Lord Henry Howard (1540-1614): an Elizabethan Life

Lord Henry Howard (1540-1614): an Elizabethan Life

D. C. Andersson
Volume: 27
Copyright Date: 2009
Published by: Boydell and Brewer,
Pages: 240
https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.7722/j.ctt820sr
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  • Book Info
    Lord Henry Howard (1540-1614): an Elizabethan Life
    Book Description:

    `A profound and sophisticated understanding of Howard's intellectual universe and literary production'. JONATHAN WOOLFSON. Born the second son of the poet Earl of Surrey, Henry Howard was a Cambridge scholar, courtier and crypto-Catholic intriguer of suspicious repute; after falling in and out of favour with Elizabeth I, he eventually became the most important adviser to James I. Rather than view him through the prism of Jacobean court and political life, as the sparse previous critical attention has tended to do, this detailed reassessment places him in the context of scholarship on Renaissance humanism and its varied interactions with the different styles of argument and persuasion that Howard used, often to no avail, to improve his position during troubled times. The book will be of huge importance to all those interested in the intellectual, religious or political history of early modern England.

    eISBN: 978-1-84615-742-4
    Subjects: History, Language & Literature

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-x)
  3. ABBREVIATIONS
    (pp. xi-xi)
  4. EDITORIAL PRINCIPLES
    (pp. xii-xii)
  5. PREFACE
    (pp. xiii-xvi)
  6. Introduction
    (pp. 1-8)

    The sixteenth century witnessed profound shifts in the role of the nobility in cultural life. The various aristocracies of Europe, in response to both military and social changes, needed to provide innovative justifications for their position and prestige. It is a commonplace observed in scholarship on the Renaissance that the growth of the interest in the recovery of the Classical past, at least in its guise as humanist educational ideal, was closely related to this redrawing of the intellectual foundations of the hegemonic map. At first sight, it is hard to understand why these two factors should be so linked....

  7. Chapter 1 ‘THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOOD LETTERS’. BIRTH, EDUCATION AND FIRST YEARS AT CAMBRIDGE
    (pp. 9-29)

    The Lord Henry Howard was to play many roles throughout his long life, some traditional – courtier and man of religious devotion – and others less so – prisoner, scholar, efficient administrator, patron and, perhaps, murderer.¹ Throughout these frequent changes of stage and scenery, one thing, at least, remained constant: the importance of the written word.² Unlike his more militaristic brother, Thomas, he sought advancement and favour through literary productions, each with different audiences in view. The central tenet of the rhetorical education of which he was a beneficiary was that the ‘writer’ should always think of his audience and adjust his matter...

  8. Chapter 2 ‘TANTA ASSIDUITAS’. A SCHOLARLY LIFE AT TRINITY HALL
    (pp. 30-53)

    King’s did not hold Howard long, despite its deserved reputation for humanist studies. Instead, at some point between 1566 and 1569, he migrated to the more conservative Trinity Hall. This was not an uncommon practice, at least, for example, at the level of the fellowship. Gabriel Harvey moved between Pembroke and Trinity Hall. Trinity Hall, one of a clutch of colleges founded in the earlier part of the fourteenth century, was famed as a ‘nursery for civilians’.¹ Civil law, useful in most ‘international’ careers of business and diplomacy, was probably the biggest draw of this college for Howard. It was...

  9. Chapter 3 ‘BEWARE OF TO MUCH ARTE’. BETWEEN CAMBRIDGE AND AUDLEY END
    (pp. 54-80)

    A scholarly life was, even then, not necessarily a well-remunerated one. Howard’s financial situation was always precarious. His loyalty to some members of his clan was not reciprocated with lavish annuities by the rest of them. It is worth noting that Howard is mentioned as one of the beneficiaries of the reversionary interest of various lands of his brother after the life-interest of very many others had been extinguished (including Thomas Bromley, Lord Burghley (as William Cecil became in 1571), the Earl of Sussex, the Earl of Leicester, Sir Christopher Hatton, Francis Walsingham, Sir Walter Mildmay and several others).¹ Still,...

  10. Chapter 4 ‘THE SKILL OF PHILENUS’. TEACHER, POLEMICIST, PAPIST
    (pp. 81-105)

    Letters, along with printed media, were one of the few forms of political ‘action at a distance’ available to the Elizabethan intriguer. Forged letters, buried letters, letters in code and letters sewn into doublets: all are familiar to the historian of early modern espionage, charge and counter-charge.² It was very often upon the interpretation of letters that Howard’s numerous troubles with the ruling authority turned, as evidenced by a slew of interrogatories or notes preparatory thereto. Unfortunately, these letters, sometimes denied to be authentic, sometimes lost, occasionally illegible, remain our best source for the political twists and turns with which...

  11. Chapter 5 ‘IN SOME SORT COMMUNICAT WITH DAUNGER’. SURVIVAL, SUCCESS AND DEFEAT (1578–1582)
    (pp. 106-126)

    The years immediately following Henry Howard’s anonymous publication (seemingly at Burghley’s behest) of the Defense of the Ecclesiaticall Regiment of England in 1574 were not marked by any significant upturn in his fortunes. We have seen how Burghley may have remained warm toward Howard, despite the more hostile feelings of Walsingham and his spies. It is, however, unsurprising to discover that the letters from the period are still marked, where they are marked at all, from Audley End.¹ Neither Howard’s immediate prospects at court nor the wider political scene were encouraging. Any chance of advancement for Howard within the English...

  12. Chapter 6 ‘SOMEWHAT CLOSELY CARRIED’. RHETORIC AND ASTROLOGY
    (pp. 127-143)

    Howard spent the first half of 1583 (and probably much longer than that) writing his attack on prophecy and astrology. It is noteworthy that he chose to dedicate the work to Walsingham. Perhaps it was in relation to his examination (for unspecified reasons) earlier in the year.¹ Why did Howard write the Defensative?² One suggestion, deriving from a contemporary source, is that it was written in response to a work by Richard Harvey.³ Harvey’s marginalia-prone brother, Gabriel, wrote at the foot of one page of Howard’s work the following note:

    Iwis it is not the Astrological Discourses, but a more...

  13. Chapter 7 ‘NO TERMINATION BUT IN VOCATIVO’. FAILURE, VOTARY AND CIVILIAN
    (pp. 144-167)

    No termination but in vocativo. The vocative is the case-ending of the Latin noun used to denote a relationship of address. Howard’s learned phrasing does not attempt to conceal the unpalatable truth: his politics can only be the rhetorical politics of address. We have seen that Howard’s Defensative was dedicated to Walsingham; but dedications do not a loyalist make. If Howard hoped to escape further arrest by means of his penmanship, he was wrong, as his encounter with Henry Carey was to prove. Carey was a busy man.² He had consistently held the queen’s favour, and she rewarded him with...

  14. Chapter 8 ‘AN NOBILITAS PERDATUR PER INFAMIAM?’. FROM CONSPIRATOR TO KINGMAKER
    (pp. 168-178)

    The long autobiographical sketch with which Howard prefaced his ‘Dutiful Defence’ leaves the reader in no doubt of the low pitch of disfavour to which he felt himself to have sunk: ‘my reason [is] like a flash of lightning in a winters night, which serveth not so much to guide my steppes as to manifest my miserye’.¹ His plight was made worse by his sense of entitlement and nobility. In one of his discussions on the topic of nobility, Howard asked ‘Can it [sc. ‘nobility’] be lost through infamia?’² The word infamia should be lingered over. As the context suggests,...

  15. CONCLUSION
    (pp. 179-181)

    Howard found himself in a difficult position throughout Elizabeth’s reign. The ideology of self-assertion and free speech that characterized some aspects of his father’s noble inheritance conflicted with the more prosaic and humiliating need to write begging letters and the fact of his frequent surveillance by the state.¹ There was the possibility, too, that the position of a regent master, teaching or otherwise, at a university was not, despite the changes wrought in the self-image of the aristocracy, a proper occupation for the scion of the noblest family in England. After all, no one else of Howard’s rank had pursued...

  16. APPENDIX I HENRY HOWARD’S EPICEDION FOR NICHOLAS CARR
    (pp. 182-185)
  17. APPENDIX II A NOTE ON EDIFICATION
    (pp. 186-191)
  18. BIBLIOGRAPHY
    (pp. 192-217)
  19. INDEX
    (pp. 218-222)
  20. Back Matter
    (pp. 223-225)