Thinking with Russia, writing English commonwealth
in Exploring Russia in the Elizabethan commonwealth
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The fluid representations, themes and meanings found in Giles Fletcher's texts problematise the later historiographical boundaries that have been imposed on the history of early modern Anglo-Russian relations, as mercantile, diplomatic or ethnographic. Fletcher's writings sit comfortably and yet distinctively within the various accounts of sixteenth-century English encounters with Russia. Lord Burghley's act of suppression confirmed the politically sensitive nature of Fletcher's text as well as the regime's tyranny over the freedom of expression. The analysis of Fletcher's diplomatic reports, his published work of counsel for commonwealth and his love poetry has revealed the importance of recognising the individuality and variety of Elizabethan representations of Russia. The response of the Muscovy Company promulgated a particularly hostile reading of Fletcher's text, as a work with the potential to destroy the continuation of amicable and lucrative relations with Russia.

Exploring Russia in the Elizabethan commonwealth

The Muscovy Company and Giles Fletcher, the elder (1546–1611)


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