The Škofja Loka Passion Play

Year of writing: 1721
The content of the Škofja Loka Passion shows us, in 13 images, the history of salvation, which begins with the Old Testament expulsion of Adam and Eve from paradise, when man's fall into sin, the work of the evil spirit, takes place. Death reigns in the world, and no one escapes it: "... all that lives in the holy place I have taken under my dominion ..."
Total cast size: 6 (3 f, 3 m)
vernacular drama
religiuos drama, sermon, procession

The Mystery of the Škofja Loka Passion or Processio Locopolitana is the oldest surviving dramatic work in Slovenian literature (dating from the beginning of the 18th century, with the speech peculiarities of the local milieu) and the oldest surviving European director's book, the only one from the Baroque period. It is a cultural monument created, on the one hand, by the tradition of folk devotion, as the knowledge of the Passion was passed down from generation to generation before it was written down, and, on the other hand, it is based on the tradition of older Slovenian spoken processional texts and inspired by the tradition of contemporary Central European processions. Its original uniqueness lies in the fact that it combines elements of Mediterranean processions (the devotion took the form of a procession, with groups of performers moving through the town - partly on carts, partly on stretchers) and more Germanic (central European) elements of Easter spirit plays, with actors and a dramatic structure.

Now the Third angel speaks:

You sinful soul, you must hear out,
and never again tempt your God!
This may happen to you too,
as you are unable to refrain from sin.
You may lose the kingdom of Heaven
and earn easily the Hell fire.
Refrain now from your sin
to avert ending up in everlasting jail.
The same happens to every sinner
disobeying a God’s commandment.

Tina Mahkota

The Škofja Loka Passion Play

Language of translation: English

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English translation is based on the updated language of the so-called critical transcription (phonetic transcription) of The Škofja Loka Passion Play version by Ludvik Kaluža and the playscript for the production at the Prešeren Theatre Kranj.