Lead: After nearly two decades of religious experimentation under the puritans, gradually, fitfully after 1660 the English began to loosen up. One giant step was that entertainment-deprived England reopened its theaters. This gave the big break to Eleanor Gwyn.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Cultural revival was the order of the day in the years following the restoration of King Charles II in 1660. Banished were the puritans and their attempt to rigidly enforce social behavior. Games could be played again on the Sabbath and the English could once again indulge in their love of the theater. Closed for twenty-three years, the theaters reopened with a splash -- elaborate costumes, intricate sets and for the first time, female performers. On April 8, 1663 the lights went up in Drury Lane at the King's Theatre. It would soon witness the emergence of one of England's favorites, Nelly Gywn.