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No. 022 [from The Spectator]
by [?]

Your humble servant,

Ralph Simple.”

“Drury Lane, March 24, 1710-11.


I saw your Friend the Templar this Evening in the Pit, and thought he looked very little pleased with the Representation of the mad Scene of the Pilgrim. I wish, Sir, you would do us the Favour to animadvert frequently upon the false Taste the Town is in, with Relation to Plays as well as Operas. It certainly requires a Degree of Understanding to play justly; but such is our Condition, that we are to suspend our Reason to perform our Parts. As to Scenes of Madness, you know, Sir, there are noble Instances of this Kind in Shakespear; but then it is the Disturbance of a noble Mind, from generous and humane Resentments: It is like that Grief which we have for the decease of our Friends: It is no Diminution, but a Recommendation of humane Nature, that in such Incidents Passion gets the better of Reason; and all we can think to comfort ourselves, is impotent against half what we feel. I will not mention that we had an Idiot in the Scene, and all the Sense it is represented to have, is that of Lust. As for my self, who have long taken Pains in personating the Passions, I have to Night acted only an Appetite: The part I play’d is Thirst, but it is represented as written rather by a Drayman than a Poet. I come in with a Tub about me, that Tub hung with Quart-pots; with a full Gallon at my Mouth. [6] I am ashamed to tell you that I pleased very much, and this was introduced as a Madness; but sure it was not humane Madness, for a Mule or an [ass [7]] may have been as dry as ever I was in my Life.

I am, Sir,

Your most obedient And humble servant.”

“From the Savoy in the Strand.


If you can read it with dry Eyes, I give you this trouble to acquaint you, that I am the unfortunate King Latinus, and believe I am the first Prince that dated from this Palace since John of Gaunt. Such is the Uncertainty of all human Greatness, that I who lately never moved without a Guard, am now pressed as a common Soldier, and am to sail with the first fair Wind against my Brother Lewis of France. It is a very hard thing to put off a Character which one has appeared in with Applause: This I experienced since the Loss of my Diadem; for, upon quarrelling with another Recruit, I spoke my Indignation out of my Part in recitativo:

… Most audacious Slave,
Dar’st thou an angry Monarch’s Fury brave? [8]

The Words were no sooner out of my Mouth, when a Serjeant knock’d me down, and ask’d me if I had a Mind to Mutiny, in talking things no Body understood. You see, Sir, my unhappy Circumstances; and if by your Mediation you can procure a Subsidy for a Prince (who never failed to make all that beheld him merry at his Appearance) you will merit the Thanks of

Your friend,

The King of Latium.”

[Footnote 1: therefore shall]

[Footnote 2: whom]

[Footnote 3: In the opera of ‘Camilla’:

Camilla: That Dorindas my Name.

Linco: Well, I knowt, Ill take care.

Camilla: And my Life scarce of late–

Linco: You need not repeat.

Prenesto: Help me! oh help me!

[A wild Boar struck by Prenesto.]

Huntsman: Lets try to assist him.

Linco: Ye Gods, what Alarm!

Huntsman: Quick run to his aid.

[Enter Prenesto: The Boar pursuing him.]

Prenesto: O Heavns! who defends me?

Camilla: My Arm.

[She throws a Dart, and kills the Boar.]

Linco: Dorinda of nothing afraid,
Shes sprightly and gay, a valiant Maid,
And as bright as the Day.