However_, said he,
_though he be but_ Sticks and Rags, _I'll give him Six-pence to drink my
Health_.--At Night, Mr. _Betterton_ went to the _Theatre_, when was
play'd the ORPHAN; Mr. _Betterton_ acting _Castalio_; Mrs. _Barry_,
_Monimia_.----_Well_ (said Master) _how dost like this Play_, Roger? _Why,
I don't knows_, (says _Roger_) _its well enought for_ Sticks and Rags.

To end with this _Phoenix_ of the Stage, I must say of him, as
_Hamlet_ does of his Father: "He was a Man (take him for all in all) I
cannot look upon his Like again."

His Favourite, Mrs. _BARRY_, claims the next in Æstimation. They were
both never better pleas'd, than in Playing together.--Mrs. _Barry_
outshin'd Mrs. _Bracegirdle_ in the Character of ZARA in the _Mourning
Bride_, altho' Mr. _Congreve_ design'd Almeria for that Favour.--And
yet, this fine Creature was not handsome, her Mouth op'ning most on the
Right Side, which she strove to draw t'other Way, and, at Times,
composing her Face, as if sitting to have her Picture drawn.--Mrs.
_Barry_ was middle-siz'd, and had darkish Hair, light Eyes, dark
Eye-brows, and was indifferently plump:--Her Face somewhat preceded her
Action, as the latter did her Words, her Face ever expressing the
Passions; not like the Actresses of late Times, who are afraid of
putting their Faces out of the Form of Non-meaning, lest they should
crack the Cerum, White-Wash, or other Cosmetic, trowel'd on. Mrs.
_Barry_ had a Manner of drawing out her Words, which became her, but not
Mrs. _Braidshaw_, and Mrs. _Porter_, (Successors.)----To hear her speak
the following Speech in the ORPHAN, was a Charm:

  _I'm ne'er so well pleas'd, as when I hear thee speak,
  And listen to the Music of thy Voice._

And again:

  _Who's he that speaks with a Voice so sweet,
  As the Shepherd pipes upon the Mountain,
  When all his little Flock are gath'ring round him?_

Neither she, nor any of the Actors of those Times, had any Tone in their
speaking, (too much, lately, in Use.)--In _Tragedy_ she was solemn and
august--in _Free Comedy_ alert, easy, and genteel--pleasant in her Face
and Action; filling the Stage with Variety of Gesture.--She was Woman to
Lady _Shelton_, of _Norfolk_, (my Godmother)--when Lord _Rochester_ took
her on the Stage; where for some Time, they could make nothing of
her.--She could neither sing, nor dance, no, not in a Country-Dance.

       *       *       *       *       *

Mrs. _BRACEGIRDLE_, that _Diana_ of the Stage, hath many Places
contending for her Birth--The most received Opinion is, that she was the
Daughter of a Coachman, Coachmaker, or Letter-out of Coaches, in the
Town of _Northampton_.--But I am inclinable to my Father's Opinion, (who
had a great Value for her reported Virtue) that she was a distant
Relation, and came out of _Staffordshire_, from about _Walsal_ or
_Wolverhampton_.--She had many Assailants on her Virtue, as Lord
_Lovelace_, Mr. _Congreve_, the last of which had her Company most; but
she ever resisted his vicious Attacks, and, yet, was always uneasy at
his leaving her; on which Observation he made the following Song:

  PIOUS Celinda _goes to Pray'rs,
    Whene'er I ask the Favour;
  Yet, the tender Fool's in Tears,
    When she believes I'll leave her.
  Wou'd I were free from this Restraint,
    Or else had Power to win her!
  Wou'd she cou'd make of me a Saint,
    Or I of her a Sinner!_

And, as Mr. _Durfey_ alludes to it in his Puppet Song--in _Don Quixot_,

  _Since that our Fate intends
    Our Amity shall be no dearer,
  Still let us kiss and be Friends,
    And sigh we shall never come nearer._

She was very shy of Lord _Lovelace's_ Company, as being an engaging Man,
who drest well: And as, every Day, his Servant came to her, to ask her
how she did, she always return'd her Answer in the most obeisant Words
and Behaviour, _That she was indifferent well, she humbly thank'd his
Lordship_.--She was of a lovely Height, with dark-brown Hair and
Eye-brows, black sparkling Eyes, and a fresh blushy Complexion; and,
whenever she exerted herself, had an involuntary Flushing in her Breast,
Neck and Face, having continually a chearful Aspect, and a fine Set of
even white Teeth; never making an _Exit_, but that she left the Audience
in an Imitation of her pleasant Countenance. Genteel Comedy was her
chief Essay, and that too when in Men's Cloaths, in which she far
surmounted all the Actresses of that and this Age.--Yet she had a Defect
scarce perceptible, _viz._ her Right Shoulder a little protended, which,
when in Men's Cloaths, was cover'd by a long or Campaign Peruke.--She
was finely shap'd, and had very handsome Legs and Feet; and her Gait, or
Walk, was free, manlike, and modest, when in Breeches.--Her Virtue had
its Reward, both in Applause and _Specie_; for it happen'd, that as the
Dukes of _Dorset_ and _Devonshire_, Lord _Hallifax_, and other Nobles,
over a Bottle, were all extolling Mrs. _Bracegirdle's_ virtuous
Behaviour, Come, says Lord _Hallifax_--_You all commend her Virtue, &c.
but why do we not present this incomparable Woman with something worthy
her Acceptance?_ His Lordship deposited 200 Guineas, which the rest made
up 800, and sent to her, with Encomiums on her Virtue.--She was, when on
the _Stage_, diurnally Charitable, going often into _Clare-Market_, and
giving Money to the poor unemploy'd Basket-women, insomuch that she
could not pass that Neighbourhood without the thankful Acclamations of
People of all Degrees; so that, if any Person had affronted her, they
would have been in Danger of being kill'd directly; and yet this good
Woman was an Actress.--She has been off the Stage these 26 Years or
more, but was alive _July 20, 1747_; for I saw her in the _Strand,
London_, then--with the Remains of charming _Bracegirdle_.

       *       *       *       *       *

Mr. _SANDFORD_, although not usually deem'd an Actor of the first Rank,
yet the Characters allotted him were such, that none besides, then, or
since, ever topp'd; for his Figure, which was diminutive and mean, (being
Round-shoulder'd, Meagre-fac'd, Spindle-shank'd, Splay-footed, with a sour
Countenance, and long lean Arms) render'd him a proper Person to discharge
_Jago_, _Foresight_, and _Ma'lignij_, in the VILLAIN. But he fail'd in
succeeding in a fine Description of a triumphant Cavalcade, in _Alonzo_,
in the MOURNING BRIDE, because his Figure was despicable, (although his
Energy was, by his Voice and Action, enforc'd with great Soundness of Art,
and Justice.)--This Person acted strongly with his Face,--and (as King
_Charles_ said) was the best Villain in the World.--He proceeded from the
_Sandfords_ of _Sandford_, that lies between _Whitchurch_ and _Newport_,
in Shropshire.--He would not be concern'd with Mr. _Betterton_, Mrs.
_Barry_, _&c._ as a Sharer in the Revolt from _Drury-Lane_ to
_Lincoln's-Inn-Fields_; but said, _This is my Agreement_.--_To_ Samuel
Sandford, _Gentleman_, Threescore Shillings a Week.----Pho! pho! _said
Mr._ Betterton, _Three Pounds a Week_.----_No, no, said_ Sandford;--_To_
Samuel Sandford, _Gentleman_, Threescore Shillings a Week. For which _Cave
Underhill_, who was a 3/4 Sharer, would often jeer _Sandford_; saying,
_Samuel Sandford, Gent, my Man._----Go, you Sot, said _Sandford_.--To
which t'other ever replied, _Samuel Sandford, my Man_ Samuel.

[Illustration: CAVE UNDERHILL.]

_CAVE UNDERHILL_, and Mr. _DOGGET_, will be the next treated of.

       *       *       *       *       *

_CAVE UNDERHILL_, though not the best Actor in the Course of Precedency,
was more admired by the Actors than the Audience--there being then no
Rivals in his dry, heavy, downright Way in Low Comedy.--His few Parts
were, The first Grave-digger in HAMLET,--_Sancho Pancha_, in the first
Part of DON QUIXOT,--_Ned Blunt_, in the ROVER,--_Jacomo_, in the
LIBERTINE, and the _Host_, in the VILLAIN:--All which were dry, heavy
Characters, except in _Jacomo_; in which, when he aim'd at any Archness,
he fell into downright Insignificance.--He was about 50 Years of Age the
latter End of King _William's_ Reign, about six Foot high, long and
broad-fac'd, and something more corpulent than this Author; his Face
very like the _Homo Sylvestris_, or _Champanza_; for his Nose was
flattish and short, and his Upper Lip very long and thick, with a wide
Mouth and short Chin, a churlish Voice, and awkward Action, (leaping
often up with both Legs at a Time, when he conceived any Thing waggish,
and afterwards hugging himself at the Thought.)----He could not enter
into any serious Character, much more Tragedy; and was the most confin'd
Actor I ever saw: And could scarce be brought to speak a short _Latin_
Speech in DON QUIXOT, when _Sancho_ is made to say, _Sit bonus Populus,
bonus ero Gubernator_; which he pronounced thus:

  _Shit bones and bobble arse,
  Bones, and ears Goble Nature._

He was obliged to Mr. _Betterton_ for thrusting him into the Character
of _Merryman_ in his _Wanton Wife_, or _Amorous Widow_; but _Westheart
Cave_ was too much of a Dullman.--His chief Atchievement was in
_Lolpoop_, in the _'Squire of Alsatia_; where it was almost impossible
for him to deviate from himself: But he did great Injustice to Sir
_Sampson Legend_ in _Love for Love_, unless it had been true, that the
Knight had been bred a Hog-driver.--In short, _Underhill_ was far from
being a good Actor--as appear'd by the late _Ben. Johnson's_ assuming
his Parts of _Jacomo_--the Grave-digger in _Hamlet_--and Judge _Grypus_
in _Amphytrion_.--I know, Mr. _Underhill_ was much cry'd up in his Time;
but I am so stupid as not to know why.

       *       *       *       *       *

Mr. _DOGGET_, indeed, cannot reasonably be so censur'd; for whoever
decry'd him, must inevitably have laugh'd much, whenever he saw
him act.

Mr. _Dogget_ was but little regarded, 'till he chopp'd on the Character
of _Solon_ in the _Marriage-Hater Match'd_; and from that he vegetated
fast in the Parts of _Fondlewife_ in the _Old Batchelor_--_Colignii_, in
the _Villain_--_Hob_, in the _Country Wake_--and _Ben_ the Sailor, in
_Love for Love_.--But, on a Time, he suffer'd himself to be expos'd, by
attempting the serious Character of _Phorbas_ in _Oedipus_, than which
nothing cou'd be more ridiculous--for when he came to these Words--(_But,
oh! I wish_ Phorbas _had perish'd in that very Moment_)--the Audience
conceived that it was spoke like _Hob_ in his Dying-Speech.--They burst
out into a loud Laughter; which sunk _Tom Dogget's_ Progress in Tragedy
from that Time.

  _Fælix quem faciunt aliena pericula cautum._

But our present LAUREAT had a better Opinion of himself;--for, in a few
Nights afterwards, _COLLEY_, at the old Theatre, attempted the same
Character; but was hiss'd,--his Voice sounding like _Lord
Foppington's_--_Ne Sutor ultra Crepidam._

Mr. _Dogget_ was a little, lively, spract Man, about the Stature of Mr.
L----, Sen. Bookseller in B--h, but better built.--His Behaviour modest,
chearful, and complaisant.--He sung in Company very agreeably, and in
Public very comically.--He danc'd the _Cheshire Round_ full as well as
the fam'd Capt. _George_, but with much more Nature and Nimbleness.--I
have had the Pleasure of his Conversation for one Year, when I
travell'd with him in his strolling Company, and found him a Man of very
good Sense, but illiterate; for he wrote me Word thus--_Sir, I will give
you a_ hole instead of (_whole_) _Share_.--He dress'd neat, and
something fine--in a plain Cloth Coat, and a brocaded Waistcoat:--But he
is so recent, having been so often at _Bath_,--_satis est_.--He gave his
Yearly Water-Badge, out of a warm Principle, (being a _staunch
Revolution-Whig_.)----I cannot part with this _Nonpareil_, without
saying, that he was the most faithful, pleasant Actor that ever was--for
he never deceiv'd his Audience--because, while they gaz'd at him, he was
working up the Joke, which broke out suddenly in involuntary
Acclamations and Laughter.--Whereas our modern Actors are fumbling the
dull Minutes, keeping the gaping Pit in Suspence of something delightful
a coming,--_Et parturiunt Montes, nascitur ridiculus Mus_.

He was the best Face-player and Gesticulator, and a thorough Master of
the several Dialects, except the _Scots_, (for he never was in
_Scotland_) but was, for all that, a most excellent _Sawney_. Whoever
would see him pictur'd, may view his Picture, in the Character of
_Sawney_, at the _Duke's Head_ in _Lynn-Regis_, in _Norfolk_.----While I
travell'd with him, each Sharer kept his Horse, and was every where
respected as a Gentleman.

_Jack Verbruggen_, in Point of Merit, will salute you next.

_JACK VERBRUGGEN_, that rough Diamond, shone more bright than all the
artful, polish'd Brillants that ever sparkled on our Stage.--(_JACK bore
the BELL away._)--He had the Words perfect at one View, and Nature
directed 'em into Voice and Action, in which last he was always
pleasing--his Person being tall, well-built and clean; only he was a
little In-kneed, which gave him a shambling Gate, which was a
Carelessness, and became him.--His chief Parts were _Bajazet_,
_Oroonoko_, _Edgar_ in King _Lear_, _Wilmore_ in the _Rover_, and
_Cassius_, when Mr. _Betterton_ play'd _Brutus_ with him.--Then you
might behold the grand Contest, _viz._ whether Nature or Art
excell'd--_Verbruggen_ wild and untaught, or _Betterton_ in the Trammels
of Instruction.---In _Edgar_, in King _Lear_, _Jack_ shew'd his Judgment
most; for his Madness was unlimited: Whereas he sensibly felt a
Tenderness for _Cordelia_, in these Words, (speaking to her)--_As you
did once know_ Edgar!--And you may best conceive his manly, wild Starts,
by these Words in _Oroonoko_,--_Ha! thou hast rous'd the Lyon [in] his
Den; he stalks abroad, and the wild Forest trembles at his Roar:_--Which
was spoke, like a Lyon, by _Oroonoko_, and _Jack Verbruggen_; for Nature
was so predominant, that his second Thoughts never alter'd his prime
Performance.--The late Marquess of _Hallifax_ order'd Oroonoko to be
taken from _George Powel_, saying to Mr. _Southern_, the Author,--That
_Jack_ was the unpolish'd Hero, and wou'd do it best.--In the _Rover_
(_Wilmore_) never were more beautiful Scenes than between him, and
Mrs. _Bracegirdle_, in the Character of _Helena_; for, what with
_Verbruggen's_ untaught Airs, and her smiling Repartees, the Audience
were afraid they were going off the Stage every Moment.--_Verbruggen_
was Nature, without Extravagance--Freedom, without Licentiousness--and
vociferous, without bellowing.----He was most indulgently soft, when he
says to _Imoinda_,--_I cannot, as I wou'd, bestow thee; and, as I ought,
I dare not._--Yet, with all these Perfections, _Jack_ did, and said,
more silly Things than all the Actors besides; for he was drawn in at
the common Cheat of Pricking at the Girdle, Cups and Balls, _&c._ and
told his Wife one Day that he had found out a Way to raise a great
Benefit.--_I hope_, said she, _you'll have your_ Bills _printed in_ Gold
Letters.--_No, no, better than that_, said he; _for I'll have the
King's-Arms all in Gold Letters_.--As Mr. _Verbruggen_ had Nature for
his Directress in Acting, so had a known Singer, _Jemmy Bowen_, the same
in Music:--He, when practising a Song set by Mr. PURCELL, some of the
Music told him to grace and run a Division in such a Place. _O let him
alone_, said Mr. _Purcell_; _he will grace it more naturally than you,
or I, can teach him_.--In short, an Actor, like a Poet,

  _Nascitur, non fit._

And this Author prizes himself on that Attempt, as he hath had the
Judgment of all the best Critics in the Character of _Fondlewife_ in the
_Old Batchelor_.--_If you wou'd see Nature_, say they, _see_ Tony
Aston--_if Art_, Colley Cibber;--and, indeed, I have shed mock Tears in
that Part often involuntarily.

       *       *       *       *       *

Mrs. _VERBRUGGEN_ claims a Place next. She was all Art, and her Acting
all acquir'd, but dress'd so nice, it look'd like Nature. There was not
a Look, a Motion, but what were all design'd; and these at the same
Word, Period, Occasion, Incident, were every Night, in the same
Character, alike; and yet all sat charmingly easy on her.--Her Face,
Motion, _&c._ chang'd at once: But the greatest, and usual, Position was
Laughing, Flirting her Fan, and _je ne scay quois_,--with a Kind of
affected Twitter.--She was very loath to accept of the Part of _Weldon_
in _Oroonoko_, and that with just Reason, as being obliged to put on
Men's Cloaths--having thick Legs and Thighs, corpulent and large
Posteriours;--but yet the Town (that respected her) compounded, and
receiv'd her with Applause; for she was the most pleasant Creature that
ever appear'd: Adding to these, that she was a fine, fair Woman, plump,
full-featur'd; her Face of a fine, smooth Oval, full of beautiful,
well-dispos'd Moles on it, and on her Neck and Breast--Whatever she did
was not to be call'd Acting; no, no, it was what she represented: She
was neither more nor less, and was the most easy Actress in the World.
The late Mrs. OLDFIELD borrow'd something of her Manner in free
Comedy;--as for Tragedy, Mrs. _Verbruggen_ never attempted it.
_Melanthe_ was her Master-piece; and the Part of _Hillaria_ in
_Tunbridge-Walks_ cou'd not be said to be Acted by any one but her.--Her
Maiden-Name was _Percival_; and she was the Widow of Mr. _Mountford_,
(who was kill'd by Lord _Mohun_) when Mr. _Verbruggen_ married her.--She
was the best Conversation possible; never captious, or displeas'd at any
Thing but what was gross or indecent; for she was cautious, lest fiery
_Jack_ shou'd so resent it as to breed a Quarrel;--for he wou'd often
say,--_Dammee! tho' I don't much value my Wife, yet no Body shall
affront her, by G--d_; and his Sword was drawn on the least Occasion,
which was much in Fashion at the latter End of King _William's_
Reign;--at which Time I came on the Stage, when Mr. _Dogget_ left it;
and then the facetious _Joe Haines_ was declining in Years and
Reputation, tho' a good Actor and Poet, his Prologues exceeding all ever
wrote.--[_Vide_ Love and a Bottle.]

       *       *       *       *       *

_JOE HAINES_ is more remarkable for the witty, tho' wicked, Pranks he
play'd, and for his Prologues and Epilogues, than for Acting.--He was,
at first, a Dancer.--After he had made his Tour of _France_, he narrowly
escaped being seiz'd, and sent to the _Bastile_, for personating an
_English_ Peer, and running 3000 Livres in Debt in _Paris_; but, happily
landing at Dover, he went to _London_, where in _Bartholomew-Fair_, he
set up a Droll-Booth, and acted a new Droll, call'd, _The Whore of
Babylon, the Devil, and the Pope_. This was in the first Year of King
_James_ II. when _Joe_ was sent for, and roundly admonish'd, by Judge
_Pollixfen_ for it. _Joe_ reply'd, _That he did it in Respect to his_
Holiness; _for, whereas many ignorant People believed the_ Pope _to be
a_ Beast, _he shew'd him to be a fine, comely old Gentleman, as he was;
not with Seven Heads, and Ten Horns, as the_ Scotch _Parsons describe
him_. However, this Affair spoil'd _Joe's_ expiring Credit; for next
Morning, a Couple of Bailiffs seiz'd him in an Action of 20_l._ as the
Bishop of _Ely_ was passing by in his Coach.--Quoth _Joe_ to the
Bailiffs,--_Gentlemen, here's my Cousin, the Bishop of_ Ely, _going into
his House; let me but speak to him, and he'll pay the Debt and Charges_.
The Bailiffs thought they might venture that, as they were within three
or four Yards of him. So, up goes _Joe_ to the Coach, pulling off his
Hat, and got close to it. The Bishop order'd the Coach to stop, whilst
_Joe_ (close to his Ear) said softly, _My Lord, here are two poor Men,
who have such great Scruples of Conscience, that, I fear, they'll hang
themselves._--Very well, _said the Bishop_. So, calling to the Bailiffs,
he said, _You two Men, come to me To-morrow Morning, and I'll satisfy
you_. The Men bow'd, and went away. _Joe_ (hugging himself with his
fallacious Device) went also his Way. In the Morning, the Bailiffs
(expecting the Debt and Charges) repair'd to the Bishop's; where being
introduced,--_Well_, said the Bishop, _what are your Scruples of
Conscience?_--_Scruples!_ (said the Bailiffs) _we have no Scruples: We
are Bailiffs, my Lord, who, Yesterday, arrested your Cousin_, Joe
Haines, _for 20l. Your Lordship promised to satisfy us To-day, and we
hope your Lordship will be as good as your Word._--The Bishop,
reflecting that his Honour and Name would be expos'd, (if he complied
not) paid the Debt and Charges.--There were two Parts of Plays (_Nol
Bluff_ in the _Old Batchelor_, and _Roger_ in _Æsop_) which none ever
touch'd but _Joe Haines_.--I own, I have copied him in _Roger_, as I did
Mr. _Dogget_ in _Fondlewife_.--But, now, for another Story of him.

In the long Vacation, when Harlots, Poets, and Players, are all
poor,--_Joe_ walking in _Cross-Street_, by _Hatton-Garden_, sees a fine
Venison-Pasty come out of _Glassop's_, a Pastry-Cook's Shop, which a Boy
carried to a Gentleman's House thereby.--_Joe_ watch'd it; and seeing a
Gentleman knock at the Door, he goes to the Door, and ask'd him if he
had knock'd at it: _Yes_, said the Gentleman; _the Door is open'd_.--In
goes the Gentleman, and _Joe_ after him, to the Dining-Room.--Chairs
were set, and all ready for the Pasty. The Master of the House took
_Joe_ for the Gentleman's Friend, whom he had invited to Dinner; which
being over, the Gentleman departed. _Joe_ sat still.--Says the Master of
the House to _Joe_, _Sir, I thought you would have gone with your
Friend_!--_My Friend_, said _Joe_; _alas! I never saw him before in my
Life_.--_No, Sir_, replied the other: _Pray, Sir, then how came you to
Dinner here?_--_Sir_, said _Joe_, _I saw a Venison-Pasty carried in
here; and, by this Means, have din'd very heartily of it_. _My Name is_
Joe Haines, (said he) _I belong to the_ Theatre.--_Oh, Mr._ Haines,
(continued the Gentleman) _you are very welcome; you are a Man of Wit:
Come, bring t'other bottle_; which being finish'd, _Joe_, with good
Manners, departed, and purposely left his Cane behind him, which he
design'd to be an Introduction to another Dinner there: For, next Day,
when they were gone to Dinner, _Joe_ knock'd briskly at the Door, to
call for his Cane, when the Gentleman of the House was telling a Friend
of his the Trick he play'd the Day before.--_Pray call Mr._ Haines
_in_.--_So, Mr._ Haines, said he; _sit down, and partake of another
Dinner_.--_To tell you the Truth_, said _Joe_, _I left my Cane Yesterday
on purpose_: At which they all laugh'd.--Now _Joe_ (altho' while
greedily eating) was very attentive to a Discourse on Humanity begun,
and continued, by the Stranger Gentleman; wherein he advanced, that
every Man's Duty was to assist another, whether with Advice, Money,
Cloaths, Food, or whatever else. This Sort of Principle suited _Joe's_
End, as by the Sequel will appear. The Company broke up, and _Joe_, and
the Gentleman, walk'd away, (_Joe_ sighing as he went along.) The
Gentleman said to him, _What do you sigh for?_--_Dear Sir_, (quoth
_Joe_) _I fear my Landlord will, this Day, seize my Goods for only a
Quarter's Rent, due last Week_.--_How much is the Money?_ said the
Gentleman.--_Fifty Shillings_, said _Joe_, _and the Patentees owe me
Ten Pounds, which will be paid next Week._--_Come_, said the Gentleman,
_I'll lend thee Fifty Shillings on your Note, to pay me faithfully in
three Weeks_. Which _Joe_, with many Promises and Imprecations,
sign'd.--But _Joe_, thereafter, had his Eyes looking out before him;
and, whenever he saw the Gentleman, would carefully avoid him; which the
Gentleman one Day perceiv'd, and going a-cross _Smithfield_, met _Joe_
full in the Face, and, in the Middle of the _Rounds_, stopp'd him.
Taking him by the Collar, _Sirrah_, said he, _pray pay me now, you
impudent, cheating Dog, or I'll beat you into a Jelly_.--_Joe_ fell down
on his Knees, making a dismal Outcry, which drew a Mob about them, who
enquir'd into the Occasion, which was told them; and they, upon hearing
it, said to the Gentleman, _That the poor Man could not pay it, if he
had it not_.--_Well_, said he, _let him kneel down, and eat up that thin
Sirreverence, and I'll forgive him, and give up his Note_.--_Joe_
promis'd he would, and presently eat it all up, smearing his Lips and
Nose with the human Conserve. The Gentleman gave him his Note; when
_Joe_ ran and embrac'd him, kissing him, and bedaubing his Face, and
setting the Mob a hollowing.

       *       *       *       *       *

_The_ SECOND PART _of their_ LIVES, _with the Continuation of_ JOE
HAINES'_s Pranks, the Author hopes a fresh Advance for.----In the_
Interim, _he thanks his Friends._

_FINIS._



MEMOIRS OF THE ACTORS AND ACTRESSES MENTIONED BY CIBBER,

TAKEN FROM EDMUND BELLCHAMBERS'S EDITION OF THE "APOLOGY," 1822.


WILLIAM SMITH.

This judicious actor, who is said to have been originally a barrister,
came into the Duke's Company, when acting under Sir William D'Avenant,
in Lincoln's Inn Fields, about the year 1663. He rose soon after to the
duties of _Buckingham_, in "King Henry the Eighth," and subsequently
filled a range of characters distinguished by their variety and
importance. _Sir William Stanley_, in Caryl's wretched play of the
"English Princess," procured him additional estimation and applause,
which were still farther enlarged by his performance of _Stanford_ in
Shadwell's "Sullen Lovers." Mr. Smith was the original _Chamont_ in
Otway's "Orphan," and played many parts of as much local consequence in
pieces that are now forgotten.

     NOTE.--All passages enclosed in square brackets are by the present
     editor, who is also responsible for the notes marked (L.).

Chetwood informs us that Mr. Smith was zealously attached to the
interests of King James the Second, in whose army, attended by two
servants, he entered as a volunteer. Upon the abdication of that
monarch, he returned to the stage, by the persuasions of many friends,
who admired his performances, and resumed his original part of
_Wilmore_ in the "Rover;" but having been received with considerable
disapprobation, on account of his party principles, the audience was
dismissed, and he departed from public life in the manner already
mentioned. It is difficult to reconcile these discrepancies. Chetwood's
minuteness looks like credibility, and Cibber has committed a mistake in
stating that Mr. Smith "entirely quitted" the stage at this secession,
he having returned in 1695, when at the earnest solicitations of his
sincere friends Mr. Betterton and Mrs. Barry, strengthened by the
influence of Congreve over many of his connections in high life, he
consented to sustain the part of _Scandal_ in that author's comedy of
"Love for Love," upon its production at the new theatre in Little
Lincoln's Inn Fields, when his inimitable performance imparted an extra
charm to that admirable play. Continued peals of applause attested the
satisfaction which his auditors felt at the return of their old
favourite, and it seems singular that Congreve should have wholly
overlooked this memorable event, in the "prologue" at least, where the
defection of Williams and Mrs. Mountfort is thus obscurely stated:

  Forbear your wonder, and the fault forgive
  If in our larger family we grieve
  One falling Adam, and one tempted Eve.

Mr. Smith continued on the stage till about twelve months after this
period, when, according to Downes, having a long part in Banks's tragedy
of "Cyrus," 1696, he fell sick on the fourth day of performance, and
died from a cold, as Chetwood relates, occasioned by cramp, which having
seized him while in bed, he rose to get rid of it, and remained so long
in his naked condition, that a fever ensued from disordered lungs, and,
in three days, put an end to his existence.

We have but a slender clue to the stage-management of Mr. Smith, which
was exercised over the Duke's Company in Dorset-garden, conjointly with
Betterton and Dr. D'Avenant, when the famous agreement which bears their
signatures was concluded with Hart and Kynaston, for an union of the
theatres. It has been said that Booth [who wrote an epitaph on Smith]
applied to him for an engagement, which was refused from a fear of
offending his relatives, but with that kindness of expression and
deportment so warmly distinguished in his epitaph. This assertion,
however, is unfounded, for when Mr. Smith died, Barton Booth was a
Westminster scholar, and in the fourteenth year of his age; the
character of this eminent comedian must, accordingly, have been drawn up
from such intelligence as the writer acquired at a subsequent period.

It only remains to be remarked, that Chetwood has placed Mr. Smith's
original return to the stage in the year 1692; but, not to insist upon
the known looseness of this writer's information, let us ask if a
political offence would be so vehemently remembered, after the lapse of
four years, as to drive an estimable actor from the harmless pursuance
of his ordinary duties? Cibber is doubtless correct in the floating date
of this fact, which must have happened _previous_ to the revolution. Mr.
Smith was a principal actor in Lee's later tragedies, but in the
"Princess of Cleve," 4to, 1689, we find the part he would naturally have
played to Betterton's _Nemours_, supported by Mr. Williams.

Smith's value as an actor, may be immediately felt by a reference to
the parts he enjoyed under Betterton, with whom he lived till death in
the most cordial manner, enhancing his fame by honourable emulation,
and promoting his interests by unbroken amity. No instance has been
recorded of their dissention or dispute, and from the notice which
Betterton extended to Booth, he very possibly communicated that high
account of his departed friend, which the latter has recorded with such
spirit and fidelity.

From Cibber's admission, it appears, that Smith's moral qualities and
professional excellence, procured him an extensive reception among
people of rank, a patronage which his polished manners continued to
exact, till society, by his death, sustained one of its deepest
deprivations. (B.) Chetwood's story is now incapable either of proof or
disproof. The known facts about Smith's retirement are, that his name
appears to Constantine the Great, to Courtine in Otway's "Atheist," and
to Lorenzo in Southerne's "Disappointment," in 1684; that it then
disappears, and does not again occur till 1695. It is probable that he
retired in 1684, as it is unlikely that his name should not appear in
one or other of the 1685 bills. (L.)


CHARLES HART.

Charles Hart was the great nephew of Shakspeare, his father, William,
being the eldest son of our poet's sister Joan. Brought up as an
apprentice under Robinson, a celebrated actor, he commenced his career,
conformably to the practice of that time, by playing female parts, among
which the _Duchess_, in Shirley's tragedy of the "Cardinal," was the
first that exhibited his talents, or enhanced his reputation.

Puritanism having gathered great strength, opposed theatrical amusements
as vicious and profane institutions, which it was at length enabled to
abolish and suppress. On the 11th day of February, 1647,[227] and the
subsequent 22d of October, two ordinances were issued by the Long
Parliament, whereby all stage-players were made liable to punishment for
following their usual occupation. Before the appearance of this severe
edict, most of the actors had gone into the army, and fought with
distinguished spirit for their unfortunate master; when, however, his
fate was determined, the surviving dependants on the drama were
compelled to renew their former efforts, in pursuance of which they
returned, just before the death of Charles, to act a few plays at the
"Cockpit" theatre, where, while performing the tragedy of "Rollo," they
were taken into custody by soldiers, and committed to prison.[228] Upon
this occasion, Hart, who had been a lieutenant of horse, under Sir
Thomas Dallison, in Prince Rupert's own regiment, sustained the
character of _Otto_, a part which he afterwards relinquished to
Kynaston, in exchange for the fierce energies of his ambitious brother.

At the Restoration, Hart was enrolled among the company constituting his
Majesty's Servants, by whom the new Theatre Royal, Drury-lane, was
opened on the 8th of April, 1663, with Beaumont and Fletcher's play of
the "Humourous Lieutenant," in which he sustained a principal character
for twelve days of successive representation.

About the year 1667,[229] Hart introduced Mrs. Gwyn upon the dramatic
boards, and has acquired the distinction of being ranked among that
lady's first felicitous lovers, by having succeeded to Lacy, in the
possession of her charms. Nell had been tutored for the stage by these
admirers in conjunction, and after testifying her gratitude to both,
passed into the hands of Lord Buckhurst, by whom she was transferred to
the custody of King Charles the Second.

The principal parts, according to Downes, sustained by Mr. Hart,
were _Arbaces_, in "King and No King;" _Amintor_, in the "Maid's
Tragedy;" _Othello_, _Rolla_, _Brutus_, and _Alexander the Great_.
Such was his attraction in all these characters, that, to use the
language of that honest prompter, "if he acted in any one of these
but once in a fortnight, the house was filled as at a new play;
especially _Alexander_, he acting that with such grandeur and agreeable
majesty, that one of the court was pleased to honour him with this
commendation--'that Hart might teach any king on earth how to comport
himself.'" His merit has also been specified as _Mosca_, in the "Fox,"
_Don John_, in the "Chances," and _Wildblood_, in an "Evening's Love;"
which, however, according to the same authority, merely harmonised
with his general efforts, in commanding a vast superiority over the
best of his successors.

Rymer has said that Hart's action could throw a lustre round the meanest
characters, and, by dazzling the eyes of the spectator, protect the
poet's deformities from discernment. He was taller, and more genteelly
shaped than Mohun, on which account he probably claimed the choice of
parts, and was prescriptively invested with the attributes of youth and
agility. He possessed a considerable share in the profits and direction
of the theatre, which were divided among the principal performers; and
besides his salary of £3 a week, and an allowance as a proprietor,
amounting to six shillings and three-pence a day, is supposed to have
occasionally cleared about £1000 per annum.

[On the 14th of October, 1681, a memorandum was signed between Dr.
Charles Davenant, Betterton, and Smith, of the one part, and Hart
and Kynaston, of the other, by which the two last mentioned, in
consideration of five shillings each for every day on which there shall
be a play at the Duke's Theatre, undertake to do all they can to break
up the King's Company. The result of this agreement was the Union of
1682. This agreement is given in Gildon's "Life of Betterton" (p. 8),
and in Genest (i. 369). I suppose it is a genuine document, but I
confess to some doubts, based chiefly on my belief that Betterton was
too honest to enter into so shabby an intrigue.]

Declining age had rendered Hart less fit for exertion than in the vigour
of life, and certain of the young actors, such as Goodman and Clark,
became impatient to get possession of his and Mohun's characters. A
violent affliction, however, of the stone and gravel, compelled him to
relinquish his professional efforts, and having stipulated for the
payment of five shillings a-day, during the season,[230] he retired from
the stage, and died a short time after.

Hart was always esteemed a constant observer of decency in manners, and
the following anecdote will evince his respect for the clergy. That
witty, but abandoned fellow, Jo Haynes, had persuaded a silly divine,
into whose company he had unaccountably fallen, that the players were a
set of people, who wished to be reformed, and wanted a Chaplain to the
Theatre, an appointment for which, with a handsome yearly income, he
could undertake to recommend him. He then directed the clergyman to
summon his hearers, by tolling a bell to prayers every morning, a
scheme, in pursuance of which Haynes introduced his companion, with a
bell in his hand, behind the scenes, which he frequently rang, and cried
out, audibly, "Players! players! come to prayers!" While Jo and some
others were enjoying this happy contrivance, Hart came into the theatre,
and, on discovering the imposition, was extremely angry with Haynes,
whom he smartly reprehended, and having invited the clergyman to dinner,
convinced him that this buffoon was an improper associate for a man of
his function.[231]


MICHAEL MOHUN.

The life of Michael Mohun, though passed in its early stages beneath a
different teacher, was chequered by the very shades which distinguished
that of Hart, with whom he acquired his military distinctions, and
reverted to a theatrical life. He was brought up with Shatterel, under
Beeston, at the "Cock-pit," in Drury-lane, where, in Shirley's play of
"Love's Cruelty," he sustained the part of _Bellamente_, among other
female characters,[232] and held it even after the Restoration.

Having attained the rank of captain in the royal forces, Mohun went to
Flanders upon the termination of the civil war, where he received pay as
a major, and acquitted himself with distinguished credit. At the
Restoration, he resumed his pristine duties, and became an able second
to Hart, with whom he was equally admired for superlative knowledge of
his arduous profession.

He is celebrated by Lord Rochester, as the great Æsopus of the stage;
praise, which, though coming from one of so capricious a temper, may be
relied on, since it is confirmed by more respectable testimony. He was
particularly remarkable for the dignity of his deportment, and the
elegance of his step, which mimics, said his lordship, attempted to
imitate, though they could not reach the sublimity of his elocution. The
Duke's comedians, it would seem, endeavoured to emulate his manner, when
reduced by age and infirmity, a baseness which the same noble observer
has thus warmly reprehended:--

  Yet these are they, who durst expose the Age
  Of the great Wonder of the English Stage.
  Whom Nature seem'd to form for your delight,
  And bid him speak, as she bid Shakespeare write.
  These Blades indeed are Cripples in their Art,
  Mimick his Foot, but not his speaking part.
  Let them the _Traytor_ or _Volpone_ try,
  Could they
  Rage like _Cethegus_, or like _Cassius_ die?
         (Epilogue to Fane's "Love in the Dark.")

Mohun, from his inferior height and muscular form, generally acted
grave, solemn, austere parts, though upon more than one occasion,
as in _Valentine_, in "Wit without Money," and _Face_, in the
"Alchemist,"--one of his most capital characters,--he was frequently
seen in gay and buoyant assumptions to great advantage. He was
singularly eminent as _Melantius_, in the "Maid's Tragedy;" _Mardonius_,
in "King and No King;" _Clytus_, _Mithridates_, and the parts alluded to
by Lord Rochester. No man had more skill in putting spirit and passion
into the dullest poetry than Mohun, an excellence with which Lee was so
delighted, that on seeing him act his own King of Pontus, he suddenly
exclaimed, "O, Mohun, Mohun, thou little man of mettle, if I should
write a hundred plays, I'd write a part for thy mouth!" And yet Lee
himself was so exquisite a reader, that Mohun once threw down a part in
despair of approaching the force of the author's expression. The
"Tatler" has adverted to his singular science;[233] "in all his parts,
too," says Downes, "he was most accurate and correct;" and perhaps no
encomium can transcend the honours of unbroken propriety.

About the year 1681, there are some reasons to suspect that the king's
company was divided by feuds and animosities, which their adversaries in
Dorset-garden so well improved, as to produce an union of the separate
patents. Hart and Kynaston were dexterously detached from their old
associates, by the management of Betterton, whose conduct, though
grounded upon maxims of policy, can derive no advantage from so unfair
an expedient. Upon the completion of this nefarious treaty, Mohun, who
found means to retain the services of Kynaston, with the remnant of the
royal company, continued to act in defiance of the junction just
concluded, as an independent body. Downes, in his "Roscius Anglicanus,"
so far as the imperfect structure of its sentences can be relied on,
expressly asserts this; and yet if "the patentees of each company united
patents, and, by so incorporating, the duke's company were made the
king's, and immediately removed to the Theatre Royal in Drury-lane,"
what field did Mohun and his followers select for their operations, to
pitch their tents, and hoist their standard? Till some period, at least,
of the year 1682, this party were in possession of their antient
domicile, as Mohun at that time, acted _Burleigh_, in Banks's "Unhappy
Favourite," and sustained a principal character in Southern's "Loyal
Brother," with, for his heroine, in both pieces, the famous Nell
Gwyn.[234]

[Bellchambers is here very inaccurate. The union of 1682 was, no doubt,
opposed by some of the King's Company, from November, 1681, when the
memorandum between Davenant, Betterton, Hart, and others, was executed,
and the date of the actual conclusion of the union. This is clearly
indicated in Dryden's Prologue on the opening of Drury Lane by the
united company on 16th November, 1682. But, whatever the opposition had
been, it had ceased then, because in the cast of the "Duke of Guise,"
produced less than three weeks later, appear the names of Kynaston and
Wiltshire, whom Bellchambers represents as supporting Mohun in his
supposed opposition theatre. (L.)]


CARDELL GOODMAN.

Cardell Goodman, according to his own admissions, as detailed by Cibber
elsewhere, was expelled the university of Cambridge, for certain
political reasons, a disgrace, however, which did not disqualify him for
the stage. He came upon it, accordingly, by repairing to Drury-lane
theatre, where Downes has recorded [what was probably] his first
appearance, as _Polyperchon_, in the "Rival Queens," 4to. 1677. Here,
although we cannot trace his success in any character of importance, Mr.
Cibber has adverted to his rapid advances in reputation. He followed the
fortunes of Mohun in opposing the united actors, but, about three years
afterwards, resorted to them, (in 1685,) and sustained the hero of Lord
Rochester's "Valentinian." It is about this period that his excellence
must have blazed out as _Alexander the Great_, since Cibber, who went
upon the stage in 1690, says Goodman had retired before the time of his
appearance.

The highest salary enjoyed at that period we are now treating of, was
six shillings and three pence per diem, a stipend that was by no means
equal to the strong passions and large appetites of a gay, handsome,
inconsiderate young fellow. He was consequently induced to commit a
robbery on the highway, and sentenced upon detection, to make a summary
atonement for his fatal error; but this being the first exploit of that
kind to which the scantiness of his income had urged him, King James was
persuaded to pardon him, a favour for which Goodman was so grateful,
that, in the year 1696, he shared with Sir John Fenwick in a design to
assassinate King William, who spared his life in consideration of the
testimony he was to render against his accomplice. This condition,
however, Goodman did not fulfil, as he withdrew clandestinely to the
continent, to avoid giving evidence, and died in exile.

Having been selected as a fit instrument for her abandoned pleasures by
the Duchess of Cleveland, Goodman, long before his death, became so
happy in his circumstances, that he acted only at intervals, when his
titled mistress most probably desired to see him; for he used to say, he
would not even act _Alexander_, unless his Duchess were in front to
witness the performance.


RICHARD ESTCOURT.

Richard Estcourt, according to the biographical notice of Chetwood, was
born at Tewksbury, in Glostershire, in the year 1668, and received a
competent education at the Latin grammar-school of his native town.
Influenced by an early attachment to the stage, he left his father's
house, in the fifteenth year of his age, with an itinerant company, and on
reaching Worcester, to elude the possibility of detection, made his first
appearance as _Roxana_, in the "Rival Queens." Having received a correct
intimation of this theatrical purpose, his father sent to secure the
fugitive, who slipped away in a suit of woman's clothes, borrowed from one
of his kind-hearted companions, and travelled to Chipping-Norton, a
distance of five-and-twenty miles, in the course of the day.

To prevent such excursions for the future, he was quickly carried up to
London, and apprenticed to an apothecary in Hatton-garden, with whom,
according to some authorities, he continued till the expiration of his
indentures, and duly entered into business; which, either from want of
liking or success he soon afterwards renounced, and returned to his
favourite avocation.[235] Chetwood, on the contrary, asserts that he
broke away from his master's authority, and after strolling about
England for two years, went over to Dublin, where his performances were
sanctioned by ardent and universal applause.

About the opening of the eighteenth century [that is, 18th October,
1704], Mr. Estcourt was engaged at Drury-lane Theatre, where he made his
débût as _Dominic_, in the "Spanish Friar," and established his efforts,
it is said, by a close imitation of Leigh, the original possessor of
that part. In the year 1705 [should be 1706], such was his merit or
reputation, that Farquhar selected him for _Sergeant Kite_, in the
"Recruiting Officer," a character to which Downes has alluded in terms
of unqualified praise. It is asserted in the "Biographia Dramatica,"
that Mr. Estcourt was "mostly indebted for his applause to his powers of
mimicry, in which he was inimitable; and which not only at times
afforded him opportunities of appearing a much better actor than he
really was,--by enabling him to copy very exactly several performers of
capital merit, whose manner he remembered and assumed,--but also, by
recommending him to a very numerous acquaintance in private life,
secured him an indulgence for faults in his public profession, that he
might otherwise, perhaps, never have been pardoned." As if an actor, in
defiance of peculiar incapacity, associated emulation, and public
disgust, could maintain, for twelve successive years, the very highest
station in the Drury-lane company, attainable by talents, such as he was
only flattered with possessing!

That Estcourt was happy in a "very numerous acquaintance," there is no
reason to conceal or deny. He was remarkable for the promptitude of his
wit, and the permanence of his pleasantry, qualifications that
recommended him to the most cordial intercourse with Addison, Steele,
Parnell, who has honoured him in a Bacchanalian poem, by the name of
Jocus, and other choice spirits of the age, who enjoyed the variety of
his talents, and acknowledged the goodness of his heart. He was highly
in favour with the great Duke of Marlborough, but those who know his
grace's character, will hardly be surprised to learn that he did not
improve his fortune by that dazzling distinction. Estcourt's honours,
indeed, were strictly nominal, for though constituted providore of the
Beef-steak Club,--an assemblage comprising the chief wits and greatest
men of the nation,--he gained nothing by the office but their badge of
employment,--a small golden gridiron, suspended from his neck by a bit
of green riband.

If the foregoing remarks should be held sufficient to redeem his
dramatic character from the obloquy with which it has so long been
attended, the following anecdote will perhaps be accepted as ample
evidence of his great talent for private mimicry.

Secretary Craggs, when very young, in company with some of his friends,
went, with Estcourt, to Sir Godfrey Kneller's, and whispered to him that
a gentleman present was able to give such a representation of many among
his most powerful patrons, as would occasion the greatest surprise.
Estcourt accordingly, at the artist's earnest desire, mimicked Lords
Somers, Halifax, Godolphin, and others, so exactly, that Kneller was
delighted, and laughed heartily at the imitations. Craggs gave a signal,
as concerted, and Estcourt immediately mimicked Sir Godfrey himself, who
cried out in a transport of ungovernable conviction, "Nay, there you are
out, man! By G--, that's not me!"

About a twelvemonth before his death, having retired from the stage,
Estcourt opened the Bumper tavern, in Covent-garden, and by enlarging
his acquaintance, most probably shortened his days. He died in the year
1713 [should be 1712], and was buried near his brother comedian, Jo
Haynes, in the church-yard of St. Paul's, Covent-garden.


THOMAS BETTERTON.

Thomas Betterton was born in Tothill-street, Westminster, in the year
1635 [baptized 11th August, 1635], his father at that time being
under-cook to King Charles the First. He received the rudiments of a
genteel education, and testified such a propensity to literature, that
it was the steadfast intention of his family to have had him qualified
for some congenial employment. This design, the confusion and violence
of the times most probably prevented, though a fondness for reading
induced them to consult his inclinations, and he was accordingly
apprenticed to Mr. Rhodes, a respectable bookseller, residing at the
Bible, in Charing-cross.

This person, who had been wardrobe-keeper to the theatre in Blackfriars,
before the suppression of dramatic amusements, on General Monk's
approach to London, in the year 1659, obtained a license from
the [governing powers] to collect a company of actors, and employ
them at the "Cockpit," in Drury-lane. Here, while Kynaston, his
fellow-apprentice, sustained the principal female parts, Betterton was
distinguished by the vigour and elegance of his manly personations. The
fame of Beaumont and Fletcher was then at its zenith, and in their plays
of the "Loyal Subject," and the "Mad Lover," added to "Pericles," the
"Bondman," and the "Changeling," Mr. Betterton established the
groundwork of his great reputation.

Sir William D'Avenant having been favoured with a patent before the
civil wars broke out, obtained a renewal of that royal grant upon the
Restoration, and in the spring of 1662 [should be June, 1661], after
rehearsing various plays at Apothecaries'-hall, he opened a new theatre
in Lincoln's-inn-fields, where Rhodes's comedians, with the addition of
Harris, and three others, were sworn before the Lord Chamberlain, as
servants of the crown, and honoured by the sanction of the Duke of York.

Here Sir William D'Avenant produced his "Siege of Rhodes," a play in two
parts, embellished with such scenery and decorations as had never been
before exhibited on the boards of a British theatre. The parts were
strongly cast, and this drama, assisted by its splendid appendages, was
represented for twelve days, successively, with unbounded approbation.

At this period Mr. Betterton first assumed the part of _Hamlet_,
deriving considerable advantage from the hints of Sir William D'Avenant,
to whom the acting of Taylor [who had been instructed by Shakespeare]
had been formerly familiar. Downes expressly declares that this
character enhanced Mr. Betterton's reputation to the utmost, and there
is much collateral evidence to substantiate its brilliant
superiority.[236]

Mr. Betterton was so favourably considered by Charles the Second, that,
upon his performance of _Alvaro_, in "Love and Honour," he received that
monarch's coronation-suit for the character, as a token of esteem.
Public opinion kept pace with his efforts to secure it, and by evincing
unparalleled talent in such diversified parts as _Mercutio_, _Sir Toby
Belch_, and _Henry the Eighth_, (the last of which was adopted from his
manager's remembrance of Lowin) he speedily attained to that eminence in
his art, above which no human exertion can probably ascend.

At the king's especial command, it has been asserted by some of his
biographers that Mr. Betterton went over to Paris to take a view of the
French stage, and suggest such means as might ensure a corresponding
improvement upon our own. They even go so far as to term him the first
who publicly introduced our moving scenes, though Sir William D'Avenant,
to whom that honour decidedly belongs, had attached them, less
perfectly, perhaps, in 1658, to his "Cruelty of the Spaniards in Peru."


By or before 1663, Mr. Betterton had married Mrs. Saunderson, a
performer in the same company, of matchless merit and unsullied virtue,
though that event, by the "Biographia Dramatica," and other incautious
compilations, is referred to the year 1670. This lady, it may be
remarked, was single, while denominated mistress; the appellation of
miss not being made familiar to the middle classes, till after the
commencement of the ensuing century.

The duke's company, notwithstanding the favour and excellence to which
Betterton, Harris, Smith, and other members were admitted, began to
feel its want of attraction so forcibly, that Sir William D'Avenant was
induced to try the effects of a new theatre, which was accordingly opened,
with unparalleled magnificence, in Dorset-garden, Salisbury-court,
notwithstanding an earnest opposition by the city of London, in November,
1671. Opinion, however, still inclining to their antagonists, dramatic
operas were invented, and soon enabled the players at this place to
achieve a triumph over merit unassisted by such expensive frivolity.

At the death of D'Avenant, on the 17th of April, 1668, Mr. Betterton
succeeded to a portion of the management, and so great was the
estimation in which both he and his lady were held, that in the year
1675, when a pastoral, called "Calisto; or, the Chaste Nymph," written
by Mr. Crown, at the request of King Charles's consort, was to be
performed at court by persons of the greatest distinction, they were
appointed to instruct them in their respective parts. In 1682, an union
was effected with the rival company, which Mr. Betterton continued to
direct, till Rich, in 1690, obtained possession of the patent, and
dispossessed him of importance and authority.

Exasperated by ill treatment, Mr. Betterton confederated with the
principal performers to procure an independent license, which being
granted by King William, they built a new theatre in Lincoln's-inn-fields,
by subscription, and opened it on the 30th of April, 1695, with
Congreve's comedy of "Love for Love."

In 1705, enfeebled by age and infirmity, this distinguished veteran
transferred his license to Sir John Vanbrugh, who erected a handsome
theatre in the Haymarket, at which, divested of influence or control, he
accepted an engagement as an actor.

Mr. Betterton's salary never exceeded eighty shillings a-week, and
having sustained the loss of more than £2,000, by a commercial venture
to the East Indies, in 1692, necessity compelled him to pursue his
professional avocations. On Thursday, April the 13th, 1709,[237] the
play of "Love for Love" was performed for his benefit, an occasion which
summoned Mrs. Barry and Mrs. Bracegirdle from their retirement, to aid
this antient coadjutor by the resumption of those parts they had
originally sustained. Congreve is said to have furnished a prologue,
though withdrawn and never submitted to print, which was delivered by
the latter lady, the former reciting an epilogue from the pen of Rowe,
which remains in lasting testimony of his affectionate regard. From this
address the following lines are worthy of transcription:

  But since, like friends to wit, thus throng'd you meet,
  Go on, and make the generous work complete;
  Be true to merit, and still own his cause,
  Find something for him more than bare applause.
  In just remembrance of your pleasures past,
  Be kind and give him a discharge at last;
  In peace and ease life's remnant let him wear,
  And hang his consecrated buskin here.

This hint, however, proved unavailing, and "Old Thomas" still continued
to labour, when permitted by intermissions of disease, for that
subsistence his age and his services should long before have secured.

Mr. Betterton accordingly performed at intervals in the course of the
ensuing winter, and on the 25th of April, 1710 [should be 13th April],
was admitted to another benefit, which, with the patronage bestowed upon
its predecessor, is supposed to have netted nearly £1000. Upon this
occasion, he was announced for his celebrated part of _Melantius_, in
the "Maid's Tragedy," from the performance of which he ought, however,
upon strict consideration, to have been deterred; for having been
suddenly seized with the gout, a determination not to disappoint the
expectancy of his friends, induced him to employ a repellatory medicine,
which lessened the swelling of his feet, and permitted him to walk in
slippers. He acted, accordingly, with peculiar spirit, and was received
with universal applause; but such were the fatal effects of his laudable
anxiety, that the distemper returned with unusual violence, ascended to
his head, and terminated his existence, in three days from the date of
this fatal assumption. On the 2nd of May his remains were deposited with
much form in the cloisters of Westminster-abbey.

Mr. Betterton was celebrated for polite behaviour to the dramatic
writers of his time, and distinguished by singular modesty, in not
presuming to understand the chief points of any character they offered
him, till their ideas had been asked, and, if possible, adopted. He is
also praised in some verses published with the "State Poems," for
extending pecuniary assistance to embarrassed writers, till the success
of a doubtful production might enable them to remunerate their generous
creditor. Indeed, Mr. Betterton's benevolence was coupled with such
magnanimity, that upon the death of that unhappy friend to whose
counsels his little fortune had been sacrificed, he took charge of a
surviving daughter, educated her at considerable expense, and not only
made her an accomplished actress, but a valuable woman.[238]

Among many testimonies of deference to his judgment, and regard for his
zeal, the tributes of Dryden and Rowe have been brilliantly recorded. He
was naturally of a cheerful temper, with a pious reliance upon the
dispensations of providence, and nothing can yield a higher idea of his
great affability, than the effect his behaviour produced upon Pope, who
must have been a mere boy, when first admitted to his society. He sat to
the poet for his picture, which Pope painted in oil,[239] and so eager
was the bard to perpetuate his memory, that he published a modernization
of Chaucer's "Prologues," in this venerable favourite's name, though
palpably the produce of his own elegant pen.[240] As an author, Mr.
Betterton's labours were confined to the drama, and if his original
pieces are not entitled to much praise, his alterations exhibit some
judicious amendments.


EDWARD KYNASTON.

Edward Kynaston made his first appearance in 1659, at the "Cockpit" in
Drury-lane, under the management of Rhodes, to whom, in his trade of
bookselling, he had previously been apprenticed. Here he took the lead
in personating female parts, among which he sustained _Calis_, in the
"Mad Lover;" _Ismenia_, in the "Maid in the Mill;" the heroine of Sir
John Suckling's "Aglaura;" _Arthiope_, in the "Unfortunate Lovers;" and
_Evadne_, in the "Maid's Tragedy." The three last of these parts have
been distinguished by Downes and our author as the best of his efforts,
and being then but a "mannish youth," he made a suitable representative
of feminine beauty. Kynaston's _forte_, at this period, appears to have
consisted in moving compassion and pity, "in which," says old Downes,
"it has since been disputable among the judicious, whether any woman
that succeeded him so sensibly touched the audience as he."

At the Restoration, when his majesty's servants re-opened the "Red Bull"
playhouse, in St. John-street, next shifted to Gibbons's tennis-court,
in Clare-market, and finally settled, in 1663, at their new theatre in
Drury-lane, Kynaston was admitted to their ranks, and played
_Peregrine_, in Jonson's comedy of the "Fox." He also held _Sir
Dauphine_, a minor personage, in the same author's "Silent Woman," and
soon after succeeded to _Otto_, in the "Duke of Normandy," a part which
was followed by others of variety and importance.

In derogation of Cibber's panegyric, we are assured by Davies, upon the
authority of some old comedians, that, from his juvenile familiarity
with female characters, Kynaston contracted some disagreeable tones in
speaking, which resembled the whine or cant that genuine taste has at
all times been impelled to explode. When George Powel was once
discharging the intemperance of a recent debauch from his stomach,
Kynaston asked him if he still felt sick. "How is it possible to be
otherwise," said Powel, "when I hear you speak?" Much as Kynaston,
however, might have been affected by the peculiarities of early
practice, we cannot consent, upon evidence such as this, to rob him of
the laurels that have sprung from respectable testimony.

In 1695 he followed the fortunes of Betterton to Lincoln's-inn-fields,
and supported a considerable character in John Banks's "Cyrus the
Great," produced the year after this removal. The time of his retirement
is not known, but it appears from our author that he continued upon the
stage till his memory and spirit both began to fail him. He had left it,
however, before 1706, when Betterton and Underhill have been specified
by Downes, as "being the only remains of the Duke of York's servants,"
at that time before the public. Kynaston died wealthy, and was buried in
the church-yard of St. Paul's, Covent-garden.

Kynaston bore a great resemblance to the noted Sir Charles Sidley, a
similitude of which he was so proud, that he endeavoured to display it
by the most particular expedients. On one occasion, he got a suit of
laced clothes made in imitation of the baronet's, and appearing publicly
in it, Sir Charles, whose wit very seldom atoned for his ill-nature,
punished this vain propensity in his usual mischievous manner. He hired
a bravo to accost Kynaston in the Park, one day when he wore his finery,
pick a quarrel with him on account of a pretended affront from his
prototype, and beat him unmercifully. This scheme was duly put in
practice, and though Kynaston protested that he was not the person his
antagonist took him for, the ruffian redoubled his blows, on account of
what he affected to consider his scandalous falsehood. When Sir Charles
Sidley was remonstrated with upon the cruelty of this transaction, he
told the actor's friends that their pity was misplaced, for that
Kynaston had not suffered so much in his bones as _he_ had in his
character, the whole town believing that it was he who had undergone the
disgrace of this chastisement.


WILLIAM MOUNTFORT.

William Mountfort, according to Cibber's estimate, was born in 1660, and
having, I suppose, joined the king's company at a very early age, about
the year 1682, "grew," in the words of old Downes, "to the maturity of a
good actor." At Drury-lane theatre, he sustained _Alfonso Corso_, in the
"Duke of Guise," in 1682. His rise was so rapid, that in 1685 we find
him selected for the hero of Crowne's "Sir Courtly Nice," "which," says
Downes, "was so _nicely_ performed," that none of his successors, but
Colley Cibber, could equal him. Perhaps the last new character assumed
by Mountfort was _Cleanthes_, in Dryden's "Cleomenes," a play to which
he spoke the prologue.

I here present the reader with a narrative of those circumstances
attending the death of Mountfort, which have so long been misunderstood
and misrepresented.

A Captain Richard Hill had made proposals of marriage to Mrs.
Bracegirdle, which were declined from what Hill appeared to consider an
injurious preference for Mountfort, between whom, though a married man,
and the lady, at least a platonic attachment was often thought to
subsist. Enraged at Mountfort's superior success, and affecting to treat
him as the only obstacle to his wishes, Hill expressed a determination
at various times, and before several persons, to be revenged upon him,
and as it was proved upon the trial, coupled this threat with some of
the bitterest invectives that could spring from brutal animosity.
Among Hill's associates was Lord Mohun, a peer of very dissolute
manners, whose extreme youth afforded but a faint palliative for his
participation in the act of violence and debauchery to which Hill
resorted. This nobleman, however, who seems to have felt a chivalric
devotion to the interests of his friend, engaged with Hill in a cruel
and perfidious scheme for the abduction of Mrs. Bracegirdle, whom Hill
proposed to carry off, violate, and afterwards marry. They arranged with
one Dixon, an owner of hackney carriages, to provide a coach and six
horses to take them to Totteridge, and appointed him to wait with this
conveyance over against the Horse-shoe tavern in Drury-lane. A small
party of soldiers was also hired to assist in this notable exploit, and
as Mrs. Bracegirdle, who had been supping at a Mr. Page's in
Prince's-street, was going down Drury-lane towards her lodgings in
Howard-street, Strand, about ten o'clock at night, on Friday the 9th of
December, 1692, two of these soldiers pulled her away from Mr. Page, who
was attending her home, nearly knocked her mother down, and tried to
lift her into the vehicle. Her mother, upon whom the blow given by these
ruffians had providentially made but a short impression, hung very
obstinately about her neck, and prevented the success of their
endeavours. While Mr. Page was calling loudly for assistance, Hill ran
at him with his sword drawn, and again endeavoured to get Mrs.
Bracegirdle into the coach, a task he was hindered from accomplishing,
by the alarm that Page had successfully given. Company came up, on which
Hill insisted on seeing Mrs. Bracegirdle home, and actually led her by
the hand to the house in which she resided. Lord Mohun, who during this
scuffle was seated quietly in the coach, joined Hill in Howard-street,
the soldiers having been previously dismissed, and there they paraded,
with their swords drawn, for about an hour and a half, before Mrs.
Bracegirdle's door. Hill's scabbard, it ought to be remarked, was
clearly proved to have been lost during the scuffle in Drury-lane, and
Lord Mohun, when challenged by the watch, not only sheathed his weapon,
but offered to surrender it. These were strong points at least in his
lordship's favour, and deserve to be noted, because the prescriptive
assertion that Mountfort was treacherously killed, is weakened by the
establishment of those facts. Mrs. Brown, the mistress of the house
where Mrs. Bracegirdle lodged, went out on her arrival, to expostulate
with Lord Mohun and his confederate, and after exchanging a few words of
no particular importance, dispatched her maid servant to Mountfort's
house,[241] hard by in Norfolk-street, to apprise Mrs. Mountfort of the
danger to which, in case of coming home, he would be subjected. Mrs.
Mountfort sent in search of her husband, but without success, and the
watch on going their round, between eleven and twelve o'clock, found
Lord Mohun and Hill drinking wine in the street, a drawer having brought
it from an adjacent tavern. At this juncture Mrs. Brown, the landlady,
hearing the voices of the watch, went to the door with a design of
directing them to secure both Lord Mohun and Hill, and some conversation
passed upon that subject, although her directions were not obeyed.
Seeing Mountfort, just as he had turned the corner into Howard-street,
and was apparently coming towards her house, Mrs. Brown hurried out to
meet him, and mention his danger, but he would not stop, so as to allow
her time for the slightest communication. On gaining the spot where Lord
Mohun stood, Hill being a little farther off, he saluted his lordship
with great respect, and was received by him with unequivocal kindness.
Lord Mohun hinted to Mountfort that he had been sent for by Mrs.
Bracegirdle, in consequence of her projected seizure, a charge which
Mountfort immediately denied. Lord Mohun then touched upon the affair,
and Mountfort expressed a hope, with some warmth, that he would not
vindicate Hill's share in the business, against which, while disclaiming
any tenderness for Mrs. Bracegirdle, he protested with much asperity.
Hill approached in time to catch the substance of Mountfort's remark,
and having hastily said that he could vindicate himself, gave him a blow
on the ear, and at the same moment a challenge to fight. They both went
from the pavement into the middle of the road, and after making two or
three passes at each other, Mountfort was mortally wounded. He threw
down his sword, which broke by the fall, and staggered to his own house,
where Mrs. Page, who had gone to concert with Mrs. Mountfort for her
husband's safety, hearing a cry of "murder" in the street, threw open
the door, and received him pale, bleeding, and exhausted, in her arms.
Hill fled and escaped, but Lord Mohun, having surrendered himself, was
arraigned before parliament as an accomplice, on the 31st of January,
1693, and, after a laborious, patient, protracted, and impartial trial,
acquitted of the crime, in which he certainly bore no conspicuous part.
Mountfort languished till noon the next day, and solemnly declared, at
the very point of death, that Hill stabbed him with one hand while he
struck him with the other, Lord Mohun holding him in conversation when
the murder was committed. From the fact, however, of Mountfort's sword
being taken up unsheathed and broken, there is no doubt, without
insisting upon the testimony to that effect, that he used it; and that
he could have used it after receiving the desperate wound of which he
died, does not appear, by his flight and exhaustion, to have been
possible. Some of his fellow-players, it seems, had sifted the evidence
of a material witness, the day after his death, and at this evidence
they openly expressed their dissatisfaction. Mountfort, it was
indisputably shown, too, _went out of the way to his own house_, in
going down Howard-street at all, as he ought to have crossed it, his
door being the second from the south-west corner. These circumstances
will perhaps support a conjecture that some part of the odium heaped
upon Lord Mohun and Hill has proceeded from the cowardice and
exasperation of a timid and vindictive fraternity, coupled with the
individual artifices of Mrs. Bracegirdle, to redeem a character which
the real circumstances of Mountfort's death, dying as her champion,
severely affected. Cibber's assurance of her purity, may merely prove
the extent of his dulness or dissimulation, for on calmly reviewing this
case in all its aspects, chequered as it is by Hill's impetuosity, Mrs.
Bracegirdle's lewdness, and Mountfort's presumption, I cannot help
inferring that he fell a victim, not unfairly, to one of those casual
encounters which mark the general violence of the times. The record of
his murder is therefore erroneous, and we may hope to see it amended in
every future collection of theatrical lives.[242]


SAMUEL SANDFORD.

Samuel Sandford made his first appearance upon the stage, under
D'Avenant's authority, in the year 1663,[243] at the time when that
company was strengthened by the accession of Smith and Matthew Medbourn.
The first part for which he has been mentioned by Downes, is _Sampson_,
in "Romeo and Juliet;" he soon after sustained a minor part in the
"Adventures of Five Hours," fol. 1663; and when D'Avenant produced his
comedy of the "Man's the Master," he and Harris sung an eccentric
epilogue in the character of two street ballad-singers. Sandford was the
original _Foresight_, in "Love for Love," and though Mr. Cibber has
exclusively insisted upon his tragic excellence, he must have been a
comedian of strong and diversified humour. When Betterton and his
associates seceded to the new theatre in Lincoln's-inn-fields, he
refused to join them as a sharer, but was engaged at a salary of three
pounds per week. As Sandford is not enumerated by Downes among the
actors transferred to Swiney, in the latter end of 1706, when Betterton
and Underhill, indeed, are mentioned as "the only remains" of the duke's
company, it is clear he must have died during the previous six years,
having been referred to by Cibber, as exercising his profession in 1700.
His ancestors were long and respectably settled at Sandford, a village
in Shropshire; and he seems to have prided himself, absurdly, upon the
superiority of his birth.


JAMES NOKES.

James Nokes formed part of the company collected at the "Cockpit," in
1659, and is first mentioned by Downes for _Norfolk_, in "King Henry the
Eighth," some time after D'Avenant's opening in Lincoln's-inn-fields.
Upon this assumption Mr. Davies has expressed a very reasonable doubt,
and conjectured, with much plausibility, that it was sustained by
Robert Nokes.

In Cowley's "Cutter of Coleman-street" [1661], the part of _Puny_ was
allotted to Nokes, whose reputation at that period appears to have been
but feebly established, as the more important comic characters were
intrusted to Lovel and Underhill. We find the name of Nokes affixed to
_Lovis_, in Etherege's "Comical Revenge," 1664, but his performance of
that part, whatever merit it might have evinced, acquired no
distinction. [This is wrong; Nokes played Sir Nicholas Cully: the part
of Lovis was acted by Norris.] The plague then beginning to rage,
theatrical exhibitions were suspended, in May, 1665, and the company
ceased to act, on account of the great fire, till [about] Christmas,
1666, when their occupation was resumed in Lincoln's-inn-fields, and
Lord Orrery produced his play of "Mr. Anthony." In this piece there was
an odd sort of duel between Nokes and Angel, in which one was armed with
a blunderbuss, and the other with a bow and arrow. Though this frivolous
incident procured Nokes some accession of public notice, it was Dryden's
"Sir Martin Mar-all," [1667,] which developed his powers to their
fullest extent, and raised him to the highest pitch of popularity.

According to Downes, the Duke of Newcastle gave a literal translation of
Molière's "Etourdi" to Dryden, who adapted the part of _Sir Martin
Mar-all_ "purposely for the mouth of Mr. Nokes;" and the old prompter
has corroborated Mr. Cibber's assertion of his success. Nokes added
largely to his reputation, in [1668], by performing _Sir Oliver_, in
"She would if she could;" and strengthened Shadwell's "Sullen Lovers,"
by accepting the part of _Poet Ninny_.

Nokes acted _Barnaby Brittle_ at the original appearance--about 1670--of
Betterton's "Amorous Widow," and [in 1671] performed _Old Jorden_, in
Ravenscroft's "Citizen turned Gentleman," a part which the king and
court were said to have been more delighted with than any other, except
_Sir Martin Mar-all_. His _Nurse_, in "Caius Marius," 1680, excited
such uncommon merriment, that he carried the name of Nurse Nokes to his
grave. In 1688, he supported the hero of Shadwell's "'Squire of
Alsatia," a play which was acted in every part with remarkable
excellence, and enjoyed the greatest popularity. We find no farther
mention of him, subsequent to this period, though included by Cibber
among those who were performing under the united patents, in 1690, when
he first came into the company. According to Brown, who has peculiarly
marked out his "gaiety and openness" upon the stage, he kept a
"nicknackatory, or toy-shop," opposite the spot which has since received
the denomination of Exeter Change. The date of his death is uncertain,
but there is some reason to presume that it happened about the year
1692.[244]


WILLIAM PINKETHMAN.

The first mention of Pinkethman, by Downes, is for the part of _Ralph_,
in "Sir Salomon," when commanded at court, in the beginning of [1704],
but he had been alluded to, two years before, in Gildon's "Comparison
between the Two Stages," as the "flower of Bartholomew-fair, and the
idol of the rabble. A fellow that overdoes every thing, and spoils many
a part with his own stuff." [He was on the stage as early as 1692.] He
is again mentioned in the "Roscius Anglicanus" for _Dr. Caius_, in the
"Merry Wives of Windsor," and continued to act in the Drury-lane company
till his death, about the year 1725.

Pinkethman was a serviceable actor, notwithstanding his irregularities,
and performed many characters of great importance. He was the original
_Don Lewis_, in "Love makes a Man," 1701, a proof that his talents were
soon and greatly appreciated. His eccentric turn led him, in too many
instances, from the sphere of respectability, and we find him in the
constant habit of frequenting fairs, for the low purpose of theatrical
exhibition. His stage talents were marred, it is true, by an extravagant
habit of saying more than had been "set down" for him; and though this
abominable blemish is fully admitted, still its toleration proves that
Pinkethman must have been an actor of uncommon value. His son was a
comedian of merit, who played _Waitwell_, in the "Way of the World," at
the opening of Covent-garden theatre, in December, 1732, and died in
May, 1740.


ANTHONY LEIGH.

The "famous Mr. Anthony Leigh," as Downes denominates him, came into the
duke's company, about the year [1672], upon the deaths of several
eminent actors, whose places he and others were admitted to supply. He
played _Bellair_, _sen_., in Etherege's "Man of Mode," at its production
in 1676. In 1681, Leigh supported _Father Dominic_, in Dryden's "Spanish
Friar;" a piece, which, according to the "Roscius Anglicanus," was
"admirably acted, and produced vast profit to the company." Leigh's
success was so great in this character, that a full-length portrait was
taken of him in his clerical habit, by Sir Godfrey Kneller, for the Earl
of Dorset, from which a good mezzotinto engraving is now in the hands of
theatrical collectors. In 1685, we find him allotted to _Sir Nicholas
Calico_, in "Sir Courtly Nice;" in 1688 he supported _Sir William
Belfond_, in Shadwell's "Squire of Alsatia," and these parts, with a few
others, appear to have constituted his peculiar excellence.

The satirical allusions of such a random genius as Brown, are rarely to
be relied upon, or we might suspect Leigh, from the following extract,
to have been distinguished by pious hypocrisy:--

"At last, my friend Nokes, pointing to a little edifice, which exactly
resembles Dr. Burgess's conventicle in Russel-court, says he, 'your
old acquaintance Tony Leigh, who turned presbyterian parson upon his
coming into these quarters, holds forth most notably here every
Sunday.'"--"Letters from the Dead to the Living" [1744, ii. 77].


CAVE UNDERHILL.

Cave Underhill was a member of the company collected by Rhodes, and
which, soon afterwards, submitted to the authority of Sir William
D'Avenant. He is first mentioned by Downes, for his performance of _Sir
Morglay Thwack_, in the "Wits," after which he sustained the
_Grave-digger_, in "Hamlet," and soon testified such ability, that the
manager publicly termed him "the truest comedian" at that time upon his
stage.[245] Underhill, about this time, strengthened the cast of "Romeo
and Juliet," by playing _Gregory_, and though the custom of devoting the
best talent which the theatres afford, to parts of minor importance, has
ceased, it is a practice to which the managers, were public amusement
consulted, might safely recur. In Shakspeare's "Twelfth Night," which,
says Downes, "had mighty success by its well performance," Underhill
soon after supported the _Clown_, a character in which the latter
attributes delineated by Cibber, could alone have been employed.
Underhill's reputation appears to have been speedily established, as we
find him intrusted by Cowley, in [1661], with the hero of his "Cutter of
Coleman-street;" and he is mentioned by Downes for especial excellence
in performing _Jodelet_, in D'Avenant's "Man's the Master." His first
new part after the accession of James, was _Hothead_, in "Sir Courtly
Nice;" on the 30th of April, 1695, he distinguished himself by his
chaste and spirited performance of _Sir Sampson Legend_, in Congreve's
"Love for Love," and in 1700, closed a long, arduous, and popular
career of original parts, by playing _Sir Wilful Witwou'd_, in the "Way
of the World." [He continued on the stage till 1710.]

A brief account of this valuable comedian has been furnished by Mr.
Davies, which, for the satisfaction of our readers, we shall proceed to
transcribe.

"Underhill was a jolly and droll companion, who, if we may believe such
historians as Tom Brown, divided his gay hours between Bacchus and
Venus, with no little ardour. Tom, I think, makes Underhill one of the
gill-drinkers of his time; men who resorted to taverns, in the middle of
the day, under pretence of drinking Bristol milk, (for so good sherry
was then called) to whet their appetites, where they indulged themselves
too often in ebriety. Underhill acted till he was past eighty. He was so
excellent in the part of Trinculo, in the Tempest, that he was called
Prince Trinculo.[246] He had an admirable vein of pleasantry, and told
his lively stories, says Brown, with a bewitching smile. The same author
says, he was so afflicted with the gout, that he prayed one minute and
cursed the other. His shambling gait, in his old age, was no hindrance
to his acting particular parts. He retired from the theatre in
1703."--"Dram. Misc.," iii. 138.

On the 31st of May, 1709, Underhill applied for a benefit, and
procured it, upon which occasion he played his favourite part of the
_Grave-digger_, and received the following cordial recommendation from
Sir Richard Steele:--

"My chief business here [Will's Coffee House] this evening, was to speak
to my friends in behalf of honest Cave Underhill, who has been a comic
for three generations; my father admired him extremely when he was a
boy. There is certainly nature excellently represented in his manner of
action; in which he ever avoided that general fault in players, of doing
too much. It must be confessed, he has not the merit of some ingenious
persons now on the stage, of adding to his authors; for the actors were
so dull in the last age, that many of them have gone out of the world,
without having ever spoken one word of their own in the theatre. Poor
Cave is so mortified, that he quibbles and tells you, he pretends only
to act a part fit for a man who has one foot in the grave; _viz._ a
_Grave-digger_. All admirers of true comedy, it is hoped, will have the
gratitude to be present on the last day of his acting, who, if he does
not happen to please them, will have it then to say, that it is the
first time."--"Tatler," No. 22.


GEORGE POWELL.

The father of George Powell was an actor in the king's company at the
time of its junction, in 1682, with the duke's. Powell's access to the
theatre was, therefore, easy; and we are intitled to suspect, though the
time is not to be ascertained, that he began to act at a very early
period.

Even, according to Cibber's allowance, when Powell was appointed to the
principal parts abandoned by Betterton and his revolters, they were
parts for which, whether serious or comic, he had both elocution and
humour. It is remarked by Davies,[247] that Cibber "seems to have hated
Powell," and if so, we have a ready clue to the neglect and asperity
with which he has treated him.

Powell succeeded Betterton, it is supposed, in the part of _Hotspur_,
when that excellent comedian exchanged its choleric attributes, in his
declining years, for the gaiety and humour of _Falstaff_. _Edgar_, in
"King Lear," was also one of his most successful characters, but of
this, owing to his irregularities, he was dispossessed by Wilks. To such
a height, indeed, was the intemperance of this actor carried, that Sir
John Vanbrugh, in his preface to the "Relapse," 4to, 1697, speaking of
Powell's _Worthy_, has exposed it in following manner:

     One word more about the bawdy, and I have done. I own the
     first night this thing was acted, some indecencies had like to
     have happened; but it was not my fault. The fine gentleman of
     the play, drinking his mistress's health in Nantes brandy,
     from six in the morning to the time he waddled on upon the
     stage in the evening, had toasted himself up to such a pitch
     of vigour, I confess I once gave up _Amanda_ for gone, and am
     since, with all due respect to Mrs. Rogers, very sorry she
     escaped: for I am confident a certain lady, (let no one take
     it to herself that is handsome) who highly blames the play,
     for the barrenness of the conclusion, would then have allowed
     it a very natural close.

To the folly of intoxication he added the horrors of debt, and was so
hunted by the Sheriffs' officers, that he usually walked the streets
with a sword (sheathed) in his hand, and if he saw any of them at a
distance, he would roar out, "Get on the other side of the way, you
dog!" The bailiff, who knew his old customer, would obligingly answer,
"We do not want you _now_, Master Powell." Harassed by his distresses,
and unnerved by drink, it is hardly to be wondered at if his reputation
decreased, and his ability slackened; but that his efforts were still
marked by a possession of the very highest qualities that criticism can
attest, is proved by the following extract from the "Spectator:"

     Having spoken of Mr. Powell as sometimes raising himself
     applause from the ill taste of an audience, I must do him the
     justice to own, that he is excellently formed for a tragedian,
     and, when he pleases, deserves the admiration of the best
     judges.--No. 40.

Addison and Steele continued their regard for this unhappy man as long
as they could render him any service, and that he acted _Portius_, in
"Cato," on its appearance in 1713, must have been with the author's
approbation. The last trace we have of Powell is confined to a playbill,
for his benefit, in the year 1717, since when no vestige has been found
of his career. He lies buried, it has been said, in the vault of St.
Clement-Danes; but though the period of his death may be fixed not far
from the date of this document, it cannot be minutely ascertained.
[Genest says Powell died 14th December, 1714.]

In the intervals of excess Powell found time for repeated literary
labour, having written four plays, and superintended the publication of
three more. His fault was too great a passion for social pleasure, but
though the irregularities this passion produced, disabled him from
exerting the talents he was allowed to possess, still his excellence on
the stage is not to be disputed. He was esteemed at one period of his
life a rival to Betterton, and had the prudence of his conduct been
equal to the vigour of his genius, he would have held, as well as
reached, that lofty station for which nature had designed him.

If the testimony of Aston can be relied on, Powell was born in the year
1658, being incidentally mentioned by that facetious writer, as
Betterton's junior by three and twenty years.


JOHN VERBRUGGEN.

John Verbruggen, it appears from the assertion of Mr. Davies, was a
dissipated young fellow, who determined, in opposition to the advice of
his friends, to be an actor, and accordingly loitered about Drury-lane
theatre, at the very time when Cibber was also endeavouring to get
admittance, in expectation of employment. On the death of Mountfort,
whose widow he married, Verbruggen was intrusted, I have no doubt, with
the part of _Alexander_, his fondness for which was such, that he
suffered the players and the public, for many years, to call him by no
other name. [He seems to have been called Alexander from his first
appearing on the stage, till 1694.] It is mentioned in more than one
pamphlet, that Cibber and Verbruggen were at variance, and hence the
animosity and unfairness with which the latter has been treated.[248]

The first part to which Verbruggen can be traced, is _Aurelius_, in
"King Arthur," 4to, 1691 [he played _Termagant_ ("Squire of Alsatia") in
1688]: in the year 1696, Mr. Southern assigned him the character of
_Oroonoko_, by the special advice of William Cavendish, the first Duke
of Devonshire; and as the author informs us in his preface, "it was
Verbruggen's endeavour, in the performance of that part, to merit the
duke's recommendation." A further proof of Mr. Cibber's partiality, is
the constant respect paid to Verbruggen by such judges of ability as
Rowe and Congreve, for whose pieces he was uniformly selected. His
_Mirabel_, in the "Way of the World," and _Bajazet_, in "Tamerlane,"
were parts of the highest importance, and it will be difficult to show
that an ordinary actor could have been intrusted, by writers of equal
power and fastidity, with duties of which he was not thoroughly
deserving. When Verbruggen died it is impossible to ascertain. He
played _Sullen_, in the "Beaux' Stratagem," at its production in 1707,
and as Elrington made his appearance in _Bajazet_, in 1711, there is
some reason to conclude that Verbruggen's death occurred during that
interval. [He died before April, 1708.]

Though Gildon, a scribbler whose venality was only exceeded by his
dulness, has mentioned Verbruggen in the most derogatory terms,[249]
there is ample evidence in the bare record of his business, to justify
the most unqualified merit we may incline to ascribe. Chetwood alludes
to him, in pointing out Elrington's imitation of his excellencies, as "a
very great actor in tragedy, and polite parts in comedy,"[250] and the
author of the "Laureat" enumerates a variety of important characters, in
which he commanded universal applause.


JOSEPH WILLIAMS.

Joseph Williams,[251] who was bred a seal-cutter, came into the duke's
company, about the year 1673, when but a boy, and according to the
practice of that period, being apprenticed to an eminent actor, "served
Mr. Harris." I find him first mentioned by Downes, for _Pylades_, in the
serious opera of "Circe;" his next character of importance being
_Polydore_, in the "Orphan," 1680; and, same year, _Theodosius_, in Lee's
tragedy of that name. The Union in 1682, without diminishing his merit,
appears to have lessened his value, by the introduction of Kynaston and
others, who had more established pretensions to parts of importance.

The secession of Williams from Betterton's company, just before the
opening in 1695, has been noticed and explained by Mr. Cibber, in a
subsequent passage. Greatly, as I have no doubt, he has depreciated the
merit of this actor, no materials remain of a more recent date than
those already quoted, by which we may conjecture his talents, or enforce
his estimation. Williams is not to be confounded with an actor of the
same appellation, who was at Drury-lane theatre in the year 1730, and
relieved Cibber of _Scipio_, in Thomson's "Sophonisba," a curious
account of which is given in the "Dramatic Miscellanies."


ELIZABETH BARRY.

Elizabeth Barry, it is said, was the daughter of Edward Barry, Esq., a
barrister, who was afterwards called Colonel Barry, from his having
raised a regiment for the service of Charles the First, in the course of
the civil wars. The misfortunes arising from this engagement, involved
him in such distress, that his children were obliged to provide for
their own maintenance. Lady D'Avenant, a relation of the noted laureat,
from her friendship to Colonel Barry, gave this daughter a genteel
education, and made her a constant associate in the circle of polite
intercourse. These opportunities gave an ease and grace to Mrs. Barry's
behaviour, which were of essential benefit, when her patroness procured
her an introduction to the stage. This happened in the year 1673, when
Mrs. Barry's efforts were so extremely unpropitious, that the directors
of the duke's company pronounced her incapable of making any progress in
the histrionic art. Three times, according to Curll's "History of the
Stage," she was dismissed, and by the interest of her benefactor,
re-instated. When Otway, however, produced his "Alcibiades," in 1675,
her merit was such, as not only to excite the public attention, but to
command the author's praise, which has been glowingly bestowed upon her
in the preface to that production. We find her, next season, filling
the lively character of _Mrs. Lovit_, in Etherege's "Man of Mode;" and
in 1680, her performance of _Monimia_, in the "Orphan," seems to have
raised that reputation to its greatest height, which had been gradually
increasing. The part of _Belvidera_, two years afterwards, and the
heroine of Southern's "Fatal Marriage," in 1694, elicited unrivalled
talent, and procured her universal distinction.

When Mrs. Barry first resorted to the theatre, her pretensions to notice
were a good air and manner, and a very powerful and pleasing voice. Her
ear, however, was so extremely defective, that several eminent judges,
on seeing her attempt a character of some importance, gave their opinion
that she never could be an actress. Upon the authority of Curll's
historian, Mr. Davies[252] has compiled what appears to me an apocryphal
tale of her sudden rise to the pinnacle of excellence, though there is
no reason to dispute her criminal intimacy with the Earl of Rochester. I
am not inclined, while doubting the precise anecdote of his assistance,
to deny that much advantage might have been derived from his general
instructions.

Mrs. Barry was not only remarkable for the brilliancy of her talent, but
the earnestness of her zeal, and the ardour of her assiduity. Betterton,
that kind, candid, and judicious observer, bore this testimony to her
eminent abilities, and unyielding good-nature, that she often exerted
herself so greatly in a pitiful character, that her acting has given
success to plays which would disgust the most patient reader.[253] When
she accepted a part, it was her uniform practice to consult the author's
intention. Her last new character was the heroine of Smith's "Phædra and
Hippolytus," and though Mrs. Oldfield and the poet fell out concerning a
few lines in the part of _Ismena_, Mrs. Barry and he were in perfect
harmony. [_Valide_, in Goring's "Irene," 1708, was her last new part.]

Mrs. Barry must have closed her career with this performance, being
mentioned by Steele, in the "Tatler," when assisting at Betterton's
benefit, on Thursday, April 7th, 1709, as "not at present concerned in
the house." She died on the 7th of November, 1713, aged fifty-five
years, and was buried in Acton church-yard. Mr. Davies ascribes her
death to the bite of a favourite lap-dog, who, unknown to her, had been
seized with madness, and there seems to be no grounds for disturbing his
supposition.


MRS. BETTERTON.

When Sir William D'Avenant undertook the management of the duke's
company, he lodged and boarded four principal actresses in his house,
among whom was Mrs. Saunderson, the subject of this article.

Mrs. Saunderson's first appearance in D'Avenant's company, was made as
_Ianthe_, in the "Siege of Rhodes," on the opening of his new theatre in
Lincoln's-inn-fields, in April, 1662 [should be June, 1661]. She played
_Ophelia_ soon afterwards, and that part being followed by Shakspeare's
_Juliet_, evinces the consideration in which her services were held.
[About] 1663, she married Mr. Betterton, and not in 1670, as it is
erroneously mentioned in the "Biographia Dramatica," and other worthless
compilations.[254]

The principal characters sustained by Mrs. Betterton, were _Queen
Catharine_, in "Henry the Eighth;" the _Duchess of Malfy_; the _Amorous
Widow_; those enumerated in the text, and many others, not less
remarkable for their importance than their variety. On the death of her
husband, in April, 1710, she was so strongly affected by that event, as
to lose her senses, which were recovered, however, a short time previous
to her own decease. Mr. Cibber may be right in stating that she only
enjoyed the bounty of her royal mistress for about half a year; but, in
that case, the pension could not have been granted directly he died, as
we find that Mrs. Betterton was alive on the 4th of June, 1711, more
than thirteen months after, and had the play of "Sir Fopling Flutter,"
performed at Drury-lane for her benefit. Mrs. Betterton, though
prevented from performing, by age and infirmity, enjoyed a sinecure
situation in Drury-lane theatre, till she withdrew from it, in 1709, and
was paid at the rate of [one pound] a-week. The "Biographia Britannica"
says she survived her husband eighteen months, but the precise date of
her decease has never been discovered. [Mrs. Betterton made a will on
10th March, 1712. In all probability Bellchambers is right in supposing
that the annuity was not granted till some time after her husband's
death.]


BENJAMIN JOHNSON.

This excellent actor, who was familiarly known by the appellation of his
great namesake, Ben Jonson, came into the Theatre Royal, from an
itinerant company, as Mr. Cibber relates, about the year 1695. He was
bred a sign painter, but took more pleasure in hearing the actors, than
in handling his pencil or spreading his colours, and, as he used to say
in his merry mood, left the saint's occupation at last to take that of
the sinner.

Johnson's merit was evinced as _Sir William Wisewould_, in Cibber's
comedy of "Love's Last Shift," 4to, 1696; but I find him first mentioned
by Downes, for _Justice Wary_, in Caryl's "Sir Salomon" [about 1704 or
1705]; the old prompter, in a species of postscript to his valuable
tract, then terms him "a true copy of Mr. Underhill," and instances his
_Morose_, _Corbaccio_, and _Hothead_, as very admirable efforts. Johnson
passed over to the management of old Swiney, in 1706, with other members
of Betterton's company, and established a very high reputation by his
chaste and studied manner of acting. When Rich, in 1714, opened his new
theatre in Lincoln's-inn-fields, Booth, Wilks, and Cibber, the managers
of Drury-lane, solicitous to retain in their service comedians of merit,
paid a particular respect to Johnson, by investing him with such parts
of Dogget, who had taken leave of them, as were adapted to his powers.
Here he continued with fame and profit, till August, 1742, when he
expired in the seventy-seventh year of his age. Mr. Davies, who appears
to have been familiar with his excellencies, has given a description of
Johnson, which, for its evident taste and candour, I shall do myself the
pleasure to transcribe.

"That chaste copier of nature, Ben Johnson, the comedian, for above
forty years, gave a true picture of an arch clown in the _Grave-digger_.
His jokes and repartees had a strong effect from his seeming
insensibility of their force. His large, speaking, blue eyes he fixed
steadily on the person to whom he spoke, and was never known to have
wandered from the stage to any part of the theatre."--"Dram. Misc.,"
iii. 140.


WILLIAM BULLOCK.

This excellent actor came to London, as we see, about 1695, deriving his
engagement from the distress in which Drury-lane theatre was involved by
the desertion of Betterton, and other principal performers. He quitted
this establishment in 1714, owing, as Mr. Cibber insinuates, to the
ungovernable temper of Wilks; and passed over to John Rich, at the
opening of Lincoln's-inn-fields. He is first mentioned by Downes, for
the _Host_, in Shakspeare's "Merry Wives of Windsor" [about 1704 or
1705], and appears to be pointed at in Dennis's "Epistle Dedicatory" to
the "Comical Gallant," where the irascible writer thus addresses the
Hon. George Granville:--

"Falstaff's part, which you know to be the principal one of the play,
and that which on all the rest depends, was by no means acted to the
satisfaction of the audience, upon which several fell from disliking the
action, to disapproving the play." [As noted before, p. 252, Bullock was
probably not the actor aimed at.]

This piece was printed in 1702, as acted "at the Theatre Royal in
Drury-lane;" with a list of the _dramatis personæ_, but the names of the
actors not annexed. Bullock, however, sustained the part of _Sir
Tunbelly Clumsy_, in Vanbrugh's "Relapse," which had been previously
performed under the same auspices, and from its nature, most probably by
the same actor.

William Bullock was a comedian of great glee and much vivacity, and in
his person large, with a lively countenance, full of humourous
information. Steele, in the "Tatler," with his usual kind sensibility,
very often adverts to Bullock's faculty of exciting amusement, but
sometimes censures his habit of interpolation.[255] In Gildon's
"Comparison between the Two Stages," 1702 [p. 199], he is termed the
"best comedian since Nokes and Leigh, and a fellow that has a very
humble opinion of himself." Bullock's abilities have been ratified by
the sanction of Macklin, who denominated him a true theatrical genius;
and Mr. Davies saw him act several parts with great applause, and
particularly the _Spanish Friar_, when beyond the age of eighty. He died
on the 18th of June, 1733. [Genest, iii. 593, points out that Bullock
was acting in 1739.]


JOHN MILLS.

Our first notice of this actor is found in the "Roscius Anglicanus,"
where Downes, who seems anxious to dispatch his subject, says summarily
that "he excels in tragedy," but without making the remotest allusion to
any characters in which his talent had been displayed.

John Mills the elder was, in person, inclined to the athletic size; his
features were large, though not expressive; his voice was full, but not
flexible; and his deportment was manly, without being graceful or
majestic. He was considered one of the most useful actors that ever
served in a theatre, but though invested by the patronage of Wilks with
many parts of the highest order, he had no pretensions to quit the
secondary line in which he ought to have been placed. Steele[256] taxes
him very broadly with a want of "sentiment," and insinuates that by
making gesture too much his study, he neglected the better attributes of
his art.

On the death of Betterton, or soon after, Wilks, who took upon himself
to regulate the theatrical cast, gave _Macbeth_, with great partiality,
to Mills, while Booth and Powell were condemned to represent the
inferior parts of _Banquo_ and _Lenox_. Mills, though he spoke the
celebrated soliloquy on time,--

  To-morrow, and to-morrow, etc.,

with propriety, feeling, and effect, wanted genius to realise the
turbulent scenes in which this character abounds. So much, indeed, was
his deficiency perceived, that the indignation of a country gentleman
broke out one night, during the performance of this play, in a very odd
manner. The 'squire, after having been heartily tired with Mills, on the
appearance of his old companion, Powell, in the fourth act, exclaimed,
loud enough to be heard by the audience, "For God's sake, George, give
us a speech, and let me go home."[257]

I recollect an incident of the same sort occurring at Bristol, where a
very indifferent actor, declaimed so long and to such little purpose,
that an honest farmer, who sat in the pit, started up with evident
signs of disgust, and waving his hand, to motion the speaker off, cried
out, "Tak' un away, tak' un away, and let's have another."

One of the best parts sustained by Mills, was that of _Pierre_, which he
acted so much to the taste of the public, that the applause it produced
him exceeded all that was bestowed upon his best efforts in every thing
else. He also acted _Ventidius_ with the true spirit of a rough and
generous old soldier, and in _Bajazet_, by the aid of his strong, deep,
melodious voice, he displayed more than ordinary power.

It is supposed that Mills died in [December], 1736, respected by the
public as a decent actor, and beloved by his friends as a worthy man.


THEOPHILUS KEEN.

Theophilus Keen received his first instructions in acting from Mr.
Ashbury, of the Dublin theatre, in which he made his appearance about
the year 1695. He most probably came into the Drury-lane company with
Johnson and others, when Rich had beaten up for recruits. On the opening
of the new house in Lincoln's Inn Fields, he went over to it, and,
according to Chetwood, had a share not only of the management, but in
the profit and loss, which latter speculation proved so disastrous to
him, that he died in the year 1719, of a broken heart. He was buried in
the church of St. Clement-Danes, and so much does he seem to have been
respected, that more than two hundred persons in deep mourning, attended
his funeral.

The influence he possessed in the theatre sometimes led him to assume
such parts as _Edgar_, _Oroonoko_, and _Essex_, while his excellence lay
in _Clytus_, and characters of a similar cast. His figure and voice,
though neither elegant nor soft, were good, and his action was so
complete, that it obtained for him the epithet of majestic, and when he
spoke those lines of the _King_, in "Hamlet," where he descants upon the
dignity that "doth hedge" a monarch, his look and whole deportment were
so commanding, that the audience accompanied them always with the
loudest applause.


MRS. MARY PORTER.

This valuable and respected actress, who was not only an honour to the
stage, but an ornament to human nature, obtained the notice of Betterton
by performing, when a child, the _Genius of Britain_, in a Lord Mayor's
pageant, during the reign of Charles or James the Second. It was the
custom for fruit-women in the theatre formerly to stand fronting the
pit, with their backs to the stage, and their oranges, &c. covered with
vine leaves, under one of which Betterton threatened to put his little
pupil, who was extremely diminutive, if she did not speak and act as he
would have her.

Mrs. Porter was the genuine successor of Mrs. Barry, and had an elevated
consequence in her manner, which has seldom been equalled. One of her
greatest parts was Shakspeare's _Queen Catherine_, in which her
sensibility and intelligence, her graceful elocution and dignified
behaviour, commanded applause and attention in passages of little
importance. When the scene was not agitated by passion, to the general
spectator she failed in communicating equal pleasure; her recitation of
fact or sentiment being so modulated as to resemble musical cadence
rather than speaking. Where passion, however, predominated, she exerted
her powers to a supreme degree, and exhibited that enthusiastic ardour
which filled her audience with animation, astonishment, and delight.

The dislocation of her thigh-bone, in the summer of 1731, was attended
with a circumstance that deserves to be recorded. She lived at
Heywood-hill, near Hendon, and, after the play, went home every night
in a one-horse chaise, prepared to defend herself against robbery, with
a brace of pistols. She was stopped on one of those occasions by a
highwayman, who demanded her money, and having the courage to level one
of her pistols at him, the assailant, who was probably unfurnished with
a similar weapon, assured her that he was no common thief, and had been
driven to his present course by the wants of a starving family. He told
her, at the same time, where he lived, and urged his distresses with
such earnestness, that she spared him all the money in her purse, which
was about ten guineas. The man left her, on which she gave a lash to the
horse, who suddenly started out of the track, overturned her vehicle,
and caused the accident already related. Let it be remembered to this
good woman's credit, that notwithstanding the pain and loss to which he
had, innocently, subjected her, she made strict inquiry into the
highwayman's character, and finding that he had told the truth, she
raised about sixty pounds among her acquaintance, and sent it, without
delay, to the relief of his wretched family. There is a romantic
generosity in this deed that captivates me more than its absolute
justice.

About the year 1738, Mrs. Porter returned to the stage, and acted many
of her principal characters, with much vigour and great applause, though
labouring under advanced age and unconquerable infirmity. She had the
misfortune to outlive an annuity upon which she depended, and died in
narrow circumstances, about the year 1762. [She published Lord
Cornbury's comedy of "The Mistakes," in 1758, by which she realized a
large sum of money.]

Though her voice was harsh and unpleasing, she surmounted its defects by
her exquisite judgment. In person she was tall and well shaped; her
complexion was fair; and her features, though not handsome, were made
susceptible of all that strong feeling could desire to convey. Her
deportment was easy, and her action unaffected; and the testimony upon
which the merits of Mrs. Porter are placed, entitles us to rank her in
the very first class of theatrical performers.


MRS. ANNE OLDFIELD.

Anne Oldfield was born in the year 1683, and would have possessed a
tolerable fortune, had not her father, a captain in the army, expended
it at a very early period. In consequence of this deprivation, she
went to reside with her aunt, who kept the Mitre tavern, in St.
James's-market, where Farquhar, the dramatist, one day heard her reading
a few passages from Beaumont and Fletcher's "Scornful Lady," in which
she manifested such spirit, ease, and humour, that being struck by her
evident advantages for the stage, he framed an excuse to enter the room,
a little parlour behind the bar, in which Miss Nancy was sitting.

Vanbrugh, who frequented the house, and was known to Mrs. Oldfield's
mother, received a communication from that lady of the very great warmth
with which his friend Farquhar had extolled her daughter's abilities.
Vanbrugh, who seems to have been a zealous and sincere friend to all by
whom his assistance was courted, immediately addressed himself to our
heroine, and having ascertained that her fancy tended to parts of a
sprightly nature, he recommended her to Rich, the manager of Drury-lane,
by whom she was immediately engaged, at a salary of fifteen shillings
_per_ week. Her qualifications soon rendered her conspicuous among the
young actresses of that time, and a man of rank being pleased to express
himself in her favour, Mr. Rich increased her weekly terms to the sum of
twenty shillings.

The rise of Mrs. Oldfield was gradual but secure, and soon after the
death of Mrs. Verbruggen she succeeded to the line of comic parts so
happily held by that popular actress. Her _Lady Betty Modish_, in 1704,
before which she was little known, and barely suffered, discovered
accomplishments the public were not apprised of, and rendered her one
of the greatest favourites upon whom their sanction had ever been
bestowed. She was tall, genteel, and well shaped; her pleasing and
expressive features were enlivened by large speaking eyes, which, in
some particular comic situations, were kept half shut, especially when
she intended to realise some brilliant idea; in sprightliness of air,
and elegance of manner, she excelled all actresses; and was greatly
superior in the strength, compass, and harmony of her voice.

Though highly appreciated as a tragic performer, Mrs. Oldfield, in the
full round of glory, used to slight her best personations of that sort,
and would often say, "I hate to have a page dragging my train about. Why
don't they give Porter those parts? She can put on a better tragedy face
than I can." The constant applause by which she was followed in
characters of this description, so far reconciled her to Melpomene, that
the last new one in which she appeared was Thomson's _Sophonisba_. Upon
her action and deportment the author has expressed himself with great
ardour in the following lines:

     Mrs. Oldfield, in the character of _Sophonisba_, has excelled
     what, even in the fondness of an author, I could either wish
     or imagine. The grace, dignity, and happy variety, of her
     action have been universally applauded, and are truly
     admirable.

Thomson's praise, indeed, is not more liberal than just, for we learn,
that in reply to some degrading expression of _Massinissa_, relating to
Carthage, she uttered the following line,--

  Not one base word of Carthage, for thy soul!--

with such grandeur of port, a look so tremendous, and in a voice so
powerful, that it is said she even astonished Wilks, her _Massinissa_;
it is certain the audience were struck, and expressed their feelings by
the most uncommon applause.[258] Testimony like this is sufficient to
protect her claim to tragic excellence, eclipsed as it certainly is by
the superiority of her comic reputation.

_Lady Townly_ has been universally adduced as her _ne plus ultra_ in
acting. She slided so gracefully into the foibles, and displayed so
humourously the excesses, of a fine woman too sensible of her charms,
too confident in her strength, and led away by her pleasures, that no
succeeding _Lady Townly_ arrived at her many distinguished excellencies
in the character. By being a welcome and constant visitor to families of
distinction, Mrs. Oldfield acquired a graceful carriage in representing
women of high rank, and expressed their sentiments in a manner so easy,
natural, and flowing, that they appeared to be of her own genuine
utterance. Notwithstanding her amorous connexions[259] were publicly
known, she was invited to the houses of women of fashion, as conspicuous
for unblemished character as elevated rank. Even the royal family did
not disdain to see Mrs. Oldfield at their levees. George the Second and
Queen Caroline, when Prince and Princess of Wales, often condescended to
converse with her. One day the Princess told Mrs. Oldfield, she had
heard that General Churchill and she were married: "So it is said, may
it please your royal highness," replied Mrs. Oldfield, "but we have not
owned it yet."

In private, Mrs. Oldfield was generous, humane, witty, and well-bred.
Though she disliked the man, and disapproved of his conduct, yet the
misfortunes of Savage recommended him to her pity, and she often relieved
him by a handsome donation. Her influence with Walpole contributed to
procure his pardon when convicted, on false evidence, of murder, and
adjudged to death, a fate which his most unnatural mother did her utmost
to enforce. It is not true that she either allowed this poet an annuity,
or admitted his conversation,[260] but still the benefits she did confer
upon him were quite numerous enough to warrant his celebration of her
memory. The goodness of her heart, and the splendour of her talents, were
topics upon which Savage might have ventured to insist, without
endangering his piety or wounding his pride. Dr. Johnson has sanctioned
the silence of this author,[261] on the grounds of Mrs. Oldfield's
condition; but that dogmatic man would have shown a truer taste for
benevolence, had he recommended the most ardent devotion to individuals
of any stamp, who were actuated by so glorious a principle.

Pope, who seems to have persecuted the name of player with a malignancy
unworthy of his genius, has stigmatised the conversation of Mrs.
Oldfield by the word "_Oldfieldismos_," which he printed in Greek
characters; nor can there be a doubt that he meant her by the dying
coquette, in one of his epistles. That Mrs. Oldfield was touched by the
vanity of weak minds, and drew an absurd importance from the popularity
of her low station, may be fairly inferred, and might have been fairly
derided;[262] but Pope, with his usual want of candour, has appealed to
less tangible failings, and tried, as in most cases, much more to
ridicule the person than correct the fault. I do not dispute the
brilliancy of his sarcasm, but I would rather hail the rigour of his
justice.[263]

Mrs. Oldfield died on the 23d of October, 1730, most sincerely lamented
by those to whom her general value was not unknown.



INDEX.


  Abbé, Monsieur L', a French dancer, i. xxvii., i. 316.

  Acting, excellence of, about, 1631, i. xlviii.;
    Cibber's views on versatility in, i. 209.

  Actors, their names not given in old plays, i. xxv.;
    join Charles I.'s army, i. xxix.;
    the prejudice against, i. 74-84;
    taken into society, i. 83;
    their delight in applause, i. 85;
    entitled Gentlemen of the Great Chamber, i. 88;
    must be born, not made, i. 89;
    their private characters influence audiences, i. 243-251;
    their arrangement with Swiney in 1706, ii. 9;
    refused Christian burial by the Romish Church, ii. 29;
    badly paid, ii. 64;
    dearth of young, ii. 221.

  ---- the old, played secretly during the Commonwealth, i. xxx.;
    arrested for playing, i. xxx.;
    bribed officers of guard to let them play, i. xxx.

  Actress (Miss Santlow), insulted, i. 76.

  Actresses, first English, i. 87, _note_ 1, i. 90, i. 119;
    who were Charles II.'s mistresses, i. 91;
    difficulty of getting good, ii. 222.

  Addison, Joseph, i. 245, ii. 36, _note_ 1, ii. 151, ii. 163, _note_ 1,
      ii. 251;
    Pope's attack on, i. 38;
    his opinion of Wilks's Hamlet, i. 100;
    his view regarding humour in tragedy, i. 123;
    his play of "Cato," ii. 120;
    its great success, ii. 127-133;
    presents the profits of "Cato" to the managers, ii. 129;
    its success at Oxford, ii. 137;
    his "Cato" quoted, ii. 238, _note_ 2.

  Admission to theatres, cheap, before 1642, i. xxvii.

  Adventurers--subscribers to the building of Dorset Garden Theatre,
      i. 97, _note_ 1;
    their interest in the Drury Lane Patent, ii. 32, _note_ 1;
    Rich uses them against Brett, ii. 57;
    names of the principal, ii. 57, _note_ 1.

  Agreement preliminary to the Union of 1682, ii. 324, ii. 328.

  "Albion Queens, The," ii. 14, _note_ 1.

  "Alexander the Great," by Lee, i. 105.

  Allen, William, an eminent actor, i. xxvi.;
    a major in Charles I.'s army, i. xxix.

  Alleyn, Edward, caused the Fortune Theatre to be built for his company,
      i. xxviii.;
    endowed Dulwich College, i. xxviii.;
    Ben Jonson's eulogium of, i. xxviii.

  "Amphytrion," by Dryden, i. 113.

  Angel, a comedian, ii. 347.

  Anne, Queen (while Princess of Denmark), deserts her father, James II.,
      i. 67, i. 70;
    pensions Mrs. Betterton, i. 162;
    at the play, i. 185;
    forbids audience on the stage, i. 234, _note_ 2;
    her death, ii. 161.

  Applause, i. 221;
    the pleasure of, i. 85.

  Archer, William, his investigations regarding the truth of Diderot's
      "Paradoxe sur le Comédien," i. 103, _note_ 1;
    his "About the Theatre," i. 278, _note_ 1.

  Aristophanes, referred to, i. 39.

  Arlington, Earl of, his death, i. 31, _note_ 1.

  Arthur, son of Henry VII., pageants at his marriage, i. xliii.

  Ashbury, Joseph, the Dublin Patentee, i. 236, ii. 364;
    engages Mrs. Charlotte Butler, i. 165;
    memoir of, i. 165, _note_ 1.

  Aston, Anthony, quoted, i. 109, _note_ 1,
      i. 110, _note_ 1, i. 116, _note_ 1, i. 167, _note_ 1, i. 167,
      _note_ 2, ii. 354;
    on his own acting of Fondlewife, ii. 312;
    his "Brief Supplement" to Cibber's Lives of his Contemporaries,
      reprint of, ii. 297;
    his description of Mrs. Barry, ii. 302;
    Betterton, ii. 299;
    Mrs. Bracegirdle, ii. 303;
    Dogget, ii. 308;
    Haines, ii. 314;
    Mrs. Mountfort, ii. 313;
    Sandford, ii. 306;
    Underhill, ii. 307;
    Verbruggen, ii. 311.

  Audience on the stage, i. 234, ii. 246.

  Audiences rule the stage for good or evil, i. 112;
    authors discouraged by their severity, i. 176.

  Authors abusing managers and actors, ii. 249;
    managers' troubles with, ii. 249;
    Cibber censured for his treatment of, ii. 251, _note_ 1.


  Bacon, Lord, quoted, i. xlv.

  Baddeley, Robert, the last actor who wore the uniform of their
      Majesties' servants, i. 88, _note_ 3.

  Balon, Mons., a French dancer, i. 316.

  Banks, John, the excellence of his plots, ii. 15;
    his "Unhappy Favourite," ii. 244.

  Baron, Michael (French actor), i. 175.

  Barry, Mrs. Elizabeth, i. 98, i. 110, _note_ 1, i. 185, i. 188,
      i. 192, _note_ 1, i. 251, _note_ 1, ii. 300, ii. 302, ii. 306,
      ii. 320, ii. 337, ii. 365;
    Cibber's account of, i. 158-161;
    her great genius, i. 158;
    Dryden's compliment to, i. 158;
    her unpromising commencement as an actress, i. 159;
    her power of exciting pity, i. 160;
    her dignity and fire, i. 160;
    the first performer who had a benefit, i. 161;
    her death, i. 161;
    her retirement, ii. 69;
    Anthony Aston's description of, ii. 302;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 357.

  Beaumont and Fletcher's "Wild-Goose Chase," published for Lowin and
      Taylor's benefit, i. xxxi.

  Beeston, Christopher, ii. 326.

  "Beggar's Opera," i. 243, i. 318.

  Behn, Mrs. Aphra, i. 195.

  Bellchambers, Edmund, his edition of Cibber's "Apology" quoted,
      i. 5, _note_ 1, i. 14, _note_ 1, i. 35, _note_ 2, i. 41, _note_ 2,
      i. 58, _note_ 1, i. 71, _note_ 1, i. 106, _note_ 1, i. 123,
      _note_ 2, i. 133, _note_ 1, i. 141, _note_ 1, i. 146, _note_ 1,
      i. 152, _note_ 1, i. 161, _note_ 2, i. 163, _note_ 1, i. 170,
      _note_ 1, i. 179, _note_ 2, i. 183, _note_ 1, i. 197, _note_ 3,
      i. 202, _note_ 1, i. 251, _note_ 1, i. 278, _note_ 1, ii. 17,
      _note_ 1, ii. 51, _note_ 1, ii. 88, _note_ 1, ii. 185, _note_ 1,
      ii. 252, _note_ 1, ii. 254, _note_ 1;
    his memoir of Mrs. Barry, ii. 357;
    Betterton, ii. 333;
    Mrs. Betterton, ii. 359;
    W. Bullock, ii. 361;
    Estcourt, ii. 331;
    Goodman, ii. 329;
    Hart, ii. 322;
    B. Johnson, ii. 360;
    Keen, ii. 364;
    Kynaston, ii. 339;
    Anthony Leigh, ii. 349;
    John Mills, ii. 362;
    Mohun, ii. 326;
    Mountfort, ii. 341;
    James Nokes, ii. 346;
    Mrs. Oldfield, ii. 367;
    Pinkethman, ii. 348;
    Mrs. Porter, ii. 365;
    Powell, ii. 352;
    Sandford, ii. 346: Smith, ii. 319;
    Underhill, ii. 350;
    Verbruggen, ii. 354;
    Joseph Williams, ii. 356.

  Benefits, their origin, i. 161;
    Mrs. Elizabeth Barry the first performer to whom granted, i. 161,
      ii. 67;
    part confiscated by Rich, ii. 66;
    Rich ordered to refund the part confiscated, ii. 68;
    amounts realized by principal actors, ii. 78, _note_ 1.

  Betterton, Mrs. Mary, i. 98, i. 327, ii. 336;
    said to be the first English actress, i. 90, _note_ 1;
    Cibber's account of, i. 161-162;
    without a rival in Shakespeare's plays, i. 162;
    her unblemished character, i. 162;
    pensioned by Queen Anne, i. 162;
    her death, i. 162;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 359.

  ---- Thomas, i. 98, i. 162, i. 175, i. 181, _note_ 2, i. 187,
       _note_ 1, i. 188, ii. 64, _note_ 2, ii. 128, ii. 211, _note_ 1,
       ii. 215, ii. 237, ii. 244, _note_ 1, ii. 306, ii. 308, ii. 311,
       ii. 320, ii. 324, ii. 346, ii. 352, ii. 358. ii. 359, ii. 363,
       ii. 365;
    improves scenery, i. xxii.;
    taken into good society, i. 83;
    famous for Hamlet, i. 91;
    Cibber's eulogium of, i. 99-118;
    his supreme excellence, i. 100;
    description of his Hamlet, i. 100;
    Booth's veneration for, i. 101, _note_ 1;
    his Hotspur, i. 103;
    his Brutus, i. 103;
    the grace and harmony of his elocution, i. 106;
    his success in "Alexander the Great," i. 106, i. 108;
    his just estimate of applause, i. 109;
    his perfect elocution, i. 111;
    description of his voice and person, i. 116;
    Kneller's portrait of, i. 117;
    his last appearance, i. 117;
    his death, i. 118;
    the "Tatler's" eulogium of, i. 118, _note_ 1;
    Gildon's Life of, i. 118, _note_ 2, ii. 324, ii. 337, _note_ 1,
      ii. 358;
    Mrs. Bracegirdle returns to play for his benefit, i. 174;
    ill-treated by the Patentees, i. 188;
    makes a party against them, i. 189;
    obtains a licence in 1695, i. 192, _note_ 1, i. 194;
    mimicked by Powell, i. 205, i. 207, _note_ 1;
    his versatility, i. 211;
    his difficulty in managing at Lincoln's Inn Fields, i. 228;
    as a prologue-speaker, i. 271;
    inability to keep order in his Company, i. 315;
    said to be specially favoured by the Lord Chamberlain, ii. 18;
    declines management in, 1709, ii. 69;
    advertisement regarding his salary (1709), ii. 78, _note_ 1;
    his superiority to Wilks and Booth, ii. 245;
    Anthony Aston's description of, ii. 299;
    and the puppet-show keeper, ii. 301;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 333.

  Betterton's Company (1695 to, 1704), their decline, i. 314;
    disorders in, i. 315.

  Biblical narratives dramatized in the "Ludus Coventriæ," i. xxxvii.
      _et seq._

  Bibliography of Colley Cibber, ii. 289-296.

  Bickerstaffe, Isaac (author), ii. 288.

  Bickerstaffe, John (actor), ii. 77, _note_ 1, ii. 94, _note_ 1;
      threatens Cibber for reducing his salary, i. 71, _note_ 1.

  Bignell, Mrs., ii. 77, _note_ 1, ii. 129, _note_ 2.

  "Biographia Britannica," ii. 360.

  "Biographia Dramatica," i. 184, _note_ 1, i. 278, _note_ 1, i. 330,
       _note_ 1, ii. 14, _note_ 1, ii. 332, ii. 336, ii. 337, _note_ 1,
       ii. 359, _note_ 1.

  Bird, Theophilus, an eminent actor, i. xxvi.

  Blackfriar's Company, "men of grave and sober behaviour," i. xxvii.

  ---- Theatre, i. xxv., i. xxvi., i. xxviii., i. xlix.;
    its excellent company, i. xxiv., i. xxvi.

  Blanc, Abbé Le, his account of a theatre riot, i. 278, _note_ 1.

  "Blast upon Bays, A," ii. 266.

  "Bloody Brother, The," actors arrested while playing, i. xxx.

  Booth, Barton, i. 157, ii. 36, _note_ 1, ii. 77, _note_ 1, ii. 94,
      _note_ 1, ii. 95, _note_ 1, ii. 110, ii. 128, ii. 129, _note_ 2,
      ii. 167, ii. 230, ii. 232, ii. 320, ii. 361, ii. 363;
    Memoirs of, published immediately after his death, i. 5;
    story told by him of Cibber, i. 63, _note_ 1;
    his veneration for Betterton, i. 101, _note_ 1;
    his indolence alluded to by Cibber, i. 103;
    his reverence for tragedy, i. 121;
    his Morat, i. 122;
    his Life, by Theo. Cibber, quoted, i. 122, _note_ 1, i. 123, _note_ 2,
        ii. 130, _note_ 2, ii. 140, _note_ 1;
    his Henry VIII., i. 123, _note_ 2;
    is warned by Powell's excesses to avoid drinking, i. 260;
    as a prologue-speaker, i. 271;
    elects to continue at Drury Lane in 1709, ii. 70;
    his marriage, ii. 96, _note_ 1;
    the reason of the delay in making him a manager, ii. 114;
    his success as Cato, ii. 130-133;
    his claim to be made a manager on account of his success, ii. 130;
    supported by Lord Bolingbroke, ii. 130, _note_ 2;
    his name added to the Licence, ii. 140;
    the terms of his admission as sharer, ii. 144;
    his suffering from Wilks's temper, ii. 155;
    his connection with Steele during the dispute about Steele's patent,
        ii. 193, _note_ 1;
    Wilks's jealousy of, ii. 223;
    a scene with Wilks, ii. 234-237;
    and Wilks, their opinion of each other, ii. 240;
    his deficiency in humour, ii. 240;
    formed his style on Betterton, ii. 241;
    Cibber's comparison of Wilks and Booth, ii. 239-245;
    his Othello and Cato, ii. 243;
    memoir of, ii. 254, _note_ 1;
    Patent granted to him, Wilks, and Cibber, after Steele's death,
        ii. 257;
    sells half of his share of the Patent to Highmore, ii. 258.

  Booth, Mrs. Barton (see also Santlow, Hester), insulted by Capt.
      Montague, i. 76-78;
    sells the remainder of Booth's share to Giffard, ii. 259.

  Boswell, James, his "Life of Dr. Johnson," quoted, i. 36, _note_ 2,
      i. 46, _note_ 1, i. 215, _note_ 1, ii. 41, _note_ 2, ii. 163,
      _note_ 1.

  Bourgogne, Hotel de, a theatre originally used for religious plays,
      i. xxxv.

  Boutell, Mrs., mentioned, i. 161, _note_ 1, i. 167, _note_ 2.

  Bowen, James (singer), ii. 312.

  Bowman (actor), memoir of, ii. 211, _note_ 1;
    sings before Charles II., ii. 211.

  ---- Mrs., ii. 211, _note_ 1.

  Bowyer, Michael, an eminent actor, i. xxvi.

  Boy-actresses, i. 90;
    still played after the appearance of women, i. 119.

  Bracegirdle, Mrs. Anne, i. 98, i. 182, i. 188, i. 192, _note_ 1,
      ii. 300, ii. 302, ii. 312, ii. 337;
    admitted into good society, i. 83;
    Cibber's account of, i. 170-174;
    her good character, i. 170-172;
    her character attacked by Bellchambers, i. 170, _note_ 1;
    Tom Brown's scandal about her, i. 170, _note_ 1;
    attacked in "Poems on Affairs of State," i. 170, _note_ 1;
    her best parts, i. 173;
    her retirement, i. 174;
    memoir of her, i. 174, _note_ 2;
    her rivalry with Mrs. Oldfield, i. 174, _note_ 2;
    declines to play some of Mrs. Barry's parts, i. 188-9;
    her retirement, ii. 69;
    Anthony Aston's description of, ii. 303;
    her attempted abduction by Capt. Hill, ii. 342.

  Bradshaw, Mrs., ii. 77, _note_ 1, ii. 94, _note_ 1, ii. 303.

  Brett, Colonel Henry, a share in the Drury Lane Patent presented
      to him by Skipwith, ii. 32;
    his acquaintance with Cibber, ii. 33;
    Cibber's account of, ii. 34-42;
    admires Cibber's perriwig, ii. 35;
    and the Countess of Macclesfield, ii. 39-41;
    his dealings with Rich, ii. 42-49, ii. 56-60;
    makes Wilks, Estcourt, and Cibber his deputies in management,
      ii. 56, _note_ 1;
    gives up his share to Skipwith, ii. 59.

  ---- Mrs. (see also Miss Mason, and Countess of Macclesfield),
      Cibber's high opinion of her taste, ii. 41, _note_ 2;
    his "Careless Husband" submitted to her, ii. 41, _note_ 2;
    her judicious treatment of her husband, ii. 41, _note_ 2.

  Bridgwater (actor), ii. 260.

  Brown, Tom, ii. 348, ii. 350;
    his scandal on Mrs. Bracegirdle, i. 170, _note_ 1.

  Buck, Sir George, his "Third University of England," quoted, i. xlviii.

  Buckingham, Duke of, ii. 210.

  "Buffoon, The," an epigram on Cibber's admission into society, i.
      29, _note_ 1.

  Bullen, A. H., his "Lyrics from Elizabethan Song-books," i. 21,
      _note_ 1.

  Bullock, Christopher, ii. 169, _note_ 2.

  ---- Mrs. Christopher, i. 136, _note_ 2.

  ---- William, i. 194, i. 313, i. 332, ii. 169, _note_ 2, ii. 252,
         _note_ 1;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 361.

  Burbage, Richard, i. xxvi.

  Burgess, Colonel, killed Horden, an actor, i. 303;
    his punishment, i. 302, _note_ 2.

  Burlington, Earl of, ii. 209.

  Burnet, Bishop, his observations on Nell Gwynne, ii. 212;
    on Mrs. Roberts, ii. 212.

  Burney, Dr., his "History of Music," ii. 55, _note_ 1, ii. 89,
      _note_ 1;
    his MSS. in the British Museum, i. 174, _note_ 2, ii. 198,
      _note_ 1, ii. 224, _note_ 1.

  Burt (actor), superior to his successors, i. xxiv.;
    apprenticed to Shank, i. xxv.;
    and to Beeston, i. xxv.;
    a "boy-actress," i. xxv.;
    a cornet in Charles I.'s army, i. xxix.;
    arrested for acting, i. xxx.

  Butler, Mrs. Charlotte, i. 98, i. 237, ii. 262;
    Cibber's account of, i. 163-165;
    patronized by Charles II., i. 163;
    a good singer and dancer, i. 163;
    a pleasant and clever actress, i. 164;
    compared with Mrs. Oldfield, i. 164;
    goes to the Dublin theatre, i. 164;
    note regarding her, i. 164, _note_ 1.

  Byrd, William, his "Psalmes, Sonets, etc.," i. 21, _note_ 1.

  Byron, Lord, a practical joke erroneously attributed to him while at
      Cambridge, i. 59, _note_ 1.


  Cambridge. See Trinity College, Cambridge.

  "Careless Husband," cast of, i. 308, _note_ 1.

  Carey, Henry, deprived of the freedom of the theatre for bantering
      Cibber, ii. 226, _note_ 2.

  Carlile, James, memoir of, i. 84, _note_ 1;
    is killed at Aughrim, i. 84, _note_ 1, i. 85.

  Cartwright (actor), belonged to the Salisbury Court Theatre, i. xxiv.

  Castil-Blaze, Mons., his "La Danse et les Ballets" quoted, i. 316,
      _note_ 1.

  Catherine of Arragon, pageants at her marriage with Prince Arthur,
      i. xliii.

  "Cato," by Addison, cast of, ii. 120, _note_ 1;
    its success, ii. 127-133;
    at Oxford, ii. 137;
    its influence, ii. 26;
    Cibber's Syphax in, i. 122.

  Chalmers, George, his "Apology for the Shakspeare-Believers," i. 276,
      _note_ 1, i. 277, _note_ 1.

  "Champion" (by Henry Fielding), quoted, i. 1, _note_ 1, i. 38,
      _note_ 1, i. 50, _note_ 2, i. 63, _note_ 1, i. 69, _note_ 1,
      i. 93, _note_ 2, i. 288, _note_ 1, ii. 54, _note_ 2.

  Charke, Charlotte, ii. 285.

  ---- (musician), husband of Cibber's daughter, ii. 285.

  Charles II. mentioned, i. 120, i. 133;
    his escape from Presbyterian tyranny, i. 22;
    Cibber sees him at Whitehall, i. 30;
    writes a funeral oration on his death while still at school, i. 31;
    Patents granted by him to Davenant and Killigrew, i. 87;
    wittily reproved by Killigrew, i. 87, _note_ 2;
    called Anthony Leigh "his actor," i. 154;
    his Court theatricals, ii. 209;
    and Bowman the actor, ii. 211;
    his opinion of Sandford's acting, ii. 306.

  Chesterfield, Lord, his powers of raillery, i. 13, i. 14;
    refers ironically to Cibber in "Common Sense," i. 71, _note_ 1;
    opposes the Licensing Act of 1737, i. 289.

  Chetwood, William Rufus, Cibber acts for his benefit, ii. 265;
    his "History of the Stage," i. 165, _note_ 1, i. 207, _note_ 1,
      i. 244, _note_ 1, ii. 140, _note_ 1, ii. 169, _note_ 3, ii.
      319-320, ii. 331, ii. 356, ii. 364.

  "Children of her Majesty's Chapel," i. xxxvi.

  "Children of Paul's," i. xxxvi.

  Churchill, General, ii. 369, _note_ 2.

  ---- Lady (Duchess of Marlborough), i. 67;
    Cibber attends her at table, i. 68;
    his admiration of her, i. 68;
    her beauty and good fortune, i. 69.

  Cibber, Caius Gabriel, father of Colley Cibber, i. 7, _note_ 2;
    his statues and other works, i. 8;
    his marriage, i. 8, _note_ 1;
    his death, i. 8, _note_ 1;
    presents a statue to Winchester College, i. 56;
    employed at Chatsworth, i. 58;
    statues carved by him for Trinity College Library, Cambridge, i. 59.

  Cibber, Colley, Account of his Life:--
    His Apology written at Bath, i. 1, _note_ 1;
    his reasons for writing his own Life, i. 5, i. 6;
    his birth, i. 7;
    his baptism recorded, i. 7, _note_ 2;
    sent to school at Grantham, i. 9;
    his character at school, i. 9;
    writes an ode at school on Charles II.'s death, i. 31;
    and on James II.'s coronation, i. 33;
    his prospects in life, i. 55;
    his first taste for the stage, i. 58;
    stifles his love for the stage and desires to go to the University,
      i. 58;
    serves against James II. in 1688, i. 61;
    attends Lady Churchill at table, i. 68;
    his admiration of her, i. 68;
    disappointed in his expectation of receiving a commission in the
      army, i. 71;
    petitions the Duke of Devonshire for preferment, i. 73;
    determines to be an actor, i. 73;
    hangs about Downes the prompter, i. 74, _note_ 1;
    his account of his own first appearances, i. 180;
    his first salary, i. 181;
    description of his personal appearance, i. 182;
    his first success, i. 183;
    his marriage, i. 184;
    plays Kynaston's part in "The Double Dealer," i. 185;
    remains with Patentees in, 1695, i. 193;
    writes his first Prologue, i. 195;
    not allowed to speak it, i. 196;
    forced to play Fondlewife, i. 206;
    plays it in imitation of Dogget, i. 208;
    his slow advancement as an actor, i. 209, i. 215;
    writes his first play, "Love's Last Shift," i. 212;
    as Sir Novelty Fashion, i. 213;
    encouraged and helped by Vanbrugh, i. 215;
    begins to advance as an actor, i. 218;
    better in comedy than tragedy, i. 221;
    tragic parts played by him, i. 222;
    his Iago abused, i. 222, _note_ 1;
    description of his Justice Shallow, i. 224, _note_ 2;
    leaves Drury Lane for Lincoln's Inn Fields, i. 232, _note_ 1;
    returns to Drury Lane, i. 232, _note_ 1;
    his "Love in a Riddle" condemned, i. 244-250;
    accused of having Gay's "Polly" vetoed, i. 247;
    his Damon and Phillida, i. 249, _note_ 1;
    consulted by Rich on matters of management, i. 253;
    his disputes with Wilks, i. 258;
    his "Woman's Wit" a failure, i. 264;
    distinguished by Dryden, i. 269;
    attacked by Jeremy Collier, i. 274;
    his adaptation of "Richard III.," i. 139;
    his "Richard III." mutilated by the Master of the Revels, i. 275;
    attacked by George Chalmers, i. 276, _note_ 1, i. 277, _note_ 1;
    declines to pay fees to Killigrew, Master of Revels, i. 277;
    his surprise at Mrs. Oldfield's excellence, i. 307;
    writes "The Careless Husband" chiefly for Mrs. Oldfield, i. 308;
    finishes "The Provoked Husband," begun by Vanbrugh, i. 311, _note_ 1;
    invited to join Swiney at the Haymarket, i. 333;
    leaves Rich and goes to Swiney, i. 337;
    his "Lady's Last Stake," ii. 2;
    his "Double Gallant," ii. 3;
    his "Marriage à la Mode," ii. 5;
    declines to act on the same stage as rope-dancers, ii. 7;
    advises Col. Brett regarding the Patent, ii. 33, ii. 42;
    his first introduction to him, ii. 33;
    his account of Brett, 34-42;
    as Young Reveller in "Greenwich Park," ii. 41;
    made Deputy-manager by Brett, ii. 56, _note_ 1;
    advertisement regarding his salary, 1709, ii. 78, _note_ 1;
    made joint manager with Swiney and others in 1709, ii. 69;
    and his fellow-managers, Wilks and Dogget, ii. 110, ii. 117, ii.
      121, ii. 127;
    mediates between Wilks and Dogget, ii. 122;
    his troubles with Wilks, ii. 124;
    his views and conduct on Booth's claiming to become a manager, ii.
      131-133, ii. 140-143;
    his meetings with Dogget after their law-suit, ii. 150;
    his "Nonjuror," i. 177, _note_ 1, ii. 185-190;
    accused of stealing his "Nonjuror," ii. 186, _note_ 1;
    makes the Jacobites his enemies, ii. 185-187;
    reported dead by "Mist's Weekly Journal," ii. 188;
    his "Provoked Husband" hissed by his Jacobite enemies, ii. 189;
    his appointment as Poet Laureate in 1730, i. 32, _note_ 1;
    the reason of his being made Laureate, ii. 190;
    his "Ximena," ii. 163, _note_ 1;
    his suspension by the Duke of Newcastle, ii. 193, _note_ 1;
    his connection with Steele during the dispute about Steele's Patent,
      ii. 193, _note_ 1;
    his account of a suit brought by Steele against his partners, ii.
      196-208;
    his pleading in person in the suit brought by Steele, ii. 199-207;
    his success in pleading, ii. 198, _note_ 1, ii. 207;
    assisted Steele in his "Conscious Lovers," ii. 206;
    his playing of Wolsey before George I., ii. 216;
    admitted into good society, i. 29;
    elected a member of White's, i. 29, _note_ 1;
    an epigram on his admission into good society, i. 29, _note_ 1;
    Patent granted to Cibber, Wilks, and Booth after Steele's death,
      ii. 257;
    sells his share of the Patent to Highmore, ii. 258;
    his sale of his share in the Patent, i. 297;
    his shameful treatment of Highmore, ii. 259;
    his retirement, ii. 255;
    gives a reason for retiring from the stage, i. 178, i. 179,
      _note_ 1;
    his appearances after his retirement, ii. 261, ii. 263, ii.
      264, ii. 268;
    his remarks on his successful reappearances, i. 179;
    his last appearances, i. 6, _note_ 1;
    his adaptation of "King John," i. 6, _note_ 1;
    his "Papal Tyranny in the Reign of King John" withdrawn from
      rehearsal, ii. 263;
    his "Papal Tyranny" produced, ii. 268;
    its success, ii. 270;
    his quarrel with Pope, ii. 270-283;
    and Horace Walpole, ii. 284;
    his death and burial, ii. 284;
    list of his plays, ii. 286-287;
    bibliography of, ii. 289-296;
    Anthony Aston's "Supplement" to, ii. 297.

  Cibber, Colley, Attacks on him:--
    Commonly accused of cowardice, i. 71, _note_ 1;
    threatened by John Bickerstaffe, for reducing his salary, i. 71,
      _note_ 1;
    accused of "venom" towards Booth, i. 123, _note_ 2;
    abused by Dennis, i. 66, _note_ 1, ii. 168, _note_ 1;
    his offer of a reward for discovery of Dennis, i. 41, _note_ 1, ii.
      168, _note_ 1;
    charged with envy of Estcourt, i. 115, _note_ 2;
    Fielding's attacks upon, quoted (see under Fielding, Hy.);
    his galling retaliation on Fielding, i. 286;
    said to have been thrashed by Gay, i. 71, _note_ 1;
    "The Laureat's" attacks upon (see "Laureat");
    satirized on his appointment as Laureate, i. 46;
    epigrams on his appointment quoted, i. 46, _note_ 1;
    writes verses in his own dispraise, i. 47;
    his Odes attacked by Fielding, i. 36, _note_ 2;
    and by Johnson, i. 36, _note_ 2;
    charges against him of levity and impiety, i. 58, _note_ 1;
    accused of negligence in acting, i. 241, _note_ 1;
    attacked by the daily papers, i. 41;
    his disregard of them, i. 41, i. 44, _note_ 1;
    on newspaper attacks, ii. 167;
    on principle never answered newspaper attacks, ii. 168;
    his famous quarrel with Pope, ii. 270;
    "The Nonjuror" a cause of Pope's enmity to Cibber, ii. 189, _note_ 1;
    attacked by Pope for countenancing pantomimes, ii. 182, _note_ 1;
    his reply, ii. 182, _note_ 1;
    his first allusion to Pope's enmity, i. 21;
    his opinion of Pope's attacks, i. 35;
    his Odes, i. 36, _note_ 2;
    supposed to be referred to in Preface to Shadwell's "Fair Quaker of
      Deal," ii. 95, _note_ 1;
    attacked for mutilating Shakespeare, ii. 263;
    accused of stealing "Love's Last Shift," i. 214, and "The Careless
      Husband," i. 215, _note_ 1;
    satirized by Swift, i. 52, _note_ 2;
    his defence of his follies, i. 2, i. 19.

  Cibber, Colley, Criticisms of Contemporaries:--
    On the production of Addison's "Cato," ii. 120, ii. 127-133;
    his description of Mrs. Barry, i. 158-161;
    on the excellence of Betterton and his contemporaries, i. 175;
    his eulogium of Betterton, i. 99-118;
    his description of Mrs. Betterton, i. 161-162;
    his account of Booth and Wilks as actors, ii. 239-245;
    his description of Mrs. Bracegirdle, i. 170-174;
    his description of Mrs. Butler, i. 163-165;
    his high opinion of Mrs. Brett's taste, ii. 41, _note_ 2;
    submits every scene of his "Careless Husband" to Mrs. Brett, ii.
      41, _note_ 2;
    on his own acting, i. 220-226;
    his "Epilogue upon Himself," ii. 265;
    on Dogget's acting, ii. 158;
    his low opinion of Garrick, ii. 268;
    his description of Kynaston, i. 120-127;
    his description of Leigh, i. 145-154;
    his description of Mrs. Leigh, i. 162-3;
    his description of Mountfort, i. 127-130;
    his description of Mrs. Mountfort, i. 165-169;
    his praise of Nicolini, ii. 51;
    his description of Nokes, i. 141-145;
    his hyperbolical praise of Mrs. Oldfield's Lady Townly, i. 51, i.
      312, _note_ 3;
    on Rich's misconduct, ii. 46;
    his description of Sandford, i. 130;
    his description of Cave Underhill, i. 154-156;
    his unfairness to Verbruggen, i. 157, _note_ 2;
    his account of Wilks and Booth as actors, ii. 239-245;
    on Wilks's Hamlet, i. 100;
    praises Wilks's diligence, ii. 160, ii. 239;
    on Wilks's love of acting, ii. 225;
    on Wilks's temper, ii. 155, ii. 171;
    a scene with Wilks, 234-237.

  Cibber, Colley, Reflections and Opinions:--
    On acting, i. 209, i. 221;
    on acting villains, i. 131-135, i. 222;
    on the prejudice against actors, i. 74-84;
    his advice to dramatists, ii. 14;
    on applause, i. 221, ii. 214;
    on the severity of audiences, i. 175;
    on politeness in audiences, ii. 247;
    on troubles with authors, ii. 249;
    on the effect of comedy-acting, i. 140;
    on Court influence, ii. 103;
    on criticism, i. 52;
    on his critics, ii. 220;
    on humour in tragedy, i. 121;
    on the Italian Opera, ii. 50-55;
    on the difficulty of managing Italian singers, ii. 88;
    on laughter, i. 23;
    on the liberty of the stage, i. 289;
    on the validity of the Licence, i. 284;
    on the power of the Lord Chamberlain, ii. 10-23;
    his principles as manager, i. 190;
    on management, ii. 60;
    on judicious management, ii. 74;
    on the duties and responsibilities of management, ii. 199-207;
    on the success of his management, ii. 245;
    on morality in plays, i. 265, i. 272;
    on the power of music, i. 112;
    on Oxford theatricals, ii. 133-139;
    on pantomimes, i. 93, ii. 180;
    on prologue-speaking, i. 270;
    on the difficulties of promotion in the theatre, ii. 223;
    on the Queen's Theatre in the Haymarket, i. 322;
    on raillery, i. 11;
    on the Revolution of 1688, i. 60-63;
    on satire, i. 37;
    on the reformation of the
    on making the stage useful, ii. 24-31;
    on the benefit of only one theatre, i. 92, ii. 139, ii. 178-185;
    on the shape of the theatre, ii. 84;
    on his own vanity, ii. 182.

  ---- Miscellaneous:--
    Profit arising from his works, i. 3, _note_ 2;
    frequently the object of envy, i. 33;
    his obtrusive loyalty, i. 33, _note_ 1, i. 66;
    banters his critics by allowing his "Apology" to be impudent and
      ill-written, i. 43;
    his easy temper under criticism and abuse, i. 50;
    confesses the faults of his writing, i. 50;
    his "quavering tragedy tones," i. 110, _note_ 1;
    his playing of Richard III. an imitation of Sandford, i. 139;
    his "Careless Husband" quoted, i. 148, _note_ 1;
    his wigs, ii. 36, _note_ 1;
    his treatment of authors, ii. 37, _note_ 1;
    reproved by Col. Brett for his treatment of authors, ii. 37,
      _note_ 1;
    his dedication of the "Wife's Resentment" to the Duke of Kent,
      ii. 46;
    censured for his treatment of authors, ii. 251, _note_ 1;
    his satisfaction in looking back on his career, ii. 115;
    his acknowledgment of Steele's services to the theatre, ii. 162;
    his dedication of "Ximena" to Steele, ii. 163, _note_ 1;
    his omission of many material circumstances in the history of the
      stage, ii. 193, _note_ 1;
    Wilks his constant supporter and admirer, ii. 226, _note_ 1;
    his "Odes," ii. 283;
    hissed as Phorbas, ii. 309;
    Aston on Cibber's acting, ii. 312.

  Cibber, Mrs. Colley, her marriage, i. 184;
    her character, i. 184, _note_ 1;
    her father's objection to her marriage, i. 184, _note_ 1.

  ---- Lewis (brother of Colley), admitted to Winchester College, i. 56;
    Cibber's affection for, i. 57;
    his great abilities, i. 57;
    his death, i. 57.

  ---- Susanna Maria (wife of Theophilus), ii. 267, _note_ 1, ii. 270,
      ii. 285;
    her speaking described, i. 110, _note_ 1.

  ---- Theophilus, ii. 187, _note_ 1, ii. 262;
    mentioned ironically by Lord Chesterfield, i. 71, _note_ 1;
    in "Art and Nature," i. 152, _note_ 1;
    acts as his father's deputy in heads a mutiny against Highmore,
      ii. 259;
    account of him, ii. 285;
    his "Life of Booth" quoted, i. 122, _note_ 1, i. 123, _note_ 2,
      ii. 130, _note_ 2, ii. 140, _note_ 1.

  "Circe," an opera, i. 94.

  Civil War, the, closing of theatres during, i. 89.

  Clark, actor, memoir of, i. 96, _note_ 3.

  Cleveland, Duchess of, and Goodman, ii. 330.

  Clive, Mrs. Catherine, ii. 260, ii. 268, _note_ 1, ii. 269;
    her acting in "Love in a Riddle," i. 244, _note_ 1.

  Clun, a "boy-actress," i. xxiv.

  Cock-fighting prohibited in, 1654, i. lii.

  Cockpit, The (or Phoenix), i. xxv.;
    its company, i. xxvi., i. xxviii., i. xlix.;
    Rhodes's Company at, i. xxviii.;
    secret performances at, during the Commonwealth, i. xxx.

  Coke, Rt. Hon. Thomas, Vice-Chamberlain, his interference in Dogget's
    dispute with his partners, ii. 146.

  Coleman, Mrs., the first English actress, i. 90, _note_ 1.

  Colley, the family of, i. 8, i. 9.

  ---- Jane, mother of Colley Cibber, i. 8, _note_ 1.

  Collier, Jeremy, i. 170, _note_ 1, i. 268, _note_ 2, i. 273, i. 274,
      ii. 233, _note_ 2;
    his "Short View of the Profaneness, &c., of the English Stage," i.
      xxi., i. xxxiii., i. 272, i. 289;
    his arguments confuted, i. xxxiii.

  Collier, William, M.P., i. 97, _note_ 2, ii. 172, ii. 175;
    procures a licence for Drury Lane, ii. 91;
    evicts Rich, ii. 92;
    appoints Aaron Hill his manager, ii. 94, _note_ 1;
    his unjust treatment of Swiney, ii. 101, ii. 107;
    takes the control of the opera from Swiney, ii. 102;
    farms the opera to Aaron Hill, ii. 105;
    forces Swiney to resume the opera, ii. 107;
    made partner with Cibber, Wilks, and Dogget at Drury Lane, ii. 107;
    his shabby treatment of his partners, ii. 108, ii. 141;
    his downfall, ii. 109;
    replaced by Steele in the Licence, ii. 164.

  Comedy-acting, the effect of, i. 140.

  "Common Sense," a paper by Lord Chesterfield, quoted, i. 71, _note_ 1.

  "Comparison between the two Stages," by Gildon, i. 189, _note_ 1,
      i. 194, _note_ 1, i. 194, _note_ 5, i. 214, _note_ 1, i. 216,
      _note_ 1, i. 218, _note_ 2, i. 231, _note_ 2, i. 232, _note_ 2,
      i. 233, _note_ 1, i. 254, _note_ 1, i. 303, _note_ 1, i. 306,
      _note_ 1, i. 316, _note_ 2, ii. 328, _note_ 2, ii. 348, ii. 356,
      _note_ 1, ii. 362.

  Complexion, black, of evil characters on the stage, i. 133.

  Congreve, William, i. 185, i. 274, i. 284, ii. 36, _note_ 1, ii. 110,
      ii. 159, ii. 251, ii. 302;
    Memoir of, mentioned, i. 5, _note_ 1;
    his "Love for Love," i. 155, i. 197;
    scandal about him and Mrs. Bracegirdle, i. 170, _note_ 1;
    a sharer with Betterton in his Licence in 1695, i. 192, _note_ 1,
      i. 197;
    his "Mourning Bride," i. 199;
    his "Way of the World," i. 200;
    his opinion of "Love's Last Shift," i. 220;
    and Vanbrugh manage the Queen's Theatre, i. 320, i. 325;
    gives up his share in the Queen's Theatre, i. 326;
    and Mrs. Bracegirdle, ii. 304.

  Cooper, Lord Chancellor, ii. 149, ii. 174.

  Coquelin, Constant, his controversy with Henry Irving regarding
      Diderot's "Paradoxe sur le Comédien," i. 103, _note_ 1.

  Corelli, Arcangelo, ii. 247.

  Cory (actor), ii. 169, _note_ 2.

  Court, theatrical performances at, see Royal Theatricals;
    interference of the, in the management of the stage, i. 89.

  Covent Garden, Drury Lane theatre sometimes described as the theatre
      in, i. 88, _note_ 1.

  Covent Garden Theatre, i. 92, _note_ 1.

  Coventry, the old Leet Book of, i. xl.

  Craggs, Mr. Secretary, ii. 96, _note_ 1, ii. 165, ii. 333;
    chastises Captain Montague for insulting Miss Santlow, i. 77.

  Craufurd, David, his account of the disorders in Betterton's company,
      i. 315, _note_ 2.

  Crawley, keeper of a puppet-show, ii. 301.

  Creation, the, dramatized in the "Ludus Coventriæ," i. xxxviii.

  Cromwell, Lady Mary, i. 267, _note_ 1.

  Cross, Mrs., i. 334, _note_ 1.

  ---- Richard, prompter of Drury Lane, i. 181, _note_ 2.

  Crowne, John, his masque of "Calisto," ii. 209.

  Cumberland, Richard, his description of Mrs. Cibber's speaking, i.
      110, _note_ 1.

  Cunningham, Lieut.-Col. F., doubts if Ben Jonson was an unsuccessful
      actor, i. 85, _note_ 1.

  Curll, Edmund, his "History of the Stage," i. 96, _note_ 4, i. 174,
      _note_ 2, ii. 357;
    his "Life of Mrs. Oldfield," i. 305, _note_ 2;
    his memoirs of Wilks, i. 5, _note_ 1.

  Curtain Theatre, the, mentioned by Stow as recently erected, i. xlviii.

  Cuzzoni, Francesca, her rivalry with Faustina, ii. 89.

  "Cynthia's Revels," played by the Children of her Majesty's Chapel,
      i. xxxvi.


  "Daily Courant," quoted, ii. 175, _note_ 1.

  Daly, Augustin, his Company of Comedians, ii. 289.

  Dancers and singers introduced by Davenant, i. 94.

  Davenant, Alexander, ii. 32, _note_ 1;
    his share in the Patent, i. 181, _note_ 1.

  ---- Dr. Charles, ii. 324.

  ---- Sir William, i. 181, _note_ 1, i. 197, _note_ 3, ii. 179,
      _note_ 1, ii. 334;
    first introduces scenery, i. xxxii.;
    copy of his patent, i. liii.;
    Memoir of, i. 87, _note_ 1;
    Poet Laureate, i. 87, _note_ 1;
    receives a patent from Charles I., i. 87, _note_ 1;
    from Charles II., i. 87;
    his company worse than Killigrew's, i. 93;
    he introduces spectacle and opera to attract audiences, i. 94;
    unites with Killigrew's, i. 96;
    his "Macbeth," ii. 229, _note_ 1.

  Davies, Thomas, his "Dramatic Miscellanies," i. 3, _note_ 2, i. 41,
      _note_ 1, i. 58, _note_ 1, i. 71, _note_ 1, i. 74, _note_ 1, i.
      90, _note_ 1, i. 101, _note_ 1, i. 153, _note_ 1, i. 166, _note_ 1,
      i. 179, _note_ 1, i. 181, _note_ 2, i. 192, _note_ 1, i. 214,
      _note_ 2, i. 222, _note_ 1, i. 224, _note_ 2, i. 241, _note_ 1, i.
      273, _note_ 1, i. 274, _note_ 1, i. 302, _note_ 2, i. 330, _note_
      1, ii. 36, _note_ 1, ii. 211, _note_ 1, ii. 216, _note_ 1, ii. 226,
      _note_ 1, ii. 230, _note_ 1, ii. 233, _note_ 3, ii. 240, _note_ 1,
      ii. 263, _note_ 1, ii. 268, _note_ 1, ii. 325, _note_ 1, ii. 335.
      _note_ 1, ii. 351, ii. 352, ii. 354, ii. 355, _note_ 1. ii. 358,
      ii. 361, ii. 363, ii. 369;
    his "Life of Garrick," i. lv., _note_ 1, i. 283, _note_ 2, ii. 259.

  Davis, Mary (Moll), i. 91, _note_ 1.

  Denmark, Prince of, his support of William of Orange, i. 67, i. 70.

  Dennis, John, i. 41, _note_ 2, ii. 361;
    abuses Cibber for his loyalty, i. 66, _note_ 1;
    accuses Cibber of stealing his "Love's Last Shift," i. 215;
    his attacks on Steele and Cibber, ii. 168, _note_ 1, ii. 176,
      _note_ 1;
    attacks Wilks, ii. 226, _note_ 2;
    abuses one of the actors of his "Comic Gallant," ii. 252, _note_ 1.

  "Deserving Favourite, The," i. xxv.

  Devonshire, Duke of, ii. 305;
    his quarrel with James II., i. 72;
    Cibber presents a petition to, i. 73.

  Diderot, Denis, his "Paradoxe sur le Comédien," i. 103, _note_ 1.

  Dillworth, W. H., his "Life of Pope," ii. 278, _note_ 1.

  Dixon, a member of Rhodes's company, i. 163, _note_ 1.

  Dobson, Austin, his "Fielding" quoted, i. 286, _note_ 1, i. 287,
      _note_ 3, i. 288, _note_ 1.

  Dodington, Bubb, mentioned by Bellchambers, i. 14, _note_ 1.

  Dodsley, Robert, purchased the copyright of Cibber's "Apology," i. 3,
      _note_ 2.

  Dogget, Thomas, i. 157, ii. 110, ii. 227, ii. 314, ii. 361;
    his excellence in Fondlewife, i. 206;
    Cibber plays Fondlewife in imitation of, i. 208;
    his intractability in Betterton's Company, i. 229;
    deserts Betterton at Lincoln's Inn Fields, and comes to Drury Lane,
      i. 229;
    arrested for deserting Drury Lane, ii. 21;
    defies the Lord Chamberlain, ii. 21;
    wins his case, ii. 22;
    made joint manager with Swiney and others in 1709, ii. 69;
    his characteristics as a manager, ii. 111, ii. 117;
    his behaviour on Booth's claiming to become a manager, ii. 131,
      ii. 141;
    retires because of Booth's being made a manager, ii. 143;
    his refusal to come to any terms after Booth's admission, ii. 145;
    goes to law for his rights, ii. 149;
    the result, ii. 150;
    Wilks's temper, the real reason of his retirement, ii. 150-155;
    shows a desire to return to the stage, ii. 157;
    his final appearances, ii. 158;
    Cibber's account of his excellence, ii. 158;
    Anthony Aston's description of, ii. 308.

  Doran, Dr. John, his "Annals of the Stage," i. 88, _note_ 3, i. 130,
      _note_ 1, i. 161, _note_ 3, ii. 62, _note_ 1, ii. 284.

  Dorset, Earl of, ii. 305;
    has Leigh's portrait painted in "The Spanish Friar," i. 146;
    when Lord Chamberlain, supports Betterton in 1694-1695, i. 192;
    compliments Cibber on his first play, i. 214.

  Dorset Garden, Duke's Theatre, i. xxxii.

  ---- Theatre, built for Davenant's Company, i. 88, _note_ 2;
    the subscribers to, called Adventurers, i. 97, _note_ 1.

  "Double Dealer, The," i. 185, _note_ 1.

  "Double Gallant," cast of, ii. 3, _note_ 2.

  Downes, John, his "Roscius Anglicanus," i. 83, _note_ 1, i. 84,
      _note_ 1, i. 96, _note_ 3, i. 114, _note_ 1, i. 127, _note_ 2,
      i. 130, _note_ 1, i. 141, _note_ 1, i. 146, _note_ 1, i. 163,
      _note_ 1, i. 181, _note_ 2, i. 187, _note_ 2, i. 192, _note_ 1,
      i. 197, _note_ 1, i. 197, _note_ 2, i. 316, _note_ 2, i. 320,
      _note_ 2, i. 333, _note_ 1, ii. 158, _note_ 3, ii. 320, ii. 323,
      ii. 328, ii. 330, ii. 332, ii. 334, ii. 340, ii. 341, ii. 342,
      ii. 346, ii. 347, ii. 348, ii. 349, ii. 350, ii. 356, ii. 359,
      ii. 360, ii. 361, ii. 362;
    attended constantly by Cibber and Verbruggen in hope of employment
      on the stage, i. 74, _note_ 1;
    the "Tatler" publishes a supposed letter from, ii. 75.

  "Dramatic Censor," 1811, ii. 57, _note_ 1, ii. 79, _note_ 2.

  Dramatists, Cibber's advice to, ii. 14.

  Drury Lane Theatre, i. 92, _note_ 1;
    opened by King's Company, i. xxxii.;
    built for Killigrew's Company, i. 88;
    sometimes called "the theatre in Covent Garden," i. 88, _note_ 1;
    desertion from in 1733, i. 283;
    Company (1695), their improvement, i. 314;
    its Patent, ii. 31;
    its original construction, ii. 81;
    why altered, ii. 81;
    under W. Collier's management, 1709, ii. 91;
    report on its stability, ii. 176-177.

  Dryden, John, ii. 163, _note_ 1, ii. 210, ii. 251;
    his prologue on opening Drury Lane, 1674, i. 94, _note_ 2, i.
      322, _note_ 1;
    a bad elocutionist, i. 113;
    his Morat("Aurenge-Zebe"), i. 124;
    his high praise of Mrs. Elizabeth Barry, i. 158;
    his prologue to "The Prophetess," i. 187, _note_ 1;
    his "King Arthur," i. 187, _note_ 2;
    a sharer in the King's Company, i. 197;
    his address to the author of "Heroic Love" quoted, i. 231, _note_ 1,
      ii. 238, _note_ 3;
    his indecent plays, i. 267;
    his epilogue to "The Pilgrim," i. 268;
    his "Secular Masque," i. 268, _note_ 1;
    his prologue to "The Prophetess" vetoed, ii. 13;
    his prologues at Oxford, ii. 134, ii. 136, _note_ 1, ii. 137,
      _note_ 1;
    expensive revival of his "All for Love," ii. 175.

  Dublin, Wilks's success in, i. 235.

  "Duchess of Malfy," i. xxv.

  Dugdale, Sir William, his "Antiquities of Warwickshire" quoted,
      i. xxxvi.;
    mentions the "Ludus Coventriæ," i. xxxviii.

  Duke's Servants, The, i. 87, _note_ 1, i. 88.

  Duke's Theatre, ii. 336;
    first theatre to introduce scenery, i. xxxii.

  Dulwich College, built and endowed by Edward Alleyn, i. xxviii.

  "Dunciad, The," i. 36, _note_ 1, ii. 181, _note_ 1, ii. 182, _note_ 1,
      ii. 270;
    on Italian opera, i. 324, _note_ 1.

  Dyer, Mrs., actress, i. 136, _note_ 2.


  Edicts to suppress plays, 1647-1648, ii. 322.

  Edward, son of Henry VI., pageant played before, i. xl.

  ---- son of Edward IV., pageant played before, i. xlii.

  Edwin, John, his "Eccentricities" quoted, ii. 78, _note_ 1.

  E----e, Mr. [probably Erskine], his powers of raillery, i. 13, i. 14,
      _note_ 1, i. 16.

  Egerton, William, his memoirs of Mrs. Oldfield, i. 5, _note_ 1.

  "Egotist, The," i. lv., _note_ 1, i. 36, _note_ 2, i. 41, _note_ 2,
      i. 43, _note_ 1, i. 45, _note_ 1, i. 46, _note_ 1, i. 53, _note_ 1,
      ii. 265.

  Elephants on the stage, ii. 7, _note_ 1.

  Elizabeth, Queen, and the Spanish Armada, allusion to, i. 64;
    her rule of government, i. 65.

  Elocution, importance of, i. 110.

  Elrington, Thomas, his visit to Drury Lane in 1714, ii. 121, _note_ 1;
    Cibber said to have refused to let him play a certain character, ii.
      193, _note_ 1.

  Ely, Bishop of, and Joe Haines, ii. 315.

  Erskine, Mr., probably the person mentioned by Cibber, i. 13, i. 14,
      _note_ 1, i. 16.

  Estcourt, Richard, i. 166, i. 237. i. 332. i. 334, _note_ 1;
    a marvellous mimic, i. 114;
    yet not a good actor, i. 115;
    said to be unfairly treated by Cibber, i. 115, _note_ 2;
    could not mimic Nokes, i. 142;
    his "gag" on the Union of the Companies in, 1708, i. 301;
    his first coming to London, i. 304;
    made Deputy-manager by Brett, ii. 56, _note_ 1;
    advertisement regarding his salary, 1709, ii. 78, _note_ 1;
    his Falstaff, ii. 300;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 331.

  Eusden, Laurence, poet laureate, his death, i. 32, _note_ 1.

  Evans, John, his visit to Drury Lane in 1714, ii. 121, _note_ 1;
    his Falstaff, ii. 300.


  "Faction Display'd," ii. 233, _note_ 2.

  "Fair Maid of the West, The," i. xxv.

  Fairplay, Francis, a name assumed by Cibber on one occasion, i. 48.

  "Fairy Queen," preface to, quoted, i. 110, _note_ 1.

  Farinelli (singer), ii. 88.

  Farquhar, George, ii. 251, ii. 367, ii. 369.

  Fashionable nights, ii. 246.

  Faustina (Faustina Bordoni Hasse), her rivalry with Cuzzoni, ii. 89.

  Fees for performances at Court, ii. 218.

  Fenwick, Sir John, ii. 62.

  Fideli, Signor, i. xxvii.

  Field, Nathaniel, originally a "Chapel boy," i. xxxvii.

  Fielding, Henry, i. 202, _note_ 1, i. 287, _note_ 4, i. 288, _note_ 1,
      ii. 269; attacks Cibber in "The Champion," i. 1, _note_ 1, i. 38,
      _note_ 1, i. 50, _note_ 2, i. 63, _note_ 1, i. 69, _note_ 1, i.
      93, _note_ 2, i. 288, _note_ 1, ii. 54, _note_ 2;
    in "Joseph Andrews," i. 10, _note_ 1, i. 50, _note_ 2, i. 61,
      _note_ 1;
    in "Pasquin," i. 36, _note_ 2;
    attacks Cibber for mutilating Shakespeare, ii. 263;
    manager of a company at the Haymarket, i. 92, _note_ 1;
    Cibber's retaliation on, i. 286;
    Austin Dobson's memoir of, quoted, i. 286, _note_ 1, i. 287,
      _note_ 3, i. 288, _note_ 1;
    said to have caused the Licensing Act of 1737, i. 286.

  Fitzgerald, Percy, his "New History of the English Stage," i. 90,
      _note_ 1, i. 320, _note_ 1, ii. 11, _note_ 1, ii. 32, _note_ 1,
      ii. 49, _note_ 1, ii. 56, _note_ 1, ii. 79, _note_ 2;
    ii. 94, _note_ 1, ii. 148, _note_ 1.

  Fitzharding, Lady, i. 68.

  Fitzstephen, William, his "Description of the City of London,"
      i. xxxvii.

  Fleetwood, Charles, ii. 264;
    purchases from Highmore and Mrs. Wilks their shares of the Patent,
      i. 285, ii. 261;
    the deserters return to him, ii. 261.

  Fletcher, John, his plays, i. xxv.

  Footmen, admitted gratis to Drury Lane, i. 233;
    this privilege abolished, i. 234, _note_ 1.

  Fortune Theatre, i. xxvi., i. xxix.

  Fox, Bishop, had charge of pageants in which sacred persons were
      introduced, i. xlv.

  French actors at Lincoln's Inn Fields, ii. 180, _note_ 1.

  ---- audience, conduct of, ii. 247.

  "Funeral, The," i. 263.


  Gaedertz, Herr, his "Zur Kenntniss der altenglischen Bühne," ii. 84,
      _note_ 1.

  "Gammer Gurton's Needle," one of the earliest regular comedies, i.
      xlvii.

  Garrick, David, i. 110, _note_ 1, i. 278, _note_ 1, ii. 259, ii. 270;
    his influence in reforming the stage, ii. 263;
    Cibber plays against, ii. 268;
    Cibber's low opinion of, ii. 268;
    Davies's Life of, i. lv., _note_ 1, i. 283, _note_ 2, ii. 259.

  Gaussin, Jeanne Catherine, ii. 248.

  Gay, John, said to have thrashed Cibber, i. 71, _note_ 1;
    his "Beggar's Opera," i. 243;
    his "Polly" forbidden to be played, i. 246, i. 278, _note_ 1.

  Genest, Rev. John, his "Account of the English Stage," i. 83, _note_ 1,
      i. 88, _note_ 3, i. 91, _note_ 2, i. 91, _note_ 4, i. 97,
      _note_ 1, i. 110, _note_ 1, i. 149, _note_ 2, i. 156, _note_ 2,
      i. 174, _note_ 2, i. 203, _note_ 1, i. 220, _note_ 1, i. 230,
      _note_ 1, i. 267, _note_ 2, i. 268, _note_ 1, i. 269, _note_ 1,
      i. 296, _note_ 1, i. 326, _note_ 3, ii. 5, _note_ 1, ii. 7,
      _note_ 1, ii. 56, _note_ 1, ii. 79, _note_ 2, ii. 96, _note_ 1,
      ii. 98, _note_ 1, ii. 123, _note_ 1, ii. 165, _note_ 1, ii.
      169, _note_ 3, ii. 171, _note_ 1, ii. 186, _note_ 1, ii. 186,
      _note_ 2, ii. 187, _note_ 1, ii. 198, _note_ 1, ii. 210,
      _note_ 1, ii. 251, _note_ 1, ii. 267, ii. 269, ii. 324;
    his opinion of Cibber's Richard III., i. 139, _note_ 2.

  "Gentleman's Magazine," ii. 284.

  Gentlemen of the Great Chamber, actors entitled, i. 88.

  George I. has theatrical performances at Hampton Court, ii. 208;
    his amusement at a scene of "Henry VIII.," ii. 216;
    his present to the actors for playing at Court, ii. 218.

  ---- II., i. 32, ii. 219.

  Giffard, Henry, i. 92, _note_ 1, i. 283, _note_ 1;
    his theatre in Goodman's Fields, i. 282, _note_ 2;
    purchases half of Booth's share of the Patent, ii. 259.

  Gifford, William, doubts if Ben Jonson was an unsuccessful actor, i.
      85, _note_ 1.

  Gildon, Charles, his Life of Betterton, i. 118, _note_ 2, ii. 324,
      ii. 337, _note_ 1, ii. 358.

  Globe Theatre, i. xxvi., i. xxix.

  Goffe, Alexander, a "boy-actress," i. xxx.;
    employed to give notice of secret performances during the
      Commonwealth, i. xxx.

  "Golden Rump, The," a scurrilous play, i. 278, _note_ 1.

  Goodman, Cardell, mentioned, i. 83, _note_ 1, i. 96;
    prophesies Cibber's success as an actor, i. 183;
    a highway robber, ii. 61, ii. 63;
    his connection with the Fenwick and Charnock Plot, ii. 62;
    he and Captain Griffin have one shirt between them, ii. 63;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 329.

  Goodman's Fields, unlicensed theatre in, i. 281;
    attempt to suppress it, i. 282;
    Odell's theatre, i. 282, _note_ 1;
    Giffard's theatre, i. 282, _note_ 2.

  ---- Theatre, i. 92, _note_ 1;
    closed by Licensing Act (1737), i. 92, _note_ 1.

  Grafton, Duke of, ii. 260;
    blamed for making Cibber Laureate, i. 46, _note_ 1.

  Grantham, Cibber sent to school at, i. 9.

  Griffin, Captain (actor), i. 334, _note_ 1;
    admitted into good society, i. 83;
    memoir of, i. 83, _note_ 1;
    and Goodman have one shirt between them, ii. 63.

  Griffith, Thomas, his visit to Drury Lane in 1714, ii. 121, _note_ 1.

  "Grub Street Journal," ii. 258, _note_ 1.

  Guiscard, his attack on Lord Oxford referred to, i. 291.

  Gwyn, Nell, i. 91, _note_ 1, i. 182, _note_ 1, ii. 323;
    and Charles II., ii. 211;
    Bishop Burnet's opinion of, ii. 212.


  Haines, Joseph, ii. 252, _note_ 1;
    his _bon mot_ on Jeremy Collier, i. 273;
    account of his career, i. 273, _note_ 1;
    Aston's description of, ii. 314;
    his pranks, ii. 315, ii. 325;
    Life of, ii. 325, _note_ 1.

  Halifax, Lord, i. 217, ii. 311;
    a patron of the theatre, ii. 4;
    his testimonial to Mrs. Bracegirdle, ii. 305.

  Hamlet, incomparably acted by Taylor, i. xxvi.;
    Betterton as, i. 100;
    Wilks's mistakes in, i. 100.

  Hammerton, Stephen, a famous "boy-actress," i. xxvi.;
    played Amyntor, i. xxvi.

  Hampton Court, theatrical performances at, ii. 208, ii. 214, ii. 219.

  "Hannibal and Scipio," i. xxv.

  Harlequin, Cibber's low opinion of the character, i. 150-152;
    played without a mask by Pinkethman, i. 151.

  "Harlequin Sorcerer," a noted pantomime, ii. 181, _note_ 1.

  Harper, John, arrested as a rogue and vagabond, i. 283;
    trial, ii. 260;
    the result of his trial, i. 284;
    his Falstaff, ii. 300.

  Harris, ii. 334, ii. 346.

  Harrison, General, murders W. Robinson the actor, i. xxix.

  Hart, Charles, i. 125, _note_ 2, ii. 134, ii. 137, _note_ 1;
    superior to his successors, i. xxiv.;
    apprenticed to Robinson, i. xxiv.;
    A "boy-actress," i. xxiv.;
    a lieutenant in Charles I.'s army, i. xxix.;
    arrested for acting, i. xxx.;
    grows old and wishes to retire, i. xxxii.;
    his acting of the Plain Dealer, i. 83, _note_ 1;
    famous for Othello, i. 91;
    his retirement, i. 96;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 322.

  Haymarket, Little Theatre in the, i. 92, _note_ 1;
    opened by the mutineers from Highmore in 1733, ii. 259;
    closed by Licensing Act (1737), i. 92, _note_ 1.

  ---- the Queen's Theatre in the (now Her Majesty's), i. 319;
    its history, i. 319, _note_ 1;
    opened for Betterton's Company, i. 320;
    defects in its construction, i. 320, i. 326;
    inconvenience of its situation, i. 322.

  Hemming, John, i. xxvi.

  "Henry VIII.," ii. 215.

  Heron, Mrs., ii. 262.

  Hewett, Sir Thomas, his report on the stability of Drury Lane, ii. 177.

  Highmore, John, at variance with his actors, i. 283;
    his purchase of the Patent, i. 283, _note_ 1;
    the price he paid for the Patent, i. 297, _note_ 1;
    purchases half of Booth's share of the Patent, ii. 258;
    purchases Cibber's share, ii. 258: his actors mutiny, ii. 259;
    he summons Harper as a rogue and vagabond, ii. 260;
    sells his share in the Patent, ii. 261.

  Hill, Aaron, on "tone" in speaking, i. 110, _note_ 1;
    appointed by W. Collier to manage Drury Lane, ii. 94, _note_ 1;
    defied and beaten by his actors, ii. 94, _note_ 1;
    farms the opera from Collier, ii. 105;
    on Booth's lack of humour, ii. 240, _note_ 2.

  ---- Captain Richard, his murder of Mountfort, i. 130, _note_ 1,
      ii. 342.

  "Historia Histrionica," reprint of, i. xix.;
    preface to, i. xxi.

  "Historical Register for 1736," ii. 263.

  Hitchcock, Robert, his "Historical View of the Irish Stage," i. 165,
      _note_ 1.

  "Holland's Leaguer," i. xxv.

  Holt, Lord Chief Justice, ii. 22.

  Horden, Hildebrand, a promising actor, killed in a brawl, i. 302.

  Horton, Mrs., ii. 260.

  Howard, J. B., plays Iago in English to Salvini's Othello, i. 325,
      _note_ 1.

  ---- Sir Robert, i. 192, _note_ 1.

  Hughes, Margaret, said to be the first English actress, i. 90,
      _note_ 1.

  Hutton, Laurence, his "Literary Landmarks of London" quoted, i. 7,
      _note_ 3, ii. 284, _note_ 1.


  Irving, Henry, his controversy with Constant Coquelin regarding
      Diderot's "Paradoxe sur le Comédien," i. 103, _note_ 1;
    restores Shakespeare's "Richard III." to the stage, ii. 287.

  Italian Opera, introduced into England, i. 324;
    "The Dunciad" on, i. 324, _note_ 1.


  Jackson, John, his "History of the Scottish Stage" referred to, ii.
      181, _note_ 1.

  Jacobites attacked in Cibber's "Nonjuror," ii. 185;
    repay Cibber for his attack by hissing his plays, ii. 187;
    hiss his "Nonjuror," ii. 189.

  James II., ii. 134;
    Cibber, at school, writes an Ode on his coronation, i. 33;
    Cibber serves against, at the Revolution, i. 60;
    his flight to France, i. 70;
    his quarrel with the Duke of Devonshire, i. 72.

  Jekyll, Sir Joseph, ii. 198.

  Jevon, Thomas, i. 151, _note_ 1.

  Johnson, Benjamin (actor), i. 99, _note_ 1, i. 194, i. 313, i. 332,
      ii. 129, _note_ 2, ii. 252, _note_ 1, ii. 262, ii. 308;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 360.

  Johnson, Dr. Samuel, i. 215, _note_ 1, ii. 163, _note_ 1;
    his opinion of Cibber's Odes, i. 36, _note_ 2;
    his epigram on Cibber's Laureateship quoted, i. 46, _note_ 1;
    his "Life of Pope," ii. 275, ii. 276, ii. 280, _note_ 1, ii. 281,
      _note_ 1;
    his "Lives of the Poets," ii. 27, _note_ 1, ii. 128, _note_ 1, ii.
      370;
    his famous Prologue (1747) quoted, i. 113, _note_ 1.

  Jones, Inigo, ii. 209.

  Jonson, Ben, i. 245;
    out of fashion in 1699, i. xxiii.;
    no actors in 1699 who could rightly play his characters, i. xxiv.;
    his plays, i. xxv.;
    his epigram on Alleyn, i. xxviii.;
    on Sal Pavy, i. xxxvi.;
    said by Cibber to have been an unsuccessful actor, i. 85;
    this denied by Gifford and Cunningham, his editors, i. 85, _note_ 1;
    his Masques, ii. 209.

  Jordan, Thomas, his "Prologue to introduce the first woman that came
      to act on the stage," 1660, i. 90, _note_ 1, i. 119, _note_ 1.

  "Joseph Andrews" quoted, i. 10, _note_ 1, i. 50, _note_ 2, i. 61,
      _note_ 1.

  "Julius Cæsar," special revival of, in 1707, ii. 5.


  Keen, Theophilus, i. 332, ii. 77, _note_ 1, ii. 94, _note_ 1, ii.
      129, _note_ 2, ii. 169, _note_ 2;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 364.

  Kemble, John P., mentioned, i. lv., _note_ 1.

  Kent, Duke of, ii. 46.

  ---- Mrs., ii. 169, _note_ 2.

  Killigrew, Charles, ii. 32, _note_ 1;
    his share in the Patent, i. 181, _note_ 1.

  ---- Thomas, i. 181, _note_ 1, i. 197, _note_ 3;
    granted a Patent similar to Davenant's, i. liii., i. 87;
    memoir of, i. 87, _note_ 2;
    his witty reproof of Charles II., i. 87, _note_ 2;
    his Company better than Davenant's, i. 93;
    unites with Davenant's, i. 96.

  "King and no King," special revival of, in 1707, ii. 5.

  "King Arthur," i. 187.

  "King John" mutilated by Colley Cibber, ii. 268.

  "King John and Matilda," i. xxv.

  King's Servants, The, i. 87, _note_ 2, i. 88;
    before 1642, i. xxvi.;
    after the Restoration, i. xxxi.

  Kirkman, Francis, his "Wits," ii. 84, _note_ 1.

  Knap, ii. 169, _note_ 2.

  Kneller, Sir Godfrey, his portrait of Betterton, i. 117;
    his portrait of Anthony Leigh, i. 146, ii. 349;
    imitated by Estcourt, ii. 333.

  Knight, Mrs. Frances, ii. 77, _note_ 1, ii. 94, _note_ 1, ii. 169,
      _note_ 2.

  ---- Joseph, his edition of the "Roscius Anglicanus" referred to,
      i. 87, _note_ 1, i. 90, _note_ 1.

  Knip, Mrs., i. 182, _note_ 1.

  Kynaston, Edward, i. 98, i. 119, ii. 324, ii. 334, i. 185, i. 327;
    petted by ladies of quality, i. 120;
    the beauty of his person, i. 121;
    his voice and appearance, i. 121;
    his bold acting in inflated passages, i. 124;
    his majesty and dignity, i. 125-6;
    lingered too long on the stage, i. 126;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 339.


  Lacy, John, superior to his successors, i. xxiv.

  Lady of title, prevented by relatives from becoming an actress, i. 75.

  "Lady's Last Stake," cast of, ii. 3, _note_ 1.

  Langbaine, Gerard, his "Account of the English Poets," ii. 13, _note_ 1.

  Laughter, reflections on, i. 23.

  "Laureat, The" (a furious attack on Cibber), i. 3, _note_ 2, i. 14,
      _note_ 1, i. 35, _note_ 2, i. 48, _note_ 1, i. 78, _note_
      1, i. 101, _note_ 2, i. 122, _note_ 1, i. 123, _note_ 1, i. 140,
      _note_ 1, i. 157, _note_ 2, i. 174, _note_ 2, i. 182, _note_ 2,
      i. 191, _note_ 2, i. 222, _note_ 1, i. 224, _note_ 1, i. 238,
      _note_ 1, i. 239, _note_ 1, i. 242, _note_ 1, i. 256, _note_ 1,
      i. 258, _note_ 2, i. 264, _note_ 1, i. 273, _note_ 2, i. 300,
      _note_ 1, i. 312, _note_ 2, ii. 30, _note_ 1, ii. 37, _note_ 1,
      ii. 121, _note_ 1, ii. 148, _note_ 1, ii. 160, _note_ 1, ii.
      163, _note_ 1, ii. 251, _note_ 1, ii. 256, _note_ 1, ii. 335,
      _note_ 1, ii. 356.

  Lebrun, Charles, painter, alluded to, i. 106.

  Lee, Charles Henry, Master of the Revels, ii. 260.

  ---- Mrs. Mary, i. 163, _note_ 1.

  ---- Nathaniel, ii. 327;
    his "Alexander the Great," i. 105;
    a perfect reader of his own works, i. 113;
    Mohun's compliment to him, i. 114;
    failed as an actor, i. 114.

  Leigh, Anthony, i. 98, i. 142, i. 304, i. 327;
    Cibber's account of, i. 145-154;
    his exuberant humour, i. 145;
    in "The Spanish Friar," i. 145;
    painted in the character of the Spanish Friar, i. 146;
    his best characters, i. 146, i. 149;
    and Nokes, their combined excellence, i. 147, his superiority to
      Pinkethman, i. 149;
    the favourite actor of Charles II., i. 154;
    compared with Nokes, i. 154;
    his death, i. 154, i. 188;
    his "gag" regarding Obadiah Walker's change of religion, ii. 134;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 349.

  Leigh, Mrs. Elizabeth, i. 98;
    Cibber's account of, i. 162-163;
    her peculiar comedy powers, i. 162;
    note regarding her, i. 163, _note_ 1.

  ---- Francis, ii. 77, _note_ 1, ii. 94, _note_ 1, ii. 169, _note_ 2,
      ii. 170, _note_ 1.

  Leveridge, Richard, ii. 169, _note_ 3.

  Licence granted by King William in 1695, i. 98.

  Licensing Act of 1737, i. 278, _note_ 1, i. 286, i. 287, _note_ 4,
      ii. 262.

  "Lick at the Laureat," said to be the title of a pamphlet, i. 35,
      _note_ 2.

  Lincoln's Inn Fields, Duke's old Theatre in, i. xxxii., i. 88,
      _note_ 2.

  ---- Betterton's theatre in, i. 194;
    its opening, i. 196;
    its success at first, i. 227;
    its speedy disintegration, i. 228.

  ---- Rich's theatre in, ii. 79, ii. 100;
    its exact situation, ii. 101, _note_ 1;
    Rich's Patent revived at, ii. 165;
    its opening, ii. 166, _note_ 1, ii. 171, _note_ 1;
    actors desert Drury Lane to join, ii. 169.

  "London Cuckolds," i. 267.

  "London News-Letter," i. 302, _note_ 2.

  Lord Chamberlain, Cibber on the power of the, ii. 10-23, ii. 74;
    his name not mentioned in the Patents, ii. 10;
    Sir Spencer Ponsonby-Fane on the power of, ii. 11, _note_ 1;
    his power of licensing plays, ii. 11;
    plays vetoed by him, ii. 12-14;
    actors arrested by his orders, ii. 17-22;
    his edicts against desertions, ii. 17, _note_ 1, ii. 18,
      _note_ 1;
    said to favour Betterton at the expense of rival managers, ii. 18;
    various edicts regarding Powell, ii. 19, _note_ 1, ii. 20, _note_ 1,
      ii. 94, _note_ 1;
    warrant to arrest Dogget, ii. 21, _note_ 1;
    his edict separating plays and operas in 1707, ii. 49, _note_ 1;
    interferes on behalf of actors in their dispute with the Patentees
      in 1709, ii. 68;
    silences Patentees for contumacy, ii. 72;
    his order for silence, 1709, quoted, ii. 73, _note_ 1.

  Lord Chamberlain's Records, i. 229, _note_ 1, i. 315, _note_ 2, ii.
      17, _note_ 1, ii. 18, _note_ 1, ii. 19, _note_ 1, ii. 20,
      _note_ 1, ii. 21, _note_ 1, ii. 49, _note_ 1, ii. 50, _note_ 1,
      ii. 69, _note_ 1, ii. 73, _note_ 1, ii. 79, _note_ 2, ii. 94,
      _note_ 1, ii. 102, _note_ 1, ii. 108, _note_ 2, ii. 171,
      _note_ 1, ii. 193, _note_ 1, ii. 218, _note_ 1, ii. 219, _note_ 1,
      ii. 257, _note_ 1.

  Lorraine, Duke of, ii. 219.

  Louis XIV., mentioned, i. 6.

  ---- Prince, of Baden, ii. 228.

  "Love in a Riddle," cast of, i. 244, _note_ 1.

  Lovel (actor), ii. 347.

  Lovelace, Lord, ii. 304.

  "Love's Last Shift," cast of, i. 213, _note_ 1.

  Lowin, John, ii. 335;
    arrested for acting, i. xxx.;
    superior to Hart, i. xxiv.;
    his chief characters, i. xxvi.;
    too old to go into Charles I.'s army, i. xxix.;
    becomes an inn-keeper, and dies very poor, i. xxxi.

  "Lucius Junius Brutus," by Lee, vetoed, ii. 13.

  "Ludus Coventriæ," i. xxxviii.;
    these plays acted at other towns besides Coventry, i. xxxviii.;
    a description of them, i. xxxviii. _et seq._

  "Lunatick, The," ii. 252, _note_ 1.

  Luttrell's Diary quoted, i. 302, _note_ 2.


  Macaulay, Lord, his "History of England" referred to, ii. 134,
      _note_ 3.

  "Macbeth" _in the nature of an opera_, i. 94, _note_ 1;
    ii. 228, ii. 229, _note_ 1.

  Macclesfield, Countess of, ii. 39. See also Mrs. Brett.

  Macklin, Charles, ii. 270, ii. 362;
    his first coming to London, ii. 261;
    a great reformer, ii. 262.

  Macready, William C, mentioned, i. 135, _note_ 1.

  MacSwiney, Owen. See Swiney, Owen.

  "Maid's Tragedy" vetoed in Charles II.'s time, ii. 12;
    played with altered catastrophe, ii. 12.

  Mainwaring, Arthur, ii. 369, _note_ 2.

  Malone, Edmond, i. 185, _note_ 1, i. 197, _note_ 3, ii. 32, _note_ 1,
      ii. 138, _note_ 1.

  Management, Cibber on the duties and responsibilities of, ii. 199-207.

  Margaret, Queen of Henry VI., pageant played before her, i. xl.

  Marlborough, Duchess of. See Churchill, Lady.

  ---- Duke of, ii. 96, _note_ 1, ii. 130, ii. 164, ii. 228.

  "Marriage à la Mode," by Cibber, cast of, ii. 5, _note_ 1.

  Marshall, Anne, i. 161, _note_ 1;
    said to be the first English actress, i. 90, _note_ 1.

  ---- Julian, his "Annals of Tennis" quoted, i. 315, _note_ 1.

  Mary, the Virgin, and Joseph, characters in the "Ludus Coventriæ,"
      i. xxxix.

  ---- Queen, her death, i. 193.

  "Mary, Queen of Scotland," by Banks, vetoed, ii. 14.

  Masculus, a comedian, who was a Christian martyr, i. xxii.

  Masks, Ladies wearing, at the theatre, i. 266;
    ultimately the mark of a prostitute, i. 267, _note_ 1.

  Mason, Miss. See Countess of Macclesfield, and Mrs. Brett.

  Masques, enormous expense of, ii. 209.

  Master of the Revels. See Revels.

  Mathews, Charles (the elder), his powers of imitation referred to,
      i. 115, _note_ 1.

  Mathias, St., the choosing of, as an apostle, dramatized in the
      "Ludus Coventriæ," i. xxxviii.

  Matthews, Brander, ii. 289, _note_ 1.

  Maynard, Serjeant, a Whig lawyer, satirized, i. 149, _note_ 2.

  Medbourn, Matthew, ii. 346.

  Melcombe, Lord, mentioned, i. 14, _note_ 1.

  "Mery Play between the Pardoner and the Frere, the Curate and
      Neybour Pratte, A," described, i. xlv.

  Miller, James, his "Art and Nature" failed, i. 152, _note_ 1.

  ---- Josias (actor), ii. 262.

  Mills, John, i. 332, ii. 70, _note_ 2, ii. 129, _note_ 2, ii. 259,
      _note_ 1, ii. 262;
    his friendship with Wilks, i. 259, ii. 223;
    his honesty and diligence, i. 260;
    his large salary, i. 260;
    advertisement regarding his salary, 1709, ii. 78, _note_ 1;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 362;
    and the country squire, ii. 363.

  Milward, William, i. 224, _note_ 2.

  Mist, Nathaniel. See "Mist's Weekly Journal."

  "Mist's Weekly Journal," ii. 163, _note_ 1, ii. 167, ii. 187.

  Mohun, Lord, ii. 314;
    implicated in Mountfort's death, i. 130, _note_ 1, ii. 342.

  ---- Michael, superior to his successors, i. xxiv.;
    apprentice to Beeston, i. xxv.;
    acted Bellamente, i. xxv.;
    a captain in Charles I.'s army, i. xxix.;
    his death, i. 96;
    his admiration of Nat. Lee's elocution, i. 114;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 326.

  Montague, Captain, insults Miss Santlow, i. 76;
    chastised by Mr. Craggs, i. 77.

  Moore, Mrs., ii. 77, _note_ 1, ii. 94, _note_ 1.

  Morley, Professor Henry, his edition of the "Spectator," ii. 54,
      _note_ 1.

  Mountfort, William, i. 98, i. 108, i. 170, _note_ 1, i. 237, ii. 314;
    taken into good society, i. 83;
    Cibber's account of, i. 127-130;
    his voice and appearance, i. 127;
    his Alexander the Great, i. 127;
    his excellent acting of fine gentlemen, i. 127;
    his delivery of witty passages, i. 128;
    his Rover, i. 128;
    his versatility, i. 128, i. 210;
    his Sparkish ("Country Wife") and his Sir Courtly Nice, i. 129;
    copied by Cibber in Sir Courtly Nice, i. 129;
    his tragic death, i. 130, i. 188;
    memoir of him, i. 130, _note_ 1;
    Tom Brown on his connection with Mrs. Bracegirdle, i. 170, _note_ 1;
    his comedy of "Greenwich Park," ii. 41;
    copied by Wilks, ii. 241;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 341;
    full account of his death by the hands of Capt. Hill, ii. 342-345.

  ---- Mrs., i. 98, i. 237, ii. 343, ii. 367;
    Cibber's account of, i. 165-169;
    her variety of humour, i. 165;
    her artistic feeling, i. 166;
    her acting of the Western Lass, i. 166;
    in male parts, i. 167;
    plays Bayes with success, i. 167;
    the excellence of her Melantha, i. 167;
    memoir of, i. 169, _note_ 1;
    leaves Betterton's company in 1695, i. 200;
    her death, ii. 306;
    Anthony Aston's description of, ii. 313.

  Mountfort, Susanna, i. 334, _note_ 1.

  Music in the theatre, i. xxxii.


  Newcastle, Duke of, ii. 219;
    (Lord Chamberlain), his persecution of Steele, ii. 193, _note_ 1.

  Newington Butts, i. xlix.

  Newman, Thomas, actor, one of their Majesties' servants, i. 88,
      _note_ 3.

  Nichols, John, his "Theatre, Anti-Theatre, &c.," ii. 66, _note_ 2,
      ii. 168, _note_ 1, ii. 174, _note_ 2, ii. 176, _note_ 1, ii. 177,
      _note_ 1, ii. 193, _note_ 1.

  Nicolini (Nicolo Grimaldi), singer, ii. 48, ii. 51;
    Cibber's high praise of, ii. 51;
    praised by the "Tatler," ii. 52.

  Noblemen's companies of players, i. xlvii.

  Nokes, James, i. 98;
    Cibber's description of, i. 141-145;
    his natural simplicity, i. 141;
    could not be imitated, i. 142;
    his best characters, i. 142;
    his ludicrous distress, i. 143;
    his voice and person, i. 145;
    and Leigh, their combined excellence, i. 147;
    compared with Leigh, i. 154;
    his death, i. 188;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 346;
    why called "Nurse Nokes," ii. 348.

  Nokes, Robert, i. 141, _note_ 1, i. 143, _note_ 2, ii. 346.

  "Nonjuror, The," a line in the epilogue quoted, i. 49;
    cast of, ii. 185, _note_ 2.

  Norris, Henry, ii. 77, _note_ 1, ii. 94, _note_ 1.

  ---- Mrs., said to be the first English actress, i. 90, _note_ 1.

  Northey, Sir Edward, his "opinion" on the Patent, ii. 32, _note_ 1.


  Oates, Titus, i. 133.

  Odell, Thomas, his theatre in Goodman's Fields, i. 282, _note_ 1.

  "Old and New London," referred to, ii. 104, _note_ 1.

  Oldfield, Mrs. Anne, i. 157, i. 251, _note_ 1, i. 332, ii. 69, ii.
      129, _note_ 2, ii. 358;
    memoirs of, published immediately after her death, i. 5;
    her acting of Lady Townly praised in high-flown terms by Cibber,
      i. 51, i. 312, _note_ 3;
    admitted into good society, i. 83;
    her unpromising commencement as an actress, i. 159, i. 305;
    compared with Mrs. Butler, i. 164;
    her rivalry with Mrs. Bracegirdle, i. 174, _note_ 2;
    Cibber's account of, i. 305-312;
    her good sense, i. 310;
    her unexpected excellence, i. 306;
    Cibber writes "The Careless Husband" chiefly for her, i. 308;
    her perfect acting in it, i. 309;
    and Wilks playing in same pieces, i. 314;
    proposed to be made a manager, ii. 69;
    gets increased salary instead, ii. 71;
    advertisement regarding her salary, 1709, ii. 78, _note_ 1;
    riot directed against, ii. 166;
    settles a dispute between Wilks, Cibber, and Booth, ii. 236;
    her death, ii. 254;
    copied Mrs. Mountfort in comedy, ii. 313;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 367;
    and Richard Savage, ii. 369.

  Opera, i. 111;
    control of, given to Swiney, ii. 48.

  ---- Italian, account of its first separate establishment, ii. 50-55;
    decline of Italian, ii. 87-91.

  Otway, Thomas, his failure as an actor, i. 114, _note_ 1;
    his "Orphan," i. 116, _note_ 2.

  Oxford, visited by the actors in 1713, ii. 133, ii. 135;
    Dryden's Prologues at, ii. 134, ii. 136, _note_ 1;
    its critical discernment, ii. 136.

  ---- Lord, Guiscard's attack on, referred to, i. 291.


  Pack, George, ii. 77, _note_ 1, ii. 94, _note_ 1;
    account of, ii. 169, _note_ 3.

  Pageants formed part in receptions of princes, &c., i. xl. _et seq._

  Painting the face on the stage, i. 182, _note_ 1.

  Pantomimes, the origin of, ii. 180;
    Cibber's opinion of, ii. 180;
    "The Dunciad" on, ii. 181, _note_ 1.

  "Papal Tyranny in the Reign of King John," cast of, ii. 269, _note_ 1.

  Parish-clerks, play acted by, in 1391, i. xxxv.

  Parliamentary reports on the theatres, i. 278, _note_ 1.

  "Parson's Wedding, The," played entirely by women, i. xxxii.

  "Pasquin" quoted, i. 36, _note_ 2.

  Patent, copy of, granted to Sir William Davenant in 1663, i. liii.;
    Steele's, ii. 174.

  Patentees, the, their foolish parsimony, i. 164;
    their ill-treatment of Betterton and other actors, i. 187;
    the actors combine against them, i. 189;
    their deserted condition, i. 194. (For transactions of the Patentees,
      see also Rich, C.)

  Pavy, Sal, a famous child-actor, i. xxxvi.;
    Ben Jonson's epigram on, i. xxxvi.

  Pelham, Hon. Henry, Cibber's "Apology" dedicated to, i. lv., _note_ 1.

  Pembroke, Earl of, ii. 105, _note_ 1.

  Pepys, Samuel, his "Diary," i. 119, _note_ 1, i. 161, _note_ 2, i.
      182, _note_ 1, i. 267, _note_ 1, i. 303, _note_ 1.

  Percival (actor), i. 183, _note_ 1.

  Perkins, an eminent actor, i. xxvi.;
    his death, i. xxxi.

  Perrin, Mons. (of the Théâtre Français), ii. 221, _note_ 1, ii. 246,
      _note_ 1.

  Perriwigs, enormous, worn by actors, ii. 36, _note_ 1.

  Phoenix, the, or Cockpit, i. xxvi.

  "Picture, The," i. xxv.

  Pinkethman, William, i. 313, i. 334, _note_ 1, ii. 129, _note_ 2, ii.
      252, _note_ 1;
    his inferiority to Anthony Leigh, i. 149;
    his liberties with the audience, i. 152;
    hissed for them, i. 153, _note_ 1;
    his lack of judgment, i. 150;
    plays Harlequin without the mask, i. 151;
    his success as Lory in "The Relapse," i. 230;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 348.

  ---- the younger, ii. 349.

  Plays, value of old, for information on manners, i. xxi.;
    old, no actors' names given, i. xxv.;
    originally used for religious purposes, i. xxxiv., i. xxxv.;
    their early introduction, i. xxxvii.;
    began to alter in form about the time of Henry VIII., i. xlv.;
    origin of, in Greece and England, i. xlviii.;
    the alteration in their subjects noticed by Stow in 1598, i. xlviii.;
    temporarily suspended, i. xlix.;
    arranged to be divided between Davenant's and Killigrew's companies,
      i. 91;
    expenses of, i. 197, _note_ 3.

  Players defended regarding character, i. xxii.;
    not to be described as rogues and vagabonds, i. xlix.;
    entirely suppressed by ordinances of the Long Parliament, i. li.

  Playhouses, large number of, in 1629, i. xlix.

  "Poems on Affairs of State," quoted, i. 170, _note_ 1.

  "Poetaster, The," played by the Children of her Majesty's Chapel, i.
      xxxvi.

  Poet Laureate, Cibber appointed, 1730, i. 32, _note_ 1.

  Pollard, Thomas, a comedian, i. xxvi.;
    superior to Hart, i. xxiv.;
    too old to go into Charles I.'s army, i. xxix.;
    arrested for acting, i. xxx.;
    his retirement and death, i. xxxi.

  Pollixfen, Judge, ii. 315.

  Ponsonby-Fane, Sir Spencer, his memorandum on the power of the Lord
      Chamberlain, ii. 11, _note_ 1.

  Pope, Alexander, ii. 151;
    Cibber's "Letter" to, quoted, i. 3, _note_ 1;
    Cibber's first allusion to Pope's enmity, i. 21;
    an epigram comparing Pope and Cibber in society, i. 29, _note_ 1;
    Cibber's opinion of Pope's attacks, i. 35;
    some of Pope's attacks quoted, i. 36, _note_ 1;
    his attack on Atticus (Addison), i. 38;
    Cibber's "Letter" to, quoted, i. 44, _note_ 1, i. 45, _note_ 2;
    epigram attributed to him, on Cibber's Laureateship, i. 46, _note_ 1;
    his "Moral Essays," quoted, i. 307, _note_ 3;
    attacks Cibber for countenancing pantomimes, ii. 182, _note_ 1;
    "The Nonjuror" a cause of his enmity to Cibber, ii. 189, _note_ 1;
    his "Epistle to Dr. Arbuthnot," ii. 189, _note_ 1;
    his quarrel with Cibber, ii. 270-283;
    Cibber's "Letter" to him, ii. 271;
    his famous adventure, ii. 278;
    Cibber's second "Letter" to, ii. 281;
    his portrait of Betterton, ii. 339;
    his attacks on Mrs. Oldfield, ii. 370. (See also "Dunciad.")

  Porter, Mrs. Mary, ii. 129, _note_ 2, ii. 303, ii. 368;
    Dogget plays for her benefit after his retirement, ii. 158;
    accident to, ii. 254, ii. 365;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 365.

  Portuguese, the, and religious plays, i. xxxv.

  "Post-Boy Rob'd of his Mail," i. 328, _note_ 1, i. 329, _note_ 1.

  Powell, George, i. 157, i. 193, i. 203, _note_ 1, i. 228, i. 259, i.
      334. _note_ 1, ii. 77, _note_ 1, ii. 94, _note_ 1, ii. 129,
     _note_ 2, ii. 238, ii. 301, ii. 311, ii. 363;
    offered some of Betterton's parts, i. 188;
    his indiscretion as a manager, i. 204;
    mimics Betterton, i. 205, i. 207, _note_ 1;
    the contest between him and Wilks for supremacy at Drury Lane, i.
      237-243, i. 251-256;
    his carelessness, i. 240, i. 243;
    deserts Drury Lane, i. 239;
    returns to Drury Lane, i. 239;
    arrested for deserting his manager, ii. 18;
    arrested for striking young Davenant, ii. 19;
    discharged for assaulting Aaron Hill in 1710, ii. 94, _note_ 1;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 352.

  Price, Joseph, account of him by Bellchambers, i. 146, _note_ 1.

  Prince's Servants, The, before, 1642, i. xxvi.

  Pritchard, Mrs., ii. 268, _note_ 1.

  Profits made by the old actors, i. xxxii.;
    of the theatre, how divided in 1682, i. 97.

  Prologue-speaking, the art of, i. 271.

  "Prophetess, The," i. 187.

  "Provoked Husband," cast of, i. 311, _note_ 1.

  "Provoked Wife," altered, ii. 233.

  "Psyche," an opera, i. 94.

  Puppet-show in Salisbury Change, i. 95.

  Purcell, Henry, i. 187, _note_ 1, ii. 312.


  Quantz, Mons., ii. 89, _note_ 1.

  Queen's Servants, The, before 1642, i. xxvi.

  ---- Theatre in the Haymarket, success of Swiney's company in, ii. 1;
    set aside for operas only, ii. 48;
    its interior altered, ii. 79;
    opened by the seceders from Drury Lane in 1709, ii. 87.

  Quin, James, i. 224, _note_ 2, ii. 259, _note_ 1;
    the chief actor at Garrick's appearance, ii. 262.


  Raftor, Catherine. See Clive.

  ---- James, i. 330, _note_ 1.

  Raillery, reflections on, i. 11.

  Raymond, his "opinion" on the Patent, ii. 32, _note_ 1.

  Red Bull Theatre, i. xxvi., i. xxix.;
    used by King's Company after the Restoration, i. xxxi.;
    drawing of the stage of the, ii. 84, _note_ 1.

  Reformation of the stage, Cibber on, i. 81.

  Rehan, Ada, a great comedian, ii. 289.

  Religion and the stage, i. xxi., i. xxxiii.

  "Renegado, The," i. xxv.

  Revels, Master of the, his unreasonableness to Cibber, i. 275;
    his fees refused to be paid, i. 277.

  Rhodes, the prompter, ii. 333, ii. 339;
    his company, at the Cockpit, i. xxviii.;
    his company of actors engaged by Davenant, i. 87, _note_ 1.

  Rich, Christopher, Patentee of Drury Lane, i. 181, _note_ 1, ii.
      336, ii. 361, ii. 367;
    description of, i. 233, _note_ 1;
    admits servants to theatre gratis, i. 233;
    his treatment of his actors, i. 252;
    consults Cibber on matters of management, i. 253;
    his principles of management, i. 262, ii. 6-8;
    his tactics to avoid settling with his partners, i. 328;
    his objections to an union of the two companies, i. 329;
    permits Swiney to rent the Queen's Theatre, i. 331;
    his foolish neglect of his actors, i. 334;
    declines to execute his agreement with Swiney, i. 336;
    wishes to bring an elephant on the stage, ii. 6;
    introduces rope-dancers at Drury Lane, ii. 7;
    silenced for receiving Powell, ii. 19, _note_ 1;
    his share in the Patent, ii. 32, _note_ 1, ii. 98;
    his dealings with Col. Brett, ii. 42-49, ii. 56-60;
    Cibber on his misconduct, ii. 46;
    his foolish mismanagement, ii. 60, ii. 65;
    confiscates part of his actors' benefits, ii. 66;
    ordered to refund this, ii. 68;
    silenced by the Lord Chamberlain (1709), ii. 72;
    his proceedings after being silenced, ii. 77, ii. 79, _note_ 2;
    an advertisement issued by him regarding actors' salaries in 1709,
      ii. 78, _note_ 1;
    evicted by Collier from Drury Lane (1709), ii. 92;
    his Patent revived in 1714, ii. 79, ii. 165;
    his extraordinary behaviour to the Lord Chamberlain, ii. 98;
    Genest's character of him, ii. 98, _note_ 1;
    rebuilds Lincoln's Inn Fields Theatre, ii. 100;
    his death, ii. 166, _note_ 1.

  Rich, John, ii. 79, ii. 98, _note_ 2;
    opens Lincoln's Inn Fields Theatre, ii. 166, _note_ 1;
    an excellent Harlequin, ii. 181, _note_ 1;
    manages the Lincoln's Inn Fields company, ii. 262;
    opens Covent Garden, ii. 262.

  "Richard III.," Cibber's adaptation of, i. 139;
    his playing in, i. 139, i. 275;
    cast of, ii. 288, _note_ 1.

  Richardson, Jonathan, ii. 276.

  Roberts, Mrs., one of Charles II.'s mistresses, ii. 212.

  Robins, a comedian, i. xxvi.

  Robinson, William, ii. 322;
    Hart apprenticed to, i. xxiv.;
    a comedian, i. xxvi.;
    murdered by Harrison, i. xxix.

  Rochester, Lord, ii. 138, _note_ 1, ii. 303.

  Rogers, Mrs., i. 332, ii. 129, _note_ 2, ii. 169, _note_ 2, ii. 353;
    her affectation of prudery, i. 135;
    becomes Wilks's mistress, i. 136;
    her eldest daughter, i. 136;
    riot caused by, ii. 166.

  Rogues and vagabonds, players not to be described as, i. xlix., i. 1.

  "Roman Actor, The," i. xxv.

  Roman Catholic religion, attacked by Cibber, i. 80.

  Rope-dancers on the stage, ii. 7.

  "Roscius Anglicanus." See Downes, John.

  Rose Tavern, the, i. 303, _note_ 1.

  Rowe, Nicholas, in love with Mrs. Bracegirdle, i. 172;
    complains of French dancers, i. 317.

  Royal Theatricals during George I.'s reign, ii. 208;
    during previous reigns, ii. 209;
    effect of audience on actors, ii. 214;
    fees for, ii. 218.

  Rymer, Thomas, ii. 324.


  Sacheverel, Doctor, his trial hurtful to the theatres, ii. 91.

  St. Giles's-in-the-Fields, Colley Cibber christened at, i. 7,
      _note_ 2.

  "St. James's Evening Post," ii. 198, _note_ 1.

  St. Paul's Singing School, i. xlix.

  Salisbury Court, the private theatre in, i. xxiv., i. xxvi., i.
      xxviii.

  Salvini, Tommaso, the great Italian tragedian, plays in Italian,
      while his company plays in English, i. 325, _note_ 1.

  Sandford, Samuel, i. 98, i. 327, ii. 244, _note_ 1;
    the "Spagnolet" of the theatre, i. 130;
    Cibber's account of him, i. 130-1;
    his personal appearance, i. 131;
    an actor of villains, i. 131, i. 137;
    his Creon ("OEdipus"), i. 131;
    the "Tatler" on his acting, i. 132, _note_ 1;
    anecdote of his playing an honest character, i. 132;
    "a theatrical martyr to poetical justice," i. 137;
    his voice and manner of speaking, i. 138;
    would have been a perfect Richard III., i. 138;
    Cibber plays Richard III. in imitation of, i. 139;
    Anthony Aston's description of, ii. 306;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 346.

  Santlow, Hester, her first appearance as an actress, ii. 95;
    her manner and appearance, ii. 95;
    her character, ii. 96, _note_ 1;
    her marriage with Booth, ii. 96, _note_ 1.
    (See also Booth, Mrs. Barton.)

  Satire, reflections on, i. 37;
    Cibber's opinion regarding a printed and an acted, i. 289.

  Saunderson, Mrs. See Betterton, Mrs.

  Savage, Richard, ii. 39, _note_ 1;
    and Mrs. Oldfield, ii. 369.

  Scenes, first introduced by Sir William Davenant, i. xxxii., i. 87,
      _note_ 1.

  "Secular Masque, The," i. 268, _note_ 1.

  Sedley, Sir Charles, Kynaston's resemblance to, ii. 341.

  Senesino (singer), ii. 53.

  Sewell, Dr. George, his "Sir Walter Raleigh," ii. 186, _note_ 1.

  Shadwell, Charles, his "Fair Quaker of Deal," ii. 95.

  ---- Thomas, his comedy of "The Squire of Alsatia," i. 148.

  Shaftesbury, first Earl of, i. 134, _note_ 1.

  Shakespeare, William (see also names of his plays), a better author
      than actor, i. xxv., i. 89;
    his plays, i. xxv.;
    his plays depend less on women than on men, i. 90;
    expenses of plays in his time, i. 197.

  "Sham Lawyer, The," ii. 252, _note_ 1.

  Shank, John, a comedian, i. xxvi.;
    played Sir Roger ("Scornful Lady"), i. xxvi.

  Shatterel, ii. 326;
    superior to his successors, i. xxiv.;
    apprentice to Beeston, i. xxv.;
    a quartermaster in Charles I.'s army, i. xxix.

  Shelton, Lady, ii. 303.

  Shore, John, brother-in-law of Colley Cibber, i. 184, _note_ 1.

  ---- Miss. See Cibber, Mrs. Colley, i. 184, _note_ 1.

  "Shore's Folly," i. 184, _note_ 1.

  "Silent Woman," i. xxiv.

  Singers and dancers introduced by Davenant, i. 94;
    difficulty in managing, ii. 88.

  Skipwith, Sir George, ii. 60.

  ---- Sir Thomas (one of the Patentees of Drury Lane), ii. 109;
    does Vanbrugh a service, i. 217;
    receives "The Relapse" in return, i. 217;
    a sharer in the Drury Lane Patent, ii. 31;
    assigns his share to Colonel Brett, ii. 32;
    his friendship for Brett, ii. 39;
    claims his share from Brett, ii. 59.

  Smith, William, i. 327, ii. 324, ii. 346;
    insulted by one of the audience, i. 79;
    defended by the King, i. 79;
    driven from the stage because of the King's support of him, i. 79;
    taken into good society, i. 83;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 319.

  Sophocles, his tragedies, ii. 29.

  Southampton House, Bloomsbury, i. 7, _note_ 3.

  Southerne, Thomas, ii. 311;
    prophesies the success of Cibber's first play, i. 212;
    his "Oroonoko," i. 216, _note_ 1.

  Spaniards, the, and religious plays, i. xxxv.

  "Spectator," ii. 353.

  Spiller, James, ii. 169, _note_ 2.

  Stage, and religion, i. xxi., i. xxxiii.;
    the, Cibber on the reformation of, i. 81;
    audience on, forbidden, i. 234;
    Cibber on the influence of, ii. 24-31;
    shape of the, described, ii. 84;
    doors, ii. 84, _note_ 1.

  Statute regarding rogues and vagabonds, i. 1.;
    against profanity on the stage, i. 1.;
    against persons meeting out of their own parishes on Sundays for
      sports, etc., i. 1.;
    entirely suppressing players, i. li.

  Steele, Sir Richard, i. 97, _note_ 2, i. 276, ii. 36, _note_ 1, ii.
      109, ii. 128, ii. 151, ii. 217, ii. 251, ii. 257;
    substituted for Collier in the Licence, ii. 162;
    the benefits he had conferred on Cibber and his partners, ii. 162;
    Dennis's attacks on, ii. 168, _note_ 1;
    receives a Patent, ii. 173;
    assigns equal shares in the Patent to his partners, ii. 174;
    account of his transactions in connection with the theatre which
      are ignored by Cibber, ii. 193, _note_ 1;
    persecuted by the Duke of Newcastle, then Lord Chamberlain, ii.
      193, _note_ 1;
    his Licence revoked, ii. 193, _note_ 1;
    restored to his position, ii. 193, _note_ 1;
    the expiry of his Patent, ii. 193, _note_ 1;
    assigns his share of the Patent, ii. 196;
    brings an action against his partners, ii. 196;
    account of the pleadings, ii. 196-208;
    his recommendation of Underhill's benefit, ii. 351.

  Stow, John, his "Survey of London" quoted, i. xxxv., i. xlviii.

  Strolling players, i. xl., i. xlvii., i. 1.

  Subligny, Madlle., a French dancer, i. 316.

  "Summer Miscellany, The," ii. 272, _note_ 1.

  Sumner, an eminent actor, i. xxvi.;
    his death, i. xxxi.

  Sunderland, Lady (the Little Whig), i. 320.

  Swan Theatre, drawing of the stage of the, ii. 84, _note_ 1.

  Swanston, Eliard, acted Othello, i. xxvi.;
    the only actor that took the Presbyterian side in the Civil War,
      i. xxix.

  Swift, Jonathan, an attack on Cibber by him in his "Rhapsody on
      Poetry" quoted, i. 52, _note_ 2.

  Swiney, Owen, i. 97, _note_ 2, ii. 43, ii. 223, ii. 267;
    his "Quacks," i. 247, _note_ 1;
    account of his character, i. 329;
    memoir of, i. 330, _note_ 1;
    rents the Queen's Theatre from Vanbrugh, i. 330. i. 333. _note_ 1;
    his agreement with Rich about renting the Queen's Theatre, i. 331;
    Rich declines to execute it, i. 336;
    his success at the Queen's Theatre in 1706-7, ii. 1;
    his arrangement with his actors in 1706, ii. 9;
    control of the opera given to, ii. 48;
    his gain by the opera in 1708, ii. 55;
    has joint control of plays and operas (1709), ii. 69;
    forced to hand over the opera to Collier, ii. 102;
    forced to resume the opera, ii. 107;
    goes abroad on account of debt, ii. 108;
    his return to England, ii. 108;
    Cibber plays for his benefit, ii. 262.


  "Tatler," the, i. 38, i. 132, _note_ 1, ii. 75, ii. 93, ii. 229,
      _note_ 1, ii. 244, _note_ 1, ii. 244, _note_ 2, ii. 328, ii.
      362, ii. 363;
    its eulogium of Betterton, i. 118, _note_ 1;
    recommends Cave Underhill's benefit, i. 155;
    praises Nicolini, ii. 52;
    its influence on audiences, ii. 162.

  Taylor, John, his "Records of my Life" quoted, i. lxv., _note_ 1.

  ---- Joseph, ii. 334;
    superior to Hart, i. xxiv.;
    his chief characters, i. xxvi.;
    too old to go into Charles I.'s army, i. xxix.;
    arrested for acting, i. xxx.;
    his death, i. xxxi.

  "Tempest, The," as an opera, i. 94;
    revival of, ii. 227.

  Theatre, the, mentioned by Stow as recently erected, i. xlviii.

  Théâtre Français, ii. 221, _note_ 1, ii. 246, _note_ 1.

  Theatres, number of, before 1642, i. xxvi.;
    more reputable before 1642, i. xxvii.;
    less reputable after the Restoration, i. xxvii.;
    evil, artistically, of multiplying, i. 92.

  Theobald, Lewis, deposed from the Throne of Dulness, ii. 280.

  Thomson, James, his "Sophonisba," ii. 368.

  Tofts, Mrs. Katherine, i. 334, _note_ 1, ii. 51;
    Cibber's account of, ii. 54.

  "Tone" in speaking, i. 110, _note_ 1.

  Trinity College, Cambridge, Caius Cibber's statues on the Library,
      i. 59;
    particulars regarding these, i. 59, _note_ 1.


  Underhill, Cave, i. 98, i. 142, i. 327, ii. 307, ii. 346, ii. 347,
      ii. 361;
    his chief parts, i. 154-155;
    Cibber's account of, i. 154-156;
    his particular excellence in stupid characters, i. 154;
    the peculiarity of his facial expression, i. 155;
    his retirement and last appearances, i. 155, _note_ 2;
    his death, i. 156;
    Anthony Aston's description of, ii. 307;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 350.

  Underwood, John, originally a "chapel boy," i. xxxvii.

  Union of Companies in 1682, i. xxxii., i. 96;
    in 1708, i. 301;
    causes that led up to, ii. 45, ii. 48.


  Valentini (Valentini Urbani), singer, i. 325, ii. 51, ii. 55.

  Vanbrugh, Sir John, i. 269, i. 274, i. 284, ii. 107, ii. 110, ii.
      190, ii. 337, ii. 353, ii. 367;
    his opinion of Cibber's acting of Richard III., i. 139;
    his "Relapse," i. 216, i. 218;
    his high opinion of Cibber's acting, i. 216;
    his "Provoked Wife," i. 216-217;
    in gratitude to Sir Thomas Skipwith presents him with "The Relapse,"
      i. 217;
    his "Æsop," i. 216, i. 218;
    his great ability, i. 219;
    alters his "Provoked Wife," ii. 233;
    his share in the "Provoked Husband," i. 311, _note_ 1;
    builds the Queen's Theatre, i. 319;
    and Congreve manage the Queen's Theatre, i. 320, i. 325;
    his "Confederacy," i. 325;
    "The Cuckold in Conceit" (attributed to him), i. 326;
    his "Squire Trelooby," i. 326;
    his "Mistake," i. 327;
    sole proprietor of the Queen's Theatre, i. 326;
    lets it to Swiney, i. 330, i. 333, _note_ 1.

  Vaughan, Commissioner, ii. 278, _note_ 1.

  "Venice Preserved," ii. 224, _note_ 1.

  Verbruggen, John, i. 108, _note_ 2;
    mentioned, i. 157, i. 193;
    hangs about Downes, the prompter, i. 74, _note_ 1;
    note regarding, i. 157, _note_ 2;
    Anthony Aston's description of, ii. 311;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 354.

  ---- Mrs. See Mrs. Mountfort.

  Vere Street, Clare Market, theatre in, i. xxxii.

  Versatility, Cibber's views on, i. 209.

  Victor, Benjamin, ii. 259;
    a story told by him of Cibber's cowardice, i. 71, _note_ 1;
    his "History of the Theatres," i. 110, _note_ 1, i. 297,
      _note_ 1, ii. 259, _note_ 2, ii. 260, _note_ 1, ii. 261,
      _note_ 1, ii. 264, ii. 270;
    his "Letters" quoted, i. 58, _note_ 1;
    his "Life of Booth," i. 5, _note_ 1, ii. 240, _note_ 2.

  Villains, Cibber's views on, i. 131;
    Macready's views on, referred to, i. 135, _note_ 1;
    E. S. Willard mentioned as famous for representing, i. 135,
      _note_ 1;
    on the acting of, i. 222.

  Vizard-masks (women of the town), i. xxvii. See also Masks.

  Voltaire, his "Zaïre," ii. 248.


  Walker, Obadiah, his change of religion, ii. 134.

  Waller, Edmund, altered the last act of the "Maid's Tragedy," ii. 12.

  Walpole, Horace, and Cibber, ii. 284.

  Warburton, Bishop, mentioned, i. 106, _note_ 1, ii. 281.

  Ward, Professor A. W., his "English Dramatic Literature," i. 187,
      _note_ 1.

  Warwick, Earl of, his frolic with Pope and Cibber, ii. 278.

  Weaver, John, his "Loves of Mars and Venus," ii. 180, _note_ 2.

  Webster, Benjamin, i. 88, _note_ 3.

  "Wedding, The," i. xxv.

  "Weekly Packet" quoted, ii. 171, _note_ 1.

  Welsted, Leonard, satirically mentioned by Swift, i. 52, _note_ 2.

  Westminster Bridge, difficulties in getting permission to build,
      ii. 104.

  Whig, the Little (Lady Sunderland), i. 320.

  White's Club, Cibber a member, i. 29, _note_ 1.

  Whitefriars, i. xlix.

  "Whitehall Evening Post," Cibber sends verses to, regarding himself,
      i. 47.

  Whitelocke's "Memorials," ii. 209, _note_ 2.

  Wigs. See Perriwigs.

  Wildair, Sir Harry, i. 318.

  "Wild-Goose Chase, The," i. xxv.

  Wilks, Robert, i. 108, _note_ 2, i. 157, i. 270, i. 332, ii. 36,
      _note_ 1, ii. 167, ii. 176, ii. 300, ii. 352, ii. 361, ii. 363,
      ii. 368;
    memoirs published immediately after his death, i. 5;
    mistakes in his Hamlet, i. 100, _note_ 1;
    lives with Mrs. Rogers, i. 136;
    distressed by Pinkethman's "gagging," i. 153, _note_ 1;
    his impetuous temper, i. 190, i. 191, _note_ 1, i. 191, _note_ 2,
      ii. 127, ii. 150-155, ii. 171;
    his return to Drury Lane from Dublin, i. 235;
    his commencing as actor, i. 235;
    the contest between him and Powell for supremacy at Drury Lane,
      i. 237-243, i. 251-256;
    his wonderful memory, i. 240, i. 242;
    his diligence and care, i. 240, ii. 160;
    his good character, i. 243;
    made chief actor at Drury Lane, under Rich, i. 256;
    his energy in managing, i. 257;
    his disputes with Cibber, i. 258;
    his friendship with Mills, i. 259;
    as a prologue-speaker, i. 271;
    the occasion of his coming to London, i. 304;
    and Mrs. Oldfield playing in same pieces, i. 314;
    made Deputy-manager by Brett, ii. 56, _note_ 1;
    made joint-manager with Swiney and others in 1709, ii. 69;
    advertisement regarding his salary, 1709, ii. 78, _note_ 1;
    his characteristics as a manager, ii. 111, ii. 117;
    his patronage of his friends, ii. 121;
    his behaviour on Booth's claiming to become a manager, ii. 131,
      ii. 141;
    his favour for Mills, ii. 223;
    his connection with Steele during the dispute about Steele's Patent,
      ii. 193, _note_ 1;
    his love of acting, ii. 225;
    a genuine admirer of Cibber, ii. 226, _note_ 1;
    attacked by Dennis, ii. 226, _note_ 2;
    his excellence as Macduff, ii. 228;
    gives the part to Williams, ii. 229;
    but withdraws it, ii. 230;
    complains of acting so much, ii. 232;
    a scene between him and his partners, ii. 234-237;
    benefits arising from his enthusiasm for acting, ii. 237;
    and Booth, their opinion of each other, ii. 240;
    formed his style on Mountfort's, ii. 241;
    Cibber's comparison of Booth and Wilks, ii. 239-245;
    his Othello, ii. 244;
    death of, ii. 254;
    memoir of, ii. 254, _note_ 4;
    Patent granted to him, Cibber, and Booth, after Steele's death,
      ii. 257.

  Wilks, Mrs., inherits Wilks's share in the Patent, ii. 258;
    delegates her authority to John Ellys, ii. 258;
    her share sold to Fleetwood, ii. 261.

  Willard, E. S., mentioned, i. 135, _note_ 1.

  William of Orange, Cibber a supporter of, at the Revolution, i. 60;
    made king, i. 70;
    gives a Licence to Betterton, i. 192, _note_ 1.

  Williams, Charles, Wilks gives him the part of Macduff, ii. 229;
    but withdraws it, ii. 230;
    hissed in mistake for Cibber, i. 179, _note_ 1.

  ---- Joseph, mentioned, i. 157, i. 200;
    Bellchambers's memoir of, ii. 356.

  Wiltshire (actor), leaves the stage for the army, i. 84;
    killed in Flanders, i. 85.

  Winchester College, Cibber stands for election to, and is
      unsuccessful, i. 56;
    his brother, Lewis Cibber, is afterwards successful, i. 56;
    his father presents a statue to, i. 56;
    communication from the Head Master of, i. 56, _note_ 2.

  Wintershal (actor), belonged to the Salisbury Court Theatre, i. xxiv.

  Woffington, Margaret, her artistic feeling, i. 166, _note_ 1;
    an anecdote wrongly connected with her, ii. 266.

  "Woman's Wit," cast of, i. 264, _note_ 1.

  Women, their first introduction on the stage, i. xxxii., i. 89,
      _note_ 1, i. 90.

  Wren, Sir Christopher, the designer of Drury Lane Theatre, ii. 82.

  Wright, James, his "History of Rutlandshire," i. 8;
    quoted, i. 9, _note_ 1;
    his "Historia Histrionica," i. xix.

  Wykeham, William of, Cibber connected with by descent, i. 56.


  "Ximena," cast of, ii. 163, _note_ 1.


  York, Duke of (James II.), at Whitehall, i. 30.

  Young, Dr. Edward, his "Epistle to Mr. Pope" quoted, i. 54, _note_ 1.

  Young actors, dearth of, ii. 221.


                         END OF VOL. II.



[Illustration]



        CHISWICK PRESS:--C. WHITTINGHAM AND CO., TOOKS COURT,
                          CHANCERY LANE.



FOOTNOTES


[Footnote 1: That is, "The Beaux' Stratagem," by Farquhar, produced 8th
March, 1707. Cibber played the part of Gibbet.]


[Footnote 2: "Lady's Last Stake; or, the Wife's Resentment," a comedy by
Cibber, produced 13th December, 1707.

  LORD WRONGLOVE           Mr. Wilks.
  SIR GEORGE BRILLANT      Mr. Cibber.
  SIR FRIENDLY MORAL       Mr. Keene.
  LADY WRONGLOVE           Mrs. Barry.
  LADY GENTLE              Mrs. Rogers.
  MRS. CONQUEST            Mrs. Oldfield.
  MISS NOTABLE             Mrs. Cross.]


[Footnote 3: "The Double Gallant; or, the Sick Lady's Cure," a comedy by
Cibber, produced 1st November, 1707.

  SIR SOLOMON SADLIFE         Mr. Johnson.
  CLERIMONT                   Mr. Booth.
  CARELESS                    Mr. Wilks.
  ATALL                       Mr. Cibber.
  CAPTAIN STRUT               Mr. Bowen.
  SIR SQUABBLE SPLITHAIR      Mr. Norris.
  SAUNTER                     Mr. Pack.
  OLD MR. WILFUL              Mr. Bullock.
  SIR HARRY ATALL             Mr. Cross.
  SUPPLE                      Mr. Fairbank.
  LADY DAINTY                 Mrs. Oldfield.
  LADY SADLIFE                Mrs. Crosse.
  CLARINDA                    Mrs. Rogers.
  SYLVIA                      Mrs. Bradshaw.
  WISHWELL                    Mrs. Saunders.
  SITUP                       Mrs. Brown.]


[Footnote 4: The plays from which Cibber compiled "The Double Gallant"
are "Love at a Venture," "The Lady's Visiting Day," and "The Reformed
Wife" (Genest, ii. 389).]


[Footnote 5: Eighteenpence was for many years the recognized price of
plays when published.]


[Footnote 6: These were played on 14th January, 21st January, and 4th
February, 1707, in the order Cibber gives them. The alteration of
Dryden's plays was done by Cibber, and was called "Marriage à la Mode;
or, the Comical Lovers."

  CELADON     Mr. Cibber.
  PALAMEDE    Mr. Wilks.
  RHODOPHIL   Mr. Booth.
  MELANTHA    Mrs. Bracegirdle.
  FLORIMEL    Mrs. Oldfield.
  DORALICE    Mrs. Porter.

I have not seen a copy of this, so take the cast from Genest.]


[Footnote 7: An elephant was introduced into the pantomime of "Harlequin
and Padmanaba," at Covent Garden, 26th December, 1811. Genest points out
that one had appeared at Smock Alley Theatre, Dublin, in 1771-2.]


[Footnote 8: In Mr. Percy Fitzgerald's "New History of the English
Stage" (ii. 436) he gives an interesting memorandum by the Hon. Sir
Spencer Ponsonby-Fane regarding this point. It begins: "That the
Chamberlain's authority proceeded from the Sovereign alone is clear,
from the fact that no Act of Parliament, previous to the 10 Geo. II., c.
28 (passed in 1737), alludes to his licensing powers, though he was
constantly exercising them."]


[Footnote 9: Langbaine, in his "Account of the English Dramatick Poets,"
1691, says (p. 212): "_Maids Tragedy_, a Play which has always been
acted with great Applause at the King's Theatre; and which had still
continu'd on the English Stage, had not King _Charles_ the _Second_],
for some particular Reasons forbid its further Appearance during his
Reign. It has since been reviv'd by Mr. _Waller_, the last Act having
been wholly alter'd to please the Court."

I think there can be little doubt that the last reason suggested by
Cibber was the real cause of the prohibition.]


[Footnote 10: Produced at Dorset Garden, 1681.]


[Footnote 11: Produced at Dorset Garden, 1690. See _ante_, vol. i. p.
187. I presume that the lines alluded to by Cibber are:--

  "Never content with what you had before,
  But true to change, and Englishmen all o'er."]


[Footnote 12: In the "Biographia Dramatica" (iii. 24) the following note
appears: "Mary Queen of Scotland. A play under this title was
advertised, among others, as sold by Wellington, in St. Paul's
Churchyard, in 1703." But the work Cibber refers to is "The Island
Queens; or, the Death of Mary Queen of Scots," a tragedy by John Banks,
printed in 1684, but not produced till 6th March, 1704, when it was
played at Drury Lane as "The Albion Queens."]


[Footnote 13: "The Unhappy Favourite; or, the Earl of Essex," produced
at the Theatre Royal, 1682.]


[Footnote 14: "Virtue Betrayed; or, Anna Bullen," first acted at Dorset
Garden, 1682.]


[Footnote 15: Bellchambers notes here that this order was superfluous,
because the prohibition was inserted in the Patents given to Davenant
and Killigrew. But, whether superfluous or not, I find from the Records
of the Lord Chamberlain's Office that this order was frequently made. On
16th April, 1695, an edict was issued forbidding actors to desert from
Betterton's company; on 25th July, 1695, desertions from either company
were forbidden; and this latter order was reiterated on 27th May, 1697.]


[Footnote 16: I do not know whether it is merely a coincidence, but it
is curious that, after Betterton got his License (on 25th March, 1695),
an edict was issued that no one was to desert from his company to that
of the Theatre Royal; while a general order against any desertion from
either company to the other was not issued for more than three months
after the first edict. The dates, as given in the Records of the Lord
Chamberlain's Office, are 16th April and 25th July respectively. If this
were intentional, it would form a curious commentary on Cibber's
statement.]


[Footnote 17: Genest supposes that this incident occurred about June,
1704. But the Lord Chamberlain's Records of that time contain no note of
it, and Cibber's language scarcely bears the interpretation that three
years elapsed between Powell's leaving Drury Lane and returning to it,
as was the case at that time; for he was at Lincoln's Inn Fields for
three seasons, 1702 to 1704. I find, however, a warrant, dated 14th
November, 1705, to apprehend Powell for refusing to act his part at the
Haymarket, so that the audience had to be dismissed, and for trying to
raise a mutiny in the company. He was ordered to be confined in the
Porter's Lodge until further notice. On the 24th November Rich was
informed that Powell had deserted the Haymarket, and was warned not to
engage him. Now these desertions must have followed each other pretty
closely, for he was at Drury Lane in the beginning of 1705; at the
Haymarket in April of the same year; and about six months later had
deserted the latter. The sequel to this difficulty seems to be the
silencing of Rich for receiving Powell, on 5th March in the fifth year
of Queen Anne's reign, that is, 1707. Unless the transcriber of the
Records has made a mistake in the year, Powell was thus suspended for
about eighteen months. It will be noticed that Cibber does not say that
he was acting the night after his release, but merely that he was behind
the scenes.]


[Footnote 18: Among the Lord Chamberlain's Records is a copy of a decree
suspending all performances at Drury Lane because Powell had been
allowed to play. This is dated 3rd May, 1698. His offence was that he
had drawn his sword on Colonel Stanhope and young Davenant. The
suspension was removed the following day; but on the 19th of the same
month Powell was forbidden to be received at either Drury Lane or Dorset
Garden.]


[Footnote 19: A warrant was issued to apprehend Dogget and take him to
the Knight Marshall's Prison, on 23rd November, 1697, his offence being
desertion of the company of Drury Lane and Dorset Garden. The Records
contain no note as to the termination of the matter; but this is, beyond
doubt, the occasion referred to by Cibber.]


[Footnote 20: Horace, _Epis._, i. 6, 68.]


[Footnote 21: At Drury Lane, 14th April, 1713.]


[Footnote 22: This is a pretty way of putting what Johnson, in his Life
of Addison, afterwards stated in the well-known words: "The Whigs
applauded every line in which Liberty was mentioned, as a satire on the
Tories; and the Tories echoed every clap to show that the satire was
unfelt." In the next paragraph Johnson describes the play as "supported
by the emulation of factious praise."]


[Footnote 23: I confess I do not know Cibber's authority for this
statement.]


[Footnote 24: "The Laureat" abuses Cibber for this sentence, declaring
that he evidently considered "Sophocles" to be the name of a tragedy.
But Cibber's method of expression, though curious, does not justify this
attack.]


[Footnote 25: "Caviare to the general."--"Hamlet," act ii. sc. 2.]


[Footnote 26: Malone supposes that Skipwith acquired his shares from the
Killigrew family, but in the indenture by which he transferred his
interest to Brett, it seems as if he had acquired part of it from
Alexander Davenant, and the remainder by buying up shares of the
original Adventurers. The indenture will be found at length in Mr. Percy
Fitzgerald's "New History of the English Stage," i. 252. Skipwith is
described in the "Biog. Dram." (i. 487) as "a weak, vain, conceited
coxcomb." The proportion in which the shares were divided among the
various holders is shown by the "Opinion" of Northey and Raymond, in
1711, to have been this: Three-twentieths belonged to Charles Killigrew.
The remainder was divided into tenths, of which two-tenths belonged to
Rich; the other eight parts were owned by the Mortgagees or Adventurers.
If Cibber's supposition is correct, two of these parts belonged to
Shipwith.]


[Footnote 27: It is dated 6th October, 1707.]


[Footnote 28: As noted vol. i. p. 213, January, 1695, Old Style; that
is, January, 1696.]


[Footnote 29: Davies ("Dram. Misc.," iii. 84) says: "The heads of the
English actors were, for a long time, covered with large full-bottomed
perriwigs, a fashion introduced in the reign of Charles II., which was
not entirely disused in public till about the year 1720. Addison,
Congreve, and Steele, met at Button's coffee-house, in large, flowing,
flaxen wigs; Booth, Wilks, and Cibber, when full-dressed, wore the same.
Till within these twenty-five years, our Tamerlanes and Catos had as
much hair on their heads as our judges on the bench.... I have been
told, that he [Booth] and Wilks bestowed forty guineas each on the
exorbitant thatching of their heads."]


[Footnote 30: "The Laureat," p. 66, relates with great acrimony an
anecdote of Colonel Brett's reproving Cibber harshly for his treatment
of an author who had submitted a play to him. Cibber is said to have
opened the author's M.S., and, having read two lines only, to have
returned it to him saying, "Sir, it will not do." Going to Button's, he
related his exploit with great glee, but was rebuked in the strongest
terms by Colonel Brett, who is said to have put him to shame before the
whole company. This is related as having occurred many years after the
time Cibber now writes of; the suggestion being that Brett did not
consider Cibber as a friend.]


[Footnote 31: This was the Countess of Macclesfield, the supposed mother
of Richard Savage, who had a large fortune in her own right, of which
she was not deprived on her divorce from the Earl of Macclesfield.
Shortly after her divorce, probably about 1698, she married Brett. She
lived to be eighty, or over it, dying 11th October, 1753.]


[Footnote 32: A comedy by Mountfort the actor, originally played at the
Theatre Royal, 1691. The part of Young Reveller was then taken by the
author, and we have no record of Cibber's playing it before 1708; but
from this anecdote he must have done so ten years earlier.]


[Footnote 33: In Boswell's Life of Johnson (i. 174) there is a note by
Boswell himself:--

"Miss Mason, after having forfeited the title of Lady Macclesfield by
divorce, was married to Colonel Brett, and, it is said, was well known
in all the polite circles. Colley Cibber, I am informed, had so high an
opinion of her taste and judgement as to genteel life, and manners, that
he submitted every scene of his _Careless Husband_ to Mrs. Brett's
revisal and correction. Colonel Brett was reported to be too free in his
gallantry with his Lady's maid. Mrs. Brett came into a room one day in
her own house, and found the Colonel and her maid both fast asleep in
two chairs. She tied a white handkerchief round her husband's neck,
which was a sufficient proof that she had discovered his intrigue; but
she never at any time took notice of it to him. This incident, as I am
told, gave occasion to the well-wrought scene of Sir Charles and Lady
Easy and Edging."]


[Footnote 34: See note, vol. i. p. 301.]


[Footnote 35: 1707. See note on page 3 of this vol.]


[Footnote 36: The edict which ordered this division of plays and operas
is dated 31st December, 1707. Each theatre is ordered to confine itself
to its own sphere on pain of being silenced; and no other theatre is
permitted to be built. A copy of the edict is given by Mr. Percy
Fitzgerald ("New History," i. 258), but it is not a _verbatim_ copy of
the original in the Lord Chamberlain's Office, though it contains all
that is of importance in it.]


[Footnote 37: At the Union, 1707-8, the Lord Chamberlain took measures
to assert his supremacy. Under date 6th January, 1708, he orders that no
actors are to be engaged at Drury-Lane who are not Her Majesty's
servants, and he therefore directs the managers to send a list of all
actors to be sworn in.]


[Footnote 38: Bellchambers notes that Mrs. Tofts "sang in English, while
her associates responded in Italian."]


[Footnote 39: The whole passage regarding Nicolini is:--

"I went on _Friday_ last to the Opera, and was surprised to find a thin
House at so noble an Entertainment, till I heard that the Tumbler was
not to make his Appearance that Night. For my own Part, I was fully
satisfied with the Sight of an Actor, who, by the Grace and Propriety of
his Action and Gesture, does Honour to an human Figure, as much as the
other vilifies and degrades it. Every one will easily imagine I mean
Signior _Nicolini_, who sets off the Character he bears in an Opera by
his Action, as much as he does the Words of it by his Voice. Every Limb,
and every Finger, contributes to the Part he acts, insomuch that a deaf
Man might go along with him in the Sense of it. There is scarce a
beautiful Posture in an old Statue which he does not plant himself in,
as the different Circumstances of the Story give Occasion for it. He
performs the most ordinary Action in a Manner suitable to the Greatness
of his Character, and shows the Prince even in the giving of a Letter,
or the dispatching of a Message. Our best Actors are somewhat at a Loss
to support themselves with proper Gesture, as they move from any
considerable Distance to the Front of the Stage; but I have seen the
Person of whom I am now speaking, enter alone at the remotest Part of
it, and advance from it with such Greatness of Air and Mien, as seemed
to fill the Stage, and at the same Time commanded the Attention of the
Audience with the Majesty of his Appearance."--"Tatler," No. 115,
January 3rd, 1710.]


[Footnote 40: An excellent account of Mrs. Tofts is given by Mr. Henry
Morley in a note on page 38 of his valuable edition of the "Spectator."
She was the daughter of one of Bishop Burnet's household, and had great
natural gifts. In 1709 she was obliged to quit the stage, her mental
faculties having failed; but she afterwards recovered, and married Mr.
Joseph Smith, a noted art patron, who was appointed English Consul at
Venice. Her intellect again became disordered, and she died about the
year 1760.]


[Footnote 41: Cibber's most notorious blunder in language was made in
this sentence. In his first edition he wrote "was then _but_ an Adept in
it," completely reversing the meaning of the word "Adept." Fielding
("Champion," 22nd April, 1740) declares Cibber to be a most absolute
Master of English, "for surely he must be absolute Master of that whose
Laws he can trample under Feet, and which he can use as he pleases. This
Power he hath exerted, of which I shall give a _barbarous_ Instance in
the Case of the poor Word _Adept_.... This Word our great _Master_ hath
tortured and wrested to signify a _Tyro_ or _Novice_, being directly
contrary to the Sense in which it hath been hitherto used." It is of
course conceivable that the error was a printer's error not corrected in
reading the proof.]


[Footnote 42: Nicolini was the stage name of the Cavalier Nicolo
Grimaldi. Dr. Burney says: "This great singer, and still greater actor,
was a Neapolitan; his voice was at first a _soprano_, but afterwards
descended into a fine _contralto_." He first appeared, about 1694, in
Rome, and paid his first visit to England in 1708. Valentini Urbani was
a _castrato_, his voice was not so strong as Nicolini's, but his action
was so excellent that his vocal defects were not noticed.--"General
History of Music," 1789, iv. 207, 205.]


[Footnote 43: Colonel Brett, by an indenture dated 31st March, 1708,
made Wilks, Estcourt, and Cibber, his deputies in the management of the
theatre. Genest (ii. 405) says this was probably "31st March, 1708, Old
Style," by which I suppose he means March, 1709. But I cannot see why he
should think this. Brett entered into management in January, 1708, and
was probably out of it by March, 1709. It may be that Genest supposes
that this indenture marks the end of Brett's connection with the
theatre; whereas it was probably one of his first actions. It will be
remembered that he stated his intention of benefitting Cibber by taking
the Patent (see _ante_, p. 42). A copy of the indenture is given by Mr.
Percy Fitzgerald ("New History," ii. 443). It is dated 31st March in the
seventh year of Queen Anne's reign, that is, 1708.]


[Footnote 44: On p. 328 of vol. i. Cibber says that Rich (about 1705)
had led the Adventurers "a Chace in Chancery several years." From the
petition presented in 1709 against the order silencing Rich, we learn
that the principal Adventurers were: Lord Guilford, Lord John Harvey,
Dame Alice Brownlow, Mrs. Shadwell, Sir Edward Smith, Bart., Sir Thomas
Skipwith, Bart., George Sayer, Charles Killegrew, Christopher Rich,
Charles Davenant, John Metcalf, Thomas Goodall, Ashburnham Toll,
Ashburnham Frowd, William East, Richard Middlemore, Robert Gower, and
William Collier. It is curious that everyone who has reproduced this
list has, as far as I know, mistaken the name "Frowd," calling it
"Trowd." The earliest reproduction of the list of names which I know is
in the "Dramatic Censor," 1811, col. III.]


[Footnote 45: I do not know when Sir Thomas Skipwith died; but in 1709
the petition of the Adventurers, &c., is signed by, among others, Sir
Thomas Skipwith.]


[Footnote 46: This anecdote shows that Rich had some sort of Committee
of Shareholders to aid (or hinder) him. Subsequent experience has shown,
as witness the Drury Lane Committee at the beginning of this century,
how disastrous such form of management is.]

[Footnote 47: Dr. Doran ("Their Majesties' Servants," 1888 edition, i.
103) gives the following account of Goodman's connection with this
plot:--

"King James having saved Cardell's neck, Goodman, out of pure gratitude,
perhaps, became a Tory, and something more, when William sat in the seat
of his father-in-law. After Queen Mary's death, Scum was in the Fenwick
and Charnock plot to kill the King. When the plot was discovered, Scum
was ready to peach. As Fenwick's life was thought by his friends to be
safe if Goodman could be bought off and got out of the way, the rogue
was looked for, at the _Fleece_, in Covent Garden, famous for homicides,
and at the robbers' and the revellers' den, the _Dog_, in Drury Lane.
Fenwick's agent, O'Bryan, erst soldier and highwayman, now a Jacobite
agent, found Scum at the _Dog_, and would then and there have cut his
throat, had not Scum consented to the pleasant alternative of accepting
£500 a year, and a residence abroad.... Scum suddenly disappeared, and
Lord Manchester, our Ambassador in Paris, inquired after him in vain. It
is impossible to say whether the rogue died by an avenging hand, or
starvation."]


[Footnote 48: This anecdote is valuable as establishing the identity of
_Captain_ Griffin with the Griffin who retired (temporarily) from the
stage about 1688. See note on page 83 of vol. i.]


[Footnote 49: When Betterton and his associates left the Theatre Royal
and opened Lincoln's Inn Fields Theatre. See Chapter VI.]


[Footnote 50: Indulto--In Spain, a duty, tax, or custom, paid to the
King for all goods imported.]


[Footnote 51: In the "Answer to Steele's State of the Case," 1720
(Nichols's ed. p. 527), it is said: "After Mr. Rich was again restored
to the management of the Play-house, he made an order to stop a certain
proportion of the clear profits of every Benefit-play without exception;
which being done, and reaching the chief Players as well as the
underlings, zealous application was made to the Lord Chamberlain, to
oblige Mr. Rich to return the money stopped to each particular. The
dispute lasted some time, and Mr. Rich, not giving full satisfaction
upon that head, was silenced; during the time of which silence, the
chief Players, either by a new License, or by some former (which I
cannot absolutely determine, my Memoirs being not at this time by me)
set up for themselves, and got into the possession of the Play-house in
Drury-lane."]


[Footnote 52: See _ante_, vol. i. p. 161.]


[Footnote 53: This warning is dated 30th April, 1709, and is a very
peremptory document. Rich's treasurer is ordered to pay the actors the
full receipts of their benefits, under deduction only of £40 for the
charges of the house. See the Order for Silence quoted _post_, page 73.]


[Footnote 54: Mrs. Bracegirdle retired in February, 1707. Mrs. Barry
played up to the end of the season, 1708, that is, up to June, 1708. She
does not seem to have been engaged in 1708-9, but she was a member of
the Haymarket Company in 1709-10.]


[Footnote 55: From Chapter XVI. it will be seen that Wilks's unfair
partiality for John Mills, whom he forced into prominence at Booth's
expense, was the leading reason for Booth's remaining with Rich.]


[Footnote 56: The Order for Silence has never, I believe, been quoted. I
therefore give it in full. The theatre closed on the 4th of June, 1709,
which was Saturday, and did not open again under Rich's management, the
Order for Silence being issued on the next Monday.

"_Play House in Covent Garden silenc'd._ Whereas by an Order dated the
30^{th} day of Apr^{ll} last upon the peti{c~o}n of sev^{ll} Players &c:
I did then direct and require you to pay to the respective Comedians who
had benfit plays last winter the full receip^{ts} of such plays
deducting only from each the sume of 40l. for the Charges of the House
pursuant to the Articles made w^{th} y^m at y^e theatre in the
Haymarkett and w^{ch} were promis^d to be made good upon their removall
to the Theatre in Covent Garden.

"And whereas I am inform^d y^t in Contempt of the said Ord^r y^u still
refuse to pay and detain from the s^d Comedians y^e profits of y^e s^d
benefit plays I do therefore for the s^d Contempt hereby silence you
from further acting & require you not to perform any Plays or other
Theatricall entertainm^{ts} till further Ord^r; And all her Maj^{ts}
Sworn Comedians are hereby forbid to act any Plays at y^e Theatre in
Covent Gard^n or else where w^{th}out my leave as they shall answer the
contrary at their perill And &c: Given &c: this 6^{th} day of June 1709
in the Eighth Year of her Majesty's Reign.

  "(Signed) KENT.

  "To the Manager or Manag^{rs}          }
  of her Maj^{ts} Company of Comedi^{ns} }
  for their Patentees."                  }

  I have copied this from the Lord Chamberlain's Records.]


[Footnote 57:

  "_Honoured Sir_,
   _July_ 1. 1710.

"Finding by divers of your late Papers, that you are a Friend to the
Profession of which I was many Years an unworthy Member, I the rather
make bold to crave your Advice, touching a Proposal that has been lately
made me of coming into Business, and the Sub-Administration of Stage
Affairs. I have, from my Youth, been bred up behind the Curtain, and
been a Prompter from the Time of the Restoration. I have seen many
Changes, as well of Scenes as of Actors, and have known Men within my
Remembrance arrive to the highest Dignities of the Theatre, who made
their Entrance in the Quality of Mutes, Joynt-stools, Flower-pots, and
Tapestry Hangings. It cannot be unknown to the Nobility and Gentry, That
a Gentleman of the Inns of Court, and a deep Intriguer, had some Time
since worked himself into the sole Management and Direction of the
Theatre. Nor is it less notorious, That his restless Ambition, and
subtle Machinations, did manifestly tend to the Extirpation of the good
old _British_ Actors, and the Introduction of foreign Pretenders; such
as Harlequins, _French_ Dancers, and _Roman_ Singers; which, tho' they
impoverish'd the Proprietors, and imposed on the Audience, were for some
Time tolerated, by Reason of his dextrous Insinuations, which prevailed
upon a few deluded Women, especially the Vizard Masks, to believe, that
the Stage was in Danger. But his Schemes were soon exposed, and the
Great Ones that supported him withdrawing their Favour, he made his
_Exit_, and remained for a Season in Obscurity. During this Retreat the
Machiavilian was not idle, but secretly fomented Divisions, and wrought
over to his Side some of the inferior Actors, reserving a Trap Door to
himself, to which only he had a Key. This Entrance secured, this cunning
Person, to compleat his Company, bethought himself of calling in the
most eminent of Strollers from all Parts of the Kingdom. I have seen
them all ranged together behind the Scenes; but they are many of them
Persons that never trod the Stage before, and so very aukward and
ungainly, that it is impossible to believe the Audience will bear them.
He was looking over his Catalogue of Plays, and indeed picked up a good
tolerable Set of grave Faces for Counsellors, to appear in the famous
Scene of _Venice Preserved_, when the Danger is over; but they being but
meer Outsides, and the Actors having a great Mind to play the _Tempest_,
there is not a Man of them when he is to perform any Thing above Dumb
Show is capable of acting with a good Grace so much as the Part of
_Trincalo_. However, the Master persists in his Design, and is fitting
up the old Storm; but I am afraid he will not be able to procure able
Sailors or experienced Officers for Love or Money.

"Besides all this, when he comes to cast the Parts there is so great a
Confusion amongst them for Want of proper Actors, that for my Part I am
wholly discouraged. The Play with which they design to open is, _The
Duke and no Duke_; and they are so put to it, That the master himself is
to act the Conjurer, and they have no one for the General but honest
_George Powell_.

"Now, Sir, they being so much at a Loss for the _Dramatis Personæ_,
_viz._ the Persons to enact, and the whole Frame of the House being
designed to be altered, I desire your Opinion, whether you think it
advisable for me to undertake to prompt 'em: For tho' I can clash Swords
when they represent a Battel, and have yet Lungs enough to huzza their
Victories, I question, if I should prompt 'em right, whether they would
act accordingly.--I am

  Your Honour's most humble Servant,
  "J. DOWNES.

"_P.S._ Sir, Since I writ this, I am credibly informed, That they design
a New House in _Lincoln's-Inn-fields_, near the Popish Chapel, to be
ready by _Michaelmas_ next; which indeed is but repairing an Old one
that has already failed. You know the honest Man who kept the Office is
gone already."]


[Footnote 58: The chief actor who remained with Rich was Booth. Among
the others were Powell, Bickerstaffe, Pack, Keene, Francis Leigh,
Norris, Mrs. Bignell, Mrs. Moor, Mrs. Bradshaw, and Mrs. Knight.]


[Footnote 59: An interesting advertisement was published on Rich's
behalf in July, 1709, which gives curious particulars regarding the
actors' salaries. I quote it from "Edwin's Eccentricities," i. 219-224,
without altering the figures, which, as regards the pence, are rather
eccentric:--

"ADVERTISEMENT CONCERNING THE POOR ACTORS, WHO, UNDER PRETENCE OF HARD
USAGE FROM THE PATENTEES, ARE ABOUT TO DESERT THEIR SERVICE.

"Some persons having industriously spread about amongst the Quality and
others, what small allowances the chief Actors have had this last Winter
from the Patentees of Drury Lane Play-house, as if they had received no
more than so many poor palatines; it was thought necessary to print the
following Account.

"The whole company began to act on the 12th of October, 1708, and left
off on the 26th of the same month, by reason of Prince George's illness
and death; and began again the 14th of December following, and left off
upon the Lord Chamberlain's order, on the 4th of June last, 1709. So
acted, during that time, in all 135 days, which is 22 weeks and three
days, accounting six acting days to a week.

                           In that time                      £    s.  d.

  To Mr. Wilkes, by salary, for acting, and taking
    care of the rehearsals; paid                            168   6   8

  By his Benefit play;                                       90  14   9

                                           Total            259   1   5
                                                           -------------
  To Mr. Betterton by salary, for acting, 4_l._ a week
    for himself, and 1_l._ week for his wife, although
    she does not act; paid                                  112  10   0

  By a benefit play at common prices, besides what
    he got by high prices, and Guineas; paid                 76   4   5
                                                           -------------
                                                            188  14   5
                                                           -------------
  To Mr. Eastcourt, at 5_l._ a week salary; paid            112  10   0

  By a benefit play; paid                                    51   8   6
                                                           -------------
                                                            163  18   6
                                                           -------------
  To Mr. Cibber, at 5_l._ a week salary; paid               111  10   0

  By a benefit play; paid                                    51   0  10
                                                           -------------
                                                            162  10  10
                                                           -------------

  To Mr. Mills, at 4_l._ a week for himself, and 1_l._
    a week for his wife, for little or nothing              112  10   0

  By a benefit play paid to him (not including therein
    what she got by a benefit play)                          58   1   4
                                                           -------------
                                                            170  11   4
                                                           -------------

  To Mrs. Oldfield, at 4_l._ a week salary, which for 14
    weeks and one day; she leaving off acting presently
    after her benefit (viz.) on the 17th of March last,
    1708, though the benefit was intended for her whole
    nine months acting, and she refused to assist others
    in their benefits; her salary for these 14 weeks and
    one day came to, and she was paid,                       56  13   4

  In January she required, and was paid ten guineas, to
    wear on the stage in some plays, during the whole
    season, a mantua petticoat that was given her for
    the stage, and though she left off three months
    before she should, yet she hath not returned any
    part of the ten guineas                                  10  15   0

  And she had for wearing in some plays a suit of
    boys cloaths on the stage; paid                           2  10   9

  By a benefit play; paid                                    62   7   8
                                                           -------------
                                                            132   6   7
                                                           -------------
                                       Certainties in all  1077   3   8
                                                           -------------

"Besides which certain sums above-mentioned, the same actors got by their
benefit plays, as follows:

                                                             £    s.  d.

  Note, that Mr. Betterton having had 76_l._ 4_s._ 5_d._
    as above mentioned, for two-thirds of the profits by
    a benefit play, reckoning his tickets for the boxes
    at 5_s._ a piece, the pit at 3_s._ the first gallery
    at 2_s._ and the upper gallery at 1_s._----But the
    boxes, pit, and stage, laid together on his day, and
    no person admitted but by his tickets, the lowest
    at half a guinea a ticket; nay he had much more, for
    one lady gave him ten guineas, some five guineas,
    some two guineas, and most one guinea, supposing that
    he designed not to act any more, and he delivered
    tickets out for more persons, than the boxes, pit,
    and stage could hold; it is thought he cleared at
    least 450_l._ over and besides the 76_l._ 4_s._ 5_d._   450   0   0

  'Tis thought Mr. Estcourt cleared 200_l._ besides the
    said 51_l._ 8_s._ 6_d._                                 200   0   0

  That Mr. Wilkes cleared by Guineas, as it is thought,
    about 40_l._ besides the said 90_l._ 14_s._ 9_d._        40   0   0

  That Mr. Cibber got by Guineas, as it is thought,
    about 50_l._ besides the said 51_l._ 0_s._ 10_d._        50   0   0

  That Mr. Mills got by guineas about 20_l._ as it is
    thought, besides the said 58_l._ 1_s._ 4_d._             20   0   0

  That Mrs. Oldfield, it is thought, got 120_l._ by
    guineas over and above the said 62_l._ 7_s._ 8_d._      120   0   0
                                                           -------------
                                                   In all   880   0   0
                                                           -------------

"So that these six comedians, who are the unsatisfied people, have
between the 12th of October and the 4th of June last, cleared in all the
following sums:

                                                             £   s.   d.

  Acted 100 times, Mr. Wilkes certain                       259   1   5
                       and more by computation               40   0   0
                                                           -------------
                                                     Both   299   1   5
                                                           -------------
  Acted 16 times, Mr. Betterton certain                     188  14   5
                       and more by computation              450   0   0
                                                           -------------
                                                            638  14   5
                                                           -------------
  Acted 52 times, Mr. Estcourt certain                      163  18   6
                       and more by computation              200   0   0
                                                           -------------
                                                            363  18   6
                                                           -------------
  Acted 71 times, Mr. Cibber certain                        162  10  10
                       and more by computation               50   0   0
                                                           -------------
                                                            212  10  10
                                                           -------------
  Acted -- times, Mr. Mills certain                         170  11   4
                       and more by computation               20   0   0
                                                           -------------
                                                            190  11   4
                                                           -------------
  Acted 39 times, Mrs. Oldfield certain                     132   6   7
                       and more by computation              120   0   3
                                                           -------------
                                                            252   6   7
                                                           -------------
                                                   In all  1957   3   2
                                                           -------------

"Had not acting been forbid seven weeks on the occasion of Prince George's
death, and my Lord Chamberlain forbad acting about five weeks before the
tenth of July instant; each of these actors would have had twelve weeks
salary more than is above-mentioned.

"As to the certainties expressed in this paper, to be paid to the six
Actors, the same are positively true: and as to the sums they got over
and above such certainties, I believe the same to be true, according to
the best of my computation.

"Witness my hand, who am Receiver and Treasurer at the Theatre Royal,
Drury Lane,

  "July 8th, 1709.
            "ZACHARY BAGGS."]


[Footnote 60: It was opened 18th December, 1714.]


[Footnote 61: The Lord Chamberlain's Records enable an exact account to
be given of the transactions which led to the formation of this
Haymarket Company. After Rich was silenced, his actors petitioned the
Lord Chamberlain on three separate occasions, namely, 10th June, 20th
June, and 5th July, 1709, and in answer to their petitions, the
Haymarket, which was then devoted solely to Opera, was permitted to be
used for Plays also. In an Answer to the actors' petitions, the Lord
Chamberlain permits the manager of the Haymarket to engage such of them
as he wished, and to act Plays four times a week, the other days being
devoted to Operas. This License is dated 8th July, 1709. This is, of
course, only a formal sanction of the private arrangement mentioned by
Cibber _ante_ p. 69; and was resented by Booth and others who were in
Rich's favour. They therefore petitioned the Queen direct, in despite of
the Lord Chamberlain (see "Dramatic Censor," 1811, col. 112; Genest, ii.
426; Mr. Fitzgerald's "New History," i. 273), but no result followed,
until Collier's advent, as is related further on.]


[Footnote 62: The description of the shape of the stage which follows is
interesting and valuable. In early times the stage was a platform
surrounded by the audience, not, as now, a picture framed by the
proscenium. This is evident, not only from descriptive allusions, but
from the two drawings which have come down to us of the interior of
pre-Restoration theatres--De Witt's drawing of the Swan Theatre in 1596,
reproduced in Herr Gaedertz's "Zur Kenntniss der altenglischen Bühne"
(Bremen, 1888), and the well-known print of the Red Bull Theatre during
the Commonwealth, which forms the frontispiece to Kirkman's "The Wits,
or Sport upon Sport" (1672). In both of them the pit entirely surrounds
the stage on three sides, while the fourth side also contains spectators
in boxes placed above the entrance-doors. By gradual modifications the
shape of the stage has changed, till now the audience is confined to one
side. The doors used for entrances and exits, to which Cibber alludes,
have disappeared comparatively recently. They may be seen, for instance,
in Cruikshank's plates to Dickens's "Grimaldi."]


[Footnote 63: The Haymarket opened on 15th September, 1709, and there
was no rival theatre till 23rd November, when Drury Lane opened; but
from this latter date till the end of the season both theatres were
open.]


[Footnote 64: Bellchambers has here the following note:--"The monarch
alluded to, I suppose, was Victor Amadeus, King of Sardinia. Carlo
Broschi, better known by the name of Farinelli, was born in the dukedom
of Modena, in 1705, and suffered emasculation, from an accident, when
young. The Spanish king Ferdinand created him a knight of Calatrava,
honoured him with his friendship, and added to his fortune. He returned
to Italy on his patron's death, and died in 1782."]


[Footnote 65: Francesca Cuzzoni and Faustina Bordoni Hasse, whose famous
rivalry in 1726 and 1727 is here referred to, were singers of remarkable
powers. Cuzzoni's voice was a _soprano_, her rival's a _mezzo-soprano_,
and while the latter excelled in brilliant execution, the former was
supreme in pathetic expression. Dr. Burney ("History of Music," iv. 319)
quotes from M. Quantz the statement that so keen was their supporters'
party spirit, that when one party began to applaud their favourite, the
other party hissed!]


[Footnote 66: Horace, _Epod._ xvi. 2.]


[Footnote 67: See note on page 87.]


[Footnote 68: The trial opened on 27th February, 1710, and lasted for
more than three weeks. The political excitement it caused must have
done great harm to theatricals. Shadwell, in the Preface to "The Fair
Quaker of Deal," mentioned _post_, page 95, says it was a success,
"Notwithstanding the trial in Westminster-Hall, and the rehearsal of
the new opera."]


[Footnote 69: In the British Museum will be found a copy of the report
by the Attorney-General and Solicitor-General, who were ordered by Queen
Anne to inquire into this business. Rich declared that Collier broke
into the theatre with an armed mob of soldiers, &c., but Collier denied
the soldiers, though he admitted the breaking in. He gave as his
authority for taking possession a letter signed by Sir James Stanley,
dated 19th November, 1709, by which the Queen gave him authority to act,
and required him not to allow Rich to have any concern in the theatre.
His authority was appointed to run from 23rd November, 1709.]


[Footnote 70: "Tatler," No. 99, 26th November, 1709: "_Divito_ [Rich]
was too modest to know when to resign it, till he had the Opinion and
Sentence of the Law for his Removal.... The lawful Ruler [of Drury Lane]
sets up an Attorney to expel an Attorney, and chose a Name dreadful to
the Stage [that is Collier], who only seemed able to beat _Divito_ out
of his Intrenchments.

"On the 22d Instant, a Night of public Rejoycing, the Enemies of
_Divito_ made a Largess to the People of Faggots, Tubs, and other
combustible Matter, which was erected into a Bonfire before the Palace.
Plentiful Cans were at the same time distributed among the Dependences
of that Principality; and the artful Rival of _Divito_ observing them
prepared for Enterprize, presented the lawful Owner of the neighbouring
Edifice, and showed his Deputation under him. War immediately ensued
upon the peaceful Empire of Wit and the Muses; _The Goths_ and _Vandals_
sacking _Rome_ did not threaten a more barbarous Devastation of Arts and
Sciences. But when they had forced their Entrance, the experienced
_Divito_ had detached all his Subjects, and evacuated all his Stores.
The neighbouring Inhabitants report, That the Refuse of _Divito_'s
Followers marched off the Night before disguised in Magnificence;
Door-Keepers came out clad like Cardinals, and Scene-Drawers like
Heathen Gods. _Divito_ himself was wrapped up in one of his black
Clouds, and left to the Enemy nothing but an empty Stage, full of
Trap-Doors, known only to himself and his Adherents."]


[Footnote 71: Barton Booth, Theophilus Keen, Norris, John Bickerstaffe,
George Powell, Francis Leigh, George Pack, Mrs. Knight, Mrs. Bradshaw,
and Mrs. Moore were Collier's chief performers. As most of them had
signed the petition in Rich's favour which I mentioned in a note on page
79, it is not wonderful that disturbances soon arose. Collier appointed
Aaron Hill to manage the company, and his post seems to have been a
somewhat lively one. On 14th June, 1710, the Lord Chamberlain's Records
contain an entry which proves how rebellious the company were. Powell,
Booth, Bickerstaffe, Keen, and Leigh, are stated to have defied and
beaten Aaron Hill, to have broken open the doors of the theatre, and
made a riot generally. For this Powell is discharged, and the others
suspended. Mr. Fitzgerald ("New History," i. 308 _et seq._) quotes a
letter from Hill, in which some account of this matter is given.]


[Footnote 72: Charles Shadwell's "Fair Quaker of Deal" was produced at
Drury Lane on 25th February, 1710. In the Preface the author says, "This
play was written about three years since, and put into the hands of a
famous Comedian belonging to the Haymarket Playhouse, who took care to
beat down the value of it so much, as to offer the author to alter it
fit to appear on the stage, on condition he might have half the profits
of the third day, and the dedication entire; that is as much as to say,
that it may pass for one of his, according to custom. The author not
agreeing to this reasonable proposal, it lay in his hands till the
beginning of this winter, when Mr. Booth read it, and liked it, and
persuaded the author, that, with a little alteration, it would please
the town" (Bell's edition). If, as is likely, Cibber is the actor
referred to, his abuse of the play and the actors is not
unintelligible.]


[Footnote 73: Hester Santlow, the "Santlow, fam'd for dance" of Gay,
married Barton Booth. She appears to have retired from the stage about
1733. Genest (iii. 375) says, "she seems to have been a pleasing actress
with no great powers." Her reputation was none of the best before her
marriage, for she was said to have been the mistress of the Duke of
Marlborough and of Secretary Craggs. See memoir of Booth.]


[Footnote 74: Genest (ii. 430) has the following outspoken character of
Rich: "He seems in his public capacity of Patentee and Manager to have
been a despicable character--without spirit to bring the power of the
Lord Chamberlain to a legal test--without honesty to account to the
other proprietors for the receipts of the theatre--without any feeling
for his actors--and without the least judgment as to players and
plays."]


[Footnote 75: Rich's Patent was revived, as Cibber states (p. 78), in
1714, when it was the property of his son, John Rich.]


[Footnote 76: There is no more curious transaction in theatrical history
than the acquisition of the entire right in the Patent by Rich and his
son. Christopher Rich's share (see note on p. 32) was seventeen
one-hundredths, or about one-sixth; yet, by obstinate dishonesty, he
succeeded in annexing the remainder.]


[Footnote 77: In March, 1705.]


[Footnote 78: There has been some doubt as to the locality of the
theatre in Little Lincoln's Inn Fields, in which Betterton acted, one
authority at least holding that he played in Gibbons' Tennis Court in
Vere Street, Clare Market. But Cibber distinctly states that Rich rented
the building which Betterton left in 1705, and old maps of London show
clearly that Rich's theatre was in Portugal Street, just opposite the
end of the then unnamed street, now called Carey Street. In "A New and
Exact Plan of the Cities of London and Westminster," published 30th
August, 1738, by George Foster, "The New Play House" is given as the
name of this building, and it is worthy of notice that Cibber, a few
lines above, writes of "the New Theatre in Lincoln's Inn Fields." See
also vol. i. p. 192, note 1, where I quote Downes, who calls Betterton's
theatre the New Theatre in Lincoln's Inn Fields. About 1756 this house
was made a barrack; it was afterwards an auction room; then the China
Repository of Messrs. Spode and Copeland, and was ultimately pulled down
about 1848 to make room for the extension of the Museum of the Royal
College of Surgeons.]


[Footnote 79: The Licence to Swiney, Wilks, Cibber, and Dogget, for
Drury Lane, is dated 6th November, 1710. In it Swiney's name is spelled
"Swyny," and Cibber's "Cybber."]


[Footnote 80: Westminster Bridge was authorized to be built in the face
of virulent opposition from the Corporation of London, who feared that
its existence would damage the trade of the City. Dr. Potter, Archbishop
of Canterbury, and others interested, applied for an Act of Parliament
in 1736; the bridge was begun in 1738, and not finished till 1750, the
opening ceremony being held on 17th November of that year. Until this time
the only bridge was London Bridge. See "Old and New London," iii. 297.]


[Footnote 81: I presume the Noble Commissioner is the Earl of Pembroke,
who laid the first stone of the bridge on 29th January, 1739.]


[Footnote 82: Collier seems to have relied on Aaron Hill in all his
theatrical enterprises, for, as previously noted, Hill had been manager
for him at Drury Lane.]


[Footnote 83: At the end of the season 1708-9. See _ante_, p. 69.]


[Footnote 84: Collier's treatment of Swiney was so discreditable, that
when he in his turn was evicted from Drury Lane (1714) we cannot help
feeling gratified at his downfall.]


[Footnote 85: Swiney's Licence for the Opera is dated 17th April, 1712.]


[Footnote 86: For a further account of Steele's being given a share of
the Patent, which he got through Marlborough's influence, see the
beginning of Chapter XV.]


[Footnote 87: See vol. i. 284-285.]


[Footnote 88: That is, he had been the chief of Collier's Company at
Drury Lane at his opening in November, 1709. See _ante_, p. 94.]


[Footnote 89: Martial, x. 23, 7.]


[Footnote 90: This is a blunder, which, by the way, Bellchambers does
not correct. "Cato" was produced at Drury Lane on 14th April, 1713. The
cast was:--

  CATO                   Mr. Booth.
  LUCIUS                 Mr. Keen.
  SEMPRONIUS             Mr. Mills.
  JUBA                   Mr. Wilks.
  SYPHAX                 Mr. Cibber.
  PORTIUS                Mr. Powell.
  MARCUS                 Mr. Ryan.
  DECIUS                 Mr. Bowman.
  MARCIA                 Mrs. Oldfield.
  LUCIA                  Mrs. Porter.]


[Footnote 91: "The Laureat" says these Irish actors were Elrington and
Griffith, but I venture to think that Evans's name should be substituted
for that of Griffith. All three came from Ireland to Drury Lane in 1714;
but, while Elrington and Evans played many important characters,
Griffith did very little. Again, I can find no record of the latter's
benefit, but the others had benefits in the best part of the season. The
fact that they had _separate_ benefits makes my theory contradict Cibber
on this one point; but what he says may have occurred in connection with
one of the two benefits. Cibber's memory is not infallible.]


[Footnote 92: Genest's record gives Wilks about one hundred and fifty
different characters, Dogget only about sixty.]


[Footnote 93: Horace, _Ars Poetica_, 121.]


[Footnote 94: See note on page 120.]


[Footnote 95: Johnson (Life of Addison) terms this "the despicable cant
of literary modesty."]


[Footnote 96: 14th April, 1713. See note on page 120.]


[Footnote 97: Mrs. Oldfield, Powell, Mills, Booth, Pinkethman, and Mrs.
Porter, had their benefits before "Cato" was produced. "Cato" was then
acted twenty times--April 14th to May 9th--that is, every evening except
Monday in each week, as Cibber states. On Monday nights the benefits
continued--being one night in the week instead of three. Johnson, Keen,
and Mrs. Bicknell had their benefits during the run of "Cato," and on
May 11th the regular benefit performances recommenced, Mrs. Rogers
taking her benefit on that night.]


[Footnote 98: The Duke of Marlborough is the person pointed at.]


[Footnote 99: Theo. Cibber ("Life of Booth," p. 6) says that Booth in
his early days as an actor became intimate with Lord Bolingbroke, and
that this "was of eminent advantage to Mr. _Booth_,--when, on his great
Success in the Part of CATO (of which he was the original Actor) my
Lord's Interest (then Secretary of State) established him as a Manager
of the Theatre."]


[Footnote 100: There are five Prologues by Dryden spoken at Oxford; one
in 1674, and the others probably about 1681.]


[Footnote 101: James II.]


[Footnote 102: Obadiah Walker, born 1616, died 1699, is famous only for
the change of religion to which Cibber's anecdote refers. Macaulay
("History," 1858, ii. 85-86) relates the story of his perversion, and in
the same volume, page 283, refers to the incident here told by Cibber.]


[Footnote 103: 1713. The performance on 23rd June, 1713, was announced
as the last that season, as the company were obliged to go immediately
to Oxford.]


[Footnote 104: Dryden writes, in one of his Prologues (about 1681), to
the University of Oxford:--

  "When our fop gallants, or our city folly,
  Clap over-loud, it makes us melancholy:
  We doubt that scene which does their wonder raise,
  And, for their ignorance, contemn their praise.
  Judge, then, if we who act, and they who write,
  Should not be proud of giving you delight.
  London likes grossly; but this nicer pit
  Examines, fathoms, all the depths of wit;
  The ready finger lays on every blot;
  Knows what should justly please, and what should not."]


[Footnote 105: In a Prologue by Dryden, spoken by Hart in 1674, at
Oxford, the poet says:--

  "None of our living poets dare appear;
  For Muses so severe are worshipped here,
  That, conscious of their faults, they shun the eye,
  And, as profane, from sacred places fly,
  Rather than see the offended God, and die."

Malone (Dryden's Prose Works, vol. i. part ii. p. 13) gives a letter
from Dryden to Lord Rochester, in which he says: "Your Lordship will
judge [from the success of these Prologues, &c.] how easy 'tis to pass
anything upon an University, and how gross flattery the learned will
endure."]

[Footnote 106: Theo. Cibber ("Life of Booth," p. 7) says that Colley
Cibber and Booth "used frequently to set out, after Play (in the Month
of _May_) to _Windsor_, where the _Court_ then was, to push their
different Interests." Chetwood ("History," p. 93) states that the other
Patentees "to prevent his solliciting his Patrons at Court, then at
_Windsor_, gave out Plays every Night, where Mr. _Booth_ had a principal
Part. Notwithstanding this Step, he had a Chariot and Six of a
Nobleman's waiting for him at the End of every Play, that whipt him the
twenty Miles in three Hours, and brought him back to the Business of the
Theatre the next Night."]


[Footnote 107: The new Licence was dated 11th November, 1713. Dogget's
name was of course included as well as Booth's.]


[Footnote 108: This must have been in November, 1713.]


[Footnote 109: The Right Hon. Thomas Coke.]


[Footnote 110: The dates regarding this quarrel with Dogget are very
difficult to fix satisfactorily. In the collection of Mr. Francis Harvey
of St. James's Street are some valuable letters by Dogget in connection
with this matter. From these, and from Mr. Percy Fitzgerald's "New
History" (i. 352-358), I have made up a list of dates, which, however, I
give with all reserve. We know from "The Laureat" that Dogget had some
funds of the theatre in his hands when he ceased acting, and this fact
makes a Petition by Cibber and Wilks, that he should account with them
for money, intelligible. This is dated 16th January, 1714--it cannot be
1713, as Mr. Fitzgerald says, for Booth was not admitted then, and the
quarrel had not arisen. Then follows a Petition from Cibber, Booth, and
Wilks, dated 5th February, 1714, praying the Chamberlain to settle the
dispute. Petitions by Dogget bear date 17th April, 1714; and, I think,
14th June, 1714. Mr. Fitzgerald gives this latter date as 14th January,
1714, and certainly the date on the document itself is more like "Jan"
than "June;" but in the course of the Petition Dogget says that the
season will end in a few days, which seems to fix June as the correct
month. The season 1713-14 ended 18th June, 1714. Next comes a Petition
that Dogget should be compelled to act if he was to draw his share of
the profits, which is dated 3rd November, 1714. In this case we are on
sure ground, for the Petition is preserved among the Lord Chamberlain's
Papers. Another Petition by Dogget, in which he talks of his being
forced into Westminster Hall to obtain his rights, is dated "Jan. ye 6
1714," that is, 1715. After this, legal action was no doubt commenced,
as related by Cibber.]


[Footnote 111: So full an account of Dogget is given by Cibber and by
Aston, that I need only add, that he first appeared about 1691; and that
he died in 1721.]


[Footnote 112: See memoir of Mrs. Porter at the end of this volume.]


[Footnote 113: On March 18th, 1717. Cibber is wrong in stating that this
was Dogget's last appearance; for a week after he played Ben in "Love
for Love" (March 25th, 1717), and made his last appearance, after the
lapse of another week (April 1st, 1717), when he acted Hob in "The
Country Wake."]


[Footnote 114: Downes ("Rosc. Ang.," p. 52) gives a quaint description
of Dogget: "Mr. _Dogget_, On the Stage, he's very Aspectabund, wearing a
Farce in his Face; his Thoughts deliberately framing his Utterance
Congruous to his Looks: He is the only Comick Original now Extant:
Witness, _Ben. Solon_, _Nikin_, The _Jew_ of _Venice_, &c."]


[Footnote 115: "The Laureat," p. 83: "Thy Partiality is so notorious,
with Relation to _Wilks_, that every one sees you never praise him, but
to rail at him; and only oil your Hone, to whet your Razor."]


[Footnote 116: 1714.]


[Footnote 117: In the Dedication to Steele of "Ximena" (1719) Cibber
warmly acknowledges the great service Steele had done to the theatre,
not only in improving the tone of its performances, but also in the mere
attracting of public attention to it. "How many a time," he says, "have
we known the most elegant Audiences drawn together at a Day's Warning,
by the Influence or Warrant of a single _Tatler_, when our best
Endeavours without it, could not defray the Charge of the Performance."
In the same Dedication Cibber's gratitude overstepped his judgment, in
applying to Steele's generous acknowledgment of his indebtedness to
Addison's help in his "Spectator," &c., Dryden's lines:--

  "Fool that I was! upon my Eagle's Wings
  I bore this Wren, 'till I was tir'd with soaring,
  And now, he mounts above me----"

The following Epigram is quoted in "The Laureat," p. 76. It originally
appeared in "Mist's Journal," 31st October, 1719:--

  "_Thus_ Colley Cibber _to his Partner_ Steele,
  _See here, Sir Knight, how I've outdone_ Corneille;
  _See here, how I, my Patron to inveigle,
  Make_ Addison _a_ Wren, _and you an_ Eagle.
  _Safe to the silent Shades, we bid Defiance;
  For living Dogs are better than dead Lions_."

In one of his Odes, at which Johnson laughed (Boswell, i. 402) Cibber
had the couplet:--

  "Perch'd on the eagle's soaring wing,
  The lowly linnet loves to sing."

"Ximena; or, the Heroic Daughter," produced on 28th November, 1712, was
an adaptation of Corneille's "Cid." We do not know the cast of 1712, but
that of 1718 (Drury Lane, 1st November) was the following:--

  DON FERDINAND          Mr. Mills.
  DON ALVAREZ            Mr. Cibber.
  DON GORMAZ             Mr. Booth.
  DON CARLOS             Mr. Wilks.
  DON SANCHEZ            Mr. Elrington.
  DON ALONZO             Mr. Thurmond.
  DON GARCIA             Mr. Boman.
  XIMENA                 Mrs. Oldfield.
  BELZARA                Mrs. Porter.]


[Footnote 118: A Royal Licence was granted on 18th October, 1714, to
Steele, Wilks, Cibber, Dogget, and Booth. The theatre opened before the
Licence was granted. The first bill given by Genest is for 21st
September, 1714.]


[Footnote 119: Christopher Rich died before the theatre was opened, and
it was under the management of John Rich, his son, that Lincoln's Inn
Fields opened on 18th December, 1714, with "The Recruiting Officer." The
company was announced as playing under Letters Patent granted by King
Charles the Second.]


[Footnote 120: This refers to a riot raised by the supporters of Mrs.
Rogers, on Mrs. Oldfield's being cast for the character of Andromache in
Philips's tragedy of "The Distressed Mother," produced at Drury Lane on
17th March, 1712.]


[Footnote 121: Cibber on one occasion manifested temper to a rather
unexpected degree. In 1720, when Dennis published his attacks on Steele,
in connection with his being deprived of the Patent, he accused Cibber
of impiety and various other crimes and misdemeanours; and Cibber is
said in the "Answer to the Character of Sir John Edgar" to have inserted
the following advertisement in the "Daily Post": "Ten Pounds will be
paid by Mr. CIBBER, of the Theatre Royal, to any person who shall (by a
legal proof) discover the Author of a Pamphlet, intituled, 'The
Characters and Conduct of Sir JOHN EDGAR, &c.'" (Nichols, p. 401.)]


[Footnote 122: Cibber refers to his remarks (see vol. i. p. 191) on the
conduct of the Patentees which caused Betterton's secession in 1694-5.]


[Footnote 123: In addition to Keen, Bullock (William), Pack, and Leigh,
whom Cibber mentions a few lines after, Spiller and Christopher Bullock
were among the deserters; and probably Cory and Knap. Mrs. Rogers, Mrs.
Knight, and Mrs. Kent also deserted.]


[Footnote 124: George Pack is an actor of whom Chetwood ("History," p.
210) gives some account. He first came on the stage as a singer,
performing the female parts in duets with Leveridge. His first
appearance chronicled by Genest was at Lincoln's Inn Fields in 1700, as
Westmoreland in the first part of "Henry IV." Chetwood says he was
excellent as Marplot in "The Busy Body," Beau Maiden in "Tunbridge
Walks," Beau Mizen in "The Fair Quaker of Deal," &c.: "_indeed Nature
seem'd to mean him for those Sort of Characters_." On 10th March, 1722,
he announced his last appearance on any stage; but he returned on 21st
April and 7th May, 1724, on which latter date he had a benefit. Chetwood
says that on his retirement he opened the Globe Tavern, near
Charing-Cross, over against the Hay-Market. When Chetwood wrote (1749)
Pack was no longer alive.]


[Footnote 125: Francis Leigh. There were several actors of the name of
Leigh, and it is sometimes difficult to distinguish them. This
particular actor died about 1719.]


[Footnote 126: In the "Weekly Packet," 18th December, 1714, the
following appears:--

"This Day the New Play-House in Lincolns-Inn Fields, is to be open'd and
a Comedy acted there, call'd, The Recruiting Officer, by the Company
that act under the Patent; tho' it is said, that some of the Gentlemen
who have left the House in Drury-Lane for that Service, are order'd to
return to their Colours, upon Pain of not exercising their Lungs
elsewhere; which may in Time prove of ill Service to the Patentee, that
has been at vast Expence to make his Theatre as convenient for the
Reception of an Audience as any one can possibly be."

Genest remarks that this seems to show that the Lord Chamberlain
threatened to interfere in the interests of Drury Lane. He adds:
"Cibber's silence proves nothing to the contrary, as in more than one
instance he does not tell the whole truth" (ii. 565). In defence of
Cibber I may say that the Chamberlain's Records contain no hint that he
threatened to interfere with the Lincoln's Inn Fields Theatre or its
actors.]


[Footnote 127: In both the first and second editions Cibber writes 1718,
but this is so obviously a misprint that I correct the text. Steele was
elected for Boroughbridge in the first Parliament of George I., which
met 15th March, 1715.]


[Footnote 128: "The very night I received it, I participated the power
and use of it, with relation to the profits that should arise from it,
between the gentlemen who invited me into the Licence."--Steele, in "The
Theatre," No. 8 [Nichols, p. 64].]


[Footnote 129: The managers also expended money on the decoration of the
theatre before the beginning of the next season after the Patent was
granted. In the "Daily Courant," 6th October, 1715, they advertise: "His
Majesty's Company of Comedians give Notice, That the Middle of next Week
they will begin to act Plays, every day, as usual; they being oblig'd to
lye still so long, to finish the New Decorations of the House."]


[Footnote 130: This revival was on 2nd December, 1718. Dennis, whose
"Invader of his Country" was, as he considered, unfairly postponed on
account of this production, wrote to Steele:--

"Well, Sir, when the winter came on, what was done by your Deputies?
Why, instead of keeping their word with me, they spent above two months
of the season in getting up "All for Love, or, the World well Lost," a
Play which has indeed a noble first act, an act which ends with a scene
becoming of the dignity of the Tragic Stage. But if HORACE had been now
alive, and been either a reader or spectator of that entertainment, he
would have passed his old sentence upon the Author.

  "'_Infelix operis summâ, quia ponere totum
  Nesciet._'" [_Ars Poetica, 34._]
                   Nichols' "Theatre," p. 544.]


[Footnote 131: Cibber here skips a few years, for the report by Sir
Thomas Hewitt is dated some years after the granting of the Patent. The
text of it will be found in Nichols's "Theatre," p. 470:--

       "MY LORD, _Scotland-yard,                 Jan. 21, 1721_.

     "In obedience to his Majesty's commands signified to me by
     your Grace the 18th instant, I have surveyed the Play-house
     in Drury-lane; and took with me Mr. RIPLEY, Commissioner
     of his Majesty's Board of Works, the Master Bricklayer,
     and Carpenter: We examined all its parts with the greatest
     exactness we could; and found the Walls, Roofing, Stage, Pit,
     Boxes, Galleries, Machinery, Scenes, &c. sound, and almost as
     good as when first built; neither decayed, nor in the least
     danger of falling; and when some small repairs are made, and
     an useless Stack of Chimnies (built by the late Mr. RICH)
     taken down, the Building may continue for a long time, being
     firm, the Materials and Joints good, and no part giving way;
     and capable to bear much greater weight than is put on them.

       "MY LORD DUKE,
     "Your GRACE's Most humble and obedient servant,
                    "THOMAS HEWETT.

     "N.B. The Stack of Chimnies mentioned in this Report (which
     were placed over the Stone Passage leading to the Boxes) are
     actually taken down."]


[Footnote 132: See _ante_, vol. i. p. 234.]


[Footnote 133: Cibber, vol. i. p. 94, relates how, when the King's
Company proved too strong for their rivals, Davenant, "to make head
against their Success, was forced to add Spectacle and Music to
Action."]


[Footnote 134: In the season 1718-19, Rich at Lincoln's Inn Fields
frequently produced French pieces and operas. He must have had a company
of French players engaged.]


[Footnote 135: This is, no doubt, John Weaver's dramatic entertainment
called "The Loves of Mars and Venus," which was published, as acted at
Drury Lane, in 1717.]


[Footnote 136: The following lines ("Dunciad," iii. verses 229-244) are
descriptive of such pantomimes as Cibber refers to:--

  "He look'd, and saw a sable Sorc'rer rise,
  Swift to whose hand a winged volume flies:
  All sudden, Gorgons hiss, and dragons glare,
  And ten-horn'd fiends and giants rush to war.
  Hell rises, Heav'n descends, and dance on Earth,
  Gods, imps, and monsters, music, rage, and mirth,
  A fire, a jig, a battle, and a ball,
  Till one wide conflagration swallows all.
    Thence a new world, to nature's laws unknown,
  Breaks out refulgent, with a heav'n its own:
  Another Cynthia her new journey runs,
  And other planets circle other suns:
  The forests dance, the rivers upward rise,
  Whales sport in woods, and dolphins in the skies,
  And last, to give the whole creation grace,
  Lo! one vast Egg produces human race."

The allusion in the last line is to "Harlequin Sorcerer," in which
Harlequin is hatched from a large egg on the stage. See Jackson's
"History of the Scottish Stage," pages 367-368, for description of John
Rich's excellence in this scene.]


[Footnote 137: In the "Dunciad" (book iii. verses 261-264) Pope writes:--

  "But lo! to dark encounter in mid air
  New wizards rise: here Booth, and Cibber there:
  Booth in his cloudy tabernacle shrin'd,
  On grinning Dragons Cibber mounts the wind."

On these lines Cibber remarks, in his "Letter to Mr. Pope," 1742 (page
37): "If you, figuratively, mean by this, that I was an Encourager of
those Fooleries, you are mistaken; for it is not true: If you intend it
literally, that I was Dunce enough to mount a Machine, there is as
little Truth in that too."]


[Footnote 138: Henry of Navarre, of whom it has been said that he
regarded religion mainly as a diplomatic instrument.]


[Footnote 139: It is hardly necessary to note that this was the Scottish
Rebellion of 1715; yet Bellchambers indicates the period as 1718.]


[Footnote 140: Cibber's most notorious play, "The Nonjuror," was
produced at Drury Lane on 6th December, 1717. The cast was:--

  SIR JOHN WOODVIL       Mr. Mills.
  COLONEL WOODVIL        Mr. Booth.
  MR. HEARTLY            Mr. Wilks.
  DOCTOR WOLF            Mr. Cibber.
  CHARLES                Mr. Walker.
  LADY WOODVIL           Mrs. Porter.
  MARIA                  Mrs. Oldfield.]


[Footnote 141: Genest (ii. 615) quotes the Epilogue to Sewell's "Sir
Walter Raleigh," produced at Lincoln's Inn Fields 16th January, 1719:--

  "Yet to write plays is easy, faith, enough,
  As you have seen by--Cibber--in Tartuffe.
  With how much wit he did your hearts engage!
  He only stole the _play_;--he writ the _title-page_."]


[Footnote 142: Genest says it was acted twenty-three times.]


[Footnote 143: Genest remarks (ii. 616) that "Cibber deserved all the
abuse and enmity that he met with--the Stage and the Pulpit ought NEVER
to dabble in politics."

Theo. Cibber, in a Petition to the King, given in his "Dissertations"
(Letter to Garrick, p. 29), says that his father's "Writings, and public
Professions of Loyalty, created him many Enemies, among the
Disaffected."]


[Footnote 144: "Mist's Weekly Journal" was an anti-Hanoverian sheet,
which was prominent in opposition to the Protestant Succession.
Nathaniel Mist, the proprietor, and, I suppose, editor, suffered sundry
pains and penalties for his Jacobitism. In his Preface to the second
volume of "Letters" selected from his paper, he relates how he had,
among other things, suffered imprisonment and stood in the pillory.]


[Footnote 145: There can be little doubt that the "Nonjuror" was one of
the causes of Pope's enmity to Cibber. Pope's father was a Nonjuror. See
"Epistle to Dr. Arbuthnot," where the poet says of his father:--

  "No courts he saw, no suits would ever try,
  Nor dar'd an oath, nor hazarded a lie."]


[Footnote 146: Produced 10th January, 1728. See vol. i. p. 311, for list
of characters, &c.]


[Footnote 147: Meaning, no doubt, that the post of Poet Laureate was
given to him as a reward for his services to the Government.]


[Footnote 148: 1733.]


[Footnote 149: In leaping from 1717 to 1728, as Cibber does here, he
omits to notice much that is of the greatest interest in stage history.
Steele's connection with the theatre was of a chequered complexion, and
it is curious as well as regrettable that an interested observer like
Cibber should have simply ignored the great points which were at issue
while Steele was a sharer in the Patent. In order to bridge over the
chasm I give a bare record of Steele's transactions in connection with
the Patent.

His first authority was a Licence granted to him and his partners,
Wilks, Cibber, Dogget, and Booth, and dated October 18th, 1714. This was
followed by a Patent, in Steele's name alone, for the term of his life,
and three years after his death, which bore date January 19th, 1715.
Cibber (p. 174) relates that Steele assigned to Wilks, Booth, and
himself, equal shares in this Patent. All went smoothly for more than
two years, until the appointment of the Duke of Newcastle (April 13th,
1717) as Lord Chamberlain. He seems soon to have begun to interfere in
the affairs of the theatre. Steele, in the eighth number of "The
Theatre," states that shortly after his appointment the Duke demanded
that he should resign his Patent and accept a Licence in its place. This
Steele naturally and rightly declined to do, and here the matter rested
for many months. With reference to this it is interesting to note that
among the Lord Chamberlain's Papers is the record of a consultation of
the Attorney-General whether Steele's Patent made him independent of the
Lord Chamberlain's authority. Unfortunately it is impossible to decide,
from the terms of the queries put to the Attorney-General, whether these
were caused by aggressive action on Steele's part, or merely by his
defence of his rights.

The next molestation was an order, dated December 19th, 1719, addressed
to Steele, Wilks, and Booth, ordering them to dismiss Cibber; which they
did. His suspension, for it was nothing more, lasted till January 28th,
1720. Steele, in the seventh number of "The Theatre," January 23rd,
1720, alludes to his suspension as then existing, and in No. 12 talks of
Cibber's being just restored to the "Begging Bridge," that is, the
theatre. The allusion is to an Apologue by Steele ("Reader," No. II.)
which Cibber quotes, and applies to Steele, in his Dedication of
"Ximena" to him. A peasant had succeeded in barricading, with his whole
belongings, a bridge over which an enemy attempted to invade his native
country. He kept them back till his countrymen were roused; but when the
forces of his friends attacked the enemy, the peasant's property was
destroyed in the fray and he was left destitute. He received no
compensation, but it was enacted that he and his descendants were alone
to have the privilege of _begging_ on this bridge. Cibber applies this
fable to the treatment of Steele by the Lord Chamberlain, and there can
be no doubt that this Dedication must have caused great offence to that
official, and contributed materially to Cibber's suspension, though
Steele declared that the attack upon his partner was merely intended as
an oblique attack on himself. The author of the "Answer to the Case of
Sir Richard Steele," 1720 (Nichols's ed., p. 532), says that Cibber had
offended the Duke by an attack on the King and the Ministry in the
Dedication of his "Ximena" to Steele. He also says that when the
Chamberlain wanted a certain actor to play a part which belonged to one
of the managers, Cibber flatly refused to allow him, and was thereupon
silenced. (The actor is said to have been Elrington, and the part
Torrismond; but I doubt if Elrington was at Drury Lane in 1719-20.) A
recent stage historian curiously says that the play which gave offence
was "The Nonjuror," which is about as likely as that a man should be
accused of high treason because he sang "God Save the Queen!"

Steele then, being made to understand that the attack on Cibber was the
beginning of evil directed against himself, wrote to two great Ministers
of State, and presented a Petition to the King on January 22nd, 1720,
praying to be protected from molestation by the Lord Chamberlain. The
result of this action was a revocation of Steele's Licence (_not_ his
Patent specially, which is curious) dated January 23rd, 1720; and on the
next Monday, the 25th, an Order for Silence was sent to the managers and
actors at Drury Lane. The theatre accordingly remained closed Monday,
Tuesday, and Wednesday, January 25th to 27th, 1720, and on the 28th
re-opened, Wilks, Cibber, and Booth having made their submission and
received a Licence dated the previous day.

On the 4th of March following the actors of Drury Lane were sworn at
the Lord Chamberlain's office, "pursuant to an Order occasioned by
their acting in obedience to his Majesty's Licence, lately granted,
exclusive of a Patent formerly obtained by Sir Richard Steele, Knight."
The tenor of the Oath was, that as his Majesty's Servants they should
act subservient to the Lord Chamberlain, Vice-Chamberlain, and
Gentleman-Usher in Waiting. Whether Steele took any steps to test the
legality of this treatment is doubtful; but, on the accession of his
friend Walpole to office, he was restored to his position at the head of
the theatre. On May 2nd, 1721, Cibber and his partners were ordered to
account with Steele for his past and present share of the profits of the
theatre, as if all the regulations from which his name had been excluded
had never been made. This edict is signed by the Duke of Newcastle, and
must, I fancy, have been rather a bitter pill for that nobleman. How
Steele subsequently conducted himself, and how much interest he took in
the theatre, Cibber very fully relates in the next few pages. After
Steele's death a new Patent was granted to Cibber, Wilks, and Booth, as
will be related further on. It may be noted here, however, that the date
of the new Patent proves conclusively that Steele's grant was never
superseded. The new power was dated July 3rd, 1731, but it did not take
effect till September 1st, 1732, exactly three years after Steele's
death, according to the terms of his original Patent.]


[Footnote 150: This is one of Cibber's bad blunders. The Case was heard
in 1728. Genest (iii. 208) refers to the _St. James's Evening Post's_
mention of the hearing; and, in the Burney MSS. in the British Museum, a
copy of the paragraph is given. It is not, however, a cutting, but a
manuscript copy. "Saty. Feb. 17. There was an hearing in the Rolls
Chapel in a Cause between Sir Richard Steele, Mr. Cibber, Mr. Wilks, and
others belonging to Drury-Lane Theatre, which held five hours--one of
which was taken up by a speech of Mr. Wilks, which had so good an
effect, that the Cause went against Sir Richard Steele."--St. James's
Evening Post, Feb. 17 to Feb. 20, 1728. In its next issue, Feb. 20 to
Feb. 22, it corrects the blunder which it had made in attributing
Cibber's speech to Wilks.]


[Footnote 151: This was in the Dedication to "Ximena." The passage will
be found quoted by me in a note on page 163 of this volume.]


[Footnote 152: Cibber himself, of course.]


[Footnote 153: This Coronation was tacked to the play of "Henry VIII.,"
which was revived at Drury Lane on 26th October, 1727. Special interest
attached to it on account of the recent Coronation of George II.]


[Footnote 154: This was in 1718. On 24th September, 1718, the bills
announce "the same Entertainments that were performed yesterday before
his Majesty at Hampton Court."]


[Footnote 155: In Whitelocke's "Memorials" there is an account of a
Masque played in 1633, before Charles I. and his Queen, by the gentlemen
of the Temple, which cost £21,000.]


[Footnote 156: The Earl of Burlington.]


[Footnote 157: "Calisto" was published in 1675. Genest (i. 181) says:
"Cibber, with his usual accuracy as to dates, supposes that Crowne was
selected to write a mask for the Court in preference to Dryden, through
the influence of the Duke of Buckingham, who was offended at what Dryden
had said of him in Absalom and Achitophel--Dryden's poem was not written
till 1681--Lord Rochester was the person who recommended Crowne." I may
add that Dryden furnished an Epilogue to "Calisto," which was not
spoken.]


[Footnote 158: Boman, or Bowman, was born about 1651, and lived till
23rd March, 1739. He made his first appearance about 1673, and acted to
within a few months of his death, having thus been on the stage for the
extraordinary period of sixty-five years. He was very sensitive on the
subject of his age, and, if asked how old he was, only replied, that he
was very well. Davies speaks highly of Boman's acting in his extreme old
age ("Dram. Misc.," i. 286 and ii. 100). Mrs. Boman was the adopted
daughter of Betterton.]


[Footnote 159: Bishop Burnet.]


[Footnote 160: First edition, vol. i.]


[Footnote 161: Davies ("Dram. Misc.," i. 365) says: "Wolsey's filching
from his royal master the honour of bestowing grace and pardon on the
subject, appeared so gross and impudent a prevarication, that, when this
play was acted before George I. at Hampton-Court, about the year 1717,
the courtiers laughed so loudly at this ministerial craft, that his
majesty, who was unacquainted with the English language, asked the
lord-chamberlain the meaning of their mirth; upon being informed of it,
the king joined in a laugh of approbation." Davies adds that this scene
"was not unsuitably represented by Colley Cibber;" but, in scenes
requiring dignity or passion, he expresses an unfavourable opinion of
Cibber's playing.]


[Footnote 162: From the Lord Chamberlain's Records it is clear that £10
was the fee for a play at Whitehall during the time of Charles I. If the
performance was at Hampton Court, or if it took place at such a time of
day as to prevent the ordinary playing at the theatre, £20 was allowed.]


[Footnote 163: The warrant for the payment of these performances is
dated 15th November, 1718. The expenses incurred by the actors amounted
to £374 1_s._ 8_d._, and the present given by the King, as Cibber
states, was £200; the total payment being thus £574 1_s._ 8_d._]


[Footnote 164: M. Perrin, the late manager of the Theatre Français, was
virulently attacked for giving _la jeune troupe_ no opportunities, and
so doing nothing to provide successors to the great actors of his time.]


[Footnote 165: After the death of Wilks and Booth, and the retirement of
Cibber, the stage experienced a period of dulness, which was the natural
result of the want of good young talent in the lifetime of the old
actors. Such periods seem to recur at stated intervals in the history of
the stage.]


[Footnote 166: "Venice Preserved" was acted at the Haymarket on 22nd
February, 1707, but Dr. Burney's MSS. do not give the cast. On 15th
November, 1707, Pierre was played by Mills.]


[Footnote 167: For an account of this matter, see _ante_, page 70.]


[Footnote 168: Davies ("Dram. Misc.," iii. 255) has the following
interesting statement regarding Cibber and Wilks, which he gives on
Victor's authority:--

"However Colley may complain, in his Apology, of Wilks's fire and
impetuosity, he in general was Cibber's great admirer; he supported him
on all occasions, where his own passion or interest did not interpose;
nay, he deprived the inoffensive Harry Carey of the liberty of the
scenes, because he had, in common with others, made merry with Cibber in
a song, on his being appointed poet laureat; saying at the same time, he
was surprised at his impertinence, in behaving so improperly _to a man
of such great merit_."]


[Footnote 169: John Dennis, in an advertisement to the "Invader of his
Country," remarks on this foible. He says:--

"I am perfectly satisfied that any Author who brings a Play to
_Drury-Lane_, must, if 'tis a good one, be sacrificed to the Jealousie
of this fine Writer, unless he has either a powerful Cabal, or unless he
will flatter Mr. _Robert Wilks_, and make him believe that he is an
excellent Tragedian." The "fine Writer" is, of course, Cibber.]


[Footnote 170: "In the trajedy of _Mackbeth_, where _Wilks_ acts the
Part of a Man whose Family has been murder'd in his Absence, the
Wildness of his Passion, which is run over in a Torrent of calamitous
Circumstances, does but raise my Spirits and give me the Alarm; but when
he skilfully seems to be out of Breath, and is brought too low to say
more; and upon a second Reflection, cry, only wiping his Eyes, What,
both my Children! Both, both my Children gone--There is no resisting a
Sorrow which seems to have cast about for all the Reasons possible for
its Consolation, but has no Recource. There is not one left, but both,
both are murdered! Such sudden Starts from the Thread of the Discourse,
and a plain Sentiment express'd in an artless Way, are the irresistible
Strokes of Eloquence and Poetry."--"Tatler," No. 68, September 15th,
1709.

The extraordinary language of Macduff is quoted from Davenant's
mutilation of Shakespeare's play. Obviously it is not Shakespeare's
language.]


[Footnote 171: Charles Williams was a young actor of great promise, who
died in 1731. On the production of Thomson's "Sophonisba" at Drury Lane,
on February 28th, 1730, Cibber played Scipio, but was so hissed by a
public that would not suffer him in tragic parts, that he resigned the
character to Williams. (See Footnote 201, vol. i. anchored on page 179.)
This would seem to indicate that Williams was an actor of some position,
for Scipio is a good part.]


[Footnote 172: "In the strong expression of horror on the murder of the
King, and the loud exclamations of surprize and terror, Booth might have
exceeded the utmost efforts of Wilks. But, in the touches of domestic
woe, which require the feelings of the tender father and the
affectionate husband, Wilks had no equal. His skill, in exhibiting the
emotions of the overflowing heart with corresponding look and action,
was universally admired and felt. His rising, after the suppression of
his anguish, into ardent and manly resentment, was highly expressive of
noble and generous anger."--"Dram. Misc.," ii. 183.]


[Footnote 173: This revival took place 11th January, 1726. The play was
acted eleven times.]


[Footnote 174: Jeremy Collier specially attacked Vanbrugh and his
comedies for their immorality and profanity, and for their abuse of the
clergy. Even less strict critics than Collier considered Vanbrugh's
pieces as more indecent than the average play. Thus the author of
"Faction Display'd," 1704, writes:--

  "_Van_'s Baudy, Plotless Plays were once our boast,
  But now the Poet's in the Builder lost."]


[Footnote 175: Davies ("Dram. Misc.," iii. 455) says that he supposes
Cibber prevailed upon Vanbrugh to alter the disguise which Sir John
Brute assumes from a clergyman's habit to that of a woman of fashion.]


[Footnote 176: Sir John Brute.]


[Footnote 177: Cibber's meaning is not very clear, but if he intends to
convey the idea that it was for this revival that Vanbrugh made these
alterations, he is probably wrong, for when the play was revived at the
Haymarket, on 19th January, 1706, it was announced as "with
alterations."]


[Footnote 178: Mrs. Oldfield played Lady Brute, whose lover Constant
is.]


[Footnote 179: Wilks played Constant; Booth, Heartfree; and Cibber, Sir
John Brute.]


[Footnote 180: Cibber begins the seventh chapter of this work with an
account of Betterton's troubles as a manager. See vol. i. p. 227. See
also vol. i. p. 315.]


[Footnote 181:

  "Ye Gods, what Havock does Ambition make
  Among your Works!"--"Cato," act i. sc. 1.]


[Footnote 182:

  "And, in despair their empty pit to fill,
  Set up some Foreign monster in a bill.
  Thus they jog on, still tricking, never thriving,
  And murdering plays, which they miscall reviving."

    "Address to Granville, on his Tragedy, _Heroic Love_."]


[Footnote 183: "During Booth's inability to act, ... Wilks was called
upon to play two of his parts--Jaffier, and Lord Hastings in Jane Shore.
Booth was, at times, in all other respects except his power to go on the
stage, in good health, and went among the players for his amusement His
curiosity drew him to the playhouse on the nights when Wilks acted these
characters, in which himself had appeared with uncommon lustre. All the
world admired Wilks, except his brother-manager: amidst the repeated
bursts of applause which he extorted, Booth alone continued
silent."--Davies ("Dram. Misc.," iii. 256).]


[Footnote 184: Aaron Hill, quoted by Victor in his "Life of Barton
Booth," page 32, says: "The Passions which he found in Comedy were not
strong enough to excite his Fire; and what seem'd Want of Qualification,
was only Absence of Impression."]


[Footnote 185: Wilks can have seen Mountfort only in his early career,
for he did not leave Ireland till, at least, 1692; and in that year
Mountfort was killed.]


[Footnote 186: Wilks first played Othello in this country on June 22nd,
1710, for Cibber's benefit. Steele draws attention to the event in
"Tatler," No. 187, and in No. 188 states his intention of stealing out
to see it, "out of Curiosity to observe how _Wilks_ and _Cibber_ touch
those Places where _Betterton_ and _Sandford_ so very highly excelled."
Cibber was the Iago on this occasion. Steele probably found little to
praise in either.]


[Footnote 187: The Earl of Essex, in Banks's "Unhappy Favourite," was
one of Wilks's good parts, in which Steele ("Tatler," No. 14) specially
praises him. Booth acted the part at Drury Lane on November 25th, 1709.]


[Footnote 188: See Cibber on Betterton's Hamlet and on Wilks's mistakes
in the part, vol. i. page 100.]


[Footnote 189: In the Theatre Français a similar arrangement holds to
this day, Tuesday being now the fashionable night. M. Perrin, the late
manager, was accused of a too great attention to his _Abonnés du Mardi_,
to the detriment of the theatre and of the general public.]


[Footnote 190: See _ante,_ vol. i. page 234.]


[Footnote 191: Arcangelo Corelli, a famous Italian musician, born 1653,
died 1713, who has been called the father of modern instrumental music.]


[Footnote 192: Jeanne Catherine Gaussin, a very celebrated actress of
the Comédie Française, was the original representative of Zaïre, in
Voltaire's tragedy, to which Cibber refers. She made her first Parisian
appearance in 1731; she retired in 1763, and died on 9th June, 1767.
Voltaire's "Zaïre" owed much of its success to her extraordinary
ability.]


[Footnote 193: Cibber has been strongly censured for his treatment of
authors. "The Laureat" gives the following account of an author's
experiences: "_The Court sitting, Chancellor Cibber_ (for the other two,
like M----rs in _Chancery_, sat only for Form sake, and did not presume
to judge) nodded to the Author to open his Manuscript. The Author begins
to read, in which if he failed to please the _Corrector_, he wou'd
condescend sometimes to read it for him: When, if the play strook him
very warmly, as it wou'd if he found any Thing new in it, in which he
conceived he cou'd particularly shine as an Actor, he would lay down his
Pipe, (for the _Chancellor_ always smoaked when he made a Decree) and
cry, _By G--d there is something in this: I do not know but it may do;
but I will play such a Part_. Well, when the Reading was finished, he
made his proper Corrections and sometimes without any Propriety; nay,
frequently he very much and very hastily maimed what he pretended to
mend" (p. 95). The author also accuses Cibber of delighting in repulsing
dramatic writers, which he called "Choaking of Singing birds." However,
in Cibber's defence, Genest's opinion may be quoted (iii. 346): "After
all that has been said against Chancellor Cibber, it does not appear
that he often made a wrong decree: most of the good plays came out at
Drury Lane--nor am I aware that Cibber is much to be blamed for
rejecting any play, except the Siege of Damascus in the first
instance."]


[Footnote 194: In the preface to "The Lunatick" (1705) the actors are
roundly abused; but the most amusing attack on actors is in the
following title-page: "The Sham Lawyer: or the Lucky Extravagant. As it
was _Damnably_ Acted at the Theatre-Royal in Drury Lane." This play, by
Drake, was played in 1697, and among the cast were Cibber, Bullock,
Johnson, Haines, and Pinkethman.

Bellchambers notes: "Such was the case in Dennis's 'Comic Gallant,'
where one of the actors, whom I believe to be Bullock, is most severely
handled." I think he is wrong in imagining Bullock to be the actor
criticised. Dennis says that Falstaffe was the character that was badly
sustained, and I cannot believe Bullock's position would entitle him to
play that part in 1702. Genest (ii. 250) suggests Powell as the
delinquent.]


[Footnote 195: Cibber's account of Booth is so complete that there is
little to be added to it. Booth was born in 1681, and was of a good
English family. He first appeared in Dublin in 1698, under Ashbury, but
returned to England in 1700, and joined the Lincoln's Inn Fields
Company. He followed the fortunes of Betterton until, as related by
Cibber in Chapter XII., the secession of 1709 occurred. From that point
to his retirement the only event demanding special notice is his
marriage with Hester Santlow (see p. 96 of this volume). This took place
in 1719, and was the cause of much criticism and slander, some of which
Bellchambers reproduces with evident gusto. I do not repeat his
statements, because I consider them wildly extravagant. They are fully
refuted by Booth's will, from the terms of which it is clear that his
marriage was a happy one, and that he esteemed his wife as well as loved
her. Booth's illness, to which Cibber refers above, seized him early in
the season of 1726-27, and though after it he was able to play
occasionally, he was never restored to health. His last appearance was
on 9th January, 1728, but he lived till 10th May, 1733.]


[Footnote 196: See memoir of Mrs. Oldfield at end of volume.]


[Footnote 197: Mrs. Porter met with the accident referred to in the
summer of 1731. See Davies, "Dram. Misc.," iii. 495. She returned to the
stage in January, 1733.]


[Footnote 198: Wilks died 27th September, 1732. He was of English
parentage, and was born near Dublin, whither his father had removed,
about 1665. He was in a Government office, but about 1691 he gave this
up, and went on the stage. After a short probation in Dublin he came
over to London, and was engaged by Rich, with whom he remained till
about 1695. He returned to Dublin, and became so great a favourite
there, that it is said that the Lord Lieutenant issued a warrant to
prevent his leaving again for London. However, he came to Drury Lane
about 1698, and from that time his fortunes are closely interwoven with
Cibber's, and are fully related by him.]


[Footnote 199: "The Laureat," p. 96: "As to the Occasion of your parting
with your Share of the Patent, I cannot think you give us the true
Reason; for I have been very well inform'd, it was the Intention, not
only of you, but of your Brother Menagers, as soon as you could get the
great Seal to your Patent, (which stuck for some Time, the then Lord
_Chancellor_ not being satisfied in the Legality of the Grant) to
dispose it to the best Bidder. This was at first kept as a Secret among
you; but as soon as the Grant was compleated, you sold to the first who
wou'd come up to your Price."]


[Footnote 200: Among the Lord Chamberlain's Papers is a copy of a
warrant to prepare this Patent. It is dated 15th May, 1731, and the
Patent itself is dated 3rd July, 1731, though it did not take effect
till 1st September, 1732. The reason for this is noted on page 196.]


[Footnote 201: "The Grub-Street Journal," 7th June, 1733, says: "One
little Creature, only the Deputy and Representative of his Father, was
turbulent enough to balk their Measures, and counterbalance all the
Civility and Decency in the other scale.... To remedy this, the
Gentleman who bought into the Patent first, purchased his Father's
Share, and set him down in the same obscure Place from whence he rose."]


[Footnote 202: In "The Case of John Mills, James Quin," &c., given in
Theo. Cibber's "Dissertations" (Appendix, p. 48), it is stated that
"such has been the Inveteracy of some of the late Patentees to the
Actors, that when Mrs. _Booth_, Executrix of her late Husband, _Barton
Booth_, Esq; sold her sixth part of the Patent to Mr. _Giffard_, she
made him covenant, not to sell or assign it to Actors."]


[Footnote 203: "I must own, I was heartily disgusted with the Conduct
of the Family of the _Cibbers_ on this Occasion, and had frequent and
violent Disputes with Father and Son, whenever we met! It appeared to
me something shocking that the Son should immediately render void, and
worthless, what the Father had just received Thirty-one Hundred and Fifty
Pounds for, as a valuable Consideration."--Victor's "History," i. 14.]


[Footnote 204: Cibber, in Chapter VIII. (vol. i. p. 283), alludes to
this trial, and gives the first of these two suppositions as the reason
of Harper's acquittal, but Victor ("History," i. 24) says that he has
been informed that this is an error.]


[Footnote 205: "He was a Man of Humanity and strict Honour; many
Instances fatally proved, that his Word, when solemnly given, (which was
his Custom) was sufficient for the Performance, though ever so injurious
to himself."--Victor's "History," i. 25.]


[Footnote 206: See _ante_, Chapter IX. (vol. i. Footnote 367 anchored on
page 330)]


[Footnote 207: "The clamour against the author, whose presumption was
highly censured for daring to alter Shakspeare, increased to such a
height, that Colley, who had smarted more than once for dabbling in
tragedy, went to the playhouse, and, without saying a word to any body,
took the play from the prompter's desk, and marched off with it in his
pocket."--"Dram. Misc.," i. 5.]


[Footnote 208: Produced at the Haymarket, 1737.]


[Footnote 209:

    "Enter Ground-Ivy.

_Ground._ What are you doing here?

_Apollo._ I am casting the Parts in the Tragedy of King _John_.

_Ground._ Then you are casting the Parts in a Tragedy that won't do.

_Apollo._ How, Sir! Was it not written by _Shakespear_, and was
not _Shakespear_ one of the greatest Genius's that ever lived?

_Ground._ No, Sir, _Shakespear_ was a pretty Fellow, and said some
things that only want a little of my licking to do well enough; King
_John_, as now writ, will not do----But a Word in your Ear, I will make
him do.

_Apollo._ How?

_Ground._ By Alteration, Sir; it was a Maxim of mine when I was at the
Head of Theatrical Affairs, that no Play, tho' ever so good, would do
without Alteration."--"Historical Register," act iii. sc. 1.]


[Footnote 210: These appearances took place on January 12th, 13th, and
14th, 1741.]


[Footnote 211: Fondlewife's pet name for his wife Lætitia.]


[Footnote 212: Lætitia's pet name for Fondlewife. See vol. i. page 206.]

[Footnote 213: An allusion to his own phrase in the Preface to "The
Provoked Husband." See vol. i. page 51.]


[Footnote 214: The name "Susannah Maria" naturally suggests Susanna
Maria Arne, the wife of Theo. Cibber; but the anecdote cannot refer
to her, because she was married in 1734, some years before Cibber
began his "Apology."]


[Footnote 215: Davies ("Dram. Misc.," iii. 501) says: "Mr. Garrick asked
him [Cibber] if he had not in his possession, a comedy or two of his own
writing.--'What then?' said Cibber.--'I should be glad to have the
honour of bringing it into the world.'--'Who have you to act it?'--'Why,
there are (said Garrick) Clive and Pritchard, myself, and some others,'
whom he named.--'No! (said the old man, taking a pinch of snuff, with
great nonchalance) it won't do.'" Davies (iii. 502) relates how Garrick
drew on himself a rebuke from Cibber. Discussing in company the old
school, "Garrick observed that the old style of acting was banishing the
stage, and would not go down. 'How do you know? (said Cibber); you never
tried it.'"]


[Footnote 216: "Papal Tyranny in the Reign of King John."

  KING JOHN                               Mr. Quin.
  ARTHUR, his Nephew                      Miss J. Cibber.
  SALISBURY                               Mr. Ridout.
  PEMBROKE                                Mr. Rosco.
  ARUNDEL                                 Mr. Anderson.
  FALCONBRIDGE                            Mr. Ryan.
  HUBERT                                  Mr. Bridgewater.
  KING PHILIP        }                  { Mr. Hale.
  LEWIS the Dauphin  }  of France       { Mr. Cibber, Jun.
  MELUN, a Nobleman  }                  { Mr. Cashell.
  PANDULPH, Legate from Pope Innocent     Mr. Cibber, Sen.
  ABBOT     }  of Angiers               { Mr. Gibson.
  GOVERNOR  }                           { Mr. Carr.
  LADY CONSTANCE                          Mrs. Pritchard.
  BLANCH, Niece to King John              Mrs. Bellamy.]

[Footnote 217: "_On_ CIBBER'S _Declaration that he will have the last
Word with Mr. POPE._

  QUOTH _Cibber_ to _Pope_, tho' in Verse you foreclose,
  I'll have the last Word, for by G--d I'll write Prose.
  Poor _Colley_, thy reas'ning is none of the strongest,
  For know, the last Word is the Word that lasts longest."
                          "The Summer Miscellany," 1742.]


[Footnote 218: This play was produced at Drury Lane, 16th January, 1717;
and the performance of "The Rehearsal" referred to took place on the 7th
February.]


[Footnote 219: The Earl of Warwick was the young nobleman, and it is
said in Dillworth's "Life of Pope" that "the late Commissioner Vaughan"
was the other gentleman.]


[Footnote 220: "But Pope's irascibility prevailed, and he resolved to
tell the whole English world that he was at war with Cibber; and, to
show that he thought him no common adversary, he prepared no common
vengeance; he published a new edition of the 'Dunciad,' in which he
degraded Theobald from his painful pre-eminence, and enthroned Cibber in
his stead."--Johnson's "Life of Pope."]


[Footnote 221: "Unhappily the two heroes were of opposite characters,
and Pope was unwilling to lose what he had already written; he has
therefore depraved his poem by giving to Cibber the old books, the old
pedantry, and the sluggish pertinacity of Theobald."--Johnson's "Life of
Pope."]


[Footnote 222: See _ante_, p. 272.]


[Footnote 223: It has been generally stated that Cibber died on 12th
December, 1757, but "The Public Advertiser" of Monday, 12th December,
announces his death as having occurred "Yesterday morning." The
"Gentleman's Magazine" and the "London Magazine," in their issues for
December, 1757, give the 11th as the date.]


[Footnote 224: Mr. Laurence Hutton, in his "Literary Landmarks of
London" (p. 54), gives the following interesting particulars regarding
Cibber's last resting-place: "Cibber was buried by the side of his
father and mother, in a vault under the Danish Church, situated in
Wellclose Square, Ratcliff Highway (since named St. George Street). This
church, according to an inscription placed over the doorway, was built
in 1696 by Caius Gabriel Cibber himself, by order of the King of
Denmark, for the use of such of his Majesty's subjects as might visit
the port of London. The church was taken down some years ago (1868-70),
and St. Paul's Schools were erected on its foundation, which was left
intact. Rev. Dan. Greatorex, Vicar of the Parish of St. Paul, Dock
Street, in a private note written in the summer of 1883, says:--

"'Colley Cibber and his father and mother were buried in the vault of
the old Danish Church. When the church was removed, the coffins were all
removed carefully into the crypt under the apse, and then bricked up. So
the bodies are still there. The Danish Consul was with me when I moved
the bodies. The coffins had perished except the bottoms. I carefully
removed them myself personally, and laid them side by side at the back
of the crypt, and covered them with earth.'"]


[Footnote 225: Shakespeare's "Richard III." was produced at the Lyceum
Theatre on 29th January, 1877. It was announced as "strictly the
original text, without interpolations, but simply with such omissions
and transpositions as have been found essential for dramatic
representation." In Richard Mr. Irving's great powers are seen to
special advantage.

The cast of Cibber's play in 1700 was--

  KING HENRY VI., _designed for_    Mr. Wilks.
  EDWARD, PRINCE OF WALES           Mrs. Allison.
  RICHARD, DUKE OF YORK             Miss Chock.
  RICHARD, DUKE OF GLOUCESTER       Mr. Cibber.
  DUKE OF BUCKINGHAM                Mr. Powel.
  LORD STANLEY                      Mr. Mills.
  DUKE OF NORFOLK                   Mr. Simpson.
  RATCLIFF                          Mr. Kent.
  CATESBY                           Mr. Thomas.
  HENRY, EARL OF RICHMOND           Mr. Evans.
  OXFORD                            Mr. Fairbank.
  QUEEN ELIZABETH                   Mrs. Knight.
  LADY ANN                          Mrs. Rogers.
  CICELY                            Mrs. Powel.]


[Footnote 226: A beautiful Portfolio of Sketches of Mr. Daly's Company
has been published, in which is a portrait of Miss Rehan as Hypolita,
with a critical note by Mr. Brander Matthews.]


[Footnote 227: This is a specimen of that commonest of blunders, the
confusing of the dates of the first month or two of the year. The edict
was issued February, 1647-8, that is, 1648. What Bellchambers calls the
"subsequent" October was therefore the preceding October. (L.)]


[Footnote 228: See "Historia Histrionica."]


[Footnote 229: Nell Gwyn made her first appearance not later than 1665.
Pepys, on the 3rd of April, 1665, mentions "Pretty, witty Nell, at the
King's House." (L.)]


[Footnote 230: Should be for the remainder of his life. (L.)]


[Footnote 231: Vide Davies's "Dramatic Miscellanies," vol. iii. p. 264.


Another anecdote of the same kind is found in a "Life of the late famous
comedian, J. Haynes," 8vo. 1701, which, as it preserves a characteristic
trait of this valuable actor, is worth repeating.

"About this time [1673] there happened a small pick between Mr. Hart and
Jo, upon the account of his late negotiation in France,{A} and there
spending so much money to so little purpose, or, as I may more properly
say, to no purpose at all.

    {A} Soon after the theatre in Drury-lane was burnt down, Jan.
    1671-2, Haynes had been sent to Paris by Mr. Hart and Mr.
    Killegrew, to examine the machinery employed in the French
    Operas.--_Malone._

"There happened to be one night a play acted, called 'Cataline's
Conspiracy,' wherein there was wanting a great number of senators. Now
Mr. Hart being chief of the house, would oblige Jo to dress for one of
these senators, although his salary, being 50_s._ per week, freed him
from any such obligation. But Mr. Hart, as I said before, being sole
governor of the playhouse, and at a small variance with Jo, commands it,
and the other must obey.

"Jo being vexed at the slight Mr. Hart had put upon him, found out this
method of being revenged on him. He gets a Scaramouch dress, a large
full ruff, makes himself whiskers from ear to ear, puts on his head a
long Merry-Andrew's cap, a short pipe in his mouth, a little
three-legged stool in his hand; and in this manner follows Mr. Hart on
the stage, sets himself down behind him, and begins to smoke his pipe,
laugh, and point at him, which comical figure put all the house in an
uproar, some laughing, some clapping, and some hollaing. Now Mr. Hart,
as those who knew him can aver, was a man of that exactness and grandeur
on the stage, that let what would happen, he'd never discompose himself,
or mind any thing but what he then represented; and had a scene fallen
behind him, he would not at that time look back, to have seen what was
the matter; which Jo knowing, remained still smoking. The audience
continued laughing, Mr. Hart acting, and wondering at this unusual
occasion of their mirth; sometimes thinking it some disturbance in the
house, again that it might be something amiss in his dress: at last
turning himself toward the scenes, he discovered Jo in the aforesaid
posture; whereupon he immediately goes off the stage, swearing he would
never set foot on it again, unless Jo was immediately turned out of
doors, which was no sooner spoke, but put in practice."]


[Footnote 232: Bellamente is not a female, but a male character. By
referring to the mention of this matter in the "Historia Histrionica,"
it will at once be seen how Bellchambers's blunder was caused. (L.)]


[Footnote 233: "My old friends Hart and Mohun, the one by his natural
and proper force, the other _by his great skill and art_, never
failed to send me home full of such ideas as affected my behaviour,
and made me insensibly more courteous and human to my friends and
acquaintance."--"Tatler," No. 99.]


[Footnote 234: The following extract from a pamphlet, called "A
Comparison between the Two Stages," will amply evince the popular
estimation in which Hart and Mohun were held:--

"The late Duke of Monmouth was a good judge of dancing, and a good
dancer himself; when he returned from France, he brought with him St
André, then the best master in France. The duke presented him to the
stage, the stage to gratify the duke admitted him, and the duke himself
thought he would prove a mighty advantage to them, though he had nobody
else of his opinion. A day was published in the bills for him to dance,
but not one more, besides the duke and his friends came to see him; the
reason was, the plays were then so good, and Hart and Mohun acted them
so well, that the audience would not be interrupted, for so short a
time, though 'twas to see the best master in Europe."

I suspect that Mohun was born about the year 1625, from the circumstance
of his acting _Bellamente_, the heroine of Shirley's "Love's Cruelty,"
in 1640, when he had probably reached, and could hardly have exceeded,
the age of fifteen years. (B.)

As has been before pointed out, Bellamente is not a female character. He
is the husband of Clariana, and could scarcely be played by a boy. If
Mohun represented the character in 1640, he must have been considerably
older than Bellchambers imagines. (L.)]


[Footnote 235: This account, though generally rejected, appears to me
more deserving of credit than Chetwood's notoriously neglectful habits,
in gleaning intelligence, or making assertion.]


[Footnote 236: "I have lately been told by a Gentleman who has
frequently seen Mr. _Betterton_ perform this Part of _Hamlet_, that he
has observ'd his Countenance (which was naturally ruddy and sanguin) in
this Scene of the fourth Act where his Father's Ghost appears, thro' the
violent and sudden Emotions of Amazement and Horror, turn instantly on
the Sight of his Father's Spirit, as pale as his Neckcloath, when every
Article of his Body seem'd to be affected with a Tremor inexpressible;
so that, had his Father's Ghost actually risen before him; he could not
have been seized with more real Agonies; and this was felt so strongly
by the Audience, that the Blood seemed to shudder in their Veins
likewise, and they in some Measure partook of the Astonishment and
Horror, with which they saw this excellent Actor affected."--"Laureat,"
1740, p. 31.

----"I have seen a pamphlet, written above forty years ago, by an
intelligent man, who greatly extols the performance of Betterton in this
last scene, commonly called the closet scene."--Davies's "Dramatic
Miscellanies," vol. iii. p. 112, ed. 1784.]


[Footnote 237: In Gildon's "Life," &c., 1710, there is a copy of Rowe's
"Epilogue," stated to have been spoken by Mrs. Barry "at the Theatre
Royal, in Drury-lane, April the 7th," and this mistaken date has been
perpetuated by the "Biographia Dramatica." [In spite of this
contradiction of Gildon and the "Biographia Dramatica," they are right,
and Bellchambers is wrong. The date was 7th April, 1709.]]


[Footnote 238: This lady, who was remarkably handsome, married Boman,
the actor.]


[Footnote 239: This curiosity, I believe, is still preserved in the Earl
of Mansfield's mansion, at Caen-wood.]


[Footnote 240: Pope, in the postscript of a letter to Cromwell, writes
thus:--

"----This letter of death puts me in mind of poor Betterton's, over whom
I would have this sentence of Tully for an epitaph, which will serve for
his moral as well as his theatrical capacity:

  '_Vitæ bene actæ jucundissima est recordatio._'"

In another part of his correspondence, he intimates that Betterton's
"remains" had been taken care of, alluding, I suppose, to this
post-humous forgery.]


[Footnote 241: Mrs. Brown swore she went herself, but appears to have
been mistaken.]


[Footnote 242: Bellchambers seems to have had a craze on the subject of
Mrs. Bracegirdle's character, which he vilifies on every possible
opportunity. His opinion here appears to me very questionable.]


[Footnote 243: Sandford played Worm in "The Cutter of Coleman Street" as
early as 1661. (L.)]


[Footnote 244: Cibber says that Nokes, Mountfort, and Leigh, "died about
the same year," _viz._ 1692.]


[Footnote 245: "Roscius Anglicanus."]


[Footnote 246: I find, on looking over the "Roscius Anglicanus,"
that _Trinculo_ is termed _Duke Trinculo_, in a short reference
to the "Tempest."]


[Footnote 247: "Dramatic Miscellanies," vol. ii. p. 323.]


[Footnote 248: "That Verbruggen and Cibber did not accord, is plainly
insinuated by the author of the Laureat. It was known that the former
would resent an injury, and that the latter's valour was entirely
passive. The temper of Verbruggen may be known, from a story which I
have often been told by the old comedians as a certain fact, and which
found its way into some temporary publication.

"Verbruggen, in a dispute with one of King Charles's illegitimate sons,
was so far transported by sudden anger, as to strike him, and call him a
son of a whore. The affront was given, it seems, behind the scenes of
Drury-lane. Complaint was made of this daring insult on a nobleman, and
Verbruggen was told, he must either not act in London, or submit
publicly to ask the nobleman's pardon. During the time of his being
interdicted acting, he had engaged himself to Betterton's theatre. He
consented to ask pardon, on liberty granted to express his submission in
his own terms. He came on the stage dressed for the part of _Oroonoko_,
and, after the usual preface, owned that he had called the Duke of St.
A. a son of a whore. 'It is true,' said Verbruggen, 'and I am sorry for
it.' On saying this, he invited the company present to see him act the
part of _Oroonoko_, at the theatre in Lincoln's-inn-fields."--"Dramatic
Miscellanies," vol. iii. p. 447.]


[Footnote 249: "A fellow with a crackt voice: he clangs his words as if
he spoke out of a broken drum."--"Comparison, &c.," 1702.]


[Footnote 250: "History of the Stage," p. 136.]

[Footnote 251: There was also a David Williams; perhaps the person who
played the _2d Grave-digger_, in "Hamlet." (B.) [Genest gives this part
to Joseph Williams.]]


[Footnote 252: "Dramatic Miscellanies," vol. iii. p. 209.]


[Footnote 253: "Life of Betterton," p. 16.]


[Footnote 254: Downes expressly mentions her as Mrs. Betterton for
_Camilla_ [should be _Portia_], in the "Adventures of Five Hours," 1663;
and she also acted by that name, a few months after, in the "Slighted
Maid." This error originated with the "Biographia Britannica," but Mr.
Jones, the late slovenly editor of the book alluded to, had ample means
to correct it. (B.)]


[Footnote 255: "You'll have Pinkethman and Bullock helping out Beaumont
and Fletcher."--Tatler, No. 89.]


[Footnote 256: "Tatler," No. 201.]


[Footnote 257: "Dramatic Miscellanies," vol. ii. p. 133.]


[Footnote 258: "Dramatic Miscellanies," vol. iii. p. 465.]


[Footnote 259: It is supposed that she was engaged in a tender
intercourse with Farquhar, and was the "Penelope" of his amatory
correspondence. She lived successively with Arthur Mainwaring, one of
the most accomplished characters of his age, and General Churchill; by
each of whom she had a son.]


[Footnote 260: This fact is firmly denied in Cibber's "Lives of
the Poets," and with a pointed reference to Johnson's admission of
it.--Vol. v. p. 33.]


[Footnote 261: Savage, however, was _not_ silent; though he abstained
from putting his name to the poem, he indisputably wrote upon Mrs.
Oldfield's death. It is preserved in Chetwood's "History."]


[Footnote 262: What can be more ridiculous than the following anecdote?

Mrs. Oldfield happened to be in some danger in a Gravesend boat, and
when the rest of the passengers lamented their imagined approaching
fate, she, with a conscious dignity, told them their deaths would be
only a private loss;--"But I am a public concern."--"Dramatic
Miscellanies," vol. i. p. 227.]


[Footnote 263: The bitterness of Pope's muse subsided upon no occasion,
where the name of Mrs. Oldfield might be aptly introduced. Thus in the
"Sober Advice from Horace," one of his inedited poems:

  Engaging Oldfield! who, with grace and ease,
  Could join the arts to ruin and to please.]



      *      *      *      *      *      *



Transcription note:

The original spelling and grammar have been retained. Footnotes have been
moved to the end of this work. Minor adjustments to hyphenation and other
punctuation have been made without annotation.

Typographical Changes to this volume:

  pg 44  Sir Thomas Shipwith[Skipwith], had trusted
  pg 103 of so grave and stanch[staunch] a Senator
  pg 113 have been in our Power so throughly[thoroughly] to
  pg 159 he expresly[expressly] wrote for him
  pg 241 upon the Model of Monfort[Mountfort not corrected]
  pg 349 The "famous Mr. Antony[Anthony] Leigh,"
  pg 370 nor can their[there] be a doubt
  pg 289 Added heading [Bibliography of Colley Cibber]
  fn 26  two of these parts belonged to Skipwith[Shipwith]





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