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Stephen ................... Mr. EMERY.
This piece is the production of Mr. Colman, and indeed has a considerable resemblance to his former pieces in the general style of the characters, the turn of the sentiments, the nature of the incidents, and the point of the dialogue. Without detailing the plot in its several circumstances, it may be sufficient to remark that the business of the piece arises out of the distresses of the Poor Gentleman, his introduction to Sir Robert Bramble ani bis nephew, and concludes with the marriage of his daughter to Frederick Bramble, and his consequent relief from poverty and suffering.
In the conduct of this plot there is a general de. ficiency of interest, and the attention of the audience is throughout too often directed to subordinate circumstances and interior persons, while the final result of the piece is not rendered sufficiently proinis rent. If deficient, however, in strength of interest, this deficiency is amply made up in a succession of incidents which, while they all tend to the developement of the plot, seemn to afford ainusement in the absence of more important business-though not of that complicated nature which never for a moment suffers curiosity to be suspended, they bestow that degree of pleasure which is to be derived froin broad mirth and coarst humour. Many of the scenes are highly comic; and of the situations, some are not destitute of that kind of embarrassment which at once produces surprise aud affords entertainment.--The characters are in general drawn with considerable spirit, and though none of them have at all the merit of originality, they possess a a degree of novelty which is comparatively respect
able. The Poor Gentleman is a brave soldier, who, after being severely wounded at the siege of Gibraltar, retires on half.pay, and his character exhibits a picture of the warmest loyalty and the most pure honor ; and his attendant, the Corporal, is no bad representative of thewell-known Corporal Trim. Gallipot, the apothecary, is a very entertaining character, combining in his manners the habits of his profession and those of an officer in a corps of volunteer cavalry; and Sir Robert Bramble is an amusing picture of an old-fashioned baronet who detests flattery and loves contradiction. The other characters are not striking-they are the mere copies of what have been imitated a thou: and times before. Of the sentiinents we shall only remaik, that they are generous and manly, breathing a spirit of the most enlarged and liberal philosophy. The dialogue is similar to what prevails in the author's other pieces, possessing no claim to chasteness, terseness, or energy; it is distinguished by frequent puns and quibhles, and by them, more than true humour, it excites laughter and affords amusement.
All the actors exerted themselves to considerable advantage, and several of them were more than usually happy in their efforts. We have seldorn seen Murray appear to more advantage, and Fawcett was particularly comic in the apoibecary, and if be would abate a little of his farcical extravagance, and deliver his part with somewhat less ràpidity, it would be little inferior to his Doctor Panglos, gene. rally allowed to be one of his most successful exer. tions. When we mention that Lewis and Munden were more than usually successful in their charac. ters, we have only to add that the others were respectable.- Mrs. Mattocks and Mrs. Powell were much applauded in their parts.
FOR FEBRUARY, 1801.
THE MINSTREL YOUTH,
BY WILLIAM CASE, JUN.
Strange horrors, doubly cheerless.
« How fast the rain is pouring !
“ Abroad so dreadful roaring.
Whilst the old castle's high walls tock
" With ev'ry gust loud swelling. .. . me > There mournfully the ivy mourns
“ The battlements surrounding,
“ Athwart the gloom hoarse. sounding." ,
A voice without cried—“ Shelter here
« May a poor traveller borrow?"-
Deep sunk the plaint of sorrow.
In courteous suit low bending ;
In heavy drops descending.
His carriage unassuming.
His scatures all illuming.
(His sire, he said, so nam'd him,)
A mostrel youth proclaim'd him.
« Be chceriul, whilst you're able,"
And spread his homely table.
ão My woes, I lear, are endless“ Though few the years these eyes have seen, • " Too long, believe me, have I been
“ A wanderer poor and friendless! « Methinks an happly lo: is yours,
" The last of days thus ending, « Ne'er fearing life's rough storms may rave, 66 But downward to the silen: grave
" With soft slow progress wending." " We envy not our castle's lord,”
Rejoin'd the aged peasant, “ Far greater bliss 'uis our's to share, « Our waking thoughts all peaceful are, *** Our dreams by night are pleasant.
* Yet once a pang most keen we felt
“ Pang I shall e'er remember! ",'Twas when our poor dear Julia died, : " As her low bed I sat beside
“ One evening in December. « Excuse an old man's weakness, friend,
“ Soft is a parent's seeling !"Whilst Hubert thus essay'd to speak, The youth adown his wrinkled cheek
Mark'd the big tear-drops stealing. “ You're tir'd, perchance," resum'd the host,
His words with grief sore laden, « Else I a tale of woe could tell, “ Would bid your heart with pity swell,
“ For Julia, hapless maiden ?"" The minstrel cried. Oh, I could list,
" E'ev till the dawn of morrow: “ But midnight is not yet gone by.” Old Hubert heav'd a deep drawn sigh,
And thus pour'd-forth his sorrow : “ Hard by, upon a green hill top,
“ With a deep moat surrounded, “ A weather-beaten časle stands, “ O'erlooking all the neighbouring lands
“ By the horizon hounded. “ Earl Alric, wretch of thoughts most dark,
« The vast domain possesses, « In hawking all his days are spent, " At night loud bursts of merriment
“ Ring through his hall's recesses, " A soul more vile than Alric's sure
“ No mortal can inherit; " Henry, an orphan, with him dwelt, " Yet he no throb of pity felt
“ For one so rich in merit. 56 Poor Henry! of his parents, Heaven .« In earliest youth bereft him ; 6. His father, on the couch of death, " Ere yet was flown his vital breath,
• To Alric's care had left him.