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interesting; the plot artfully contrived; the upraveling easy, the event natural, but striking, and unexpected. ) ri. In Tragedy, the heart should be melted, the tender passions excited, and virtue properly encouraged and rewarded. It should also exbibit men that bear about them the stamp of human nature; that have its passions, its excesses, its weaknesses, and its iniseries; and shonld present then to us, in that point of view, which will create pity, or excite terror. Æschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides, among the Greeks, and Seneca, among the Romans, were the niost celebrated tragic poets.
2. Comedy arose after Tragedy, and at first painted from nature. This is called the Old Coniedy, and had for a long time the privilege of attacking citizens, and even the gods with impunity: but when the magistrates were brought upon the stage, a law passed, prohibiting the introduction of
The middle Comedy, to evade this law, assumed imaginary names, under which were depicted from nature, the characters and mamers of those who were to be the subject of ridicule. A second law, deprived authors of this last liberty, and reduced Comedy, nearly to its present state. Instead of being a satire on individuals, it became the mirror of life and manpers; this was called the new Comedy. Aristophanes was the chief of the antient Greek comic poets: the Roman were, Andronicus, Ennius, Plautus, and Terence...,
3. The Theatre among the Romans, was a large semni. circular building, with long porticoes, covered galleries, and walks planted with trees, iu which the people amused themselves, till the plays began. It was divided into the following parts: (1.) The porticus, scalæ, sedilia; the rows of sedilia, or seats were called cunei, because they were formed like wedges, growing narrower as they came pearer the centre of the theatre; and these were all disposed about its circumference. (2.) The orchestra so called from og merobos, to dance: it was the inner part and centre of the theatre, and lowest of all, and hollow ; whence the whole open space of the theatre was called cuvea. Here sat the senators, and here were the dancers aud music. (3.) The proscenium, was a place drawn from one horu of the theatre to the other, between the orchestra and the scene, being higher than the former, and lower
than the latter: here the comie and tragic actors spoke and performed upon an elevated platform, which was called the pulpitum, or stage. (4.) The scene, which was the opposite part to the audience decorated with pictures and columns; and, originally, with trees, to shade the actors, whéri they performed in the open air. (5) The postscenium or part behind the scenes. All the actors were masked. The mask was an entire bead, like a helmet, having a painted visage, hair, colours, and a large moutlı, so disposed; that it greatly increased the voice. To express the variety of passions, a mask was worn, which viewed in profile, represented joy on one side, and grief on the other;
the actor turniog round dexterously, when necessary. The immense size of the theatres, frequently capable of containing 30,000 people, would have rendered it absolutely impossible, for the greater part of the audience to see the natural countenance of the actor; this artificial enlargement then, had its use.
: The Grecian actors wore long robes, called syrma. In comedy, they had pallia, or cloaks; the Romans wore long upper garments, called toga. The declamation of the actors was a sort of singing; it had notes as music bas, but not characters like those of the musical song. The covering of the feet and legs in tragedy, was the cothurnus, or buskin, with high heels, which increased the stature of the actors, and gave them an heroic appearance. The sandal or sock, soccus, was fiat, and in the common mode, The names of these appendages to the foot and leg, have been used to designate the two different species of dramatie performances.
94. The origin of all the European theatres may be traced to a kind of extempore farce, perforined by idle people, strolling about from town to town, and aetjuy to the mob, in places of public resort. These buttooneries were, in the fifteenth century, succeeded by the mysteries, in which Adam and Eve, the Patriarchs, the Proplets, the Virgit Mary, our Saviour, his apostles, and even God-himself, were brought upon the stage, and very often, represented in the most ridiculous, and, impions manner. Aceustomed to the pomp and splendour of the Romist church, and the various drama-like representations which her service enjoined, they thought it no profanation thus to amuse themselves. Accordingly, a play at first was considered only as a supplentent to religious duties, and was even acted in the church-yards, or burying grounds.
• What is now called the stage,' observes Mr. Strutt, * consisted of three several platforms, or stages raised one above another. On the uppermost, sat the Pater Cælestis surrounded with his angels; on the secoud, appeared the holy saints, and glorified men; and the last and lowest, was occupied by mere men, who had not yet passed from this transitory life to the regions of eternity. On one side of this lowest platformi, was the resemblance of a dark pitchy cavern, whence issued the appearance of fire and fames; and when it was necessary, the audience were treated with hideous yellings and noises, as imitative of the howlings and cries of wretched souls tormented by the relentless denions. From this yawning cave, the devils theniselves constantly ascended to delight and instruct the spectators :-to delight, because they were usually the greatest jesters and buffoons that then appeared; and to instruct, for that they treated the wretched mortals who were delivered to them with the utmost cruelty, thereby warning all mep, carefully to avoid falliug into the clutches of such bardened and remorseless spirits.!.
The mysteries were, in England, succeeded by another species of dramatic entertainment called the moralities," in which, the virtues and vices of mankind were personified, and introduced on the stage. In the sixteenth century, however, these mummeries were superseded by Nature's sweetest child, the bard of Avon ; aud by the productions of a Jonson, and a Fletcher.
The first royal licence for a theatre in England, was granted in 1574, to James Burbage, and four others, sera vants to the earl of Leicester, to act plays at the Globe, Bankside, or any otber part of England. Plays were op: posed by the Puritans in the year 1633, and suspended till 1660, when Charles II. licensed two companies, Killigrew's and Davenant's. Till this time, boys performed the parts of women, Sir William Daveuant introduced operas, and both companies united, 1684, and continued together till 1694; when, from the reduced salaries given to the per
* Manners and Customs of the English.
formers, the principal of them, upder Betterton, obtained a licence, and withdrew to Portugal street, Lincoln's-innfields, in 1695. Plays in Shakspeare's time, began at one o'clock p. n. and continued for two hours. Even in 1667, they cominenced at three. Dramatic entertainments were usually exhibited, ou Sundays, a practice which was not abolished till the third year of Charles I.
5. The progress of the French stage toward perfection, was yery similar, and the same revolution in scenic representation, was effected by Corveille, Rotrou, Mairet, and others.
6, We shall not here express any opinion of the charaeter and tendency of theatrical entertainments ;-it must, therefore, be distinctly understood, that when the following plays are considered worthy of perusal, they are noticed as literary compositions only.
Select English Dramas.
The dramatic works of Shakspeare. Tragedies.-Congreve's Mourning Bride. Rowe's Fair Penitent, and Jane Shore. Addison's Cato. Young's Revenge. Moore's Gamester. Máson's Caractarus and Eifrida. Home's Douglas. Johnson's Irene. Mwphy's Grecian Daughter. Miss More's sa. cred Dramas. Comedies.-Colman's Clandestine Marriage. Sheridan's School for Scandal, Rivals, and Critic, Cumberland's West Indian, and Wheel of Fortune. Miss Baillie's Series of Plays illustrative of the Passionis, 2 vols. 8vo. and Miscellaneous Plays, 8vo.
Select Books on Rhetoric, and the Belles Lettres, Smith's Translation of Longinus on the Sublime, 8vo. Melmoth's Letters of Fitzosborne, 8vo. or 12mo. Campbell's Philoso. phy of Rhetoric, 2 vols. 8vo. Kaimes' Elements of Criticism, 9 vols. 8vo. Blair's Lectures, 3 vols. Svo
Barron's Lectures on Logic, and the Belles Lettres, 2 vols. 8vo. Stewart's Philosophical Essays, 4to. Pollin on Belles Lettres, 4 vols. 8vo. Brown's British Cicero, 3 vols. 8vo. Sheridan on Elocution, 8vo. Priestley on Oratory and Criticism, 4to.. Johnson's Lives of the Poets, 3. vols. 8vo. or 12mo, a rich mine of criticism on the works of our standard poets. Irving's Scottish Poets, 2 vols. 8vo. Dryden's Prose Works, 4vols. 8vo. Johnson's Fugitive Picces, 2 vols, 12mo. Warton on Pope and Spenser, 4 vols. 8vo. Irving's Elements of Composition, 12mo. a very useful book for young persous. Scragge on Composition, 12mo. Enfield's Speaker,
Approved Translations of select Greek and Roman Writers.
I, GREEK. Tytler's Essay on the Principles of Translation, 8vo. Æschylus, by Potter, 8vo. Anacreon, by Moore, 2 vols. 12mo, Select Plays of Aristophanes, by Cumberland and others, 8vo, Aristotle's Poetics, by Twining, 4to. Callimachus, by Dodd, 4to. Demosthenes, by Leland, 2 vols. 8vo. Dyonisius, by Spelman,, 4 vols. 4to. Epictetus, by Mrs. Carter, 2 vols. 8vo. Euripides, by Potter, 2 vols. 8vo.; by Wodhull, 3 vols. 8vo. Herodian, by Hart, 8vo. Herodotus, by Belve, 4 vols. 8vo. Hesiod, by Cooke, 8vo. Homer, by Pope, 8vo. and 12mo.; by Cowper, 4 vols. 8vo. Isocrates, by Dinsdale, 8vo. Longinus, by Smith, 8vo. Fragments of Menander, by Cumberland, in his Observer, 8vo. Pindar, by West, 2 vols. 19mo. Plutarch, by Langhorne, corrected by Wrangham, 6 vols. 8vo. Polybius, by Hampton, 3 vols. 8vo. Sophocles, by Francklin, 8vo.; by Potter, 8vo. Theocritus, Bion, and Moschus, by Polwhele, 2 vols. 8vo. Thucydides, by Smith, 2 vols. 8vo. Xenophon's Cyropædia, by Ashley, 2 vols. 8vo. Affairs of Greece, by Sinith, 4to. Memoirs of Socrates, by Fielding, 8vo. Banquet, by Welwood, 8vo.--Translations from the Greek Anthology, 8vo. From the Minor Greek Poets, by Morrit, 12mo.-Many beautiful fragments of the Greek Poets, elegantly and faithfully translated, will be found in the Observer of Mr. Cumberland. --Le Théâtre des Grecs, par Brumoy, 13 tom. 8vo. (Paris 1785-9) or, translated by Mrs. Lennox, 3 vols. 4to.
II. ROMAN, Aulus Gellius, by Beloe, 3 vols. 8vo, Cæsar, by Duncan, 8vo. Cicero's Orations, by Guthrie, 2 vols. 8vo. Letters, by Melmoth, 3 vols. 8vo. Cato and Lælius, by Melmoth, 8vo. Offices, by Macartney, 8vo. Charaeter of an Orator, by Guthrie, 8vo. Horace, by Francis, 4 vols. 1210. Juvenal, hy Gifford, 8vo. Livy, by Baker, 6 vols. Svo. Lucan, by Rowe, 8vo. Lucretius, by Good, 2 vols. 4to. Ovid's Metamorphoses, by Gaith. Persius, by Drummond, 12mo. Pliny's Letters, by Melmoth, 2 vols. 8vo. Quinctilian, by Guthrie, 2 vols. 8vo. Sallust, by Murphy, 8vo. Suetonius, hy Thomson, 8vo. 'Tacitus, by Murphy, 8 vols. 8vo. Terence, by Colman, 2 vols. 8vo. Tibulins, by Granger, 2 vols, 12mo. Vida, by Pitt, 8vo. Virgil, by Pitt and Warton, 4 vols. 8vo.; by Dryden, 8vo.--Translations from the antients (Juvenal, Horace, etc.) by Gilh. Wakefield, 12mo.
** Many of the poelicul translations above specified, may be found appended to Chalmers', Anderson's, and barpe's (Park's) Collection of English Poetry, and may be purchased separately. The latter is both chrap and commodious. Dibdin's Introduction to the Classics, 2 rels. 12mo, is an excellent guide to the best editions of the
Select English Classics. Tatler, Spectator, Guardian, Rambler, Idler, Adventurer, Observer, and Gleaner. Bacon's [:says.Drake's Essays on the Tatler, etc. 5 vols. 12mo.