Castle of Perseverance

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The earliest surviving complete morality play, in 3,700 lines, dating from the first quarter of the 15th cent., one of the group (the others are Mankind and Wisdom) known as Macro plays from their 18th‐cent. owner. In four parts, it is of interest as an exhaustive compendium of such morality features as a battle between vices and virtues, a mixture of allegorical (Backbiter) and diabolical (Belyal) figures, and the enactment of Death and Judgement; but it is also highly significant in the history of English theatre, largely because of a diagrammatic representation of the Castlemound as ‘Theatre in the Round’ which its staging requires.

Subjects: Literary Studies (Plays and Playwrights).

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