Three late medieval morality plays: Mankind, Everyman, Mundus et infans

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Middle English

"Take example, all ye that this do hear or see..."

The Morality Play was popular in England between 1400 and 1600. It offers moral instruction and spiritual teaching with personal abstractions representing good and evil. Surviving plays from that period number about sixty and the three in this edition were among the first ten.

Mankind is a plain, honest farming man who struggles against worldly and spiritual temptation. The bawdy humour and violent action in the play serve to make the moral point and instruct by example.

Everyman portrays a man's struggles in the face of death to raise himself to a state of grace so that he may experience everlasting life. It is exceptional among the Moralities for this narrow focus on the last phase of life, and conveys its message with awe-inspiring seriousness.

Mundus et Infans is more typical of the Morality genre. It shows an arrogant, bullying protagonist led astray by a single evildoer into a life of debauchery, before the inevitable conversion to virtue. In showing the whole of man's life it is the antithesis of Everyman, the action of which seems to take place in a single day.

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Grouping Information

Grouped Work ID d6f9e411-8dde-9620-54d9-68912b308ccf
Grouping Title three late medieval morality plays mankind everyman mundus et infans
Grouping Author g a lester
Grouping Category book
Last Grouping Update 2018-10-03 04:49:02AM
Last Indexed 2018-12-12 04:52:05AM

Solr Details

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auth_author2 Lester, G. A. 1943-
author2-role Lester, G. A.1943-
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owning_library_arlington Arlington Public Library, Aurora Hills, Central, Cherrydale, Columbia Pike, Connection Crystal City, Detention Center, Glencarlyn, Local History, Plaza, Shirlington, Westover
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publishDate 2007
record_details ils:.b13232629|Book|Books||Middle English|Methuen,|2007.|xlii, 157 pages : facsimiles ; 20 cm.
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series New mermaids
series_with_volume New mermaids|
title_display Three late medieval morality plays : Mankind, Everyman, Mundus et infans
title_full Three late medieval morality plays : Mankind, Everyman, Mundus et infans / edited by G.A. Lester
title_short Three late medieval morality plays :
title_sub Mankind, Everyman, Mundus et infans