La farce de meunier
La Farce du Meunier combines two of the genre's favorite comic devices, spousal abuse and scatalogical humor. The miller is on his deathbed begging his wife to call the priest, who she is in fact having an affair with. While shenanigans are taking place at the miller's house, Lucifer is directing one of his devils on how to capture a human soul, telling him that the soul comes out the bottom. While the priest is reading the miller his last rights, the miller is overcome with diarrhea which the demon catches in his sack. He returns to hell, proud of his accomplishment, only to be berated by Lucifer for stinking up hell. As noted by several scholars this play is meant to be performed in concert with the Mystère de Saint-Martin, mirroring the holy scent at the ascent of Saint Martin. It makes me think of the old saying that cleanliness is next to godliness, but truly, in a period where sanitation is next to non-existant, one has to imagine that such smells were rather commonplace. This play would be an interesting case study for anyone who is interested in sensory studies.
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M.A. French Literature Florida State University