Published: 6 November 2015
Author(s): Emanuele Armocida, Thomas Böni, Frank J. Rühli, Francesco M. Galassi
Section: Letter to the Editor

Pulcinella, mainly known in the English-speaking world as Mr Punch (Fig. 1), is a character from the Italian Commedia dell'Arte, whose origins can be traced back to protagonists of Roman Atellan comedy (e.g. Maccus or Bucco), whose grotesque appearances closely resemble the 16th century Neapolitan mask. The character as we know him originated in Naples, most likely representing a lazy, angry opportunist who is easily beaten, plausibly as the comic personification of folk unleashing their basic instincts.

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