Flags, Crests and Mottos -
Advertising - Flags were erected on the day of the performance which
sometimes displayed a picture advertising the next play to be performed.
Colour coding was used to advertise the type of play to be performed - a
black flag meant a tragedy , white a comedy and red a history. A crest
displaying Hercules bearing the globe on his shoulders together with the
motto "Totus mundus agit histrionem" ( the whole world is a playhouse )
was displayed above the main entrance of the Globe Theater. This phrase
was slightly re-worded in the William Shakespeare play As You Like It -
"All the world’s a stage" which was performed at the Globe Theater.
The Globe Theatre
The Elizabethan general public (the Commoners) referred to as
groundlings would pay 1 penny to stand in the 'Pit' of the Globe Theater.
The gentry would pay to sit in the galleries often using cushions for
comfort. Rich nobles could watch the play from a chair set on the side
of the Globe stage itself. Theatre performances were held in the
afternoon, because, of course, there was limited artificial lighting.
Men and women attended plays, but often the prosperous women would wear
a mask to disguise their identity. The plays were extremely popular and
attracted vast audiences to the Elizabethan Theatres. There were no
toilet facilities and people relieved themselves outside. Sewage was
buried in pits or disposed of in the River Thames. The audiences only
dropped during outbreaks of the bubonic plague, which was unfortunately
an all too common occurrence during the Elizabethan era. This happened
in 1593, 1603 and 1608 when all Elizabethan theatres were closed due to
the Bubonic Plague (The Black Death).
Interesting Facts and Information about
the Elizabethan Theatre Audiences
Some interesting facts and
information about the Elizabethan Theatre and Elizabethan Theatre Audiences
Elizabethan Elizabethan Theatre Audiences
Details, facts and information about the Elizabethan Theatre Audiences
in the Elizabethan Theatre can be accessed via the Elizabethan Era Sitemap.