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the new opinion started by Mr. Irwin rests only upon an extract from the Chinese annals which he received from a mandarin, a friend of his, and consequently upon the good faith alone of that mandarin; and, besides, that he was a stranger to the manner in which the game of chess is related to have been invented

PUBLIC AMSEMENTS FOR JANUARY.

in India; for he says that it was designed by a Bramin to cure the melancholy of the daughter of a rajah. This origin he justly thinks highly improbable; but he would scarely have said the same of the account given in the preceding part of this article.

KING'S THEATRE.

Ox Friday, January 6, the season of Operas commenced. The theatre has been refitted with great care; the boxes new papered and painted, and the benches as well as chairs renewed.

It seems the affairs of the Opera this season will be conducted with much better harmony. Amongst the latest and best arrangements of the Managers, they have thought proper to cause the Composers of the Opera to assist at the piano-forte. So that the celebrated Maestro Punitta, already in London, and likewise Maestro Griglielmi, who is expected from Portugal (both celebrated on the Continent), will aid and assist, alternately, at the piano; which will, no doubt, give the public that pleasure and satisfaction so necessary in the Italian Opera. Naldi, who is re-engaged and made director of the Operas, we hail as a

A new Comic Opera, intitled La Cappricciosa
Pentito, by Fioravanti, introduced the new
Prima Buffa, Siguora Collini. After a singer
and actress of such excellence as Catalani, the
task was uncommonly arduous, and demanded
no small degree of indulgence from the public.
Madame Collini seemed to feel the difficulty
she had to encounter, and her manners power-happy omen; and congratulate the proprietors
in placing so great a singer in such a difficult
and honourable situation.

fully influenced the spectators in her favour.
The first impression was soon ripened into
favour, for she displayed very superior powers
both of voice and action. In her features she
resembles the captivating Grassini, and her
tone is also of the same quality. She sang with
ease, clearness, and taste. The music is a pro-
mising specimen of the master, and was very
much applauded. Naldi was received with
the warm welcome which he deserves. His
Comedy is a high treat to the connoiseur.

A new Divertisement and Ballet displayed
the strength of the corps of Dancers. We have
had no such union of talents for many years.
Young Vestris sprang forward, with all the
power and activity which his father possessed
seventeen years ago; and the same astonish-
ing talent seemed to be revived. The house
was in a paroxysm of vociferation in the pas
de deux of Vestris and his partner, Mademoi-
selle Angiolini. She is extremely elegant in
her figure; petite, but finely formed, and she
has acquired the manner of Vestris. Her
equilibrium is perfect. She finishes the most
difficult movement with truth, and her posture
has great strength. Certainly since the first
year of Des Hayes, when we had also Didelot
and Rose, we have had no such Corps de Ballet
in regard to principals as were exhibited this
night.

DRURY-LANE.

ON Thursday January 5, a new Comedy, entitled Man and Wife; or, More Secrets than One, was produced for the first time. The following are the Dramatis Persona :—

Lord Austincourt........ Mr. HOLLAND.
Sir Robert Austincourt.... Mr. POWELL.

Charles Austincourt...... Mr ELLISTON.
Sir Willoughby Worret.... Mr. Dowrox.

Falconer (disguised as } Mr. WROUGHTON.

Abel Grouse) ....

Cornelius O'Diddimus.... Mr. JOHNSTONE.
Ponder....
Mr. MATHEWS.
Mr. SMITH.

Sailor....

Mrs. HARLOWE.

...

.... Mrs. JORDAN. Mrs. H. SIDDONS.

...

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Lady Worret.

Helen Worret

Fanny ...

The plot of this piece is not that of a Comedy, but of a Romance. It is not an imitation of life, nor has it that sufficient probability which gives to a fiction the decorum of nature, and the resemblance of truth. It is cold, insipid extravagance; reason is violat ed for what is monstrous, without being pleas

the structure of this character, by those arti fices of stage-display, of which, the writers of latter times have made such abundant use. However admirable the play, it may be remark.

without indignity to the genius of Shake. spear, that the character of Macbeth is not very various, nor very nicely distinguished. Such is the solemnity and grandeur of the events in this play, that individual character is either neglected or absorbed. Such is the overwhelming terror of the witchcraft and the magic; such the abounding variety and mystery of the plot, that the poet perhaps had no leisure, or no inclination, to point his characters with any nice discrimination, or to expand them to that excellence of which they were capable.

There is another plot-It is that of a mock marriage and a sham parson, by which the Peer conceives that he has cheated the credulity of a silly girl; but as the agents of rogues are often confederates against them, so in this case, the Peer is fairly caught in his own suare by a scheming Attorney, who prepares as good a licence as Doctors' Commons could issue, and as substantial a priest as ever Bishop ordained.

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ing, and the wind is disgusted by falsehood, which wants the common charm of novelty.

Two children, by a kind of gipsy trick, are changed in their cradles; one becomes a Baron bold, the other a gallant tar. The catastropheed, of the play divests the pseudo Baron of his title, and elevates the sailor to the Peerage. This improbability is rendered more disgusting by its being more trite.

To represent the character of Macbeth with suitable propriety, a good actor should bring to it, not only the ordinary excellencies of his art, but a degree of refined taste, an acute aud

Such is this silly plot, which, foolish as it is, was conducted with matchless absurdity. There was no pause or division in the narra-versatile sensibility, a characteristic grandeur, tive: there was no middle part-all was either involution or catastrophe.

and a royal dignity; in short, such qualities as are peculiar to a chosen few of his profession.

The Characters were of a piece with the Fable. The cattle and the cart were perfectly well matched. There was a Noble Lord who richly deserved the gallows; and a Baronet who had very fair claims for the pillory.-It is difficult to distinguish which was most offensive, the penitence or roguery of the Attorney and his Clerk-The part of the Sailor was that of a clamorous Patriot, aud Helen was a coquette without smartness or repartee.

The language of the piece, however, was sometimes elegant This is its only recommendation, and brought it safely into port,having kept an even, quiet tenor, in a voyage in which little was ventured, and nothing gained but safety.

HAYMARKET THEATRE.

On Wednesday, January 11, Mr. Young, to whom the Managers of this theatre have afforded an opportunity of appearing in the leading characters of the drama, with no other limit than that of his own discretion, came forward in the character of Macbeth.

The part of Macbeth is not very nicely adapted to popular effect. The ambition of the performer has not been much consulted in

Mr. Young, who is an actor of great merit, and, as a tragedian, second perhaps to none but Kemble, is no wise suited to this charac

ter.

His manner is precise, dry, and rigid; there is a formal and studied accuracy in his style, a want of diguity, and a total defect of sensibility.

He seems never to forget himself into feeling, or to plunge into the scene with the artless promptitude of passion. There was nothing absurd in his performance; on the contrary, there were many points of great and shining excellence; but the effect produced The was that of languor and indifference. audience were never roused by the impetuosity of his courage, and had no sympathy with the compunctions of his guilt. He was at no time master of the genius of the scene; and though in some parts he satisfied the judgment, he seldom touched the heart.

We must not omit, however, without its due praise, his admirable delivery of the lines in the banquet scene,

"Can such things be, and overcome us like a summer's cloud, &c."

These lines were spoken as we have never heard them before, and the effect was such as justified the novelty.

EPISTLE TO DR. ARBUTINOT,

BEING THE PROLOGUE TO THE

Tie up the knocker; say I'm sick, I'm dead.
The Dog-star rages! nay, 'tis past a doubt,
All Bedlami, or Parnassus, is let out:
Fire ip each eye, and papers in each hand,
They rave, recite, and madden round the land.
What walls can guard me, or what shades
can hide?

P. SHUT, shut the door, good John, fatigu'd || Rhymes ere he wakes, and prints before term

I said,

ends,

Oblig'd by hunger and request of friends;
"The piece, you think, is incorrect? why take
it;

"I'm all submission, what you'd have it make
it."

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All fly to Twit'nam, and in humble strain
Apply to me, to keep them mad or vain.
Arthur, whose giddy son neglects the laws,
Imputes to me and my damn'd works the cause;
Poor Cornus sees his frantic wife elope ;
And curses wit, and poetry, and Pope.
Friend to my life! (which did not you prolong
The world had wauted many an idle song,)
What drops of nostrum can this plague remove
Or which must end me, a fool's wrath or love?
A dire dilemma! either way I'm sped;

If foes, they write; if friends, they read me
dead.

Seiz'd and tied down to judge, bow wretched I!
Who can't be silent, and who will not lie:
To laugh, were want of goodness and of grace;
And to be grave, exceeds all power of face:
I sit with sad civility, I read

With honest anguish, and an aching head;
And drop at last, but in unwilling ears,
This saving counsel, "Keep your piece nine

SATIRES.

years."

Nine years! cries he, who high in Drury-
lanc,

Lull'd by soft zephyrs thro' the broken pane,
La Belle Assemblée.-No. XLI.

Three things another's modest wishes bound,
My friendship, and a prologue, and ten pound.
Pitholeon sends to me: "You know his
Grace,

"I want a patron; ask him for a place."
Pitholeon libell'd me-but here's a letter
"Informs you, Sir, 'twas when he knew uo
better.

"Dare you refuse him? Curl invites to dine;
"He'll write a journal, or he'll turn divine."
Bless me! a packet." "Tis a stranger
sues,

"A virgin tragedy, an orphan muse."
If I dislike it, "Furies, death and rage!"
If I approve,
"Commend it to the stage."
There (thank my stars!) my whole commission
ends,

The players and I are, luckily, no friends.
Fir'd that the house reject him, " 'Sdeath, I'll
print it,

"And shame the fools-Your int'rest, Sir, with Lintot."

Lintot, dull rogue! will think your price too much :

"Not, Sir, if you revise it, and retouch."
All my demurs but double his attacks;
At last he whispers, "Do; and we go snacks."
Glad of a quarrel, straight I clap the door :
"Sir, let me see your works and you no more."
'Tis sung, when Midas' ears began to
spring

(Midas, a sacred person and a king),
His very minister who spied them first
(Some say his Queen) was forc'd to speak, or
burst.

And is not mine, my friend, a sorer case,
When ev'ry coxcomb perks them in my face?
A. Good friend, forbear! you deal in
dang'rous things,

I'd never name Queens, Ministers, or Kings;
Keep close to ears, and those let asses prick,
'Tis nothing-P, Nothing, if they bite and
kick?

Out with it, Dunciad! let the secret pass,
That secret to each fool, that he's an ass:
H

The truth once told (and wherefore should we lie?)

The Queen of Midas slept, and so may I.

You think this cruel? take it for a rule,
No creature smarts so little as a fool.
Let peals of laughter, Codrus, round thee
break,

Thou unconcern'd canst hear the mighty crack:
Pit, box, and gall'ry in convulsions hurl'd,
Thou stand'st unshook amidst a bursting
world.

He spins the slight self-pleasing thread anew :
Destroy his fib or sophistry in vain,
The creature's at his dirty work again;
Thron'd on the centre of his thin designs,
Proud of a vast extent of flimsy lines!
Whom have I hurt? has poet yet, or peer,
Lost the arch'd eyebrow, or Parnassian sncer;
And has not Colley still his lord and whore?
His butchers Henly, his free-masons Moor?
Does not one table Bavius still admit?
Still to one bishop Philips seem a wit?
Still Sappho-4. Hold, for God's sake-you'll
offend,

Who shames a scribbler? break one cobweb The courtly Talbot, Somers, Sheffield read;

thro'

Ev'n mitred Rochester would nod the head;
And St. John's self (great Dryden's friend be-

The muse but serv'd to ease some friend, not
wife,

To help me thro' this long disease, my life;
To second, Arbuthnot! thy art and care,
And teach the being you preserv'd to bear.

But why then publish? Granville the polite,
And knowing Walsh, would tell me I could
write;

No names-be calm-learn prudence of a
friend :

I too could write, and I am twice as tall;
But focs like these-P. One flatt'rer's worse
than all.

Of all mad creatures, if the learn'd are right,
It is the slaver kills, and not the bite.
A fool quite angry is quite innocent:
Ala

'tis ten times worse when they repent.
One dedicates in high beroic prose,
And ridicules beyond a hundred foes:

Go on, obliging creatures, make me see
All that disgrac'd my betters met in me.
Say for my comfort, languishing in bed,
"Just so immortal Maro held his head;"
And when I die, be sure you let me know
Great Homer died three thousand years ago.

Well-natur'd Garth, inflam'd with early praise,
And Congreve lov'd, and Swift endur'd my
lays;

Why did I write! what sin to me unknown
Dipp'd me in ink, my parent's, or my own?
As yet a child, nor yet a fool to fame,
I lisp'd in numbers, for the numbers came.
I left no calling for this idle trade,
No duty broke, no father disobey'd

While pure description held the place of sense?
Like gentle Fanny's was my flow'ry theme,
A painted mistress, or a purling stream.
Yet then did Gildon draw his venal quill;
I wish'd the man a dinner, and sat still.
Yet then did Dennis rave in furious fret;
I never answer'd, I was not in debt.
If want provok'd, or madness made them print,
I wag'd no war with bedlam or the mint.

Did some more sober critic come abroad;
If wrong, I smil'd; if right, I kiss'd the rod.
Pains, reading, study, are their just pretence ;
And all they want is spirit, taste, and sense.
Commas and points they set exactly right;

One from all Grub-street will my fame defend, || And 'twere a sin to rob them of their mite.
And, more abusive, calls himself my friend.
This prints my letters, that expects a bribe,
And others roar aloud, “Subscribe, subscribe."

Yet ne'er one sprig of laurel grac'd their ribalds,
From slashing Bentley down to piddling Tib.
balds;

There are who to my person pay the court,
I cough like Horace, and, tho' lean, am short.
Ammon's great son one shoulder had too
high;
Such Ovid's nose; and, "Sir! you have an
eye"-

fore)

With open arms receiv'd one poet more.
Happy my studies, when by these approv'd!
Happier their author when by these belov'd!
From these the world will judge of men and
books,

Not from the Burnets, Oldmixons, and Cooks.
Soft were my numbers, who could take of-
fence

Each wight who reads not, and but scans and
spells,

Each word-catcher that lives on syllables,
Ev'n such small critics some regard may claim,
Preserv'd in Milton's or in Shakspear's name.
Pretty! in amber to observe the forms

Of hairs or straws, or dirt, or grubs, or worms!
The things we know are neither rich nor rare,
But wonder how the devil they got there.

Were others angry: I excus'd them too; Well might they rage, I gave them but their due.

A man's true merit 'tis not hard to find;
But each man's secret standard in his mind,
That casting-weight pride adds to emptiness,
This who can gratify? for who can guess?
The bard whom pilfer'd pastorals renown,
Who turns a Persian tale for half-a-crown,

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Just writes to make his barrenness appear, And strains from hard-bound brains eight lines a year;

He who still wanting, tho' he lives on theft, Steals much, spends little, yet has nothing left: And he who now to sense, now nonsense leaning,

Means not, but blunders round about a meaning,

And he whose fustian's so sublimely bad,
It is not poetry, but prose run mad :

All these my modest satire bade translate,
And own'd that nine such poets made a Tate.
How did they fume, and stamp, and roar, and
chafe!

And swear, not Addison himself was safe. Peace to all such! but were there one whose

fires

True genins kindles, and fair fame inspires ; Blest with each talent and each art to please, And born to write, converse, and live with

ease:

Should such a man, too fond to rule alone,
Bear, like the Turk, no brother near the throne,
View him with scornful, yet with jealous eyes,
And hate for arts that caus'd himself to rise;
Damn with faint praise, assent with civil leer,
And, without sneering, teach the rest to sneer;
Willing to wound, and yet afraid to strike,
Just hint a fault, and hesitate dislike;
Alike reserv'd to blame or to commend,
A tim'rous foe, and a suspicious friend;
Dreading ev'n fools, by flatt'rers besieg'd,
And so obliging, that he ne'er oblig'd;
Like Cato, give his little senate laws,
And sit attentive to his own applause;
While wits and Templars ev'ry sentence raise,
And wonder with a foolish face of praise-
Who but must laugh, if such a man there be?
Who would not weep, if Atticus were he?
What, tho' my name stood rubric on the
walls,

Or plaster'd posts, with claps, in capitals?
Or smoking forth, a hundred hawkers load,
On wings of winds came flying all abroad?
I sought no homage from the race that write;
I kept, like Asian monarchs, from their sight:
Poems I heeded (now be-rhym'd so long)
No more than thou, great George! a birth-day
song.

I ne'er with wits or witlings pass'd my days,
To spread about the itch of verse and praise;
Nor like a puppy dangled thro' the town,
To fetch and carry sing-song up and down;
Nor at rehearsals sweat, and mouth'd, and
cry'd,

With bandkerchief and orange at my side:
But sick of fops, and poetry, and prate,
To Bufo left the whole Castalian state.

Proud as Apollo on his forked hill,
Sat full-blown Bufo, puff'd by ev'ry quill;
Fed with soft dedication all day long,
Horace and he went hand in hand in song.
His library (where busts of poets dead
And a true Pindar stood without a head)
Receiv'd of wits an undistinguish'd race,
Who first his judgment ask'd, and then a place:
Much they extoll'd his pictures, much his seat,
And flatter'd ev'ry day, and some days eat :
Till grown more frugal in his riper days,
He paid some bards with port, and some with
praise;

To some a dry rehearsal was assign'd;
And others (harder still) he paid in kind.
Dryden alone (what wonder!) came not nigh;
Dryden alone escap'd his judging eye:
But still the great have kindness in reserve;
He help'd to bury whom he help'd to starve.
May some choice patron bless each grey
goose quill!

May ev'ry Bavius have his Bufo still!
So when a statesman want's a day's defence,
Or envy holds a whole week's war with sense:
Or simple pride for flatt'ry makes demands,
May Dunce by Dunce be whistled off my
hands!

Blest be the great for those they take away,
And those they left me, for they left me Gay;
Left me to see neglected genius bloom,
Neglected die, and tell it on his tomb :
Of all thy blameless life the sole return,
My verse and Queensb'ry weeping o'er thy urn.
O let me live my own, and die so too!
(To live and die is all I have to do :)
Maintain a poet's dignity and ease,
And see what friends, and read what books I
please.

Above a patron, tho' I condescend
Sometimes to call a minister my friend.
I was not born for courts or great affairs :
I pay my debts, believe, and say my pray'rs ;
Can sleep without a poem in my head,
Nor know if Dennis be alive or dead.

Why am I ask'd what next shall see the light?

Heavens! was I born for nothing but to write?
Has life no joys for me? or (to be grave)
Have I no friend to serve, no soul to save?

66

I found him close with Swift."-" Indeed? no doubt "(Cries prating Balbus) something will come out."

'Tis all in vain, deny it as I will, "No, such a genius never can lie still ;" And then for mine obligingly mistakes The first lampoon Sir Will or Bubo makes. Poor guiltless 1! and can I choose but smile, When ev'ry coxcomb knows me by my style.

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