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Abstract

The manuscript 'plot' of the play The Second Part of the Seven Deadly Sins is a valuable document for theatre historians, but its date and company have been a matter of dispute. It was long thought to originate with Strange's Men in the early 1590s, but David Kathman argued in a 2004 article, using a variety of evidence including apprenticeship records, that it is actually from the Lord Chamberlain's Men in 1597-98. Andrew Gurr argued for the traditional date in his 2007 article 'The Work of Elizabethan Plotters and 2 Seven Deadly Sins', challenging the relevance of Kathman's new evidence and claiming that his redating of the plot results in various problems. However, Gurr's rebuttal is itself marred by errors and faulty reasoning, and does nothing to weaken Kathman's argument. In particular, Gurr's claims about London apprentices are refuted by a wide array of documentary evidence.

Author Biography

David Kathman is an independent scholar in Chicago, Illinois. His archival research on theatrical apprentices has appeared in Shakespeare Quarterly and Shakespeare Survey, and his research on theatrical inns has appeared in several places, including the Oxford Handbook of Early Modern Theatre. He has contributed to numerous reference works, including the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, the Shakespeare Encyclopedia, and the forthcoming Cambridge Encyclopedia of Shakespeare. He is working on a book about inns, taverns, and halls where plays were performed in sixteenth-century London.

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