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Burton, John

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Born in London about 1749, the son of the Drury Lane actor Edmund Burton (d. 1772), he first appeared at Drury Lane playing a page in “Love Makes a Man” on 28 October 1762. He filled children’s roles as Master Burton until 1767-68, when he began to be billed as J. Burton and assumed roles that denoted his maturity. He remained with Drury Lane for many years, through the end of Garrick’s management and beyond, until 1795-96. At the end of his career he suffered from debt and ended up in Newgate, where he died in great distress in 1797. Burton was a useful if innocuous player in minor roles, yet he was accounted one of the actors who formed the School of Garrick, many of whom were painted by Spicer (G0100). Other portraits of him are listed in the BDA 2: 242. He was also a landscape painter. (BDA)
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