Punch,  44 (1863), 204–05.

Giving us Pepper

Peter Pepper


Letter, Spoof; Drama, Drollery


Amusement, Display, Supernaturalism, Light, Instruments, Class

    Introducing himself as John H Pepper's assistant, explains that this 'learned and scientific gentleman has permitted his Ghost to appear at one of the suburban theatres' and expresses delight at the fact that the illusion is terrifying audiences 'whose notions of the supernatural are thereby realised to the full'. On this basis, he explains that he visited the theatre in person to witness the audience's 'notions of the supernatural'. (204) He then presents a report of the drama in the form of a scene from the play itself. The drama reveals the vulgar behaviour of the audience who consist of women noisily singing to their children and people who do not appear to treat the ghostly performer with much respect. The narrator denies that this is the proper way to treat a ghost and suggests that Pepper should appear in a production of Richard Wagner's opera The Flying Dutchman.

© Science in the Nineteenth-Century Periodical Project, Universities of Leeds and Sheffield, 2005 - 2020

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