Lewis, Leopold David (DNB00)

LEWIS, LEOPOLD DAVID (1828–1890), dramatist, eldest son of David Lewis of Middlesex, physician, was born in London in 1828, was educated at King's College School, was admitted a solicitor in 1850, and practised at 4 Skinner's Place, Sise Lane, London, till 1875. A drama called ‘The Bells,’ which he had adapted from ‘Le Juif Polonais,’ by MM. Erckmann-Chatrian, was produced at the Lyceum Theatre 25 Nov. 1871, and was rendered notable by Mr. Henry Irving's striking impersonation of the leading character, Mathias, the conscience-stricken burgomaster. This was published as No. 97 of Lacy's series of acting editions. Lewis's other dramas were the ‘Wandering Jew,’ Adelphi Theatre, 14 April 1873; ‘Give a Dog a Bad Name,’ Adelphi, 18 Nov. 1876; and the ‘Foundlings,’ Sadler's Wells, 8 Oct. 1881. From February to December 1868 Lewis and Mr. Alfred Thompson conducted a monthly periodical entitled ‘The Mask, a Humorous and Fantastic Review.’ Lewis and Mr. Thompson wrote all the articles, and the latter supplied all the illustrations. Despite its cleverness, the work met with little favour from the public. Lewis also wrote a series of tales in three volumes entitled ‘A Peal of Merry Bells,’ published in 1880. He died in the Royal Free Hospital, Gray's Inn Road, London, on 23 Feb. 1890, and was buried at Kensal Green.

[Times, 25 Feb. 1890, p. 5 and 27 Feb., p. 9; Era, 1 March 1890, p. 10; Mask, 1868, p. iii., with portrait; St. Stephen's Review, 1 March 1890, p. 8, and 8 March, p. 18, with portrait.]

G. C. B.