A certain theatrical troupe, after a dreary and unsuccessful tour, finally arrived in a small New Jersey town. That night, though there was no furore or general uprising of the audience, there was enough hand-clapping to arouse the troupe's dejected spirits. The leading man stepped to the foot-lights after the first act and bowed profoundly. Still the clapping continued.
When he went behind the scenes he saw an Irish stagehand laughing heartily. "Well, what do you think of that?" asked the actor, throwing out his chest.
"What d'ye mane?" replied the Irishman.
"Why, the hand-clapping out there," was the reply.
"Yes," said the Thespian, "they are giving me enough applause to show they appreciate me."
"D'ye call thot applause?" inquired the old fellow. "Whoi, thot's not applause. Thot's the audience killin' mosquitoes."
Applause is the spur of noble minds, the end and aim of weak ones.—Colton.
O Popular Applause! what heart of man is proof against thy sweet, seducing charms?—Cowper.