Duncan I of Scotland and Macbeth

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English IV Macbeth Essay Assignment English drama, as we know it was not always the way it is. It has evolved tremendously since the time of early church plays. Drama in England began long before the Renaissance period. It originated from early church’s ceremonies that were performed to educate the common folk. Before the Renaissance, several kinds of plays were written and produced. Miracle plays and mystery plays were introduced to teach people stories from the Bible. Morality plays taught people how to live and die. Soon, these plays became too dramatic for church purposes; so, priests ordered the removal of drama from the church. Between the 1300’s and 1400’s, various workers’ guilds cooperated in staging cycles of plays that dramatized the whole history of human race. According to the Elements of literature book (page 283 paragraph 2), parts of four cycles of these plays have been preserved and named after the towns where they probably came from. These cycles were named, York, Chester, Coventry, and Wakefield. Gradually, the plays became less religious. They often relied on deus ex machina, an artificial device arbitrarily used to resolve a plot. Later, comedy was incorporated into the plays. This clashing of comedy and serious drama showed the English skills of directors and producers. In the early 1500’s, a new kind of play called an Interlude was introduced. Interludes were one-act plays that combined many styles of plays. In the mid-sixteenth century, performing drama in a permanent building came about. Plays were still performed in marketplaces and courtyards after the first theaters were built. James Burbage built the first public theater called the “Theater” in 1576. Shortly after, a playhouse called the Curtain was built; then came other theaters like the Rose, Swan, Fortune, and the Red Bull. The most popular public theater at the time though was the “ Globe”. The Globe was nicknamed “ The Wooden O” because of its great O-shaped structure. The

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