Definition of morality play in English:

morality play


  • A kind of drama with personified abstract qualities as the main characters and presenting a lesson about good conduct and character, popular in the 15th and early 16th centuries.

    • ‘In many ways, the film is a morality play, but it is equally valid as a thriller or a character study.’
    • ‘Instead, we are given a medieval morality play where each character is a virtue or vice and stays that way throughout.’
    • ‘For centuries King Lear was read as a morality play, hammering home Christian ideals of divine justice - that things always work out for those who are good, and the bad will always get their comeuppance.’
    • ‘Taken as such, both films are examples of the morality play - the narrative form in which conflicts between allegorical depictions of good and evil leave plenty of room for moral lessons to be drawn.’
    • ‘As a morality play examining the extremes of good and evil in all of us, the film sports unquestionable potential.’
    • ‘As we approach the end of scene three of the morality play, two heroic character types have emerged: the victim and the judge.’
    • ‘One deliberate omission involves the vestiges of the medieval morality play that remained in Marlowe's 16 th-century retelling.’
    • ‘So much, in fact, that this play within the idea of the morality play is brimming with moral lessons.’
    • ‘They create a morality play in which good battled evil.’
    • ‘It's a great example - almost a morality play - of one of the key flaws in the president's leadership.’