(Gr.), ' an imitation of everything,' (1) a kind of dramatic entertainment in which the performers express themselves by gestures to the accompaniment of music, and which may bo called a prose ballet. I t has been in use among Oriental nations from very ancient times. The Greeks introduced pantomime into their choruses, some of the performers gesticulating, accompanied by music, whilst others sang. The Romans had entire dramatic representations consisting of dancing and gesticulation only, and some of their performers attained high excellence in the art. The wordless play with music has made only sporadic appearances in recent times ; a typical example is 1 L'Enfant prodigue.' (See W o r m - s e r . ) A mixture of pantomime and dancing constitutes the modern ballet d'action. (See B a l l e t - d a n c i n g . ) (2) The first occurrence of an English equivalent to the Italian ' Commedia dell' Arte '- the ultimate origin of which is exceedingly obscure-seems to have been a t Drury Lane in 1702, when ' Tavern Bilkers,' by John Weaver (the friend of Addison and Steele), was produced. I t was not successful, but in 1716-17, at Lincoln's Inn Theatre, John Rich, under the name of Lun, performed the character of Harlequin in a style which extorted the admiration of those who most disapproved of the class of piece. His pantomime'* were originally musical masques, usually upou some classical mythological subject, between the scenes of which harlequinade scenes were introduced, the two parts having no connexion. The music for the majority of them was composed by J . E. Galhard. Their popularity compelled the managers of Drury Lane to adopt pantomimes in order to compete successfully with their rival, and they were then soon produced a t other theatres also. After a time the original form was changed, and in lieu of the mythological masque, a short drama, of three or four scenes, was constructed, the invariable characters in which, under different shapes, were an old man, his pretty daughter, or ward-whom he was desirous of uniting to a wealthy but foolish suitor, but who had a poorer and favoured lover-and the old man's knavish serving-man. The girl and her lover were protected by a benevolent fairy, whilst the old man and his favourite had the assistance of a malevolent spirit. To counteract the machinations of the evil being, the fairy determined th a t her proteges should undergo a term of probation under different shapes, and accordingly transformed them into Harlequin and Columbine, giving to the former a magic bat to assist him in his progress. The evil spirit then transformed the old man and his servant into Pantaloon and Clown, and the wealthy suitor into the Dandy Lover, and the harlequinade began, the two lovers being pursued by the others through a variety of scenes, but always foiling them by the aid of the bat.1 At length the fairy reappeared and declared the success of the lovers, and the piece terminated. Vocal music was largely introduced, not only in the opening, but also in the harlequinade, and the best English composers did not disdain to employ their talents in producing it. The two Arnes, Dibdin, Battishill, Linley, Shield, Attwood and others, all composed music for this class of entertainment. About 1830 the length of the opening was greatly extended, more spectacular effects introduced, and the ' transformation scene ' became by degrees the climax of the whole. Original music was still composed for the pantomime, but the task of producing it was entrusted to inferior composers. Gradually the harlequinade scenes were reduced in number, the opening assumed the character of an extravaganza upon the subject of some nursery tale, and the music became a selection of the popular tunes of the day. In the early pantomimes Harlequin was the principal character, and continued so until the genius of Grimaldi placed the Clown in the most prominent position. In pantomimes of the middle period the pantomimists who sustained the principal parts in tho harlequinade invariably performed in the l The names Harlequin, Columbine and Pantaloon are derived from the Italian- Arlecchino, Colomhina and Pantalone. Clown Is known in Italy as Pagliaccio ; in France as Pierrot, Paillasse, or Pitre ; in German as Bajas, or Hanswurst (Jack-pudding) opening the characters who were transformed. A consideration of the difference between the Italian Arlecchino and the English Harlequin is beyond the scope of our present purpose. w . H. H. (3) The entertainment now generally described as pantomime is historically descended from the above, but bears few traces of its descent. The harlequinade has vanished. The fairy-tale is retained merely as an indication th a t the entertainment is intended for children. The hero, called ' principal boy,' is acted by a woman ; the comic character, generally principal boy's mother, is acted by a man. Beyond these conventions the pantomime is practically a revue, the attraction being the number of ' turns * from the variety stage incorporated into it. The music matches the * turns.' c.