“A Mass of Indecent Vulgarity” : Christmas Mummers in 1820s Whitehaven

‘The comedians, of which there are many companies, parade the streets, and ask at almost every door if the mummers are wanted. They are dressed in the most grotesque fashion; their heads adorned with high paper caps, gilt and spangled, and their bodies with ribbons of various colours, while St. George and the prince are armed with ten swords. The mysterie ends with a song… I am satisfied you will join me, in surprise, that for so great a number of years, such a mass of indecent vulgarity as “Alexander and the King of Egypt” should be used without alteration.’

The doctor revives the patient - Mummer's play

The doctor revives the patient – Mummer’s play

(Letter from William Hone of Whitehaven to The Every Day Book; dated 4th September 1826.)

‘On the eve of the 25th, a party of mummers, dressed in most fantastic costume… were admitted to the Continue reading