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"Haymarket, Little Theatre. On Account of Dr. Arne's Oratorio of Judith, and the same Reason for want of some principal Assistants of Performers, Master and Miss Mozart are obliged to postpone the Concerts which should have been To-morrow, the 15th instant, to Monday the 18th instant. They desire the Nobility and Gentry will be so kind as to excuse them for not performing according to the Time first proposed. Tickets to be had of Mr. Mozart, at Mr. Williamson's in Thriftstreet, Soho, and at the said Theatre. Tickets delivered for the 15th will be admitted. A Box Ticket admits Two into the Gallery. ++ To prevent Mistakes, the Ladies and Gentlemen are desired to send their Servants to take Places for the Boxes, and give in their Names to the Box-keepers on Monday the 18th in the Afternoon." (14th February, 1765.)
"Haymarket, Little Theatre. The Concert for the Benefit of Miss and Master Mozart will be certainly performed on Thursday the 21st instant, which will begin exactly at Six, which will not hindering [sic] the Nobility and Gentry from meeting in other Assemblies on the same Evening. Tickets to be had of Mr. Mozart, at Mr. Williamson's in Thrift-street, Soho, and at the said Theatre. A Box Ticket admits two into the Gallery. + To prevent Mistakes, the Ladies and Gentlemen are desired to send their Servants to keep Places for the Boxes, and give in their Names to the Box-keepers on Thursday the 21st in the Afternoon." (15th February, 1765.)
To the announcement on the 21st of February is added the statement that
"All the Overtures will be from the Compositions of these astonishing Composers [sic], only eight years old."
Then, on 11th March, appeared the following:"By Desire. For the Benefit of Master Mozart of Eight Years, and Miss Mozart of Twelve Years of Age, Prodigies of Nature, before their Departure for England, which will be in Six Weeks' Time. There will be performed at the End of this Month, or the Beginning of April, A Concert of Vocal and Instrumental Music. Tickets at Half-a-Guinea each. To be had of Mr. Mozart, at Mr. Williamson's in Thrift-street, Soho; where those Ladies and Gentlemen, who will honour him with their Company from Twelve to Three in the Afternoon, any Day in the Week, except Tuesday and Friday, may, by taking each a Ticket, gratify their Curiosity; and not only hear this young Music-Master and his Sister perform in private, but likewise try his surprising Musical Capacity by giving him any Thing to play at Sight, or any Music without Bass, which he will write upon the Spot, without recurring to his Harpsichord. The Day and Place of the Concert will be advertised in the Public Advertiser eight Days before." (11th March, 1765.)
This evidently produced no satisfactory result; since, after the lapse of a month, it was thought expedient to reduce the price of the tickets:
"Mr. Mozart, the Father of the celebrated young Musical Family, who have so justly raised the Admiration of the greatest Musicians of Europe, intending soon to leave England, proposes, before his Departure to give to the Public in general an Opportunity of hearing these young Prodigies perform both in public and private, by giving at the End of this Month, a Concert, Which will chiefly be conducted by his Son, a Boy of Eight Years of Age, with all the Overtures of his own Composition. Tickets may be had at 5s. each of Mr. Mozart, at Mr. Williamson's in Thrift-street, Soho; where such Ladies
and Gentlemen, who chuse to come themselves, and take either Tickets, or the Sonatas composed by this Boy, and dedicated to Her Majesty (Price 10s. 6d.), will find the Family at home every Day in the Week, from Twelve to Two o'clock; and have an Opportunity of putting his Talent to a more particular Proof, by giving him any Thing to play at Sight, or any Music without a Bass, which he will write upon the Spot, without recurring to his Harpsichord. Notice of the Day and Place of the Concert will be given in due Time." (9th April, 1765.)
Another month passed ere a day was fixed for the concert:
"For the Benefit of Miss Mozart of Thirteen, and Master Mozart of Eight Years of Age, Prodigies of Nature. Hickford's Great Room in Brewer Street, Monday, May 13, will be A Concert of Music, with all the Overtures of this little Boy's own Composition. Tickets may be had at 5s, each of Mr. Mozart, at Mr. Williamson's in Thriftstreet, Soho; where such Ladies and Gentlemen who chuse to come themselves, and take either Tickets, or the Sonatas composed by this Boy, and dedicated to Her Majesty (Price 10s. 6d.), will find the Family at home every Day in the Week, from Twelve to Two o'clock; and have an Opportunity of putting his Talents to a more particular Proof by giving him any Thing to play at Sight, or any Music without a Bass, which he will write upon the Spot, without recurring to his Harpsichord." (10th May, 1765.)
"For the Benefit of Miss Mozart of Thirteen, and Master Mozart of Eight Years of Age, Prodigies of Nature. Hickford's Great Room in Brewer Street, This Day, May 13, will be A Concert of Vocal and Instrumental Music, with all the Overtures of this little Boy's own Composition. The Vocal Part by Sig. Cremonini; Concerto on the Violin, Mr. Barthelemon; Solo on the Violoncello, Sig. Cirii; Concerto on the Harpsichord by the little Composer and his Sister, each single and both together, &c. Tickets at 5s. each to be had of Mr. Mozart, at Mr. Williamson's in Thrift-street, Soho." (13th May, 1765.)
At the end of the month, the public were invited to hear the children perform at their lodgings:-
"Mr. Mozart, the Father of the celebrated young Musical Family, who have so justly raised the Admiration of the greatest Musicians of Europe, begs Leave to inform the Public that his Departure from England is fixed for the Beginning of next month. Such Ladies and Gentlemen who desire to hear these young Prodigies perform in private, will find the Family at Home at his Lodgings at Mr. Williamson's, in Thrift-Street, Soho, every Day in the Week from One to Three o'Clock, and may have an Opportunity of putting his Talent to a more particular Proof, by giving him any thing to play at Sight. The Terms are 5s. each Person, or else to take the Sonatas composed by this Boy and dedicated to Her Majesty (Price 10s. 6d.), which he has had the Honour of performing many Times before their Majesties." (30th May,
A little more than five weeks passes, and it is evident that the children are no longer attractive at the west end of the town, so the city is to be tried, and with still lower prices:
"Mr. Mozart, the Father of the celebrated young Musical Family, who have so justly raised the Admiration of the greatest Musicians of Europe, has been obliged by the Desire of several Ladies and Gentlemen, to postpone
"To all Lovers of Sciences. The greatest Prodigy that Europe, or that even Human Nature has to boast of, is, without Contradiction, the little German Boy, Wolfgang Mozart: a Boy, Eight Years old, who has, and indeed very justly, raised the Admiration not only of the greatest Men, but also the greatest Musicians in Europe. It is hard to say whether his Execution upon the Harpsichord, and his playing and singing at Sight, or his own Caprice, Fancy, and Compositions for all Instruments, are most astonishing. The Father of this Miracle, being obliged by Desire of several Ladies and Gentlemen to postpone, for a very short Time, his Departure from England, will give an Opportunity to hear this little Composer and his Sister, whose musical Knowledge wants not Apology. Performs every Day in the Week from
Twelve to Three o'Clock in the Great Room at the Swan and Hoop, Cornhill. Admittance, 2s. 6d. each Person. The two Children will play also together with four Hands upon the same Harpsichord, and put upon it a Handkerchief, without seeing the Keys." (11th July, 1765.)
How long the performances were continued posterior to this advertisement, I cannot discover; but no further announcement was made, and early in September we find the family on the Continent. It is a rather remarkable circumstance that Leopold Mozart, although a violinist of some eminence, did not himself perform at any of the public concerts at which his children appeared.
W. H. HUSK.
INDULGENCES PRINTED BY WILLIAM CAXTON.
Three various Indulgences are now known to bave been produced at the Westminster press. They were all printed on slips of parchment, with a blank space for the name of the person to whom they were granted, and another for the month and the day, the year being printed in full. They were all issued in 1480 and 1481, by the authority of Pope Sixtus IV. and were for the benefit of those who would contribute to the defence of the Isle of Rhodes against the Turks. No. 1 is dated 1480, and the blank spaces having been filled in by the pen, we find that it was granted on the last day of March, to Simon Mountfort and Emma his wife. The only copy of this edition is in the British Museum. No. 2 is dated 1481, and owes its preservation entirely to the fact that it was used as waste in Caxton's workshop. The workmen there having to bind a copy of Chaucer's Boethius de Consolatione, which was just printed,
used it to strengthen the back of the volume. That very copy is still preserved in the curious but neglected old library of the Abbey Grammar School, St. Alban's. Both the above are fully described in the second volume of The Life and Typography of William Caxton, just published., No. 3 is entirely unknown to bibliographers, having been very recently discovered by Mr. Bradshaw of Cambridge, in the Town Library of Bedford. Like No. 2 it has been used for the binding of a book, and to that circumstance alone is owing its preservation. That such short pieces as these Indulgences were printed instead of being written, points to an extensive demand for them; and that many editions were issued is evident from the fact that the only three copies known are of three different editions. Such ephemeral publications, like the Stans Puer, the Book of Courtesy, the sheet of Bedside Prayers, and other small-sized issues of Caxton's press, owe their present rarity to the very fact of their having been originally both WILLIAM BLADES. cheap and abundant. 11, Abchurch Lane.
CORNELIUS AGRIPPA ON THE MORALS OF THE CLERGY.
The state of morals, both among clergy and laity, of the time preceding Luther and his schism, is pretty generally admitted by all who read history, be their name for that schism what it may. The following is the testimony of Cornelius Agrippa, in his work, De Incertitudine et Vanitate then at Cologne in 1531. At this time the LuScientiarum, first published at Antwerp in 1530, theran dispute was raging, but had not got to the point of an actual division: I mean especially at the time at which the work was written. Agrippa himself was not suspected of Lutheranism, nor of anything worse than sorcery, and heresy in that undefined sense in which it was frequently imputed to men of learning: that kind of heresy which, in my younger days, was insinuated by a shake of the head and "I never knew any good come of all that reading." He was a dependent on the Emperor and on the Archbishop of Cologne for his bread, and he seems to have said nothing but what was permitted. Here is an extract (Latin does not blush) from the chapter De Lenonia, which with the Ars Meretricia, counts among the sciences, and certainly ought to have been placed among the systems :
dent pontifici, qui census annuus nonnunquam viginti "Romana scorta in singulas hebdomadas julium penmillia ducatos excedit: adeoque ecclesiæ procerum id munus est, ut una ecclesiarum proventibus etiam lenociniorum numerent mercedem. Sic enim ego illos supputantes aliquando audivi: habet (inquientes) ille duo beneducatorum quadraginta, et tres putanas in bordello, quæ ficia, unum curatum aureorum viginti, alterum prioratum reddunt singulis hebdomadibus julios viginti. Jam vero
A rare local tract, penes me, is entitled :— "The Christian Synagogue: or, the Original Use and Benefit of Parochial Churches, set forth in a SERMON Preached at BYRMINGHAM, in the County of WARWICK, on the Feast of St. Philip and St. James, Anno MDCCX, at a General Meeting of the Commissioners appointed for the Building an Additional Parochial Church in Byrmingham, which by Virtue of a late Act of Parliament is to be called St. Philip's Church. Publish'd at the desire of the Commissioners and Inhabitants of the Place. By WILLIAM BINCKES, D.D., Dean of LICHFIELD. London: Printed for Jonah Bowyer, at the Rose in Ludgate St.; and Michael Johnson, Bookseller in Lichfield. MDCCX. 8vo." Pp. 22.
The connection of Dr. Binckes with Lichfield would be a sufficient reason for his sermon being
placed in the hands of Johnson, instead of printed in the town in which it was delivered. Did not, however, a more cogent reason exist in the fact, that Birmingham-then, as now, the most Beotic of towns-did not at that time possess a printingpress capable of producing the work? The supposition that this may have been the case is, perhaps, erroneous; but the research of years has been unsuccessful in discovering any book or than the date of the sermon alluded to. pamphlet earlier than 1717-seven years later
The scarce, if not unique tract, bearing this date, is entitled:
"A LOYAL ORATION. Giving a short account of several plots, some purely Popish, others mixt: the former contriv'd and carry'd on by Papists, the latter both by Papists and also Protestants of the High-Church Party united together against our Church and State; as also, of the many Deliverances which Almighty God has vouchsaf'd to us since the Reformation. Compos'd by JAMES PARKINSON, formerly fellow of LINCOLN College, in OXFORD, now Chief Master of the Free-School of Birmingham, in Warwickshire; and spoke by his Son on the 10th day of December, 1716. And now publish'd at the Request of Captain Thetford, Captain Shugborough, and several other Officers of the Prince's Own Royal Regiment of Welsh Fusileers, and other Loyal Gentlemen. To which is annex'd, by way of Postscript, the Author's Letter to the Rev. Mr. Higgs, Rector of St. Philip's Church, in Birmingham; who, upon hearing this Loyal Speech, was so displeas'd and nettl'd with it, and particularly with that Passage that relates to BIDDING PRAYERS, which he constantly uses, that on the Sunday following he could not forbear reviling the author in his Sermon, calling the Speech a scurrilous Discourse, and the Composer thereof a Slanderer and Calumniator. Birmingham: Printed and Sold by Matthew Unwin, near St. Martin's Church. 1717. 4to." Pp. 40.
We must not, however, forget that Birmingham is town of altogether modern growth; and that its unimportance at the time referred to, and even many years later, would perhaps account for the absence of a printing office capable of undertaking book-work. Even so late as Oct. 13, 1733, we find a letter from the then Bishop of Lichfield and Coventry, writing on the subject of the Free-School, and expressing his "disposition to concur in a scheme for restoring its credit and prosperity," addressed:
"MR. WILLIAM RUSSELL, Senr, at his house, in Edgbaston Street, in Birmingham, Warwickshire.
Turn at Coleshill. Free. Richa Lich. & Cov."
It was just about this time that Johnson was visiting his friend Hector, the surgeon, at the house of Warren, "the first established bookseller" in Birmingham; for whom he translated Father Lobo's Voyage to Abyssinia (printed in Birmingham in 1735, though with the London imprint on the title); and for whose newspaper he furnished those "periodical essays," the recovery of which would be a matter of so much interest.
The Rev. James Parkinson, author of the above-mentioned Loyal Oration, appears to have been a very troublesome fellow. He was appointed head-master by the governors, in 1694, "out of compassion, as he had lost his fellowship, it being all he had to depend on." The fact was, he had been expelled from the University for his anti-monarchical principles-a circumstance of which his patrons were, doubtless, aware but trusting that he had grown wiser by experience, they elected him, and hoped that he "would be peaceable in his office." But they were doomed to disappointment, as the following document, excerpted from their minutes, attests:
"Mem. That upon the 24th day of June, A.D. 1709, Wee, the Governors of the Free Grammar School in Birmm, who have subscribed our names, having considered ye behaviour of Mr Parkinson, who officiates as cheife-Master in ye sayd schoole, and finding that the sayed schoole, which was flourishing and usefull before he came to it, doth dayly decline thro' his mismanagement and unquiettness, and unfittness to be cheife-master there, Doe in Discharge of our trust unanimously order that an eject may be presented agt him, and such other speedy course taken for removing him from the sayd office of cheife-master as councill shall advise, to the end a more fitt master may be elected in his roome; and wee order that a Defense be made for us to the bill in Chancery by him brought agt us in the name of the Attorney Generall, and all the Relation of the said Mr Parkinson. And out of civility to him, tho' we don't apprehend he much deserves it, we direct notice to be given to him of this our order, that he may seek for another place where he may be more useful."-Signed by SAML. EDEN, and eleven other Governors.
These gentlemen do not seem to have prospered with their suit; as we find, in 1711, an entry of
"Sundry payments on accompt of Chancery suit, inter alia, £50 to Mr Parkinson (Head-Master), by order of the Court, towards his expenses in the suit."
I believe that he was finally got rid of by pension. He died March 28, 1722, and was succeeded in his office by the Rev. John Hansted.
A few years before the appointment of Mr. Parkinson to the head-mastership, the place of "usher," or second-master, had been held for two years (1686-8) by the Rev. William Wollaston, M.A., author of the well-known treatise, The Religion of Nature Delineated; and alluded to by Bishop Butler, in the preface to his Three Sermons, as “a late author of great and deserved reputation." From the preface to the octavo, and best edition of The Religion of Nature (1750), we are informed that he had held a subordinate position in the same school since June, 1682:
"About which Time, seeing no Prospect of Preferment, He so far conformed himself to the Circumstances of his Fortune as to become Assistant to the Head-Master of Birmingham School."
His accession in 1688, to "a very ample estate," enabled him to resign his appointment; and this
was not before it was necessary, for, having "got a small Lectorship in a Chapel, about two miles distant," and doing "the Duty of the whole Sunday," he found that this labour," and the business of the Great Free-School, for about four years, began to break his Constitution; and if continued, had probably overcome it quite, though the stamina of it were naturally very strong."
It is singular that no other name of literary eminence is to be found in the list of head, or second masters of this school: unless, indeed, it be that of the late Rev. Rann Kennedy, the friend of Dr. Parr, and a poet of considerable original genius. WILLIAM BATES. Edgbaston.
“P. 238. Oriunda è furiis Qualis leænæ est, talis ira fœminæ. Mala mulier cunctis feris est ferocior. Artificiosa est nocere, mulier quum vult, Val. A fixen, limbe of the Devil," &c.
Very likely some of the readers of "N. & Q." have found the word fixen vixen in some work earlier in date than those I have spoken of above. EDWIN ARMISTEAD.
JEREMY COLLIER ON THE STAGE.
I have recently looked over a volume, which, though it made an immense sensation, and moreover, had a great effect at the time of its appearing, is very little known at present, viz. Jeremy Collier's work against the stage, specially of his day. Collier was born in 1650, and became a divine of great learning and activity. The most known of his publications was that to which I refer, entitled
"A short View of the Immorality and Profaneness of the English Stage; together with the Sense of Antiquity upon this Argument."
Dryden, Congreve, and others had certainly done much to provoke such a diatribe. It met with fierce and clever antagonists, specially among the dramatists attacked; but the learned author manfully stood his ground, retorted on his opponents with no less spirit than that with which he undertook the controversy, and had the honour of causing Dryden to confess the impropriety in many of his publications, and to obtain an honourable testimony from the pen of Dr. Johnson. "At last," says he, "comedy grew more modest,
and Collier lived to see the reward of his labour in the reformation of the theatre."
The copy before me is the 2nd edition, published so rapidly as to appear in the same year with the first. The author hits hard-in a style more learned and vehement than, to me at least, interesting or attractive; and I should think that, at the present day, few would read the book, though not long, without much of that skipping to which I readily confess.
The book is divided into five chapters. The first treats of the "immodesty of the stage" of the day, and dwells on the writings of heathen dramatists as on this head, far superior. Plautus, Terence, Seneca, the Greek tragedians, and Aristophanes are favourably contrasted, and the plays of Beaumont, Fletcher, and Corneille are quoted in the same light.
The 2nd chapter treats of the stage as profane, with a multitude of illustrations from the favourite pieces of the day; e. g. The Mock Astrologer, The Orphan, Old Bachelor, Double Dealer, Don Sebastian, Love for Love, &c. To this is added a similar comparison with that of the previous chapter,
in favour of heathen over professedly Christian dramatists.
The 3rd chapter is the shortest in the volume, and treats of the ridicule and depreciation of the clergy contained in the plays of the day. Much learning is introduced in a brief compass with reference to the honour due to the clerical profession, and granted, with few exceptions, at all times and in all countries. To show the variety of our author's argument, and to give a specimen of his style, I quote a passage on the rank of many of the clerical order:
"Odo, brother to William the Conqueror, was Bishop of Baieux, and Earl of Kent. King Stephen's brother was Bishop of Winchester. Nevill, Archbishop of York, was brother to the great Earl of Warwick, and Cardinal Pool was of the Royal Family. To come a little lower and to our own times. And here we may reckon not a few persons of noble descent in holy orders. Witness the Berklyes, Comptons, Montaynes, Crews, and Norths; the Annesley's, Finchs, Grayhams, &c. And as for the gentry, there are not many good families in England, but either have had or have a clergyman in them."-Pp. 135-6.
The 4th chapter is headed "Immorality encouraged by the Stage." The ancients are again quoted as, on this head, less culpable. Pieasure, as the sole end of poetry and poetic action, is condemned, and a higher one enforced in various ways, as by quotations from Aristotle, Quintilian, Ben Jonson, and others; and the extravagant rant, the treatment of women, the coarse usage of the nobility, and the licentious freedom of the English stage, as shown at the time beyond that of any other country, is severely criticised. Quotations in proof are made from the Spanish Friar, King Arthur, Love Triumphant, and others.
The 5th chapter deals specifically with three plays; the two first by Dryden, Amphitryon and King Arthur; the last one little known now, Don Quixote by Durfey, charging them straight home, and on close criticism, with various transgressions against propriety, morality, and religion. So with The Relapse also.
The 6th, and concluding chapter, is a very learned collection of the opinions against the stage, declared by states, codes, councils, Fathers of the Church, and in a multitude of other documents quoted on the author's side.
I think that this analysis, in which brevis esse laboro to the very best of my capacity, may have
some interest for readers such as those whom the
pages of "N. & Q." usually meet. A small proportion only, I should suppose, have read the original book, but few of them will have attended to the general literature of the last century, without being frequently reminded of it and its author. FRANCIS TRENCH.