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Fools and clowns. Chronicle or History Plays. Explore the workings and legitimacy of kingship ... No women on the English stage in Shakespeare's day. ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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The English Renaissance 1485-1660
  • The Renaissance in England
  • 1485-1660
  • Renaissance rebirth
  • Renaissance person one who is
    interested in
  • science, literature, history,
  • art other subjects
  • Begins in 14th century Italy
  • Refers to renewed interest in classics
  • Renewal of human spirit of curiosity and

  • Humanism Questions about the Good Life
  • People of Middle Ages looked for help by
    turning to someone in authority a feudal
    lord, king, or God.
  • People in classical cultures sought answers
    from within. Classical literature dominated
    by questions related to HUMAN LIFE What is
    the good life? What is a good state? How do I
    lead a good life?
  • Writers artists intellectual movement

Humanism Questions about the Good Life
  • No essential conflicts between teachings of the
    church ancients Renaissance sought to
    harmonize two great sources of wisdom The
    Bible and the Classics.
  • Aim was to use classics to strengthen, not
    discredit, Christianity, and to attain virtue,
    not or fame.
  • Humanist philosophy Man was created in the
    image of God. Each person is a little world,
    or a microcosm. Humans are capable of
    perfecting themselves because we share in the
  • Renewed emphasis in art, literature, religious,
  • political debates leading to the Protestant

Humanismfrom Morality to Chronicle
  • It was the aim of the humanists to educate those
    who ruled in wise and virtuous government.
  • How do you teach a king? Very tactfully . . .
  • The effectiveness of the morality play was
    attractive to humanists, who changed the nature
    of the moral from religion to political virtue
    without changing the techniques of the drama.
  • A natural medium for the humanists to use in
    educating the king, for plays were frequently
    performed at Court.

New Technology a flood of print
  • Johannes Gutenberg 1400?-1468
  • Invented printing with movable type
  • First printed complete book an immense
    Latin Bible
  • 1476 printing reached England
  • Printing press made books
  • available to more people

The Tudors
Henry VII 1485-1509 Henry VIII 1509-1547
Edward VI 1547-1553 Mary I 1553-1558
Elizabeth I 1558-1603
The Beginnings of the Tudor Dynasty
  • After War of the Roses, The Tudors took over
  • Henry VII inherited a war torn country, but
    rebuilt the nation and began exploration to the
    new world.
  • Henry VIII one of the most colorful
    characters in English history, took the throne
    after his father died. Increased the power of
    the monarchy.
  • His desire for a male heir led to the most
  • event of his reign breaking from the Church
    in Rome.

  • The Reformation
  • 1483-1546 German monk Martin Luther broke with
    the Roman Catholic Church
  • 95 Theses listed his objections to central
    beliefs and practices of Roman Catholic Church.
  • Beliefs based not on the words of an Italian
    Pope, but on a personal understanding of the Bible

  • The Reformation - details
  • 95 Theses listed Luthers objections to
    central beliefs and practices of Roman Catholic
  • People had to depend on grace of God for
  • Objected to sale of Pardons, challenged
    authority of the Pope - People didnt need an
    intermediary to commune with God.
  • John Calvin (Sweden). Claimed all events are
    predestined by God central belief of Puritan
  • Englands Protestant Reformation came about
    because of Henry VIIIs inability to have a

  • Wives of Henry VIII
  • Catherine of Aragon Spanish, mother of Mary
    I marriage annulled by Henry because she
    couldnt produce a son.
  • Anne Boleyn mother of Elizabeth I beheaded
    at the Tower of London for adultery.
  • Jane Seymour mother of Edward VI who became
    king at age 9. He died at age 15. Succeeded by
    Mary I, daughter of Catherine, aka Bloody Mary.
  • Anne of Cleves divorced
  • Catherine Howard beheaded
  • Catherine Parr strong Protestant, helped
    raise both Mary and Elizabeth

The English Reformation
  • To marry Anne Boleyn, Henry requested an
    annulment of his marriage to Catherine of Aragon
    from the Pope he was refused.
  • Henry broke with RCC, and in 1531 became Supreme
    Head of the Church of England,or the Anglican
    Church. Sir Thomas More, (author of Utopia),
    Chancellor of England and Henry VIIIs friend,
    was imprisoned and ordered to be executed for not
    signing a document that declared Henry head of
    the Church of England.
  • Henry seized RCC lands, burned monasteries
    destroying documents called the Dissolution.
  • When Edward VI (ruled 1547-53) Archbishop Cranmer
    transformed the Church of England into a
    thoroughly Protestant Church Calvinistic.

The English Reformation
  • Edward died, and Queen Mary (ruled 1553-58)
    reimposed Catholicism on the English Church
    Bloody Mary. Killed protestants and repressed
    her people who resented her marriage to the King
    of Spain with brutality.
  • Elizabeth (ruled 1558-1603) worked out a
    compromise church that retained as much as
    possible from the Catholic church while putting
    into place most of the foundational ideas of
    Protestantism. She was technically Protestant.
    Elizabethan Age.
  • Mystery and Morality plays were outlawed as they
    taught Roman Catholic doctrine   

  • Elizabeth I - The Virgin Queen1558-1603
  • One of most brilliant successful monarchs in
  • Reestablished Church of England
  • Widely read in Latin, Greek other languages
  • Court was a center of literary activity -
    English literature reached its zenith patron
    of Shakespeare
  • Shrewd leader England became the most
    powerful nation in Europe
  • Executed her cousin, Mary Stuart,
  • exiled Queen of Scotland, inciting the anger
    of King Phillip II of Spain

1588 Defeat of the Spanish Armada
  • Damaged Spains prestige
  • England's star was on the rise.
  • Elizabeth took the defeat of the armada as a sign
    of divine blessing
  • English patriotism and devotion to the queen
    soared to its greatest heights, shown in part by
    a profusion of literature that included
    Shakespeare's first plays--patriotic histories of
    the English monarchy.
  • England became greatest power in Europe

James I
  • Second cousin to Elizabeth I son of Mary
  • Succeeded Elizabeth who was childless
  • Tried hard but was no Elizabeth
  • Wrote books
  • Sponsored new translation of Bible King
    James version
  • Patronized Shakespeare
  • Plymouth colony established by angered
    Puritans who disliked idea of Divine Right of

Medieval Concepts of Tragedy De casibus
tragedies of fortune
  • Tragedy is less the result of individual action
    than a reflection of the inevitable turning of
    Fortune's wheel.
  • Fortune, traditionally female because of the
    association of women with the moon and
    changeability, has two faces, one benign, one

Influence of Roman Theatre
  • 5 act structure
  • Comedy
  • Plots
  • Stock characters
  • Tragedy
  • Revenge motif
  • Irony
  • Use of ghosts
  • Violent spectacle

Elizabethan Stock Characters
  • Senex old man in authority
  • Miles gloriosus braggart soldier
  • Shrew sharp-tongued woman
  • Clever servant
  • Machiavel political schemer
  • Calumniator believed a liar who is believed
  • Idiotes a malcontent
  • Pedant in love with the sound of his own
    didactic voice
  • Fools and clowns

Chronicle or History Plays
  • Explore the workings and legitimacy of kingship
  • What is a good King?
  • Historical exemplars (Lear, Macbeth, Julius
  • Often turn into tragedies

Christopher Marlowe1564-93
  • Tragedies
  • Tamburlaine
  • Dido Queen of Carthage
  • Dr. Faustus
  • Edward II
  • Massacre at Paris
  • Jew of Malta
  • MA from Cambridge
  • Established blank verse as dramatic medium
    Marlowes mighty line
  • Overreacher
  • Killed in a brawl

Ben Jonson1572-1637
  • Educated at Westminster School -- no university
    but the most learned of playwrights
  • Important comedies of humor include Every Man in
    His Humor, Volpone, The Alchemist, Bartholomew
  • Wrote and staged court masques with Inigo Jones
  • Celebrated poet and conversationalist Sons of
  • Declared Shakespeare as not for an age, but for
    all time

William ShakespeareApril 23, 1564-April 23, 1616
  • Born in Stratford-upon-Avon
  • Married Anne Hathaway in 1582 at age of 18
  • 3 children Susanna (1583) and Hamnet and Judith
  • 1585-92 the lost years
  • 1595 record of membership in Lord Chamberlains

Acting Companies
  • 1590 -- 1642 approximately 20 companies of
    actors in London (although only 4 or 5 played in
    town at one time)
  • More than a hundred provincial troupes.
  • Companies usually played in London in the winter
    and spring and to travel in the summer when
    plague ravaged the city
  • Members
  • Shareholders
  • Apprentices
  • Hired men

Boy Actors
  • No women on the English stage in Shakespeare's
  • The parts of women were acted by child
    actors--boys whose voices had not yet changed.
  • Whole acting companies were created with child
    performers the Children of the Chapel Royal, and
    the St. Paul's Boys. The children's companies
    played regularly at Court.
  • The Puritans, who disapproved of the theatre in
    general, were particularly scandalized by boys
    cross-dressing as women.

Types of Plays
  • Chronicle or History Plays
  • Comedies
  • Romantic
  • Pastoral
  • Feast of Fools
  • Social
  • Humors
  • Tragedies
  • Senecan Revenge
  • De casibus -- turn of Fortune
  • Fatal flaw
  • Romances
  • far-away adventures
  • Any combination of the above

The best actors in the world, either for
tragedy, comedy, history, pastoral,pastoral-comica
l, historical-pastoral, tragical historical,
scene individable or poem unlimited. -- Hamlet
Early Works prior to 1594
  • Poetry
  • Venus and Adonis,
  • The Rape of Lucrece,
  • sonnets
  • Plautine Comedy
  • A Comedy of Errors
  • Courtly Comedy
  • Two Gentlemen of Verona
  • Farcical/problem Comedy
  • The Taming of the Shrew
  • History Plays
  • Henry VI 1,2,and 3
  • Richard III
  • Senecan Revenge Tragedy
  • Titus Andronicus
  • Romantic Tragedy
  • Romeo and Juliet

Lord Chamberlains Men
  • Originally formed under the patronage of Lord
    Strange, but when he died in 1594, the players
    found a patron in Henry Carey, the Lord
  • Performed at the Theatre and the Curtain
  • 1599 moved to the newly built Globe. By 1600 they
    had emerged as the leading theatrical company in
  • 1603 became the King's Men under a royal patent
    from James I. The company continued successfully
    until the Puritans closed the theatres in 1642.

Theatre Interiors
Blackfriars Theatre
Sketch of the Swan Theatre
The Globe
  • One of the most famous playhouses of all time,
    and the playhouse where Shakespeare performed
    many of his greatest plays.
  • Built from oak, deal, and stolen playhouse
    frames, the 3-story, 3000 capacity Globe
    Theatre, co-owned by William Shakespeare has
    become almost as famous as the playwright

Shakespeare Needs a New Playhouse to Compete
  • The 1598 decision to build the famous playhouse
    came about as the answer to many of The Lord
    Chamberlains Mens problems.
  • Lease on Blackfriars Theater ended , and the
    LCM, (Shakespeare, J R Burbage, G Byran,
    John Hemminges, Augustine Phillips, Thomas Pope
    and Will Sly) had nowhere else to perform their
  • Their rivals, The Admirals Men, already had
    The Rose to perform their plays.
  • One little problem a lack of money.

Paying for the PlayhouseShareholders
  • James and Richard Burbage of LCM had money,
    but not enough.
  • Each would own 25 of the new playhouse the
    rest would each chip in for the remaining 50.
    The rest of the men would each own 12.5 share
    (Will Kemp backed out).
  • The playhouse was completed, opening in 1599.
  • The circular playhouse could hold up to 3000-
  • Made money by renting out the playhouse, and
    from ticket sales for their own performances

Theft Builds the Playhouse
  • Construction began in 1599 near Thames River.
  • Robert Burbages already had "The Theatre,"
    the first of
  • its kind in London and an inheritance from his
    father, but the land lease it was built on
    expired in 1597.
  • This playhouse should have reverted to the
    landlord Giles Allen with the land.
  • Instead, Burbage tore it down and then
    discretely removed several 12 oak beams,
    taking them to form the structural frame for
    a 100 foot circular polygon, the heart of the
    new playhouse's structure.

Location, Location, Location
  • Near the river Thames, but not in central
    London - in outlying colorful district
    called Southwark.
  • Not too different from what we would call a
    bad district today. Not the place to find
    respectable gentry.
  • Attracted commoners and gentry alike,
    bringing people of all classes together
  • Elements of Englands strict class divisions
    remained commoners were in the courtyard
    nobility were seated in the galleries.

Advertising and Marketing
  • To announce the arrival of the new playhouse,
    the LCM flew a flag with Hercules carrying a
    Globe on his shoulders to announce the imminent
    performance of Shakespeares play Julius
  • True to its name, above the main entrance was
    inscribed the words "Totus mundus agit
    histrionem" (_the whole world is a playhouse__),
    a phrase echoed in As You Like It ("_All the
    worlds a stage__").

General Appearance
  • Large circular structure, 3 stories high.
  • A small straw thatched roof only partially
    covered the circular structure, - like a
    football stadium
  • In the center, extended the 5 feet high main
  • At the back of this stage were two doors and a
    central curtain.
  • Behind this were changing rooms for the
  • Above this stage was a central balcony,
    flanked by two other balconies serving as
    playhouse boxes.

General Appearance
  • Third level - house-like structure supported by
    columns - announcements were made and the flag
    would often fly, advertising plays currently
    being performed.
  • Three rows of seating forming circular bands
    wrapped around the interior, called galleries.
    Cost more, but offered the comfort of seating.
  • Those in the central uncovered courtyard had
    to stand through what could be a three-hour
    performance, rain or shine.

Burnt to the Ground and Rebuilt Again
  • Tragedy struck during a performance of Henry
    VIII (1613), a cannon fired during the play
    ignited the thatched roof, burning it to the
  • Rebuilt just one year later, the famous
    playhouse again opened its doors for business
    with the original's dangerous straw thatched
    roof now wisely replaced with tile.

Popular Success 1595-1600
  • Comedies
  • Loves Labours Lost
  • A Midsummers Nights Dream
  • Much Ado About Nothing
  • As You Like It
  • Twelfth Night
  • The Merchant of Venice
  • Merry Wives of Windsor
  • Histories
  • King John
  • Richard II
  • Henry IV 1,2
  • Henry V
  • Tragedies
  • Julius Caesar
  • Hamlet

A Darker Vision 1601-1607
  • Problem Plays
  • Alls Well That Ends Well
  • Measure for Measure
  • Troilus and Cressida
  • Tragedies
  • Othello
  • King Lear
  • Macbeth
  • Antony and Cleopatra
  • Coriolanus

Final Works 1608-1612
  • Tragedy Timon of Athens
  • Romances
  • Cymbeline
  • Pericles
  • The Winters Tale
  • The Tempest
  • Collaborations with John Fletcher
  • Henry VIII
  • Two Noble Kinsmen

Shakespeare was buried on April 25, 1616 in Holy
Trinity Church, Stratford, where he had been
baptized just over 52 years earlier Good friend
for Jesus sake forbearTo dig the dust enclosed
here!Blest be the man that spares these
stones,And curst be he that moves my bones
First Folio 1623
  • First collected edition of Shakespeare's plays.
  • Included 36 plays, 18 of which - never been
    published before
  • The editors of the volume, Shakespeare's fellow
    actors John Heminge and Henry Condell, arranged
    the plays in three genres Comedies, Histories,
    and Tragedies.
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