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spiracy, and rebellion in their looks.” “And I'll swear it, Brother Castle,” says his companion; "let's dash at them.” In the third, a cat watches the movements of some unsuspecting mice: “There's a pretty collection of rogues gathered together," observes Grimalkin; “if there is not a plot among them, burn my tail and whiskers." In the last, we behold a Kite just about to pounce on some chicken : “The world's over-run with iniquity," says the bird of prey; "and these troublesome miscreants will not let honest hawks sleep in security.” We shall return to the subject of these Government spies and the troubles of 1817 in the graphic satires of George Cruikshank.
In 1817, the rivalry between the two national theatres ran so high, that the Covent Garden management employed agents to scour the provinces in search of a rival to Edmund Kean at Drury Lane. After a time one was found in the person of Lucius Junius. Booth, who in stature, role of characters, and (as it was imagined) style of acting, closely resembled, if he did not equal, the great original. He made his début at Covent Garden, in the character of Richard the Third. Whether it was a success or not seems doubtful; for the manager being out of town, those deputed to act as deputies did not care to undertake the responsibility of engaging the new star. In this dilemma, overtures were made to him by the rival house, which he accepted, and made hisappearance as “Iago” to Kean's “Othello” to a densely-packed audience at Drury Lane. So great was the likeness between the two actors, that strangers were puzzled to know which was Kean and which was Booth, until the tragedy reached the third act, when. the genius of Kean made itself felt, and no doubt remained in the minds of the audience which was master of his art.
Booth, in fact, discovered that he had made a mistake, and the day after his trial at old Drury, signed articles to return to Covent. Garden for three years. Here he proved a great attraction; he must have been in truth an actor of no ordinary merit; his rendering of the character of Lear, in particular, met with universal approbation, and in this tragedy he was supported by actors of the ability of Charles Kemble and William Macready, both of whom he threw
THE RIVAL RICHARDS.
into the shade. At the end, however, of his engagement, feeling that he was incapable of meeting Kean on anything like equal terms, he set sail for America.
The appearance of Edmund Kean and Lucius Junius Booth at Drury Lane is referred to in a satire entitled, The Rival Richards, published by S. W. Fores in 1817. The sketch (evidently the work of an amateur) shows us Folly seated on an ass, holding in one hand a pair of scales, in one of which stands Booth, and in the other Edmund Kean. To the mind of the satirist there appears to be no difference in the abilities of the two performers, as the scales exactly balance. On the right, the portico of Covent Garden is overshadowed by the inelegant but massive proportions of Drury Lane; the intervening space being occupied by various figures and details, among which is a “patent clapping machine.” An advertisement board carried by one of the figures clearly shows that the satire-an elaborate idea badly worked out-has reference to the period when both actors were engaged at “old Drury."
Undoubtedly the most important event of the year 1818 was the congress of the allied sovereigns at Aix-la-Chapelle, and the evacuation of France which followed. By the second treaty of Paris, the stay of the occupying armies had been fixed at a period of five years; but by an official note, dated the 4th of November, 1818, the ministers of Austria, Great Britain, Russia, and Prussia, referring to the engagements entered into by the French Government with the subscribing powers to that treaty, stated that such Government had fulfilled all the clauses of the treaty, and proposed, “with respect to those clauses, the fulfilment of which was reserved for more remote periods, arrangements which were satisfactory” to the contracting parties. Under these circumstances the sovereigns resolved that the military occupation of France should forthwith be discontinued.
On the 7th of November, the Duke of Wellington, commander-inchief of the army of occupation, issued an order of the day, taking leave of the troops under his command, which concluded in the following terms :
1818. EVACUATION OF
"It is with regret that the general has seen the moment arrive when the dissolution of this army was to put an end to his public connections and his private relations with the commanders and other officers of the corps of the army. The field marshal deeply feels how agreeable these relations have been to him. He begs the generals commanding in chief to receive and make known to the troops under their orders, the assurance that he shall never cease to take the most lively interest in everything that may concern them; and that the remembrance of the three years during which he has had the honour to be at their head, will be always dear to him.”
Wellington appears to have received particular marks of distinction from the Emperor Alexander ; but what may have been the particular tittle tattle which led up to the caricature we shall next describe, we are now unable to fathom. That it grew out of the event which we have attempted to describe will be sufficiently obvious. It is entitled, A Russian Dandy at Home ; a scene at Aixla-Chapelle, and was published by Fores in December, 1818. In it, the satirist shows us the Duke arrayed in the regimentals of a Russian general, part of which comprise a pair of jack-boots considerably too large for him, a fact which amuses the Emperor and certain English and Cossack officers at his back. The following doggerel appended to the satire affords an explanation of its meaning:
“It is said that the head of the forces allied,
Not having a coat to his back,
To drink their champagne and their sack.
Had the monarch allowed him to choose,
For the pleasure to stand in his shoes."
Queen Charlotte. A well-drawn caricature, published by Fores in February, 1818,
and entitled, A Peep at the Pump Room, or the Zomersetshire Folks in a Maze, shows us a singularly ugly old woman habited in a wonderful bonnet, and clothes of antiquated make and fashion,