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Lady's Magazine;

For A P R I L, 1796.

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Account of the PLAY of VORTI. that we should say something more.

GER'N, represented at ibe Thea- !- After a brief sketch of the fable and
TRE ROYAL, DRURY LANE, on characters, we shall proceed to no-

tice the grounds on which it was

condemned by every unprejudiced HIS piece was said to have been hearer-by those, who decided not

found among certain manu- from dates or MSS. but who fought, scripts in the poffeilion of Mr. Ire- and sought in vain, for passion and land, and supposed to have been for nature, for the juft impersonifiwritten by the immortal Shakespeare. cation and glowing description of The attention of the public could our immortal bard. not therefore fail to be greatly excited by the discovery, and interest. DRAMATIS PERSONÆ. eri in the question of its authenticity. It has at length been left to a Vortigern

Mr. Kemble. British audience, fond even to en

Conftant us

Mr. Bensley. Virtimernis

Mr. Whitfild. thusiasm of their national poet, to

Sons of

Mr. Truema!ı. decide, from their feelings, whether, Palcevitius

VurtigernMr.C.Kemole. as a drama, it was conceived in the Aureiius i

M. Barrimore. energetic spirit of our Shakespeare - Ver 5 Nr. Cau field, whether it was a pofthumous garland


Mr Ki g.

Mr. Benion. to be hung over his sacred


Mr. Panimore.
or a bastard (cion, which imposure
woulu fain graft on the stock of cre-

Rowena,(Daughter of Hen-

Mrs. Millar. dulity.

Flavia, (Daughter of Vorri-
The verdict of a numerous and


Mrs. Jordan. discriminating audience was decid. Edinu::da, (Wife of Vorti. edly against its legitimacy. - They gern)

Mrs. Powel. heard with candour, and expected

Barons, Attendants, &c.
with ungratified attention. Their

decision was in the end as absolute as
it must be irrevocable.

Conlantius, an aged king of the Of a production to which the pub. Britons, weary of the cares of yolic notice has been long and artis-vernment of his kingdom, in an afcially attracted, it will be'expected sembly of the barons, surrenders a

U 2


Sons of

moiety of his crown to Vortigern, of the Britons and Saxons. Hengit one of his favourite chieftains. Nain-Rowena poisons herfelf: tigern, with feigned reluctance, and Vortigern, engaging in fingle yields to his commands. but is no combat with Aurelius, is difarmed, sooner inducted into power, than, and saved by the interposition of giving a loose to his ambition, he Flavia. Aurelius espoules Flavia ; resolves on the death of Conftantius, and thus the piece concludes. and employs two wretches to effect From this ketch it will appear, his purpose. Imputing the mur that the writer of the piece, whoder to some Scots then at colirt, he ever he may be, has ased all the li. causes them to be apprehended, and cence which Shakespeare himself dispatches messengers to Aurelius could claim. The unities of time and his brother, then at Rome, and place are disregarded; the scene urging their return, to ease him of is now in Britain and then at Rome; the anxious task of ruling ; sending but the breacli of rule is made withat the same time his hired bravoes to out atonement. The fcenes are affaffinate them on their return. changed, it is true, but all are equal

The adherents of the late king, ly barren. The writer travels to no violently fufpeciing. Vortigern to purpose, and is accompanied by no “have bren guilty of his murder, con intereft. There is nothing like vey intelligence of this design to the creative fancy, nothing of fervid two young princes, who land in defcription, nothing of that lucid Scotland. Their cause is there warm. (order" which the mind of Shakely espoused, and a large force (peare could impart even to the most marched againft Vortigern, who ap- chaotic scenes. There is nothing, plies to Hengist king of the Saxons. in fact, but what either the infancy Hengist, with a considerable body or do!age of Shakespeare must have of Saxons, comes to his alliftance. disdained--there is nothing like Aurelius is violently in love with himself. Flavia, the daughter of Vortigern, We are reminded, it is true, of who, with her brother Pafcentius, the scenes and language of Shakeescapes to the Scottish army on the fpeare; but the recollection is exkorders. A battle is faught. Vor- cited only by approximate situations, cigern is victorious.-Hengist con- and by a bald initation of his dia. ceives the delign of becoming ma- lect. Thus, Vortigern, in the fter of the kingdom by means of his first ad, and after the murder of the beautiful daughter Rowena, whoni king, is no other than Macbeth.-he introduces to Vortigern aţ a ban. Flavia, her brothes, and the fool, quet in celebration of the victory, are taken from “ As vou like it ;"

Vortigern becomes violently ena- and Vortigern in the last act is Richmoured ; and though his queen was are III. itimulated by his constill living, who had been driven to fcience, and weighed down by his niadness by his ill treatment, he in- despair. If


other evidence stantly declares her queen of Eng. were as ftrongly in favour of this land. This irritates his orn fons, play, as it is decisively against it, we as well as the barons: and Vortigern conid never believe that Shakespeare having ordered considerable largesles could borrow fo vilely froin him to be given to the folliers, in the felt!-He, who conation of wbich the latter atat al right to have been consulted, they go " Exhaufted worlds, and then creover to the party of the princes, who ated new,'' are enabled, in heir tuin, to attack and defeat the combined forces could never have descended to repro


duce the creatures of his own fancy, not. The age in which he lived under a thin and flimsy disguise. might have borne such coarsenels.

But it is the defects and not the His iinirator has ventured what beauties of Shakespeare, which the taste of his prototype avoided. have been caught up by the falle Of the abfurd, the instances are such taste of his imitator. --Many a page trash, as of“ a bellowing trumpet" has been wasted to vindicate the of " brains travelling on a pilgrimline in Macbeth,

age"--and of “ death, with his icy

bands, seizing a king by the feet. “ His filver sin laced with his golden The last instance occurs in what blood."

has been quoted as the finest paffage

in the play. We here give it memoriMr. Ireland, or Mr. Ireland's ter to our readers. journeyman, improves on the falfehood and absurdity of this meta

---Oh, sovereign death! phor.- When Vortigern hands his That haft for thy domain ihis world {word to his friend, and orders him



Church-yards and charnel-houses are thy to plunge it in his heart, a fituation instantly taken from that of Antony

And hospitals thy sumptuous palnces;

And when thou wouldit be merry, thou and Ventidius, the latter replies in

doft chule terms like the following:

The gaudy chamber of a dying king :

On! then thou doft ope wide thy bony “ Were every drop to fall a gem,


(tricks, And every jewel to belong to me

And, with rule laugirer and fantastis I could not do lhe deed ?"

Thou clap'ít thy rattiing fingers to thy fides;

[feet, When we comment on some

With icz hand thou tak'st him by the other abftract patlages in this play,

And upwards so 'till thou dost reacti his heart,

(night." we do it with full recollection of an

And wrap liim in the cloak of laliing ingenious critique which appeared some years since on Othello, up The “ modernisms," if so they posing it to be produced as a mo may be termed, are innumerable, dern play. It intimates, that the The word “crisisoccurs more burst of 'indignation, " Oh damn than once, --a word, we will boldly her! damn her!” would outweigh affirm, never used by Shakespeare. and fink the other merits of that – The phrase of liquid forrows" piece. But however plausible this is not less evidently of the modera fuppofition may be--and though school. It would be endless to rethe false refinement of this day may cite the anachronisins of this deteject what is in nature, and there- scription. fore admillible at all times---there is The play liad every aid from acta line to be drawn between the vul. ing and decoration.

There were gar and the absurd. The former is fongs to relieve the dreadful tedium as variable as taste ;---the latter is as of the scene, by Mrs. Jordan and determinable as truth.

Miss Leake. But the contempt and As instances of the vulgar, it is ridicule of the audience was to poffible that Shakespeare might have strongly manifested during the two laid that his hero " would not last acts, that Mr. Kemble was combudge”-or that he “would not pelled to come forward and bey an die in-a-doors full fomach'dor even hearing to the end. The hearing defire « his enemies to follow him was given, and the piece almost to bell."-This Shakespeare might unaniinqutly condemned. An athave done, though he certainly did tempi was made to announce it for



Monday evening. This was refift. 1 a strong tower at each end, and s ed; and after a long struggle, che statues on each side. The old town School for Scandal was given out by is fituated near the Muldaw, and is Mr. Kemble.

very populous; the houses are high, The prologue was an appeal to and the streets narrow. Here is the the candour of the audience. The old palace, where the ancient kings epilogue would have won,


resided. The finest ornament of this thing could, the grace and favour part is the university. The jesuits of the auditory. It was exquisitely have a magnificent college here, and delivered by Mrs. Jordan, but with here the Jews reside, and have nine out success!

synagogues. Their number amounted to 90,000 persons, till they of.

fénded the late king of Prussia, who DESCRIPTION of the City of | drove them all from the town. The PRAGUE.

new town is the best built part of

Prague : it has spacious streets, (With a View elegantly engraved.) with gardens and vineyards, and is

separated from the old town, by a RAGUE is a handsome, large, ditch, into which they can let water.

and celebrated town or city, in The little town is on the west side of Germany; the capital of the king, the Muldaw, and joined to the old dom of Bohemia. It comprehends one by a bridge of twenty four three towns, viz. the old, the new, arches, 1700 feet long, and about and the little town. It is one of the thirty-five in breadth. This town largest cities in Europe, being' al was built on the spot where there most fifteen miles in circumference, was a forest, and there is a poplar and, next to London, Paris, and tree yet standing, which they af. Constantinople, the most populous. firm has grown there about 1009 It contains 100 churches, besides years. 9 Jewish fynagogues, anci a cele On a rising ground, called Radbrated university, which stands in schin-hill; is Upper Prague, where the old town, and was founded in is a manificent palace of the emperos, 13; 8, by the emperor Charles IV. from which the Bohemian tiates being the only one in Bolrmia, and fung three Austrian deputies out of commonly having in it at present the window, three stories high, in 1400 students.

But when John 1618, without their receiving much 'Huss was rector there in 1;oş, it is hurt. Here also is the cathedral of said to have had noless th:111 44,000 ; St. Veit, and in it are the bodies of and afterwards when the emperor St. Wenceslaus, and St. John de Charles V. would have retreached Nepomuc, the latter being in very the privileges of the students 27,000 high veneration among the Boheof them are said to have left it in mians, and his thrine much resorted one week, and 10,000 more toon af The brass ftatue of him, as big ter. This city also contains several as lise, is erected on the bridge, monasteries.

whence he was cast into the river. Prague is built

seven moun-

This city contains 52 palaces of tains : the river Moldaw, or Mul the nobility; but many of them daw, runs through the town, and luffered greatly during the seven Separates the old froin the new. year's war, which began in 1756. There is a handsome bridge over it, The principal buildings are the royal built with free itont, and Tupported Castle, the Radschin, and the Straw. with 18 arches. It is 1770 feet in house : in the first the elector of length, and 35 in breadth, having Bavaria received the homage of the




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