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INTRODUCTION IN THE THEATRE.*
By me so often in trouble and need
Hope ye will our undertaking succeed ?
* In Germany, the theatres are frequently the property of the sovereign or the state, and their organization more resembles that of the staff of a public office than with us, the appointments to many branches being permanent.
How to humour the taste of the people I know ;
may be that they have not been bred
* In Germany, theatrical hours, as well as all others, are much earlier than in England. At Weimar, when the translator was there, the theatre began at six o'clock, and was over at nine, and probably that is the case now. One reason why theatricals are so much more flourishing on the continent than in England, is, that instead of interfering directly with the meals of the higher classes, as here, they fill up intervals between them, and the consequence is, a preponderance of cultivation and taste in the audience, to which the actor, to attain character in his profession, must act up, instead of as here, acting down to the audience, the overwbelming majority of whom, are very accurately described by the Manager, a few lines further on. It is to be remembered, that this is not supposed to take place in a regular theatre, but in the temporary theatre, or rather booth, of a strolling company.
+ Wehen is not a verb, but a real substantive. Geburtswehen are the pains of labour.
Scrambling and elbowing, through the choked wicket,
Our portal of heaven, to where sits the cash taker ; Risking their necks for the chance of a ticket,
Like a famishing mob at the door of a baker. On such manifold minds, such miraculous sway, Is the Poet's alone! My dear friend, oh, exert it to-day.
Oh! speak not to me of the mob; at the sight
flourish; Where friendship and love join the bliss of the heart,
With the hand of a god to create and to nourish.
In the depths of our bosoms, how many a thought,
Through the faltering lips climbing faintly to-day, Now eluding our grasp, now exultingly caught,
Is devoured by the moment’s tumultuous sway.
Before at its perfected form it arrives :
For posterity, only the sterling survives.
I wish of posterity less I might hear ;
If I were to talk of posterity, who Would make for the present the fun and the cheer That the present requires--and, what's more, will
have too. The presence, besides, of a spirited lad, * Is something methinks well worth being had, Who imparts what he has in a manner to please, And will not take huff at the people's caprice. The wider his circle, the better he likes it, For he's sure to awaken more chords when he strikes
it; Now set to like a man-shew a brilliant example, In each of her keys give of Fancy a sample. Understanding and reason, † let feeling abound, And passion, but mark ! Folly's voice in the chorus
* Meaning himself.
+ Vernunft reason; Verstand understanding. Kant divides intellect into understanding and reason. The understanding, acting upon experience, merely compares, judges and measures its representations, and is conversant solely with their mutual limits and relations, classifying them according to certain schemes of its own, which are called categories. While, how
Above all things let plenty of action arise,
At your work, that the many may stare in amaze, You've the bulk of the multitude's suffrages won,
And the popular favour your labour repays.
the masses can stir, Each looks out for what he himself may prefer, And he who brings much will bring something that
pleases All palates, and sends them contented away ; When you give them a piece, at once give it in pieces,
With such a ragout you will sure make your way ; 'Tis as easy to serve up as 'tis to invent. What use is it ever a whole to present, When it still by the public in fragments is rent ?
Ye feel not how such a mere job must degrade,
How little befits it, art's true-hearted child, Affectation so blundering, such mere tricks of trade,
Among you I observe, indeed, maxims are styled.
ever, the understanding is thus limited, the activity of the reason is unbounded, and, as the principle of principles, it is the base and verification of every special principle and reason.