It was the age of theaters, comparable to the popularity of movies and cinema of today. Politics and propaganda was part of the plays. Theater was an industry. London was the hub of theater activity. Theatre entrepreneurs had money, fame and they created excitement for the society. Men played women’s roles, wearing awkward clothing as women were prohibited from appearing on the stage. Women too disguised as men to get a role. But women had other opportunities, Singman writes, “Already in this period, women were often involved in elementary teaching. Women engaged in various home industries, especially the spinning of wool thread. ”(p. 31) As for job opportunities, it was a strange period, as compared to the present times.
Apothecary was very popular. The one who practiced apothecary sold potions and poisons to the public! Acrobatics was comparable to the circus shows of today. The best jobs were commanded by the artists. Jeffrey L Singman writes, “In towns, the economy was dominated by crafts and trades. There was very little actual industry at this time. Crafts and finished products were largely provided by craftsmen and Trades tradesmen out of small specialty shops. ”(p. 29) Blacksmiths were in great demand.
There were iron tool makers and they also did repairs job. They manufactured weapons for the army. Fashion was the watchword and highly unique. The dress reflected one’s status and wealth. Upper class was fond of many layers of clothing and elegant styles. Lower class stuck to basic materials. The laws prescribed what one could and could not wear depending upon one’s status. To support a particular vocation/industry often novel rules were introduced.
Singman writes, “Flat caps were either knit of woolen yarn or sewn of woven fabric. In an effort to support the cap-knitting industry, it was mandated by law in 1571 that male commoners wear knitted flat caps on Sundays and holidays. ”(p. 105) The Elizabethan era was a time associated with Queen Elizabeth Is reign (1558–1603) and is often considered to be the golden age in English history. That was the period as well when Shakespeare shone with his most brilliant writing and theater talents.
But the golden age was the violent age also. Torture was common and many devices and weapons were used for this ill-famed exercise. “Many games where very violent, like fencing. The Elizabethan Period had many forms of recreation and amusement activities. Typically the sports were categorized as team sports, blood sports, and individual sports.
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