Masque | Criticism

F. Paul Wilson
This literature criticism consists of approximately 22 pages of analysis & critique of Masque.
This section contains 6,204 words
(approx. 21 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Stephen Orgel

SOURCE: “The Masque,” in English Drama to 1710, edited by Christopher Ricks, Barrie & Jenkins, 1971, pp. 354-69.

In the following essay, Orgel, a noted scholar of the masque, places the genre in the context of the history of literature, outlining its distinctive characteristics and development.

The masque is only in a very qualified sense a chapter in the history of English drama. Its origins are to be found in Christmas mummings, in courtly dances and in spectacular entertainments, but not until the seventeenth century is the composition of court masques regularly undertaken by a professional playwright. Ben Jonson gave the masque its most characteristic form, and we might begin by observing that his selection as masque writer for the court of James I, and—initially at least—his remarkable success, had more to do with his qualities as a poet than as a playwright. Indeed, his gradual development of the...

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This section contains 6,204 words
(approx. 21 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Stephen Orgel
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Gale
Critical Essay by Stephen Orgel from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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