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UBC Theses and Dissertations

A study of the popularity of Edmund Spenser as revealed by allusion and criticism between the years 1600… Armstrong, Robert James 1951

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A STUDY OP THE POPULARITY OF EDMUND SPENSER AS REVEALED BY ALLUSION  AND CRITICISM BETWEEN THE YEARS 1600 AND  1850, WITH AN APPENDIX ADDED TO SHOW THE  EXTENT OF SPENSER STUDY AND SCHOLARSHIP  IN LEADING NORTH AMERICAN UNIVERSITIES  AND COLLEGES TODAY by ROBERT JAMES ARMSTRONG A T H E S I S SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OP ARTS i n t h e Department o f E n g l i s h We a c c e p t t h i s t h e s i s a s c o n f o r m i n g t o t h e s t a n d a r d r e q u i r e d f r o m c a n d i d a t e s f o r t h e d e g r e e o f M a s t e r o f A r t s . Members o f t h e Department o f E n g l i s h THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA OCTOBER, 1951 . ....ABSTRACT... T h i s t h e s i s i s a. s t u d y o f t h e p o p u l a r i t y o f Edmund S p e n s e r as r e v e a l e d hy a l l u s i o n a n d c r i t i c i s m between t h e y e a r s 1600 t o 1850. An a p p e n d i x h a s b e e n a d d e d showing .the e x t e n t o f S p e n s e r s t u d y and s c h o l a r s h i p i n l e a d i n g N o r t h A m e r i c a n u n i v e r s i t i e s t o d a y . I have shown t h a t S p e n s e r was h i g h l y r e g a r d e d by t h e E l i z a b e t h a n a n d J a c o b e a n w r i t e r s ; was a t t a c k e d by t h e neo-c l a s s i c i s t s ; was p r a i s e d w i t h o u t q u a l i f i c a t i o n by t h e r o -m a n t i c s and w i t h q u a l i f i c a t i o n by t h e l a t e r r o m a n t i c s ; and was s e v e r e l y a t t a c k e d by t h e e a r l y V i c t o r i a n s . S p e n s e r ' s p o p u l a r i t y , I b e l i e v e , h a s d e c l i n e d n o t among w r i t e r s b u t among r e a d e r s , r e a c h i n g i t ' s l o w e s t p o i n t a t t h e t i m e o f t h e r o m a n t i c s , and n o t r e g a i n i n g s t r e n g t h s i n c e . The a p p e n d i x c o n t a i n s t h e r e s u l t s o f a q u e s t i o n n a i r e , s e n t t o l e a d i n g u n i v e r s i t i e s , c o n c e r n i n g S p e n s e r s t u d y and s c h o l a r s h i p . I n t h e s e i n s t i t u t i o n s S p e n s e r r e c e i v e s ' o n l y a s m a l l f r a c t i o n o f t h e a t t e n t i o n , t h a t i s p a i d t o C h a u c e r , S h a k e s p e a r e a n d M i l t o n . I n my o p i n i o n , t h e r e s u l t s r e v e a l t h e f a c t t h a t , , m a i n l y b e c a u s e o f s t u d e n t a p a t h y t o -wards him, u n i v e r s i t i e s a r e not f o s t e r i n g a s t u d y o f S p e n s e r . On t h e w h o l e , I t h i n k I have shown t h a t t h e works o f Edmund S p e n s e r have become t h e p r o p e r t y o f w r i t e r s a n d o f a s m a l l g r o u p o f i n t e r e s t e d s c h o l a r s . i.'.TABLE OF CONTENTS... INTRODUCTION • i Chapter One; ELIZABETHAN AND JACOBEAN WRITERS -PROSE 1 Chapter Two: ELIZABETHAN AND JACOBEAN WRITERS; -VERSE 19 Chapter Three: THE NEO-CLASSICISTS 33 Chapter Four: THE PRE - R OM ANT ICS 61 Chapter F i v e : THE ROMANTICS' 82 Chapter S i x : THE EARLY VICTORIANS. .106 Chapter Seven: CONCLUSION 123 APPENDIX 150 BIBLIOGRAPHY' 138-. INTRODUCTION. No attempt has been made i n t h i s t h e s i s t o p r e s e n t a d e f i n i t i v e study o f Spenserian a l l u s i o n s and c r i t i c i s m . The i n t e n t i o n has simply been to r e v e a l the u n d u l a t i o n s of Spenser's p o p u l a r i t y over a p e r i o d of some two hundred and f i f t y y e a r s , w i t h the hope that the reasons why Spenser's works are not b e i n g read t o the same e x t e n t , or w i t h the same thoroughness, as those o f Shakespeare, M i l t o n , and Chaucer, might be found. I am c e r t a i n that some of these reasons, i f not a l l , are ma n i f e s t i n the c r i t i c i s m s quoted i n t h i s essay, but, wishing t o remain o b j e c t i v e towards Spenser's a r t , I am f o r c e d t o al l o w the reader to draw h i s own c o n c l u s i o n s concerning t h i s problem. The t h e s i s covers the years between 1600 and 1850. At the beginning I had hoped t o present my d a t a without b e n e f i t of such l a b e l s as n e o - c l a s s i c a l , pre-romantic, and romantic. But i t was found i m p o s s i b l e t o do so as c e r t a i n w r i t e r s , d i s t i n g u i s h e d by s i m i l a r c r i t i c a l i n -t e n t i o n s , f e l l e a s i l y i n t o groups, and the e f f i c a c y and convenience o f l a b e l l i n g such groups c o u l d not be over-looked. The reason^/ f o r c o n c l u d i n g the thelsis a t the yea r 1850 was t h r e e f o l d . I n the f i r s t p l a c e , i f l a t e r m a t e r i a l - i i -was t o be p r e s e n t e d a d e q u a t e l y t h e l e n g t h o f t h e t h e s i s . would have had t o be d o u b l e d o r , more p r o b a b l y , t r i p l e d . S e c o n d l y , a v a s t amount o f l a t e r S p e n s e r s c h o l a r s h i p , i n many c a s e s the s t u d y o f d e t a i l s , w o u l d have h a d t o be t a k e n i n t o c o n s i d e r a t i o n e v e n t h r o u g h s u c h s c h o l a r s h i p i s n o t c r i t i c i s m o f the t y p e r e l e v a n t t o the demands o f t h i s t h e s i s . I n t h e t h i r d p l a c e , and most i m p o r t a n t , t h e t r e n d I had b e e n most e a g e r t o d i s c o v e r nad a l r e a d y , b y 1850, b e e n f i r m l y e s t a b l i s h e d . To c o r r o b o r a t e t h i s f i n a l p o i n t I p r e p a r e d a q u e s t i o n n a i r e t o d e t e r m i n e t h e e x t e n t o f S p e n s e r s t u d y and s c h o l a r s h i p t o d a y and s e n t I t t o a l l t h e l e a d i n g u n i v e r s i t i e s and c o l l e g e s o f E n g l i s h - s p e a k i n g N o r t h A m e r i c a . A s t u d y o f t h i s q u e s t i o n n a i r e , w h i c h i s p r e s e n t e d i n an a p p e n d i x a t t h e end o f t h e t h e s i s , shows t h a t t h e waning o f S p e n s e r ' s p o p u l a r i t y i s s t i l l u n c h e c k e d , e v e n t h o u g h h i s i m p o r t a n c e i s s t i l l r e c o g n i z e d . H e e d i n g S p e n s e r ' s a d v i c e t h a t Him • • • i l l b eseemes, a n o t h e r s f a u l t t o name, T h a t may vnwares be b l o t t e d w i t h t h e same; (Fg, I I , i x , 58) I s h a l l l e t t h e c r i t i c s s p e a k f o r t h e m s e l v e s . - 1 -...CHAPTER ONE... ELIZABETHAN AND JAC QBEAN WRITERS: PROSE. - L i t e r a r y c r i t i c i s m a s we know i t t o d a y , a s e p a r a t e a c t i v i t y a k i n t o and a i d i n g a r t i s t i c c r e a t i o n , was v i r t u a l l y n o n - e x i s t e n t i n t h e E l i z a b e t h a n P e r i o d . How-e v e r , i n t h e random j o t t i n g s o f w r i t e r s and i n t h e f r a g -m e n t a r y e u l o g i e s o f p o e t s c a n b e s e e n the- e m b r y o n i c b e g i n n i n g s o f c r i t i c i s m as a n a c t i v i t y . T h e r e were ex-c e p t i o n s t o t h i s b u t t h e y were r a r e as c a n be s e e n by s t u d y i n g P u t t e n h a m , Aseham, S i d n e y , Carew, Webbe, Campion, H a r v e y , Nashe, and D a n i e l - a l l o f whom p r o d u c e d compara-t i v e l y b r i e f w o r k s . S i d n e y , o f c o u r s e , i n h i s A p o l o g i e  f o r P o e t r i e , w r i t t e n a b o u t 1580, i s t h e g r e a t e s t c r i t i c o f h i s a g e . D r a y t o n i n h i s v e r s e l e t t e r t o h i s f r i e n d S i r H enry R e y n o l d s , " O f . p o e t s a n d p o e s y , " r e v e a l s judg-. ments a b o u t h i s c o n t e m p o r a r i e s t h a t a r e wis e and s o u n d , and one c a n o n l y r e g r e t t h a t he s p e n t so much t i m e on. h i s . P o l y - O l b i o n , o r i n c h a n g i n g h i s M o r t i r a e r i o d o s i n t o t h e B a r o n ' s Wars, i n s t e a d o f s p e n d i n g more t i m e i n d e v e l o p i n g h i s c r i t i c a l f a c u l t y . Many o f t h e t r a c t s w h i c h were " c r i t i c a l " d e a l t w i t h t h a t p e c u l i a r e m b r o i l m e n t r e g a r d i n g q u a n t i t a t i v e a n d a c c e n t u a l m e t r e s w h i c h a r o s e when i t was -2-d i s c o v e r e d t h a t E n g l i s h c o u l d he a l i t e r a r y language - an argument i n t e r e s t i n g now o n l y f o r i t s i m p l i c a t i o n s of how our verse developed. To o v e r l o o k t h i s p e r i o d I n a survey of Spenser c r i -t i c i s m , however, would he grave f o l l y . Although there i s no t r a c t , even mihor, which s t u d i e s Spenser or h i s works as such, the b r i e f r e f e r e n c e s to him i n the prose of the time and the a l l u s i o n s i n the poetry', g i v e us the necessary m a t e r i a l s by which to gauge the breadth and depth of h i s impact upon the p e r i o d . We s h a l l f i n d no t r e n d s . We s h a l l f i n d p r a i s e or censure but w i t h few reasons g i v e n f o r e i t h e r . I t would be i m p o s s i b l e to g i v e every a l l u s i o n and comment made about Spenser o r - h i s works. Enough should-be g i v e n , however, to i l l u s t r a t e the importance he had among h i s contemporaries. I n a l l s c h o l a r s h i p t h a t i s d e s u l t o r y c e r t a i n s t o r i e s and legends are i n t e r p o l a t e d t h a t y e a r s l a t e r are d i s -proved or h e l d i n doubt. L i k e Surrey and Marlowe, Spenser was not to escape the t e l l i n g o f t a l e s . Prom John Manning-ham's D i a r y of 1602-3 we l e a r n t hat When h i r M a j e s t i e had g i u e n order t h a t Spenser should haue a reward f o r h i s poems", but Spenser could haue n o t h i n g , he p r e s e n t e d h i r with these v e r s e s : I t p l e a s e d your Grace vpon a tyme To graunt me reason f o r my ryme, But from that tyme v n t i l l t h i s season I heard of n e i t h e r ryme nor reason. ( T o u s e ) 1 1 Westminster, Camden S o c i e t y , J.B. N i c h o l s , 1868, p. 4 3 . The s t o r y i s a common one hut i t cannot be s u b s t a n t i a t e d . That Queen E l i z a b e t h had ordered a sum to be g i v e n to Spenser, and t h a t he had not r e c e i v e d i t because o f the i n t e r v e n t i o n o f one of her m i n i s t e r s we may ac c e p t as f a c t s . That Spenser sent her such a p i e c e o f d o g g e r e l as p r o t e s t can be doubted. L i k e w i s e i n the Jonson c o n v e r s a t i o n s r e c o r d e d by W i l l i a m Drummond we are t o l d : That the I r i s h having rob'd Spenser's goods, and burnt h i s house and a l i t l e c h i l d new born, he and h i s wyfe escaped; and a f t e r he d i e d f o r l a k e o f - b r e a d i n King S t r e e t , and r e f u s e d 2 0 p i e c e s sent to him by my L o r d o f Essex, and s a i d , He was s o r r i e hfeclaad no time to spend them. That i n t h a t paper S. .¥. Raughly had of the A l l e g o r i e s o f h i s F a y r i e Queen, by the B l a t i n g Beast the P u r i -tans were understood, by the f a l s e Duessa the Q. o f Scots.2 The q u o t a t i o n remains c o n t r o v e r s i a l . There i s no pr o o f t h a t t h e r e was a ' l i t l e c h i l d ' , i n f a c t i t i s h i g h l y d o u b t f u l . E i t h e r the paper 'Raughly had' i s l o s t or Jonson i s r e f e r r i n g to the l e t t e r to Ralegh which was p u b l i s h e d w i t h the f i r s t t h ree books of the F a i r i e Queene. I f i t i s the Ralegh l e t t e r i t must be noted t h a t no mention i s made of e i t h e r the P u r i t a n s or the Queen of S c o t s . 3 I t must be remembered t h a t Jonson was not always a c c u r a t e ; 2 The Works of Ben Jonson. F r a n c i s Cunningham, ed., London, Chatto & Windus, 1 9 0 3 , v o l . 3 , p. 4-78. 3 The Spenser-Ralegh l e t t e r i t s e l f poses i n t e r e s t i n g problems. I f i t was w r i t t e n a f t e r the f i r s t t h r e e books why i s the p l a n i n i t i n e r r o r ? I f i t was w r i t t e n p r i o r to these books why was the p l a n n ot changed to conform w i t h the books when p u b l i s h e d ? - 4 -once he s a y s t h a t S u r r e y was d i s f i g u r e d , b y s m a l l - p o x s c a r s when a c t u a l l y i t was S u r r e y ' s m o t h e r who was d i s -f i g u r e d . . B i o g r a p h e r s have b e e n b y no means as s h o r t o f m a t e r i a l s w i t h w h i c h t o draw a p i c t u r e o f S p e n s e r ' s l i f e as t h e y have b e e n i n t h e c a s e o f S h a k e s p e a r e . B u t we must a s k w h e t h e r o r n o t t h e y have examined t h e i r f i n d i n g s c l o s e l y e n o u g h t o i n t e r - r e l a t e t h e works o f the a u t h o r w i t h h i s l i f e . T h e r e a r e no b i o g r a p h i e s w r i t t e n b y h i s c o n t e m p o r a r i e s : i n d e e d , a n i n t e r e s t i n b i o g r a p h i c a l w r i t i n g d i d n o t a r i s e u n t i l t h e s e v e n t e e n t h c e n t u r y . The e x t e n t o f S p e n s e r ' s i m p o r t a n c e as a w r i t e r o f v a r i o u s f o r m s o f c o m p o s i t i o n i s . w e l l i l l u s t r a t e d by W i l l i a m L i s l e i n h i s P r e f a c e t o E c l o g u e s o f V i r g i l , ( 1 6 2 8 ) , when he w r i t e s t h a t O n l y M a s t e r S p e n s e r l o n g s i n c e t r a n s l a t e d t h e G n a t . . . g i v i n g t h e w o r l d p e r a d v e n t u r e t o c o n c e i v e t h a t he w o u l d a t one t i m e o r o t h e r have gone t h r o u g h t h e r e s t o f t h i s p o e t ' s w orks: and i t i s h o t i m p r o b a b l e t h a t t h i s v e r y c a u s e was i t t h a t made e v e r y man e l s e so v e r y n i c e t o meddle w i t h any p a r t o f t h e b u i l d i n g w h i c h he h a d be g u n , f o r f e a r t o come s h o r t w i t h d i s g r a c e o f t h e p a t t e r n w h i c h he h a d s e t b e f o r e them. ...4 E v e n as l a t e as 1628 S p e n s e r was h e l d t o be a m a s t e r t r a n s -l a t o r . A n o t h e r method o f g a u g i n g a p o e t ' s i m p o r t a n c e i s t o o b s e r v e how many q u o t a t i o n s f r o m S p e n s e r , v e r b a l , o r a l m o s t s o , t h a t o t h e r p o e t s embed i n t h e i r own w r i t i n g s . One 4 Qjuoted i n t h e " I n t r o d u c t i o n " t o V. S c h o l d e r e r ' s E n g l i s h E d i t i o n s and T r a n s l a t i o n s o f G r e e k and L a t i n C l a s s i c s , L o n d o n , B i b l i o g r a p h i c a l S o c i e t y P u b l i c a t i o n s , 1911, p . x x l v . - 5 -example w i l l be s u f f i c i e n t to i l l u s t r a t e ; as i t i s not a matter of import to our t h e s i s . The f o l l o w i n g l i n e s from the F a e r i e Qpeene, : L i k e t o an Almond tree; ymounted hye On top o f greene S e l i n i s a l l alone, Witn blossomes braue bedecked d a i n t i l y ; Whose tender l o c k s do tremble euery one At-euery l i t t l e b r e a t h , that vnder heauen i s blowne. ( I , v i i , 32) appear as f o l l o w s i n Marlowe's Tamburlaine the Gve&t, .. Upon the l o f t y and c e l e s t i a l mount Of ever-green S e l i n u s q u a i n t l y decked With blooms more white than E r y c i n a ' s brows, Whose tender blossoms tremble every one, At every l i t t l e b r e a t h through heaven i s blown.5 (IV, i i i , 120-125) A study o f the number of times he was quoted by h i s con-temporaries would be most v a l u a b l e as i t would r e v e a l how widely and completely he was read. The y e a r 1579 brought the landmark p u b l i c a t i o n of the Shepheardes Calender whose h a n d l i n g , e x p e r i m e n t a t i o n and d i v e r s i t y of v e r s i f i c a t i o n brought i t s author, Immerito, immediate fame. By 1586 when W i l l i a m Webbe, i n h i s D i s c o u r s e o f E n g l i s h Poetry, d i s c u s s e s the "...many s o r t s s of v e r s e s as may be d e v i s e d d i f f e r e n c e s of numbers...." he says t h a t "To auoyde t h e r e f o r e tediousnesse and c o n f u s i o n , I w y l l repeate onely the d i f f e r e n t s o r t e s of v e r s e s out of the Sheepeheardes Calender,'which may w e l l serve to beare . a u t h o r i t i e i n thys matter."6 5 T h i s may prove that Marlowe saw the manuscript o f the F a e r i e Queene p r i o r to i t s p u b l i c a t i o n ; 6 Westminster, C o n s t a b l e , 1895, p. 59. - 6 -The importance of the Shepheardes Calender t o Spenser's age and to the development o f E n g l i s h l i t e r a t u r e cannot be over estimated. A f t e r Spenser's death the venerable Drayton w r i t e s t h a t "Master Edmund Spenser had done enough f o r the i m m o r t a l i t y o f h i s name,, had he o n l y g i v e n us h i s Shepherd's Calendar, a master-piece, i f any....Spenser i s the prime p a s t o r a l ! s t of E n g l a n d . " 7 In many ways Drayton, whose judgment i s sound, i s c o r r e c t . I t i s w i t h the Calender t h a t Spenser's fame was assured. George Put- . \ , tenham records i n h i s Arte of E n g l i s h P o e s i e , i f indeed i t be' his , , t h a t "For Eglogue and p a s t o r a l l P o e s i e , S i r P h i l i p  Sydney and M a i s t e r C h a l l e n n e r , and t h a t o t h e r Gentleman who wrate the l a t e shepheardes C a l l e n d e r . " ^ To F r a n c i s Meres, Spenser was "...our famous E n g l i s h Poet...."^ and to G i l e s F l e t c h e r he was "...our (I know no o t h e r name more g l o r i o u s then h i s own) Mr. Edmund Spenser...." 1^ Jonson, i n one of h i s i n t e r m i n a b l e notes t o the Masque o f Queens, speaks of "...the grave and 7 "To the Reader o f His P a s t o r a l s , " i n The Works of the  E n g l i s h . P o e t s . . . , Alexander Chalmers, ed., London, J . Johnson and Others, 1810, v o l . 4, p. 431» C i t e d h e r e a f t e r as C h a l - mer's Poets. 8 /l598/,Arber's R e p r i n t s , Westminster, C o n s t a b l e , 1895, p. 77. . 9 " P a l l a d i s Tamia," / 1 5 9 8 7 , i n E l i z a b e t h a n C r i t i c a l  E s s a y s , Gregory Smith, ed., Oxford, Oxford U n i v e r s i t y • P r e s s , 1904 (193 7), v o l . 2, p. 313. 10 The Complete Poems of G i l e s F l e t c h e r , Alexander B. G r o s a r t , ed., London, Chatto & Windus, 1876,-p. 116. - 7 -d i l i g e n t S p e n s e r . . . . " 1 ! A l t h o u g h c o n t e m p o r a r y remarks c o n c e r n i n g t h e o u t p u t o f w r i t e r s o r t h e p o p u l a r i t y o f t h e i r works a r e r a r e , we f i n d G a b r i e l H a r v e y i n h i s M a r g i n a l i a r e p o r t i n g t h a t " . . . t h e C o u n t e s s e o f Pembrokes A r c a d i a , & t h e P a e r i e Que.ene a r now f r e s h e s t i n r e q u e s t : & A s t r o p h i l , & Amyntas a r none, o f t h e i d l e s t p a s t i m e s o f s u m . f i n e h u m a n i s t s . " 1 2 However, as we s h a l l s e e l a t e r , H a r v e y d i d n o t a p p r o v e o f t h e F a e r i e Qpeene. M e r e s , whose c h i e f fame r e s t s i n t h e f a c t t h a t he made a l i s t i n g o f S h a k e s p e a r e ' s p l a y s , w r o t e i n 1598, " . . . I s a y o f S p e n s e r ' s F a i r y Queene, I knowe n o t what more e x c e l l e n t o r e x q u i s i t e Poem may be w r i t t e n . " and, he c o n -t i n u e s , " . . . S p e n s e r ' s E l i z a , t h e F a i r y , Queene, h a t h t h e a d u a n t a g e o f a l l t h e Queenes i n t h e w o r l d e , t o be e t e r n i z e d b y so d i u i n e a P o e t . " 1 3 T h i s i s h i g h p r a i s e I n d e e d and i t comes some e i g h t y e a r s a f t e r t h e p u b l i c a t i o n o f S p e n s e r ' s f i r s t t h r e e b o o k s o f t h e P a e r i e Queene. D u r i n g t h e l a s t y e a r s o f t h e s i x t e e n t h c e n t u r y t h e g r o w i n g p r i d e i n t h e E n g l i s h l a n g u a g e was p a r a l l e l e d b y a f e a r o f the i n f l u e n c e s o f f o r e i g n t r a v e l and f o r e i g n l i t e r a t u r e s . The I t a l i a n a t e E n g l i s h m a n was an o b j e c t t o be s c o r n e d . I n 1589 Thomas Nashe w r i t e s , i n h i s I n t r o d u c t i o n 11 J o n s o n , op. c i t . , p . 58 n. 12 G.C. Moore S m i t h , ed. , Stratford-Upon-Avon-,-. Shake-s p e a r e Head P r e s s , 1913, p . 232. 13 M e r e s , op. c i t . , p . 316. - 8 -to Greene's Menaphon. th a t ...should the challenge of deepe c o n c e i t e he int r u d e d by any f o r r a i n e r , to br i n g our Eng-l i s h w i t s to the touchstone of A r t , I would p r e f e r r e d i u i n e Master Spencer, the m i r a c l e of w i t , to bandie l i n e by l i n e f o r my l i f e , i n the honour of England, against Spaine, Fraunce, I t a l y , and a l l the world.1 4 A l i s t of the "...most pregnant w i t s of these our times, whom succeeding ages may j u s t l y admire" i s made by W i l l i a m Camden. He w r i t e s , ...what a world could I present to you out of S i r P h i l i p Sidney, Ed. Spenser, John Owen, Samuel D a n i e l , Hugh Hol l a n d , Ben John-son, Thomas Champion, Mich. Drayton, George Chapman, John Marston, W i l l i a m Shakespeare....15 Richard Carew makes a comparative l i s t i n g of the lead i n g poets and one which i s i n t e r e s t i n g because of h i s choice of c l a s s i c a l counterparts: W i l l you reade V i r g i l l ? t a k e t h e E a r l l of  Surrey: C a t u l l u s ? Shakespeare^ and Marlowes fragment: Quid? Daniele: Lucane? Spenser: M a r t t a l l ? S i r Iohn Pauls and others.16 A more l i m i t e d l i s t i n g of poets i s made i n 1621 by Peter Heylyn i n h i s /'ft kPOKofr/lof. A L i t t l e D e s c r i p t i o n of the Great World. The c h i e f e i n matter of Poesie haue b i n 1 Gower, 2 Chaucer, of whom S i r P h i l i p S i d -ney. ..maruailed how tha t man i n those m i s t i e times could see so c l e a r e l y , and how we i n these c l e a r e times goe so stumblingly a f t e r 14, The Works of Thomas Nashe. R.B. McKerrow, ed., London, Sidgwick & Jackson, 1910, v o l . 3, P- 323. Cf. The Vnfortvnate T r a v e l l e r , v o l . 2, of Works, f o r Nashe's a n t i - f o r e i g n f e e l i n g s . 15 Remains Concerning B r i t a i n , / e d i t e d 167^7, London, John Russel Smith, 1870, p. 344-. 16 "The Ex c e l l e n c y of the E n g l i s h Tongue," /1595 -67, i n El i z a b e t h a n C r i t i c a l Essays, v o l . 2, p. 293. - 9 -17 h i m , 3 Edmund S p e n c e r , 4 D r a y t o n . . . . • H a r v e y ' s l i s t i n h i s M a r g i n a l i a i s l i m i t e d a l s o : T r i a v i u i d i s s i m a B r i t a n n o r u m I n g e n i a , C h a u c e r u s , Morus, J u e l l u s : ©jaibus addo t r e s f l o r e n t i s s i m a s i n d o l e s , Heiuodum, S i d n e i u m , Spencerum. Q u i Q u a e r i t i l l u s t r i o r a A n g l o r u m x i n g e n i a , i n u e n i t o b s c u r i o r a . P e r p a u c o s e x c i p i o ; eorumque p r i m e s , Smithum, Aschamum, V i l s o n u m ; D i g g e s l u m , B l u h d e u i l u m , H a c l i u t u m , mea C o r c u l a . - ^ L a t e r we f i n d H a r v e y l a m e n t i n g , u s i n g .an almost-new s l a t e o f w r i t e r s , t h a t t h e r e were Not manie C h a w c e r s , o r L i d g a t e s , Gowers o r O c c l e u e s , S u r r i e s , o r Heywoods, i n t h o s e d a y e s : & how few Aschams, o r P h a e r s , S i d n e y s , o r S p e n s e r s , Warners o r D a n i e l s , S i l u e s t e r s , o r Chapmans, i n t h i s p r e g n a n t age. To S p e n s e r , Meres i s one o f t h e k i n d e s t c r i t i c s : As T h e o c r i t u s i s f a m o u s e d f o r h i s I d y l l i a i n G r e e k e , and V i r g i n f o r h i s E c l o g s i n L a t i n e * : so S p e n s e r t h e i r i m i t a t o r i n h i s S h e p h e a r d e s C a l e n d e r i s renowned f o r t h e l i k e a r gument, and h o n o u r e d f o r f i n e P o e t i c a l l i n u e n t i o n and most e x q u i s i t w i t . 2 0 Meres a l s o l i s t s S p e n s e r among t h e b e s t o f t h e l y r i c , e l e g i a c , and p a s t o r a l . p o e t s , . . . Nashe i n h i s F o u r e L e t t e r s C o n f u t e d a l s o t u r n s t o c l a s s i c a l e x a m ples b u t adds a n o t e of' c e n s u r e -17 QjUoted i n C a r o l i n e S p u r g e o n ' s F i v e H u n d r e d Y e a r s o f  C h a u c e r C r i t i c i s m . . . , C h a u c e r S o c i e t y , L o n d o n , Kegan P a u l , T r e n c h , T r u b n e r & Co. L t d . , and Henry Frowde, 1914, S e r . 2, No. 48, P t . 1, p. 194. 18 H a r v e y , M a r g i n a l i a , p . 122. 19 I b i d . , p. 231. 20 M e r e s , op. c i t . , p . 398 -10-Homer and. V i r g i l , two v a l o r o u s A u t h o r s , ' y e t were t h e y n e u e r k n i g h t e d ; t h e y w r o t e I n Hex-i . a m e t e r v e r s e s : E r g o , C h a u c e r , and S p e n s e r , t h e Homer and V i r g i l o f E n g l a n d , were f a r r e o u e r s e e n e t h a t t h e y w r o t e n o t a l l . t h e i r Poems i n Hexameter v e r s e s a l s o . ^ 1 I n Haue w i t h y o v t o S a f f r o n - W a l d e n , however, Nashe h a s , w i t h one o f h i s c h a r a c t e r i s t i c t w i s t s o f i d e a , w r i t t e n o n l y t h e h i g h e s t p r a i s e : . . . M a s t e r S p e n c e r , whom I do n o t t h r u s t i n t h e l o w e s t p l a c e b e c a u s e I make the l o w e s t v a l u a t i o n o f , b u t as wee v s e t o s e t t h e Summ'tot' a l w a y s v n d e r n e a t h ' " o r a t t h e b o t -tome, he b e i n g t h e S u m ' t o t ' o f w h a t s o e u e r c a n be s a i d o f s h a r p e i n u e n t i o n and s c h o l -l e r s h i p . 2 ^ ' -I n 1622 George W i t h e r warned h i s r e a d e r s n o t t o " . . . l o o k e f o r S p e n c e r s o r D a n i e l s w e l l - c o m p o s e d numbers; o r t h e deepe c o n c e i t s o f n o w - f l o u r i s h i n g I o h n s o n " 2 ^ i n h i s work. . Ben J o h a o n u s e s S p e n s e r as one s i d e o f an argument a g a i n s t t h e 'common-reader.' He w r i t e s , . . . i f i t were p u t t o t h e j q u e s t i o n o f t h e W a t e r - r h y m e r ' s /John Taylor7 w o r k s , a g a i n s t • S p e n s e r ' s , I d o u b t n o t b u t t h e y w o u l d f i n d more s u f f r a g e ; b e c a u s e t h e most f a v o u r common v i c e s , o u t o f . a p r e r o g a t i v e t h e v u l g a r have t o l o s e t h e i r judgments and l i k e t h a t w h i c h i s n a u g h t . ^ • B e f o r e t u r n i n g t o t h e v e r s e p r a i s e o f Spenser-we must l o o k a t the p r o s e c e n s u r e w h i c h , a l t h o u g h s l i g h t i n b u l k , i s g e n e r a l l y s o u n d i n judgment. 21 Nashe, op. c i t . , v o l . 1, p . 299. 22 I b i d . , p . 108. 23 "To t h e R e a d e r , " J u v e n i l i a , S p e n s e r S o c i e t y , 1871, .. v o l . 1, p . 17. 25 J o n s o n , op. c i t . , p. 298. - 1 1 S i r P h i l i p S i d n e y t o u c h e s u p o n S p e n s e r ' s u s e o f l a n -g uage, b r i e f l y and t o the p o i n t , i n h i s A p o l o g i e f o r P o e t r i e . He w r i t e s , The S h e a p h e a r d s K a l e n d e r , hath'much P o e t r i e i n h i s E g l o g u e s : i n d e e d e w o r t h y t h e r e a d i n g i f I be n o t d e c e i u e d . T h a t same f r a m i n g o f h i s s t i l e , t o a n o l d r u s t i c k l a n g u a g e , I d a r e n o t a l o w e , s i t n n e y t h e r T h e o c r i t u s i n G r e e k e , V i r g i n i n L a t i n e , n o r S a n a z a r , i n I t a l i a n , d i d a f f e c t i t ; 2 5 J o n s o n i s a l i t t l e h a r s h e r when he remarks t h a t " S p e n s e r , i n a f f e c t i n g t h e a n c i e n t s , w r i t no l a n g u a g e . . . . " 2 ^ S t r o n g e r s t i l l i s Bolton'<s c e n s u r e : Inv-verse t h e r e a r e E d . S p e n c e r ' s Hymns. I c a n n o t a d v i s e the a l l o w a n c e o f o t h e r h i s Poems, as f o r p r a c t i c k E n g l i s h , no more 'than • I c a n do J e f f . C h a u c e r , L y d g a t e , P e i r c e ' Ploughman, o r L a u r e a t S k e l t o n . ^ 7 A t l e a s t S p e n s e r has b e e n p u t i n g o o d company. We c a n q u e s t i o n , however, t h e v a l i d i t y o f B o l t o n ' s judgment o f p o e t r y when he a d d s , My: judgment i s n o t h i n g a t a l l i n Poems o r P o e s i e , a n d t h e r e f o r e I d a r e n o t go f a r , b u t w i l l s i m p l y d e l i v e r my M i n d c o n c e r n i n g t h o s e . A u t h o u r s among u s , whose E n g l i s h h a t h i n my C o n c S i t most p r o p r i e t y , and i s n e a r e s t t o t h e P h r a s e o f C o u r t , and t o t h e S p e e c h u s e d among the n o b l e a n d among the b e t t e r s o r t i n London, t h e two s o v e r e i g n S e a t s a n d , as i t were, P a r l i a m e n t t r i b u n a l s t o t r y t h e q u e s t i o n i n , * ' 2 0 / W r i t t e n c. 1 5 8 0 , p u b l i s h e d 1 5 9 5 J 7 , A r b e r ' s R e p r i n t s , London, C o n s t a b l e , 1 9 2 9 , pp. 6 2 - 6 3 . 2 6 J o n s o n , op. c i t . , p . 4 1 2 . 2 7 Edmund B o l t o n , " H y p e r c r i t i ' c a , " / 1 6 1 8 ? / , i n C r i t i c a l  E s s a y s o f t h e S e v e n t e e n t h C e n t u r y , J . E . S p i n g a r n , e d . , Ox-f o r d , C l a r e n d o n P r e s s , 1 9 0 8 , v o l . 1 , p . 1 0 9 . 2 8 L o c . c i t . -12-By 1650, t h e end. o f t h e p e r i o d we have b e e n u s i n g f o r t h e s u b s t a n c e o f t h i s c h a p t e r , we f i n d t h a t c r i t i c i s m i s s l o w l y d e v e l o p i n g and m a t u r i n g and a c t i n g a s h e r a l d f o r tne c r i t i c a l ages t o come. I n h i s " P r e f a c e " t o G-ondibert, S i r W i l l i a m D a v e n a n t w r i t e s , and we q u o t e a l o n g p a s s a g e b e c a u s e o f i t s i m p o r t a n c e t o S p e n s e r c r i t i c i s m , t h a t S p e n c e r may s t a n d h e r e as t h e l a s t o f t h i s s h o r t f i l e o f h e r o i c p o e t s ; men, whose i n t e l l e c t u a l s were o f so g r e a t a m a k i n g , ( t h o u g h some have t h o u g h t them l i a b l e t o t h o s e few c e n s u r e s we have m e n t i o n e d ) as p e r h a p s t h e y w i l l , i n w o r t h y memory, o u t -l a s t , e v e n makers o f l a w s , and f o u n d e r s o f e m p i r e s , and a l l b u t s u c h as must t h e r e f o r e l i v e e q u a l l y w i t h them, b e c a u s e t h e y have r e c o r d e d t h e i r names. And s i n c e we h a v e d a r e d t o remember t h o s e e x c e p t i o n s , w h i c h t h e c u r i o u s have a g a i n s t them, i t w i l l n o t be e x p e c t e d I s h o u l d f o r g e t what i s o b j e c t e d a g a i n s t S p e n c e r : whose o b s o l e t e l a n g u a g e we a r e c o n s t r a i n e d t o m e n t i o n , t h o u g h i t be grown t h e most v u l g a r a c c u s a t i o n t h a t . i s l a i d t o h i s c h a r g e . Language ( w h i c h i s t h e o n l y c r e a t u r e o f man's c r e a t i o n ) h a t h , l i k e a p l a n t , s e a s o n s o f f l o u r i s h i n g and d e c a y ; l i k e p l a n t s , i s removed f r o m one s o i l t o a n o t h e r , and b y b e i n g so t r a n s p l a n t e d , d o t h o f t e n - g a t h e r v i g o u r and i n c r e a s e . But as I t i s f a l s e h u s b a n d r y t o g r a f t o l d b r a n c h e s u p o n young s t o c k s ; so we may wonder t h a t o u r l a n g u a g e ( n o t l o n g b e f o r e h i s t i m e , c r e a t e d o u t o f c o n f u s i o n o f o t h e r s , and t h e n b e g i n n i n g t o f l o u r i s h l i k e a new p l a n t ) s h o u l d (as h e l p s t o . i t s i n c r e a s e ) r e c e i v e f r o m h i s hand new g r a f t s o f o l d w i t h e r e d words. B u t t h i s v u l -g a r e x c e p t i o n s h a l l o n l y have the v u l g a r e x c u s e ; w h i c h i s , t h a t t h e u n l u c k y c h o i c e o f h i s s t a n z a , h a t h , b y r e p e t i t i o n o f a rhyme, b r o u g h t h i m t o t h e n e c e s s i t y o f many e x p l o d e d words. . I f we p r o c e e d f r o m h i s . l a n g u a g e t o h i s a rgument, we must o b s e r v e w i t h o t h e r s , t h a t h i s n o b l e and most a r t f u l hands d e s e r v e d t o be e m p l o y e d u p o n m a t t e r - o f a more n a t u r a l and t h e r e f o r e o f a more u s e f u l k i n d . H i s a l l e -g o r i c a l s t o r y (by many h e l d d e f e c t i v e i n t h i s - 13 -• c o n n e x i o n ) . r e s e m b l i n g ( m e t h i n k s ) a Con-t i n u a n c e o f e x t r a o r d i n a r y dreams"; s u c h as e x c e l l e n t p o e t s , and p a i n t e r s , b y b e i n g o v e r - s t u d i o u s may have i n t h e b e g i n n i n g , o f f e v e r s : And t h o s e m o r a l v i s i o n s a r e j u s t o f so much use t o human a p p l i c a t i o n , a s . p a i n t e d h i s t o r y , when w i t h the c o u s e n a g e o f l i g h t s i t i s r e p r e s e n t e d i n s c e n e s , b y w h i c h we a r e much l e s s i n f o r m e d t h e n b y a c t i o n s o n t h e s t a g e . 2 9 A c c o r d i n g t o Drummond, i t must be a d m i t t e d , J o n s o n was more s u c c i n c t when he s a i d t h a t " S p e n s e r ' s s t a n z a s p l e a s e d h i m n o t , n o r h i s m a t t e r . . . . " 3 0 T h e r e i s more i n D a v e n a n t ' s c r i t i c i s m , however, t h a n i s a p p a r e n t on a c a s u a l r e a d i n g . H i s words s h o u l d be k e p t i n mind w n i l e s u r v e y i n g l a t e r c r i t i c s . H i s v i e w o f l a n g u a g e as b e i n g e v o l u t i o n a r y i s p a r t i c u l a r l y a c u t e and w e l l p h r a s e d . We c a n n o t , however, s u b s c r i b e t o h i s a t t e m p t t o j u s t i f y S p e n s e r ' s - u s e o f a r c h a i c words b e c a u s e o f the n e c e s s i t y o f s t a n z a and r i m e . I n t h e t h i r d p a r a g r a p h , o f t h e q u o t a t i o n Dave nan t may w e l l be t o u c h i n g u p o n a m a t t e r o f g r e a t i m p o r t a n c e : he may w e l l be f e e L l i n g f o r t h e r e a s o n why the P a e r i e Queene i s l i t t l e r e a d : he may w e l l have d i s c o v e r e d ( b u t n o t c o n s c i o u s l y ) one o f the s e c t i o n s o f t h e chasm t h a t , s e p a r a t e s S p e n s e r and t h e r e a d e r - and i n p a r t i c u l a r , f o r o u r p u r p o s e s h e r e , t h e modern r e a d e r . . A c c o r d i n g t o D a v e n a n t the v a l u e o f the F a e r i e Queene has b e e n l e s s e n e d b y t h e f a c t t h a t i t i s made up o f a s e r i e s o f v i v i d p i c t u r e s o r t a b l e a u x r a t h e r t h a n o f a c t i o n s . T h i s , however, may have b e e n S p e n s e r ' s 29 C h a l m e r ' s P o e t s , v o l . 6, p p . 250-251. 30 J o n s o n , op. c i t . > p . 470. -14-i n t e n t i o n , and, i f so, i t s achievement i s a r t i s t i c . The unknown "H.R." ( i f he be not Henry Reynolds) i s not so harsh when he w r i t e s i n t h i s Mythomystes; . . . I must approue the l e a r n e d Spencer, i n the r e s t of h i s Poems no l e s s e then h i s F a i r y Qjueene, an exact body of the E t h i c k e d o c t r i n e ; though some good iugments haue wisht, and perhaps not without cause, that he had t h e r e i n beene % l i t t l e f r e e r of h i s f i c t i o n , and not so c l o s e r i u e t t e d t o h i s Morall...who, i n other l e s s e laboured t h i n g s , may haue indeed more h a p p i l y (howeuer, always c h e e r e l y and smoothly) w r i t t e n . In the l i g h t o f some of - t h e s e statements we cannot censure the pe d a n t i c Harvey too s t r o n g l y when he w r i t e s to Spenser about the p o r t i o n of the F a e r i e Queene manuscript he had read -In good f a i t h I had once again n i g h f o r g o t t e n your FAERIE QUEENE: ' howbeit, by good chaunce, I haue nowe sent h i r home at the l a s t e , n e i t h e r i n b e t t e r nor worse case than I founde h i r . And must.you of o e c e s s i t i e haue my •-Iudgement of h i r I n dee&e: To be p l a i n e , I am voyde of. . a l l iudgement. .. I f . . . the FAERY QUEENE be f a i r e r i n your eye than' the NINE MUSES And " HOBGOBLIN runne away with the Garland from A p o l l o , Marke what I saye, and y e t I w i l l not say that T thought; but there an End f o r t h i s once, and f a r e you w e l l , t i l l God o r some good A u n g e l l p u t t e you i n a b e t t e r minde.^ 2 At l e a s t we must not censure Harvey i n the same way as d i d Thomas Nashe when he wrote, Immortall Spencer, no f r a i l t i e hath thy fame, but the Imputation of t h i s I d i o t s f r i e n d s h i p : vpon an vnspotted Pegasus should 31 In C r i t i c a l Essays o f the Seventeenth Century, v o l . 1 , P . 147. . ; 32 I n E l i z a b e t h a n C r i t i c a l E s s a y s , v o l . 1, pp. 115-116. -15-thy gorgeous a t t i r e d F a y r i e Queene r i d e t r i -umphant through a l l reports dominions, but that t h i s mud-born bubble, t h i s b i l e on the browe of the V n i u e r s i t y , t h i s bladder of p r i d e newe blowne, challengeth some i n t e r e s t i n her prosperity.33 Although h i s works are f i l l e d with many a l l u s i o n s to Spenser, M i l t o n makes only one important reference to our poet when he congratulates " . . . o u r sage and serious Poet S p e n s e r . . . a better teacher then [ s i c ] Scotus or Aquinas"34 f o r h i s d e s c r i p t i o n of Temperance i n the F a e r i e Queene. The success of Spenser was, as we have seen, immediate and whole-hearted. There had not been since Chaucer any poet of such s t a t u r e . He burst upon the E n g l i s h l i t e r a r y scene at a most favourable time - at a time when the Eng-l i s h language was t r y i n g to f i n d i t s place as an l i t e r a r y medium. He was an innovator i n m e t r i c s ; he gave new im-petus to the p a s t o r a l form; he revealed the l a t e n t musical powers of E n g l i s h ; and he presented a l l e g o r y i n such a way that i t a t t a i n e d the height of great a r t . I t i s no wonder that h i s contemporaries p r a i s e d him h i g h l y , f o r he l e d the way to t h e i r greatness a l s o . Spenser h e r a l d e d , and was a p a r t of , that great phenomenon, the E l i z a b e t h a n Age. There i s , however, i n Spenser's sudden p o p u l a r i t y a c e r t a i n i n c o n g r u i t y . In the A r t s immediate fame often presages d i s a s t e r . Often an a r t i s t who gains h i s z e n i t h at once i s w r i t i n g too much f o r h i s own time and, with 33 Nashe, op. c i t . . , v o l . 1, p . 282. 34 " A e r o p a g i t i c a , " [ I 6 4 4 ] , The Works of John M i l t o n , New York, Columbia U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1931, v o l . A> P« 311. -16-p a s s i n g years and changing customs and morals, i s no l o n g e r speaking to l a t e r readers i n words, i n i d e a s t h a t are of importance to them. The w r i t e r who speaks l e s s f o r h i s own t i m e and more f o r a l l t i m e i s the one whose fame, though not n e c e s s a r i l y immediate, endures and, indeed, i n c r e a s e s . In the s m a l l amount of prose c r i t i c i s m o f Spenser's p e r i o d we f i n d t h a t Spenser i s , on the whole, h i g h l y p r a i s e d . He i s p r a i s e d as a t r a n s l a t o r a l t h o u g h t r a n s l a t i o n was not one of h i s major l i t e r a r y o c c u p a t i o n s . The metres of the Shapheardes Calender are used as the b a s i s f o r an E l i z a b e t h a n study o f E n g l i s h m e t r i c s . Many quo-t a t i o n s from h i s works are used by other contemporary w r i t e r s i n t h e i r works. These t h i n g s r e v e a l h i s p o p u l a r i t y . Not a l l the c r i t i c a l p r a i s e of Spenser, however, r e -mained u n t i n g e d by censure. I t i s extremely d i f f i c u l t to e v a l u a t e p r a i s e - you can acknowledge i t s e x i s t e n c e and i t s amount, but u n l e s s you have some adverse c r i t i c i s m to balance a g a i n s t i t you are a t a l o s s f o r what to do ?/ith i t : you may t h i n k e i t h e r t h a t the p r a i s e i s j u s t i f i e d or t h a t i t i s not, but, i n e i t h e r case, you are basing your judgments upon your own c r i t i c a l a n a l y s i s of the o r i g i n a l work. On the ot h e r hand, i f t h e r e i s some adverse c r i t i c i s m t o s e t a g a i n s t the p r a i s e , you can observe trends t h a t were o c c u r i n g a t a i c e r t a i n p e r i o d without c a l l i n g upon your own p e r s o n a l c r i t i -c a l powers to such an extent t h a t you i n j u r e the v a l i d i t y o f your f i n a l judgment. The main c r i t i c a l a t t a c k matte by Spenser's contemporaries -17-was a g a i n s t h i s use of language. Sidney censured Spenser f o r h i s r u s t i c s t y l e ; Jonson s a i d he " w r i t no language;" and both B o l t o n and Davenant found h i s use of language to he r e p r e h e n s i b l e . Compared to most E l i z a b e t h a n c r i t i c s (so c a l l e d ) these f o u r are of no sma l l importance. Spenser, through the pen of the mysterious E.K., gave h i s reasons f o r h i s use of a r c h a i c and r u s t i c language. These reasons may be c o n s i d e r e d to a b o l i s h any grounds f o r censure on the s u b j e c t . But do they? Sidney, Jonson, and even Davenant were not c r i t i c s who would deny a poet's r i g h t to a c h i e v e h i s a r t i s t i c ends by any means he t h i n k s f i t -as long as those ends are a c h i e v e d . Yet they dared to f i n d f a u l t on the v e r y ground t h a t Spenser had attempted to make i n v i o l a t e . The use here of the t r i t e phrase "where there's smoke, there's f i r e " i s p e c u l i a r l y f i t t i n g . These f o u r men a r e s a y i n g , i n e f f e c t , t h a t Spenser's use of l a n -guage h i n d e r s f u l l and immediate a p p r e c i a t i o n of h i s work. Spenser says h i s language i s necessary: they say i t i s bothersome. I do not wish i n any way to" pass judgment on t h i s problem. I wish o n l y t h a t the problem be kept i n mind throughout t h i s t h e s i s f o r i t w i l l occur a g a i n and a g a i n . When a l l the arguments are brought t o g e t h e r the reader may be a b l e to form h i s own o p i n i o n . A second cause f o r censure was based on Spenser's choice o f s u b j e c t matter and h i s h a n d l i n g of i t . To Davenant the s u b j e c t matter was n e i t h e r n a t u r a l nor u s e f u l . He c o n s i d e r e d a l l e g o r y to be the dream t h a t a r i s e s from a -18-f e v e r , and he co n s i d e r e d moral v i s i o n s to l a c k a c t i o n . H.R. made a s i m i l a r c r i t i c i s m . Spenser's f i c t i o n , he s a i d , was so c l o s e l y a t t a c h e d to h i s moral t h a t i t l o s t i t s freedom. Whereas one may censure Spenser's use of language on the grounds shown above even though Spenser attempted to j u s t i f y i t s use, one had best e x e r t g r e a t care i n a t t a c k i n g , i n the manner of Davenant and H»R., Spenser's s u b j e c t matter and h i s h a n d l i n g o f i t . Spenser was i n t e n s e l y i n t e r e s t e d i n h i s a l l e g o r i e s and i n the morals he co u l d draw from them: h i s f i c t i o n s were l i t t l e more than outward c l o t h i n g . As i n the case of language, the problem of s u b j e c t matter w i l l be examined by l a t e r c r i t i c s . A t h i r d p o i n t o f a t t a c k i s touched upon by Davenant and has to do w i t h the ch o i c e o f the F a e r i e Queene stanza form. As t h i s p o i n t w i l l be laboured by l a t e r c r i t i c s we had be s t wait and observe what they have to say bef o r e we se t f o r t h our f i n d i n g s . These t h r e e problems, language, s u b j e c t matter, and stanza form, were a l l r a i s e d by Spenser's contemporaries, and were problems t h a t p u z z l e d many l a t e r w r i t e r s . L e t us keep them i n mind and watch how they were handled by the n e o - c l a s s i c i s t s , the pre-romantics, and the rom a n t i c s . On the whole Spenser was g r e a t l y f a v o u r e d by h i s con-temporaries. I n order to g i v e a more comprehensive p i c t u r e of the h e i g h t o f h i s fame and the scojke o f h i s i n f l u e n c e i t i s n e c e s s a r y to devote a chapter to a qu i c k survey of what was s a i d about him i n contemporary v e r s e . -19-... .CHAPTER TWO.. . ELIZABETHAN AMD JACOBEAN WRITERS: VERSE ' A l l u s i o n s to Spenser and h i s works i n the poetry of h i s contemporaries are many: some are obscure - impossible to s u b s t a n t i a t e ; some are d e f i n i t e - long and f i l l e d w i t h the highest p r a i s e . In general they f a l l Into four main c l a s s e s : I , p r a i s i n g of Spenser; I I , mourning h i s death; I I I , u s i n g h i s name to. f l a t t e r or p r a i s e other poets; IV, c a l l i n g upon him f o r a i d or permission to w r i t e . Many of the poets who have a l l u d e d to Spenser are known to us now by name only while t h e i r works r e s t untouched by most readers upon l i b r a r y shelves or have become the personal i n t e l l e c t u a l property of s c h o l a r s of the p e r i o d . S'ome of t h i s poetry i s e x c e p t i o n a l l y bad - not poetry at a l l but r a t h e r poor verse. However, a quick glance at I t w i l l r e v e a l , as d i d our b r i e f survey of the prose, how widespread was Spenser's fame. I n the f l y l e a f of h i s Di a r y John Manningham made the f o l l o w i n g j o t t i n g -In Spenserum. Famous a l i u e , and dead, here i s the ods, Then God of Poets, nowe Poet of the Gods. 1 / I 6 0 2 - 3 / , Westminster, Camden S o c i e t y , J.B. N i c h o l s , 1868, p. 2. -20-a s e n t i m e n t w h i c h e c h o e s t h e g e n e r a l i d e a o f what we s h a l l s u r v e y . One o f the e a r l i e s t r e f e r e n c e s i n v e r s e to S p e n s e r i s t o b e f o u n d i n the P r o l o g u e t o G e o r g e P e e l e ' s The Honour  o f t h e G a r t e r i n w h i c h he r e f e r s t o " G r e a t H o b b i n o l , " m e a n i n g , a c c o r d i n g t o t h e e d i t o r , A.H. B u l l e n , S p e n s e r and n o t Har v e y . 2 T h e r e i s a g r e a t s i m i l a r i t y among t h e a l l u s i o n s i n c l a s s one, t h e p r a i s i n g o f S p e n s e r , b u t y e t t h e i n d i v i d u a l i t y shown i n t h e h a n d l i n g o f them b y v a r i o u s w r i t e r s i s i n t e r -e s t i n g . I n 1597 J o s e p h H a l l makes two r e f e r e n c e s t o S p e n s e r i n h i s s a t i r e s , V i r g i d e m i a r u m ; .once i n d i r e c t p r a i s e ; B u t l e t no r e b e l l S a t y r e d a r e t r a d u c e T h ' e t e r n a l L e g e n d s o f t h y F a e r y Muse, Renowned S p e n c e r : whome no e a r t h l y w i g h t . D a r e s once t o e m u l a t e , much l e s s e d a r e s d e s p i g h t . 3 and once h i s u s e o f t h e m a r r i a g e o f the r i v e r s i s a d i s -t i n c t d e v e l o p m e n t o f t h e s t y l e o f S p e n s e r ' s P r o t h a l a m i o n ; They /the muses/ h a u n t t h e . t y d e d Thames and • • ,v - s a l t Med way, ' E r e s i n c e the fame o f t h e i r l a t e B r i d a l l day. : The c o n t r o v e r s y a b o u t S p e n s e r ' s u s e o f r u s t i c and a r c h a i c l a n g u a g e i s u s e d b y E v e r a r d G u i l p i n as a b a s i s f o r i m p e r s o n a l p r a i s e : ,2 The Works o f George P e e l e , A.H. B u l l e n , e d / , Lon d o n , J o h n C. Wimmo, 1888, v o l . 2, p . 318, 11. 39-40. 3 The C o l l e c t e d Poems o f J o s e p h H a l l , A. D a v e n p o r t , e d . , L i v e r p o o l , U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1949, p . 16, 11. 21-24. 4 I b i d . , p . 12, 11. 29-30. -21-Some blame deep S p e n c e r f o r h i s grandam words, O t h e r s p r o t e s t t h a t , i n them he r e c o r d s H i s m a i s t e r - p e e c e o f c u n n i n g g i u i n g p r a i s e , And g r a u i t y t o h i s p r o f o u n d - p r i c k t l a y e s . ^ The d a t e , 1598, makes the G u i l p i n q u o t a t i o n p a r t i c u l a r l y v a l u a b l e : i t was w r i t t e n o n l y two y e a r s a f t e r t h e p u b l i -c a t i o n o f t h e f i r s t t h r e e b o o k s o f t h e F a e r i e Queene. S i d -n e y ' s c e n s u r e o f S p e n s e r was p u b l i s h e d one y e a r p r i o r t o t h e F a e r i e Queene and was b a s e d e n t i r e l y u p o n h i s knowledge o f the S h e p h e a r d e s O a l e n d e r . G u i l p i n ' s l i n e s would s u g g e s t t h a t the c o n t r o v e r s y was w i d e s p r e a d . Whether i t was c a r r i e d on b y word o f mouth o r n o t we do n o t know: we c e r t a i n l y have no g r e a t number o f w r i t t e n r e c o r d s o f i t . T h e r e f o r e we may presume t h a t t h e arguments were o r a l ; t h a t t h e d e b a t e s were p a r t o f t h e t a v e r n d i s c u s s i o n s . We may presume, however, t h a t S p e n s e r ' s works were w e l l enough known t o become mat-t e r f o r d e b a t e . R i c h a r d B a r n f i e l d was no g r e a t p o e t b u t h i s a b i l i t y t o w r i t e p r a i s e s o f h i s c o n t e m p o r a r i e s has b r o u g h t h i s name and h i s works down t o u s , whereas h i s p o e t i z i n g m i g h t o t h e r -w i s e have b e e n f o r g o t t e n . A b o u t t h e y e a r 1598 two p r a i s e s o f S p e n s e r a p p e a r e d f r o m h i s p e n . I n " I f m u s i c and sweet , p o e t r y a g r e e " he w r i t e s , S p e n s e r t o me, whose d e e p c o n c e i t i s s u c h A s , p a s s i n g a l l c o n c e i t , needs no d e f e n c e . Thou l o v ' s t t o h e a r t h e sweet m e l o d i o u s s o u n d T h a t P hoebus' l u t e ( t h e q ueen o f m u s i c ) makes; And I I n deep d e l i g h t am c h i e f l y drowned • 5 S k i a l e t h e i a , ££598/,.London,,Humphrey M i l f o r d , ' 1 9 3 1 , S a t i r e V I , n.p. -22-Whenas h i m s e l f t o s i n g i n g he b e t a k e s . ® I t i s p o s s i b l e t h a t he "needs no d e f e n c e " r e f e r s t o the argument t h a t S p e n s e r ' s s u b j e c t m a t t e r ( i n the c a s e o f the F a e r i e Queene) was i n c o m p r e h e n s i b l e . B a r n f i e l d u s e s t h e theme o f "deep c o n c e i t " a g a i n i n "A remembrance o f some E n g l i s h p o e t s " when he s a y s L i v e , S p e n s e r , e v e r i n t h y F a i r y Queen, Whose l i k e , f o r deep c o n c e i t , was n e v e r s e e n . Crowned mayst t h o u be, u n t o t h e y more renown, As k i n g o f p o e t s , w i t h a l a u r e l crown. Two i n t e r e s t i n g r e f e r e n c e s t o Spenser, a p p e a r i n t h e two p a r t s o f The R e t u r n f r o m P a r n a s s u s w h i c h were p r o d u c e d a t C a mbridge a b o u t t h e y e a r 1600 and whose a u t h o r s h i p i s d o u b t f u l l y a t t r i b u t e d t o a J . Day. I n P a r t One G u l l l o , s a y s , Not i n a v a i n e v e i n e ( p r e t t i e , i ' f a i t h j ) : make mee them i n two o r t h r e e ' d i v e r s v a y n s , i n C h a c u e r ' s , G-ower's and S p e n s e r ' s and Mr. S h a k e -s p e a r e ' s . M a r r y . . . 0 sweet Mr. S h a k e s p e a r e . ' I ' l e have h i s p i c t u r e i n my s t u d y a t t h e c o u r t e . I n P a r t Two a l o n g s e c t i o n o f the p l a y i s d e v o t e d t o the d i s c u s s i o n o f v a r i o u s p o e t s . Of S p e n s e r , J u d i c i o r e m a r k s , A s w e e t e r Swan t h e n . e u e r song i n Poe, A s h r i l l e r N i g h t e n g a l e t h e n e u e r b l e s t The p r o u d e r g r o u e s o f s e l f e a d m i r i n g Rome. B l i t h Was e a c h v a l l y , a n d each" s h e a p e a r d p r o u d , W h i l e he d i d c h a u n t h i s r u r a l l m i n s t r a l s i e . A t t e n t i u e was f u l l many a d a i n t y c a r e . Nay, h e a r e r s hong v p o n h i s m e l t i n g t o n g , W h i l e s w e e t l y o f h i s F a i e r y Queene he s o n g , ' 6 I n P o e t r y o f t h e E n g l i s h R e n a i s s a n c e 1509-1660, W i l l i a m J . H e b e l and Hoyt G. Hudson, e d s . , New Y o r k , A p p l e -t o n - C e n t u r y - C r o f t s , 1929, pp. 259-40. 7 I b i d . , p. 240. 8 The P i l g r i m a g e t o P a r n a s s u s w i t h t h e Two P a r t s o f t h e  R e t u r n f r o m P a r n a s s u s , W.D.. M a c r a y , e d . , O x f o r d , C l a r e n d o n P r e s s , 1886, P t . 1, I I I , i , p. 58. -23-While to the waters f a l l he t u n ' d [her] fame And i n eaeh barke engrau'd E l i z a e s name, And yet f o r a l l t h i s , vnregarding s o i l e V n l a c ' t the l i u e of h i s d e s i r e d l i f e , Denying mayntenance f o r h i s deare r e l e i f e . Carelesse [ere] to preuent h i s exequy, g Scarce deigning to shut vp h i s dying eye. The amount of space a l l o t e d to Spenser i s second to that given John Marston who i s not p r a i s e d but defamed w i t h r i b a l d censure. The other poets discussed are Constable, D a n i e l , Lodge, Watson, Drayton, John Davis , Lok, Hudson, Marlowe, Jonson ("The w i t t i e s t f e l l o w of a B r i c k l a y e r i n E n g l a n d , " p . 87), Shakespeare, Churchyard, and Nashe. P r e v i o u s l y Ralegh had w r i t t e n h i s famous sonnet "Me-thought I saw the grave where Laura Lay" i n which he wrote: A l l suddenly I saw the F a i r y Queen, At whose approach the soul of P e t r a r c h wept; And from thence f o r t h those graces were not seen, For they t h i s Queen attended; i n whose stead O b l i v i o n l a i d him down on L a u r a ' s hearse. Hereat the hardest stones were seen to b l e e d , And groans of b u r i e d ghosts the heavens d i d p i e r c e : Where homer's s p r i g h t d i d tremble a l l f o r g r i e f . And cursed the access of that c e l e s t i a l t h i e f . 1 ° From F r a n c i s Thynne's amazing hodge-podge o f personal advice and E l i z a b e t h a n r i b a l d r y , Emplemes and Epigrames, comes a short epigram e n t i t l e d "Spenser's F a y r i e Queene." Revowmed Spenser, whose heavenlie s p r i t e e c c l i p s e t h the sonne of former p o e t r i e , i n whome the muses harbor' with d e l i g h t , gracinge thy verse with I m m o r t a l l t i e , Crowning thy f a r i e Queene with d e i t i e , 9.The P i l g r i m a g e . P t . 2, I I , i i , p . 8A. 10 The Poems of S i r Walter Raleigh c o l l e c t e d and authen- t i c a t e d with those of S i r Henry Wotton and other c o u r t l y poets  from 15A0-1650* J . Hannah, e d . , London, George B e l l , 1910, p . 8. --24-t h e famous C h a u c e r y e a i d s h i s L a w r e l l crowne u n t o t h y s u g r e d p e n n , f o r t h y renowne. Noe c a n k r e d e n v i e c a n n t h y fame d e f a c e , n o r c a t i n g e tyme consume t h y s a c r e d v a y n e ; noe c a r p l n g e z o i l u s c a n n t h y v e r s e d i s g r a c e , n o r s c o f f i n g e Mdmus' t a u n t t h e w i t h d i s d a i n e , s i n c e t h y r a r e worke e t e r n a l l p r a i s e d o t h g a y n e ; t h e n l i v e t h o u s t i l l , f o r s t i l l thy/;- v e r s e s h a l l l i v e , . • t o v n b o r n e p o e t s , w h i c h l i g h t and l i f e w i l l g i v e . ' One o f the. most f a n c i f u l a l l u s i o n s t o S p e n s e r I s made toy Ben J o n s o n i n h i s masque The G o l d e n Age R e s t o r e d /16157 where, a f t e r t h e f o l l o w i n g v e r b a l f a n f a r e -Y o u f a r - f a m e d s p i r i t s o f t h i s h a p p y i s l e , T h a t f o r y o u r s a c r e d s o n g s have g a i n e d t h e s t y l e Of P h o e b u s ' s o n s , whose n o t e s t h e a i r a s p i r e Of t h ' o l d E g y p t i a n o r t h e T r a c i a n l y r e , E h a t CHAUCER, GOWER, LIDGATE, SPENSER, n i g h t , . P u t on y o u b e t t e r f l a m e s and l a r g e r l i g h t , To w a i t u p o n the Age t h a t s h a l l yourngmes new n o u r i s h , S i n c e V i r t u e p r e s s e d s h a l l grow, and b u r i e d A r t s s h a l l f l o u r i s h . 1 ^ t h e f o u r p o e t s appe§r a n d t a k e p a r t i n t h e e n t e r t a i n m e n t and a r e t o l d "To w r i t e y o u r names i n some new f l o w e r , | T h a t y o u may l i v e f o r e v e r * " l i- 5 a t w h i c h p o i n t t h e masque a b r u p t l y e n d s , u n f i n i s h e d . The p o e t most p r o l i f i c i n t n e p r a i s e o f S p e n s e r was W i l l i a m Browne who spoke. o f " D i v i n e s t S p e n s e r , h e a v ' n - b r e d Happy Muse J " 1 * and t r i e d t o f o l l o w h i s m a s t e r f a i t h f u l l y i n s t y l e i f n o t i n g e n i u s . H i s a l l u s i o n s a r e t o o many t o be 11 / l 6 0 p _ 7 , L o n d o n , E a r l y E n g l i s h ' T e x t S o c i e t y , 1876, p . 71. 12 The Works o f Ben J o n s o n , F r a n c i s Cunningham, e d . , L o n -don, C h a t t o & Windus, 1903, v o l . 5, p . 102. 13 I b i d . , p / 104. 14 The Poems o f W i l l i a m Browne, G o r d o n Goodwin, e d . , L o n -do n , Lawrence & B u l l e n , 1894, v o l . 1, p . 225. -25-r e c o r d e d h e r e . •High p r a i s e f o r S p e n s e r came f r o m t h e pen o f D r a y t o n i n h i s c r i t i c a l , l e t t e r o f 1627 t o h i s f r i e n d S i r H e n r y Reynolds': G r a v e m o r a l l S p e n c e r a f t e r t h e s e came on Th e n whom I am p e r s w a d e d t h e r e was none S i n c e t h e b l i n d B a r d h i s I l i a d s u p d d i d make F i t t e r a . t a s k e l i k e t h a t t o u n d e r t a k e , To s e t downe b o l d l y , b r a v e l y t o I n v e n t , I n a l l h i g h k n o w l e d g e , s u r e l y e x c e l l e n t . - ^ ' A r a r e l i n k i n g t o g e t h e r o f t h e names o f S p e n s e r and S h a k e s p e a r e was made i n 1630 by J o h n T a y l o r i n h i s "The P r a i s e o f Hemp-seed" when he r e m a r k s , i n p a s s i n g , t h a t " S p e n s e r , and S h a k e s p e a r e d i d i n A r t e x c e l l . " The l a s t v e r s e p r a i s e o f S p e n s e r t h a t I s h a l l m e n t i o n h e r e comes f r o m N a t h a n i e l W h i t i n g , who w r o t e , i n h i s I I I n s o n i o I n s o n n a d a d o , t h a t ' I r ' n - s i n e w e d T a l u s w i t h h i s s t e e l y f l a i l L o ng s i n c e i 1 t h ' r i g h t o f j u s t i c e d i d p r e v a i l U n d e r t h e s c e p t r e o f t h e F a i r y Queen: Y e t Spenser'.s l o f t y m e a s u r e s makes i t g r e e n . ^ 7 . A p e c u l i a r poem w r i t t e n on t h e d e a t h o f S i r P h i l i p S i d n e y b y A, W. r e v e a l s t h e c l o s e c o n n e c t i o n t h a t e x i s t e d b e t w e e n S i d n e y and S p e n s e r and a l s o r e t e l l s t h e s t o r y o f S p e n s e r ' s p o v e r t y i n l a t e r l i f e . The poem "An E c l o g u e : Made Long S i n c e Upon t h e D e a t h o f S i r P h i l i p S i d n e y , " i s 15 The Works o f M i c h a e l D r a y t o n , J . W i l l i a m H e b e l , e d . , S h a k e s p e a r e Head P r e s s , 1932, v o l . 3, p . 228, l l . 79-84. 16 S p e n s e r S o c i e t y , 1869, v o l . 3, p . 72. 17 /16367,' i n M i n o r p o e t s o f t h e C a r o l i n e P e r i o d , George S a i n t s b u r y , e d . , O x f o r d , C l a r e n d o n P r e s s , 1906, v o l . 3, p . 550. -26-datea 1599 and appeared i n Fr a n c i s Davison's P o e t i c a l  Rhapsody of 1602. I t goes, i n p a r t , as f o l l o w s ! Thenot. Ah.' where i s C o l i n , and nis passing s k i l l ? For him i t f i t s our sorrow to f u l f i l . P e r i n . I'way sore extremes our C o l i n press so near: Alas that such extremes should press him s o l Tne want of wealth, and l o s s of love so dear: Scarce can he breathe from under heaps of woe: He that bears heaven, bears no such weight, I trow. . Thenot. Hath he sucn s k i l l i n making a l l above, And hath no s k i l l to get, or wealth, or love? P e r i n . P r a i s e I s the g r e a t e s t p r i z e tnat poets g a i n , A simple g a i n that feeds'tnem ne'er a wait. The wanton l a s s f o r whom he oare such p a i n , L i k e running water loves to change and f l i t . .... Ye shepherd's boys that lead your f l o c k s a f i e l d The w h i l s t your sheep feed s a f e l y round about, Break me your pipes that pleasant sound d i d y i e l d ; Sing now no more the songs of C o l i n C l o u t . ^Because Sidney i s d e a d / l ^ Later Thenot s i n g s : A l a ck and well-a-day J may shepherds c r y , Our W i l l y dead, our C o l i n k i l l e d with care .' Who s h a l l not loathe to l i v e , and long to d i e ? * ^ Since t h i s poem was w r i t t e n on the eve -of Spenser's death, more or l e s s , I t brings us n i c e l y to c l a s s two - poems w r i t t e n i n mourning f o r him. How true the story I s that when Spenser was bur i e d a l l the l e a d i n g poets of the day wrote e l e g i e s upon h i s death 18 A.H. B u l l e n , ed. , London, 0-eorge B e l l , 1890, v o l . 1, pp. 6 5 - 6 7 . 19 Ibid.., p. 71. -27-a n d t o s s e d them and t h e pens w i t h w h i c h t h e y had b e e n w r i t t e n i n t o t h e open .grave we s h a l l n e v e r know. I f t h e s t o r y be t r u e t h e n t h e l o s s t o E n g l i s h l i t e r a t u r e i s g r e a t . B e s i d e s t h e s e e l e g i e s we can presume t h a t a l a r g e body o f p o e t r y was w r i t t e n a b o u t S p e n s e r ' s d e a t h - a l a r g e p a r t o f w h i c h has b e e n l o s t o r , p e r h a p s , n o t y e t d i s c o v e r e d . One o f t h e e a r l i e s t r e f e r e n c e s p r o b a b l y was made by J o h n C h a l k h i l l i n h i s T h e a l m a and C l e a r c h u s . He w r o t e : C l o s e by t h e r i v e r was a t h i c k - l e a v ' d g r o v e , Where s w a i n s o f o l d sang s t o r i e s o f t h e i r l o v e ; But u n f r e q u e n t e d now s i n c e C o l i n d i e d , C o l i n , t h a t k i n g o f s h e p h e r d s and t h e p r i d e Of a l l A r c a d i a . . . . 2 0 Sometime b e t w e e n 1603 and 1606 the a g i n g J o h n L y l y w r o t e "A t r u e s u b i e c t s sorowe, f o r the l o o s e /sic// o f h i s l a t e S o u e r a i g n e , " i n w h i c h he m e n t i o n s S p e n s e r ' s d e a t h . 20 I n M i n o r P o e t s o f t h e C a r o l i n e P e r i o d , v o l . 2, p . 374, 11. 31-55. I n a f o o t n o t e Mr. S a i n t s b u r y r emarks t h a t he i s n o t c e r t a i n t h a t t h e r e f e r e n c e I s t o S p e n s e r . I f i t i s , he s a y s , i t . w o u l d p o s t d a t e T h e a l m a and C l e a r c h u s t o t h e b e g i n n i n g o f the s e v e n t e e n t h c e n t u r y . I do n o t f e e l t h a t Mr. S a i n t s -b u r y 's r e t i c e n c e i s j u s t i f i e d . T h e r e i s , i t must.be a d m i t t e d , some c o n t r o v e r s y o v e r w h e t h e r o r n o t C h a l k h i l l was t h e w r i t e r b u t e d i t o r s f a v o r t h e v i e w t h a t he was. He was a f r i e n d o f S p e n s e r a n d , a s a p o e t , f l o u r i s h e d a r o u n d t h e y e a r 1600. T h e r e seems, t h e r e f o r e , t o be no a d e q u a t e r e a s o n f o r n e e d i n g t o p o s t d a t e t h e poem. However, t h e m y s t e r y a r o u n d t h e w r i t e r r e m a i n s . H i s o t h e r works (one o r two o c c a s i o n a l s o n g s ) were p u b l i s h e d f i r s t i n I z a a k W a l t o n ' s C o m p l e t e A n g l e r i n 1653, and t h e T h e a l m a was f i r s t , p u b l i s h e d i n 1683 b y W a l t o n who s a y s , i n h i s p r e f a c e , " . . . I have a l s o t h i s t r u t h t o s a y o f t h e a u t h o r , t h a t he was i n h i s time a man g e n e r a l l y known, and as w e l l b e l o v e d ; f o r he was humble, and o b l i g i n g i n h i s b e h a v i o u r , a g e n t l e m a n , . a s c h o l a r , v e r y i n n o c e n t and p r u d e n t : and i n d e e d h i s whole l i f e was u s e f u l , q u i e t , and v i r t u o u s . " (p. 3 7 3 ) . The f a c t t h a t C h a l k h i l l d i e d b e f o r e t h e c o m p l e t i o n o f t h e T h e a l m a i s o f no h e l p as h i s .death d a t e ( l i k e h i s b i r t h d a t e ) i s unknown. I t i s s"afe, however, I f e e l , w i t h o n l y one r e s e r v a t i o n , t o a c c e p t t h e q u o t a t i o n a s r e f e r r i n g t o S p e n s e r - t h a t t h e - 2 3 -Wher's C o l l i n C l o u t , or Rowland now become, That wont to leade our Shepheards i n a r ing? (Ah me) the f i r s t , pale death hath strooken dombe, The l a t t e r , none incourageth to sing.21 Probably the most famous b i t of verse i s the epithaph w r i t t e n by W i l l i a m Camden: Upon Master Edmund Spencer, the famous Poet: At Delphos shrine one d i d a doubt propound, Which by the Oracle must be r e l e a s e d , Whether of Poets were the best renown'd, Those that s u r v i v e , or those that be deceased. The God made answer by d i v i n e suggestion, While Spencer i s a l i v e i t i s no q u e s t i o n . 2 2 I t was i n e v i t a b l e that W i l l i a m Browne should e l e g i z e Spenser's death and he d i d so i n the f i r s t book of h i s B r i t a n n i a ' s P a s t o r a l s . Had C o l i n Clout yet l i v ' d (but he i s gone), That best on e a r t h could tune a l o v e r ' s moan, Whose sadder tones e n f o r c ' d the rocks to weep, And l a i d the greatest g r i e f s i n quiet s leep: reference may be to the death of C o l i n i n the Calender and not to Spenser at a l l . But even so i t would be f a r - f e t c h e d as the names C o l i n and Spenser were, long before t h i s , being i n t e r -changed by w r i t e r s . 21 Works. R.W. Bond, e d . , Oxford, Clarendon P r e s s , 1902, v o l . 1, p . 516. 22 Remains Concerning B r i t a i n , / e d i t e d 167^ 47, London, John R u s s e l l Smith, 1370, pp. 427-4 2 8. -29-Who when he sung (as I would do t o mine) H i s t r u e s t l o v e s t o h i s f a i r R o s a l i n e , E n t i c ' d e a c h s h e p h e r d ' s , e a r t o h e a r h i m p l a y , And r a p t w i t h wonder, t h u s a d m i r i n g . s a y : T h r i c e happy p l a i n s ( i f p l a i n s t h r i c e happy may b e ) Where s u c h a s h e p h e r d p i p e s t o s u c h a l a d y . Who made t h e l a s s e s l o n g t o s i t down n e a r him; And woo'd the! r i v e r s f r o m t h e i r s p r i n g s t o h e a r him. Heaven r e s t t h y s o u l ( i f so a s w a i n may p r a y ) And as t h y works l i v e h e r e , l i v e , t h e r e f o r a y e . ° I n 1658 D r u . C o o p e r i n h i s commendatory v e r s e s to.James S h i r l e y w r o t e , YsThen S p e n s e r r e i g n ' d s o l e P r i n c e o f P o e t s h e r e , As b y h i s F a i r y Queen d o t h w e l l a p p e a r , T h e r e was n o t one so b l i n d , so b o l d a b a r d , So i g n o r a n t l y p r o u d o r f o o l i s h - h a r d To e n c o u n t e r h i s sweet Muse, f o r Phoebus vow'd A s h a r p r e v e n g e o n h i m s h o u l d b e so p r o u d . . . 2 4 I t was c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o f t h e c r i t i c i s m o f t h e p e r i o d f o r c o m p a r i s o n s t o be made b e t w e e n a c o n t e m p o r a r y p o e t and a c l a s s i c a l one. I t was a l s o c h a r a c t e r i s t i c t h a t i f one p o e t w i s h e d t o f l a t t e r o r p r a i s e a n o t h e r he compared him t o a t h i r d p o e t o r s a i d t h a t he had s u r p a s s e d t h e o t h e r . T h i s l a t t e r theme c a n be s e e n i n t h e f o l l o w i n g poem "To Samuel D a n i e l " w r i t t e n b y F r a n c i s D a v i s o n . So, l e a r n e d D a n i e l , when a s t h o u d i d s t s e e , T h a t S p e n s e r e r s t so f a r had s p r e a d h i s fame, , T h a t he was m onarch deemed o f P o e s y , Thou d i d s t , I g u e s s , e v e n b u r n w i t h j e a l o u s y , L e s t l a u r e l were n o t l e f t enough t o frame A n e s t s u f f i c i e n t f o r t h i n e e n d l e s s name. • *> • • . . . s o h a t h t h y Muse s u r p a s s e d S p e n s e r , a n d a l l t h a t do w i t h h o t d e s i r e To t h e t h u n d e r - s c o r n i n g l a u r e 1 - c r o w n a s p i r e . 25 Browne, op. c i t . , v o l . 1, p . 88. 24 The D r a m a t i c Works and Poems o f James S h i r l e y , A l e x -a n d e r D y c e , e d . , London., . J o h n M u r r a y , 1853, v o l . 1, p . l x x x i v . 25 D a v i s o n , op. c i t . , v o l . 1. p p . 136-157. '' ' -30-Two commendatory verse s w r i t t e n t o W i l l i a m Browne i l l u s t r a t e t h i s comparative method. Edward Heyward, equating Browne to Spenser, w r i t e s : •. Him d i d Nature from h i s b i r t h . • And the Muses s i n g l e out, ( For a second C o l i n C l o u t.^6 On the o t h e r hand -E. Johnson i n h i s verses p r e f i x e d to Browne's The Shepherd's Pipe g i v e Browne p r e f e r e n c e to Spenser: A poet's born, not made: no wonder then Though Spenser, Sidney ( m i r a c l e s of men, Sole E n g l i s h makers, whose ev'n names so h i g h Express by i m p l i c a t i o n poesy) Were long u n p a r a l l e l ' d : f o r Nature, b o l d In t h e i r c r e a t i o n , spent that p r e c i o u s mould, That nobly b e t t e r e a r t h , that p u r e r s p i r i t Which p o e t s , as t h e i r b i r t h r i g h t s , c l a i m t.' i n h e r i t : And i n t h e i r g r e a t p r o d u c t i o n p r o d i g a l , C a r e l e s s of f u t u r e s , w e l l - n i g h spent her a l l . Viewing her work, conscious sh' had s u f f e r ' d wrack, Hath caus'd our country men e'er s i n c e to l a c k That b e t t e r e a r t h and-form: long t h r i f t y grown, Who t r u l y might bear p o e t s , brought f o r t h none: T i l l now of l a t e , seeing her s t o c k s new f u l l (By time and t h r i f t ) o f matter b e a u t i f u l , And quintessence of form, what s e v e r a l Our e l d e r poets graces had, those a l l She now determln'd to u n i t e In one, ^7 So to surpass h e r s e l f , and c a l l ' d him Browne. Another c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the p e r i o d i s a poet's d e s i r e of the a i d or patronage of another. In h i s Orchestra S i r John Davies w r i t e s , 0 that I could o l d G e f f e r i e ' s Muse awake Or borrow C o l i n ' s f a y r e h e r o i k e s t i l e , l?m Or smooth my rimes w i t h D e l i a ' s servants f i l e . 26 Browne, op. c i t . , v o l . 1, p. 12. 27 I b i d . , v o l . 2, pp. 81-82. 28 /15967, The Complete Poems of S i r John D a v i e s , Alex-ander B. G r o s a r t , ed., London, Chatto & Windus, 1876, v o l . 1, p. 212. -31-I't c a n be s e e n a g a i n - i n W i l l i a m S m i t h ' s C h l o r i s o f .1596 -C o l i n , my d e a r and most e n t i r e , b e l o v e d , ' My muse a u d a c i o u s s t o o p s h e r p i t c h t o thee-;,1 D e s i r i n g t h a t t h y p a t i e n c e be n o t moved By t h e s e rude l i n e s , w r i t t e n h e r e y o u s e e ; ^ 9 S i m i l a r l y J o h n M a r s t o n w r i t e s , "But f i r s t he must i n v o k e good C o l i n C l o u r . " 3 0 and Browne* :^And i f my Muse t o S p e n s e r ' s g l o r y come, | No k i n g s h a l l own my v e r s e s f o r h i s c r o w n . " 3 ^ We h a v e , by no means, a t t e m p t e d t o p r e s e n t a l l t h e a l l u s i o n s t o S p e n s e r t h a t a r e t o be f o u n d i n t h e v e r s e o f h i s p e r i o d o r o f t h e y e a r s i m m e d i a t e l y f o l l o w i n g h i s d e a t h . Our e n d e a v o u r , however, has b e e n t o p r e s e n t a number s u f -f i c i e n t t o r e v e a l h i s p o p u l a r i t y and t o show i n what, f o r m t h e s e a l l u s i o n s were p r e s e n t e d . T hey f a l l , as s t a t e d p r e -v i o u s l y , i n t o f o u r c l a s s e s : t h o s e p r a i s i n g S p e n s e r ; t h o s e m o u r n i n g h i s d e a t h ; t h o s e u s i n g h i s name t o f l a t t e r o r p r a i s e o t h e r p o e t s ; a n d t h o s e a s k i n g h i s p e r m i s s i o n t o w r i t e , as i f he were a Muse o f P o e t r y . Two o f t h e t h r e e m a i n p o i n t s u p o n w h i c h S p e n s e r was c r i t i c a l l y " a t t a c k e d , as r e v e a l e d i n t h e l a s t c h a p t e r , a r e m e n t i o n e d i n t h e s e v e r s e s : J o h n G u i l p i n r e v e a l s t h e e x t e n t o f t h e c o n t r o v e r s y o v e r S p e n s e r ' s u s e o f l a n g u a g e , and R i c h a r d ' B a r n f i e l d shows, when he d e f e n d s S p e n s e r ' s "deep c o n c e l t > " t h a t some c o n t r o v e r s y h a d a r i s e n o v e r t h e 29 I n P o e t r y o f t h e E n g l i s h R e n a i s s a n c e , p . 222. 30 The Works o f J o h n M a r s t o n , A.H. B u l l e n , e d . , L o n d o n , J o h n Nimmo, 1887, v o l . 3, p . 341. 31 Browne, op. c i t . , v o l . 2, p. 213. - 3 2 -comprehensibility of Spenser's subject matter. These, however, are i s o l a t e d examples, and i t i s not u n t i l l a t e r that verse becomes a vehicle f o r more serious c r i t i c a l , analyses of Spenser's works. Looking backward from the year 1650, we can see Spenser as a poet of immense popularity with, and immense influence upon, his fellow poets. Looking forward, however, we fi n d a tempering of the praise and a greater amount of. adverse c r i t i c i s m of his work. Men of l e t t e r s , as they become further removed from Spenser, attempt to shuffle him into a. permanent po s i t i o n i n the ever lengthening l i s t of Eng-l i s h writers - but each shuffle i s performed according to the l i t e r a r y conventions of the period i n which i t takes place. -35-...CHAPTER THREE... • THE NEO-CLASSICISTS As we move i n t o the p e r i o d f o l l o w i n g 1650 many changes can be noted i n the c r i t i c a l o u t l o o k of a new group of w r i t e r s . Spenser has been dead f o r f i f t y y e a rs when the p e r i o d begins; the d i r e c t i n f l u e n c e he e x e r t e d over w r i t e r s who immediately f o l l o w e d him (the p o s t -Spenserians) i s not as strong so the new w r i t e r s ; a n o t i c e a b l e tempering, a mellowing i s t a k i n g p l a c e ; Spenser i s becoming a p a r t of a g r e a t background known as the E l i z a b e t h a n Age. These a r e , i t must be admitted,- g e n e r a l statements, b u t , even so, when one.is viewing a l a r g e and o f t e n unwieldy t o p i c the terms must, p e r f o r c e , be g e n e r a l and s p e c i f i c terms must be used to make them comprehensible. The f r e q u e n t l y used image that l i t e r a t u r e i s l i k e a r i v e r i s o f t e n v a l u a b l e . As the y e a r s s l i d e past we can see the narrow dancing Spenserian brook widening and becoming more s l u g g i s h u n t i l i t empties i n t o the g r e a t r i v e r of l i t e r a t u r e i t s e l f - not, however, to be l o s t but t o be noted by s w i r l s and eddies and sometimes by a p a t c h of r a p i d s which g i v e s o f f s p a r k l i n g r e f l e c t i o n s of what once was and never can be a g a i n . -54-The n o t e s o f m e l l o w i n g , t h e l o o k i n g b a c k w a r d , c a n be d e t e c t e d as e a r l y as t h e y e a r 1651 when R.C., i n h i s r e -marks "To t h e R e a d e r " o f W i l l i a m B o s w o r t h ' s A r c a d u s and  S'epha, s a y s , H i s making t h e e n d . o f one v e r s e t o be t h e • f r e q u e n t b e g i n n i n g o f t h e o t h e r , ( b e s i d e s the a r t o f the. t r o p e ) was t h e l a b o u r a n d d e l i g h t o f Mr. Edmund S p e n c e r , whom S i r Walt. R a l e i g h and S i r K e n e l i n D i g b y were used t o c a l l t h e E n g l i s h S 5 i r g i l , and i n d e e d V i r g i l h i m s e l f d i d o f t e n u s e i t . . . T h r e e y e a r s l a t e r Edmund G a y t o n i n h i s F i e a s a n t Motes  u p o n Don Q u i x o t l i s t s t h e F a e r i e Queene as b e i n g among the romances t h a t w o u l d be o f e t e r n a l fame. O t h e r s he m e n t i o n s a r e t h e A r c a d i a , R a n d o l p h , G o n d i b e r t , , u n s p e c i f i e d ones b y D r a y t o n , Beaumont an d F l e t c h e r , S h a k e s p e a r e , a n d " J o h n s o n " / J o n s o n / . 2 The E n g l i s h romances, a c c o r d i n g t o G a y t o n , c o n -t r a r y t o what one m i g h t e x p e c t f r o m the t i t l e o f ' h i s book, a r e "...as w e l l w o r t h y t h e r e a d i n g , as any i n the w o r l d . " 3 G a y t o n ' s b r i e f l i s t w o u l d be f u r t h e r c u t down t o d a y - p e r h a p s t o a p o i n t where o n l y Don Q u i j o t e , S h a k e s p e a r e ' s r o m a n c e s , and, p o s s i b l y , t h e F a e r i e Queene w o u l d r e m a i n as p a r t o f a l i t e r a t u r e t h a t i s a d e q u a t e l y r e a d . The i n i m i t a b l y j o l l y churchman Thomas F u l l e r , who i n 1662 was t o p u b l i s h h i s H i s t o r y o f the W o r t h i e s o f E n g l a n d , w r o t e , i n 1655, t h a t C h a u c e r 1 I n M i n o r P o e t s o f the C a r o l i n e P e r i o d , George S a i n t s -b u r y , e d . , O x f o r d , C l a r e n d o n P r e s s , 1906, v o l . 2, p . 527. 2 Q u o t e d i n S h a k e s p e r e A l l u s i o n Book, C M . I n g l e b y and o t h e r s , c o m p i l e r s , London, O x f o r d U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1932, V o l . 2, p . 56. 3 L o c . c i t . -35-. . . l l e s b u r i e d i n t h e S o u t h - I s l e o f S t . P e t e r s , W e s t m i n s t e r , and s i n c e h a t h g o t t h e company o f S p e n c e r and D r a y t o n (a p a i r - r o y a l o f P o e t s ) , enough ( a l m o s t ) to. make p a s s e n g e r s f e e t t o move m e t r i c a l l y , who go o v e r the p l a c e , where so much P o e t i c a l d u s t I s i n t e r r e d . 4 James H o w e l l a l s o commented on t h e b u r i a l p l a c e s i n h i s L o n d o n i o p o l i s ( 1 6 5 7 ) . He m e n t i o n s t h a t S p e n s e r i s n e x t i n p o e t r y a n d i n g r a v e t o t h a t " P r i n c e o f E n g l i s h Poets." -C h a u c e r . 5 I n a l i g h t e r v e i n i s "On the Time P o e t s , " b y a n unknown w r i t e r , w h i c h a p p e a r e d I n Choyce D r o l l e r y o f 1656. Of these, s a d P o e t s t h i s way r a n the s t r e a m , And D e c k e r f o l l o w e d a f t e r I n a dream; Rounce, R o b b i e , H o b b l e , he t h a t w r i t so h i g h Dig/j7 B a s s e f o r a B a l l a d , J o h n Shank f o r a J i g ; Sent b y Ben J o n s o n , as some A u t h o r s s a y , Broom went b e f o r e and k i n d l y swept t h e way: O l d C h a u c e r welcomes them i n t o t h e G r e e n , And S p e n s e r b r i n g s them t o the f a i r y Queen. L i g h t e r . s t i l l , a n d , • p e r h a p s , as t h e e d i t o r s n o t e , a hoax, i s , , "To h i s I n g e n i o u s F r i e n d , t h e A u t h o r , on h i s i n c o m p a r a b l e Poems. Carmen Jocoserium,"SW. W.C.C. Oxon." w h i c h a p p e a r e d two y e a r s l a t e r i n Samuel A u s t i n ' s Naps u p o n P a r n a s s u s . . To the e compar'd, o u r E n g l i s h P o e t s a l l s t o p , And v a i l t h e i r B o n n e t s , e v e n S h a k e s p e a r ' s F a l s t o p . C h a u c e r the f i r s t o f a l l wasn't w o r t h a f a r t h i n g , L i d g a t e , and H u n t i n g d o n , w i t h G a f f e r H a r d i n g . N o n - s e n t e t h e F a e r y Queen, and M i c h a e l D r a y t o n , L i k e B a b e l ' s Balm; o r Rhymes o f Edward P a i t o n , W a l l e r , and T u r l i n g h a m , and b r a v e George Sandys g. Beaumont, and F l e t c h e r , Donne, Jeremy C a n d i s h , 4 " C h u r c h H i s t o r y , " q u o t e d i n C a r o l i n e S p u r g e o n , F i v e  Hundred Y e a r s o f C h a u c e r C r i t i c i s m and A l l u s i o n , S e r . 2, No. 48, P t . 1, p . 231. 5 C i t e d i n S t u d i e s i n P h i l o l o g y , 1925, v o l . 20, p.477 6 Quoted i n S p u r g e o n , op. c i t . , P t . 1, p . 234. -56-H e r b e r t , and C l e e v e l a n d , and a l l t h e t r a i n n o b l e A r e S a i n t s - b e l l s u n t o t h e e , and t i i o u g r e a t Bow-b e l l . V T h i s b a n d y i n g a b o u t o f names and t h i s use. Of r i b a l d r y , as we s h a l l see b e l o w , may be t a k e n as a s i g n t h a t S p e n s e r I s now t h o u g h t o f as b e i n g o f t h e p a s t b u t n o t y e t f a r enough removed f o r him t o be g i v e n some u n i v e r s a l l y a c -c e p t e d p o s i t i o n . I t i s a common f e a r among w r i t e r s t h a t t h i n g s o f t h e i m m e d i a t e p a s t w i l l o v e r s h a d o w t h i n g s o f t h e p r e s e n t and t h u s t h e y must make some k i n d o f a t t a c k on t h e n e a r p a s t i n o r d e r t o show t h e i r s u p e r i o r i t y o v e r i t . Thomas P u l l e r was one o f t h e f i r s t E n g l i s h b i o g r a p h e r s , and a l t h o u g h he I s e x c e p t i o n a l l y I n a c c u r a t e ( i t m i g h t be a r g u e d t h a t a c c u r a c y was n o t a l w a y s p o s s i b l e a t t h e t i m e ) h i s work i s , n e v e r t h e l e s s , e x c e e d i n g l y v a l u a b l e . I n h i s s h o r t b i o g r a p h i c a l s k e t c h o f S p e n s e r i n - t h i s H i s t o r y o f t h e W o r t h i e s o f E n g l a n d ( 1 6 6 2 ) , he w r i t e s t h a t S p e n s e r ...became an e x c e l l e n t s c h o l a r ; b u t e s p e c i a l l y most happy i n E n g l i s h p o e t r y , as h i s works do d e c l a r e ; i n w h i c h th e many C h a u c e r i s m s u s e d ( f o r I w i l l n o t s a y a f f e c t e d by him) a r e t h o u g h t . by t h e i g n o r a n t t o be b l e m i s h e s known by t h e l e a r n e d t o be b e a u t i e s , t o h i s book; w h i c h n o t w i t h s t a n d i n g h a d been more s a l e a b l e , i f more c o n f o r m e d t o o u r modern l a n g u a g e . 8 H e r e , once a g a i n , we a r e f o r c e d t o v i e w S p e n s e r ' s l a n g u a g e b a r r i e r , b u t , however, w i t h t h e i n t i m a t i o n t h a t b e c a u s e o f . I t the book d i d n o t s e l l w e l l . T h a t w h i c h was t h e b a r r i e r t o ' P u l l e r s h o u l d be a d o u b l e b a r r i e r t o u s . Y e t one c a n n o t h e l p 7 Q u o t e d i n S h a k e s p e r e A l l u s i o n : B o o k , v o l . 2, p. 78.• 8 P.A. N u t t a l l , e d . , L o n d o n , T. T e g g , 1840, v o l . 2, p. 379. -37-w o n d e r i n g w h e t h e r t h e a b s e n c e o f t h e b a r r i e r would have i n c r e a s e d . t h e s a l e s . Any answer t o t h i s , o f c o u r s e , would , be mere s p e c u l a t i o n . R e p e a t i n g • t h e s t o r y t o l d b y J o h n Manningham, c o n c e r n i n g the p i e c e o f d o g g e r a l s e n t by S p e n s e r t o , Q u e e n E l i z a b e t h when h e ' f a i l e d t o r e c e i v e h e r m o n e t a r y r e w a r d , F u l l e r s a y s t h a t i t was "commonly t o l d and b e l i e v e d . " ^ He ends t h e b i o g r a p h i c a l s k e t c h w i t h an o n l y p a r t i a l l y t r u e a c c o u n t o f S p e n s e r ' s f u n e r a l and monument -Nor must we f o r g e t , t h a t t h e e x p e n s e o f h i s f u n e r a l and monument v/as d e f r a y e d a t t h e s o l e c h a r g e o f R o b e r t , f i r s t o f t h a t name, e a r l o f E s s e x . ! 0 The monument w h i c h was p r o m i s e d by Queen E l i z a b e t h was n o t e r e c t e d u n t i l 1620 and was p a i d f o r , n o t b y E s s e x , b u t b y the C o u n t e s s o f D o r s e t . A s h i f t o f w e i g h t i n t h e c r i t i c a l b a l a n c e s i s made by S i r J o h n Denham when he w r i t e s , O l d m o t h e r W i t , and N a t u r e , gave S h a k e s p e a r e and F l e t c h e r a l l t h e y h a v e ; I n S p e n s e r , and i n J o n s o n , A r t Of s l o w e r N a t u r e g o t t h e s t a r t ; 1 1 The b a l a n c e i s one t h a t we would more r e a d i l y a c c e p t t o d a y . -e x c e p t , p e r h a p s , i n t h e c a s e o f F l e t c h e r . The s t i l l i m p o r t a n t i n f l u e n c e o f t h e F a e r y Queene i s r e v e a l e d i n Thomas S p r a t ' s A c c o u n t o f t h e L i f e o f C o w l e y . He r e p o r t s , o f C owley, t h a t , 9 F u l l e r , op. c i t . , p / 379 10 I b i d . , p . 380. 11 "On Mr. Abraham Co w l e y ' s D e a t h , " /iQQTj, i n C h a l m e r ' s P o e t s , v o l . 7, p . 247. -38-The o c c a s i o n o f h i s f i r s t i n c l i n a t i o n t o P o e t r y was h i s c a s u a l l i g h t i n g on S p e n c e r ' s F a i r y Queen, when he was but j u s t a b l e t o r e a d . T h a t i n d e e d I s a Poem f i t t e r f o r t h e e x a m i n a t i o n o f men t h a n the c o n s i d e r a t i o n o f a C h i l d . But i n him i t met w i t h a F a n c y whose s t r e n g t h was n o t t o be j u d g e d by t h e number o f h i s y e a r s . 1 ^ L a t e r , i n t h e same work, S p r a t s a y s t h a t ...whoever w o u l d do.. .^Cowley_7 r i g h t s h o u l d n o t o n l y e q u a l him t o t h e P r i n c i p a l A n c i e n t W r i t e r s o f our own N a t i o n ^ C h a u c e r and S p e n s e r y 7 , b u t s h o u l d a l s o r a n k h i s name amongst t h e A u t h o r s of the t r u e A n t i q u i t y , t h e b e s t o f t h e G r e e k s and Romans.^ 3 An i n t e r e s t i n g b i t o f v e r s e a p p e a r s i n a 1609 c o p y o f the F a e r i e Queene; i t was p r o b a b l y w r i t t e n about 1670 b y t h e b o o k ' s owner, J o h n H a c k e t -S p e n s e r , o u r g l o r i e t i s ' t h y g o l d e n p e n Admitts t h e e t h i r d b e f o r e a l l o t h e r men. Sage Homer, V i r g i l , S p e n s e r L a u r e a t Make a p o e t i c a l t r i u m v i r a t e . I 4 No m e n t i o n , i t must. be..noted, i s made o f a n y o t h e r E n g l i s h p o e t ss. A b o u t t h e same y e a r ( i t i s o f t e n d i f f i c u l t and a t t i m e s i m p o s s i b l e t o d a t e i n d i v i d u a l poems) Andrew M a r v e l l ' s S a t i r e "Tom May's Death," a p p e a r e d . I t i n c l u d e d t h e f o l l o w i n g l i n e s : I f t h a t c a n bp t h y home where SPENSER l i e s , And r e v e r e n d CHAUCER; b u t t h e i r d u s t d o e s r i s e A g a i n s t t h e e , and e x p e l s t h e e f r o m t h e i r s i d e , As t h e e a g l e ' s plumes f r o m o t h e r b i r d s d i v i d e : 1 3 I n . 1671 S i r Thomas C u l p e p p e r gave h i s r e a s o n s f o r n o t 12 /T.668/, I n C r i t i c a l E s s a y s o f the S e v e n t e e n t h C e n t u r y , v o l . 2, p . 121. 13 I b i d . , p . 145. 14 " V e r s e s on S p e n s e r , " Athenaeum, 1883, v o l . 1, p . 247. 15 S a t i r e s , G.A. A i t k i n , e d . , L o n d o n , Lawrence & B u l l e n , 1892, p . 13. -39-u s i n g outmoded l a n g u a g e . I n , h i s E s s a y e s he w r i t e s . Some have thoiiaght t o h o n o u r A n t i q u i t y toy u s i n g s u c h / w o r d s / a s were o b s o l e t e , as h a t h b e e n done b y o u r famous S p e n c e r and o t h e r s , t h o u g h t h e t i m e s p a s t a r e no more r e s p e c t e d by a n u n n e c e s s a r y c o n t i n u i n g o f t h e i r words t h e n i f wee wore c o n s t a n t l y t h e same t r i m m i n g t o our. C l o a t h s as t h e y d i d , f o r i t i s n o t S p e e c h , b u t t h i n g s w h i c h r e n d e r a n t i q u i t y v e n e r a b l e , b e s i d e s t h e d a n g e r o f e x p r e s s i n g no L a n g u a g e , i f as S p e n c e r made u s e o f C h a u c e r s , we s h o u l d l i k e w i s e i n t r o d u c e h i s . . . ' I t i s d i s a p p o i n t i n g t h a t the two m a j o r c r i t i c s o f t h e p e r i o d , Thomas Rymer and J o h n D r y d e n , e s p e c i a l l y t h e l a t t e r had l i t t l e t o s a y c o n c e r n i n g S p e n s e r . N e v e r t h e l e s s , i n t h e l i t t l e t h e y w r o t e , we a r e i n t r o d u c e d t o t h e c r i t i c a l a p p r o a c h o f n e o - c l a s s i c i s m . I n h i s " P r e f a c e t o t h e T r a n s l a t i o n o f R a p i n ' s R e f l e c t i o n s o f A r i s t o t l e ' s T r e a t i s e o f P o e s i e , " p u b l i s h e d i n 1674, Rymer w r i t e s , S p e n s e r , I t h i n k , may be r e c k o n ' d t h e f i r s t o f o u r H e r o i c k P o e t s ; h e . h a d a l a r g e s p i r i t , a s h a r p judgment, a n d a G e n i u s f o r H e r o i c k P o e s i e , p e r -. haps above any t h a t e v e r w r i t s i n c e V i r g i l . But o u r m i s f o r t u n e i s , . h e w a nted a t r u e I d e a , and l o s t h i m s e l f b y f o l l o w i n g a n u n f a i t h f u l g u i d e . T hough b e s i d e s Homer a n d V i r g i l he h a d r e a d T a s s o , y e t he r a t h e r s u f f e r e d h i m s e l f t o be m i s l e d by A r i o s t o ; w i t h whom b l i n d l y r a m b l i n g o n m a r v e l l o u s A d v e n t u r e s , he makes no C o n s c i e n c e o f P r o b a b i l i t y . A l l i s f a n c i f u l and c h i m e r i c a l , w i t h o u t any u n i f o r m i t y , w i t h o u t any f o u n d a t i o n i n t r u t h ; h i s Poem i s p e r f e c t F a i r y - l a n d . ! 7 He t h e n c o n t i n u e s : We must blame the I t a l i a n s f o r d e b a u c h i n g g r e a t S p e n c e r ' s judgment; and t h e y c a s t him 16 I n S p u r g e o n , op. c i t . , p p . 247-248. 1 7 . I n S p i n g a r m , op. e x t . , p p . 167-168 -40-on t h e u n l u c k y c h o i c e o f t h e s t a n z a , w h i c h i n no w i s e i s p r o p e r f o r o u r Language.18 T h a t S p e n s e r ' s poem i s " p e r f e c t P a i r l y - l a n d " I s i n t r u t h t h e h i g h e s t p r a i s e , a l t h o u g h n o t meant by Rymer t o be s u c h . The b l a m i n g o f t h e I t a l i a n s f o r t h e s t a n z a f o r m i s t o be r e p e a t e d l a t e r by o t h e r c r i t i c s i n c l u d i n g D r . J o h n s o n . I t i s b e s t a t t h i s p o i n t t o d e p a r t from, t h e c h r o n o -l o g i c a l method o f p r e s e n t a t i o n b e i n g used, i n t h i s c h a p t e r a n d t o t u r n d i r e c t l y t o D r y d e n who was, b y h i s own a d m i s s i o n , i n f l u e n c e d b y Rymer ( b u t n o t w i t h o u t r e s e r v a t i o n s and r e -f u t a t i o n s ). • ' ' _. I n h i s " D e d i c a t i o n " t o the S p a n i s h F r i a r ( 1 6 8 1 ) , D r y d e n , when s p e a k i n g o f t h e " p u f f y s t y l e " t h a t " l o o k s l i k e g r e a t n e s s " s a y s , " I remember, when I was a b o y , I t h o u g h t i n i m i t a b l e S p e n s e r a mean p o e t , i n c o m p a r i s o n o f S y l v e s t e r ' s D u b a r t a s . . . . "19 T w e l v e y e a r s l a t e r i n i".A D i s c o u r s e C o n c e r n i n g t h e O r i g i n a l and P r o g r e s s o f S a t i r e " he makes a f u l l e r s t u d y o f S p e n s e r . He w r i t e s , . . . t h e r e i s no u n i f o r m i t y i n t h e d e s i g n o f S p e n s e r : he alms a t t h e a c c o m p l i s h m e n t o f no one a c t i o n ; he r a i s e s up a h e r o f o r e v e r y one. o f h i s a d v e n t u r e s ; and endows e a c h o f them w i t h some p a r t i c u l a r m o r a l v i r t u e , w h i c h r e n d e r s them a l l e q u a l , w i t h o u t s u b o r d i n a t i o n , o r p r e f e r e n c e . 2 0 To t h e modern r e a d e r t h i s c r i t i c i s m i s n o t p a r t i c u l a r l y damning when i t i s r e a l i z e d t h a t i t i s o n l y a m a n i f e s t a t i o n 18 S p i n g a r n , op. c i t . , p . 168 19 E s s a y s o f J o h n D r y d e n , W » P . K e r , e d . , . O x f o r d , C l a r e n d o n P r e s s , 1900, v o l . 1, p . 247. 20 I b i d . , v o l . 2, p . 28. -41-o f t h e p r e j u d i c e s o f a p e r i o d t h a t was i n t e r e s t e d i n s u c h c o n v e n t i o n s as t h e u n i t i e s and•decorum. D r y d e n , however, c o n t i n u e s , . . . f o r t h e r e s t , h i s o b s o l e t e l a n g u a g e , and t h e i l l c h o i c e o f h i s stanza?, a r e f a u l t s h u t o f t h e s e c o n d m a g n i t u d e ; f o r , n o t w i t h s t a n d i n g t h e f i r s t , he i s s t i l l i n t e l l i g i b l e , a t l e a s t a f t e r a l i t t l e p r a c t i c e ; and f o r t h e l a s t , he i s more t o be a d m i r e d , t h a t l a b o u r i n g u n d e r s u c h a d i f f i c u l t y , h i s v e r s e s a r e , s o numerous, so v a r i o u s , and so h a r m o n i o u s . . . . ^ 1 C a n t h e s e " f a u l t s " be c o n s i d e r e d d i f f i c u l t i e s f o r S p e n s e r t o labour" u n d e r ? • ' D r y d e n , i n h i s " D e d i c a t i o n " t o t h e A e n e i s , r e t u r n s t o t h e q u e s t i o n o f a c t i o n , and s t a t e s t h a t " S p e n s e r h a s a b e t t e r p l e a f o r h i s F a i r y Queen, ha d h i s a c t i o n b e e n f i n i s h e d , o r h a d b e e n o n e . 1 ! ^ And i n t h e " P r e f a c e " t o t h e S y l v a e he t o u c h e s once more o n l a n g u a g e when he s p e a k s a b o u t u s i n g t h e d i a l e c t o f T h e o c r i t u s - " S p e n s e r has e n d e a v o u r e d i t i n h i s S h e p h e r d ' s C a l e n d a r ; b u t n e i t h e r w i l l i t s u c c e e d i n E n g l i s h ; f o r w h i c h r e a s o n I f o r b o r e t o a t t e m p t i t . " 2 5 As i f w i s h i n g t o end any f u r t h e r d i s c u s s i o n about t h e m a t t e r o f t h e " r u l e s " D r y d e n w r i t e s , a g a i n i n t h e " D e d i -c a t i o n " t o A e n e i s , t h a t " S p e n s e r wanted o n l y t o have r e a d t h e r u l e s o f B o s s u ; f o r n o man was e v e r b o r n w i t h a g r e a t e r g e n i u s o r h a d more knowledge t o s u p p o r t i t . " ^ 4 ' D r y d e n ' s s t u d y o f S p e n s e r and-'Milton i s most i n t e r e s t i n g . I n the " P r o g r e s s o f S a t i r e " he w r i t e s , 21 D r y d e n , op. c i t . - , v o l . 2 p p . 28-29 22 I b i d . , p. 65 23 I b i d . , v o l . 1, p . 266 24 I b i d . , v o l . 2, p . 220. -42-I f o u n d i n . . . / E i l t o n J a t r u e s u b l i m i t y , l o f t y t h o u g h t s , w h i c h were c l o t h e d w i t h a d m i r a b l e G r e c i s m s , and a n c i e n t w o r k s , w h i c h he had b e e n d i g g i n g f r o m t h e m i n e s o f C h a u c e r and S p e n s e r . . . . S p e n s e r had • s t u d i e d V i r g i l t o . a s m u c h r a d v a n t a g e as ' • M i l t o n had done H o m e r . . . . ^ A few y e a r s l a t e r i n the A e n e i s " D e d i c a t i o n " he r e p o r t s t h a t S p e n s e r and M i l t o n a r e t h e n e a r e s t , i n E n g l i s h , To V i r g i l and H o r a c e i n t h e L a t i n ; and I have e n d e a v o u r e d t o f o r m my s t y l e b y i m i t a t i n g t h e i r m a s t e r s . And u l t i m a t e l y i n h i s l a s t work i n 1699, t h e " P r e f a c e t o' th e P a b l e s > " he s t a t e s , " M i l t o n h a s a c k n o w l e d g e d t o me, t h a t S p e n s e r was h i s o r i g i n a l . . . . " ' ^ I t i s d i f f i c u l t t o s a y w h e t h e r o r n o t t h e c r i t i c i s m o f t h i s p e r i o d , b a s e d on t h e " r u l e s , " I s a s i g n o f t h e w i d e n i n g chasm between S p e n s e r and t h e r e a d e r . - W h a t t h e " r u l e s " t o r e down has b e e n , i t must be a d m i t t e d , b u i l t up a g a i n . I t i s d i f f i c u l t i n d e e d t o make any d e f i n i t e d i s c o v e r y a s t o w h e t h e r t h i s t y p e of c r i t i c i s m had a n y l a s t i n g e f f e c t s , o r made t h e chasm d e e p e r . I t i s d o u b t f u l w h e t h e r i n - t h e e nd i t d i d . We may assume t h a t i t d i d n o t . - ' • " P a s s i n g o v e r Samuel Speed's t r i t e p r a i s e i n v e r s e o f S p e n s e r 5 ^ we come t o t h e i n t e r e s t i n g Soame-Dryden t r a n s -l a t i o n o f B o i l e a u ' s A r t o f P o e t r y i n w h i c h S p e n s e r i s g i v e n c r e d i t b y t h e " r u l e s " -S p e n s e r d i d n e x t i n p a s t o r a l s e x c e l , And t a u g h t t h e n o b l e a r t o f w r i t i n g w e l l , To s t r i c t e r r u l e s t h e s t a n z a d i d r e s t r a i n , 25 D r y d e n , op. c i t . , v o l . 2, p / 109 26 I b i d . , p . 225. 27 I b i d . , p . 247 28 "Pragmenta C i r c e r i s , " /l67£/,. i n S h a k s p e r e A l l u s i o n  Book, v o l . 2, p . 206. -45-And f o u n d f o r p o e t r y a r i c h e r v e i n . ^ A b o u t t h e y e a r 1680 J o h n A u b r e y wrote h i s b r i e f b i o g r a p h y o f S p e n s e r , f i l l e d (as one m i g h t e x p e c t ) w i t h h e a r s a y e v i d e n c e . He t e l l s us t h a t S p e n s e r ...was an a c q u a i n t a n c e and f r e q u e n t e r o f S i r Erasmus. D r e y d e n . H i s m i s t r i s , R o s a l i n d , was a kinswoman o f S i r E r a s m u s ' l a d y ' s . The chamber t h e r e a t S i r Erasmus* i s s t i l l c a l l e d -Mr. S p e n c e r ' s chamber. L a t e l y , a t t h e ' C o l l e g e t a k e i n g - d o w n e th e w a i n s c o t o f h i s chamber, t h e y f o u n d a n abundance o f c a r d s , w i t h s t a n z a s o f t h e ' P a e r i e Queen' w r i t t e n on them.- f r o m J o h n D r e y d e n , e s q . , P o e t L a u r e a t e . 3 ^ The i d e n t i t y o f R o s a l i n d s t i l l r e m a i n s a m y s t e r y . Of S p e n s e r ' s . a p p e a r a n c e A u b r e y r e p o r t s t h a t "Mr. Bee-s t o n s a y e s he was a l i t t l e man, wore s h o r t h a i r e , l i t t l e band, a n d l i t t l e c u f f s . " ^ T h i s i s a more c r e d i b l e s t a t e m e n t . A u b r e y r e l a t e s a^ s t o r y c o n c e r n i n g S p e n s e r w h i c h i s i n t e r e s t i n g i n l i g h t o f S i r W i l l i a m D a v e n a n t ' s c r i t i c i s m ( s e e C h a p t e r One). He s a y s : S i r J o h n Denham t o l d me, t h a t a r c h b i s h o p ' . U s h e r , L o r d P r i m a t e o f Armagh, was a c q u a i n t e d w i t h h i m , t b - v b t h i s t o k e n : when S i r W i l l i a m , D a v e n a n t ' s G o n d i b e r t came f o r t h , S i r J o h n a s k t the L o r d P r i m a t e i f he had s e e n i t . S a i d t h e P r i m a t e , 'Out u p o n him, w i t h h i s v a u n t i n g p r e f a c e , he s p e a k e s a g a i n s t my o l d f r i e n d , Edmund S p e n s e r . ' 3 £ The most i n t r i g u i n g o f A u b r e y ' s t a l e s a p p e a r s i n h i s l i f e o f S i r P h i l i p S i d n e y . The s t o r y g o e s as f o l l o w s : 29 I n The A r t o f P o e t r y , A.S. C o o k , . e d . , B o s t o n and o t h e r s , G i n n & Co., 1892, p . 165. 30 B r i e f L i v e s , A. C l a r k , e d . , O x f o r d , C l a r e n d o n Press', 1898, v o l . 2, p . 232. 31 I b i d . , p . 253. 32 L o c . . c i t . -44-Among o t h e r s Mr. Edmund S p e n c e r made h i s a d d r e s s e t o him, and b r o u g h t h i s F a e r y Queen. S i r P h i l i p was b u s y a t h i s s t u d y , and h i s s e r v a n t d e l i v e r e d Mr. S p e n c e r ' s b o o k s t o h i s m a s t e r , who l a y d i t b y , t h i n k i n g i t m i g h t be s u c h s t u f f e a s he was f r e q u e n t l y t r o u b l e d w i t h . Mr. S p e n c e r s t a y d so l o n g t h a t h i s p a t i e n c e was w e a r i e d , and went h i s way d i s -contented., and n e v e r i n t e n d e d t o come a g a i n . When S i r P h i l i p p e r u s e d i t , he was so ex-c e e d i n g l y d e l i g h t e d w i t h i t , t h a t he was e x t r e m e l y ' s o r r y he was gonne, and where' t o s e n d f o r h i m he knew n o t . A f t e r much e n q u i r y he l e a r n e d h i s l o d g e i n g and s e n t f o r h i m , m i g h t i l y c a r e s s e d him, and o r d e r e d h i s s e r v a n t t o g i v e him...pounds i n g o l d . H i s s e r v a n t s a y d t h a t t h a t was t o o much; 'No,' s a i d S i r P h i l i p , 'he i s . . . , ' and o r d e r e d an a d d i t i o n . From t h i s time t h e r e was a g r e a t f r i e n d s h i p b e t w e e n them, t o h i s d y i n g d a y . 5 5 T h e r e c a n be no d o u b t t h a t t h e s t o r y i s f a l s e . I n t h e f i r s t p l a c e t h e p a r t a b o u t t h e money i s s i m i l a r t o s t o r i e s t o l d c o n c e r n i n g Queen E l i z a b e t h and S p e n s e r . I n t h e s e c o n d p l a c e i f t h e s t o r y were t r u e i t would u p s e t much o f t h e d a t i n g o f e v e n t s i n S p e n s e r ' s l i f e t h a t has become g e n e r a l l y a c c e p t e d . • I t i s u n d e r s t o o d t h a t G a b r i e l H a r v e y o b t a i n e d a p l a c e f o r S p e n s e r i n t h e h o u s e h o l d o f L e i c e s t e r i n t h e y e a r 1578, and d u r i n g t h a t y e a r S p e n s e r became . a c q u a i n t e d w i t h S i d n e y , D y e r , G r e v i l l e and o t h e r s and t h e " A e r o p a g u s " was f o r m e d . The f o l l o w i n g y e a r , 1579, savy the p u b l i c a t i o n o f t h e S h e p h e a r d e s C a l e n d e r and most p r o b a b l y the b e g i n n i n g o f t h e F a e r i e Queene. I t i s h i g h l y d o u b t f u l w h e t h e r t h i s l a t t e r work was begun e a r l i e r , and, e v e n i f i t were, whether t h e r e was enough w r i t t e n t o make a p r e s e n t a t i o n o f i t t o S i d n e y a t a t i m e when'Spenser was s t i l l unknown t o him. 3b' A u b r e y , op. c i t . , p. 248. I n h i s E s s a y on P o e t r y J o h n S h e f f i e l d (Duke o f Buck-i n g h a m s h i r e ) a d v i s e s t h e r i s i n g p o e t t h a t ...he must be b e y o n d what I c a n s a y ; Must above T a s s o ' s l o f t y f l i g h t s p r e v a i l , „ S u c c e e d where S p e n s e r , and S v ' n M i l t o n f a i l . The m a t t e r o f l a n g u a g e i s r e v i v e d a g a i n by F r a n c i s A t t e r b u r y i n h i s " P r e f a c e t o t h e s e c o n d p a r t o f Mr. W a l l e r ' Poems, p r i n t e d i n 1690," when he w r i t e s , ;: . . . i t i s a s u r p r i s i n g - r e f l e c t i o n , t h a t b e t w e e n what S p e n s e r w r o t e l a s t , and W a l l e r f i r s t , t h e r e c o u l d n o t be much above t w e n t y y e a r s ' d i s t a n c e ; and y e t t h e o n e ' s . l a n g u a g e , l i k e the money o f t h a t t i m e , i s as c u r r e n t now as e v e r ; w h i l s t t h e o t h e r ' s words a r e l i k e o l d c o i n s , we must go t o an a n t i q u a r y t o u n d e r s t a n d t h e i r t r u e m e a n i n g and v a l u e . ^ 5 T h i s a p p e a r s t o be an o v e r s t a t e m e n t . S i r W i l l i a m Temple's E s s a y : o f p o e t r y , ' p u b l i s h e d i n 1685, i s a n a t t a c k on S p e n s e r ' s h a n d l i n g o f s u b j e c t m a t t e r o f a r e l i g i o u s k i n d . He s a y s , The r e l i g i o n o f t h e G e n t i l e s had b e e n woven i n t o the c o n t e x t u r e o f a l l t h e a n c i e n t p o e t r y , • w i t h a v e r y a g r e e a b l e . m i x t u r e , w h i c h made t h e moderns a f f e c t t o g i v e t h a t o f C h r i s t i a n i t y a p l a c e i n t h e i r poems. But t h e t r u e r e l i g i o n was n o t f o u n d t o become f i c t i o n so w e l l as a • f a l s e had done, and a l l t h e i r a t t e m p t s o f t h i s k i n d seemed r a t h e r t o d e b a s e r e l i g i o n , t h a n t o h e i g h t e n p o e t r y . S p e n c e r e n d e a v o u r e d t o s u p p l y t h i s w i t h m o r a l i t y , and t o make i n -s t r u c t i o n , i n s t e a d o f s t o r y , the s u b j e c t o f a n - E p i c poem. H i s e x e c u t i o n was e x c e l l e n t , and h i s . f l i g h t s o f f a n c y v e r y n o b l e and h i g h , . . b u t h i s d e s i g n was p o o r , and h i s m o r a l l a y so b a r e , t h a t i t l o s t t h e e f f e c t ; ' t i s t r u e , t h e 34 /I6827, i n C h a l m e r ' s P o e t s , v o l . 10, p. 94. 35 I n The Poems o f Edmund W a l l e r , G. T h o r n e D r u r y , e d . L o ndon, A.H. B u l l e n , 1901, p . x i x . -46-p i l l was g i l d e d , b u t so t h i n t h a t t h e c o l o u r and t h e t a s t e were t o o e a s i l y d i s c o v e r e d . 3 ^ What S i r W i l l i a m r e p o r t s i s m o s t l y t r u e . He h a s , however, o v e r - s i m p l i f i e d t h e m a t t e r o f the m o r a l . He has v i e w e d t h e F a e r i e Queene, i t a p p e a r s , as b e i n g o n l y a r e l i g i o u s poem and h a s f o r g o t t e n t h e o t h e r i m p l i c a t i o n s w h i c h were s e t f o r t h b y S p e n s e r h i m s e l f : t h a t i t was a n a l l e g o r y o f r e l i g i o n , p o l i t i c s , a n d m o r a l s . The m o r a l o f t h e s e a l l e g o r i e s d o e s n o t b y a n y means " l a y b a r e , " n o r , . o n e f e a r s , w i l l i t e v e r do s o . H i s m a i n p o i n t i s , n e v e r t h e -l e s s , w e l l t a k e n , and a l t h o u g h S p e n s e r d i d n o t d e b a s e r e l i g i o n t o h e i g h t e n p o e t r y , he d i d s u c c e e d i n r a i s i n g some s o r t o f b a r r i e r ( o r , n o t t o change o u r image i n w i d e n -i n g and d e e p e n i n g t h e chasm), b y means o f h i s d a r k c o n c e i t s , b e t w e e n h i m s e l f and h i s r e a d e r . I n 1691 someone a s k e d ' T h e A t h e n i a n M e r c u r y the q u e s t i o n "Which i s t h e b e s t Poem t h a t e v e r was made, and who i n y o u r  O p i n i o n , d e s e r v e s t h e T i t l e o f the b e s t P o e t t h a t e v e r was?" and an unknown w r i t e r answered as f o l l o w s : P l a u t u s wrote w i t t i l y , T e r e n c e n e a t l y - and S e n e c a h a s v e r y f i n e t h o u g h t s * - B u t s i n c e we c a n ' t go t h r o u g h a l l the w o r l d , l e t ' s l o o k home a l i t t l e . G r a n d s l r e C h a u c e r , i n s p i t e o f t h e Age, was a Man o f as much w i t , s e n s e and h o n e s t y as any t h a t have w r i t a f t e r him. F a t h e r Ben was e x c e l l e n t a t Humour, Shake-s p e a r e d e s e r v e s the Name, o f s w e e t e s t w h i c h M i l t o n gave him. - S p e n c e r was a n o b l e p o e t , h i s F a i r y - Q u e e n as e x c e l l e n t p i e c e o f Mor-a l i t y , P o l i c y , H i s t o r y . D a v e n a n t had a g r e a t g e n i u s . - Too much c a n ' t be s a i d o f Mr. C o l e y . M i l t o n ' s P a r a d i s e L o s t and .some o t h e r Poems 36 The Works o f S i r W i l l i a m Temple, L o n d o n , T. Wott.on, 1 7 5 7 , . v o l . 3, pp. 419-420. -47-o f h i s w i l l n e v e r be e q u a l ' d . W a l l e r , i s the most c o r r e c t P o e t we h a v e . 3 7 I n h i s " P r e f a c e t o P r i c e A r t h u r , An H e r o i c k Poem," S i r R i c h a r d B l a c k m o r e a t t a c k s S p e n s e r ' s use o f a l l e g o r y . He w r i t e s , ... A r i o s t o and S p e n c e r , however g r e a t w i t s , n o t o b s e r v i n g . . ./Xh&J j u d i c i o u s C o n d u c t o f ••'*;,• V i r g i l , n o r a t t e n d i n g t o any s o b e r R u l e s , are. h u r r i e d o n w i t h a b o u n d l e s s , i m p e t u o u s F a n c y o v e r H i l l and D a l e , t i l l t h e y a r e b o t h l o s t i n a Wood o f " A l l e g o r i e s , - A l l e g o r i e s so' w i l d , u n n a t u r a l , and e x t r a v a g a n t , as g r e a t l y d i s -p l e a s e t h e R e a d e r , 3 a I f one i s t o w r i t e a l l e g o r i e s t h a t c o n f o r m to t h e " r u l e s , " S i r R i c h a r d c o n t i n u e s , he must i n t r o d u c e t h e v i c e s as F u r i e s and the v i r t u e s as G o d d e s s e s o r o t h e r d i v i n e p e r s o n s . I n t h i s way t h e r e a d e r w i l l i m m e d i a t e l y know t h a t an a l l e g o r y i s i n t e n d e d . 3 9 S i r R i c h a r d g o e s on t o s a y , e c h o i n g b u t n o t f o l l o w i n g A r i s t o t l e , t h a t P r o b a b i l i t y must be i n the A c t i o n , t h e C o n d u c t , the Manners; and when humane i/"sic_ 17' means c a n -n o t , M a c h i n e s a r e i n t r o d u c ' d t o s u p p o r t i t . N o t h i n g i s more n e c e s s a r y t h e n P r o b a b i l i t y , no R u l e more c h a s t l y t o be o b s e r v ' d . ^ O A t l e a s t he c a n n o t a c c u s e S p e n s e r o f n o t u s i n g t h e t e c h n i q u e o f t h e M a c h i n e . B l a c k m o r e has a c c e p t e d t h e f a l l a c y t h a t a n a l l e g o r i c a l romance c a n be f i t t e d i n t o a n e o - c l a s s i c a l mould. T h i s i s f a r f r o m b e i n g p o s s i b l e as t h e romance i s n o t m a l l e a b l e and w i l l e i t h e r i t s e l f b r e a k o r cause t h e 37 J u l y 11, 1691, q u o t e d i n S p u r g e o n , op. c i t . , v o l . 1, p. 263. 38 /T695J7, i n S p i n g a r n , op. c i t . , v o l . 3, p . 238. 39 L o c . c i t . 40 L o c . c i t . - 4 8 -n e o - c l a s s i c a l t o o l s to b r e a k w h i l e t h e y are b e i n g u s e d to make i t c o n f o r m . A somewhat l a r g e p r o p o r t i o n of t h e v e r s e o f the l a t e r s e v e n t e e n t h c e n t u r y c a n be n o t e d n o t so much f o r i t s l i g h t -h e a r t e d r i b a l d r y ta;S;, f o r i t s d o w n r i g h t c r u d i t y and, i n the case of s a t i r e s , v i t u p e r a t i o n . ' The a t t a c k s on i n d i v i d u a l w r i t e r s and on s o c i a l c o n d i t i o n s and thought are r e m i -n i s c e n t o f the E l i z a b e t h a n p a m p h l e t e e r s . Other v e r s e , w r i t t e n by w r i t e r s s u c h as Denham and Oldham, a p p e a r e d o b v i o u s l y f o r the sake o f i t s o b s c e n i t y . I t would seem t h a t t h e r e were r e a d e r s f o r t h i s type of l i t e r a t u r e and i t i s c o n c e i v a b l e t h a t p o e t s who would o t h e r w i s e have been r e j e c t e d c o m p l e t e l y as • ' p o e t s ' , I f they had w r i t t e n on more c o n v e n t i o n a l s u b j e c t s , were p o p u l a r because t h e y v e r s i f i e d o b s c e n i t y . One such p o e t , j u s t m e n t i o n e d , who p r a c t i s e d v e r s i f i e d v u l g a r i t y was J o h n Oldham, who i s , however, more t o be remembered f o r h i s v i t r i o l i c s a t i r e s . H i s v u l g a r i t y , a l -though a t t imes a s t o n i s h i n g , i s m o s t l y redeemed by h i s c l e v e r p r e s e n t a t i o n . One o f h i s s a t i r e s w i t h the e x c e p t i o n a l l y l o n g t i t l e - "A S a t y r . The P e r s o n o f S p e n s e r i s b r o u g h t i n D i s s u a d i n g the A u t h o r from, the S t u d y o f P o e t r y , a n d shewing how l i t t l e I t i s e s t e e m ' d and e n c o u r a g ' d i n t h i s p r e s e n t Age" - i s i m p o r t a n t enough to w a r r a n t .a r a t h e r d e t a i l e d s t u d y . A l t h o u g h the poem i s n o t a c r i t i q u e , i t does r e v e a l two t h i n g s o f i m p o r t a n c e ; i n t h e f i r s t p l a c e , Oldham's i r r e v e r e n t h a n d l i n g o f S p e n s e r ; and i n the s e c o n d -49-p l a e e , h i s u s e o f S p e n s e r as a means t o p r e s e n t h i s own v i e w s a b o u t the c o n d i t i o n o f p o e t r y o f h i s own age. .The poem opens w i t h a d e s c r i p t i o n o f S p e n s e r ' s g h o s t : I n came a g h a s t l y Shape, a l l p a l e and t h i n , As some p o o r S i n n e r , who by P r i e s t had b e e n Under, a l o n g L e n t ' s P e n a n c e , s t a r v ' d and w h i p ' d , Or p a r b o i l ' d L e c h e r , l a t e f r o m H o t - h o u s e c r e p t : P a mish'd h i s L o o k s a p p e a r ' d , h i s E y e s sunk i n , . L i k e Morning-Gown a b o u t h i m hung h i s S k i n , A W r e a t h o f L a w r e l on h i s Head he wore, A Book, I n s c r i b ' d t h e F a i r y Queen, he b o r e . 4 1 S p e n s e r i s d i s i l l u s i o n e d b y t h e t r e a t m e n t he has h a d a t t h e hands o f P o e t r y and e x c l a i m s , Had I the c h o i c e o f F l e s h and B l o o d ' a g a i n , To a c t once more i n L i f e ' s t u m u l t u o u s S c e n e ; I ' d be a P o r t e r , o r a S c a v e n g e r , A Groom, o r any t h i n g , b u t P o e t h e r e : The r e a s o n f o r t h i s b i t t e r n e s s , he c o n t i n u e s , i s t h a t So many now, and b a d t h e S c r i b b l e r s b e , ' T i s s c a n d a l t o be o f t h e Company: ,The f o u l D i s e a s e I s so p r e v a i l i n g grown,• So much the F a s h i o n o f the C o u r t and Town, T h a t s c a r c e a man w e l l - b r e d i n e i t h e r ' s deemed; But who has k l l l ' d , b e e n o f t e n c l a p t , and o f t has r h i m ' d : 4 i S G r i m l y S p e n s e r t e l l s Oldham t o ...go, have t h y p o s t e d Name F i x ' d up w i t h B i l l s o f Quack, and p u b l i c k Sham; To be t h e s t o p o f g a p i n g P r e n t i s e s , And r e a d by r e e l i n g D r u n k a r d s , when t h e y p i s s ; Or e l s e t o be e x p o s ' d on t r a d i n g S t a l l , W h i l e t h e . b i l k ' d Owner h i r e s G a z z e t s t o t e l l , 'Mongst S p a n i e l i s l o s t , t h a t A u t h o r d o e s n o t s e l l . 4 4 and warns h i m t h a t 41 L o n d o n , M. H i n d m a r c h , 1698. I n c o h e r e n t p a g i n a t i o n . 42 I b i d . 45 I b i d . 44 I b i d . - 5 0 -. . . g r a n t thy Poetry should f i n d success, And (which i s rare) the squeamish G r i t i c k s please; Admit, i t read, and p r a i s ' d , and courted he By t h i s n i c e Age, and a l l P o s t e r i t y ; I f thou expectest ought hut empty Fame; Condemn thy Hopes, and Labours to the F l a m e : ^ The system of patronage i s a l s o censured by Spenser's ghost. He speaks 1 of . . . a gay wealthy Sot, who would not b a i l For bare f i v e Pounds the Author out of J a i l , Should he starve t h e r e , and r o t ; who i f a B r i e f Game out the needy Poets to r e l i e v e , To the whole t r i b e would scarce a Tester g i v e . But f i f t y Guinneas f o r a Whore and C l a p ! The p e e r ' s w e l l u s ' d , and comes o f f wond'rous cheap: A Poet would be dear, and out o' th* w a y . . . . ^ F i n a l l y , Spenser warns, "Be a l l but Poet, and t h e r e ' s way to live."''*''•' But seeing that Oldham i s not i n c l i n e d to take h i s advice he b i t t e r l y remarks - "Then s l i g h t e d by the very N u r s e r y , | M a y 1 s t thou at l a s t be forced to s t a r v e , l i k e me."^ 8 T h i s b r u t a l and v i v i d l y v u l g a r attack on the state of poetry makes Oldham's a t t r i b u t i n g of the attack to Spenser a l l the more remarkable, e s p e c i a l l y i n l i g h t of the f a c t that Spenser i s u s u a l i y considered to have been m i l d tempered (even when h i s I r i s h views are seen to r e f l e c t a f a c e t of h i s c h a r a c t e r ) . Alexander Pope, a l s o , showed a youthful d i s r e s p e c t f o r Spenser by using the F a e r i e Queene stanza form i n The A l l e y / 45 Oldham, op. c i t . 47 I b i d . 46 I b i d . 48 I b i d . t Joseph Warton fEssay on the Genius and W r i t i n g s of  Pope. London, Dodsley, 1782, pp. 92-100] deprecates t h i s i m i t a t i o n of Spenser whose " p e n c i l . . . i s as powerful as that of Rubens." -51 a poem w h i c h t e l l s a b o u t t h e o b s c e n i t i e s t h a t a r e t o be f o u n d i n the l o w a l l e y s o f a n a v e r a g e c i t y . ^ ^ B o t h f o r i t s c o n f u s e d i m a g e r y and i t s t h o u g h t , t h e f o l l o w i n g p a s s a g e f r o m Samuel C o b b 1 s P o e t a e B r i t a n n i c i i s i n t e r e s t i n g . Sunk I n t h e Sea o f I g n o r a n c e we l a y , T i l l C h a u c e r r o s e , and p o i n t e d o u t t h e Day, A j o k i n g B a r d , whose A n t i q u a t e d Muse I n mouldy Words c o u l d s o l i d S ense P r o d u c e . Our E n g l i s h E n n i u s . H e , who c l a i m ' d h i s p a r t I n w e a l t h y .Nature, t h o 1 u n s k i l l d i n A r t . The s p a r k l i n g Diamond on h i s D u n g - h i l l s h i n e s , And G o l d e n F r a g m e n t s g l i t t e r i n h i s L i n e s . W hich S p e n c e r g a t h e r ' d for" h i s L e a r n i n g known, And by s u c c e s s f u l G l e a n i n g s made h i s own. So c a r e f u l Bees on a f a i r Summer's Day, Hum o ' e r t h e F l o w e r s , and s u c k the sweets away. ®£ G l o r i a n a , and h e r K n i g h t s he s u n g , Of B e a s t s , w h i c h f r o m h i s p r e g n a n t F a n c y s p r u n g . 0 h a d t h y P o e t , B r i t a n y , r e l y / d ' On n a t i v e S t r e n g t h , and F o r e i g n A i d d e n y ' d i Had n o t w i l d F a i r i e s b l a s t e d h i s d e s i g n , ' . •Moeonide's and V i r g i l h ad b e e n T h i n e J T h e i r f i n i s h * d Poems he e x a c t l y v i e w ' d But C h a u c e r ' s s t e p s R e l i g i o u s l y p u r s u ' d . He c a l l ' d and p i c k ' d , and t h o u g h t i t g r e a t e r p r a i s e T ' a d o r e h i s M a s t e r , . t h a n i m p r o v e h i s P h r a s e . Twas c o u n t e d S i n to d e v i a t e f r o m h i s Page; So s a c r e d was t h ' A u t h o r i t y o f A g e J . The Coyn must s u r e f o r c u r r a n t S t e r l i n g p a s s Stamp'd w i t h oLd C h a u c e r ' s V e n e r a b l e F a c e . B u t J o h n s o n f o u n d i t o f a g r o s s A l l o y , M e l t e d i t down and f l u n g t h e Scum away. He dug p u r e S i l v e r f r o m a Roman Mine And p r e s t h i s ' S a c r e d Image on t h e C o y n . 5 0 I n h i s " D i s c o u r s e on P a s t o r a l , " p u b l i s h e d i n 1704, Pope makes a b l a z i n g a t t a c k on what he f e l t was S p e n s e r ' s m i s u s e o f t h i s f o r m . The e c l o g u e s , he f i n d s , a r e t o o l o n g , t o o a l l e g o r i c a l , and c o n t a i n t o o much w h i c h t r e a t s o f r e l i g i o n . 49 The Works o f A l e x a n d e r Pope, J . W i l s o n C r o k e r and Whitwe11 E l w i n , e d s . , Lo n d o n , J o h n M u r r a y , 1871, v o l . 4, pp. 425-428. T h i s poem was n o t p u b l i s h e d u n t i l 1727. 50 / c . 1 7 0 0 7 , i n S p u r g e o n , op. c i t . , v o l . 1, p p . 271-2. -52-The l y r i c measure a d o p t e d by S p e n s e r i s n o t , a c c o r d i n g t o Pope, i n t h e p a s t o r a l t r a d i t i o n . C o n c i s e n e s s , he s a y s , was f o r s a k e n b y S p e n s e r when he c h o s e h i s s t a n z a f o r m s : 51 S p e n s e r w o u l d have b e e n w i s e r h a d he c h o s e n the c o u p l e t . Cn the o t h e r hand, Pope d e c l a r e s t h a t ' i n manners, t h o u g h t s and c h a r a c t e r s , S p e n s e r a p p r o a c h e s T h e o c r i t u s i n e x c e l l e n c e . But i n d i a l e c t , S p e n s e r i s the i n f e r i o r o f the two:"... the o l d E n g l i s h and c o u n t r y p h r a s e s o f S p e n s e r , " Pope w r i t e s , were e i t h e r e n t i r e l y o b s o l e t e , o r s p o k e n o n l y b y p e o p l e o f t h e l o w e s t c o n d i t i o n . As t h e r e i s a d i f f e r e n c e b e t w i x t s i m p l i c i t y and r u s t i c i t y , so t h e e x p r e s s i o n o f s i m p l e t h o u g h t s s h o u l d be p l a i n , b u t n o t c l o w n i s h . 5 ^ F i n a l l y , Pope s a y s t h a t S p e n s e r ' s u s e o f c a l e n d a r months I s b r i l l i a n t , w i t h t h e r e s e r v a t i o n t h a t months do n o t a f f o r d s u f f i c i e n t c hanges t o make s u c c e s s i v e d e s c r i p t i o n s I n t e r e s t i n g and t h a t S p e n s e r was f o r c e d , t h e r e f o r e , to r e p e a t h i s d e s c r i p t i o n s o r , a t t i m e s , t o o m i t them a l t o g e t h e r . I n t h e y e a r 1709 Ambrose P h i l i p s w r i t e s t h a t t h e " t r u e n a t u r e " o f p a s t o r a l p o e t r y was h i t u p o n by T h e o c r i t u s , V i r -g i l , and S p e n s e r . V i r g i l and S p e n s e r , however, "...made use o f i t as a' p r e l u d e t o e p i c p o e t r y : b u t , I f e a r , t h e i n n o c e n c y o f t h e s u b j e c t makes i t so l i t t l e i n v i t i n g . " Matthew P r i o r , i n the same y e a r , makes a c o m p a r i s o n between H o r a c e and S p e n s e r u s i n g terms o f h i g h e s t p r a i s e , 51 Pope, op. c i t . , v o l . 1, pp. 262-263. 52 I b i d . , v o l . 1, p . 263. 53 " P r e f a c e " t o h i s P a s t o r a l s , i n C h a l m e r ' s P o e t s , v o l . 13, p . 107. -53-He w r i t e s , My two g r e a t e x a m p l e s , H o r a c e and S p e n s e r , i n many t h i n g s r e s e m b l e e a c h o t h e r : b o t h have a h e i g h t o f i m a g i n a t i o n , and a m a j e s t y o f e x p r e s s i o n i n d e s c r i b i n g the s u b l i m e ; and b o t h know to temper t h o s e t a l e n t s , and s w e e t e n t h e d e s c r i p t i o n , s o as t o make I t l o v e l y as w e l l a s pompous: b o t h have e q u a l l y t h a t a g r e e a b l e manner o f m i x i n g m o r a l i t y w i t h t h e i r s t o r y , and t h a t c u r i o s a f e l l c i t a s i n the c h o i c e o f t h e i r d i c t i o n , w h i c h e v e r y w r i t e r aims a t , and so v e r y few have r e a c h e d : b o t h a r e p a r t i c u l a r l y f i n e i n t h e i r i m a g e s , and kn o w i n g i n t h e i r numbers. L e a v i n g , t h e r e f o r e , o u r two m a s t e r s t o t h e c o n s i d e r a t i o n and s t u d y o f t h o s e who d e s i g n t o e x c e l i n p o e t r y . . . . 5 4 I n The T a t l e r o f J u l y 6, 1710, S i r R i c h a r d S t e e l e " T r a n s p r b s e d , " t o m o d i f y a t e r m he b o r r o w e d f r o m B a y e s , t h e T e n t h C a n t o o f Book IV o f t h e F a e r i e Queene f o r t h e b e n e f i t o f many E n g l i s h L o v e r s , who have, by f r e q u e n t l e t t e r s , d e s i r e d me t o l a y down some r u l e s f o r the c o n d u c t o f t h e i r v i r t u o u s amours..."55 A t t h e end o f the " t r a n s -p r o s e d " v e r s i o n S t e e l e w r i t e s , T h i s a l l e g o r y i s so n a t u r a l , t h a t i t ex-p l a i n s i t s e l f . The p e r s o n s i n i t a r e v e r y a r t f u l l y d e s c r i b e d , and d i s p o s e d i n p r o p e r p l a c e s . The p o s t s a s s i g n e d t o Do u b t , D e l a y , and D a n g e r , a r e a d m i r a b l e . The g a t e o f Good D e s e r t has s o m e t h i n g n o b l e a n d i n s t r u c t i v e i n i t . B u t above a l l I am most p l e a s e d w i t h t h e , b e a u t i f u l g r o u p o f f i g u r e s i n the c o r n e r o f t h e . t e m p l e . Among t h e s e , Womanhood i s drawn l i k e what t h e p h i l o s o p h e r s c a l l a n U n i v e r s a l N a t u r e , and i s a t t e n d e d w i t h b e a u t i f u l r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s o f a l l t h o s e v i r t u e s t h a t a r e t h e o r n a m e n t s o f t h e f e m a l e s e x , c o n s i d e r e d i n i t s n a t u r a l p e r f e c t i o n and i n n o c e n c e . 5 6 54 /17097, " P r e f a c e " t o "An O d e . . . . w r i t t e n i n I m i t a t i o n o f S p e n s e r ' s S t i l e , " i n C h a l m e r ' s P o e t s , v o l . 10, p . 178. See a l s o s e c o n d s t a n z a o f the Ode f o r p r a i s e o f S p e n s e r . 55 No. 194, i n The B r i t i s h E s s a y i s t s , R o b t . Lynam and o t h e r s , e d s . , London, J . F . Dove, 1827, v o l . 5, p. 138. 56 I b i d . , p . 142. -54-No s i g n o f t h e n e o - c l a s s i c a l r e l i a n c e upon t h e " r u l e s " can be d e t e c t e d i n t h e s e words o f S t e e l e . I n d e e d , t h e y show s i g n s o f t h e r o m a n t i c i s m t h a t was a l r e a d y becoming e v i d e n t i n t h e l i t e r a t u r e o f E n g l a n d . Two y e a r s l a t e r S t e e l e a g a i n u s e d t h e F a e r i e Queene as t h e s u b j e c t f o r an a r t i c l e , t h i s t i m e i n t h e S p e c t a t o r . He says t h a t by u s i n g f a i r y - l a n d t h e k n i g h t s - e r r a n t a r e g i v e n a f u l l scope w h i c h t h e y c o u l d n o t have i n t h e r e a l w o r l d 57 w i t h o u t becoming i n c r e d i b l e . Of S p e n s e r ' s s t y l e , S t e e l e r e p o r t s t h a t i t i s " . . . v e r y p o e t i c a l ; no p u n s , a f f e c t a t i o n s o f w i t , f o r c e d a n t i t h e s i s , o r any o f t h a t low t r i b e . " 5 8 And he u p h o l d s S p e n s e r ' s use o f a r c h a i c l a n g u a g e -H i s o l d words a r e a l l t r u e E n g l i s h , and numbers, e x q u i s i t e ; and s i n c e o f words t h e r e i s t h e m u l ta  r e n a s c e n t u r . s i n c e t h e y a r e a l l p r o p e r , s u c h a poem s h o u l d n o t (any more t h a n M i l t o n ' s ) s u b s i s t a l l o f i t o f common o r d i n a r y words.59 S t e e l e i s u n d o u b t e d l y t h e f o r e r u n n e r o f a new c r i t i c a l a p p r o a c h to Spenser.59a Y e t t h e r e was s t i l l one g r e a t n e o -c l a s s i c a l c r i t i c t o be h e a r d f r o m - Samuel J o h n s o n , B u t b e f o r e we t u r n t o h i m , and t h u s b r i n g t h i s c h a p t e r to a c l o s e , we s h o u l d , i n p a s s i n g , m e n t i o n J o h n Gay. I n 1714t Gay, i n "The Proeme to t h e C o u r t e o u s R e a d e r " w h i c h p r e f a c e d h i s S h e p h e r d ' s Week, s t a t e d t h a t he was t h e f i r s t E n g l i s h p o e t t o w r i t e e c l o g u e s i n t h e s t y l e o f 57 N o . 54©, N o v . 1 9 , 1712, L o n d o n , B e r w i c k , 1807, v o l . 7. p . 265. 58 I b i d . , p . 266. 59 L o c . c i t . . 59a E x c e p t f o r a few p a s s i n g r e f e r e n c e s , S t e e l e ' s c o l -l e a g u e . A d d i s o n d i d n o t t r e a t o f S p e n s e r i n t h e S p e c t a t o r . -55-T h e o c r i t u s n o t w i t h s t a n d i n g t h e f a c t t h a t i n some ways he u s e d S p e n s e r as a m o d e l . Of S p e n s e r ' s work he s a y s , Y e t h a t h h i s shepherd's hoy a t some t i m e s r a i s e d h i s r u s t i c n e e d t o rhymes more r u m b l i n g t h a n r u r a l . D i v e r s e g r a v e p o i n t s a l s o h a t h he h a n d l e d o f c h u r c h l y m a t t e r , and d o u b t s i n r e l i g i o n d a i l y a r i s i n g , t o g r e a t c l e r k s o n l y a p p e r t a i n i n g . What' l i k e t h me b e s t a r e h i s names, i n d e e d r i g h t s i m p l e and meet f o r t h e c o u n t r y , s u c h as L o b b i n , Cuddy, H o b b i n o l , D i g g e n , and o t h e r s , some o f w h i c h I have made b o l d t o b o r r o w . M o r e o v e r , as he c a l l e d h i s e c l o g u e s , t h e S h e p h e r d ' s C a l e n d a r , and d i v i d e d t h e same i n t o t w e l v e months, I have c h o s e n ( p e r a d v e n t u r e n o t o v e r - r a s h l y ) t o name mine by t h e d a ys o f t h e week, o m i t t i n g Sunday o r t h e S a b b a t h , o u r s b e i n g s u p p o s e d t o be C h r i s t i a n s h e p h e r d s , and t o be t h e n a t c h u r c h - w o r s h i p . Y e t f u r t h e r o f many o f m a i s t e r S p e n s e r ' s e c l o g u e s i t may be o b s e r v e d ; t h o u g h months t h e y be c a l l e d , o f the s a i d months t h e r e i n n o t h i n g i s s p e c i f i e d ; w h e r e i n I have a l s o e s t e e m e d him w o r t h y mine i m i t a t i o n . ^ 0 T h i s l a s t s t a t e m e n t s h o u l d be compared w i t h t h a t o f Pope-*^ D r . J o h n s o n , sometimes r e f e r r e d t o as t h e l a s t o f t h e n e o - c l a s s i c i s t s , b a r e l y t o u c h e d upon S p e n s e r , and y e t what he h a s s a i d , and has s a i d e m p h a t i c a l l y , we c a n c o n s i d e r as a p e r o r a t i o n t o S p e n s e r c r i t i c i s m i n t h e age we have h a d u n d e r s t u d y . I n h i s a r t i c l e "The D a n g e r s o f I m i t a t i o n " . w h i c h a p p e a r e d i n The R a m b l e r i n 1751, he w r o t e , To I m i t a t e the f i c t i o n s and s e n t i m e n t s o f S p e n s e r c a n i n c u r no r e p r o a c h , f o r a l l e g o r y i s p e r h a p s one t h e most p l e a s i n g v e h i c l e s o f i n -s t r u c t i o n . B u t I am v e r y f a r f r o m e x t e n d i n g t h e same r e s p e c t t o h i s d i c t i o n o r h i s s t a n z a . H i s s t y l e was I n h i s own t i m e a l l o w e d t o be v i c i o u s . . . d a r k e n e d w i t h o l d words and p e c u l i -a r i t i e s o f p h r a s e , a nd...remote f r o m c ommon u s e . . . , H i s s t a n z a i s a t once d i f f i c u l t and u n p l e a s i n g ; t i r e s o m e t o t h e e a r by i t s u n i f o r m i t y , and t o t h e a t t e n t i o n by i t s l e n g t h . I t was a t f i r s t f o r m e d 60 I n C h a l m e r ' s P o e t s , v o l . 10, p . 444. -56-i n I m i t a t i o n o f the I t a l i a n p o e t s , w i t h o u t due r e g a r d t o t h e g e n i u s o f our l a n g u a g e . The I t a l i a n s have l i t t l e v a r i e t y o f t e r m i n a t i o n , and were f o r c e d t o c o n t r i v e s u c h a s t a n z a as m i g h t a d m i t th e g r e a t e s t number o f s i m i l a r rhymes; b u t o u r words end with- no s u c h d i -v e r s i t y , t h a t i t i s s e l d o m c o n v e n i e n t f o r u s t o b r i n g more t h a n two•of th e same sound t o - . g e t h e r . I f i t be j u s t l y o b s e r v e d by M i l t o n , t h a t a rhyme o b l i g e s t h e p o e t s to e x p r e s s t h e i r t h o u g h t s i n i m p r o p e r t e r m s , t h e s e i m p r o p r i e t i e s must a l w a y s be m u l t i p l i e d , as t h e d i f f i c u l t y o f rhyme i s i n c r e a s e d by l o n g c o n c a t e n a t i o n s . 1 He then, c o n t i n u e d , P e r h a p s , however, the s t y l e o f S p e n c e r m i g h t by l o n g l a b o u r be j u s t l y c o p i e d ; b u t li£e i s s u r e l y g i v e n us f o r h i g h e r p u r p o s e s t h a n t o g a t h e r what o u r a n c e s t o r s have w i s e l y t h r o w n away and t o l e a r n what i s o f n o r v a l u e , b u t b e c a u s e i t has b e e n f o r g o t t e n . g 2 The h u n d r e d y e a r s s u r v e y e d i n t h i s c h a p t e r have r e v e a l e d many c r i t i c a l d i f f e r e n c e s . A t the, b e g i n n i n g o f the p e r i o d we c a n n o t e t h e c h a n g e - o v e r f r o m t h e E l i z a b e t h e n s p o n t a n e i t y -w h i c h s u r v i v e d i n the R e s t o r a t i o n - to t h e r a t i o n a l i s m o f t h e n e o - c l a s s i c a l p e r i o d ; and a t t h e end we have S t e e l e h e r a l d i n g t h e p r a i s e o f t h e p r e - r o m a n t i c s . D u r i n g t h i s h u n d r e d y e a r s , a l s o , we f i n d a c e r t a i n l i g h t n e s s c r e e p i n g i n t o t h e v e r s e a l l u s i o n s t o S p e n s e r , and, s o o n a f t e r w a r d s , a n o t e o f o b s c e n i t y r e p l a c i n g t h e l i g h t n e s s . I n t h i s p e r i o d , a g r e a t e r i n t e r e s t i n b i o g r a p h y w h i c h , a l t h o u g h t h e d e t a i l s p r e s e n t e d a r e o f t e n f a r f r o m f a c t u a l , I l l u s t r a t e s the i n t e r e s t i n p o e t s as men as w e l l as a r t i s t s . I n t h e y e a r s i m m e d i a t e l y f o l l o w i n g 1650 t h e r e i s a 61 I n The B r i t i s h E s s a y i s t s , v o l . I o , p . 96. 62 I b i d . , p. 97. -57-d i s t i n c t t r e n d of l o o k i n g backwards at the great age t h a t had gone before and of attempting to put the mass of E l i z a b e t h a n w r i t e r s i n t o some ord e r . W r i t e r s at t h i s e a r l y stage, however, do not reach d e f i n i t e c o n c l u s i o n s ; they r a t h e r r e v e a l a f e a r t h a t they are not yet f a r enough removed from t h e i r s u b j e c t to d e a l p r o p e r l y w i t h I t . There i s a tendency i n some o f these w r i t e r s to laugh o f f the g r e a t age as i f , by t h e i r l a u g h i n g , they are showing t h e i r s u p e r i o r i t y over t h e i r i l l u s t r i o u s p r e d e c e s s o r s . Others . l i k e to corroborate t h e i r statements w i t h i l l u s t r a t i o n s o f ! s i m i l a r t h i ngs s a i d by t h e i r p r e d e c e s s o r s . C r i t i c i s m i s as y e t i n i t s i n f a n c y and w i l l not show sign s of m a t u r i t y u n t i l the advent of Rymer and, more e s p e c i a l l y , of Dryden. Biography Is i n i t s i n f a n c y a l s o . I t Is not biography as we know i t today. I t c o n s i s t s , u s u a l l y , of b r i e f , j o t t i n g s concerning a w r i t e r ; a few dates; b i r t h . a n d death peaces; one or two anecdotes of a f i c t i o n a l r a t h e r than f a c t u a l nature; and, sometimes, a t h i n l y c r i t i c a l note about the w r i t e r ' s works. As a c l a s s , these works are r a t h e r i n t e r e s t i n g , because o f t h e i r r e v e l a t i o n of what readers wanted to know, than important. Notwithstanding t h e i r -i n a c c u r a c i e s , they i l l u s t r a t e the temper of the time i n which they were w r i t t e n . When we come to Rymer and Dryden we a t once r e a l i z e £hat we have found men who approach c r i t i c i s m as more than a secondary o c c u p a t i o n . We a l s o r e a l i z e t h a t we have met the r i s i n g t i d e of n e o - c l a s s i c i s m with i t s emphasis upon - 5 8 -t h e r u l e s and o t h e r c o n v e n t i o n s a n d demands. D u r i n g t h i s h u n d r e d - y e a r p e r i o d t h e r e a r e e v e r - i n c r e a s i n g a t t a c k s made on S p e n s e r ' s u s e o f l a n g u a g e , h i s s u b j e c t m a t t e r , and h i s s t a n z a f o r m . A f o u r t h r e a s o n f o r c e n s u r e i s r a i s e d by Pope, P h i l i p s and G-ay; S p e n s e r ' s u s e o f the p a s t o r a l . F i r s t , i n t h e a t t a c k on S p e n s e r ' s u s e o f l a n g u a g e , F u l l e r r e m arks t h a t t h e F a e r i e Queene would have b e e n more s a l e a b l e h a d i t c o n f o r m e d t o modern E n g l i s h . C u l p e p p e r ' s v i e w i s t h a t l a n g u a g e , l i k e d r e s s , i s a l w a y s c h a n g i n g and t h a t a w r i t e r s h o u l d k e e p up t o d a t e . S p e n s e r ' s l a n g u a g e , a c c o r d i n g t o D r y d e n , i s o n l y a m i n o r f a u l t b e c a u s e i t d o e s n o t make h i s w r i t i n g s u n i n t e l l i g i b l e . The o p i n i o n o f A t t e r b u r y i s q u i t e t h e o p p o s i t e t o t h a t o f D r y d e n . A t t e r b u r y s a y s t h a t b e f o r e a r e a d e r c a n u n d e r s t a n d S p e n s e r ' s t r u e m e aning he has t o c o n s u l t an a n t i q u a r y . The l a s t o f t h e s e c r i t i c s t o c e n s u r e S p e n s e r ' s l a n g u a g e i s D r . J o h n s o n who f i n d s i t "remote f r o m common u s e . " A d i f f e r e n t g r o u p o f c r i t i c s - w h i c h i n c l u d e s D r y d e n , however - f i n d s f a u l t w i t h S p e n s e r ' s c h o i c e and h a n d l i n g o f s u b j e c t m a t t e r . Rymer s t a t e s f o r c e f u l l y t h a t S p e n s e r d i d n o t have "a t r u e i d e a . " D r y d e n s t u d i e d t h e m a t t e r a t g r e a t e r l e n g t h and f o u n d t h a t t h e r e was no u n i f o r m i t y o f d e s i g n , no s i n g l e a c t i o n , and no o b e d i e n c e t o t h e r u l e s i n the F a e r i e Queene. Temple c l a i m e d t h a t C h r i s t i a n i t y was h o t a s s u i t a b l e t o p o e t r y as pagan r e l i g i o n , and as a r e s u l t o f S p e n s e r ' s u s i n g i t t h e F a e r i e Queene had a p o o r d e s i g n and a " b a r e " m o r a l . Backmore a t t a c k e d S p e n s e r ' s - 5 9 -a l l e g o r y b e c a u s e i t d i d n o t f o l l o w t h e " s o b e r " r u l e s . Gay f o u n d t h e r e l i g i o u s m a t t e r i n t h e S h e p h e a r d e s C a l e n d e r t o be r e p r e h e n s i b l e . J o h n s o n , c o n t r a r y t o what one m i g h t e x p e c t , t h o u g h t t h a t S p e n s e r ' s f i c t i o n s , s e n t i m e n t s , and. a l l e g o r y were w o r t h y o f I m i t a t i o n . The t h i r d s e t o f c o m p l a i n t s were l e v e l l e d a g a i n s t S p e n s e r ' s s t a n z a f o r m s , p a r t i c u l a r l y a g a i n s t t h e S p e n s e r i a n .-.stanza. B o t h Rymer and J o h n s o n a t t a c k e d the S p e n s e r i a n s t a n z a b e c a u s e i t had b e e n a d a p t e d f r o m the I t a l i a n and was t h e r e f o r e u n s u i t a b l e t o E n g l i s h . ( I n t r u t h , the S p e n s e r i a n s t a n z a was more p r o b a b l y d e v e l o p e d f r o m C h a u c e r ) . D r y d e n j u d g e d S p e n s e r ' s m i l c h o i c e o f s t a n z a t o b e , l i k e h i s c h o i c e o f l a n g u a g e , o n l y a m i n o r f a , u l t . I n the Soame-Dryden t r a n s -l a t i o n o f B o i l e a u ' s A r t o f P o e t r y , however, S p e n s e r I s g i v e n c r e d i t f o r m a k i n g h i s s t a n z a f o r m c o n f o r m t o t h e r u l e s . The a t t a c k on S p e n s e r ' s u s e .of- t h e p a s t o r a l was made b y Pope, Gay, and l e s s s t r o n g l y b y P h i l i p s . Pope f o u n d v e r y l i t t l e t o p r a i s e - i n S p e n s e r ' s h a n d l i n g o f t h e form.'. He c e n s u r e d t h e e c l o g u e s o f S p e n s e r f o r t h e i r l e n g t h , c o n t e n t , l y r i c i s m , and s t a n z a f o r m s . He a d v i s e d t h e u s e o f the c o u p l e t . Gay, a f t e r i m i t a t i n g S p e n s e r ' s S h a p h e a r d e s C a l e n d e r i n h i s The S h e p h e r d ' s Week, s t a t e d u n a b a s h e d l y i n h i s "proem" t h a t he h i m s e l f was the f i r s t E n g l i s h w r i t e r t o w r i t e p a s t o r a l s i n t h e s t y l e o f T h e o c r i t u s . I n g e n e r a l i t c a n be s e e n , t h e n , t h a t S p e n s e r ' s popu-l a r i t y was a t a low-ebb d u r i n g t h e n e o - c l a s s i c a l p e r i o d , a p e r i o d i n w h i c h h i s works were m e a s u r e d by t h e r u l e s . -60-With S t e e l e , however, came a f o r e t a s t e of the u n q u a l i f i e d p r a i s e which the pre-romantics and the romantics were to l a v i s h on Spenser. We t u r n , t h e r e f o r e , w i t h some a n t i c i p a t i o n to those e a r l y pre-romantics, Warton and Hurd. Yet i t was Addison who, i n h i s verse l e t t e r to Henry S a c h e v e r a l l , spoke f o r a l l the n e o - c l a s s i e i s t s -Old Spenser next, warmed w i t h p o e t i c rage, In a n c i e n t t a l e s amused a barbarous age; An age t h a t y e t u n c u l t i v a t e and rude, where'er the poets' f a n c y l e d , pursued Through p a t h l e s s f i e l d s , and unfrequented f l o o d s , To dens of dragons and enchanted woods. But now the mystic t a l e , t h a t p l e a s e d no more; The long-spun a l l e g o r i e s fulsome grow, While the d u l l moral l i e s tod p l a i n below. We view w e l l - p l e a s e d a t d i s t a n c e a l l the s i g h t s Of arms and p a l f r e y s , b a t t l e s , f i e l d s , and f i g h t s , And damsels i n d i s t r e s s , and courteous k n i g h t s ; But when we l o o k too near, the shades decay. And a l l the p l e a s i n g landscape fades away." 63 "An Account of the G r e a t e s t E n g l i s h P o e t s , " [1694], The Works of Joseph Addison. R. Hurd, ed., London, G. B e l l , v o l . I , p. 23. - 6 1 -. .-CHAPTER FOUR. . . THE PRE-ROMANTICS' .With t h e p u b l i c a t i o n o f Thomas War-ton's O b s e r v a t i o n s  on t h e F a i r y Queen o f . S p e n s e r i n 1754 and R i c h a r d K u r d ' s L e t t e r s on C h i v a l r y and Romance i n 1762 a new a p p r o a c h t o S p e n s e r and a new t r e n d i n c r i t i c i s m was g i v e n t o t h e w o r l d . T h e i r work i s o f extreme i m p o r t a n c e and, w h e t h e r o r n o t we a g r e e w i t h e v e r y t h i n g t h e y have t o s a y , we must a c k n o w l e d g e i t s g r e a t v a l u e n o t o n l y t o S p e n s e r i a n c r i t i -c i s m but a l s o t o c r i t i c i s m i n g e n e r a l . Coming a t a t i m e when the s u p r e m a c y o f n e o - c l a s s i c a l r u l e s was f i r s t b e i n g q u e s t i o n e d , t h e y a r e t h e g r e a t e s t o f the p r e - r o m a n t i c . c r i t i c f o r none t h a t c a m e j a f t e r them, u n t i l t h e r o m a n t i c s t h e m s e l v e s a d d e d more t o the new c r i t i c a l i m p u l s e . I t i s w i t h W a r t o h t h a t we can b e s t see t h i s c r i t i c a l c h a n g e - o v e r f r o m n e o - c l a s s i c i s m t o r o m a n t i c i s m f o r he i s , a t one and t h e same t i m e , a n e o - c l a s s i c i s t ' a n d • a p r e - r o m a n t i c . Hurd,- on the o t h e r hand, i s p u r e l y p r e - r o m a n t i c - w i t h , p e r h a p s , a t o u c h o f s o m e t h i n g t h a t makes him more modern s t i l l . He was, however, n o t a d v e r s e , w h i l e s l a s h i n g away a t t h e ' c r i t i c i s m by t h e r u l e s and demanding t h a t t h e F a e r i e  Queene be s t u d i e d f o r what i t was, f r o m s e t t i n g up a n o t h e r -62-c r i t i c a l method t h a t t o some e x t e n t was b a s e d on new r u l e s . The l o q u a c i o u s and d i g r e s s i o n - l o v i n g W a r t o n s u r v e y e d t h e d e v e l o p m e n t o f l i t e r a t u r e and was s u r p r i s e d t o f i n d t h a t when t h e works of- Homer and A r i s t o t l e were r e s t o r e d ' t o s t u d y i n I t a l y and when p o e t r y was r e l e a s e d f r o m t h e t o i l s o f G o t h i c (meaning m e d i e v a l ) i g n o r a n c e and b a r b a r i t y , i n s t e a d o f a new t a s t e i n w r i t i n g d e v e l o p i n g , t h e r o m a n t i c manner, o f w r i t i n g ' b e c a m e e s t a b l i s h e d . " Warton f o u n d t h a t t h e r e s t o r a t i o n o f a n c i e n t l e a r n i n g d i d n o t e v e n show any r e s u l t s b y i m p r o v i n g c r i t i c i s m . -.Warton, h e r e , I s s p e a k i n g as a n e o - c l a s s i c i s t . S p e n s e r ' s F a e r i e Queene s p r a n g f r o m t h i s s o i l and, t o W a r t o n , i t was a n u n f o r t u n a t e g r o w t h . He s a y s t h a t S p e n s e r ' s g r e a t e r r o r , was i n f o l l o w i n g A r i o s t o and n o t T a s s o who had more " c o n d u c t and d e c o r u m " 1 - w h i c h sounds a n o t h e r n e o - c l a s s i c a l n o t e . T h e r e i s s t i l l more t o be s e e n o f W a r t o n as a neo-c l a s s i c i s t . He f i n d s i n t h e F a e r i e - Queene u n i t y o f h e r o '• . ( P r i n c e Arthur.) and u n i t y o f d e s i g n b u t c a n n o t f i n d any u n i t y , o f a c t i o n . T h u s , he r e a s o n s , the v a r i o u s a d v e n t u r e s w h i c h c o n s t i t u t e t h e v a r i o u s b o o k s do n o t make up'one l e g i t i m a t e poem. As t h e h e r o i c poem i s r e q u i r e d t o be one w h o l e , compounded o f many v a r i o u s p a r t s , r e l a t i v e and d e p e n d e n t , i t i s e x p e d i e n t t h a t n o t one o f t h o s e p a r t s s h o u l d be so r e g u l a r l y c o n t r i v e d , and so c o m p l e t e l y f i n i s h e d , as t o become a whole o f i t s e l f . F o r t h e mind once s a t i s f i e d i n a r r i v i n g a t t h e consummation o f a n o r d e r l y s e r i e s o f e v e n t s , , a c q u i e s c e s I n t h a t s a t i s f a c t i o n . 2 1 Thomas W a r t o n , O b s e r v a t i o n s on t h e F a i r y Queene o f  S p e n s e r , L o n d o n , R. D u t t o n , 1807, v o l . . 1, p. 5. 2 I b i d . , v o l . 1, p. 12. -63-I t w o u l d have b e e n b e t t e r , he b e l i e v e s , . i f S p e n s e r h a d made e a c h b o o k a s e p a r a t e poem o f t w e l v e c a n t o s i n s t e a d o f t r y i n g t o c o r r e l a t e them. "The p o e t m i g h t , " he w r i t e s , " e i t h e r have e s t a b l i s h e d t w e l v e K n i g h t s w i t h o u t a n A r t h u r , o r an A r t h u r w i t h o u t t w e l v e K n i g h t s . " 3 As i t i s , A r t h u r ' s p o s i t i o n , a c c o r d i n g t o W a r t o n , i s n o t a v e r y c a p t i -v a t i n g one b e c a u s e h i s a c t i v i t y o f o n l y a s s i s t i n g i n t h e v a r i o u s a d v e n t u r e s does n o t j u s t i f y h i s r e w a r d o f g a i n i n g G l o r i a n a i n t h e end. So f a r we have s e e n o n l y one s i d e o f W a rton: t h e one w h i c h demands t a s t e , decorum, u n i t y and o t h e r n e o - c l a s s i c a l c r i t e r i a . . But t h e r e i s t h e o t h e r ' s i d e w h i c h he r e v e a l s t o us s u d d e n l y and w i t h o u t w a r n i n g , and i s t h e most i m p o r t a n t s i d e o f h i s c r i t i c a l a p p r o a c h . He w r i t e s , B u t i t i s a b s u r d t o t h i n k o f j u d g i n g e i t h e r A r i o s t o o r S p e n s e r b y p r e c e p t s w h i c h t h e y d i d n o t a t t e n d t o . We who l i v e i n t h e d a y s o f w r i t i n g b y r u l e , a r e a p t t o t r y e v e r y compo-s i t i o n by t h o s e la.ws w h i c h we have b e e n t a u g h t t o t h i n k - t h e s o l e " c r i t e r i o n o f e x c e l l e n c e . C r i t i c a l t a s t e i s u n i v e r s a l l y d i f f u s e d , and we r e q u i r e t h e same o r d e r and d e s i g n w h i c h e v e r y modern p e r f o r m a n c e i s e x p e c t e d to h a v e , i n poems where t h e y n e v e r were r e q u i r e d o r i n t e n d e d . S p e n s e r , and t h e same may be s a i d o f A r i o s t o , d i d n o t l i v e i n an age o f p l a n n i n g . H i s p o e t r y i s t h e c a r e l e s s e x u b e r a n c e o f a warm i m a g i n a t i o n and a s t r o n g s e n s i b i l i t y . I t was h i s b u s i n e s s t o engage the . f a n c y , and t o i n -t e r e s t t h e a t t e n t i o n by b o l d , and s t r i k i n g i m a g e s , i n t h e f o r m a t i o n , and t h e d i s p o s i t i o n o f w h i c h , l i t t l e l a b o u r o r a r t was a p p l i e d . The v a r i o u s and t h e m a r v e l l o u s were t h e c h i e f s o u r c e s o f d e l i g h t . Hence we f i n d one a u t h o r ' r a n s a c k i n g a l i k e t h e r e g i o n s o f r e a l i t y and 3 W arton, op. c i t . , v o l . 1, p . 14. -64-romance, o f t r u t h and f i c t i o n , t o f i n d the•• , . p r o p e r d e c o r a t i o n s and f u r n i t u r e f o r h i s f a i r y S t r u c t u r e . B o r n i n s u c h a n a g e , S p e n s e r wrote-r a p i d l y f r o m h i s own f e e l i n g s , w h i c h a t t h e . same time were n a t u r a l l y n o b l e . 4 T h i s i s , i n d e e d , a new a p p r o a c h when v i e w e d i n l i g h t o f - "• p r e v i o u s n e o - c l a s s i c a l c r i t i c i s m . We n eed n o t a g r e e w i t h • a l l W a r ton s a y s , f o r example, when he s p e a k s o f " l i t t l e . l a b o u r o r a r t " b e i n g a p p l i e d , ' b u t we must a d m i t t h a t he i s d o i n g more t h a n i n s e r t i n g t h e t h i n edge o f a p r e - r o m a n t i c '.-.' wedge i n t o n e o - c l a s s i c a l c r i t i c i s m - I n f a c t , the p a s s a g e . d e t o n a t e s w i t h a f a r - r e a c h i n g e x p l o s i o n . •• I f the. r e a d e r o f W a r t o n was . s u r p r i s e d , a f t e r r e a d i n g t h e i n t r o d u c t o r y , pages, o f the O b s e r v a t i o n s ' , b y t h a t p a s s a g e , he was more s u r p r i s e d s t i l l when he r e a d -I f t h e F a i r y Queen.be d e s t i t u t e o f t h a t a r r a n g e m e n t and oeconomy w h i c h e p i c s e v e r i t y ; r e q u i r e d , y e t we s c a r c e l y r e g r e t t h e l o s s , o f t h e s e , w h i l e t h e i r p l a c e i s so amply s u p p l i e d b y s o m e t h i n g w h i c h more p o w e r f u l l y a t t r a c t s u s ; s o m e t h i n g w h i c h engages t h e a f f e c t i o n s , t h e f e e l i n g s o f t h e h e a r t , r a t h e r t h a n t h e c o l d a p p r o b a t i o n o f t h e h e a d . I f t h e r e be any poem whose g r a c e s p l e a s e , b e c a u s e t h e y a r e s i t u a t e d b e y o n d t h e r e a c h o f a r t , and [ where t h e f o r c e and f a c u l t i e s o f c r e a t i v e i m a g i n a t i o n d e l i g h t , b e c a u s e t h e y a r e u n a s -• - s i s t e d and u n r e s t r a i n e d by t h o s e o f d e l i b e r a t e , judgment, i t i s t h i s . ' 'In r e a d i n g S p e n s e r , ' " - i f t h e c r i t i c i s n o t s a t i s f i e d , y e t t h e r e a d e r ' . ,' . i s t r a n s p o r t e d . 5 ' T h i s , t h e n , i s Wart on'.'s a p p r o a c h : . t r y , to c r i t i c i z e t h e poem' f o r w h a t ' i t . i s . He i s n o t t h r o w i n g away h i s b e l i e f i n t h e r u l e s o f - n e o - c l a s s i c i s m b u t i s , r a t h e r , p u t t i n g i t a s i d e i n 4 W a r t o n , op. c i t . , v o l . 1, pp.. 21-22. 5 I b i d . , v o l / 2, pp. 25-24 I -65-o r d e r t o a p p r o a c h a poem t h a t was n o t w r i t t e n u n d e r t h e i n f l u e n c e o f t h e r u l e s . The r e m a i n d e r o f t h e O b s e r v a t i o n s , f o r ' the most p a r t , i s a t e x t u a l s t u d y and a d e t a i l e d a n a l y s i s o f s u c h t o p i c s as and S p e n s e r ' s ' . i m i t a t i o n s o f C h a u c e r and o f A r i o s ' t o , A the- l i k e w i t h many d i g r e s s i o n s t o s t u d y s c a r c e l y a l l i e d s u b j e c t s c o n -n e c t e d w i t h , f o r example, C h a u c e r , M i l t o n , m y t h o l o g y and c h i v a l r y . A number o f h i s s c a t t e r e d , o b s e r v a t i o n s , however, a r e i m p o r t a n t enough f o r f u r t h e r s t u d y . A c c o r d i n g t o W a r t o n , S p e n s e r ' s d e v e l o p m e n t o f t h e S p e n s e r i a n s t a n z a was n o t b a s e d on C h a u c e r ' s o t t a v a r i m a but'- r a t h e r on t h e e i g h t - l i n e s t a n z a f o r m u s e d b y b o t h A r i o s t o a n d T a s s o . H i s c o n j e c t u r e on t h i s p r o b l e m seems t o a r i s e f r o m t h e f a c t , he s a y s , t h a t S p e n s e r a t t e m p t e d t o f o l l o w t h e I t a l i a n s i n t h e i r r i m e scheme. W a r t o n f i n d s t h a t t h i s new s t a n z a f o r m l e a d s t o t h r e e m a i n d i f f i c u l t i e s : i t f o r c e s S p e n s e r t o d i l a t e h i s t h o u g h t b y means o f many c i r c u m l o c u t i o n s ; i t l e a d s t o r e d u n d a n c y a n d r e p e t i t i o n o f words;' and i t e n c o u r a g e s t h e u s e , a t t i m e s , o f "words and images t h a t a r e s l i g h t l y i m p r o p e r " t o f i l l - o u t t h e l i n e s . D e s p i t e , t h e s e i m p e r f e c t i o n s , W a rton d i s c o v e r s t h a t t h e s t a n z a h a s t h e h o n o u r o f b e i n g r e s p o n s i b l e , b e c a u s e of, i t s p r o l i x i t y , f o r S p e n s e r ' s m a g n i f i c e n t d e s c r i p t i o n s . The s t r i g e n c y o f the r i m e p a t t e r n a l s o f o r c e s S p e n s e r t o . u s e c e r t a i n i n n o v a t i o n s i n s p e l l i n g s u c h a s . t h e . 6 W a r t o n , gp. c i t . , v o l . 1, pp. 157-158. -66-u s e o f denay f o r deny. B u t n o t a l l t h e s e c h a n g e s , W a r t o n p o i n t s o u t , were made b e c a u s e o f t h e r i m e . S p e n s e r a p p e a r s , a t t i m e s , and the p o i n t i s i n t e r e s t i n g , t o have a l t e r e d the s p e l l i n g o f c e r t a i n words f o r eye a p p e a l o n l y . Thus i t i s t h a t S p e n s e r i n o r d e r t o r i m e b i t e w i t h d e l i g h t s p e l l e d i t b i g h t . We s h o u l d , however, e x e r c i s e some c a r e b e f o r e we a c c e p t W a r ton's t h e s i s f o r , i t must be remembered, s p e l l i n g a t S p e n s e r ' s t i m e had n o t y e t j e l l e d i n t o t h e s e t f o r m s we have t o d a y , a n d , i n d e e d , t h e s e v a r i a t i o n s w h i c h W a r t o n c i t e s were commonly u s e d i n S p e n s e r ' s t i m e . W arton e x p r e s s e s s u r p r i s e t h a t a poem so r e s t r i c t e d b y s t a n z a and rim e s h o u l d r e v e a l s o much " s p i r i t and e a s e . " 1 7 S p e n s e r ' s s t y l e , W a r t o n g o e s so. f a r as t o s a y , "...has g r e a t p e r s p i c u i t y and f a c i l i t y . " 3 One o f t h e m a i n r e a s o n s why S p e n s e r made u s e o f o b s o l e t e l a n g u a g e , W a r t o n s a y s , was t o c o u n t e r a c t the p r a c t i c e o f h i s c o n t e m p o r a r i e s who were a d u l t e r a t i n g E n g l i s h w i t h b o r r o w i n g s f r o m S p a n i s h , F r e n c h , L a t i n and I t a l i a n . B u t e v e n w i t h t h i s i d e a i n m i n d , S p e n s e r was f o r c e d b e c a u s e o f h i s rime t o u s e some f o r e i g n words. F o r t h e same r e a s o n S p e n s e r c o i n e d new rime words s u c h as d a m n i f y 'd., u n r u l i m e n t , and h a z a r d r i e . N o t w i t h s t a n d i n g t h e o b s o l e t e d i c t i o n W a r t o n f i n d s t h a t " F o r many s t a n z a s 7 W a r t o n , op. c i t . , v o l . . 1 , p. 169. 8 I b i d . , v o l . 1, p. 170. - a l -t o g e t h e r we may f r e q u e n t l y read, h i m w i t h as much f a c i l i t y as we c a n t h e same number o f l i n e s i n S h a k e s p e a r e . " ^ S p e n s e r , e x c l a i m s W a r t o n , was a r a p i d w r i t e r , e a s i l y c a r r i e d away h y an i m p e t u o u s I m a g i n a t i o n , and, as a r e s u l t , he was c a r e l e s s i n h i s c o n s t r u c t i o n and f a i l e d t o r e v i s e what he w r o t e . H i s work, t h e r e f o r e , i s f i l l e d w i t h c o n t r a -d i c t i o n s , i n c o n s i s t e n c i e s and r e p e t i t i o n s . ...he n o t o n l y f a i l s i n t h e c o n n e x i o n o f s i n g l e words, b u t o f c i r c u m s t a n c e s : n o t o n l y v i o l a t e s t h e r u l e s o f grammar b u t o f p r o b a b i l i t y , t r u t h , and p r o p r i e t y . 1 ° The f o u r m a i n f a u l t s t h a t W a r t o n l i s t s a r e e l l i p s i s , c o n -f u s e d c o n s t r u c t i o n , t a u t o l o g y , and c o n t r a d i c t i o n . When s p e a k i n g o f S p e n s e r ' s i m i t a t i o n s o f C h a u c e r and A r i o s t o , W a r t o n w r i t e s , S p e n s e r i s u n i v e r s a l l y a c k n o w l e d g e d t o have been a n a t t e n t i v e r e a d e r , a n d a p r o f e s s e d a d m i r e r o f b o t h _ t h e s e p o e t s . H i s i m i t a t i o n s f r o m . . .^/Chaucer/ a r e most commonly l i t e r a l , c o u c h e d i n t h e e x p r e s s i o n s o f t h e o r i g i n a l . What he h a s drawn f r o m A r i o s t o a r e a r t i f i c i a l f i c t i o n s , w h i c h c o n s i s t i n g o f u n n a t u r a l com- . b i n a t i o n s , c o u l d n o t , on a c c o u n t o f t h e i r s i n g u l a r i t y , be f a l l e n u p on b o t h p o e t s a c -c i d e n t a l l y , as n a t u r a l a p p e a r a n c e s m i g h t be, w h i c h l i e e x p o s e d and o b v i o u s t o a l l , a t a l l t i m e s . 1 1 Y e t , when W a r t o n compares S p e n s e r and A r i o s t o he f i n d s t h a t S p e n s e r ' s r e p r e s e n t a t i o n s a r e b e a u t i f u l a n d s u b l i m e , e v e n w i t h t h e i r a b s u r d i t i e s , w h i l e A r i o s t o ' s " s t r o k e s o f t r u e p o e t r y b e a r no p r o p o r t i o n t o h i s s a l l i e s o f m e r e l y r o m a n t i c 9 W a r t o n , op. c i t . , v o l . 1, p . 185. 10 I b i d . , v o l . 1, p . 312. 11 I b i d . , v o l . 1, pp. 188-189. -68-i m a g i n a t i o n . U X l t B e f o r e we p a s s on t o a s t u d y o f Hurd we must g l a n c e b r i e f l y a t Warton's e x a m i n a t i o n o f S p e n s e r ' s a l l e g o r y . W a r t o n s a y s t h a t t h e r e a r e two S p e n s e r s - one i s t h e r o -m a n t i c p o e t and t h e o t h e r i s t h e a l l e g o r i s t . He r e m a r k s t h a t S p e n s e r , i n c o p y i n g t h e manners of. c h i v a l r y , i s j u s t . as much m a k i n g a n i m i t a t i o n o f r e a l l i f e as i s Homer when he g i v e s u s p l a i n d e s c r i p t i o n s , f o r b o t h a r e o n l y c o p y i n g t h e manners e x i s t i n g d u r i n g t h e i r t i m e s . The r e a s o n why S p e n s e r ' s p e r s o n a g e s a r e so d i s t i n c t and a n i m a t e d may be t h a t t h e y a c t u a l l y e x i s t e d i n t h e l i f e a b o u t him; t h e y were d e r i v e d r a t h e r f r o m E l i z a b e t h a n c o u r t l y s p e c t a c l e s t h a n f r o m the O r l a n d o P u r i o s o . W a r ton i s n o t c e r t a i n t h a t S p e n s e r ' s a l l e g o r y m i g h t n o t be d a n g e r o u s t o r e l i g i o u s t h o u g h t . He w r i t e s t h a t . . . S p e n s e r h a s m i n g l e d d i v i n e m y s t e r y -with' human a l l e g o r y . S u c h a p r a c t i c e as t h i s t e n d s n o t o n l y t o c o n f o u n d s a c r e d a n d p r o f a n e s u b j e c t s , b u t t o p l a c e t h e l i c e n t i o u s s a l l i e s o f i m a g i n a t i o n u p o n . a l e v e l w i t h t h e d i c t a t e s o f d i v i n e i n s p i r a t i o n ; t o d e b a s e t h e t r u t h and d i g n i t y o f h e a v e n l y t h i n g s b y m a k i n g C h r i s t i a n a l l e g o r y s u b s e r v i e n t t o the p u r p o s e s o f R o m a n t i c f i c t i o n . 1 5 F o r a l l t h i s , W a r t o n s t i l l f i n d s g r e a t r i c h n e s s i n Sjpenser's a l l e g o r i c a l d e s c r i p t i o n s and s a y s t h a t S i a c k v i l i e ' s I n d u c t i o n i s t h e o n l y o t h e r a l l e g o r i c a l poem i n E n g l i s h ' t o a p p r o a c h 12 Warton, op. c i t . , v o l . 1, p. 505. 15 I b i d . , v o l . 2, pp. 86-87. - 6 9 -t h e F a e r i e Queene on t h i s c o u n t . I n many ways K u r d ' s t h e s i s i s a d e v e l o p m e n t o f W a r t o n ' s . I n - p l a c e o f t h e n e o - c l a s s i c a l l e a n i n g s o f W a r t o n , however, Hurd r e v e a l s h i m s e l f , as a r o m a n t i c who i s t r y i n g t o r e c o n c i l e , i n some f o r m , t h e t e n e t s o f t h e c l a s s i c o r h e r o i c w i t h t h e G o t h i c . Thus he i s a p r e - r o m a n t i c : he i s r o m a n t i c i n temperament, -but i s t o o e a r l y i n time n o t t o be i n f l u e n c e d b y what has gone b e f o r e . T h e r e i s , he r e p e a t s t h r o u g h o u t h i s L e t t e r s on C h i v a l r y and Romance, a g r e a t r e s e m b l a n c e between the h e r o i c a n d t h e G o t h i c . H u r d i s a t t e m p t i n g t o make whole c l o t h o u t o f two p i e c e s o f d i f f e r e n t m a t e r i a l and d i f f e r e n t c o l o u r . ' I t i s h e r e t h a t he f a i l s . Y o u c a n n o t s a y , i n one b r e a t h , t h a t h e r o i c and G o t h i c a r e a l i k e b e c a u s e t h e y a r o s e i n s o c i e t i e s whose s o c i a l s t r u c -t u r e s a r e s i m i l a r , and, i n t h e n e x t b r e a t h , u r g e t h a t G o t h i c l i t e r a t u r e : c a n be s t u d i e d o n l y i n l i g h t o f i t s own r e q u i r e -ments and n o t by t h o s e o f h e r o i c ' l i t e r a t u r e . Hurd b u i l t h i s t h e o r i e s i n t o a f a l s e f a c a d e o f g e n e r a l c r i t i c i s m and t h e n when he t u r n e d t o a s p e c i f i c s t u d y o f t h e F a e r i e Queene he u n c o n s c i o u s l y t o r e t h e f a c i n g o f f a n d r e v e a l e d t h e s t r u c t u r a l f a u l t s o f h i s c r i t i c a l method. When, a f t e r ' s p e n d i n g more t h a n h a l f h i s t i m e p r o v i n g how much a l i k e t h e h e r o i c and t h e G o t h i c a r e , H u r d w r i t e s -Judge o f t h e F a e r y Queen b y t h e c l a s s i c m o d e l s , and y o u a r e - s h o c k e d w i t h i t s d i s o r d e r ; c o n s i d e r i t w i t h a n eye t o -70-i t ' s /sic. and e l s e w h e r e / G o t h i c o r i g i n a l , and y o u f i n d i t r e g u l a r . The u n i t y and s i m p l i c i t y o f the f o r m e r a r e more c o m p l e t e * b u t t h e l a t t e r h a s t h a t s o r t o f u n i t y and s i m p l i c i t y , w h i c h r e s u l t s f r o m i t ' s n a t u r e . 1 4 The r e a d e r c a n o n l y be a s t o u n d e d f o r he has s u d d e n l y b e e n •pushed o f f t h e p a t h down w h i c h H u r d h a d b e e n l e a d i n g h im. H a v i n g p o i n t e d t h e r e a d e r i n a new d i r e c t i o n H u r d c o n -t i n u e s t o j o l t him. The u n i t y o f the poem, he w r i t e s , . . . c o n s i s t s i n the r e l a t i o n o f i t ' s s e v e r a l a d v e n t u r e s t o one common o r i g i n a l , t h e ap-p o i n t m e n t o f the P a e r y Queen; and t o one common end, t h e c o m p l e t i o n o f the F a e r y Queen's i n j u n c t i o n s . 1 5 W h i c h i s to s a y , he c o n t i n u e s , t h a t " . . . i t i s an u n i t y o f d e s i g n , and not. o f a c t i o n . "1® T h e r e i s a n o t h e r s h o c k i n s t o r e f o r . the r e a d e r , s i n c e , a c c o r d i n g t o Hurd, t h e a d v e n t u r e o f P r i n c e A r t h u r was a n a f t e r - t h o u g h t , f o r c e d , u p o n S p e n s e r b y c l a s s i c a l p r e j u d i c e , and I u s e d as a b l i n d t o c o n c e a l t h e poem's G o t h i c d i s o r d e r . 1 ' I n t h i s way S p e n s e r c r e a t e d a poem t h a t was b o t h a l l e g o r i c a l and n a r r a t i v e , and, H u r d s a y s , ...as an a l l e g o r i c a l poem, t h e method o f t h e P a e r y Queen . i s g o v e r n e d by t h e j u s t n e s s o f th e m o r a l : As a n a r r a t i v e poem, i t i s c o n -d u c t e d on the i d e a s and u s a g e s o f c h i v a l r y . I n e i t h e r v i e w , i f t a k e n b y i t s e l f , , t he p l a n i s d e f e n s i b l e , B u t f r o m t h e u n i o n o f t h e two d e s i g n s t h e r e a r i s e s a p e r p l e x i t y , and c o n -f u s i o n , w h i c h i s t h e p r o p e r , a n d o n l y c o n -s i d e r a b l e , d e f e c t o f t h i s e x t r a o r d i n a r y p o e m . 1 ® 14 L e t t e r s on C h i v a l r y and Romance, E d i t h J . Morley,. e d . , Lon d o n , H e n r y Frowde, 1911, pp.' 118-119. 15 I b i d . , p. 121. .16 I b i d . , p . 122. 17 I b i d . , p. 124. • . . •:* 18 I b i d . , pp. 126-127. -71-T h i s s t a t e m e n t I s a f a r c r y f r o m H u r d ' s a d m o n i t i o n t h a t we " s h o u l d s t u d y t h e F a e r i e Queene f o r what i t i s - p o e t r y . H u r d s u d d e n l y demands t h a t i t f u l f i l o n l y t h e G o t h i c r e -q u i r e m e n t s , and he f i n d s f a u l t w i t h i t s c l a s s i c a l c o n -v e n t i o n s . F o r one s e t o f r u l e s he i s s u b s t i t u t i n g a n o t h e r on t h e g r o u n d , as he s a y s , t h a t the G o t h i c i s b e t t e r a d a p t e d t o t h e ends o f p o e t r y t h a n i s t h e c l a s s i c . 1 ® The r e a s o n , H u r d s a y s , why t h e F a e r i e Queene has f a l l e n i n t o g e n e r a l n e g l e c t i s t h a t t h e g e n e r a l i t y o f r e a d e r s , knowing s o l i t t l e a b o u t t h e age o f c h i v a l r y , c a n n o t be made t o b e l i e v e t h a t s u c h manners, as t h e poem p o r t r a y s , e v e r e x i s t e d . ^ 0 The s i m i l a r i t i e s between t h e works o f Warton a n d Hurd a r e o b v i o u s . T hey b o t h saw t h e n e e d o f a p p r o a c h i n g t h e F a e r i e Queene unencumbered c r i t i c a l l y b y the n e o - c l a s s i c a l r u l e s . I n t h i s W a r t o n , more n e o - c l a s s i c a l t h a n H u r d , was more s u c c e s s f u l f o r , u n l i k e H u r d , he d i d n o t a t t e m p t t o s e t up any r o m a n t i c o r G o t h i c r u l e s t o j u s t i f y what he was d o i n g . H u r d , i n s e a r c h i n g f o r some f o r m o f i d e a l r o m a n t i c i s m , f o u n d t h a t t o combat t h e n e o - c l a s s i c a l s y s t e m o f c r i t i c i s m he had t o s e t up a s i m i l a r s y s t e m u n d e r t h e t e r m G o t h i c • w h i c h , i n t h e end, was e q u a l l y r e s t r i c t i v e t o t h e f r e e c r i t i c i s m o f p o e t r y as p o e t r y . B e f o r e we p r o c e e d f u r t h e r i n t h e e i g h t e e n t h c e n t u r y 19 H u r d , op. c i t . , p. 128. 20 I b i d . , p . 149. -72-we must r e t r a c e o u r s t e p s and l o o k " b r i e f l y a t one o r two m i n o r c r i t i c s who w r o t e p r i o r t o , o r c o n t e m p o r a r y w i t h , W a rton and H u r d . I n a l e t t e r d a t e d December 24, 1741, W i l l i a m Shen-s t o n e , an e a r l y r o m a n t i c p o e t and S p e n s e r i a n i m i t a t o r , w r o t e t o a f r i e n d , R i c h a r d G r a v e s , t h a t S p e n s e r ' s . . . s u b j e c t i s c e r t a i n l y b a d , and h i s a c t i o n I n e x p r e s s i b l y c o n f u s e d ; b u t t h e r e a r e some p a r t i c u l a r s i n h i m t h a t charm one. Those w h i c h a f f o r d t h e g r e a t e s t s c o p e f o r a l u d -i c r o u s i m i t a t i o n a r e h i s s i m p l i c i t y and o b s o l e t e p h r a s e ; and y e t t h e s e a r e what g i v e one a v e r y s i n g u l a r p l e a s u r e i n t h e p e r u s a l . The b u r l e s q u e w h i c h t h e y o c c a s i o n i s o f a q u i t e d i f f e r e n t k i n d t o t h a t o f P h i l i p ' s S h i l l i n g , C o t t o n ' s T r a v e s t i e , H u d i b r a s , o r S w i f t ' s works....21 I n aa o t h e r l e t t e r , d a t e d J a n u a r y 19, 1741-2 fTJ, w r i t t e n t o t h e same f r i e n d , S h e n s t o n e r e p e a t s t h e same i d e a -The t r u e b u r l e s q u e o f S p e n s e r (whose c h a r a c t e r i s t i c i s . s i m p l i c i t y ) seems t o c o n -s i s t i n a s i m p l e r e p r e s e n t a t i o n o f s u c h t h i n g s as one l a u g h s t o see o r t o o b s e r v e o n e ' s s e l f , r a t h e r t h a n i n any m o n s t r o u s c o n t r a s t b e t w i x t t h e t h o u g h t s a n d w o r d s . ^ •The m a t t e r o f S p e n s e r i a n i m i t a t i o n was a t t a c k e d i n v e r s e b y R o b e r t L l o y d , a member o f t h e Nonsense C l u b , w h i c h had as members W i l l i a m Cowper, George Colman a i d Bon-n e l l T h o r n t o n , and w h i c h p u b l i s h e d t h e u n s i i c c e s s f u l Con-n o i s s e u r . L l o y d , i n 1755, w r o t e : O t h e r s , who a i m a t f a n c y , c h o o s e To woo t h e g e n t l e S p e n s e r ' s Muse. T h i s p o e t f i x e s f o r h i s theme 21 The L e t t e r s o f W i l l i a m S h e n s t o n e , M i n n e a p o l i s , U n i p v e r s i t y o f M i n n e s o t a P r e s s , 1959, p . 30. 22 I b i d . , p . 32. -75-On a l l e g o r y , o r a dream: •_ F i c t i o n and T r u t h t o g e t h e r j o i n s T h r o u g h a l o n g waste o f f l i m s y l i n e s ; F o n d l y b e l i e v e s h i s f a n c y g l o w s , And image u p o n image grows; T h i n k s h i s s t r o n g musfe t a k e s wond'rous f l i g h t s , Whene'er she s i n g s o f p e e r l e s s w i g h t s , .. • . Of d e n s , o f p a l f r e y s , s p e l l s , and k n i g h t s : T i l l a l l e g o r y , S p e n s e r ' s v e i l T' i n s t r u c t and p l e a s e i n m o r a l t a l e , W i t h him's no v e i l t h e t r u t h t o s h r o u d , B u t one i m p e n e t r a b l e c l o u d . ^ C r i t i c i s m s u c h as t h i s was n o t d e s t i n e d , however, t o s t o p t h e number o f S p e n s e r i m i t a t i o n s t h a t were f l o w i n g f r o m the pens o f v a r i o u s p o e t s . I n , the " P r e f a c e " t o h i s "Hymn t o May," W i l l i a m Thompson w r i t e s t h a t /"As S p e n s e r i s t h e most d e s c r i p t i v e a n d f l o r i d o f a l l o u r E n g l i s h w r i t e r s , I a t t e m p t e d t o i m i t a t e h i s manner i n t h e f o l l o w i n g poem."24 Thompson, how e v e r , d o e s n o t . b e t r a y any e f f o r t t o i m i t a t e S p e n s e r ' s d i c t i o n . Thompson c o n t i n u e s , i n t h e " P r e f a c e " -S h a k e s p e a r e i s t h e p o e t o f N a t u r e , i n a d a p t i n g the a f f e c t a t i o n s and p a s s i o n s t o h i s c h a r -a c t e r s ; and S p e n s e r i n d e s c r i b i n g h e r de-, l i g h t f u l s c e n e s and r u r a l b e a u t i e s . ' H i s l i n e s a r e most m u s i c a l l y sweet; and h i s d e s c r i p t i o n s most d e l i c a t e l y a b u n d a n t , e v e n t o a wantonness o f p a i n t i n g : b u t s t i l l i t I s t h e m u s i c and p a i n t i n g o f N a t u r e . We f i n d no a m b i t i o u s o r n a m e n t s , o r e p i g r a m m a t l c a l t u r n s , i n h i s w r i t i n g s , b u t a b e a u t i f u l s i m p l i c i t y : w h i c h p l e a s e s f a r above t h e g l i t t e r o f p o i n t e d w i t . 2 5 The C r i t i c a l R e v i e w o f 1759 c a r r i e d O l i v e r G o l d s m i t h ' s r e v i e w o f t h e C h u r c h e d i t i o n o f S p e n s e r ' s works. G o l d s m i t h ' s 23 The C o n n o i s s e u r , No. 67, May 8, 1755, i n B r i t i s h  E s s a y i s t s , 1827, v o l . 18, p . 280. . 24 /I7577, i n C h a l m e r ' s P o e t s , 1810, v o l . 15, p . 32. E5 L o c . c i t . t r i b u t e i s no l e s s f l o r i d t h a n t h a t o f Thompson. He w r i t e s , T h e r e i s a p l e a s i n g t r a n q u i l i t y o f m i n d w h i c h e v e r a t t e n d s t h e r e a d i n g o f t h i s a n c i e n t p o e t . We l e a v e t h e ways o f t h e p r e s e n t w o r l d , and a l l t h e a g e s o f p r i m -e v a l i n n o c e n c e and h a p p i n e s s r i s e t o our v i e w . V i r g i l , and even Homer, seem t o be modern, u p o n t h e c o m p a r i s o n . The i m a g i n a t i o n o f h i s r e a d e r l e a v e s r e a s o n b e h i n d , p u r s u e s t h e t a l e , w i t h o u t c o n s i d e r i n g t h e a l i e g o r y , and u pon t h e w h o l e , i s charmed w i t h o u t i n -s t r u c t i o n . 2 ^ ,The l a s t s t a t e m e n t i s i n t e r e s t i n g i n l i g h t o f t h e " t e a c h and ' d e l i g h t " t h e o r y o f p o e t r y , and G o l d s m i t h a t t e m p t s t o j u s t i f y'.this s t a t e m e n t when he w r i t e s , . . . t h e p l e a s u r e we r e c e i v e f r o m . . , t h o u g h n e v e r so f i n e l y b a l a n c e d b e t w e e n t r u t h and f i c t i o n , i s b u t o f a s u b o r d i n a t e n a t u r e , as we have a l w a y s two p a s s i o n s op-p o s i n g e a c h o t h e r j a l o v e o f r e a l i t y w h i c h r e p r e s s e s the f l i g h t s o f f a n c y , and a p a s s i o n f o r t h e m a r v e l l o u s , w h i c h would l e a v e r e -f l e c t i o n b e h i n d . 2 7 G o l d s m i t h , i t would a p p e a r , makes a c o m p l e t e s e p a r a t i o n b e t w e e n p o e t r y ' s power t o d e l i g h t a n d i t s power t o t e a c h . He s t r e s s e s t h a t t h e power t o d e l i g h t i s t h e more i m p o r t a n t and t h e s t r o n g e r . When one c o n s i d e r s t h a t t h e b u l k o f S p e n s e r ' s work i s a l l e g o r i c a l , i t i s d i f f i c u l t t o see how f u l l a p p r e c i a t i o n c a n be g a i n e d when one .reads " w i t h o u t c o n s i d e r i n g t h e a l l e g o r y . " T r u e , i t i s p o s s i b l e t o r e a d the F a e r i e Queene f o r i t s s t o r y a l o n e . But c a n a r e a d e r do s o c o m f o r t a b l y when he knows t h a t S p e n s e r meant i t f o r 26 " S p e n s e r ' s F a e r i e Queene," i n the Works o f O l i v e r  G o l d s m i t h , P e t e r Cunningham, ed.,.London, J o h n M u r r a y , 1878, v o l . 4, p . 203. 27 L o c . c i t . -75-s o much more? I n d e e d , w o u l d i t be p o s s i b l e t o r e a d t h e poem w i t h o u t g a i n i n g some i n s t r u c t i o n f r o m t h e m o r a l a l l e g o r y ( t h e most o b v i o u s a l l e g o r y o f t h e t h r e e ) ? I n the r e v i e w G o l d s m i t h a l s o g i v e s a word o f w a r n i n g c o n c e r n i n g i m i t a t i o n . He s a y s t h a t . . . t h e v e r s e s o f S p e n s e r may, p e r h a p s , one day be c o n s i d e r e d t h e s t a n d a r d o f E n g l i s h p o e t r y . I t were h a p p y i n d e e d , i f h i s b e a u t i e s were the o n l y o b j e c t s o f modern i m i t a t i o n ; b u t many o f h i s w o r d s , j u s t l y f a l l e n i n t o d i s u s e among h i s s u c c e s s o r s , have been o f l a t e r e v i v e d , and a l a n g u a g e , a l r e a d y t o o c o p i o u s , has b e e n augmented by a n u n n e c e s s a r y r e i n f o r c e m e n t . ^ 8 Our c r i t i c seems t o have f o b g o t t e n t h a t t h e s e words he s p e a k s o f h a d b e e n r e v i v e d b y S p e n s e r , had n o t b e e n u s e d t o any g r e a t e x t e n t by t h e p o e t ' s s u c c e s s o r s , a n d were, i n f a c t , one o f t h e m a i n arguments r a i s e d a g a i n s t h i s work. Of S p e n s e r ' s b i o g r a p h y , G o l d s m i t h r e m a r k s t h a t " . . . t h e h i s t o r y o f one p o e t m i g h t s e r v e w i t h . . . l i t t l e v a r i a t i o n f o r t h a t o f any o t h e r . " 2 9 T h i s i s a s t a t e m e n t t h a t , I n v i e w o f o u r modern c o n c e p t i o n o f c r i t i c i s m as an a c t i v i t y w h i c h i n c l u d e s , b e s i d e s t h e s t u d y o f t h e a e s t h e t i c , t h e s t u d y o f h i s t o r y , b i o g r a p h y , p s y c h o l o g y , s o c i o l o g y , and b i o l o g y , g i v e s one r e a s o n t o p a u s e a n d t h i n k . R e t u r n i n g t o the l a n g u a g e o f • S p e n s e r we f i n d F r a n c i s Fawkes, i n h i s ; " p r e f a c e " t o t h e I d y l l i u m s o f T h e o c r i t u s , w r i t i n g t h a t t h e t r a n s l a t i o n o f T h e o c r i t u s s h o u l d be done 28 G o l d s m i t h , op. c i t . , p . 205. 29 I b i d . , p. 204. -76-i n S p e n s e r ' s l a n g u a g e b e c a u s e i t was p r o p e r f o r T h e o-c r i t u s ' " D o r i c i d i o m . " ^ O One o f the most p e c u l i a r i m i t a t o r s o f S p e n s e r i s D r . J o h n A r m s t r o n g , who w rote most o f h i s poems on m e d i c a l m a t t e r s o r d i s e a s e . H i s most famous work i s The A r t o f  P r e s e r v i n g H e a l t h . H i s i m i t a t i o n o f S p e n s e r d e a l s a l s o w i t h t h e i l l s o f t h e f l e s h and was w r i t t e n a t t h e r e q u e s t o f James Thomson t o be i n s e r t e d i n t h e l a t t e r ' s S p e n s e r i a n C a s t l e o f I n d o l e n c e . 5 1 A n o t h e r S p e n s e r I m i t a t o r was'James B e a t t i e who, i n The M i n s t r e l , i m i t a t e d n o t o n l y t h e m e a s u r e , cut a l s o t h e "harmony, s i m p l i c i t y , and v a r i e t y " 5 ^ o f S p e n s e r ' s compo-s i t i o n . B e a t t i e a l s o d e f e n d s t h e S p e n s e r i a n s t a n z a f r o m i t s d e t r a c t o r s . He w r i t e s , and somewhat a s t u t e l y , t h a t I t a l l o w s t h e s e n t e n t l o u s n e s s o f t h e c o u p l e t , as w e l l as t h e more complex m o d u l a t i o n o f b l a n k v e r s e . What some c r i t i c s have r e m a r k e d , o f i t s u n i f o r m i t y g r o w i n g a t l a s t t i r e s o m e t o the e a r , w i l l be f o u n d t o h o l d t r u e , o n l y r r when t h e p o e t r y i s f a u l t y i n o t h e r r e s p e c t s . 5 3 We s a i d t h a t h i s s t a t e m e n t i s somewhat a s t u t e o n l y b e c a u s e i t c a n be a p p l i e d t o most o f t h e i m i t a t i o n s . I t d o e s n o t , however, answer the c h a r g e , g e n e r a l l y p o i n t e d o u t , t h a t t h e F a e r i e Queene s t a n z a t e n d s t o become s o p o r i f i c i n a 50 ,/l767/, i n C h a l m e r ' s P o e t s , v o l . 20, p . 156. 51 / I 7 7 0 7 , i n C h a l m e r ' s P o e t s , v o l . 16, p. 545. 32 " p r e f a c e , " / 1 7 7 1 7 , i n The P o e t i c a l Works o f James  B e a t t i e , L o n d o n , B e l l and D a l d y , n.d., p. 5. 33 I b i d . , p. 4. -77-l o n g poem b e c a u s e i t p e r m i t s v e r y l i t t l e change o f s p e e d . But S p e n s e r , however, may n o t have d e s i r e d s p e e d . I n h i s H i s t o r y o f E n g l i s h P o e t r y ( 1 7 7 8 - 1 7 8 1 ) , Thomas W a r t o n , whose O b s e r v a t i o n s have b e e n r e v i e w e d a bove, p o i n t s o u t t h a t many p a s s a g e s o f t h e F a e r i e Queene were s u g g e s t e d .• 34 t o S p e n s e r b y S a c k v i l l e ' s I n d u c t i o n . W a r t o n j i n a l a t e r s e c t i o n o f h i s w e i g h t y tome, t a k e s S p e n s e r t o t a s k f o r h i s d e d i c a t o r y v e r s e s t o t h e F a e r i e Queene. He s o u r l y , b u t c o r r e c t l y , w r i t e s t h a t . . . S p e n s e r i n c o m p l i a n c e w i t h a d i s g r a c e f u l c u s t o m , o r r a t h e r i n o b e d i e n c e t o the' e s -• t a b l i s h e d t y r a n n y o f p a t r o n a g e , p r e f i x e d t o t h e FAIRY QUEENE f i f t e e n o f t h e s e a d u l -t o r y p i e c e s , w h i c h i n e v e r y r e s p e c t a r e t o be numbered among t h e meanest o f h i s com-p o s i t i o n s . 55 Warton's a t t e m p t t o j u s t i f y S p e n s e r ' s d e f e c t s by s a y i n g , i n h i s O b s e r v a t i o n s , that' t h e y were the r e s u l t o f h i s f o l - . l o w i n g A r i o s t o i s r e p u d i a t e d b y George E l l i s i n h i s S p e c i -mens o f t h e E a r l y E n g l i s h P o e t s . E l l i s w r i t e s t h a t . . . t h e " O r l a n d o F u r i o s o , " t h o u g h a b s u r d and e x t r a v a g a n t , i s u n i f o r m l y a m u s i n g . We a r e e n a b l e d t o t r a v e l t o the c o n c l u s i o n o f o u r j o u r n e y w i t h o u t f a t i g u e , t h o u g h o f t e n b e -w i l d e r e d b y t h e w i n d i n g s o f t h e r o a d , and s u r p r i s e d b y t h e a b r u p t change o f o u r t r a -v e l l i n g c o m p a n i o n s ; whereas i t i s s c a r c e l y p o s s i b l e t o accompany S p e n s e r ' s a l l e g o r i c a l he'roes t o the end o f t h e i r e x c u r s i o n s . T h e y want f l e s h and b l o o d ; a want f o r w h i c h n o t h i n g c a n compensate.... P e r s o n i f i c a t i o n p r o t r a c t e d i n t o a l l e g o r y a f f e c t s a modern r e a d e r a l m o s t as d i s a g r e e a b l y as i n s p i r a t i o n c o n t i n u e d t o •madness. 36 34 Ward, L o c k & Co., n.d., p . 777. 35 I b i d . , p. 914. 36 London, Longman, ; H u r s t , R e e s , Orme, and Brown-, 1811, v o l . 2, p . 233. -78-T h e s e d e f e c t s , a c c o r d i n g t o E l l i s , were c a u s e d b y the age., and S p e n s e r , t h e r e f o r e , f o r a l l h i s g e n i u s , c o u l d h a v e done no more t h a n what he d i d . I n f a c t , s a y s E l l i s , " H i s g l o w i n g f a n c y , h i s unbounded command o f language., a n d h i s a s t o n i s h i n g f a c i l i t y and s w e e t n e s s o f v e r s i f i c a t i o n , have p l a c e d him i n t h e v e r y f i r s t r a n k o f E n g l i s h poets." 3''' And t h i s i s i n s p i t e o f t h e f a c t t h a t i t i s " s c a r c e l y p o s s i b l e t o accom-pany S p e n s e r ' s a l l e g o r i c a l h e r o e s t o t h e end o f t h e i r ex-c u r s i o n s . " I n t h i s c h a p t e r d e a l i n g w i t h p r e - r o m a n t i c c r i t i c s wev, s h o u l d not;e two i n t e r e s t i n g t r e n d s : t h e d e c i s i v e b r e a k i n g away f r o m t h e r u l e s o f n e o - c l a s s i c i s m ; and t h e l e s s e n i n g o f t h e amount o f a d v e r s e c r i t i c i s m d i r e c t e d a g a i n s t S p e n s e r . I n W a r t o n , o f c o u r s e , we c a n f i n d t h a t some n e o - c l a s s i c a l t e n e t s s t i l l r e m a i n : Hurd,.we c a n s e e , i s , i n the e n d , e n d e a v o u r i n g t o s e t u p a s e r i e s o f new r u l e s t o t a k e the p l a c e o f t h o s e o f t h e n e o - c l a s s i c i s t s . B u t we c a n n o t condemn e i t h e r o f t h e s e w r i t e r s b e c a u s e o f t h e s e t h i n g s - t h e y a r e w r i t i n g a t a t i m e when t h e y c a n do n o t more t h a n f o r e s h a d o w t h e f u t u r e , and, we must a d m i t , t h e y a c h i e v e t h e i r ends much b e t t e r t h a n we m i g h t e x p e c t . . W a r t o n , a l t h o u g h he b e l i e v e d t h a t t h e d e v e l o p m e n t o f r o m a n t i c i s m was u n f o r t u n a t e , can be s a i d 1 ' t o b e , i n t h e f i n a l a n a l y s i s , a p r e - r o m a n t i c : he t h o u g h t t h a t S p e n s e r wrote n o t f o r t h e h e a d , b u t f o r t h e h e a r t . H u rd, on t h e o t h e r hand, a f t e r t r y i n g u n s u c c e s s f u l l y t o 37 E l l i s , op. c i t . , p. 233. -79-r e c o n c i l e the t e n e t s o f t h e c l a s s i c a l and h e r o i c .with t h e G o t h i c , t r i e s t o a n a l y z e the F a e r i e Queene w i t h f r e e d o m a n d s u c c e e d s I n s e t t i n g up a new s e t o f r u l e s . H u r d , l i k e W a r t o n , when f i n a l l y j u d g e d , i s a p r e - r o m a n t i c , b u t one who i s u n a b l e t o s h e d c o m p l e t e l y t h e n e o - c l a s s i c i s t s * demand f o r o r d e r . The t e r m " p r e - r o m a n t i c " i s w e l l c h o s e n when l i t e r a t u r e i s b e i n g s u r v e y e d as a w hole. When, however, a s u r v e y i s b e i n g made o f t h e c r i t i c s o f one w r i t e r t h e t e r m l o s e s a g r e a t d e a l o f i t s f o r c e . A t b e s t i t d e s i g n a t e s a g r o u p o f w r i t e r s who p r e c e d e d t h e r o m a n t i c s . I t does n o t i n d i c a t e t o what e x t e n t t h e s e w r i t e r s a r e r o m a n t i c . The c r i t i c s s u r v e y e d i n t h i s c h a p t e r , i n t h e i r o p i n i o n s o f S p e n s e r , do n o t r e v e a l any marked d e v e l o p m e n t o f r o m a n t i c i s m . Thompson, G o l d s m i t h , Fawkes an d B e a t t i e , a r e more r o m a n t i c , b y r e a s o n o f t h e i r p r a i s e , t h a n a r e o t h e r s l i k e W a r t o n , Hur d and S h e n s t o n e who have some a d v e r s e c r i t i c i s m t o o f f e r . T h e r e i s no c o n s t a n t , w i d e n i n g f l o w o f r o m a n t i c i s m t o be f o u n d i n t h e c r i t i c i s m o f t h e p e r i o d . I n p r e v i o u s c h a p t e r s I have c o n c l u d e d w i t h a r e v i e w o f a d v e r s e c r i t i c i s m u n d e r t h e h e a d i n g s : S p e n s e r ' s u s e o f l a n g u a g e ; h i s s u b j e c t m a t t e r ( i n c l u d i n g h i s a l l e g o r y ) and h i s h a n d l i n g o f i t ; h i s s t a n z a f o r m s ; h i s u s e o f p a s t o r a l . To t h i s l i s t we must now add a f i f t h ' p r o b l e m - h i s c o n s t r u c t -i o n . The p r e - r o m a n t i c s have a t t a c k e d S p e n s e r u n d e r t h e f i r s t t h r e e o f t h e s e heads and on t h e l a s t ; t h e y have o m i t t e d any s t u d y o f h i s u s e . o f p a s t o r a l . - 8 0 -On the p r o b l e m o f S p e n s e r ' s use o f l a n g u a g e G o l d s m i t h r e m a r k s i n p a s s i n g t h a t S p e n s e r ' s l a n g u a g e has " j u s t l y f a l l e n i n t o d i s u s e . " I t i s d o u b t f u l w h e t h e r o r n o t we s h o u l d e v e n c o n s i d e r t h i s r e m a r k t o be a d v e r s e c r i t i c i s m . S p e n s e r ' s s u b j e c t m a t t e r a n d h i s h a n d l i n g o f i t comes i n f o r v a r i o u s c r i t i c a l a t t a c k s . W a r t o n , a l t h o u g h he f i n d s u n i t y o f d e s i g n and o f h e r o i n t h e F a e r i e Queene, f i n d s no • u n i t y of. a c t i o n and t h e r e f o r e , he s a y s , t h e v a r i o u s b o o k s do n o t make up a l e g i t i m a t e poem. He a l s o s t i p u l a t e s t h a t t h e b l e n d i n g o f s a c r e d and p r o f a n e s u b j e c t s i s d a n g e r o u s b e c a u s e i t w i l l "debase t h e t r u t h and d i g n i t y o f h e a v e n l y t h i n g s b y making C h r i s t i a n a l l e g o r y s u b s e r v i e n t t o t h e p u r p o s e s o f R o m a n t i c f i c t i o n " . H u r d , i n h i s t u r n , d o e s n o t f i n d t h e l a c k o f u n i t y o f a c t i o n i m p o r t a n t b e c a u s e the poem has u n i t y o f d e s i g n . He d o e s , . n e v e r t h e l e s s , p o i n t o u t t h a t P r i n c e A r t h u r was i n c o r p o r a t e d i n t o the poem as a n a f t e r t h o u g h t f o r t h e p u r p o s e o f c o n c e a l i n g t h e F a e r i e  Queene's G o t h i c d i s o r d e r . He a l s o s a y s t h a t S p e n s e r ' s u n i o n o f a l l e g o r y and n a r r a t i v e , t h e f i r s t g o v e r n e d b y the m o r a l , th e s e c o n d b y c h i v a l r y , I s the o n l y " c o n s i d e r a b l e " d e f e c t i n the poem. S h e n s t o n e w r i t e s , w i t h o u t g i v i n g r e a s o n s , t h a t S p e n s e r ' s s u b j e c t i s b a d and t h a t h i s a c t i o n i s c o n f u s e d . And l a s t l y , E l l i s s t a t e s t h a t t h e O r l a n d o  P u r l o s o i s more e a s i l y f o l l o w e d t h a n th e F a e r i e Queene b e c a u s e S p e n s e r ' s c h a r a c t e r s l a c k " f l e s h a n d b l o o d . " W a r t o n I s t h e o n l y one o f t h e s e c r i t i c s t o f i n d f a u l t w i t h S p e n s e r ' s s t a n z a f o r m . L i k e so many o t h e r s he - S l -a t t r i b u t e s t h e S p e n s e r i a n s t a n z a t o an I t a l i a n m o d e l . T h i s s t a n z a , he c o m p l a i n s , l e a d s t o many d i l a t e d c i r c u m l o c u t i o n s , t o r e d u n d a n c y and r e p e t i t i o n o f words, and t o t h e u s e o f "words and images t h a t a r e s l i g h t l y i m p r o p e r . " The f o r m d o e s , however, he c o n c e d e s , l e n d i t s e l f t o m a g n i f i c e n t d e s c r i p t i o n s . W a r ton a l s o t a k e s S p e n s e r t o t a s k b e c a u s e h i s c a r e l e s s c o n s t r u c t i o n f i l l s h i s work w i t h c o n t r a ^ t i o n - s , i n c o n -s i s t e n c i e s , and r e p e t i t i o n s . W a r t o n f i n d s f o u r main s t r u c -t u r a l f a u l t s : e l l i p s i s , c o n f u s i o n , t a u t o l o g y , and c o n t r a -d i c t i o n . On the w h o l e , i t may be s a i d t h a t t h e p r e - r o m a n t i c s show n e i t h e r t h e same amount o f a d v e r s e c r i t i c i s m as the n e o - c l a s s i c i s t s n o r t h e same amount o f g e n u i n e p r a i s e as the E l i z a b e t h a n - J a c o b e a n w r i t e r s . I n d e e d , e x c e p t i n t h e c a s e o f W a r t o n and H u r d , t h e r e i s l e s s w r i t t e n a b o u t S p e n s e r a t t h i s p e r i o d t h a n i n t h e two p e r i o d s f o l l o w i n g S p e n s e r . The v i e w , however, o f t h e s e two w r i t e r s , t h a t the F a e r i e  Queene s h o u l d be s t u d i e d f o r what i t i s - f r e e f r o m the r e s t r i c t i o n s o f p o s t - S p e n s e r i a n l i t e r a r y c o n v e n t i o n s -i s o f g r e a t i m p o r t a n c e n o t o n l y t o S p e n s e r i a n c r i t i c i s m b u t a l s o t o c r i t i c i s m as a w h o l e . -82-... CHAPTER F I V E . .-. THE ROMANTICS Many a l l u s i o n s t o S p e n s e r and t o c h a r a c t e r s i n t h e F a e r i e Queene a r e t o be f o u n d i n t h e p o e t r y o f the u n -f o r t u n a t e R o b e r t S o u t h e y , t h e f i r s t t r u e r o m a n t i c t o s t u d y S p e n s e r . S o u t h e y had b e e n i n t r o d u c e d t o the F a e r i e  Qnaeene as a young man, and he c a r e f u l l y r e c o r d e d h i s ex-p e r i e n c e as f o l l o w s : No young l a d y o f t h e p r e s e n t g e n e r a t i o n f a l l s t o a new n o v e l o f S i r W a l t e r S c o t t ' s w i t h k e e n e r r e l i s h t h a n I d i d . . . t o t h e F a e r y Queen. I f I h a d b e e n a s k e d w h e r e f o r e i t gave me so much more p l e a a a r e t h a n e v e r A r i o s t o had done, I c o u l d n o t have a n s w e r e d th e q u e s t i o n . I now know t h a t i t was v e r y much owing t o t h e magic o f i t s v e r s e ; the c o n t r a s t b etween t h e f l a t c o u p l e t s o f a r h y m s t e r l i k e H o o l e , and t h e f u l l e s t and f i n e s t o f a l l s t a n z a s w r i t t e n b y one who was p e r f e c t m a s t e r o f h i s a r t . B u t t h i s was n o t a l l , A r i o s t o t o o o f t e n p l a y s w i t h h i s • s u b j e c t ; S p e n s e r i s a l w a y s i n e a r n e s t . The d e l i c i o u s l a n d s c a p e s w h i c h he l u x u r i a t e s i n d e s c r i b i n g , b r o u g h t e v e r y t h i n g b e f o r e my e y e s . I c o u l d f a n c y s u c h s c e n e s as h i s l a k e s and f o r e s t s , g a r d e n s and f o u n t a i n s p r e s e n t e d ; and I f e l t t h o u g h I d i d n o t u n d e r s t a n d , t h e t r u t h and p u r i t y o f h i s f e e l i n g s , a i d t h a t l o v e o f the b e a u t i f u l and th e g o o d w h i c h p r e v a d e s h i s p o e t r y . 1 S o u t h e y ' s a c c e p t a n c e o f S p e n s e r was w h o l e h e a r t e d -1 The L i f e and ( C o r r e s p o n d e n c e o f t h e L a t e R o b e r t S o u t h e y , Rev. C h a r l e s C. S o u t h e y , e d . , L o n d o n , Longman, Brown, G r e e n & Longmans, 1849, v o l . 1, p . 85. -83-u n m a r r ^ e d b y any d i f f i c u l t i e s a r i s i n g f r o m e i t h e r t h e lan& guage o r t h e v e r s i f i c a t i o n . He w r i t e s , . . . I , who'had l e a r n e d , a l l I t h e n knew o f th e h i s t o r y o f E n g l a n d f r o m S h a k e s p e a r e , and who had m o r e o v e r r e a d Beaumont and F l e t c h e r , f o u n d no d i f f i c u l t y i n S p e n s e r ' s E n g l i s h , and f e l t i n t h e b e a u t y o f h i s v e r s i f i c a t i o n a charm i n p o e t r y o f w h i c h I h a d n e v e r b e e n f u l l y s e n s i b l e b e f o r e . From t h a t t i m e I t o o k S p e n s e r f o r my m a s t e r , 2 S t r a n g e as I t may seem, S o u t h e y d i d n o t r a n k h i s " m a s t e r " as t h e g r e a t e s t E n g l i s h p o e t . I n a l e t t e r t o W a l t e r Savage L a n d o r d a t e d J a n u a r y 11, 1811, S o u t h e y r e v e a l s , s u c c i n c t l y , h i s p r e f e r e n c e s o f t h e p o e t s and h i s o p i n i o n o f t h e s t a t e o f ' E n g l i s h p o e t r y a t h i s t i m e . I t i s , i n d e e d , a shrewd c r i t i c a l e v a l u a t i o n . Y o u r a b h o r r e n c e o f S p e n s e r /Ke w r i t e s / i s a s t r a n g e h e r e s y . I a d m i t t h a t . h e i s i n f e r i o r t o C h a u c e r (who f o r v a r i e t y o f power has no c o m p e t i t o r e x c e p t S h a k e s p e a r e ) , b u t he i s the g r e a t m a s t e r o f E n g l i s h v e r s i f i c a t i o n , i n c o m p a r a b l y t h e g r e a t e s t m a s t e r i n o u r l a n g u a g e . . . . C h a u c e r i s as much a p o e t as i t was p o s s i b l e f o r him t o be when t h e l a n g u a g e was i n so rude a s t a t e . T h e r e seems t o be t h i s m a t e r i a l p o i n t o f d i f f e r e n c e b e t w e e n u s , - y o u t h i n k we have l i t t l e p o e t r y w h i c h was g o o d f o r any-t h i n g b e f o r e M i l t o n ; I , t h a t we have l i t t l e s i n c e , e x c e p t i n o u r own immediate d a y s . I do n o t s a y t h e r e was much b e f o r e , b u t what t h e r e was, was s t e r l i n g v e r s e i n s t e r l i n g E n g l i s h . I t h a d t h o u g h t and f e e l i n g , i n i t . A t p r e s e n t , the s u r e s t way t o become p o p u l a r i s t o have as l i t t l e o f e i t h e r . i n g r e d i e n t as p o s s i b l e . 5 Y e a r s l a t e r i n h i s ' a m a z i n g c a t c h - a l l , The D o c t o r , 2 The P o e t i c a l Works o f R o b e r t S o u t h e y , London, Longman, Orme, Brown, G r e e n & Longmans, 1838, v o l . . 1 , p . v i i i . 3 L i f e and C o r r e s p o n d e n c e , v o l . 3, p . 295. -34-S o u t h e y c a s t i g a t e s e d i t o r s who h o l d t h e i d e a t h a t t h e y s h o u l d prune the F a e r i e Queene down u n t i l i t i s f i t f o r t h e e a r s o f y o u ng m a i d e n s . He d o e s n o t b e l i e v e t h a t t h e s p e l l i n g c o u l d be m o d e r n i z e d w i t h o u t r u i n i n g the m e t r e . As f o r t h e l a n g u a g e , he f o r c e f u l l y s t a t e s t h a t he does n o t t h i n k anyone e v e r had t r o u b l e r e a d i n g t h e F a e r i e Q u e e n e . 4 A n o t h e r p o e t whose works c o n t a i n many a l l u s i o n s t o S p e n s e r and h i s works i s W i l l i a m Wordsworth. I n h i s " P r e f a c e " t o the 1815 e d i t i o n o f L y r i c a l B a l l a d s , Words-w o r t h w r i t e s , The g r a n d s t o r e - h o u s e s o f e n t h u s i a s t i c and m e d i t a t i v e I m a g i n a t i o n , o f p o e t i c a l , as c o n t r a d i s t i n g u i s h e d f r o m human and d r a m a t i c I m a g i n a t i o n , a r e t h e p r o p h e t i c and l y r i c a l p a r t s o f t h e H o l y S c r i p t u r e s , and t h e works o f M i l t o n , t o w h i c h I c a n n o t f o r b e a r t o a d d t h o s e o f S p e n s e r . 5 I n t h e s u p p l e m e n t a r y e s s a y t o the " P r e f a c e " W o r d s w o r t h t u r n s a q u e s t i o n i n g g l a n c e a t S p e n s e r ' s l i t e r a r y p o s i t i o n and f i n d s i t none t o o s e c u r e . O u t s i d e E n g l a n d , he r e m a r k s , S p e n s e r i s s c a r c e l y known a t a l l , and i f h i s r a n k were t o be d e t e r m i n e d b y t h e a t t e n t i o n e v e n the. E n g l i s h p a i d t o h i m i t would have t o be c o n s i d e r e d v e r y s m a l l . " B u t , " he c o n c l u d e s , "he was a g r e a t power; and b e a r s a h i g h name; trie l a u r e l h a s been awarded t o h i m . " 6 4 The D o c t o r , L o n d o n , Longman, Brown, G r e e n & Longmans, 1848, p p . 382-584. 5 The P o e t i c a l Works o f W i l l i a m W o r d s w o r t h, W i l l i a m K n i g h t , e d . , E d i n b u r g h , Wm. P a t t e r s o n , 1883, v o l . 4, p . 523. 6 I b i d . , p . 338. - 8 5 -I t i s a p p r o p r i a t e b e f o r e a p p r o a c h i n g , t h e g r e a t e r c r i t i c i s m o f H a z l i t t and C o l e r i d g e , t o l o o k a t some a b s o l u t e (but- s c a r c e l y c r i t i c a l ) , p r a i s e o f t h e F a e r i e . Queene w r i t - ' t e n by S . G i l m a n f o r the N o r t h A m e r i c a n Review o f 1817..? "The p l a n o f t h e ' F a e r y Queene'," G i l m a n w r i t e s , " i s t h e g r a n d e s t and most n o b l e t h a t e v e r e n t e r e d i n t o the c o n -s t i t u t i o n o f a poem."8 How h a r d i t • i s t o condone t h i s -statement, when'one t h i n k s .of' Homer's - e p i c s o r o f M i l t o n ' s P a r a d i s e L o s t . ' Acco'rding t o G i l m a n , r e a d e r s f o r e g o S p e n s e r n o t b e c a u s e o f l e n g t h , o b s o l e t e d i c t i o n , p r t h e " a n t i q u e s i m p l i c i t y o f t h e s t y l e " b u t b e c a u s e t h e y do h o t l i k e a l l e g o r y . 9 C o m p a r i n g S p e n s e r w i t h Shakespeare', • G i l m a n w r i t e s , I n some r e s p e c t s S p e n s e r i s s u p e r i o r t o S h a k e s p e a r e . He w i e l d s t h e r o d o f e n c h a n t -ment w i t h a more s o o t h i n g and i n s i n u a t i n g e f f e c t - and he t h r o w s on the c o l o u r i n g s o f h i s d e s c r i p t i o n , a h i g h e r f l o o d of. l i g h t , as w e l l , as a s o f t e r b o d y o f s h a d e . I t i s t r u e he' has a s m a l l e r number o f b r i l l i a n t p a s s a g e s ; b u t t h e n he redeems t h i s compara-t i v e d e f e c t b y a much l e s s abundance o f t r a s h . - He w r o t e a t . l e i s u r e a n d . d e l i b e r a t e l y w a i t e d ' . f o r i n s p i r a t i o n ; S h a k e s p e a r e - s c r i b b l e d a g a i n s t t i m e - c h a s e d t h e muse - won g l o r i o u s l y i n -d e e d - b u t sometimes a b u s e d h e r A ° The e s s a y c o n c l u d e s w i t h a h i g h l y p o e t i c a l , b u t r a t h e r m e a n i n g l e s s , f l i g h t o f f a n c i f u l c r i t i c i s m . . The F a e r y Queen' i s a r e p o s i t o r y o f a l l .7 "The F a e r i e Queene o f S p e n s e r , " v o l . 5, pp. 501-509. 8 I b i d . , pp. 502-505. -' . . -9 I b i d . , p. 505. . 10 I b i d . , pp. 507.-508. -86-t h e m i n o r b e a u t i e s o f p o e t r y . - Unbounded v a r i e t y i n i t s d e s c r i p t i o n s - e x a c t f i d e l i t y I n : i t s c o p i e s o f n a t u r e - i n i m i t a b l e p l a y f u l -n e s s i n i t s s a l l i e s o f f a n c y - i r r e s i s t i b l e s e v e r i t y i n i t s s a t i r e - a r a v i s h i n g t r a n s -p o r t I n i t s f l i g h t s o f p a s s i o n - a n u n s p a r i n g c o p i o u s n e s s , f e r t i l i t y , and r i c h n e s s o f i m a g e r y -i n s h o r t , t h e r e i s n o t a f l o w e r o f P a r n a s s u s , w h i c h i s n o t t o be g a t h e r e d t h e r e . 1 1 Y e s , a l l t h i s may be t r u e - i f we s o r t i t o u t and w e i g h e a c h ¥irord i n t h e l e x i c a l b a l a n c e . F o r example, what does t h e w r i t e r mean b y " e x a c t f i d e l i t y i n i t s c o p i e s o f n a t u r e " ? T h e r e a r e no " c o p i e s " t o be f o u n d . S p e n s e r c r e a t e d a new, d e l i g h t f u l , p h a n t a s m a l w o r l d w h e r e i n h i s c h a r a c t e r s m i g h t roam w i t h f r e e d o m . And what i s i n t e n d e d b y " i n i m i t a b l e p l a y f u l n e s s " ? S p e n s e r i s s e l d o m , i f e v e r , p l a y f u l i n t h e F a e r i e Queene. What i s " i r r e s i s t i b l e s e v e r i t y " ? I r r e -s i s t i b l e s a t i r e , p e r n a p s , b u t s e v e r i t y , no. And how c a n we a c c e p t a " r a v i s h i n g t r a n s p o r t i n i t s f l i g h t s o f p a s s i o n " ? To have p a s s i o n s we must have human c h a r a c t e r s , a n d t h e s e t h e F a e r i e Queene does n o t h a v e . I t h a s p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n s o f t h e v a r i o u s v i r t u e s , o f g o o d and e v i l i n v a r i o u s s h a p e s and f o r m s , b u t the v e r y f a c t t h a t t h e y a r e p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n s s n u f f s o u t t h e s p a r k t h a t would have f i r e d them i n t o l i f e , human l i f e . The R e d c r o s s K n i g h t does n o t f o r s a k e Una and l e a g u e w i t h F i d e s s a b e c a u s e o f a f l a w I n h i s c h a r a c t e r . He d o e s so b e c a u s e o f A r c h i m a g o ' s s p e l l s . As we know, e v e n God c a n n o t o v e r r u l e t h e s p e l l s c a s t b y t h e d e v i l a l t h o u g h he c a n a t t e m p t t o p r e v e n t them o r l a t e r r e p a i r t h e damage 11 G i l m a n , op. c i t . , p . 309. -87-t h e y have done,. A l l t h i s i s n o t meant t o condemn c r i t i c a l p r a i s e s u c h as t h a t , o f G i l m a n b u t r a t h e r t o p o i n t o u t i t s d a n g e r s . As ' we have s e e n p r e v i o u s l y , t h e n e o - c l a s s i c a l c r i t i c s condemned o r b e l a b o u r e d S p e n s e r w i t h . a r g u m e n t s b a s e d on t h e ' r u l e s ' . We p o i n t e d o u t a t t h a t t i m e t h a t s u c h c r i t i c i s m , a l t h o u g h t e m p o r a r i l y d a maging, was n o t o f g r e a t i m p o r t a n c e as i t d i d n o t have l a s t i n g e f f e c t s . ' When t h e c r i t i c i s m - o f t h e r u l e s c o l l a p s e d a l l t h a t i t h a d e v a l u a t e d n e e d e d r e v a l u a t i o n . T h a t t h i s ' r e v a l i d a t i n g had t o be done, by t h e p r e - r o m a n t i c s and t h e r o m a n t i c s was somewhat u n f o r t u n a t e . T h e i r c r i t i c i s m v a r i e d b a s i c a l l y f r o m t h a t o f t h e n e o - c l a s s i c i s t s and, t h e r e -f o r e , a l a r g e amount o f sound a d v e r s e c r i t i c i s m b y t h e l a t t e r g r o u p was w i p ed away and r e p l a c e d g e n e r a l l y b y I n d i s c r i m i n a t e p r a i s e . The r o m a n t i c s d i s c o v e r e d i n S p e n s e r t h a t - s a m e f r e e d o m t h e y t h e m s e l v e s c h e r i s h e d a f t e r t h e f a l l o f t h e r u l e s . They a l s o f o u n d a l l t h e e l e m e n t s o f r o m a n t l s m e t h a t gave them t h e i r name. The work o f H u r d and W a r t o n , a l t h o u g h o f g r e a t v a l u e , l e d t o t h i s a p p r o a c h . The e a r l y r o m a n t i c s r e a l i z e d t h a t i n S p e n s e r t h e y had a k i n d r e d s p i r i t a n d t h u s were b i a s e d i n h i s f a v o u r . T h i s i s n o t t o say t h a t t h e y r e s u r r e c t e d S p e n s e r and e n g e n d e r e d a g e n e r a l i n t e r e s t i n h i s w o r k s . T h a t would be f a r f r o m t r u e . As W o rdsworth p o i n t e d o u t , S p e n s e r was h a r d l y known o u t s i d e E n g l a n d and l i t t l e known e v e n i n E n g l a n d . But t h e p o e t s r e a d him and f o u n d i n him a v o i c e o f t h e "new p o e t r y " - t h e i r new p o e t r y . And b e s i d e s t h i s , -88-t h e p o e t s , on the whole, were the c r i t i c s , and i n t h e i r p r e f a c e s , t h e i r l e t t e r s , and t h e i r e s s a y s , t h e y b u i l t up a body o f h i g h a n d , on t h e w h o l e , u n q u a l i f i e d p r a i s e o f t h e " m a s t e r " - as S o u t h e y a f f e c t i o n a t e l y c a l l e d S p e n s e r . F o r a l l t h i s , t h e e a r l y r o m a n t i c s f a i l e d , e x c e p t f o r Wordsworth, t o r e a l i z e t h a t S p e n s e r was n o t b e i n g r e a d , and t h a t , I f he were as g r e a t as t h e y s a i d , i t was t i m e t h a t t h e y a t t e m p t e d t o f i n d t h e f a u l t t h a t . m u s t n e c e s s a r i l y l i e w i t h t h e r e a d e r . I f the f a u l t , l a y n o t w i t h t h e r e a d e r then, t h e i r ' m o s t l a v i s h p r a i s e c o u l d n o t c o v e r t h e f l a w o r f l a w s i n h e r e n t i n S p e n s e r ' s work. W i t h the a d v e n t o f the l a t e r r o m a n t i c s we c a n see a c h a n g e . R o m a n t i c i s m h a s Become f i r m l y e n t r e n c h e d and i s a c c e p t e d and i t s w r i t e r s a r e a b l e t o w r i t e c r i t i c i s m t h a t i s n o t c o l o u r e d b y the f i r s t d awning o f a new movement, Thus i t i s t h a t W i l l i a m H a z l i t t , w i t h a c u t e p e r c e p t i o n , w r i t e s , i n h i s e s s a y "On S h a k e s p e a r e and M i l t o n , " t h a t "The c h a r -a c t e r i s t i c o f C h a u c e r i s i n t e n s i t y ; of. S p e n s e r , r e m o t e n e s s ; o f M i l t o n , e l e v a t i o n ; o f S h a k e s p e a r e , e v e r y t h i n g . " 1 2 And, he c o n t i n u e s , " C h a u c e r most f r e q u e n t l y d e s c r i b e s t h i n g s as t h e y a r e ; S p e n s e r , as we w i s h them t o be; S h a k e s p e a r e , as t h e y would be; and M i l t o n as t h e y o u g h t t o b e . " l 3 I n a h o t h e r o e s s a y H a z l i t t s a y s t h a t S p e n s e r " . . . p a i n t s n a t u r e , n o t as we f i n d i t , b u t as we e x p e c t e d t o f i n d i t and 12 I n L e c t u r e s on t h e E n g l i s h P o e t s and t h e E n g l i s h Comic  W r i t e r s , W.C. H a z l i t t , e d . , L o n d o n , G. B e l l , 1899, p. 61. 13 L o c . c i t . -89-f u l f i l s t h e d e l i g h t f u l p r o m i s e o f o u r y o u t h . . And, he g o e s on -The two w o r l d s o f r e a l i t y and o f f i c t i o n a r e p o i s e d on the w i ngs o f h i s i m a g i n a t i o n . H i s ideas-, i n d e e d , seem more d i s t i n c t .than h i s -p e r c e p t i o n s . He i s a p a i n t e r o f a b s t r a c t i o n s , and d e s c r i b e s them w i t h d a z z l i n g m i n u t e n e s s . 1 5 To H a z l i t t t h e r e were no p o e t s e i t h e r b e f o r e C h a u c e r o r between C h a u c e r and SSpenser t h a t were o f g e n e r a l i n -t e r e s t o r whose g e n i u s m e r i t e d a c o m p a r i s o n w i t h e i t h e r one. B o t h C h a u c e r and Spenser, were a c t i v e i n l i f e , y e t S p e n s e r ' s p o e t r y c a n n o t be c a l l e d a c t i v e . I t was, s a y s H a z l i t t , " . . . i n s p i r e d by t h e l o v e o f ease-, and r e l a x a t i o n f r o m a l l ' t h e c a r e s and b u s i n e s s o f l i f e . " 1 6 As a f i n a l e v a l u a t i o n , H a z l i t t s t a t e s s i m p l y t h a t S p e n s e r , " o f a l l t h e p o e t s , . . . i s t h e most p o e t i c a l . " l ^ . P a r f r o m t h e d i c t u m t h a t K e a t s was t o p o p u l a r i z e , " B e a u t y i s t r u t h , t r u t h i s b e a u t y , " I s H a z l i t t ' s s t a t e m e n t t h a t The l o v e o f b e a u t y , however, and n o t o f t r u t h , i s the m o v i n g p r i n c i p l e o f h i s m i n d ; and he i s g u i d e d i n h i s f a n t a s t i c d e l i n e a t i o n s by - no r u l e b u t t h e i m p u l s e o f an i n e x h a u s t i b l e -i m a g i n a t i o n . He l u x u r i a t e s e q u a l l y i n s c e n e s ^ \ o f e a s t e r n m a g n i f i c e n c e on the s t i l l s o l i t u d e ^ o f a h e r m i t ' s c e i l , i n the e x t r e m e s . o f s e n s u r a l i t y o r r e f i n e m e n t . 1 8 14 "On C h a u c e r and S p e n s e r , " i n L e c t u r e s , p. 46. 15 L o c . c i t . 16 I b i d . , p. 45. 17 L o c . c i t . 18 I b i d . , p. 47. -90-I n S p e n s e r ' s a l l e g o r i c a l p e r s o n a g e s and f i c t i o n s H a z l i t t f i n d s a n " . . . o r i g i n a l i t y , r i c h n e s s , and v a r i e t y . . . w h i c h a l m o s t v i e w i t h t h e s p l e n d o u r o f t h e a n c i e n t m y t h o l o g y . "19 U n l i i k e A r i o s t o , who c a r r i e s h i s r e a d e r s i n t o t h e w o r l d o f romance, S p e n s e r c a r r i e s h i s i n t o a w o r l d o f f a i r y l a n d , a w o r l d o f " i d e a l b e i n g s . " 2 0 H a z l i t t f o l l o w s i n t h e f o o t s t e p s o f t h o s e c r i t i c s who,. as we have s e e n , do n o t b e l i e v e t h a t i t i s o f any i m p o r t a n c e t o comprehend t h e a l l e g o r y . He w r i t e s t h a t some p e o p l e . . . a r e a f r a i d o f t h e a l l e g o r y , as i f t h e y t h o u g h t i t would b i t e them: t h e y l o o k a t i t as a c h i l d l o o k s a t a p a i n t e d d r a g o n , and t h i n k i t w i l l s t r a n g l e them i n i t s s h i n i n g f o l d s . T h i s i s v e r y i d l e . I f t h e y do n o t meddle with'.the a l l e g o r y , t h e a l l e g o r y w i l l n o t meddle w i t h them. W i t h o u t m i n d i n g i t a t a l l , t h e whole i s as p l a i n as a p i k e -s t a f f . I t m i g h t a s w e l l be p r e t e n d e d t h a t we c a n n o t see P o u s s i n ' s p i c t u r e s f o r t h e a l l e g o r y , as t h a t t h e a l l e g o r y p r e v e n t us f r o m u n d e r s t a n d i n g S p e n s e r . 2 1 I n a n s w e r i n g t h e c h a r g e t h a t S p e n s e r l a c k s b o t h p a s s i o n a n d s t r e n g t h , H a z l i t t r e p l i e s t h a t he has a g r e a t amount o f 19 H a z l i t t , op. c i t . , p. .46. 20 L o c . c i t . 21 I b i d . , p . 49. I t i s i n t e r e s t i n g t o see what Mr. T u c k e r B r o o k e has t o s a y o f S p e n s e r ' s a l l e g o r y . He w r i t e s , " A l l e g o r y , f o r s o o t h i I f t h e F a e r i e Queene i s a l l e g o r i c a l , so i n t h e i r d i f f e r e n t , ways a r e Hamlet and Tom J o n e s and t h e Book o f J o b ; so i s a l l g r e a t f i c t i o n and most p o e t r y . S p e n s e r ' s f a i r y l a n d i s no m y s t i c f a n t a s y , b u t a t r u e p i c t u r e o f t h e d e m o c r a c y o f l i f e . H i s men and women p u r s u e t h e i r c a r e e r s t h r o u g h e v e r f r e s h and a p p a r e n t l y u n p r e m e d i t a t e d i n c i d e n t s , r e s i s t i n g ' o r y i e l d i n g t o t h e n a t u r a l t e m p t a t i o n s t h e y e n c o u n t e r , p e r f o r m i n g t h e i r h e r o i s m s a n d t h e i r mean-n e s s e s ; l o s t sometimes f o r l o n g s e r i e s o f c a n t o s t o t h e . r e a d e r , b u t a l w a y s r e a p p e a r i n g i n t h e n a t u r a l p r o g r e s s o f -91-b o t h . He has n o t i n d e e d ^/he w r i t e s / t h e p a t h o s o f • i m m e d i a t e a c t i o n o r s u f f e r i n g , w h i c h i s more p r o p e r l y t h e d r a m a t i c ; b u t he has a l l t h e p a t h o s o f s e n t i m e n t and romance - a l l t h a t b e l o n g s t o d i s t a n t o b j e c t s o f t e r r o r , and u n c e r t a i n , i m a g i n a r y d i s t r e s s . H i s s t r e n g t h , i n l i k e manner, i s n o t s t r e n g t h o f w i l l o r a c t i o n , o f bone and m u s c l e , n o r i s i t c o a r s e and p a l p a b l e - b u t i t assumes a c h a r a c t e r o f v a s t n e s s and s u b l i m i t y s e e n t h r o u g h t h e same v i s i o n a r y medium, and b l e n d e d w i t h t h e a p -p a l l i n g a s s o c i a t i o n s o f p r e t e r n a t u r a l a g e n c y . 2 2 A c c o r d i n g t o H a z l i t t , c o m p a r i s o n s s h o u l d ' n o t be made be t w e e n S p e n s e r a n d S h a k e s p e a r e . I t would be b e t t e r t o com-pare- t h e F a e r i e Qiueene w i t h M i l t o n ' s Comus or. w i t h - Bunyan's P i l g r i m ' s P r o g r e s s . The c o m p a r i s o n w i t h Comus would "not be u n f a v o u r a b l e t o S p e n s e r . " 2 3 B u t , H a z l i t t b e l i e v e s , t h e -e v e n t s , n e v e r h u r r i e d on t o f o r c e d c o n c l u s i o n s , a l w a y s a d v a n -c i n g f r o m t a s k t o t a s k i n t h e s i m p l e human way. W h i l e l i f e l a s t s , i n t e r e s t c o n t i n u e s and d u t y d r i v e s . " ( p . 4 9 9 ) . L a t e r Mr. Brooke adds t h a t " . ; . t h e poem moves, one o f the t r u e s t Human Comedies and one o f t h e most b e a u t i f u l . S t i l l b e g i n -n i n g , n e v e r e n d i n g , c h a r a c t e r i s added t o c h a r a c t e r , i n c i d e n t t o i n c i d e n t , as o u r m o t l e y l i f e f l o w s p a s t t h e windows o f K i l -c o l m a n C a s t l e . H e r e , i f e v e r , i s a r t c o n c e a l e d i n a r t ; e v e r y e p i s o d e seems t o grow t o i t s p e r f e c t i o n as i n c o n s p i c u o u s l y as i f . the s u n and r a i n of h e a v e n f o s t e r e d i t , - , and one c a u g h t b y t h e w i t c h e r y o f t h i s n a r r a t i v e may. a t t i m e s be t e m p t e d t o b l a s -pheme a g a i n s t the o t h e r gods o f P a r n a s s u s . E v e n C h a u c e r ' s a r t may l o o k p u e r i l e , and b e s i d e s the t i d a l f l o w o f S p e n s e r e v e n t h e g r e a t d r a m a t i s t ' s / s i c T / m e t h o d , w i t h i t s s p o t l i g h t s and o v e r h a s t e , may sometimes seem l i k e t i n s e l a g a i n s t m o o n l i g h t . " (11. 5 0 0 - 5 0 1 ) . "From "The R e n a i s s a n c e , " i n "A L i t e r a r y H i s t o r y  o f E n g l a n d , A l b e r t C. Baug'h, ed. , New Y o r k , A p p l e t o n , 1948. •It i s , i n d e e d , d a n g e r o u s g r o u n d u p o n w h i c h to t r e a d . I f , as a c c o r d i n g t o Mr. B r o o k e , t h e r e i s no a l l e g o r y , t h e n we have n o t h i n g to. w o r r y u s . I f , on t h e o t h e r h a n d , t h e r e i s a l l e g o r y , as S p e n s e r and most w r i t e r s s a y , . t h e n I s i n c e r e l y b e l i e v e t h a t i n o r d e r t o g e t the most f r o m the F a e r i e Queene we must a t t e m p t t o comprehend i t t o the b e s t o f o u r a b i l i t y . 22 H a z l i t t , op. c i t . , p. 54. . 23: L o c . c i t . -92 P i l g r i m ' s P r o g r e s s has more i n t e r e s t b u t l e s s i m a g i n a t i o n 24 t h a n the F a e r i e Queene. H a z l i t t s p e a k s i n more d e t a i l a b o u t S p e n s e r ' s l a n g u a g e , s t a n z a and v e r s i f i c a t i o n . The s t a n z a , he r e m a r k s , was b o r r o w e d f r o m t h e I t a l i a n s (a c o n t r o v e r s i a l p o i n t ) and a l -t h o u g h f i t t e d t o t h e i r l a n g u a g e was n o t p a r t i c u l a r l y s u i t e d t o - E n g l i s h b e c a u s e o f t h e " . . . s t u b b o r n , u n a c c o m o d a t i n g r e s i s t a n c e . . . / o f " i t s / c o n s o n a n t e n d i n g s . . . . " 2 5 To f i l l o u t t h e c o m p l i c a t e d r i m i n g o f t h i s " s i n g - s o n g " s t a n z a , S p e n s e r was " . . . s e d u c e d i n t o a c e r t a i n l i c e n s e o f e x p r e s s i o n . . . . " ^ 6 F o r S p e n s e r ' s v e r s i f i c a t i o n H a z l i t t has t h e h i g h e s t p r a i s e . He w r i t e s , -/ i t / . . . i s a t once the most smooth and the most s o u n d i n g i n t h e l a n g u a g e . I t i s as. l a b y r i n t h o f sweat s o u n d s . . . t h a t w o u l d c l o y by t h e i r v e r y s w e e t n e s s , b u t t h a t t h e e a r i s c o n s t a n t l y r e l i e v e d and e n c h a n t e d by t h e i r c o n t i n u e d v a r i e t y o r m o d u l a t i o n , d w e l l i n g -on t h e p a u s e s o f t h e a c t i o n , o r f l o w i n g on i n a f u l l e r t i d e o f harmony w i t h the movement o f t h e s e n t i m e n t a l . I t has n o t t h e b o l d d r a m a t i c t r a n s i t i o n s o f S h a k e s p e a r e ' s b l a n k v e r s e , n o r t h e h i g h - r a i s e d tone :of M i l t o n ' s : b u t i t i s t h e p e r f e c t i o n o f m e l t i n g harmony, d i s s o l v i n g t h e s o u l i n p l e a s u r e , o r h o l d i n g i t c a p t i v e i n t h e c h a i n s o f s u s p e n s e . S p e n s e r was t h e p o e t o f o u r waking dreams; and he has i n v e n t e d n o t o n l y a l a n g u a g e , b u t a m u s i c o f h i s own f o r them. The u n d u l a t i o n s a r e i n f i n i t e > l i k e t h o s e o f t h e waves o f the s e a ; b u t t h e e f f e c t . i s s t i l l t he same, l u l l i n g t h e s e n s e s i n t o a deep o b l i v i o n o f t h e j a r r i n g n o i s e s o f the w o r l d , f r o m w h i c h we have no w i s h t o be e v e r r e c a l l e d . ^ 24 H a z l i t t , op. c i t . , p . 55. 25 I b i d . , p . 56. 26 L o c . c i t . 27 I b i d . , pp. 56-57. H a z l i t t , l i k e n e a r l y a l l the c r i t i c s we have s t u d i e d so f a r , agrees on the ab s o l u t e supremacy of Spenser's v e r s i f i c a t i o n . A short two years a f t e r H a z l i t t wrote, W a s h i n g t o n I r v i n g commented b r i e f l y upon the " p u r i t y and s t a b i l i t y " o f the E n g l i s h language. The p o i n t he makes i n h i s "Sketch-book of G e o f f r e y Crayon" i s p a r t i c u l a r l y w e l l taken. I r v i n g , i t . should be remembered, attempted to b l e n d the c l a s s i c a l and European c u l t u r e s i n t o an American c u l t u r e . He succeeded i n such works as h i s Homeric-Cervantesque H i s t o r y of New  Yo r k and the elemental burger, o r o l d wives', t a l e s of R i p  Van Winkle and The Legend of Sleepy-Hollow. I t i s not d i f f i c u l t , t h e r e f o r e , t o understand the mind of a man who wrote that Even now many t a l k of Spenser's 'well of pure E n g l i s h u n d e f i l e d , ' a s i f the language ever sprang from a w e l l or founta i n - h e a d , and was not r a t h e r a mere confluence of v a r i o u s tongues, p e r p e t u a l l y s u b j e c t t o changes and i n t e r m i x t u r e s . I t i s t h i s which has made E n g l i s h l i t e r a t u r e so extremely mutable, and the r e p u t a t i o n b u i l t upon i t so f l e e t i n g . 2 8 I t i s unfortunate that I r v i n g has not g i v e n us h i s opinio n s concerning the F a e r i e Queene. I t i s probable t h a t h i s keen l i t e r a r y s e n s i b i l i t y would have added something v a l u a b l e although not deeply p e n e t r a t i n g , to our s t o r e o f Spenser s c h o l a r s h i p . .A r a t h e r s u r p r i s i n g and welcome a t t a c k on Spenser's" minor poems, w r i t t e n by an anonymous author, appeared i n the R e t r o s p e c t i v e Review o f 1825. The a t t a c k was welcome, not i n that i t was j u s t i f i e d , b u t i n that i t o f f e r e d a needed 28 /I8207, i n The Works of Washington I r v i n g , New York, G.P. Putnam, 1860, v o l . 2, p. 164. -94-r e l i e f f r o m the p r a i s e t h a t was g r o w i n g more and more u n -q u a l i f i e d . S t e a d y p r a i s e , l i k e u n r u f f l e d w a t e r , s o o n s t a g n a t e s th e works o f a w r i t e r . Pew r e a d e r s w i l l a p p r o a c h s u c h a w r i t e r b e c a u s e t h e y f e e l t h a t t h e y a l s o w i l l be f o r c e d to p r a i s e him. On the o t h e r hand a c r i t i c a l c o n -t r o v e r s y w i l l s t i m u l a t e r e a d e r s t o a p p r o a c h tne w o r ks o f t h e w r i t e r u n d e r d i s c u s s i o n . U n j u s t i f i e d a d v e r s e c r i t i c i s m , h owever, when i t makes a sudden a p p e a r a n c e i s n o t s t i m u l a t i n g , u n l e s s i t e x c i t e s an i n d i s c r i m i n a t i n g r e a d e r t o memorize a mot o r two t h a t i t t u r n s and t o u s e them a b o u t works he has n o t t a k e n t h e t r o u b l e t o r e a d . The s t o n e t h a t t h e R e t r o s p e c t i v e  R e v i e w t h r e w i n t o t h e c a l m . w a t e r s o f c r i t i c a l c o m p l a c e n c y was, however, w i t h o u t e f f e c t , f o r t h e t o t a l l a c k o f j u s t i f i c a t i o n t u r n e d the s t o n e i n t o a p e b b l e and o n l y momentary r i p p l e s b r o k e t h e s u r f a c e c a l m . Our R e t r o s p e c t i v e c r i t i c , and the a d j e c t i v e i s I r o n i c , w r i t e s t h a t I n the e u l o g i u m s h e a p e d u p o n S p e n s e r ' s m i n o r poems, l i t t l e d i s c r i m i n a t i o n h a s , i n o u r o p i n i o n , b e e n e x e r c i s e d ; the judgment o f the c r i t i c seems t o have been h o o d - w i n k e d , an d h i s t a s t e d e p r i v e d o f t h e f a c u l t y o f d i s -t i n g u i s h i n g t h e good f r o m the b a d , t h e s o u l e . and s p i r i t f r o m mere c o r p o r a l s u b s t a n c e , , w h i c h i s m o r t a l and o u g h t t o be inhumed.^9 T h i s i s , i t must be a d m i t t e d , i n p a r t t r u e : c e r t a i n o f S p e n s e r ' s m i n o r poems a r e o f l i t t l e v a l u e - b u t t h e y a r e s e l d o m h e l d up by c r i t i c s as e xamples o f g r e a t p o e t r y . Our anonymous 29 " S p e n s e r ' s M i n o r Poems," v o l . 12, p . i 4 3 . - 9 5 -c r i t i c , therefore, i s heating a dead, horse. Of the eclogues i n the Shepheardes Calender t h i s c r i t i c thinks that "They contain...some, although hut a small quantity of poetry..... "30 Such a statement i s absurd. I f the Calender i s not poetry then very l i t t l e that followed i t i s poetry either, and, i t must be remembered, i t s i n -fluence was immeasurable. Another example of this c r i t i c ' s bias i s his statement on the Amoretti. He says, A bad sonnet i s one of the d u l l e s t things i n creation, and a series of them absolutely i n t o l e r a b l e . Those i n question are, f o r the most part, cold, passionless, and conceited; indeed, we actually f e e l i t a task to get through them.31 There i s s i n c e r i t y i n Spenser's every sonnet. In the Amor-e t t i Spenser reveals an evenness of tone, s t y l e , and f e e l i n g exhibited elsewhere only by Daniel, but Daniel, with a l l . his sweet perfection, unlike Spenser, lacked the creative spark. There was a voluptuous repose about him /the Review continues/ which prevented him from leaving the beaten track, which induced him to rest s a t i s f i e d with the subjects on which, po e t i c a l talent was o r d i n a r i l y exercised, and with the forms of composition i n which they were invented, models on which natural sen-timent, and the simple language of passion, were s a c r i f i c e d to absurd f i c t i o n s and cold Ingenuity. His smaller pieces are...for the most part, actually dull.32 30 Retro. Review, p. 144 31 Ibid.., pp. 157-158. 32 Ibid., p. 164. -96-I t seems h a r d l y n e c e s s a r y t o comment u p o n t h i s c r i t i c i s m e x c e p t t o a s k what i s meant by " v o l u p t u o u s r e p o s e , " and t o wonder i f the w r i t e r r e a l l y ' b e l i e v e d t h a t " a b s u r d f i c t i o n s " were the " s u b j e c t s on w h i c h p o e t i c a l t a l e n t was o r d i n a r i l y e x e r c i s e d " ? I n t h e same y e a r (1825) an a r t i c l e a p p e a r e d i n the Q u a r t e r l y Review w h i c h c o n t r a s t s f a v o u r a b l y w i t h t h e one j u s t d e s c r i b e d . Whereas, the R e t r o s p e c t i v e r e f e r r e d t o S p e n s e r ' s " a b s u r d f i c t i o n s , " t h e Q u a r t e r l y f i n d s t h a t b a s i c a l l y S p e n s e r was a s a c r e d p o e t . The F a e r i e Queene, w r i t e s the unknown a u t h o r o f t h e a r t i c l e , . . . i s a c o n t i n u a l , d e l i b e r a t e e n d e a v o u r to' e n l i s t t h e r e s t l e s s i n t e l l e c t and c h i v a l r o u s f e e l i n g , o f an i n q u i r i n g and r o m a n t i c age , on the s i d e o f g o o d n e s s and f a i t h , o f p u r i t y and j u s t i c e . 3 o A l t h o u g h t h i s c r i t i c i s d i s a p p o i n t e d t o f i n d some v u l g a r p a s s a g e s i n S p e n s e r , he r e m a r k s t h a t e v e n i n t h e s e p a s s a g e s S p e n s e r i s n e v e r " s e d u c t i v e . " I n d e e d , he s a y s , " V i c e I n h i m , however t r u l y d e s c r i b e d , i s a l w a y s made c o n t e m p t i b l e o r o d i o u s . " 3 4 S p e n s e r ' s w r i t i n g s a r e f i l l e d , he p o i n t s o u t , w i t h a l l u s i o n s t o the s a c r e d w r i t i n g s o f t h e B i b l e - " . . . a l l u s i o n s b r e a t h e d , i f we may so s p e a k , r a t h e r t h a n u t t e r e d , and much f i t t e r t o be s i l e n t l y c o n s i d e r e d , t h a n t o be d r a g g e d f o r w a r d f o r q u o t a t i o n o r m i n u t e c r i t i c i s m . " 3 5 T h e s e v e i l e d a l l u s i o n s 33 " S a c r e d Poetry," v o l . 52, 1825, p . 225. '34 I b i d . , pp. 225-226. 55 Ibid'. , p. 227'. -97-r e s u l t f r o m t h e f a c t t h a t S p e n s e r ...would have s h r u n k more f r o m t h e c h a n c e o f d e b a s i n g a s a c r e d s u b j e c t by unhandsome t r e a t m e n t , t h a n o f I n c u r r i n g r i d i c u l e b y what w o u l d be c a l l e d u n s e a s o n a b l e a t t e m p t s t o h a l -low t h i n g s m e r e l y s e c u l a r . 3 6 I t i s no more c o r r e c t to v i e w S p e n s e r as e s s e n t i a l l y a s a c r e d p o e t t h a n i t i s t o . v i e w h i m as a p o l i t i c a l w r i t e r o r a m o r a l p h i l o s o p h e r . He I s a l l t h r e e ; and he i s much more - he i s a f a n c i f u l s t o r y - t e l l e r . A l t h o u g h n e i t h e r l a s t i n m e r i t nor c h r o n o l o g y o f t h e c r i t i c s m e n t i o n e d i n t h i s c h a p t e r , I have r e s e r v e d a d i s -c u s s i o n o f C o l e r i d g e u n t i l now b e c a u s e o f h i s i m p o r t a n c e . C o l e r i d g e ' s " A p p e n d i x . o n S p e n s e r " I s a s h o r t p a s s a g e w h i c h a p p e a r s w i t h o t h e r . a p p e n d i c e s a t t h e end o f h i s L e c t u r e s and N o t e s u p o n S h a k e s p e a r e . . . . The a p p e n d i x has a t h r e e - f o l d , v a l u e : I t s c o m p a r i s o n b e t w e e n S h a k e s p e a r e and S p e n s e r ; i t s d e f i n i t i o n o f a l l e g o r y ; and I t s e n u m e r a t i o n o f the s e v e n c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f S p e n s e r ' s w o r k s . T h e s e t h r e e , p o i n t s s h o u l d be t a k e n up i n some d e t a i l . I n the f i r s t p l a c e we have the S h a k e s p e a r e - S p e n s e r c o m p a r i s o n , w h i c h i s most a s t u t e . C o l e r i d g e w r i t e s -r T h e r e i s t h i s d i f f e r e n c e , among many o t h e r s , b e t w e e n S h a k e s p e r e and S p e n s e r ; - S h a k s p e r e i s n e v e r c o l o u r e d by t h e c u s t o ms o f h i s age; what a p p e a r s o f c o n t e m p o r a r y c h a r a c t e r i n him i s m e r e l y n e g a t i v e ; i t i s j u s t n o t s o m e t h i n g e l s e . He h a s none o f t h e f i c t i t i o u s r e a l i t i e s o f the c l a s s i c s , none o f t h e g r o t e s q u e n e s s o f c h i v a l r y , none of- t h e a l l e g o r y o f the m i d d l e a g e s ; t h e r e i s no s e c t a r i a n i s m e i t h e r o f 36 Q u a r t e r l y R e v i e w, p . 228. -98-p o l i t i c s - o r r e l i g i o n , no m i s e r , no w i t c h , -no common w i t c h , - no a s t r o l o g y - n o t h i n g impermanent o f however l o n g d u r a t i o n ; b u t he s t a n d s l i k e t h e yew t r e e i n L o r t o n v a l e , . w h i c h has known so many ages t h a t i t b e l o n g s t o none i n p a r t i c u l a r ; a l i v i n g image o f end-l e s s s e l f - r e p r o d u c t i o n , l i k e t h e i m m o r t a l t r e e o f M a l a b a r . I n S p e n s e r t h e s p i r i t o f c h i v a l r y i s e n t i r e l y p r e d o m i n a n t , a l t h o u g h w i t h a much g r e a t e r i n f u s i o n o f the p o e t ' s own i n d i v i d u a l s e l f i n t o i t t h a n i s f o u n d i n any o t h e r w r i t e r . He h a s t h e w i t o f t h e s o u t h e r n w i t h t h e d e e p e r i n w a r d n e s s o f the n o r t h e r n g e n i u s . 5 7 S e c o n d l y , C o l e r i d g e ' s d e f i n i t i o n o f a l l e g o r y I s e x t r e m e l y v a l u a b l e . I t n o t o n l y i n c l u d e s t h e d i c t i o n a r y d e f i n i t i o n b u t a l s o i s e x t e n d e d t o g i v e a f u l l e r u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f a l l t h e n e c e s s a r y components. A s t u d e n t would d o ' w e l l t o keep C o l e r i d g e ' s d e f i n i t i o n i n m i n d w h i l e s t u d y i n g the F a e r i e Qjaeene o r any o t h e r a l l e g o r i c a l work. C o l e r i d g e s a y s t h a t a l l e g o r y i s . . . t h e employment o f one s e t o f a g e n t s and images t o c o n v e y i n d i s g u i s e a m o r a l m e a n i n g , w i t h a l i k e n e s s t o the i m a g i n a t i o n , b u t w i t h a d i f f e r e n c e t o t h e u n d e r s t a n d i n g , - t h o s e a g e n t s and i m a g e s b e i n g so c o m b i n e d as t o f o r m a homogeneous whole. T h i s d i s t i n g u i s h e s i t f r o m m e t a p h o r , w h i c h i s . p a r t o f a n a l l e g o r y . But a l l e g o r y i s n o t p r o p e r l y d i s t i n g u i s h a b l e f r o m f a b l e , o t h e r w i s e t h a n as t h e f i r s t i n -c l u d e s t h e s e c o n d , as a genus i t s s p e c i e s : f o r i n a f a b l e t h e r e must be n o t h i n g b u t what i s u n i v e r s a l l y known and a c k n o w l e d g e d , b u t i n an a l l e g o r y t h e r e may be t h a t w h i c h i s new a n d n o t p r e v i o u s l y a d m i t t e d . 3 8 He t h e n c o n t i n u e s : " H a r r a t i v e a l l e g o r y i s d i s t i n g u i s h e d f r o m m y t h o l o g y as r e a l i t y f r o m s y m b o l , I t i s , I n s h o r t , t h e 37 L e c t u r e s and Motes upon S h a k e s p e a r e . . . , T. A s h e , e d . , L ondon, G. B e l l , 1900, pp. 510-511. 38 I b i d . , p. 511. -99-p r o p e r i n t e r m e d i u m b e t w e e n p e r s o n and p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n . "39 The s e v e n c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f S p e n s e r ' s work, a c c o r d i n g t o C o l e r i d g e , a r e : 4 ^ 1. T h e r e I s a s w e e t n e s s and f l u e n c y i n t h e v e r s e o f S p e n s e r t h a t c a n be d i s t i n g u i s h e d f r o m t h e more c o m p l i c a t e d t e x t u r a l h a r m o n i e s t o be f o u n d i n t h e works o f e i t h e r S h a k e s p e a r e o r M i l t o n . 2. I n the m e t r e o f t h e F a e r i e Queene t h e r e i s a c e r t a i n " s c i e n t i f i c " c o n s t r u c t i o n w h i c h c a n be s e e n i n S p e n s e r ' s a b l e a l l i t e r a t i o n t h a t d o u b l e s a n i mage's i m p r e s s i o n . I t i s i n t e r e s t i n g t o n o t e t h a t on June 24, 1827, C o l e r i d g e r e -c o r d e d i n h i s T a b l e T a l k t h a t S p e n s e r ' s E p i t h a l a m l o n i s t r u l y s u b l i m e ; and p r a y mark t h e s w a n - l i k e movement of. h i s ex-q u i s i t e P r o t h a l a m i o n . H i s a t t e n t i o n t o m e t r e and r h y t h m i s sometimes so e x t r e m e l y m i n u t e as t o be p a i n f u l e v e n t o my e a r , and. y o u know how h i g h l y . I p r i z e good v e r s i f i c a t i o n . 4 1 3. S p e n s e r has an e x c e l l e n t g i f t f o r b l e n d i n g d e s c r i p t i o n s o f e x t e r n a l n a t u r e a n d s t o r y i n c i d e n t w i t h th e a l l e g o r y a n d t h e e p i c a c t i v i t y . The d e s c r i p t i o n s a r e n o t p i c t u r e s q u e b u t c o n s t i t u t e a s e r i e s o f d r e a m - l i k e i m a g e s . 4. I n the F a e r i e Queene t h e r e i s a w o n d e r f u l a b s e n c e . o f p a r t i c u l a r i t i e s o f b o t h s p a c e and t i m e . T h e r e I s n e i t h e r h i s t o r y n o r g e o g r a p h y . I t i s a t r u e f a i r y - l a n d , o r , a l a n d 39 L e c t u r e s , p . 511. 40 I b i d . , pp. 512-517. 41 The T a b l e T a l k and Omnlana, T. Ashe, e d . , L ondon, G. B e l l , 1925, pp. 45-46. -100-o f m e n t a l s p a c e . "The p o e t , " C o l e r i d g e s a y s , "has p l a c e d y o u i n a dream...and y o u n e i t h e r w i s h , n o r have t h e power, t o e n q u i r e where y o u a r e , o r how y o u g o t t h e r e . " 42 5. T h e r e i s a b a s i c c h a r a c t e r o f C h r i s t i a n c h i v a l r y i n a l l S p e n s e r ' s p e r s o n s , b u t e s p e c i a l l y i n h i s women, C o l e r i d g e w r i t e s , and t h e p o i n t may w e l l be h e l d i n d o u b t , t h a t The G r e e k s , e x c e p t , p e r h a p s , i n Homer, seem t o have h a d no way o f m a k i n g t h e i r women i n -t e r e s t i n g , b u t b y u n s e x i n g them, as i n the i n s t a n c e s o f t h e t r a g i c Medea, E l e c t r a , &c. C o n t r a s t s u c h c h a r a c t e r s w i t h S p e n s e r ' s Una, who e x h i b i t s no p r o m i n e n t f e a t u r e , has no p a r t i c u l a r ! z a t i o n , b u t p r o d u c e s t h e same f e e l i n g t h a t a s t a t u e d o e s , when contem-p l a t e d a t a d i s t a n c e . 4 5 To t h i s w r i t e r a t l e a s t t h e image o f Una as a s t a t u e i s p a r t i c u l a r l y i n a p p r o p r i a t e . T h e r e c a n n o t be a n y t h i n g more " u n s e x e d " t h a n a s t a t u e w h i c h i s i n a n e v e r l a s t i n g s t a t i c p o s i t i o n . Whereas, on t h e o t h e r hand, the s e x o f Medea and E l e c t r a i s s t r i p p e d away b y t h e t r a g i c c i r c u m s t a n c e s w h i c h e n g u l f them. T r a g e d y i s a g r e a t l e v e l l e r , n o t i n the sense o f m aking common, b u t o f making human - o r r a t h e r , i n t h e s e n s e where m a l e n e s s o r f e m a l e n e s s i s no l o n g e r o f i m p o r -t a n c e and o n l y humanness r e m a i n s w i t h i t s g e n e r a l , p e r h a p s , u n i v e r s a l r e s p o n s e s t o the t r a g i c s t i m u l i . 6. T h e r e i s i n S p e n s e r t h e w o r k i n g s o f a n a t i o n a l i s m t h a t was c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o f E n g l a n d ' s e l d e r p o e t s . I t i s 42 L e c t u r e s , p. 514 43 I b i d . , p. 515. -101-t h e g l o r i f i c a t i o n o f E n g l a n d . The m a g i c a l u s e o f n a t i o n a l names was known b y S p e n s e r as i s i l l u s t r a t e d by h i s c h r o n i c l e o f t h e B r i t i s h k i n g s (FQj. I I , 10) and t h e m a r r i a g e o f t h e Thames and Medway (FQ. IV, 1 1 ) . "What a damper t o a l l I n t e r e s t , " C o l e r i d g e w r i t e s , " i s a l i s t o f n a t i v e E a s t I n d i a n m e r c h a n t s J Unknown names a r e n o n - c o n d u c t o r s ; t h e y s t o p a l l sympathy."44 B u t , we may a s k , i s t h i s t r u e ? A l i s t o f t h e names o f t h e E a s t I n d i a n m e r c h a n t s b y i t s e l f i s u n i n t e r e s t i n g b u t n o t much l e s s s o t h a n a s t r a i g h t l i s t o f B r i t i s h k i n g s . Any l i s t , o f names t a k e n o u t o f a c o n t e x t i s h a r d l y i n s p i r i n g . Y e t a l i s t o f t h e s e m e r c h a n t s c i t e d i n s i d e t h e framework o f a poem o r s t o r y may be o f g r e a t i n t e r e s t i n t h a t t h e i r v e r y s t r a n g e n e s s adds t o t h e t o n e , t h e c o l o u r , and u s u a l l y . , i n t h e c a s e o f p i e c e s w i t h a n E a s t I n d i a n b a c k g r o u n d , the m y s t e r y . One would suppose t h a t C o l e r i d g e w o u l d a l s o s ay t h a t the l e s s t h a t I s known a b o u t a name would l o w e r t h e name's c o n d u c t i v e power. Thus t h e c o n d u c t i v e power o f say 'Queen E l i z a b e t h ' w o u l d be i n f i n i t e l y g r e a t e r t h a n t h a t o f ' K u b l a Khan' o r 'Xanadu.' T h i s i s n o t t r u e . I n t h e c a s e o f 'Queen E l i z a b e t h ' i t i s a m a t t e r o f h i s t o r i c a l r e c a l l , w h i l e w i t h 'Zanadu' and ' K u b l a Khan', i t I s m o s t l y a m a t t e r o f i m a g i n a t i o n . V. C o l e r i d g e ' s s e v e n t h p o i n t i s o f v i t a l i n t e r e s t as i t r e v e a l s t h e f i r s t a d e q u a t e and i n g e n i o u s v i e w o f S p e n s e r ' s i n t e l l e c t . He w r i t e s , 44 L e c t u r e s , p . 516. -102-. . . t h e g r e a t and p r e v a i l i n g c h a r a c t e r o f S p e n s e r ' s m i n d i s f a n c y u n d e r t h e c o n d i t i o n s o f i m a g i n a t i o n , as a n e v e r p r e s e n t b u t n o t a l w a y s a c t i v e power. He has a n i m a g i n a t i v e f a n c y , b u t he has n o t i m a g i n a t i o n , i n k i n d o r d e g r e e , as S h a k s p e r e and M i l t o n h a v e , . . . . . Add t o t h i s a f e m i n i n e t e n d e r n e s s and a l m o s t m a i d e n l y p u r i t y o r f e e l i n g , and above a l l , a deep m o r a l e a r n e s t n e s s w h i c h p r o d u c e s a ... b e l i e v i n g sympathy and a c q u i e s c e n c e i n t h e r e a d e r . . . . 4 5 I f we a c c e p t C o l e r i d g e ' s t h e o r i e s o f ' f a n c y and i m a g i n a t i o n ' t h e n we may a c c e p t the s t a t e m e n t above as i t s t a n d s ; i f we do n o t a c c e p t h i s t h e o r i e s we, o f n e c e s s i t y , w o u l d have t o r e - w o r d t h e s t a t e m e n t t o s u i t , o u r own i d e a s - b u t t h e c o n c l u s i o n s r e a c h e d i n e i t h e r c a s e would be t h e same. Whereas the e a r l y r o m a n t i c c r i t i c s g i v e S p e n s e r u n -q u a l i f i e d p r a i s e , the l a t e r r o m a n t i c s and t h e e a r l y V i c -t o r i a n s r e v e a l r e s t r a i n t . Gone i s t h e i d e a o f s u b s e r v i e n c e t o a " m a s t e r . " I t i s t r u e t h a t we f i n d c e n s u r e , l i k e t h a t p r i n t e d i n t h e R e t r o s p e c t i v e R e v i e w, b u t i t i s o f no g r e a t i m p o r t a n c e . What i s i m p o r t a n t i s the f a c t t h a t we have a c r i t i c l i k e C o l e r i d g e who c a n t u r n a c l e a r and u n b i a s e d i n t e l l e c t t o w a r d s S p e n s e r . Of c o u r s e we n e e d n o t a g r e e w i t h a l l he s a y s ; i n d e e d , he s a y s l i t t l e , , b u t we c a n f i n d much o f v a l u e i n t h a t l i t t l e . The same i s t r u e , t o a d e g r e e , o f H a z l i t t whose b r i e f c o m p a r i s o n s between C h a u c e r , S p e n s e r , S h a k e s p e a r e and M i l t o n a r e b r i l l i a n t . U n l i k e t h e p r e v i o u s c h a p t e r s t h i s one must end w i t h o u t the u s u a l b r i e f r e v i e w o f t h e a d v e r s e c r i t i c i s m . 45 L e c t u r e s , pp. 516-517. - 1 0 3 -W i t h t h e e x c e p t i o n o f the a u t h o r the a r t i c l e p r i n t e d i n the R e t r o s p e c t i v e R e v i e w ( w h i c h has been g i v e n s u f f i c i e n t space a l r e a d y ) , H s t z l i t t i s the o n l y one o f the c r i t i c s i n c l u d e d h e r e who has made a d e f i n i t e a t t a c k on S p e n s e r . T h i s he d i d when he w r o t e t h a t the " s i n g - s o n g " s t a n z a o f t h e I t a l i a n s , w h i c h , he s a y s , S p e n s e r a d o p t e d f o r h i s . F a e r i e Queene , f o r c e d S p e n s e r t o u s e a " c e r t a i n l i c e n s e o f e x -p r e s s i o n . . . . " Row t h i s l a c k o f a d v e r s e c r i t i c i s m i s n o t a s i g n t h a t the r o m a n t i c c r i t i c s were f i l l e d ' w i t h o n l y u n -q u a l i f i e d p r a i s e o f S p e n s e r . I t i s t r u e t h a t the e a r l y r o m a n t i c c r i t i c s w r o t e i n h i g h e s t p r a i s e of. S p e n s e r b e c a u s e he i n f l u e n c e d them g r e a t l y - e s p e c i a l l y i n v e r s i f i c a t i o n . S o u t h e y c o n s i d e r e d h i m as h i s " m a s t e r , " and W o r d s w o r t h r a n k e d h i m w i t h the H o l y S c r i p t u r e s a n d M i l t o n as b e i n g one o f t h e " g r a n d s t o r e - h o u s e s o f e n t h u s i a s t i c and m e d i t a t i v e I m a g i n a t i o n . W o r d s w o r t h a l s o comments on t h e l i t t l e a t t e n t i o n t h a t i s p a i d t o S p e n s e r b o t h i n s i d e and o u t s i d e E n g l a n d . He does n o t , h o w e v e r , q u e s t i o n the i n c o n g r u i t y o f a h i g h l y p r a i s e d b u t s c a r c e l y known p o e t ; he s i m p l y c o n c l u d e s t h a t the l a u r e l had b e e n awarded S p e n s e r . From the p e n o f O i l m a n we have u n q u a l i f i e d p r a i s e t h a t i s most f a n c i f u l . Y e t he makes a r e m a r k t h a t may c o n t a i n some t r u t h . P e o p l e do n o t r e a d the F a e r i e Queene, he w r i t e s , b e c a u s e t h e y do n o t l i k e a l l e g o r y . Why, we a s k , d i d n o t W o r d s w o r t h t a k e t i m e t h u s t o s p e c u l a t e ? The a n s w e r i s s i m p l e : the r o m a n t i c c r i t i c s , on the w h o l e , were too much o c c u p i e d i n w r i t i n g on p o e t r y i n g e n e r a l and a s p e c t s o f i t - 1 0 4 -i n p a r t i c u l a r t o devote much time to a complete s t u d y o f any p o e t . One c r i t i c makes a dogmatic s t a t e m e n t b u t f o r e g o e s any r e a s o n i n g f o r i t , and a n o t h e r c r i t i c may s u p p l y a r e a s o n . But d a r e we weave these q u e s t i o n s and a n s w e r s , these f a c t s and r e a s o n s , t o g e t h e r and say that we have a c o m p l e t e p i c t u r e o f the r o m a n t i c c r i t i c i s m o f S p e n s e r No; we may n o t . Wordsworth may be f a r from a g r e e i n g w i t h G i l m a n ( i f we c o u l d a s k d i r e c t q u e s t i o n s ) t h a t the l a c k o f i n t e r e s t shown i n S p e n s e r i s the r e s u l t o f a l a c k o f -i n t e r e s t i n a l l e g o r y . Whereas the n e o - c l a s s i c i s t s were k n i t f a i r l y w e l l t o g e t h e r by means o f t h e r u l e s , the r o -m a n t i c s were k n i t t o g e t h e r by a. l a c k o f r u l e s . T h i s i s a c o n d i t i o n t h a t makes f i n a l e v a l u a t i o n d i f f i c u l t . E a c h . c r i t i c was f r e e t o s a y what he p l e a s e d a n d , o f Spenser , he s a i d so l i t t l e t h a t what he d i d n o t say p o s e s a p r o b l e m . The l a t e r r o m a n t i c c r i t i c s , H a z l i t t and C o l e r i d g e , were more d e f i n i t e and l e s s b i a s e d t h a n those i m m e d i a t e l y p r e c e d i n g them. They thought h i g h l y o f S p e n s e r . Of c o u r s e , they were n o t i n agreement: H a z l i t t t h o u g h t t h a t S h a k e s p e a r e and Spenser s h o u l d n o t be compared; C o l e r i d g e makes s u c h a c o m p a r i s o n w i t h o u t any i l l e f f e c t s : Haz-l i ' t t s a i d t h a t a l l e g o r y i s not i m p o r t a n t and t h a t the r e a d e r n e e d n o t comprehend i t ; C o l e r i d g e s a i d t h a t i t Is i m p o r t a n t b e c a u s e i t i s the " p r o p e r i n t e r m e d i u m between p e r s o n and p e r s o n i f i -c a t i o n . " N e i t h e r H a z l i t t n o r C o l e r i d g e f e l l I n t o the c r i t i c a l p i t f a l l o f v i e w i n g the F a e r i e Queene from one s i d e o n l y as d i d the anonymous w r i t e r i n the Q u a r t e r l y Review - 1 0 5 -who saw the F a e r i e Queene as a r e l i g i o u s work o n l y . I t i s t h e a c u t e c r i t i c a l p e r c e p t i o n o f b o t h H a z l i t t and C o l e r i d g e t h a t h o l d s them above t h e i r c o n t e m p o r a r y c r i t i c s . I n the n e x t c h a p t e r we s h a l l s t u d y c r i t i c s s u c h as M a c a u l a y , W i l s o n ( N o r t h ) , H a l l a m and M o r l e y , and w i l l d i s c o v e r i n t h e c r i t i c i s m o f t h e e a r l y V i c t o r i a n s a n a b r u p t change f r o m t h a t o f the r o m a n t i c s . -106-. . .CHAPTER SIX. . . THE EARLY VICTORIANS L o r d M a c a u l a y i n h i s e s s a y "The p i l g r i m ' s P r o g r e s s , " w r i t t e n a b o u t 1830, s a y s t h a t S p e n s e r i s one o f t h e g r e a t e s t p o e t s who e v e r l i v e d b u t t h a t e v e n he c a n n o t make a l l e g o r y i n t e r e s t i n g - t h e "One u n p a r d o n a b l e f a u l t , " he w r i t e s , •which " p e r v a d e s the whole o f t h e F a i r y Queen. We c a n o n l y s u r m i s e how c o r r e c t M a c a u l a y I s I n h i s e s t i m a t e o f r e a d e r s o f the F a e r i e Queene. I t i s a n ap-p a l l i n g e s t i m a t e - more a p p a l l i n g s t i l l when one c o n s i d e r s t h e l ; few r e a d e r s who a p p e a r t o a p p r o a c h t h e poem a t a l l . M a c a u l a y s a y s , • . We become s i c k o f c a r d i n a l v i r t u e s and d e a d l y s i n s , and l o n g f o r t h e s o c i e t y o f p l a i n men and women. Of .the p e r s o n s who r e a d the f i r s t ' c a n t o , n o t one i n t e n reaches, the end o f t h e f i r s t book, and n o t one i n a h u n d r e d p e r s e v e r e s t o t h e end o f t h e poem. V e r y few and v e r y weary a r e t h o s e who §re i n a t t h e d e a t h o f t h e B l a t a n t B e a s t . I f the l a s t s i x b o o k s , w h i c h a r e s a i d t o have b e e n d e s t r o y e d i n I r e l a n d had b e e n p r e s e r v e d , we d o u b t w h e t h e r any h e a r t l e s s s t o u t t h a n t h a t o f a commentator would have h e l d o u t t o t h e e n d . 2 j 1 "She Works o f L o r d M a c a u l a y , L a d y T r e v e l y a n , e d . , . L o n -d o n , Longmans, G r e e n , and Co.,. 1879, v o l . 5, p . 447. 2 L o c . c i t . -107-V l r g i n i a W o o l f was t o s t a t e t h e same i d e a i n a way more k i n d when she w rote t h a t "The F a e r y Queen, i t i s s a i d , has n e v e r b e e n r e a d t o t h e end; no one has e v e r w i s h e d P a r a -d i s e L o s t , i t i s s a i d , a word l o n g e r . . . " 0 The s t o r y o f the l o s s o f the l a s t s i x b o o k s o f t h e F a e r i e Queene a p p e a r s now and t h e n i n c r i t i c s 1 r e v i e w s . I t i s h i g h l y i m p r o b a b l e t h a t t h e s e b o o k s were e v e r w r i t t e n . The s h o r t n e s s o f the p e r i o d between the p u b l i c a t i o n o f t h e s e c o n d t h r e e b o o k s and the K l l c o l m a n f i r e b e l i e s S p e n s e r ' s a c c r e d i t e d r a t e o f c o m p o s i t i o n - c o n s i d e r e d t o b e s l o w and l e i s u r e l y . An anonymous r e v i e w e r i n t h e Q u a r t e r l y R e v i e w o f 1830 s a y s t h a t S p e n s e r a l l o w e d h i s s t o r y , e x c e p t i n t h e c a s e o f Book One, t o l e a d h i m away f r o m h i s m o r a l . He s a y s t h a t " . . . t h e a t t e m p t a t t o o much i n g e n u i t y has m a r r e d the s i m p l i c i t y o f h i s a l l e g o r y , and d e p r i v e d i t , ' i n a g r e a t d e g r e e , o f c o n s i s t e n c y and c o h e r e n c e . " ^ T h i s s t a t e m e n t i s , i n p a r t , t r u e . But t o a t t r i b u t e the f a u l t t o t o o much " i n g e n u i t y " seems t o be p o o r judgment on t h e p a r t o f t h e c r i t i c . The method o f c o m p o s i t i o n o f t h e poem, as we have i t , i s n o t c e r t a i n . I f S p e n s e r s t a r t e d o u t c o n s c i o u s l y t o f o l l o w A r i o s t o t h e n Books T h r e e a n d F o u r may be s a i d t o have b e e n w r i t t e n f i r s t as t h e y f o l l o w A r i o s t o ' s method n ^ i i i — c l o s e l y . T h i s , however, i s c r i t i c a l c o n j e c t u r e . I t d o e s 3 "The B^aery Queen, " i n The. Moment and O t h e r E s s a y s , London,.The H o g a r t h P r e s s , 1947, p. 25. 4 V o l . 43, 1830, p . 487. -108-seem p r o b a b l e , n e v e r t h e l e s s , t h a t t h e P a e r i e Queene, as o r i g i n a l l y c o n c e i v e d by S p e n s e r , u n d e r w e n t many changes d u r i n g c o m p o s i t i o n , a n d l o s t , t h e r e f o r e , some o f t h e c o n s i s t e n c y and c o h e r e n c e s u g g e s t e d b y the p l a n . I n a poem o f s u c h l e n g t h we c a n n o t e x p e c t more c o n s i s t e n c y o r c o h e r e n c e t h a n t h e P a e r i e Queene now e x h i b i t s b e c a u s e p r o b l e m s o f c o m p o s i t i o n a r i s e t h a t n e c e s s a r i l y a l t e r t h e o r i g i n a l p l a n . The w r i t e r i n t h e Q u a r t e r l y a l s o r e m a r k s t h a t a l t h o u g h S p e n s e r s i d e d w i t h v i r t u e he""was a c o l d m o r a l i s t and t u r n e d e a s i l y f r o m h i s work t o pay a compliment o r t o i n d u l g e h i s own f a n c y . 5 T h i s p o i n t t h a t S p e n s e r was a c o l d m o r a l i s t , o r t h a t he l a c k e d p a s s i o n , i s i n t e r e s t i n g . C a n i t be t h a t t h e key t o t h e p r o b l e m o f S p e n s e r and h i s r e a d e r s l i e s i n S p e n s e r ' s own c h a r a c t e r ? I s i t p o s s i b l e t h a t t h e b a s i c f a u l t i n S p e n s e r ' s work i s t h e d i r e c t r e s u l t o f a l a c k o f warmth i n h i m s e l f ? One must keep i n mind t h e b r u t a l c o l d -n e s s r e v e a l e d , i n h i s e x p r e s s i o n o f h i s I r i s h v i e w s . J o h n W i l s o n , b e t t e r known as C h r i s t o p h e r N o r t h , s e t h i m s e l f a d i f f i c u l t t a s k when, f e e l i n g t h a t S p e n s e r was n o t b e i n g r e a d , he d e c i d e d t o c o n s t r u c t a n a r r a t i v e o f the p o e t ' s l i f e w i t h s p e c i m e n s f r o m t h e m i n o r poems. The f i n i s h e d work was p u b l i s h e d as a s e r i e s o f s e v e n a r t i c l e s i n B l a c k w o o d ' s M a g a z i n e f r o m t h e y e a r 1833 t o 1835. F o r o u r p u r p o s e the a r t i c l e s a r e o f v e r y l i t t l e u s e ; w h i c h i s 5 Q u a r t e r l y , ( 1 8 3 0 ) , p . 487. -109-n o t t o s a y t h a t t h e y a r e o f l i t t l e v a l u e . T hey a r e e x a c t l y what Worth p l a n n e d them t o be - a n a r r a t i v e o f S p e n s e r ' s • l i f e . The s p e c i m e n s f r o m t h e m i n o r poems c o n s t i t u t e a n a p p r e c i a t i o n r a t h e r t h a n a c r i t i c a l a n a l y s i s . C r i t i c i s m , h owever, was bound t o c r e e p i n t o ' a work o f t h i s k i n d and w i t h t h e s e c r i t i c a l f r a g m e n t s we s h a l l have t o be c o n t e n t . N o r t h r e v e a l s , i n h i s s e c o n d a r t i c l e , a b e l i e f t h a t t h e E n g l i s h l a n g u a g e " . . . i s i n a l l t h i n g s s u p e r i o r t o any o t h e r l a n g u a g e now s p o k e n b y man." An i d e a s u c h a s t h i s i s a d a n g e r o u s one f o r a c r i t i c t o h o l d b e c a u s e i t i m m e d i a t e l y r e l e g a t e s t h e g r e a t e r l i t e r a t u r e s o f o t h e r n a t i o n s t o a p o s i t i o n o f i n f e r i o r i t y on the g r o u n d s t h a t t h e y a r e n o t w r i t t e n i n t h e r i g h t l a n g u a g e . I m e n t i o n t h i s p o i n t b e c a u s e , i n the same a r t i c l e , N o r t h t r i p s o v e r h i s own s t a t e m e n t . He w r i t e s , S h a l l o u r own S p e n s e r . . . b e n e g l e c t e d by h i s own p e o p l e , and t h e F a e r y Queen l i e u n r e a d , while- i n a y e a r we have a s e c o n d e d i t i o n - . f o r b e h o o f o f t h o s e who have no G r e e k - o f S o t h e b y ' s Homer?7 ' T h e r e a p p e a r s t o -be no r e a s o n why a n e g l e c t e d S p e n s e r s h o u l d be c o n n e c t e d w i t h S o t h e b y ' s Homer. The i m p l i c a t i o n N o r t h i s m a k i n g i s u n f o r t u n a t e l y c l e a r . The o n l y r e a l s i g n i f i c a n c e o f t h e s t a t e m e n t i s i t s r e v e l a t i o n o f t h e t a s t e o f r e a d e r s o f N o r t h ' s t i m e . A p l e a t o r e a d S p e n s e r b e c a u s e he I s "our own" i s p r e t t y s h a l l o w . 6 " S p e n s e r , No. I I , " V o l . 36, p . 421. 7 I b i d . , p. 430. -110 T h r o u g h o u t t h e a r t i c l e s N o r t h i s c o n t e n t t o make s u c h d i s c o v e r i e s a s : S p e n s e r had a g r e a t e r sense o f the b e a u t i -f u l t h a n any o t h e r p o e t ; h i s g e n i u s was as p r o f u s e as S h a k e s p e a r e ' s ; t h e S p e n s e r i a n s t a n z a was c o n c e i v e d b y the s o u l o f m u s i c ; t h e F a e r i e Queene was t h e g r e a t e s t a l l e g o r i c a l poem e v e r c o n c e i v e d w i t h i n h a l f t h e d i a m e t e r o f the e a r t h ; S p e n s e r i s t h e g r e a t e s t a l l e g o r i c a l p o e t ; and S p e n s e r , M i l -t o n , and W o r d s w o r t h c a n be l i n k e d t o g e t h e r b e c a u s e t h e y were d e d i c a t e d s p i r i t s . ® N o r t h f i n d s o n l y one m a j o r f a u l t i n S p e n s e r ' s , work and t h a t , s u r p r i s i n g l y enough, i s i n the S h e p h e a r d e s C a l e n -d e r . He w r i t e s , But t o o u r m inds t h e i r r e d e e m a b l e s i n o f the S h e p h e r d ' s C a l e n d a r - we w i s h we c o u l d u s e g e n t l e r words, b u t c a n n o t f i n d them - i s t h e , c o l d , u n c o m f o r t a b l e , and unhappy a i r t h a t hangs i n i t o v e r a l m o s t t h e whole o f . r u r a l l i f e . We a r e a l w a y s w i s h i n g f o r t h e sun, b u t no sun shews h i s f a c e . N a t u r e i s s t a r v e d , a n d l i f e h u n g r y - and s l e e p seems b u t t h e r e l i e f f r o m l a b o u r . T h e r e i s nowhere J o y .9 I t i s h a r s h , i n d e e d , t o s a y t h a t t h e t o n e o f a poem i s a " s i n " . O b v i o u s l y N o r t h m i s s e d t h e p o i n t . I n h i s L i v e s o f the most emi n e n t l i t e r a r y and s c i e n t i f i c men o f G r e a t B r i t a i n , S.A. Dunham makes an i n t e r e s t i n g p o i n t -one t h a t has n o t b e e n made p r e v i o u s l y . He w r i t e s t h a t t h e F a e r i e Queene "...has t h e s i n g u l a r d i s t i n c t i o n o f h a v i n g 8 I n o r d e r : "No. I , " v o l . 54, p. 852; p . 846; "N o. I I , " v o l . 36, p . 421; p . 415; p. 414: and "No. I l l , " v o l . .36, p . 683. -9 "No. I , " , . v o l . 34, p . 832. - I l l -produced, a v a s t number o f i m i t a t o r s , w i t h o u t h a v i n g e s t a b -l i s h e d a s c h o o l . " 1 ° I t may be a d d e d , however, t h a t , e v e n w i t h o u t the c r e a t i n g o f a s c h o o l , and t h e p o s t - S p e n s e r l a n s s u r e l y c o n s t i t u t e one, S p e n s e r ' s i m p o r t a n c e was g r e a t e r and l o n g e r l i v e d t h a n t h a t o f p o e t s l i k e Marlowe and J o n s o n who have had the h o n o u r t o have a ' s c h o o l ' named a f t e r them. S p e n s e r ' s i n f l u e n c e has b e e n d i f f u s e d t h r o u g h th e c e n t u r i e s . An'anonymous w r i t e r i n the Q u a r t e r l y R e v i e w o f 1840 w r i t e s t h a t "...we a r e i n d e b t e d fto S p e n s e r y 7 f o r t h e f i r s t d i s p l a y o f t h e l a t e n t r i c h e s and harmony o f o u r n a t i v e •, t o n g u e . " 1 1 He a l s o , a t t r i b u t e s S p e n s e r ' s f a u l t s t o h i s "...wanton r e d u n d a n c e o f power, r a t h e r t h a n f r o m the c o n -s t r a i n t o f i n s u f f i c i e n t o r i n f l e x i b l e d i c t i o n . " 1 ^ T h i s w r i t e r seems t o have f o r g o t t e n t h a t S u r r e y , S j a c k v i l l e and S i d n e y had a l r e a d y g i v e n an i m p e t u s t o t h i s " d i s p l a y o f . . . l a t e n t r i c h e s . » • • • H e n r y H a l l a m i n h i s I n t r o d u c t i o n - t o t h e L i t e r a t u r e o f  E u r o p e t u r n s t h e judgment o f a c l a s s i c a l s c h o l a r u p o n t h e w o r k s * o f S p e n s e r w i t h c e r t a i n i n t e r e s t i n g r e s u l t s . S p e n s e r , he w r i t e s , i n the S h e p h e a r d e s C a l e n d e r ...gave a D o r i c r u d e n e s s t o h i s d i a l o g u e ' / w h i c h i s a l i t t l e r e p u l s i v e t o o u r t a s t e . The d i a l e c t o f T h e o c r i t u s i s m u s i c a l t o o u r e a r s , and f r e e f r o m v u l g a r i t y ; p r a i s e s w h i c h we c a n n o t b e s t o w on t h e u n c o u t h p r o v i n c i a l r u s t i c i t y o f S p e n s e r . 1 3 10 London, 1836, v o l . 1, p . 348, 11 V o l . 55, p . 354. 12 I b i d . , p. 355. 13 /I839-407, L o n d o n , J o h n M u r r a y , 1882, v o l . 2, p.. 222. - 112 -Hallam a l s o attacked the poem because {it alluded to po-l i t i c a l h i story and to the r e l i g i o u s differences of the period. He does not},: because of t h i s , condemn the poem, fo r , as he says, "...mere pastoral must soon become i n -s i p i d , unless i t borrows something from active l i f e or elevated philosophy."14 The Shepheardes Calender, Hallam says, has, i n many passages, s p i r i t and beauty, but, he f i n d s , i t i s not much read or approved by the c r i t i c s . Turning ,his attention to Spenser's Epithalamion, Hal-lam says, b r i e f l y , that " I t i s an i n t o x i c a t i o n of ecstasy, ardent, noble, and pure."15 Like Wordsworth, Hallam finds that Spenser i s l i t t l e known outside England even i n an age when English l i t e r a t u r e i s comparatively well known on the continent. Ariosto's fame, Hallam writes, i s spread through Europe, but, even so, "...we have l i t t l e reason to blush f o r our countryman."''" Comparing Spenser and Ariosto, Hallam says that, i n mind and poetic character, they are complete opposites. "The I t a l i a n i s gay...," he says, while "Spenser i s ha-b i t u a l l y s e r i o u s . . . . " l ^ Hallam devotes most of his space to a study' of the Faerie Queene. His opinion of the work can best be summed 14 Hallam, op. c i t . . p. 222 15 Ibid., p. 226. 16 Ibid.. p. 236. 17 Ibid., p. 235. -113-up i n h i s s t a t e m e n t t h a t "There i s , p e r h a p s , l e s s r e a s o n t h a n some have i m a g i n e d , t o r e g r e t t h a t S p e n s e r d i d n o t c o m p l e t e h i s o r i g i n a l d e s i g n . "1® S u c h a r e m a r k engenders' l i t t l e hope t h a t we a r e t o meet w i t h any p r a c t i c a l c r i t i c i s m . Of t h e l a t t e r books o f S p e n s e r ' s m a s t e r p i e c e , H a l l a m comments t h a t S p e n s e r ' s "...muse g i v e s g r a d u a l s i g n s o f w e a r i n e s s , t h e i m a g e r y becomes l e s s v i v i d , t h e v e i n o f p o e t i c a l d e s c r i p t i o n l e s s r i c h , t h e d i g r e s s i o n s more f r e -q u e n t and v e r b o s e . "19 The •statement c o n c e r n i n g d i g r e s s -i o n s may, p e r h a p s , be j u s t i f i e d . The r e s t o f t h e s t a t e m e n t , however, i s h a r d l y f a i r t o S p e n s e r . Who c a n p o s s i b l y r e a d c a n t o s n i n e t o t w e l v e o f Book S i x and f i n d s i g n s o f w e a r i n e s s , l e s s v i v i d i m a g e r y , o r a l e s s r i c h v e i n o f p o e t i c a l d e s c r i p t i o n ? I t i s t r u e t h a t t h i s p a r t i c u l a r b o o k may be c r i t i c i s e d b e c a u s e o f i t s change o f h e r o e s -b u t c e r t a i n l y n o t f o r any o t h e r r e a s o n . H a l l a m b e t r a y s t h e b a s i s f o r h i s v i e w s when he w r i t e s t h a t I t i s f e l t . a l r e a d y i n S p e n s e r , as i t i s p e r -haps e v e n i n A r i o s t o , when we r e a d much o f ' e i t h e r , t h a t t a l e s o f k n i g h t s and l a d i e s , g i a n t s and savage, emen, end i n a s a t i e t y w h i c h n o p o e t i c a l e x c e l l e n c e c a n overcome.^0 E v e n t h e a l l e g o r i e s , do n o t p a s s m u s t e r a c c o r d i n g to H a l l a m ' s r e q u i r e m e n t s . "One o f t h e i r g r e a t e s t o f f e n s e s . . . , " he w r i t e s , " i s t h a t t h e y gave b i r t h t o some t e d i o u s and 18 H a l l a m , op. c i t . , p. 237. 19 L o c . c i t . 20 L o c . c i t . -114-u n i n t e r e s t i n g p o e t r y o f t h e same k i n d . " 2 1 B e s i d e s t h e d e f e c t s o f o b s o l e t e n e s s and r e d u n d a n c y f o u n d i n the F a e r i e Queene, H a l l a m f i n d s t h a t S p e n s e r was ...sometimes d e f i c i e n t i n one a t t r i b u t e o f a g r e a t p o e t , t h e c o n t i n u a l r e f e r e n c e t o t h e t r u t h o f n a t u r e , so t h a t h i s f i c t i o n s s h o u l d be a l w a y s s u c h as m i g h t e x i s t on the g i v e n c o n d i t i o n s . 2 2 What k i n d o f c r i t i c i s m , we may a s k , i s t h i s ? I t i s one o f S p e n s e r ' s many a c h i e v e m e n t s t h a t h i s c h a r a c t e r s c a n e x i s t , w i t h i n h i s f a i r y l a n d , e x c e p t i o n a l l y t r u e t o l i f e , o r t r u e t o n a t u r e . S p e n s e r ' s t a s k was n o t a s i m p l e one - i t was h i g h l y complex. H i s c h a r a c t e r s had' t o f i t i n t o t h r e e s e p a r a t e moulds - i n t h e f i r s t p l a c e , t h e y h a d t o f i t i n t o a f a i r y l a n d ; s e c o n d l y , t h e y had t o c o n f o r m t o m e d i e v a l c h i v a l r y ; and, i n the t h i r d p l a c e , t h e y had t o be s u i t a b l e t o a l l e g o r y - and t h e a l l e g o r y i s t r i p l e . We may e v e n add a f o u r t h r e q u i r e m e n t - t h e y had t o be t r u e t o l i f e . I t n e e d n o t be commented u p o n t h a t • t h e p e r f e c t a c h i e v e m e n t o f al 1 f o u r i s i m p o s s i b l e . The i d e a l i z a t i o n r e q u i s i t e f o r a n - a l l e g o r i c a l , c h a r a c t e r m a k e s - i t d i f f i c u l t f o r t h a t c h a r -a c t e r t o be. t r u e t o l i f e . But S p e n s e r a l m o s t a c h i e v e d t h i s r e s u l t . We c a n r e a d t h e F a e r i e Queene and f o r g e t t h a t t h e a l l e g o r i e s e x i s t ( n o t , however, w i t h t h e f u l l p o e t i c e n j o y m e n t o f t h e poem), whereas i n a work s u c h as> p i l g r i m ' s P r o g r e s s the a l l e g o r y I s a l w a y s e v i d e n t - i n d e e d , t h e s t o r y l o s e s much o f i t s i m p a c t i f the a l l e g o r y i s i g n o r e d . 21 H a l l a m , op. c i t . , p. 238. 22 I b i d . , pp. 238-239. . -115-H a l l a m p a s s e s h i s f i n a l judgment on t h e F a e r i e Queene ' when he w r i t e s t h a t T i m e , however, h a s g r a d u a l l y wrought i t s . work; and, n o t w i t h s t a n d i n g the more i m a g i n a t i v e c a s t o f p o e t r y i n t h e p r e s e n t c e n t u r y , i t may be w e l l d o u b t e d w h e t h e r the F a e r y Queen i s as much r e a d o r as h i g h l y e s t e e m e d as i n t h e d a y s o f Anne. I t i s n o t p e r h a p s v e r y d i f f i c u l t t o a c c o u n t f o r t h i s : t h o s e who s e e k the d e l i g h t t h a t mere f i c t i o n p r e s e n t s t o the m i n d (and t h e y a r e t h e g r e a t m a j o r i t y o f r e a d e r s ) have b e e n s u p p l i e d t o t h e u t m o s t l i m i t o f t h e i r c r a v i n g b y s t o r i e s accommodated t o e v e r y temper, and f a r more s t i m u l a n t t h a n t h e l e g e n d s o f F a e r y l a n d . 2 3 I n 1840, t h e N o r t h A m e r i c a n Review p u b l i s h e d a r e v i e w b y H.K. C l e v e l a n d , o f t h e f i r s t A m e r i c a n e d i t i o n o f S p e n s e r ' s w o r k s . To C l e v e l a n d t h e F a e r i e Queene i s c o m p l e t e l y r e p r e -s e n t a t i v e o f S p e n s e r ' s age a n d u n l i k e t h e works o f S h a k e s p e a r e and M i l t o n w h i c h a r e a g e l e s s , o r , w r i t t e n f o r a l l t i m e -" . . . t h e i r w e a l t h , " C l e v e l a n d w r i t e s , "was an e t e r n i t y , a n d t o e t e r n i t y t h e y e n t r u s t e d t h e i r fame.."24 on t h e o t h e r h a n d , • S p e n s e r . . . w a s r e m a r k a b l y t h e c h i l d o f h i s age....He was t h e c r e a t u r e o f h i s times.., b e c a u s e the- t i m e s , were d i s t i n g u i s h e d for- ' t h e i r g r a n d e u r and n o b l e n e s s . I t was h i s h i g h p r i v i l e g e , t h a t t h e s u r e r o a d t o g r e a t n e s s was t o c o n f o r m , t o the s p i r i t o f h i s t i m e s ; t o r i s e up t o t h e s t a t u r e o f -. t h e i r r o b u s t manhood.25 "The whole poem o f the ' F a e r i e Queene'," he w r i t e s , . . . i s a f a i t h f u l m i r r o r o f the t i m e s . I t i s f i l l e d w i t h t h e p r e v a i l i n g s e n t i m e n t s , 25 H a l l a m , op. c i t . , p . -.240. 24 V o l . 50, p. 187. ... 25 L o c . c i t . -116 t h e l o y a l t y and t h e g a l l a n t r y , t h e b r a v e r y , t h e w i t , t h e l e a r n i n g , t h e p a t r i o t i s m , and the p i e t y , w h i c h d i s t i n g u i s h e d t h e r e i g n o f E l i z a b e t h . 2 6 T h i s sounds v e r y f i n e b u t i t means v e r y l i t t l e . We would h a r d l y t u r n t o Sjpenser t o g e t a p i c t u r e o f t h e E l i z a b e t h a n Age. We would more p r o b a b l y , and more c o r r e c t l y , t u r n t o S h a k e s p e a r e and J o n s o n a n d o t h e r d r a m a t i s t s , t o p o e t s l i k e S i d n e y and R a l e g h , t o the V o y a g es o f H a k l u y t , t o t h e pam-p h l e t s , t o t h e r e a l i s t i c f i c t i o n s - b u t h a r d l y t o t h e F a e r i e Queene. T h e r e i s t o o much o f the m e d i e v a l i n the poem t o e n a b l e i t t o be c a l l e d a " f a i t h f u l m i r r o r o f t h e t i m e s . " To e n j o y f u l l y t h e works o f S p e n s e r , C l e v e l a n d a d v i s e s t h a t t h e y be r e a d a t l e a s t t h r e e t i m e s . The f i r s t r e a d i n g s h o u l d be done o n l y w i t h the a i d o f a g l o s s a r y and w i t h o u t any a t t e n t i o n b e i n g p a i d t o t h e a l l e g o r y o r t o t h e h i s -t o r i c a l a l l u s i o n . The s e c o n d r e a d i n g s h o u l d n o t s o o n f o l l o w t h e f i r s t . When i t ' i s . ' u n d e r t a k e n i t would 1 be a c c o m p a n i e d b y . a n e x p l a n a t i o n o f t h e a l l e g o r y . An e x t e n s i v e s t u d y , however, s h o u l d n o t be made o f t h e a l l e g o r y , f o r , . a s C l e v e -l a n d r e m a r k s , " T h a t man who b i n d s h i m s e l f t o an e x c l u s i v e s e a r c h f o r a l l e g o r y , may have a p h i l o s o p h i c a l , b u t c e r t a i n l y n o t a p o e t i c a l mind.. "27 We must remember, he c o n t i n u e s , . . . t h a t t h e g r e a t o b j e c t o f t h e r e a d e r s h o u l d be t h e p o e t r y , the s t o r y , t h e work as a p r o d u c t i o n o f a r t ; he s h o u l d s t u d y t h e . t e x t f a r more t h a n the n o t e s and comments.28 26 C l e v e l a n d , op. c i t . , p . 188. 27 I b i d . , p p . 189-190. 28 I b i d . , p . 190. -117-The t h i r d r e a d i n g s h o u l d be done w i t h a t e x t t h a t e x p l a i n s t h e l e s s o b v i o u s h i s t o r i c a l and c l a s s i c a l a l l u s i o n s . The p l o t o f t h e F a e r i e Qjueene, s a y s C l e v e l a n d , i s e x c e p t i o n a l l y s i m p l e -A B r i t i s h p r i n c e s e e s i n a v i s i o n t h e F a i r y Queen; he f a l l s i n l o v e , and goes i n s e a r c h o f t h i s unknown f a i r , and a t l e n g t h f i n d s h e r . T h i s f a b l e has a b e g i n n i n g , a m i d d l e , and an end.29 T h i s i s r e m a r k a b l e when one c o n s i d e r s the F a e r i e Queene t o be u n f i n i s h e d . C l e v e l a n d a p p e a r s t o be c r i t i c i s i n g n o t so much the work o f a r t as t h e I d e a b e h i n d i t . And i s t h e p l o t r e a l l y so s i m p l e ? I n d e e d n o t . C l e v e l a n d ' s i d e a o f the p l o t i s o n l y t h e s i m p l e t h r e a d u p o n w h i c h th e b e a d s o f I n d i v i d u a l s t o r i e s a r e s t r u n g . E a c h b o o k h a s a p l o t o f i t s own w h i c h i s more i m p o r t a n t t o the f u l f i l m e n t o f S p e n s e r ' s I n t e n t i o n t h a n t h e s i m p l e b a c k g r o u n d f a b l e o u t -l i n e d b y C l e v e l a n d . The " I m a g i n a r y C o n v e r s a t i o n s " o f W a l t e r Savage L a n d o r c o n s t i t u t e a u n i q u e a p p r o a c h t o c r i t i c i s m , b i o g r a p h y and f a b l e . T h e r e i s l i t t l e o f v a l u e and much o f i n t e r e s t . The c o n v e r s a t i o n s a r e n o t a l l c r i t i c a l by any means. The one e n t i t l e d " E s s e x and S p e n s e r " 3 0 i s n o t much more t h a n a n a t t a c k on the I r i s h , the Jews, and t h e C a t h o l i c s . I t r e l a t e s t h e s t o r y o f the K i l c o l m a n f i r e and t h e b u r n i n g o f S p e n s e r ' s c h i l d . 29 C l e v e l a n d , op. c i t . , p. 194 50 The Works and L i f e o f W a i t e r Savage L a n d o r , London, Chapman & H a l l , 1876, v o l . 5, pp. 90-96. -118-I n t h e c o n v e r s a t i o n , "Southey and P o r s o n , " L a n d o r . s a y s o f S p e n s e r , t h r o u g h t h e mouth o f P o r s o n , t h a t "There i s s c a r c e l y a p o e t o f t h e same e m i n e n c e , whom I have f o u n d i t so d e l i g h t f u l t o r e a d i n , o r so t e d i o u s t o r e a d t h r o u g h . " 3 -The same i d e a , e l a b o r a t e d s l i g h t l y , i s r e p e a t e d i n " M i l t o n and M a r v e l . " The c o n v e r s a t i o n g o e s -M i l t o n . . . . I w o u l d r a t h e r have w r i t t e n two s u c h s c e n e s / a s t h o s e i n Dante/ 7 t h a n t w e n t y s u c h poems as t h e F a e r y Queen. M a r v e l . A l l e g o r y grows t i r e s o m e : n e v e r t h e -l e s s , y o u have f o u n d , as I have h e a r d y o u s a y , much t o p l e a s e y o u i n S p e n s e r . The h e a r t , I c o n f e s s i t , i s n e v e r - t o u c h t by h i m ; and .he ' d o e s n o t e x c i t e e v e n a l i g h t e m o t i o n . M i l t o n . He l e a d s us i n t o no walks o f N a t u r e . A p o e t must do t h a t , o r f o r f e i t h i s r i g h t t o a s e a t i n t h e u p p e r house.32 L a n d o r ' s judgment, t h a t t h e F a e r i e Queene i s " t e d i o u s , " t h a t i t s a l l e g o r y i s " t i r e s o m e , " and t h a t S p e n s e r does n o t r e v e a l N a t u r e t o u s , may be t r u e - b u t l e t u s r e s e r v e o p i n i o n u n t i l l a t e r . The o p i n i o n o f L a n d o r c a n b e s t be shown, p r o b a b l y , by a few l i n e s f r o m h i s poem " C h a u c e r , 0 how I w i s h t h o u w e r t . " He w r i t e s , Ah, s u r e l y v e r s e was n e v e r meant To r e n d e r m o r t a l s s o m n o l e n t . I n S p e n s e r ' s l a b y r i n t h i n e , rhymes I throw'my arms o ' e r h e a d a t t i m e s , Opening s o n o r o u s mouth as wide . , ' . • ' As o y s t e r s h e l l s a t ebb o f t i d e . 3 5 The a d v i c e g i v e n by H. M o r l e y i n an a r t i c l e p u b l i s h e d 31 L a n d o r , op. c i t . , v o l . 4, pp. 74-75. 32 I b i d . , v o l . 4, pp. 150-151. 33 I b i d . , v o l . 8, p.- 518. -119-by t h e Athenaeum makes an a p p r o p r i a t e c o n c l u s i o n t o t h i s s u r v e y o f more i m p o r t a n t S p e n s e r c r i t i c i s m . About t h e a n r i o t a t o r s o f Sjpenser, M o r l e y w r i t e s , W i t h a l l human l e a r n i n g t h e y a p p e a r t o have b e e n f e d , - b u t t h e p l a i n f a n c y w h i c h s h o u l d s u s t a i n t h o s e who f o l l o w S p e n s e r ' s s t e p s seems r a r e l y t o have f o u n d i t s way i n t o t h e i r mind.3 4 How t r u e t h i s i s . S p e n s e r ' s u s e o f a n t i q u e words, M o r l e y r e m a r k s , " . . . a c q u i r e d / f o r t h e s e w o r d s / i n c r e a s e d w e a l t h o f e x p r e s -s i o n , and s c a t t e r e d the l i g h t s and s h a d e s o f l a n g u a g e w i t h p e c u l i a r d e l i c a c y . " 3 5 • . M o r l e y makes a s t a t e m e n t w i t h w h i c h t h i s c h a p t e r may j u s t l y c o n c l u d e : ' • The f o p p e r y w h i c h c o n s i d e r s t h e m e a n i n g o f S p e n s e r t o o p l a i n to be t h o u g h t a b o u t , and the p e d a n t r y w h i c h w o u l d see i n h i m o n l y a d e a l e r i n t h e "marine s t o r e s " o f p e t t y h i s t o r y , have a l i k e t e n d e d t o s c a r e away n a t u r a l and u n a f f e c t e d p e r c e p t i o n s f r o m most p u b l i c e x p o s i t i o n s o f S p e n s e r . The t r a i n o f t h o u g h t f r o m c a n t o t o c a n t o I s n o t " t o o p l a i n " ; - i n d i v i d u a l a l l e g o r i e s a r e m a n i f e s t enough, b u t t h e e x a c t d e s i g n w h i c h t h e y . a l l u n i t e t o f o r m , the l e a d i n g a r g u -ments I n w h i c h t h e y a l l o c c u r , a r e s u f f i c i e n t l y r e c o n d i t e t o demand a s e a r c h and s u f f i c i e n t l y i n g e n i o u s t o be w o r t h d i s c o v e r y . To p o i n t t h e s e o u t would be t o i n c r e a s e t h e p o p u l a r i t y • o f S p e n s e r , - and add t o t h e d e l i g h t o f many r e a d e r s who do n o t c a r e t o s t u d y p o e t r y , b u t s e e k i n i t o n l y r e l a x a t i o n and a m u s e m e n t . 3 6 I t h as b e e n n e c e s s a r y t o o m i t c e r t a i n w r i t e r s f r o m t h i s 34 /I8487, v o l . 21, p . 800. 35 L o c . c i t . 36 L o c . c i t . -120-c h a p t e r b e c a u s e t h e y add n o t h i n g t o t h e s t u d y we have u n d e r t a k e n . N o t a b l e among t h e s e i s S i r W a l t e r S c o t t , who c o n t r i b u t e d b r i e f p r a i s e i n h i s two a r t i c l e s t o t h e E d i n -b u r g h R e v i e w ( v o l . 7 and v o l . 1 7 ) , and John K e a t s , who f o u n d immense i n s p i r a t i o n i n the works o f S p e n s e r . K e a t s , e a r l y i n l i f e , c o n t r i b u t e d a s h o r t , i n s i g n i f i c a n t poem t o t h e l o n g l i n e o f S p e n s e r i m i t a t i o n s , and l a t e r p r e s e n t e d an a n n o t a t e d e d i t i o n o f t h e F a e r i e Queene t o h i s b e l o v e d Fanny. The most s t r i k i n g n o t e i n t h e S p e n s e r i a n c r i t i c i s m o f t h e E a r l y V i c t o r i a n s i s the a b r u p t change f r o m t h e p r a i s e o f t h e r o m a n t i c c r i t i c s . U n l i k e t h e p r e v i o u s p e r i o d s i n w h i c h one movement I s f o r e s h a d o w e d i n i t s p r e -d e c e s s o r and f a d e s g r a d u a l l y i n t h e movement t h a t f o l l o w s , t h e r e i s no t r a n s i t i o n f r o m r o m a n t i c c r i t i c i s m t o t h e c r i t i c i s m o f t h e E a r l y V i c t o r i a n s . T h i s l a c k o f t r a n s i t i o n i s s t r a n g e when.one remembers t h a t t h e V i c t o r i a n Age was p r e d o m i n a n t l y r o m a n t i c . Y e t i t i s n o t so s t r a n g e when one r e a l i z e s t h a t t h e V i c t o r i a n r o m a n t i c i s m was t e m p e r e d by t h e V i c t o r i a n i n t e r e s t i n s c i e n c e , p o l i t i c s , r e l i g i o n , p h i l o s o p h y and m o r a l i t y . V i c t o r i a n r o m a n t i c i s m was more c o n v e n t i o n a l i n a t t i t u d e t h a n was t h e r o m a n t i c i s m o f t h e t u r n o f t h e n i n e t e e n t h c e n t u r y . I f t h i s i s k e p t i n mind the a b r u p t n e s s c a n be b e t t e r u n d e r s t o o d . W i t h t h e e x c e p t i o n o f H a l l a m , who a t t a c k e d the l a n g u a g e o f the Shepheard.es C a l e n d e r and l a b e l l e d i t " r e p u l s i v e , " the E a r l y V i c t o r i a n s l i m i t e d t h e i r a d v e r s e -121-c r i t i c i s m o f S p e n s e r to a t t a c k s on h i s s u b j e c t m a t t e r . M a c a u l a y f o u n d t h a t a l l e g o r y was the one u n p a r d o n a b l e f a u l t i n t h e P a e r i e Queene. H a l l a m a l s o a t t a c k e d the poem b e c a u s e o f i t s ' a l l e g o r i e s . He w r i t e s t h a t t h e y "gave b i r t h t o some t e d i o u s and u n i n t e r e s t i n g p o e t r y o f t h e same k i n d . " The word " t e d i o u s " i s a l s o a p p l i e d t o them b y L a n d o r . An anonymous w r i t e r i n t h e Q u a r t e r l y R e v i e w e x p l a i n s t h a t S p e n s e r ' s a l l e g o r y was d e p r i v e d o f i t s . c o n s i s t e n c y and c o h e r e n c e b e c a u s e o f t o o much i n g e n u i t y and t h a t S p e n s e r , e x c e p t i n Book One, a l l o w e d h i s s t o r y t o l e a d h i m away f r o m h i s m o r a l . C h r i s t o p h e r N o r t h , r e v i e w i n g S p e n s e r ' s m i n o r poems, a t t a c k s t h e S h e p h e a r d e s C a l e n d e r b e c a u s e o f i t s " c o l d , u n c o m f o r t a b l e , a n d unhappy a i r . " He i s u n a b l e t o f i n d , he s a y s , any j o y i n t h e poem a t a l l . The most vehement a t t a c k on S p e n s e r came f r o m the p e n o f H a l l a m . B e s i d e s a t t a c k i n g ' t h e C a l e n d e r b e c a u s e o f i t s " r e p u l s i v e " l a n g u a g e , he condemns t h e poem b e c a u s e i t c o n t a i n s a l l u s i o n s t o p o l i t i c a l ' h i s t o r y and t o t h e r e l i g i o u s d i f f e r e n c e s i n the E l i z a b e t h a n Age. When he t u r n s t o the P a e r i e Queene H a l l a m i s e v e n more b i t t e r . H e . f o r one, he w r i t e s , d o e s n o t r e g r e t t h a t - S p e n s e r ' s o r i g i n a l p l a n was n o t c o m p l e t e d . The l a t e r b ooks o f t h e poem, he r e m a r k s , show s i g n s o f w e a r i n e s s , and c o n t a i n l e s s v i v i d i m a g e r y , l e s s r i c h d e s c r i p t i o n s , and more f r e q u e n t v e r b o s e d i g r e s s i o n s t h a n do the e a r l i e r b o o k s . T a l e s o f k n i g h t s and l a d i e s , H a l l a m c o n c l u d e s , "end i n a s a t i e t y w h i c h no p o e t i c a l -122-e x c e l l e n c e c a n o v e r c o m e . " Of c o u r s e , n o t a l l e a r l y V i c t o r i a n c r i t i c i s m was a d -v e r s e - b u t t h a t w h i c h was p r o d u c e d by t h e m a j o r w r i t e r s , on t h e whole, was. Gone i s t h e p r a i s e f o r S p e n s e r ' s v e r s i f i c a t i o n , f o r few o f t h e c r i t i c s a t t h i s time were t h e m s e l v e s p o e t s . These c r i t i c a l a t t a c k s may be a s i g n • t h a t S p e n s e r i s f a d i n g i n t o t h e b a c k g r o u n d and i s l o s i n g h i s l i t e r a r y p o p u l a r i t y . • I n t h e n e x t c h a p t e r an a t t e m p t w i l l be made t o v i e w t h e two h u n d r e d and f i f t y y e a r s o f S p e n s e r c r i t i c i s m s u r v e y e d I n the p r e c e d i n g c h a p t e r s and t o see what t r e n d s have b e e n r e v e a l e d . -123-... .CHAPTER SEVEN, . . CONCLUSION. S p e n s e r was by no means as p o p u l a r i n 1850 as he was i n the y e a r s f r o m h i s d e a t h t o 1650. I must s t r e s s t h a t we a r e d e a l i n g w i t h p o p u l a r i t y and n o t w i t h i m p o r -t a n c e * t h e y a r e two e n t i r e l y d i f f e r e n t t h i n g s . The popu-l a r i t y o f a w r i t e r i s u s u a l l y d e t e r m i n e d b y the e x t e n t t o .• w h i c h he i s r e a d , whereas h i s i m p o r t a n c e i s b e s t c o n s i d e r e d i n r e l a t i o n t o t h e i n f l u e n c e he has h a d on o t h e r w r i t e r s i n m a t t e r s o f t h o u g h t o r s t y l e , and on r e a d e r s I n m a t t e r s o f t h o u g h t , manners o r d e l i g h t . A w r i t e r may.be p o p u l a r w i t h o u t b e i n g i m p o r t a n t , o r i m p o r t a n t w i t h o u t b e i n g p o p u l a r . . I t i s a supreme a c h i e v e m e n t f o r a w r i t e r t o be b o t h p o p u l a r .and i m p o r t a n t . T h e r e i s , however, l i t t l e c o r r e l a t i o n b e -tween p o p u l a r i t y and i m p o r t a n c e ; n o r i s t h e r e any r u l e f o r m e a s u r i n g e i t h e r . T o d a y , when a b o o k s e l l s o v e r a m i l l i o n c o p i e s we c a n be f a i r l y w e l l a s s u r e d t h a t o v e r a m i l l i o n p e o p l e have r e a d i t a n d we c a n i n f e r t h a t i t i s p o p u l a r . E v e n i f , however, i t e x e r t s an i n f l u e n c e o v e r i t s r e a d e r s we can n o t measure i t s i m p o r t a n c e w h i l e we a r e c o n t e m p o r a r y w i t h i t . -124-I t s i n f l u e n c e , i n d e e d , may o n l y be s e e n as a p a s s i n g f a d o f t h o u g h t , m anners, o r s t y l e . When we v i e w t h e E l i z a b e t h a n Age we must t a k e i n t o c o n s i d e r a t i o n a number o f f a c t o r s t h a t do n o t t r o u b l e u s when we v i e w o u r own age. I n t h e f i r s t p l a c e , we a r e u n a b l e t o e s t i m a t e the number o f r e a d e r s a b o o k had t h e n , b e c a u s e h i g h c o s t o f p u b l i c a t i o n p r o b a b l y c a u s e d a w i d e r h a n d - t o - h a n d c i r c u l a t i o n o f books t h a n e x i s t s a t p r e s e n t . S e c o n d l y , t h e a v e r a g e p e r s o n , o r r e a d e r , whom o u r pub-l i s h e r s c a t e r t o t o d a y , was d i f f e r e n t t h r e e h u n d r e d and f i f t y y e a r s ago: he e i t h e r c o u l d n o t r e a d o r was n o t c a p a b l e o f a b s o r b i n g a n y t h i n g b e y o n d t h e " b r o a d s i d e s " o r , w i t h d i f f i c u l t y , r e l i g i o u s t r a c t s . I n the t h i r d p l a c e , the. e d u c a t e d E l i z a b e t h a n d i f f e r e d f r o m h i s modern c o u n t e r -p a r t . The e d u c a t e d E l i z a b e t h a n g e n t l e m a n had b e e n ' i m p e l l e d ' i n t o t h e Trivium': and Q u a d r l v i u m : He was s o u n d l y g r o u n d e d i n t h e c l a s s i c s , i n l a n g u a g e s , i n t h e o l o g y , i n p h i l o s o p h y , .and, i f a t a l l p o s s i b l e , he r e c e i v e d h i s f i n a l p o l i s h on the 'grand t o u r . ' E l i z a b e t h a n l i t e r a t u r e , on t h e whole, was p r o d u c e d b y w r i t e r s w i t h s u c h e d u c a t i o n a l b a c k g r o u n d s ( S h a k e s p e a r e was a n e x c e p t i o n t o t h i s ) . By k e e p i n g t h e s e t h i n g s i n m i n d , we c a n see f r o m t h e l a r g e number o f a l l u s i o n s and r e f e r e n c e s t o S p e n s e r by b o t h E l i z a b e t h a n and J a c o b e a n w r i t e r s how g r e a t was S p e n s e r ' s p o p u l a r i t y . He was w r i t i n g f o r men whose e d u c a t i o n e n a b l e d them t o comprehend h i s c l a s s i c a l and t h e o l o g i c a l a l l u s i o n s -125 w i t h an immediacy t h a t e n s u r e d t h e i r e n j o y m e n t , F u r -t h e r m o r e , S p e n s e r was w r i t i n g a t a time when h i s i n n o v a -t i o n s i n v e r s i f i c a t i o n , when h i s m a s t e r f u l h a n d l i n g o f r i m e , m e t r e and s t a n z a c r e a t e d a n Immediate i n t e r e s t . S u c h s k i l f u l v e r s i f y i n g had n e v e r b e e n s e e n b e f o r e i n E n g l i s h , e x c e p t i n C h a u c e r ' s works, whic h , a t S p e n s e r ' s t i m e , were o v e r - s h a d o w e d by a p r e o c c u p y i n g i n t e r e s t i n t h e c l a s s i c s and i n I t a l i a n l i t e r a t u r e . • ' ' B e s i d e s m a k i n g Innovations'.?- i n v e r s i f i c a t i o n , S p e n s e r , l i k e h i s c o n t e m p o r a r i e s , a l s o t u r n e d t o L a t i n and I t a l i a n m o d e l s , l o o k e d t o m e d i e v a l c h i v a l r y f o r I n s p i r a t i o n , wrote r e l i g i o u s , m o r a l and p o l i t i c a l a l l e g o r i e s , and c o p i e d t h e l a n g u a g e o f C h a u c e r . As a r e s u l t h i s work was a m i x t u r e o f m e d i e v a l g o t h i c and r e n a i s s a n c e c l a s s i c i s m t i n g e d , p e r h a p s , w i t h b a r o q u e . E v e r y t h i n g was i n t h e s p i r i t o f t h e t i m e s e x c e p t t h e a n t i q u e d i c t i o n w h i c h drew c r i t i c a l a t t a c k s f r o m S i d n e y , J o n s o n , B o l t o n and D a v e n a n t - a l l c o n -t e m p o r a r i e s o r n e a r c o n t e m p o r a r i e s o f S p e n s e r . W i t h t h e a d v e n t o f t h e . R e s t o r a t i o n t h e s p o n t a n e i t y o f t h e E l i z a b e t h a n and J a c o b e a n w r i t e r s was r e p l a c e d by the s o b r i e t y o f t h e n e o - c l a s s i c i s t s w i t h t h e i r r e a s o n a n d t h e i r r u l e s . The c r i t i c s f o u n d f a u l t w i t h S p e n s e r ' s a r c h a i c l a n g u a g e , h i s s u b j e c t m a t t e r , h i s a l l e g o r i e s , h i s s t a n z a f o r m s , and h i s u s e o f the p a s t o r a l . Rymer, D r y d e n , Pope, - 126 -Gay, and Johnson - a l l censured Spenser. He was s t i l l w i d e l y read i n t h i s p e r i o d , as the number of a l l u s i o n s shows, but h i s p r e s t i g e was a t a low ebb. H i s gre a t i n f l u e n c e on v e r s i f i c a t i o n , however, was s t i l l s t r o n g , and, t h e r e was no l e s s e n i n g o f the number o f Spenser i m i t a t i o n s t h a t were f l o w i n g from the pens o f w r i t e r s - u s u a l l y minor authors. I t never occured t o the n e o - c l a s s i c i s t s t h a t the reason the F a e r i e Queene d i d not conform to the r u l e s was t h a t i t was not w r i t t e n a c c o r d i n g to the r u l e s . The n e o - c l a s s i c i s t s were c e r t a i n t h a t they were r i g h t , and they c i t e d A r i s t o t l e and Horace, Rapin and B o i l e a u as c o r r o b o r a t i o n . A r i s t o t l e was the g r e a t name, the g r e a t c r i t i c , and what he s a i d was law, or, r a t h e r , what they thought he s a i d was law. Thus they proceeded to condemn w r i t e r s l i k e Spenser and Shakespeare f o r r not conforming to the r u l e s ; and they themselves wrote l i t e r a t u r e t h a t , stymied by t h e i r own r e g u l a t i o n s , tended to become s t i l t e d . The l i t e r a r y pendulum, however, i s never s t i l l , and the n e o - c l a s s i c i s t s were superseded by the pre-romantics -a p e c u l i a r group of w r i t e r s who were n e i t h e r n e o - c l a s s i c a l nor romantic, but r a t h e r occupy a t r a n s i t i o n a l s t a t e i n be-tween the two s c h o o l s . Warton and Hurd, e a r l y pre-romantics, were authors of the two most v a l u a b l e and important t r a c t s concerning Spenser t h a t come out of the whole p e r i o d covered by t h i s t h e s i s . Each showed a c o n s i d e r a b l e n e o - c l a s s i c a l i n f l u e n c e which, however, was counter-balanced by t h e i r demand t h a t the F a e r i e Queene should be s t u d i e d f o r what i t •J -127-i s a n d n o t I n t h e l i g h t o f any r e s t r i c t i o n s i m p o s e d hy p o s t - S p e n s e r i a n l i t e r a r y c o n v e n t i o n s . I h g e n e r a l , i t may be s a i d , t h e p r e - r o m a n t i c s wrote, l e s s a d v e r s e c r i t i c i s m and l e s s g e n u i n e p r a i s e o f S p e n s e r t h a n e a r l i e r w r i t e r s . And, i n d e e d , few w r i t e r s i n t h i s p e r i o d were c o n c e r n e d w i t h him. S p e n s e r ' s i n f l u e n c e was s t i l l t o be s e e n , however, i n many S p e n s e r i a n i m i t a t i o n s , and a l l u s i o n s t o S p e n s e r and h i s muse were s t i l l numerous. N e v e r t h e l e s s , t h e f e r v o u r o f t h e E l i z a b e t h a n and J a c o b e a n w r i t e r s , a n d e v e n t h a t o f some n e o - c l a s s i c i s t s , was n o t r e p e a t e d . W i t h t h e e x c e p t i o n o f Warton's O b s e r v a t i o n s and Hurd's L e t t e r s t h e c r i t i c i s m was p a l l i d . The e a r l y r o m a n t i c w r i t e r s , on the o t h e r hand, h e a p e d on S p e n s e r the m o s t w h o l e h e a r t e d and u n q u a l i f i e d p r a i s e . T h e y f o u n d i n S p e n s e r the v o i c e o f t h e i r own r o m a n t i c i s m ; t h e y f o u n d i n h i s p o e t r y t h e same m u s i c o f word and m e l o d y o f v e r s e t h a t t h e y t h e m s e l v e s w i s h e d t o a c h i e v e . B u t e v e n s o , two d i s t u r b i n g d e v e l o p m e n t s were a p p a r e n t . I n the f i r s t p l a c e t h e t r e n d o f n e g l e c t i n g S p e n s e r ' s a l l e g o r i e s , w h i c h became e v i d e n t d u r i n g t h e s e v e n t e e n t h c e n t u r y , was s t r e n g t h -e n i n g ; and, s e c o n d l y , as W ordsworth r e v e a l e d , S p e n s e r was l i t t l e known e i t h e r i n E n g l a n d o r e l s e w h e r e . I n o t h e r w ords, S p e n s e r ' s g e n e r a l p o p u l a r i t y h a d d e c l i n e d c o n s i d e r a b l y . The a p p r e c i a t i o n o f h i s works had become l i m i t e d a l m o s t en-t i r e l y t o p o e t s who, on t h e whole, were i n f l u e n c e d p r i n c i -p a l l y by the s w e e t n e s s o f h i s v e r s i f i c a t i o n . . A l t h o u g h n e v e r a d v e r s e i n t h e i r c r i t i c i s m , t h e l a t e r -128-r o m a n t i c c r i t i c s were l e s s u n q u a l i f i e d i n e u l o g i z i n g S p e n -s e r . T h e r e was, however, no t r a n s i t i o n b e t w e e n the r o -m a n t i c s and t h e e a r l y V i c t o r i a n s . The a b r u p t change o f i d e a b etween t h e s e two g r o u p s i s s u r p r i s i n g b e c a u s e , a f t e r a l l , t h e e a r l y V i c t o r i a n s were r o m a n t i c s t h e m s e l v e s . T h e r e c a n be o n l y one e x p l a n a t i o n f o r t h i s a b r u p t n e s s , a n d t h a t i s t h a t the sudden i n t e r e s t o f s c i e n c e , p o l i t i c s , r e l i g i o n , p h i l o s o p h y and m o r a l i t y i n d u c e d t h e V i c t o r i a n r o m a n t i c s t o h o l d a more c o n v e n t i o n a l a t t i t u d e t h a n was p o s s e s s e d b y t h e r o m a n t i c s a t t h e t u r n o f t h e n i n e t e e n t h c e n t u r y . W i t h s u c h a b a c k g r o u n d i t i s no wonder t h a t t h e e a r l y V i c t o r i a n s l i m i t e d t h e i r a d v e r s e c r i t i c i s m a l m o s t com-p l e t e l y t o a t t a c k s a g a i n s t S p e n s e r ' s s u b j e c t m a t t e r and h i s a l l e g o r y . T h e i r s was p r e d o m i n a n t l y a m o r a l c r i t i c i s m , and w i t h the j a u n d i c e d e y e s o f m o r a l i s t s t h e y were u n a b l e t o see t h e b e a u t i e s o f m e d i e v a l and r e n a i s s a n c e r i c h n e s s , t h e d e l i g h t s o f f a i r y - l a n d , o r t h e p l e a s u r e s o f t a l e s d e a l i n g w i t h k n i g h t s and l a d i e s . Two o b s e r v a t i o n s c a n be. made: S p e n s e r ' s p o p u l a r i t y was a t i t s l o w e s t p o i n t , a n d h i s i n f l u e n c e , i f f e l t a t a l l , was n o t a c k n o w l e d g e d . S p e n s e r ' s p o p u l a r i t y a p p e a r s t o have b e e n i n a g e n e r a l d e c l i n e s i n c e t h e p e r i o d o f the n e o - c l a s s i c i s t s , n o t , o f c o u r s e , among t h e p o e t s , b u t , a c c o r d i n g t o v a r i o u s s t a t e -ments made by Wordsworth, M a c a u l a y and o t h e r s , among t h e r e a d i n g p u b l i c . B u t e v e n among t h e p o e t s many a s p e c t s o f S p e n s e r ' s work were n o t c o n s i d e r e d i n t e r e s t i n g ; i n d e e d , -129-h i s v e r s i f i c a t i o n r e m a i n e d the m a i n r e a s o n f o r t h e i r h o l d i n g h i s w r i t i n g s i n any e s t e e m w h a t s o e v e r . The a l l e g o r i e s l o s t t h e i r i m p o r t a n c e . (the;-key t o t h e p o l i t i -c a l . a l l e g o r y , i t must he a d m i t t e d , may n e v e r be d i s c o v e r e d ) , and t h e s u b j e c t m a t t e r was c o n s i d e r e d e i t h e r o l d - f a s h i o n e d , o r t o o s i m p l e , o r was a t t a c k e d o n m o r a l a n d r e l i g i o u s g r o u n d s . Too many commentators v i e w e d the F a e r i e Queene f o r t h e p l e a s u r e s i t a f f o r d e d , n o t w i t h s t a n d i n g t h e f a c t t h a t S p e n s e r w r o t e , i n h i s l e t t e r t o R a l e g h , t h a t "The g e n e r a l l end t h e r e f o r e o f a l l t h e b o o k i s t o f a s h i o n a g e n t l e m a n o r n o b l e p e r s o n i n v e r t u o u s and g e n t l e d i s c i p l i n e . . . . " I n o r d e r t o c o n f i r m my o p i n i o n t h a t S p e n s e r ' s p o p u -l a r i t y had b e e n s t e a d i l y d e c r e a s i n g , I have a t t e m p t e d i n t h e a p p e n d i x t o t h i s t h e s i s t o show t h e p r e s e n t s t a t e o f S p e n s e r s t u d y and s c h o l a r s h i p . -130-... APPENDIX... The g e n e r a l i n t e n t o f t h e q u e s t i o n n a i r e s e n t t o s e v e n t y - f i v e l e a d i n g N o r t h A m e r i c a n U n i v e r s i t i e s was t o d e t e r m i n e t h e e x t e n t o f S p e n s e r s t u d y and s c h o l a r s h i p t o -d a y . A t t h e t i m e t h i s t h e s i s was w r i t t e n r e p l i e s had b e e n r e c e i v e d f r o m s i x t y o f t h e s e i n s t i t u t i o n s ( f o r names see l i s t a t e n d ) . On t h e whole the r e s u l t s show a s u r p r i s i n g i n d i f f e r e n c e t o S p e n s e r . S i n c e S p e n s e r i s u s u a l l y r a n k e d w i t h C h a u c e r , S h a k e -s p e a r e , and M i l t o n as one o f t h e f o u r g r e a t e s t E n g l i s h p o e t s , t h e f o l l o w i n g r e s u l t s o f the s u r v e y a r e i n t e r e s t -i n g . Of the s i x t y u n i v e r s i t i e s r e p o r t i n g , o n l y one d o e s n o t o f f e r a c o u r s e on C h a u c e r , o r a c o u r s e t h a t c e n t r e s i n C h a u c e r ; a l l o f f e r a S h a k e s p e a r e c o u r s e o f some s o r t ; and a l l b u t s e v e n o f f e r c o u r s e s s t r e s s i n g t h e s t u d y o f M i l t o n (two u n i v e r s i t i e s r e p o r t t h a t t h e y o f f e r t h e i r M i l t o n c o u r s e o n l y o c c a s i o n a l l y ) . Compared w i t h t h e s e f i g u r e s t h e amount o f S p e n s e r s t u d y i s d i s a p p o i n t i n g : o n l y t w e n t y - s i x u n i v e r -s i t i e s o f f e r c o u r s e s t h a t a r e , i n some way, p r e d o m i n a n t l y S p e n s e r c o u r s e s ( t h i s f i g u r e i n c l u d e s t h r e e C a n a d i a n i n s t i -t u t i o n s , ©jueen's U n i v e r s i t y , The U n i v e r s i t y o f S a s k a t c h e w a n , and The U n i v e r s i t y o f T o r o n t o ) . The work o f t h e s e t w e n t y - s i x c o l l e g e s c a n be b r o k e n - 1 3 1 -down as f o l l o w s ; t w e n t y s t u d y t h e F a e r i e Queene i n f u l l ; t e n o f f e r t h e i r S p e n s e r c o u r s e s t o g r a d u a t e s t u d e n t s only-; f i v e i n c l u d e t h e s t u d y o f o t h e r w r i t e r s i n . t h e i r c o u r s e s (Queen's l i s t s i t s c o u r s e as "An Honours c o u r s e d e v o t e d a l m o s t e n t i r e l y t o S p e n s e r and M i l t o n a l t h o u g h w i t h some a t t e n t i o n t o m i n o r p o e t s . " ) ; t h r e e o f f e r t h e i r c o u r s e s i n t h e f o r m o f a s e m i n a r ; one o f f e r s i t s C o u r s e i n a l t e r n a t e y e a r s , one e v e r y two o r t h r e e y e a r s , and one o n l y when r e g i s t r a t i o n demands (so f a r t w i c e i n t e n y e a r s ) . T h r e e o t h e r u n i v e r s i t i e s have w i t h d r a w n t h e i r S p e n s e r c o u r s e s b e c a u s e o f i n s u f f i c i e n t i n t e r e s t . The a v e r a g e e n r o l m e n t i n t h e s e c l a s s e s i s e i g h t e e n , v a r y i n g f r o m t h r e e ( U n i -v e r s i t y o f C o l o r a d o ) t o s e v e n t y - f i v e ( C o l u m b i a U n i v e r s i t y ) . The a v e r a g e e n r o l m e n t i n o t h e r a d v a n c e d E n g l i s h c o u r s e s i s f o r t y . Gf t h e s i x t y u n i v e r s i t i e s h e a r d f r o m o n l y f o r t y - n i n e o f f e r l i t e r a r y s u r v e y c o u r s e s on a f i r s t o r s e c o n d y e a r l e v e l , and f o r t y - t w o o f t h e s e c o u r s e s i n c l u d e s compul-s o r y r e a d i n g s f r o m S p e n s e r . The e x t e n t o f t h i s r e a d i n g v a r i e s g r e a t l y among c o l l e g e s , b u t , on t h e w h o l e , they i n c l u d e a l l o r p a r t o f t h e f o l l o w i n g : one t o t h r e e c a n t o s o f the F a e r i e Queene, one e c l o g u e o f t h e Sihepheardes C a l e n -d e r , f i v e t o t h i r t e e n c o n n e t s f r o m the A m o r e t t l , and p o r t i o n s ( .') o f the E p i t h a i ami on and t h e P r o t h a i ami on. V a s s a r and W e l l e s l e y , b o t h women's c o l l e g e s , i n c l u d e the r e a d i n g o f two books o f t h e F a e r i e Queene. A d v a n c e d c o u r s e s t h a t i n c l u d e a s t u d y o f S p e n s e r a r e -132-• o f f e r e d by t h i r t y - f i v e u n i v e r s i t i e s . The amount o f t i m e . s p e n t on S p e n s e r i n t h e s e c o u r s e s v a r i e s f r o m two l e c t u r e s t o e i g h t weeks o f l e c t u r e s . The a v e r a g e t i m e , however, i s two and one h a l f weeks. On l y t w e n t y u n i v e r s i t i e s r e p o r t t h a t t h e y have had s t u d e n t s c a r r y on g r a d u a t e r e s e a r c h work on S p e n s e r , o f w h i c h f i f t e e n have l i s t e d t h e amount; the o t h e r f i v e r e c o r d t h a t t h e r e has e i t h e r b e e n " c o n s i d e r a b l e o v e r t h e y e a r s , " o r " n o t much," o r "none r e c e n t l y . " Prom the f i f t e e n u n i v e r s i t i e s w h i c h have s t a t e d t h e amount o f r e s e a r c h done, t h e r e have come e i g h t e e n m a s t e r ' s and t h i r t e e n d o c t o r a l t h e s e s ( o f w h i c h f i v e m a s t e r ' s t h e s e s a n d one d o c t o r a l t h e s i s a r e I n p r e p a r a t i o n a t p r e s e n t ) . O n l y two C a n a d i a n u n i v e r s i t i e s c l a i m any g r a d u a t e work on S p e n s e r : The U n i v e r s i t y o f T o r o n t o has had one d o c t o r a l t h e s i s , and M c G i l l U n i v e r s i t y s a y s " n o t much" work h a s b e e n done. Of t h e c o l l e g e s r e -p o r t i n g , the u n i v e r s i t i e s o f N e b r a s k a and T e x a s have had t h e most r e s e a r c h work c a r r i e d on b y g r a d u a t e s : t h e y have had f i v e these's a p i e c e . The U n i v e r s i t y o f F l o r i d a s a y s t h a t "M.A. c a n d i d a t e s do n o t know enough" t o u n d e r t a k e g r a d u a t e work on S p e n s e r , a n d t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f W a s h i n g t o n s t a t e s t h a t the " f a l l i n g o f f /of g r a d u a t e r e s e a r c h w o r k / i s p r o p o r t i o n a t e t o t h e f a l l i n g o f f o f S p e n s e r s c h o l a r s h i p g e n e r a l l y . " ( D u r i n g t h e t h i r t y y e a r s t h a t t h e l a t e P.M. P a d e l f o r d l e c t u r e d a t t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f W a s h i n g t o n t h a t i n s t i t u t i o n was one o f N o r t h A m e r i c a ' s l e a d i n g c e n t r e s o f S p e n s e r s c h o l a r s h i p ) . -135-U n i v e r s i t i e s w h i c h do n o t o f f e r a S p e n s e r c o u r s e were a s k e d w h e t h e r o r n o t t h e y t h o u g h t t h a t the i n c o r p o r a t i o n o f s u c h a c o u r s e i n t o t h e i r c u r r i c u l u m would be s u c c e s s f u l . Of t h e t w e n t y - f i v e u n i v e r s i t i e s w h i c h a n s w e r e d t h i s q u e s t i o n o n l y s i x t h o u g h t t h a t a S p e n s e r , c o u r s e would be s u c c e s s f u l . The U n i v e r s i t y o f A l a s k a r e p l i e d f a v o u r a b l y e v e n t h o u g h t h e i r a v e r a g e e n r o l m e n t i n a d v a n c e d E n g l i s h c o u r s e s i s s i x . A number o f the comments as t o why a S p e n s e r c o u r s e w o u l d n o t be s u c c e s s f u l i l l u m i n a t e a t t i t u d e s t h a t a r e b e i n g t a k e n t o w a r d S p e n s e r a t t h e p r e s e n t t i m e , p r o f e s s o r A.L. W h e e l e r o f t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f M a n i t o b a w r i t e s t h a t "Perhaps The F a e r y Queen l a c k s f o r e v e n an a d v a n c e d s t u d e n t t h e s o l i d meat o f M i l t o n , C h a u c e r e t c . " S p e n s e r ' s " l i m i t e d a p p e a l " i s s t r e s s e d b y Mr. P a c e y o f New B r u n s w i c k U n i v e r s i t y , b y ' M i s s M a r i o n C a r s o n o f . t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f N e b r a s k a ( t h e i r S p e n s e r c o u r s e f a i l e d , i n 1946, t h e f i r s t y e a r i t was o f -f e r e d ) , and by M i s s M u r i e l J . Hughes o f t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f Vermont. The l a c k o f c o mpetent t e a c h e r s f o r a S p e n s e r c o u r s e i s p o i n t e d o u t b y P r o f e s s o r J.W. H u g g i n s o f the v U n i v e r s i t y o f A r i z o n a , by M i s s M a r i e Dunvas o f t h e U n i v e r -s i t y o f G e o r g i a , and Mr. T.P. H a r r i s o n o f t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f T e x a s , w h i c h o f f e r s a c o u r s e on S p e n s e r . Some comments a r e most i n t e r e s t i n g . Mr. C l a u d e W. F a u l k n e r , ^ A c t i n g Head' o f . the E n g l i s h - D e p a r t m e n t o f t h e U n i - . v e r s i t y o f A r k a n s a s w r i t e s t h a t "Most s t u d e n t s (and t e a c h e r s ) f i n d S p e n s e r v e r y d u l l . " P r o f e s s o r F.Y. S t . C l a i r o f 'the -134-U n i v e r s i t y o f N o r t h D a k o t a t h i n k s t h a t a S p e n s e r c o u r s e w o u l d be " t o o s p e c i a l i z e d f o r t h e amount o f n a t u r a l a p p e a l t h a t the s u b j e c t m a t t e r would have' f o r A m e r i c a n s t u d e n t s . " T h e r e i s "No g r e a t i n t e r e s t on p a r t o f e i t h e r s t u d e n t s of f a c u l t y " at t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f S o u t h C a r o l i n a , a c c o r d i n g to J . E d w i n W h i t e s e l l , Chairman of t h e G r a d u a t e Committee. A l t h o u g h New Y o r k U n i v e r s i t y o f f e r s a S p e n s e r c o u r s e w i t h an a v e r a g e e n r o l m e n t of t w e n t y - f i v e s t u d e n t s , S p e n s e r i s f o u n d n o t to be " a p p e a l i n g enough i n c o m p e t i t i o n w i t h an u n u s u a l l y r i c h o f f e r i n g . " P r o f e s s o r U.A. S h a a b & r of t h e U n i v e r s i t y of P e n n s y l s a n i a s t a t e s t h a t " U n d e r g r a d u a t e s f i n d S p e n s e r h a r d to r e a d ; an i n t e n s i v e c o u r s e s h o u l d o v e r -come t h i s h a n d i c a p ; b u t t h e r e a r e too many o t h e r w r i t e r s e q u a l l y e l i g i b l e f o r i n t e n s i v e s t u d y who p r e s e n t no s u c h o b s t a c l e . " L a u r e n c e L . S m i t h of the U n i v e r s i t y of Wyoming a l s o f i n d s t h a t t h e r e a r e more " a p p a r e n t n e e d s " f o r a l s t u d e n t t h a n a s t u d y of S p e n s e r . A r a t h e r s u r p r i s i n g eri'fcd-3(2i.Sffi i s made by P r o f e s s o r T.M. P e a r c e of the U n i v e r s i t y of New M e x i c o who w r i t e s , "You know, as w e l l as I , t h a t i t w o u l d expand o n l y i n t o l i t e r a r y h i s t o r y , E l i z a b e t h a n p o l i -t i c s , c l a s s i c a l b a c k g r o u n d s , w o r l d l i t e r a t u r e , and e s t h e t i c c r i t e r i a . " However, t h e s e t h i n g s a l o n e , i t seems to me, w o u l d make a S p e n s e r c o u r s e of v i t a l i m p o r t a n c e f o r a b e t t e r u n d e r s t a n d i n g of a l l E l i z a b e t h a n l i t e r a t u r e . Mr. M a r c u s S e l d e n Goldman, S p e n s e r l e c t u r e r at the U n i v e r s i t y of I l l i n o i s , i n c h e c k i n g to d e t e r m i n e t h e number of t h e s e s w r i t t e n on S p e n s e r at t h a t u n i v e r s i t y was -135-s u r p r i s e d t o f i n d t h e t o t a l l e s s t h a n he e x p e c t e d , c o n -s i d e r i n g t h a t H.S.V. J o n e s was S p e n s e r l e c t u r e r a t I l -l i n o i s b e f o r e h i s d e a t h . P r o f e s s o r Goldman comments on a n e w l y d e v e l o p i n g l i t -e r a r y t r e n d . He w r i t e s , The t r e n d h e r e i n r e c e n t y e a r s seems t o have been away f r o m E n g l i s h l i t e r a t u r e t o A m e r i c a n l i t e r a t u r e , away f r o m p o e t r y t o p r o s e f i c t i o n , and away f r o m t h e o l d e r p e r i -ods t o t h e most r e c e n t o n e s . Prom c o n v e r -s a t i o n s w i t h men i n t h e f a c u l t i e s o f o t h e r u n i v e r s i t i e s , p a r t i c u l a r l y u n i v e r s i t i e s i n t h e M i d d l e West, I have t h e i m p r e s s i o n t h a t t h e t r e n d i s n o t a l o c a l phenomenon b u t r a t h e r g e n e r a l . I t i s , o f c o u r s e , g r e a t l y t o be r e g r e t t e d , f o r a t l o n g l a s t , i t i s c e r t a i n t o make f o r b o t h n a r r o w n e s s and . s u p e r f i c i a l i t y i n l i t e r a r y s c h o l a r s h i p ; . I f s u c h a t r e n d e x i s t s t h e n we must t r u l y f e a r f o r the f u t u r e s t a t e o f l i t e r a r y s c h o l a r s h i p and f o r the s t a t e o f S p e n s e r s c h o l a r s h i p , w h i c h a p p e a r s t o be a l r e a d y t o t t e r i n g o n a c r u m b l i n g f o u n d a t i o n . A s u r v e y , s i m i l a r t o t h e one I have made, was c o n -d u c t e d i n 1949 b y W i l l i a m B. H u n t e r , J r . , o f W o f f o r d C o l l e g e among a l l f o u r - y e a r c o l l e g e s and u n i v e r s i t i e s o f A l a b a m a , F l o r i d a , G e o r g i a , K e n t u c k y , N o r t h C a r o l i n a , S o u t h C a r o l i n a , and T e nnessee.^ - Mr. H u n t e r w r i t e s t h a t f i f t y - s e v e n o f s i x t y - s i x r e p o r t i n g c o l l e g e s i n c l u d e d - S p e n s e r i n a sophomore s u r v e y c o u r s e w i t h t h r e e t o s i x c l a s s h o u r s o f l e c t u r e s . A t t h e u p p e r c l a s s l e v e l o n l y n i n e t e e n c o l l e g e s had c o u r s e s t h a t t o u c h e d on S p e n s e r w i t h s i x t o t w e n t y - f o u r h o u r s d e v o t e d 1 " S p e n s e r and M i l t o n i n S o u t h e a s t , " i n S o u t h A t l a n t i c  B u l l e t i n / ( M a r c h , 1951),. v o l . 1.6, No. 4., p. 1 and pp. 5-6. -136-t o h i s s t u d y , and f o u r t e e n c o l l e g e s h a d c o u r s e s d e v o t e d e n t i r e l y t o the s t u d y o f S p e n s e r ( t w e n t y t o f o r t y - f i v e c l a s s h o u r s ) w i t h e n r o l m e n t s , o f t e n t o t w e l v e s t u d e n t s . On the whole, the r e s u l t s o f Mr. H u n t e r ' s s u r v e y and o f my own a r e s i m i l a r , w i t h t h e e x c e p t i o n t h a t he f o u n d t h a t t h e r e was more g r a d u a t e r e s e a r c h i n p r e p a r a t i o n a t s m a l l e r c o l l e g e s t h a n I f o u n d i n t h e l a r g e r i n s t i t u t i o n s . A b o u t S p e n s e r and M i l t o n s c h o l a r s h i p , Mr. H u n t e r w r i t e s : . . . t h e most t e l l i n g judgment o f t h i s s u r -vey s h o u l d be aimed a t o u r g r a d u a t e s c h o o l s . O n l y h a l f o f them o f f e r a d v a n c e d s t u d y o f t h e s e two p o e t s , who a s s u r e d l y r a n k among o u r t o p f i v e . The c o l l e g e s a p p e a r t o be d o i n g t h e i r j o b s b e t t e r t h a n t h e u n i v e r s i t i e s , b u t i f the l a t t e r do n o t i n t e r e s t t h e i r g r a d -u a t e s i n t h e work o f t h e s e two p o e t s , t e a c h -i n g o f them w i l l i n e v i t a b l y d e c l i n e i n t h e c o l l e g e s , whose f a c u l t i e s must be t r a i n e d i n t h e l a r g e r s c h o o l s . 2 and, he s a y s : S p e n s e r comes o f f b e t t e r p r o p o r t i o n a t e l y i n r e s e a r c h and t h e s e s , b u t f a r e s w o r se among the u n d e r g r a d u a t e s t h a n M i l t o n , who, i n t u r n , i s w i d e l y r e a d by a l l l e v e l s o f s t u d e n t s a l t h o u g h i n t e r e s t i n h i m does n o t a p p e a r t o c a r r y o v e r v e r y w e l l i n t o t h e g r a d u a t e s c h o o l . 3 The i n t e l l e c t u a l a p a t h y r e v e a l e d b y S p e n s e r i a n c r i t i c i s m up t o 1850, and shown by t h e s e two s u r v e y s o f S p e n s e r s t u d y t o d a y , i s s t a r t l i n g . I t i s h a r d l y p o s s i b l e t o c o n t i n u e . t a l k i n g o f o u r l i t e r a r y h e r i t a g e when the g r e a t w r i t e r s who make up t h a t h e r i t a g e a r e b e i n g f o r g o t t e n o r o v e r l o o k e d . 2 H u n t e r , op. c i t . , p. 6. 5 L o c . c i t . -137-Canadian u n i v e r s i t i e s reporting were* Uni v e r s i t y of Alberta (University of B r i t i s h Columbia) McGi l l University McMaster University U n i v e r s i t y of. Manitoba New Brunswick University Queen's University U n i v e r s i t y of Saskatchewan Un i v e r s i t y of Toronto American u n i v e r s i t i e s reporting were; University Universi ty Unive r s i t y University Bryn Mawr University U n i v e r s i t y of Alabama of Alaska of Arizona of Arkansas of C a l i f o r n i a of Colorado Columbia University University of Connecticut University of Delaware Duke University U n i v e r s i t y of F l o r i d a University of Georgia Harvard University U n i v e r s i t y of I l l i n o i s State University of Iowa John Hopkins University U n i v e r s i t y of Kansas Unive r s i t y of Kentucky Louisiana State University-University of Maine University of Unive r s i t y of Unive r s i t y of Unive r s i t y of Montana State Univ e r s i t y of Unive r s i t y of Unive r s i t y of Michigan Minnesota M i s s i s s i p p i Missouri University Nebraska Nevada New Mexico New York University U n i v e r s i t y of North Carolina University of North Dakota Northwestern University U n i v e r s i t y of ©klahoma University of Pennsylvania \ College of Puget Sound Purdue University Rutgers University U n i v e r s i t y of South Carolina University of South Dakota Stanford U n i v e r s i t y U n i v e r s i t y of Texas University of Utah Vassar College University of Vermont Univer s i t y of V i r g i n i a U n i v e r s i t y of Washington Wellesley College University of Wisconsin Unive r s i t y of Wyoming Yale Univ e r s i t y -137a-APPMDIX TWO The f o l l o w i n g b r i e f summary of the numbers of e d i t i o n s of Spenser's F a e r i e Queene and h i s complete Works to the year 1850 i s i n t e r e s t i n g . Separate e d i t i o n s of various minor works are not considered nor are c o l l e c t i o n s of poetry which i n c l u d e s e l e c t i o n s from Spenser's poetry. During Spenser's a c t u a l l i f e t i m e only the two parts of the F a e r i e Queene (Bks. I to I I I , and Bks, IV to VI) were p u b l i s h e d . Before 1650, however, three e d i t i o n s of h i s Works appeared. The F a e r i e Queene d i d not appear i n p r i n t by i t s e l f during the N e o - C l a s s i c a l p e r i o d (1650-175°) but three new e d i t i o n s of the Works came from the p r e s s . The Pre-Romantic and Romantic periods were p a r t i c u l a r l y r i c h - f o u r e d i t i o n s of the F a e r i e Queene and eleven of the Works. S i x more e d i t i o n s of the l a t t e r , published by the E a r l y V i c t o r i a n s , appeared before 1850. I t would seem safe to say that these f i g u r e s i n d i c a t e the spread of l i t e r a c y and growth of t e x t u a l s c h o l a r s h i p rather than r e v e a l any information about Spenser's p o p u l a r i t y . -138-...BIBLIOGRAPHY... The number enclosed i n brackets at the end of each entry s i g n i f i e s the number of the chapter i n which the m a t e r i a l may be found. Addison, Joseph, "An account of the Greatest E n g l i s h P o e t s , " [1694-], The Works of Joseph Addison, R. Hurd, e d . , London, G. B e l l , v o l . 1, p . 23. [33• Armstrong, Dr. John, I m i t a t i o n of Spenser, i n The Works of  the E n g l i s h P o e t s . . . , Alexander Chalmers, e d . , London, J . Johnson and,Others, 1810, v o l . 16, p . 156. To be known hereafter as Chalmer's Poets. (4)• Athenian Mercury. J u l y 11, 1691, v o l . 2, quoted i n Caro-l i n e F . E . Spurgeon, F i v e Hundred Years of Chaucer  C r i t i c i s m and A l l u s i o n (1357-1900). Chaucer S o c i e t y , London, Kegan P a u l , Trench, Triibner & C o . , L t d . , and Henry Frowde, 1914, s e r . 2, No. 48, P t . 1, p . 263. ( 3 ) . A t t e r b u r y , F r a n c i s , "Preface to the second part of Mr. W a l l e r * s Poems, p r i n t e d i n the year 1690," i n The Poems of Edmund W a l l e r . G. Thorne Drury, e d . , London, A . H . B u l l e n , 1901, p . x i x . ( 3 ) . Aubrey, John, B r i e f L i v e s . A. C l a r k , e d . , Oxford, O l a r e n -deon, P r e s s , 1898, v o l . 2, pp. 232-233; p . 248. (3) . A u s t i n , Samuel, "Naps upon Parnassus," [ I 6 5 8 ] , quoted i n Shakspere A l l u s i o n Book, C M . Ingleby, and Others, e d s . , London, Oxford U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1932, v o l . 2, p . 7 8 . (3) . -139-B a r n f i e l d . R i c h a r d , " i f music a n d sweet p o e t r y a g r e e , " and A remembrance o f some E n g l i s h p o e t s , " , i n P o e t r y o f t h e E n g l i s h R e n a i s s a n c e 1509-1660, J . Wm. H e b e l , and Hoyt H. Hudson, e d s . , New Y o r k , A p p l e t o n - C e n t u r y - C r o f t s , 1929. ( 2 ) . B e a t t i e , James, " P r e f a c e " t o "The M i n s t r e l , " / I 7 7 3 / , i n The P o e t i c a l Works o f James B e a t t i e , London, B e l l and D a l d y , n.d. ( 4 ) . • B l a c k m o r e , S i r R i c h a r d , " P r e f a c e t o P r i n c e A r t h u r , an H e r o i c k Poem," _1695/, i n C r i t i c a l E s s a y s o f t h e  S e v e n t e e n t h C e n t u r y , J . E . S p i n g a r n , e d . , O x f o r d , C l a r e n d o n P r e s s , 1908-9, v o l . 3, p. 238. ( 3 ) . B o l t o n , Edmund, " H y p e r c r i t i c a , " _1618_7, i n C r i t i c a l  E s s a y s o f t h e S e v e n t e e n t h C e n t u r y , ( s e e u n d e r B l a c k m o r e ) , v o l . 1, p. 109. ( 1 ) . B r o o k e , T u c k e r , "The R e n a i s s a n c e , " i n A L i t e r a r y H i s t o r y o f E n g l a n d , A l b e r t C. B a u g h , e d . , New Y o r k . 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( 2 j T Wilson, John, [Christopher North], "Spenser," Blackwood's Magazine. 1833, 1834, 1835, v o l s . 34, 36, 37. (6). Wither, George, J u v e n i l i a , Spenser Society, 1871, v o l s . 1 and 3. (TV-Woolfe, V i r g i n i a , "The Faery Queen," i n The Moment and  Other Essays. London, Hogarth Press, 1947. (6). Wordsworth, William, The P o e t i c a l Works of William Words- worth. William Knight, ed., Edinburgh, William Pat-terson, 1883, v o l . 4. (5). 

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