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The Faerie Queene and Middle English Romance: The Matter of Just Memory$
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Andrew King

Print publication date: 2000

Print ISBN-13: 9780198187226

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198187226.001.0001

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Approaching Spenser's Medievalism

Approaching Spenser's Medievalism

Chapter:
(p.1) 1 Approaching Spenser's Medievalism
Source:
The Faerie Queene and Middle English Romance: The Matter of Just Memory
Author(s):

Andrew King

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198187226.003.0001

This chapter examines the way in which The Faerie Queene itself remembers and relates to native literary and historical traditions — Arthurian history and faerie romance — mirroring English history. It also considers how Spenser's earlier work, The Shepheardes Calender, is also the matter, in both the textual and physical senses, of a remembered native literary tradition. The activities of Matthew Parker, John Bale, William Camden, John Dee, John Stow, Robert Cotton, and the circle of the Elizabethan Society of Antiquaries in seeking out, studying, lending, and preserving medieval manuscripts and other monuments provide a significant backdrop to the concerns of this study. The driving force behind this antiquarian scholarship was ‘the spirit of nationalism’, the desire to use histiography to promote the greatness of the English protestant nation.

Keywords:   The Faerie Queene, The Shepheardes Calender, Elizabethan Society of Antiquaries, Matthew Parker, John Bale, William Camden, John Dee, John Stow, Robert Cotton

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