'Bellower' Quin



  • Nickname of the English actor James Quin (1693 - 1766),referring to his bombastic style. Few could match Quin in loudnessof voice or costume. He made his debut in 1712 at the Smock AlleyTheatre, Dublin, and two years later became an overnight success atDrury Lane when he stood in for a sick actor in Rowe's Tamerlane.He consolidated his reputation in Shakespearean roles, becoming especiallyrenowned for his Falstaff. A product of the heroic school of acting,'Bellower' Quin came to seem a rather laughable and outdated figurein the more restrained era of David Garrick. "If theyoung fellow is right," snorted Quin of Garrick, "I andthe rest of the players have been all wrong."

    Quin was noted for his stubbornness and short temper, whichled to fiery rows with Charles Macklin, his fellow actor atLincoln's Inn Fields. This was somewhat reckless of both men: Quinonce killed a fellow actor, William Bowen, in a duel and Macklinnotoriously stabbed an actor to death for arguing over a wig.