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but had not courage to speak. One of them swore I was certainly dumb, which gave the other an opportunity to exert his wit on that advantage, and the general glibness of women's tongues. I walked now as quick as ever I could, my face glowing with indignation. At last, almost out of breath, I got to the house of Mrs. Ranger. Confused, and not remembering the single knock, which I cught to have given at the door, I gave a rat-tat, as loud as would have been given by the footman of a lady of quality, her ladyship in waiting. My two 'squires, judging by my knock at the door, I was a person of distinction, asked me pardon, and sneaked away. A footman came flying to the door. I was ready to sink at my mistake, when observing iny parcel, he asked me, who it was that knocked ? I answered it was 1, and was going to tell him of the two rude men that occasioned my doing so, when he giving a loud laugh, I was again so discomposed, that I could not say a word.
• A bell ringing he left me in the passage, and I was going to make my escape out of the house, when Mrs. Ranger's maid, observing me, asked, if I had any business with her mistress ? I then told her whom I came from, while I was so agitated, that I could scarcely stand. She immediately went, and informed her mistress; and I was desired to walk up stairs. I was ushered into the dressing-room, where Mrs. Ranger received me with a loud laugh, and asked me if I kept a footman. I made no answer, but fell to unloofing my parcel, when observing my hand tremble, the continued her laugh, with a “ Lard! girl, you have got the palsy. Pray what is become of Jackson ? I have not Teen her these three weeks. Has the got any new wash for the face? I vow it was the oddeft composition the brought me last ever was made.” “ I really don't know, madam, whether she has or not. Pray, will you be so good as to look at the lacec :” Sitting down at her toilette, the began to adjust her head dress, without giving me any answer, or seeming to remember I was in the room. While she con. tinued practising all the ridiculous airs imaginable in the glass, I had time to recollect my spirits, and to think how absurd it was to be so uneasy at the folly of people I had no connection with. “Pray, madam,” said I again, " will you be so good as look at the laces :"
" Are you the young woman Jackson was proposing to get, to aflist her in her business ?” “N-0, y-es--Ma'am". * You are on trial, I suppose.” Turning about her chair from the toilette, “Let me look at you, child. Upon my word very pretty : where got you those languishing cyes ?” Her maid coming in, " Bret," said she, “ pray look what a pretty girl
“ I lup
Jackson has got: observe her eyes.” The maid beginning to ftare as her mistress had done, I lost all patience. pose, madain,” said I, “ you are not for any of the laces at present," and rolling up my parcel, the lady and her maid again fell into an immoderate fit of laughter ; during which I made what haste I could down stairs, and, the street door being open, I made my escape ; while the maid continued laughing, and calling after me, “ young woman, iniss, miss, pray, come back; Mrs. Ranger wants to look at the laces.” Mrs. Ranger and you may go where you please, and look for lace, (thought I) you shall see none of mine. When I was out of the reach of their impertinence, I could not help laughing, in spite of the lowness of my spirits, at this adventure.'
VIII. Th: Engiish Merchant, a Comedy. As it is acted at the Theatre· Ropal in Drury-Lane. By George Colman. 8vo, Pr. is. 6d.
Becket. F HIS comedy is profeffedly written upon the plan of
L'Ecossaise, by Voltaire, to whom on that account it is dedicated by the author,'Mr. Colman. The plot is very simple, but extremely interesting and sentimental.
A gentleman who had the unhappiness to be engaged in the Iate rebellion forfeirs his life to the law, and, like many other unfortunate persons in his situation, becomes deeply sensible of his guilt; but willing to be restored to his country, ventures to come to London, in hopes that his friend lord Brumpton would procure him his pardon, and that he might obtain fome intelligence of his daughter Amelia, whom he had left an infant, Chance directs him to hire lodgings in the very house where his daughter was living, or rather starving, but with a dignity that gained her admiration without procuring her relief. She had made a favourable impression on the heart of lord Falbridge, but had broken off all connections with him, because he had made her dishonourable proposals. Her virtuous indignation converted his lordship into a sincere penitent and lover; and he, previous to his attachment to Amelia, had difcontinued his correspondence with lady Alton, one of the leading belles esprits, but a woman of ă fiery vindi&tive temper. Her ladyship finding that Amelia was the loadstone who had withdrawn his lordship’s affections from her, plants Mr. Spatter, an author, one of her dependents as a patronefs of taste and learning, but a fellow completely abandoned to every kind of infamy, to watch Amelia; and he takes lodgings in the very fame house, viz. that of Mrs. Goodman.
Spatter, by intercepting letters, and various other circumStances, having discovered Amelia to be the daughter of Sir William Douglas, lays an information against her before the government ; upon which she is arrested by an officer (as our author calls him, meaning, we suppose, a meslenger of statè).We are entirely ignorant of Mr. Colman's motives for this compliment to that species of genery; for by an officer we should be apt to think he was a bail ff.--Be that as it may, our honest · English merchant, Mr. Freeport, bails Amelia – Here our author is mistaken, for the meffenger had no power to take
bail. Voltaire indeed violates the national manners in this instance without hesitation ; but our author seems fo fensible of
such an infringement, that he makes the officer himself apodogize for it in the fifth aet.
Spatter next discovers Sir William Douglas to be in the house, and that he is the father of Amelia. In the near tiine Free'port, who with an infinite share of philanthropy mixes a dath of oddity in his composition, being informed of Amelia's wants and virtues, offers her a present of two hundred pounds; which The obstinately refusing to accept, he places it in the hands of her worthy landlady Mrs Goodman. The villainous Spatter obtains from the government a fresh warrant, not only against Amelia but her father : and the benevolent Freeport finding that lord Brumpton, who had been lately dead, was the friend upon whoin Sir William Douglas depended for his pardon, applies to the heir of his title, and finding it had been procured, releases the two prisoners. Lord Falbridge, who is equally solicitous for their safety, offers Amelia his hand in marriage, which she accepts with the consent of her father and Freeport, who honestly confesses his benevolence to Amelia had some leaven of self-interest in it, yet generously resigns her to his lordship
Perhaps no comedy was ever produced upon the stage with a more moral tendency, or less offensive to decency, than the English Merchant. We enter with concern into the fate of the virtuous characters, and we can perceive that the author's feelings always arise in the right place.
Colley Cibber wrote his Nonjuror with an intent to raise the public indignation against that deluded set of men ; and his purpofe has been generally condemned, since experience has taught us that lenity and a generous confidence can make them as good subjects as any belonging to the crown ; witness the late war, and the almost utter extinction of those principles which have given fo much nneasiness to a revolution government.. Nature has given the drawing, and good sense the colouring, of Mr. Colman's Sir William Douglas. The majeity of Amelia under her P 4
distress is admirable, and the contrast between the manner of her suffering and that of her faithful maid Molly is truly Terentian; but it requires a reader of sensibility to taste it.
After passing these encomiums, the reader cannot suspect that in characterising this comedy we let down aught in malice; and therefore we shall be less reserved in observing, that as our poor friend Thomson, the author of the Seasons, said to the late amiable prince of Wales, after losing his place, that his circumstances were more poetical than before ; so we think those of Amelia are rather too distressful. What must have become of her, had it not been for the accidental support of Freeport and her landlady? We shall likewise take the liberty to suggest, that Mr. Colman is a little too niggardly of poetical justice with regard to Spatter and La-France ; neither do we think, unless, like Voltaire, he had some particular character in his eye, there was any necessity to inake him an author. However, we will yenture to say, that there are as few reprehensible passages in this comedy as in any that ever appeared on the English or any other stage.
MONTHLY CATALOGU B. 9.1 The Adventures of an Author. Written by himself and a Friend.
In 2 Vols. 1 2 mo. Pr. 6s. Robinson.
thyself,' is exemplified in no instance more than the accounts which authors give of themselves and of each other in performances of this kind. They generally couple an author and a bookseller together, like a quack-doctor and a merryandrew; the former giving the word of command, and the other going through all his exercises of buffoonery to please the gaping crowd, and to fill his master's pockets. How far this is a just representation of authorship, we shall leave the fraternity to judge, for our readers cannot. We can only speak from our own observation, that if there is any incidents drawn from the life, in the adventures of Mr. Atall, (for such is our hero's name) as an author, it is so caricatured, that we can scarcely difcern a stroke which can lead us to guess at the original.
Mr. Atail, who is the most affuming grub that ever appeared in this character, sets out in the world as a lawyer's clerk, then commences spouter, stands a candidate for the stage, becomes the acquaintance of Mr. Hyper, a poet, politician, and critic ; next turns beau, rhimester, bully, keeper, gamefter, and, towards the end of the first volume, author. He does not shine much in that character in the second volume, where he comis
mences a Reviewer ; for at last he resolves to transport himself to Jamaica. He is taken prisoner by a Spanish privateer in the voyage, and carried to St. Sebastians, from whence he and some of his countrymen escape. As we think this the moft entertaining part of his adventures, we are tempted to believe the author has in reality some experience of a seafaring life.
Upon his deliverance and return to England Mr. Atall com: mences pedlar, and enters into partnership with a Jew, who cheats and strips him of his all. He next returns to his trade of authorship, in which he makes, as formerly, but a poor figure. He goes to Bath, and after running through various adventures, he is kind as to knock his mother on the head, (that is only as an author, for he fupposes her to have died a natural death) by which he becomes master of two thousand five hundred pounds a year, and acquires an amiable character. Such are the general contents of this piece ;
the second volume of which the author concludes with saying, that he expects no quarter from the next monthly batteries of the Reviewers. Indeed, Mr. Atall, you may make yourself easy ; for we will answer for ourselves, that we do not think you worth powder and shot.
10. The Female American, or the Adventures of Unca Eliza Wink, į field. Compiled by herself. 2 Vol. 12mo. Pr. 6s. Noble.
Mrs. Unca Eliza Winkfield is a most strange adventurer, and her memoirs seem to be calculated only for the wild Indians to whom fhe is so closely allied. We could therefore have wished; as well for her fake as our own, that this lady had published her adventures at the Fall of Niagara, or, upon the Banks of Lake Superior, as she would then, probably, have received the most judicious and sincere applause from her enlightened countrymen and princely relations, and have saved us fix hours very disagreeable employment. 11. The History of Mr. Byron and Miss Greville. 2 Vols. Izmo.
Pr. 6s.' Noble. This history has little to recommend it but its stile, which is superior to that we meet with in the generality of Novels. As usual, the hero and heroine are all perfection, in person, sentiment, morals, and conduct; and of course they are persecuted by their ill-fated stars, and the inflexibility of parental opposition. However, they at length come together, and are necessarily then at the very pinnacle of felicity. Miss Greville's delicacy is carried to a very great height, in refusing to make