Boekgegevens
Titel: First English reading book: Engelsch leesboek voor instituten, gymnasiën en hoogere burgerscholen: met Nederlandsche woordenlijst
Auteur: Herrig, Ludwig
Uitgave: Arnhem: J. Voltelen, 1869 *
Auteursrechten: Zie auteursrechten
Citeerinstructie: Bijzondere Collecties van de Universiteit van Amsterdam, UBM: IWO 513 H 21
URL: https://schoolmuseum.uba.uva.nl/bookid/LCSM_204683
Onderwerp: Taal- en letterkunde naar afzonderlijke talen: Engelse taalkunde
Trefwoord: Leesvaardigheid, Engels, Leermiddelen (vorm)
* jaar van uitgave niet op de gebruikelijke wijze verkregen, mogelijk betreft het een schatting
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•258
sUiir in my hand, 1 bid adieu wilb tears in
my eyes to my old benefactor. I had not
gone far from tlie house when I heard be-
hind me the cry of stop thief! but this
only increased my dispatch; it would have
been foolish to stop, as 1 knew the voice
could not be levelled at me. But hold, 1
think 1 passed those two months at the cu-
jate's without drinking. Gome, the times
are dry, and may this be my poison if ever
1 spent two more pious, stupid months, in
all my life!
'Well, after travelling some days, whom
should .] hght upon but a company of stroll-
ing players. The moment 1 saw them at
a distance my heart warmed to them; 1
had a sort of natural love for every thing
of the vagabond order: they were employed
in settling their baggage, 'which had been
overturned in a narrow way; 1 oflered my ;
assistance, which they accepted; and we f
soon became so well acquainted, that they j
took me as a servant. This was a paradise
to me; they sung, danced, drank, eat, and
travelled, all at the same lime. By the
blood of the Mirabels, 1 thought I had
never lived till then, I grew as merry as a
grig, and laughed at every word that was
spoken. They liked me as much as 1 liked
tbem, I was a very good ligure, as you
see; and, though T was poor, 1 was not
modest.
'I Jove a stragghng life above all things
in the world; sometimes good, sometimes
bad; to be warm to-day, and cold to-moj--
row; to eat when one can get it, and drink
when (the tankard is out) it stands before
me. We arrived that evening at Tender-
den, and took a large room at the Grey-
liound; where we resolved to exhibit Romeo
and Juhet, with the funeral procession, the
grave, and the garden scene. Romeo was
to be performed by a gentleman from the
Theatre Royal in Brury J.ane; Juliet, by
a lady who had never appeared on any
stage before; and I was to snuff the candles:
all excellent in our way. We had figures
enough, but the difficulty was to dress them.
The same coat that served Romeo, turned
with a blue lining outwards, served for his
iriend Mercutio; a large piece of ci ape suf-
ficed at once for Juliet's petticoat and pall:
a pestle and mortar from a neighbouring
apothecary's answered all the purposes of
a bell; and our landlord's own family, wrap-
ped in white sheets, served to fill up the
procession. In short, there were but three
figures among us that might be said to be
dressed with any propx'iety; I mean the
nurse, the starved apothecary, and myself.
Our performance i^ave univci^al satisfaction:
the whole audience were enchanted with
our powers.
'There is one rule by which a strolling
player may be ever secure of success;that
is, in our theatrical way of expressing it,
to make a great deal of the character. To
speak and act as in common hfe, is not
playing, nor is it what people come to see;
natural speaking, like sweet wine, runs
glibly over the palate, and scarcely leaves
any taste behind it; but being high in a
part resembles vinegar, which grates upon
the taste, and one feels it while ho is drink-
ing. To please in town or country, the way
is to cry, wring, cringe into attitudes, mark
the emphasis, slap the pockets, and labour
like one in the falling sickness; that is the
way to work for applause: that is the way
to gain it.
'As we received much reputation for our
skill on this hrsi exhibition, it was but na-
tural fo)' me to ascribe part of the success
to myself; I snuffed the candles, and let me
tell you, that without a candle-snuffer the
piece would lose half its embeUishments.
In this manner we continued a fortnight,
and drew tolerable houses; but the evening
before our intended departure, we gave out
our very best piece, in which all our strength
was to be exerted. We had great expec-
tations from this, and even doubled our
prices, when behold one of the principal
actors fell ill of a violent fever. This was
a stroke like thunder to our little com-
pany: they were resolved to go in a body to
scold the man for falling sick at so incon-
venient a time, and lhat too of a disorder
that threatened to bo expensive; I seized
the moment, and offered to act the part
myself in his stead. Tho case was despe-
rate: they accepted my offer; and I accord-
ingly sat down, with the part in my hand
and a tankard before me, (sir, your health),
and studied tlie chaiacter, which was to be
rehearsed the next dav, and plaved soon
after.
'1 found my memory excessively helped
by drinking: I learned my part with aston-
ishing rapidity, and bid adieu to snuffing
candies ever after. 1 found that nature had
designed me for more noble employments,
and I was resolved to take her when in tho
humour. AVe got together in order to re-
hearse; and 1 informed my companions,
masters now no longer, of the surprising
change 1 felt within me. Let the sick man,
said I, be under no uneasinesss to get well
again; I'll fdl his place to universal satis-
faction; he may even die if he thinks pro-
per; ril engage that he shall never be miss-