Ralph Roister Doister



  • The first English comedy on classical lines. It was writtenin 1534 by the Oxford scholar Nicholas Udall (1505 - 56) and receivedits first performance at Eton, where he was headmaster. Udall composedthe play, which shows the influence of Plautus and Terence,for performance by his pupils instead of the usual Latin comedies.It was not printed until about 1566. Despite its crude action anddoggerel verse, the play influenced generations of comic dramatistsin England. The story follows the wooing of a wealthy London widow,dame Christian Custance, by the pompous fool, Ralph Roister Doister.