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Original Actors in Shakspeare's Dramas.
himself again, until the play was done. He had all This personage, who appeared at the head of the the parts of an excellent orator, animating his words King's Servants, in the royal license of 1603, bas with speaking, and speech with action; his auditors escaped the notice of the historian of our stage ; being never more delighted than when he spake, and, in truth, we know scarcely anything of bimn.
nor more sorry than when he held bis peace; yet, Fletcher was, probably, of St. Saviour's, South
even then, he was an excellent actor still; never wark, where several families of that name resided, failing in his part when he had done speaking, but as may be learnt from the parish register. He was
with his looks and gesture maintaining it still to the placed before Shakspeare and Richard Burbadge in height." The testimony of sir Richard Baker is king James's license, as much, perliaps, by acci to the same purpose; he pronounces him to have dent as design. Augustine Phillips, when he made
been “such an actor as no age must ever look to his will, in May, 1605, bequeathed to his fellow: Remains we find an epitaph on this tragedian more
see the like.” In Philpot's Additions to Camden's Laurence Fletcher, twenty shillings. fellow of Phillips and of Shakspeare was buried in concise than even that on Ben Jonson, being only St. Saviour's church, on the 12th of September,
“Exit Burbadge.” The following also appears in a 1608. What plays of our author's he performed in
manuscript in the British Museuin: is uncertain, nor does it appear whether he excelled “Epitaph on Mr. Richard Burbage, the Player. in tragedy or comedy.
“ This life's a play, scean'd out by natures arte,
Where every man hath his allotted parte.
This man hathe now (as many more can tell)
Ended his part, and he hath acted well. The brother of the poet, was a performer at the
The play now ended, think his grave to be
The detíring howse of his sad tragedie; Globe, lived in St. Saviour's, and was buried in the Where to give his fame this, be not afraid, church of that parish. The entry in the register runs
Here lies the best tragedian ever plaid." thus : "1607, December 31, [was buried) Edmond
JOHN HEMINGES Shakspeare, a player, in the church.” Nothing more Is said by Roberts, the player, to have been a is known of bin ;'stimulated, most probably, by his tragedian, and, in conjunction with Condell, to bave brother's success, he came to the metropolis and followed the business of printing, but his authority attached himself to the theatre; but he died young, is doubtful. As early as November, 1597, he apand seems to have made little progress in his pro- pears to have been the manager of the Lord-cham. fession.
berlain's Company. This station, for which bis RICHARD BURBADGE,
prudence qualítied him, he held, probably, during The most celebrated tragedian of our author's originally a Warwickshire lud, a shire which was
forty years. There is reason to believe that he was time, was the son of James Burbadge, who was
produced so many players and poets; the Buralso an actor, and, perhaps, a countryman of Shak
badges, the Shakspeares, the Greens, and the speare's. He lived in Holywell-street, in the parish
Harts. Of Heminges' cast of characters little is of St. Leonard, Shoreditch ; from which it may be supposed that he originally played at the Curtain first representative of Falstafl. He was adopted
known; there is only a tradition that he was the Theatre, which was in that neighbourhood. It is by king James, on bis accession, as one of his singular that he should have resided, from the year
theatrical servants; and was ranked the fifth in the 1600 to his death, in a place so distant from the royal license of 1603. He bad the bonour to be Blackfriars playhouse, and still further from the Globe, in which theatres he acted during the whole editor of Shakspeare's works. He died at the age
remembered in Shakspeare's will, and was the first of that time. By bis wife, Winifred, he had four daughters, two of whom were baptized by the wame
of seventy-five, in the parish of St. Mary, Alder. of Juliet. His fondness for the name of Juliet,
manbury; and was buried, according to the register, perhaps, arose from his having been the original served, devises considerable property, and provides
on the 12th of October, 1630. His will, still prethe 13th of March, 1019, and was buried in the tions and fellows. Romeo in our author's play. Barbadge died about
various kind tokens of remembrance for his relachurch of St. Leonard, Shoreditch. His will is still extant in the Prerogative Oflice, but it contains no
AUGUSTINE PHILLIPS thing remarkable. Richard Burbadge is introduced Was placed next to Barbadge in the royal in person in an old play called The Returne from license of 1603. He was an author as well as an Parnassus, and instructs a Cambridge scholar how actor, and left behind him some ludicrous rhymes, to play the part of King Richard the Third, in which which were entered in the Stationers' books in 1593, character Burbadge was greatly admired. That be and were entitled The Jigg of the Slippers. He represented this part is proved by bishop Corbet, is supposed to bave performed characters in low who, in his Iter Boreale, speaking of his host at life. Whatever he might have been in the theatre, Leicester, tells us,
he was certainly a respectable man in the world. " When he would have said, king Richard died,
He amassed considerable property. He died at And call'd a horse, a horse, he Burbage cry'd." He, probably, also enacted the clwracters of King at his dying request, in the chancel of the church
Mortlake, in Surrey, in May, 1605, and was buried John, Richard II. Henry V. Timon, Brutus, Corio- of that parish, leaving his wife, Anne, executris o Janus, Macbeth, Lear, and Othello. He was one of the principal sharers or proprietors of the Globe married again, John Heminges, Richard Burbadge
his will; with this proviso, however, that if she and Blackfriars theatres; and was of such emi William Sly, and Timothie Whithorne, should b nence, that in a letter, preserved in the British
his executors. His widow did marry again, anMuseum, written in the year 1613, the actors at
John Heminges immediately proved the will, o the Globe are called Burbadge's Company. Fleck noe writes thas of him in his Short Discourse of the Phillips had reposed in him.
the 16th of May, 1607, and assumed the trast whic English Stage, 1664: “He was a delightful Proteus, so wholly transforming himself into bis parts,
WILLIAM KEMPE and putting off himself with his cloaths, as he never Was the successor of Tarleton.
“ Here I mo (not so much as in the tyring-house) assumed needs reinember Tarleton," says Heywood in b
Apology for Actors, "in bis time gracious with the Nothing: he, probably, acted such parts as required queen bis soveraigne, and in the people's general dry hamour rather than splendid declamation. He applause; to whom succeeded William Kempe, as was recognised as a fellow by Augustine Phillips, Fell in the favour of her majestie, as in the opinion in 1605, and distinguished as a friend by a legacy and good thoaghts of the general audience.” From of twenty shillings. He lived among the other the ito. editions of some of our author's plays, we players, and among the fashionable persons of that learn that he was the original performer of Dog- period, in Holywell-street. The exact date of bis berry, in Much Ado about Nothing, and of Peter, death is unknown, but he was buried, says the reia Romeo and Juliet. From an old comedy, called gister of St. Leonard's, Shoreditch, on the 13th of The Return from Parnassus, we may collect that March, 1618, three days before the great Burbadge be was the original Jastice Shallow ; and the con was laid in the same cemetery. temporary writers inform us that he usually acted
JOHN LOWIN the part of a clown, in which, like Tarleton, he was celebrated for his extemporal wit. Launcelot, if the date on bis picture in the Ashmolean Mu
Was a principal performer in Shakspeare's plays. in the Merchant of Venice ; Touchstone, in As You Like It; Launce, in The Two Gentlemen of Verona; Wright mentions in his Historia Histrionica, that
seum at Oxford, is accurate, he was born in 1576. and the Grave-digger, in Hamlet; were, probably, before the wars, he used to act the part of Falalso performed by this comedian. He was an agthor as well as an actor. So early as the year he means during the reign of king Charles I. from
' with mighty applause;" but, without doubt, 1589. Kempe's comic talents seem to have been
1625 to 1611. When our poet's King Henry IV. highly estimated; for an old pamphlet called An
was first exhibited, Lowin was but twenty-one Almond for a Parrot, written by Thomas Nashe, is dedicated “to that most comicall and conceited
years old; it is, therefore, probable that Heminges,
or some other actor, originally represented the fat cavaleire monsieur du Kempe, jestmonger, and vice-gerent generall to the ghost of Dick Tarle- knight, and that several years afterwards the part
was given to Lowin. Roberts, the player, informs toa." From a passage in one of Decker's tracts, it
us, that he also performed King Henry VIII. and may be presumed that this comedian was dead in the year 1609. In Braithwaites Remains, 1618, be is certainly erroneous, since it appears from more
Hamlet; but with respect to the latter, his account is thus commemorated :
ancient writers, that Joseph Taylor was the first * Cpse Kempe and his Morice, with his Epitaph. *Welcome from Norwich, Kempe: all joy to see
representative of that character. Lowin is introThy safe return moriscoed lustily.
duced in the Induction to Marston's Malecontent, Bai cat, alas: bow soone's thy morice done,
and he and Taylor are noticed in a copy of verses, Whea pipe and tabor, all thy friends be gone; And leave thee Dow to dance the second part
written in the year 1632, soon after the appearance Wie feeble naturr, bot with nimble art!
of Jonson's Magnetic Lady, as the two most Then all the triumphs fraught with strains of mirth, Shall be caz'd up within a chest of earth:
esteemed actors of that time: Shall be they are; thou hast danc'd thee out of breath:
“Let Lowin cease, and Taylor scorn to touch And now must make thy parting dance with death."
The loathed stage, for thou hast made it such,"
Though Heminges and Condell had an interest This actor likewise played the part of a clown. in the theatre to the time of their death, yet they He died before the year 1600. He is mentioned in ceased to act about the year 1623; and, in the next an old book, called Hamour's Ordinarie, where a year, Lowin and Taylor took the management. Man may be verie merie and exceeding well used | After the theatres were suppressed, Lowin befor Sixpence.
came miserably poor; and, in his later years, he ...... What meanes Singer then,
kept an inn, the Three Pigeons at Brentford. He And Pope, the clowne, to speak so borish, when They counterfaite the clownes upon the stage ?"
died in London, aged eighty-three, and was buried GEORGE BRYAN,
in the ground belonging to the parish of St. MarNOTHING is known of this performer, except
tin's in the Fields, March 18, 1658. that in the exhibition of the Seven Deadly Sins he
SAMUEL CROSS. represented the Earl of Warwick. He was cer This actor was, probably, dead before the year tainly on the stage previously to the year 1588. 1600; for Heywood, who had bimself written for HENRY CONDELL,
the stage before that time, says he had never seen
him. Is said by Roberts, the player, to have been a
ALEXANDER COOKE. comedian; but he does not mention any authority for this assertion but stage tradition. In Webster's
It appears that this actor was the heroine of the Duchess of Malfy, he originally acted the part of stage, even before the year 1588. He acted as a the Cardinal ; and, as when that play was printed it is thence reasonably supposed, that he repre
woman in Jonson's Sejanus, and in The Fox; and in 1623, another
performer had taken the character, sented the ligliter females of Shakspeare's dramas. it is probable that he had retired from the stage Alexander Cooke was recollected as a fellow by before that time. He still, however, continued to bare an interest in the theatre, being mentioned with Augustine Phillips, and distinguished as an intimate the other players to whom a license was granted by a legacy. by Charles I. in 1625. He had, probably, a con SAMUEL GILBURNE, unknown. siderable portion of the shares or property in the
ROBERT ARMIN Globe and Blackfriars theatres. This actor, as well PERFORMED in The Alchymist, in 1610, and was is Heminges, lived in Aldermanbury. He is alive in 1611, some verses having been addressed to bovourably noticed in Shak speare's will, and was him in that year by John Davies of Hereford, from che of the editors of his dramas.
which he appears to bave occasionally performed WILLIAM SLY
the part of the clown or fool : Was joined with Shakspeare in the license "To honest, gamesome, Robert Armine,
Who tickles the spleene like a harmless vermin." granted in 1603. He is introduced personally in
“Armine, what shall I say of thee, but this, the Indaction to Marston's Malecontent, 1604; and Thou art a fool and knave; both ---fic, I miss, from bis there using an affected phrase of Osrick's
And wrong thce much; sith thou indeed art neither,
Although in shew thou playest both together." ia Hamlet, we may collect that he performed that
He was the author of a comedy called The Two part. He died before the year 1612.
Maids of More-clack, 1609; also of a book called RICHARD COWLEY
A Nest of Ninnies, simply of themselves without Is said to have been an actor of a low class, Compound, 1608; and, at Stationers' Hall, was baving taken the part of Verges, in Mach Ado about entered, in the same year, a book called Phantasma,
"........ We had
the Italian Taylor, and his Boy, made by Mr. | certain perquisites annexed to this office, and a Armin, servant to his majesty. He was certainly salary of sixpence a day. When he was in attendance one of the Lord-chamberlain's Players at the acces upon the king, he had a salary of £3: 6s : 8d. per sion of king James, and was received, with greater month. Taylor died in the year 1653, and was actors, into the royal company, As a fellow, buried at Richmond. He must have been nearly Armin was kindly remembered by Phillips, who seventy years of age at his death. He is said by left bim a legacy of twenty shillings.
some to have painted the portrait of Shakspeare, WILLIAM OSTLER
now in the possession of the duke of Chandos; but,
if genuine, it is much more likely that Barbadge Had been one of the Children of the Chapel,
was the artist, for there is a picture in Dulwich having acted in Jonson's Poetaster, together with College, wbich he is known to have painted. Field and Underwood, in 1601, and is said to have performed women's parts. In 1610, both he and
ROBERT BENFIELD Underwood acted as men in Jonson's Alchymist. Was but a second-rate actor. He acted the King, In Davies's Scourge of Folly, there are some verses in the Deserving Favourite; Ladialaus, in The addressed to him with this title: “ To the Roscius Picture; and Junius Rusticus, in The Roman Actor. of these times, William Ostler.” He acted An He was living in 1617, being one of the players tonio, in Webster's Duchess of Malfy, in 1623 ; who signed the dedication to the folio edition of but the period of bis death is uncertain.
Fletcher's plays, published in that year.
This actor performed female characters: in the · Both these actors had been Children of the Seven Deadly Sins he played Aspatia ; but in 1611 Chapel; and, probably, at the Globe and Black | be had arrived to an age which entitled bim to refriars theatres, performed female parts. Field, present male parts ; for in The Second Maiden's when he became too manly to take the characters Tragedie, which was produced in that year, be of women, played the part of Bussy d'Ambois, in performed the Tyrant. Chapman's play of that name. From the preface to
RICHARD ROBINSON one edition of it, it appears that he was dead in
Acted in Jonson's Cataline in 1611; and from a 1611. Nothing more is known of John Underwood but passage in The Devil is an Ass, 1616, it appears
that at that period he usually took female characters: that he performed the part of Delio, in The Duchess of Malfy, and that he died about the year 1624.
The merriest supper of it there, one night
The gentleman's landlady invited him
To a gossip's feast : now he, sir, brought Dick Robibson Was one of the unnamed associates of Sbakspeare, Drest like a lawyer's wife." Burbadge, and Heminges, at the Globe, and was In The Second Maiden's Tragedie he performed one of the original actors in our bard's dramas. He, the Lady of Govianus. In The Deserving Favourite, too, represented women, as early as 1589, and 1629, he played Orsinio ; and in The Wild Goose acted Rodope, in Tarleton's Plait of the Seven Chase, Le Castre. Hart, the celebrated actor, was Deadlie Sinns. He performed in tbe Alchymist, originally his boy or apprentice. In the civil wars in the year 1610. Tooley, from some expressions he served in the king's army, and was killed in an in his will, seems to have been the servant or ap- engagement by Harrison, who was afterwards prentice of Burbadge, to whose last testament he hanged at Charing.cross. Harrison refused him was a witness. Tooley made bis own will on the quarter after he had laid down bis arms, and shot 3d of June, 1623; he died soon after, in the house him in the head, saying at the same time, “ Corsed of Cuthbert Barbadge, in Holywell-street; to whose is he that doeth the work of the Lord negligently." wife, Elizabeth, the testator left a legacy of ten
JOHN SHANCKE pounds, "as a remembrance of his love, in respect
Was but in a low class; having performed the of her motherly care of him.” Tooley was a most benevolent man, while he bustled in the world
be in The Wild Goose Chase. He was an author as
Curate, in Fletcher's Scornful Lady; and Hillario, did many kind acts; and when he could no longer / well as an actor, having written a play called perform, he gave considerable legacies to the of St. Leonard's Shoreditch, and St. Giles's
Crip- Sbanke's Ordinary, which was acted at Blackfriars, plegate, which administer to the comfort of the
JOHN RICE. needy even to the present day.
Nothing is known of this player, except that WILLIAM ECCLESTONE.
be performed the Marquis of Pescara, an inconsiAll we know of this actor is from Ben Jonson's derable part in The Duchess of Malfy. He was, Alchymist, in which his name occurs, in the year perhaps, the brother of Stephen Rice, clerk, who 1610. It is highly probable, however, that he per is mentioned in the will of John Heminges. lorined in our author's plays.
We have thus enumerated all those performers JOSEPH TAYLOR.
who appear, with any certainty, to bave distinACCORDING to Downes, the prompter, he was guished themselves in the original productions of instructed by Shakspeare to play Hamlet; and Shakspeare's dramas. Of their real merits it is Wright, in his Historia Histrionica, says, " He impossible to speak; yet some of them, doubtless, performed that part incomparably well.” From the particularly Burbadge, Taylor, and Lowin, were remembrance of his performance of Hamlet, sir very excellent actors; and though the mechanical William Davenant is said to have conveyed his part of stage representations was, in their time, instructions to Mr. Betterton. He likewise played extremely imperfect, we may be certain that they Iago, and is highly commended by various contém were able to furnish the public of that age with an porary authors. In the year 1614, Taylor was at entertainment highly acceptable. The drama, inthe head of a distinct company of players, called deed, was much more a national pastime then than The Lady Elizabeth's Servants, but he soon returned at present, for it furnished a soarce of delight to to his old friends, and after the death of Burbadge, all ranks, and was highly patronised. In our own Heminges, and Condell, became manager of the more enlightened age, dicing, boxing, and horseKing's Company, in conjunction with Lowin and racing have superseded, among the higher classes, Swanston. In September, 1639, he was appointed the antiquated attractions of that stage, which Yeoman of the Revels in Ordinary to bis Majesty, Shakspeare, Jonson, and Massinger, illustrated by in the room of Mr. William Hunt; there were their transcendent genius.
Eminent Bp-gone Performers of Shakspeare's Characters.
pression, but opens into that warmth which be"BETTERTON(says Colley Cibber in his Apology) comes a man of virtue; yet this is the hasty spark was an actor, as Shakspeare was an author, both of anger which Brutus endeavours to excuse. Fithoat competitors; formed for the mutual as “Betterton had so just a sense of what was true sistance and illustration of each other's genius. or false applause, that I have heard bim say, that How Shakspeare wrote, all men who have a taste he never thought any kind of it equal to an attenfor natore may read, and know; but with bigher tive silence : that there were many ways of derapture would he still be read, could they conceive ceiving an audience into a loud one; but to keep bow Betterton played him. Then might they know them hushed and quiet, was an applause which the one was born alone to speak what the other only only truth and merit could arrive at, of which art knew to write. Could how Betterton spoke, be as there never was an equal master to himself. From Easily known as what he spoke, then might you see these various excellencies, he had so full a possesthe mose of Shakspeare in her triumph, with all sion of the esteem and regard of his auditors, that ber beanties in their best array, rising into real upon his entrance into every scene, he seemed to life and charming her bebolders. But, alas! since seize upon the eyes and ears of the giddy and inall this is so far out of the reach of description, advertent. To have talked or looked another way, bow shall I shew you Betterton? Should I, there would then bave been thought insensibility or igfore, tell you, that all the Othellos, Hamlets, norance. In all his soliloquies of moment, the Hotspars, Macbeths, and Brutus's, whom you may strong intelligence of his attitude and aspect, drew have seen since his time, have fallen far short of you into such an impatient gaze, and eager expechim? this still should give you no idea of bis parti- tation, that you almost imbibed the sentiment with calar excellence. Let as see, then, what a parti- your eyes, before the ear could reach it. I never cular comparison may do ; whether that may yet heard a line in tragedy come from Betterton, draw him nearer to you. You have seen a Ham- wherein my judgment, my ear, and my imaginaket, perhaps, who, on the first appearance of his tion were not fully satisfied; which, since his time father's spirit, has thrown bimself into all the I cannot equally say of any one actor whatsoever straining vociferations requisite to express rage That genius, which nature only gives, only can and fury, and the bouse has thundered with ap- complete an actor: this genius, then, was plause, though the misguided actor was all the strong in Betterton, that it shone out in every while (as Shakspeare terms it) tearing a passion speech and motion of bim. (Yet voice and person isto rags. I am the more bold to offer you this
are such necessary supports to it, that, by the particular instance, because the late Mr. Addison, multitude, they have been preferred to genius iti bile I sat by him, to see the scene acted, made self; or, at least, often mistaken for it.) Betterthe same observation; asking me, with some sur ton had a voice of that kind, wbich gave more prise, if I thoaght Hamlet should be in so violent spirit to terror, than to the softer passions; of a passion with the Ghost, which, though it might more strength than melody. The rage and jeahave astonished, it bad not provoked him? for you lousy of Othello became him better than the sighs may observe in this beautiful speech, the passion and tenderness of Castalio: for though in Castalio bever rises beyond an almost breathless astonish- he only 'excelled others, in Othello he excelled mest, or an impatience, limited by filial reverence, bimself; which you will easily believe, when you to inquire into the suspected wrongs that may have consider, that in spite of his complexion, Othello raised bim from the peaceful tomb, and a desire to has more natural beauties than the best actor can know, what a spirit so seemingly distressed, might find in all the magazines of poetry, to animate his vish or enjoin a sorrowful son to execute towards power, and delight his judgment with. bis fetare quiet in the grave. This was the light "The person of this excellent actor was suitable into which 'Betterton threw this scene, which he to his voice, more manly than sweet, not exceedopened with a pause of mute amazement; thening the middle stature, inclining to the corpulent; rising, slowly, to a solemn trembling voice, he of a serious and penetrating aspect; his limbs made the ghost eqaally terrible to the spectator as nearer the athletic than the delicate proportion; to himself; and, in the descriptive part of the na yet, however formed, there arose, from the bara toral emotions which the ghastly vision gave hiin, mony of the whole, a commanding view of mathe boldness of his expostulation was still governed jesty, which the fairer faced, or (as Shakspeare by decency,--manly, but not braving; his voice calls them,) the curled darlings of his time, ever Dever rising into that seeming outrage, or wild de wanted something to be equal masters of." fance of what be naturally revered. But, alas ! Betterton died in April, 1710. to preserve this medium between mouthing and meaning too little, to keep the attention more
. pleasingly awake, by a tempered spirit, than by Booth, with a very classical and highly immere vehemence of voice, is, of all the master- proved judgment, possessed all the natural powers strokes of an actor, the most difficult to reach. In of an actor in a very eminent degree. He was this nove yet bave equalled Betterton.
(says Victor) of a middle stature, five feet eight; " A farther excellence in Betterton was, that he his form rather inclining to the athletic, though would vary his spirit to the different characters he nothing clumsy or beavy; his air and deportment acted. Those wild impatient starts, that fierce naturally graceful, with a marking eye, and a and flashing fire, which he threw into Hotspur, manly sweetness in his countenance. His voice Lever came from the unruffled temper of his Bru was completely harmonious, from the softness of tas (for I have more than once seen a Brutus as the flute, to the extent of the trumpet : his attiwarm as a Hotspur). When the Betterton Brutus tudes were all picturesque; he was noble in his was provoked in bis dispute with Cassius, his designs, and happy in his execution.” His prinspirit lew only to his eye, bis steady look alone cipal parts in Sbakspeare's plays were, Othello, supplied that terror, which he disdained an intem- Lear, Brutus, and the Ghost in Hamlet. Cibber, perance in his voice should raise to. Thus, with a though sparing in bis praise of Booth, bighly comsettled dignity of contempt, like an unheeding mends his Othello :-"The master-piece of Booth rock, be repelled upon himself the foam of Cassius. (says he,) was his Othello; there he was most in Not bat in some part of this scene, where he re character, and seemed not more to animate him, proaches Cassius, his temper is not under this sup- ) self in it than bis spectators."
I'll not believe it."
Other contemporaries are more lavish in their | bat they wrote to those who had seen his performpraises of him in this part, and particularly in the ances, and are, for the most part, content with following passage :
general encomiums, from which little or nothing “This fellow's of exceeding honesty,
can be gleaned, as to his distinctive excellencies. And kuows all
qualities, with a learned spirit, of human dcalings."
We shall proceed to make such selections from This he spoke with his eye fixed upon Tago's exit, contemporary writers as will best serve to illas
trate bis felicitous conception, and wonderful perafter a long pause, as if weighing the general cha- formance of Sbakspeare's characters. Richard III. racter of the man in his own mind; and in a low
was bis first triumph. “The moment he appeared, tone of voice. Then starting into anger
(says Murphy) the character he assumed was visible “ ........ If I do find her haggard, Though that her jesses were my dear heart-strings,
in his countenance; the power of his imagination I'd whistle her off, and let her down the wind
was such, that he transformed himself into the very To prey at fortune."
man; the passions rose in rapid succession, and, beThen a pause, as if to raminate.
sore he uttered a word, were legible in every feaHaply, for I am black, And have not those soft parts of conversation
ture of that expressive face. His look, his voice, That chamberers have."
his attitude, changed with every sentiment. The Then a look of amazement at seeing Desdemona, rage and rapidity with which he enauciated the voice and countenance softened into love:
• The north---what do they in the north, "If she be false, 0, then beav'n mocks itself!
When they should serve their sovereign in the west?
made a most astonishing impression. His soliloquy “ In this, and all the distressful passages of in the tent scene, seemed to discover his very soul. heart-breaking anguish and jealousy, (says Victor) Every thing he described was almost reality; the I have frequently seen all the men, susceptible of spectator thought he heard the hum of either army the tender passions, in tears.”
from camp to camp, and steed threatening steed. Booth's excellence in Brutus, was the effect of When he started from his dream, he was a spectaa fine study of the part, which he acquired by his cle of borror. He called out in a manly tone, taste and intimate knowledge of the classics. Give me another horse.' He paused, and, with In tbe tent scene, when Cassius reiterates,
a countenance of distress, advanced, exclaiming “What, durst not tempt him ?”
in a tone of distress, · Bind up my wounds;' and and Brutus in reply says,
then falling on his knees, said, in the most piteous “For your life, you durst not;"
accent, Have mercy, heaven!' In all this, and Quin spoke the last line with a look of anger and indeed through the whole representation, we saw a tone of voice approaching to rage ; bat Booth, an exact imitation of nature. on the contrary, looking stedfastly at Cassius, “ King Lear was Garrick's most perfect effort ; pronounced these words not much raised above a in this part he has confessedly remained without whisper, yet with such a firmness of tone, as al- equal or rival. He was transformed into a feeble ways produced the most powerful effect. Again, old man, still, however, retaining an air of royalty. when Brutus says,
He bad no sudden starts, no violent gesticulations; “When I spoke this, I was ill-temper'd too,"
his movements were slow and languid, misery was he prepared the audience so for the cause of his ill depicted in every feature of bis face ; he moved temper, by shewing that he had some private his head in the most deliberate manner; his eyes
were fixed, or if they turned to any one near bim, griefs at heart, as to call up the utmost attention ; but when he afterwards acquaints them with the
he made a pause, and fixed his look on the person
after much delay; his features at the same time excause, “No man bears sorrow better--Portia's dead,»
pressing what he was going to say before he uttered the expressive pause before he spoke the last
a word. Daring the whole performance, he prewords, and his heart-piercing manner in speaking ation of mind from every idea, but that of his an
sented an aspect of extreme grief, and a total alienthem, forced every auditor to be a participator of kind daughters. How awful was his preparation his sorrows.
Booth, as King Lear, made a very powerfalim- for the imprecation on Goneril! he stood for a mopression. In the scene where the old monarch is
ment like one struck dumb, at the sudden and ondiscovered asleep in Cordelia’s lap, and where he expected feel of his child's ingratitude ; then throwbreaks out,
ing away his crutch, kneeling on one knee, clasping “Old Lear shall be a king again,"
bis bands together, and lifting np his eyes towards he was inimitably expressive, from the full tones of heaven, rendered the whole of the curse so terribly his voice, and the admirable manner of harmonizing affecting to the audience, that, during the atterhis words.
ance of it, they seemed to shrink as from a blast The Ghost in Hamlet was Booth's favourite
of lightning. Indeed, the picture be presented, inpart. He acted it with the perfect approbation of dependent of the language, was worthy
the pencil Betterton, who was his Hamlet for many years ;
of Raphael in the divinest moments of bis imagioand this performance was biglıly praised by Mack- ception of this difficult part. He had an acquaint
ation." He used to tell how he gained a just conlin, who said he was never imitated with success. His tones and manner, throughont his conference
ance in Leman-street, Goodman's-fields, who had with Hamlet, were grave and pathetic ; his tread
an only daughter about two years old; as he stood solemn and awful; and, in the recital of his mur
at his dining-room window, fondling the child, he der by a brother's hand, and the conduct of his dropped the infant into a paved area, and it was
killed most seeming virtuous queen, the audience
on the spot. He remained at the window, ed to be under the impression of seeing and hear screaming in agonies of grief; the neighbours took ing a real ghost. He was, besides, always parti- up the child, and delivered it dead to the unhappy cularly well dressed for the character, even to the father, who wept bitterly. From that moment be soles of his shoes, which, from being covered with
lost his reason, which he never recovered. Being felt, made no noise in walking on the stage, which rich, be continued in his house under the care of he crossed as if he slid over it, and which strongly visited his distracted friend, who passed the whole
keepers, appointed by Dr. Monro. Garrick often corresponded with the ideas we have of an incor- of his time in.going to the window, and there playporeal being.–Booth died in May, 1733.
ing in fancy with his child. After some dalliance GARRICK
be dropt it, and burst into a terrible agony of grief. All the authors of Garrick's day agree in prais. He would then sit down in a pensive mood, his ing his various and astonishing powers as an actor; l eyes fixed on one object, at times looking slowly