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Spenser

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    Available in PDF Format | Spenser.pdf | Unknown
    Richard William Church
Excerpt from book: CHAPTER III. SPENSER IN IRELAND. [1580.] In the first week of October, 1579, Spenser was at Leicester House, expecting " next week" to be despatched on Leicester's service to France. Whether he was sent or not, we do not know. Gabriel Harvey, writing at the end of the month, wagers that " for all his saying, he will not be gone 'over sea, neither this week nor the next." In one of the Eglognes (September) there are some lines which suggest, but do not necessarily imply, the experience of an eye-witness of the state of religion in a Eoman Catholic country. But we can have nothing but con- jecure whether at this time or any other Spenser was on the Continent. The Shepherd's Calendar was entered at Stationers' Hall, December 5,1579. In April, 1580, as we know from one of his letters to Harvey, he was at Westminster. He speaks of the Shepherd's Calendar as published : he is contemplating the publication of other pieces, and then " he will in hand forthwith with his Faerie Queene," of which he had sent Harvey a specimen. He speaks especially of his Dreams as a considerable work. " I take best my Dreams should come forth alone, being grown by means of the Gloss (running continually in manner of a Paraphrase) full as great as my Calendar. Therein be some things excellently, and many things wittily discoursed of E. K., and the pictures so singularly set forth and portrayed, as if Michael Angelo were there, he could (I think) nor amend the best, nor reprehend the worst. I know you would like them passing well." It is remarkable that of a book so spoken of, as of the Nine Comedies, not a trace, as far as appears, is to be found. He goes on to speak with much satisfaction of another composition, which was probably incorporated, like the Epithalarnion Thamesis, in his later work....   show more
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