A man killed by a lion at Astley's Theatre — a Thrilling scene.
On the 7th inst., all the lions at Astley's Royal Amphitheater, in London
, and owned by Mr. Crockett
, escaped from their den. The London Times says:
Several men who were at work in the building were startled by the loud roaring of the lions, and in a few minutes they were horror-struck at beholding one of the lions struggling with a man named Jarvey, a yard-helper in the establishment.
On the arrival of Mr. Crockett
he rushed on the stage, where the lion was running about with the unfortunate man Jarvey in his mouth, to all appearance quite dead.
instantly seized a stable fork and dealt the lion a heavy blow on the side of the head, which caused it to let the man go; but instead of running away, he turned round, and seemed inclined to spring upon his master.
Another powerful blow, however, made the enraged animal turn and run away.
Medical aid was immediately brought for poor Jarvey, but on the arrival of the surgeon life was found to be extinct.
After the body of Jarvey had been removed, Mr. Crockett
went in search of the three lions, who were now roaming about the theatre.
One was seen running at a remote corner of the stage, another was in the arena, and the other could not be seen.
The lioness was the first that was attempted to be secured, but this was a work of extreme danger and difficulty, as the assistants were all afraid of even approaching the beast.
On seeing Mr. Crockett
, the lioness made a dash through the pit saloon, whence she rushed up the box stair-case and entered one of the private boxes, and took up a most threatening attitude.
Nothing daunted, Mr. Crockett
entered the box, placed a leather collar around her neck, and having secured her head, she was hauled out of the place by ropes, and finally placed in security.
From the private box Mr. Crockett
saw another of the animals playing on the stage with a quantity of ribbons and stage properties, and, with comparative little difficulty, it was placed again in the cage; and after a few minutes' search the third was recaptured.
At half-past 7 yesterday morning the watchman of the Theatre, who is on duty all night, left, at which hour, he says, all was perfectly quiet and safe.
In consequence of the large lion being unwell, it had been parted from its companions, and it is supposed that in endeavoring to join it, one of the three lions in the other compartments of the cage must have broken down the partition and thus displaced the iron bars.
The greatest excitement and consternation prevailed for some time in the Theatre, and it required Mr. Crockett
's utmost persuasion to convince the attendants that no further danger need be apprehended.