30 MAY 1829, Page 9


HAD the John Bull, the Mignelite journalist, beheld the Queen of Portugal at Astley's on Wednesday, he would surely have been touched by the signs of royal adversity. Imagine Majesty possessed of one of the common centre boxes of that particular theatre, and ac- companied by a Court of three ladies of respectable appearance, and four entirely Portuguese-looking gentlemen! When one saw such a cortege, and a princess so bestowed, the reflection forced itself upon the mind, that misfortune lav at the root of the :aeglect ; and considering the youth and innocence of the exiled Queen, there was a melancholyin- terest in the thought, suggested by her rough and careless entertainment. What, however, we are sure would have touched the heart of the Miguelite Bull himself, was not any one of the circumstances we have described, but the spectacle of her Majesty and her whole Court in the place we have mentioned, eating ice, and stuffing themselves with cakes ! ! ! Had the Queen ate a horse in private from sheer distress and famine, her enemies might have preserved their hardness of heart towards her; but what polite soul is there which does not freeze with horror at the idea of a royal personage eating ice and munching stale cakes in the most public part of a minor theatre ! This is what that monster Don Miguel has driven the poor Princess to; and surely it is the very climax of his crimes. The manner of the con- sumption of this ice, rendered it the more hideous. We never saw people apply themselves with such active diligence to the business : their spoons flew faster than weavers' shuttles, and the jaws of the whole Court champed upon the cakes as in glad concert. " What would the King say ?" was the' thought that occurred to us with this strange exhibition of the Portuguese tooth.

While we are at Astley's, we must in justice say that the present entertainments are the best we have ever witnessed at that theatre. The performance of the stage is extremely respectable,—extremely good in its way ; and that of the horses is improved to a miracle. Harlequin, a pretty little white horse who represents Pegasus, and all but flies about fluttering his wings, is an extraordinarily talented qua- druped, and the best example of the wonders of education we ever beheld—except, of course, the productions of the two Universities. He pretends lameness, halts about, is cured, and then dances, keeping the most exact time with the band. It is really a wonderful and a beautiful exhibition.

DucRow's extraordinary feats are familiar, no doubt, to most of our readers ; and he seems to us to have improved upon himself this sea- son. A young lady flies tiptoe on horseback with the grace of CA- NOVA'S Hebe. We cannot do just honour to her name, because the distress of the country is such that we could not afford ourselves the extravagance of a play-bill.