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The twelfth of May, 1796, in north Italy, at Tavazzano, on the road from Lodi to Milan. The afternoon sun is blazing serenely over the plains of Lombardy, treating the Alps with respect and the anthills with indulgence, not incommoded by the basking of the swine and oxen in the villages nor hurt by its cool reception in the churches, but fiercely disdainful of two hordes of mischievous insects which are the French and Austrian armies. Two days... more...

The Spectacle here presented in the likeness of a Drama is concerned with the Great Historical Calamity, or Clash of Peoples, artificially brought about some hundred years ago. The choice of such a subject was mainly due to three accidents of locality. It chanced that the writer was familiar with a part of England that lay within hail of the watering-place in which King George the Third had his favourite summer residence during the war with the... more...

PREFACE. In the selection of my last Shakespearean revival at the Princess’s Theatre, I have been actuated by a desire to present some of the finest poetry of our great dramatic master, interwoven with a subject illustrating a most memorable era in English history. No play appears to be better adapted for this two-fold purpose than that which treats of Shakespeare’s favorite hero, and England’s favorite... more...

INTRODUCTORY NOTE The age of Elizabeth, memorable for so many reasons in the history of England, was especially brilliant in literature, and, within literature, in the drama. With some falling off in spontaneity, the impulse to great dramatic production lasted till the Long Parliament closed the theaters in 1642; and when they were reopened at the Restoration, in 1660, the stage only too faithfully reflected the debased moral tone of the court... more...

INTRODUCTION. Two of the dramas contained in this volume are the most celebrated of all Calderon's writings. The first, "La Vida es Sueno", has been translated into many languages and performed with success on almost every stage in Europe but that of England. So late as the winter of 1866-7, in a Russian version, it drew crowded houses to the great theatre of Moscow; while a few years earlier, as if to give a signal proof of the reality of its... more...


THE TROJAN WOMEN In his clear preface, Gilbert Murray says with truth that The Trojan Women, valued by the usage of the stage, is not a perfect play. "It is only the crying of one of the great wrongs of the world wrought into music." Yet it is one of the greater dramas of the elder world. In one situation, with little movement, with few figures, it flashes out a great dramatic lesson, the infinite pathos of a successful wrong. It has in it the... more...

THE TRAGICAL HISTORY OF DOCTOR FAUSTUS FROM THE QUARTO OF 1604.Enter CHORUS.CHORUS. Not marching now in fields of Thrasymene,Where Mars did mate the Carthaginians;Nor sporting in the dalliance of love,In courts of kings where state is overturn'd;Nor in the pomp of proud audacious deeds,Intends our Muse to vaunt her heavenly verse:Only this, gentlemen,—we must performThe form of Faustus' fortunes, good or bad:To patient judgments we appeal... more...

Plays on the subject of Caius Julius are so numerous that some difficulty arises in properly distinguishing the titles. In the case of the piece here reprinted the first title, which is also the head title, suggests a play of Chapman’s, while the running title is the traditional property of William Shakespeare. It seems, therefore, best that it should become known by the name which appears second on the title-page. And, indeed, there is... more...

INTRODUCTION. Euripides, son of Mnesarchus, was born in the island of Salamis, on the day of the celebrated victory (B.C. 480). His mother, Clito, had been sent thither in company with the other Athenian women, when Attica was given up, and the ships became at once the refuge of the male population, and the national defense. Mr. Donaldson well remarks, that the patronymic form of his name, derived from the Euripus, which was the scene of the... more...

CAST CAPTAIN NATHAN HALECAPTAIN WILLIAM HULLGENERAL WASHINGTONBOS'NLIEUTENANT PONDSIMON CARTERLIEUTENANT DREW [BRITISH]MRS. CHICHESTERCAPTAIN MONTRESSORPROVOST MARSHAL CUNNINGHAM ANNOUNCER We present here the story of the famous Revolutionary hero and martyr, Nathan Hale. For the first scene of our sketch, let us go to General Washington's headquarters in New York City. It is early September of the year 1776. In the Orderly room, outside of... more...