1787, Nov 41833, May 15
a celebrated British Shakespearean stage actor born in England, who performed, among other places, in London, Belfast, New York, Quebec, and Paris. He was known for his short stature, tumultuous personal life, and controversial divorce. Aged 14, he obtained an engagement to play leading characters for 20 nights in the York Theatre, appearing as Hamlet, Hastings and Cato. Shortly afterwards, while he was in Richardson's Theatre, a travelling theatre company, the rumor of his abilities reached George III, who commanded him to appear at Windsor Castle. He subsequently joined Saunders's circus, where in the performance of an equestrian feat he fell and broke both legsā€”the accident leaving traces of swelling in his insteps throughout his life.
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