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clown or prankster


cleansing or purification of emotions, usually by empathizing with another's problems


group of twelve or more members who sang and danced as a part of their commentary about a play


part of a plot in which the situation and some of the characters are introduced and explained


a long speech given by one actor or character; soliloquy


forms of literature that imitate the style of other writings in a humorous manner


an announcement, or commentary, about something to come


the main character who struggles throughout the play to accomplish his goals


a humorous play on words, the humorous use of homonyms so that more than one meaning can be intended

tragic hero

a protagonist having a flaw, error, weakness, or vice that causes him to lose everything, sometimes even his life


a group or series of three plays or literary works related in theme or subject


a narrative having two levels of meaning: a surface, or literal, meaning and an underlying or figurative meaning


the turning point of a play or story


the words written by the author for the characters to speak

dramatic irony

a device used to allow the audience to know something the characters do not know


plays containing ridiculous events or mockery, based on obviously humorous situations


originally intense plays filled with action, usually showing the results of man's emotions overcoming reason; later it applied to any type of writing with exaggerated emotional appeal; usually good struggles against evil


a play given without words; actors use gestures to convey the situation or story


one who assists a priest during a religious ceremony


having to do with the established form for the ceremonies or rites of religious worship


the first, or original, of anything


intended to instruct


an abrupt descent from a previous high point; an important event followed by trivial or unimportant information

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