Monday, 29 February 2016

29 February, 1592 - Muly Molocco

Here's what Lord Strange's Men performed at the Rose playhouse on this day, 424 years ago...

Henslowe writes: R at mvlamvlluco the 29 of febrearye 1591 ... xxxiiijs 

In modern English: Received at Muly Molocco, 29th February, 1592 ... 34 shillings

Today, for the first time since Henslowe's records began, Lord Strange's Men returned to a play that they had already staged. They chose to stage Muly Molocco again, which they had last performed just over a week ago.

1629 Portuguese illustration of the Battle of Alcazar
Muly Molocco was about Abd el-Malik's struggle for the throne of Morocco; you can read more about it in the blog entry for 21st February. The play had clearly increased in popularity, because Henslowe received 34 shillings this time, compared to 29 last time.

I wonder how many audience members were seeing Muly Molocco for the first time, based on word of mouth, and how many were seeing it again because they loved it? Questions like these are impossible to answer, but, as someone who has seen Star Wars: The Force Awakens four times, I cannot help but wonder whether Elizabethan audiences took similar pleasure in repetition...

That's all I have to say. Short posts like this one will appear with increasing frequency from now on, as Lord Strange's Men begin to cycle through the plays in their repertory. But not yet! There will be plenty more new plays to learn about this week, so stay tuned!

Henslowe links


Did I make a mistake? Do you have a question? Have you anything to add? Please post a comment below!

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