What does the character Everyman suggest about the common English person of the time period?
Answers 2Add Yours
Everyman has to clear his book of reckoning before he can progress to heaven, and one of the things the play considers is how humans will be judged after they have died. God is furious that humans are living a superficial life on earth, focusing on wealth and riches, without worrying about the greater judgment that is to come - and, notably, Everyman's own judgment - his ability to understand his life - becomes gradually more and more enlightened on his pilgrimage towards his heavenly reward.
The character Everyman is meant to represent all people. It seems from the text that people of this time were very concerned with wealth and material possessions. Everyman’s traits reflect the idea that the common person is easy prey for the seven deadly sins and leads a life of corruption and debauchery. He is blinded by worldly possessions and has moved far away from God. The condition of the common person is highlighted in the words of God in the opening section of the play: And now I see the people do clean forsake me. They use the seven deadly sins damnable, As pride, covetise, wrath, and lechery, Now in the world be made commendable In the play, God is angry that people have devoted themselves to earthly pleasures and have no fear of God's judgment. They show no interest in developing themselves spiritually. The play shows the audience the folly of leading such a life and teaches that penance can lead to salvation.