The Abolition of Clapping

BioscopeSnippets 180. An early name for a film camera was a “bioscope”, and the name was chosen for a film journal during the silent era of film, published in London. It ran from 1908 to 1932. On the title page of the early issues you will see “incorporating The Amusement World and The Novelty News” under the title. Those were earlier trade journals for showmen. Much like The Talking Machine News, which we looked at last month and which performed a similar service for phonographs, The Bioscope was aimed at the trade rather than the general public, but it still carried a range of articles that are absolutely fascinating from an historical perspective.

The quote below is from the 7th January 1909 issue, and concerns an organisation known as the Hanover League, founded with unusual aims:

The Hanover League just formed for the abolition of hand-clapping in theatres has soon met with opposition. One of our Scottish readers has objected in rather stringent terms to the idea, and he exhorts all his supporters to uphold him immediately. We do not think that the case is quite so serious as our correspondent appears to believe, but nevertheless the case will not be made any worse if a number of our readers express their indignation. The scheme may be successful in Germany, but here—No! They will get no encouragement on our soil. It is interesting to note that the league has also taken upon itself to abolish the ringing of church bells. In this latter work we hope it will find world-wide sympathy and support. We heartily congratulate the league on the adoption of this humane work, and propose them for an honourable place on the scroll of public benefactors. But pictures and artistes will be applauded long after these officious gentlemen have ceased to strive for the abolition of hand-clapping.

Has anyone heard of the “Hanover League”? If so, please comment below.

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About Roger Pocock

Co-writer on Author of Editor of
This entry was posted in 20th Century, England, History, Humor, Humour, London, Magazines, Newspapers, Snippets and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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