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where we took up our quarters at an hotel in the Faubourg St. Germain, at that time the most fashionable part of the town, and generally frequented by the English. We remained there a few days, and I believe saw every thing worth seeing, visited Versailles, and saw the King and Queen, and the royal family, dine in public, apparently adored by the populace.

At that time there existed a ceremony, to which all foreigners were obliged to submit ; I mean, that of being actually compelled to receive the chaste salutes of the dames de la halle (fish women), who besieged, in those days, the residences of strangers, and presented them with nosegays, nor would they quit their post until they had obtained both money and kisses; but, I must say that these amatory advances were to me a horrid nuisance.

My object, while in Paris, was to see all the theatres, and I therefore visited one or other of them every evening. I went, first, to the grand opera, and was delighted with the magnificence of the scenery, decorations, and dresses, and, above all, with their choruses ; in that department. they decidedly bear away the palm from every other country: the orchestra was most minutely attended to, and more numerous than even that of San Carlo at Naples : but the principal singers (God save them) made a shriek louder than I thought any human

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beings capable of producing. The opera was Gluck's Iphigenia, which we had performed at Vienna; but for decorations and effect, Paris beat us out of the field. The chorus and procession, where Pylades and Orestes in chains, were dragged on by Gardel, Vestris, and a host of first-rate dancers, were beyond any thing I could have conceived. I went the next night to the same theatre, and saw the first representation of the grand serious opera of “ (Edipe à Colon;" the music by Sacchini, was delightful and enchanting. I there heard, for the first time, the celebrated bass singer, Cheron, who played the part of Edipe, and sang in a delightful style ; it was quite different from the performance of the night before, indeed I could scarcely imagine myself in the same theatre. I saw, too, the opera of Phedra, and had great pleasure in seeing Madame St. Auberti perform the part of Phedra; she was a great actress, and when she sang in a demi voice, was quite charming. This unfortunate lady and accomplished actress subsequently married, and with her husband, the Count d'Entraigues, was robbed and murdered by their servant when in England.

In this opera I felt much gratified by hearing Monsieur Laïs, possessing a fine baritone voice, with much taste and expression; but his greatest praise, in my opinion, was, that he was very unlike a French singer. The next theatre I visited, was



the Français. Their great tragedians, at the time, were on leave of absence in the provinces; I had not, therefore, an opportunity of seeing a tragedy, but I was amply compensated by their excellent comedians; their comic acting is always natural. I saw Molé act the part of Duretête, in Farquhar's Inconstant, admirably. Fleury was inimitable in Le Pupile (the guardian); and Madame Contare in Susan, Beaumarchais' Marriage of Figaro, exquisite. Dugazzon was a fine low comedian ; indeed, I thought all the actors good ; but my favourite theatre of all was the Théâtre Italien, in the Rue Favart, where French comic operas were performed; the orchestra was very good, and the actors and singers equally so, a Mademoiselle Renard had a most delightful voice, and was a sweet singer.

I saw there “ Richard Cour de Lion,” and enjoyed its charming music. I thought it always Grétry's masterpiece. Clairval, the original Blondel, gave the air of “ O Richard ! O mon Roi !" with great expression. His acting in the scerie when he heard the voice of Richard from the prison, was electrifying : his joy, his surprise, at having found his king, the trembling of his voice, his scrambling up the tree to let Richard hear his voice, and the expression altogether, made an impression on me that never can be effaced; and while I remained at Paris, I never missed going to see him. Monsieur

Philippe played Richard remarkably well, and gave the bravura air, “ L'univers que j'ai perdu,” with great skill and animation.

Having, at length, satisfied our curiosity at Paris, we took our departure, and never halted until we got to Boulogne; when we arrived there, we went to the hotel kept then by Mrs. Knowles (now Parker’s), and a very good house it was. The old lady herself went over with us in the packet to Dover: in it also was Pilon, who wrote 66 The Fair American,” and “ He would be a Soldier;" a thoughtless, extravagant, hair-brained fellow, who had been a long time at Boulogne, where he had been much noticed by the principal people. When we got in sight of Shakspeare's Cliff, he expressed his surprise at Shakspeare's referring to it as particularly high, and found great fault with our immortal bard's judgment of altitude, and with the spot itself, which he considered wholly unworthy of his notice. We landed at Dover, and went to the York Hotel, and agreed to dine together, and travel to London the next day.

After dinner we went to the custom-house, in order to have our trunks examined; but poor Pilon had, in the hurry of leaving Boulogne, left his trunk behind him : he seemed absolutely paralyzed with horror; and told us, on our return to the inn, that he must set off to Boulogne in the


packet which was to sail that night, and get his trunk at all hazards. We thought it particularly silly for him to do so, especially as he suffered greatly from sea-sickness, and there was a stiffish breeze blowing. We advised him to dispatch a messenger for it, but all would not do; he persisted in going himself, and took such copious draughts of hot brandy and water, that the poet's head became considerably confused.

At length, as the effects of his numerous potations became more powerful, he opened his heart to us; “Gad, my friends," said he, “if I don't get my trunk, I shall be ruined,-it will be opened, and in it will be found the bitterest satire I could write, upon all the people with whom, and upon whom I have been living, during the whole of my stay at Boulogne; and if they should see it or hear of it, I shall never be able to shew


face amongst them again.” At midnight the packet sailed, and in it the grateful playwright, in order to save his reputation.

We, having neither written lampoons, nor left our trunks behind us, set off in the n:orning, breakfasted at Canterbury, and dined at Rochester, and an unlucky dinner it was for me; I had purchased some prints and trinkets at Paris, which, by the aid of the steward of the packet, I got safe across the water; and on

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