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William Godwin: his Friends and Contemporaries
Ch. III. 1800
John Philip Kemble to William Godwin, 9 December 1800

Contents Vol. I
Ch. I. 1756-1785
Ch. II. 1785-1788
Ch. III. 1788-1792
Ch. IV. 1793
Ch. V. 1783-1794
Ch. VI. 1794-1796
Ch. VII. 1759-1791
Ch. VII. 1791-1796
Ch. IX. 1797
Ch. X. 1797
Ch. XI. 1798
Ch. XII. 1799
Ch. XIII. 1800
Contents Vol. II
Ch. I. 1800
Ch. II. 1800
Ch. III. 1800
Ch. IV. 1801-1803
Ch. V. 1802-1803
Ch. VI. 1804-1806
Ch. VII. 1806-1811
Ch. VIII. 1811-1814
Ch. IX. 1812-1819
Ch. X. 1819-1824
Ch. XI. 1824-1832
Ch. XII. 1832-1836
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Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
Produced by CATH
No. 89 Great Russell Street, Bloomsbury Square.
December 9th, 1800.

My dear Sir,—I will not advertize any Play beyond Monday, depend on it, since you wish I should not. As to next week’s being eminently unfavourable to the Theatre, whoever told you so was eminently ignorant of what he pretended to know. The week in which I acted the ‘Haunted Tower,’ was said to be eminently unfavourable to the Theatre, so was the week in which I acted the ‘Siege of Belgrade,’ and the ‘School for Scandal,’ and ‘Pizarro.’ The two most successful pieces that ever were acted were both presented to the Public in the End of May, a time of all others the most eminently unfavourable to the Theatre. There is no time unfavourable to a work of real merit, with Judges so good, so unbiassed, and considerately kind, as generally compose the Audiences in London.

“As to Orders, pray use your own Discretion about the number of Friends you wish to send into the Boxes or Gallery for your Support, but into the Pit no Orders are ever admitted from any person whatsoever. I never wrote an Order for the Pit in my life. Having told you this, now let me tell you, that, if you take my Advice, you will not send an Order at all into the theatre on the first night. I am perfectly convinced that I have seen many a piece expire at its first Appearance, that might have lived to a good old age, if it had not been smothered in the Birth by the over-officiousness of injudicious Friends,—Yours truly,

J. P. Kemble.”