William Shakespeare: The Critical Heritage - Vol. 6

By Brian Vickers | Go to book overview

I know not what more can be said to the praise of Euripides than that no one, I believe, can read this scene without being reminded of the MACBETH of SHAKESPEARE. (309-11)


298.

James Fennell, Shakespeare in the theatre

1789

From the Prompter, October-December 1789. This journal ran from 24 October to 10 December 1789 (nineteen issues).

For the ascription to Fennell see the Catalogue of the Hope Collection of Periodicals in the Bodleian, and C.H. Gray, Theatrical Criticism in London to 1795 (New York, 1931, 1971), pp. 305-7. Fennell also conducted the Theatrical Guardian in March and April 1791 (six issues). James Fennell (1766-1816), educated at Eton and Trinity College, Cambridge, took up acting when he had mortgaged his inheritance at the age of 21 to pay his gambling debts. As an actor he was known especially for his Othello, with successes in both Edinburgh and London. He emigrated to America in 1793, acting and giving recitals in New York, Boston, and Philadelphia, and resorting to fraud or manual labour when pressed for money. See Fennell’s autobiography, An Apology for the life of James Fennell (Philadelphia, 1814), and P.A. Hummert, ‘The Prompter: An Intimate Mirror of the Theatre in 1789’, Restoration and Eighteenth-Century Theatre Research, 3 (1964), pp. 37-46.

[From no. 4, 28 October 1789; on The Tempest at Drury Lane]

The Tempest always brings a full house, but the audience were disappointed and displeased at the liberties taken by authors and

-516-

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