Medieval Theatre

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by n02634642
Last updated 7 years ago

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Medieval Theatre

What I noticed

When people experience a hardship, they usually cling to religion as a way to find comfort in why tragic events happen. Because the church was such a large part of the lives of individuals at this time, mortality, and the promise of an after life was what made these individuals so dedicated to the church and its teachings.

The chuch has notoriously been very patriarchal. Unlike plays written in Ancient Greek and Roman times, liturgical drama seldom included women in the plays.


During this time period, theatre moved outside, and plays were performed on pageant wagons in townsquares accross Europe.


In this unit, I connected the play Everyman to Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol." It is always interesting to me to see how literary works connect to pieces of literature and theatre from a time much earlier in history. These connections not only provide an Ah-ha! moment, but in the case of this play, it helped me to better understand what was going on where my understanding of the language failed me.

Theatre in the MedievalPeriod


The impact of theatre

In the Medieval Era, the main form of theatre was liturgical drama. Most of the population in Europe was uneducated, and could not understand, let alone read Latin. Because of this, the plays were performed in the vernacular or common language of the area at that time. The Church was the center of life during this period, and in order to convey the "word of God" to the citizens, they implemented the use of theatre to help them better understand what the sermon was really about, to get away from the harsh realities of everyday life, and to focus on God.



Because of the lack of education during this time period, few plays were actually written down. It makes me wonder if this was because maybe these plays did not have a religious focus. Being that religious officials were the most educated at this time, they may not have seen it as important to save plays that did not have a religious focus.


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