kept the spectators in profound silence. On a sudden he thrust down his head into his bosom, and mimicked the squeaking of a young pig, so naturally, that the audience insisted upon it that he had one under his cloak, and ordered him to be searched; which being done, and nothing appearing, they loaded him with the most extravagant applause. A Countryman among the audience observing what passed; "Oh!" says he, "I can do better than this," and immediately gave out that he would perform the next day. Accordingly, on the morrow, a yet greater crowd was collected. Prepossessed, however, in favour of the Mountebank, they came rather to laugh at the Countryman than

 

The Mountebank and the Countryman

A Certain wealthy Patrician, intending to treat the Roman people with some theatrical entertainment, publicly offered a reward to any one who would produce a novel spectacle. Incited by emulation, artists arrived from all parts to contest the prize, among whom a well-known witty Mountebank gave out that he had a new kind of entertainment that had never yet been produced on any stage. This report being spread abroad, brought the whole city together. The theatre could hardly contain the number of spectators. And when the artist appeared alone upon the stage, without any apparatus, or any assistants, curiosity and suspense

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