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a very singular adventurer, was the son of a clergyman, and a

, a very singular adventurer, was the son of a clergyman, and a native of Zurich, in Switzerland, where he married, but left his country in consequence of an intrigue. Having had an opportunity of visiting the principal cities of Europe, he acquired a taste for elegant and refined pleasures, which by degrees qualified him for the management of public amusements. In 1708, when he was near fifty years old, he came to England on a negotiation from the Swiss at Zurich; but failing in his embassy, he entered as a private soldier in the guards for protection. By his sprightly engaging conversation, and insinuating address, he soon became a favourite with our young people of fashion, from whom he obtained the appellation of “the Swiss count,” by which name he is noticed in the “Tatler.” He had the address to procure a subscription, with which in 1709 he was enabled to furnish out the opera of “Thomyris,” which was written in English, and performed at the queen’s theatre in the Haymarket, with such success, that he g ined by this performance alone 500 guineas. The judicious remarks he made on several detects in the conduct of our operas in general, and the hints he threw out for improving those entertainments, soon established his character as a theatrical critic. Appeals were made to his judgment; and some very magnificent and elegant decorations, introduced upon the stage in consequence of his advice, gave such satisfaction to George II. who was fond of operas, that his majesty was pleased from that time to countenance him, and he soon obtained the chief management of the opera-house in the Haymarket. He then undertook to improve another species’of diversion, not less agreeable to the king, the masquerades, and over these he always presided at the king’s theatre. He was likewise appointed master of the revels. The nobility now caressed htm so much, and had such an opinion of his taste, that all splendid and elegant entertainments given by them upon particular occasions, and all private assemblies by subscription, were submitted to his direction, for which he was liberally rewarded.