All About History

Street entertaine­r


Acting the fool

These masked actors would travel around Italy (and, in later centuries, all over Europe) performing in market places, country fairs and city carnivals. A form of street theatre, every commedia troupe traded in the same stock characters, like Zanni the comedic servant (pictured) and Il Dottore, an old bore. The actors would then improvise comedy around loose stories.

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