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Classicism in the theatre was developed by 17th century French playwrights from what they judged to be the rules of Greek classical theatre, including the Three Unities of time, place and action.

The language also had to be of the most exalted kind, excluding 'low-life' characters and smutty jokes.

Classicists did not approve of Shakespeare, who broke all these rules and plenty more.

Examples of classicist playwrights:

Victor Hugo was among the first french playwrights to break these conventions.

See also: