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Art, nature, and Spenser's pictorialism Forster, Catherine Anne 1966

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ART, NATURE, AND SPENSER'S PICTORIALISM by CATHERINE ANNE FORSTER B.A., The University of B r i t i s h Columbia, 1961 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS i n the Department of English We accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA A p r i l , 1966 In presenting t h i s thesis i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t of the requirements for an advanced degree at the U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree that the Library s h a l l make i t f ree ly avai lable for reference and study. I further agree that per-mission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the Head of my Department or by his representatives,, It i s understood that copying, or p u b l i -cation of this thesis for f i n a n c i a l gain s h a l l not be allowed without my written permission. Department of The Univers i ty of B r i t i s h Columbia, Vancouver 8, Canada. Date ABSTRACT i . T h i s t h e s i s began with the d e s i r e to understand the g o l d i v y p a i n t e d green t h a t entwines the c r y s t a l f o u n t a i n i n Spenser's Bower of B l i s s . Although t h i s a r t i f i c i a l v e g e t a t i o n s t r u c k me as an example of what twe n t i e t h - c e n t u r y c r i t i c s would c a l l " k i t s c h " , I somehow f e l t t h a t the poet h i m s e l f was viewing h i s c r e a t i o n as an o b j e c t of beauty. In order t o t e s t t h i s f e e l i n g I began my r e s e a r c h by examining the use of the terms " a r t " and "nature" i n E l i z a b e t h a n w r i t i n g , f o r i t seemed to me th a t i n the d e f i n i t i o n of and the r e l a t i o n s h i p between these two terms l a y a key t o Spenser's e s t h e t i c . The a r t i s t here has t r i e d t o make an a r t i f i c i a l substance appear to be n a t u r a l ; r e a d i n g the E l i z a b e t h a n c r i t i c s I found t h a t such attempts a t a r t i s t i c d e c e p t i o n were almost unanimously applauded. Spenser's age co u l d not have formulated i t s e s t h e t i c i n t u i t i v e l y , however, and i n order t o understand i t s h i s t o r i c a l p e r s p e c t i v e I have examined the r e l a t i o n s h i p between " a r t " and "nature" i n important h i s t o r i c a l p e riods b e f o r e the Renaissance. Here i t was found that a t times when p a i n t i n g i s dominant, as i n the Renaissance, a r t ' s i m i t a t i o n of nature i s understood n a t u r a l i s t l c a l l y , and a convention of l i t e r a r y p i c t o r i a l i s m a r i s e s . In the w r i t i n g s of the c r i t i c s of the I t a l i a n Renaissance, a r t i s p r a i s e d i i . f o r i t s approximation t o nature, and the poet, l i k e the p a i n t e r , i s admired f o r h i s a c c u r a t e p i c t u r e s . T u r n i n g to the E l i z a b e t h a n c r i t i c s I found an e s t h e t i c s i m i l a r to that expressed by the I t a l i a n w r i t e r s . A common philosophy l i e s behind t h i s e s t h e t i c . I t i s b e l i e v e d t h a t to i m i t a t e nature w i t h accuracy i s to reproduce i n a r t the harmony of God's c r e a t i o n . In performing t h i s i m i t a t i o n man the a r t i s t i s demonstrating h i s r e l a t i o n s h i p t o God the A r t i s t . I t was found f u r t h e r t h a t the E l i z a b e t h a n environment a l s o demonstrated the d e l i g h t i n a r t ' s a b i l i t y t o de c e i v e t h a t i s expressed by the w r i t e r s of the p e r i o d . And we f i n d i n t h e i r s urroundings, i n v i s u a l support of the c r i t i c a l t h e o r i e s , t h a t the E l i z a b e t h a n s are not only d e l i g h t e d when a r t appears to be nature, but t h a t they a r e a l s o d e l i g h t e d when nature appears t o be a r t . Looking f i n a l l y a t Spenser's scenes, we f i n d h i s per i o d ' s e s t h e t i c e x e m p l i f i e d . He bases h i s i d e a o f the b e a u t i f u l on the con c e p t i o n o f a world made up of order and v a r i e t y . He p r a i s e s v e r i s i m i l i t u d e i n a r t , d e l i g h t i n g t o see a r t appear t o be na t u r e . He a l s o d e l i g h t s when he sees a n a t u r a l scene t h a t resembles a r t . In a d d i t i o n he d e s c r i b e s with p l e a s u r e s i t u a t i o n s i n which a r t and nature a r e i n f r i e n d l y c o m p e t i t i o n , or, perhaps the most d e l i g h t f u l r e l a t i o n s h i p o f a l l , s i t u a t i o n s i n which a r t and nature i i i . p l a y complementary r o l e s . One of Spenser's c h a r a c t e r -i s t i c a l l y Renaissance t r a i t s i s h i s a b i l i t y t o separate e t h i c s and e s t h e t i c s . T h i s p o i n t has o f t e n been overlooked f o r the g o l d i v y p a i n t e d green has been d i s m i s s e d i n some previous c r i t i c i s m not as e s t h e t i c a l l y poor, but e t h i c a l l y , as e v i l . Rather, i n E l i z a b e t h a n eyes, I t i s b a s i c a l l y an e s t h e t i c good and can be used by the poet t o c r e a t e a number of e f f e c t s . i v . TABLE OF CONTENTS Chapter Page I. THE PROBLEM AND THE APPROACH 1 I I . ART, NATURE AND PICTORIALISM FROM PLATO TO TASSO 9 I I I . ART, NATURE AND PICTORIALISM AMONG THE ELIZABETHANS 2J IV. ELIZABETHAN VISUAL ARTS k7 V. SPENSER'S PICTORIAL ART 65 ACKNOWLEDGMENT I would l i k e t o thank Dr. Marcus Beach f o r h i s h i s p a t i e n c e , and h i s i n t e r e s t . CHAPTER I THE PROBLEM AND THE APPROACH D e s p i t e t h e i r d i s s i m i l a r i t y t o the t r a i t s of modern poetry, the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of Spenser's s t y l e , i t s l e i s u r e l y pace, i t s purposely ornate language, i t s system-a t i c a l l y i n t r i c a t e sound p a t t e r n s , a l o n g w i t h the copious v a r i e t y of i t s s u b j e c t matter, a r e s t i l l a p p r e c i a t e d by many contemporary readers o f poetry. And the thematic m a t e r i a l of Spenser's g r e a t e s t work, though p o s s i b l y over-simple i f read too m e c h a n i c a l l y , i f read s y m p a t h e t i c a l l y , remains c o m p e l l i n g . For i t c o n t a i n s a b a s i c view of man's problems: h i s s t r u g g l e t o m a i n t a i n the f o r c e s o f l i g h t i n the f a c e o f the f o r c e s of darkness, h i s s t r u g g l e to be h o l y or temperate, o r human, i n a world f u l l of temptations, b e s t i a l i t y , and d e s p a i r . My problem with Spenser i s a much l e s s e r one. For I f i n d t h a t the g r e a t e s t o b s t a c l e to a modern's sympathetic r e a d i n g of t h i s poet i s n e i t h e r h i s s t y l e nor h i s s u b j e c t matter, but r a t h e r t h a t very q u a l i t y f o r which he was so much admired by h i s e i g h t e e n t h - and i n i n e t e e n t h - c e n t u r y r e a d e r s , h i s p i c t o r i a l v i v i d n e s s . I t i s not t h a t too much a t t e n t i o n to picture-making i n poetry 1 R u d o l f G o t t f r i e d i n "The P i c t o r i a l Element i n Spenser' Poetry" (ELH, XIX, 1952, 203-213) notes t h a t Spenser i s compared t o Rubens by Joseph Warten; t o Raphael, C o r r e g i o , M i c h e l a n g e l o and Poussin by L e i g h Hunt; and to Glan B e l l i n i T i t i a n and T i n t o r e t by L o w e l l (pp. 20^-205). 2. i s o b j e c t i o n a b l e i n i t s e l f ; i t i s rat h e r t h a t Spenser's p i c t u r e s , from most current e s t h e t i c viewpoints, are i n bad t a s t e : Una, with her white s k i n whiter than the white ass on which she r i d e s which, to begin w i t h , i s "more white than snow" ( I . i . 4 ) ; the beaten gold i v y on the f o u n t a i n i n the Bower of B l i s s , painted green ( I I . x i i . 6 l ) ; Belphoebe, w i t h her "lockes c r i s p e d , l i k e golden wyre" ( I I . i i i . 3 0 ) , and Belphoebe's f o r e s t d w e l l i n g , with i t s e q u i d i s t a n t trees that " n a t u r a l l y " resemble a s t a t e l y t h e a t r e (III.v.39). I t would seem t h a t Spenser's conception of what makes a p l e a s i n g p i c t u r e i s based on assumptions r a d i c a l l y d i f f e r e n t from most of those we hold concerning the proper r e l a t i o n -s h i p between a r t and nature. Our o b j e c t i o n , of course, i s grounded on a modern d i s t a s t e f o r the a r t i f i c i a l . An easy answer to those who d i s l i k e Spenser's t a s t e , then, would be simply to point out the a m e l i o r a t i v e use of the term " a r t i f i c i a l " i n Renaissance c r i t i c i s m and t o thus dismiss our a n t i p a t h y ' w i t h a con-descending remark about the h i s t o r i c a l r e l a t i v i t y of e s t h e t i c s . But s u r e l y t h i s would be a lamentable a t t i t u d e , f o r i t means d i s m i s s i n g an important aspect of a great poet's work as simply u n a v a i l a b l e f o r pleasure. Perhaps a more determined examination of the problem would lead to a greater understanding and a p p r e c i a t i o n . S e v e r a l attempts have already been made to overcome t h i s b a r r i e r of t a s t e . C. S. Lewis defined the problem as a moral one and explained the gold-painted-green i v y , f o r example, as a misuse of a r t c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the Bower of B l i s s . He f i n d s the n a t u r a l - a r t i f i c i a l c o n t r a s t one of the great a n t i t h e s e s which run throughout the whole of the Fa e r i e Queene, on a p a r a l l e l with L i f e and Death or L i g h t and Darkness. S p e c i f i c a l l y he b e l i e v e s t h a t the poet con-s t r u c t e d the Bower of B l i s s as a c a l c u l a t e d opposite to the Garden of Adonis: "The one i s a r t i f i c e , s t e r i l i t y , death: the other, nature, f e c u n d i t y , l i f e . " (p.326) The explan-a t i o n of the painted i v y , then, i s that i t i s e v i l , and, Lewis r a t h e r s t r o n g l y argues, to misunderstand t h i s i s e i t h e r t o accuse Spenser of bad t a s t e , or,, what i s worse, to confess oneself an admirer of metal v e g e t a t i o n as a garden ornament (p.325). Lewis' wholesale equation of Nature with good and A r t with e v i l i n the F a e r i e Queene has been modified by s e v e r a l l a t e r c r i t i c s but most a c c u r a t e l y , I t h i n k , by Hans P. Guth i n h i s a r t i c l e " A l l e g o r i c a l I m p l i c a t i o n s of A r t i f i c e i n Spenser's F a e r i e Queene".3 A f t e r f i n d i n g i n Spenser many examples i n which nature i s portrayed w i t h h o r r i b l e aspects 2C. S. Lewis, The A l l e g o r y of Love (New York, 1958), pp. 327-328. 3PMLA, LXXVI. (1961), ^ 7^-^79. and, on the other hand, many words of p r a i s e such as " b e a u t i f y " , :"embellish", "painted" and "gorgeous" which are suggestive of a r t i f i c e , Guth concludes that both A r t and Nature appear i n the F a e r i e Queene wit h good and e v i l a s s o c i a t i o n s (p. ^ 75) and that "the moral i m p l i c a t i o n s of a r t i f i c e depend on the author's i n t e n t i o n i n a given passage" (p. 4-79). This argument q u i t e c o n c l u s i v e l y breaks down Lewis' g e n e r a l i z e d equation but s t i l l leaves us wit h e v i l i v y . However, an a d d i t i o n a l comment by G u t h — t h a t the moral and e s t h e t i c v i s i o n are not fused, that t h i s i s a l l e g o r y , not symbolism (p. > 7 9 ) — s u p p o r t s my own f e e l i n g about the i v y : i t may be e v i l , but f o r Spenser, a t l e a s t , i t i s nevertheless b e a u t i f u l . What I am quest i o n i n g here i s the c r i t i c a l assumption that the E l i z a b e t h a n mind was incapable of se p a r a t i n g e t h i c s from e s t h e t i c s . I t i s t r u e t h a t one of the main concerns of the c r i t i c i s m w r i t t e n by Spenser's contemporaries was the v i n d i c a t i o n of poetry on the grounds of i t s moral usefulness, but i n the f o l l o w i n g chapters i t w i l l be argued that an understanding of the moral i m p l i c a t i o n s of t h e i r a r t i s not s u f f i c i e n t f o r a f u l l a p p r e c i a t i o n because i t does not ex a c t l y c o i n c i d e with the E l i z a b e t h a n f e e l i n g f o r the b e a u t i f u l . The idea and the f e e l i n g are of course c l o s e l y r e l a t e d , f o r ^Suggested,,, f o r example, by J o e l E. Spingarn, L i t e r a r y  C r i t i c i s m i n the Renaissance (New York, 1924), p. 58 and p. 2o2. the E l i z a b e t h a n d e l i g h t i n the a r t i f i c i a l ( i . e . t h e i r f e e l i n g f o r the b e a u t i f u l ) i s based on t h e i r idea of the s t r u c t u r e of the u n i v e r s e , e s p e c i a l l y on t h e i r idea of the order of nature. Even a t t h i s point i t can be seen that Spenser's moral purpose alone w i l l not e x p l a i n away h i s apparently d i s t a s t e f u l m i n g l i n g of a r t and nature. Even i f we allowed i t to excuse the i v y , accepting Lewis' i m p l i e d imperative t h a t what i s e v i l cannot be b e a u t i f u l , we are s t i l l l e f t w i t h a l i s t of a t r o c i t i e s which are morally good: Una's ghou l i s h s k i n or the m e t a l l i c Belphoebe and her stagy landscape. At times a r a t h e r r a d i c a l approach has been used to dismiss t h i s whole problem. I t i s argued that Spenser's t a s t e i n p i c t u r e s i s not questionable at a l l , f o r he i s not p i c t o r i a l . I s r a e l Baroway, f o r example, i n t h i s manner explains away Belphoebe's a r t i f i c i a l i t y . He demonstrates that Spenser's method here has been i n f l u e n c e d by the o r i e n t a l image technique of the Song of Songs which he b e l i e v e s Spenser a t one time translated..-5 The technique i s one which does not attempt to d e s c r i b e a woman p h y s i c a l l y , but by equating p a r t s of her body to supreme types of e x c e l l e n c i e s .(usually good f r u i t or v a l u a b l e metal) evokes -'"The Imagery of Spenser and the Song of Songs", JEGP, XXXIII ( 1 9 3 * 0 , 2 3 - 4 5 . a d i f f u s e and "benumbing sensuous response r a t h e r than an e r o t i c one. On a much broader b a s i s Rudolf G o t t f r i e d and L y l e G l a z i e r have e f f r o n t e d c r i t i c a l t r a d i t i o n by arguing that the " p a i n t e r of the poets" should i n no cases be viewed p i c t o r i a l l y . G o t t f r i e d argues that Spenser should not be considered a p a i n t e r because he i s a poor one, h i s p i c t u r e s are e i t h e r l o g i c a l l y i n c o n s i s t e n t or weak i n composition. We cannot v i s u a l i z e the opening scene, f o r example, because the three f i g u r e s , Red Cross, Una and the Dwarf, are a l l moving a t a d i f f e r e n t pace; they simply cannot be contained w i t h i n one frame. Spenser's pageants, G o t t f r i e d f i n d s , are not p i c t o r i a l because they break i n t o a s e r i e s of separate groups or s i n g l e f i g u r e s . And the p i c t u r e of Belphoebe, s k i p p i n g as i t does from her forehead, to her costume, to her l e g s , to her spear, to her breast and back t o her h a i r , i s poorly composed and not f l a t t e r i n g . ^ This argument that Spenser i s clumsy, or imprecise w i t h h i s brush does not, i t seems to me, e x c l u s i v e l y deny him the t i t l e of p a i n t e r . The t i t l e i s metaphorical; we must not expect the p r e c i s i o n of an o i l p a i n t e r from a p a i n t e r i n words. At one p o i n t , however, G o t t f r i e d does c o n v i n c i n g l y e x p l a i n why Spenser does not compose p i c t o r i a l l y . He points out that the i n c o n g r u i t y i n the opening scene 6"The P i c t o r i a l Elements i n Spenser's Poetry", 203-213. r e s u l t s from Spenser's su b o r d i n a t i n g p i c t o r i a l q u a l i t y to moral a l l e g o r y (p. 210). This i s the grounds on which G l a z i e r , even more c o n v i n c i n g l y , argues against Spenser's p i c t o r i a l i s m . He f i n d s the poet's c o l o r s patchy and h i s l i n e s "mere i m p r e s s i o n i s t i c suggestions f o r use by the inner 7 eye". He points out, f o r example, that i n the opening scene commonly thought of as v i v i d l y d e s c r i p t i v e , white, s i l v e r , red and black are the only c o l o r s that appear and that Una's hy p e r b o l i c whiteness stands l e s s f o r the c o l o r of a face than f o r the radiance of an a b s t r a c t idea ( T r u t h ) , (p. 301). C u r i o u s l y enough, G l a z i e r a l s o remarks, undermining h i s own argument agai n s t Spenser's p i c t o r i a l i s m , that i t i s the reader, with h i s knowledge of medieval and Renaissance a r t , who s u p p l i e s the v i v i d p i c t u r e s from Spenser's h i n t s (p. 300) He admits that the h i n t s are t h e r e , then, and s i n c e a reader i s needed f o r a poem to e x i s t — w e i n e v i t a b l y have p i c t u r e s . And I would argue that i f the reader's imagination i s c a l l e d upon to v i s u a l i z e e a r l y Renaissance p i c t u r e s , then Spenser's a r t i s i n some sense p i c t o r i a l , f o r the creators of these p i c t u r e s , l i k e our po e t - p a i n t e r , used simple c o l o r s , and, we should not f o r g e t , shared h i s a l l e g o r i c a l temper. A b r i e f survey of E l i z a b e t h a n v i s u a l a r t s w i l l h e l p to show that Spenser's e s t h e t i c i s i n f a c t a dominant one i n 7"The Nature of Spenser's Imagery", MLQ, XVI (1955)* 300. 8. h i s p e r i o d , w h i l e , i n t u r n , a knowledge of t h e s e a r t s w i l l h e l p us v i s u a l i z e the poet's p i c t u r e s . To demonstrate t h a t t h i s l o o k i n g back and f o r t h between two a r t s i s a l e g i t i m a t e process, i n f a c t a necessary one, once p r a c t i s e d by the E l i z a b e t h a n s themselves, a look a t the Renaissance convention of "ut p i c t u r a p o e s i s " must a l s o be taken. .. The t r a d i t i o n of "ut p i c t u r a p o e s i s " i s an o l d one and a study of i t s development r e v e a l s i t s importance i n a p e r i o d when a r t i s expected to r e a l i s t i c a l l y i m i t a t e n a t u r e. Spenser's g o l d - p a i n t e d - g r e e n i v y , plus h i s p i c t o r i a l i s m i n g e n e r a l , demonstrate that he belonged to such a p e r i o d . A b r i e f look a t the h i s t o r y of the r e l a t i o n s h i p of a r t , nature and p i c t o r i a l i s m , with s p e c i a l emphasis on i t s s t a t e i n the Renaissance, w i l l t h e r e f o r e precede our look at E l i z a b e t h a n e s t h e t i c s , E l i z a b e t h a n v i s u a l a r t s , and, f i n a l l y , Spenser's p i c t u r e s . CHAPTER I I ART, NATURE AND PICTORIALISM FROM PLATO TO TASSO U n t i l the l a t e nineteenth century when Oscar Wilde, w i t h t y p i c a l arrogance and a c u i t y , reversed the p o s i t i o n of the subject and the o b j e c t , the dictum that a r t i m i t a t e s nature had been a common s t a r t i n g point f o r e s t h e t i c p h i l o s o p h i e s . That the philosophies nevertheless argue f o r d i f f e r e n t concepts of a r t , must be explained by the e x i s t -ence of v a r y i n g conceptions of the process of i m i t a t i o n and v a r y i n g d e f i n i t i o n s of the idea of nature. For P l a t o the r e a l world i s the world of ideas. Since to him the world of nature i s i n i t s e l f a deceptive I m i t a t i o n , the a r t i s t i n i m i t a t i n g i t performs a not very laudable f u n c t i o n , f o r he removes men even f a r t h e r from t r u t h . That P l a t o i s d i s c u s s i n g an i m i t a t i v e a r t can be seen from h i s assumption that the a r t i s t uses p a r t i c u l a r examples as obj e c t s of i m i t a t i o n . He says, f o r i n s t a n c e , that an a r t i s t i n p a i n t i n g a bed can only i m i t a t e what i s alre a d y "a shadow of the t r u t h " , t h a t i s , a p a r t i c u l a r bed that i s made by the cabinet maker i n i m i t a t i o n of the one Q r e a l bed that e x i s t s i n the realm of ideasn. And poets, • ^The Rep u b l i c , t r a n s . G i l b e r t , Book X, i n L i t e r a r y  C r i t i c i s m , P l a t o to Dryden, ed. A l l a n H. G i l b e r t (New York, 19^0), p. 44. In t h i s chapter, unless otherwise noted, a l l quotations from c r i t i c a l works are from G i l b e r t * anthology, and, unless otherwise noted, are t r a n s l a t e d by the e d i t o r . 10. he argues, share with the painters the role of deceptive imitators (p. 48). A r i s t o t l e q u a l i f i e s the famous dictum i n such a way as to give the a r t i s t quite another r o l e than the one that Plato had given him. While the l a t t e r regarded r e a l i t y as pure "Ideas" divorced from the concrete, A r i s t o t l e con-ceived of r e a l i t y as a process of becoming. The concrete takes on form and meaning when i t works i n accordance with p e r s i s t i n g , ordered p r i n c i p l e s , and a r t , through harmonious design, imitates t h i s ordered process of nature.^ In t h i s concept of imitation a r t functions i d e a l i s t i c a l l y f o r i n carrying out a l o g i c a l process the a r t i s t reveals not what has happened (the particular) but what would happen, according to the laws of pr o b a b i l i t y (the u n i v e r s a l ) . That A r i s t o t l e does not think of imitation i n a p i c t o r i a l sense i s evident from his naming of music as the highest of the a r t s . Music, with i t s quality of duration can better imitate moral or natural harmony than painting, which must make use of shape and color symbolically. A r i s t o t l e ' s understanding of his own dictum, then, yie l d s an esthetic that demands the i d e a l , an a r t that i s closer to the abstract than to the n a t u r a l i s t i c . Where Plato's comparison of painting and poetry denigrates the l a t t e r for i t s subjection to the p a r t i c u l a r , A r i s t o t l e ' s 9Walter Jackson Bates, C r i t i c i s m : The Major Texts (New York, 1952), p. 5. comparison i l l u s t r a t e s the i d e a l i z i n g process of a r t : "the d r a m a t i s t s should i m i t a t e good p o r t r a i t p a i n t e r s who, though p r e s e n t i n g the r i g h t form and making t h e i r p o r t r a i t s 1 0 l i k e the o r i g i n a l s , make them more " b e a u t i f u l . " With Horace c r i t i c i s m becomes urbane; the concern here i s no longer with the o n t o l o g i c a l p o s i t i o n of poetry but r a t h e r with what makes good poetr y . Horace seems to have taken the dictum t h a t a r t should i m i t a t e nature l i t e r a l l y , f o r h i s primary concern i s with the maintenance of decorum, decorum f o r the sake o f v e r i s i m i l i t u d e , and v e r i s i m i l i t u d e i n order to ensure the c r e d u l i t y o f the poet' audience. In o t h e r words, a r t must seem to be nature (or r e a l i t y ) i t s e l f . In s t y l e a l s o , a r t must seem n a t u r a l : "I s h a l l aim a t a poem so d e f t l y f a s h i o n e d out of f a m i l i a r matter t h a t anybody might hope to emulate the f e a t , yet f o r 11 a l l h i s e f f o r t s sweat and l a b o u r i n v a i n " . x And the poet h i m s e l f i s to be a b l e n d of a r t and nature: "Whether a good poem be the work of nature or of a r t i s a moot p o i n t . F o r my p a r t I f a i l to see the Use of study without w i t , ( n a t i v e a b i l i t y ) or of wit without t r a i n i n g : so t r u e i s i t t h a t each r e q u i r e s the o t h e r ' s a i d i n h e l p f u l u n i o n " (The A r t of  Poetry (408), G i l b e r t , p. 14.1). 1 0 T h e P o e t i c s , t r a n s . A l f r e d Gudeman,'Ch. XV, 5468, G i l b e r t , p. 91. 1 1 The A r t of Poetry, t r a n s . Edward H . B l a k e n e y , G i l b e r t , p. 1 3 2 . , Jean Hagstrum finds that Horace's frequent comparisons of poetry to painting (the whole e p i s t l e begins with the extended analogy) are evidence of his b e l i e f that art should l i t e r a l l y imitate nature (the external world), 12 for painting can do t h i s better than poetry. It was i n fact to Horace's authority that Renaissance c r i t i c s turned when they argued that poetry should imitate the techniques of painting. Just as they extend his observation that "the poet's aim i s either to p r o f i t (teach) or to please ( d e l i g h t ) " (Art of Poetry ( 2 3 3 ) , G i l b e r t , p. 139) into the dictum that poetry should teach through delight, so i n his observation that a poem i s l i k e a painting ( ( 3 6 0 ) , p. 139) the verb was converted into a should be or a must be. But although Horace himself d i d not advocate that poetry should imitate painting (which would surely remove i t one step from nature), he did qu a l i f y his argument f o r decorum as consistent i m i t a t i o n of r e a l i t y for the sake of i l l u s i o n . An a l t e r n a t i v e to c a r e f u l l y following the dictates of decorum, i t seems, i s simply to copy past masters: "Either s t i c k to t r a d i t i o n or see that your inventions be con-s i s t e n t . " ( (119) , p. 131), and "Do you, my fri e n d s , study the Greek masterpieces: thumb them day and night" ( (263)> p. I 3 6 ) . Now instead of a r t imitating nature, i t i s recommended that.art should imitate a r t . 1 2 J e a n H. Hagstrum, The S i s t e r Arts (University of Chicago Press, 1958), p. 10. 13. F o r Longinus' On the S u b l i m e ^ the balance i s weighted i n favour of conscious a r t over an a r t t h a t con-s c i e n t i o u s l y looks t o nature. The aim of Longinus' s u b j e c t , e l e v a t e d s t y l e , i s not to persuade an audience t h a t what they hear i s r e a l , but r a t h e r to t r a n s p o r t them w i t h sub-l i m i t y : "Genius does not merely persuade an audience but l i f t s i t t o e c s t a s y " (Ch. 1, G i l b e r t , p. 147). I t i s t r u e t h a t Longinus g i v e s as the f i r s t two (and necessary) sources of the sublime the n a t u r a l q u a l i t i e s of e l e v a t i o n of mind and vehement p a s s i o n , but the o t h e r t h r e e s o u r c e s — f i g u r a t i v e language, noble d i c t i o n and devoted arrangement of w o r d s — a r e i n f a c t the main s u b j e c t of h i s t r e a t i s e . In Chapter Three he argues a g a i n s t those who would c l a i m t h a t genius i s a g i f t of nature and w i l l only be r u i n e d i f s u b j e c t e d to the r u l e s of a r t . The r e v e r s e , t h a t n ature i s inadequate without a r t , i s i n f a c t the case. And i f t h e r e a r e some t h i n g s that depend on nature a l o n e , we can only be sure of t h i s f a c t through a knowledge of a r t (p. 148). A theory of l i t e r a r y p i c t o r i a l i s m seems to be expressed by Longinus i n a d e f i n i t i o n of one of h i s key terms: "The name im a g i n a t i o n i s commonly a p p l i e d to any i d e a t h a t enters the mind and produces speech, but the meaning t h a t p r e v a i l s i s the one I employ, namely, that i n your enthusiasm and s t r o n g f e e l i n g you seem to see what you speak 13Trans. by G i l b e r t as On L i t e r a r y E x c e l l e n c e . 14. of and put i t b e f o r e the eyes of your audience" ( G i l b e r t , p. 165). T h i s convention of p i c t o r i a l i s m as i t developed among the A l e x a n d r i a n poets such as Callimachus and P h i l e t a s presents, the paradox of an a r t that i m i t a t e s a r t f o r the sake of n a t u r a l i s m . In the A l e x a n d r i a n p e r i o d , one of g r e a t p a i n t e r s and a h i g h i n t e r e s t i n p a i n t i n g , there emerged an i c o n i c genre of poetry—poems which were w r i t t e n e x p r e s s l y to d e s c r i b e works of a r t . The works of a r t a r e p r a i s e d f o r t h e i r n a t u r a l i s m , however, and Hagstrum argues t h a t the genre developed because of a l i t e r a l i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of a r t ' s r o l e i n i m i t a t i n g nature, accompanied by the b e l i e f t h a t p a i n t i n g of a l l the a r t s , can do t h i s b e s t (pp. 25-27). D u r i n g the Middle Ages the dictum t h a t a r t i m i t a t e s nature i s a t times r e s t o r e d , a t l e a s t i n theory, t o i t s o r i g i n a l meaning, f o r Aquinus w r i t e s , echoing A r i s t o t l e , t h a t " a r t i m i t a t e s nature i n i t s o p e r a t i o n " (Summa 1.9.117• a.I.e., quoted by Hagstrum, p. 46, u n d e r l i n i n g mine). Nature as simply e x t e r n a l r e a l i t y i s not the concern of a r t . T h e o s o p h i l u s , author of one o f the few s u r v i v i n g medieval t r a c t s on p a i n t i n g , says n o t h i n g a t a l l about nature o r d e s i g n , but i s concerned w i t h mixing c o l o r s to ac h i e v e not n a t u r a l but a r t i s t i c e f f e c t s (Hagstrum, p. 51)» Dante, who, G i l b e r t says, i s so much an echo of h i s age t h a t he may be chosen as r e p r e s e n t a t i v e of medieval c r i t i c a l theory (p. 199)> does not once mention o u t s i d e r e a l i t y i n h i s enumeration of 15. the c r u c i a l moments i n the production of a r t . And, as i f echoing Aquinas, h i s b a s i c q u a l i f i c a t i o n f o r beauty i s not form, but c l a r i t a s , l i g h t or: l u m i n o s i t y . A r t i n the Middle Ages tends to the a b s t r a c t and the l e a s t n a t u r a l i s t i c of i t s forms, a r c h i t e c t u r e and music, take the prominent place formerly occupied i n theory by p a i n t i n g . A moral concern has d e f i n e d a r t and separated i t from nature, but i n poetry, at l e a s t , i t i s s t i l l p o s s i b l e to separate e t h i c s and e s t h e t i c s . Dante, f o r example, says: "The goodness and beauty of every composition are d i s t i n c t and separate from each other. I t s goodness i s i n i t s idea and i t s beauty i n the adornment of i t s words . . . " (Convlvio. quoted by G i l b e r t , p. 200). In the Renaissance p a i n t i n g i s again the dominant a r t and w i t h i t s c a r e f u l o b s e r vation of anatomy, i t s new s u b t l e t y i n c o l o r i n g , and i t s d i s c o v e r y of the laws of p e r s p e c t i v e , i t becomes more than ever the a r t that can most a c c u r a t e l y observe e x t e r n a l nature. A renewed i n t e r e s t i n the order of nature as the subject of a r t i s aided by a r e v i v a l of c l a s s i c a l t e x t s . At t h i s time A r i s t o t l e ' s statement that a r t should i m i t a t e nature i s o f t e n taken to mean that a r t should reproduce o b j e c t i v e r e a l i t y , w h i l e , as was noted above, Horace's "a poem i s l i k e a p a i n t i n g " i s o f t e n q u a l i f i e d i n t o "a poem should be l i k e a p a i n t i n g " . The two, of course, go hand i n hand, f o r i f i t i s the aim of a r t to 1 6 . present Images of the e x t e r n a l world a l l other a r t s should admire and i m i t a t e p a i n t i n g , f o r p a i n t i n g can perform t h i s f e a t most o b v i o u s l y , and, now, thanks to Leonardo and h i s peers, most a c c u r a t e l y . A g a i n and a g a i n , i n s p i t e of t h e i r sometimes a n t i -t h e t i c a l v i e w p o i n t s , we f i n d the I t a l i a n c r i t i c s d e f e n d i n g t h e i r t h e o r i e s of poetry by r e f e r e n c e e i t h e r to nature or to p a i n t i n g , o r , to both. G i r a l d i C i n t h i o defends the m u l t i p l e - a c t i o n c o n s t r u c t i o n o f modern romances such as Orlando F u r i o s o over the s i n g l e - a c t i o n c o n s t r u c t i o n of the c l a s s i c e p i c : " D i v e r s i t y o f a c t i o n s c a r r i e s with i t v a r i e t y itfhich i s the s p i c e of d e l i g h t , and gi v e s the author wide scope f o r i n t r o d u c i n g episodes, or ple a s a n t d i g r e s s i o n s , and f o r b r i n g i n g i n events which i n poems d e a l i n g with a s i n g l e a c t i o n cannot come about save w i t h some h i n t of blame . . . " (On the Composition of Romances, G i l b e r t , p. 2 6 4 ) . But he adds that these many a c t i o n s must be w e l l i n t e g r a t e d : The w r i t e r should use great d i l i g e n c e t h a t the p a r t s of h i s work f i t t o g e t h e r l i k e the p a r t s o f the body . . . . And'in p u t t i n g t o g e t h e r the bony frame he w i l l seek t o f i l l i n the spaces and make the members equal i n s i z e , and t h i s can be done by i n s e r t i n g a t s u i t a b l e and r e q u i s i t e p l a c e s , l o v e s , hates l a m e n t a t i o n s , l a u g h t e r , s p o r t s , s e r i o u s t h i n g s , b e a u t i e s , d e s c r i p t i o n s o f p l a c e s , temples, and persons, f a b l e s both i n v e n t e d by the author h i m s e l f and taken from the a n c i e n t s , voyages, wanderings, monsters, u n f o r s e e n events, deaths, f u n e r a l s , mournings, r e c o g n i t i o n s , things t e r r i b l e and p i t i a b l e , weddings, b i r t h s , v i c t o r i e s , triumphs, s i n g l e combats, j o u s t s , tournaments, catalogues, laws and other l i k e matters . . . For there i s nothing above the heavens or below, nor i n the very g u l f of the abyss, which i s not ready to the hand and choice of the j u d i c i o u s poet . . . . (pp. 264-265) C. S. Lewis has argued that the F a e r i e Queene i s by genre a branch of the I t a l i a n epic ( A l l e g o r y of Love, p. 305) and G i l b e r t suggests that i n Spenser's l o s t c r i t i c a l work, The E n g l i s h Poet, an argument s i m i l a r to G i r a l d i ' s would be set f o r t h (p. 4 6 2 ) ; the foregoing l i s t which reads l i k e a quick synopsis of the F a e r i e Queene c e r t a i n l y seems to confirm these views. The point that i s to be n o t i c e d here, however, i s t h a t t h i s exuberant v a r i e t y , excessive and a r t i f i c i a l to the modern reader, i s defended by G i r a l d i by making i t analogous to a n a t u r a l s t r u c t u r e , the body of man. Mazzoni, w i t h a s i m i l a r aim of defending the moderns ag a i n s t the a n c i e n t s , a l s o defends v a r i e t y w i t h a metaphor from nature: " c e r t a i n l y as we see t h a t gardens w i t h various l e a f y t r e e s are not l e s s but more b e a u t i f u l than groves i n which we see oaks onl y , i n l i k e manner I t h i n k the b e a u t i f u l and a t t r a c t i v e v a r i e t y of our epic poets . . . i s much more to be commended than the severe and r i g i d s i m p l i c i t y of the a n c i e n t s " (Discourse i n the Defense of the Comedy, G i l b e r t , p. 359) . At t h i s point i t would seem that a Renaissance d e l i g h t i n v a r i e t y i n a r t can be explained by t h e i r love of nature, a l t h o u g h Mazzoni's metaphor does q u a l i f y n ature i n t o n a t u r e improved by a r t (a garden). T u r n i n g t o Minturno, however, we f i n d a member of the opp o s i t e camp ( t h a t of the a n c i e n t s ) a r g u i n g t h a t a r t based on a s i n g l e a c t i o n g i v e s " a l l her e f f o r t to the i m i t a t i o n of Nature, and does w e l l i n pro-p o r t i o n as she approaches h e r " ( L , A r t e P o e t i c a , G i l b e r t , p. 285). Minturno i s the one who i s a r g u i n g out of tune with t h e times, but i n h i s f e e l i n g of the n e c e s s i t y of def e n d i n g a r t by approximating i t to nature, he i s a t one with h i s contemporaries. I n the comparison of poetry to p a i n t i n g we a g a i n f i n d c r i t i c s employing s i m i l a r metaphors f o r o p p o s i t e arguments. G i r a l d i compares the poet xfith the p a i n t e r because of t h e i r power of v a r y i n g l i k e n e s s e s (p. 269)» w h i l e Minturno employs the same metaphor t o argue a g a i n s t v a r i e t y . He supports h i s defence f o r one complete a c t i o n by comparing the a c t i o n w i t h the l i n e s i n a p a i n t i n g — t h o u g h c o l o r s may vary the o u t l i n e remains the same from beginning t o end (p. 286). The s u g g e s t i o n t h a t these p a r a l l e l s a r e i m p l i c i t arguments f o r a r e a l i s t i c a r t i s made e x p l i c i t i n Mazzoni, f o r he compares poetry t o p a i n t i n g by a r g u i n g t h a t the primary aim of poetry i s n e i t h e r to d e l i g h t nor to teach but to i m i t a t e , and to i m i t a t e a c c u r a t e l y (p. 376). The Renaissance i d e a l of the a c c u r a t e i m i t a t i o n of nature makes the p r i n c i p l e s of v e r i s i m i l i t u d e and decorum 19. two of t h e i r primary c r i t i c a l concerns. The moral aim of poetry, however, i s not l o s t s i g h t o f . ^  Mazzoni, although he advances the a p p a r e n t l y amoral case f o r poetry as an i m i t a t i v e a r t , goes on to argue t h a t p l e a s u r e always n a t u r a l l y accompanies i m i t a t i o n (p. 37?) » and. a poet, possessor as he i s of a " c i v i l f a c u l t y " should ensure that t h i s d e l i g h t i s d i r e c t e d t o b e n e f i t " p e r f e c t poetry concerns i t s e l f w i t h d e l i g h t f o r the sake of u t i l i t y " (p. 381) . Another approach to the r e l a t i o n s h i p between poetry and e t h i c s i s found i n G i r a l d l ' s statement t h a t "The f u n c t i o n . . . o f our poet, with r e s p e c t to a f f e c t i n g morals, i s to p r a i s e v i r t u o u s a c t i o n s and to blame v i c e s and by means of the t e r r i b l e and the piteous to make them odious t o the r e a d e r " (p. 2 7 1 ) . The s e p a r a t i o n of G i r a l d i ' s m o r a l i t y from the medieval i s i l l u m i n a t e d when we compare t h i s statement with Dante's d e c l a r a t i o n of the aim of h i s D i v i n e Comedy: "the end of the whole and the part i s to remove those l i v i n g i n t h i s l i f e from a s t a t e of misery and to l e a d them to a s t a t e of happiness" ( L e t t e r t o Can  Grande D e l i a S c a l a . G i l b e r t , p. 2 0 5 ) . Poetry f o r G i r a l d i should make t h i s present l i f e a more pl e a s a n t one while i n Dante i t promises a b e t t e r one h e r e a f t e r . In the degree ^ C a s t e l v e t r o i s the e x c e p t i o n when he argues the s o l e aim of the poet i s "to g i v e a semblance of t r u t h t o the happenings t h a t come upon men through f o r t u n e , and by means of t h i s semblance to g i v e d e l i g h t to h i s r e a d e r s " (On the P o e t i c s i n G i l b e r t , p. 3 0 7 ) . 20. of devotion to these moral aims even a greater divergence i s t o be found, f o r Dante's aim i s c a r r i e d throughout i n h i s a l l e g o r y w h i l e i n G i r a l d i ' s c r i t i c i s m , as i n the poem that he i s defending, i t i s only p e r i o d i c a l l y i n s e r t e d , o f t e n w i t h the appearance of an a f t e r - t h o u g h t . A l i n e of reasoning which b r i n g s together an i d e a l of i m i t a t i o n and an aim of m o r a l i t y i s to be found i n Tasso's Discourses on the Heroic Poem (159*0, another work which G i l b e r t f e e l s Spenser's E n g l i s h Poet would have resembled. Tasso argues that poetry cannot have two aims, e i t h e r the d e l i g h t i n g or the p r o f i t i n g must dominate, and he p r e f e r s the l a t t e r . Poetry f o r Tasso should p r o f i t through d e l i g h t ( i n G i l b e r t , p. 46?). Pleasure as the end of poetry, however, should not be despised, because pleasure i s capable of making the nature of man m a g n i f i c e n t — "Those who love pleasure are l i k e l y to become both magnan-imous and s p l e n d i d " (p. 469). One f e e l s that Spenser, w i t h h i s gorgeously c l a d and d e l i g h t f u l l y courteous knights and l a d i e s , would on t h i s point h e a r t i l y agree with the I t a l i a n . Pleasure of course i s derived from beauty and Beauty i s a work of nature and s i n c e i t c o n s i s t s i n a c e r t a i n p r o p o r t i o n of limb w i t h a f i t t i n g s i z e and b e a u t i f u l and p l e a s i n g c o l o r i n g , these c o n d i t i o n s that once were b e a u t i f u l i n themselves w i l l ever be b e a u t i f u l . . . . But i f such i n themselves are the works of nature, such must needs be the works of a r t which without any intermediary i s the i m i t a t o r of nature . . . i f the pro-p o r t i o n of the members i n i t s e l f i s b e a u t i f u l when i m i t a t e d by the p a i n t e r and the s c u l p t o r , and i f something i n nature i s worthy of a d m i r a t i o n , the a r t i f i c i a l t h i n g t h a t i s s i m i l a r to the n a t u r a l w i l l a l s o be admirable, (p. 497) Here we f i n d the i d e a l s of Renaissance a r t — p r o p o r t i o n ("a c e r t a i n p r o p o r t i o n of l i m b " ) , decorum or the proper place of a l l the parts ("with a f i t t i n g s i z e " ) , v a r i e t y and ornament ( " b e a u t i f u l and p l e a s i n g c o l o r i n g " ) — p r e s e n t e d as q u a l i t i e s t h a t are n a t u r a l l y obtained through a c l o s e i m i t a t i o n of nature. And t h i s process of i m i t a t i o n a l s o y i e l d s the m o r a l i t y of a r t , f o r i t i s argued tha t a r t , i n thus i m i t a t i n g nature, i s • i n f a c t d i v i n e , f o r the works of nature are the works of God, "the f i r s t a r t i s t " (p. 4 9 2 ) . This idea that e x t e r n a l nature i s the product of D i v i n e A r t had occurred as e a r l y as P l a t o and was a l s o an important current of thought i n the Middle Ages, but f o r many Renaissance t h e o r i s t s , anxious to rescue nature from the d e v i l and a r t from the p u r i t a n s , i t was to take on e v a n g e l i c a l p r o p o r t i o n . In England, where the P u r i t a n pressure was stronger than i n I t a l y , t h i s D i v i n e A r t theory, along w i t h other moral defenses, i s t o be found i n greater predominance. But even i n Tasso, who here so emphatically argues f o r the i n e x t r i c a b l l i t y of a r t and m o r a l i t y , we can f i n d evidence f o r an e s t h e t i c s separable from e t h i c s : "Real beauty . . . i s not so c a l l e d because of any u s e f u l n e s s i t may possess, but i s p r i m a r i l y b e a u t i f u l i n i t s e l f " . J So a l s o among the E n g l i s h w r i t e r s , occupied as they are with j u s t i f y i n g beauty, an i d e a l of beauty, a p a r t from e t h i c s , can, i f c a r e f u l l y searched f o r , be found. 15Tasso's Opere quoted by Spingarn, L i t e r a r y C r i t i c i s m  i n the Renaissance (New York, 1908), p. 57. CHAPTER I I I 2 3 ART, NATURE AND PICTORIALISM AMONG THE ELIZABETHANS J . W. H. A t k i n s , arguing a g a i n s t G. Gregory Smith and J o e l E. Spingarn, h i s most prominent predecessors i n the study of Renaissance c r i t i c i s m , denies the i n f l u e n c e of six t e e n t h - c e n t u r y I t a l i a n c r i t i c s on the E l i z a b e t h a n defenders of poetry. He f i n d s that the defenses of the l a t t e r are c h a r a c t e r i z e d by an appeal to Nature or reason, and that t h i s i s a r e s u l t of the c o n t i n u a t i o n of medieval or n a t i v e thought and a l s o the i n f l u e n c e of f i f t e e n t h -century humanism. A s e t t l i n g of these disputes over d i r e c t i n f l u e n c e i s not w i t h i n the scope of t h i s paper, though i n passing I would argue th a t the p a r a l l e l p o s i t i o n s demonstrable between si x t e e n t h - c e n t u r y I t a l i a n and E n g l i s h c r i t i c s i n d i c a t e , i f d i r e c t i n f l u e n c e be denied, an ex c e p t i o n a l case of g l e i c h z e l t i g k e i t . In deference to A t k i n s ' argument, however, and i n order not to make one i n f l u e n c e appear o v e r l y predominant, a look at a re l e v a n t work by a f i f t e e n t h - c e n t u r y humanist should perhaps be taken. In Erasmus* "The Godly Feast" Eusebius takes h i s dinner guests on a tour of h i s garden, a garden which i s ^ E n g l i s h L i t e r a r y C r i t i c i s m : The Renascence (London, 1947), p. 6. designed f o r pleasure, but "honest pleasure, that i s : to f e a s t the eyes, r e f r e s h the n o s t r i l s , r e s t o r e the s o u l . " The garden i s dominated by a statue of C h r i s t i n s t e a d of Priapus. Nature here i s rescued from the d e v i l and wit h i t a r t , f o r Eusebius answers a guest who wonders about the n e c e s s i t y of p a i n t i n g a garden on the w a l l s of an already neat and t r i m one: One garden wasn't enough to hold a l l kinds of p l a n t s . Moreover, we are twice pleased when we see a painted flower competing with a r e a l one. In one we admire the cleverness of Nature, i n the other the inventiveness of the p a i n t e r , i n each the goodness of God, who gives a l l t h i n g s f o r our use . . ." (p. 137) I t i s the argument of Tasso wi t h a s l i g h t d i f f e r e n c e . Here we are not asked to admire a r t f o r i m i t a t i n g the c r e a t i v e a ct of God but to admire the i m i t a t i v e a ct i n i t s e l f because t h i s very a b i l i t y has been created by God. An emphasis that marks Erasmus' e s t h e t i c as more s c h o l a s t i c than Tasso's i s to be found i n h i s c o n t i n u a l p r a i s e of v a r i e t y , but v a r i e t y i n the form of catalogue, and i n the pervading presence of m o r a l i t y , but m o r a l i t y i n the form of sentence. On the w a l l s of the garden can be found every k i n d of b i r d , every k i n d of t r e e , every k i n d of f l o w e r , e t c . , and w i t h each one, a proverb. One p a r t i c u l a r d e t a i l of the garden comes p o i n t e d l y 'Ten C o l l o a u i e s , t r a n s l a t e d C r a i g R. Thompson (New York, 1957), p. 135. c l o s e "to Spenser's green-gold i v y which s t a r t e d , and i n time w i l l end, t h i s i n q u i r y . The c u l t u r e d Eusebius has i n h i s Godly g a r d e n — p i l l a r s of i m i t a t i o n marble! The p i l l a r s c o n t a i n a l e s s o n , as a l l items i n t h i s garden do, which i s to remind us that appearances o f t e n deceive. But the owner proudly adds the comment that "We make up f o r l a c k of wealth by i n g e n u i t y " (p. 137). S u r e l y h e r e i n i s Implied t h a t besides the lesson', and des p i t e the, what now seems to us t a s t e l e s s i m i t a t i o n , these p i l l a r s are to be enjoyed f o r t h e i r beauty. Even i n Erasmus, then, as e s t h e t i c separable from e t h i c s can be found. The p i l l a r s are examples of deception, but they are b e a u t i f u l . Erasmus shares the E l i z a b e t h a n d e l i g h t i n the achievement of a r t i f i c i a l i t y . Although he was Dutch by b i r t h , h i s many t r i p s to England, h i s teaching p o s i t i o n a t Cambridge, and h i s f r i e n d s h i p with C o l e t and More, a l l o w us perhaps t o consider Erasmus as the f i r s t E n g l i s h c r i t i c that we have here examined. He i s r e f e r r e d to with respect by the c r i t i c s of the E l i z a b e t h a n period proper and h i s e f f o r t s to i n t e g r a t e c l a s s i c i s m and C h r i s t i a n i t y are c e r t a i n l y t h e i r h e r i t a g e . , Before I begin my examination of A r t and Nature i n the e s t h e t i c s of the E l i z a b e t h a n s , however, i t should be noted that a f a r more thorough survey of the use of these two key terms during the Renaissance has been made i n a 1 8 recent book by Edward W i l l i a m T a y l o r . Prom page 8 to 21 he records the h a b i t u a l j o i n i n g of A r t and Nature as a n a l y t i c a l terms i n a v a r i e t y of " l o g i c a l l y " u n r e l a t e d areas of human endeavour: education, r h e t o r i c , cosmetics, gardening and l i t e r a r y c r i t i c i s m . H is explanation f o r t h e i r pervasive use i s tha t i n the order of nature the two of them comprehended the whole of man's experience. He quotes i n h i s support l i n e s from H e r r i c k ' s Upon Man: Man i s compos'd here of a two-fold p a r t ; The f i r s t of Nature, and the r e s t of A r t -(p. 33) Taylor e x p l a i n s the d i f f e r e n t p o s i t i o n s Renaissance w r i t e r s take i n t h e i r assessment of the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the two terms as dependent on t h e i r views of reason. "Where Nature i s v i r t u a l l y equivalent to ( r i g h t ) reason, the r e l a t i o n s h i p between Nature and the product of human reason, A r t , w i l l be complementary" (p. 28). T h i s , he f e e l s , i s the orthodox p o s i t i o n of C h r i s t i a n humanists, while Montaigne who sees the law of nature as opposed to human reason and hence the terms A r t and Nature as a n t i t h e t i c a l , i s the exception (p. 2 9 ) . He l a t e r adds, however, th a t a w r i t e r ' s view can vary with p a r t i c u l a r s i t u a t i o n s (p. 35) a n d i t i s the p a r t i c u l a r s i t u a t i o n of the u n f a l i e n , i n f a c t s u p e r i o r ^ N a t u r e and A r t i n Renaissance L i t e r a t u r e (New York, 1 9 6 4 ) . 2?. p o s i t i o n of nature i n p a s t o r a l that Taylor's book comes to focus on. H i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n , while h e l p f u l l y thorough i n i t s f i r s t chapter, explores through p a s t o r a l the r e l a t i o n -s h i p of A r t , Nature and e t h i c s and leaves the question of A r t , Nature and e s t h e t i c s s t i l l to be examined. In our attempt to explore the l a t t e r we w i l l f i r s t observe the use of the terms by an e a r l y E l i z a b e t h a n , Roger Ascham. In Ascham's chapter on I m i t a t i o from The Scholemaster (1570),*9 he defines the process of a r t i n terms of the i m i t a t i o n of nature: I m i t a t i o n i s a f a c u l t i e to express l i v e l i e and p e r f i t e l i e that example which ye go about to folow. And of i t s e l f e i t i s l a r g e and wide: f o r a l l the workes of nature i n a maner be examples f o r a r t e to folow. ( I , p. 5) Ascham does not develop t h i s i n l a r g e f o r h i s subject here, i n a d i s c o u r s e on education, i s the proper use of another k i n d of i m i t a t i o n , the i m i t a t i o n of other authors. In the process of t h i s d i s c u s s i o n , however, he o f t e n makes use of the poet-painter analogy and i n doing so implies again that a b a s i c process of a r t i s t h a t of the c l o s e I m i t a t i o n of nature. He p r a i s e s even a mean p a i n t e r as being a b e t t e r i m i t a t o r than some students at u n i v e r s i t y (p. 1 0 ) ; he p r a i s e s l<^In G . Gregory Smith's E l i z a b e t h a n C r i t i c a l Essays (London, 1904), I , pp. 1-45. Unless otherwise noted a l l f o l l o w i n g quotations from E l i z a b e t h a n c r i t i c a l works w i l l be taken from Smith's two volume c o l l e c t i o n . The s p e l l i n g i n Smith has been reproduced except i n the cases of u's and v's or j ' s and i ' s which I have modernized. V i r g i l f o r i m i t a t i n g Homer as p r e c i s e l y as a p a i n t e r i n London f o l l o w s the f e a t u r e of any f a i r personage (p. 15) and on pages 22 and 28 he a g a i n employs t h i s type of com-p a r i s o n . The analogy employed i n p r a i s e of V i r g i l makes l i t t l e sense of a modern; we would expect i t r a t h e r to toe employed i n d i s p r a i s e , f o r i t emphasizes f o r us V i r g i l ' s l a c k of o r i g i n a l i t y , h i s " a r t i f i c i a l i t y " i n a p e j o r a t i v e sense. But to Ascham an a r t that i m i t a t e s a r t and an a r t t h a t i m i t a t e s n ature are e q u a l l y p r a i s e w o r t h y — p r o v i d e d a model has been chosen which i n i t s e l f i s a good d e p i c t i o n of n a t u r e . A seeming r e v e r s a l of o p i n i o n occurs i n Ascham's comment on S a l u s t , however. Fo r he d i s p r a i s e s him with the words t h a t " i n S a l u s t w r i t i n g i s more A r t e than n a t u r e , and more l a b o r than A r t e " and adds that he does not express him-s e l f " l i v e l y and n a t u r a l l y with common speach but a r t i f i c i a l l i a f t e r to l e a r n e d a s o r t " ( I , p. 4 0 ) . These words seem u n e q u i v o c a l i n t h e i r preference of nature over a r t , but i f we read f u r t h e r we f i n d t h a t the reason S a l u s t e r r e d i n Ascham's eyes i s t h a t he i m i t a t e d the wrong people ( I , pp. 41-43); i n other words, a r t i f i c i a l i t y ( i n the sense of a r t ' s i m i t a t i o n of a r t ) i s not bad i n i t s e l f , but with a m i s d i r e c t e d a r t i f i c e r i t can r e s u l t i n a wrong, or f a l s e a r t i f i c i a l i t y . A r i g h t a r t i f i c i a l i t y , on t h e other hand, i s one t h a t seems n a t u r a l — t h a t i s , i t s t i l l has an u l t i m a t e connection with nature f o r i t has chosen i t s model f o r t h i s connection. As i n Ascham's, we may i s o l a t e i n Sidney's c r i t i c i s m a quotation which would i n d i c a t e a separation i n the w r i t e r ' mind between the p o s i t i o n and value of the products of a r t and those of nature. But i n Sidney a r t , a t l e a s t the a r t of poetry, i s d e f i n i t e l y valued above nature. He demon-s t r a t e s how every a r t of mankind has "the workes of Nature f o r h i s p r i n c i p a l l o b j e c t " , showing how the astronomer, geometrician, musician, philosopher, lawyer, h i s t o r i a n , grammarian, r h e t o r i c i a n , l o g i c i a n , p h y s i c i a n and even the metaphysician r e l y on nature to o b t a i n t h e i r a r t i f i c i a l r u l e s . This i s indeed the orthodox e m p i r i c i s t p o s i t i o n , but Sidney expresses i t only as a preface to h i s r e a l point — t h a t of the supremacy of poetry. For f o l l o w i n g the d e s c r i p t i o n of the f u n c t i o n s of the other a r t s comes the triumphant: Onely the Poet, disdayning to be t i e d to any such s u b j e c t i o n , l i f t e d up w i t h the v i g o r of h i s owne i n v e n t i o n , dooth growe i n e f f e c t another nature, in.making t h i n g s e i t h e r b e t t e r then Nature b r i n g e t h f o r t h , o r, q u i t e a newe, formes such as never were i n Nature . . . so as hee goeth hand i n hand with Nature, not enclosed w i t h i n the narrow warrant of her g u i f t s , but f r e e l y ranging onely w i t h i n the Zodiak of h i s owne w i t . ( I , I56) At f i r s t reading t h i s sounds s t a r t l i n g l y l i k e an a r t f o r a r t ' s sake d o c t r i n e based on a spontaneous s u b j e c t i v e 30. concept of c r e a t i v i t y , but as we read f u r t h e r and l e a r n how poets make the "too much loved earth more l o v e l y " , we are reminded that even i m i t a t i o n with improvement remains i m i t a t i o n . Reading s t i l l f u r t h e r we f i n d t h a t the improve-ment i s made to present b e t t e r than n a t u r a l men as b e t t e r examples to f o l l o w ; i n other words, i t i s a r t f o r m o r a l i t y ' s , not f o r a r t ' s sake. We must read much f a r t h e r , however, t o the l a s t s e c t i o n of the Apology where Sidney i s diagnosing the f a u l t s of contemporary poetry, to f i n d what i s perhaps h i s most s i n c e r e , because h i s calmest, a t t i t u d e towards poetry. In h i s opening pages he i s anxious to f l a u n t the powers of poetry i n the face of i t s d e t r a c t o r s and a t times makes use of h y p e r b o l i c means of persuasion. Towards the end, however, though he repeats h i s contention t h a t a poet must be born with h i s d i v i n e g i f t , he adds with emphasis that even "the highest f l y i n g w i t " must have a Dedalus to guidehim, a Dedalus with "three wings to beare i t s e l f e up i n t o the ayre of due commendations t h a t i s , A r t e , I m i t a t i o n , and Exercise,," ( I , 195). And i t i s because E n g l i s h poets w i l l not cumber them-selves with a r t i f i c i a l r u l e s or i m i t a t i v e patterns that t h e i r products are so open to censure. A spontaneous c r e a t i v i t y , then, w i l l not produce good a r t ; but n e i t h e r w i l l the i g n o r i n g of nature, f o r Sidney, i n e x p l a i n i n g how he o f t e n f i n d s a sounder s t y l e i n "smally learned C o u r t i e r s " 31. than i n some professors of l e a r n i n g says: "the C o u r t i e r , f o l l o w i n g that which "by p r a c t i s e hee f i n d e t h f i t t e s t to nature, t h e r e i n (though he know i t not) doth according to A r t , though not by A r t : where the other, u s i n g A r t to show A r t , and not t o hide A r t (as i n these cases he should doe), f l y e t h from nature, and indeede abuseth A r t " ( I , 203). Choosing the f i t t e s t i n Nature leads to a r t , and, as i n Ascham, the good, conscious a r t i f i c i a l i t y , i s the one t h a t seems n a t u r a l . That poetry's job i s to produce what seems l i k e nature, even though f o r the sake of teaching i t produces what i s i n f a c t , b e t t e r than nature, i s evident i n Sidney's arguments f o r the greater moral e f f i c a c y of poetry than of h i s t o r y and philosophy. The supremacy l i e s i n poetry's picture-making a b i l i t y , and i n i t s a b i l i t y t o make convincing p i c t u r e s , f o r when i t does so poetry i s "indeed the r i g h t Popular Philosopher" ( I , 1 6 ? ) . As b e f i t s i t s t i t l e the greater part of Sidney's Apology i s devoted to the defence of poetry's moral q u a l i t y ; he even gives poetry's moral f u n c t i o n a place i n h i s famous d e f i n i t i o n : "Poesie t h e r e f o r e i s an a r t e of i m i t a t i o n . . . a speaking p i c t u r e : w i t h t h i s end, to teach and d e l i g h t " ( I , 1 5 8 ) . But because Sidney i s preoccupied with poetry's a b i l i t y t o teach need not mean that he i s unaware of the a b i l i t y of a r t to d e l i g h t without teaching. Already i n h i s 3 2 . "too much loved earth" (I, 156) Sidney makes an i m p l i c i t admission that delight i n beauty can be dangerous to morality, and elsewhere, but with clever rhetoric that turns his admission into a i d f o r his own defense, he con-fesses i t . Poetry, he says, may be "Phantastike" instead of "Eikastike"; i t may i n f e c t the fancy with unworthy objects instead of f i g u r i n g f o r t h good things as i t should. But he argues that i t i s not poetry that abuses man's wit, but man's wit that abuses poetry, and, more strongly s t i l l , that "whatsoever, being abused dooth most harme, being r i g h t l y used (and upon the r i g h t use each thing conceivith h i s t i t l e ) , doth most good" (I, 186-18?). There i s a sentence along the way i n t h i s argument, however, that seems to me to express what Sidney could never d i r e c t l y confess (and which i s also hinted at i n the "too much" phrase); i t contains a proudly amoral, and t y p i c a l l y Renaissance esth e t i c : "But grant love of beautie to be a b e a s t l i e f a u l t (although i t be very hard, s i t h onely man, and no beast, hath that gyft to descerne beauty). . . " (I, 186). In I t a l y Castelvetro and Pracastoro had boldly claimed for delight i n beauty an amoral status. And the defense here, that love of beauty i s a qu a l i t y that helps to define man, i s c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the new morality of the Renaissance, ine v i t a b l y associated with I t a l y . It i s a morality i n which man i s responsible to. the image of man as man, not man as the 33. Image of God. Sidney, however, only h i n t s a t h i s a t t r a c t i o n to i t . Perhaps the h i n t was not made co n s c i o u s l y . The focus of Puttenham's c r i t i c a l t r e a t i s e , as i t s t i t l e i n d i c a t e s , d i f f e r s from that of Sidney's. His concern i s with The A r t e of E n g l i s h Poesie and a c c o r d i n g l y h i s chapters are devoted to formal concerns such as the cha r a c t e r -i s t i c s of genres, proportions (metre and rhyme) and decorations ( f i g u r e s ) . He begins, however, wi t h a defense that resembles Sidney's, arguing f o r the d i v i n e i n s p i r a t i o n of poetry, i t s a n t i q u i t y , and i t s moral e f f i c a c y . He i s not qu i t e as s t r i n g e n t i n h i s i n s i s t e n c e on the l a t t e r , however, f o r he q u i t e c o n s c i o u s l y allows that poetry can f u n c t i o n simply as a "common solace of mankind, i n a l l h i s t r a v a i l s and cares of t h i s t r a n s i t o r i e l i f e ; and i n t h i s l a s t s o r t , being used f o r r e c r e a t i o n onely, may a l l o w a b l y beare matter not: .alwayes of the gravest or of any great commoditie or p r o f i t , but r a t h e r i n some s o r t v a i n e , d i s s o l u t e , or wanton, so i t be not very scandalous & of e v i l l example" ( I I , 25). T h i s , however, i s only the t h i r d " s o r t " of poetry; the f i r s t honours the gods, while the second i s concerned w i t h moral d o c t r i n e and "the r e v e a l i n g of sciences n a t u r a l l to other p r o f i t a b l e A r t s " ( I I , 25). This l i s t i n g of 3^. a l t e r n a t i v e s i s t y p i c a l of Puttenham's uncommitted p o s i t i o n i n the w r i t i n g of t h i s t r e a t i s e . He s t a r t s and f i n i s h e s h i s work with s i m i l a r l i s t s , and i n h i s c o n c l u s i o n passes o f f the whole t h i n g as a "tedious t r i f l e " ( I I , 1 9 2 ) . The l a t t e r remark, of course, i s only a conventional show of c o u r t l y gentleness, appropriate s i n c e the work i s dedicated to the Queen, but the noncommittal l i s t s , w i t h t h e i r generous employment of our key terms, Nature and A r t , remain. Puttenham's f l e x i b l e use of them gives us perhaps the t r u e s t p i c t u r e of t h e i r general employment among the E l i z a b e t h a n c o u r t i e r s . With echoes of Sidney, Puttenham begins by s t a t i n g t h a t a poet i s a maker analogous to God, and as such i s s u p e r i o r to a l l other a r t i f i c e r s , s c i e n t i f i c or mechanical. But the very next sentence q u a l i f i e s t h i s e x a l t a t i o n : "And nev e r t h e l e s s e , without any repugnancie at a l l , a Poet may i n some s o r t be s a i d a f o l l o w e r or i m i t a t o r , because he can expresse the t r u e and l i v e l y of every t h i n g i s set before him . . . and Poesie an a r t not only of making, but a l s o of i m i t a t i o n " ( I I , 3 ) . D i s c u s s i n g the a r t of poetry Puttenham f i n d s that even more q u a l i f i c a t i o n s are necessary. Again he begins on a high note—"And t h i s science i n h i s p e r f e c t i o n can not grow but by some d i v i n e ' i n s t i n c t " . He then s e t t l e s down by degrees: "or by e x c e l l e n c i e of nature and complexion; or "by great s u b t i l t i e of the s p i r i t s and wit; or by much experience and observation of the world, and course of kinde; or, peradventure, by a l l or most part of them" (liT, 3-4, Underlining mine). One feels a f t e r reading the t r e a t i s e through that the "or" that Puttenham would t r u l y support i s missing, that i t would be "or by exercise, study and imitation of authors". For already i n Chapter II he i s defining a r t as "a c e r t a i n order of rules pre-scribed by reason, and gathered by experience" ( i . e . observation of the success of past authors) and i n his f i n a l chapter he i s advising the a r t i s t to dissemble so that the su b t l e t i e s of his art "may not appeare, nor seeme to proceede from him by any studie or trade of r u l e s , but to be his n a t u r a l l " (II, 186-187). Following t h i s position, i n some ways resembling Sidney's, come more q u a l i f i c a t i o n s , three pages of them that explain where and when the natural i s i n fact more commendable than the a r t i f i c i a l . Looking again at the other arts Puttenham shows that sometimes a r t i s an a i d to nature, as i n gardening and physic, and says that then i t i s no small praise for the gardener and physician to be c a l l e d a cunning a r t i f i c e r ; that sometimes art surmounts nature's s k i l l , as when a garden produces flowers that did not exist before (makes a single g i l l i f l o w e r double), and again the a r t i f i c i a l i s praiseworthy; t h i r d l y 3 6 . that a r t sometimes i m i t a t e s nature, as i n p a i n t i n g and c a r v i n g and here a l s o the a r t i f i c i a l i s to be p r a i s e d . F i n a l l y , he says that a r t can produce e f f e c t s contrary to nature, as a carpenter b u i l d i n g a house, and here too i t i s a p r a i s e to c a l l the a r t a r t i f i c i a l . Also i n the a c t i o n s of man there are those a c t i v i t i e s that are praised f o r being a r t i f i c i a l , such as dancing by measures, s i n g i n g by note or p l a y i n g the l u t e . Speech, however, i s n a t u r a l to man, and though i t may be improved by e x e r c i s e "whatsoever a man speakes or persuades he doth i t not be i m i t a t i o n a r t i f i c i a l l y , but by observation n a t u r a l l y " ((EI, 190). Puttenham admits that one may speak b e t t e r with the a i d of r u l e s and precepts, j u s t as one may see b e t t e r with the a i d of g l a s s e s , but n a t u r a l speaking, as with unaided seeing, w i l l always be praised above the a r t i f i c i a l . Turning s p e c i f i c a l l y to the poet, however, Puttenham argues that i n h i s composition he must use a l l f o u r types of a r t i f i c i a l i t y d escribed above, and i s admired f o r each, but " f o r that i n our maker or Poet which r e s t s only i n devise and issues from an e x c e l l e n t sharpe and quick i n v e n t i o n , hplpen by a c l e a r e and b r i g h t phantasie and imagination" he i s then most admired when he i s most n a t u r a l and l e a s t a r t i f i c i a l ( I I , 191 - 192). So a t the end of a work whose aim i s to a i d the making of poetry comes an admission, i n e f f e c t , that a poet i s born and not made. But note that i t i s only 37. o n e - f i f t h of the c r e a t i v e process that i s praised as n a t u r a l . The n a t u r a l must be there, but so must the f o u r -f i f t h s of a r t i f i c e ; Nature suggests, but a r t p o l i s h e s . "Therefore s h a l l our Poet receave prayse f o r both". And when the p r a i s e i s f o r a r t , as i n Ascham and Sidney, i t i s f o r the a r t i f i c i a l w e l l dissembled. In Ascham, Sidney and Puttenham we have three important spokesmen f o r E l i z a b e t h a n c r i t i c i s m , and the agreement we f i n d i n t h e i r a t t i t u d e s towards a r t and nature — t h a t a r t i s an i m i t a t i o n of nature, t h a t nature needs a r t , and that a r t must seem n a t u r a l — c a n be found almost unanimously among the l e s s e r c r i t i c s . Harvey a t t a c k s Nashe saying that he needs a r t and I m i t a t i o n to a t t a i n "whereunto the cranknesse of Imagination already a s p i r e t h " ( I I , 276) ; but Nashe himself argues that he has not set h i m s e l f a g a i n s t a r t but the "diseases of a r t " ( I , 3 2 0 ) . And i n another controversy Campion argues against rhyme as a vulgar and " u n a r t i f i c i a l " custom ( I I , 327)> and D a n i e l defends rhyme on the grounds that i t i s n a t u r a l to the E n g l i s h language and that Nature i s above a l l A r t ( I I , 359) . D a n i e l i s r e f u t i n g what many E l i z a b e t h a n w r i t e r s would c a l l a" f a l s e a r t i f i c i a l i t y , a r i g o r o u s a p p l i c a t i o n of r u l e s to an u n y i e l d i n g substance, and i n order to emphasize the un-naturalness of t h i s process h i s r h e t o r i c a l i n c l i n a t i o n , q u i t e n a t u r a l l y , leads him to e x a l t i t s opposite. D a n i e l here i s the exception; the ot h e r s , even i f on opposite sides i n a p a r t i c u l a r controversy, agree i n general on a balance being necessary i n the r e l a t i o n s h i p between nature and a r t . That an E l i z a b e t h a n e s t h e t i c i s not i n e x t r i c a b l y i n v o l v e d i n e t h i c s was seen i m p l i c i t l y i n Sidney and e x p l i c i t l y i n Puttenham. And to assure ourselves that many Elizabethans were aware of t h i s f a c t we can t u r n to F r a n c i s Meres and f i n d i n h i s P a l l a d l s Tamla, a l i t e r a r y commonplace-book, the d e c l a r a t i o n that we may p r a i s e an a r t at the same time as we detest i t s subject-matter. H i s example i s a p o r t r a i t of murder or i n c e s t ( I I , 311)- The occurence of t h i s statement i n a commonplace book argues that i t was enter t a i n e d by others than Meres h i m s e l f . D e l i g h t , then, may be separated from p r o f i t . But there remains to be defined those q u a l i t i e s which i n a r t p a r t i c u l a r l y d e l i g h t e d the E l i z a b e t h a n s . The importance of d e l i g h t i n the a r t i f i c i a l w e l l dissembled has, I hope, been demonstrated from Ascham's, Sidney's and Puttenham's c r i t i c i s m . F urther i l l u s t r a t i o n i s to be found i n the "ut p i c t u r a poesis" t r a d i t i o n the currency of which we have already witnessed among the c r i t i c s . The po i n t s at which Ascham compares poetry t o p a i n t i n g have been noted; Sidney d e f i n e s poetry as a speaking p i c t u r e and l i k e Meres uses p a i n t i n g to i l l u s t r a t e the immoral p o s s i b i l i t i e s of a r t (Sidney, I , 18?; Meres, I I , 3 1 1 ) ; Puttenham, i n d i s c u s s i n g ornament, compares f i g u r e s i n poetry t o colours i n p a i n t i n g ( I I , 1 ^ 3 ) . Jean Hagstrum, who has devoted a book to the examination of the r e l a t i o n s h i p between these two a r t s , (see above footnote 12) claims that "the c h i e f importance of ut p i c t u r a poesls i n Renaissance c r i t i c i s m was tha t i t served the purpose of a r t i s t i c n a t u r a l i s m " (p. 6 2 ) . On the other hand, i t has been argued that the E l i z a b e t h a n p i c t o r i a l a r t s were not themselves n a t u r a l i s t i c , and i t i s tr u e that to a modern viewer, having experienced nineteenth-century n a t u r a l i s m , the E l i z a b e t h a n v e r s i o n of t h i s s t y l e seems h i g h l y a r t i f i c i a l . But, i n support of Hagstrum and as we have seen above, the n a t u r a l and a r t i f i c i a l to the E l i z a b e t h a n are not a n t i t h e t i c a l . Furthermore, c e r t a i n characters i n E l i z a b e t h a n poems and plays c l e a r l y comment on a r t as i f i t were n a t u r a l i s t i c . Since i t has o f t e n been shown tha t he abounds i n them, Shakespeare, the most famous of E l i z a b e t h a n s , can be used as a source f o r t h i s p a r t i c u l a r E l i z a b e t h a n commonplace In h i s e a r l y poem, The Rape of Lucrece, 181 l i n e s are devoted to the d e s c r i p t i o n of a p a i n t i n g d e p i c t i n g the seige of Troy. The f u n c t i o n of the p a i n t i n g w i t h i n the poem i s to epitomize i n v i s u a l terms Lucrece's g r i e f . She f i n d s and describes Hecuba's face as the one i n which 40. " a l l d i s t r e s s i s s t e l l e d " ( 1 . 1444) "but a great many l i n e s a r e simply devoted to the p r a i s i n g of the p a i n t e r ' s s k i l l , and h i s s k i l l , i t i s e v i d e n t , l i e s i n h i s a c h i e v e -ment of l i f e l i k e n e s s : A thousand lamentable o b j e c t s t h e r e , In s c o r n of na t u r e , a r t gave l i f e l e s s l i f e . (11. 1373-1374) Many a dry drop seemed a weeping t e a r . ( 1 . 1375) And here and there the p a i n t e r i n t e r l a c e s Pale cowards, marching on wi t h t r e m b l i n g paces, Which h e a r t l e s s peasants d i d so w e l l resemble That one would swear he saw them quake and tremble. (11 . 1390-139*0 The s c a l p s of many, almost h i d behind, To jump up h i g h e r seemed, to mock the mind. (11. 1413-1414) (Mock the viewer's mind, that i s , i n t h a t what he knows i s f i x e d and u n r e a l seems to move, and to be r e a l . ) For such imaginary work was t h e r e . C o n c e i t d e c e i t f u l , so compact, so k i n d . (11 . 1422-1423) (Kind, meaning n a t u r a l . ) The f i r s t and the l a s t o f these q u o t a t i o n s , i t w i l l be noted, e x p l i c i t l y c o n t a i n the c l i c h e of the c r i t i c s , t h a t an a r t w e l l dissembled ( t o seem n a t u r a l ) i s to be p r a i s e d . S c a t t e r e d throughout the play s of Shakespeare we f i n d f u r t h e r evidence of h i s p e r i o d ' s e s t h e t i c . Bassanio on opening the l e a d casket and f i n d i n g with wonder P o r t i a ' s p i c t u r e t h e r e i n p r a i s e s the a r t i s t f o r h i s r e a l i s m : 41. "What demigod /Hath come so near c r e a t i o n ? Move these eyes?" (Merchant of Venice. Act I I , sc. i i , 11. 116-117) In Timon of Athens the Poet p r a i s e s a product of h i s f r i e n d the P a i n t e r w i t h " I t t u t o r s nature, A r t i f i c i a l s t r i f e / L i v e s i n these touches, l i v e l i e r than l i f e . " ( I , i , 3 8 - 3 9 ) . Iachimo i n Cymbeline views a t a p e s t r y i n Imogen's bedchamber and wonders that i t "Could be so r a r e l y and e x a c t l y wrought, /Since the t r u e l i f e on't was " ( I I , i v . 7 5 - 7 6 ) . In the same scene he views the c a r v i n g on the mantelpiece and remarks: "Never saw I figures/So l i k e l y to r e p o r t themselves. The cutter/was as another nature, dumb, outwent her, /Motion and breath l e f t out. (11. 82-85) I have quoted a t some leng t h i n support of my view th a t E l i z a b e t h a n a r t , i n E l i z a b e t h a n eyes, c o n s c i e n t i o u s l y attempted to i m i t a t e e x t e r n a l nature. Some c r i t i c s f i n d i t p o s s i b l e to Ignore comments of the s o r t t h a t Iachimo and Bassanio make d e s p i t e t h e i r frequency, and point to others t h a t i n d i c a t e an a p p r e c i a t i o n of a symbolic a r t . Rosamond Tuve, f o r example, argues t h a t E l i z a b e t h a n a r t i f a c t s were designed to please on the grounds of formal e x c e l l e n c e r a t h e r than by " l i k e n e s s to the s t u f f of l i f e — a r e l a t i v e l y formless subject matter not to be i d e n t i f i e d w i t h the p o e t i c subject and e v i d e n t l y not even l o o s e l y i d e n t i f i e d w i t h ' r e a l i t y ' . " 2 0 The p r a i s e of l i f e - l i k e n e s s i n p i c t u r e s , 2 Q E l i z a b e t h a n and Metaphysical Imagery (Chicago, 1947), p. 25 . 42. she says, i s a c t u a l l y an apprehension of the i n t e l l i g i b l e i n the v i s i b l e and f o r i l l u s t r a t i o n she quotes from an o b s e r v a t i o n of another p i c t u r e of Troy, t h i s one i n Drayton's Mortimeriados: "See w o f u l l C i t t i e , on thy r u l n ' d wall,/The v e r i e Image of thy s e l f e heer see". Tuve i t a l i c i z e s "Image of thy s e l f e " and f e e l s t h a t t h i s proves t h a t the a r t i s t l i k e the poet only p o r t r a y s the p s y c h o l o g i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t (p. 54). What Tuve i s p o i n t i n g out i s not d i f f i c u l t t o see, even i n Lucrece can be found l i n e s t h a t p r a i s e the a r t i s t f o r r e v e a l i n g an inward q u a l i t y through e x t e r n a l p r e s e n t a t i o n ("But the m i l d g l a n c e t h a t s l y U l y s s e s l e n t / Showed deep regard and s m i l i n g government" 11. 1399-1400). But should r e c o g n i z i n g these e f f e c t s of a r t make us b l i n d to the othe r s ? We cannot deny that the E l i z a b e t h a n s d e l i g h t e d i n the a b i l i t y of a r t to epitomize; the p a i n t i n g occurs i n Lucrece f o r t h a t very reason. But th a t they a t the same time d e l i g h t e d i n a r t ' s a b i l i t y to count-f e i t , to seem l i f e - l i k e , must a l s o be r e c o g n i z e d . Tuve's argument i s that the E l i z a b e t h a n concept of i m i t a t i o n i n v o l v e s the a r t i s t ' s o r d e r i n g of nature and because of t h i s he may only present the u n i v e r s a l and the s i g n i f i c a n t (p. 2 5 ) • I would argue r a t h e r t h a t the E l i z a b e t h a n sees nature as a l r e a d y ordered, h i s s u b j e c t matter as a l r e a d y u n i v e r s a l and s i g n i f i c a n t , and h i s job as an a r t i s t , t h e r e f o r e , t o i m i t a t e n a t u r a l i s t i c a l l y . * 3 . A return to the c r i t i c s may help to demonstrate my contention. Campion, advocating the adoption of quantitative verse, writes that "The world i s made by simmetry and proportion, and i s i n that respect compared to Musick and Musick to Poetry" ( I I , 329) . Daniel, arguing to a d i f f e r e n t end employs the same means, for to him rhyme i s more pleasing to Nature, because Nature desires certainty ( I I , 3 6 6 ) . Harvey praises Petrarch f o r making a r t more excellent "by contemplation of excellentest nature" ( I I , 2 5 9 ) . Nature, for these Elizabethans, already contained the order that i s necessary to a r t . The quotation from Campion with i t s reference to the harmony of the spheres surely reminds us (how could Tuve forget) of that ordered Elizabethan world picture that T i l l y a r d finds i n 21 so many Elizabethan writings. And i n imitation of the Elizabethans I may here describe a picture to i l l u s t r a t e my point. Edward Taylor has included between pages 3 and 4 of his Nature and Art i n Renaissance L i t e r a t u r e (see footnote 18) the reproduction of an i l l u s t r a t i o n from Robert Fludd's Utrlusque cosmi ma.joris s c i l i c e t et minoris  metaphysica, physica atque technica h i s t o r i a (Oppenheim, l 6 l 7 ) » e n t i t l e d The Mirror of Nature and the Image of Art (Integrae  Naturae speculum, Artisque imago). In i t we see the hand of God extended from a cloud and grasping a chain which ends i n a manacle about the wrist of the goddess Natura. Natura 2 1 E . M. T i l l y a r d , The Elizabethan World Picture (London, I960). stands on sea and l a n d , her sun breast fecundates the earth and her head i s surrounded by s t a r s . In her l e f t hand she i n t u r n holds a chain; t h i s one manacles an ape-l i k e man (or a man-like ape) who holds a globe i n one hand, a compass i n the other, and who s i t s on the ear t h . The whole symbolizes, as Taylor points out, the attempts of a r t , or, man, to ape the works of God and Nature. And i n the surrounding symbolism we are reminded t h a t the works of God and Nature are already f i r m l y ordered. B i r d , f i s h , c a r r o t , man, woman, s n a i l , snake, l i o n , they a l l have a s e t , ordered place i n the h e i r a r c h y . And swi t c h i n g once more, wi t h E l i z a b e t h a n a g i l i t y , from p a i n t i n g to poetry, we f i n d i n Shakespeare support f o r our b e l i e f i n the currency of t h i s p i c t u r e of a r t as ape. A gentleman i n the Winter's Tale comments on Paulina's statue; "a piece many years i n doing and now newly performed by that r a r e I t a l i a n master, J u l i o Romano, who, had he himself e t e r n i t y and could put breath i n t o h i s work, would b e g u i l e Nature of her custom, s_o p e r f e c t l y he jls her ape" ( V . i i . 103-108, u n d e r l i n i n g mine). Even though the E l i z a b e t h a n world p i c t u r e i s not uniform.—some w r i t e r s draw on the chain of being, others on the theory of humours and others c l a i m a d i v i n e mystery-the assumption i n a l l these cases i s th a t the order i s there i n nature. The a r t i s t ' s t a s k , then, i s to i m i t a t e t h i s order f a i t h f u l l y , or, to make h i s own work seem n a t u r a l . I f he does so s u c c e s s f u l l y , the work of a r t a c t u a l l y becomes a meaningful part of the scheme of t h i n g s . Despite the evidence that E l i z a b e t h a n s sometimes regarded a r t as n a t u r a l i s t i c , I t might s t i l l be argued t h a t the professed n a t u r a l i s m of the E l i z a b e t h a n s i s simply a case of Englishmen aping I t a l y r a t h e r than nature. Por i n that country n a t u r a l i s m was a r e a l o p t i o n f o r the a r t i s t , and i t was to an I t a l i a n s c u l p t o r that Shakespeare paid the compliment of "p e r f e c t ape". I f we f i n d that the E l i z a b e t h a n v i s u a l a r t s can by no means be termed n a t u r a l i s t i c , we w i l l be forced to reassess the foregoing evidence and admit t h a t the "ut p i c t u r a p o e s i s " of c r i t i c a l convention i s j u s t t h a t , a borrowed and there f o r e meaningless convention. A look at these a r t s w i l l not only decide t h i s question of n a t u r a l i s m , but a l s o provide a broader, more p r a c t i c a l understanding of E l i z a b e t h a n e s t h e t i c s . 47. CHAPTER IV THE ELIZABETHAN VISUAL ARTS A common c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of E l i z a b e t h a n v i s u a l a r t s , obvious to the casual observer's eye, i s profuseness, v a r i e t y , or exuberance of d e t a i l . This love of v a r i e t y i s evident i n the E l i z a b e t h a n s ' c l o t h i n g , the surfaces of t h e i r f u r n i t u r e , on t h e i r t a p e s t r i e s , i n t h e i r gardens, and, i n ge n e r a l , throughout t h e i r whole environment. One n a t u r a l l y surmises that a l l t h i s surface a c t i v i t y i s d i c t a t e d by a concept of a r t th a t i s d e c o r a t i v e r a t h e r than n a t u r a l i s t i c . There i s l i t t l e to m i t i g a t e t h i s impression when on c l o s e r observation one f i n d s t h a t some k i n d of order i s i n f a c t i n c o n t r o l of t h i s p r o f u s i o n . For the order i n e v i t a b l y seems to be a mechanically imposed one: the geometric lay-out of the r i c h l y confused flower-beds, the c a r e f u l l y proportioned oak panels beneath a l l the fretwork, o r , to t u r n to a p e r t i n e n t analogy i n the a r t of l i t e r a t u r e , the 12 x 12 scheme that was intended to c o n t r o l the wandering expansiveness of the F a e r i e Queene. This k i n d of subdivided u n i t y i s obviously not organic, and an organic u n i t y i s s u r e l y what i s expected i n n a t u r a l i s t i c a r t , n a t u r a l i s t i c a r t as we know i t , t h a t i s . But i f n a t u r a l i s m i s the attempt of a r t to c o n s c i e n t i o u s l y i m i t a t e nature, the term can be used i n r e f e r r i n g to E l i z a b e t h a n a r t viewed through E l i z a b e t h a n eyes. 48. For i t s apparently a r t i f i c i a l p r i n c i p l e of profuse v a r i e t y w i t h i n an imposed order i s i n f a c t the method by which the E l i z a b e t h a n a r t i s t i m i t a t e d nature. For nature, to the E l i z a b e t h a n , i s at once w i l d l y profuse and c a r e f u l l y ordered. For example, Hooker, who, according to T i l l y a r d , i s a spokes-man f o r the educated nucleus t h a t formulated many b e l i e f s current i n the E l i z a b e t h a n age, sees the order i n nature as God's law "that order which God before a l l ages hath set down wi t h h i m s e l f , f o r himself to do a l l t h i n g s by." A mechanically imposed orders i s i n t r i n s i c , or n a t u r a l , then, because God has w i l l e d i t so. Furthermore, Hooker adds, that God, having so chosen to work i n f i n i t u d e of some s o r t to show Hi s g l o r y , then chose to express the abundance of His g l o r y i n v a r i e t y ( T i l l y a r d , p. 1 1 ) . We are not j u s t i f i e d then i n a p p l y i n g the terms " a r t i f i c i a l " or " d e c o r a t i v e " to E l i z a b e t h a n a r t s i f we mean by t h i s a p p l i c a t i o n that these a r t s are f r i v o l o u s and s u p e r f i c i a l , that they had nothing to say about man's r o l e i n the u n i v e r s e ; To i n s i s t t h a t the g l i t t e r i n g a r t of the pe r i o d i s i n f a c t organic from an E l i z a b e t h a n viewpoint w i l l seem curious but even T i l l y a r d , who should more than most be expected to overcome t h i s f e e l i n g of queerness, c a n d i d l y admits i n h i s Epilogue to the E l i z a b e t h a n World  P i c t u r e that the Elizabethan's view of the cosmos and i t s mechanical a p p l i c a t i o n s (such as the number two being the 49. symbol of the female and the number three of the male) must, to a modern, I n e v i t a b l y remain "queer" (p. 101). And i f T i l l y a r d says t h i s of the E l i z a b e t h a n w o r l d - p i c t u r e i t s e l f , we can expect an even queerer f e e l i n g when we meet wit h a r t ' s i m i t a t i o n of t h a t p i c t u r e . The E l i z a b e t h a n s themselves d i d not employ the term "n a t u r a l i s m " . I have used i t i n order t o re-evaluate i t s counter term, the word " a r t i f i c i a l " . This term was f r e q u e n t l y used by the Eliz a b e t h a n s themselves, but not i n the- p e j o r a t i v e sense w i t h which i t i s i n e v i t a b l y employed today. Though the E l i z a b e t h a n s d i d not use the term n a t u r a l i s t i c and though they d i d not c o n t i n u a l l y announce th a t t h e i r a r t i m i t a t e d the p r i n c i p l e s of God's nature, they f r e q u e n t l y complimented a r t by r e f e r r i n g to nature, and complimented nature by r e f e r r i n g to a r t . A r t and nature to them were not a n t i t h e t i c a l but a n c i l l a r y . In the previous chapter evidence of t h i s theory has been found i n the E l i z a b e t h a n c r i t i c a l w r i t i n g s . A look at the E l i z a b e t h a n v i s u a l a r t s provides s i m i l a r evidence t h a t they regarded the two as amicable. I t may be a p p r o p r i a t e to begin t h i s study by l o o k i n g at the a r t of gardening f o r i t i s here above a l l that the r e l a t i o n -s h i p of a r t and nature most obviously manifests i t s e l f . I t has been noted above th a t the o r g a n i z a t i o n a l p r i n c i p l e of m u l t i p l e u n i t y , of profuseness segmented i n t o a mechanical order, i s to be observed i n the layout' of the 50. E l i z a b e t h a n garden. A c c o r d i n g t o E s t h e r S i n g l e t o n , who has done c a r e f u l r e s e a r c h i n t o the s t r u c t u r e o f E l i z a b e t h a n gardens with the aim of p r o v i d i n g p r a c t i c a l i n s t r u c t i o n s f o r l o v e r s of Shakespeare who wish to reproduce them, t h e r e a r e f o u r p r i n c i p l e s t h a t were observed i n a l l stately-E l i z a b e t h a n gardens: 1. The la y o u t was made a c c o r d i n g to the a r c h i t e c t u r e of the house i n long t e r r a c e s and paths of r i g h t l i n e s , o r " f o r t h r i g h t s " to harmonize with the r e c t a n g u l a r l i n e s of the Tudor b u i l d i n g s , yet a t the same time the monotony of the s t r a i g h t l i n e was broken up with beds of i n t r i c a t e p a t t e r n s ( k n o t s ) . 2. Beds were p l a n t e d w i t h mixed fl o w e r s to pro v i d e a mosaic of r i c h , i n d e t e r m i n a t e c o l o r . 3» There were fl o w e r s and shrubs f o r a l l seasons. 4. A t t e n t i o n was g i v e n t o the sense of s m e l l as w e l l as s i g h t . 2 2 While t h i s f o u r t h p r i n c i p l e w i l l h a r d l y seem r e l e v a n t here, i t , s h o u l d be noted i n pa s s i n g as evidence of the E l i z a b e t h a n joy i n p e r c e i v i n g i n t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p s . Here the i n t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p i s simply between the senses, but the E l i z a b e t h a n s tended to see a l l t h e i r a r t s i n r e l a t i o n s h i p to one another. The f a c t t h a t they had an i n s t i n c t i v e f e e l i n g f o r correspondences, saw, i n f a c t , the whole u n i v e r s e as i n t e r r e l a t e d , i s w e l l made i n T i l l y a r d ' s book (see fo o t n o t e 21). The other t h r e e p r i n c i p l e s , however, a r e what i n t e r e s t us here; The f i r s t i l l u s t r a t e s the p r i n c i p l e of m u l t i p l i c i t y 2 2 T h e Shakespeare Garden (London, 1923), pp. 42-43. 51.. w i t h i n an imposed order while the second and t h i r d emphasize the importance t h a t was given to v a r i e t y or abundance. Once the o v e r - a l l order has been imposed, the v a r i e t y i s allowed to run rampant: to provide a r i c h indeterminate mosaic of c o l o r s . S i n g l e t o n has a p p r o p r i a t e l y used the term "mosaic" to d e s c r i b e a flower bed, f o r i t was i n common usage among the E l i z a b e t h a n s . Sidney, f o r example, describes Kalander's garden i n The A r c a d i a : . . . They were suddainely stept i n t o a d e l i c a t e greene, of each s i d e of the greene a t h i c k e t bend, behinde the t h i c k e t s again newe beddes of f l o w e r s , which being under the t r e e s , the tre e s were t o them a P a v i l i o n , and they to the tr e e s a mosaical f l o o r e : so tha t a r t e t h e r e i n irould needes be d e l i g h t f u l l by c o u n t e r f e i t i n g h i s enemie e r r o r , making order i n confusion.23 Kalander's garden i s pra i s e d f o r resembling man-made s t r u c t u r e s such as mosaics or p a v i l i o n s ; i t seems that the viewer d e r i v e s h i s pleasure from seeing the n a t u r a l appear a r t i f i c i a l . In such p r a c t i c e s of E l i z a b e t h a n gardening as the ge o m e t r i c a l l y t r a i n e d f r u i t t rees we f i n d the same apparent d e s i r e to d e n a t u r a l i z e nature. But i n hearing an El i z a b e t h a n speak of t h i s process we l e a r n t h a t i t i s not a wanton one; i t i s , i n f a c t , a t l e a s t according to Gervase Markham i n h i s Country Farm, a process based on n a t u r a l p r i n c i p l e s : 23The Complete Works of S i r P h i l i p Sidney, ed. A l b e r t F e u i l l e r a t (London, 1 9 1 2 ) , Volume I , p. 17. 52. The Garden of Pleasure s h a l l be set about and compassed w i t h arbors made of jessamin, rosemarie, box, j u n i p e r , c y p r e s s - t r e e s , s a v i n , cedars, rose-trees and other d a i n t i e s f i r s t planted and pruned according as the nature of every one doth r e q u i r e * (quoted by S i n g l e t o n , p. 71 u n d e r l i n i n g mine) His p o s i t i o n seems to be tha t nature n a t u r a l l y needs a r t . A f u r t h e r c o m p l i c a t i o n i s added to t h i s confusion of terms when one reads Bacon's "Essay on Gardens," for. here i t i s recommended that the gardener's a r t be employed to g a i n a r t i f i c i a l l y an e f f e c t of n a t u r a l n e s s : For the heath, which was the t h i r d part of our p l o t [the f i r s t was a green i n the entrance, the second a main garden] I wish i t to be framed, as much as may be, to a n a t u r a l wildness. Trees, I would have none i n i t ; but some t h i c k e t s made only of sweetbrier and honeysuckle and some w i l d v i n e amongst; and the ground set with v i o l e t s , s t r a w b e r r i e s and primroses . . . and these to be i n the heath, here and th e r e , set i n any order. I a l s o l i k e l i t t l e heaps i n the nature of m o l e h i l l s (such as are i n w i l d heaths) . . . . (quoted by S i n g l e t o n , p. 62) Here we have an elaborated design to produce an e f f e c t of untutored nature. I t would seem th a t Bacon, at l e a s t i n the t h i r d part of h i s garden, does not share some of h i s contemporaries' love f o r the appearance of the a r t i f i c i a l . On the other hand, we may have here an example of that d e l i g h t we found the E l i z a b e t h a n c r i t i c s t a k i n g i n the a r t i f i c i a l w e l l dissembled. For the pleasure that was f e l t i n Kalender's garden, i n seeing nature seem what i t was not, i s s u r e l y d u p l i c a t e d here. In the former the n a t u r a l scene had been transformed Into a seeming p a v i l i o n ; here a n a t u r a l scene, whatever i t was, now seems to be a w i l d heath. And the viewers of Bacon's " n a t u r a l " garden would be w e l l aware th a t t h i s was an a r t i f i c i a l heath, f o r y they have j u s t passed through a c u l t i v a t e d green and a t r a d i t i o n a l l y knotted garden. T h e i r d e l i g h t i n t h i s heath would d e r i v e from the very f a c t t h a t they know i t to be an a r t i f i c i a l one: i t i s a d e l i g h t i n the deceptive achieve-ments of a r t i f i c i a l i t y . I f f u r t h e r proof i s needed t h a t Bacon d i d not widely diverge from contemporary t a s t e i n gardens one may r e f e r to h i s comments on the t o p i a r y a r t . He objected to the pruning of hedges i n t o the shapes of animals or men (whole b a t t l e f i e l d s were sometimes depicted) but recommended.the c u t t i n g of geometric shapes. Here we are reminded that although an E l i z a b e t h a n does not despise a r t i f i c i a l i t y i n i t s e l f , he does recognize and r e j e c t what seems to be a f a l s e a r t i f i c i a l i t y . The t r e e s , that i s , would n a t u r a l l y lend themselves to geometrical shapes (the eye can see t h i s e a s i l y enough) but i t i s hard to imagine a t r e e t h a t could r e a d i l y be shaped i n t o a man on horseback. Such a shaping would be an example of f a l s e a r t i f i c i a l i t y . These observations on gardening seem to lead to the c o n c l u s i o n t h a t the Eli z a b e t h a n s p r e f e r r e d a r t to nature. But i t seems to me that i n the above cases the d e l i g h t i s 5r>. taken i n a r t i f i c i a l i t y because the substance with which the a r t i s t works i n nature i t s e l f . When the a r t i s t works wit h a r t i f i c i a l m a t e r i a l s , on the other hand, the d e l i g h t i s i n the reverse p r o c e s s — t h a t i s , the viewer d e l i g h t s i n the achievement of the appearance of nature. This seeming c o n t r a d i c t i o n i s res o l v e d i f we consider t h a t , i n both cases, the b a s i s f o r the d e l i g h t , whether the apparent e f f e c t be a r t i f i c i a l or n a t u r a l , l i e s i n the perception of the c l o s e r e l a t i o n s h i p between a r t and nature. In p e r c e i v i n g t h i s the E l i z a b e t h a n viewer i s i n f a c t seeing h i s w o r l d - p i c t u r e confirmed. I t i s a p i c t u r e i n which man and h i s man-made products are not i n disharmony w i t h nature, f o r nature i s a l s o man-made, i n the sense that i t was made f o r man. Both seeing a r t look n a t u r a l and seeing nature look a r t i f i c i a l draws a t t e n t i o n ' to the s k i l l of the a r t i f i c e r , and i n t h i s perception another pleasant aspect of the w o r l d - p i c t u r e i s made evident. On the chain of being man i s l i n k e d by h i s i n t e l l i g e n c e to the angels, and u l t i m a t e l y to God. In d i s p l a y i n g the in g e n u i t y of h i s i n t e l l i g e n c e man the maker demonstrates h i s connection w i t h God the Maker. Before moving indoors to show the d e l i g h t i n the a r t i f i c i a l made n a t u r a l , one l a s t p r a i s e of a garden should perhaps be recorded. The examples above only i m p l i e d a d e l i g h t i n a r t s ' triumph over nature; S i r Henry Wotton, author of Elements of A r c h i t e c t u r e uses these key terms 55. e x p l i c i t l y , and i n doing so, I b e l i e v e , he demonstrates th a t the b a s i s of h i s d e l i g h t i s i n deception, i n the complete replacement of one term by the other. He i s p r a i s i n g S i r Henry Panshaw f o r h i s garden i n Ware Park: He d i d so p r e c i s e l y examine the t i n c t u r e s and seasons of h i s flowers that In t h e i r s e t t i n g s , the inwardest of which that were to come a t the same time, should be always a l i t t l e darker than the outmost, and so serve them f o r a k i n d of g e n t l e shadow, l i k e a piece not of Nature but of A r t . (quoted by S i n g l e t o n , p. 47) While gardens, opening out as they d i d l i k e a s e r i e s of rooms p a r t i t i o n e d o f f by hedges, arbors or w a l l s , seemed to be the indoors moved out, the appearance of the i n t e r i o r of E l i z a b e t h a n houses, to a responsive eye, seemed to be the outdoors moved i n . Here the a r t i s t , working w i t h a r t i f i c i a l m a t e r i a l , courts n a t u r a l forms. Carved d e c o r a t i o n mainly of f l o r a l or f o l i a g e m o t i f s flow and c o i l over both w a l l s and f u r n i t u r e . The c e i l i n g s themselves are encrusted wi t h moulded strapwork ornament and the f l o o r s kept covered with f r e s h rushes. Though f u r n i t u r e was sparse, an e f f e c t of coldness or bareness was avoided by the w a l l covering: p a n e l l i n g , p l a s t e r work, and elaborate t a p e s t r i e s . T a pestries seem to have been e s p e c i a l l y popular i n England at t h i s time, f o r f o r e i g n v i s i t o r s of the period (1580-1600) f r e q u e n t l y recorded t h e i r a dmiration f o r the use t h a t Englishmen made of them. ^ An inventory of King Henry's c o l l e c t i o n (which was no doubt i n h e r i t e d by h i s daughter), included more than 2,000 items, while an Inventory of a p r i v a t e c o l l e c t i o n of the E l i z a b e t h a n p e r i o d , such as that of L e i c e s t e r House where the young Spenser had f o r a time 25 r e s i d e d , would i n c l u d e as many as 150 items. The a r t of t a p e s t r y making i s u s u a l l y considered to be a medieval one and many E l i z a b e t h a n items do i n f a c t d e p i c t medieval subjects i n a medieval manner. But si d e by s i d e with schematized r e p r e s e n t a t i o n s of the Seven Deadly Sins are to be found t a p e s t r i e s d e p i c t i n g the t a l e s from Ovid and employing such new devices as p e r s p e c t i v e . In the m e d i e v a l l y - s t y l e d t a p e s t r i e s nature i s i m i t a t e d only i n the r i c h borders, where n a t u r a l m o t i f s i n t e r t w i n e ; i n the t a p e s t r i e s executed under Renaissance i n f l u e n c e — o f t e n a f t e r cartoons by the great I t a l i a n a r t i s t s — t h e f i g u r e s themselves are r e a l i s t i c a l l y or n a t u r a l l y shaped w h i l e the use of perspective produces the e f f e c t of a room opening on the out-of-doors. A look i n t o the Great Chamber of Hardwick H a l l , one of the l e a s t a l t e r e d of the E l i z a b e t h a n great houses, 2k E.g. Samuel V i e c h e l i n 1585, F r e d e r i c k , Duke of Wirt embers i n 1592,. Paul Hentzner i n 1598. See W. B. Rye's England as Seen by Foreigners (London, I865)• ^ F r e d e r i c k Hard, "Clothes of Arras and of Toure," SP, XXVII ( 1930) , p. 172. 57. provides concrete i l l u s t r a t i o n of the points made above. 26 The rushes are now missing from the f l o o r but the w a l l surfaces are t y p i c a l l y E l i z a b e t h a n ones. They are bordered w i t h a deep p l a s t e r f r i e z e , d e p i c t i n g Diana and her c o u r t , i n which the nymphs and the f o l i a g e seem i n e x t r i c a b l e i n t e r -twined. The B r u s s e l t a p e s t r i e s which hang beneath t h i s f r i e z e d e p i c t the s t o r y of U l y s s e s . I n a photograph these t a p e s t r i e s are e a s i l y mistaken f o r o i l s because of t h e i r s k i l l f u l use of l i g h t and dark and of p e r s p e c t i v e . The marble f i r e p l a c e i s covered w i t h strapwork and the t a b l e s and sideboards w i t h elaborate f l o r a l design. o I t i s t r u e that our r e a c t i o n to such a room would o not be t o exclaim that here i s a room f u l l of nature, but r a t h e r that here i s a room f u l l of d e c o r a t i v e a r t . But the room i n t e r i o r , even i f a r t i f i c i a l / by our standards, does employ a r t forms t h a t create an i l l u s i o n of expanse and n a t u r a l v a r i e t y , and an E l i z a b e t h a n viewer, I b e l i e v e , would make the former exclamation. Everywhere e l s e h i s r e a c t i o n to the a r t i f i c i a l - n a t u r a l dichotomy has been the opposite one to what ours would be, i n f a c t f o r him the dichotomy i s h a r d l y a dichotomy a t a l l . This has been evident, I t h i n k , from the way i n which he g l e e f u l l y • ^ P i c t u r e s of Hardwick H a l l , i n t e r i o r and e x t e r i o r , can be found i n S a c h e v e r e l l S i t w e l l ' s Great Houses of  Europe (New York, 1961), pp. 99 - 105, 58. overlays the n a t u r a l with the a r t i f i c i a l ( h i s gardens s t r i v e to look man-made) and then i n t u r n , j u s t as g l e e -f u l l y , overlays the a r t i f i c i a l w i t h forms taken from nature. Again, to r e i t e r a t e my main p o i n t , these two processes are p o s s i b l e f o r the E l i z a b e t h a n because f o r him nature i s not a n t i p a t h e t i c towards man and h i s products, nor i s a r t a debasing of nature. The E l i z a b e t h a n a r t i s t strove to e x a c t l y reproduce nature i n some of h i s a r t i f i c i a l products. This can be seen by l o o k i n g once again i n t o the Great Chamber and observing t h a t the p l a s t e r f r i e z e d e p i c t i n g Diana and her nymphs i s painted i n l i f e - l i k e c o l o r s . This observation w i l l a l s o serve to remind us of the d i f f e r e n c e between the E l i z a b e t h a n and present day t a s t e s . The f r i e z e can be viewed as abbreviated s t a t u a r y and we are reminded that E l i z a b e t h a n statues were, i n f a c t , painted with the c o l o r s of l i f e . The p a i n t i n g of s t a t u a r y i n l i f e - l i k e c o l o r s i s re l e g a t e d today to such realms of " k i t s c h " as Royal Doulton ornaments, p l a s t i c d o l l s and Royal Wax Museums. That the E l i z a b e t h a n s , however, viewed w i t h seriousness and admir a t i o n the attempt of a s c u l p t o r to create the i l l u s i o n of a l i v i n g person has been argued i n the previous chapter, w i t h reference to the pr a i s e s l a v i s h e d on the statue of Paulina i n The Winter's Tale (see page 4 4 ) . As f u r t h e r i l l u s t r a t i o n , l e t us r e t u r n to Kalander's garden i n The A r c a d i a : 59. . . . and i n one of the t h i c k e t s was a f i n e fountaine made thus. A naked Venus of white marble, wherein the graver had used such cunning, that the n a t u r a l l blew veines of the marble were framed i n f i t t e p l a c e s , to set f o o r t h the b e a u t i f u l l veines of her bodie. At her brest she had her babe Aeneas, who seemed (having begun to sucke) t o leave t h a t , to looke upon her fa y r e eyes, which smiled a t the babes f o l l i e , the meane while the breast running. (Sidney, Complete Works, I , 1?-18.) Though t h i s s t atue i s not painted, the p r a i s e of the use of the blue veins of the marble to d e p i c t the blue veins of the body i s d i c t a t e d by the same t a s t e that appreciates a f u l l y painted s t a t u e . And t h i s t a s t e i s expressed by the author of what i s u s u a l l y considered one of the most exalted •27 expressions of c r i t i c a l theory ever w r i t t e n . By passing from the E l i z a b e t h a n garden to the E l i z a b e t h a n i n t e r i o r we have omitted an examination of the El i z a b e t h a n home's e x t e r i o r . I t was noted t h a t the garden w a l l s or d i v i s i o n s were to reproduce the l i n e s and pro-p o r t i o n s of the Tudor house. Looking at the house i t s e l f we f i n d that j u s t as the geometric l i n e s of the garden were r e l i e v e d by beds of i n d e f i n i t e p a t t e r n s , so the l i n e s of the houses were broken up with stone fretwork, mullloned 2?Further proof of the common t a s t e Sidney shares w i t h Shakespeare i s to be found immediately f o l l o w i n g the d e s c r i p t i o n of the s t a t u e . Here a g a l l e r y of p i c t u r e s i s viewed and the p a i n t e r i s pra i s e d f o r a c h i e v i n g the e f f e c t of r e a l i t y . In reference to the statue i t should a l s o be noted t h a t i n the a r t i s t ' s u t i l i z a t i o n of the blue veins we have a f i n e example of a r t ' s deceptive d i s g u i s i n g of nature. windows, columns and p i l a s t e r s . The love of both order and v a r i e t y , of m u l t i p l e u n i t y , i s again evident. The a p p l i c a t i o n of columns and p i l a s t e r s to the E l i z a b e t h a n house i s evidence of the i n f l u e n c e on E n g l i s h b u i l d e r s of the I t a l i a n Renaissance. John Gloag i n The  Englishman's C a s t l e maintains t h a t the n a t i v e craftsmen resented f o r e i g n fashions and d i d not t r o u b l e to understand oo the r a t i o n a l e of c l a s s i c p r o p o r t i o n s . I t i s g e n e r a l l y maintained t h a t these proportions were not used w i t h under-standing and conscientiousness i n England u n t i l the works of Inigo Jones (1573-1652). But even i f the r a t i o n a l e of c l a s s i c a l b u i l d i n g was not understood by the E l i z a b e t h a n a r c h i t e c t s , the c l a s s i c a l m o t i f s were i n popular use, and t h e i r i m p l i c a t i o n s may w e l l have been understood by the more educated viewers, some of whom would be f a m i l i a r with I t a l i a n Renaissance a r c h i t e c t u r a l theory. While the con-s i s t e n t u t i l i z a t i o n of c e r t a i n r u l e s of pr o p o r t i o n would seem at f i r s t glance a wholly i n o r g a n i c or unnatural' approach to a r c h i t e c t u r e , behind the I t a l i a n t h e o r i s t s b e l i e f i n the n e c e s s i t y of these r u l e s i s the assumption that antique b u i l d i n g (from which the r u l e s of pr o p o r t i o n were derived) conformed i n a higher degree than that of any other age to the immutable laws of beauty informing 2 8 ( L o n d o n , 19^9), pp. 6 2 - 6 3 . 61. Nature, the a r t of God. The c o n v i c t i o n of the s p i r i t u a l relevance of c e n t r a l i z e d p l a n n i n g — c h u r c h e s were planned according to the shape of the c i r c l e , the polygon, the Greek c r o s s — i s expressed by A l b e r t i : " I t i s manifest that Nature d e l i g h t s p r i n c i p a l l y i n round f i g u r e s , since we f i n d t h a t most things which are generated, made or d i r e c t e d by Nature, are round." 2^ Further evidence of t h i s b e l i e f i n the naturalness of b e a u t i f u l forms i s found i n diagrams that show the anthropomorphic d e r i v a t i o n s of the standard proportions of the church facade and pl a n . Two such d i a -grams by Francesco d i G i o r g i o (ca. 1490-1495) are reproduced i n Frazer's Key Monuments on page 317. In the opening of Puttenham*s "Of P r o p o r t i o n " we have a c l e a r example of an Eliz a b e t h a n ' s awareness of the n a t u r a l and mathematical b a s i s f o r a r t i s t i c form, wh i l e Spenser demonstrates h i s awareness of the b u i l d i n g a r t i s t ' s method of i m i t a t i n g nature i n h i s d e s c r i p t i o n of the House of Temperance (F a e r i e  Queene, I I . i x . 22). A f t e r having n o t i c e d a c a r e f u l blending of a r t and nature i n E l i z a b e t h a n gardens and houses, one might expect to f i n d the same i n E l i z a b e t h a n p a i n t i n g , the most c l e a r l y r e p r e s e n t a t i o n a l of the a r t s . The general o p i n i o n concerning E l i z a b e t h a n p a i n t i n g , however, i s that i t i s a h i g h l y 2 ^ A l f r e d F r a z e r , Key Monuments of the H i s t o r y of  A r c h i t e c t u r e (New York, N.D.), p. LXXI. s t y l i z e d , u n r e a l i s t i c a r t . This impression i s d e r i v e d l a r g e l y from the p o r t r a i t s of Queen E l i z a b e t h , but these p o r t r a i t s , as E l l i s Waterhouse has pointed out, were anachronisms, the s t y l e of which was i n f a c t imposed upon the p a i n t e r : [in E l i z a b e t h ' s p o r t r a i t s ] Likeness of f e a t u r e and i n t e r e s t i n form and volume have been abandoned i n favour of an e f f e c t of s p l e n d i d majesty obtained by d e c o r a t i v e p a t t e r n , and the forms have been f l a t t e n e d a c c o r d i n g l y . The Queen's a s t o n i s h i n g wardrobe and p o l i t i c s k i l l w i t h which she used i t alone made t h i s anachronism i n E l i z a b e t h a n p o r t r a i t u r e possible.3 0 In the Queen's p o r t r a i t s , then, an impression of majesty, not of l i f e , was d e s i r a b l e . But that w i t h other, subjects., an attempt t o capture l i f e was o f t e n the a r t i s t ' s aim can be seen i n the work and w r i t i n g s of Nicholas H i l l i a r d , the Queen's limner (miniature a r t i s t ) and goldsmith. While he must needs abandon i t when p o r t r a y i n g the Queen, i n h i s work wi t h other subjects H i l l i a r d ' s aim was to achieve a p s y c h o l o g i c a l intimacy. He w r i t e s i n h i s A r t of Limning (1600) that the "curious drawer" must c l o s e l y observe h i s subject i n l i f e and, as i t were, catch "these l o v e l y graces, w i t t i n g s m i l i n g s , and these s t o l e n glances which suddenly, l i k e l i g h t e n i n g , pass and another countenance t a k e t h place.." (Waterhouse, p. 23), Here i t appears that the E l i z a b e t h a n p a i n t e r i s wishing f o r the twentieth-century's candid-photographer's eye. 3°Painting i n B r i t a i n 1530 to 1790 (Penguin Books, 1953), p. 2 3 . While the great i n f l u x of I t a l i a n p a i n t i n g s i n t o England d i d not begin u n t i l the seventeenth century, the Renaissance refinements of chiaroscuro and per s p e c t i v e were not unknown to the El i z a b e t h a n s . I t a l i a n a r t i s t s v i s i t e d England and Englishmen v i s i t e d I t a l y . Sidney, f o r example, whose p o r t r a i t was painted by Veronese, was w e l l acquainted w i t h I t a l i a n a r t . H i l l i a r d , i n h i s A r t of  Limning, discusses the etchings of Durer. H o l b e i n , although he had to temper h i s s t y l e to the more me d i e v a l l y -minded t a s t e of h i s patron, brought to the court of Henry the E i g h t h a knowledge of both Leonardo and Raphael. And the p o r t r a i t c a l l e d "Young Man i n Red", painted by an unknown E n g l i s h a r t i s t around 155°» i s assumed to be the f i r s t European f u l l - l e n g t h p o r t r a i t of a f i g u r e s i l h o u e t t e d a g a i n s t a wide h o r i z e n with a d r a m a t i c a l l y receding l a n d -scape below. Though we should perhaps h e s i t a t e to c a l l the e f f e c t s of the Renaissance innovations i n p a i n t i n g n a t u r a l i s t i c , the new a r t was nevertheless praised by the E l i z a b e t h a n s as an accurate p o r t r a y a l of l i f e , as e a r l i e r quotations from both Sidney and Shakespeare i n d i c a t e . To f e e l the e x c i t e -ment w i t h which t h i s new a r t was greeted one should r e f e r to p l a t e s 15 and 16 i n Panofsky's Studies i n Iconology.^^ Here, s i d e by s i d e , are reproduced a medieval miniature 3 1New York, 1962. p o r t r a i t of the Rape of Europa and a Durer drawing of the same s u b j e c t . In the m i n i a t u r e , an i l l u s t r a t i o n f o r a fourteenth-century moralized v e r s i o n of Ovid, Europa's three companions, l o o k i n g e x a c t l y a l i k e , are set i n a f o r m a l i z e d landscape and Europa and the b u l l , i n no p a r t i c u l a r h u r ry, move through s p l a s h l e s s water. The d e p i c t i o n i s not an incompetent one; i t s schematized q u a l i t i e s are d i c t a t e d by a schematized s t o r y ; But i n Durer*s v e r s i o n the s t o r y loses i t s m o r a l i t y and regains l i f e . The three companions, though perhaps too l a r g e i n p r o p o r t i o n to t h e i r d i s t a n c e , s t r e t c h i n v a r i o u s l y anguished p o s i t i o n s before a receding landscape. Europa, with f l y i n g h a i r and f l u t t e r i n g robes, draws up her toes to avoid the water s p l a s h i n g below the b u l l . As Panofsky says, Durer*s drawing a c t u a l l y gives l i f e to Ovid's sensual d e s c r i p t i o n (p. 30)• should keep t h i s comparison i n mind when h e s i t a t i n g to c a l l E l i z a b e t h a n or Renaissance a r t n a t u r a l -i s t i c , f o r the E l i z a b e t h a n eyes were not comparing t h e i r a r t with photographs, but with examples, such as the one given here, of the medieval a r t t h a t preceded i t . 65. CHAPTER V SPENSER'S PICTORIAL ART The i n t e n t of t h i s chapter i s to demonstrate the presence of the Renaissance eye i n Spenser. Before proceeding, however, i t may "be w e l l to acknowledge i t s more than o c c a s i o n a l medieval s q u i n t . Although Chapter IV was devoted to the Renaissance e s t h e t i c p r i n c i p l e s evident i n E l i z a b e t h a n a r t s and a r t i f a c t s i t must not be f o r g o t t e n t h a t Spenser's environment would a l s o c o n t a i n remnants of the medieval t r a d i t i o n i n design. I t was noted above that i n the case of p o r t r a i t s of Queen E l i z a b e t h the medieval p r i n c i p l e of n o n - r e a l i s t i c , a l l e g o r i c a l r e p r e s e n t a t i o n was c o n s c i o u s l y adhered t o . So i n Spenser, I f e e l , when-ever he pai n t s a medieval p o r t r a i t he does i t w i t h a conscious i n t e n t . That he o f t e n does so i s h a r d l y incon-s i s t e n t s i n c e h i s whole subject m a t t e r — h i s s e r i e s of kn i g h t s w i t h t h e i r v a r i o u s q u e s t s — i s drawn from the Middle Ages and h i s o v e r - a l l method, t h a t of a l l e g o r y , a l s o belongs to that period. ^ 2 I t was through t h i s r e c o g n i t i o n of a l l e g o r i c a l i n t e n t that G o t t f r i e d and G l a z i e r were able to argue that 3 2Proof t h a t Spenser was aware of h i s d e c i s i o n to be u n r e a l i s t i c i s found i n the Proem to Book I I I . Here h i s reason i s the same as t h a t of the p a i n t e r s : h i s subject i s Queen E l i z a b e t h and her v i r t u e i s too d a z z l i n g to be portrayed without the v e i l of a l l e g o r y . 66. Spenser's p i c t u r e s were not, i n f a c t , p i c t o r i a l a t a l l (see pp. 6-7 above). I t i s s i g n i f i c a n t , however, t h a t i n order to demonstrate Spenser's s u b o r d i n a t i o n of p i c t o r i a l i n t e n t to a l l e g o r i c a l s i g n i f i c a n c e , both c r i t i c s use as t h e i r evidence the p i c t u r e of Una, Red Cross, and the dwarf as they enter i n Book I , Cante i . G o t t f r i e d argues t h a t a l l three f i g u r e s are moving a t d i f f e r e n t paces and so cannot be contained w i t h i n one frame, w h i l e G l a z i e r points out the p a u c i t y of c o l o r s i n the scene. In the former case the v a r i o u s paces, which would appear so l u d i c r o u s i f the scene was v i s u a l i z e d i n r e a l i s t i c terms, are appropriate symbols f o r the tempers of the minds of the three a c t o r s , while i n the l a t t e r the h y p e r b o l i c d e s c r i p t i o n of the white-ness of Una's face i s c a l c u l a t e d to emphasize the q u a l i t y Truth of which Una i s the symbol. I f t h i s i s a p i c t u r e at a l l then--and G l a z i e r admits t h a t the reader w i l l r e a d i l y supply a p i c t u r e d e s p i t e the extreme economy of Spenser's h i n t s — i t i s a p i c t u r e i n the medieval manner: the movement of each f i g u r e i s independent, c o l o r i s scarce, and the f i g u r e s are a l l e g o r i c a l . But t h i s i s Spenser's opening scene, the one i n which he would s u r e l y be most conscious of h i s attempt to create an aura of a l o s t Golden Age. In t h i s same canto we f i n d a c l e a r l y Chaucerian d e s c r i p t i o n of landscape which l i k e t h a t of the human f i g u r e s i n the scene can b a r e l y be c a l l e d p i c t o r i a l . J Una and Red Cross, running i n t o the woods to a v o i d a shower, are s a i d to p r a i s e the t r e e s about them: The s a y l i n g Pine, the Cedar proud and t a l l , The vine-prop Elme, the Poplar never dry, The b u i l d e r Oake, sole k i n g of f o r r e s t s a l l , The Aspine good f o r staves, the Cypresse f u n e r a l l . The L a u r e l l , meed of mightie Conquerours And Poets sage, the F i r r e that weepeth s t i l l , The Willow worne of f o r l o r n e Paramours, The Eugh obedient to the benders w i l l , The B i r c h f o r s h a f t e s , the Sallow f o r the m i l l , The Mirrhe sweete bleeding i n the b i t t e r wound, The w a r l i k e Beech, the Ash f o r nothing i l l , The f r u i t f u l l O l i v e , and the Platane round, The carver Holme, the Maple seeldom inward sound. (1.1.8-9) The c a t e g o r i c a l l i s t does not lend i t s e l f t o p i c t u r e -making; the extent of the v a r i e t y here, although i t reminds us of the Renaissance love f o r t h a t q u a l i t y i n nature, would make any v i s u a l i z a t i o n u n n a t u r a l . I n d i v i d u a l l y , the trees are c h a r a c t e r i z e d i n u t i l i t a r i a n terms r a t h e r than con-s i d e r e d as objects of e s t h e t i c pleasure. The eye that looks upon them i s the same one that looked upon Una and saw only meaning, not form. But Spenser's eye, c o n s i s t e n t l y medieval i n t h i s opening canto, i s to f l i c k e r between i t s medieval and Renaissance lenses as the poem progresses. When we meet Princ e A r t h u r i n Canto v i i of Book I , stanzas 29 to 35, he i s d escribed as a creature covered from "top to toe" with t w i n k l i n g stones, burnished g o l d , mother of p e a r l and •'-'cf., f o r example, Chaucer's Parliament of Fowls 11. 1 7 6 f f . 68. diamond. There i s not a h i n t of what the b r e a t h i n g body-under a l l t h i s g l i t t e r may look l i k e and, a g a i n , t h i s u n n a t u r a l i s t i c impression would seem to be the one con-s c i o u s l y aimed a t . Por Prince Arthur represents the v i r t u e Magnificence, the container of a l l the other twelve v i r t u e s , and, as such, a c r e a t i o n hardly to be r e a l i z e d i n o r d i n a r y n a t u r a l i s t i c terms. Spenser demonstrates t h a t he i s capable of employing n a t u r a l i s t i c p i c t o r i a l i s m , however, only one canto l a t e r . Duessa's d e s c r i p t i o n , i n f a c t , may perhaps be considered a l i t t l e too n a t u r a l i s t i c : Her c r a f t i e head was a l t o g e t h e r b a l d , And as i n hate of honorable e l d , Was overgrowne with s c u r f e and f i l t h y s c a l d ; Her t e e t h out of her r o t t e n gummes were f e l d , And her sowre breath abhominably smeld; Her d r i e d dugs, l i k e bladders l a c k i n g wind, Hong downe, and f i l t h y matter from them weld; Her w r i z l e d s k i n as rough, as maple r i n d , So scabby was, that would have l o a t h d a l l womankind. Her neather p a r t s , the shame of a l l her k i n d , My chaster Muse f o r shame doth b l u s h to w r i t e ; But a t her rompe she growing had behind A foxes t a i l e , w i t h dong a l l fowly d i g h t ; And eke her f e e t e most monstrous were i n s i g h t ; For one of them was l i k e an Eagles claw, With g r i p i n g t a l a u n t s armed to greedy f i g h t , The other l i k e a Beares uneven paw: More ugly shape yet never l i v i n g c r eature saw. (I.vlii . 4 7 - 4 8 ) In one sense t h i s p o r t r a i t i s u n r e a l i s t i c , s i n c e no " l i v i n g c r e a t u r e " ever saw the model f o r i t . But i n c o n t r a s t w i t h the d e s c r i p t i o n of A r t h u r , i t i s r e a l i s t i c . Of Arthur we see only g l i t t e r and not l i f e . Here, although we again 69. have a p i c t u r e w i t h an a l l e g o r i c a l aim, the subject i s f r i g h t f u l l y f u l l of breath and a l l the more c a r e f u l l y made so, i t would s.eem, because of the poet's awareness that she has never breathed before. The poet's aim i s to f r i g h t e n h i s readers by v i s u a l i z i n g the ugl y r e a l i t y of De c e i t . The f a c t that P r i n c e Arthur i s described w i t h a r t i f i c i a l d e t a i l s (precious gems, val u a b l e metals, etc.) whil e i n Duessa's d e s c r i p t i o n n a t u r a l i s t i c d e t a i l s are used (scabs, dung, etc.) may suggest that a moral p r i n c i p l e u n d e r l i e s Spenser's p i c t o r i a l methods, that he uses n a t u r a l i s m i n p i c t u r e s of e v i l and an a r t i f i c i a l method i n p i c t u r e s of v i r t u e . One of the aims of t h i s chapter i s to demonstrate that any such equation i s untenable and t h a t the sepa r a t i o n of e t h i c s and e s t h e t i c s i n Spenser i s , i n f a c t , one of h i s Renaissance t r a i t s . I t should be noted a t t h i s point that the moral equation suggested by the examples so f a r given i s d i r e c t l y opposite to the one found by Lewis. (He f i n d s the n a t u r a l good and the a r t i f i c i a l bad.) The purpose of the examples here, however, has been simply to demonstrate tha t Spenser i n f a c t has two modes of seeing. His more t y p i c a l way of seeing i s found i n the many d e s c r i p t i o n s of tr e e s g r a c e f u l l y forming arbors of pleasure. In these nature i s seen i n e s t h e t i c r a t h e r than u t i l i t a r i a n terms, t h a t i s , with a Renaissance r a t h e r than a medieval eye. But medieval p i c t u r e s are undeniably present i n Spenser. Perhaps they are sometimes unconsciously painted i n i m i t a t i o n of Chaucer but more o f t e n they are d i c t a t e d by a c o n s c i o u s l y a l l e g o r i c a l aim. Spenser t e l l s us the p h i l o s o p h i c a l reasoning behind t h i s k i n d of i m i t a t i o n i n the Proem to Book V. Here he says that he has chosen to d i s c i p l i n e h i s age w i t h p i c t u r e s of a former one because that e a r l i e r time was c l o s e r to the Golden Age when "simple Truth d i d rayne, and was of a l l admyred" (verse 3» l i n e 9 ) . I t should be noted that t h i s b e l i e f t h a t the world had g r a d u a l l y become worse and worse si n c e the Golden Age, o r , i n C h r i s t i a n terms, s i n c e the P a l l , was a Renaissance commonplace. Looking at i t from t h i s point of view, then, Spenser's medievalism can be explained as c h a r a c t e r i s t i c a l l y . Renaissance, a t l e a s t i n i t s m o t i v a t i o n . But even Spenser's more Renaissance p i c t u r e s have a l l e g o r i c a l i n t e n t i o n s , and the a l l e g o r i c a l temper i s i n f a c t a t r a i t t hat p e r s i s t e d i n the Renaissance a r t s . The d i f f e r e n c e between a l l e g o r i c a l i n t e n t i n medieval and Renaissance p i c t u r e s i s r e a l l y a matter of degree! i n the former the a l l e g o r y dominates and cannot be ignored; i n the l a t t e r a l i v e l y , sensuous r e a l i s m a t t r a c t s the viewer and shares h i s a t t e n t i o n w i t h the u n d e r l y i n g a l l e g o r y . A curious combination of l i v e l i n e s s plus heavy a l l e g o r y i s found i n the frequent scenes of pageantry i n 7 i : the F a e r i e Queenel These pageants resemble masques ( a l l e g o r i e s presented by r e a l p l a y e r s ) , and the l i v e l i n e s s w i t h which they are depicted reminds us that the masque was a f a v o u r i t e E l i z a b e t h a n a r t . The a r t of course i s medieval i n d e r i v a t i o n and Spenser's medieval eye i s apparent when he presents h i s pageants. The a c t o r s are given i n a c a t e g o r i c a l l i s t i n a manner which i s simply an extension of the method used i n the t r e e - d e s c r i p t i o n i n Book I , Canto i . They are dressed i n symbolic c l o t h i n g , and o f t e n a c t u a l l y c a r r y symbols of t h e i r a b s t r a c t i d e n t i t y so that there i s no chance th a t t h e i r a l l e g o r i c a l s i g n i f i c a n c e should be overlooked. The movement i n these p i c t u r e s , as i n the case of the p i c t u r e of Una and the Red Cross, i s a s t i f f , u n r e a l i s t i c one. In the d e s c r i p t i o n of the pageant of Pride's c a r r i a g e , f o r example, nineteen stanzas are devoted to the appearance of the drawers of the c a r r i a g e (the remaining s i x Deadly Sins) and two stanzas to the a c t u a l process of moving i n and out of Pride's c a s t l e to take the a i r ( I . i v . 1 8 - 3 8 ) . Here the a c t u a l subject matter, the Seven Deadly S i n s , i s a f a v o u r i t e medieval one, and the s e a t i n g of the s i x drawing s i n s on v a r i o u s beasts appro-p r i a t e t o t h e i r a l l e g o r i c a l s i g n i f i c a n c e — I d l e n e s s on an a s s , Gluttony on a swine, Lechery upon a g o a t — p r o d u c e s , as i n the opening p i c t u r e of the poem, a composition that cannot p o s s i b l y move on any r e a l i s t i c b a s i s . Among these medieval 72. i m p r e s s i o n s , however, i s an o c c a s i o n a l r e a l i s t i c s t r o k e o f p o r t r a i t u r e t h a t s u g g e s t s t h a t t h e r e a r e r e a l a c t o r s b e n eath t h e a l l e g o r i c a l c l o t h i n g s I d l e n e s s w i t h h i s heavy head h a n g i n g t o t h e s i d e , G l u t t o n y w i t h h i s up-blown b e l l y , s w o l l e n eyes and l o n g c r a v e - l i k e neck, h i s b o o z i n g c a n and h i s v e r y r e a l i s t i c problem o f s i t t i n g u p r i g h t on h i s mount. I n g e n e r a l , however, t h i s pageant produces a m e d i e v a l p i c t u r e , as does t h e masque o f C u p i d i n t h e House of Busyrane ( I I I . x i i . 4 - 2 6 ) , and t h a t o f t h e s e a s o n s , months and hour s i n t h e M u t a l i t y Cantos ( V I I . v i i . 2 8 - 4 6 ) . I n such pageant making, I f e e l , S penser need n o t c o n s c i o u s l y s t r i v e t o copy m e d i e v a l models. F o r t h i s form o f a l l e g o r i c a l e n t e r t a i n m e n t remained 34 i n t h e E l i z a b e t h a n s e t t i n g . Keeping i n mind, t h e n , t h a t Spenser's R e n a i s s a n c e eye i s f r e q u e n t l y c a p a b l e o f a m e d i e v a l s q u i n t , we may now examine t h e dominant mode of v i s i o n i n t h e F a e r i e Queene; Here we s h a l l f i n d , as was found i n the e x a m i n a t i o n o f t h e c r i t i c a l works o f Spenser's c o n t e m p o r a r i e s and o f t h e V i s u a l a r t s w i t h w h i c h he was s u r r o u n d e d , an e s t h e t i c t h a t bases i t s i d e a o f b e a u t y on a v i s i o n of a v a r i e d b u t 3^For a f u l l d e s c r i p t i o n of an E l i z a b e t h a n masque see E n i d W e l s f o r d ' s The C o u r t Masque (Cambridge, 1927) , p. 153. The d e s c r i p t i o n , a p a r t from t h e language.,., c o u l d e a s i l y be m i s t a k e n f o r an e x c e r p t from t h e F a e r i e Queene. ordered u n i v e r s e , an e s t h e t i c which can, d e s p i t e these p h i l o s o p h i c a l i m p l i c a t i o n s , be considered q u i t e apart from e t h i c s , and an e s t h e t i c which i n i t s own terms takes p a r t i c u l a r d e l i g h t i n v e r i s i m i l i t u d e . Along with t h i s d e l i g h t i n v e r i s i m i l i t u d e i s to be found a more general d e l i g h t i n objects which i n t e r m i n g l e the e f f e c t s of a r t and of nature. Spenser's love of a v a r i e d universe and h i s b e l i e f i n an ordered one are evident throughout the F a e r i e Queene. I t i s i n two other works, however, t h a t he d i r e c t l y d i s c usses the theory that beauty must be understood i n terms of a world order. In "An Hymne i n Honour of Beautie" Spenser ex p l a i n s the beauty of nature i n P l a t o n i c terms: What time t h i s worlds great work-maister d i d cast To make a l l t h i n g s , such as we now behold, I t seems th a t he before h i s eye had p l a s t A goodly Paterne, to whose p e r f e c t mould He fashiond them as comely as he could; That now so f a i r e and seemely they appeare, As nought may be amended any wheare. ( 1 1 . 1 9 - 3 5 ) E v e r y t h i n g , he says, has been ma.de according to one p a t t e r n , and, s i n c e t h i s p a t t e r n i s an a t t r a c t i v e one, everything i s f a i r . This o b v i o u s l y w i l l need some q u a l i f i c a t i o n or we w i l l have no e s t h e t i c a t a l l , and Spenser does, i n f a c t , q u a l i f y t h i s f i r s t g e n e r a l i z a t i o n . Before n o t i n g the q u a l i f i c a t i o n , however, i t should be n o t i c e d that the above l i n e s r e v e a l a c e r t a i n p r e d i s p o s i t i o n toward beauty, on 74. Spenser's p a r t . As i n the l i n e s i n the Proem to Book VI of the F a e r i e Queene where he expresses h i s d e l i g h t i n Faeryland and i n the f i n a l two verses of the F a e r i e Queene where he expresses h i s sympathy f o r M u t a b i l i t y ' s c l a i m to sovereignty, here we f e e l that Spenser r e a l l y has an e s t h e t i c of h i s own. He d e l i g h t s i n a l l . Even h i s u g l i e s t p i c t u r e s , as, f o r example, the p o r t r a i t of Duessa examined above, have been painted w i t h an e n t h u s i a s t i c eye and tongue. In the "Hymne", however, he does go on to describe an e s t h e t i c h e i r a r c h y which was commonly held among Renaissance c r i t i c s . Those things which are most f a i r , he says, are those that are c l o s e s t to the o r i g i n a l p a t t e r n of Beauty. These things partake inwardly of the s p i r i t of that Beauty and thus have an e l e v a t i n g i n f l u e n c e on the beholder: they are able to k i n d l e l o v e . The poem then turns to a d i s c u s s i o n of the r e f i n i n g process of love and leaves the c o n s i d e r a t i o n of outward beauty behind. The point t h a t must be emphasized here i s that beauty, when i t i s f i r s t beheld, i s recognized as beauty because i t has been made according to a p a t t e r n . The f a c t t h a t Spenser argues that outward beauty, as the white and red of flowers or complexions,- i s not r e a l or t r u e beauty, of course suggest an e s t h e t i c s based on e t h i c s . But the poet, although he emphatically s t a t e s that i t i s the b e a u t i f u l s o u l t h a t forms the b e a u t i f u l body ( 1 1 . 1 2 7 - 1 3 3 ) , goes on to lament that t h i s i s o f t e n not the case, that 75. sometimes a b e a u t i f u l s o u l , through some a c c i d e n t , i s given a deformed body (11.141-142), and sometimes beauty i n f a c t graces the sin n e r (11.148-150). Spenser may b e l i e v e that the se p a r a t i o n of e t h i c a l and e s t h e t i c a l beauty i s the e x c e p t i o n a l and lamentable case, but he c l e a r l y speaks of them as separate v a l u e s . In "The Hymne of Heavenly Beautie" the poet, as the t i t l e suggests, i s l i t t l e concerned w i t h the beauty of n a t u r a l forms. Here the C h r i s t i a n Platonism q u i c k l y moves from e a r t h l y beauty to the contemplation of the a b s t r a c t beauty of God. Before l e a v i n g the former, however, the poem gives a b r i e f e x planation of sensuous beauty t h a t d i f f e r s only s l i g h t l y from t h a t given, i n the "Hymne i n Honour of Beautie"; Then looke who l i s t , thy g a z e f u l l eyes t o feed With s i g h t of tha t i s f a i r e , looke on the frame Of t h i s wyde u n i v e r s e , and t h e r e i n reed The endlesse kinds of c r e a t u r e s , which by name Thou canst not count, much l e s s e t h e i r natures aimes A l l which are made wit h wondrous wise r e s p e c t , And a l l with admirable beautie deckt. (11.29-35) Here the P l a t o n i c concept of the Patte r n i s m i s s i n g — i n t h i s poem Plato ' s realm of Ideas i s given a p o s i t i o n between the sky and the realm of the Cherubins and Seraphins — a n d the great workmaster i s q u i t e d e f i n i t e l y the C h r i s t i a n God. The r e s u l t i n g beauty of c r e a t i o n , however, i s s i m i l a r to that found i n the e a r l i e r hymn. Again, everything i s w e l l made and a l l things are i n t e r r e l a t e d because of t h e i r common author. The v a r i e t y of c r e a t i o n i s p a r t i c u l a r l y emphasized i n the above l i n e s , and i t s order i s evident throughout the poem. Order and v a r i e t y are two of the key terms i n Spenser's d e s c r i p t i o n of God's work of C r e a t i o n . Another key e s t h e t i c a l term may a l s o be accounted f o r here: the endless kinds of creatures are w i t h admirable beauty "deckt". The Creator, the f i r s t a r t i s t , employs besides the p r i n c i p l e s of v a r i e t y and order, the p r i n c i p l e of d e c o r a t i o n . Throughout the F a e r i e Queene references are to be found that confirm the philosophy expressed i n the two "Hymns". In Book IV, Canto i we meet Deussa's companion, A t e , the p r i n c i p l e of d i s c o r d , whose d w e l l i n g i s by the Gates of H e l l . A l l her study and a l l her thought, Spenser t e l l s us, i s devoted to schemes f o r d i s r u p t i n g Concord: So much her malice d i d her might surpas, That even t h ' A l m i g h t i e s e l f e she d i d maligne, Because to man so m e r c i f u l l he was, And unto a l l h i s creatures so benigne, S i t h she her s e l f e was of h i s grace indigne: For a l l t h i s worlds f a i r e workmanship she t r i d e , Unto h i s l a s t confusion to b r i n g , And that great golden chaine q u i t e to d i v i d e , With which i t blessed Concord hath together t i d e . (IV.i.30) Thus as a passing reference to c l a r i f y the f u n c t i o n of one of h i s a c t o r s , Spenser o u t l i n e s what T i l l y a r d r e f e r s to as an E l i z a b e t h a n world p i c t u r e , the great Chain of Being. 77. The created world, or nature, i s seen to c o n s i s t of a h e i r a r c h y (the chain) of which the parts are i n harmony (Concord) and the whole i s thought of as a work of a r t ("worlds f a i r e workmanship"). In Book V, Canto i i we have another reminder of Spenser's f i r m b e l i e f i n the n a t u r a l h i e r a r c h y of c r e a t i o n . Here A r t e g a l l and Talus ( J u s t i c e and h i s Executor) meet a g i a n t who i s attempting to balance the elements, to weigh Heaven wi t h H e l l , to lower the mountains to the p l a i n s , to supress t y r a n t s and to e q u a l i z e incomes? i n s h o r t , to upset the world order. A r t e g a l l , the p r i n c i p l e of j u s t i c e and t h e r e f o r e the knower of t r u e order, nobly answers the g i a n t ' s arguments f o r e q u a l i t y w i t h "The h i l s doe not the l o w l y dales d i s d a i n e " (41.3); what i s high has been made so by God as what i s low has been a l s o . The g i a n t had seen i n j u s t i c e i n the sea s t e a l i n g from the land and i n j u s t i c e i n the land being so increased by " a l l t h a t dying to i t turned be" (37.7). A r t e g a l l i n r e p l y points out t h a t what i s taken by the sea a t one point i s returned to the land somewhere e l s e , and to the second o b j e c t i o n , t h a t i t i s only j u s t t h a t the land be increased by those who d i e i n t o i t s i n c e o r i g i n a l l y a l l have t h e i r being from that l a n d . I f p r o p e r l y considered, then, a c o n t r o l l e d order, or j u s t i c e , i s to be seen even i n the c y c l e of nature i t s e l f . 78; The Creator's c o n t r o l of a l l aspects of the n a t u r a l i s t i c c y c l e i s developed a t even gr e a t e r length i n the famous d e s c r i p t i o n of the Garden of Adonis and i n the f i n a l M u t a b i l i t y Cantos. The a c t i v i t y i n the Garden of Adonis i s a confusing one and has given r i s e t o much c r i t i c a l debate. The thousand babes that attend o l d Genius w a i t i n g f o r f l e s h y weeds would seem to represent forms s i n c e i t i s from the substance of Chaos, or unformed matter, which e x i s t s outside t h i s garden, that Genius s u p p l i e s the babes w i t h t h e i r d e s i r e d weeds ( I I I . v i . 3 6 ) . But t h a t t h i s i s a garden of P l a t o n i c forms i s r e f u t e d by the f a c t that the d e s t r u c t i v e powers of time are operative here and that i n t h i s c r e a t i v e process i t i s the forms t h a t change and not the substance ( 3 8 . 1 - 2 ) . With A r t e g a l l ' s arguments about the n a t u r a l c y c l e i n mind I am i n c l i n e d to agree w i t h Brents S t i r l i n g ' s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of the Garden of Adonis as a d e s c r i p t i o n of the " n a t u r a l i s t i c elements of Spenser's cosmology" .35 The forms that change then are not P l a t o n i c forms a t a l l but only i n d i v i d u a l p h y s i c a l shapes. What i s being eulogized i n t h i s garden i s the p h y s i c a l process of l i f e i t s e l f w i t h the love making of Venus and Adonis as an a p p r o p r i a t e c e n t r a l symbol. In the M u t a b i l i t y Cantos c o n t i n u a l change, which i s 35"The Philosophy of Spenser's 'Garden of Adonis'," PMIA, IL (193*0. r, 522. 7 9 . an a t t r i b u t e of the Garden of Adonis, i s again made a subject of beauty and wonder. The changefulness of the earth i n f a c t i s seen to be so a w e - i n s p i r i n g as to challenge the power of God h i m s e l f . M u t a b i l i t y b r i n g s her c l a i m to sovereignty before the judge Nature and asks Nature t o c a l l f o r t h the times and seasons as witness of her r i g h t s Nature o b l i g e s and an impressive pageant of the b e a u t i f u l v a r i e t y of the e a r t h l y process f o l l o w s . I t i s s i g n i f i c a n t , however, that i t i s Nature's "sergeant" Order that c a l l s f o r the seasons and hours. The v e r d i c t a f t e r the performance, that Change i n f a c t only seems to r e i g n , that a p r i n c i p l e of order c o n t r o l s a l l t h i s v a r i e t y , i s the one t h a t i s expected. But although i t i s Spenser h i m s e l f who u l t i m a t e l y gives t h i s v e r d i c t , and who had i t i n mind a l l along, h i s f i n a l r a t h e r n o s t a l g i c remarks about M u t a b i l i t y should a l s o be noted. For although he recognizes the dominance of the p r i n c i p l e or order, he, remains i n love w i t h the appearance of change: When I bethinke me on t h a t speech whyieare, Of M u t a b i l i t y , and w e l l i t way: Me seemes, that though she a l l unworthy were Of the Heav'ns Rule; yet very sooth to say, In a l l t h i n g s e l s e she beares the greatest sway. Which makes me l o a t h t h i s s t a t e of l i f e so t i c k l e , And love of t h i n g s so vaine to caste away; Whose f l o w r i n g p r i d e , so f a d i n g and so f i c k l e , Short Time s h a l l soon cut down w i t h h i s consuming s i c k l e . ( V I I . v i i i . 1 ) Spenser's world view, then, embodies the p r i n c i p l e s of v a r i e t y and order. The b e l i e f that nature i t s e l f con-t a i n s the p r i n c i p l e s of beauty n a t u r a l l y leads to a d e l i g h t i n a r t that d i s p l a y s v e r i s i m i l i t u d e . Narrowly defined " v e r i s i m i l i t u d e " i s the attempt of a r t to appear to be r e a l i t y , but when the term i s a p p l i e d to the E l i z a b e t h a n s i t must i n c l u d e the d e l i g h t , w h i c h occurs when a r t may be mistaken f o r nature, nature mistaken f o r a r t , o r , what i s even more d e l i g h t f u l , where a r t and nature are both seen to be present and e i t h e r p l a y f u l l y compete w i t h one another, or o f f e r one another complementary a i d . In a l l these cases, when a r t i s not a t a l l i n disharmony w i t h nature, the E l i z a b e t h a n viewer has a c o n f i r m a t i o n of the world's harmony. Man the a r t i s t i s q u i t e n a t u r a l l y I m i t a t i n g God the a r t i s t . The process i s a n a t u r a l one f o r man was made i n God's image. Spenser p r a i s e s v e r i s i m i l i t u d e mainly i n h i s d e s c r i p -t i o n s of t a p e s t r i e s , but he was not unaware of the r e a l i s t i c p o s s i b i l i t i e s of p a i n t i n g as w e l l . In the argument to the February Eclogue E. K. p r a i s e s Thenot f o r t e l l i n g the t a l e of the Oak and the B r i a r "so l i v e l y and so f e e l i n g l y , as i f the t h i n g were set f o r t h i n some P i c t u r e before our eyes, more p l a i n l y could not appeare". We may assume th a t i f E. K. i s aware of the "ut p i c t u r a p o e s l s " t r a d i t i o n , so 81. would be Spenser. Spenser hi m s e l f confirms t h i s when i n the Proem to Book I I I of the F a e r i e Queene he a c t u a l l y takes a stand i n the debate. Again the " l i v e l i n e s s " or l i f e l i k e n e s s of p a i n t i n g ( " l i f e - r e s e m b l i n g p e n c i l l " , verse 2) i s p r a i s e d , but the poet goes on to argue, q u i t e understandably, that a poet's a r t excels p a i n t i n g i n i t s a b i l i t y to portray r e a l i t y a c c u r a t e l y . This argument may imply no more than an awareness of the c r i t i c a l debate, current i n I t a l y , over the r e l a t i v e powers of the s i s t e r a r t s , but an awareness of the I t a l i a n p i c t o r i a l a r t s themselves i s i m p l i e d by E. K. i n the Preface to the Shepheardes Calender. Here he l i k e n s Spenser's use of rough words In h i s poetry to the use of rough, rocky backgrounds i n p a i n t i n g s . Both have the e f f e c t of making the p r i n c i p l e subject appear more b e a u t i f u l , Da V i n c i ' s "Madonna of the Rocks" comes to mind, though the e f f e c t was widespread i n Renaissance p a i n t i n g . But Spenser's a p p r e c i a t i o n of " l i v e l i n e s s " i s most evident i n h i s p r a i s e of t a p e s t r i e s , works of a r t of a k i n d he was c e r t a i n l y immediately f a m i l i a r w i t h . As was noted above (p. 56), the t a p e s t r i e s of the s i x t e e n t h century employed the devices of l i g h t and shadow, pro p o r t i o n and p e r s p e c t i v e which c h a r a c t e r i s t i c a l l y belong to the Renaissance a r t of p a i n t i n g . In C a s t l e Joyous we are shown such a t a p e s t r y . Here the love of Venus f o r Adonis, a 82. f a v o u r i t e Renaissance s u b j e c t , i s d e p i c t e d w i t h a great d e a l of motion or l i v e l i n e s s , f o r i t i s the passionate f i t s and the sensual d e l i g h t s of the s t o r y , not i t s p o s s i b l e a l l e g o r i c a l i n t e n t , that immediately impress the viewer. Even the d a i n t y flower i n t o which Adonis was f i n a l l y metamorphosed " i n t h a t c l o t h was wrought, as i f i t l i v e l y grew" ( I l i a . 3 8 . 9 ) . More elaborate p r a i s e f o r the l i f e l i k e n e s s i n a work of t a p e s t r y i s to be found i n the d e s c r i p t i o n of t h a t d e p i c t i n g Cupid's power i n the House of Busyrane ( I l l . x i . 29-46); Here chiaroscuro i s suggested when the a r t i s t i s p r a i s e d f o r the "wondrous s k i l l , and sweet w i t " w i t h which he p i c t u r e d the s l e e p i n g Leda shaded by d a f f o d i l s ( 3 2 . 3 - 5 ) . The workman's s k i l l i s more o f t e n p r a i s e d , however, f o r i t s v e r i s i m i l i t u d e : Europa's heart " d i d l i v e l y seeme to tremble" (30.8); i n Phaeton's s t o r y " a l l the walles d i d seeme to flame" ( 3 8 . 6 ) ; i n Neptune's, " h i s seahorses d i d seeme to snort amayne" (41.1); and f i n a l l y , the bloody r i v e r w i t h which the a r t i s t surrounds t h i s mass of a c t i v i t y , i s "so l i v e l y and so l i k e , t h a t l i v i n g sence i t f a y l d " (46.9). In another poem of Spenser's i n which t a p e s t r i e s play an important r o l e , the weaver's a r t i s a g a i n judged according t o i t s attainment of r e a l i s m (Muiopotmos, 11.279-280). On Arachne's t a p e s t r y we again see Europa c a r r i e d through the sea on the b u l l and i t i s "so l i v e l y seene,/That i t t r u e Sea, and t r u e B u l l ye would weene". In reading the stanza which de s c r i b e s the expression of f e a r on Europa's face and her t a k i n g up of her d a i n t y f e e t from the range of the waves one i s reminded of Durer's d e p i c t i o n of the scene. But whether Spenser's model here was a c t u a l l y a v i s u a l one or whether he. was working d i r e c t l y from Golding does not matter. The p i c t u r e he renders, l i k e the v e r s i o n by D i i r e r , i s a Renaissance one. The most important point f o r us to note i s t h a t i n Mulopotmos» P a l l a s * t a p e s t r y i s given the p r i z e over Arachne's because of her triumphant p o r t r a y a l of the b u t t e r f l y " F l u t t e r i n g among the O l i v e s wantonly,/That seem'd to l i v e , so l i k e i t was i n s i g h t " (II.33I-332): The accurate p o r t r a i t of a b u t t e r f l y , w i t h i t s f l u t t e r i n g movements, i t s v e l v e t nap, i t s g l o r i o u s c o l o r s and g l i t t e r i n g eyes, would seem to be the winner because i t i s the f i n e s t example of an a r t i s t ' s a b i l i t y t o capture the ephemeral beauty of l i f e ; Extreme commitment to the b e l i e f that a r t should i m i t a t e nature i s s u r e l y f e l t by those who f i n d t h a t nature i n t u r n i m i t a t e s a r t : I f one b e l i e v e s that any work of a r t i s an attempt to i m i t a t e some p e r f e c t i o n i n nature, i t f o l l o w s that when any p e r f e c t i o n i n nature i s met w i t h , he w i l l immediately t h i n k of a r t . In the F a e r i e Queene we 8 4 . f i n d human beauties p r a i s e d e i t h e r f o r t h e i r approximation to a work of a r t or f o r t h e i r s u p e r i o r i t y to any known works. When Guyon s e l e c t s Shamefastness as the object of h i s a t t e n t i o n s i n the C a s t l e of Alma, f o r example, her b l u s h i n g complexion i s des c r i b e d i n terms of a r t : And ever and anone wi t h r o s i e red The b a s h f u l l bloud her snowy cheekes d i d dye, That her became, as p o l i s t yvory, Which cunning Craftesmans hand hath overlayd With f a i r e v e r m i l i o n or pure C a s t o r y i ( m i x . 4 1 . 3 - 7 ) B r i t o m a r t ' s golden h a i r , on the other hand, i s s a i d to e x c e l any p o s s i b l e work of a r t . But before t h i s i n t e l l e c t u a l statement i s made, the poet's f i r s t i n s t i n c t i s t o admire i t f o r i t s approximate!on to a work of a r t i f i c e : . . . her yel l o w heare Having through s t i r r i n g l o osd t h e i r wonted band, L i k e to a golden border d i d appeare, Framed i n goldsmithes forge with cunning hand: Yet goldsmithes cunning could not understand To frame such s u b t i l e w i r e , so s h i n i e c l e a r e i (IV.vi.20. 1 - 6 ) B e a u t i f u l works of nature are a l s o praised f o r t h e i r a r t i f i c i a l appearance. In the s e t t i n g of Dame Nature's court on Mount A r l o , d e s p i t e the f a c t t h a t the poet has t o l d us that a l l here i s b e a u t i f u l s o l e l y through nature's workman-s h i p , we nevertheless f i n d the flowers a t Dame Nature's f e e t described as seeming r i c h e r "then any t a p e s t r y " ( V I I . v i i . 1 0 . 8 ) . Here nature's beauty has surpassed the achievements of a r t , but the p r a i s e of i t s beauty must s t i l l be made x\rith r eference to i t s competitor. 85. Whole frameworks of nature are a l s o seen i n a r t i f i c i a l terms. The s e t t i n g of Belphoebe's d w e l l i n g i s l i k e a t h e a t r e ( I I I . v . 3 9 ) , and the bay through which Guyon and the Palmer s a i l i s l i k e n e d to a h a l f t h e a t r e ( I I . x i i . 3 0 ) . There i s a suggestion i n these passages t h a t Spenser sees and composes at the same time. That i s , i n v i s u a l i z i n g a n a t u r a l s e t t i n g he a u t o m a t i c a l l y e l i m i n a t e s c e r t a i n elements and rearranges others u n t i l the whole formation i s a p l e a s i n g -l y symmetrical one. On the other hand i t may'be t h a t he uncon-s c i o u s l y only chooses to remember those n a t u r a l s e t t i n g s which contain the symmetry of a r t . In two of the examples given.above i t was seen that nature's beauty e x c e l l e d the p o s s i b i l i t i e s of a r t . But that art. a t times excels nature, i s calmly acknowledged by Spenser i n h i s "Hymne i n Honour of Beautie." He discusses the a r t of p i c t u r e s "In which oftimes, we Nature see of A r t / E x c e l d , i n p e r f e c t l i m n i n g every p a r t " (11.83-84). I t seems to me t h a t Spenser considers the contest f o r supremacy between a r t and nature a f r i e n d l y one. For many objects l o v i n g l y described i n the F a e r i e Queene seem to be found e s p e c i a l l y d e l i g h t f u l because they bear witness to the existence of t h i s f r i e n d l y b a t t l e . But the f a c t that the r e l a t i o n s h i p of a r t and nature i s o f t e n r e f e r r e d to as a b a t t l e has no doubt made many c r i t i c s wish to f i n d out which s i d e Spenser i s on. In these searches the d e c i s i o n i s u s u a l l y made i n 86. favour of nature and, as i s the case i n C. S. Lewis' a n a l y s i s of the problem (see Chapter I above, page 3 ) , proof i s d e r i v e d from a c a t e g o r i z a t i o n of Spenser's gardens. Lewis, f o r example, found t h a t the Bower of B l i s s w i t h a l l i t s a r t i f i c e was e v i l , and that the Garden of Adonis, w i t h a l l i t s n a t u r a l n e s s , was good. This equation i s c o n t e x t u a l l y a ferue one, but i t does not take i n t o account the b e a u t i f u l appearance of these gardens. The Bower of B l i s s , though e v i l , i s o f t e n exceedingly b e a u t i f u l . Sometimes the f a l s e n e s s of i t s beauty i s revealed through an overwrought a r t i f i c i a l i t y ; but more o f t e n the garden of A c r a s i a f u n c t i o n s , as i t must i f i t i s t o have any e f f e c t i n the a l l e g o r y , as a r a v i s h i n g e n t i c e r of the senses. I t does t h i s by employing a r t which has the supreme excellency of appearing n a t u r a l . Our f i r s t glimpse at the Bower of B l i s s i s given when A t i n seeks out Cymochles t h e r e . That Cymochles has f a l l e n i n t o e v i l ways i s evident from the f a c t t h a t he has cast aside h i s weapons of war f o r the pleasures of "loose Ladies and l a s c i v i o u s boyes" (II.v.28 - 9 ) . But i s the a c t u a l s e t t i n g In which he i s found e v i l i n i t s e l f ? The arbor i n which he l i e s has been formed by " a r t s t r i v i n g to compaire/ With nature" (29.1-2) but the suggestion of harmony, r a t h e r than s t r i f e i s the e f f e c t produced. The arbor i s ; Framed of wanton y v i e , f l o u r i n g f a i r e , Through which the f r a g r a n t E g l a n t i n e d i d spred His p r i c k i n g armes, e n t r a y l d with roses r e d , 8?. Which d a i n t i e odours round about them threw, And a l l w i t h i n w i t h flowres was garnished, That when myId Zephyrus emongst them blew, Did breath out bounteous smels, and painted c o l o r s shew. (29.3-9) The mixture of a r t and nature here, although i t s e f f e c t s are being abused by the l a s c i v i o u s Cymochles, i s the one t h a t i s I d e a l l y a t t a i n e d by the gardener's a r t . Compare t h i s passage, f o r example, with the d e s c r i p t i o n of a harmless garden v i s i t e d by the b u t t e r f l y C l a r i o n : To the gay gardins h i s u n s t a i d d e s i r e Him wholly c a r i e d , t o r e f r e s h h i s s p r i g h t s : There l a v i s h Nature i n her best a t t i r e , Powres f o r t h sweet odors, and a l l u r i n g s i g h t s ; And A r t e w i t h her contending, doth a s p i r e T' e x c e l l the n a t u r a l l , w i t h made d e l i g h t s : And a l l that f a i r e or pleasant may be found, I n r i o t o u s excesse doth there...abound... (Mulopotmos, 11. 161-168) The i v y i s missing here but the mixture of b e a u t i f u l odors w i t h b e a u t i f u l s i g h t s and the statement that a r t i s contending w i t h nature occurs i n both d e s c r i p t i o n s . The observation t h a t a r t and nature are at b a t t l e does not suggest e v i l but r a t h e r a normal garden s e t t i n g . That the b a t t l e i s r e a l l y a f r i e n d l y one i s obvious from the sense of harmony achieved i n both d e s c r i p t i v e passages. And although wanton i v y i s present In Cymochle's arbor t h i s need not f u n c t i o n as a warning. For we f i n d wanton i v y t r a i l i n g over the House of Alma's porch (VI.ix.24.5) and i t i s even entwining an arbor i n the Bower of B l i s s ' s e t h i c a l a n t i - t y p e , the Garden 88. of Adonis (III.vi.4 4 . 5 ). In the Bower of B l i s s , furthermore, can be found "the s t a t e l y tree,/That dedicated i s t ' Olympioke Jove" (31 .2-3) . ' I t i s not the s e t t i n g i t s e l f , then, that i s e v i l , but i t i s the use that i t i s being put to that i s c o r r u p t i n g . The s e t t i n g i n i t s e l f i s n e i t h e r good nor e v i l , but b e a u t i f u l . In Canto x i i , when we approach the Bower of B l i s s f o r a second time, we are b e t t e r able t o perceive the e v i l l u r k i n g behind or among the beauty f o r we are accompanied by a moral guide, the Palmer. S t i l l , the i v o r y gate that forms i t s outer entrance seems to demonstrate that f r i e n d l y b a t t l e between a r t and nature which was p a r t i c u l a r l y admired by Spenser: on i t a s h i p passing through the sea i s so r e a l i s t i c a l l y carved "That seemd the waves were i n t o yvory,/Or yvory i n t o the waves were sent" .(II.xii.4 5 . 3 - 4 ) . The guardian of t h i s gate, however, though a comely person, has a "semblance p l e a s i n g , more then n a t u r a l l " ( 4 6 . 5 ) . (Under-l i n i n g mine) Here we have a warning of e v i l , but i t comes not from the appearance of the garden paradise i t s e l f but from one of i t s i n h a b i t a n t s . I t i s t r u e , however, that the p l a i n which Guyon and the Palmer f i r s t behold on e n t e r i n g a l s o g ives warning of a f a l s e a r t i f i c i a l i t y : A l a r g e and spacious p l a i n e , on every s i d e Strowd w i t h pleasauns, whose f a i r e grassy ground Mantled w i t h greene, and goodly b e a u t i f i d e With a l l the ornament of Fl o r a e s p r i d e , Wherewith her mother A r t , as h a l f e i n scorne Of niggard Nature, l i k e a pompous b r i d e Did decke her and too l a v i s h l y adorne. (50.2-8) 89. This too l a v i s h l y adorned meadow i s admired "by Guyon but recognized as dangerous. Passing through another gate, however, a more d a i n t y paradise i s found and here a l l appears harmonious and ordered ("The dales f o r shade, the h i l l e s f o r breathing space," 58.6). There i s no f a l s e l u x u r i a n c e to warn Guyon o f f ; i n f a c t one of the most d e l i g h t f u l aspects of t h i s garden i s that "The a r t , which a l l t h a t wroght, appeared i n no p l a c e . " (58.9) Since t h i s i s a q u a l i t y that graces a l l f a i r works (58.9)» no wonder Guyon i s a t t h i s point taken i n by the seeming naturalness of the play of the maidens i n the f o u n t a i n . Without the superhuman moral v i s i o n of the Palmer, Guyon at t h i s point would have been l o s t . The nymphs that deceive Guyon are p l a y i n g i n that curious f o u n t a i n which stands i n the centre of t h i s garden paradise. Over t h i s f o u n t a i n t r a i l s the pure gold i v y , s u b t l y painted green so t h a t "wight, who d i d not w e l l a v i s ' d i t vew,/Would s u r e l y deeme i t to be y v i e trew" (61.4-5). Surely t h i s i s the supreme compliment t o the a r t of the Bower of B l i s s . The s c u l p t o r and p a i n t e r here have s u c c e s s f u l l y a t t a i n e d the v e r i s i m i l i t u d e that we have seen Spenser to admire i n h i s comments on p i c t o r i a l a r t . Without an a d v i s e r here the viewer would mistake a r t f o r r e a l i t y . In other words, the craftsmanship that wrought i t "appeared i n no p l a c e " and t h a t , Spenser says, only a few l i n e s e a r l i e r , 90. " a l l f a i r e workes doth most aggrace" (58.8). We have, then, i n the centre of A c r a s i a ' s garden, a f i n e work of a r t . Passing i n s t i l l f u r t h e r towards her a c t u a l bower, i n the d e s c r i p t i o n of the beauty of the b i r d s ' songs mixed w i t h v o i c e s , instruments, winds and waters, we a l s o have a supreme example of the harmony p o s s i b l e to an o r d e r l y mixing of nature and a r t (verse 70). But as Guyon and the Palmer approach the Enchantress's bed i t s e l f a warning song i s heard. The song i s a " l o v e l y l a y " chanted i n harmony with the b i r d s ' songs but the f a l s i t y of i t s l o g i c — i t argues "gather, ye rosebuds" by making a man's l i f e analogous to t h a t of a rose (a v i o l a t i o n of the Chain of B e i n g ) — i s r e a d i l y understood by both Guyon and the Palmer: "The constant p a i r heard a l l , t hat he d i d say,/Yet swarved not" (76, 5-6). Seeing A c r a s i a and her l o v e r i n bed, one needs no perceptive Palmer to point out the moral d e p r a v i t y of the s i t u a t i o n . A c r a s i a ' s c l o t h e s are d i s a r r a y e d , her breast bare, and she i s occupied w i t h sucking the s p i r i t out of her s l e e p i n g l o v e r . Verdant's degradation i s evident not only i n h i s l a n g u i s h i n g posture but a l s o , and more s t r o n g l y , i n h i s cast aside and m u t i l a t e d arms that hang upon a t r e e of the bower.. Guyon's former a b e r r a t i o n i s not repeated, and a f t e r he and the Palmer have s a f e l y chained A c r a s i a . . . a l l those pleasant bowres and P a l l a c e brave, Guyon broke downe, with r i g o u r p i t t i l e s s e ; 9 1 . Ne ought t h e i r goodly workmanship might save Them from the tempest of h i s wrathfulnesse. (83.1-4) The moral w i l l has triumphed, then, "but s u r e l y a f e e l i n g of re g r e t r i n g s through t h i s d e c l a r a t i o n of triumph. A s u p p o s i t i o n of t h i s s o r t , which poses the question as to which was stronger i n Spenser, h i s moral or h i s e s t h e t i c nature, cannot, with any s u r i t y , be answered. The point t h a t I wish to s t r e s s i s that the two natures are separable. A c r a s i a ' s garden i s not e v i l because i t contains a great d e a l of a r t i f i c i a l i t y : i t i s e v i l because A c r a s i a i s i n h a b i t i n g i t , and i f to destroy her, her bower must a l s o be destroyed, then beauty i s l o s t i n the attainment of m o r a l i t y . For Spenser, then, n e i t h e r the beauty of nature nor the beauty of a r t has i n I t s e l f any e t h i c a l i m p l i c a t i o n s . I t has already been noted that wanton i v y appears not only i n the Bower of B l i s s but a l s o i n the Garden of Adonis and on the House of Alma. More s t r i k i n g than t h i s i s the hyper-b o l i c whiteness of A c r a s i a ' s s k i n (verse 7?) which would be very hard to d i s t i n g u i s h from the whiteness of the chaste Una. N a t u r a l and a r t i f i c i a l beauty may be good or bad as the possessor, or u l t i m a t e l y the author, chooses to make i t . P r i n c e A r t h u r approaches a l l a g l l t t e r and we assume that g o l d , diamonds and pearls are symbols of excellence ( I . v i i . 2 9 - 3 6 ) . Our entry i n t o the C a s t l e Joyous, however, 9 2 . which turns out t o be the d w e l l i n g place of l a s c i v i o u s knights and l a d i e s , d a z z l e s us w i t h a s i m i l a r d i s p l a y : But f o r to t e l l the sumptuous aray . Of that great chamber, should be labour l o s t : For l i v i n g w i t , I weene, cannot d i s p l a y The r o y a l r i c h e s and exceeding c o s t , Of every p i l l o u r and of every post; Which a l l of purest b u l l i o n framed were, And wi t h great pearles and p r e t i o u s stones embost, That the b r i g h t g l i s t e r of t h e i r beames c l e a r e Did s p a r k l e f o r t h great l i g h t , and g l o r i o u s d i d appeare. (III. 1 . 3 2 ) Gold f o i l i s used as a metaphor f o r d e c e i t f u l looks ( I V . i i . 29), and was the substance from which the d e c e i v i n g i v y was hammered, but Britomart's h a i r has a l s o been compared t o hammered gold and i t Is gold t h a t i s used to crown Sapience i n the f i n a l "Hymne of Heavenly Beautie". To know the moral value of an object which has a r t i f i c i a l or n a t u r a l beauty we must r e l y on an e t h i c a l c r i t e r i o n that has no i n e v i t a b l e r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h the symbol i t s e l f . And i f the symbol turns out to be bad, i t nevertheless remains b e a u t i f u l , a t l e a s t i n the purely e s t h e t i c sense. As a f u r t h e r example consider the i m i t a t i o n F l o r i m e l . Not e s t h e t i c perception but a magic g i r d l e i s r e q u i r e d to d i s t i n g u i s h between the f a l s i t y of the snowy F l o r i m e l and the v i r t u e of the b e a u t i f u l Amoret (IV.v . 1 5 - 1 9 ) . 3 6 3°This point has a l s o been.noted by Hans P. Guth, " A l l e g o r i c a l I m p l i c a t i o n s of A r t i f a c e i n Spenser's F a e r i e Queene", PMLA, LXXVI (1961), p. 47?. Both a r t and nature can be good and bad i n the F a e r i e Queene, f o r "vertues seat i s deepe w i t h i n the mynd, /And not i n outward shows, but inward thoughts •defynd" (VI.Proem 5'8-9)» An ordered and various nature,' however, i s always p l e a s i n g , and a work of a r t d i s p l a y i n g order, v a r i e t y and v e r i s i m i l i t u d e , o r , simply good craftsmanship, i s always admired. We see that a work of a r t that appears p a r t i c u l a r l y a r t i f i c i a l i s considered admirable i n the frequent use of the word "cunningly" as a complimentary e p i t h e t . To c a l l a work cunningly done i s to recognize the presence of the a r t i s t and to admire him f o r the s k i l l of h i s workmanship. Although we might expect the word cunning to be a p p l i e d to a r t that attempts to deceive, as much does i n A c r a s i a ' s garden, we f i n d the word employed, i n the midst of a l l t h i s d e c e i t , to an u l t i m a t e symbol of m o r a l i t y — t h e Palmer's s t a f f . ( I t i s framed of wood cunningly. I l . x i i . 4 1 . 1 ) The i d o l of I s i s , another symbol of goodness, i s a l s o p r a i s e d f o r the cunning of the hand that wrought i t ( V . v i i . 6 . 3 ) . But cunning craftsmanship, although admirable, can a l s o be employed f o r e v i l means, and hence the lamentable d e s t r u c t i o n of the "goodly workmanship" of the Bower of B l i s s . The Garden of Adonis, a l l reproduction and goodness, where, i n c o n t r a s t to the Bower of B l i s s "of t h e i r owne a c c o r d / A l l t h i n g s , as they created were, doe grow" ( I I I . vi.34.2-3) i s o f t e n used as evidence of Spenser's preference f o r nature over a r t . But, as was suggested above, t h i s garden seems to be an a l l e g o r i c a l p r e s e n t a t i o n of the c y c l e of n a t u r a l c r e a t i o n . I t i s only n a t u r a l , then, that here there should be no a r t . Josephine Bennett, i n attempting to f i x the l o c a t i o n of t h i s garden, demonstrates that i t i s a s e m i - c e l e s t i a l paradise f o r which Spenser had 37 precedence i n both P l a t o n i c and C h r i s t i a n t r a d i t i o n . U s u a l l y t h i s paradise was l o c a t e d on the moon but f o r the sake of Amoret's education i t was more convenient f o r Spenser to l o c a t e h i s on a mountain top. For the point that i s to be made here i t i s not necessary to l o c a t e Adonis' garden any more d e f i n i t e l y than to say that although i t represents the c y c l e of e a r t h l y reproduction i t i s not of t h i s e a r t h . For one t h i n g , the garden possesses only forms and must r e l y on Chaos to supply the matter f o r e a r t h l y c r e a t i o n . Here we f i n d then n e i t h e r a m o r a l i t y nor an e s t h e t i c s that i s d i r e c t l y a p p l i c a b l e to l i f e on e a r t h . Venus and Adonis, symbols of goodness here, l i e l a n g u i s h i n g i n love making a l l day i n the manner of A c r a c i a and Verdant. This a c t i v i t y can only be understood a l l e g o r i c a l l y - - V e n u s , the mother of a l l substance, i s making love w i t h Adonis, the f a t h e r of a l l forms. For an overindulgence i n l o v e -making, as we have seen i n the Bower of B l i s s , i s an e v i l 37»Spenser's Garden of Adonis," PMLA, XLVII (1932), pp. 46-80. 95-i n the world of r e a l i t y . Por our i l l u m i n a t i o n of what i s e s t h e t i c a l l y good on t h i s e a rth the Garden of Adonis i s again not very h e l p f u l . There i s no a r t i n t h i s garden s i n c e there are no men to create i t . We do see workmanship here, however, the workmanship of God the a r t i s t ( I I I . v i . 1 2 . 5 ) , and the f a m i l i a r p r i n c i p l e s of order and v a r i e t y are again the r u l i n g ones i I n f i n i t e shapes of creatures there are bred, And uncouth formes, which none yet ever knew, And every s o r t i s i n a sundry bed Set by i t s e l f e , and ranokt i n comely rew. ( 3 5 . 1 - M ( u n d e r l i n i n g mine) In the Bower of B l i s s a r t , nature and love-making are abused. In the Garden of Adonis n e i t h e r a r t nor e a r t h l y nature appear and the love-making i s of an a l l e g o r i c a l nature. In yet another examination of l o v e , however, a r t and nature are q u i t e amicably r e l a t e d . Although the love between Scudamour and Amoret has i t s own allegory,, i t s s i g n i f i c a n c e , i n comparison to the u n i v e r s a l c y c l e r e p r e -sented by Venus and Adonis, contains a l e s s o n a p p l i c a b l e t o o r d i n a r y human conduct, f o r Amoret, r a i s e d i n "goodly womanhed" by Venus, i s r e p r e s e n t a t i v e of married l o v e . The garden through which Scudamour must pass to a t t a i n h i s b r i d e , t h e r e f o r e , i s a p p r o p r i a t e l y an e a r t h l y one of e x c e p t i o n a l 9 6 . p e r f e c t i o n ^ When Scudamour a r r i v e s on the i s l a n d c o n t a i n i n g Venus' temple, which i n t u r n contains Amoret, i t seems to h i s "simple doome": The only pleasant and d e l i g h t f u l l p l a c e , That ever troden was of f o o t i n g s t r a c e . For a l l t h a t nature by her mother w i t Could frame i n e a r t h , and forme of substance base, Was t h e r e , and a l l t h a t nature d i d omit, A r t p l a y i n g second natures p a r t , supplyed i t . (IV.x.21.4 -9) His d e s c r i p t i o n continues and we f i n d t h a t every t r e e i s e i t h e r growing n a t u r a l l y or planted t h e r e , that there are h i l l s f o r viewing, dales f o r love-making, groves f o r shade and p l a i n s f o r sun-taking (22-24). Besides the pleasures of a v a r i e d and o r d e r e d nature, whi6h, i t should be noted, i s the product of both nature and a r t , t h i s garden contains every "queint d e v i c e " — i . e . a r t i f a c e — t h a t ever a heart has yearned f o r (22.8 . 9 )• A garden t h a t i s t o provide a man with h i s e a r t h l y happiness, then, contains the beauties of both nature and a r t , the two working s i d e by s i d e i n harmony. And i f a r t sometimes seems to be nature or nature seems to be a r t there i s no cause f o r alarm. Scudamour, passing along the garden's w a l l , admires the "stones of r i c h assay":' Cast i n t o sundry shapes by wondrous s k i l l , That l i k e on earth no where I recken may: And underneath, the r i v e r r o l l i n g s t i l l With murmer s o f t e , t h a t seem'd to serve the workmans w i l l . (15.6-9) The p l e a s u r e t h a t i s here f e l t i n the o b s e r v a t i o n of the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the workmanship of stones and the apparent workmanship of r e a l waves seems to be g i v e n u t t e r a n c e i n the harmonious murmuring of the r i v e r i t s e l f . That the r e l a t i o n s h i p between a r t and nature found i n the garden of Venus• temple i s the i d e a l one f o r t h i s l i f e on e a r t h i s f u r t h e r supported by the contents of Book VI, The Legend of Courtesy. A c c o r d i n g to Edward T a y l o r a concern f o r the r e l a t i o n s h i p between a r t and nature i s the u n i f y i n g p r i n c i p l e of t h i s book, f o r a l t h o u g h men a r e born with c o u r t e s y and i n t h a t sense the q u a l i t y i s n a t u r a l , C a l i d q r e h i m s e l f embodies c i v i l i z e d c o u r t e s y — t h e best combination of n a t u r e and a r t p o s s i b l e i n the order of n a t u r e . The wholesale condemnation of a r t which i s g i v e n through Meliboe's l i p s i n Canto ix.24-25, i s e x p l a i n e d by T a y l o r as a p p l i c a b l e only i n the i d e a l world of the p a s t o r a l (p. 113). I t i s s i g n i f i c a n t t h a t C a l i d o r e may not remain i n t h i s world w i t h h i s P a s t o r e l l but must continue i n the world of a r t h i s p u r s u i t of the B l a t a n t Beast, an a l l e g o r i c a l f i g u r e r e l a t e d t o c o u r t l y a f f a i r s . In the most l a v i s h d e s c r i p t i o n of Book VI we a g a i n have a p a r a d i s e formed by nature a l o n e , but as i n the case of the Garden of Adonis, the a l l e g o r y here i s a g a i n v i s i o n a r y . Here the Graces are f o r the moment on e a r t h -^Nature and A r t i n Renaissance L i t e r a t u r e (New York, 1964), p. 118. and the earth f o r t h a t moment i s a p p r o p r i a t e l y p e r f e c t . (The t r e e s " a l l w inter as i n sommer bud".) But the s e t t i n g ' s n a t u r a l p e r f e c t i o n , as we might expect, i s an extremely ordered one: the h i l l i s of "equal" height and i s bordered w i t h s t a t e l y t r e e s which appear a l s o to be of equal height (VI.x. 6 - 8 ) . So too the dance which the Graces perform i n a n a t u r a l n u d i t y i n e v i t a b l y has the appearance of a r t . I t i s performed i n a r i n g and t h e r e f o r e i s a symmetrical and ordered one. According to T a y l o r the Graces themselves represent "the i d e a l union of nature and a r t t h a t i s the height of courteous c i v i l i t y " (p. 117), f o r they not only "bestow" t h e i r g i f t s on man, but they a l s o "teach" him how to "demeane" him s e l f (verse 2 3 ) . Although a t t h i s p o i n t , near the end of the e x i s t i n g n a r r a t i v e , Spenser seems to g i v e an e t h i c a l recommendation f o r the proper balance of nature and a r t , various combinations of a r t and nature have occured f r e q u e n t l y i n the e a r l i e r books f o r the sake of e s t h e t i c d e l i g h t and i n s e v e r a l r e l a t i o n s to the e t h i c a l a l l e g o r y . Although Spenser can a t times r a i s e h i s e s t h e t i c to e t h i c a l and cosmological s i g n i f i c a n c e , these passages occur i n h i s most a b s t r a c t e d v i s i o n s ; whereas i n the general environment of F a i r y l a n d the reader must r e l y upon some e x t r a s i g n a l from the author before he can be sure i f the beauty he beholds belongs to a m o r a l l y s u p e r i o r or i n f e r i o r o b j e c t . And although beauty 99. i s o f t e n abused by the morally degenerate, we must remember Spenser's plea i n beauty's defense: Yet nathemore i s t h a t f a i r e beauties blame, But t h e i r s that do abuse i t unto i l l : Nothing so good, but that through g u i l t y shame May be c o r r u p t , and wrested unto w i l l . (VHymne i n Honour of Beautie", 11.155-158) Beauty, then, remains a good i n i t s e l f , d e s p i t e i t s moral abusers. To show what i s b e a u t i f u l to Spenser has been the whole aim of t h i s study. H i s e s t h e t i c a p p r e c i a t i o n has proven to be one th a t i s c o n s i s t e n t w i t h a wide-spread Renaissance outlook that sees beauty i n a r t when i t sees order, v a r i e t y and v e r i s i m i l i t u d e . - ^ Because t h i s concept of beauty i s based p h i l o s o p h i c a l l y on a b e l i e f i n an ordered universe and a theory that man the a r t i s t i s i m i t a t i n g God the A r t i s t , i t would seem to f o l l o w that what i s b e a u t i f u l i s a l s o m o r a l l y good, f o r God's universe i s i n t h i s view c e r t a i n l y a good one. Looking a t p i c t u r e s of beauty i n Spenser, however, we f i n d that e t h i c s and e s t h e t i c s have no absolute c o r r e l a t i o n . The poet provides another Renaissance commonplace to e x p l a i n t h i s discrepancy. He expl a i n s t h a t i n the Golden Age beauty and v i r t u e were one and the same, 39The key terms "decorum" and "harmony" can be considered as s u b d i v i s i o n s of order. 100. but as the world waxed o l d e r : . . . b e a u t i e , which was made to represent The great Creatours owne resemblance b r i g h t , Unto abuse of lawlesse l u s t was l e n t , And made the b a i t e of b e s t i a l l d e l i g h t : Then f a i r e grew f o u l e , and f p u l e grew f a i r e i n s i g h t , And that which wont to vanquish God and man, Was made the v a s s a l l of the v i c t o r s might. ( I V . v i i i . 3 2 . l - 7 ) In these l i n e s , i n which we sense a f e e l i n g of re g r e t over the abuse of beauty, we are reminded of that r i n g of reg r e t t h a t seemed to sound as the Bower of B l i s s was f e l l e d under Guyon*s f u r y . 101. LIST OF WORKS CITED Primary Sources Erasmus, D e s i d e r i u s . Ten C o l l o q u i e s , t r a n s . C r a i g R. 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