Spenser and French Literature

Anne Lake Prescott

in The Oxford Handbook of Edmund Spenser

Published in print October 2010 | ISBN: 9780199227365
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks of Literature

 Spenser and French Literature

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  • Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)
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This article focuses on Spenser's relationship with French poetry. Spenser's most visible interest in French poetry began early, when he was asked, perhaps by his schoolmaster Richard Mulcaster, to translate a set of sonnets by Joachim Du Bellay for an English version of the Flemish poet Jan Van der Noot's anti-Catholic polemic, A Theatre for Voluptuous Worldlings (1569). In his Complaints Spenser also published the Ruines of Rome, a translation of Du Bellay's haunting sonnet sequence Les Antiquitez de Rome, to which his Songe is a sort of appendix. Some years after his introduction to Du Bellay's poetry Spenser found an earlier French poet who would inspire him to imitation if not to praise: Clément Marot, chief poet at the court of Fran çois I.

Keywords: French poetry; Joachim Du Bellay; Clément Marot

Article.  8244 words. 

Subjects: Literature ; Literary Studies (1500 to 1800) ; Literary Studies (Poetry and Poets)

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