Marian Political Allegory

Alice Hunt

in The Oxford Handbook of Tudor Literature

Published in print September 2009 | ISBN: 9780199205882
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks of Literature

Marian Political Allegory

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  • Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)



This article discusses John Heywood's The Spider and the Fly, which was published in 1556, three years into Mary I's reign and two years after her marriage to Philip II of Spain. This 400-plus-page poem draws attention to its allegorical status in its opening lines. Heywood's Preface tells us of his poem's doubleness, of its ability to say one thing and mean another. We therefore begin to read expecting the poem's characters and plot to reflect real people and a real situation.

Keywords: poem; Mary I; allegory; Philip II of Spain

Article.  7967 words. 

Subjects: Literature ; Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)

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