The Analogy of The Faerie Queene

The Analogy of The Faerie Queene

JAMES NOHRNBERG
Copyright Date: 1976
Pages: 894
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt7ztkhr
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  • Book Info
    The Analogy of The Faerie Queene
    Book Description:

    This book combines an analysis of The Faerie Queene's, total form with an exposition of its allegorical content.

    Originally published in 1980.

    ThePrinceton Legacy Libraryuses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These paperback editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

    eISBN: 978-1-4008-5625-1
    Subjects: Language & Literature

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. PREFACE
    (pp. ix-xviii)
    J. C. N.
  4. ABBREVIATIONS
    (pp. xix-2)
  5. I THE ONE AND THE MANY
    (pp. 3-86)

    The formal epic takes precedence over other literary kinds naturally. When it is successful, it becomes the privileged and summary testament of a people and their epoch. To be an epic, a narrative poem must satisfy two basic requirements: it must contain the concept of a total action,¹ and it must possess a nearly determinative relation to a culture. Helen says that the things that happened to her happened because she and Paris were destined to become a song for ages to come.² It is a singularly vain and complacent thing to say, perhaps, but she is doubtless right in...

  6. II THE BOOK OF LIFE
    (pp. 87-282)

    Literary surveys often describe a given work as “an allegory” in the same way that one might classify a play as a comedy. This usage is misleading where it implies that allegory is a genre in its own right—we only have to glance at Spenser to discover that allegory may be found in pastoral, elegy, satire, dream-vision, romance, and in sacred and profane mythology.¹ We are not dealing with a genre, but a theory of poetry.

    The theory is expounded in Boccaccio’s seminal defense of poetry. The poet composes stories, or fictions: “Fiction is a form of discourse, which,...

  7. III BOOKS OF THE GOVERNORS
    (pp. 283-426)

    The preceding essay has described Spenser’s first legend as an analogy for the Word itself. Subsequent legends develop their own analogies, internal to the poem. For purposes of organizing the ensuing commentary, I will indicate three such analogies, based on the more or less inevitable comparison of the two parts of the poem we have. Occasionally Spenser is rather pointed about these analogies and it seems clear that he drew on his first installment for inspiration in the composition of the second. Starting from the center of the poem and working outward—and this may be how the second installment...

  8. IV THE CONJUGATION OF THE WORLD
    (pp. 427-652)

    … in all the affairs of man’s life the first step holds the place of God himself and makes all the rest right, if but approached with proper reverence by all concerned.

    (Plato,LawsVI, 775e, concerning the nuptial bed)

    Now we also find that in some places in Italy the bride stepping beyond the paternal house lifts up her foot, and does not touch the threshold. For this practice diverse causes are assigned. It seems quite right to me, lest she possibly be hurt by magic potions, which are customarily buried under the threshold by witches, to the destruction...

  9. V THE WORD OF GOD AND THE WORDS OF MEN
    (pp. 653-734)

    The formal education of a child starts by introducing him to a very hypothetical construction: a fairyland of letters and numbers and the rules for their grammars. To some extent all early training has this arbitrary character, at least when it is considered from the point of view of unconditioned impulse and natural energy. Eventually our experience and our education become more or less synonymous; we begin to inhabit the world we have made. Our fairyland becomes “second nature” to us, ahabitusin the Scholastic sense, and this second nature occupies virtually the entire available space of our conscious...

  10. VI IN DAEMOGORGON’S HALL: THE FORMING-POWER OF A RENAISSANCE IMAGINATION
    (pp. 735-792)

    haec super imposita est caeli fulgentis imago,

    signaque sex foribus destris totidemque sinistras.

    Above these is placed the image of the shining sky,

    six signs on the right-hand doors, and just as many on the left.

    (Ovid,Metam. II.17f., the Palace of the Sun)

    Our infancie is compared to the Moon, in which we seem only to live and grow, as plants; the second age to Mercury, wherein we are taught and instructed; our third age to Venus, the days of love, desire, and vanity; the fourth to the Sun, the strong, flourishing, and beautiful age of man’s life; the...

  11. ANALYTICAL TABLE OF CONTENTS
    (pp. 793-802)
  12. INDEX
    (pp. 803-870)
  13. Back Matter
    (pp. 871-872)