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No 290. FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 1, 1711-12.

Projicit ampullas et sesquipedalia verba.

HOR. Ars. Poet. ver. 97.

Forgets his swelling and gigantic words.


The players, who know I am very much their friend, take all opportunities to express a gratitude to me for being so. They could not have a better occasion of obliging me, than one which they lately took hold of. They desired my friend Will Honeycomb to bring me to the reading of a new tragedy ; it is called, The Distrest Mother'. I must confess, though some days are passed since I enjoyed that entertainment, the passions of the several characters dwell strongly upon my imagination; and I congratulate the age, that they are at last to see truth and human life represented in the incidents which concern heroes and heroines. The style of the play is such as becomes those of the first education, and the sentiments worthy those of the highest figure. It was a most exquisite pleasure to me, to observe real tears drop from the eyes of those who had long made it their profession to dissemble affliction; and the player, who read, frequently threw down the book, until he had given vent

1 By Ambrose Philips. It is little more than a translation from the Andromaque of Racine. The Epilogue to this play, which has Mr. Budgell's name prefixed to it, and has been very much admired, Dr. Johnson says, was actually written by Addison. Mrs. Johnson was assured so by Mr. Draper, the partner of Tonson, the Bookseller.

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