The survivals of medieval religious drama in New Mexico
Every year in many remote villages in New Mexico people gather at Christmas and Easter to witness dramatic productions of Biblical stories concerning these two seasons. Although these religious performances have taken on many new characteristics through the centuries, they are not, as many critics think, a new and quaint form of folk drama but instead are a curious remnant of a very old form of religious drama which was transported from medieval Spain to colonial Mexico and finally up the Rio Grande valley to New Mexico. Certainly these plays have come a long way from their medieval ancestors, the religious mysteries that were part of the 'liturgical services within the church, and have disintegrated and beoome secularized through their transmission from the church to the laity. Of the ten extant plays in New Mexico today, three treat subjects from the Old Testaments Adam y Eva, Cain y Abel, and Lucifer y San Miguel. Plays of Adam and Eve and Cain and Abel were not new, having been presented in Mexico, Spain, and central Europe. Five of the extant plays present subjects from the New Testaments El Coloquio de San Joa, Los Pastores, Auto de los Reyes Magos, El Nino Perdido, and La Pasion. There are two others not liturgical in origin, which can be traced back to the Middle Ages, Los moroa y loa cristianos and las Cuatro Apariciones de la Virgen de Guadalupe....
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