1825 ca. ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Richard Tickell

Henry Mackenzie, Anecdotes and Egotisms, 1825 ca.; ed. Thompson (1927) 148.



I forget at the beginning of what Parliament it was that Tickell wrote his excellent pamphlet called Anticipation, one of the best jeux d'esprit ever published. It was a supposed debate at the opening of the Session, carried on by the different celebrated speakers of the time, whose speaking he mimicked with wonderful happiness of imitation. Among others was Colonel Barry, whose affectation of reading and historical knowledge he ridiculed by making him quote in illustration of his argument various historical facts of various countries. When the Session commenced, Barry rose and spoke; but not having seen the pamphlet, his speech was so exactly like the anticipation of it, that the House burst into a roar of laughing, so that he could not go on.

Tickell closed the Anticipation by making some member move for calling before the House the author or publisher of Anticipation for a breach of privilege; this effectually prevented any such motion, as no member would encounter the ridicule of following the mimicry of the pamphlet in such a speech as the witty author had put in his mouth.