Miracle Plays

Miracle Plays were strictly speaking dramas founded on legends of the saints, as distinct from mysteries founded on scriptural subjects, but the name came to cover all those religious representations for the instruction of the people fostered by the Church of the Middle Ages, performed first in churches, afterwards in public places; they were common in England from the 12th century, but latterly became corrupt through the introduction of grotesque indecorous comicalities; the rise of the drama led to their abandonment; on the Continent ecclesiastical action was taken against them, not by the Reformers, but by the Church itself in the 18th century, and everywhere they have all but disappeared; the Passion Play acted every 10 years at Oberammergau, Bavaria, is the only important survival.

Definition taken from The Nuttall Encyclopædia, edited by the Reverend James Wood (1907)

Mirabeau, Victor Riquetti, Marquis de * Miranda
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