Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

actions, and he died the death of a hero, being her pen being nothing short of his, as I am
slain at the battle of Zutphen, in 1586, while ready to allest, so far as so inferior a reason
be was mounting the third borse, having pre- may be taken, having seen incomparable lellers
i bously had two killed under him. He wrote of hers. But, lest I should seem to trespass
obe dramatic piece, The Lady of the May, a upon truth, which few do unsuborned (as I
masque acted before Elizabeth, in the gardens protest I am, unless by her rhetoric), I shall

Wanstead, in Essex; but his noblest work is leave the world her epitaph, in which the au-
the Arcadia, which, with his poems, will live thor (B. Jonson), doth manifest himself a poet
as long as the language in which they are in all things but untruth:
Written.

« Underneath this sable hearse

Lies the subject of all verse; MARY HERBERT, COUNTESS

Sydney's sister, Pembroke's mother;

Death, ere thou kill'st such another,
OF PEMBROKE.

Fair, and good, and learn'd as she,
Time shall throw a dart at thee.

Marble piles let no man raise
The favourite sister of Sydney, to whom he

To her fame, for after days dedicated his Arcadia. This lady was a gene

Some kind woman, born as she,

Reading this, like Niobe, mous friend of learning and genius, and her own

Shall turn statue, and become ndowments were of the first order. Francis

Both her mourner and her tomb." Osborne, in his Memoirs of King James, says of her, “She was that sister of sir Philip

And these were Sbakspeare's contemporaries; Sidney, to whom he addressed bis Arcadia, and and a few brief pages is all we afford to the of whom he had no other advantage than what fame of those, who, while living, filled the be received from the partial benevolence of world with their genius. Melancholy reflection! fortune in making him a man, which yet she-this, if anything can, must teach us the did, in some judgments, recompense in beauty, nothingness of earthly honours.

Original Actors in Shakspeare's Dramas.

LAURENT FLETCHER.

EDMOND SHAKSPEARE,

This personage, who appeared at the head of The brother of the poet, was a performer at he King's Servants, in the royal license of the Globe, lived in St. Saviour's, and was buried 1603, has escaped the notice of the historian of in the church of that parish. The entry in the ar slage; and, in truth, we know scarcely register runs thus“ 1606, December 31, (was anything of him. Fletcher was, probably, of buried] Edmond Shakspeare, a player, in the St. Saviour's, Southwark, where several fa- church.” Nothing more is known of him; wides of that name resided, as may be learnt stimulated, most probably, by bis brother's sucfrom the parish register. He was placed be- cess, he came to the metropolis and attached fore Shakspeare and Richard Burbadge in king himself to the theatre; but he died young, and James's license, as much, perhaps, by accident seems to have made litlie progress in bis pro33 design. Augustine Phillips, when be made fession. bis will, in May, 1605, bequeathed to his fellow, Laurence Fletcher, twenty shillings.

RICHARD BURBAGE, And this fellor of Philips and of Shakspeare Fas buried in St. Saviour's church, on the i 21h The most celebrated tragedian of our author's of September, 1608. What plays of our author time, was the son of James Burbage, who was be performed in is uncertain, nor does it ap- also an actor, and, perhaps, a countryman of par whether he excelled in tragedy or comedy. | Shakspeare's. He lived in Holywell-street, in

[ocr errors]

WARNER.

from Charles I. After the judicial murder ol

that monarch, he retired to the Continent with A native of Warwickshire, much celebrated queen Henrietta and the prince of Wales. for a metrical chronicle of British history, called Being employed in their service, he was taken Albion's England, which is written throughout prisoner, confined at Cowes castle, and his life with great ability, and occasionally evinces a

threatened. Under these trying circumstances, highly poetical spirit. Percy says of Warner :

Davenant's courage was singularly conspicuous ; -“To his merit nothing can be objected, un

he was then writing his poem of Gondibert, less, perbaps, an affected quaintness in some of and notwithstanding the almost certain prospect his expressions, and an indelicacy in some of of immediate death, such was his fortitude and his pastoral images.” The following account self possession, that he was able to proceed of his death is extracted from the parish register with the work. A fact like this, is more boof Amwell :-" 1668-9. Master William nourableto Davenant than volumes of panegyric. Warner, a man of good years, and of honest At the intercession of Milton he was spared, reputation; by his profession, alturney at com- and received permission to open a theatre in mon plese ; author of Albion's England; dyinge Charterbouse Yard. When Charles II. ascended suddenly in the nyght in his bedde, without any the throne, Sir William received a patent to former complaynt or sicknesse, on Thursday act plays at the Duke's theatre, in Lincoln's Inn nyght, being the 9th daye of March, and was Fields; and here it was that he first introduced buried the Saturday following, and lieth in the the present mode of illustrating the drama by church at the upper end, under the stone or means of appropriate scenery and decorations Gwalter Sludes.” Warner also wrote Syring, Davenant died at an advanced age, admired or, a Seaven told Historie, handled with vad and beloved by all parties. Dryden, and we rietie of pleasant and profitable, both comicall cannot give nobler praise, estimated his talents and tragicall Argument, 1597.

very highly. TAYLOR,

SIR PHILIP SYDNEY. The water poet, he having been a sculler on

A hero, in whom the chivalrous virtues which the Thames. He was once mad enough to we read of in romance, and which we are acventure himself, with a companion, in a paper customed to treat as fabulous, were realized. boat to Rochester, when they were both nearly His person was the persection of the human drowned. He seems to have been very illiterate; form; he was brave lo a fault ; his munificence but in spite of the most disheartening obstacles, was princely; and his courteous manners won be applied himself to composition, and his pro- the hearts of all that approached him. In the ductions are far from contemptible. Taylor presence of monarchs bis humility was that of was a violent royalist. At the commencement an equal; but when the poor and miserable of the rebellion he retired to Oxford, but that surrounded him, his countenance beamed with city being surrendered to the parliament, he welcome and kindliness. To all these amiable returned to London and kept a public-house in qualities, were united a depth of learning and Long Acre. At the king's death, be set up the a felicity of genius, which entitled him to rank sign of the Mourning Crown, which, giving with the best writers of his age. He was the offence, he substituted his own effigy, inscribed darling of England and the admiration of Euwith this distich :

rope. He was born at Penshurst in Kent, « There's many a king's head hanged up for a sign,

1554; he remained at Oxford till bis 17th year, And many a saint's head too. Then why not mine ?"

and then set out on the grand tour. Al bis

return, in the pride of his youth and the full SIR WILLIAM DAVENANT. vigour of his intellect, queen Elizabeth ap

pointed him her ambassador to the friendly Born at Oxford, 1605, and supposed by some, German powers; but when the fame of his though on very slight grounds, to have been valour and genius became so general, that be 123 a natural son of Shakspeare's. At Ben Jonson's put in nomination for the kingdom of Poland, death he was chosen laureate ; and in 1643, she refused to sanction his advancement lest she having distinguished himself on a variety of should lose the brightest jewel in her crown. occasions, he received the honour of knighthood His life was one continued course of gloriow

actions, and be died the death of a hero, being her pen being nothing short of his, as I am slain at the ballle of Zutphen, in 1586, while ready to attest, so far as so inferior a reason be was mounting the third borse, having pre- may be taken, having seen incomparable lellers sously had two killed under him. He wrote of hers. But, lest I should seem to trespass ede dramatic piece, The Lady of the May, a upon truth, which few do unsuborned (as I masque acted before Elizabeth, in the gardens protest I am, unless by her rhetoric), I shall Wanstead, in Essex ; but his noblest work is leave the world her epitaph, in which the auibe Arcadia, which, with his poems, will live thor (B. Jonson), doth manifest himself a poet as long as the language in which they are in all things but unlruth: written.

« Underneath this sable hearse

Lies the subject of all verse;
MARY HERBERT, COUNTESS

Sydney's sister, Pembroke's mother;
OF PEMBROKE.

Death, ere thou kill'st such another,
Fair, and good, and learn'd as she,
Time shall throw a dart at thee,

Marble piles let no man raise
The favourite sister of Sydney, to whom he

To her fame, for after days dedicated his Arcadia. This lady was a gene

Some kind woman, born as she,

Reading this, like Niobe, rous friend of learning and genius, and her own

Shall turn statue, and become endowments were of the first order. Francis

Both her mourner and her tomb." Osborne, in his Memoirs of King James, says of her, “She was that sister of sir Philip

And these were Shakspeare's contemporaries; Sidney, to whom he addressed bis Arcadia, and and a few brief pages is all we afford to the of whom he bad no other advantage than what fame of those, who, while living, filled the be received from the partial benevolence of world with their genius. Melancholy reflection! fortune in making bim a man, which yet she-this, if anything can, must teach us the did, in some judgments, recompense in beauty, nothingness of earthly honours.

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small]

This personage, who appeared at the head of The brother of the poet, was a performer at .be King's Servants, in the royal license of the Globe, lived in St. Saviour's, and was buried 1603, has escaped the notice of the historian or in the church of that parish. The entry in the

ur stage; and, in truth, we know scarcely register runs thus“ 1606, December 31, (was anything of him. Fletcher was, probably, of buried] Edmond Shakspeare, a player, in the St. Saviour's, Southwark, where several fa- church.” Nothing more is known of him; mi'ies of that name resided, as may be learnt stimulated, most probably, by bis brother's sucfrom the parish register. He was placed be- cess, he came to the metropolis and attached fore Shakspeare and Richard Burbadge in king himself to the theatre; but he died young, and James's license, as much, perhaps, by accident seems to have made litli progress in his proas design. Augustine Phillips, when be made fession. his will, in May, 1605, bequeathed to his frllon, Laurence Fletcher, twenty shillings. RICHARD BURBAGE, Aad this fellow of Philips and of Shakspeare sas buried in St. Saviour's church, on the i 21h The most celebrated tragedian of our author's of September, 1608. What plays of our author time, was the son of James Burbage, who was be performed in is uncertain, nor does it ap- also an actor, and, perhaps, a countryman of year wbether be escelled in tragedy or comedy. Shakspeare's. He lived in Holywell-street, in

g.

the parish of St. Leonard, Shoreditch; from Philpol's Additions to Camden's Remains we which it may be supposed that he originally find an epitaph on this tragedian more concise played at the Curtain Theatre, which was in than even that on Ben Jonson, being only that neighbourhood. It is singular ibat he “ Exit Burbage.The following also appears should have resided, from the year 1600 10 bis in a manuscript in the British Museum : death, in a place so distant from the Blackfriars playhouse, and still further from the Globe, in * Epitaph on Mr. Richard Burbage, the Player. which theatres he acted during the whole of

“This life's a play, scean'd out by natures arte,

Where every man hath his allotted parte. that time. By his wife, Winifred, he bad four Tais man hat he now (as many more can tell)

Ended his part and he hath acted well. daughters, two of whom were baptized by the

The play now ended, think his grave to be name of Juliet. His fondness for the name of The detiring bowse of his sad tragedie ; Juliet, perhaps, arose from his having been the

Where to give his fame this, be not afraid,

Here lies the best tragedian ever plaid.” original Romeo in our author's play. Burbage died about the 13th of March, 1619, and was

JOHN HEMINGES buried in the church of St. Leonard, Shoreditch. His will is still extant in the Prerogative Office, but it contains nothing remarkable. Richard

Is said by Roberts, the player, lo bave been Burbage is introduced in person in an old play

a tragedian, and, in conjunction with Condell, called The Returne from Parnassus, and in- to have followed the business of printing, but structs a Cambridge scholar how to play the his authority is doublful. As early as November, part of King Richard the Third, in which 1597, he appears to have been the manager of character Burbage was greatly admired. That the Lord Chamberlain's Company. This station, he represented this part is proved by bishop for which bis prudence qualified him, he held, Corbel, who, in his Iter Boreale, speaking of probably, during forty years. There is reason his host at Leicester, tells us,

to believe that he was originally a Warrickshire

lad, a shire which bas produced so many When he would have said, king Richard died, players and poels; the Burbages, ibe ShakAnd call'd a horse, a horse, he Burbage cry'd."

speares, the Greens, and the Harts. Or HeHe, probably, also enacted the characters of there is only a tradition that he was the first

minges' cast of characters little is known; King John, Richard II., Henry V., Timon, Brutus, Coriolanus, Macbeth, Lear, and Othello! representative of Falstafr

. He was adopted He was one of the principal sharers or pro- theatrical servants; and was ranked the fifth in

by king James, on his accession, as one of his prietors of the Globe and Blackfriars theatres ; the royal license of 1603. He had the honour and was of such eminence, that in a leller,

to be remembered in Shakspeare's will, and was preserved in the British Museum, wrillen in

the first editor of Shakspeare's works. He the year 1613, the actors at the Globe are

died at the age of seventy-five, in the parish of called Burbage's Company. Flecknoe writes thus of him in his Short Discourse of the Eng- according to the register, on the 12th of October,

St. Mary, Aldermanbury; and was buried, lish Stage, 1664: “ He was a delightful Pro

1630. His will, still preserved, devises conleus, so wholly transforming himself into his parts, and pulling off himself with his cloaths, tokens of remembrance for his relations and

siderable properly, and provides various kind as he never (not so much as in the trying

fellows. house) assumed himself again, until the play was done. He had all the parts of an excellent orator, animating his words with speaking, and

AUGUSTINE PHILLIPS speech with action; his auditors being never more delighted than when he spake, nor more

Was placed next to Burbage in the royal fisorry than when he held his peace; yel, even cense of 1603. He was an author as well as an then, he was an excellent actor still; never actor, and left behind him some ludicrous rhymes, sailing in his part when he had done speaking, which were entered in the Stationers' book ia but with his looks and gesture maintaining it 1593, and were entitled The Jigg of the still to the height.” The testimony of sir Ri- Slippers. He is supposed to have performed chard Baker is to the same purpose ; he pro

characters in low life. Whatever he might nounces bim lo bave been “such an actor as

bave been in the theatre, he was certainly 3 no age must ever look to see the like.” Jo respectable man in the world. He amassed

considerable properly. He died at Mortlake, Then all thy triumphs fraught with strains of mirth,

Shall be cag'd up within a chest of earth: in Surrey, in May, 1605, and was buried, at Shall be ? they are: thou hast danc'd thee out of breath; bis dying request, in the chancel of the church And now must make thy parting dance with death." of that parish, leaving his wise, Anne, execulrix if bis will; with this proviso, however, that if

THOMAS POPE. che married again, John Heminges, Richard kurbage, William Sly, and Timolbie Whit- He died before the year 1600. He is men

This actor likewise played the part of a clown. hume, should be his executors. His widow did marty again, and John Heminges immediately narie, where a Man may be verie merie and

lioned in an old book, called Humour's Ordiproved the will, on the 16th of May, 1607, exceeding well used for Sispence. and assumed the trust which Philips had repused in him.

What meenes Singer then,
And Pope, the clowne, to speak so borish, when

They counterfaite the clowues upon the stage ?"
WILLIAM KEMPE

GEORGE BRYAN. Was the successor of Tarleton. “Here I must needs remember Tarleton,” says Heywood

Nothing is known of performer, except in bis Apology for Actors, “in his time gracious that in the exhibition of the Seven Deadly Sins with the queen bis soveraigne, and in the he represented the Earl of Warwick. He was people's general applause; to whom succeeded certainly on the stage previously to the year 1586. Wiliam Kempe, as well in the favour of her ibajeslie, as in the opinion and good thoughts

HENRY CONDELL of the general audience.” From the 4to editions of some of our author's plays, we learn

Is said by Roberts, the player, to have been ibat he was the original performer of Dogberry,

a comedian; but he does not mention any auin much Ado about Nothing, and of Peter, in thority for this assertion but stage tradition. In Romeo and Juliet. From an old comedy,

Webster's Duchess of Malfy, he originally acted chied The Return from Parnassus, we may the part of the Cardinal; and, as when that ellect that he was the original Justice Shallow;

play was printed in 1623, another performer and the contemporary writers inform us that had taken the character, it is probable that he be usually acted the part of a clown, in which,

had retired from the stage before that time. He like Tarleton, he was celebrated for his extem-still, however, continued to have an interest in poral wil. Launcelot, in the Merchant of Ve- the theatre, being mentioned with the other nice; Touchstone, in As You Like It; Launce,

players to whom a license was granled by in The Two Gentlemen of Verona; and the Charles 1. in 1625. He bad, probably, a conGrave-digger, in Hamlet, were, probably, also siderable portion of the shares or property in performed by this comedian. He was an au

the Globe and Blackfriars theatres. This ther as well as an actor. So early as the year actor, as well as Heminges, lived in Alderman1559, Kempe's comic talents seem to bave bury. He is honourably noticed in Shakspeare's been bighly estimated; for an old pamphlet will, and was one of the editors of his dramas. called An Almond for a Parrot, written by Thomas Nasbe, is dedicated “ to that most

WILLIAM SLY cumicall and conceiled cavaleire monsieur du Kempe, jestmonger, and vice gerent generall

Was joined with Shakspeare in the license to the ghost of Dick Tarleton." From a pas granted in 1603. He is introduced personally sage in one of Decker's tracls, it may be pre

in the Induction to Marston's Malecontent, sumed that this comedian was dead in the year

1604; and from his there using an affected 1609. In Braithwaite's Remains, 1619, he phrase of Osrick's in Hamlet, we may collect is lbos commemoraled :

that he performed that part. He died before

the year 1612.
* ['pon Kempe and his Morice, with his Epitaph.
"Welcome from Norwich, Kempe: all joy to see

RICHARD COWLEY
Thy safe return moriscoed lustily.
But out, alas! how soone's tby morice done,
When pipe and tabor, all thy friends be gone ;

Is said to have been an actor of a low class,
Add leare thee now to dance the second part
With feeble nature, not with uimble art !

having taken the part of Verges, in Much Ado.

« ZurückWeiter »