The Physician and His Servant in the Croxton Play of the Sacrament

Jillian Linster

Abstract


The Croxton Play of the Sacrament features a physician who has regularly been characterized as a quack and buffoon. This paper combines the play’s historical and cultural context with a close reading of the text to argue that the doctor himself is a legitimate medical practitioner; the combined clowning of his servant and the foolishness of his patient make the physician appear comical. By considering possible performance choices and the relationship of the audience to the play’s action, I suggest a more complex reading of a scene and character that have previously been too readily dismissed.


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.12745/et.20.2.3028

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