- 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 audiences
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.