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Charlotte Charke

  • Your two friends, Prudence and Reflection, I am informed, have lately ventured to pay you a visit; for which I heartily congratulate you, as nothing can possibly be more joyous to the heart than the return of absent friends, after a long and painful peregrination.

  • As the following history is the product of a female pen, I tremble for the terrible hazard it must run in venturing into the world, as it may very possibly suffer, in many opinions, without perusing it; I therefore humbly move for its having the common chance of a criminal, at least to be properly examined, before it is condemned ...

  • As I have, among many other censures, labored under that of being a giddy, indiscreet wife, I must take this opportunity of referring myself to the superior judgment of those who read my story ... in less than a month after marriage, I received the most demonstrative proofs of disregard, where I ought to have found the greatest tenderness: to be even to my face, apparently convinced of his insatiate fondess for a plurality of common wretches, that were to be had for half a crown. This, consequently, raised in me both aversion and contempt ...

  • ... nor did he make the least provision for either of us, when he went abroad. 'Tis true, I was then in Lincoln's Inn-Fields Playhouse, and from thence engaged at a good salary with the late Mr. Fielding; but then I was as liable to death or infirmities as any other part of the creation, which might have disempowered me from getting my own, or my child's bread.

  • ... my uncle ... had the misfortune to be ever touched in his brain, and, as a convincing proof, married his maid, at an age when he and she both had more occasion for a nurse than a parson.

  • ... I have observed gratitude to be a principle, that bears the smallest share in the hearts of those where it ought to be most strongly resident, so that I begin to imagine one half of the world don't understand the real etymology of the word.

  • Another expedient, towards the making of my fortune, was letting three several rooms to as many different persons, but in principle were all alike, and conjunctive in the perpetration of my destruction. ... they had taken violent fancies to my very candlesticks and sauce-pans, my pewter terribly shrunk, and my coals daily diminished, from the same opportunity they had in conveying off my beer; and, as I kept an eating-house also, there was very often a hue and cry after an imaginary dog, that had run away with three parts of a joint of meat.

  • But, alas! Misfortunes are too apt to wear out Friendship ...

  • The least glimmering or shade of acting, in man or woman, is a sure motive of envy in the rest; and, if their malice can't persuade the town's-people into a dislike of their performance, they'll cruelly endeavor to taint their characters ...

  • ... I began to be quite outrageous, and told him all I conceived of him; uttering several bold truths, not in the least to the advantage of his character.

  • Power, when invested in the hands of knaves or fools, generally is the source of tyranny ...

Charlotte Charke, English actor, memoirist

(1713 - 1760)

Full name: Charlotte Cibber Charke.