ore adequate boards. The stage at the ambitious New Opera House was so small, and the foreshortening so excessive in consequence, that in the opening scene of Ivanhoe
Cedric and his guests actually sat at meat in Rotherwood Hall with their knees above the table, producing a ludicrous effect. And yet the piece was projected on the most pompous scale, with tournament, siege, fire, solemn trial, battle, murder and sudden death--in short, all the details that require the most ample spaces. The reporters were told, of course, that the stage was the largest in Europe, and they may possibly have believed it. At any rate, they told the public so. They ought to have known that Ivanhoe
had no chance so cramped and huddled together.
The second obstacle was the counterpart of an inadequate stage--to wit, an overloaded book. There were too many principal characters. They cluttered up the stage, got in each other's way and distracted attention from the main action. A skilful novelist can dispose of