Charles Macklin, an Irish actor, born in Westmeath about 1690, died in London, July 11, 1797. His real name was McLaughlin. At the age of 14 he was apprenticed to a saddler, and soon ran away to England, where he married the widow of a publican. This marriage was speedily dissolved on account of his youth, and Macklin, returning to Ireland, became badgeman in Trinity college, Dublin. In 1711 he again visited England, and joined.a strolling company of players in the capacity of harlequin. In 1725 he made his appearance at the Lincoln's Inn theatre, London, as Alexander in "CEdipus." In 1735 he accidentally killed a fellow actor in a quarrel, for which he was tried and found guilty of manslaughter. He was however acting in 1741, when he established his fame by his representation of Shy-lock at Drury Lane theatre. Retiring from the stage in 1753, he turned tavern-keeper and lecturer on oratory in Covent Garden. He lectured in full dress, and was laughed at by the wits of the day; and this speculation having failed, he returned to the stage in 1758, where he continued with some intervals till 1789, when, in his 100th year, the failure of his powers finally compelled him to abandon it for ever.

There is some doubt as to the date of his birth, he himself, to serve a special purpose, as was alleged, placing it in 1699, contrary to the evidence of his contemporaries; but even in that case he presents an extraordinary instance of professional longevity. He was the author of ten dramas, two of which are still occasionally represented, "The Man of the World" and "Love a la Mode." A memoir of him, by J. T. Kirkman, was published in London in 1799.