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Spenser, Sidney, and the early modern chivalric code
Jean R. Brink

1577: The courtier Philip Sidney and I had privately discussed these three books of Livy, scrutinizing them so far as we could from all points of view, applying a political analysis, just before his embassy to the emperor Rudolf II. He went to offer him congratulations in the queen's name just after he had been made emperor. Our consideration was chiefly directed at

in The early Spenser, 1554–80
Shakespeare’s challenges to performativity
Yan Brailowsky

. 12 Supernatural and ordinary language The king claimed a divinely inspired, poetic, interpretative dexterity. In the fictional world of the stage, Shakespeare was also a poet-prophet as he portrayed characters who appeal to spirits to divine their future or that of their country. The playwright's inclusion of a great number of prophecies in his plays suggests that, contrary to other public venues, the stage afforded a greater degree of liberty concerning political prophecies

in Shakespeare and the supernatural
Yulia Ryzhik

the Elizabethan mind are derived mainly from the work of the humanising poets – Wyatt, Surrey, Spenser, with the derivations from French and Italian literature, Fulke Greville and the Senecals – or from the work of the dramatists’. From poets, in other words, rather than ‘professional men’, Eliot derives the most familiar characteristics of Renaissance poetry. From this point of view, Roger Ascham seems to Eliot more modern than John Donne, a man defined by ‘theological politics’ to the extent that other powerful literary influences (Montaigne, Seneca, Machiavelli

in Spenser and Donne
Sir Philip Sidney, humility and revising the Arcadia
Richard James Wood

notes, ‘by adding a Greek termination to the first elements of his names’, prompts the reader to recognize ‘the customary pose of the poet introduced into his own pastoral poem’. 2 The correspondence between Philip Sidney and Philisides has formed the central pillar of several scholarly readings of the Arcadia . For Blair Worden, Philisides represents the serious purpose behind Sidney’s apparently trifling fiction: He wrote at a grave political moment, when he believed the survival of Protestantism and liberty to be at stake. […] Politics, it is true, can

in Sidney's Arcadia and the conflicts of virtue
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A play that ‘approves the common liar’
Carol Chillington Rutter

, managed the peace (North, 1579 ). That play fell neatly into two halves, ‘jaw-jaw’ and ‘war-war’, set tidily in two locations: a play built on handsome symmetries, with two murders (one at the hands of the politically motivated republican conspirators, the other, of the mindless mob), two funeral orations (the first, settling Rome, the second, rabble-rousing it to bloody mutiny), two hauntings (the eerie grave-opening storm in the first half echoed by the tent-apparition scene in the second); a formal play where characters spoke textbook oratory (‘It must be by his

in Antony and Cleopatra
Open Access (free)
Personal Shakespeare
Steve Sohmer

difficult and unsatisfying play. But with Carey taking the role of Faulconbridge – and the wrong successor, an unknown Prince Henry, suddenly appearing out of nowhere to fill John’s vacant throne in 5.7 – how much more pensive and politically relevant the work now seems. If Shakespeare’s hopes for resurrection and reunion with his lost son Hamnet, the passing of Nashe, and the

in Reading Shakespeare’s mind
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Shakespeare and the supernatural
Victoria Bladen and Yan Brailowsky

Supernatural elements constitute a significant dimension of Shakespeare's plays: ghosts haunt political spaces and internal psyches; witches foresee the future and disturb the present; fairies meddle with love; natural portents and dreams foreshadow events; and a magus conjures a tempest from the elements. These aspects contribute to the dramatic power and intrigue of the plays, whether they are treated in performance with irony, comedic effect or unsettling gravity. Although Shakespeare's plays were written and performed for early modern

in Shakespeare and the supernatural
Jean R. Brink

matriculated, was central to Reformation history. Of the men with close ties to Pembroke who played major roles in contemporary church politics, the most prominent was Edmund Grindal (1519?–1583; appointed Archbishop of Canterbury 1575 and served until 1583). He appears in Spenser's early literary work Shepheardes Calender (1579) under the anagram Algrind and as representative of the view that the clergy should be held to a higher standard

in The early Spenser, 1554–80
Sir Philip Sidney and stoical virtue
Richard James Wood

. However, Skretkowicz does highlight a particular difference between the two men: Duplessis-Mornay’s stoical philosophy ‘inspires a selfless flight to the end of life’, an unwillingness to compromise to save oneself from martyrdom; while Languet ‘identifies a very practical need in the world of politics to tolerate personal failings’, and is even prepared to excuse those who eschew martyrdom. 3 Duplessis-Mornay’s combative attitude—what Skretkowicz describes as ‘enduring the worst in a positive, fighting spirit’ 4 —is evident in his Discours de la mort et de la vie

in Sidney's Arcadia and the conflicts of virtue
Laurie Johnson

political lock-picking’, so any allegory likely to still be discernible several centuries later surely would not have gone unnoticed and therefore unpunished, 21 there have been a number of attempts to map the play's treatment of gendered authority while excluding any direct topical reference to the queen herself. 22 Maurice Hunt, on the other hand, suggests that Midsummer could more safely encrypt an allegory about Elizabeth that was not intended for her instruction but

in Shakespeare and the supernatural