Comedian players
(912 words)

The term “comedian", in the sense of “comic poet”/“comic actor”, came into use towards the end of the 16th century and entered German (Komödiant) through the English acting troupes (“Engelische Comedianten”; English comedian players) who toured Germany. In German it became the term for a professional actor, before the word Schauspieler superseded it in the 18th century (Actor).

Whereas in 16th-century Germany, theater was an exclusively amateur preserve, a profession of acting had developed in England since the 15th century. The first English comedi…

Cite this page
Froeßl, Felicitas, “Comedian players”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 23 September 2018 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_SIM_022464>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20170206



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