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Full text of "Memoirs Of Joseph Grimaldi"

122

MEMOIRS OP JOSEPH GKRIMALDI.

that Mr. Grimaldi would sustain his original character. This
announcement being in direct violation of his articles of agree-
ment at Drury Lane, and wholly inconsistent with the terms of
his engagement at Sadler's "Wells, he had no alternative but at
once to wait upon Mr. John Zemble, the stage-manager of the
former theatre, and explain to him the exact nature of his
position.

He found John Kemble at the theatre, who received him with
all the grandeur and authority of demeanour which it was his
habit to assume when he was about to insist upon something
which he knew would be resisted. Grimaldi bowed, and Kenable
formally and gravely touched his hat.

" Joe," said Kemble, with great dignity, "what is the mat-
ter?"

In reply, Grimaldi briefly stated his case, pointing out that
he was engaged by his articles at Drury to play in last pieces
at and after Easter, but not in pantomime; that at Sadler's
"Wells he was bound to perform in the first piece; that these
distinct engagements had never before been interfered with by
the management of either theatre in the most remote manner
upon any one occasion; and that, however much he regretted
the inconvenience to which his refusal might give rise, he could
not possibly perform the part for which he had been announced
at Drury Lane.

Kemble listened to these representations with a grave and
unmoved countenance ; and when Grimaldi had finished, after
waiting a moment, as if to make certain that he had really
concluded, rose from his seat, and said in a solemn tone, " Joe,
one word here, sir, is as good as a thousand—you must come !"

Joe felt excessively indignant at this, not merely because
mnst is a disagreeable word in itself, but because he conceived
that the tone in which it was uttered rendered it additionally
disagreeable 5 so, saving at once what the feeling of the moment
prompted, he replied, " Yery good, sir. In reply to must, thereced,