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214                       MEMOIRS OF JOSEPH GBIMAIDI.

them to make violent efforts to escape, for the most part fatal
to the unfortunate persons who tried them. Several people
flung themselves from the gallery into the pit, others rushed
hopelessly into the densest part of the crowd and were suffo-
cated, others were trodden under foot, and hence the melan-
choly result.

This accident happening on the last night but four of the
season, it was deemed prudent not to re-open the house that
year.* Such performers as were entitled to benefits, and had
not yet taken them, took them at the Circus; and thus ter-
minated the season of 1807,—the most melancholy termination
of a season which Sadler's "Wells Theatre had ever known.

On the 26th of December, was produced " Harlequin in his
Element; or, Fire, Water, Earth, and Air," in which Bologna
and Grimaldi were the harlequin and clown. It was highly
successful, and in Grrimaldi's opinion deservedly so, for he
always considered it one of the best pantomimes in which he
ever played. During this season, he also performed in an
unsuccessful melo-drama, entitled " Bonifacio and Bridgetino,"t

* The house closed, but re-opened for two nights on Monday, November 2,
and Tuesday, November 3. The whole proceeds were given to the relations of
the deceased, and to the inn.iTnp.rl sufferers on that luckless night, the 15th of the
preceding month. The entire company engaged in the theatre tendered their
services gratuitously: the two nights' representations produced 2,901. 7s., which
was beneficially and impartially distributed by the proprietors, a proceeding
which elicited the following declaration:—

" We, the magistrates, who have acted on this occasion, feel it incumbent upon
us to express to the public our approbation of the conduct of the proprietors of
Sadler's Wells, who used, as it appears, every possible exertion at the time, and
have shown every attention to alleviate, as much as was in their power, the dis-
tress occasioned by so melancholy an event; and at the same time we feel a
pleasure in bearing our testimonies to the grateful deportment of those who have
experienced the attention, the humanity, and the liberal relief which has been
^afforded thf^,


" SABEBB'S WBM.S, Nov. 27,1807."

t Bologna Jun. and Grimaldi were the two heroes in. this piece, produced for
he first time at Covent Garden Theatre, on Thursday, March 31,1808.sung by him,