Pseudolus

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...
Pseudolus
Written byPlautus
Characters
  • 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
Close

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]