Skip to main content

Full text of "Memoirs Of Joseph Grimaldi"

See other formats



"I think," said his lordship, laughing again, " the boy is not
quite So much afraid of his father as you suppose.   Come here,


With this, he held up half-a-crown, and the child, perfectly
well knowing the value of money, darted from his corner,
seized it with pantomimic suddenness, and was darting back
again, when the Earl caught him by the arm.

"Here, Joe!" said the Earl, " take off your wig and throw it
in tie fire, andhere's another half-crown for you."

So sooner said than done. Off came the wig,—into the fire
it went; a roar of laughter arose; the child capered about with
a half-crown in each hand; the Earl, alarmed for the conse-
quences to the boy, busied himself to extricate the wig with the
tongs and poker; and the father, in full dress for the Ship-
wrecked Mariner, rushed into the room at the same moment. It
was lucky for "Little Joe" that Lord Derby promptly and
humanely interfered, or it is exceedingly probable that his
father would have prevented any chance of his being buried
alive at all events, by killing him outright.

As it was, the matter could not be compromised without Ms
receiving a smart beating, which made Tii-m cry very bitterly ;
and the tears running down his face, which was painted "an inch
thick," came to the *' complexion at last," in parts, and made him
look as much like a little clown as like a little human being, to
neither of which characters he bore the most distant resemblance.
He was "called" almost immediately afterwards, and the father
Wngin a violent rage, had not noticed the circumstance until the
IMe object came on the stage, when a general roar of laughter
directed Ms attention to his grotesque countenance.   Becoming
more violent than before, he fell upon him at once, and beat him
severely, and the child roared vociferously.   This was all taken
Try tb.e audience as a most capital joke; shouts of laughter
aad peals of applause shook the house; and the newspapers next
uwrniag declared, that it was perfectly wonderful to see a meremione, Miss Farren; was performed,