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the curtain was drawn, it discovered even there a very splendid audience.

This unusual encouragement, which was given to a play for the advantage of so great an actor, gives an undeniable instance, that the true relish for manly entertainments and rational pleasures is not wholly lost. All the parts were acted to perfection: the actors were careful of their carriage, and no one was guilty of the affectation to insert witticisms of his own; but a due respect was had to the audience, for encouraging this accomplished player. It is not now doubted but plays will revive, and take their usual place in the opinion of persons of wit and merit, notwithstanding their late apostacy in favour of dress and sound. This place is very much altered since Mr. Dryden frequented it; where you used to see songs, epigrams, and satires, in the hands of every man you met, you have now only a pack of cards; and instead of the cavils about the turn of the expression, the elegance of the style, and the like, the learned now dispute only about the truth of the game. But however the company is altered, all have shewn a great respect for Mr. Betterton: and the very gaming part of this house have been so touched with a sense of the uncertainty of human affairs (which alter with themselves every moment) that in this gentleman they pitied Mark Antony of Rome, Hamlet of Denmark, Mithridates of Pontus, Theodosius of Greece, and Henry the Eighth of England. It is well known, he has been in the condition of each of those illustrious personages for several hours together, and behaved himself in those high stations, in all the changes of the scene, with suitable dignity. For these reasons, we intend to repeat this late favour to him on a proper occasion, lest he, who can instruct us so well

in personating feigned sorrows, should be lost to us by suffering under real ones". The town is at present in very great expectation of seeing a comedy now in rehearsal", which is the twenty-fifth production of

" Thomas Betterton (the Roscius of his time) was born in Tothill-street, Westminster, in 1635. His father (who was under-cook to King Charles the first) bound him apprentice to a bookseller, hut nature had formed him for the stage, and he made his first appearance on it in 1656, at the opera-house in Charter-house-yard, under the direction of Sir William D'Avenant. If he was not the first to introduce moveable scenes into English theatres, he very much improved the decorations of the stage. He went over, at the command of Charles the second to take a view of the French scenery and machinery, and at his return regulated those of the English. He was sober, modest, and friendly; kept the best of company; and was remarkable off the stage for the decent simplicity of his dress. He composed, translated, and altered several dramatic pieces, and, having for many years borne away the palm from all his competitors, died April 28, 1710, and was interred in Westminster-abbey. Mr. Booth, who knew him only in his decline, used to say, that he never saw him, off or on the stage, but he learned something from him; and frequently observed that Betterton was no actor: that he put on his part with his clothes, and was the very man he undertook to be, till the play was over, and nothing more. So exact was he in following nature, that the look of surprise he assumed in the character of Hamlet astonished Booth (when he first personated the ghost) to such a degree, that he was unable to proceed in his part for some moments. See Cibber's Apology, Tatler, N°167, and Davies's Dramatic Miscellanies, for a particular account of this eminent

There is a mezzotinto by Williams, which, Cibber says,' resembled him extremely;' and a fine picture of him by Pope, in the possession of the Earl of Mansfield.

12 The Modern Prophets. 4to, 1709. See No 11, and 43.


my honoured friend Mr. Thomas D'Urfey; who, besides his great abilities in the dramatic, has a peculiar talent in the lyric way of writing", and that with a manner wholly new and unknown to the ancient Greeks and Romans, wherein he is but faintly imitated in the translations of the modern Italian operas.

St. James's Coffee-house, April 11. LETTERS from the Hague of the sixteenth say, that major general Cadogan was gone to Brussels, with orders to disperse proper instructions for assembling the whole force of the allies in Flanders, in the beginning of the next month. The late offers concerning peace were made in the style of persons who think themselves upon equal terms: but the allies have so just a sense of their present advantages, that they will not admit of a treaty, except France offers what is more suitable to her present condition.

At the same time we make preparations, as if we were alarmed by a greater force than that which we are carrying into the field. Thus this point seems now to be argued sword in hand. This was what a great general '4 alluded to, when being asked the names of those who were to be plenipotentiaries for the ensuing peace, he answered with a serious air, “There are about an • hundred thousand of us.' Mr. Kidney", who has the ear of the greatest politicians that come hither, tells me, there is a mail come in to-day with letters, dated Hague, April the nineteenth, N. S. which say, a design of bringing part of our troops into the field, at the latter end of this month, is now altered to a resolution of marching towards the camp about the twentieth of the next. Prince Eugene was then returned thither from Amsterdam. He sets out from Brussels on Tuesday: the greater number of the general officers at the Hague have orders to go at the same time. The squadron at Dunkirk consists of seven vessels. There happened the other day, in the road of Scheveling, an engagement between a privateer of Zeeland and one of Dunkirk. The Dunkirker, carrying thirty-three pieces of cannon, was taken and brought into the Texel. It is said the courier of monsieur Rouille is returned to him from the court of France. Monsieur Vendosme, being re-instated in the favour of the duchess of Burgundy, is to command in Flanders.

13 D'Urfey acquired his greatest fame by a peculiar talent for writing witty catches, satires, and songs of humour, suited to the spirit of the times, which he sung in a lively and entertaining manner. See Guard. N° 29, and 67.

14 The duke of Marlborough.
15 The waiter at St. James's coffee-house.

Mr Kidney added, that there were letters of the seventeenth from Ghent, which give an account, that the enemy had formed a design to surprise two battalions of the allies which lay at Alost: but those battalions received advice of their march, and retired to Dendermond. Lieutenant general Wood appeared on this occasion at the head of five thousand foot and one thousand horse; upon which the enemy with. drew, without making any farther attempt.

From my own Apartment.

I am sorry I am obliged to trouble the public with so much discourse upon a matter which I at the very first mentioned as a trifle, viz. the death of Mr. Par tridge 16, under whose name there is an almanack come out for the year 1709; in one page of which it

is asserted by the said John Partridge, that he is still : living, and not only so, but that he was also living

some time before, and even at the instant when I writ of his death. I have in another place, and in a paper by itself, sufficiently convinced this man that he is dead, and, if he has any shame, I do not doubt but that by this time he owns it to all his acquaintance: for though the legs and arms and whole body of that man may still appear, and perform their animal functions; yet since, as I have elsewhere observed, his art is gone, the man is gone. I am, as I said, concerned, that this little matter should make so much noise; but since I am engaged, I take myself obliged in honour to go on in my Lucubrations, and by the help of these arts of which I am master, as well as my skill in astrological speculations, I shall, as I see occasion, proceed to confute other dead men, who pretend to be in-being, although they are actually deceased. I therefore give all men fair warning to mend their manners; for I shall from time to time print bills of mortality; and I beg the pardon of all such who shall be named therein, if they who are good for nothing shall find themselves in the number of the deceased.



16 Dean Swift, in his Predictions for 1708, foretold that Partridge the almanack-maker would infallibly die on the 29th of March, about eleven at night, of a raging fever. The wits, resolved to support this prediction, uniformly insisted that Partridge actually died at that time. See N°, 11, and 44, and lord Orrery's Remarks on the Life and Writings of Swift, p. 62.

17 As there were no signatures to the papers in the Tat

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