Formal Matters is intended as an exploration of the emerging and potential links in early modern literary and cultural studies between the study of material texts on the one hand, and the analysis of literary form on the other. The essays exemplify some of the ways in which an attention to the matter of writing now combines in critical practice with the questioning of its forms: how an interest in forms might combine with an interest in the material text and, more broadly, in matter and things material. Section I, ‘Forming literature’, makes literary and sub-literary forms its focus, examining notions of authorship; ways of reading, consuming, and circulating literary and non-literary material; and modes of creative production and composition made possible by the exigencies of specific forms. Section III, ‘The matters of writing’, examines forms of writing, both literary and non-literary, that grapple with other fields of knowledge, including legal discourse, foreign news and intelligence, geometry, and theology. At stake for the authors in this section is the interface between discourses encoded in, and even produced through, specific textual forms.Linking these two sections are a pair of essays take up the subject of translation, both as a process that transforms textual matter from one formal and linguistic mode to another and as a theorization of the mediation between specific forms, materials, and cultures.
This collection of sixteen essays, the first devoted to John Derricke’s work,
offers new readings of, and new sources behind, The Image of Irelande: With a
Discoverie of Woodkarne (1581), all to better explicate facets of this difficult
and complex book. While prior scholarship on Derricke was largely confined to
commentary on the illustrations, the essays in this volume encompass a broad
range of approaches to the Image of Irelande in its entirety. Although on the
face of it, The Image is blatantly pro-Sidney and anti-Irish propaganda, and has
always been so received, the essays in this collection combine to suggest that
Derricke’s book is in fact far more culturally and politically daring than has
been assumed, with a highly sophisticated textual and visual presentation only
now brought into focus. In addition to scrutinizing Derricke’s poetic and
iconographic practices, the essays include insights from architecture and
archaeology, print history and reading practices, studies of civic display and
colonial ideologies. The collection, divided into five sections (Ideologies,
Archaeologies, Print and publication, Influences, and Interpretations),
establishes a basis on which to build future analyses of Derricke’s enigmatic
we don’t have to layer past and present on top of one another to
create a hybrid montage. As a vision of Rome’s possible future the
picture of cows lowing in the Forum is simply and literally true. In
Archaeologies of EnglishRenaissanceLiterature , Philip
Schwyzer makes the following observation about a group of English
Renaissance treatments of ruin, including Shakespeare’s Sonnet
This book analyses Anna of Denmark’s material and visual patronage at the Stuart
courts, examining her engagement with a wide array of expressive media including
architecture, garden design, painting, music, dress, and jewellery. Encompassing
Anna’s time in Denmark, England, and Scotland, it establishes patterns of
interest and influence in her agency, while furthering our knowledge of
Baltic-British transfer in the early modern period. Substantial archival work
has facilitated a formative re-conceptualisation of James and Anna’s
relationship, extended our knowledge of the constituents of consortship in the
period, and has uncovered evidence to challenge the view that Anna followed the
cultural accomplishments of her son, Prince Henry. This book reclaims Anna of
Denmark as the influential and culturally active royal woman that her
contemporaries knew. Combining politics, culture, and religion across the courts
of Denmark, Scotland, and England, it enriches our understanding of royal
women’s roles in early modern patriarchal societies and their impact on the
development of cultural modes and fashions. This book will be of interest to
upper level undergraduate and postgraduate students taking courses on early
modern Europe in the disciplines of Art and Architectural History, English
Literature, Theatre Studies, History, and Gender Studies. It will also attract a
wide range of academics working on early modern material and visual culture, and
female patronage, while members of the public who enjoy the history of courts
and the British royals will also find it distinctively appealing.
Between 1598 and 1800, an estimated 3, 271 Catholic women left England to enter convents on the Continent. This study focuses more particularly upon those who became Benedictines in the seventeenth century, choosing exile in order to pursue their vocation for an enclosed life. Through the study of a wide variety of original manuscripts, including chronicles, death notices, clerical instructions, texts of spiritual guidance, but also the nuns’ own collections of notes, this book highlights the tensions between the contemplative ideal and the nuns’ personal experiences. Its first four chapters adopt a traditional historical approach to illustrate the tensions between theory and practice in the ideal of being dead to the world. They offer a prosopographical study of Benedictine convents in exile, and show how those houses were both cut-off and enclosed yet very much in touch with the religious and political developments at home. The next fur chapters propose a different point of entry into the history of nuns, with a study of emotions and the senses in the cloister, delving into the textual analysis of the nuns’ personal and communal documents to explore aspect of a lived spirituality, when the body, which so often hindered the spirit, at times enabled spiritual experience.
Ralph Knevet's Supplement of the Faery Queene (1635) is a narrative and allegorical work, which weaves together a complex collection of tales and episodes, featuring knights, ladies, sorcerers, monsters, vertiginous fortresses and deadly battles – a chivalric romp in Spenser's cod medieval style. The poem shadows recent English history, and the major military and political events of the Thirty Years War. But the Supplement is also an ambitiously intertextual poem, weaving together materials from mythic, literary, historical, scientific, theological, and many other kinds of written sources. Its encyclopaedic ambitions combine with Knevet's historical focus to produce an allegorical epic poem of considerable interest and power. This new edition of Knevet's Supplement, the first scholarly text of the poem ever published, situates it in its literary, historical, biographical, and intellectual contexts. An extensive introduction and copious critical commentary, positioned at the back of the book, will enable students and scholars alike to access Knevet's complicated and enigmatic meanings, structures, and allusions.
1994), pp. 1–10, 113–66.
For in-depth discussion of this controversy, see Andrew Murphy,
‘Revising Criticism: Ireland and the British Model’, in David J. Baker and
Willy Maley (eds), British Identities and EnglishRenaissanceLiterature (Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, 2002), pp. 24–36, and Patricia Parker, Language and
Conquest in Early Modern Ireland: EnglishRenaissanceLiterature and Elizabethan Imperial
Expansion (Cambridge: Cambridge University
most of the Protestant leaders themselves would have wished – and especially those for whom the transference of the Virgin’s aura to the Queen of
England was a powerful political tool. Interestingly, however, in Ralegh’s
poem, there are powerful traces of what was increasingly becoming a
fragmented, even lost world. The poem contains echoes of the devotion
15 Grace Tiffany, Love’s Pilgrimage: The Holy Journey in EnglishRenaissanceLiterature
(Newark: University of Delaware Press, 2005), 118, 28–34.
16 The Poems of Sir Philip Sidney, ed. William A
in criticism as one of the great
cruxes of EnglishRenaissanceliterature’: 113
But all those pleasaunt bowres and Pallace
braue, Guyon broke downe, with rigour pitilesse;
Nor ought their goodly workmanship might saue Them
from the tempest of his wrathfulnesse, But that their
blisse he turn’d to
‘Of magic look and meaning’: themes concerning the cultural chess-player
definition of ‘Automaton’, quoted in W. B. Hyman,
‘Introduction’, in W. B. Hyman (ed.), The Automaton in EnglishRenaissanceLiterature
(Farnham: Ashgate, 2011), p. 5.
A cultural history of chess-players
6 ‘Acknowledgements’, in A. S. Mittman (ed.) with P. Dendle, The Ashgate Research
Companion to Monsters and the Monstrous (Farnham: Ashgate, 2012), p. xxii.
7 D. H. Li, The Genealogy of Chess (Bethesda, MD: Premier Publishing, 1998).
8 H. Golombek, A History of Chess (London: Routledge, 1976), p. 10.
9 R. Eales, Chess: The History of a Game (Glasgow