Read The Playmaker Online

Authors: Thomas Keneally

The Playmaker

BOOK: The Playmaker
13.05Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

EARLY BIRD BOOKS

FRESH EBOOK DEALS, DELIVERED DAILY

BE THE FIRST TO KNOW—

NEW DEALS HATCH EVERY DAY!

The Playmaker

Thomas Keneally

To Arabanoo and his brethren,

still dispossessed.

Contents

Dramatis Personae

The Players

PART ONE

1.
The Reading

2.
Isle of Turnips

3.
Players

4.
Recruiting the Perjurer

5.
Dreams

6.
By the Spikes

7.
A Full Company

8.
The Morality of Plays

PART TWO

9.
The Hunt

10.
Wryneck Day

PART THREE

11.
Perjury and the Play

12.
The Autopsy

13.
Hanging the Marines

14.
Playing to the Indian

15.
Enchanting the Indian

16.
The Play and Poetry

17.
Judging the Perjurer

18.
Exorcising Handy Baker

PART FOUR

19.
Letters

20.
Bruises

21.
The Redeemed Forest

22.
Ca-bahn

23.
Curse or Cure

24.
The Watching of the Ill

25.
Withholding Prussian Blue

PART FIVE

26.
Tattoo

27.
Celebrating the Part

28.
Lag Matrimony

29. San Augustin

30.
Performance

EPILOGUE

Author's Note

About the Author

Dramatis Personae

MEN

C
APTAIN
P
LUME
,
the Recruiting Officer

Henry Kable

M
R
. W
ORTHY
,
a Gentleman of Shropshire

Robert Sideway

J
USTICE
B
ALANCE
,
a Country Justice

Ketch Freeman

C
APTAIN
B
RAZEN
,
a Second Recruiting Officer

John Wisehammer

S
ERGEANT
K
ITE
,
Plume's Sergeant

John Arscott

B
ULLOCK
,
a Country Clown

C
OSTAR
P
EARMAIN
, a
Recruit

}

Curtis Brand

T
HOMAS
A
PPLETREE
,
a Recruit

John Hudson

WOMEN

S
ILVIA,
Daughter to Justice Balance, in love with Plume

Mary Brenham

M
ELINDA,
a Lady of Fortune

Nancy Turner

L
UCY,
Melinda's Maid

Duckling

(Sometimes known as Ann Smith)

R
OSE,
a Country Girl

Mrs. Dabby Bryant

SCENE:
Shrewsbury

THE PLAY IS MANAGED BY

Lieutenant Ralph Clark, Marines

The Players

H
ENRY
K
ABLE
: Sentenced at Norfolk Lent Assizes, 1783, held at Thetford before Sir James Eyre Knight and Fleetwood Bury, Esquire. For burgling the dwelling house of Abigail Hambling, Widow, taking goods to the value of some eighteen pounds. Sentenced to death. Reprieved on account of extreme youth. Seven years' transportation.

Occupation: labourer.

Age at sentencing: sixteen years.

Present age: twenty-two years.

R
OBERT
S
IDEWAY
: Tried by the London Jury before Mr. Recorder at Justice Hall in the Old Bailey at the sessions which began on October 16th, 1782. For stealing property value twenty-eight shillings. Guilty. Transported for seven years.

Then at a special session for the County of Devon held at Exeter Castle on Monday, May 24th, 1783, was found at large still within the realm of Great Britain without any lawful cause. Guilty. Death. Respited on condition of transportation for life.

Occupation: watchcase maker.

Age at second sentencing: twenty-three years.

Present age: twenty-nine years.

K
ETCH
(J
AMES
) F
REEMAN
: At the Hereford Lent Assizes on March 4th, 1784, before Sir William Henry Ashurst Knight and Jerome Knapp Esquire, Justices. Sentenced for highway attack on Thomas Baldwin and taking from him twelve shillings in money. Guilty, to be hanged. Reprieved. Transported seven years.

Occupation: labourer.

Age at sentencing: seventeen years.

Present age: twenty-two years.

J
OHN
W
ISEHAMMER
: Sentenced Bristol, February 10th, 1785, for stealing snuff from the shop of Messrs. Ricketts and Load.

Transportation, seven years.

Occupation: no trade.

Age at sentencing: twenty years.

Present age: twenty-four years.

J
OHN
A
RSCOTT
: At Bodmin Assizes, August 18th, 1783. Sentenced for burglary and breaking and entering the dwelling house of Philip Polkinghorn and then the house of George Thomas. Watches and tobacco stolen. To be transported for seven years.

Occupation: carpenter.

Age at sentencing: twenty years.

Present age: twenty-five years.

C
URTIS
B
RAND
: At Maidstone, Kent, on January 6th, 1784. For stealing two game-cocks. Sentenced to seven years.

Occupation: no trade.

Age at sentencing: twenty years.

Present age: twenty-five years.

J
OHN
H
UDSON
: First tried at Middlesex before Mr. Justice Willes at Justice Hall in the Old Bailey at the sessions of December 10th, 1783. For burgling and breaking and entering the dwelling house of William Holdsworth, and stealing therein one linen shirt value ten shillings, five silk stockings value five shillings, one pistol value five shillings, and two aprons value two shillings. Transported for seven years.

Occupation: sometimes a chimney sweeper.

Age at sentencing: nine years.

Present age: fourteen years.

M
ARY
B
RENHAM
: Tried by first Middlesex Jury before Mr. Baron Hotham at Justice Hall in the Old Bailey at the sessions which began Wednesday, December 8th, 1784. For feloniously stealing stuffed petticoats, a pair of stays, four and a half yards of cloth, one waistcoat, one cap, one pair of cotton stockings, one pair of nankeen breeches and one cloth cloak, the property of John Kennedy. Value thirty-nine shillings. Transported for seven years.

Occupation: servant.

Age at sentencing: not yet fourteen.

Present age: eighteen years.

N
ANCY
T
URNER
: At Worcester Lent Assizes on March 5th, 1785. For feloniously stealing a silk cloak, a pair of stays, a muslin handkerchief, a lace handkerchief, an apron, and other stuff, goods of Nancy Collins of the Parish of Holy Cross in Pershore. Total value forty shillings. Sentenced to seven years' transportation.

Occupation: servant.

Age at sentencing: seventeen years.

Present age: twenty-one years.

D
UCKLING
(
SUPPOSED NAME
A
NN
S
MITH
): Believed sentenced at Old Bailey, October, 1786. For stealing silverware, value forty-five shillings. Sentenced to death. Reprieved to seven years' transportation.

Occupation: none.

Age at sentencing: sixteen years.

Present age: nineteen years.

D
ABBY
(
ALIAS
M
ARY
) B
RYANT
: Devon Lent Assizes, held at Exeter on March 20th, 1786, before Sir James Eyre Knight and Sir Beaumont Hotham Knight. For feloniously assaulting Agnes Lakeman Spinster in the King's Way, putting her in corporal fear and danger of her life, and feloniously and violently taking from her person one silk bonnet value twelve pence and other goods value eleven shillings eleven pence, her property. Guilty of highway robbery. To be hanged. Reprieved. Transported seven years.

Occupation: forest dweller.

Age at sentencing: twenty years.

Present age: twenty-three years.

PART ONE

First Ralph heard again how Harry had—one evening in the settlement's first days—discovered Duckling's absence from her tent across the stream. In those days, soon after the women were landed, Duckling occupied her own little bell of canvas close to Captain Jemmy Campbell's marquee, for whom she worked for a time as a servant. Harry had set the patrols of the convict night watch and then gone to Duckling's tent to see sitting in front of it Dot Handilands, the most ancient of the she-lags, rumoured to be eighty years of age. For then, before huts and locks, felons with little else to do were often employed for a small portion of food or liquor to keep watch over people's possessions.

BOOK: The Playmaker
13.05Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

Other books

Fakebook by Dave Cicirelli
My Little Phony - 13 by Lisi Harrison
Lieberman's Choice by Stuart M. Kaminsky
Recipe for Disaster by Stacey Ballis
Hold of the Bone by Baxter Clare Trautman
Only Everything by Kieran Scott
The Perfect Girl by Gilly Macmillan