Now to the Drama turn - Oh! motley sight!


Harvard Theatre Collection - HTC 31.039t

Gods! O’er those boards shall Folly rear her head
Where GARRICK trod, and SIDDONS lives to tread?

James Gillray (1756-1815). Blowing up the Pic Nics: or, Harlequin Quixote attacking the Puppets (London, April 2nd, 1802).

The amateur Pic Nic Society provided an alternative to licensed theatres but was popularly decried for its decadent productions. This satirical print by Gillray depicts Sheridan as Harlequin leading the charge against the Pic Nics, on stage as well as in the popular press. Sarah Siddons (as Lady Macbeth), Charles Kemble (as Hamlet), and others play supporting roles, while the spectre of David Garrick observes the commotion through the floor boards.