Comedy of errors

A comedy of errors is a narrative work (often a play) that is light and often humorous or satirical in tone, in which the action usually features a series of comic instances of mistaken identity or other misunderstanding, and which typically culminates in a happy resolution of the thematic conflict.[1][2]

Satire and farce

A slight variation of the "comedy of errors" discipline is farcical theatre, which revolves around humor caused by the foolish mistakes of unintelligent characters and the chaos that derives from it. Examples of farces include British sitcom Fawlty Towers and Men Behaving Badly, as well as films like Monty Python's Life of Brian and Charlie Chaplin's The Great Dictator.

In Shakespeare

William Shakespeare wrote a play entitled The Comedy of Errors. A Midsummer Night's Dream is another well-known Shakespearean example of a comedy of errors.

On television

Many modern television situation comedies use comedy of errors as a standard plot device, often in every episode. Three's Company is considered a classic example of such a sitcom.

Many episodes of the American sitcom Frasier exemplify the qualities of this sort of comedy.


  1. Weld, John (1975). Meaning in Comedy: Studies in Elizabethan Romantic Comedy. SUNY Press. pp. 154–55. ISBN 0-87395-278-2.
  2. Pearson, Jacqueline (1980). Tragedy and tragicomedy in the plays of John Webster. Manchester University Press ND. p. 13. ISBN 0-7190-0786-0.
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