Pub.d as the Act Directs July 10. 1779 by W. Richardson No. 68 High Holborn
Mezzotint, good impression with very large margins; platemark 155 x 115mm (6 x 4½"). Uncut. Glued to backing sheet top left corner.
John Palmer (1744-98), actor, also known as 'Plausible Jack'. A popular and versatile actor, Palmer was believed to have performed over 375 different parts in his career. Palmer's remarkable career took him to many parts of the British Isles, including spells in Scotland and Ireland. After establishing himself as an actor, Palmer opened a new theatre, the Royalty, on Wellclose Square in East London. The theatre was open for less than two years however, and failed to offer the alternative to the West End which Palmer hoped to provide. His later career involved producing spectacles at the Royal Circus, but he was an actor to the last. Palmer had been beset by accidents throughout his career, including a near-fatal accident when a stage trap was released too quickly, and a stabbing when a spring in a dagger failed to work. He continued to work strenuously right up to his death, when taking on a lead role in Benjamin Thompson's 'The Stranger' at short notice. Clearly struggling, Palmer collapsed on stage and died during the fourth act. From a set of small mezzotint portraits of actors published by the printseller William Richardson in 1779. Engraved after a painting by draughtsman and singer Robert Dighton (1751-1814) by the mezzotint engraver and printseller Robert Laurie (1755?-1836). Music, instruments and mask (representing theatre) in title area.
Ex: collection of the late Hon. C. Lennox-Boyd; CS 1 iii/iii; O'D 7; for the Royal Circus see ref. 8120. Ex: Oettingen-Wallerstein Collection.
[Ref: 36673] £220.00