E. K. Chambers The English Folk-Play

ISBN 13: 9781443720861

The English Folk-Play

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9781443720861: The English Folk-Play

THE ENGLISH FOLK-PLAY by E. K. CHAMBERS. Originally published in 1933. Contents include: THE MUMMERS PLAY ..... 3 THE PRESENTATION . . . . .13 THE COMBATANTS . . . . .23 THE DISPUTE . . . . . - 33 THE LAMENT . . . . . .38 THE WESTON-SUB-EDGE PLAT . . .41 THE CURE . . . . . .50 JACK FINNEY ...... 57 MULTIPLIED COMBATS . . . 59 THE Quite . . . . . .63 THE MYLOR PLAY . . . . .71 COSTUME . . . . . .83 ABNORMAL MUMMERS PLAYS . . .87 THE PLOUGH PLAY . . . . .89 THE REVESBY PLAY . . . . .104 THE SWORD DANCE . . . . .123 THE AMPLEFORTH PLAY . . . .131 THE MORRIS DANCE . . . . .150 JACK OF LENT . . . . .153 MEDIEVAL PARALLELS . . . .160 vi ANALYSIS PAGE SAINT GEORGE 170 THE SEPEN CHAMPIONS . . . .174 THE STAGE AND THE FOLK . . . .185 THE RESIDUAL PROBLEM . . .192 THE PROBLEM OF ORIGIN PARALLELS FROM WESTERN EUROPE . . 197 PARALLELS FROM THE BALKANS . . .206 A PRIMITIVE LUDUS . . . . .211 THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THE LUDUS . .216 WOOING PLATS . . . . .229 1 52 OF TEXTS 236 INDEX 245 ILLUSTRATIONS 1. ST. GEORGE AND THE DRAGON. Drawing by THOMAS FISHER in J. G. Nichols, Ancient Paintings at Stratford upon-dvon 1838, from Fresco in the Chapel of the Gild of Holy Cross. frontispiece 2. A KIRMESS IN THE NETHERLANDS. Engraving in the British Museum from Painting by PIETER BRUEGHEL c. I53 6 9-facing p. 204 THE MUMMERS PLAY AND ITS CONGENERS The Mummers Play. years ago, I attempted, in The Mediaeval Stage, to give an account of the Mummers Play, as one of several ludi of the folk which involve an element of mimesis. Since then, much additional material has been collected on the play and its congeners, notably by the late Reginald Tiddy and Cecil Sharp, and by Professor C. R. Baskervill, Mr. Douglas Kennedy, and Mr. Stuart Piggott and fresh light has been thrown on the possible origin of such ludi by the discovery of close analogues still surviving in various parts of the Balkans. It seems, therefore, worth while to go over the ground again, and to bring together the threads of the old and the new evidence with regard to this singular and long-enduring seasonal ceremony. In 1903 I was able to make use of twenty-nine examples of the play. I can now draw upon well over a hundred, more or less complete, together with a few entangled in ludi of other types. Probably there are others, even in print, which have eluded my search, and there are references, in Tiddys valuable study and elsewhere, to performances at various places from which no texts, so far as I know, are upon record. But my hundred or so examples cover the greater part of the country, and extend to Wales, the Isle of Man, the eastern coast-line of Ireland, and the Lowlands of Scotland. From the more purely Celtic

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