Ancient Roman play by Plautus / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Pseudolus is a play by the ancient Roman playwright Titus Maccius Plautus. It is one of the earliest examples of Roman literature. Pseudolus was first shown in 191 B.C. during the Megalesian Festival,[1] which was a celebration for the Greek Goddess Cybele.[2] The temple for worship of Cybele in Rome was completed during the same year in time for the festival.[3]

Quick facts: Pseudolus, Written by, Characters, Setting...
Written byPlautus
  • Simo, Athenian gentleman
  • Calidorus, son of Simo
  • Pseudolus, slave to Simo
  • Callipho, neighbor of Simo
  • Phoenicium, prostitute
  • Ballio, pimp
  • Harpax, slave of an officer
  • Slave boy belonging to Ballio
  • A cook, hired by Ballio
  • Charinus, friend of Calidorus
  • Simia, slave to Charinus
Settinga street in Athens, before the houses of Simo, Callipho, and Ballio

Pseudolus was written in Plautus's old age (he was probably over 60 at the time): Cicero mentions it in his book on Old Age as an example of a work written by older men.[4] It proved to be very popular and was frequently revived. Cicero records that in his day the famous actor Roscius frequently took the part of Ballio.[5][6]

M. M. Willcock calls this play "Plautus' masterpiece". He adds: "For the special qualities of Plautus – vigour, wit, invention, the charm of low class humanity – this play is supreme."[7]