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Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 07.djvu/386

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Burnaby
Burnaby
380
  1. 'The Modish Husband,' 4to, 1702.
  2. 'Love Betray'd, or the Agreeable Disappointment,' 4to, 1702.

From the first named, which was played at Drury Lane in 1700 and was a failure, Colley Gibber borrowed a portion of the 'Ladies' Last Stake.' The 'Ladies' Visiting Day,' given at Lincoln's Lin Fields in 1701, was withdrawn after one representation. It owes something to the 'Country Wife' of Wycherley, and was imitated by Gibber in the 'Double Gallant.' Concerning the 'Modish Husband,' produced at Drury Lane in 1702, Gildon, in his 'Comparison between Two Stages,' speaks contemptuously, expressing his satisfaction that 'the town has damned it' (p. 197). This, however, is a fairly amusing comedy, dealing, like other of the author's plays, with the intrigue of a married woman, but written with some smartness. 'Love Betray'd,' played at Lincoln's Inn Fields in 1703, is to some extent a modernisation of the 'Twelfth Night.' In one of his dedications Burnaby assigns as the cause of the failure of his comedies the charge of indecency which was brought against them. This might well be. The 'Reform'd Wife' is as cynical as anything in Wycherley. Genest says that this comedy was printed with no list of characters. He must have been misled by an imperfect copy. A full cast, including Wilks, Johnson, Haines, Mills, Mrs. Knight, Mrs. Rogers, and Mrs. Verbruggen, and confuting some of Genest's assumptions, is in perfect copies.

[Downes's Roscius Anglicanus; Egerton's Theatrical Remembrancer; authorities cited.]

J. K.


BURNABY, FREDERICK GUSTAVUS (1842–1885), traveller and soldier, was born at Bedford on 3 March 1842, being the son of the Rev. Gustavus Andrew Burnaby of Somersby Hall, Leicestershire, and canon of Middleham in Yorkshire (who died on 15 July 1872), by Harriet, sister of Mr. Henry Villebois of Marham House, Norfolk (who died in 1883). He was educated at Bedford grammar school and Harrow, and afterwards privately in Germany. From Harrow he himself narrated that he was nearly expelled for sending a very lively article against 'fagging' to 'Punch,' but the Harrow authorities disclaim any knowledge of this incident, and the only article (Punch, 18 March 1854) which could be the one referred to must at any rate have been largely edited by Douglas Jerrold. At Harrow he was distinguished for aptitude in French, and in Germany he became master of French, German, and Italian. He had indeed a gift for languages, acquiring in later life a very good knowledge of Spanish and Russian, and a traveller's acquaintance with Turkish and Arabic. At the age of sixteen, being the youngest of 150 candidates, he passed his examination for the army, and was gazetted a cornet in the 3rd regiment of cavalry of the household brigade in 1859. He became successively lieutenant in 1861, captain in 1866, major in 1879, lieutenant-colonel in 1880, and received the command of the regiment in 1881, which he retained till his death. His strength and stature were enormous; he stood 6 ft. 4 in. in height, was 46 in. round the chest, and must have been, when young, one of the strongest men in Europe. Feats of his, such as using a dumbbell of 1½ cwt. and carrying a small pony under his arm, seem to be well authenticated. But in his passion for gymnastics he developed his muscular system at the expense of his vitality, and was compelled to travel for his health. Half the year being practically at his disposal as leave, he was enabled to gratify his strong taste for adventure by extensive and daring travel. He visited Central and South America early in his military life. In 1868 he went to southern Spain and Tangier, contributing letters to 'Vanity Fair' of a boyish kind. In 1870, while cholera was raging, he went to Odessa, via St. Petersburg, intending to thoroughly explore south-eastern Russia, but was recalled by news of his father's illness. In 1873, when General Kauffmann was beginning his invasion of Khiva, Burnaby intended to have gone to Central Asia, and started on his journey; but, falling ill of typhoid fever in Naples, went to Spain to restore his health, and there forced his way through the heart of the Carlist rebel lines by Vittoria into France. In the following year he went as correspondent of the 'Times' to the Carlist camp, where he began a lasting friendship with Don Carlos. His letters to the 'Times' begin 12 Aug. 1874, and go on till October at frequent intervals. At the end of the year he was despatched by the 'Times' to join Colonel Gordon in the Soudan, with whom he penetrated far up the Nile towards the equator, and acquired experience which afterwards proved of use during the English operations of 1884. His letters to the 'Times' are of dates 4 and 13 Jan. and 5 Feb. 1874. Accidentally learning in Khartoum that the Russian Government had refused entrance to Europeans into Central Asia, he at once decided to resume his former design of going thither; and, after spending some time in preparations and methodical study of the subject, started on 30 Nov. 1875. He tra-