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It was first performed in Canterbury Cathedral on June 15, as part of the annual Canterbury Festival. The play is inspired by the murder of the Archbishop of Canterbury Thomas Becket on December 29, In his younger days, although he was already an ordained priest, Becket had been a close friend of King Henry II of England and lived a purely secular life of pleasure.
The play begins when Becket returns to Canterbury from exile, although he knows that his life is in danger. The play shows influences of Ancient Greek drama with its inclusion of a Chorus and of medieval morality plays in which personifications of vices appear as characters. A performance of the play was shown on BBC television inthe first year that television was broadcast in the United Kingdom.
It was adapted as a black and white British film in Part 1 The play opens on December 2, The Chorus of women of Canterbury gather at the Cathedral.
They lament the difficult lives which they have to lead and have a premonition that something terrible will happen soon.
Three priests also comment that they miss their Archbishop but worry about what would happen if he were to return. A herald announces that Thomas Becket has returned to England and is on his way to Canterbury.
He regrets to say that Becket and the King have not been reconciled and he fears that violence will follow. The priests and the Chorus talk about how they are certain to suffer when Becket returns.
One of the priests tells the Chorus that they should pretend to be happy when Becket comes back to Canterbury. At that moment, Becket arrives unexpectedly. Four Tempters appear, one after the other, to tempt Becket. The First Tempter says that Becket should return to the secular life of pleasure that he led as a young man.
The Second Tempter tells Becket that he should become Chancellor of England again, saying that he can do more to help the poor in a political position than in a purely religious one. Becket finds these temptations easy to resist because they are things which he has already experienced.
He suggests that Becket should seek to become a martyr. In death, his cause would be recognized as just and his enemies would be condemned.
His name would long outlast those of the men that killed him. He says that he will not try to become a martyr but will accept his fate, whatever it is. He says that Christians should both mourn and celebrate the death of Jesus.
He says that, similarly, the sacrifices of true martyrs should be both mourned and celebrated. According to Becket, true martyrs submit completely to the will of God and find freedom in doing so.
Becket concludes the sermon by telling his congregation that he believes he may not live long enough to speak to them again. The priests comment that all the days since Christmas have been dedicated to various saints but that December 29 is just an ordinary day.
Four gruff knights arrive and demand to see Becket. When he arrives, they insult him and accuse him of treason. The priests protect Becket, in spite of the threats which the knights make towards them.
Becket comforts the Chorus, telling them that although life will become more difficult for them after his murder, they will also find comfort in the fact that they witnessed his martyrdom. Becket refuses to escape. Although the Cathedral doors are initially locked and bolted, the priests agree to open the doors and let the knights come in.
Becket refuses and is killed."Murder in the Cathedral" is a poetic play by T. S. Eliot. It is called a poetic play because it is written in verse or poetry instead of prose.
Murder in the Cathedral () Murder in the Cathedral, like many of the morality plays, is a drama of temptation, but Becket as the is the most sustained poetic drama in English since Samson Agonistes [by John Milton], and playable as that work was not designed to be.
In. Other French twentieth-century verse-dramas include works by Char, Ceasier and Château, but the poetic qualities which characterize much that has been most striking in modern French drama have more generally found expression in prose plays rather than verse plays – as, for example, in the work of Giordano, Anomaly, Becket, UNESCO and Avian.
This article describes about the poetic drama from the twentieth century which describes the Murder in the Cathedral.
Other French twentieth-century verse-dramas include works by Char, Ceasier and Château, but the poetic qualities which characterize much that has been most striking in modern French drama have more generally found expression in prose plays rather than verse plays – as, for example, in the work of Giordano, Anomaly, Becket, UNESCO and Avian. Murder in the Cathedral I had only two other pieces of drama or poetry in my collection - an old Arden's Shakespeare edition of Henry V and a collection of Poe's works - I'm just not a big fan of reading poetry or drama, though I do enjoy seeing plays acted. (and without humor). And different from other adaptations of the Becket story /5(85). Murder in the Cathedral, poetic drama in two parts, with a prose sermon interlude, the most successful play by American English poet T.S. Eliot. The play was performed at Canterbury Cathedral in and published the same year. Set in December , it is a modern miracle play on the martyrdom of.
English poetic drama in the twentieth century arose as a reaction to the deteriorating naturalistic prose plays of Ibsen, Shaw and Galsworthy. This article describes about the poetic drama from the twentieth century which describes the Murder in the Cathedral.
English poetic drama in the twentieth century arose as a reaction to the deteriorating naturalistic prose plays of Ibsen, Shaw and Galsworthy. What features make murder in the Cathedral a poetic drama? in contrary to the socioeconomic issues that constituted the naturalistic plays. In Murder in the Cathedral, he chose to retell the inner conflict of Becket to win over temptations and be a martyr by losing "his will in the will of God".
The Family Reunion, on the other hand.