‘By consent of the whole chapter’: Lincoln Cathedral’s Rewards for Touring Players and School Comedies, 1561-1593
The records of Lincoln Cathedral possess the largest and most enduring evidence for cathedral-funded dramatic performance in medieval and early modern England. In the mid-sixteenth century earlier forms of financial backing were replaced by the rewarding of travelling players by the chapter. The absence of similar rewards in the civic accounts of the period makes the cathedral records unique in their documentation of touring players and school comedies in the city. The following essay demonstrates the unique role played by Lincoln Cathedral and reveals an alternative view of looking at who bestowed financial gifts on travelling players during the reign of Elizabeth I.
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