p. 220




Status: Incomplete

Sketch of Junius Brutus Booth continued---His
celebrated contest with Kean in "Othello"---Re-
marks on his style of acting.

About 1817 the celebrated trial of talent be-
tween Kean and Booth took place at Drury
Lane. As this contest has been much dwelt
upon and variously described it may be appo-
site to our purpose to give some of its details
here. This interesting exhibition of theatrical
championship may be declared to have consti-
tuted an epoch in the lives of the two trage-
dians. It was said in England and reiterated
here that Booth's manner was an ingenious
imitation of that of Kean---" his person being
about the same size and his voice adapting it-
self to the same tones and imitating the same
abrupt transitions in intonations and even ac-
tion thus strikingly assimilating in nearly all
points it may not therefore be wondered at
that when the two actors were apart from each
other Booth by the trick and fashion of
Kean's style should impose successfully upon
the public for the spirit of yhe latter." Thus
did Kean's friends discourse. Booth having
suddenly arisen at a rival theatre and possess-
ing all the attributes which characterized
Kean's excellencies gave cause for partizan ex-

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