It was getting very near Christmas-time, and all the boys at Miss Ware's school were talking excitedly about going home for the holidays, of the fun they would have, the presents they would receive on Christmas morning, the tips from Grannies, Uncles, and Aunts, of the pantomimes, the parties, the never-ending joys and pleasures which would be theirs.
But, in what I have said, I would not be understood to be an advocate for two play-houses; for we shall soon find that two sets of actors, tolerated in the same place, have constantly ended in the corruption of the theatre; of which the auxiliary entertainments, that have so barbarously supplied the defects of weak action, have, for some years past, been a flagrant instance; it may not, therefore, be here improper to shew how our childish Pantomimes first came to take so gross a possession of the stage.
Imagine all these things intensified to the uttermost, and prolonged to nigh the limits of endurance, so that genial ideas and softening influences seem to have become things of the long-forgotten past, and then try to imagine a change, compared to which all the transformation scenes of all the pantomimes that ever blazed are as a tomtit's chirp to a lion's roar, or a a Words fail again!
I put my arm round her, pressing my cheek against hers, while childish visions, more childish than any in this little head, flitted before me, of pantomimes, and toys, and sweetmeats, and the thousand things that children love. If I had been as rich as my father had planned for me to be, how I would have lavished them upon this anxious little creature!
Pantomimes, as they grew, were made more and more attractive, "new scenery, decorations, and flyings" were introduced, and with new "flyings," of course, more accidents.
The chevalier Ramsay places it also among the lost arts. Both, no doubt, grounding their opinion on that deficiency of execution on the modern theatres, compared to what is incontestably transmitted to us, by history, of the excellence of the antient pantomimes.
His pint of champagne was dry and bitter stuff, not like the Veuve Clicquots of old days. Over his cup of coffee, he bethought him that he would go to the opera. In the Times, therefore he had a distrust of other papers he read the announcement for the evening. It was 'Fidelio. Mercifully not one of those new-fangled German pantomimes by that fellow Wagner.
Pantomimical Characters Neapolitan Pantomime The Harlequin Family The Original Characters in the Italian Pantomimes Celebrated Harlequins Italian and French Harlequins A French view of the English Clown Pierrots' origin Pantaloon, how the name has been derived Columbine Marionette and Puppet Shows.
We have also a distracting couple of Clowns and Pantaloons in our Pantomimes: though Colney says that the multiplication of the pantaloon is a distinct advance to representative truth and bother Colney! Two Columbines also. We forbear to speak of men, but where is the boy who can set his young heart upon two Columbines at once!
At each corner a denser throng was gathered around jugglers, tumblers, wrestlers that writhed over the road-way, actors who danced Etruscan pantomimes and carried their make-up in little bags slung around their necks, singers of medleys, and would-be popular poets who spouted coarse epigrams and ribald satires levelled at the thieving, the effeminate, the adulterous patricians who thought to rule Rome and had named an Aemilius Paullus to stand beside and check the generous, the fearless, the incorruptible Varro.