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The Belles of Canterbury A Chaucer Tale Out of School   By:

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THE BELLES OF CANTERBURY

A CHAUCER TALE OUT OF SCHOOL

=A Play In One Act for Eleven Girls=

BY ANNA BIRD STEWART, A.M.

DEDICATED TO MISS DOROTHY CONREY

1912

=PRICE 25 CENTS=

NEW YORK LONDON SAMUEL FRENCH SAMUEL FRENCH, LTD. PUBLISHER 26 SOUTHAMPTON STREET 28 30 WEST 38TH STREET STRAND

=THE BELLES OF CANTERBURY=

PERSONS IN THE PLAY.

FRESHMAN } SOPHOMORE } JUNIOR } Pupils at a girls' school SENIOR }

CHARACTERS FROM THE CANTERBURY TALES.

WIFE OF BATH From the Prologue PRIORESS " " " FIRST NUN " " " SECOND NUN " " " EMILY From the Knight's Tale HIPPOLYTA " " " " GRISELDA " " Clerk's "

COSTUMES.

The simplicity of the costuming as well as of the stage setting makes the play an easy one for amateurs to produce.

The dress of the four school girls should be as modern as possible. Their hair should be elaborately arranged.

HIPPOLYTA should wear the dress of an Amazon, armor if possible, or a short skirt, sandals laced high with crossed strings, waist to match the skirt, a crown, and a shield on the left arm. The shield can he made by gilding or covering a barrel head with silver paper.

EMILY wears a long gown of pale dull green cheese cloth, falling straight from the shoulders and girded in at the waist by a curtain cord. She must have fair hair which should be braided down her back.

GRISELDA should wear a similar costume of pale gray and lavender, with a tall headdress of wire covered with white gauze and tinsel.

The WIFE OF BATH wears a short skirted costume of very bright colors, red stockings, very broad shoes, a straw hat with a broad brim and no trimming, if possible one of the sun hats worn by farmers.

The PRIORESS and her NUNS wear black skirts and white waists. Over this they wear black scholastic gowns such as are worn by graduates of academies and colleges, girded in with a leather strap. A yard of white cloth cut down one side for about ten inches, and then a circle cut out of the center, makes the white guimpe for the NUN, the curved part being put under the chin and the two cut ends fastened on top of the head. A second piece of white cloth is bound across the forehead for a bandeau . Two yards of black material make the veil which falls on either side of the face and down the back.

=THE BELLES OF CANTERBURY=

SCENE: A school room or in the room of one of the girls if preferred. If possible, a piano is included in the furnishings, which may be as elaborate or as simple as desired. Two entrances must be provided, one covered by a square framework supposed to represent a bookcase. Books are across the top. In front of it hangs a full curtain.

It will be very effective to have the frame work representing the bookcase directly in the center of the stage at back, so that it is in full view of the audience. A table with books, etc., can be placed at one side of the stage. A few chairs can be set around the room but not in a way to hide the bookcase.

As the Curtain Rises SOPHOMORE and FRESHMAN are seated at the table.

SOPHOMORE. Now, the Seniors weren't that way last year. You're only a Freshman, so of course you can't judge, but I never saw so slow a class as this year's, why they haven't said a word about the entertainment, and yet everyone knows they ought to give us a Thanksgiving party. ( any other festival can be substituted here )

FRESHMAN. A party? What do they have to eat?

SOPHOMORE. They're not likely to have anything this year. If I had known that last Thanksgiving I would have eaten twice as much. I haven't anything to be thankful for.

FRESHMAN... Continue reading book >>




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