Traditional Drama Research Group
The website of the Traditional Drama Research Group

The English Mumming Play: An introductory bibliography

Issue: 
Traditional Drama Forum - No.5

Article type: 
Book Reviews

Author: 
Peter Millington

by Eddie Cass, Michael J.Preston and Paul Smith
London, FLS Books, 2000, ISBN 0-903515-21-0, 40pp.

This is comprehensive bibliography of literature on British mumming plays. It is clearly intended for research use, which it serves admirably. It does not, however, cover the modern folk play revival movement, or material giving performance advice. There are 280 individual entries, which give author, title and publication details. There are no individual abstracts or summaries, but each section commences with a summary of the key issues and key publications relevant to its subject. The sections are:

  • Introduction
  • Serials
  • The early theatre and performance theory
  • Social and historical context
  • Regional guides
  • Theoretical approaches to traditional drama and mumming plays
  • English mumming plays [with subsections for each of the main types]
  • Chapbooks
  • The mumming play elsewhere [Scotland, Ireland, Newfoundland and the British West Indies]
  • Collections
  • Other related traditions [such as the Derby Tup, Hoodening, etc.]
  • Film and other media

There is an author index, and to help people obtain copies of the items, there are descriptions of the archives of the Folklore Society, the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library, and the Morris Ring Archive

Peter Millington