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BY THE Saunterer IN SOCIETY.
AUNTERING this week will be like becoming a guest at a fairy banquet. For that" Once a year," the Dramatic College Fete, we are allowed to pass the magic boundary which separates audiences and actors, and permitted for a short time to mingle with the clever men and lovely women who adorn the English stage. I always spend about twice my annual income at the bazaar, but I do not grudge it, for I feel I am indebted to far more than that amount to those delightful people who on this occasion consent to play the fool gracefully on behalf of the poor and aged and sick of their profession. I hope, therefore, next Saturday to meet tho British public at Sydenham, and trust they will "come down" handsomely in every sense.
The Chancellor has retired, and however much one may regret the loss of his great intellect to the Government of the country, and howover much one may attribute the virtuous indignation on the part of the Opposition to mere party feeling, it is impossible not to admit that the disgrace is somewhat merited, if only on the ground of laxity and inattention. The keeper of tho Queen's Conscience should be like Caesar's wife, above the breath of suspicion. The conduct of the Honourable (!) Richard Bethell may have contributed largely to his father's downfall, but to what extent, one asks, is that conduct chargeable to faults of training? A father has more serious duties toward a son than the appointing him to lucrative offices.
I mu St point out in connection with the scandal a circumstance which seems to me very suspicious indeed. Lord Chelmsford, in his haste to pelt mud at the fallen Chancellor, has a little bespattered his own official robes. A question about the granting of a pension to Mr. Winslow by Lord Westbury was asked and answered—on the whole pretty correctly—in the House of Commons. The next night Lord Chelmsford rises in the House of Lords to explain away the explanation. It had been stated that he had not refused to recommend Mr. Winslow for a pension, but his lordship was anxious to declare that he had done so, and not once only. So far so good! But this sternly inflexible Chancellor, retiring from the woolsack, does not scruple to write to his successor, urging Mr. Win Blow's claims for tho very pension he himself had refused him. This looks like a premeditated attempt to get Lord Westbiry into a scrape. If not that, at all events it proves that incorruptible Chancellors are not rarer on the Whig side than the Tory, though they may not always be found out until they forget to shield their reputations in their anxiety to stab that of an opponent.
A Very excellent process is this new "Wothlytype" photographic invention. It avoids the harsh hard Hues and black shadows which spoil so many otherwise excellent likenesses taken by tho old plan. A photograph of Mr. Suthern as Brother Sam is lying before me at this moment, and speaks volumes in favour of Wothlytype. But we must have another name for the process if' it is to be popular, as it is likely to be, I fancy, on account of its being specially adapted for reproducing the female face divine. Tho ladies have never been taken successfully yet, but they will be able to have their varying expressions caught now, without any of the exaggerations which too often libel them in the common carle de visile.
The magazines this month are suffering from the heat of tho weather, I believe. 1% y few of them exhibit any sparkle, and some of them are very vapid indeed. But en rrtvnche the last number of All the Year Round contains an article on "Duffers," which is irresistibly comic and clever. The "duffing author"—a photograph for accuracy of portraiture—is excellent. Who of us does not know the writer-inmosaic, who is perpetually talking of "tho burly Doctor," "the witty Dean of St. Paul's," and "Gentle Oliver," thus making a gentle livelihood out of quotations from well-known authors P This is the sort of gentleman who would pass for a genius if there were no such tilings as those plaguy inverted commas, and who, even in spite of them, passes for a decent cook, because he serves up his own morsel of tasteless beefsteak with so many sauces manufactured by other people, that one appreciates the flavour of the dish without attributing it to its proper sources.
Letters, letters, letters, letters,
Some that threaten prison fetters
Such as bind insolvent debtors)—
One from Cooson, Wiles, and Railer,
One from Copperblocx, my tailor—
My unreasonable tailor—
One in Flagg's disgusting hand.
One from ErHRAm and Moses,
I should liko to pull their noses—
Their uncompromising noses;
One from Alice with the roses,
Timo was when I waited, waited,
Humblo postmen execrated—
Loudly, deeply execrated—
When I found I wasn't fated
Time was when I'd not have bartered
Of her little pen a dip For a peerage duly gartered— For a peerage starred and gartered— With a palace— office chartered—
Or a secretaryship!
But the time for that is over,
And I wish we'd never met. I'm afraid I've proved a rover— I'm afraid a heartless rover— Quarters in a place like Dover Tend to make a man forget.
Now I can accord precedenco
To my tailor, for I do
To my proffered I.O.U.I
Bills for can iages and horses,
Matters that concern the Forces—
News that may affect the Forces—
News affecting my resources,
And the tiny little paper,
With the words that seem to run
From her little fingers taper
(They are very small and taper),
By the tailor and the draper
And unopened it's remaining!
I can read her gentle hope— Her entreaties, uncomplaining (She was always uncomplaining)— Her devotion never waning
Through the little envelope.
"Double, Double, Toil and Trouble!"
An artist of some eminence, has recently given his notions of the characteristics of colour. He says white signifies purity, blue, fidelity, etc., etc., but appears to be in serious error in one point. He speaks of yellow as indicative of domestic trouble. We always thought black and bluo stood for the domestic brews of trouble.
We understand that the active and intelligent myrmidons of Sib Richard Mayne are about to apply for summonses against the managers of theatres for supplying tie public with a drop between the acts without having a license.
FROM OUR STALL.
Through fire and ■water, over hill over dalo, through bush through briar, over park over pale, by cab and by rail, by patrician carriage and by reasonable omnibus, flocked Mr. Toole's friends and admirers on the occasion of Mr. Toolr's benefit. After an Adelphi farce, which on account of its long services will porhaps always be retained upon the establishment—a new and original drama, not an original drama not adapted from tho French, but an original original drama, was produced, in which Mr, Toole played an honest fireman, named Joe Bright. The name of Bright was doubtless given to tho hero on account of tho helmet which adorns his brow; it by no means indicate* tho limpidity or lustre of his intellect, for a stupider fellow than Joe Bright never handled hoso or rescued lovely woman in her night dress. Joe loves and is beloved by a charming girl, played and looked by Miss Henrietta Sims, and though this charming girl (played by Miss Henrietta Sims, reader, remember that), gives him every artless and innocent proof of her affection that she can, short of Baying, "Joe, I lovo you! Accompany mo to the sacred altar, where tho clergyman shall make you mine, shall make mo yours, and us ours, and both each other's;" Joe, the idiot, trill not sea it, but insists on snivelling and getting drunk, and dividing his day in alternate allotments of maudlin love and attempted assaults upon his sister. He understands fire-engines, but not the fair sex. But fortune favours Joe, because ho is rough and has an honost heart. The girl he loves, whom ho brought out of a burning house when a baby, and brought up in his own cottage to be a beautiful woman, turns out to be an heiress with large estates somowhore; and Joe is betrothed to her, and after tho fall of tho curtain may be supposed to marry her, and go and live in tho country in a villa on his wife's property; and, now and then, to set fire to a cottage for the sake of playing on tho flames with a portable engine, and so remind himself of old times.
Mr. Tools was stupid, honest, tipsiSed, blind, sentimental. Ho acted with a truth and effect that roused his audience to an enthusiasm incompatible, to our mind, with the present state of tho thermometer. Mr. Billinqton looked handsome, and played well as a musician in high spirits and pecuniary difficulties; and Miss Hbnrisita Sims, as bofore mentioned, was a charming inginu,.
As for Miss Wool»ab—but it is impossible to describe Miss WoolOar except in Hnakinoso, and Ruskinese can only be written by its inventor. Let us say, then, that hor portrayal of Joe's cheer}', positive, energetic, clear-headed sistor, was perfect. Tho forco of Woolqar could no farther go. It has often occurred to us that Miss Woolgar would be good to eat; if not, why sheuld she havo changed her namo to Mellon f
Thoro is a considerable amount of simplicity and reality in tho plot and incidents of Through Fire and Water, and also a considerable amount of what is conventional and unnatural. Mu. Walter Gordon was quite right to make Ruth cling to Joo even when he is unworthy of her, for love, we know, is blind, and young ladies are apt to choso ineligible partners; neither can exception be taken to Joe's sister, who docs not seem to doat on Mr. Kit Coventry, for Kit does not get dnmk and snivel, but makes love like a man; all of which facts may be objoctionable to Joe's sister, who is tho sort of girl who loves hard and loves to find fault. When, however, the author has dowered Ruth with unexpected fortune, his bounty even to his own dramatis persona; should stop. It was too much to make Kit and Ruth brother and sister. Sufficient for a play 4s the genealogy thereof; there was no noeessity for uniting all the characters in the bonds of consanguinity. Ever sinco Mr. Box inquired of Mr. Cox whether ho (Mr. Cox) had a strawberry mark upon his left arm, and Mr. Cox said that ho had not, and Mr. Box said that that fact convinced him (Box) that he (Cox) was his (Box's) long-lost brother, it has been dangerous to find out too many relations on tho stage. Besides, there, as elsewhere, relations are a bore.
When the play was over tho audience began to call, and tho characters passed across the stago linked hand-in-hand, sausagefashion, if wo may bo allowed that uncomplimentary though savoury comparison; and then the author was called for, and he came and bowed. By the way, why should the author be called on last? The play is his, and not tho actors'. He invented it, or if he didn't, as Dundreary would say, " Some other fella did." If in the Elizarethlin age, "calling" had beon in fashion, can wo imagine Shakespeare trotting on after tho representatives of his own creations, and bowing, delighted at being taken notice of among tho actors?
By the action of that law of compensation which governs all things, the termination of the civil war in America which takes from these isles and Astley's the famous Menken (if a tear should bjot this page, ploaso consider it a printer's error, and discharge the man), which takes from these isles and Astley's the famous Menken, gives to England and tho Adelphi an American actor. Mr. John E. Owens opened—green-roomatically speaking—in a something called a comic drama, entitled Solon Shinr/l*. The piece is beneath notice, and it is
to bo regretted that Mr. Owens' talents should have been " damaged," by such a trumpery, ricketty vehicle as he elected to display them in.
Solon Shinglo, the character personated by Mr. Owens, is an old Yankee farmer, who pays a visit to an America* village for tho purpose of looking after a lawsuit, and while waiting with his team at the door of the house of a friend, has a barrel of "-apple-sarce" stolen from his waggon. This is the foundation on which Mu. Owens has built up a character, or rather an idiosyncrasy, for we presume Solon Shingle is not to be looked cat as a type of the American farmer, but is to bo taken for an exceptional person. Solon is a very old man, Beventy and upwards; ho talks continually, which we understand to bean American hubit; he "chews" continually, and ho expectorates continually—two habits which, even when Cousin Jonathan shall have pocketed this country and annexed Ireland, will hardly become naturalised in polito society.
Solon is a real free and enlightened citizen, active, restless, and inquiring. He wants to know, he does! In court he is not afraid, but reminds the judge ol tho time when his mother kept a tavern. Despite his senility he ia shrewd and canny, despite his age he gesticulates with that galvanic sort of inappropriate action peculiar to tho "cream of tiiu airth." He is not easily put down, and has a high opinion of himself. Ho might he safely trusted in a drawing room full of ladies, for ho would say nothing coarso or offensive. Profoundly practical in action, a more illogical talker could not be found, eve* on a philanthropic or political platform. He is "Uncle Sam" with all his good heartedness and had taste, his high national honour and low commercial morality. The highest compliment is paid to Ma. Owens by acknowledging his complete personal submersion in Mr. Solon Shingle, and by speaking of Mr. Solon Shingle as if he were a real existent person. It is a remarkable performance, humourous and broad, and, at tho same time, as highly finished in every point of detail as a miniature.
From Exclusive, Sources Of Information.
Gentlemen,—My views are so familiar to you that in again soliciting j-our suffrages I have little to explain and nothing to withdraw.
Tho Houso of Commons has only had 137 sittings during the session; out of these I have attended 294, and on tho other occasion I was ill in bed with diphtheria, cholera morbus, angina pectoris, and bile.
I am steadfastly opposed to any attentats at assassination; and I will not allow anybody to play Brutus with my constituents.
I consider that too much public money has been spent upon the National Portrait Gallery, a building which is of no value except historically; and surely every elector can form his own ideas of political persons, such as Ciiahles James Pitt, Pehkin Cade, or Titus Garrick without going by omnibus all tho way from Finsbury to Great George-street, Westminster.
I am prepared, if re-elected, to vote for tho abolition of most things.
I am not at all certain that it would not be a good plan to give every operative two votes, so as to resist the encroachments of aristocracy.
With regard to female suffrage, I am prepared to extend it to the honest-hearted daughter of toil, who goes out charing, or takes in washing; but I would sternly refuse it to tho pampered duchess.
Your humble servant and delegate to command,
No. 4.—To The Electors Of Devizes.
Gentlemen,—Strictly following out my well-known system of interrogatory polities, I write this address for the purpose of asking you a question.
Are you disposed to roturn me once again as your representative in the Commons Houso of Parliament P
Should your answer be in the affirmative, I pledge myself to let not a single evening elapse without asking at least three questions of tho Chancellor of the Exchequer, two of the First Lord of the Treasury, and another of the Secretary of State for the Home Department.
A somewhat similar course of action was pursued by me during tho greater part of the session which has now elapsed.
If it has met with your approval, why should I fear the Blanders of a vonal and scurrilous press't
Why should I not persevere in a path simply because I tread it alone!'
Why should I submit to bo browbeaten by those whose only desire is to stiflo the free expression of opinion in the bud, and to muzzlo the independent tribunes of the people '<
Why need I say more f Does not this brief address convince you of the proprioty of voting for Your grateful servant,
Darby Griffith f
MRS. BROWN AT THE DRAMATIC PETE.
I Don't think as ever I was so flustered in my life, and all nothing after all. For I was a-thinkin' as I was goin' to havo a quiet day, and set my heart on unpicking my coburg, as I'm going to hare dyed, when in comes our Jane's Job.
I says, "Joe, whatever is it P"
He says, " Mother has sent me Otbt for to ask yon to come and spend the day to have broad beans and bacon," as I'm partial to, and he says, "As Jane and me is a-goin', and I'm that late as I can't stay a moment," and off ho goes.
Well, I says, I didn't want to go nowheres, but his mother is that peppery if you seems at all cool, and Brown does make such a row about me a-keeping of her at her distance, as is a low-lived woman, and given to abuse, so I thort as it was best to go.
The way as I busted thro' dressing nobody wouldn't credit, and the heat as I was in was downright wapour baths.
Off I sets, and nearly dropped a-gottin' to the end of tho street, where I was just in time to miss a 'bus, and had to wait a quarter of a hour, which was as well perhaps, for if I hadn't took a something at the Catherine Wheel, I don't think as I could have gono on.
When the 'bus did come it was that full, and the way as a party give mo a shove, and used low abuse, thro' mo a-treading quito light on his foot, you'd a thought as I'd been a elephant.
I got out of the 'bus close to London-bridge, as I hurries over, thro' a-seein' as it was late, thro' Joe's mother a-dinin' full early, as I considers twelve to be. I was looking out for tho Bermondsey 'bus all over the bridge, as would set me down at the door, and gets quite on to the top of Tooley-street when I hoars, "Mrs. Brown, Mrs. Brown!" So I thinks it's only jeers, and keeps on, when a blow in the back nearly sends mo for'ards, and round I turns for to resent such freedoms, and thero was that boy 8am, as is Joe's youngest brother, a-grinning like wild.
So I says, "Whatever do you mean by taking away any one's breath like that."
"Why," he says, "mother says you're as deaf as a beadle, and we've been a-hoHarin' like mad at you aver so long." I says, " Wherever is your mother t"
"Over there," says he; and thero, sure enough, all along the kerb, was Mrs. Simmons, as is Joe's mother, tho' married again, stun Jin', a-laughing like mad.
"Wherever are you a-goin't" says she.
"Why, to see you, to be sure," says I.
"To see me, then you're in the wrong box, for I'm goin' out for the day."
"Why, didn't you send Joe to ask me to come and spend the day?" "Next Monday," says she.
Well, you might havo knocked me down with a feather, I was that took aback.
"Where are you off to?" says I.
"To the Dramatic Fair," says she, "at tho Crystian Pallis." "Whatever's that?" says I.
"Oh," says she, "for to give a home to them actors as is past work."
I says, "Oh, indeed, like Chelsea 'Ospital where the Greenwich pensioners is."
Says she, "No doubt."
"Well," I says, "I'll tako myself home again." "No," says she, "como along with us, and a pleasant day we shrill have."
So I don't like to throw cold water over nobody, and givo way, and off we went just in time for to havo a good fight for the train, as I got into with difficulties, thro' the man a-shetting in my gownd, as prevented me a-setting down comfortable, as was that scrouged, as it's well as the journey wasn't long.
Dear heart! when wo got there, what with the stairs and passages I was dead-beat afore wo got into the Pallis, as was that full as ono couldn't think where thoy all come from.
The noise and the din was that confusion as I couldn't make out whatever was a-goin' on. There certainly was a deal of lovely ladios.