The Monster in the Corner: Plague and The Three Ladies of London

STEGGLE, Matthew (2015). The Monster in the Corner: Plague and The Three Ladies of London. In: OSTOVICH, Helen and GOUGH, Melinda, (eds.) Performance as Research in Early English Theatre Studies: The Three Ladies of London in Context. McMaster University.

Full text not available from this repository.
Official URL:
Related URLs:


This essay asks: how does The Three Ladies of London relate to the plague, the monster in the corner of the early modern playhouse? Given the association between playhouse and plague, it is not surprising that plague is never directly staged in early modern commercial theatre. Ideas about the plague, however, chime with specific details of Wilson’s play, which participates in two public debates of the early 1580s, about immigrants in London and about public theatre, to which the plague is also integral. Furthermore, and hitherto little explored, plague is bound up in what one might call the fabric of the play. Thus while the pathotext of plague may include, as one of its many layers, the ideas of specifically sexual infection associated with other Elizabethan diseases such as syphilis, these concerns are of distant secondary importance compared to the play's engagement with the arbitrary, terrifying, and rapidly fatal plague.

Item Type: Book Section
Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Humanities Research Centre
Depositing User: Matthew Steggle
Date Deposited: 28 Jan 2016 10:25
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2021 18:30

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics