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The play consists of 502 lines and is preserved incomplete: Following a prologue which commands the audience's attention, the King of Life boasts of his power and enjoys the homage of his Queen and his two knights, Strength and Health. When the Queen advises him that he should prepare for death through a godly life, he scorns her, declaring that he will live forever. He is supported in this folly by his knights and his messenger, Mirth. The Queen then sends Mirth to summon the Bishop, who preaches a sermon on the abuses of the age and the terrors in store for those who forfeit grace by refusing to think of death. But the King readily banishes the Bishop and sends Mirth to challenge Death to a combat.

Although the text breaks off at this point, the prologue indicates that Death appeared and conquered the King of Life. The prologue also suggests that the King's soul, after parting from his body, was saved from the fiends by the intercession of Our Lady; but it is not clear whether the Virgin or the soul and body actually appeared as characters in the play.

Performance was out of doors, to judge from the prologue's reference to the weather, with the action taking place in a platea and in relation to at least two thrones - one for the Bishop and another with curtains for the King.

Pride of Life