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Was it not a stack machine already?

The embedding API explicitly exposes a stack, so I assumed that it was implemented that way.

it had a stack, but that stack was on the heap. In lua 5.4 under normal circumstances, 20 frames of Lua call stack corresponds to 20ish frames of C call stack. In lua 5.3 the number of C stack frames was some smaller number unrelated to the depth of the Lua call stack.

Ah - so it uses the C native stack.

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