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Comedy may be said to have arisen about 562 B. c, when Susarion and Dolon travelled around, caricaturing the vices and follies of their time, from a rude scaffold.
The first Tragedy was acted in Athens, by Thespis, from a wagon, in the year 535 B. c. In the same year Thespis received a goat as reward for playing "Alcestis" at Athens. Goats were frequently given as rewards for this kind of composition, and the word Tragedy is derived by some, from the words Tragos, a goat, Ode, a song, literally a " goat-song."
The earliest attempt at dramatic action, with a plot, or incident to give it connection, was the representation of the gift of the grape to man­kind, by Dionysius; this required three dramatis personae, therefore Thespis changed his linen mask three times.
Solon was not well pleased with the new art; striking his stick upon the ground he said: "If this sort of thing were allowed and praised, it would soon be found in the market-place;" and to Thespis who was singinsr a recitation in the character which he was acting, he said: "Are you not ashamed to lie so?"
Solon had probably forgotten that when he aroused the Athenians to the reconquest of Salamis, he had assumed the character of a herald from tho island. Solon had predicted right however, the drama became the most cherished institution of Greece; even in its earliest stages, the state fostered it, and it always attracted the poor •». for

E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III