In medieval times the art of mimes developed and in the nineteenth century the mime became recognizable by his speechless posture and the white mask. Clowning is, in a way, a connection between slapstick comedy and mime, as it uses both methods to produce laughter in the addressee. Contemporarily, the clown is a figure identified by various costumes, distinctive makeup, a red nose, and colourful wigs, but clowning has its roots in ancient times, where clowns were mainly bald, with bizarre hats and plaid uniforms.
The earliest clowns performed buffoonery, practical jokes, juggling, or parody and these things have not changed much throughout the ages. Harlequin and Pierrot are two of the most popular types of clowns, who owe their existence to commedia dell'arte. Notably, their characteristics originates in sixteenth and seventeenth century European culture. 1.4. Commedia dell'arte Commedia dell'arte as one of the oldest forms of professional theatre flourished in the 16th century through to the 18th century, in Italy.
The performances were mainly improvised, and the actors were professionals. They used costumes and masks that illustrated their character. Their comical models were identified by their appearance or behaviour. Initially, they were supposed to represent inhabitants of a specific part of Italy and even included the dialect of a distinct area. Additionally, the relations between characters onstage were similar to these between actors in their lives and because of this fact, the plays were more credible.