Research: Seven Deadly Sins and Seven Virtues

Following the presentations, Lynn had considered all of the ideas and for a first structure idea, suggested using inspiration from the Seven deadly sins. In the post she created, she also put in the seven virtues which countered the sins, with their being pairs, one member as the sin, the other as the saint. As I could be possibly playing one of the saints or sinners and that is the main concept of the show, it is important to know each of these and their meaning. The 14 sets can therefore be played true to the definition of what was previously created.

The Seven Deadly Sins:

Jack Wellman wrote an article which listed the seven deadly sins, he wrote that there are seven deadly sins as that was a number special to God, due to the fact that he created the world in seven days. These deadly sins are:

  • Lust
  • Gluttony
  • Greed
  • Sloth
  • Wrath
  • Envy
  • Pride (Wellman, 2012)

These were then explained in further detail by Mary Smith and a blog called ‘healing Grace’ with a short definition of each:

  • Lust: This sin is created through having many sexual thoughts and desires towards someone, which can be struggled to be controlled. Smith also write for this definition that it is considered a sin when it is not used for reproduction (Smith, no date). A blog called ‘Healing Grace’ also defined this, adding that the term originally meant desire, so this could also be desires to money and power (No author, no date).
  • Gluttony: ‘Healing Grace’ defined Gluttony as glut tire from Latin, meaning to gulp. Smith wrote that this sin can be committed through having an uncontrollable greed or addiction to drugs, alcohol and eating uncontrollable amounts of food.
  • Greed: The sin of greed also relates to gluttony in the aspect of excess, relating to drug and alcohol issues in gluttony. However, instead of food and drink, this sin is committed through having an uncontrollable greed for money and any items with worth that can give the person great benefit.
  • Sloth: Being a sloth relates to the sinner being unable to accept who they are and their existence. It also means that the sinner does not accept responsibility to anything, particularly in religion.
  • Wrath: This relates to anger and being unable to control it with a hatred towards someone because of their race or religion. This person may want to get revenge on whoever has angered them.
  • Envy: Being envious of someone is to become jealous of what someone else has what the sinner wants.
  • Pride: Smith describes this one as the most serious one as it involves the sinner believing they are above everyone. Wellman also wrote that it is people looking down on others, then commenting on a story about Lucifer, who was guilty of this sin.

The Seven Contrary Virtues:

Despite their being seven deadly sins, there are also seven virtues which have the opposite meaning. These seven virtues are listed by Adam Shannon with what sin they counter:

  • Humility-Pride
  • Kindness-Envy
  • Abstinence -Gluttony
  • Chastity-Lust
  • Patience -Anger
  • Charity -Greed
  • Diligence -Sloth (Shannon, no date)

‘Healing Grace’ also wrote the definitions for these contrary virtues:

  • Humility: This virtue is all about respect and not always thinking of yourself, instead the person is not looking down on others. If that person has made a promise to someone else, then they should stick to it (No author, no date). Kevin Knight also wrote on this definition that it was restraining on their own successes (Knight, 2012).
  • Kindness: Being full of compassion, trust and love to others, someone with this virtue may also try to add extra kindness in order to inspire others to follow.
  • Abstinence: Also known as ‘temperance’, as written in another article (Kevin Knight, No date), is the restraint of eating excess amounts of food.
  • Chastity: Showing restraint to someone in a sexual manner.
  • Patience: Having a peaceful mind while dealing with situations and other people, possibly a mix between both.
  • Charity: Being generous and being kind to someone, therefore, this links to kindness and also describes as being full of love.
  • Diligence: The idea of not giving up, having a good work ethic and doing whatever it takes to not become lazy.

What it means for Saints and Sinners Performance:

As this is going to be our layout for the performance, our characters are going to be based on these seven deadly sins and virtues. In terms of my performance, if I am given a character which is one of these, then I can look at that for future references and really give my character a specific identity and use that to progress throughout the rehearsal process. This will be the same for other cast members, we want each character to have different personalities, not all be diligence or wrath.




Jack Wellman (2012) What Are The Seven Deadly Sins and Their Meanings? Available at: (Accessed: 20 March)

Mary Smith (no date) What are the Seven Deadly Sins and their Meanings. Available at: (Accessed: 20 March)

No Author (No date) 7 Modern Sins and the 7 Heavenly Virtues. Available at: (Accessed: 29 March)

Adam Shannon (No date) Virtues. Available at: (Accessed: 29 March)

Kevin Knight (2012) Virtue. (Accessed: 29 March)