'Aaron Trow' was first serialized in Public Opinion, 14 and 21 December 1861 (reprinted in TAC2). A savagely realistic convict tale, set in the British penal colony in Bermuda. Trow escapes from prison and breaks into the house of a young woman, Anastasia Bergen. He threatens to do 'worse than murder'. Her screams are heard by neighbours, who summon Anastasia's lover, the Presbyterian minister Caleb Morton. He discovers Anastasia bloody, but still alive, and organizes a party to hunt Trow down. They track the convict to a rocky cove where he and Caleb fight hand to hand in the water. Trow is drowned. JS
'About Hunting' (two-part article). Foxhunting is a most thoroughly English pastime, open to lords, tenants, and tradesmen alike and conducive to goodwill among them. Railway access for city-dwellers is easy. Hunting is not cheap but can be reasonable. Masters' expenses are considerable; all hunters should pay fair subscriptions. Success is measured by pleasure, not a score. It is a wholesome recreation (wild behaviour and excessive drinking are not part of the sport) for all, including clergy. Horses need proper care, landowners deserve courtesy from hunters, and the master of hounds must be respected. Saint Pauls ( October 1867), 206-19; ( March 1868), 675-90. AKL
'Accusations against Lord Brougham, The' (letter). Lord Brougham, now elderly, known for public service over 50 years, stands accused of selling patronage. His faults do not include personal venality. The facts will surely exonerate him; all should wait for evidence. Pall Mall Gazette ( 20 March 1865), 3. AKL
Acorn, Lawrence, young ne'er-do-well and horse thief, known for his scrapes with the law, including two years' imprisonment with hard labour. He is associated with Jack the Grinder in the murder of Farmer Trumbull but is acquitted despite evidence against him by his former fiancée Carry Brattle. VB SRB
acting mad actors. As a student of drama, Trollope encouraged G. H. *Lewes to publish his theatre critiques in more permanent form. Thus, in 1875, Trollope found himself addressed in a dedicatory "'Epistle'" that acknowledged the genesis of On Actors and the Art of Acting, Lewes's authoritative account of stage performances from Edmund Kean to Tommaso Salvini. Trollope was 'pleased' by the book and his friend's 'compliment' but begged to differ 'as to trifles, in regard to character', particularly Hamlet's madness ( Letters 2, 664-5). He concluded with a list of "'The greatest actors I ever saw'": ' E. Kean, Rachel,
Mars, Got, Lemaitre . . . Mrs Yates . . . Robson', and two French actors who impressed him so faintly that he could only remember the initial of their surnames. Trollope must have been still at Harrow when he saw Kean, who drank himself to death in 1833; Rachel (Élisa Félix) had a triumphant London season in 1841 (just before Trollope left for Ireland), though he might have seen later performances. The preponderance of French names reflects the decadence of British acting. The list also suggests an affection for comedy and farce: Elizabeth Yates was a major comedienne ( 1799-1860) and Frederick Robson ( 1821-64) an expert farceur whose performance in The Yellow Dwarf was famous in the 1850s.
Trollope could not share Lewes's discriminating 'admiration for [Charles] Fechter', whose Hamlet, Iago, Claude Melnotte (in The Lady of Lyons) were the rage in the 1860s. As he told Kate Field, 'I myself hate Fechter as an actor' ( Letters 1, 509). He also disagreed with Lewes about William Charles *Macready, who 'never moved me to tears'. Yet he admired him as 'a man of supreme intelligence' who sought to elevate drama, past and present, and bought the actor's promptcopy of Congreve Love for Love (now in the Folger Library). After seeing W. G. Wills Charles I at the Lyceum, he described Isabel Bateman as 'very lovely, and perfectly dignified . . . when passionate as well as when angry and playful' ( Letters 2, 577). As the King, Henry Irving, whom Trollope had already seen in Boucicault Formosa, 'was better than I had expected,--very good occasionally, but with some terrible lapses'. Irving had yet to turn the Lyceum into a temple