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English literature with its best works. Thomas a son twenty years of age, a lieutenant in the Campbell is a Scotchnian.'
army." SIR WALTER Scott. - A Scotchman and a The late dreadful crisis in the commercial great poet. Lord Byron is also a little Scotch.' world, which began with the bankers and ended Dr Pichot.—May I ask you on what terms with the booksellers, caused the failure of the
house of Constable and Co. of Edinburgh, who Sir WALTER Scott.—' I received a letter from were not only the publishers of our author's him yesterday. We are in correspondence, and works, but with whom he was associated in buthat of an amicable and intimate description.' siness, as a sleeping partner. This disastrous
Dr Pichot. — He has scoffed a little at Scot- event necessarily removed the thin veil which land.'
had hitherto concealed the « Great Unknown, Sir Walter Scort.—- The Edinburgh Review from the full gaze of an admiring public. The went much too far. Lord Byron is very irri- avowal of Sir Walter himself was made at the table.'
Edinburgh Theatrical Fund Dinuer, the details of Dr Pichot.— I saw the portrait of Mr Jeffrey which, from their peculiar interest in relation to at Abbotsford.
presume you are friendly.' the subject of this sketch, we are bound to lay Sir Walter Scott.— Yes; he is one of our fully before our readers. literary notables, and a distinguished barrister.' « The first Annual Dinner of the Edinburgh The
Dr Pichot.—- Have you also appeared at the atrical Fund was held yesterday (24th Feb. 1827), bar?
in the Assembly Rooms, Sir Walter Scott in the Sir Walter Scott.— Like all young barris-chair; and near whoin sat the Earl of Fife, Lord ters, I have pleaded on criminal trials.'
Meadowbank, Sir John Hope of Pinkie, Bart., Ad« I shall here add, from the authority of Mr miral Adam, Baron Clerk Rattray, Gilbert Innes, Lockhart, that Sir Walter, when called to the bar, Esq., James Walker, Esq., Robert Dundas, Esq., at the age of twenty-one, gave but few testimo- Alexander Smith, Esq., etc. nies of his talent. He once, however, had an « After dinner the usual toasts were given, when opportunity of speaking before the General As- the chairman, in an appropriate speech, proposed sembly, and the question having suddenly kin- the memory of his late Royal Highness the Duke dled his powers, he expressed himself with a flood of York. - Drank in solemn silence. of eloquence. The famous Dc Blair was present, « The chairman (Sir Walter Scort) then requestand said aloud, “This young barrister will be a ed that gentlemen would fill a bumper, as full as it great man.'
would hold, while he would say only a few words. «1 resume our dialogue. Dr Pichot. - You He was in the habit of hearing speeches, and he quitted pleading for a judicial situation.' knew the feeling with which long ones were re
Sir Walter Scort.-- I was not appointed clerk garded. He was sure that it was perfectly undeof the Court of Session till after I had published cessary for him to enter into any vindication of Marinion. I was already sheriff of Selkirkshire. the dramatic art, which they had come here to
« Lady Scott entered the drawing-room, and laid support. This, however, he considered to be the a box on the table, which she opened, and showed proper time and proper occasion for him to say to Mr Crabbe, and then to me: this box contain a few words on that love of representation which ed a kind of cockade or St Andrew's cross, com was an innate feeling in human nature. It was posed of pearls and precious stones found on the the first amusement that the child had – it grew coast of Scotland.
greater as he grew up; and, even in the decline LADY Scott.—' It is a St Andrew's cross, which of life, nothing amused so much as when a comthe ladies of Scotland have commissioned Sir mon tale is well told. The first thing a child does Walter to present to his majesty before he alights. is to ape his schoolmaster, by.flogging a chair. It is the work of a lady of high rank and great It was an enjoyment natural to humanity. It was beauty.'
implanted in our very nature, to take pleasure « I naturally admired the cross, the pearls, and from such representations, at proper times, and the delicacy of the workmanship. Two children on proper occasions. In all ages the theatrical now entered; one the youngest son of Sir Walter, art had kept pace with the improvement of manand the other, I believe, a brother of Mr Lock- kind, and with the progress of letters and the hart; those are his majesty's two pages,' said fine arts. As he has advanced from the ruder Lady Scott to me; and she explained to me that stages of society, the love of dramatic representthey would be pages only during the residence of ations has increased, and all works of this nature the king at Edinburgh. I asked Sir Walter if he have been improved, in character and in struchad not another son; and he replied, that he had ture. They had only to turn their eyes to the
history of ancient Greece, although he did not natural talents; and after that, they have but a pretend to be very deeply versed in ancient his short space of time, during which they are fortutory. Its first tragic poet commanded a body of nate if they can provide the means of comfort in troops at Marathon. The second and nexi were the decline of life. That comes late, and lasts men who shook Athens with their discourses, as but a short time, after which they are left detheir theatrical works shook the theatre itself. If pendent. Their limbs fail, their teeth are loosenthey turned to France, in the time of Louis the ed, their voice is lost, and they are left, after Fourteenth, that era in the classical history of giving happiness to others, in a most disconsolate that country, they would find that it was referred state. The public were liberal and generous to to bý all Frenchmen as the golden age of the those deserving their protection. It was a sad drama there. And also in England, in the time thing to be dependent on the favour, or, he might of Queen Elizabeth, the drama began to mingle say, in plain terms, on the caprice of the public; deeply and wisely in the general polities of Eu- and this more particularly for a class of persons rope, not only not receiving laws from others, of whom extreme prudence is not the character. but giving laws to the world, and vindicating the There might be instances of opportunities being rights of mankind. (Cheers.) There have been neglected; but let them tax themselves, and convarious times when the dramatic art subsequently sider the opportunities they had neglected, and fell into disrepute. Its professors have been stig- the sums of money they had wasted; let every matised, and laws have been passed against them, gentleman look into his own bosom, and say less dishonourable to them than to the statesmen whether these were circumstances which would by whom they were passed, and to the legislators soften his owo feelings, were he to be plonged by whom they were adopted. What were the into distress. He put it to every generous bosom times in which these laws were passed? Was it – to every better feeling-to say what consolanot when virtue was seldom inculcated as a moral tion was it to old age to be toid that you might duty, that we were required to relinquish the have made provision at a time which had been most rational of all our amusements, when the neglected-(loud cheers) - and to find it objected, clergy were enjoined celibacy, and when the laity that if you had pleased you might have been were denied the right to read their bibles. He wealthy. He had hitherto been speaking of what, thought that it must have been from a notion of in theatrical language, were called stars, but they penance that they erected the drama into an ideal were sometimes fallen ones. There was another place of profaneness, and the tent of sin. He did class of sufferers naturally and necessarily connot mean to dispute that there were many excel- nected with the theatre, without whom it was lent persons who thought differently from him, impossible to go on. The sailors have a sayand they were entitled to assume that they were ing, every man cannot be a boatswain. If there not guilty of any hypocrisy in doing so. He gave must be persons to act Hamlet, there must also them full credit for their tender consciences, in be people to act Laertes, the King, Rosencrantz, making these objections, which did not appear to and Guildenstern, otherwise a drama cannot go him relevant to those persons, if they were what on. If even Garrick himself were to rise from the they usurp themselves to be; and if they were dead, he could not act llamlet alone. There must persons of worth and piety, he should crave the be generals, colonels, commanding-officers, and liberty to tell them, that the first part of their subalterns; but what are the private soldiers to duty was charity, and that if they did not chuse do? Many have mistaken their own talents, and to go to the theatre, they at least could not deny have been driven in early youth to try the stage, that they might give away, from their superfluity, to which they are not competent. He would know what was required for the relief of the sick, the what to say to the poet and the artist. He would support of the aged, and the comfort of the af- say that it was foolish, and he would recommend flicted. These were duties enjoined by our reli- to the poet to become a scribe, and the artist to gion itself. (Loud cheers.) The performers are in paint sign-posts --- (loud laughter). -But he could a particular manner entitled to the support or not send the player adrift, for if he cannot play regard, when in old age or distress, of those who Hamlet, he must play Guildenstern. Where there had partaken of the amusements of those places are many labourers wages must be low, and no which they render an ornament to society. Their man in such a situation can decently support a art was of a peculiarly delicate and precarious wife and family, and save something off his innature. They had to serve a long apprenticeship. come for old age. What is this man to do in It was very long before even the first-rate geniuses latter life? Are you to cast him off like an old could acquire the mechanical knowledge of the hinge, or a piece of useless machinery, which has stage business. They must languish long in ob- done its work? To a person who has contributed scurity before they can avail themselves of their to our amusement, this would be unkind, un
grateful, and unchristian. His wants are not of guished person, to say, if he were able, what
on what he had done. “Look on't again I dare « Mr Mackay rose on behalf of his brethren, to not.' He had thus far umbosomed himself, and return their thanks for the toast just drunk. After he knew that it would be reported to the public. ably advocating the cause of the Fund, he con He meant, when he said that he was the author, cluded by tendering to the meeting, in the name that he was the total and undivided author. of his brethren and sisters, their unfeigued with the exception of quotations, there was not thanks for their liberal support, and begged to a single word that was not derived from himself, propose the health of the Patrons of the Edin- or suggested in the course of his reading. The burgh Theatrical Fund. (Cheers.)
wand was now broken, and the rod buried. You « Lord MEADOWBANK begged to propose a health, will allow me further to say, with Prospero, 't is which, in an assembly of Scotsmen, would be re- your breath that has filled my sails; and to crave one ceived, not with an ordinary feeling of delight, single toast in the capacity of the author of these but with rapture and enthusiasm.-- He knew that novels; and he would dedicate a bumper to the it would be painful to his feelings if he were to health of one who has represented some of those speak to him in the terms which his heart prompt-characters, of which he had endeavoured to give ed; and that he had sheltered himself under his the skeleton, with a degree of liveliness which native modesty from the applause which he de- rendered him grateful. He would propose the served. But it was gratifying at last to know health of his friend Baillie Nicol Jarvie-(loud that these clouds were bow dispelled, and that applause),—and he was sure, that when the authe Great Unknown- the mighty magician-(here thor of Waverley and Rob Roy drinks to Nicol the room literally rung with applauses, which Jarvie, it would be received with that degree of were continued for some minutes) – the minstrel applause to which that gentleman has always been of our country, who had conjured up, not the accustomed, and that they would take care that, phantoms of departed ages, but realities, now on the present occasion, it should be PRODIGIOUS! stands revealed before the eyes and affections of (Long and vehement applause.) his country. In his presence it would ill become Mr MACKAY, who spoke with great humour in him, as it would be displeasing to that distin- the character of Baillie Jarvie. - My conscience!
ain. If there ere must also Rosencrantz, a cannot go rise from the There must fficers, and e soldiers to talents, and y the stage, would know · He would recommend he artist to ut he could annot play here there w, and no
support a off his inin to do in ike an old
which has contributed kind, un
My worthy father the deacon could not have be- concile him to old age, it was the reflexion that lieved that his son could hae had sic a compli- he had seen the rising as well as the setting sun ment paid to him by the Great Unknown. of Mrs Siddons. He remembered well their break
« Sir Walter Scort.-Not unknown now, Mr fasting near to the theatre-waiting the whole Baillie.
day- the crushing at the doors at six o'clock « Mr Mackay. He had been long identified and their going in and counting their fingers till with the Baillie, and he was now vain of the seven o'clock. But the very first step, the very cognomen which he had worn for eight years, first word which she uttered, was sufticient to and he questioned if any of his brethren in the overpay him for all his labours. The house was council had given such universal satisfaction. literally electrified; and it was only from wit(Loud laughter and applause) Before he sat nessing the effects of her genius, that he could down he begged to propose, “the Lord Provost guess to what a pitch theatrical excellence could and the City of Edinburgh.'
be carried. Those young fellows who have only « Mr Par. Robertson gave 'Mrs Henry Siddons, seen the setting sun of this distinguished perand success to the Theatre-Royal of Edinburgh.' former, beautiful and serene as that was, must
Mr Murray returned thanks for Mrs Siddous. give us old fellows, who have seen its rise, leave « Sir WALTER Scott here stated, that Mrs Siddons to hold our heads a little higher. wanted the means, but not the will, of beginning « Mr Mackay announced that the subscription the Theatrical Fund. He here alluded to the for the night amounted to 280l.; and he expressgreat ability of Mr Murray's management, and ed gratitude for this substantial proof of their of luis merits, which were of the first order, and kindness. of which every person who attends the theatre « Mr Vackay here entertained the company with must be sensible; and, after alluding to the em a pathetic song. barrassments with which the Theatre was threat a Sir W. Scott apologized for having so long ened, he concluded by giving the health of Mr forgotten their native land. He would now give Murray, which was drank with three times three. Scotland, the Land of Cakes. He would give
« Mr Murray-Gentlemen, I wish I could be every river, every loch, every hill, from Tweed to lieve that, in any degree, I merited the compli- Johnnie Groat's house - every lass in her cottage ments with which it has pleased Sir Walter Scott and countess in her castle; and may her sons to preface the proposal of my health, or the very stand by her, as their fathers did before them, flattering manner in which you have done me and he who would not drink a bumper to his the honour to receive it. When, upon the death toast, may he never drink whisky more. of my dear brother, the late Mr Siddons, it was « Sir W. Scott—Gentlemen, I crave a bumper proposed that I should undertake the manage all over. The last toast reminds me of a negment of the Edinburgh Theatre, I confess I drew lect of duty. Unaccustomed to a public duty of back, doubting my capability to free it from the this kind, errors in conducting the ceremonial of load of debt and difficulty with which it was sur- it may be excused, and omissions pardoned. rounded. In this state of anxiety I solicited the Perhaps I have made one or two omissions in the advice of one who had ever honoured me with course of the evening, for which I trust you will his kindest regard, and whose name no member grant me your pardon and indulgence. One of my profession can pronounce without feel- thing in particular I have omitted, and I would ings of the deepest respect and gratitude-1 al- now wish to make amends for it by a libation of lude to the late Mr John Kemble. (Great ap- reverence and respect to the memory of Shakplause.) To him I applied ; and with the repe- speare. He was a man of universal genius, and tition of his advice I shall cease to transgress from a period soon after his own era to the preupon your time. (Hear, hear.) My dear Wil- sent day he has been universally idolized. When liam, fear not; integrity and assiduity must prove I come to his honoured name, I am like the sick an overmatch for all difficulty, and though I ap- man who lung up his crutches at the shrine, and prove your pot indulging å vain confidence in was obliged to confess that he did not walk better your own ability, and viewing with respectful than before. It is indeed difficult, gentlemen, apprehension the judgment of the audience you to compare bim to any other individual. The have to act before, yet be assured that judgment only one to whom I can at all compare him is the will ever be tempered by feeling that you are wonderful Arabian dervise, who dived into the acting for the widow and fatherless.' (Loud ap- body of each, and in that way became familiar plause.)
with the thoughts and secrets of their hearts. Mr J. MACONOCHIE gave the health of Mrs He was a man of obscure origin, and as a player, Siddons.'
limited in his acquirements. But he was born Sir W. Scort said, that if any thing could re- evidently with a universal genius. llis eyes
glanced at all the varied aspects of life, and his verty. If there are twelve plans, it is odds bat fancy portrayed with equal talents the king on the largest, without any regard to comfort, or an the throne, and the clown who cracks his ches- eye to the probable expense, is adopted. There nuts at a Christmas fire. Whatever note he takes, was the College projected on this scale, and unhe strikes it just and true, and awakens a corre- dertaken in the same manner, and who shall see sponding chord in our own bosoms. Gentlemen, the end of it? It has been building all my life, I propose 'the memory of William Shakspeare.' and may probably last during the lives of my
Glee, ‘Lightly tread, 't is hallow'd ground.' children, and my children's children. Let it not « After the glee, Sir Walter rose, and begged to be said, when we commence a new theatre, as propose as a toast the health of a lady, whose was said on the occasion of laying the foundation living merits are not a little honourable to Scol- stone of a certain building, behold the endless land. The toast (said he) is also flattering to the work begun. Play-going folks should attend national vanity of a Scotchman, as the lady somewhat to convenience. The new theatre whom I intend to propose is a native of this coun- should, in the first place, be such as may be fitry. From the public her works have met with nished in eighteen months or two years; and, in the most favourable reception. One piece of the second place, it should be one in which we hers, iu particular, was often acted here of late can hear our old friends with comfort. It is betyears, and gave pleasure of no mean kind to ter that a theatre should be crowded now and many brilliant and fashionable audiences. In then, ihan to have a large theatre, with benches her private character, she (he begged leave to say) continually empty, to the discouragement of the is as remarkable as in a public sense she is for actors, and the discomfort of the spectators. (Apher genius. In short, he would in one word name plause.) - Joanna Baillie.'
« Immediately afterwards he said, Gentlemen, it « W. Menzies, Esq., advocate, was sure that all is now wearing late, and I shall request permispresent would cordially join him in drinking sion to retire. Like Partridge, I may say, : the health of Mr Terry.'
sum qualis eram.' At my time of day, I can agree « Sir W. Scott – Mr Baron Clerk — The Court with Lord Ogleby as to the rheumatism, and say, of Exchequer.'
* There's a twinge. I hope, therefore, you will a Mr Baron Clerk regretted the absence of his excuse me for leaving the Chair. (The worthy Learned Brother. None, he was sure, could be Baronet then retired, amid long, loud, and rapmore generous in his nature, or ready to help a turous cheering.)» Scottish purpose.
When Sir Walter had thus declared, à propos Sir W. Scott—There is one who ought to be lo nothing, that he was the man who had so long remembered on this occasion. He is indeed well concealed his features under the mask of the auentitled to our great recollection --one, in short, thor of Waverley, all the world stared, not so to whom the drama in this city owes much. He much at the unexpectedness of the disclosure, for succeeded, not without trouble, and perhaps at it was virtually well-known before, but that the some considerable sacrifice, in establishing a declaration should be made at that particular theatre. The younger part of the company nay moment, when there appeared no reason for renot recollect the theatre to which I allude; but vealing the quasi secret. A document which we there are some who with me inay remember by have lately seen, however, explains the circumname the Theatre in Carrubber's Close. There stance, and puts to flight many sage conjectures. Allan Ramsay established his little theatre. . His The unfortunate position of the affairs of Consta-. own pastoral was not fit for the stage, but it has ble and Co., and of Ballantyne and Co., with the its own admirers in those who love the Doric lan- latter of which firms Sir Walter Scott was conguage in which it is written; and it is not without nected, has rendered it necessary that their acmerits of a very peculiar kind. But, laying aside counts should not only be looked into, but exall considerations of his literary merit, Allan was a 'posed to the creditors. Tbe transactions recorded Good jovial honest fellow, who could crack a bottle there show explicitly enough who was the author with the best. “The Memory of Allan Ramsay.' of Waverley ; :-- we not only find Sir Walter Scott
« Mr P. ROBERTSON - I feel that I am about to receives payment for these works, but we find tread on ticklish ground. The talk is of a new him stipulating for the purchase-money of works theatre, but wherever the new theatre may be then unconceived, and of yielding up every stierected, I trust we strall meet the Old Company. ver, or its worth, which he could command, but
« Sir Walter Scott-Wherever the new theatre actually pledging future labours akin to former is built, I hope it will not be large. There are ones, for the liquidation of his debts. These, and two errors which we commonly commit-the one a variety of other particulars are to be found in arising from our pride, the other from our po- the excerpts of the sederunt book of the meet