By Peter Hyland
An creation to Shakespeare's Poems presents a full of life and knowledgeable exam of Shakespeare's non-dramatic poetry: the narrative poems Venus and Adonis and The Rape of Lucrece; the Sonnets; and diverse minor poems, together with a few only in the near past attributed to Shakespeare. Peter Hyland locates Shakespeare as a sceptical voice in the turbulent social context during which Elizabethan specialist poets needed to paintings, and relates his poems to the tastes, values and political pressures of his time. Hyland additionally explores how Shakespeare's poetry will be of curiosity to twenty-first century readers.
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Extra info for An Introduction to Shakespeare's Poems
A major initiator of this interest was Petrarch, who sought to unearth and disseminate Greek and Latin texts, and to implant their ideals through his own Latin writings and his imitations of classical literature. Throughout the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries the humanist endeavour continued to rediscover classical texts and, increasingly, to propagate their ideas. The humanist project effectively reached England at the end of the fifteenth century through the teachings of Desiderius Erasmus and Sir Thomas More.
YOUR LORDSHIP’S IN ALL DUTY, WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE There are scholars who have detected in this dedication a more familiar tone than in the earlier one, and have conjectured from it an increasingly intimate relationship between Shakespeare and his young patron. However, even if the tone is more familiar (and I do not think it is clear that it is), it might mean no more than that Shakespeare felt more confident about dedicating this second poem to a man who had already accepted his first. I think we need to understand that dedications were in themselves a kind of genre, with conventions of their own.
He was deeply involved in public and military affairs, and his recklessness and outspokenness at one point made him so offensive to the queen that between 1580 and 1583 he retired from the court, living principally at Wilton House, the home of his sister Mary, Countess of Pembroke. During that period he produced a body of writing that 24 An Introduction to Shakespeare’s Poems was to become extraordinarily influential, including the sonnet sequence Astrophil and Stella, which inspired the fashion for sonnet sequences of the 1590s; the Arcadia, a prose romance with verse interludes; and An Apology for Poetry (also known as The Defense of Poesy), the first serious attempt in English to justify the kind of imaginative writing that we would now include under the larger heading of ‘literature’.
An Introduction to Shakespeare's Poems by Peter Hyland