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The good old King (notwithstanding his misfortune in being fiftulatif fimus) will appear to much advantage if drawn (in the ftyle of Mortimer's etchings of Heads from Shakespeare) to accompany p. 22. He may be drawn with that penfive dejection with which this time honoured Lancafter utters the lines of:-I, after him, &c.—and his time of life may be gathered from his speech to Bertrand, when he tells him, that haggish age has ftolen on, and wore him out of act.

Page 35.


This page gives us an opportunity of reprefenting to great advantage the Countess of Roufillon, in company with Helen. And on perufal of a character of fuch worth as the Countess is-of fo much piety-fine fenfe of fo noble an education—and of the tenderest affection for Helenthere is no doubt but fome artist will adorn this page with a venerably graceful portrait (in rich metzotinto) of her, who throughout every fcene, irrefiftibly commands a reverential efteem. Shakespeare no doubt had great delight in drawing this character; and we may hope to fee expreffed in her countenance, that mild luftre of calm thought which the mind alone gives, and that certain expreffive air which can only proceed from virtuous paffions.


SHE might be drawn at half length, with Helen, as repeating this paffage :

Count. Wherefore? tell true.

Hel. I will tell truth; by grace itfelf I fwear.

The attitude of Helen may be fomewhat like that which I have propo. fed for the Head-piece: and there might be added to the animation with which fhe ought to speak this fentence," une douceur feduifante." *

Page 66.

Of all the different fituations in which Parolles appears, it is neceffary to know which is the moft comic one; as a bare perufal of the play may not be fufficient to ascertain that with certainty-for it is well known that good comedians frequently introduce many exquisite strokes of character and humour, which were evidently designed by the author; but which may have escaped the eyes of literary critics. The admirers therefore of fuch comedians as Woodward and King (who I believe have fhone most in this character) will be the most proper to select the scene best suited to our present purpose. It is impoffible for the writer of these pages to se


K 2

She would appear to very great advantage, in saying:

I follow him not

By any token of prefumptious fuit;

Nor would I have him, 'till I do deferve him.

P. 34.

lect the best fituation, as he has never feen this comedy on the ftage. He will therefore only mention those pages which strike him as giving the best views of Parolles. They are page 40, 66, 90, 91, 97, 98, 118, 119. Page 131 is omitted to be here ftated, as that page will certainly be accompanied with him and the Clown.



*WHEN this play was revived in 1741, Milward, who acted the King, is faid to have caught a diftemper which proved fatal to him, by wearing in this part, a too light and airy fuit of clothes, which he put on after his fuppofed recovery. He felt himself feized with a fhivering; and was asked by one of the players, how he found himself?"How is it poffible, he said with some pleasantry, be fick, when I have fuch a phyfician as Mrs. Woffington." This elegant and beautiful actress was the Helen of the play. His diftemper however increased, and foon after hurried him to his grave. On its revival in 1757, under the direction of Mr. Garrick, the part of the Countess was given to Mrs. Pritchard, Helen to Mifs Macklin, and Parolles to Woodward.

Yet am I thankful. If my heart were great,
T'would burst at this. Captain I'll be no more.


THIS fcene always afforded much pleasure to the audience. Upon its last revival, it was acted with fuch theatrical skill as excited general merriment. The unbinding Parolles, who looked about him with anxious furprize and terror, redoubled the bursts of laughter which echoed round the theatre. DAVIES'S DRAMATIC MISCELLANIES.

WHEN this Play was got up at the Haymarket, in 1785, a new Prologue was written on the occa fion by Mr. Pillon-and the following are the concluding lines;

a mightier charge we boaft-
'Tis Shakespeare fteers to night upon our coaft;
To cut him down from first rate fize we've dar'd
Finding fome planks and beams by time impair'd;
The heart of oak of genius is the fame;

You fend the gale that blows him on to fame.
One glowing, bold, energic, golden line,
Drawn with the fire of Shakespeare's pen divine,
Genius and Taste can never prize too high,
For whilft he lives, thofe twins can never die.

PERHAPS he would appear to as much advantage in the following pages, as any where elfe-namely, at page 40, at the words :

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At page 90, at the words-But a drum! or,

At page 91, when he fays-I would have that drum-or another, or hic jacet.

On the ftage, it certainly would have a fine effect (in the moment of Lafeu's re-entry) to behold Parolles, as in page 66; but this effect would be much leffened in a print. And the fame objection would be against introducing him in page 98, when he is told of seventeen poinards being at his bofom-merely on account of his being blind folded. The dress and figure of this jackanapes with fcarfs, may be partly gathered from what Lafeu fays of him :-" I did think thee, for two ordinaries, to be a pretty wife fellow; thou didst make tolerable vent of thy travel; it might pass: yet the scarfs, and the bannerets about thee, did manifoldly diffuade me from believing thee a veffel of two great a burthen." And yet in page 132, we are fo interested in the dejection of Drum,


poor Tom

(My Lord, I am a man whom fortune
hath cruelly fcratch'd :-)

and so strucken with the relenting and generous Lafeu (Cox* my passion ! give me your hand :-how does your drum?) who is not willing that he should at last be suffered to ftarve: that we can fcarce-and ought not indeed to leave this laft page without reprefenting them. Some may think the dejection of Parolles will appear equally to advantage in the preceding page, in company with the Clown; where he may be faying:-Nay, you need not to ftop your nofe, Sir, I fpake but by a metaphor—with a look rather turned up,


His drefs may

be partly ga

and by no means directed to the Clown.* thered likewise from the Vignette to Bell's last edition; in which print the musket and drum are characteristic ornaments.

In the print to Hanmer's edition, is introduced Lafeu; whofe figure (though poffeffing much grace, and worth looking at) is by no means characteristic.

Page 78.

I CANNOT forbear recommending another fcene of the Countess and her beloved ward. They may be finely drawn in this page, at the

words of:

But I do with his name out of my blood,
And thou art all my child.

And she may be tenderly grafping the hand of, and foothing the dejected and weeping Helen; who may hold the letter in her hand, which The has just read. †

* That Lafeu is made fo relenting we must attribute to our author's great knowledge of man, and bis large nature as Ben Johnson expreffes it. He knew that those who are most prone to vehement anger are the fooneft pacified. Hot fpirits make quicker hafte to repair the mischiefs of their efcapes from reason, than those who are more temperate and fedate.


Notwithstanding the virulent invectives which the authorefs of "Shakespeare illuftrated" has thrown out against Helen, (as well as against Shakespeare in this play) I believe all readers are interefted in her character-and indeed the Countess is only attached to her, from her being

a maid too virtuous For the contempt of empire.


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