356 MEMOIRS 03? JOSEPH GBIMALDI. (not of Lombard-street), and "Wieland, of Drury Lane, may be mentioned as possessing grotesque humour of no ordinary kind; while for mere feats of tumbling dexterity, Brown, lang, and Gibson of the Adelphi, perhaps stand unrivalled. It is no dis- paragement to all or any of these actors of pantomime, to say, that the genuine droll, the grimacing, filching, irresistible clown left the stage with Gfrimaldi, and though often heard of, has never since been seen.* In private, Grrimaldi was a general favourite, not only among his equals, but with his superiors and inferiors. That he was a man of the kindest heart, and the most child-like simplicity, nobody who has read the foregoing pages can for a moment doubt. He was innocent of all caution in worldly matters, and has been known, on the seller's warranty, t to give forty guineas for a gold watch, which, as it subsequently turned out, would have been dear at ten. Among many acts of private goodness may be mentioned—although he shrunk from, the slightest allusion to the story—bis release of a brother actor from Lan- caster jail, under circumstances which showed a pure benevolence of heart, and delicacy of feeling, that would have done honour to a prince. With far more temptations to indulge in. the pleasures of the table than most men encounter, Gfrimaldi was through life re- markably temperate, never having been seen, indeed, in a state * Tom Matthews, perhaps, presents at this time the nearest approach. t The seller's warranty was doubtless that of some Jew money-lender, by •which class of persons he seems to have been almost devoured: when their pressure became insupportable, or they pushed their claims to a consummation not too devoutly to be wished, and sent a sheriff's officer to enforce the demand, Joe was wont to accompany them to the shop of Mr. Crouch, a pawnbroker, in Kay-street, Clerkenwell, by whom the sum was immediately paid. When the hour approached for his appearance at the Wells, the messenger belonging to the theatre, always knew where to find him; and being told the sum required to redeem him, Joe would wait patiently till he returned and released hita'j'iiie would then proceed to delight an audience, who had but a few minutes before threatened to pull the house down if he did not appear.the visitation of God."