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Hoole The Translator Of Tasso The Ghost Puzzled








Hoole was born in a hackney-coach, which was conveying his mother to
Drury-lane Theatre, to witness the performance of the tragedy of
Timanthes, which had been written by her husband. Hoole died in 1839,
at a very advanced age. In early life, he ranked amongst the literary
characters that adorned the last century; and, for some years before his
death, had outlived most of the persons who frequented the conversazioni
of Dr. Johnson. By the will of the Doctor, Mr. Hoole was enabled to take
from his library and effects such books and furniture as he might think
proper to select, by way of memorial of that great personage. He
accordingly chose a chair in which Dr. Johnson usually sat, and the
desk upon which he had written the greater number of the papers of the
Rambler; both these articles Mr. Hoole used constantly until nearly
the day of his death.

Hoole was near-sighted. He was partial to the drama; and, when young,
often strutted his hour at an amateur theatre in Lincoln's Inn Fields.
Upon one occasion, whilst performing the ghost in Hamlet, Mr. Hoole
wandered incautiously from off the trap-door through which he had
emerged from the nether world, and by which it was his duty to descend.
In this dilemma he groped about, hoping to distinguish the aperture,
keeping the audience in wonder why he remained so long on the stage
after the crowing of the cock. It was apparent from the lips of the
ghost that he was holding converse with some one at the wings. He at
length became irritated, and "alas! poor ghost!" ejaculated, in tones
sufficiently audible, "I tell you I can't find it." The laughter that
ensued may be imagined. The ghost, had he been a sensible one, would
have walked off; but no--he became more and more irritated, until
the perturbed spirit was placed, by some of the bystanders, on the
trap-door, after which it descended, with due solemnity, amid roars of
laughter.

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