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The iconography of Elizabeth I

The visual images of Queen Elizabeth I displayed in contemporary portraits and perpetuated and developed in more recent media, such as film and television, make her one of the most familiar and popular of all British monarchs. This book is a collection of essays that examine the diversity of the queen's extensive iconographical repertoire, focusing on both visual and textual representations of Elizabeth, in portraiture, literature, contemporary sermons, speeches and alchemical treatises. It falls into three sections. The first part looks at the diverse range of religious and quasi-religious images that were employed by and about Elizabeth, such as the Prophetesse Deborah, the suggestive parallel with Joan of Arc, and finally Lady Alchymia, the female deity in alchemical treatises. When Queen Elizabeth I, the first female Protestant monarch, was enthroned in 1558, male poets, artists, theologians, and statesmen struggled to represent this new phenomenon. The second part turns to one of the major enterprises of the Elizabethan era, the attempt to colonise the New World, during which the eastern seaboard of America was renamed Virginia in celebration of the Virgin Queen. The last part focuses on the ways in which the classical world was plundered for modes of imaging and figuring the queen. Finally, the book summarises the enormously wide range of Elizabeth's iconographical repertoire of its appeal, and provides a fitting end to a book which ranges so widely across the allegorical personae of the queen.

Gary Waller

in the Tower. It is very explicitly a ‘Catholic text’ not merely a ‘religious one’, to use Alison Shell’s useful distinction.12 In one of Howard’s other poems, entitled a ‘Fourfold Meditation’, there are some stanzas on the Virgin Mary, omitted from the 1606 published edition, in which he ‘developed a telling contrast with that earthly virgin, Queen Elizabeth, whom he had formerly adored’ and the figure who was at the centre of Walsingham, sentiments which are exactly echoed in his Walsingham poem. For him, as for increasing numbers of Catholics, the usurping

in Literary and visual Ralegh
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Annaliese Connolly and Lisa Hopkins

and her reign with cinemagoers and includes a roll-call of some of the finest stage and screen actresses (and actors). Bette Davis starred as the queen twice in The Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex (1939) and The Virgin Queen (1955). Jean Simmons starred as the queen in Young Bess (1953), with Jenny Runacre taking the role as Elizabeth in Derek Jarman’s Jubilee in 1977, while

in Goddesses and Queens
Elizabeth I’s death rehearsal
Scott L. Newstok

At the burial of an epoch no psalm is heard at the tomb. 2 (Anna Akhmatova) Scholars have long debated just precisely when Elizabeth I commenced her iconographical self-presentation as a Virgin Queen; recent criticism has frequently

in Goddesses and Queens
Petrarch’s Triumphs and the Elizabethan icon
Heather Campbell

desire. Thus the popularity of the Triumphs in sixteenth-century England provided a crucial element in the creation of the Elizabethan icon. It offered a vocabulary and a cluster of associations through which Elizabeth could be presented to her own subjects and to other European political figures as the Virgin Queen, but in a context resonant of military victory and masculine

in Goddesses and Queens
‘The fantastic ethnography’ of Sir Walter Ralegh and Baconian experimentalism
Line Cottegnies

virgin Queen. 58 It is the verbal agility and allegorical imagination of the poet Sir Walter Ralegh that comes to the fore here, as this vision suggests strong Spenserian associations. In the final lines, the ‘Shepherd of the Ocean’ (as Spenser had hailed Ralegh), 59 offers an allegorical reading of the New World as a romance fairyland. Critics have often used such moments in

in A knight’s legacy
The Virgin in the Garden and Still Life
Alexa Alfer and Amy J. Edwards de Campos

prologue, Alexander Wedderburn is writing Astraea , his Eliot-esque verse-drama on the Virgin Queen, which is steeped in the complex dilemma of how to square the ‘then’ with the ‘now’ – of how to accommodate difference and the desire for historical continuity. Performed in the year of the second Elizabeth’s coronation, the play is favourably received by an audience ignited by national enthusiasm for a

in A. S. Byatt
G. W. M. Reynolds and The Mysteries of London
Rob Breton

and interprets what he sees: At that time Victoria was yet a virgin-queen. If not strictly beautiful, her countenance was very pleasing. Her light brown hair was worn quite plain; her blue eyes were animated with intellect; and when she smiled, her lips revealed a set of teeth white as Oriental pearls. Her bust was magnificent, and her figure good, in spite of the lowness of her stature. 1 That the young queen was not shy to display her bust is known, but to place a working-class boy so near to it, and to have a novelist feel so free as to comment on it

in The penny politics of Victorian popular fiction
Susana Onega

across Europe in 1591 (PB 10) points to this story as a rewriting of Virginia Woolf’s Orlando: Ali’s sea journey, including the captain’s invitation to eat (PB 13),80 replicates Orlando’s voyage from Turkey to England dressed as a gypsy woman, after her change of sex.81 Likewise, Ali’s initiation into sex of the virginal princess inverts Orlando’s sexual initiation by Elizabeth I, the Virgin Queen.82 Orlando kept updating her outfits according to the period she was chap 4.qxd 2/2/06 2:00 pm Page 186 186 Jeanette Winterson living in. Echoing this, Tulip is asked

in Jeanette Winterson
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The screen incarnations of Sir Walter Ralegh
Susan Campbell Anderson

should lend itself easily not just to the stage but to the screen. Indeed, the IMDb (Internet Movie Database) lists seventeen entries for ‘Sir Walter Ralegh’ as a film or television character.7 Yet stunningly, all of them, with the exception of the children’s television special My Friend Walter (1992) and the postwar Bette Davis vehicle The Virgin Queen (1955), which will emerge in later discussion as problematic with respect to its intended focus on Ralegh, feature Ralegh either as a peripheral or supporting character, not as the focal character of the film or

in Literary and visual Ralegh