Volltext: A history of caricature and grotesque in literature and art

and Gronfque 
Hiflory of Caricature 
as feparate pieces which might be ufed at pleafure. When we reach a 
certain period in their hiftory, we find that not only was this the cafe, but 
that thefe farces were performed feparately and altogether independently 
of the religious plays. It is in France that we tind information which 
enables us to trace the gradual revolution in the medimval drama. A 
fociety was formed towards the clofe of the fourteenth century under 
the title of Corgfreres de la Pqyion, who, in 1398, eftablithed a regular 
theatre at St. Maur-des-Folfes, and fubfequently obtained from Charles VI. 
a privilege to tranfport their theatre into Paris, and to perform in it 
mytteries and miracle-plays. They now rented of the monks of Hermieres 
a hall in the hofpital of the Trinity, outfide of the Porte St. Denis, per- 
forming there regularly on Sundays and faints' days, and probably making 
a good thing of it, for, during a long period, they enjoyed great popu- 
larity. Gradually, however, this popularity was fo much diminilhed, that 
the corfi"e'res were obliged to have recourfe to expedients for reviving it. 
Meanwhile other Iirnilar focieties had arifen into importance. The clerks 
of the Bazoche, or lawyers' clerks of the Palais de J nitice, had thus affociated 
together, it is faid, as early as the beginning of the fourteenth century, 
and they dittinguifhed themfelves by compofing and performing farces, for 
which they appear to have obtained a privilege. Towards the clofe of 
the fourteenth century, there arofe in Paris another fc-ciety, which took 
the name of Enfansfansjbuci, or Carelefs Boys, who elected a pretident 
or chief with the title of Prince des Sots, or King of the Fools, and who 
compofed a fort of dramatic fatires which they called Sotties. Jealouties 
foon arofe between thefe two focieties, either becaufe the fotties were 
made fometirnes to refemble too clofely the farces, or becaufe each tref- 
patfed too often on the territories of the other. Their differences were 
finally arranged by a compromife, whereby the Bazochians yielded to their 
rivals the privilege of performing farces, and received in return the per- 
million to perform fotties. The Bazochians, too, had invented a new clafs 
of dramatic pieces which they called Moralities, and in which allegorical 
perfonages were introduced. Thus three dramatic focieties continued to 
exiit in France through the fifteenth century, and until the middle of the 


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