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Full text of "Memoirs Of Joseph Grimaldi"

OP JOSEPH GEIMAXDI.    .               193

room, as did the "lady" immediately afterwards; and well
pleased he was to be rid of her society.

Sadler's "Wells opened the season of 1807 with a new piece,
called the " Ogre," in which he enacted a character dignified
by the name of " Scamperino." This drama was not very suc-
cessful, lingering only through ten nights; but as he was
wanted of course in something else, and had every night to
hurry to Govent Garden afterwards, to play the clown in
" Mother Goose," which was still running with unabated spirit,
he endured very great fatigue for more than three months,
during which the two theatres were open together.*

In the July of this year a very extraordinary circumstance
occurred at Sadler's Wells, which was the great topic of con-
versation in the neighbourhood for some time afterwards. It
happened thus :

Captain George Harris, of the Royal 3$"avy, who was related
to the Mr. Harris of Covent Garden, and with whom Grimaldi
was slightly acquainted, had recently returned to England after
a long voyage. The crew being paid off, many of the men
followed their commander up|x> London, and proceeded to enjoy
themselves after the usual fashion of sailors. Sadler's Wells
was at that time a famous place of resort with the blue-jackets,
-the gallery being sometimes almost solely occupied by seamen
and their female companions. A large body of Capt. Harris's
men resorted hither one night, and amongst them a man who

* Sadler's "WeUs opened the season of 1807 on Easter Monday, March 30th,
with a new pantomime, entitled " Jan Ben Jan, or Harlequin and the Porty
Virgins." Eidgway made his first appearance as Harlequin, Bologna, Jan.,
haying seceded from the theatre. Among other debutants on that night, was
Pyne, the singer, as also Mrs. M'Cartney, who subsequently became Mrs. Pyne.
Grimaldi, as usual, was clown in the pantomime, which had a long and suc-
cessful run. In the scene of the interior of Pidcoefs menagerie, at Exeter
'Change, he spoke and sang " The Exhibitor's Chant," which became highly
popular. The journalists of that time were of one accord; the inimitable
drolleries of the clown were the principal cause of the crowded lobbies and the
scarcely standing room, on every night of the performance.Bristow, her first appearance.chedness and