Everyman and the Second Shepherds' Play Essay

1258 Words Feb 28th, 2013 6 Pages
Everyman and The Second Shepherds' Play

Everyman and The Second Shepherds' Play remind the audience that good deeds are necessary for redemption, however, they reinforce the idea that we must shun material concerns to be redeemed. Both plays seek to reinforce these aspects of redemption to insure that all may be redeemed. The world is imperfect, and the only way we can make ourselves perfect and worthy of redemption is by not worrying about our material well being and performing good deeds. It is by disregarding our material concerns that allow us to perform good deeds.

Everyman places his faith in material things, his friends, relatives and goods. These material things do him no good. Fellowship claims he "will not forsake thee
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Their complaints are many, and justified, yet they accomplish nothing. Although Coll thinks that

It does me good, as I walk

Thus by mine one,

Of this world for to talk

In manner of moan. ( Shepherds' Lines 66-69)

He really does not get any closer to redemption by doing this, although it may ease part of his emotional burden, his spiritual failings remain. Coll voices the concerns of all the Shepherds at the beginning of this play.

We are so hammed,

Fortaxed, and rammed,

We are made hand-tamed

With these gentlery-men. (Shepherds' 23-26)

His financial situation is in jeopardy because the gentry have overtaxed and oppressed him. They further oppress him since "I were better be hanged / Than once say him nay" (Shepherds' 51-52). Coll lives under trying conditions, and his opening speech reflects his horrible living conditions. Coll does not mention God in this, since he is focused on his material well-being, and he neglects his whole spiritual side. Like Everyman they love their goods above all else. Gib and Daw do this also. Gib has become henpecked,

Sely Copple, our hen,

Both to and fro

She cackles;

but begin she to croak,

To groan or to cluck,

Woe is him our cock,

For he is in shackles (Shepherds' 98-104).

Since his marriage has made him miserable, he can see nothing wonderful in his life. He focuses on his misery and cannot open

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