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The English Romance in Time
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The English Romance in Time: Transforming Motifs from Geoffrey of Monmouth to the Death of Shakespeare

Helen Cooper


This book is a study of romance motifs and conventions, or ‘memes’: ideas that behave like genes or organisms in their ability to replicate, adapt, and survive in different forms and cultures. First developed in French and Anglo-Norman romances of the 12th century, they were transmitted into English in the 13th-15th centuries, acquired a new and vibrant popularity when prints of medieval romances became the pulp fiction of the Tudor age, and underwent remarkable metamorphoses in the works of the great Elizabethan writers. Although the motifs themselves remain the same, sometimes even down to v ... More

Keywords: Elizabethan romance, medieval romance, Anglo-Norman, conventions, pulp fiction, Shakespeare, Spenser

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2004 Print ISBN-13: 9780199248865
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199248865.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Helen Cooper, author
Chair of Medieval and Renaissance Literature at Cambridge University
Author Webpage