, often called Punch
in English, is a classical character that originated in the Commedia dell'arte
of the 17th century
and became a stock character in Neopolitan puppetry. His main characteristic, from which he acquired his name, is his extremely long nose, which resembles a beak. In Latin, this was a pullus gallinaceus
, which led to the word "Pulliciniello" and "Pulcinella", related to the Italian pulcino
He often wears a black mask and long white coat, and has loose and straggly hair.
Pulcinella features in an eponymous ballet by Igor Stravinsky; see Pulcinella (ballet).
see also: Punch and Judy