The White Devil

Background

The story is loosely based on an event in Italy thirty years prior to the play's composition: the murder of Vittoria Accoramboni in Padua on 22 December 1585. Webster's dramatisation of this event turned Italian corruption into a vehicle for depicting "the political and moral state of England in his own day", particularly the corruption in the royal court.

The play explores the differences between the reality of people and the way they depict themselves as good, "white", or pure.


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