Masking and politics: the Alison Craik incident, Edinburgh 1561

Sarah Carpenter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The informal performance traditions and theatre games of the sixteenth century had the capacity not only to shape social encounters but to influence contemporary responses to and interpretation of those encounters. Analysis of one domestic masking visit in Edinburgh shows how it functioned as both enactment and interpretation of social and political relations in Scotland in the early months following Mary Queen of Scots return from France in 1561. Topical tensions involving social status, gender, political, religious and national affiliation all find tacit expression through the structure and cultural implications of the masking game.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)625-636
Number of pages11
JournalRenaissance Studies
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2007


  • Edinburgh
  • Mary Stewart
  • Masking
  • Performance game
  • Scottish Reformation


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