Henry Irving (1838–1905) was a popular Victorian actor-manager who directed and performed in numerous Shakespeare plays throughout his career. He also campaigned for the recognition of acting as a legitimate art form like painting or music, and was a great populariser of theatre with the public.
In this article of 1893, Irving writes about his four favourite acting parts: Hamlet, Richard III, Iago and King Lear. He discusses the art of acting, his opinions on these roles and his experiences of performing in them. The article is illustrated with a photograph of Irving, and portraits of him in the roles of Lear, Hamlet and Richard III.
The English Illustrated Magazine was a monthly publication that ran from October 1883 to August 1913. It featured works of fiction and articles on a range of topics, including travel and topography.