Anonymous: N-Town Cycle of the Mystery Plays

(1034 words)
  • Claire Sponsler (University of Iowa )

Like the York, Towneley, and Chester cycles, the N-Town plays tell the story of biblical history from Creation to Judgment Day, although N-Town adds some extra elements to that basic pattern. The N-Town plays survive in one manuscript, now in the British Library, which probably dates to the late fifteenth century. The date ‘1468’ written in the hand of the main scribe of the manuscript appears at the end of one play and so provides the earliest possible date for the copying of the manuscript. Scholars once thought that the N-Town plays were from Coventry and so called them the ‘Ludus Coventriae’, but linguistic evidence shows they come from East Anglia. The collection was also given the name ‘the Hegge Plays…

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Sponsler, Claire. "N-Town Cycle of the Mystery Plays". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 09 December 2004
[, accessed 23 May 2015.]