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Steve Sohmer

for writers – playwrights particularly – who openly flaunted topicality. As Annabel Patterson notes in Censorship and Interpretation , ‘governments fear the theater more than other forms of literature because of its capacity to stir up public opinion’ 3 – presumably because books and other documents tend to be read in private, and the

in Reading Shakespeare’s mind
The ends of incompletion
Chloe Porter

of authority. The theme of ‘enforced’ incompletion is repeated later in the prose work. In 1563, the Elizabethan government drafted a proclamation suggesting measures for the regulation of the production of portraits of the queen. The plan was for one image of Elizabeth I to be made by ‘some special commission painter’, as a stock ‘example’ to be ‘followed’ in all other

in Making and unmaking in early modern English drama
Rachel E. Hile

Game at Chess (1624).3 The anti-Spanish, antiCatholic satirical play was licensed by the Master of the Revels on June 12, 1624 and enjoyed a wildly popular run of nine consecutive days in August 1624 before being shut down in response to complaints to the government from the Spanish ambassador Don Carlos de Coloma. Manuscripts of the play proliferated in the following months, and the play was eventually printed, without being licensed by the Stationers’ Company, after James I’s death in 1625. In this play, as Andrew McRae observes, Middleton employs a strongly

in Spenserian satire
Divine destruction in Friar Bacon and Friar Bungay
Chloe Porter

unstable monarchic iconography with iconoclasm directed against aspects of post-Reformation culture implicated in Elizabethan government. The ‘idol’ presented by Bacon’s climactic prophecy is too vulnerable to contain the iconoclasm of which it is the end product. Furthermore, the uncontainable nature of iconoclasm in Friar Bacon and Friar Bungay is in fact suggested by the dynamics of

in Making and unmaking in early modern English drama
Rachel E. Hile

censorship of the Elizabethan government, the ability to circuitously signal one’s own alignment with the religious and political beliefs associated with Spenser by alluding to him, as I argue that Thomas Middleton does, becomes an additional way to create and convey meaning in a deniable way. Later, as authors try to find the new lines not to cross under the Jacobean government, Spenser retains his value as a toweringly significant author understood to stand for a particular set of meanings and values. Throughout the period, his status as a canonized and central author

in Spenserian satire
Open Access (free)
Theory and Spenserian practice
Rachel E. Hile

of self-righteous conviction that Burghley had responded unfairly to The Faerie Queene, as Bruce Danner argues). We can speculate what impact Spenser hoped to achieve with these poems, but we do not know whether he was surprised and dismayed by the censorious government response or whether he relished the knowledge that his barbs had bitten. At any rate, Spenser’s book was MUP_Hile_SpenserSatire_Printer.indd 34 14/10/2016 15:35 Indirect satire 35 punished, but not his body, and the scandal died down quickly. Thomas Tresham’s letter, dated “the xixth of Marche

in Spenserian satire
Rachel E. Hile

will look at Thomas Middleton in 1599 and 1604 as a young writer who appreciated Spenser not only poetically but also politically, and thus used allusions to Spenser to convey his own affiliation with the ideas about government and religions associated with the more famous poet. MUP_Hile_SpenserSatire_Printer.indd 118 14/10/2016 15:35

in Spenserian satire