The Edge of Christendom on the Early Modern Stage 9781501514159, 9781501520334

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Table of contents :
Contents
Acknowledgements
Introduction
Part One: The Edge and the Centre
Chapter 1 “All places shall be hell that are not heaven”: The Edge of Rome
2 Beautiful Polecats: The Living and the Dead in Julius Caesar
3 Danger and Demarcation in Massinger
Part Two: Edges Abroad
Chapter 4 “Having passed Armenian deserts now”: Marlowe’s Tamburlaine the Great
5 Bears and Fairies: A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Twelfth Night
6 The Last Plays and the Edges of Christendom
7 The Politics of the Rose: English Histories and Foreign Flowers
Part Three: Edges at Home
Chapter 8 North by North-West: The Danelaw and the Edge of Christendom
9 Let the Right One In: Edges of Christendom in Cavendish-Talbot Houses
Conclusion
Works Cited
Index of Place Names, Authors, and Works
Recommend Papers

The Edge of Christendom on the Early Modern Stage
 9781501514159, 9781501520334

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Lisa Hopkins The Edge of Christendom on the Early Modern Stage

Late Tudor and Stuart Drama

Gender, Performance, and Material Culture Series Editors: Cristina León Alfar (Hunter College, CUNY, USA) Helen Ostovich (McMaster University, Hamilton, Canada)

Lisa Hopkins

The Edge of Christendom on the Early Modern Stage

ISBN 978-1-5015-2033-4 e-ISBN (PDF) 978-1-5015-1415-9 e-ISBN (EPUB) 978-1-5015-1417-3 Library of Congress Control Number: 2021950668 Bibliographic information published by the Deutsche Nationalbibliothek The Deutsche Nationalbibliothek lists this publication in the Deutsche Nationalbibliografie; detailed bibliographic data are available on the Internet at http://dnb.dnb.de. © 2022 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston Cover image: Sotiris_Filippou_Photographer / iStock / Getty Images Plus Printing and binding: CPI books GmbH, Leck www.degruyter.com

Contents Acknowledgements Introduction

VII

1

Part One: The Edge and the Centre 1 “All places shall be hell that are not heaven”: The Edge of Rome 2 Beautiful Polecats: The Living and the Dead in Julius Caesar 3 Danger and Demarcation in Massinger

31 51

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Part Two: Edges Abroad 4 “Having passed Armenian deserts now”: Marlowe’s Tamburlaine the 95 Great 5 Bears and Fairies: A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Twelfth Night 6 The Last Plays and the Edges of Christendom

115

135

7 The Politics of the Rose: English Histories and Foreign Flowers

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Part Three: Edges at Home 8 North by North-West: The Danelaw and the Edge of Christendom 9 Let the Right One In: Edges of Christendom in Cavendish-Talbot Houses 203 Conclusion Works Cited

223 226

Index of Place Names, Authors, and Works

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183

Acknowledgements I have incurred many debts during the writing of this book. Chapters 1, 4, 6, 8, and 9 grew out of conference papers in Wittenberg, Yerevan, Waikato, Newcastle, and Rome; I thank Kirk Melnikoff and Lucy Munro, Jasmine Seymour, Mark Houlahan, Adam Hansen, Maria del Sapio Garbero, Maddalena Pennachia and Domenico Lovascio for the chance to speak at those. I am also grateful to Bill Angus, Dan Cadman, Annaliese Connolly, the late Roy Eriksen, Gemma Leggott, Colm MacCrossan, Michael Paraskos, Tom Rutter, Matt Steggle, Crosby Stevens, and Becky Yearling. Thanks to Helen Ostovich and Cristina León Alfar for help with obtaining material during the pandemic, and to the anonymous reader for the press who saved me from myself in a number of ways. As always, thanks too to Chris and Sam, particularly to Sam for help with Matthew Paris. Chapter 2 was originally published as “Beautiful Polecats: The Living and the Dead in Julius Caesar,” Shakespeare Survey 72 (2019): 160 – 70. Chapter 3 was originally published as “Theatricality, Faith, and Color Imagery in Philip Massinger,” in Stages of Engagement: Drama and Religion in PostReformation England, edited by James Mardock and Kathryn McPherson (Pittsburgh: Duquesne University Press, 2014), 219 – 39. A version of chapter 4 appeared in Bazmavep: Rivista di Studi Armenistici (San Lazzaro, Venice: 2019), 163 – 73. Some parts of chapter 5 originally appeared as “Comedies of the Green World: A Midsummer Night’s Dream, As You Like It, and Twelfth Night,” in The Oxford Handbook of Shakespearean Comedy, edited by Heather Hirschfeld (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018), 520 – 36, and other parts in “The Shared Space of the Wood in A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” in Critical Insights: A Midsummer Night’s Dream, edited by Nicolas Tredell (New York: Salem Press, 2020), 87– 101. A version of chapter 8 appears in Shakespeare and the North, edited by Adam Hansen (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2021).

https://doi.org/10.1515/9781501514159-001

Introduction King James I said he desired “the solace and universal peace of Christendom,”¹ and Franklin L. Baumer argues that “the idea of ‘the common corps of Christendom’ continued to hold its ground to an astonishing degree in official as in other circles.”² This book investigates how Shakespeare and his contemporaries represented the edges of Christendom, which was largely but not wholly coterminous with the boundaries of Europe but could also, as we shall see, become sharply localised in some less expected places. Throughout the period, the borders of Christendom were under constant threat. Nabil Matar and Rudolph Stoekel observe: During Shakespeare’s lifetime, Europe had three frontiers that defined it. The first frontier was the Ottoman-Habsburg in central Europe, which flared up in the great Hungarian war of 1593 – 1606 … The two other fronts/frontiers were across the Mediterranean: the eastern Mediterranean front commonly known as the “Levant” and the Barbary coast of North Africa.³

The Levant and Barbary frontiers were fixtures, but the Ottoman Empire was expansionist, and from the late fifteenth century onwards it was coming constantly closer. The seemingly relentless Turkish advance is registered in many texts of the period. Barbara Fuchs, noting that “there are specific textual traces of the imperial Ottoman threat in The Tempest,” argues that this is because “Any island imagined in the Mediterranean at the time of the play … would be understood to exist in a hotly contested space, permanently threatened by the Ottoman Empire if not directly under its control.”⁴ Camoens’s The Lusiads rhetorically demands, “The Turks are interfering more and more in the affairs and the wealth of this Europe of yours: why do you not drive them back to their primitive caves in the Caspian hills and amid the arid rigours of Scythia?,” though he adds that luckily “here at least, in this small land of Portugal, there will not lack those

 W. B. Patterson, King James VI and I and the Reunion of Christendom (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997), p. 3.  Franklin L. Baumer, “England, the Turk, and the Common Corps of Christendom,” The American Historical Review 50, no. 1 (October 1944), pp. 26 – 48, p. 28.  Nabil Matar and Rudolph Stoekel, “Europe’s Mediterranean Frontier: The Moor,” in Shakespeare and Renaissance Europe, edited by Andrew Hadfield and Paul Hammond (London: Bloomsbury, 2005), pp. 220 – 52, p. 222.  Barbara Fuchs, “Conquering Islands: Contextualizing The Tempest,” Shakespeare Quarterly 48, no. 1 (Spring 1997), pp. 45 – 62, pp. 55 and 57– 58. https://doi.org/10.1515/9781501514159-002

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Introduction

who will do and dare for Christendom”; this proved prophetic, for the Lusiads is dedicated to the warlike Dom Sebastião, King of Portugal, who ultimately met his death in North Africa.⁵ The Turks seemed to be everywhere. Syria and Egypt both fell to the Ottoman Empire in 1516 – 1517. Roger Crowley notes that “On Christmas night 1567, Morisco mountaineers from the Alpujarras scaled the walls of the Alhambra Palace in Granada and called for an uprising in the name of Allah,”⁶ and in 1568 there were fears that Dubrovnik might be targeted by the Ottomans. In 1571 Cyprus fell; this is why Daniel J. Vitkus calls Othello “Shakespeare’s Mediterranean tragedy, set at the margins of Christendom but at the center of civilization.”⁷ Otranto, Apulia, and Naples were all also at various times considered possible targets of an Ottoman attack,⁸ and in 1627 Muslim corsairs raided Iceland and took several hundred captives. William Lithgow’s The Totall discourse, of the rare adventures, and painefull peregrinations of long nineteene yeares travailes from Scotland, to the most famous kingdomes in Europe, Asia, and Affrica is ostensibly a travel narrative, but it doubles as a catalogue of places menaced by the Turks. Lithgow notes of Ancona that “This Sea-strong Towne, set on a Promontore, / Defieth the Turkes with its defensive shoare,” and he says of Zadar in modern Croatia, “They have indured many invasions of the Turkes, especially in the yeare one thousand five hundred and seventy, when for the space of foureteene moneths, they were daily molested and besieged, but the victory fell ever to the Christians: if the Turkes could win this place, they might easily command the Adreatic Seas, in regard of that faire Haven which is there.”⁹ Lithgow was particularly aware of Turkish depredations in Greece and the Greek islands, noting that Rethymnon in Crete “standeth by the sea side, and in the yeare 1597 it was miserably sacked, and burned with Turkes” (p. 84), that Chios “was taken by Solyman the Magnificent on Easter day 1566, being the same yeare that our late gracious, and once

 Luis de Camoens, The Lusiads, translated by William C. Atkinson (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 1952), pp. 80, 163, and 183.  Roger Crowley, Empires of the Sea: The Final Battle for the Mediterranean 1521 – 1580 (London: Faber and Faber, 2008), p. 74.  Daniel J. Vitkus, “Turning Turk in Othello: The Conversion and Damnation of the Moor,” Shakespeare Quarterly 48, no. 1 (Summer 1997), pp. 145 – 76, p. 145.  Noel Malcolm, Agents of Empire: Knights, Corsairs, Jesuits and Spies in the Sixteenth-Century Mediterranean World [2015] (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 2016), pp. 97 and 173.  William Lithgow, The Totall discourse, of the rare adventures, and painefull peregrinations of long nineteene yeares travailes from Scotland, to the most famous kingdomes in Europe, Asia, and Affrica (London: Nicholas Okes for Nicholas Fussell and Humphrey Moseley, 1632), pp. 36 and 32. All further quotations will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.

Introduction

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Soveraigne Lord, King Iames of blessed memory was borne” (p. 103), and that “This Isle of Rhodes was lost by the Maltezes, Anno Domini 1522” (p. 179), as a result of which “The Fortresse of Rhodes, and that Fortresse Famogusta, in Cyprus, are the two strongest Holds, in all the Empire of the great Turke” (p. 179). It is not surprising that, as Daniel Vitkus notes, According to one English author, writing in 1575, the Turks “were indeede at the first very far from our Clyme & Region, and therefore the lesse to be feared, but now they are even at our doores and ready to come into our Houses.”¹⁰

Everywhere they looked, early modern Britons would indeed have felt that the enemy was almost at the gates. Sometimes Europeans voluntarily opened those gates: In the winter of 1543, to the scandal of Christendom, Barbarossa’s lean predatory galleys were rocking safely at anchor in the French port of Toulon. There were thirty thousand Ottoman troops in the town; the cathedral had been converted into a mosque and its tombs desecrated. Ottoman coinage was imposed and the call to prayer rang out over the city five times a day.¹¹

In England, Elizabeth I entered into an alliance with the Turks. This was extremely controversial, not only because “in a decade that witnessed numerous battles between English and Turkish forces on the Mediterranean, an Anglo-Ottoman alliance could be received as scandalous and, more significantly, treasonous to the ‘common corps of Christendom,’” but also because of the nature of what was exported: despite papal injunctions against the exportation of lead, tin, steel, and other materials for munitions to the “infidel” … the continued dismantling of Catholic churches and abbeys meant that these materials were in particular abundance in England … In time the term bell metals came to denote the prohibited goods England would ship to Turkish territories.¹²

Matthew Dimmock notes that in the 1590s,

 Daniel Vitkus, “Adventuring Heroes in the Mediterranean: Mapping the Boundaries of Anglo-Islamic Exchange on the Early Modern Stage,” Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies 37, no. 1 (Winter 2007), pp. 75 – 96, p. 78.  Crowley, Empires of the Sea, p. 209.  Jonathan Burton, “Anglo-Ottoman Relations and the Image of the Turk in Tamburlaine,” Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies 30, no. 1 (Winter 2000), pp. 125 – 56, pp. 133 – 34.

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Introduction

attacks upon Elizabeth and her realm began to centre exclusively upon relations between … England and the Ottoman Empire. The Russian monarch in particular complained that he had been given to understand from “the Pope’s legate,” that “her Majesty did not only favour the Turk, but also aided him against other Christian princes.” John Mirrik, the “agent for the Company of English merchants trading in Russia” had, in response, to assure the Russian court that “her Majesty to join in force or send munition unto the Turk or to aid him against any prince in Christendome, were a thing not to be credited.”¹³

Noel Malcolm notes of Elizabeth I that “In the early 1580s it was even suspected that she was planning to use English sailors to seize Malta and give it to the Ottomans as a forward base for new offensive campaigns.”¹⁴ Conversely, Christendom was not always very Christian. In King John, the French ambassador Chatillon reports: In brief, a braver choice of dauntless spirits Than now the English bottoms have waft o’er Did never float upon the swelling tide, To do offence and scathe in Christendom.¹⁵

Later, Arthur appealing to Hubert not to blind him swears “By my christendom” (4.1.16). Although this appeal is initially successful, ultimately the internal rifts within Christendom will lead to the death of Arthur and see England driven into desperate straits. The country is saved when the papal legate capriciously changes sides, but this is less reassuring than it might be because it is clear that King John’s twelfth-century defiance of the Pope foreshadows Henry VIII’s much more determined and durable sixteenth-century defiance of the pontiff, whose effects were still being felt in Shakespeare’s England. Moreover, King John was said by the thirteenth-century chronicler Matthew Paris to have sent a delegation to Muhammad III, caliph of the Almohad empire, offering to pay him tribute and to convert himself and his kingdom to Islam.¹⁶ Shakespeare’s play makes no mention of this, but it does give surprising prominence to King John’s niece, Blanche of Spain, whose presence might remind us that the frontiers of the Angevin empire were not that far from Almohad-controlled Andalu Matthew Dimmock, New Turkes: Dramatizing Islam and the Ottomans in Early Modern England (Aldershot, UK: Ashgate, 2005), p. 163.  Malcolm, Agents of Empire, pp. 241 and 353.  William Shakespeare, King John, edited by R. L. Smallwood (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 1974), 2.1.72– 75. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.  See Ilan Shoval, King John’s Delegation to the Almohad Court (1212): Medieval Interreligious Interactions and Modern Historiography (Turnhout, Belgium: Brepols, 2016).

Introduction

5

sia, and that Spain, so aggressively and monolithically Catholic in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, had not long before been a scene of religious conflict. It did not help that even if Christendom could have been tacitly assumed to be synonymous with Europe, Europe itself was internally incoherent. This is visible in the way it was figured on maps and in metaphor. Katja Pilhuj notes that “By 1598, the queen had become so associated with the land that a Dutch engraving envisioned Elizabeth as Europa, holding an upraised sword.”¹⁷ But a less secure and less virginal identity for the continent is hinted in an exchange in Massinger, Field and Fletcher’s The Knight of Malta: 1 [Gentlewoman] But yfaith dost thou think my Lady was never in love? 2 [Gentlewoman] I rather think she was ever in love: in perfect charity. I meane, with all the world. I [Gentlewoman] A most christian answer I promise you: but I meane in Love with a man. 2 [Gentlewoman] With a man? what els? wouldst thou have her in love with a beast? 1 [Gentlewoman] You are somewhat quick: but if she were, it were no President; did you never read of Europa the fair, that leapt A bull, that lept the Sea, that swoom to land, and then leapt her?¹⁸

This conversation starts promisingly as 2nd Gentlewoman, a member of an occupational group often associated in early modern drama with lust and flirtation, proves unexpectedly pious in her implicitly Christian definition of love as charity. 1st Gentlewoman finds her curiosity unsatisfied, but does concede that she has received “A most christian answer”; however, she presses on and specifies that what she wants to know is whether Oriana was ever in love “with a man.” At this point 2nd Gentlewoman becomes significantly less pious, and indeed positively skittish: “With a man? what els? wouldst thou have her in love with a beast?” But there is a hidden logic to this apparent change of tack, which surfaces in 1st Gentlewoman’s sudden introduction of the figure of Europa, who according to legend was raped by Jove in the shape of a bull and then  Katja Pilhuj, Women and Geography on the Early Modern English Stage (Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2019), p. 30.  John Fletcher, Nathan Field, and Philip Massinger, The Knight of Malta (London: Humphrey Moseley, 1647), 1.2.1– 14. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.

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borne away on his back. Obviously the story of Europa is understood as a myth, but it is a potentially troubling one, tying the origins of all European nations to a story of sex, instability, and bestiality, and further complicated by the fact Europa herself was, before she settled in Crete, a princess of Phoenicia, aligning her with Dido, Hannibal, and the threat they posed to European narratives of empire. Plays of the period are full of anxieties about the edges of Christendom. As Ania Loomba notes, “England’s colonial ventures were not the result of its having achieved a confident and secure national identity. Colonial ambitions are often generated by anxieties about national identity,”¹⁹ while Dennis Britton notes that in Robert Daborne’s play A Christian Turned Turk, “a conversation that begins with suggesting clear, visible, and bodily differences between Christians and Jews and Turks in the end raises questions about the body as site that can signify religious difference.”²⁰ English drama is particularly fascinated by political alliances with non-Christians: Daniel Vitkus observes that in Peele’s The Battle of Alcazar, “In the imaginative geography of the playhouse, ‘Alcazar’ is located on the border zone where both confrontation or cooperation with Islamic power are possible,”²¹ and Laurence Publicover suggests that The Travels of the Three English Brothers “sought directly to influence public opinion on Anthony Sherley’s attempts to bring Christendom into an alliance with Persia, thus encircling the Ottoman Empire,” reflecting the fact that “James, like the Sherleys, was notoriously anti-Turk: the Scottish king in 1601 had gone so far as to write to Shah Abbas to congratulate him on his recent victory against the Ottomans.”²² But the real trouble was the messy shape of the continent supposedly founded by Europa, and the resulting difficulty of differentiating it from the territories which lay adjacent to it. In 1589, Henry Cavendish, eldest son of Bess of Hardwick (whom I discuss in chapter 9), set off on a journey to Constantinople, accompanied by a servant named Fox who kept an account of the trip. In the entry for 23 June 1589 Fox notes that the Beylerbey “went out of Constantynople in great pomp towards the borders of Crystandum to suppresse the Crystyans

 Ania Loomba, Shakespeare, Race, and Colonialism (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002), p. 13.  Dennis Britton, “Muslim Conversion and Circumcision as Theater,” in Religion and Drama in Early Modern England: The Performance of Religion on the Renaissance Stage, edited by Jane Hwang Degenhardt and Elizabeth Williamson (Farnham: Ashgate, 2011), pp. 71– 86, p. 72.  Vitkus, “Adventuring Heroes in the Mediterranean,” pp. 83 – 84.  Laurence Publicover, Dramatic Geography: Romance, Intertextuality, and Cultural Encounter in Early Modern Mediterranean Drama (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017), pp. 143 and 146.

Introduction

7

that border uppon hym.”²³ Constantinople had once been Christian itself, as the very name Constantinople reminds us, and retained many architectural reminders of its Byzantine past; now it was in a state of enmity with Christians, yet it also shared a border with them, with Asia separated from Europe only by the narrow strait of the Bosphorus. And yet the very narrowness of the Bosphorus, coupled with the lack of any significant geographical differentiation along some points of the frontier between Europe and Asia, forced an ideological commitment to the existence of a set of absolute differences between Europe (and hence Christendom) and not-Europe (and hence not-Christendom), accompanied by a determined resistance to any hint of hybridity. Often this sense of opposition and difference was expressed in racialised terms. Kim F. Hall has influentially contended that “descriptions of dark and light, rather than being mere indications of Elizabethan beauty standards or markers of moral categories, became in the early modern period the conduit through which the English began to formulate the notions of ‘self’ and ‘other’”; for Hall, “the binarism of black and white might be called the originary language of racial difference in English culture.”²⁴ Moreover, she thinks that ideological investment in a black/white binary both fed and was fed by the growth in voyaging and trade expeditions: “This moment of transition—England’s movement from geographic isolation into military and mercantile contest with other countries—sets the stage for the longer process by which preexisting literary tropes of blackness profoundly interacted with the fast-changing economic relations of white Europeans and their darker ‘others’ during the Renaissance.”²⁵ It might be possible to step from Europe into Asia and for Christians to have non-Christians as disturbingly near neighbours, but the anxieties this induced could be lessened by conflating Europe with Christendom and demonising those outside it in as many ways as possible. Insisting that Christendom and Europe were coterminous entities meant ignoring some inconvenient facts: Dennis Austin Britton points out that “Ethiopians (and many others in Africa and Asia) had been Christians long before the inhabitants of Britannia were,” but that “‘infidel’ and ‘Christian’ became racial categories in early modern England”; he notes of the Song of Solomon, for instance, that “Allegorizing the black bride’s body in this way requires that the

 A. C. Wood, ed., Mr. Harrie Cavendish His Journey to and from Constantinople 1589 by Fox, His Servant, Camden Miscellany vol. 17 (London: Offices of the Royal Historical Society, 1940), p. 17.  Kim F. Hall, Things of Darkness: Economies of Race and Gender in Early Modern England (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1995), p. 2.  Hall, Things of Darkness, pp. 3 – 4.

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Introduction

bodies of real, contemporary black Christians be erased and ignored.”²⁶ Moreover, Ania Loomba observes: Numerous critics over the last decade have pointed out that English encounters with the New World generate a view of non-Europeans as culturally naked, illiterate, uncivilized, as “subjects who cannot speak.” This view was, at one period, generalized as encapsulating the truth of all English encounters with non-Europeans, but it severely distorts the dynamics of contact in Ottoman Turkey, or Morocco, or India, or Java. It also obscures the economic and political histories of the time, notably the fact that the English were not at this time in a position to colonize any part of the East.²⁷

But even if it strained credibility to insist that Europeans were better, purer, and that they alone were Christian, there were other drivers which ensured that the fiction was maintained. Patricia Akhimie observes of conduct books that “During the period of the mid-sixteenth to mid-seventeenth centuries, this genre emerged as increasingly popular, increasingly ‘naturalized’—as translations of continental works gave way to more English national and nationalist attempts—and increasingly specialized,” and it was a tenet of the genre that only white-skinned people could benefit from such texts: “The impossibility of ‘improving’ black skin by making it lighter is linked to the idea that black people cannot be improved and cannot improve themselves. The impossibility of improvement itself becomes an attribute associated with dark-skinned people.”²⁸ Ultimately, as Ania Loomba notes, “Colour … operates as a sharp dividing line between Christians and non-Christians,”²⁹ and “In medieval and early modern England, religious outsiders, minorities, as well as people from a vast spectrum of non-European lands were routinely described in terms of color; so in writings of these periods, we get black Jews, black Saracens (or Muslims), black gypsies, and black Indians, just as we get black devils and black evildoers.”³⁰ Richard Johnson’s prose romance The Most Famous History of the Seaven Champions of Christendome, first published in 1596 and much influenced by Mar Dennis Austin Britton, Becoming Christian: Race, Reformation, and Early Modern English Romance (New York: Fordham University Press, 2014), pp. 3, 8, and 15.  Ania Loomba, “Identities and Bodies in Early Modern Studies,” in The Oxford Handbook of Shakespeare and Embodiment: Gender, Sexuality, and Race, edited by Valerie Traub (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016), pp. 228 – 49, p. 234.  Patricia Akhimie, Shakespeare and the Cultivation of Difference: Race and Conduct in the Early Modern World (New York: Routledge, 2018), pp. 15 and 5.  Ania Loomba, “‘Delicious Traffickʼ: Alterity and Exchange on Early Modern Stages,” Shakespeare Survey 52 (1999), pp. 201– 14, p. 206.  Ania Loomba, “Race and the Possibilities of Comparative Critique,” New Literary History 40, no. 3 (Summer 2009), pp. 501– 22, pp. 503 – 4.

Introduction

9

lowe, gives a strong sense of the embattled state of a Christendom conceived as essentially coterminous with Europe. Johnson’s romance is a particularly telling example of a genre limned by Justin Kolb, who argues that a “combination of rising nationalism, extensive cross-cultural contact, and limited geopolitical and economic power created a public appetite for stories of heroic Englishmen and Christians who resisted the wealth and power of the foreign others they constructed,”³¹ and Ian Smith notes that it is heavily invested in validating what it considers Christian and demonising what it does not: “In Richard Johnson’s Seven Champions of Christendom, Part 1 (1596) … patterned verbal echoes triangulate and fuse the multiple referents of ‘barbarous’ into a unitary code of bestial denigration.”³² It is, however, a story with a problem. Britton notes that “at one time, romance conventions helped close the chasm between the color of the flesh and the color of the spirit,” but “in early modern England the powers of romance to transform markers of racial and religious identity were called into question by the Reformation’s insistence that all miracles had ceased and more particularly by the Church of England’s theology of baptism.”³³ This creates a difficulty for Seven Champions, because its heroes are all saints. Johnson’s strategy for dealing with this problem is first to stress the national rather than the spiritual identities of his seven heroes—St. George, St. David, St. Patrick, St. Andrew, St. Denis, St. James, and St. Anthony of Padua—and second to give them plenty to do, in ways which enable him to present them as conventional chivalric heroes rather than miracle-workers. St. Patrick is improbably credited with recovering Rhodes from the Turks, and when the ruler of Thessaly bands together with those of Persia, Egypt, Morocco, Jerusalem, Tartary, and Sicily to declare war on Christendom, St. George is appointed leader of the Christian resistance to this attack, with the other six saints following him “with as much willingnes, as the Graecians followed Agamemnon to the wofull ouerthrow of Troy.”³⁴ The reference to Troy leaches out any sense of a religious context, but it also highlights the fact that there are some decidedly anachronistic aspects to the saints’ equipment and matériel. St. Andrew’s troops are mounted on “Gallo-

 Justin Kolb, “‘In th’armor of a Pagan Knight’: Romance and Anachronism East of England in Book V of The Faerie Queene and Tamburlaine,” Early Theatre 12, no. 2 (2009), pp. 194– 207, p. 194.  Ian Smith, Race and Rhetoric in the Renaissance: Barbarian Errors (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2009), p. 90.  Britton, Becoming Christian, p. 4.  Richard Johnson, The Most Famous History of the Seaven Champions of Christendome (London: Cuthbert Burbie, 1596), p. 125. All further quotations will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.

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Introduction

wayes” and “clad all in quilted Iackes, with lances of the Turkish fashion, thicke and short, bearing vpon their Ba[n]ers the Armes of Scotland, which was a [corner Crosse?] supported by a naked [V]irgin” (p. 128). There are also 80,000 Italian soldiers each “attended on by a naked Neger” (p. 129), while St. James has “brought from the Spanish Mines ten tunne of refined gold” (p. 129); the Trojan war may have only recently ended, but these are countries already firmly established as colonial powers with interests in America and Africa, and Scotland is already inhabited by Border Reivers with their distinctive Galloway nags and quilted jackets. The seven saints may collectively represent Europe, but it is a Europe conditioned and inflected by its contact with other countries, and as in Othello, there is an element of the Turk-within-the-gates in the Scots with Turkish lances. The romance’s grasp of geopolitics is hardly more secure than its grasp of chronology. The pagan kingdoms ranged against the seven champions include Jerusalem and Judah: Johnson may be in awe of Marlowe’s ability to evoke a sense of the exotic, but he cannot follow his mentor in recognising Jews as sharing a heritage with Christianity (as pointedly evinced in The Jew of Malta when Mathias tells his mother that his conversation with Barabas was “About the borrowing of a book or two,” which looks like a nod to the fact that Christianity shares the five books of the Pentateuch with Judaism).³⁵ By the same token St. George’s father-in-law King Ptolomie swears by a heady cocktail of “Mahomet, Apollo, and Termagaunt, three Gods we Egiptians commonly ador” (sig. D3v / p. 22); this odd trinity can be traced back to French romance and is also to be found in English authors such as Matthew Paris and the author (or authors) of the Towneley Cycle,³⁶ and in Paris’s The Life of Saint Alban it is accompanied by the eye-catching assertion that these were the deities worshipped by the inhabitants of St. Albans before their conversion.³⁷ For Johnson, though, there is no question of connecting pagan deities to anywhere within Christendom itself; rather he uses them to cast the realms in which his story is set as fantasy locations where anything might happen. “Saint George in his iournie towardes Persia, ariued in a Countrie inhabited onely by maides” (p. 176), a circumstance which one might expect to lead to something of a population problem. St. Denis

 Christopher Marlowe, The Jew of Malta, in The Complete Plays, edited by Mark Thornton Burnett (London: Everyman, 1999), 2.3.160.  Michael Paull, “The Figure of Mahomet in the Towneley Cycle,” Comparative Drama 6, no. 3 (Fall 1972), pp. 187– 204.  Matthew Paris, The Life of Saint Alban, translated and introduced by Jocelyn Wogan-Browne and Thelma S. Fenster (Tempe, AZ: Arizona Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, 2010), introduction, p. 27.

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rescues Eglantine, daughter of the King of Thessaly, who has been turned into a tree which he needs to cut open in order to free and restore her. St. James goes to Sicily, where he fights a dragon, and to Cappadocia, before marrying the unicornriding Celestine, daughter of Nburzaradan the King of Jerusalem, who is attended by Amazons. We are also laconically informed that St. Andrew, en route to Thracia, “trauailed into a vale of walking Spirites, and … was set at libertie, by a going fire” (p. 67); matters are not much clarified when the narrator explains that “he beheld a certaine flame of fire walking vp and downe before him” (p. 68) which helpfully leads him out of danger. As well as allowing fantasy to leach into reality, Johnson’s text also exhibits a very vague sense of what is and is not Christendom; however, what is clear is that despite its geographical vagueness, this is a text that is following the money, in ways which help us to remember the strong economic drivers underpinning travel to “new” lands. The King of Jerusalem vows to kill St. James despite “the wealthie Spanish mines” (p. 47). When the King of Morocco is led out to be boiled in a cauldron, he is wearing “a shirt of the finest Indian silk, his hands pinniond together with a chaine of gold, & his face couered with a Damask Scarfe” (p. 136) and offers for his safety ten tunnes of tried gold, a hundred inchs of wouen silke, the which our Indian maides shall sit and spinne ith siluer wheeles: a hundred Arguses of spices and refined suger, shal be yearely paid thee by our Barberie: a hundred waggons likewise richly laden with … Iasper stones, which by our cunning Lapidiries shall be yearelie chosen foorth and brought home to England, to make that blessed countrie the richest land within the Dominions of Europe. (p. 137)

He is a walking reminder of the most important trade routes, wearing items from India and Damascus and with access to silk, sugar and spices, precious metals, and exotic gemstones—all of which can be requisitioned by England. Foreigners may be pagan, but they are also sources of wealth, and Johnson’s fevered romance presents edges of Christendom as perilous but also as full of potential. There is a tighter definition of what is and is not Christendom in the dramatised version of the story, which although still called The Seven Champions of Christendom is different in a number of respects. It is attributed to John Kirke, but Paul Merchant notes that “John Freehafer has … collected a number of topical allusions in the play which would date it around 1613 – 1614, a little early for

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Kirke” and argues instead for Heywood.³⁸ It is located in a much more concrete and specific world than the romance: the devil Tarpax’s advice to his son Suckabus is And when thou com’st in company of men, What ere they be, refuse not what they do; If they quaffe wine by Gallons, do so too: Or cloud the aire with India’s precious weede, Kindle that fuell; let thy Chimny smoak too.³⁹

Instead of walking fires and unicorns, we have here the more everyday perils of drinking and smoking. In particular, instead of the prose romance’s vague, repeated formula of “many lands,” the play introduces, and homes in on, two specific territories. It does so because it, too, is following the money, but it is also noting shifting centres of geopolitical gravity. The first territory in which the play is interested is Trebizond. Historically Trebizond, the last Byzantine empire, fell in 1461, eight years after the fall of Constantinople; its last emperor, David Comnenos, was initially pensioned off to honourable exile in Adrianople but he and six of his seven sons were executed by the Sultan in 1463, with only the youngest, George, spared. (The emperor, his murdered sons, and his nephew Alexios were canonised in 2013.) In the play, Act Two opens in Trebizond, which is suffering from an infestation of monsters (a dragon and a lion) which the unnamed emperor attributes to the wrath of the gods. Ancetes, a Trapezuntine lord, ushers in SS Andrew and Anthony and explains that unto him, by whose Unequal’d power the monstrous Dragon falls, There is allotted the glorious shield, Whose Verdge is studded round with Pearle, Diamonds, Rubies, and Saphires, Carbuncles, And other stones fetcht from the Orient: That Shield which from the Indian Provinces Was sent as tribute to abate your wrath, And stay your army from invasion. (sig. D1v)

 Paul Merchant, “Thomas Heywood’s Hand in The Seven Champions of Christendom,” Library, 5th ser., 33 (1978), pp. 226 – 30, p. 227.  J[ohn] K[irke], The Seven Champions of Christendom (London: J. Okes for James Becket, 1638), sig. C4r. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.

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SS Anthony and Andrew succeed in slaying the monsters; the emperor proposes to have them killed anyway for being Christian even though Princess Carintha and her lady Violeta have fallen in love with them, but Anthony and Andrew escape. St. Andrew was the apostle of Trebizond, but here it remains unconverted even after his departure. It is not, however, Muslim; rather its inhabitants still worship the classical Pantheon. The princess appeals to Pallas and the emperor orders sacrifices to Apollo, and he also implies a Hellenic heritage when he laments, oh we want those Gretian youths those former Ages bred; A bold Alcides, whose unequal’d strength Tyr’d a Step-mothers sharpe invention. (sig. D2r)

Ancetes reels off some more conspicuously Greek-sounding names when he reports that “The sprightly youths, Niger, Pallemon, & Antigonus” (sig. D2r) have gone to try their luck, and whoever kills the lion will receive Mars’s armour as well as “A hot Barbarian Steed” (sig. D2r), nicely coupling the suggestion that this is a classical culture with an acknowledgement of its status as a source of prized commodities. Trebizond is thus established as being both liminal and important, a point to which I shall return in chapter 4. But it is also clear that the playwright is vague about pagan belief systems and has no stomach for theological debate: St. Andrew does not mind fighting a dragon, but he has no interest in converting anyone, and just goes meekly away. The play depends on an antithesis between Christendom and paganism, but it is in no hurry to specify what either actually is; its imaginative energies are focused elsewhere, on jewels, exotic women, and the lure of the strange. The second place of interest to the play is Ormus (modern Ormuz). St. David, having accidentally killed the Prince of Tartary in a tournament, is dispatched by the king to kill the enchanter Ormandine, who is seeking to colonise Tartary from his base in Persia, with a promise that the King of Persia will make him his heir if he succeeds. However Ormandine explains that he is not originally from Persia: Know then that Island seated in the Maine, Whose crosticke sides poynts to Barbaries kingdome, Was I once Duke of, the nearest parts to it is this Of Tartary, the other is Arabia. (sig. H3r)

This strategically located island is Ormus, captured from the Portuguese in 1622 by a combined Anglo-Persian force to the great financial benefit of the East India

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Company and a bolstering of links with Shah Abbas (though with the loss of the explorer William Baffin, who died of his wounds). Ormus was of obvious military value—Lithgow noted that “the fourth [Turkish Arsenal] is at Belsara in Arabia foelix, towards the Persian Gulfe, depending of fifteene Galleys, which are kept there to afflict the Portugals, remaining in the Isle of Ormus”⁴⁰—but it is also consistently associated in seventeenth-century writing with wealth. Sheila R. Canby notes that Ormus was particularly important for the silk trade: Portuguese control of Hormuz, an island in the Persian Gulf strategically positioned at the Straits of Hormuz, did not impede the trade of Indian goods, which arrived there in large quantities and were trans-shipped to the northern Persian Gulf, Arabia and inland in Iran. However, taxes levied by the Portuguese raised the cost of goods to all concerned.⁴¹

Miriam Jacobson notes that “In his Itinerario, translated into English in 1598, van Linschoten attests in a play on words that the most orient pearls are also Eastern in origin: ‘The principal and the best that are found in all the Oriental Countries and the right Orientale pearls, are between Ormus and Vassora in the straights.’”⁴² In Jasper Mayne’s The City Match, Cypher tells the merchant Ware-house: Your two ships, Sir, that were now coming home From Ormus are both cast away; the wrack And burden on the place was valewd at Some forty thousand pound. (sig. Q1r)

In fact the ships from Ormuz arrive safely and are described as “richly landed” (sig. R2v).⁴³ In Fulke Greville’s play Alaham, published in 1632 but probably written ear⁴⁴ lier, Ormus is a strange and liminal place. As guilt begins to work on Alaham he cries:

 Lithgow, The Totall discourse, p. 168.  Sheila R. Canby, Shah ‘Abbas: The Remaking of Iran (London: The British Museum Press, 2009), p. 17.  Miriam Jacobson, Barbarous Antiquity: Reorienting the Past in the Poetry of Early Modern England (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2014), p. 164.  Jasper Mayne, The City Match (Oxford: Leonard Lichfield, 1639). On the importance of Ormuz as a source of luxury commodities see Lisa Jardine, Worldly Goods (Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan, 1996), pp. 289 and 311.  The Prologue is headed “The speach of a Ghost, one of the old Kings of Ormus” (sig. D1r). A note at the end says “This Tragedy, called Alaham, may bee printed, this 23. of Iune, 1632. Henry

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Is this Ormus? Or is Ormus my hell, Where only Furies, and not Men, doe dwell? (sig. N2r)

It does indeed seem to be a question for Greville’s play whether Ormus is a real place or a psychological location, and it is certainly unclear what its belief system is: the old King of Ormus who opens the play appears to have come from the classical underworld, but he and the current king both have bashaws, and indeed the old king laments that “by my trusted Basshas was I slaine” (sig. D1v).⁴⁵ Like Trebizond, Ormus is touched by the charm of gold, and as a result Greville seems anxious to present it, like Trebizond in The Seven Champions of Christendom, as not simply pagan (and hence bad) but as tinged by a flavour of the classical (and hence respectable). If plays are willing to acknowledge the lure and exoticism of places such as Ormus and Trebizond, however, they are much less at ease about the tension between Protestantism and Catholicism. Although there was also a view that the external pressures on Christendom might help to reunify it,⁴⁶ Europeans knew that the divide between the two confessions was problematic for the very idea of Christendom: Nandini Das notes manoeuvrings in Rome to secure “a Jesuit monopoly on the Christianizing mission in Japan,”⁴⁷ and Giles Milton observes that in Japan itself “The Jesuits had always presented the Church as united in faith and doctrine, with the Pope as its universal head. They had never revealed to the Japanese that Christendom in Western Europe had been riven in two by the emergence of Protestantism.”⁴⁸ Arthur L. Little Jr. suggests that the schism within Western Christianity also inflected and accelerated the tendency to read religious

Herbert” (sig. N4r), though Ronald A. Rebholz suggests that Mahomet might originally have been very obviously based on Essex and that the play is therefore likely to have been written earlier and subsequently revised (Ronald A. Rebholz, The Life of Fulke Greville, First Lord Brooke [Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1971], p. 132).  Fulke Greville, Certaine Learned and Elegant Workes of the Right Honorable Fulke Lord Brooke, Written in his Youth, and Familiar Exercise with Sir Philip Sidney (London: E. P. for Henry Seyle, 1633).  For instance Efterpi Mitsi notes that Sir Edwin Sandys, author of the 1605 A Relation of the State of Religion, thought that “the pressure of the Ottoman Empire on the southwest border of the Catholic Hapsburg [sic] territories would help the establishment of Protestantism in Europe” (Efterpi Mitsi, Greece in Early English Travel Writing, 1596 – 1682 [Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan, 2017], p. 108).  Nandini Das, “Encounter as Process: England and Japan in the Late Sixteenth Century,” Renaissance Quarterly 69 (2016), pp. 1343 – 68, p. 1348.  Giles Milton, Samurai William: The Adventurer Who Unlocked Japan (London: Hodder and Stoughton, 2003), p. 100.

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Introduction

difference in racialised terms: “The transformation of proper religious subjects into white ones would only intensify during the Reformation, as though Protestantism could bring stability to a more articulated whiteness posing itself ever more sharply against Jews, Muslims, and the false beauty of Catholicism.”⁴⁹ Uncertainties about the stability of European Christian identities thus increased the pressure to regard non-Europeans as even more Other. Dennis Austin Britton observes that the confessional divide had specific generic consequences for the genre of romance: “In romances written by Catholic writers, baptisms and conversions of infidels lead to an important telos of the romance genre: Despite their narrative wanderings and deferrals, romances often contain transformations of identity that lead to the incorporation of the other into Christian community.”⁵⁰ Romances by Protestant writers are much less willing to countenance such conversions, and, as we have seen, are also nervous about anything that smacks of the miraculous. The Seven Champions of Christendom seems particularly uneasy about its St. George. George sounds like a safe enough sort of hero when he says to the other saints, And here behold your maiden Knight doth draw Defence to all that wrong insultion treads on: First in our cause ’gainst those fell miscreants, That trample on the Christians sacred Crosse, Lifting aloft the Mahometane Moone, Dishonour both to heaven and Christendome: Next to maintaine by force and dint of Armes Oppressed Ladies wrongs, widowes, & Orphans, or who else, Which wrongfully dares tread within a List; And further let this Christian power extend ’Gainst blacke Inchantments, witchcraft, and the like, That Arts foule potency may meete us with. (sig. D1r)

He is chivalric, he fights Muslims, and he is opposed to black magic—so far, so good. Rather less expectedly, he is also son and heir of the Earl of Coventry. In this he is like the folk figure Guy of Warwick, famous for killing the Dun Cow, and indeed the clown calls George “the veriest kill-cow of ’em all” (sig. K3r). To anglicise George in this way is clearly an attempt to sanitise him, because both the romance and play versions of The Seven Champions of Christendom be-

 Arthur L. Little, Jr., “Re-Historicizing Race, White Melancholia, and the Shakespearean Property,” Shakespeare Quarterly 67, no. 1 (2016), pp. 84– 103, p. 90.  Britton, Becoming Christian, p. 4.

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tray a nervousness about Catholicism that does much to undo their own projects. In the romance, St. George even sends his son to the University of Wittenberg, a bizarre and wholly anachronistic choice of educational institution clearly designed to connect him as closely as possible to Protestantism, since Wittenberg was where Luther launched the Reformation. Also central to the vision of both romance and play is that the seven heroes do not become saints but are born so. When the St. George of the romance is born, “Upon his breast nature had picturde the liuely forme of a Dragon, vpon his right hand a bloody Crosse, and on his left leg a golden garter” (sig. B3r): he is already an exceptional person rather than one who needs to be canonised by the Pope. Moreover, it is a central feature of the saints’ stories that they ultimately marry; indeed one way of reading their adventures is just as so many courtships. The careful eschewal of any hint that the saints might be Catholic—they are not celibate, they are born saints in a way strangely suggestive of Calvinism—and the fact that one of George’s sons goes to Wittenberg all work to ensure that at the same time that the seven champions beat the bounds of Christendom they also testify to its internal fissures. Those fissures were making themselves pressingly felt during the period in which the plays I discuss here were written, especially after the Spanish sacked the Cornish village of Mousehole in 1595; in Jonathan Burton’s formulation, “Elizabeth’s government recognized that it was not the Muslim Turks who stood threateningly at England’s door, but rather the Catholic Spaniards,”⁵¹ and indeed the Turk was an ally against the Spaniards. Elizabeth I clearly implied that she had more in common with Turks than with Catholics when she assured Sultan Murad III that she too “was an enemy of ‘all kind of idolatries,’”⁵² while Lithgow cites a proverb which says that a Spaniard “est bonus Catholics, sed malus Christianus,”⁵³ and complains that Little better might I speake of the battell of Lepanto being abus’d even in the using of it, and that glorious victory no ways followed, as good fortune had given them an awfull opportunity: for Don Iohn of Austria their Generall had a greater mind to seaze upon the Ile of Corfu, and to robbe Venice of her liberty, then to prosecute with vengeance the brave beginning of so notable a victory; and yet his treachery was discover’d, and by the Venetian Generall speedily disappointed, to his eternall shame both wayes.⁵⁴

 Burton, “Anglo-Ottoman Relations,” p. 137.  Linda McJannet, The Sultan Speaks: Dialogue in English Plays and Histories about the Ottoman Turks (Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan, 2006), p. 5.  Lithgow, The Totall discourse, p. 466.  Lithgow, The Totall discourse, p. 51.

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The Battle of Lepanto was crucial for the defence of Cyprus, but in Lithgow’s eyes the Spanish, under Don John of Austria, are almost as much of a threat as the ostensible enemy the Turks, just as one might notice that in Othello Iago, who bears the name of the patron saint of Spain, does far more harm to the hero than the Turks ever achieve. In Thomas Kyd’s The Tragedy of Soliman and Perseda, the Governor of Rhodes greets the guests at the wedding of his daughter to the Prince of Cyprus with “Brave knights of Christendom and Turkish both,”⁵⁵ and later when Soliman asks “How did the Christians use our knights?” Brusor replies “As if that we and they had been one sect” (3.1.37– 38). We do see a difference between these two groups, but it is not the one we expect. There is a Turk who has distinguished himself fighting against the Persians (1.2.51), the Moors (1.2.55 – 56), and the Portuguese (1.1.58) and who prides himself on having made Christians accept Islam (1.2.60), but is he any worse than Basilisco, “a rutter born in Germany” (1.2.66), who has massacred children in “some part of Belgia” (1.2.84) in order that their mothers’ tears might help the grass grow and thus relieve a drought and provide food for his horse, and who has also fought in Ireland (1.2.93)? Soliman has a wicked plot to beleaguer Rhodes by sea and land. That key will serve to open all the gates Through which our passage cannot find a stop Till it have pricked the heart of Christendom, Which now that paltry island keeps from scathe. (1.4.14– 17)

But Christianity seems to be falling apart all by itself when Piston says “By God’s fish, friend, take you the Latins’ part, I’ll abuse you too!” (1.2.143 – 44), for what he is referring to is the damaging divide between Catholicism and Orthodoxy. Matthew Dimmock notes that John of Bordeaux is set in Ravenna, a city never attacked by the Turks but conquered by both the Goths and the French, and argues that the play “offers an oppositional trope of the ‘turke’ … fabricated from a number of significant contexts.”⁵⁶ In this sense almost anyone could potentially be a “Turk”: Benedict Robinson observes that the Protestant writers “John Bale, Thomas Fuller, and Samuel Purchas … all call [Pope] Urban II … ‘Turban II.’”⁵⁷

 Thomas Kyd, The Tragedy of Soliman and Perseda, in Three Romances of Eastern Conquest, edited by Ladan Niayesh (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2018), 1.2.1. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.  Dimmock, New Turkes, p. 182.  Benedict S. Robinson, “Harry and Amurath,” Shakespeare Quarterly 60, no. 4 (Winter 2009), pp. 399 – 424, p. 400.

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Rome was in one sense at the heart of Christendom, and yet in another it was the home of Christendom’s worst enemy. This book is about the edge of Christendom, yet it is also about its troubled centre. Plays set in far-off lands are of course important to my project, not least because they take us to places that we all ought to be thinking about; I am mindful of the call from Peter Erickson and Kim F. Hall that “race scholarship needs to continue to expand beyond the limits of England and its colonies, providing a wider European purview that combines different linguistic and national traditions.”⁵⁸ Plays set at the edge of Christendom are also particularly likely to be used to negotiate the Protestant/Catholic divide on the early modern English stage. However I also consider some more unexpected places in which Christendom comes under pressure and where its centre seems oddly close to its edge. Urvashi Chakravarty notes that the 1593 Returns of Strangers “depicts a London whose households were becoming, to put it bluntly, less and less English,”⁵⁹ and the familiar could seem foreign in other ways too. In London, strange fish swam up the Thames, place-names spoke of Jewry and London churches included St. Thomas of Acon (i. e. Acre); in Hardwick Hall in Derbyshire, Bess of Hardwick had a wall hanging showing a figure labelled Mahomet. Most importantly, both abroad and at home there might be uncertainties about a disturbing question which was central to both the difference between Christian and non-Christian and the difference between the two confessions of Catholicism and Protestantism: what was to be done with dead bodies? In ancient Rome, burial always had to be outside the confines of the city. In early modern England this no longer obtained, but proper disposal of bodies remained a distinction between civilisation and savagery. A search of EEBO-TCP finds 410 instances of the phrase “Christian burial” in texts published between 1550 and 1650. The idea of incomplete or disturbed burial is something that haunts Shakespeare throughout his career, and is also found in other playwrights. In William Alexander’s The Alexandraean Tragedie, the entire first act consists of the ghost of Alexander lamenting that he has not been buried.⁶⁰ Though the ghost does not appear again, it is clear that this remains the case throughout the play, and the “Argument” refers to characters called Leonatus, Antigonus, and Lysimachus, all names which are echoed in Shakespeare’s last plays. Thomas Rist, posing the question “How seri-

 Peter Erickson and Kim F. Hall, “‘A New Scholarly Song’: Rereading Early Modern Race,” Shakespeare Quarterly 67, no. 1 (Spring 2016), pp. 1– 13, p. 6.  Urvashi Chakravarty, “More than Kin, Less than Kind: Similitude, Strangeness, and Early Modern English Homonationalism,” Shakespeare Quarterly 67, no. 1 (Spring 2016), pp. 14– 29, p. 25.  William Alexander, The Alexandraean Tragedie (London: Thomas Harper, 1637).

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ously would Shakespeare have taken the notion of his theatre as a cult of the dead?,” notes “Sidney’s emphasis on ‘funerals’ as an essence of tragedy,” and reminds us that “Gorboduc not only shows the mourning of the dead common in Elizabethan drama thereafter, but in various ways it too comments on its centrality in tragedy,” while in both The Spanish Tragedy and Tamburlaine the hero keeps a family member unburied.⁶¹ Burial or lack of it is a matter of particular concern in William Lithgow’s peregrinations. He says of Scanderbeg “After whose death and buriall, his body was digged up by the Turkes, and joyfull was that man could get the least bit of his bones to preserve, and carry about with him, thinking thereby, so long as he kept it, he should alwayes be invincible, which the Turkes observe to this day.” Reaching land after a difficult voyage, he remarks that “being all disbarked on shore, we have thanks to the Lord for our unexpected safety, and buried the dead Christians in a Greekish Church-yard, and the Iewes were interred by the sea side”; later when they are attacked near Judea “wee buried the slayne people in deep graves, whereby Iackals should not open up their graves, to eate their Corpes.”⁶² In 1612 Lithgow noted with disapprobation that outside Jerusalem “I beheld a great number of dead corpes; some whereof had white winding sheets, and newly dead, lying one aboue an other in a lumpe; yeelding a pestilent smell, by reason they were not covered with earth, saue onely the artchitecture of a high vault.”⁶³ He himself never leaves anyone unburied: when his German travelling companions die, “wee digged a hollow pit, and disroabing them of their Turkish cloathes, I did with my owne hands cast them all three one above an other, in that same hole, and covering the Corpes with moulding earth,” and there seems to be nothing but approval when he notes that “In Dansick I fell deadly sicke for three Weeks space, insomuch that my grave and Tombe was prepared by my Country-men there.”⁶⁴ He also makes it clear that he regards failure to bury as unclean when he refers to “the place called Mommeis, which are innumerable Caves cut foorth of a Rocke, where unto the Corpes of the most men in Cayro, are carried and interred. Which dead bodies remayne always, unpurified.”⁶⁵ But unburial was also a problem at home. John Leland noted that Alfred and Edward the Elder were both buried at Hyde and that the abbey no longer exist-

 ish    

Thomas Rist, “‘Those Organnons by Which It Mooves’: Shakespearean Theatre and the RomCult of the Dead,” Shakespeare Survey 69 (2016), pp. 228 – 42, pp. 228, 229 – 30, and 233. Lithgow, The Totall discourse, pp. 57, 62, and 223. Lithgow, The Totall discourse, p. 281. Lithgow, The Totall discourse, pp. 295 and 425. Lithgow, The Totall discourse, p. 310.

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ed.⁶⁶ In Ancient funerall monuments, John Weever records other losses of royal bodies: of King Stephen’s burial in Faversham Abbey in 1154, for instance, he says, “His body rested here in quietnesse vntill the dissolution, when for the gaine of the lead wherein it was encoffined, it was taken vp and throwne into the next water. So vncertaine is man, yea greatest Princes, of any rest in this world, euen after buriall,” while another abbey hath beene honoured with the sepulture of foure Queenes, foure Dutchesses, foure Countesses, one Duke, two Earles, eight Barons, and some thirty fiue Knights; whose names are set downe by Stow in his Suruay of this honourable Citie; and in all, from the first foundation vnto the dissolution, sixe hundred sixtie and three persons of Qualitie were here interred. In the Quire were nine Tombes of Alabaster and Marble, inuironed with barres or strikes of iron: one Tombe in the body of the Church coped also with iron, and seauenscore graue-stones of Marble in diuers places; all which were pulled downe, taken away, and sold for fiftie pounds or thereabouts, by Sir Martin Bowes Maior of London, An. 1545. The rest of the Monuments are now wholly defaced, not any one remaining at this day, saue such which are of later times.

Even when tombs survived, they might be deceptive: Weever notes that at Hadley Here in this Church, as the Inhabitants say, Gurmond, or Gurthrun, a Danish King lieth interred: and this their assertion is confirmed by the most of our ancient Historians; yet the Tombe which they shew for his funerall Monument beares not that face of Antiquitie, as to be of seuen hundred yeares and more continuance.

In such a context, it came as no surprise that when Glastonbury Abbey was dissolved, King Arthur’s body was apparently lost.⁶⁷ Questions of what happens to bodies after death also bear on the debate over whether the Host represented the actual body of Christ through transubstantiation or merely figured it metaphorically through consubstantiation. Issues of burial are a central concern of many of the texts I discuss here. In chapter 1, I argue that individually and collectively the three “Wittenberg” plays, Hamlet, Hoffman, and Doctor Faustus, all draw attention to questions of how bodies should be buried and what happens if there is nothing left to bury; I also observe that both the things Doctor Faustus most wants to see in Rome are tombs, while Macbeth and Antony and Cleopatra both mention specific burial sites, Macbeth in the shape of the holy island of Iona and Antony and Cleopatra  John Chandler, John Leland’s Itinerary: Travels in Tudor England (Stroud, UK: Alan Sutton, 1993), p. 201.  John Weever, Ancient funerall monuments within the vnited monarchie of Great Britaine (London: Thomas Harper for Laurence Sadler, 1631), pp. 278, 388, and 748 – 49.

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by setting its final scene in Cleopatra’s pyramid. Chapter 2 centres on the story of Julius Caesar, whose body was eerily doubled by a waxwork model made after his death to illustrate the exact position of his wounds. Chapter 3 touches on the particularly troublesome question of saints’ bodies, in the shape of that of St. Dorothea, and also considers The Knight of Malta, in which Oriana’s body is removed from her tomb when it is discovered that she is not dead. Chapter 4 is about Tamburlaine, who refused to bury the body of his wife Zenocrate, and chapter 5 considers fairies, who in many narratives of the period were considered to be dead but nevertheless continued to interact with humans. Chapter 6 pits failed or unsatisfactory burials abroad against the disinterment of Mary, Queen of Scots at home. Chapter 7 considers a different kind of committal to the ground in the shape of gardening. Chapter 8 glances at the extent to which Christianity in the north of England was anchored by sanctified bodies: Bede at Durham; Cuthbert at Lindisfarne first and then afterwards also in Durham; Wilfrid in Hexham. Finally chapter 9 considers the Cavendish family, one of whose members, Margaret Cavendish née Lucas, had two dead family members disinterred by Parliament soldiers. Another recurrent interest in many of the texts I discuss is Britain’s own pagan past. In Henry the Sixth, Part Two, Cade exhorts his followers, Up Fish Street! Down Saint Magnus’ Corner! Kill and knock down! Throw them in the Thames!⁶⁸

St. Magnus was a king of Norway, but both he and St. Olav were remembered in London church names. Both speak of sanctity, but both also recall the pagan past of Scandinavia and by implication of the Danelaw, which provides the backdrop to the plays I discuss in chapter 8. Other aspects of London’s connection to pagan pasts are also remembered. In Jonson, Chapman and Marston’s Eastward Ho!, we find the stage direction “Enter SLITGUT, with a pair of ox-horns, discovering Cuckold’s Haven”; he says he is setting them up “in honour of Saint Luke,” and the note comments, “According to legend the point has once been the site of a Temple of Fortune which was later destroyed by fire. It was traditional on

 William Shakespeare, King Henry VI, Part 2, edited by Ronald Knowles, in The Arden Shakespeare Complete Works, edited by Richard Proudfoot, Ann Thompson, and David Scott Kastan (London: Thomson Learning, 2001), 4.81.1– 2. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.

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St. Luke’s day, 18 October, for a butcher of Eastcheap to commemorate King John’s cuckolding of a miller, by erecting a pair of horns on a pole there.”⁶⁹ The idea of horns also connects to hunting, another topic which crops up in several of the chapters, and which was seen as a ritual, traditional form of activity in its own right: Patricia Akhimie, describing hunting as “a highly favored and heavily coded activity within the hierarchy of the country estate complex,” notes that “Inviting guests to hunt, especially royals, had long been a cornerstone of aristocratic hospitality. It was a time-honored cultivating strategy.”⁷⁰ Discussing Shakespeare, Edward Berry notes that “One poem and eight of the plays include hunting scenes or episodes, and hunting imagery recurs throughout the canon. Shakespeare’s plays are exceptional not only in the frequency of their allusions to the hunt but in the impression of technical mastery and experiential knowledge that these allusions convey.”⁷¹ Hunting is mentioned in several of the Shakespeare plays I discuss in this book: it is an important motif in both A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Twelfth Night, and it is glanced at too in Julius Caesar—“O world thou wast the forest to this hart”⁷²—and also by implication in Henry the Sixth, Part Two, where Cade’s question “Hath my sword therefore broke through London gates, that you should leave me at the White Hart in Southwark?” (4.3.23 – 25) might conceivably point up the extent to which he is not the true heir of Richard II, whose badge (a pun on his name, Richart) was a white hart. Shakespeare also seems to influence other dramatists’ attitudes to hunting. In The Knight of Malta, Norandine fools the watch into thinking he is “a Beare broke loose” (3.1.20) just before a sequence which evokes A Midsummer Night’s Dream as the Corporal begs Norandine “Doe not make an Asse of me” (3.1.72) and then asks, “Is not this my Halbert in my hand?,” to which Norandine replies, “No, ’tis a May-pole” (3.1.84– 85). Later when Oriana groans in her tomb Norandine thinks it is “The spirit of a huntesman choakd with butter” (4.2.47). François Laroque declares: A whole body of Celtic or Teutonic rites and legends could be reconstructed from the clues provided by, for example, “the deer song” in As You Like It, the episode of Herne the Hunter at the end of The Merry Wives of Windsor or the scenes portraying the “death” and comic resurrection of Falstaff in 1 Henry IV. It is as if the masquerades of the Mummers’ plays per-

 Ben Jonson, George Chapman, and John Marston, Eastward Ho!, edited by C. G. Petter (London: Ernest Benn, 1973), 4.1 sd, 4.1.4– 5, and note.  Akhimie, Shakespeare and the Cultivation of Difference, p. 118.  Edward Berry, Shakespeare and the Hunt: A Cultural and Social Study (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2001), p. 14.  William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar, edited by David Daniell [1998] (London: Bloomsbury, 2017), 3.1.208.

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Introduction

formed in the course of village festivals at Christmas and Easter were being transposed to the professional stage. We should bear in mind that the actors of these folk mimes were often clad in foliage, animal skins and antlers and they would perform burlesque and obscene dances that reflected ancient fertility rites.⁷³

Hunting, which implicitly asserts a distinction between humans and animals, is another way of beating bounds and policing borders; scenes of transformation such as that of Actaeon, an important figure in Marlowe’s plays and in some of the decorative schemes I discuss in chapter 9, trouble the very category of humanity itself, in ways which further unsettle the attempt to distinguish between what is Christendom and what is not. The book is in three parts, each of which has three chapters. The first part, “The Edge and the Centre,” considers a variety of ways in which Rome, traditionally the heart of Christendom, becomes a growing problem for Christendom. It begins with a chapter entitled “‘All places shall be hell that are not heaven’: The Edge of Rome,” which discusses a group of plays which invite their audiences to see Rome, once the beating heart of a wholly Catholic Europe, as not only marginal but as a prisoner of its own history. I look first at a group of three plays, Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus, Shakespeare’s Hamlet, and Henry Chettle’s The Tragedy of Hoffman. All of these contain characters who have been educated at Wittenberg, the place where the Reformation began, and all of them also include powerful reminders of older, pre-Christian belief systems. I then move to a pair of plays, from 1605 – 1606, Macbeth and Antony and Cleopatra, and argue that they too relegate Rome to the periphery of their imagined worlds in ways which suggest that it has become an edgeland. The second chapter, “Beautiful Polecats: The Living and the Dead in Julius Caesar,” explores a different kind of faultline in the idea of Rome as the heart of Christendom, which is the extent to which the city contrives to speak urgently and consistently of its pre-Christian past. Rome was the seat of the pontiff, but before that it had been the seat of the Roman emperors, and the bones of ancient Rome were only very thinly covered in Renaissance Rome. I argue that Shakespeare points up this tension by creating a series of parallels between Jesus Christ and Julius Caesar, partly through using a technique he has learned from Marlowe, whose Jew of Malta slyly insinuates that Barabas is an alternative version of Christ (an early—and equally comic—prototype of the hero of the Monty Python film The Life of Brian). As I explore, Julius Caesar is a play obsessed with the word “like,” and is also the only Roman play to feature a ghost, suggesting  François Laroque, Shakespeare’s Festive World: Elizabethan Seasonal Entertainment and the Professional Stage (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1991), p. 188.

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the extent to which the Rome of the early modern present is still haunted by the Rome of the classical past. This double identity suggests that if Rome was the heart of Christendom, it was a broken heart, with “Caesar” written on it as Mary Tudor thought that “Calais” would be on hers. The place with most claim to be the geographical centre of Christendom was also its chronological edge—in fact doubly so in Julius Caesar, which not only remembers Rome’s pre-Christian past but also has characters speaking of doomsday and thus suggesting not only Christendom’s difficult birth but also its promised end. The third chapter of the first part of the book, “Danger and Demarcation in Massinger,” argues that the sense of interaction between the edges of Christendom and its internal divisions is particularly acute in four plays by Philip Massinger, The Renegado, The Knight of Malta, The Virgin Martyr, and The Picture. Each of these takes us to a territory where different faiths and nations come into direct and sustained conflict: The Renegado is set in Tunis, briefly captured by the Habsburg emperor Charles V in 1535 only to be reconquered by the Ottomans in 1574; The Knight of Malta, as the title suggests, is set on the island of Malta, which successfully withstood a Turkish siege in 1565; the Caesarea in The Virgin Martyr was historically a frontier town; and The Picture takes us to Hungary, Europe’s most vulnerable land border with the Ottoman Empire. To talk about these tensions, all four plays use a religiously and racially charged system of colour symbolism, not always expressed in terms of a black/white binary but always potentially standing in for one, and doing this enables them to perform a very specific sort of cultural work, for in demonising the non-Christians at the edges Massinger can play down the schism within Christianity itself. The second part of the book is called “Edges Abroad.” Chapter 4, “‘Having passed Armenian deserts now’: Marlowe’s Tamburlaine the Great,” argues that Marlowe is responding to the two things everyone in early modern England knew about Armenia, the country which bookends the two parts of the play: that Noah’s ark came to rest there, and that it had a heroic king called Tigranes, whose name occurs in seventy-six texts published during Shakespeare’s lifetime. It is thus a place which is both biblical and strange. I argue that for Marlowe, as for Shakespeare, naming Armenia may not only be evoking a specific geographical territory, but may also be offering a way of talking about geographical territories that invites audiences to consider questions about the relationship of peoples to the lands they inhabit, of the potential porousness of borders, and of geopolitical change at the edges of Christendom. Chapter 5 is called “Bears and Fairies: A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Twelfth Night.” In both these plays, a bustling urban settlement is contrasted with a quieter space with overtones of the pastoral, and both stage encounters between people of very different backgrounds and experiences. Both, then,

26

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can be seen as first-contact narratives in which, and as so often in first-contact narratives, the contrast between those who meet is instructive. In A Midsummer Night’s Dream the presence of fairies raises questions about the nature and status of mortality. Twelfth Night takes its name from the last day of Christmas, a festival which marks the birth of Christ and hence the inaugural moment of Christendom, but its characters are strikingly uncertain about questions of eschatology. Both these plays deal in images of far-flung travel and trade, yet both suggest that in some sense, the edge of Christendom is a matter not of distance but of mood, as the survival of folk customs and of fairy beliefs calls into question the Christianity of Europe itself. The final chapter of this part, “The Last Plays and the Edges of Christendom,” explores the idea of failed or improper burials in The Tempest, Pericles, The Winter’s Tale, and The Two Noble Kinsmen. (It is present in Cymbeline too, but I have written about that before and do not repeat it here.) The last plays take us to geographical edges of Christendom, but they also gesture at a more metaphysical one, for lack of burial could be seen as imperilling a person’s ability to pass into the next world. Like A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Twelfth Night, the last plays all involve travel, and they too all stage versions of firstcontact narratives, but here the edge of Christendom which really matters is the grave, and the extent to which it can act as a portal out of this world and into the next. Part Three is called “Edges at Home.” It begins with “The Politics of the Rose: English Histories and Foreign Flowers.” Shakespeare’s history plays are almost as interested in interment as his last plays. The Princes in the Tower were not buried; Henry V hopes the fact that he reburied Richard II will help him win the Battle of Agincourt. I argue that King John’s death in an orchard is the first in a series of garden scenes which offer a way of talking about the difficult and contradictory relationship between trouble at the edges of Christendom and trouble within Christendom. Such scenes typically refer to flowers and fruit which are growing in English soil, but are not always native to England. They may also bear traces of cultivation which separates them further from a sense of the natural and which I argue implies provisionality rather than providence in the unfolding of English history. Roses, the flowers chosen to emblematise the houses of York and Lancaster, may seem a quintessentially English garden flower, but they may remind the audience of Catholicism and of the lost traditions of monastic gardens, and their links to the East also make them emblematic of new plants growing in old soils. As gardens are figured as graves and speak of both exploration and the Reformation, they remind us that the very ground of England is not what it once was.

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Chapter 8 is called “North by North-West: The Danelaw and the Edge of Christendom.” It shows two related things: first, that the north stands in a charged and vibrant relationship with the west, and second that where England’s own north begins and ends is at least partially conditioned by the other countries which lie to the north of it, particularly Denmark, since successive Viking invasions changed the country’s sense of its own cultural geography. The two plays I discuss, Anthony Brewer’s The Lovesick King and Richard Brome’s The Queen’s Exchange, both suggest that the edge of Christendom has at times been perilously close to home. Finally chapter 9, “Let the Right One In: Edges of Christendom in CavendishTalbot Houses,” looks at two cultural phenomena associated with households presided over by women of the interrelated Cavendish and Talbot families, the creation of hangings and other wall decorations, and the writing of plays, and argues that in each case and in each household a major strategy for keeping out things which were perceived to threaten the values of Christendom was to let them in. The Cavendish house of Bolsover was built with witch-marks on its roof, not far from Creswell Crags, where caves which we now know to be prehistoric seem to have been a source of fear in the seventeenth century, since they too bear witch-marks dating from that period, and also not far from the cave known as the Devil’s Arse, mentioned by both Thomas Hobbes and Ben Jonson as a wonder of the peak, and jestingly supposed to be an entrance to the underworld. Hardwick Hall, the first of the major houses which I consider, testifies to Elizabethan England’s attempts to come to terms with the Muslim world, and even more seriously than that, Bess’s great-granddaughters Jane Cavendish and Elizabeth Brackley, finding themselves besieged in their own home at Welbeck by Parliamentary soldiers in the service of a regime which had cancelled Christmas and dug up dead bodies, respond by invoking Cleopatra. The CavendishTalbot properties thus become the extreme case of the fragility and permeability of a Christendom embattled at home as well as abroad. In this book, then, I seek to show that the concept of Christendom was under threat not only geographically but also, and more importantly, ideologically, as it faced internal collapse under the weight of all the things it was supposed to signify. Ostensibly it represented Christian unity; however it was disunited by schism and the behaviour of many of its inhabitants (not least its rulers) was only too obviously not always very Christian. It was often spoken of as if it were a geopolitical entity, and yet it was untenable to try to maintain either that Christendom was coterminous with Europe or that Christians could be divided from non-Christians along racialised lines (when Shakespeare stages an attack on Cyprus, a key bastion of Christendom, he shows a black general defending it). For some inhabitants of Christendom there might even be potential bleed

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between the categories of human and animal, never mind the questions of what might grow in Christian gardens or how bodies should be laid in Christian ground. In uncovering some of these less obvious ways in which the idea of Christendom was threatened I start with Rome, in one sense the heart of Christendom but in another one of its most fragile and imperilled edges.

Part One: The Edge and the Centre

Chapter 1 “All places shall be hell that are not heaven”: The Edge of Rome In his The Totall discourse, of the rare adventures, and painefull peregrinations of long nineteene yeares travailes from Scotland, to the most famous kingdomes in Europe, Asia, and Affrica, William Lithgow notes that when the town of Otranto was taken by the Turks in 1481, this “involved all Italy in such a feare, that for a whole yeare, and till the expulsion of the Turkes, Rome was quite forsaken.”¹ Rome might be the notional centre of Christendom, but this chapter discusses a group of plays which individually and collectively relegate Rome to the periphery by foregrounding forms of belief either different from or actively antithetical to Roman Catholicism. I start with three plays associated with Wittenberg, the home of Protestantism: Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus, Shakespeare’s Hamlet, and Henry Chettle’s The Tragedy of Hoffman (which as well as registering the advent of Protestantism also suggests the continued pull of paganism). I then move on to Macbeth, which both incriminates Catholic political practices and smuggles in reminders of the more Celtic forms of Christianity which had shaped Scotland’s past, as well as once more gesturing at paganism. Finally I turn to Antony and Cleopatra, which stands Rome on its head both temporally and spatially by systematically contrasting Rome with Egypt but suggesting that it is Egypt which has the less worldly values and a closer connection to the numinous. I argue that Antony and Cleopatra and Macbeth are in dialogue, and that between them they, like the Wittenberg plays, trouble the sense of Rome’s centrality and of the cultural importance which it ascribed to itself. Collectively these five plays tell one story, which marginalises Rome and suggests that, in religious terms at least, Europe no longer has a centre, and that any part of it can thus potentially be an edge zone. I want to start however not with a play at all but by revisiting Richard Johnson’s prose romance The Most Famous History of the Seaven Champions of Christendome, which I have already touched on in the introduction. Justin Kolb argues that “Spenser, Marlowe in Tamburlaine, and other writers of the period explored the Islamic challenge by displacing it into the space of romance and classical lit-

 William Lithgow, The Totall discourse, of the rare adventures, and painefull peregrinations of long nineteene yeares travailes from Scotland, to the most famous kingdomes in Europe, Asia, and Affrica (London: Nicholas Okes for Nicholas Fussell and Humphrey Moseley, 1632), p. 23. https://doi.org/10.1515/9781501514159-003

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erature, containing it in an imaginative realm drawn from their syncretic humanist educations and constructed out of elements drawn from a wide span of history and literature.”² Johnson’s text uses that strategy too, and as a result it offers an intriguing collocation. As we have seen, the events it relates apparently begin at a time when After the angre Greekes had ruinated the chiefest Cittie in Phrigia, and turned King Priams glorious buildinges to a waste and desolate wildernes, Duke Aeneas exempted from his natiue habitation, with manie of his distressed countrimen (Pilgrims) wandered the world to some happie region, where they might erect the Image of their late subdued Troy.³

Since Seaven Champions tells the story of seven saints and saints are by definition Christian, it is surprising to find them rubbing shoulders with Aeneas, and it is also a bit unexpected to find Aeneas’s followers described as pilgrims, even given that Goran Stanivukovic argues that there is an archaising pull inherently at work in the romance genre: “in prose romances of the period … the Christian knights’ travels and adventures, sometimes crowned with marriage to one of the Levantine princesses, have more to do with the fictionalized discursive ‘conquests’ of the territories of old Christianity and the lands in which the Crusaders displayed their heroic skills and virtues than with the imagined strategies, or projections, of colonizing those lands, or with trade.”⁴ Even these wild anachronisms are as nothing, though, compared to what is to come when Sabra, daughter of King Ptolemy of Egypt and wife of St. George, gives birth to triplet sons called Guy, Alexander, and David (she is attended in her confinement by “Proserpine the Fayrie Queene”).⁵ Guy, who is to be a soldier, is sent to Rome; Alexander, who is to be a prince, is “sent to the rich plentifull Country of England, being the pride of Christendome for all delightfull pleasures”; and David, who is to be a scholar, is sent “to the Uniuersity of Wittenberg, beeing thought at that time to bee the excellentst place of learning, that remayned throughout the whole world.”⁶ The actual name

 Justin Kolb, “‘In th’armor of a Pagan Knight’: Romance and Anachronism East of England in Book V of The Faerie Queene and Tamburlaine,” Early Theatre 12, no. 2 (2009), pp. 194– 207, p. 194.  Richard Johnson, The Most Famous History of the Seaven Champions of Christendome (London: Cuthbert Burbie, 1596), sig. B1r.  Goran V. Stanivukovic, “Introduction: Beyond the Olive Trees; Remapping the Mediterranean World in Early Modern English Writings,” in Remapping the Mediterranean World in Early Modern English Writings, edited by Goran V. Stanivukovic (Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan, 2007), pp. 1– 20, p. 11.  Johnson, The Most Famous History of the Seaven Champions of Christendome, p. 191.  Johnson, The Most Famous History of the Seaven Champions of Christendome, p. 202.

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of the University of Wittenberg was the Leucorea, whose origin-word is the Greek for white (leucos), but the English pun is always on Wittenberg; in Thomas Nashe’s The Unfortunate Traveller the Duke of Saxony is welcomed to Wittenberg with a speech which includes the words “Wit is wit” and “With all the wit I have,”⁷ and even though the point there is that the speaker has a very poor wit, it is the pun which gives impetus to the irony. Wittenberg is a place where wit is to be expected; for Johnson, it is “the excellentst place of learning, that remayned throughout the whole world,” and in 1589, Henry Cavendish’s servant Fox, accompanying his master overland to Constantinople, observed that “Wyttenburg ys a veary fayr toune and hathe ii great colligys in yt whyche doe contayne in ether of them a thowsand studyents.”⁸ Though Wittenberg was later to feature in Hamlet and Hoffman, in 1596 Johnson could have found it in drama only in Doctor Faustus. This is almost certainly where he did in fact find it, because some aspects of Johnson’s romance are clearly influenced by Marlowe. Facing execution, the King of Morocco offers that he and some of his lords will “like bridled Horses drawe thee daylie in a siluer Charriot vp and downe the sercled earth,” but St. George is unmoved because “for seauen yeares I dranke the Channell water.”⁹ The first of these remarks echoes Tamburlaine, the second Edward II in his prison cell. The inhabitants of Tripoli turn on St. George and “made a massaker of his seruants” and one of Sabra’s babies “lay in his cradle smiling like Cupid vpon the happe of Dido, whome Venus changed into the liknes of Askanius”;¹⁰ “massaker” looks like a glance at The Massacre at Paris, and the story of Venus swapping Cupid and Ascanius is central to Dido, Queen of Carthage. Johnson, then, is interested in Marlowe, in Wittenberg, and in the tale of Troy, and for him the three are imaginatively connected. In the story told by Virgil, the translatio imperii transferred the cultural capital and divine authority of Troy to Rome. In the story told by Johnson, only one of the triplets goes to Rome, and even then apparently only for its military rather than its religious associations, since he is destined to be a soldier; the other two travel to destinations which Johnson’s audience would

 Thomas Nashe, The Unfortunate Traveller, in The Unfortunate Traveller and Other Works (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 1972), p. 292. All further quotations will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.  A. C. Wood, ed., Mr. Harrie Cavendish His Journey to and from Constantinople 1589 by Fox, His Servant, Camden Miscellany vol. 17 (London: Offices of the Royal Historical Society, 1940), p. 22.  Johnson, The Most Famous History of the Seaven Champions of Christendome, pp. 137– 38.  Johnson, The Most Famous History of the Seaven Champions of Christendome, pp. 142 and 196.

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have understood as Protestant, including the very centre of Protestantism, Wittenberg. Four or five years after Johnson wrote, Wittenberg registers in English literature again, when Hamlet is declared to have studied there, and five or six years after that a secondary character in Henry Chettle’s Hoffman, Prince Jerome of Heidelberg, is proud of his education: he declares “True, I am no fool, I have been at Wittenberg, where wit grows.”¹¹ Jerome does have some book-learning; he demands of his henchman Stilt, “My beard-brush and mirror, Stilt, that set my countenance right to the Mirror of Knighthood, for your Mirror of Magistrates is somewhat too sober” (2.1.36 – 39), before adding, “They say I am a fool, Stilt, but follow me. I’ll seek out my notes of Machiavel; they say he’s an odd politician” (2.1.68 – 70). However, Jerome also expresses a belief that learning is fundamentally unnecessary: “princes have no need to be taught” (2.1.17– 18). The Wittenberg-educated Hamlet is also ambivalent about learning things: he is not ashamed to violate the first principle of sprezzatura by admitting to Horatio that he has practised fencing daily, but he regards it as beneath him to take care in handwriting until he suddenly discovers that it can actually be useful to do so. One might also observe that Faustus does not seem to value the education he received at university, and that it has not taught him such obvious things as not to sell your soul to the devil. For all the emphasis on its status as a place of learning, there seems to be a sense that Wittenberg is important not so much for what it teaches as for what it is, and what it was above all was an antithesis to Rome. Germany in general was traditionally seen as opposed to Rome: on 28 January 1574 Hubert Languet jokingly complained to Philip Sidney that “the Germans have plundered us poor Gauls of the empire which they declare that we never possessed. They say that the expedition of Godfrey of Bouillon to Jerusalem was theirs: and that the Greek and Latin writers, early and late, are talking nonsense when they say that the Gauls made so many irruptions into Italy, burned Rome, penetrated into Greece and even into Asia, since these all were undoubtedly Germans.”¹² In the case of Wittenberg in particular, one of the spurs which drove Luther to nail the ninety-five theses to the door of the Castle Church was outrage at the levy of a new tax designed to fund the rebuilding of St. Peter’s, and Luther’s friends the Cranach family deliberately created a new style of painting meant to rival and counter that of Rome.  Henry Chettle, The tragedy of Hoffman, in Five Revenge Tragedies, edited by Emma Smith (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 2012), 1.2.36. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.  Humphrey Llwyd, The Breviary of Britain, edited by Philip Schwyzer (London: Modern Humanities Research Association, 2011), p. 9.

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I think that all the Wittenberg plays are troubled by this sense that the primary meaning of Wittenberg itself lies not in any positive values of its own but in the challenge it poses to Rome. This is particularly apparent in their attitudes to death and the afterlife. It is suggestive that all three Wittenberg plays feature a cliff or other sharp difference in height: in Hamlet the castle of Elsinore beetles over the cliff, in Hoffman Martha is said to have jumped from a height into the sea, in Doctor Faustus Christ’s blood streams in the firmament but cannot be reached. In all of them we are thus alerted to the ever-present possibility of a disastrous fall without any counterbalancing sense that a Wittenberg education will help you to reach the heights of heaven. Moreover, in this respect the three plays function not only individually but also cumulatively. Hoffman clearly revisits Hamlet, but it also strikes out in some very different directions: both heroes seek to avenge their fathers and the Hoffman/Martha story picks up on Hamlet’s feeling for Gertrude, but there are very different understandings of death and of posthumous survival at work in Old Hamlet’s Ghost and Hoffman’s collection of anatomised skeletons. This contrast between the two plays might help us to notice that there is also an intriguing difference between the two texts of Doctor Faustus: in the B text Faustus’s mangled limbs are found by the scholars and taken away to be buried, but in the A text there is nothing left to bury. That the fate of Faustus puzzled at least some early modern audience members is suggested by A Knack to Know a Knave, possibly written or co-written by the clown Will Kemp and first published in 1594. The play is clearly interested in Marlowe: the bailiff of Hexham advises his son, who is a priest, that “Thou must (my son) make shew of holinesse, / And blinde the world with thy hipocrisie,”¹³ evoking The Jew of Malta, and another son who is a courtier says “Father, I liue as Aristipus did … Some tyme I moue the King to be effeminate” (sig. B2v), echoing Edward II. But it is also clearly confused, as we see when the Bailiff dies: Ah see my sonnes, where death, pall Death appears, To summon me before a fearfull Iudge: Me thi[n]ks reuenge stands with an yron whip, And cries repent, or I will punish thee: My heart is hardened, I cannot repent. Ah hark, me thinkes the Iudge doth giue my doome, And I am damnd to euer burning fyre: Soule, be thou safe, and bodie flie to hell. He dyeth. Enter Deuil, and carie him away. (sig. B3r)

 Will Kemp [?], A Knack to Know a Knave (London: Richard Jones, 1594), sigs. B1r–B2v.

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The Bailiff cannot repent and so should presumably be damned, but his last words seem to suggest that it might be only his body which is damned, while his soul might be saved. This does not work as theology, but it does perhaps function as testimony to the fact that the play’s authors were aware of a difficulty, or at least a tension, about what actually happens to Faustus, and whether there might be a question mark over whether it applies to his body or only to his soul. Hamlet and Hoffman each implicitly comment on what is at stake in this difference between the two texts of Doctor Faustus, with Hamlet exploring the logic and assumptions which underpinned the eventual emergence of the A text and Hoffman those which ultimately found expression in the B text. Hamlet pits a physical understanding of death against a metaphysical one. One scene shows us Hamlet holding a skull; two more show him speaking to a ghost. The difference is that whereas the skull of Yorick requires the still-living Hamlet to animate it, the ghost of Hamlet’s father is an independent entity, even to the extent of apparently changing costumes from armour on its first appearance to wearing “his habit, as he liv’d” on its second.¹⁴ The skull and the ghost are both resonant symbols of mortality, but the ghost looms larger in the play. Hoffman by contrast does not even recognise this distinction: Lucibella, seeing two skeletons, asks “Nay, look you here, do you see these poor starved ghosts? Can you tell whose they be?” (5.1.150 – 51). As I shall explore in chapter 6, burial practices were profoundly affected by Protestantism, in very contested ways, and funeral rites often feature in early modern plays. Hamlet, Hoffman, and Doctor Faustus all participate in this discourse, but reading them against each other reveals the extent to which they all seem to have repudiated one set of certainties but cannot agree what to put in its place. We see the ragged edges of a fractured belief system. Hoffman also echoes Hamlet in telling a story set in and around the Baltic, and in this too it calls Rome into question. The Baltic regions were among the last parts of Europe to be converted to Christianity, with crusades still being mounted at the beginning of the sixteenth century; Henry IV of England took part in one, though he eventually withdrew support for Prussia, the region in which Hoffman was set, because he felt it was too likely to fall to the “infidels.”¹⁵ In addition, the vicinity of the Baltic was strongly associated with witchcraft and the devil: Colleen Franklin notes that “The known north experienced particularly bad weather, and so, naturally, was assumed to contain a high complement of

 William Shakespeare, Hamlet, edited by Harold Jenkins (London: Methuen, 1982), 3.4.137.  Eric Christiansen, The Northern Crusades (London: Penguin, 1997), pp. 256 – 57, 3, and 229.

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evil spirits.”¹⁶ Hoffman glances at the process by which the north was Christianised when he recalls how Otho sailed from the Hansa capital of Lübeck (4.2.125), which was strongly associated with the Crusades, and the audience could probably have been expected to take the point, because Hansa merchants had a prominent presence in London until their expulsion in 1597.¹⁷ However, in the world of the play, that conversion seems to be only skin-deep. Martha’s lament for her son begins in suitably Hamletesque fashion by bemoaning “Thou wert not houseled,” but soon she is asking “Where is the apparel that I bad him wear / Against the force of witches and their spells?” (5.1.114– 15), in what looks like a direct glance at the persistent association between witches and the north and a reminder that old beliefs died hard. The Teutonic Knights had been one of the great militant orders of mediaeval Catholicism, but here they seem to have left the job half done. At the same time, one of the most iconic symbols of Christianity undergoes some strange alterations. The burning crown which killed Hoffman’s father parodies the crown of thorns, and the fact that it is ultimately applied to Hoffman himself connects him and his father to the Christian iconography of father and son. That iconography takes a strange turn, though, when Hoffman declares, “This scene is done / Father, I offer thee thy murderer’s son” (1.1.230 – 31). This idea of sacrifice to the dead is fundamentally pagan, and Hoffman is not alone in subscribing to it: Mathias says Come, lend hands To give this princely body funeral rites, That I may sacrifice this hand and heart For my peace-offerings on their sepulchres. (3.1.217– 20)

The reference to the sacrifice of a hand may potentially mobilise the memory of Titus Andronicus, imaginatively transporting the audience to the pagan world of ancient Rome rather than the Christian one we are supposedly inhabiting. We might also be prompted to ask whether the device of “a tree” for the spectacle of “a father hanged up by his son” (1.1.184) is simply a reference to the tree of the cross or whether it might also suggest the tree on which Father Odin was

 Colleen Franklin, “‘An Habitation of Devils, a Domicill for Unclean Spirits, and a Den of Goblings’: The Marvelous North in Early Modern Literature,” in The Mysterious and the Foreign in Early Modern England, edited by Helen Ostovich, Mary V. Silcox, and Graham Roebuck (Newark: University of Delaware Press, 2008), pp. 27– 38, p. 28.  Edward T. Bonahue, Jr., “Citizen History: Stow’s Survey of London,” Studies in English Literature, 1500 – 1900 38, no. 1 (Winter 1998), pp. 61– 85, p. 74.

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hanged in Norse mythology. In this context of religious uncertainty, it is hardly surprising that there is no sense of the survival of the soul: Lorrique, dying, says, “Now I must fall / Never again to rise” (5.3.23 – 24). Rodorick, perhaps echoing Doctor Faustus, drains eschatology of meaning when he says, “My heaven’s alone; all company seems hell” (4.1.106 – 7), while Hoffman goes even further when he speaks of “hell, the hope of all despairing men” (5.3.172). Moreover the play inverts scriptural narrative when the dead body of Lorrique is strung up alongside the bodies of Hoffman’s father and Prince Otho, simulating the crucifixion of Christ with the two thieves either side of him and offering an implicit comment on the Bible story. There is a flavour here of the scriptural parody of The Jew of Malta (which like Hoffman has a pair of characters called Lodowick and Mathias and finds poisoning funny).¹⁸ I suggest that Hoffman is glancing at Doctor Faustus too, and slyly inciting us to ask whether, if there is no body, there is no soul. It thus completes a trio of plays in which Wittenberg is shown challenging the traditional teachings of Rome but failing to offer any clear and definite replacement for them. This is most strikingly true of Doctor Faustus, where the hero actually visits Rome. In Lithgow’s The Totall discourse, we are told of meals in the Vatican that They are daily served with a very venerable Prelate, and a few other serviceable Priests, but for the Popes presence with them, there is no such matter. That liberty being spoyld by a drunken Dutch-man about 60 yeares agoe, who in presence of the Pope gave up againe his good Cheare and strong Wines, with a freer good will then they were allowed him, whereat the Pope grew angry, notwithstanding the drunken fellow cryed through his belching throate, Thankes Holy Father, Deere Holy Father, God blesse your Holinesse.¹⁹

This intrusive Dutchman disturbing the mealtime routine of the Vatican is strangely evocative of Doctor Faustus, who covets the Dutch seigneury of Emden and vows to chase the Prince of Parma out of the Netherlands, but whose first and most urgent desire is to see Rome. I want now to turn away from Wittenberg and follow him there, and to argue that if Wittenberg presents no more than a partial challenge to Rome, Rome itself poses a much more effective one to its own status, since it is in many ways its own antithesis. Marlowe was generally interested in Rome; Roy Eriksen notes that “the city itself, as a setting for drama and multiple references to Rome in terms of political power, pol-

 For a detailed analysis of the similarities between the two plays see Tom Rutter, “Marlowe, Hoffman, and the Admiral’s Men,” Marlowe Studies 3 (2013), pp. 49 – 62.  Lithgow, The Totall discourse, p. 15.

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icy and religion, occur in several of his plays.”²⁰ Doctor Faustus offers the most detailed example of this, and there are some aspects of Faustus’s visit to the city which are particularly notable. Faustus describes his itinerary as follows: Having now, my good Mephistopheles, Passed with delight the stately town of Trier, Environed round with airy mountain-tops, With walls of flint and deep entrenchèd lakes, Not to be won by any conquering prince; From Paris next, coasting the realm of France, We saw the river Maine fall into Rhine, Whose banks are set with groves of fruitful vines. Then up to Naples, rich Campania, Whose buildings, fair and gorgeous to the eye, The streets straight forth and paved with finest brick, Quarters the town in four equivalents. There saw we learnèd Maro’s golden tomb, The way he cut an English mile in length, Thorough a rock of stone in one night’s space.²¹

It is an odd route from Germany to Italy that goes via France, and an even odder one that goes from the Rhine to Rome via Naples. Since Marlowe was map-minded he surely knew this, and he must therefore have some purpose in naming these specific places. The magnificent Roman ruins of Trier are the first things noticed by Faustus on his journey, and they speak both of the glory of Rome and also of its fall. Thomas Cooper in his Thesaurus linguae Romae et Britannicae knows that Trier was once Augusta Treuirorum,²² but Johannes Carion notes that the Goths took Trier from the Romans.²³ Moreover Trier was Roman in both senses, for it was a place of relics as well as of ruins: John Bale speaks of “gadders to Compostell, Rome, Tryer and Tholose, with all their straunge worshippinges not commaunded of God,”²⁴ and Calvin identifies numerous relics at Trier, including one of two

 Roy Eriksen, “Marlowe’s Tour of Rome: Policy, Popery and Urban Planning,” in Urban Encounters: Experience and Representation in the Early Modern City, edited by Per Sivefors (Pisa: Fabrizio Serra editore, 2013), pp. 71– 91, p. 71.  Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus, A text, in The Complete Plays, edited by Mark Thornton Burnett (London: J. M. Dent, 1999), 3.1.1– 15. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.  Thomas Cooper, Thesaurus linguae Romae et Britannicae (London: Henry Denham, 1578).  Johannes Carion, The thre bokes of cronicles (London: S. Mierdman for Gwalter Lynne, 1550), fol. cxxix.  John Bale, The Image of Both Churches (London: Thomas East, 1570), p. 136.

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heads of St. Anne and “The knife wherewith the pascal lambe was cut.”²⁵ “Learnèd Maro’s golden tomb” (the grotto at Pozzuoli, sometimes known as the crypta Neapolitana), was also associated with wonder-working: Gervase of Tilbury said Virgil had created the grotto by miraculous means, though when King Robert of Naples asked Petrarch if he believed this, Petrarch replied that “he had nowhere read that Vergil was a sorcerer and he had discerned the marks of edged tools on the sides of the cavern.”²⁶ (In fact J. B. Trapp notes that “The crypta Neapolitana … was pierced during the Civil War or the early Augustan period” and was well known to be Roman: “Seneca and Petronius both complained” about it.²⁷) Sebastian Brant’s edition of Vergil includes a picture of the tomb which showed it as having the inscription “HIC MARO DOCTE IACES,” and a variant of the image with the same inscription appears in “a German manuscript sylloge of inscriptions dating from about 1550”;²⁸ this looks like Marlowe’s source, since “learnèd Maro” is a near-translation of the vocative “Maro docte,” and the idea of “golden” might perhaps have come from Hieronymus Turler’s 1574 statement that the tomb originally had a brass statue of Virgil which was stolen by the Mantuans.²⁹ Despite its fame, however, the tomb was surprisingly elusive: Trapp notes that “about 1453, when the great Flavio Biondo, founder of Roman archaeology, searched for a tomb that would be identified as Vergil’s by the epitaph, he failed to find it”; in 1550 Leandro Alberti also declared himself unable to identify its location; and “Paolo Giovio … concluded that since Vergil’s sepulchre was no longer to be found, it must have been destroyed by the Goths.”³⁰ Like Trier, “learnèd Maro’s golden tomb” thus speaks simultaneously of past Roman splendours and present decay, and was also an emblem of something that appeared to be miraculous but was in fact susceptible of rational explanation. Once in Rome, Faustus’s itinerary is for instance notably different from that of Jack Wilton in Nashe’s 1594 The Unfortunate Traveller, who recalls that “The chiefest thing that my eyes delighted in, was the Church of the Seven Sibyls” and also notes, “I was at Pontius Pilate’s house and pissed against it. The name of the place I remember not, but it is as one goes to Saint Paul’s Church

 John Calvin, A very profitable treatuse [A Treatise of Reliques], translated by Stephen Wythers (London: Rouland Hall, 1561), sigs. Bvir and Giiir.  J. B. Trapp, “The Grave of Vergil,” Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes 47 (1984), pp. 1– 31, pp. 7– 8.  Trapp, “The Grave of Vergil,” p. 6.  Trapp, “The Grave of Vergil,” p. 15.  Trapp, “The Grave of Vergil,” p. 18.  Trapp, “The Grave of Vergil,” pp. 10, 11, and 12.

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not far from the Jews’ Piazza” (p. 325). Jack’s laconic narrative style means that we are left in doubt whether he pisses against the house of Pilate because the behaviour of Pilate as recorded in the Bible merited such treatment, or because he does not believe that it is genuinely what it purports to be, and there is a similar ambiguity when he declares, Should I memorize half the miracles which they there told me had been done about martyrs’ tombs, or the operations of the earth of the sepulchre and other relics brought from Jerusalem, I should be counted the most monstrous liar that ever came in print. The ruins of Pompey’s theatre, reputed one of the nine wonders of the world, Gregory the Sixth’s tomb, Priscilla’s grate, or the thousands of pillars arreared amongst the rased foundations of old Rome, it were frivolous to specify, since he that hath but once drunk with a traveller talks of them. Let me be a historiographer of my own misfortunes, and not meddle with the continued trophies of so old a triumphing city. (pp. 325 – 26)

Jack Wilton’s Rome is to a large extent the Rome which a tourist might see today, one which combines classical memories with a Catholic present; Wilton scorns the Catholicism, but he acknowledges the sense of history and the fact that the main tourist attractions are widely famed, even if he pointedly refrains from confirming that he thinks they are authentic. Mephistopheles by contrast directs Faustus’s attention to two sites in particular: And now, my Faustus, that thou mayst perceive What Rome containeth to delight thee with, Know that this city stands upon seven hills That underprops the groundwork of the same. Just through the midst runs flowing Tiber’s stream, With winding banks that cut it in two parts, Over the which four stately bridges lean, That make safe passage to each part of Rome. Upon the bridge called Ponte Angelo Erected is a castle passing strong, Within whose walls such store of ordnance are, And double cannons framed of carvèd brass, As match the days within one complete year – Besides the gates and high pyramides Which Julius Caesar brought from Africa. (3.1.29 – 43)

The note in Mark Thornton Burnett’s Everyman edition says that what is meant by “high pyramides” is the obelisk in Piazza San Pietro, but there is another potential candidate in the pyramid of Caius Cestius at the head of the Via Ostiense,

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which was erected by the heirs of a magistrate attracted by Egyptian culture and funerary customs. Petrarch recorded the belief that it was the tomb of Remus, and that another pyramid near the Vatican, which does not survive, was the tomb of Romulus. However, although not cleaned and excavated until the 1660s, the pyramid of Caius Cestius obviously had an Egyptian outline, and was thus always a place that spoke both of other religions and of other traditions of disposing of bodily remains. Castel Sant’Angelo is an even more interesting choice of destination. Roy Eriksen posits Dante as a source for Mephistopheles’s description of it, specifically his account of crowds of jubilee pilgrims making their way across Ponte Sant’Angelo to St. Peter’s, and suggests that from an eschatological perspective Ponte Angelo figures in the play as “less a bridge across the Tiber into the Vatican than a bridge across the river Styx into hell and should probably be renamed ‘Ponte diabolico.’”³¹ (Eriksen also suggests Ugo Pinard’s 1555 engraving of Rome as a likely possible source for Marlowe’s image of Rome, though he notes that “Mephostophilis would have delivered his speech before Henslowe’s ‘Sittie of Rome.’”³²) What Eriksen does not mention is the castle’s previous identity as the mausoleum of the emperor Hadrian, though that was advertised by the fact that there is a portrait of Hadrian included in its decorative scheme. Eriksen does point out the presence of the name Adrian in the play and suggests that “It is certainly no coincidence that the only Englishman ever to be elected Pope was also named Hadrian,”³³ and Clifford Davidson also observes the use of the name; he thinks that Marlowe “was deliberately telescoping Adrian IV and Alexander III with Adrian VI (1522 – 1523), a Pope who reigned during the lifetime of the historical Faustus.”³⁴ The emperor Hadrian does, however, seem to be occasionally remembered in early modern drama: Laurie Maguire speculates of Adriana in The Comedy of Errors, “one cannot but wonder whether her name—the female form of Hadrian, the Ephesian patron—is coincidental.”³⁵ For us, Hadrian is famous primarily as the builder of a wall, but Marlowe’s culture attributed what we now call Hadrian’s Wall to the emperor Severus, and what they associated with Hadrian was more likely to have been his love for the beautiful boy Antinous. One wonders if it can really have been a coincidence that of all the build-

 Eriksen, “Marlowe’s Tour of Rome,” pp. 83 and 98 – 99.  Eriksen, “Marlowe’s Tour of Rome,” pp. 89 – 90.  Eriksen, “Marlowe’s Tour of Rome,” p. 81, n. 3.  Clifford Davidson, “Doctor Faustus at Rome,” Studies in English Literature 1500 – 1900 9, no. 2 (Spring 1969), pp. 231– 39, p. 236.  Laurie Maguire, “The Girls from Ephesus,” in The Comedy of Errors: Critical Essays, edited by Robert S. Miola (London: Routledge, 2001), pp. 355 – 91, p. 365.

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ings Marlowe could have chosen he should have lighted on a tomb, and one moreover which commemorated a man who loved a boy. Once again, we are reminded of a possible way to dispose of bodies, in this case that of a man who was declared a god after his death even though he troubled conventional pieties (and who also had Antinous deified). It is hard to imagine how questions of eschatology could have been more thoroughly riddled than by the tomb of a god and a building designed to house a mummy. Moreover, the name Sant’Angelo implies a tension between the concepts of saint and angel, two groups apparently similar but one (saints) corporeal and the other (angels) non-corporeal, a distinction which will mean much to Faustus during his final moments. In both name and purpose, Castel Sant’Angelo thus encourages contemplation of the question which for early moderns was the most urgent and important of all, which was what happens after death and whether anything done on earth improves the prospects for a palatable form of posthumous survival. Hoffman and Hamlet had also considered these questions, and had decoupled them from the Church of Rome. Doctor Faustus takes them up in Rome, but connects them to a pyramid and to the tomb of a pagan emperor with a reputation for atheism who was declared a god; here Rome itself negates the Roman church. I want now to move on to my second group of plays, this time not a trio but a pair: Antony and Cleopatra and Macbeth, which I shall suggest comment both on each other and on Rome in something of the same way as Hoffman, Hamlet, and Doctor Faustus do. In The Unfortunate Traveller, when the real Earl of Surrey hears that Jack Wilton is impersonating him, he catches up with him in Florence and finds him “sitting in my pontificalibus with my courtesan at supper, like Antony and Cleopatra when they quaffed standing bowls of wine spiced with pearl together”;³⁶ here Jack uncannily collapses the ostensibly very different personae of the Catholic pontiff and of the pagan Antony. If Nashe, like Marlowe, figures Rome here as chronologically on the edge between its Christian present and its pagan past, Shakespeare implicates it in an equally troubling geographical uncertainty, and like Nashe he uses the Roman Antony to interrogate claims to authority and authenticity. Both Macbeth and Antony and Cleopatra show us a world in which Rome is a perpetual peripheral presence but is never brought fully into focus. The two plays’ respective visions of Rome are different, but they mutually inform each other, and between them Macbeth and Antony and Cleopatra thus position Rome as a strange and dangerous edge. Shakespeare was probably aware that Scotland itself had never been conquered by the Ro-

 Nashe, The Unfortunate Traveller, p. 312.

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mans.³⁷ The Rome of Antony and Cleopatra is on the cusp of Christianity and is ruled by a figure connected to the Scottish-born King James, an association underlined by Cleopatra’s designation as a “gypsy”³⁸ and by the way that she and Octavia are constructed as analogous to Elizabeth I and Mary, Queen of Scots respectively by Cleopatra’s question “Is she as tall as me?,”³⁹ which, as many critics have noticed, brings to mind Elizabeth’s interrogation of Sir James Melville about Mary’s appearance. The Rome of Macbeth is the distant spiritual centre of a religion whose influence is rather vaguely felt in the play (historically the real Macbeth went on pilgrimage to Rome, but in Shakespeare’s play the Christianity of which we hear is predominantly Celtic in flavour; St. Colm’s Inch, for instance, is named after the Irish Columba). Rome is also the source of stories about people of whom Macbeth has heard but whom he does not particularly propose to emulate (Antony being one of these). Finally Macbeth features a banquet which is disturbed by an unwanted and invisible observer, something which could conceivably evoke the papal banquet in Doctor Faustus and might thus remind us of the Pope’s complete inability to deal with the supernatural forces which disrupt his meal. Few of Shakespeare’s plays are in dialogue with each other to the same extent as Macbeth and Antony and Cleopatra. In both the hero is told that his wife is dead. When Enobarbus says “I will go seek / Some ditch to die” (4.6.38 – 39), he uses a word found also in Macbeth (“ditch-delivered by a drab”), and in the next scene Scarus says, “I have yet / Room for six scotches more” (4.7.9 – 10), a term which might prompt us to think of Macbeth’s Scotland. There is at one point a tantalising possibility of a parallel situation. After his one, unexpected victory over Octavius, Antony announces, We have beat him to his camp. Run one before And let the Queen know of our gests. (4.8.1– 2)

This at least is what Arden 2 prints, but “gests” is Theobald’s emendation of F’s “guests,” and although John Wilders accepts it for his edition he remarks that it  Lisa Hopkins, “The Low Road and the High Road: Macbeth and the Way to Scotland,” in Reading the Road, from Shakespeare’s Crossways to Bunyan’s Highways, edited by Lisa Hopkins and Bill Angus (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2020), pp. 15 – 30.  See Lisa Hopkins, “Scota, Cleopatra, and Roman Law,” in Antony and Cleopatra: New Critical Essays, edited by Sara Deats (London: Routledge, 2004), pp. 231– 42.  William Shakespeare, Antony and Cleopatra, edited by John Wilders [1995] (London: Bloomsbury, 2014), 3.3.11. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.

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would be Shakespeare’s only use of “gests.” However Antony could mean Scarus, whom he specially commends to Cleopatra, and other star performers whom he intends to feast, and if he did he would be directly echoing Macbeth, who sends a messenger ahead to warn Lady Macbeth that there will be unexpected guests arriving. More certainly, Antony hopes at one point that Cleopatra will “most monster-like be shown” (4.12.36), also the fate threatened for Macbeth if he is captured. There is perhaps also a possible parallel when Maecenas says of Caesar that “When such a spacious mirror’s set before him, / He needs must see himself” (5.1.34– 35), for we might well think of Macbeth looking at the spectral king holding a glass which shows him those who will come after him on the throne. Both plays also repeatedly mention snakes,⁴⁰ and the hero of one play actually mentions the hero of the other. In Antony and Cleopatra, the soothsayer warns Antony that Octavius will defeat him: Thy daemon – that thy spirit which keeps thee – is Noble, courageous, high unmatchable, Where Caesar’s is not. But near him, thy angel Becomes afeard, as being o’erpowered; therefore Make space enough between you. (2.3.18 – 22)

 Macbeth says “We have scorched the snake, not killed it’ (William Shakespeare, Macbeth, edited by Nicholas Brooke [Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1990], 3.2.14; all further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text) and declares of Banquo and Fleance, There the grown serpent lies; the worm that’s fled Hath nature that in time will venom breed. (3.4.27– 28) Cleopatra tells the messenger that if he has bad news of Antony “Thou shouldst come like a Fury crowned with snakes” (2.5.40), and curses, “Melt Egypt into Nile, and kindly creatures / Turn all to serpents!” (2.5.78 – 79); when the messenger asks if she would prefer him to lie she replies, “Oh, I would thou didst, / So half my Egypt were submerged and made / A cistern for scaled snakes!” (2.5.93 – 95). She also imagines Antony as “painted one way like a gorgon” (2.5.226), that is a mythical monster whose hair was made of snakes. Snakes are mentioned too when Antony and his fellow triumvirs are feasted on Pompey’s ship: Lepidus. You’ve strange serpents there? Antony. Ay, Lepidus. Lepidus. Your serpent of Egypt is bred, now, of your mud by the operation of your sun; so is your crocodile. (2.7.24– 27) Later Lepidus says of the crocodile “’Tis a strange serpent” (2.7.49).

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It is to this idea that Macbeth refers when he says of Banquo “under him / My genius is rebuked, as it is said / Mark Antony’s was by Caesar” (3.1.54– 56), while the fact that “Macduff was from his mother’s womb / Untimely ripped” (5.8.15 – 16) evokes another Caesar, Julius, after whom Caesarean sections are named. Macbeth also thinks about Rome more generally. Ross tropes Macbeth as “that Bellona’s bridegroom” (1.2.55) and Macbeth himself speaks of “the imperial theme”; the claim to empire would be incongruous in Scotland but wholly appropriate to Rome. He also imagines Murder moving “With Tarquin’s ravishing strides” (2.1.55) and asks himself “Why should I play the Roman fool, and die / On mine own sword?” (5.8.1– 2). Above all, both plays have an interest in Herod. In Antony and Cleopatra, Charmian says “Let me have a child at fifty to whom Herod of Jewry may do homage” (1.2.29 – 30). Later there is an exchange between Alexas and Cleopatra: Alexas. Good majesty, Herod of Jewry dare not look upon you But when you are well pleased. Cleopatra. That Herod’s head I’ll have! (3.3.2– 5)

Finally Enobarbus says, Alexas did revolt, and went to Jewry on Affairs of Antony; there did dissuade Great Herod to incline himself to Caesar And leave his master Antony. (4.6.12– 15)

In Macbeth, R. Chris Hassel, noting that “Shakespeare reveals in other plays his considerable knowledge of the Herod figure from art as well as the mysteries,” argues that the witches’ prophecies and apparitions echo and may even try to outdo the ordo prophetarum or line of prophets and kings which bludgeons Herod into accepting the promised Messiah and his own consequent overthrow … Macbeth’s gestural and verbal struttings and frettings in response to the prophets and messengers of his doom parallel the “grotesque boasting and ranting” of the comic Herod as well as the grandiose greetings and epithets that so often mark, and mock, Macbeth’s counterpart in the mysteries. Even Macbeth’s fran-

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tic commands to Seyton about being prematurely armed for battle may parallel Herod’s own vain and frantic dressing and undressing.⁴¹

In both plays, too, much is made of the hero putting on his armour (Hassel notes of “Herod’s traditional splendor of dress” that “A bright suit of armor was part of this traditional picture”).⁴² Along with this goes an interest in both plays in the story for which Herod is most famous, the biblical account of the birth of Jesus. Antony says, “Three kings I had newly feasted” (2.2.81– 82), evoking the Nativity. In Macbeth the three weird sisters with their interest in unholy births invert the three sisters of the Coventry Carol, of which Alison Weir and Siobhan Clarke observe that “The famous, and desolate, ‘Coventry Carol,’ from The Pageant of the Shearsmen and Tailors in the Coventry cycle of mystery plays … tells the story of the Massacre of the Innocents from the point of view of three mothers of Bethlehem. The words date from 1534, but the music comes from a manuscript of the pageant written in 1591.”⁴³ However there are other elements of the Christmas story which are less specifically Christian in flavour. The greenery of Birnam Wood is not only a sign of Macbeth’s doom but surely acts too as a parody of decking the halls. There is also a doctor, a popular figure in the mummers’ plays traditionally associated with Christmas. Macbeth sets him challenges which no doctor could ever rise to when he asks first “Canst thou not minister to a mind diseased” (5.3.40) and next “If thou couldst, doctor, cast / The water of my land, find her disease” (5.3.50 – 51), but nevertheless he departs on a comic note more suited to a Christmas comedy than to a tragedy: “Were I from Dunsinane away and clear / Profit again should hardly draw me here” (5.3.61– 62). Moreover both plays feature a trio of women who might echo the Scandinavian Norns or the triple goddess of Celtic mythology⁴⁴ (Antony uses a word that Macbeth implies but withholds when he resolves that “The witch shall die” [4.12.47]), and both include a conflict

 R. Chris Hassel, Jr., “‘No Boasting like a Fool?’ Macbeth and Herod,” Studies in Philology 98, no. 2 (Spring 2001), pp. 205 – 24, pp. 205 – 6. On connections between Macbeth and the Herod of the mystery plays see also Alfred Thomas, Shakespeare, Catholicism, and the Middle Ages (Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan, 2018), pp. 208 – 10.  Hassel, “No Boasting like a Fool?,” pp. 213 and 214.  Alison Weir and Siobhan Clarke, A Tudor Christmas (London: Jonathan Cape, 2018), pp. 70 – 71.  On the Celtic flavour of the weird sisters in Macbeth see for instance Céline Savatier-Lahondès, “The Reconstruction of an Ancient Past in Shakespeare’s Drama,” Études écossaises 20 (2018). Online: https://journals.openedition.org/etudesecossaises/1394, 7.

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between an old man and a young man which might have echoes of a winter king narrative. All of these elements hint at older beliefs and festivals onto which Christianity has been belatedly and incompletely grafted. It is perhaps suggestive too that if Macbeth had been captured, his head would have been put on a maypole. As it is, it is displayed by Macduff. This might have been for purely practical reasons; David Grote notes that the play Cromwell required the King’s Men to obtain “a model of Burbage’s head displayed after Cromwell’s execution. It must have been an expensive investment, so it comes as less of a surprise that in a while we will rather gratuitously see Macbeth’s head on a pole as well.”⁴⁵ It could, then, have been a case of have head, will use. But the stage tableau could nevertheless have been evocative. Diodorus Siculus knew that the Celts cut off heads, embalmed some, and carried others at the necks of their horses, and Margaret Owens notes that Strabo “offers a detailed account of the headhunting habits of the Celts.”⁴⁶ Rebecca Yearling suggests that Guiderius in Cymbeline “is, after all, an early Briton, living in a cave, and the sight of him holding Cloten’s head might recall the images of ferocious ancient Picts brandishing the heads of their enemies that were to be found in such works as Thomas Hariot’s Brief and True Account of the New Found Land of Virginia”;⁴⁷ moreover Guiderius throws Cloten’s head into a stream, making him look for all the world as though he is adhering to Celtic custom by putting a severed head in water.⁴⁸ There had been an attempt to Christianise this tradition by making shrines of the wells which commemorated the martyrdoms of early British saints such as St. Alban and St. Winifred, but this did not obscure the connection between heads and water: St. Winifred’s head had been thrown into her well, and the well at St. Albans is fed by a spring said to have first appeared as the saint was on his way to be decapitated.⁴⁹ A text such as Sir Gawain and the Green Knight seems to register an awareness that beheading might have ritual connotations, which might support the suggestion that Macbeth could look

 David Grote, The Best Actors in the World: Shakespeare and His Acting Company (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2002), p. 88.  Margaret Owens, Stages of Dismemberment: The Fragmented Body in Late Medieval and Early Modern Drama (Newark: University of Delaware Press, 2005), p. 149.  Rebecca Yearling, “Cymbeline: Civilisation, barbarity, and the decapitation of Cloten,” paper given at the British Shakespeare Association meeting in Swansea, 2019.  See Anne Ross, Severed Heads in Wells: An Aspect of the Well Cult (Edinburgh: School of Scottish Studies, 1962).  See Alexandra Walsham, The Reformation of the Landscape: Religion, Identity, and Memory in Early Modern Britain and Ireland (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011), pp. 40 and 42.

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like a defeated winter king from a set of rituals and beliefs very different from Catholicism. Antony and Cleopatra also marginalises Rome. I have commented elsewhere on the extent to which the play offers a syncretic view of different religions,⁵⁰ and Lisa S. Starks notes that “Shakespeare employs the Isis/Osiris myth as an underlying structure in Antony and Cleopatra.”⁵¹ Early modern England could sometimes feel troubled about the extent to which the practices of one religion might map onto another. John Stow observed quite cheerfully that Westminster Abbey was built on top of a temple of Apollo,⁵² but Starks notes that “The idea that the iconic saint replaced past gods is a heated point for Reformation Protestants, who see hagiography as the site where Catholicism and paganism meet.”⁵³ Religion does seem to be an uneasy topic in Antony and Cleopatra, and as well as its intersections with Macbeth it can also be seen as in dialogue with another play which is interested in Rome. There seems no obvious reason for Antony to refer to Cleopatra as “this great fairy” (4.8.12), but perhaps there is an unobvious one. Thomas Dekker’s play The Whore of Babylon, published in the year that Antony and Cleopatra was probably first performed, has a clear debt to A Midsummer Night’s Dream: there is a character called Titania and the Empress says “Fiue Summers haue scarce drawn their glimmering / Through the Moons siluer bowe,”⁵⁴ and we also hear of Oberon, though here he was Titania’s father. It is less often noticed that The Whore of Babylon also chimes with Antony and Cleopatra. It talks about “the Pyramides vpon whose top the glorious Raigne of our deceased Soueraigne was mounted” (sig. A2r). There are two references to the idea of a square: the Prologue begins “The Charmes of silence through this Square be throwne” (sig. A3r) and First Cardinal says “alls out of square” (sig. B3r). Fideli speaks of “Dolphins backes that pittie men distrest” (sig. D3v) and the Empress mentions Caesar and entertains three kings (sig. A4v), then shortly after mentions soothsayers (sig. B1r). She also complains that Titania and the other fairies defame her. All of this finds echoes in  Lisa Hopkins, Greeks and Trojans on the Early Modern English Stage (Berlin: De Gruyter, 2020).  Lisa S. Starks, “‘Immortal Longings’: The Erotics of Death in Antony and Cleopatra,” in Antony and Cleopatra: New Critical Essays, edited by Sara Munson Deats (New York: Routledge, 2005), pp. 243 – 58, p. 246.  John Stow, A Survey of London Written in the Year 1598, introduced by Antonia Fraser (London: The History Press, 2009), p. 380.  Lisa S. Starks-Estes, “Julius Caesar, Ovidian Transformation and the Martyred Body on the Early Modern Stage,” in Julius Caesar, edited by Andrew James Hartley (London: Bloomsbury, 2016), pp. 103 – 24, p. 116.  Thomas Dekker, The Whore of Babylon (London: Nathaniel Butter, 1607), sig. A4v.

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Antony and Cleopatra. Antony exhorts a messenger to “Name Cleopatra as she is called in Rome” (1.2.112) and, as we have seen, says “Three kings I had newly feasted” (2.2.81). He also says “I have not kept my square” (2.3.6). When Lepidus declares “I have heard the Ptolemies’ pyramises are very goodly things” (2.7.34– 35) and Cleopatra says of Antony “His delights / Were dolphin-like: they showed his back above / The element they lived in” (5.2.87– 89), it begins to look like a pattern, and this would have been enhanced by the fact that as David Grote notes, Barnabe Barnes’s The Divil’s Charter, which shows “Hell itself opening up to swallow the Pope,” was playing at the Globe at the same time as Antony and Cleopatra. ⁵⁵ For The Whore of Babylon and The Divil’s Charter, Rome means Catholicism. To map that idea onto Antony and Cleopatra might help explain why what both Macbeth and Antony and Cleopatra show is a world in which Rome does not matter. Cleopatra dresses as Isis and Antony predicts that when he and Cleopatra arrive in the afterlife they will relegate Aeneas, the great founding hero of Rome, to obscurity (4.14.51– 55), while Macbeth’s Scotland is a country which the Romans never conquered and where ritual practices seem to hold echoes of a past which feels more Celtic than Catholic. Collectively Macbeth and Antony and Cleopatra conspire to relegate Rome to the edge of Christendom just as Hamlet, Hoffman and Doctor Faustus do.

 Grote, The Best Actors in the World, p. 153.

Chapter 2 Beautiful Polecats: The Living and the Dead in Julius Caesar Dr. Johnson said that a pun was Shakespeare’s fatal Cleopatra. I want to argue that puns are, appropriately enough, at work with particular vigour in a play about one of Cleopatra’s lovers. Julius Caesar features a series of puns very early on, starting with the Cobbler’s “A trade, sir, that I hope I may use with a safe conscience, which is indeed, sir, a mender of bad soles”¹ and followed by his retort to Flavius “Nay I beseech you, sir, be not out with me: yet if you be out, sir, I can mend you” (1.1.16 – 17) and finally by “Truly, sir, all that I live by, is with the awl” (1.1.22). Julius Caesar himself is also the subject of a pun in Hamlet, when Polonius says, “I did enact Julius Caesar. I was killed i’th’Capitol. Brutus killed me” and Hamlet replies, “It was a brute part of him to kill so capital a calf there.”² The prince’s joke is an opportunist one, but Lisa S. StarksEstes implies that in fact it homes in on an important concern in Julius Caesar when she refers to “Caesar, the sacrificial ‘calf’ that Hamlet jokingly calls him in his exchange with Polonius.”³ Moreover, the epigraph page of Linda Woodbridge and Edward Berry’s True Rites and Maimed Rites: Ritual and Anti-Ritual in Shakespeare and His Age shows that “true rites” comes from Julius Caesar and “maimed rites” from Hamlet,⁴ further suggesting a more than merely chronological connection between the two plays. In this chapter, I shall argue that puns in Julius Caesar are not just wordplay, but can help us understand the central mystery of the play, which is why it kills off its main character halfway through. I shall also suggest that the play pits Rome’s classical past against its  William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar, edited by David Daniell [1998] (London: Bloomsbury, 2017), 1.1.13 – 14. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text. For exploration of the religious resonances of this, see for instance Maurice Hunt, “Cobbling Souls in Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar,” in Shakespeare’s Christianity: The Protestant and Catholic Poetics of “Julius Caesar,” “Macbeth,” and “Hamlet,” edited by Beatrice Batson (Waco, TX: Baylor University Press, 2006), pp. 111– 29, pp. 112– 13.  William Shakespeare, Hamlet, edited by Harold Jenkins (London: Methuen, 1982), 3.2.102– 5. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.  Lisa S. Starks-Estes, “Julius Caesar, Ovidian Transformation and the Martyred Body on the Early Modern Stage,” in Julius Caesar: A Critical Reader, edited by Andrew James Hartley (London: Bloomsbury, 2016), pp. 103 – 24, p. 112.  Linda Woodbridge and Edward Berry, eds., True Rites and Maimed Rites: Ritual and AntiRitual in Shakespeare and His Age (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1992). https://doi.org/10.1515/9781501514159-004

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Catholic present and thus helps us see another way in which Rome is an edge rather than a centre. In making my case, I shall hope to show that Julius Caesar does indeed have something strongly in common with Hamlet, in that both are centrally concerned with the relationship between the living and the dead. Horst Zander notes that “It has become a convention in scholarship to discuss the two Caesars in the play, the private man and the political, public institution of ‘Caesar.’”⁵ There are different ways of understanding the doubleness of Caesar: David Kaula says that Julius Caesar is “much concerned with contrasting images of Caesar, the would-be monarch of Roman and founder of the universal empire that later evolved into the universal church,”⁶ and John E. Curran notes that “As a political phenomenon, Caesar was most often placed in one of two overly simplistic categories: tradition had labelled him either a Worthy or a Tyrant.”⁷ However I shall suggest that the play breaks into two because there really are two Caesars, a living and a dead. Julius Caesar is in one sense a study of the effects of being killed on a character, for in being assassinated Caesar becomes a god: Mark Rose argues that “the assassination was not the end of Caesarism but effectively the beginning.”⁸ The way that Shakespeare links the living and the dead in Julius Caesar is, I shall argue, the same way that he does in Hamlet, which is through playing on the word “like,” and in so doing he shows that not only Julius Caesar but Rome is both like and unlike itself. For anyone in the UK who received a classical education, Caesar himself is likely to be remembered in connection with a species of wordplay, a quatrain of dog Latin: Caesar Brutus Caesar Brutus

adsum iam forte aderat sic in omnibus sic inat.

 Horst Zander, “Julius Caesar and the Critical Legacy,” in Julius Caesar: New Critical Essays, edited by Horst Zander (London: Routledge, 2005), pp. 3 – 55, p. 7.  David Kaula, “‘Let Us Be Sacrificers’: Religious Motifs in Julius Caesar,” Shakespeare Studies 14 (1981), pp. 197– 214, p. 198.  John E. Curran, Jr., “What Should Be in That Caesar: The Question of Julius Caesar’s Greatness,” in Julius Caesar: A Critical Reader, edited by Andrew James Hartley (London: Bloomsbury, 2016), pp. 153 – 74, p. 155.  Mark Rose, “Conjuring Caesar: Ceremony, History, and Authority in 1599,” in True Rites and Maimed Rites: Ritual and Anti-Ritual in Shakespeare and His Age, edited by Linda Woodbridge and Edward Berry (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1992), pp. 256 – 69, p. 263.

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The eager young student of the classics may be puzzled to discover that this yields no sense, but as soon as she or he thinks of it not as a separate language but as mispronounced and misspelt English, a meaning of sorts appears: Caesar Brutus Caesar Brutus

had some jam for tea had a rat sick in omnibus sick in ’at.

This feeble jest (remembered by me from the 1970s and by my mother from the 1950s) is clearly twentieth-century, since the omnibus joke would have been impossible earlier, but Shakespeare shows us something not dissimilar in The Merry Wives of Windsor: Evans. William. Mistress Quickly.

Peace your tattlings. What is “fair,” William? Pulcher. Polecats! There are fairer things than polecats, sure.⁹

Mistress Quickly simply does not understand Latin; the author of “Caesar adsum iam forte” did, but they both achieve the same effect. The processes of Latin learning are directly glanced at in Julius Caesar when Cicero says, “men may construe things after their fashion / Clean from the purpose of the things themselves” (1.3.34– 35). The Arden 2’s note says of “construe,” “Appropriate to this Roman story, the word had associations for Elizabethans of Latin lessons,” and a cognate form of the same verb is used again when Titinius apostrophising the dead Cassius says “Alas, thou hast misconstrued everything” (5.3.84). There may also be a glance at the teaching of classical languages when Caska says “but for mine own part, it was Greek to me” (1.2.282– 83). The primary meaning of Caska’s remark clearly pertains to the difference between those ancient Romans who could speak Greek and those who could not, but there is also a secondary layer of applicability centring on the existence of such a divide in Shakespeare’s time too, with Shakespeare himself dismissed by his fellow playwright Ben Jonson as having small Latin and less Greek while others of his contemporaries, most notably George Chapman, published translations of long Greek texts. Caska is an ancient Roman, but for this one moment he could be speaking as an Elizabethan, and articulating the probable situation of many members of the audience, not to mention that of the playwright:

 William Shakespeare, The Merry Wives of Windsor, edited by G. R. Hibbard (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 1973), 4.1.24– 27.

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they know a bit of Latin, certainly enough to identify it as such if not always to construe it, but Greek is Greek to them. For schoolchildren both in Shakespeare’s day and more recently, the process of learning the Latin language was inseparable from learning about Roman history and its principal personalities: Latin was about Caesar, Brutus, Cassius, and Cicero, especially since Miranda Fay Thomas notes “T. N. Baldwin’s weight of evidence that Cicero’s De Officiis was a set text in Elizabethan grammar schools,”¹⁰ and when Cicero pops up briefly in Julius Caesar many of those in Shakespeare’s original audience would have remembered their schooldays. When Henry V promises his men that their names will become familiar in men’s mouths as household words, he is describing what was, in educated households, already the case for the characters of Julius Caesar. It would not therefore be particularly surprising if those names were played with in Shakespeare’s day in something of the same way as they are in “Caesar adsum iam forte.” In this chapter, I shall explore some of what happens to Julius Caesar as a play if we, like Mistress Quickly, start hearing words and names as connoting things other than what they denote in Latin, because this is one of the ways in which early modern Rome is never quite itself. Julius Caesar offers abundant evidence of wordplay and quips, and although there is nothing in the play quite as silly as that schoolboy doggerel, there are things which are not far off it. David Daniell in his Arden edition of the play notes: Ben Jonson’s remark in his Timber … has set off much discussion …: Many times hee fell into those things, could not escape laughter: As when hee said in the person of Caesar, one speaking to him; Caesar thou dost me wrong. Hee replyed: Caesar did never wrong, but with just cause: and such like, which were ridiculous.¹¹

The text of Julius Caesar as we have it has “Know, Caesar doth not wrong, nor without cause / Will he be satisfied” (3.1.47– 48), but this may of course represent a later revision. If it does, and if Shakespeare did indeed originally write “Caesar did never wrong, but with just cause,” was it through inattention, as Jonson seems to imply, or could it have been a deliberate paradox, perhaps designed

 Miranda Fay Thomas, “Political Acts and Political Acting: Roman Gesture and Julius Caesar,” Early Modern Literary Studies, special issue, 25 (2016). Online: https://extra.shu.ac.uk/emls/ journal/index.php/emls/article/view/223.  Julius Caesar, ed. Daniell, p. 136.

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to reveal something about Caesar’s vision of himself?¹² Perhaps, though, the line simply showcases the slipperiness of rhetoric per se, and perhaps it does so because rhetoric lies at the heart of Julius Caesar. The play stages two battles, one of words between Mark Antony and Brutus and one of swords between the armies of Antony and Octavius and those of Brutus and Cassius, but actually the second one merely confirms the winner of the first in his victory. Even if the fortunes of war had turned out differently, nothing that happened at Philippi could have undone what had already happened in the pulpit in Rome. This is a play about the power of words, but it is also one which shows us that words may be only loosely connected to actions and things, and if it did originally contain the line “Caesar did never wrong but with just cause” then it would have been no bad expression of that dangerous disconnect between words and facts. In his Arden edition of the play, David Daniell notes that “Early studies of imagery in Shakespeare usually expressed puzzlement that there was so little in Julius Caesar” (p. 44), but there are several plays on names and words, starting with the cobbler’s jokes and moving on to Cassius’s bitter Now is it Rome indeed, and room enough, When there is in it but one only man. (1.2.155 – 56)

This couplet depends on the standard early modern pronunciation of “Rome” as “room,” but it also testifies to a willingness to take the iconic name of Rome and play with it. Daniell remarks on the importance in Julius Caesar of an “emphasis on the efficacy of names” (p. 45), and Zander, noting that “the titular character appears in only three scenes out of a total of eighteen” but that “Caesar’s name occurs 219 times in the play, whereas Brutus’s is mentioned only 134,” observes that this is part of a wider pattern, for “Shakespeare made more allusions to Caesar in his works than to any other historical man.”¹³ In Julius Caesar itself the most obvious example of this interest in names is the case of Cinna the poet, who dies because of his name. When he is first introduced, he is detached from the action in terms of plot, but connected to it through atmosphere and imagery:

 Perhaps I feel differently from Jonson as I write this in 2017 because I have just seen two productions of Julius Caesar which both had photographs of Donald Trump in their programmes, for Trump is surely capable of saying (or more probably tweeting) that he never does wrong but with just cause.  Zander, “Julius Caesar and the Critical Legacy,” pp. 6 and 4.

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I dreamt tonight that I did feast with Caesar, And things unluckily charge my fantasy. I have no will to wander forth of doors, Yet something leads me forth. (3.3.1– 4)

When he tells the crowd that “Truly, my name is Cinna” (3.3.27) he apparently has no idea of the probable result, but the audience surely does. His frenzied defence that “I am Cinna the poet, I am Cinna the poet” (3.3.29) does nothing to help matters, because the play does not take much stock in poets: Poet.

For shame, you generals, what do you mean? Love and be friends, as two such men should be, For I have seen more years, I’m sure, than ye. Cassius. Ha, ha, how vildly doth this cynic rhyme. (4.3.128 – 31)

Cinna the poet dies because his name is Cinna. But could it be that the play is indulging in a spot of vild rhyming on its own account, and might he also die because his name is Sinner? And if so, might we perhaps notice that Brutus’s name, as was often noted in Renaissance writings, contains a latent pun on Brute, and could Caesar even be Seizer? It has, after all, been suggested that both Marlowe and Shakespeare reduce the hero Aeneas to plain old Any-ass, a pun made explicit by Middleton in The Roaring Girl, and the idea of a Caesar/ Seizer pun seems to be implicit in Jonson’s Sejanus when Sejanus says “Sleep, / Voluptuous Caesar, and security / Seize on thy stupid powers.”¹⁴ We know from the list of players that Shakespeare acted in Sejanus, and there might even be a sly glance at him when one of the charges made against Cremutius Cordus is “thou praisest Brutus, and affirms / That ‘Cassius was the last of all the Romans’” (3.390 – 92), though as Cremutius himself points out, lots of people wrote about Brutus and Cassius (3.411– 13) and literary allusions are slippery things. At first sight, Julius Caesar does not have much in common with the kind of mediaeval drama in which one might expect to find a character named Sinner. However Simon Barker speaks of “a medieval Christian sense of the return of

 Ben Jonson, Sejanus, edited by Philip J. Ayres (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1990), 3.598 – 600. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.

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Caesar as a restless ghost,”¹⁵ suggesting that there is something potentially mediaeval inscribed within the very plot of the play, and more specifically Patrick Gray, noting that “Shakespeare … seems to draw inspiration for his departure from Plutarch from the conventional depiction of Julius Caesar’s successor Augustus, as well as other tyrants such as Herod the Great, in medieval English mystery plays,” observes that “Caesar” in the mystery plays is typecast as a blustering, comically inadequate parody of Godhead and says of Calpurnia’s dream “As part of the plot, a neglected warning, it resembles the dream of Pilate’s wife,”¹⁶ a subject found in one surviving mystery play and possibly originally present in more, while Lisa Starks-Estes argues that “The blazon of Christ’s wounds is staged in the Towneley Cycle’s Last Judgement … Shakespeare draws from this tradition in Julius Caesar by staging Antony’s blazon of Caesar’s wounds.”¹⁷ Steve Sohmer argues that “When Shakespeare infused the text of Julius Caesar with markers to the liturgical calendar he was employing (or rediscovering) the established technique of the anonymous dramatist of the York Cycle”¹⁸ and Hannibal Hamlin traces Decius’s greeting “Caesar, all hail” to Judas’s words in the York cycle, compares Brutus staying awake and seeing the ghost to Jesus asking the disciples to watch in Gethsemane, and points out that it was “a scene dramatized in the medieval cycle plays.”¹⁹ Moreover, Julius Caesar is a play in which there are persistent glances at Christianity. Zander notes that “Scholars have … quite frequently outlined the parallels between J. C. and J. C.—Julius Caesar and Jesus Christ—and have demonstrated that Shakespeare, too, seems to have had those parallels in mind.”²⁰ Antony says of the dead Caesar “Here is himself,” with an obvious echo of “Ecce homo,”²¹ and also refers to “Caesar’s three and thirty wounds” (5.1.52).

 Simon Barker, “‘It’s an Actor, Boss. Unarmed’: The Rhetoric of Julius Caesar,” in Julius Caesar: New Critical Essays, edited by Horst Zander (London: Routledge, 2005), pp. 227– 39, p. 234.  Patrick Gray, “Caesar as Comic Antichrist: Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar and the Medieval English Stage Tyrant,” Comparative Drama 50, no. 1 (Spring 2016), pp. 1– 31, pp. 1, 2, and 13.  Starks-Estes, “Julius Caesar, Ovidian Transformation and the Martyred Body on the Early Modern Stage,” p. 114.  Steve Sohmer, Shakespeare’s Mystery Play (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1999), p. 71.  Hannibal Hamlin, The Bible in Shakespeare (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), pp. 187 and 196.  Zander, “Julius Caesar and the Critical Legacy,” p. 4.  At the production at the Crucible Theatre, Sheffield in 2017 Eliot Cowan’s Antony flung open the coffin and propped up the “corpse” (Jonathan Hyde’s Caesar, breathing through holes specially cut into the coffin), though down the road in Stratford-upon-Avon Andrew Woodall’s Cae-

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As many critics have noted, thirty-three was said to be Christ’s age at the time of his death (and a change from the figure of twenty-three found in Appian), and the conspirators’ sharing of wine at Philippi has something of the sense of a last supper; Hamlin notes too that Caesar’s invitation to the conspirators to “taste some wine” (2.2.126) is Shakespeare’s invention and draws on the importance of wine as a symbol of betrayal.²² Along similar lines, David Kaula notes that “the dream of the statue is … Shakespeare’s invention. He may have found the idea for it in the medieval cult of the Holy Blood, which featured not only the proliferation of phials of Christ’s blood but also stories about bleeding statues and paintings of Christ”; Kaula also suggests that “Caesar becomes like the ‘banquet of most heavenly food,’ the ‘most godly and heavenly feast’ described in the Anglican Communion Service” and says of the conspirators that “Outwardly they behave as Caesar’s disciples; actually they are his mockers and betrayers.”²³ There is also a suggestion of the numinous when Brutus orders of the dead Cassius “Come therefore, and to Thasus send his body” (5.3.104). Arden 2’s note on this line observes that “F has ‘Tharsus,’ assimilating to Tarsus in Asia Minor, the birthplace of St. Paul,” and Cassius, whose sight was ever thick, is not an impossible analogue for the apostle. Brutus calling his companions to a renewal of the battle says “’Tis three o’clock” (5.3.109), the hour at which Christ supposedly died. Finally, Domenico Lovascio notes the insistent accruing of herpetological imagery to early modern figurings of Caesar,²⁴ and the idea of the snake had obvious resonance in the context of biblical narrative and drama. Both the echoes of mediaeval drama and the allusions to Christianity are, however, obviously anachronistic, albeit in different ways. Firstly, although Dante put Brutus, Cassius, and Judas in the same circle of hell, Caesar lived before Christ. Secondly and more importantly, Shakespeare’s own world was very different from that represented in mediaeval drama, which predated the fissuring of Western Christianity into two competing confessions. Kaula notes that “now and then [the] characters forget they are ancient Romans rather than Elizabethans and speak of angels, devils, hell, doomsday, and other ingredients of the Christian cosmos,” as when Trebonius says “Men, wives and children stare, cry out and run, / As it were doomsday” (3.1.97– 98), but in doing so

sar, already too heavy for his fellow actors to carry off stage and having to be taken down through the trap, was not brought back on for this moment.  Hamlin, The Bible in Shakespeare, p. 188.  Kaula, “‘Let Us Be Sacrificers,’” pp. 204, 207, and 209.  Domenico Lovascio, “Re-Writing Julius Caesar as a National Villain in Early Modern English Drama,” English Literary Renaissance 47, no. 2 (2017), pp. 1– 33, pp. 6 – 10 and 28 – 29.

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they also inevitably speak of how the Christian world has become divided against itself, and in foreshadowing the end of the world they also foreshadow the end of Christendom and what it stood for. Kaula also observes of the decorating of Caesar’s images that “What these details imply is a practice like the one condemned in the official Elizabethan homily Against perill of idolatrie, and superfluous decking of churches, the ‘popish’ practice of venerating images of Christ and the saints and embellishing them with paint, jewels, and clothing” and he notes of Cassius’s anti-Caesar remarks that “another place in sixteenth-century literature where such comments and images appear, and appear quite extensively, is in the Protestant attacks on the Pope”; indeed he argues that “in his claim to supreme spiritual authority as pontifex maximus (a title North translates as ‘chief Bishop of Rome’), Caesar and not St. Peter was actually the first pope and provided the model for his ecclesiastical successors.”²⁵ The play opens with the question “Is this a holiday?,” and in so doing touches on two questions of overwhelming importance for Shakespeare’s original audience, which was what was holy and what did deserve a “holiday.” Mark Rose notes that “the tribune Marullus sounds strikingly like an indignant Puritan calling sinners to repent,”²⁶ and Kaula suggests that the behaviour of the crowd around Caesar’s body would also have reminded the audience of their own society: “Antony is describing something the members of Shakespeare’s audience could have witnessed in their own city: the avid quest for relics by the followers of Catholic missionary priests executed at Tyburn.”²⁷ Patrick Gray, noting that “By the twentieth century, the problem of the ‘two Caesars’ was well-established,” suggests that “the story of Caesar’s rise and fall lends itself by nature to an intertextual typology of Christ and Antichrist,”²⁸ though there are other ways of understanding the duality. As Gray himself also notes, “Antony’s presentation of Caesar’s wounds closely resembles … the story of Christ’s Resurrection, but undermined and ironized,”²⁹ while Hamlin compares Caesar’s failure to swim (again Shakespeare’s invention) to Jesus walking on the water³⁰ and Lisa Starks-Estes suggests that “Shakespeare exposes the pagan roots of Christianity by conflating mythology with the sacred”: for her, “By staging the creation of Julius Caesar as a martyr within a play highly inflected with Ovidian intertexts … Shakespeare not only discloses the process by which bodies are made sacred, but also he underscores

     

Kaula, “‘Let Us Be Sacrificers,’” pp. 197, 198, 200, and 202. Rose, “Conjuring Caesar,” p. 256. Kaula, “‘Let Us Be Sacrificers,’” p. 205. Gray, “Caesar as Comic Antichrist,” pp. 2 and 11. Gray, “Caesar as Comic Antichrist,” p. 17. Hamlin, The Bible in Shakespeare, p. 195.

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the connection between Christianity and its pagan past.”³¹ If Caesar were Christ sinners would be saved, but he is not so they are not, and Cinna dies. In staging what amounts to an alternative life of Christ, Shakespeare builds on the example set by Marlowe in The Jew of Malta. Paulina Kewes notes that “In Julius Caesar Shakespeare drew on Marlowe’s translation of Lucan’s Book I,”³² and Lisa Starks-Estes observes that “Following Marlowe’s lead, Shakespeare exploits the potential of Ovid on the stage in various ways,” particularly when “In Julius Caesar, Shakespeare grafts Ovidian myths of Actaeon, Orpheus and Julius Caesar himself onto his source material from Plutarch, thereby exploring connections between theatre, myth and religious rites”: for Starks-Estes, Antony’s description of Caesar’s corpse “is inflected with the myth of Actaeon … Shakespeare changes the number of Caesar’s wounds from twenty-three in Plutarch to thirty-three in Julius Caesar, which may suggest another connection to Ovid’s myth, as Actaeon famously has thirty-three hounds”;³³ Actaeon, as I have explored elsewhere, was an important figure for Marlowe.³⁴ Marlowe, an alumnus of Corpus Christi College, shows a clear interest in both Caesar and the body of the Christ in his work, repeatedly evoking Caesar and Caesarism as well as translating Lucan, and offering in Barabas an inverted shadow of Christ in ways which, as I have again shown elsewhere, also drew on the mystery plays.³⁵ Shakespeare, as so often, is less confrontational and less provocative than Marlowe, but in Julius Caesar he is, I suggest, drawing on the model provided by Barabas, down to the death-and-apparent-resurrection motif. Julius Caesar also has a dimension absent from The Jew of Malta, though, for although Caesar is not Christ, he is himself, and to be Caesar is something in its own right; indeed in Shakespeare’s hands it is two things. Caesar’s similarities to dissimilarities to both Christ and himself are negotiated in part by the play’s obsession with the word “like.” Barbara J. Baines remarks “often the action turns on a single word—‘nothing’ in King Lear, ‘indeed’ in Othello, ‘done’ in Macbeth, ‘boy’ in Coriolanus, and ‘if’ in As You Like It”; in

 Starks-Estes, “Julius Caesar, Ovidian Transformation and the Martyred Body on the Early Modern Stage,” pp. 110 and 116.  Paulina Kewes, “Julius Caesar in Jacobean England,” The Seventeenth Century 17 (2002), pp. 155 – 86, p. 174.  Starks-Estes, “Julius Caesar, Ovidian Transformation and the Martyred Body on the Early Modern Stage,” pp. 107 and 111.  Lisa Hopkins, “What’s Actaeon to Aeneas?,” chapter 1 of Greeks and Trojans on the Early Modern English Stage (Berlin: De Gruyter, 2020).  See Lisa Hopkins, “Moving Marlowe: The Jew of Malta on the Caroline Stage,” Marlowe Studies 6 (2016), pp. 1– 16.

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Julius Caesar I suggest that word is “like,”³⁶ which also figured in the title of another play of the same year, As You Like It. We hear “like” first when Cassius says that Caesar “doth bestride the narrow world / Like a Colossus” (1.2.134– 35). In a play which places so much emphasis on the fragility and indeed potential disablement of human bodies, including Caesar’s, this strikes a rare note of aggrandisement, but in so doing it also draws attention to the fact that the two things are not very like: Caesar may make the psychological impact of a Colossus, but his own ageing body, deaf in one ear and subject to epilepsy, does not in the least resemble the scale or substance of the Colossus, and Shakespeare has been at some pains to stress this. Though Miranda Fay Thomas notes that “The Book of the Courtier makes reference to Caesar ‘wearing a laurel wreath, in order to hide his baldness,’” Shakespeare considerably develops the idea of Caesar’s debility:³⁷ Patrick Gray notes that “Shakespeare is more disparaging about Caesar’s epilepsy than Plutarch is” and also observes “That Caesar is partially deaf is Shakespeare’s own invention.”³⁸ The idea of deafness has obvious metaphorical force, but together with the stress on Caesar’s epilepsy and poor swimming skills (another Shakespeare invention) it also seems designed to point up the ways in which this vulnerable man is not like a Colossus. The word “like” recurs when Cassius says, “it is meet / That noble minds keep ever with their likes” (1.2.309 – 10). Here “likes” means people who are like the speaker—equals, peers, or confrères. The idea of a mutual liking between such people might possibly be implicit, but it does not have to be there, and the passage also reminds us that “like” does not have to be a simple adjective but can also function as a noun.³⁹ Later Brutus muses: Between the acting of a dreadful thing And the first motion, all the interim is Like a phantasma or a hideous dream: The genius and the mortal instruments Are then in council, and the state of man, Like to a little kingdom, suffers then The nature of an insurrection. (2.1.63 – 69)

 Barbara J. Baines, “‘That Every Like Is Not the Same’: The Vicissitudes of Language in Julius Caesar,” in Julius Caesar: New Critical Essays, edited by Horst Zander (London: Routledge, 2005), pp. 139 – 53, p. 139.  Thomas, “Political Acts and Political Acting.”  Gray, “Caesar as Comic Antichrist,” pp. 3 and 5.  I follow OED (1) in terming it an adjective in most of the contexts in which it appears in this play, though it can also be an adverb, a preposition, and a conjunction, and on rare occasions even a noun.

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In this passage “like” is used (twice) more conventionally than in Cassius’s words: the interim between thinking of something momentous and actually doing it is “like a phantasma or a hideous dream,” and the state of man is “like to a little kingdom.” The repetition of the “like” construction both connects these two ideas and exposes the difference between them, revealing that though individually both phrases are grammatically meek, the conjunction of the two is provocative. The second, the comparison between “the state of man” and “a little kingdom,” is conventional and ostensibly conservative: it is, for example, the idea that underpins much domestic tragedy of the period, as when Alice Arden’s murder of her husband is classed as “petty treason,” and is also to be found in much homiletic literature. But for readers and audiences of Julius Caesar the moralising force of the comparison is diluted by the fact that it has been both introduced by and compared with the idea of a dream, an idea whose importance is bolstered by the cumulative effect of Calpurnia’s dream, Cinna the poet’s dream, and Brutus’s dream (unless of course it is real) of Caesar’s ghost before Philippi. The fact that we are at this very moment poised between the conception of a major enterprise and its fulfilment invites us to regard the present as the dream or phantasma as Brutus labels it, and potentially to connect that atmosphere of unreality to the supposed political truth of the second “like” construction, in ways which might perhaps destabilise its aura of naturalness and certainty. That “like” might unsettle apparent certainties rather than reinforce them is further suggested by the fact that the next use of the word also concerns a dream, when we hear how Calpurnia dreamed she saw Caesar’s statue, “Which, like a fountain with an hundred spouts, / Did run pure blood” (2.2.77– 78). Again the construction is conventional, but Calpurnia’s use of it, like Brutus’s, is tainted by at least a touch of the phantasmagoric as water turns into blood—perhaps with a potential rewriting of the idea of water turning into wine, but perhaps merely as a signifier of the unnatural and counter-intuitive. Two further uses of the word “like” associate it not with dreams but with animals. As the climax of the play approaches, Antony accuses the conspirators, You showed your teeth like apes, and fawned like hounds, And bowed like bondsmen, kissing Caesar’s feet; Whilst damned Caska, like a cur, behind Struck Caesar in the neck. O you flatterers! (5.1.41– 44)

There are four “likes” here, and each works to diminish and in most cases to dehumanise the conspirators: they are “like apes,” “like hounds,” and “like bondsmen,” while Caska is singled out as “like a cur.” The passage as a whole is further testimony (if we needed it) to Antony’s facility with rhetoric, but it also

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reveals the power of “like” to allow one character to shape how we perceive another, further underlining the ways in which “like” may serve as an ideologically driven tool for representing people and things rather than a simple, neutral way of telling truths about them. Brutus too employs animal similes when he declares, But hollow men, like horses hot at hand, Make gallant show and promise of their mettle: But when they should endure the bloody spur, They fall their crests, and like deceitful jades Sink in the trial. (4.2.23 – 27)

For Brutus as well as for Antony, comparing an enemy to an animal proves a satisfying rhetorical move as he uses “like” to build two similes comparing men to horses. However, not only is it too little, too late, but his ability to deploy language again lags behind Antony’s: there is no inherent shame in being a horse, which is how he designates Antony and Octavius, whereas a dog in Shakespeare is always a problem animal. “Like” may be a word of power, but it needs to be carefully and appropriately deployed. Some uses of “like” in the play are distinguished by the fact that a particular and ominous tonality accrues to them. Etymologically, “like” derives from the Anglo-Saxon “lych,” a corpse, a meaning preserved in modern English in the phrase “lych-gate,” meaning the gate through which a corpse is carried into the churchyard: to be like something is to share a body with it. In The Breviary of Britain, Humphrey Llwyd shows awareness of this etymology when he speaks of “Lichfield, a bishop’s see, that is to say, the Field of Dead Folk. For the northern Englishmen call death ‘lich,’ and the unlucky night ravens, ‘lich-owls.’”⁴⁰ Shakespeare also seems to remember the word’s derivation in Hamlet, where Horatio tells the hero, “I knew your father; / These hands are not more like” (1.1.211– 12), making a mockery of Hamlet’s own prophecy that his father was so special that “I shall not look upon his like again” (1.2.187), since that is exactly what he is about to do. The idea of hands is doubly significant: not only does the simultaneous likeness and unlikeness between one’s left hand and one’s right lay bare the ways in which the lych is both like and unlike the person, but it also potentially alludes to the common trope of dying as shaking hands, traceable back to Greek funerary statuary, where the dead person is often shown shak-

 Humphrey Llwyd, The Breviary of Britain, edited by Philip Schwyzer (London: Modern Humanities Research Association, 2011), p. 74.

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ing hands with a living friend, and mentioned several times in early modern drama, as for instance when Ferdinand in The Duchess of Malfi tells his sister “You have shook hands with Reputation.”⁴¹ Miranda Fay Thomas notes that “Julius Caesar contains three key scenes that involve a handshake to signify a binding promise,”⁴² but though that may indeed be what they signify, they are also suggestive of the iconography of death. The idea of bodies clings to several of the uses of “like” in Julius Caesar. Titinius says of Cassius “He lies not like the living” (5.3.58) and Lucilius prophesies of Brutus, When you do find him, or alive or dead, He will be found like Brutus, like himself. (5.4.24– 25)

Both Cassius and Brutus are still recognisable as themselves in that both still look like themselves, but neither has life, without which all likeness is reduced to a hollow parody of itself. There is a similar idea of death in play when Antony laments, O world, thou wast the forest to this hart, And this indeed, O world, the heart of thee. How like a deer, stricken by many princes, Dost thou here lie? (3.1.208 – 11)

There is already a pun here on hart/heart, and like (which is emphasised by the half-rhyme with “lie”) also functions in effect as a pun since it is the “lych” of Caesar which lies “like” a deer (with a third potential pun on “dear”). Later, Antony declares, Over thy wounds now do I prophesy (Which like dumb mouths do ope their ruby lips To beg the voice and utterance of my tongue). (3.1.259 – 61)

 John Webster, The Duchess of Malfi, edited by John Russell Brown (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1974), 3.2.134.  Thomas, “Political Acts and Political Acting.”

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Here, once more, death lurks, since the wounds are what made Caesar a “lych.” Most suggestively, the play actually theorises its own use of “like” when Brutus says, “That every like is not the same, O Caesar, / The heart of Brutus earns to think upon” (2.2.128 – 29). Baines suggests that “The ‘like,’ a form of metaphor, is not the same as that which it claims to be,” but I think there is more than that at stake in these lines.⁴³ “That every like is not the same” could conceivably remind us that Brutus’s decision to assassinate Caesar was based not on certainties but on probabilities, that is on what might or was like to happen, and specifically on his fear that Caesar might be a seizer; however, “like” here also seems to have something of the same register as the uses of “like” which accrue to the Ghost in Hamlet, and its basic meaning would therefore seem to be that not all corpses are equal. Caesar’s in particular is special, at least in this play, for Caesar, uniquely in Shakespeare’s Roman plays, comes back as a ghost, which is both like his body and yet not his body. The focus on Caesar’s body also chimes with a very odd detail found in Appian’s account of Caesar’s funeral, which is (in modern translation) that after Antony’s speech had whetted his hearers close to violence, someone raised above the bier a wax effigy of Caesar—the body itself, lying on its back on the bier, not being visible. The effigy was turned in every direction, by a mechanical device, and twenty-three wounds could be seen, savagely inflicted on every part of the body and on the face.⁴⁴

Ernest Schanzer, noting amongst other things that Antony’s word “vesture” is also found in the 1578 translation of Appian by W. B. (possibly William Barker), argues that Shakespeare used this as a source. If this is right, he would have found some suggestive details in it.⁴⁵ Appian declares that “there were some that perswaded Lucius Piso, to whome Caesar had left his Testamente, that it should neyther be brought forthe, nor his body buryed openly, least it mighte breede some newe tumult in the Citie”; however, it was in fact displayed, and used by Antony as a prop to support his oratory: “At euery of these words Antonie directed his countenance and hands to Caesars body, and with vehemencie of words opened the fact.” Antony also swore those who supported him to a rather striking oath: “that all should keepe Caesar and Caesars body.” The curious sug-

 Baines, “‘That Every Like Is Not the Same,’” p. 144.  Appian, “Caesar’s Triumph,” in Caesar and Alexander, translated by John Carter. Online: http://www.livius.org/sources/content/appian/appian-caesars-funeral/.  Ernest Schanzer, ed., Shakespeare’s Appian (Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, 1956), p. xxi.

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gestion of doubleness here, as if Caesar and Caesar’s body were separate entities, is reinforced when one shewed out of the Litter the Image of Caesar, made of waxe, for hys body it selfe lying flat in the Litter, could not be seene. Hys picture was by a deuise turned about, and .xxiij. wounds wer shewed ouer al his body, and his face horrible to behold.⁴⁶

The overall effect is to create a tension between the body itself and its simulacrum, which both represents the body and yet is not the body—which is, in short, the like of this lych. This scene does not appear in Shakespeare, but there is something very like it when Antony uses Caesar’s cloak as a substitute for his body. In Appian, before displaying the wax image, Antony had “stripped the clothes from Caesar’s body, raised them on a pole and waved them about,” and had also “turned and made a gesture towards the body of Caesar” every time he had listed one of his titles or qualities, which apparently authenticates the truth of Caesar’s identity as “sacrosanct,” “inviolate,” “father of his country,” “benefactor,” and “leader”; in Julius Caesar too he displays the robe, stopping to move the audience by recalling “the first time ever Caesar put it on” (3.2.168 – 69). Miranda Fay Thomas notes that “The deictic ‘this’ and the imperatives ‘look,’ ‘see,’ and ‘mark’ all imply a gesture which Antony must deploy to point out specific wounds.”⁴⁷ This exposes an uncertainty about what is and is not a real body, which chimes exactly with one of the issues which had fissured Christianity into two different confessions, one believing in transubstantiation and one believing in consubstantiation, and it also potentially comments on the political as well as the religious climate. In 1599, Elizabeth was sixty-six. Mark Rose argues that the play speaks to “the way the crown penetrated the church. The penetration was literal; in place of the holy rood the royal coat of arms was erected in the chancel arch of English churches.” He therefore relates Julius Caesar directly to the queen’s age and childlessness, reading it as effectively a succession play in disguise.⁴⁸ The queen’s motto was Semper eadem, always the same, but it was increasingly obvious that change was in fact coming when she finally died (as she did four years after the first production of Julius Caesar). When the queen’s own wax effigy was borne through

 Schanzer, Shakespeare’s Appian, pp. 35, 42– 43, and 45.  Thomas, “Political Acts and Political Acting.”  Rose, “Conjuring Caesar,” pp. 265 and 267. Peter Lake extends the idea of topicality to read the play as about Essex specifically (“Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar and the Search for a Usable (Christian?) Past,” in Shakespeare and Early Modern Religion, edited by David Loewenstein and Michael Witmore [Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015], pp. 111– 30, p. 129).

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the streets in 1603 as England waited for its new ruler to come from Scotland, it can rarely have been clearer that every like is not the same. To conclude, then, I have suggested that not only is wordplay important in Caesar but that the puns perform work, particularly that on “like” which consistently activates an idea of uncanniness and doubleness attaching to death. This culminates in the apparent reappearance of Caesar’s body after Brutus and Cassius have shared wine, an obvious echo of the Christian story which forces together Rome’s twin identities of classical past and Christian present and invites us to notice the uniqueness of Caesar in being the only ghost in the Roman plays and also invites us to read him as a type of Christ, in ways which both make him synecdochic of Rome’s twin pasts as capital of the Roman Empire and capital of the Catholic world, but which also glances outwards from the stage to offer implicit comment on Shakespeare’s own society too. I have already suggested that Julius Caesar shows a debt to Marlowe’s The Jew of Malta, a play which anticipates the dark comedy of the Monty Python film The Life of Brian. In that film, one character asks another what the Romans have ever done for us. Julius Caesar has several answers to that question. What did the Romans do for us? They gave us a cast of memorable characters and a language both alien and familiar through which our greatest playwright was able to speak about things which were both like the world inhabited by his audience and yet also safely different from it. And they also help us to see that the beating heart of Christendom is always already its edge.

Chapter 3 Danger and Demarcation in Massinger The tension between the edges of Christendom and its internal divisions is particularly acute in the work of Philip Massinger. In plays set in three of contemporary Europe’s most vulnerable border territories, Tunis, Hungary, and Malta, as well as the historically frontier town of Caesarea, Massinger deploys a religiously and racially charged system of colour symbolism in order to recuperate specifically Catholic forms of sanctity by placing them in sustained structural opposition to Islam. This tactic is clearly meant to downplay differences between the two confessions, though it is not wholly successful: Ambereen Dadabhoy observes of The Knight of Malta in particular that “The movement in bodies … facilitates exchange in ideas and cultural understanding and even reciprocity, but such movement also necessitates the construction of stronger, less permeable and porous borders around identity and culture.”¹ Just as a mechanical device rotating the image of Caesar, such as that imagined by Appian, would allow us to see the back of him, so Massinger too takes us behind the scenes to show the cost of maintaining a Christian identity at a time when Christianity itself was being fissured. In The Renegado, the Turkish Donusa produces a scathing indictment of the fragmented state of European Christianity, which she contrasts with the strength and unity of the Ottomans, when she exhorts her lover Vitelli to convert: Look on our flourishing empire – if the splendour, The majesty and glory of it dim not Your feeble sight – and then turn back and see The narrow bounds of yours, yet that poor remnant Rent in as many factions and opinions As you have petty kingdoms.²

As Donusa rightly observes, seventeenth-century Christendom was fractured by confessional differences as well as by the fact that it is divided into different constituent countries, while the Ottoman Empire, albeit tolerant of Jewish and Chris-

 Ambereen Dadabhoy, “The Other Woman: The Geography of Exclusion in The Knight of Malta (1618),” in Remapping Travel Narratives (1000 – 1700): To the East and Back Again, edited by Montserrat Piera (Leeds: ARC Humanities Press, 2018), pp. 235 – 56, pp. 236 – 37.  Philip Massinger, The Renegado, edited by Michael Neill (London: Methuen, 2010), 4.3.95 – 100. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text. https://doi.org/10.1515/9781501514159-005

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tian communities within its borders, extended no such liberality to internal divisions within Islam, being monolithically Sunni. However, not only does Donusa change her mind only moments later, but her attempt to convert Vitelli to Islam is presented at the outset as a function of her gender rather than of her faith. Dennis Austin Britton notes that “at the moment when Donusa attempts to turn him, she becomes an embodiment of spiritual evil—so much so that Vitelli now imagines it impossible to disconnect spirit from body. The only way to exorcise her is to destroy her body, the very body that he enjoyed sexually earlier in the play. Although the scene surely betrays European anxieties about ‘turning Turk,’ it also exemplifies the play’s investment in embodied forms of religious identity.”³ Moreover we have also been told at the outset that the contrast between Christian and Turk looks very different from the Christian perspective, for Gazet, while happy to be religiously flexible within the bounds of Christianity—“Live I in England, Spain, France, Rome, Geneva, / I am of that country’s faith” (1.1.37– 38)—will not “turn Turk” because “so I should lose / A collop of that part my Doll enjoined me / To bring home as she left it” (1.1.39 – 41). For Gazet, the differences between the increasingly High Church Protestantism of England, the Catholicism of Spain, France, and Rome, and the Calvinism of Geneva evaporate in comparison with the difference between Christianity and Islam. Dennis Austin Britton observes that although “Massinger’s treatment of the infidel-conversion motif reflects Protestant debates about the efficacy of baptism,” “Attention to martyrdom in The Renegado allows us to put aside questions about Massinger’s confessional identity. Martyrdom was truly a universal Christian precept.”⁴ In this chapter, I shall argue that these plays’ focus on edges of Christendom is a deliberate diversionary tactic to distract attention from the fact that it is in truth the centre which is under pressure. The four Massinger plays I want to consider are The Renegado, The Knight of Malta, The Virgin Martyr, and The Picture. ⁵ Although the locations of these are geographically a long way apart, there is a link. The Renegado is set in Tunis, The Knight of Malta, as its name suggests, in Malta, and The Picture in Hungary, while St. Dorothea, the heroine of The Virgin Martyr, historically lived in Caesarea Mazaca in modern Anatolia, a city which had been ruled successively by the Seljuk Turks, the Mongols, and the Eretnid dynasty before becoming part of the Ottoman Empire in 1515. In different but interconnected ways, Hungary, Malta,  Dennis Austin Britton, Becoming Christian: Race, Reformation, and Early Modern English Romance (New York: Fordham University Press, 2014), p. 163.  Britton, Becoming Christian, pp. 168 and 170.  For the purposes of this chapter, I shall consider the participation of co-authors in some of these plays only when it bears directly on my argument.

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and Tunis all witnessed fierce conflicts with the Ottomans which were avidly followed in the rest of Europe and were understood not only or perhaps not even primarily in terms of their military significance but also in terms of their confessional politics. Hungary had historically been of interest to the English for a long time: the Saxon claimant Edward the Exile, son of Edmund Ironside, had fled there after his father’s defeat, and in 1555 another potential heir to the throne, the Plantagenet-descended Edward Courtenay, whose grandmother Catherine of York was a sister of the Princes in the Tower, left England for Hungary, where he later died.⁶ Sir Philip Sidney went to Hungary; according to her daughter, Elizabeth Cary, author of The Tragedy of Mariam, learned Transylvanian; and Martin Fumée’s The history of the troubles of Hungarie was published in 1600. Matthew Steggle also identifies the lost play Albere Galles as about the Hungarian city Alba Regalis, also known as Székesfehérvár or Stuhlweissenberg, and notes that “Albere Galles could be thought of as almost a successor to Scanderbeg, drawing upon the same ingredients: a war play about Eastern Europe, the frontline between Christianity and Islam.”⁷ Hungary was liminal and embattled. William Lithgow observed that “Buda: is the capitall Citie of Hungary, wherein the Turkish Bassaw hath his residence and was taken in by Solyman the Emperour the twenty of August 1526,”⁸ and W. R. Streitberger notes that when Elizabeth came to the throne “On the ‘morowe after the Coronacion’ (16 January) there was a Mask of Hungarians or Turks”;⁹ the observer was apparently not quite sure of the difference between them. In Johnson’s Seven Champions, one section of the narrative tells of “the innumerable Troups of Pagan Knights that arriued at one instant in the Kingdome of Hungarie, and how they fell at varience in the election of a Generall” and describes how

 Mary S. Lovell, Bess of Hardwick: First Lady of Chatsworth [2005] (London: Abacus, 2006), p. 135 n.  Matthew Steggle, Digital Humanities and the Lost Drama of Early Modern England (Farnham, UK: Ashgate, 2015), pp. 104 and 115. Steggle also notes the existence of another lost play called The Hungarian Lion, of which Richard Gunnell is named as the author (p. 133); Claire Jowitt and David McInnis suggest that this might have featured Captain John Smith (“Understanding the Early Modern Journeying Play,” in Travel and Drama in Early Modern England: The Journeying Play, edited by Claire Jowitt and David McInnis [Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2018], pp. 1– 20, p. 6).  William Lithgow, The Totall discourse, of the rare adventures, and painefull peregrinations of long nineteene yeares travailes from Scotland, to the most famous kingdomes in Europe, Asia, and Affrica (London: Nicholas Okes for Nicholas Fussell and Humphrey Moseley, 1632), p. 412.  W. R. Streitberger, The Masters of the Revels and Elizabeth I’s Court Theatre (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016), p. 54.

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the Kingdome of Hungarie suffered excessiue pennurie through the numberles Armies of the accursed Infidels, beeing their appointed place of meeting: For though Hungarie of all other Countries both in Affrica and Asia, then was the richest, and plentifullest of victuals to mainetaine a Campe of men: yet was it mightely ouerprest & greatly burthened with multitudes.¹⁰

Hungary in Johnson’s text is a rallying point for armies, but it is not clear which side they are fighting for. When “the King of Hungarie caused their muster Rolles to bee publikely read, & iustly numbred in the hearing of the Pagan knights” (p. 132) the troops include 200,000 Turks provided by the Emperor of Constantinople (presumably placing us after 1453) and 250,000 from the Emperor of Greece. There are also Tartarians, Persians, men of Jerusalem, Moors, “coleblack Negars,” Arabians, Babylonians, Armenians, Macedonians, 306,000 Hungarians, Scythians, Parthians, Phrygians, Ethiopians, Thracians, and some from the provinces of Prester John (pp. 132– 33). Unsurprisingly such a diverse force cannot agree a leader and so the enterprise falls apart. One thing is clear though: the roll which the King of Hungary causes to be read refers to “our three great gods, Mahomet, Termigaunt, and Apollo” (p. 132). Like the observer at Elizabeth’s coronation, Johnson clearly has no idea which belief system Hungarians subscribe to, but is prepared to believe just about anything. Hungary first fell to the Turks in 1526, and Matthew Dimmock observes: It is … perhaps 1526 that offers the best example of a direct conjunction between the Ottoman campaign and the events of the schism in England. Suleiman’s forces defeated the Hungarian army at the battle of Mohacs in August, at which Louis II of Hungary was killed, leaving the Ottoman armies free to take Buda unchallenged and in 1529 place Vienna under siege for the first time. This episode also began the dispute for hegemony in Hungary between John Zapolya, who recognized Ottoman suzerainty, and Ferdinand of Austria, Charles V’s brother—pitting Christian against Christian in a conflict often represented as deeply compromising for Christendom.¹¹

Hungary was in the news again in the year after the 1565 Siege of Malta, leading the two to become in some sense coupled: Although the Siege was lifted in September 1565, the Ottoman campaign in Hungary in 1566 —the campaign that ended the truce of 1562 and included the death of Suleiman—was seen by many observers as a consequence of the previous year’s defeat, the “turke” “beyng in-

 Richard Johnson, The Most Famous History of the Seaven Champions of Christendome (London: Cuthbert Burbie, 1596), p. 131, p. 132.  Matthew Dimmock, New Turkes: Dramatizing Islam and the Ottomans in Early Modern England (Aldershot, UK: Ashgate, 2005), p. 23.

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flamed with malice and desyre of vengeaunce.” An order of service that follows those of the previous year word for word confirms the continuity.¹²

The Ottoman sultan Murad invaded Hungary again in July 1593, and the English envoy Edward Barton accompanied him on campaign.¹³ In one sense such attacks obviously threatened Christianity, yet in another sense they united it. There were internal as well as external conflicts in Hungary. Mark Greengrass notes that “Giorgio Basta attempted to reimpose Catholicism by force in Transylvania after 1599, following the initiative set by Archduke Ferdinand in Styria,” but he was foiled by the Calvinist István Bocskai “with covert Ottoman support”; in the end “the Habsburg Archduke Matthias … was compelled to recognize the authority of a Calvinist prince in Ottoman Hungary and Transylvania.”¹⁴ As Dimmock notes, stressing the menace of the Ottomans deflects attention from such tensions between the two confessions: “the ‘turke’ remained a predominantly fixed point in a formulation which had initially been formed as a means of ‘othering’ an opposing religious perspective.”¹⁵ Dimmock goes on to explain that this was also true of Malta: “This explains why texts such as those around Malta, despite their obvious conformist beliefs … are unquestioningly incorporated into Anglican services across England.”¹⁶ Baumer notes that in Thomas Fuller’s History of the Holy War Malta and Hungary are both identified as “bulwarks” of Christendom and further observes that “On the occasion of Prince Henry’s baptism in 1594 a masque was staged at the Scottish court in which three Christian Knights of Malta and three Turks appeared as antagonists. James himself impersonated one of the knights,”¹⁷ while Lithgow calls the Knights of Malta “our Knights of Christendome” and says of Malta “This Island may properly be termed the Fort of Christendome.”¹⁸ Malta, as Shormishtha Panja observes, was always already “a melting pot, a location where boundaries and distinctions between Jew, Christian and Muslim, and between master and slave, blur.”¹⁹ Bernadette Andrea notes that “the prayers of the Brit Dimmock, New Turkes, p. 70.  Jerry Brotton, This Orient Isle [2016] (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 2017), pp. 191 and 207.  Mark Greengrass, Christendom Destroyed: Europe, 1517 – 1648 (London: Penguin, 2015), p. 510.  Dimmock, New Turkes, p. 68.  Dimmock, New Turkes, p. 68.  Franklin L. Baumer, “England, the Turk, and the Common Corps of Christendom,” The American Historical Review 50, no. 1 (October 1944), pp. 26 – 48, p. 37, n. 59.  Lithgow, The Totall discourse, pp. 329 – 30.  Shormishtha Panja, “Marlowe and Shakespeare Cross Borders: Malta and Venice in the Early Modern World,” Early Theatre 22, no. 1 (2019), pp. 71– 92, p. 72.

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ish islanders for the island of Malta display an uncanny dynamic of identification and disavowal” and that the Knights are both recognised as protectors of Christendom but also “double in seventeenth-century Anglocentric discourse as the monstrous corsairs of a specifically Catholic Malta.”²⁰ Massinger is writing a long time after these events and sometimes in collaboration with other writers of rather different religious affiliations, but when he sets plays in Hungary, Malta, and also Tunis, he too can be seen as using the Otherness of Turks to minimise the sense of difference between the two confessions. I want to start my discussion of Massinger by considering the idea of colour, which is a question of persistent interest for him. In The Picture, the magic miniature of Sophia which Baptista paints for Mathias turns yellow when Sophia is tempted and would have gone black had she fallen. Joanne Rochester observes: The change Massinger makes from his sources indicates that his picture’s ambiguity is a deliberate choice. He adopts the Mathias/Sophia plot from the tale of “The Lady of Boeme” from Painter’s Palace of Pleasure, but he makes one significant change to the picture’s data. Painter’s image has four different colour states: unchanged indicates chastity, paleness indicates the wife’s own adulterous desire, black indicates actual adultery and yellow indicates pursuit by a seducer … Massinger’s picture has only three possible colours: unchanged for untempted, yellow for an attempted seduction, and black for adultery.

Thus “the picture’s colour changes are clear but difficult to interpret,”²¹ so that the audience’s attention is wholly focused on the question of colours and what they mean: as Erin Obermueller succinctly puts it, “Reading The Picture … means to read the picture.”²² There are, however, other things that we also need to remember. The Picture is subtitled “A true Hungarian history,” and the names of Ladislaus and of Mathias are of particular interest in that context, for Matthias Corvinus, King of Hungary from 1458 until 1490 and famous for his love of learning and patronage of some major figures of the European Renaissance, was both preceded and succeeded by a Ladislaus. Born in what is now Romania, where the painted monasteries of Moldavia depicted their devils in the costume of Turks, Matthias Corvinus spent much of his life battling, with considerable success, against the Ottomans and on his death became the subject of an Arthur-like

 Bernadette Andrea, “From Invasion to Inquisition: Mapping Malta in Early Modern England,” in Remapping the Mediterranean World in Early Modern English Writings, edited by Goran V. Stanivukovic (Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan, 2007), pp. 245 – 71, pp. 250 – 51.  Joanne Rochester, Staging Spectatorship in the Plays of Philip Massinger (Aldershot, UK: Ashgate, 2010), pp. 113 and 117.  Erin Obermueller, “‘On Cheating Pictures’: Gender and Portrait Miniatures in Philip Massinger’s The Picture,” Early Theatre 10, no. 2 (2007), pp. 87– 107, p. 87.

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legend that he only slept and would awake to save his country in its hour of need. Such stories might well have been known to Massinger, whose father Arthur had worked for the Pembroke family, because Sir Philip Sidney expressly mentions hearing stories of the past during a visit to Hungary—“In Hungary I have seen it the manner at all feasts, and other such meetings, to have songs of their ancestors’ valour, which that right soldierlike nation think the chiefest kindlers of brave courage”²³—and certainly the play is well aware of the history of conflict between Hungary and the Ottoman Empire; in its opening speech, the hero Mathias reminds Sophia that “We are not distant from the Turkesh campe / Aboue fiue leagues,”²⁴ and although the Turks are, as in Othello, soon defeated, they are not, as in Othello, subsequently forgotten. Here, then, an apparently abstract colour design which may initially seem to have something of the flavour of allegory about it proves in fact to be firmly inserted into a plot which is wholly configured by the divide between Christian and Turk. Like The Picture, The Knight of Malta, co-written by Massinger with John Fletcher and Nathan Field (who also played the Knight),²⁵ also has a complex image pattern centred on colour which is, I want to suggest, being deployed firmly for the purpose of creating a metaphorical colour pattern.²⁶ This colour pattern works in support of a schematising aesthetic which has for Massinger finally transcended the problem of representing ideal behaviour through human actors, and ultimately enables the play to offer a credible model of purity in a world in which the concept of purity is radically endangered. This is a play which clearly registers a sustained interest in the rôle of such a creature as a Knight of Malta in the contemporary world. (There is, as we shall see, also a complimentary mention of the Knights of Malta in The Renegado).²⁷ Characters who are Knights of Malta occur with perhaps surprising frequency in English Renaissance drama; Peter F. Mullany argues that this “is attributable to the considerable interest in the East as a dramatic subject found in Renaissance drama as well as to the his-

 Philip Sidney, An Apology for Poetry, edited by R. W. Maslen, 3rd ed. (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2002), p. 99.  Philip Massinger, The Picture (London: J. N. for Thomas Walkley, 1630), sig. B1r.  See William W. Appleton, Beaumont and Fletcher: A Critical Study (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1956), p. 84.  For comment on this, see Bindu Malieckal, “‘Hell’s Perfect Character’: The Black Woman as the Islamic Other in Fletcher’s The Knight of Malta,” Essays in Arts and Sciences 28 (October 1999), pp. 53 – 68, p. 60.  For speculation on some possible reasons for this see Alan Shepard, Marlowe’s Soldiers: Rhetorics of Masculinity in the Age of the Armada (Aldershot, UK: Ashgate, 2002), p. 135, and E. J. King, The Grand Priory of the Order of the Hospital of St. John of Jerusalem (London: Fleetway Press, 1924), p. 103.

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torical importance of the Knights,”²⁸ but the Knights were also connected with a location closer to home which is fundamental to the way they were portrayed on the English Renaissance stage. Before Henry VIII’s Reformation led to the disappearance of the Knights from England, their headquarters had been the priory of St. John in Clerkenwell. After the Reformation the ecclesiastical buildings were repurposed as the headquarters of the Master of the Revels, the man responsible for licensing stage plays. Everyone involved in writing or producing drama would have had business at the Revels office at some time or other, bringing them into direct contact with the memory of the Knights, and the number of appearances of Knights of Malta in English Renaissance plays also suggests that there must have been a supply of appropriate costumes. The Knights might speak of the edges of Christendom, but every time a Knight of Malta appeared on stage the audience might well be reminded of change and danger in England itself, in the shape of the religious turmoil which had expelled the Knights and led to the expropriation of their London headquarters. Knights of Malta in English Renaissance plays are coloured by this sense of the local and metatheatrical as well as by the Order’s association with edges of Christendom in and around the Mediterranean. The monastic order of the Knights Hospitaller of St. John of Jerusalem is better known as the Knights of Malta, but to connect the Knights exclusively to Malta is to tell only part of their story. As the full title of the Order proclaims, their theoretical spiritual home was Jerusalem, even if for most of their history there was no prospect of any of them actually going there. However as far as Renaissance drama was concerned their earliest real association was with Rhodes, which they defended heroically but unsuccessfully against the Turks in the early part of the sixteenth century. After they were driven out of Rhodes they took up residence in Cyprus, where they developed an interest in the lucrative sugar trade and intervened in the contested succession to the Lusignan throne, and finally they accepted the emperor Charles’s offer of Malta, which they garrisoned, fortified, and held against the Turks in the famous siege of 1565. For this reason they can appear in a variety of locations, and Mullany suggests that “In such plays as The Jew of Malta, Soliman and Perseda, The White Devil, and The Devil’s Law Case, the Knights appear in support of an overall religious and historical atmosphere.”²⁹ However, The Knight of Malta goes well beyond simply offering atmosphere; it deploys a suggestive mix of fact and fiction and combines a

 Peter F. Mullany, “The Knights of Malta in Renaissance Drama,” Neuphilologische Mitteilungen 74 (1973), pp. 297– 310, p. 297.  Mullany, “The Knights of Malta in Renaissance Drama,” p. 298.

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sophisticated awareness of previous dramatic representations with an unusual fidelity to the facts of Maltese history.³⁰ The play’s main character, Miranda, is clearly based on the historical Andres de Miranda, a captain under Don Garcia de Toledo, the governor of Sicily, who served in the Great Siege of 1565; he was killed on 23 June 1565, during the siege of Fort St. Elmo, the small and isolated fort which guarded Grand Harbour and thus took the main brunt of the attack, and his head was displayed on a lance on the following day. There were also later knights of the same name— the Portuguese Enriquez Simeone de Miranda, of whom nothing further is recorded, was admitted to the order on 25 July 1587, and a Don Ettore Pinto de Miranda was buried in the Co-Cathedral of St. John in Valletta after his death on 23 June 1709—and the recurrence of the name suggests a family connection with the order. It is, however, undoubtedly Captain Andres de Miranda who is meant in the play, even though he is there wrongly identified as an Italian,³¹ since he was the only one of the name to serve in the Great Siege, and his distinguished service is commented on in Francesco Balbi di Correggio’s account of the Siege, which records that Miranda entered Fort St. Elmo on Monday 4 June, where although serving only “in a private capacity” because “he was past his prime and would not accept any special charge,” he “was received with great joy by all who were in Saint Elmo, both knights and soldiers” and “although he had no special authority, his reputation was so great that he was obeyed.” Even when wounded, on Saturday 16 June, “he did not retire to the Birgu [the fortified citadel where he would have been safe]; he sat on a chair near the batteries, doing his duty to the last.”³² Other characters and events in the play are equally close to history as recorded by Balbi di Correggio. One of the knights sent to confer with Miranda in St. Elmo was Don Constantino Castriota; one of the knights in the play is called Castriot. (Castriot was also, but I think coincidentally in this case, the real family

 Eugene M. Waith observes that “[l]ike many of the tragicomedies The Knight of Malta has a suggestion of historical truth and draws the names of most of its characters from history, but the plot is based on at least one novella and possibly on more that have not been identified” (The Pattern of Tragicomedy in Beaumont and Fletcher [New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1952], p. 138).  John Fletcher, Nathan Field, and Philip Massinger, The Knight of Malta (London: Humphrey Moseley, 1647), 1.1.111. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.  Francesco Balbi di Correggio, The Great Siege of Malta, translated by Major Henry Alexander Balbi (Copenhagen: O. F. Gollcher and Dr. Ole Rostock, 1961), pp. 67– 68 and 80.

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name of the Albanian hero known as Scanderbeg.) The Grand Master of the Knights of Malta during the Great Siege of 1565, and subsequently the founder of Valletta, was Jean Parisot de la Valette; the Grand Master in the play is Valetta. We also hear of the distinctive chain of forts which guards the Maltese coastline (1.1.114– 15), and Mountferrato is quite correct to refer to his peer group as “This whole auberge” (1.3.142). Even more carefully noted than the history and topography of Malta are the codes and rituals of the Knights, which are underpinned by a language of colour.³³ This is a play which has characters of different colours: Virginia Mason Vaughan, noting the importance of whiteness and blackness in the play, observes that “in the tragicomedy’s opening scene, both women, one figured black and one white, are equated with the temptations of the East in language that suggests danger as well as allure.”³⁴ But colour is important in terms of costume too. Mountferrato swears “by the honour of this Christian crosse / (In blood of Infidels so often dyde)” (1.1.18 – 19), and this inaugurates a sustained play on the whiteness of the Maltese cross which Knights Hospitallers wore on their black surcoats, complicated by references to the colour which, along with black and white, is so often the third term of Renaissance Petrarchan-based colour imagery, red. Mountferrato couples musing on his white cross with embracing his black lover: White innocent signe, that do’st abhorre to dwell So neer the dim thoughts of this troubled breast, And grace these gracelesse projects of my heart. Enter Zanthia alias Abdella. with 2 Letters. Yet I must weare thee to protect my crimes, If not for conscience, for hypocrisie, Some Churchmen so wear Cassoks: Oh my Zan. My Pearle, that scornes a staine! I much repent All my neglects: Let me Ixion like, Embrace my black cloud. (1.1.171– 78)

 Elizabeth Williamson, The Materiality of Religion in Early Modern English Drama (Farnham, UK: Ashgate, 2009), p. 94, argues that it is heavily influenced by the factual accounts of the Knights by George Sandys and William Lithgow.  Virginia Mason Vaughan, “The Maltese Factor: The Poetics of Place in The Jew of Malta and The Knight of Malta,” in A Companion to the Global Renaissance: English Literature and Culture in the Era of Expansion, edited by Jyotsna G. Singh (Oxford: Blackwell, 2013), pp. 340 – 54, p. 349; see also pp. 350 – 51.

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The black Zanthia too is quick to play on her own colour, telling Mountferrato, My tongue Sir, cannot lispe to meet you so, Nor my black Cheeke put on a feigned blush, To make me seeme more modest then I am. This ground-worke, will not beare adulterate red, Nor artificiall white, to cozen love. (1.1.189 – 93)

Other characters also allude to colours and the meanings they emblematise. Valetta speaks of “Our sacred Robe of Knight-hood, our white Crosse” (1.3.40), and Mountferrato tells Zanthia (by now disguised as Abdella):³⁵ thou, in thy black shape, and blacker actions Being hels perfect character, art delighted To do what I though infinitly wicked, Tremble to hear (4.1.76 – 79)

Norandine too equates Zanthia’s blackness with badness, saying of her and Mountferrato that “Wee’l call him Cacodemon, with his bl[a]ck gib there, his Succuba, his devils seed, his spawn of Phlegeton, that o’ my conscience was bred o’ the spume of Cocitus; do ye snarle you black jill; she looks li[k]e the Picture of America” (5.2.107– 9), an image which neatly connects one edge of Christendom to another. By contrast, Oriana declares that “Mirandas deeds / Have been as white, as Orianas fame” (5.1.94– 95). To call Zanthia/Abdella a “black jill” is clearly reflex racism, yet it also draws attention to the fact that it is actually whiteness which is under pressure here, as Oriana finds her “white” fame in question and Miranda struggles to adhere to the code and values emblematised by the white cross on his black robe. As Kim F. Hall observes, “When white women bear the symbolic weight of the culture … attention is deflected from the equally vulnerable bodies of white men and the potentially threatening bodies of black men.”³⁶ The repeated references to colour in the play function as a visual aid to understanding the rôle of knighthood, which might perhaps be glossed in this play as a beacon of whiteness shining in a black world but constantly subject to temp-

 The change of names may of course also be attributable to confusion between two of the coauthors.  Kim F. Hall, Things of Darkness: Economies of Race and Gender in Early Modern England (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1995), p. 9.

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tation from the redness of blood and lust. The actual Knights of Malta were notorious for moral laxness and for frequenting prostitutes, and part of the historical Miranda’s popularity may well have arisen from the fact that he supplied the men in the fort with wine and gaming tables;³⁷ in the play, though, far stricter moral standards are generally adhered to. During the course of the play two men who believe they do not have it in them to obey the rules which govern the Knights decline to join the Order, and Miranda, who does do so, takes his oath only after he is sure that he can respect the vow of chastity. Indeed unusual emphasis is laid on the sexual status of men as well as of women in this play, as we are reminded when Lucinda tells Miranda, “I have heard ’em say here, / You are a mayd too” (3.5.141– 42). In stark contrast to the most famous previous dramatic presentation of life on Malta, Marlowe’s The Jew of Malta, in which even the friars are unchaste, here we have a Knight of Malta worthy of the name. Going hand in hand with this emphasis on the seriousness of the knightly rôle and this departure from the vision of Malta presented in The Jew of Malta are some definite indications that despite the play’s unusual fidelity to the details of Maltese history, it also has marked affiliations with other countries as well, and particularly with England. When Norandine decides to test the mettle of the watch and prowls around the fort growling, the second warden thinks it is a bear (3.1.20) and the first that it is “The Dutchmans huge fat sow” (3.1.21), neither of which is very likely to be found on Malta. Equally improbable is Norandine’s allusion to the patron saint of Wales when he demands of the Surgeon, “Dost take me for St. Davy, that fell dead / With seeing of his nose bleed?” (2.1.78 – 79), and his interest in seeing English cloth (2.1.101– 4). All these references point well away from Malta and out into a world far from the Mediterranean, and in the context of this dislocation it would perhaps not be too fanciful to suggest that the White Cross Maltese Knight can in fact stand in for the famous English Red Cross Knight immortalised by Spenser. Certainly when Valetta first promises Miranda that he can wear the cross he says, I’le wed ye to our Order: there’s a Mistresse, Whose beauty ne’re decayes: time stands below her: Whose honour Ermin-like, can never suffer, Spot, or black soyle (2.5.229 – 32)

 Balbi di Correggio, The Great Siege of Malta, p. 68.

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The reference to an ermine points clearly in the direction of Elizabeth I, who adopted the animal as one of her prime symbols because its alleged refusal to sully its fur under any circumstances made it an emblem of purity. It is therefore worth noting that from an English perspective, by the time The Knight of Malta was written new meanings had begun to accrue to the prime symbol of the Knights of Malta, the Maltese cross. The polemical tract The French Herald svmmoning all trve Christian Princes to a generall Croisade, for a holy warre against the great Enemy of Christendome, and all his Slaues, upon the occasion of the most execrable murder of Henry the Great, published in London in 1611 and dedicated to Prince Henry,³⁸ presently attributed to Jean Loiseau de Tourval,³⁹ is signed at the end of both the dedication and the main body of the text with the device of a Maltese cross inside the Greek letter Delta. Here the Catholic symbol of the Maltese cross is reclaimed for militant Protestantism, as indeed it had already been when the English settlers in Roanoke agreed that a Maltese cross carved in a tree would be the sign that they would leave if they had to flee from either the marauding native Americans or hostile Catholic Spaniards, so that it becomes a clear marker of the binary between “acceptable” religion and its Others. (This might conceivably have prompted the association between Zanthia and “the Picture of America.”) In The French Herald, moreover, something of the same colour pattern as in The Knight of Malta is seen. The author hopes to see a Christian prince facing his enemy, “both vpon a couple of their best Gennets, both in like Armour, both in huge mighty feathers, all blacke with their burnt bloud at the coming out of the battell, white before, for your mutuall love and faith.”⁴⁰ Here, as in The Knight of Malta, black, white, and the red of blood are in play in the context of a wholehearted and impassioned evocation of the possibility of a genuine spiritual purity. To write about Malta therefore afforded a way in which Field, Fletcher, and Massinger could also write about England, and in which they could meld their collective habitual penchant for surprise and for tested chastity plots with an unusually serious statement about the genuine possibility of purity. Often, in plays

 The French Herald svmmoning all trve Christian Princes to a generall Croisade, for a holy warre against the great Enemy of Christendome, and all his Slaues, upon the occasion of the most execrable murder of Henry the Great (London, 1611). My thanks to John Buchtel for alerting me to the existence of this.  Tourval had translated parts of the Protestant hero Sir Philip Sidney’s The Countess of Pembroke’s Arcadia, and had an interest in English politics, shown by his translation in September 1609 of L’apologie du roi d’Angleterre (see Charles Giry-Deloison, “France and Elizabethan England,” Transactions of the Royal Historical Society 14 [2004], pp. 223 – 42, p. 229).  The French Herald, p. 42.

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of this decade, the device of an overseas setting is a convenient way of allowing aspects of England’s own society to be covertly examined and indicted. Here, I think something rather different is happening. By taking the ideal embodied in the Knights of Malta seriously, and by putting the Knights at the thematic heart of the play by making them the centre of its image structure, Massinger, Fletcher, and Field have been able to offer Malta not as a negative mirror but as a positive rôle model for a Jacobean court which many commentators at the time did indeed see as sorely in need of models and concepts of purity and virtue. The playwrights’ subtle mix of local colour with metaphorical colour enables them not only to create a pattern, but to hold one up, just as, I shall suggest, in The Virgin Martyr the fact that the ultimate meaning is firmly located within the image pattern effectively enables Massinger and Dekker to write about sainthood without the problems caused by the presence of an actual saint. Crucially, both plays are also able to treat their Catholic central characters in a way which minimises the difference between Protestantism and Catholicism by throwing maximum emphasis on that between Christian and Turk. In The Renegado, Malta is mentioned again when Asambeg speaks of “Those thieves of Malta” (2.5.24) and Grimaldi twits the Turks with These Knights of Malta – but a handful to Your armies that drink rivers up – have stood Your fury at the height, and with their crosses Struck pale your horned moons. (2.5.64– 67)

However The Renegado is set not in Malta but in Tunis, a strategically vital city which in 1535 had been taken from the Ottomans at great cost by the Habsburg emperor Charles V only to be reconquered in 1574. The question of who controlled Tunis was of importance to the whole of Christendom. Baumer notes that in 1639 Fuller lauds the French for being currently “most loyal to the cause” and the king of Spain—“Yea, all West-Christendom oweth her quiet sleep to his constant waking, who with his galleys muzzleth the mouth of Tunis and Algiers. Yea, God in his providence hath so ordered it, that the dominions of Catholic princes (as they term them) are the case and cover of the east and south to keep and fence the Protestant countries.”⁴¹

Along with the motif of conflict against the Turks, the question of colour also recurs in The Renegado. There are conventional uses of colour imagery, such as Vi-

 Baumer, “England, the Turk, and the Common Corps of Christendom,” p. 33.

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telli’s mention of “black destruction” (1.1.132), Grimaldi’s of “black guilt and misery” (3.2.62), and Vitelli telling Donusa that “the sating of your lust hath sullied / The immaculate whiteness of your virgin beauties” (3.5.4– 5), a language which she internalises when she refers to “This being the first spot tainting mine honour” (4.2.97). But there are also some rather less conventional ones. Grimaldi takes the idea of the blackness of hell a stage further when he speaks of himself as “dyed deep in hell’s most horrid colours” (3.2.65), and blackness is literalised when a stage direction specifies “Enter AGA with a black box” (4.2.57 sd), wordlessly signifying the condemnation of Donusa, upon which Asambeg says “Bring her in / In black as to her funeral – ’tis the colour / Her fault wills her to wear” (4.2.64– 66); as Donusa herself acknowledges, That you clothe me In this sad livery of death assures me Your sentence is gone out before. (4.2.74– 76)

Yet blackness also proves salvific when Asambeg says of Vitelli “Bear him safe off / To the Black Tower” (5.3.169 – 70), from whence the whole party will be able to make their quasi-miraculous escape. There are also some unexpected details, most notably when Gazet warns Vitelli, Take you heed, sir, What colours you wear. Not two hours since, there landed An English pirate’s whore with a green apron; And, as she walked the streets, one of their muftis – We call them priests at Venice – with a razor Cuts it off, petticoat, smock and all, and leaves her As naked as my nail – the young fry wondering What strange beast it should be. I scaped a scouring: My mistress’ busk-point of that forbidden colour Then tied my codpiece; had it been discovered, I had been caponed. (1.1.48 – 58)

The fact that it is offensive for Christians to wear green, a colour associated with the Prophet, is one of a number of pieces of information which we are offered about life in Tunis; indeed this is a play which is so frankly fascinated by the Ottomans that it has at times something of a Lonely Planet Guide to the Customs of the Ottoman Empire feel to it, and would certainly earn its keep as an English

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merchant’s vade mecum. Donusa quite unnecessarily rehearses to Carazie, who has lived in Tunis for several years, the information that Our jealous Turks Never permit their fair wives to be seen But at the public bagnios or the mosques – And even then veiled and guarded. (1.2.18 – 21)

Later, she adds that “our religion / Allows all pleasure” (1.2.49 – 50) and tells Carazie to give Mustapha “The sign / That we vouchsafe his presence,” upon which the stage direction specifies that Carazie “takes up the pantofles” (1.2.62– 63). In similar vein Vitelli remarks: I have heard among the Turks for any lady To show her face bare argues love, or speaks Her deadly hatred. (1.3.172– 74)

Finally Carazie enumerates for Gazet the various offices he might aspire to, starting with beglerbeg and moving on to sanjak, chiaus, and eunuch, this last being the one which comically appeals to the unsuspecting Gazet (3.4.37 ff). Particularly striking is the stage direction “Enter MUSTAPHA [, who] puts off his yellow pantofles [and falls to his knees]” (1.2.59 sd). Islam, it seems, has not only its own customs but its own colour scheme, and the play’s care to inform us on this point may remind us that in Christendom too symbolic freight may attach to colours. The play’s interest is not only in literal travel of the kind that might be undertaken by European merchants such as Vitelli is pretending to be, and for which its information on local customs might prove helpful. Jane Hwang Degenhardt notes that there is also a strong concern with religion: “The Renegado assumes a position on doctrinal points such as lay baptism, penance, and the significance of good works in ways that seem either distinctly Catholic or proto-Arminian,” and could also be seen as having an opinion on other contentious topics, such as the moot point of whether or not grace was available to Turks.⁴² It is of a piece with this concern that its journeys also have an eschatological dimension. Vitelli greets Francisco with “stay of my steps in this life / And guide to all my blessed hopes hereafter” (1.1.64 – 65), and later Francisco tells Vitelli,

 Jane Hwang Degenhardt, Islamic Conversion and Christian Resistance on the Early Modern Stage (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2010), pp. 24 and 62.

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Let the sun Of your clear life, that lends to good men light, But set as gloriously as it did rise – Though sometimes clouded – you may write nil ultra To human wishes. (4.3.39 – 43)

“Nil ultra,” the phrase originally marking the Pillars of Hercules as the furthest point which it was appropriate for humans to explore, had been directly and deliberately inverted in Charles V’s motto of “Plus ultra,” so was virtually synonymous with exploration. The confessional configuration of this particular spiritual journey is unusually uncompromising: Francisco is a Jesuit, but he is nevertheless a wholly virtuous character and it is actually not quite clear that he is not a literal miracle-worker. Early in the play he assures Vitelli that he need not fear for the virtue of his abducted sister Paulina because I oft have told you Of a relic that I gave her, which has power – If we may credit holy men’s traditions – To keep the owner free from violence. (1.1.146 – 49)

He seems to be right, for we later see Paulina’s abductor, Asambeg, declaring to her that “There is something in you / That can work miracles (or I am cozened)” (2.5.149 – 50) and musing to himself that “Ravish her I dare not – / The magic that she wears about her neck / I think defends her” (2.5.161– 63) before terming her a “sweet saint” (2.5.164). Matthew Dimmock notes that Mary I’s wedding to Philip of Spain involved the display at Whitehall of The Conquest of Tunis tapestries commissioned by his father Charles V, which “enacted the association of Ottoman infidel and Lutheran heretic in a validation of Charles’ ongoing determination to subdue both.”⁴³ Massinger, though, uses Tunis to very different effect: for him it is a setting not for driving a wedge between the confessions, but one where the metaphorical blackness of the Turks metaphorically whitens anyone who is Christian, even a Jesuit. The Virgin Martyr is another play set on the edge between Christianity and its Others, this time in Caesarea, where the polytheism of the Roman Empire comes head to head with newly emerging Christianity, and which by the time the play was written was firmly in Turkey. Hwang Degenhardt argues that “Dekker and Massinger’s choice of setting highlights a potential correspondence between

 Dimmock, New Turkes, p. 53.

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the persecution of early Christians in the Roman empire and the contemporary persecution of Christians in the Ottoman empire,” and notes that although “the Cappadocian geography of Dorothy’s legend is located inland from the Mediterranean by about 150 miles and is completely landlocked, it is represented in the play as an active port city … In this way, the play characterises Caesarea in ways that liken it to the Mediterranean port cities of Tunis and Algiers, which dominated the adventure drama,” although she does acknowledge the possibility that Dekker and Massinger were simply confused about the setting, since there is more than one Caesarea.⁴⁴ The politics of Massinger’s plays are notoriously difficult to pin down,⁴⁵ and The Virgin Martyr, co-written with the certainly Protestant Thomas Dekker, is particularly problematic. As Nova Myhill notes, the play has been read as both Protestant and Catholic in its sympathies. (Myhill herself sees Foxe’s Acts and Monuments as an important source,⁴⁶ and Julia Gasper concurs.⁴⁷) Degenhardt, however, introduces a third term: the appeal of Catholic martyrdom and its emphasis upon physical inviolability can be better appreciated in light of England’s increased commercial engagement with the Ottoman empire during the early seventeenth century and the particular anxieties that the English stage began to attach to the threat of Islamic conversion.

For Degenhardt, the most salient fact is that The Virgin Martir is roughly contemporary with a number of plays that overtly thematize Christian resistance to “turning Turk,” including Robert Daborne’s A Christian Turned Turke (1609 – 1612); John Fletcher, Nathan Field, and Philip Massinger’s The Knight of Malta (1616 – 1619); and Massinger’s The Renegado (1623 – 1624). In each of these plays, Islamic conversion is figured as the direct result of sexual intercourse between a Christian man and a Muslim woman. Conversely, Christian resistance is exemplified through the chastity of the Christian woman.

She suggests that “In effect, The Virgin Martir’s idealization of its heroine’s physical integrity makes visible the medieval Catholic models that inform contempo-

 Degenhardt, Islamic Conversion and Christian Resistance, pp. 76 and 81.  See for instance Allen Gross, “Contemporary Politics in Massinger,” Studies in English Literature 1500 – 1900 6, no. 2 (Spring 1966), pp. 279 – 90, p. 280.  Nova Myhill, “Making Death a Miracle: Audience and the Genres of Martyrdom in Dekker and Massinger’s The Virgin Martyr,” Early Theatre 7, no. 2 (2004), pp. 9 – 31, pp. 24 and 14.  Julia Gasper, “The Sources of The Virgin Martyr,” The Review of English Studies 42 (1991), pp. 17– 31, p. 17.

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rary dramatizations of resistance to Islam,”⁴⁸ and certainly her argument would seem to receive support from the fact that when the British slave refuses to rape Dorothea, Saprinus orders “Binde him, and with a Bastinado giue him / Vpon his naked belly 200. blowes,”⁴⁹ the bastinado being a distinctively Eastern form of torture, often identified specifically with the Turks. This story, ostensibly about the historical Roman Empire, thus carries a clear set of allusions to the seventeenth-century Ottoman Empire, rather as Massinger’s later Believe As You List cheerfully substituted historical Romans for seventeenth-century Spaniards after the censor objected to the original version. In this play too we see a colour pattern structured around red, white, and black, and I want to suggest that this visual language tells a story of sanctity more clearly than the play dares do in words. In general, this play is cautious. There are certainly times when it does indeed sound Catholic. The future convert Antoninus says, Yet poyson still is poyson Though drunke in gold, and all these flattring glories To me, ready to starue, a painted banquet And no essentiall foode. (sig. C3v)

I have argued elsewhere that the plays of John Ford offer a sustained association between the purely symbolic communion of Protestantism and physical and spiritual starvation,⁵⁰ and a similar idea seems to be at work here, although it is at best a hint. There is also a richly ambiguous moment when Theophilus asks “how can stone smile, / Or woodden Image laugh?” (sig. K4v) and at that moment music sounds offstage: this is obviously theatre, but it is not obvious that it is not also a miracle. Equally though there are moments with a more Protestant flavour, as when Caliste and Christeta “both spit at the Image, throw it downe, and spurne it” (sig. G2r), in a visual image clearly redolent of the iconoclasm of the reformers. An anti-Spanish and hence implicitly anti-Catholic note seems to be sounded when Theophilus connects religiously motivated mass killings with the Pyrenees (sig. K3r), and this suggestion appears to be confirmed

 Jane Hwang Degenhardt, “Catholic Martyrdom in Dekker and Massinger’s The Virgin Martir and the Early Modern Threat of ‘Turning Turk,’” ELH 73, no. 1 (Spring 2006), pp. 83 – 117, pp. 84 and 85.  Philip Massinger, The Virgin Martyr (London: Bernard Allsop and Thomas Fawcet for Thomas Jones, 1631), sig. I1r. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this printing and reference will be given in the text.  Lisa Hopkins, John Ford’s Political Theatre (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1994).

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when he goes on to declare that “Tush, all these tortures are but phillipings” (sig. K3v), in what looks like an obvious glance at Philip of Spain. The play seems, then, to be hedging its bets. An area in which the play is particularly circumspect is sainthood. It was a tenet of Catholicism that the bodies of saints remained uncorrupted; Protestants dismissed this idea in principle and grew uneasy if it seemed to be true in practice. In The progenie of Catholics and Protestants (1633), Lawrence Anderton objected that Dr. Whitaker, although conceding that the body of St. Francis Xavier was found to be perfectly preserved and indeed sweetly scented, suggested that this might be the work of the devil.⁵¹ In 1583 Richard Eedes remarked that at Northampton “If perchance you ask the name of a church, they answer Nicholas’, John’s, Mary’s, or Thomas’, but don’t dare add the word Saint”;⁵² Dekker and Massinger seem to feel the same. When the discourse of saintliness first emerges in The Virgin Martyr, it is in a notably secularised sense, as Theophilus says of Antoninus Let him go with her, do seduc’d young man, And waite vpon thy saint in death, do, do. (sig. K1v)

His “saint” here is the woman he desires, just as Penthea in Ford’s The Broken Heart asks her lovelorn brother “Who is the saint you serve?”⁵³ Later, Macrinus says he will “saue innocent blood, a Saintlike act” (sig. L3r), but to be saintlike still falls short of being a saint, and Theophilus troubles the idea further when he exhorts his fellow Romans, no more As things vn worthy of your thoughts, remember What the canoniz’d Spartan ladies were Which lying Greece so bosts of, your owne matrons Your Romane dames whose figures you yet keepe As holy relickes in her historie Will find a second vrne. (sig. L3v)

 Lawrence Anderton, The progenie of Catholics and Protestants Whereby on the one side is proued the lineal descent of Catholicks, for the Roman faith and religion, from the holie fathers of the primitiue Church … (Rouen: the widow of Nicolas Courant, 1633), p. 32.  Richard Eedes, Iter Boreale (1583), translated and edited by Dana F. Sutton. Online: http:// www.philological.bham.ac.uk/eedes/.  John Ford, The Broken Heart, in John Ford: Three Plays, edited by Keith Sturgess (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 1970), 3.3.61.

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He goes on to list Cornelia, the mother of the Gracchi, the virtuous Roman matron Paulina, and Portia, the wife of Brutus, none of whom features in the actual calendar of saints. Not until the end of the play does Theophilus unambiguously call Dorothea a “Saint” (sig. L3v). The care with which the play treats the topic of sainthood is characteristic of its preferred mode of ambiguity, and a crucial aspect of this is its commitment to using language in playful, punning, and obviously non-literal senses. When Angelo says, “O! now your hearts make ladders of your eyes / In show to climbe to heauen, when your deuotion / Walkes vpon crutches” (sig. D2r), he uses a classic metaphysical conceit, a literary affiliation recurred to later when Spungius says “the fish you angle for is nibling at the hooke” (sig. E2r), recalling Donne’s “The Bait”; later, when Harpax tells Theophilus that he is “A Fisherman,” Theophilus asks “What doest thou catch” and Harpax punningly replies “Soules, soules, a fish cal’d soules” (sig. K4r). There is also verbal ambiguity of other sorts. Theophilus calls Dorothea “this Apostata” (sig. F2r), a word used again of her at sig. K1r, but although Theophilus means that she has forsaken paganism, the word was far more famously applied to those who had renounced Christianity, such as the emperor Julian the Apostate. Caliste’s “We come then as good Angels Dorothea” (sig. F3r) is similarly ambiguous, as too is Dorothea’s inclusion amongst the pagan gods of “Saturne bound fast in hell with adamant chaines” (sig. F4r), where we might easily hear a pun on “Satan.” Caliste’s “Oh that I had beene borne / Without a father” (sig. F4v) plays on two meanings of the word father, the divine and the biological, as does Angelo when he says “My father is in Heauen” (sig. D3v). The two meanings of Rome as both the seat of the empire and the seat of the papacy are also always in play, and perhaps the play’s most characteristic moment is the vagueness of the stage direction “Enter … a Hangman with Cordd in some vgly shape” (sig. I2r); as when Theophilus later says simply and unhelpfully “Great Britaine, what” (sig. K3v), something is presumably being used to convey something here, but the lack of specificity means we cannot be quite sure what either term of the equation might mean. When it comes to the language of colour, though, the play is far bolder. Black, inevitably, is bad: Angelo tells Spungius and Hircius “Your hearts to me lie open like blacke bookes” (sig. D2r), Antoninus speaks of “the blackest sinne / The villany of man did euer act” (sig. H5r), Theophilus says “now looke I backe / On my blacke Tyranies” (sig. L1v), and Harpax calls the devil “Blacke” (sig. H1v) and compares the probable anger of Artemisia to “ynck / Brew’d from the infernall Stix” (sig. E1v). Equally obviously, white is good. Describing Dorothea, Harpax effectively equates whiteness with virtue:

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that ghost of women, The bloudlesse Dorothaea, who in prayer And meditation (mocking all your gods) Drinkes vp her ruby colour, yet Antoninus Playes the Endymion to this pale fac’d Moone. (sig. E1v)

Later, Macrinus speaks to her of “the whitenes / Of your chast hand” (sig. E1r), and Theophilus too refers to “her white hand” (sig. L1v). Most striking is the final revelation of the whiteness and purity of all the play’s martyrs: Enter Dorothea in a white robe, crownes vpon her robe, a Crowne vpon her head, lead in by the Angell, Antoninus, Caliste and Christeta following all in white, but lesse glorious, the Angell with a Crowne for him. (sig. M1r)

However circumspect the play may be about the language of sainthood, it is prepared to be lavish with a colour which connotes purity, chastity, and spotlessness. Rather less predictably, however, there proves to be something even better than white, and that is white mixed with red. On its own, red is bad. Theophilus calls Spungius and Hircius his “fine white boyes,” but they disclaim this and call themselves his “red boyes” (sigs. E2v – r). Later, Theophilus tells Dorothea “I should looke on you / With eyes made red with fury” (sig. G2r). On three separate occasions, though, white mingled with red signals the conditions for, and atmosphere of, martyrdom. First, Harpax says to Sapritius, know your sonne, The nere enough commended Antoninus, So well hath fleshd his maiden sword, and died His snowy plumes so deepe in enemies blood, That besides publicke grace, beyond his hopes There are rewards propounded. (sig. B2v)

Next, the slave refuses to rape Dorothea, which is when Theophilus orders “with a Bastinado giue him / Vpon his naked belly 200. blowes” (sig. I1r). Finally, Angelo promises Theophilus that I then Will bring thee to a Riuer that shall wash Thy bloudy hands cleane, and more white then Snow. (sig. L1v)

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The mingling of white and red in the blood on the “maiden” sword, the bloodied white belly of the British slave, and the red hands of Theophilus whitened by the water all echo the red of the wine and the white of the bread in the mass and also have overtones of the reddening of the white stone of alchemy, not least in that the white stone itself is often imaged as a queen in white robes while the red stone is figured as the pelican, reddening its white breast to feed its young, as in Jonson’s The Alchemist where Face declares that “the retort brake, / And what was saved was put into the pelican.”⁵⁴ The pelican in turn is also a favourite image for the charity of Jesus, an idea with obvious relevance to The Virgin Martyr. It should not be surprising to find the language of alchemy in the play. Erin Obermueller observes: Baptista’s character draws from the experiences of limners in Massinger’s age. Though Nicholas Hilliard dies ten years before this play was written, his contribution to the miniature craft was substantial … His work with metals draws from alchemy.⁵⁵

In The Virgin Martyr I think two particular aspects of alchemical thought and language are of interest to Massinger and Dekker. First is the gendered element. I have already quoted Jane Hwang Degenhardt’s observation that “Christian resistance is exemplified through the chastity of the Christian woman,” and alchemy typically described the blending process it hoped to effect in gendered terms, as in The Alchemist where Surly speaks of “your red man, and your white woman” (2.3.192). It is notable that Dorothea’s own sanctity is repeatedly engaged in a symbiotic and mutually tempering exchange in which it both feeds and is fed by that of a man—the British slave, Theophilus, and Antoninus each in turn, not to mention Angelo, all exchanges which are spiritual and transformative in character. Second, as I have already suggested, there are strong religious connotations in alchemical language: the degree of success in alchemical experiments was thought to be linked to the degree of spiritual purity in the experimenter,⁵⁶ and Urszula Szulakowska notes the complex links between alchemical and eucharistic ideas in the thought of Robert Fludd,⁵⁷ while in The Al Ben Jonson, The Alchemist, in The Alchemist and Other Plays, edited by Gordon Campbell (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995), 2.3.77– 78. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.  Obermueller, “‘On Cheating Pictures,’” p. 97.  See for instance Benjamin Woolley, The Queen’s Conjuror (London: Flamingo, 2002), p. 278.  Urszula Szulakowska, “The Alchemical Medicine and Christology of Robert Fludd and Abraham von Franckenberg,” in Mystical Metal of Gold: Essays on Alchemy and Renaissance Culture, edited by Stanton J. Linden (New York: AMS Press, 2007), pp. 277– 98, p. 277.

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chemist, Mammon asks after “the sanguis agni?,” the blood of the lamb (2.2.29). When Subtle then asks Face “And when comes vivification?” and Face replies “After mortification” (2.5.25), Subtle says, F is come over the helm too, I thank my Maker, in St. Mary’s bath, And shows lac virginis. (2.3.60 – 62)

In alchemy, Massinger finds a schema in which the mingling of white and red connotes magic, miracle, and a sanctified perfection. Ultimately, then, the use of colour imagery and the use of settings in Malta, Tunis, Hungary, and the religious flashpoint of Caesarea are both working in the same way, in that both allow Massinger to recuperate imagery associated with Catholicism, either by smuggling it in under the sign of alchemical language or by instituting a structure which forces us to oppose it to Islam and/or paganism rather than Protestantism. In Othello, a play set mainly on the contested island of Cyprus, Shakespeare took an apparently simple black-white opposition and characteristically complicated and blurred it. By focusing on the sharp opposition of three clearly differentiated colours, however, Massinger ironically produces a much simpler, clearer picture in which by dislocating The Knight of Malta, The Renegado, The Virgin Martyr, and The Picture to the edge between Christianity and its others he has been able to draw the eye from the internal fissure closer to home between Protestantism and Catholicism. Finally, if you look hard enough at the edge, Rome may at last appear to be the centre. There cannot, however, be any mention of sanctified physical bodies or relics such as those which lay at its heart and gave it its raison d’être.

Part Two: Edges Abroad

Chapter 4 “Having passed Armenian deserts now”: Marlowe’s Tamburlaine the Great Goran Stanivukovic notes that “In a period in which frontiers were determined more by religion than by territory, the Mediterranean was considered to be at once familiar and strange. It was familiar because of the long history of the Crusades in the Holy Land and because of a more recent sense that Christians living in the old lands of Christianity, such as Armenia, were cut off by the Ottoman Empire from the Christian lands of Europe.”¹ Armenia was indeed a crucial territory, and this chapter will explore the way that Marlowe in particular represents its dangerous liminality. Shakespeare mentions Armenia only once. In Antony and Cleopatra, Caesar says of Antony, His sons he there proclaimed the kings of kings; Great Media, Parthia, and Armenia He gave to Alexander; to Ptolemy he assigned Syria, Cilicia, and Phoenicia.²

Here Armenia is lumped together with some other places to give a vague impression that it is somewhere in the east. Shakespeare probably knew more than that, though. He could have seen Armenia represented in maps by Ortelius and others, and some elements of Othello suggest that he might have heard of Caterina Cornaro, last queen of Cyprus, whose full title was Queen of Cyprus, Jerusalem, and Armenia.³ Above all, he was certainly familiar with Marlowe’s twopart play Tamburlaine the Great. The Tamburlaine plays, which are deeply imbricated in the story of the Ottoman-Safavid War of 1578 – 1590, are bookended by references to Armenia, in a way which clearly caught the eye of Robert Greene

 Goran V. Stanivukovic, “Introduction: Beyond the Olive Trees; Remapping the Mediterranean World in Early Modern English Writings,” in Remapping the Mediterranean World in Early Modern English Writings, edited by Goran V. Stanivukovic (Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan, 2007), pp. 1– 20, p. 6.  William Shakespeare, Antony and Cleopatra, edited by John Wilders (London: Bloomsbury, 1995), 3.6.13 – 16. Later Caesar, speaking of Antony, refers briefly to “his Armenia / And other of his conquered kingdoms” (3.6.36 – 37).  See Lisa Hopkins, Greeks and Trojans on the Early Modern English Stage (Berlin: De Gruyter; Kalamazoo, MI: Medieval Institute Publications, 2020). https://doi.org/10.1515/9781501514159-006

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when he attempted to imitate the style of Tamburlaine in his play Alphonsus, King of Aragon: You, Bajazet, go post away apace To Syria, Scythia and Albania, To Babylon, with Mesopotamia, Asia, Armenia and all other lands Which owe their homage to high Amurack.⁴

Armenia lay as a buffer zone between the two warring powers; its modern capital Yerevan, in the shadow of Mount Ararat, changed hands fourteen times between 1513 and 1737 and was a crucial territory in the conflict. Dickran Kouymjian notes that “[Sultan] Murad decided that no major attack on Persia could be undertaken if the Ottoman border areas were not firmly secured. Therefore, in 1582 he ordered the repair of the fortresses of Erevan [Yerevan] and Kars. By 1584 the Ottomans had stabilized their control over northern Armenia, Georgia, Shirvan, and Dagestan.”⁵ Both parts of Tamburlaine were performed in 1587, by which time Armenia has been on a war footing for five years, and this sense of it being a dangerous frontier territory is crucial to Marlowe’s three mentions of it. In Part One of Tamburlaine, the Persian king Cosroe’s titles include “Great lord of Media and Armenia”⁶ and Meander says that the Persian troops have passed Armenian deserts now And pitched our tents under the Georgian hills, Whose tops are covered with Tartarian thieves That lie in ambush waiting for a prey. (2.2.14– 17)

There is a double time perspective here, for Armenia was not a “desert” before Tamburlaine had crossed it: Simon Payaslian notes that “In the spring of 1386, his forces marched from Tabriz to Siunik, captured Nakhevijevan, and thereafter advanced to Erzerum and Georgia … as he continued his conquests in the name

 Robert Greene, The Comical History of Alphonsus, King of Aragon, in Three Romances of Eastern Conquest, edited by Ladan Niayesh (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2018), 3.2.58 – 62.  Dickran Kouymjian, “Armenia from the Fall of the Cilician Kingdom (1375) to the Forced Emigration under Shah Abbas (1604),” in The Armenian People from Ancient to Modern Times, edited by Richard G. Hovanissian (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1997), vol. 2, pp. 1– 50, p. 18.  Christopher Marlowe, Tamburlaine the Great, in The Complete Plays, edited by Mark Thornton Burnett (London: J. M. Dent, 1999), Part One, 1.1.163. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.

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of Islam until his death on February 18, 1405 the city of Van and most Armenian cities across the land were devastated.”⁷ The country had barely recovered when a further disaster befell it: Dickran Kouymjian cites a 1426 Armenian record which says that Iskandar, chief of the Kara Koyunlu, “made the Armenian homeland like a desert.”⁸ Marlowe might conceivably have been thinking of this damaged Armenia of the early fifteenth century, but it is more likely that his language is coloured by the Ottoman-Safavid conflict, for that is clearly in his thoughts throughout both the Tamburlaine plays, which are as much about the sixteenth-century present as the fifteenth-century past; as John Gillies observes, “Marlowe invests his fifteenth-century Mongolian conqueror with a late-sixteenth-century geographic imagination.”⁹ There is doubleness at work in another way too: Meander implies that the Persians are taking the fight to the “Tartarian thief” Tamburlaine, but at the end of Part Two, Tamburlaine’s own recollection is that he was advancing on them: Here I began to march towards Persia, Along Armenia and the Caspian Sea, And thence unto Bithynia, where I took The Turk and his great Empress prisoners. (Part Two, 5.3.127– 30)

Either way, the corridor between himself and the Persians runs “along Armenia.” In both parts of the play, Armenia is thus an edge territory, a gateway between East and West, specifically between both Persia and Turkey but also, implicitly, between Persia and Russia. Russia, broadly speaking, is where Marlowe understands Tamburlaine as coming from. In Richard Knolles’s influential The Turkish History, first printed in 1603, Tamburlaine is simply “the great Tartarian Prince Tamerlane,”¹⁰ and on Abraham’s Ortelius 1570 map Theatrum Orbis Terrarum, which we know Marlowe used, “Tartaria” is written a little way above “Moskow” and “Volga fl.” (i. e. fluvius, meaning river). A little further down from those sits Armenia, coloured

 Simon Payaslian, The History of Armenia (Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan, 2007), p. 105.  Kouymjian, “Armenia from the Fall of the Cilician Kingdom (1375) to the Forced Emigration under Shah Abbas (1604),” p. 4.  John Gillies, “Tamburlaine and Renaissance Geography,” in Early Modern English Drama: A Critical Companion, edited by Garrett A. Sullivan, Jr., Patrick Cheney, and Andrew Hadfield (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2006), pp. 35 – 49, p. 37.  Richard Knolles, The Turkish History, from the Original of That Nation, to the Growth of the Ottoman Empire (London: Forgotten Books, 2018), p. 144.

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green in some editions to show that it is a separate territory,¹¹ which is shown as having borders with Asia, the Caspian Sea, Persia, Arabia, Anatolia, and the Black Sea as well as access to the Persian Gulf, and also as including Trebizond and Soria, both of whose kings are enslaved by Tamburlaine. Looking at Ortelius’s map, Marlowe would have thought of a Tamburlaine who emerged through Armenia as being able to choose from at least four directions in which he could advance: into Persia, into Arabia, into Anatolia, and towards Egypt, which is shown as being nearly contiguous to Armenia, and hence into Africa. He could even have moved down into India, or across to China. Historically, the real Timur the Lame did all of those things: By 1370 he had made himself master of the Chagatai. Between 1380 and 1390 he embarked upon the conquest of Iran, Mesopotamia (modern Iraq), Armenia and Georgia. In 1390 he invaded the Russian lands, returning a few years later to wreck the capital of the Golden Horde, the Mongol Regime in modern South Russia. In 1398 he led a vast plundering raid into North India, crushing its Muslim readers and demolishing Delhi. Then in 1400 he returned to the Middle East to capture Aleppo and Damascus … before defeating and capturing the Ottoman sultan Bayazet at the Battle of Ankara in 1402.¹²

Emerging from his native Samarkand through modern-day Iran, the actual Timur basically captured everywhere he could reach before dying on his way to China, and as Kouymjian notes he “marched through Armenia three times on campaigns of terror and destruction as he passed from his base in the distant east to the shores of the Aegean.”¹³ In Marlowe’s play, though, he focuses first on Persia. Laurence Publicover argues that “At the heart of Travels’ persuasive strategies lies its presentation of Turks: the play attempts to convince its audience of the wisdom of an alliance with Persia against the Ottomans by drawing clear distinctions between the two Muslim peoples.”¹⁴ In Tamburlaine, Matthew Dimmock points out that “the well

 Paul Binding, Imagined Corners: Exploring the World’s First Atlas (London: Headline Book Publishing, 2003), inside cover.  John Darwin, After Tamerlane: The Rise and Fall of Global Empires, 1400 – 2000 (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 2008), p. 4.  Kouymjian, “Armenia from the Fall of the Cilician Kingdom (1375) to the Forced Emigration under Shah Abbas (1604),” p. 3.  Laurence Publicover, Dramatic Geography: Romance, Intertextuality, and Cultural Encounter in Early Modern Mediterranean Drama (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017), p. 149. He notes that “When Robert travelled to England in 1611 as Shah Abbas’s second ambassador, an episode at James’s court suggested doubts as to the youngest Sherley’s allegiance: much to James’s anger, Robert refused, at least initially, to remove his turban in the king’s presence”

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known contemporary division between the Ottoman Empire and Persia is emphasized, curiously, in favour of Persia,” even though “references to Persia and the complex political and religious situation on the fringes of the Ottoman Empire are few in material dealing with the “turke” in the early part of the century.”¹⁵ This could be because Tamburlaine’s lieutenant Usumcasane was identified in some texts as not only the “successor of Tamerlan” but also “the first Sophi, whe[n]ce now is deriued the empire of Sophi, whiche liueth this daie, as sworne enimie to the Turke,” but Dimmock suggests that there is also a typically Marlovian refusal of orthodoxy at work: By focusing upon the Persian and Ottoman, Marlowe crucially inverts the prevailing tenets of late Elizabethan foreign policy, which … sought primarily to supply the continual Ottoman demand for arms and armaments with which to combat the Persians and subsequently to draw the Ottomans away from such a war and into a militantly anti-Spanish coalition following the conquest of Portugal in 1580. In doing so, he also presages the policies of James I, who famously favoured the Persians over the Ottomans.¹⁶

For Dimmock, Marlowe is taking the exact opposite line from the Elizabethan government, and certainly he had form in opposing state-sponsored priorities. I want to suggest, though, that Marlowe is concerned to do quite a bit more than this in the Tamburlaine plays, and that the fact that the plays open and close with references to Armenia is a crucial part of his project. In the first place, I think Marlowe is engaging with the legacy of the Bible, and with subsequent dramatic representations of some of the material it contains. This is something he is much given to doing: Doctor Faustus mentions Jerome’s Bible;¹⁷ I have argued elsewhere that The Jew of Malta is influenced by mystery plays;¹⁸ and a piece of textual criticism involving the Bible—that “the New Testament is filthily written”—may have been one of the factors that brought Marlowe himself to an early death.¹⁹ A search for “Armenia” on EEBO-TCP makes it clear that there were two things everyone in early modern England knew: that (p. 161) and that “One stage direction, ‘Enter ROBERT and other Persians’ (7.0), captures the sense developed elsewhere that Robert is no longer quite an Englishman” (p. 163).  Matthew Dimmock, New Turkes: Dramatizing Islam and the Ottomans in Early Modern England (Aldershot, UK: Ashgate, 2005), pp. 137 and 138.  Dimmock, New Turkes, pp. 138 – 39 and 141.  Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus, A text, in Christopher Marlowe: The Complete Plays, edited by Mark Thornton Burnett (London: J. M. Dent, 1999), 1.1.38.  Lisa Hopkins, “Moving Marlowe: The Jew of Malta on the Caroline Stage,” Marlowe Studies 6 (2016), pp. 1– 16.  See for instance Charles Nicholl, The Reckoning: The Murder of Christopher Marlowe, rev. ed. (London: Vintage, 2002), p. 363.

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Noah’s ark came to rest there, and that it had a heroic king called Tigranes. Tamburlaine is a little like Tigranes, but his three sons and his travels mean he is more like Noah, a figure familiar to early modern audiences from both the Bible and mystery plays. (Even though no cycle survives from Marlowe’s home town of Canterbury, Kenneth Pickering argues that there is likely to have been one; intriguingly, one of his key pieces of evidence is a reference to a Pageant of St. Thomas,²⁰ a figure whom Tamburlaine seems to recall when he invites his three sons to probe the wound in his arm.) Edward George Cole notes that at least two mystery plays which do survive pun on Armenia/harmony,²¹ and “harmony” occurs twice in the Tamburlaine the Great plays, first when Tamburlaine says Zenocrate’s speech is “more pleasant than sweet harmony” (Part One, 3.3.121) and secondly when he laments her imminent death: And in this sweet and curious harmony The god that tunes this music to our souls Holds out his hand in highest majesty To entertain divine Zenocrate. (Part Two, 2.4.30 – 33)

Of course Marlowe might have been drawn to the word for other reasons, but it is not inconceivable that he was aware that “harmony” could be connected to Armenia. He does seem to have been thinking of one thing to which Armenia was definitely connected in mystery plays, and that is the story of Noah. Noah was a survivor, a man associated with the dove of peace, but also a figure of division, since his three sons were understood as the fathers of three different races. Colin P. Mitchell reminds us that Noah was not an exclusively biblical or implicitly Christian figure when he draws attention to one of the more popular Prophetic traditions—among both Shi’ites and Sunnis … whereby the Prophet stated: “Behold! My Family are like the Ark of Noah, whoever embarked in it was saved, and whoever turned away from it was drowned.”²²

 Kenneth Pickering, The Mysteries at Canterbury Cathedral (Worthing, UK: Churchman Publishing, 1986), p. x.  Edward George Cole, “Obedience, Disorder and Grace in the Noah Mystery Plays” (unpublished MA thesis, McMaster University, 1982), p. 64. Online: https://macsphere.mcmaster.ca/bit stream/11375/9231/1/fulltext.pdf.  Colin P. Mitchell, The Practice of Politics in Safavid Iran: Power, Religion and Rhetoric (London: I. B. Tauris, 2012), p. 36.

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To speak of Noah thus reminds us that while Armenia and Georgia were Christian from a very early period, their neighbours were not. In the fraught corridor between Russia, Persia, Turkey, and India a mention of an unspecified “God” must inevitably beg the question, and the same uncertainty is also implicit in Tamburlaine, especially when we wonder whether or not to read Tamburlaine’s death as a consequence of his offending Allah. Finally, Noah raises the question of relationship of humans to the countries in which they live. That Armenia famously has a diaspora larger than its population is not a new phenomenon: Boghos Levon Zekiyan observes that already by the mediaeval period “the combination of progressive Turkish (and Kurdish) immigration and Armenian decline … changed the demographic balance … Armenians ceased to constitute the majority of the population. Armenian emigration swelled the number of Armenians in the diaspora, in the Byzantine Empire, Cyprus and other centers on the Mediterranean and Black Sea coasts.”²³ At the same time, though, Razmik Panossian suggests that “Being autochthonous to the land is one of the most important themes in nationalist discourse. In this respect Armenians do indeed go very far back. The date accepted by mainstream historians for the existence of a distinct Armenian collective is the sixth century BC.”²⁴ But even without historical warrant, no one could possibly be more autochthonous than the descendants of Noah, since according to the terms of the myth there were no humans living anywhere other than Mount Ararat in the years after the flood; by definition, then, indigenous Armenians were more closely tied to their territory than any other nation on earth, and thus present a stark contrast to Tamburlaine, who roams far away from his birthplace. Mark Thornton Burnett suggests that “A crucial component of Tamburlaine’s ‘astounding’ effect is his combination of social mobility and ethnic marginality”;²⁵ his sheer geographical mobility is equally a part of it. I shall suggest that like Noah and his sons, Tamburlaine too can be seen as the subject of a tripartite division, being simultaneously understandable as Scythian, Russian, and Greek, and that he, like Noah helplessly afloat in his ark and unsure where he will find land, thus becomes an emblem of geopolitical and religious uncertainty. I am also going to take up Emrys Jones’s suggestion that Mar-

 Boghos Levon Zekiyan, “Christianity to Modernity,” in The Armenians: Past and Present in the Making of National Identity, edited by Edmund Herzig and Marina Kurkchiyan (London: Routledge, 2005) pp. 41– 64, p. 46.  Razmik Panossian, The Armenians: From Kings and Priests to Merchants and Commissars (New York: Columbia University Press, 2006), p. 33.  Mark Thornton Burnett, “Tamburlaine the Great, Parts One and Two,” in The Cambridge Companion to Christopher Marlowe, edited by Patrick Cheney (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004), pp. 127– 43, p. 130.

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lowe’s vision of how land might be represented has something in common with the sixteenth-century German painters of the Danube School, and consequently invites us to see territories not in isolation but as conditioned and configured by their contiguity with their neighbours, in ways which prohibit any single or monolithic understanding of geopolitical identity. Tamburlaine and his victorious army respect none of the established borders of his world. In the second part, his follower Theridamas announces, Thus have we marched northward from Tamburlaine, Unto the frontier point of Soria; And this is Balsera, their chiefest hold, Wherein is all the treasure of the land. (Part Two, 3.3.1– 4)

Theridamas has reached a place he recognises as a frontier point, but he is clearly not proposing to pause meekly at it and invite the border guards to check that his paperwork is in order; instead he obviously intends to pillage it, with the clear implication that it will soon cease to be a frontier post at all and become part of Tamburlaine’s rapidly expanding empire. However, Tamburlaine is also a figure who puts a particularly revealing kind of pressure on the edges of early modern Christendom, and he does this partly because he crosses chronological boundaries as well as temporal ones. Historically, Timur the Lame was an Uzbek warlord who lived from 1336 to 1405, but Marlowe’s Tamburlaine is shaped less by early modern discourses about Uzbekistan than by more temporally fluid ones about Scythians, which had their roots in the classical world but continued to be deployed by Marlowe’s contemporaries. From the perspective of the Tamburlaine plays, to be Scythian is thus to be temporally rootless, and it is also to be geographically estranged: Herodotus, the major classical source for the understanding of Scythia, notes both that “The Scythians say that they are the youngest of all nations” and that “Once across the Tanais, one has left Scythia behind.”²⁶ The Tanaïs, the classical name for the River Don, was regarded as the dividing line between Europe and the Asiatic steppes. To live beyond the Tanaïs is the metaphorical equivalent of living beyond the Irish pale; these are people who are both new and remote, and who are outside traditional frameworks both historically and spatially. As befits a people who live in such a location, Herodotus’s Scythians are savage: he goes on to declare that they drink from skulls, and that “As regards war,

 Herodotus, The Histories, translated by Aubrey de Sélincourt [1954] (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 2003), pp. 241 and 247.

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the Scythian custom is for every man to drink the blood of the first man he kills. The heads of all enemies killed in battle are taken to the king; if he brings a head, a soldier is admitted to his share of the loot; no head, no loot.”²⁷ Herodotus’s Scythians are exotic in other ways too: he speaks of them using hemp, which makes them “howl with pleasure.”²⁸ Moreover, E. V. Stepanova and S. V. Pankova note that although ancient writers don’t specify that Scythians were tattooed, several mention that their neighbours were, and Clearchus of Soli wrote of Scythian women forcibly tattooing Thracian ones.²⁹ Perhaps, then, we need to imagine Tamburlaine as being wild and bad in even more ways than we might have previously supposed. But then anyone who had read Spenser’s A View of the Present State of Ireland knew that Scythians were wild and bad, because they were the ancestors of the Irish, and also of some of the Scots: Spenser refers scornfully to “the Scythian or Scottish manners” and says that the Irish “have another custome from the Scythians, that is the wearing of Mantles, and long glibbes, which is a thicke curled bush of haire, hanging downe over their eyes, and monstrously disguising them, which are both very bad and hurtfull.”³⁰ Tamburlaine’s Scythianness is sometimes announced explicitly, as when the Soldan says, “Awake, ye men of Memphis! Hear the clang / Of Scythian trumpets!” (Part One, 4.1.1– 2), and sometimes established by association. Tamburlaine’s Scythian identity can for instance be seen as configuring his family troubles in Part Two. In the Histories, Herodotus recounts both the Scythians’ own version of their origins and the Greek one, and both involve one of three brothers winning supremacy over the other two. In the Scythians’ own version Colaxais succeeds although he is the youngest because he is able to pick up gold objects which fall from the heavens while the other two are beaten back by flames.³¹ Tamburlaine also has three sons, and Zenocrate explicitly connects the youngest with Scythia when she says, This lovely boy, the youngest of the three, Not long ago bestrid a Scythian steed, Trotting the ring, and tilting at a glove. (Part Two, 1.3.38 – 42)

 Herodotus, The Histories, pp. 260 – 61.  Herodotus, The Histories, p. 264.  E. V. Stepanova and S. V. Pankova, “Personal Appearance,” in Scythians: Warriors of Ancient Siberia, edited by St. John Simpson and Svetlana Pankova (London: Thames and Hudson, 2017), pp. 88 – 151, p. 95.  Edmund Spenser, A View of the Present State of Ireland, edited by Andrew Hadfield and Willy Maley (Oxford: Blackwell, 1997), pp. 55 and 56.  Herodotus, The Histories, pp. 241– 43.

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Another aspect of Tamburlaine’s life as a father also chimes with what Herodotus says about Scythian customs, which is that they cover their quivers with skin from “the right hands and arms of dead enemies” and as part of the mourning ritual they “make circular incisions on their arms, gash their foreheads and noses, and thrust arrows through their left hands”;³² Tamburlaine too cuts his arm after the death of Zenocrate as part of his attempt to make his sons into warriors. The Scythians are indeed at their most barbaric when it comes to death. When Zenocrate dies, Tamburlaine apostrophises her corpse, Where’er her soul be, thou shalt stay with me, Embalmed with cassia, ambergris, and myrrh, Not lapped in lead but in a sheet of gold, And till I die thou shalt not be interred. (Part Two, 2.4.129 – 31)

Partly this draws on the well-understood connection between Scythians and gold: a Persian soldier says of Tamburlaine’s troops that “about their necks / Hangs massy chains of gold down to the waist” (Part One, 1.2.125 – 26), and Tamburlaine himself commands, Lay out our golden wedges to the view, That their reflections may amaze the Persians. (Part One, 1.2.139 – 40)

But it also speaks to another aspect of Scythian culture noted by Herodotus, which is that dead rulers are embalmed and given a corpse guard of realistically posed dead men and dead horses: the corpse is laid in the tomb on a mattress, with spears fixed in the ground on either side to support a roof of withies laid on wooden poles, while in other parts of the great square pit various members of the king’s household are buried beside him … At the end of a year another ceremony takes place: they take fifty of the best of the king’s remaining servants, strangle and gut them, stuff the bodies with chaff, and sew them up again … Fifty of the finest horses are then subject to the same treatment … stout poles are driven lengthwise through the horses from tail to neck … The bodies of the men are dealt with in a similar way: straight poles are driven up through the neck, parallel with the spine, and the lower protruding ends fitted into sockets in the stakes which run through the horses … When horses and riders are all in place around the tomb, they are left there, and the mourners go away.³³

 Herodotus, The Histories, pp. 260 and 263.  Herodotus, The Histories, pp. 262– 63.

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Both Tamburlaine and his Scythian forebears, as described by Herodotus, contest death, and to do this they seek to preserve dead bodies and to keep them posed as if they were alive, blurring the boundary between the living and the dead and, as in Hoffman, implicitly proposing a wholly physicalised understanding of death which is antithetical to the values of Christendom. At the same time, though, Tamburlaine’s ostensibly Scythian identity blurs into three others. To a certain extent, he is a Turk. Jerry Brotton observes that the Ottomans were “misunderstood as descendants of the Trojans or Scythians,”³⁴ and among Tamburlaine’s challenges to borders is his envisaging of a prototype Suez canal (Part Two, 5.3.132– 35); Roger Crowley notes that the vizier Sokollu Mehmet “ordered the construction of a Suez canal” and that one of the Sultan’s titles was “Distributor of Crowns to the Rulers of the Surface of the Earth,”³⁵ a term which would also fit Tamburlaine. He is also repeatedly associated with Russia. This may not seem strange to modern European audiences because Scythians have been associated with Russia since Peter the Great first began to collect Scythian artefacts, and when the British Museum mounted an exhibition on “Scythians: Warriors of Ancient Siberia” in 2017– 2018 they were anxious to frame the story of the Scythians in a Russian context; this was partly because much of the material was lent from the Hermitage, but the Palekh boxes and matrioshka dolls on sale in the shop tended to enlist the Scythians themselves in the service of a Russian past. Connecting Tamburlaine to Russia would also have made sense to the play’s original audiences, but for different reasons. Dimmock notes that “English attempts to find a continental route through Russia to the spice trade and ‘Asia the lesse’ pioneered by explorer-traders like Anthonie Jenkinson and recorded by Hakluyt present an appreciation of the way in which mercantile significance was mapped and offer a context for the geo-political dimension of the play as a whole,” and suggests that “rather than a ‘radical’ vision of meaningless and undifferentiated space, Tamburlaine presents the opposite, a relentless catalogue of goods and trading locations reminiscent of the reports of Jenkinson and others that begins to open the east to the English mercantile gaze”: “It is exactly this geographical scope, relished and scrutinized in both parts of Tamburlaine, that the officially sanctioned Muscovy and Levant companies sought to exploit, the object of the former ‘Persia, with detours through Russia’ … and the latter the riches of the Ottoman Empire.”³⁶ The goods and trade

 Jerry Brotton, This Orient Isle [2016] (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 2017), p. 51.  Roger Crowley, Empires of the Sea: The Final Battle for the Mediterranean, 1521 – 1580 (London: Faber and Faber, 2008), pp. 206 and 194.  Dimmock, New Turkes, pp. 136 and 137.

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routes associated with Tamburlaine are thus also those which Marlowe’s audience would associate with Russia. To connect Tamburlaine to Russia also chimes with Marlowe’s implied suggestion of parallels between Tamburlaine and Ivan the Terrible, who was described by the English emissary Jerome Horsey as “a right Scythian.”³⁷ When Tamburlaine is termed “the rogue of Volga” (Part Two, 4.1.4), the play unequivocally pronounces him Russian, and yet Richard Wilson suggests that what he really embodies is not Muscovy itself but the (English) Muscovy Company: “the hero’s campaign ‘to march towards Persia, / Along Armenia and the Caspian Sea’ … accords exactly with Company goals; while even his plan to circumnavigate ‘along the oriental sea about the Indian continent … from Persepolis to Mexico, / And thence unto the Straits of Jubalter [and] the British shore’ … simply retraces the Company’s 1583 voyage to the Moluccas via South America.”³⁸ One of the things Tamburlaine promises Zenocrate is that “Thy garments shall be made of Median silk” (Part One, 1.2.95); “‘For the silk of the Medes to come by Muscovy into England is a strange hearing,’ exclaimed the English ambassador in Paris, when he learned of the new passage to Asia,”³⁹ making exactly the same connection, while Sheila R. Canby notes that in 1603 – 1604 Shah “ʼAbbas forcibly relocated a group of Armenians to Iran because of ‘the Armenians’ preexisting familial and trade networks across Turkey into Europe and in India, which led to their being considered ideal agents for the development of the market for both raw silk and woven textiles and carpets.”⁴⁰ We know that Marlowe was interested in silk, since one of the goals of Doctor Faustus is to “fill the public schools with silk,”⁴¹ and he may even have known someone exotic who was connected with the silk trade: Duncan Salkeld notes that “Reasonable Blackman,” a resident of early modern Southwark of African descent, “had a trade as a silkweaver and possibly worked, so Imtiaz Habib has argued, in making costumes for the theatre industry on Bankside.”⁴² Tamburlaine’s choice of silk as a commodity to value, which is echoed in Mycetes’s pride at being “Embossed with silk as best beseems my state” (Part One, 1.1.99) and Callapine’s promise that Al-

 Richard Wilson, “Visible Bullets: Tamburlaine the Great and Ivan the Terrible,” ELH 62 (1995), pp. 47– 68, p. 47.  Wilson, “Visible Bullets,” p. 50.  Wilson, “Visible Bullets,” p. 48.  Sheila R. Canby, Shah ‘Abbas: The Remaking of Iran (London: The British Museum Press, 2009), pp. 25 – 26.  Marlowe, Doctor Faustus, 1.1.92.  Duncan Salkeld, Shakespeare and London (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018), p. 146.

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meda shall have “A hundred bassoes clothed in crimson silk” to ride before him (Part Two, 1.2.46), is thus not likely to have been an innocent or random one, but one made in awareness of trade routes, and it also potentially offers another glance at Armenia, since before the silk reached Russia it had to travel through Armenia: Kouymjian notes of the late 1570s, “Earlier Süleyman had banned the trade of silk from Persia. It was just at this troubled moment that much of the silk trade was taken over by Armenian merchants.”⁴³ Finally Wilson further suggests that “It might have been news of how the barbarous Scythian struck his heir dead for commiserating with his victims that suggested Tamburlaine’s (otherwise unsourced) murder of his pacifist son Calyphas.”⁴⁴ Tamburlaine is, then, both Russian (in that he is like Ivan) and not Russian (in that he shares the aims and trajectory of the Muscovy Company), another aspect of the way in which he is the stranger whom we see in the glass. Tamburlaine is also Greek, in ways which stress the permeability of the border between East and West. The play version of The Seven Champions of Christendom ends with George declaring. No more good Macedon: pray lead the way, Wee’le see your Nuptiall Rites, That taske once done, We must abroad for fame of Christendome.⁴⁵

Macedon as understood here seems to be on the edge of Christendom, somewhere recognisable and comfortable but very close to “abroad,” while in Jane Lumley’s Iphigenia at Aulis, Agamemnon tells his servant to carry his letter to Clytemnestra “into grece” and tells Clytemnestra herself that she would be better “amongst your other daughters at grece”;⁴⁶ again we are somewhere which is not in Greece but to which it is very easy for Greeks to come and go. In Robert Greene’s The comical history of Alphonsus, King of Aragon Amurack, the Great Turk, has a daughter called Iphigina. The Greece of Tamburlaine seems similarly precariously positioned, and its liminality is also inflected by the precarity of Persia. Richard N. Frye notes that “Western ideas about the

 Kouymjian, “Armenia from the Fall of the Cilician Kingdom (1375) to the Forced Emigration under Shah Abbas (1604),” p. 18.  Wilson, “Visible Bullets,” p. 62.  J[ohn] K[irke], The Seven Champions of Christendom (London: J. Okes for James Becket, 1638), sig. L3r.  Jane Lumley, Iphigenia at Aulis (Charles Whittingham for the Malone Society, 1909), line 700.

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early Persians derived, of course, from their enemies the Greeks,”⁴⁷ and Catherine Nixon observes that when the Academy in Athens was closed down in AD 532 the philosophers set off for Persia because they had heard that King Khosrow was a lover of philosophy and of all things Greek.⁴⁸ Khosrow I reigned from 531 to 579 and his name became a generic term for the Sasanian kings of Persia, being amongst other things the source of Marlowe’s Cosroe; his grandson Khosrow II reigned intermittently from 590 to 628 and his battles with the Byzantine emperor Heraclius are depicted in Piero della Francesca’s fresco cycle The History of the True Cross in Arezzo, suggesting how easily Persians could be cast as enemies of Christendom. David Frye notes that “Tradition attributes the new Persian border walls to Shah Koshrow I (r. 531– 79),” who “is said to have constructed more than twenty new walls throughout the Caucasus and several more east of the Caspian,” but that “Khosrow had walled the wrong borders … The Empire, with its dozens of north-facing walls, was taken from the south.”⁴⁹ Not only is Tamburlaine opposed to the Persians, but his enemies are the enemies of Greece: Bajazeth, his main opponent in the first play, says Tamburlaine “thinks to rouse us from our dreadful siege / Of the famous Grecian Constantinople” (Part One, 3.1.6) and refers to himself as “conqueror of Graecia” (Part One, 3.1.24). Tamburlaine himself, by contrast, is repeatedly associated with Greece. Apostrophising his future wife, he rhapsodises, Zenocrate, lovelier than the love of Jove, Brighter than is the silver Rhodope, Fairer than whitest snow on Scythian hills. (Part One, 1.2.87– 89)

This is Scythian in one sense—Herodotus lists amongst the rivers of Scythia “the Scios, flowing from Paeonia and Mt Rhodope through the Haemus mountains”⁵⁰— but the reference to Jove Hellenises it. The same conjunction of Greece and Scythia is found again when Tamburlaine swears “by the love of Pylades and Orestes, / Whose statues we adore in Scythia” (Part One, 1.2.241– 42), and there is a similar tension at work when Menaphon says Tamburlaine has “a knot of amber hair / Wrappèd in curls, as fierce Achilles’ was” (Part One, 2.1.23 – 24). Achilles is a Greek hero, but Herodotus, listing the rivers of Scythia, notes that “The Hypacyris, the sixth river, flows from a lake right through the territory of the Scythian no-

   

Richard N. Frye, Persia, rev. ed. (London: George Allen and Unwin, 1968), p. 26. Catherine Nixon, The Darkening Age (London: Pan, 2018), p. 242. David Frye, Walls: A History of Civilization (London: Faber and Faber, 2018), pp. 150 –51 and 154. Herodotus, The Histories, p. 256.

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mads, and reaches the sea near Carcinitis, leaving Hylaea and the place called Achilles’ Racecourse to the right.”⁵¹ The stretch of land known as Achilles’ Racecourse is in modern Ukraine, a place whose name translates as “on the edge” and whose twenty-first-century history has tragically illustrated its liminality, so Achilles is also a figure who can be geographically distanced from Greece; indeed recent scholars have also suggested that “It is possible that the Scythians assimilated Greek myths to their own religious ideas, so that, for example, Achilles became a counterpart to Colaxaïs.”⁵² In this sense, Scythians are the uncanny doubles of Greeks, poised between an Asiatic and a European identity. Particularly suggestive is the story told by Herodotus of the Scythian king Scylas, who had a Greek mother: During his reign, Scylas, as a result of the education his mother had given him, found himself discontented with the traditional way of life in Scythia, and powerfully attracted by Greek ideas. Whenever, therefore, he went with his army to the Greek settlement of the Borysthenites—these people claim to have come originally from Miletus—his custom was to leave his men outside the wall and enter the town himself. Then, when the gates were barred behind him, and the townspeople on the watch to prevent any of the Scythians seeing what he was up to, he would change into Greek clothes, stroll about the streets without any sort of bodyguard or personal attendant, take part in religious ceremonies and behave in every way as if he were a Greek himself. Often a month or more would go by, before he would change back into his Scythian clothes and leave for home.⁵³

Eventually the Scythians discover that he has attended the festival of Dionysus and he is deposed and beheaded, but not before he has comprehensively demonstrated his ability to “pass” in both cultures. The Scythians might have been amongst those to whom the Greeks would have applied the term they themselves invented, “barbarous,” but the edge between the two territories is clearly a remarkably porous one. With this in mind, I want to go back to the Tamburlaine plays’ two mentions of Armenia. Armenia has a strong claim to being regarded as the world’s first Christian country. Tamburlaine’s own religious identity is unclear. One might assume him to be godless, but he has helped Christians: a Babylonian citizen tells the governor that it is worth appealing to Tamburlaine’s mercy because “Yet are there Christians of Georgia here / Whose state he ever pitied and relieved” (Part Two,

 Herodotus, The Histories, p. 258.  A. Yu. Alexeyev, E. F. Korolkova, T. V. Rjabkova, and E. V. Stepanova, “The Scythians and Their Cultural Contacts,” in Scythians: Warriors of Ancient Siberia, edited by St. John Simpson and Svetlana Pankova (London: Thames and Hudson, 2017), pp. 276 – 321, p. 280.  Herodotus, The Histories, p. 266.

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5.1.31– 32). Dimmock suggests that “Tamburlaine’s own conception of religion is rarely considered,” but notes that “Foxe, Bright’s abridgement, and Marlowe all acknowledge to varying degrees that Tamburlaine works on behalf of an explicitly Christian God, in responding to Christian suffering” and chastising those who inflict it.⁵⁴ Dimmock also argues, though, that religious uncertainty is much more prominent in Part Two and that “Marlowe begins to interrogate a Muslim side to his hero in this second part.”⁵⁵ I think this is partly because Part Two is overtly positioned as trembling on the edge of Christendom. Very early on, Uribassa declares, King Sigismond hath brought from Christendom More than his camp of stout Hungarians, Slavonians, Almains, Rutters, Muffs, and Danes. (Part Two, 1.1.20 – 23)

Clearly we are out of Christendom, since these troops have come “from” it, but equally clearly we are within travelling distance of it for a large and diverse army. Moreover, what happens here has the potential to affect Christendom, as we see when Orcanes says, The wand’ring sailors of proud Italy Shall meet those Christians fleeing with the tide, Beating in heaps against their argosies, And make fair Europe, mounted on her bull, Trapped with the wealth and riches of the world, Alight and wear a woeful mourning weed. (Part Two, 1.1.39 – 46)

This manic passage is characterised chiefly by confusion over who is who and where they are going. Are “The wand’ring sailors of proud Italy” sixteenthcentury Venetians and Genoese, or does the term “Italy” perhaps invite us to think of Aeneas, and maybe of his Roman descendants too? Whoever they are, why are they sailing against the tide, as they must be if they are to encounter Christians who are fleeing with it? What happens when the two groups meet— do they sail through each other, or does the arrival of one change the intentions of the other? Finally, can even a mind attuned to mythology really imagine Europe as Europa still, and if she dismounts from the bull does that mean the continent loses its geographical shape?

 Dimmock, New Turkes, pp. 154 and 145.  Dimmock, New Turkes, pp. 151 and 155.

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The one thing that is clear is that whatever else may be in flux, there is one well-understood border between what is Christendom and what is not, and that is the Danube, always already likely to be a place of interest for Marlowe because of its importance to Ovid, who, when exiled to the Black Sea, noted both its tendency to freeze and its importance in the life of nomadic tribes, including those he stigmatised as Scythians.⁵⁶ Sigismond declares, Orcanes, as our legates promised thee, We with our peers have crossed Danubius’ stream To treat of friendly peace or deadly war. (Part Two, 1.1.78 – 80)

Gazellus says, “We came from Turkey to confirm a league” (Part Two, 1.1.115) and Frederick replies, “And we from Europe to the same intent” (Part Two, 1.1.118), clearly implying that both parties understand themselves to be at the farthest edge of their respective territories. Orcanes underlines the idea when he says, Now, Sigismond, if any Christian king Encroach upon the confines of thy realm, Send word Orcanes of Natolia Confirmed this league beyond Danubius’ stream, And they will, trembling, sound a quick retreat. (Part Two, 1.1.146 – 49)

For Orcanes, the Danube is directly connected to the ideas of confines and encroachment; its “stream” is clearly understood as marking a border in something of the same way as the Tanaïs. The Danube is not where the Turks ultimately hope to be: Frederick says to Sigismond, Your majesty remembers, I am sure, What cruel slaughter of our Christian bloods These heathenish Turks and Pagans lately made Betwixt the city Zula and Danubius, How through the midst of Varna and Bulgaria And almost to the very walls of Rome They have, not long since, massacred our camp. (Part Two, 2.1.4– 10)

 See for instance R. M. Batty, “On Getic and Sarmatian Shores: Ovid’s Account of the Danube Lands,” Historia Zeitschrift für Alte Geschichte 43, no. 1 (Spring 1994), pp. 88 – 111, p. 93.

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It used to be said that “Rome” must have been an error on Marlowe’s part and that he must really have meant Constantinople, but Mark Hutchings has persuasively argued that while “Rome” was not a goal of the fourteenth-century Timur the Lame, its presence in the text is a direct reflection of the ambitions of the sixteenth-century Ottoman Turks:⁵⁷ Roger Crowley notes that Francis I told the Venetians that “Sultan Suleiman always says ‘To Rome! To Rome!’” and it was generally understood that this was the Ottomans’ ultimate objective.⁵⁸ The Turks hope, then, to press on to Rome, but the Danube is where they have currently been halted: Orcanes refers to himself as “He / That with the cannon shook Vienna walls” (Part Two, 1.1.86 – 87), but the city did not fall. The Danube is the current limit of Turkish territory, but the river also bespeaks recent Turkish advances, as suggested by the presence of the King of Trebizond among the dramatis personae, for the empire of Trebizond fell in 1461, eight years after Constantinople. Orcanes figures Trebizond as crucial to the two-way traffic between Europe and Asia: Danubius’ stream, that runs to Trebizond, Shall carry, wrapped within his scarlet waves, As martial presents to our friends at home, The slaughtered bodies of these Christians. (Part Two, 1.1.33 – 36)

This has sometimes been considered a geographical howler, but Ethel Seaton explains it by arguing that Marlowe “sees the waters of the Danube sweeping from the river-mouths in two strong currents, the one racing across the Black Sea to Trebizond, the other swirling southwards to the Bosporus, and so onward to the Hellespont and the Aegean.”⁵⁹ He also sees it as marking the edge of Christendom, marked out by the unburied Christian bodies polluting its waters. Just as Tamburlaine himself trembles on the edge of Greece and Scythia, so the two plays about him show us the edge of Europe shifting, and they use his Scythian identity to do it, since it helps us to recognise that where the border between Europe and Asia was once thought of in geographical terms as being marked by the Tanaïs, it is now understood politically and is marked by the Danube.

 Mark Hutchings, “‘And Almost to the Very Walles of Rome’: 2 Tamburlaine, II.i.9),” Notes and Queries 52, no. 2 (June 2005), pp. 190 – 92.  Crowley, Empires of the Sea, p. 66.  Ethel Seaton, “Marlowe’s Map,” in Marlowe: A Collection of Critical Essays, edited by Clifford Leech (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1964), pp. 36 – 56, p. 54.

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This emphasis on the Danube raises one last possibility about the play. In recent years growing attention has been paid to Marlowe’s visual sensibility. David Keck has noted that he seems to have responded to Ortelius as a source of illustrations rather than simply information.⁶⁰ Emily C. Bartels notes that “When Tamburlaine first appears, he makes a spectacle of his difference”;⁶¹ she discusses Marlowe’s visual sense, as too does David Thurn,⁶² while Avraham Oz argues that “When [Marlowe] insists on making his audience … view in his tragic glass the picture of ‘the Scythian Tamburlaine,’ he chooses his words carefully: his tragic picture combines both map and face.”⁶³ It is particularly suggestive that Emrys Jones draws a comparison between Marlowe’s attitude to space and that visible in some contemporary paintings: vastness is a quality that enters the European imagination in the sixteenth century. It is, I think, important to recognize that Marlowe shares this European sensibility, with its peculiar appetite for huge numbers and immense vistas. Early in the sixteenth century a new kind of landscape painting emerges in the German states and in the Netherlands. A high viewpoint is often adopted, which allows the artist to take in the most distant features of the landscape, where chains of ice-capped mountains merge indistinctly with the snowy clouds of the heavens. In the foreground may stretch an immense plain, which the artist may cover with thousands of fighting soldiers.⁶⁴

He mentions specifically the Danube School, which, although the actual term “Danube School” was not coined until the nineteenth century, consisted of a group of artists (including the Wittenberg-based Cranach the Elder) who concentrated particularly on painting the landscape on and around the Danube. Although much of their output was paintings intended for specific locations which Marlowe is unlikely to have visited, the members of the Danube School did produce etchings and woodcuts which would have made their work better known: Christopher S. Wood notes that “The landscape etchings certainly travel-

 David Keck, “Marlowe and Ortelius’s Map,” Notes and Queries 52, no. 2 (June 2005), pp. 189 – 90, p. 189.  Emily C. Bartels, “The Double Vision of the East: Imperialist Self-Construction in Marlowe’s Tamburlaine, Part One,” Renaissance Drama 23 (1992), pp. 3 – 24, p. 9.  David Thurn, “Sights of Power in Tamburlaine,” English Literary Renaissance 19 (1989), pp. 3 – 21.  Avraham Oz, “Faces of Nation and Barbarism: Prophetic Mimicry and the Politics of Tamburlaine the Great,” in Marlowe: Contemporary Critical Essays, edited by Avraham Oz (Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan, 2003), pp. 66 – 95, p. 73.  Emrys Jones, “‘A World of Ground’: Terrestrial Space in Marlowe’s ‘Tamburlaine’ Plays,” The Yearbook of English Studies 38, no. 1/2 (2008), pp. 168 – 82, p. 181.

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led quickly,” being disseminated within Germany by the early 1520s.⁶⁵ Perhaps the most famous product of the school, Albrecht Altdorfer’s 1529 Battle of Issus, depicts a battle fought by Alexander the Great “from the interests of modern Europe, or at least Christendom under the banner of the Holy Roman Empire”; Altdorfer also foreshadowed Marlowe in using meteorological phenomena to comment on human achievement,⁶⁶ and in Part One of Tamburlaine Ceneus refers to the Macedonians beating Darius—i. e. the Battle of Issus (1.1.151– 53). Wood observes that “In The Battle of Alexander, narrative is toppled from the foreground and pushed into a vast background. This is the opposite of paintings by Raphael or Michelangelo, which magnify the heroic and pull it forward, compressing the background”; “Such pictures make visible a peculiarly Christian model of history. The human actor stands isolated against a backcloth of time.”⁶⁷ Perhaps there is therefore one last connection to suggest. Shakespeare may mention Armenia only once, but he does it in a way which seems to echo Marlowe: Antony and Cleopatra’s “Great Media, Parthia, and Armenia” surely recalls Tamburlaine’s “Great lord of Media and Armenia.” Eugene Waith compares the epic effect of Antony and Cleopatra to that of Tamburlaine,⁶⁸ and John Gillies argues that “there is little, if any, phenomenological difference between the imagined geography of a play like Tamburlaine, which is directly inspired by a ‘real’ map, and that of a play like Antony and Cleopatra, which does not give evidence of having been inspired by a ‘real’ map.”⁶⁹ When he names Armenia, then, Shakespeare may perhaps be deliberately not only evoking a specific geographical territory, but also more generally a way of talking about geographical territories which invites audiences to consider questions about the relationship of peoples to the lands they inhabit, of the potential porousness of borders, and of geopolitical change.

 Christopher S. Wood, Albrecht Altdorfer and the Origins of Landscape (London: Reaktion Books, 1993), p. 260.  Larry Silver, “Nature and Nature’s God: Landscape and Cosmos of Albrecht Altdorfer,” The Art Bulletin 81, no. 2 (June 1999), pp. 194– 214, p. 204.  Wood, Albrecht Altdorfer, pp. 266 and 275.  Eugene Waith, The Herculean Hero in Marlowe, Chapman, Shakespeare and Dryden (London: Chatto and Windus, 1962), p. 121.  John Gillies, Shakespeare and the Geography of Difference (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994), p. 59.

Chapter 5 Bears and Fairies: A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Twelfth Night The green world is the classic locus of the encounter, because it is the space where different peoples meet each other: Illyrians and Messenians in Twelfth Night, humans and fairies in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. In essence these plays are both first-contact narratives in which each of the groups which meet sheds light on the other. A Midsummer Night’s Dream, for all its holiday and celebratory feel, can be seen as evoking not one but two invasions: Ireland, early modern England’s principal theatre of war, is evoked by the name of Puck, clearly derived from the Irish sprites known as Pookas, and Oberon in many versions of his legend was the son of Julius Caesar, whose landing in Britain was the first recorded event in its history. I shall suggest too that the presence of fairies forces us to confront an eschatological edge of Christendom. Twelfth Night, written on the cusp of a new century and set on a date redolent of change and transition, may not speak of invasion but does figure an incursus, as travellers from a strange country land on the shores of Illyria and proceed to interact with the inhabitants, and it also raises questions about the borderline between human and animal. Moreover, A Midsummer Night’s Dream includes an Indian boy and Twelfth Night speaks of a new map with the augmentation of the Indies and of Viola’s supposed past as fencer to the Sophy. This chapter traces the dynamics of the encounters in these comedies of the green world and argues that both probe the relationship between edges of Christendom and edges of secure and orthodox certainties. The first aspect of either play encountered by any reader or audience member is the title, and both speak of times of change and transition. Midsummer Eve had been repurposed as the feast of St. John the Baptist but was still marked by bonfires, suggesting its origin as a Celtic festival of light. Twelfth Night is the last of the twelve days of Christmas: now, the date by which decorations have to be taken down; then, the time for one final assertion of the spirit of festivity and misrule. The resulting suggestion of change and liminality is underlined by the evocation of a new regime in the pointed references to stewards which so obviously map onto the Stuarts: when Olivia says “Go thou and seek the crowner, and let him sit o’ my coz”¹ it is scarcely possible not to hear a veiled reference

 William Shakespeare, Twelfth Night, edited by Keir Elam (London: Cengage Learning, 2008), 1.5.130 – 31. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text. https://doi.org/10.1515/9781501514159-007

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to James, and the discussion of King Gorboduc and Master Parson (4.2.14– 15) recalls debates about the succession, in which both Sackville and Norton’s play Gorboduc and the polemicist Robert Parsons or Persons played a part. This is the culmination of a motif which lurked in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, where the combination of multiple marriages and of references to Elizabeth contains a veiled reminder that the queen herself has borne no children and will one day need to be replaced. But at the same time as both plays speak of change, Twelfth Night and Midsummer Night themselves are both times of ritual with a distinctly folkloric feel; moreover, the fact that both titles mention night smuggles in a suggestion of sleep. On its shortest and on one of its longest nights, Christian England dreams of elements of itself that speak of a pagan past, which in both these plays sits in uneasy tension with a divided and conflicted present and an imagined future of foreign exploration which will bring the English into contact with yet more belief systems. The liminality suggested by the plays’ temporal settings is underlined by a subtle but persistent emphasis on limits and boundaries. In A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Lysander explains to Hermia that by going into the wood they will pass out of Athenian jurisdiction. In Twelfth Night, there is repeated mention of gates. Olivia tells Viola “I heard you were saucy at my gates” (1.5.192); Viola says that in contrast to Orsino her own strategy for wooing would be to “Make me a willow cabin at your gate” (1.5.260); and Feste’s closing song declares that “’Gainst knaves and thieves men shut their gate” (5.1.388). The worlds of both plays are thus figured as constrained by sharply defined physical edges, but the contours of belief systems prove to be less firmly drawn, and so too do the contours of cultural identities. Kim F. Hall notes that “Typically, scholars have replicated Lysander’s dismissal of the ‘Ethiop’ by refusing to consider such remarks in the context of the elements of race, sexual politics, imperialism, and slavery, which form a prominent set of ‘subtexts’ to the play,” but that attending to the resonances of the term can help us to see that “threatening female sexuality and power is located in the space of the foreign: male, Grecian order is opposed to the dark, feminine world of the forest, which is also replete with Indians, Tartars, and ‘Ethiops,’”² while Arthur L. Little Jr. argues that “Shakespeare’s romantic comedy slips, deliberately or inadvertently, lifts the veil (to borrow language from W. E. B. Dubois) to reveal a king of collaboration or collusion between romantic comedy (not just this one) and the fantasies of racial whiteness.”³ Nor is  Kim F. Hall, Things of Darkness: Economies of Race and Gender in Early Modern England (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1995), pp. 1 and 22.  Arthur L. Little, Jr., “Re-Historicizing Race, White Melancholia, and the Shakespearean Property,” Shakespeare Quarterly 67, no. 1 (2016), pp. 84– 103, p. 94.

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it only A Midsummer Night’s Dream that can be read in racialised terms: Ian Smith reminds us that Queen Anna commissioned The Masque of Blackness for Twelfth Night,⁴ and Patricia Akhimie thinks that both Malvolio and the mechanicals have racialised tropes apply to them, since “Malvolio is ridiculed for his attempts to use good conduct to better himself” and “The physical evidence of manual labor, ‘hard-handed[ness]’ is a somatic mark that naturalizes, and thus racializes, the exclusion of a working-class group.”⁵ I want to start with A Midsummer Night’s Dream, particularly with the way it represents its fairies. Shakespeare makes his fairies unusually similar to humans, and yet at the same time still dangerously different. In Susanna Clarke’s modern fairy stories Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell and The Ladies of Grace Adieu, all the human characters are referred to as Christians even when they are Jewish, and “Christian” and “fairy” are understood as antithetical and mutually exclusive identities.⁶ In Dream, the ancient Athenians are surprisingly connected to Christianity when Hermia is threatened with a nunnery, but there is no suggestion of Christianity about the fairies. In other ways, though, fairies and humans are much more like each other than in any previous representation of fairies. Many British folktales involving fairies centre on where the fairies live —often a house, but sometimes a bridge or a hill. When humans enter this terrain one or both of two things usually happens: some form of visual magic is applied, which generally causes the human either not to notice that the fairies are far smaller than they seem or to believe that the surroundings are palatial when actually they are sordid; and/or it proves impossible for the human to return to their own world until something happens to break the spell. A Midsummer Night’s Dream deviates from both these norms. No one that we encounter in the wood outside Athens is a permanent denizen, with the problematic exception of the aunt whose house Lysander cannot find, and though there is a magic applied to the eyes, it affects only how humans are perceived (either by other humans or by Titania) rather than how fairies are. Moreover, both humans and fairies seem free to enter or leave the wood at will; it is a shared space which is common and open to all rather than a place of entrapment or danger, and as such it becomes a metaphor for the common ground shared by actors and audi-

 Ian Smith, Race and Rhetoric in the Renaissance: Barbarian Errors (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2009), p. 47.  Patricia Akhimie, Shakespeare and the Cultivation of Difference: Race and Conduct in the Early Modern World (New York: Routledge, 2018), pp. 30 and 118.  Susanna Clarke, Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell (London: Bloomsbury, 2004); Susanna Clarke, The Ladies of Grace Adieu (London: Bloomsbury, 2006).

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ences, in keeping with what Lisa Walters refers to as “the play’s continuous comparison between fairies, authorship, and acting.”⁷ In Shakespeare’s theatre, when it would almost certainly have been obvious that the actors playing the mechanicals were the same as those playing the fairies and Puck announces that he can happily switch from the role of auditor to that of actor, the wood is a space where theatrical magic happens and differences disappear. In order to achieve this effect, Shakespeare departs entirely from received ideas of fairies and their habitations. Matthew Woodcock observes that in A Midsummer Night’s Dream “Shakespeare appears to go out of his way to bring together as many different motifs and images from fairy mythology as he possibly can within the play: changelings; fairy hunts or ‘rades’ (II.i. lines 24– 25); a sexualized fairy queen; associations with nature, fertility, and generation; fairies’ invisibility; and the mischievous and potentially malicious puck.”⁸ However, he also goes out of his way to deviate from the ways in which these topics were usually represented. Dale M. Blount comments on “the essentially malevolent nature of fairies and their traditional activities from the twelfth through the sixteenth century” and argues that “Shakespeare consciously modified this occult folklore in A Midsummer Night’s Dream in order to make a comic drama possible,” even though “The folklore in all of his seven fairy plays is essentially traditional except for A Midsummer Night’s Dream.”⁹ In a separate article, Woodcock too notes that Puck “paints a very dark picture of fairy-kind through associating them with the ghosts of those who had damned themselves by committing suicide. Puck’s infernal vision of fairies is not without foundation and draws on a wider tradition that identifies fairies with consciously evil and malicious aspects of the supernatural. Oberon, however, is quick to dispel this image.” Shakespeare’s changes are indeed so thoroughgoing that Woodcock points to “the view, developed by nineteenth- and early twentieth-century fairy scholars, that the literary representation of fairies changed irreparably following A Midsummer Night’s Dream and that Shakespeare is responsible for establishing the dominant

 Lisa Walters, “Monstrous Births and Imaginations: Authorship and Folklore in Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” Renaissance and Reformation 39, no. 1 (Winter 2016), pp. 115 – 46, p. 116.  Matthew Woodcock, Fairy in the Faerie Queene: Renaissance Elf-Fashioning and Elizabethan Myth-Making (Aldershot, UK: Ashgate, 2004), p. 14.  Dale M. Blount, “Modifications in Occult Folklore as a Comic Device in Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” Fifteenth-Century Studies 9 (1984), pp. 1– 17, pp. 1 and 6. He lists the seven plays as The Comedy of Errors, Dream, Merry Wives, Pericles, Cymbeline, Winter’s Tale, and Tempest (p. 15, note 11).

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characteristic of fairies found in subsequent literature and artwork.”¹⁰ In short, Shakespeare seems to have been aware of a well-established view that fairies were bad and to have done everything in his power to challenge and change it. One by one, Shakespeare takes every wicked act that fairies were popularly thought to commit and turns it on its head. In his classic book The Elizabethan Fairies: The Fairies of Folklore and the Fairies of Shakespeare Minor White Latham noted that “The fairies’ passion for stealing human children from their cradles and their known practice of disfiguring them with withered arms and elvish marks is changed into an excessive solicitude about the welfare of babies.”¹¹ Wendy Wall similarly notes that “Sixteenth-century texts routinely mention charms used to ward off fairies who might steal a mortal child, kidnap a nursing woman, or deform a baby. Dream hints at this concern by dramatizing the fairies’ quarrel over the mortal Indian changeling,”¹² but it also transforms it because no one is proposing to harm the boy in any way. There are other equally notable changes. In pre-Shakespearean representations of them, fairies were generally (though not always) smaller than humans, though not minuscule: an earlier version of Oberon is said to be three feet tall,¹³ and Harold Brooks notes that “In Lyly’s Endimion, like Huon a source of the Dream, the fairies are ‘faire babies,’ and were no doubt impersonated by the smallest among Lyly’s child actors from St. Paul’s choir-school.”¹⁴ Shakespeare glances at this tradition by suggesting that some of the fairies are very small indeed: Puck says “all their elves for fear / Creep into acorn-cups, and hide them there” (2.1.30 – 31) and Titania orders “Some war with reremice for their leathern wings / To make my small elves coats” (2.2.4– 5). But there is no suggestion that Titania is much smaller than Bottom, and indeed the fact that Titania and Oberon almost always double Hippolyta and Theseus means that we perceive them—and Puck too—as being the

 Matthew Woodcock, “Spirits of Another Sort: Constructing Shakespeare’s Fairies in A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” in A Midsummer Night’s Dream: A Critical Guide, edited by Regina Buccola (London: Continuum Books 2010), pp. 112– 30, pp. 112 and 113.  Minor White Latham, The Elizabethan Fairies: The Fairies of Folklore and the Fairies of Shakespeare (New York: Columbia University Press, 1930), p. 183.  Wendy Wall, “Why Does Puck Sweep? Fairylore, Merry Wives, and Social Struggle,” Shakespeare Quarterly 52, no. 1 (Spring 2001), pp. 67– 106, p. 87.  On the question of size, see for instance Annaliese Connolly, “Shakespeare and the Fairy King: Re-viewing the Cultural and Political Contexts of A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” in A Midsummer Night’s Dream: A Critical Guide, edited by Regina Buccola (London: Continuum Books 2010), pp. 131– 49, pp. 133 and 137.  William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, edited by Harold F. Brooks (London: Methuen, 1979), p. lxxi. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.

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same size as humans. There is thus a double challenge to tradition, which authorises neither very small fairies nor fairies who are just like humans, and indeed perhaps there is a joke about this in one of the play’s other references to size, when Hermia says of Helena, Now I perceive that she hath made compare Between our statures; she hath urg’d her height. (3.2.290 – 91)

Here it is two humans who are apparently very different sizes from each other. Shakespeare is similarly innovative when it comes to the question of fairy habitations. Fairyland is usually a specific place, which humans visit only as captives or to perform specific tasks. Diane Purkiss describes how The story is clear and simple in the ballads “Thomas the Rhymer” and “Tam Lin.” A young man is alone in the countryside, taking his ease, when he sees a beautiful lady. He does not know it, but she is the queen of the fairies. He speaks to her, and somehow speaking to her is a mistake; it traps him. He finds himself her prisoner, and he must go to fairyland with her to “serve” her for seven years.¹⁵

Stories about a separate land of the fairies are particularly prevalent in the Celtic fringe. The stories of Thomas the Rhymer and Tam Lin are set in Scotland. In her history of the Isle of Man, Sara Goodwins notes that “King Orry [Godred Crovan] fought the battle which eventually gave him the island at Sky Hill. The hill was well known as the setting for a large fairy city.”¹⁶ The Isle of Man also boasts fairy houses and fairy bridges, and was famous even in Elizabethan times for its association with magic: Nashe thought that “The Druides that dwelt in the Ile of Man, which are famous for great coniurers, are reported to have been lousie with familiars. Had they but their finger and their thumbe into their neck, they could have pluckt out a whole neast of them.”¹⁷ Wales too was a land of fairies: Winfried Schleiner observes that “According to [Katharine] Briggs, Pwca’s actions and character are so similar to those of Shakespeare’s Puck ‘that some

 Diane Purkiss, Troublesome Things: A History of Fairies and Fairy Stories (London: Allen Lane, 2000), p. 68.  Sara Goodwins, A Brief History of the Isle of Man, 2nd ed. (Maughold, Isle of Man: Loaghtan Books, 2017), p. 144.  Katharine M. Briggs, The Anatomy of Puck (London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1959), p. 23, citing Thomas Nashe, Terrors of the Night, in The Works of Thomas Nashe, edited by R. B. McKerrow (London: Sidgwick and Jackson, 1910), vol. 1, p. 347.

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Welsh people have claimed that Shakespeare borrowed him from stories told by his friend Richard Prince of Brecon, who lived near Cwm Pwca.’”¹⁸ Cwm Pwca, the fairy city at Sky Hill, and the Eildon Hills where Tam Lin met the queen of fairyland all have one thing in common: they are the territory of fairies, and as such they are perilous for mortals to enter. Moreover, anyone who did so might be punished twice over, first by being kept captive and then again when they were released: Dale Blount notes that however punitive it may seem, “capture by fairies was a capital crime since it was believed that fairies seized mortals in order to turn them into witches,”¹⁹ and Lizanne Henderson observes that King James “did not advocate leniency for those who had seen the fairies and thought they should be as severely punished ‘as other witches.’”²⁰ A Midsummer Night’s Dream deviates from the norm in this respect too. Theseus says the poet’s pen “gives to airy nothing / A local habitation and a name” (5.1.16 – 17); Shakespeare does indeed give us a name of sorts, in that we know we are in a wood outside Athens, but he does not portray that wood as anyone’s habitation. Puck asks “How now, spirit! Whither wander you?” (2.1.1), clearly implying that he does not particularly expect to find the fairy there and supposes that she is en route to somewhere else. It is also clear from the following exchange that the wood is not a permanent place of residence: Fairy. … Our Queen and all her elves come here anon. Puck. The King doth keep his revels here tonight. (2.1.117– 18)

Both Titania and Oberon have selected this particular space for the night, but the Fairy’s “come” implies that Titania is not stationed there but is coming from somewhere, while Puck’s “tonight” suggests that other nights might find Oberon in other places. Moreover, Oberon wants the child to be “Knight of his train, to trace the forests wild” (2.1.25) and the Fairy asks “Are not you he / That frights the maidens of the villagery” (2.1.34– 35). Oberon is apparently peripatetic; Puck seems as likely to spend time in “the villagery” as in the wood. Titania certainly implies that fairies visit a variety of places when she says

 Winfried Schleiner, “Imaginative Sources for Shakespeare’s Puck,” Shakespeare Quarterly 36, no. 1 (Spring 1985), pp. 65 – 68, p. 66.  Blount, “Modifications in Occult Folklore,” p. 1.  Lizanne Henderson, “Witch, Fairy, and Folktale Narratives in the Trial of Bessie Dunlop,” in Fantastical Imaginations: The Supernatural in Scottish History and Culture, edited by Lizanne Henderson (Edinburgh: John Donald 2009), pp. 95 – 118. Online: http://eprints.gla.ac.uk/45389/ 3/45389.pdf, p. 6.

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And never, since the middle summer’s spring, Met we on hill, in dale, forest or mead, By paved fountain, or by rushy brook, Or in the beached margent of the sea (2.1.82– 85)

Indeed Oberon specifically asks, “How long within this wood intend you stay?” (2.1.138). The wood is also open to the human characters, but for them too it is only one place among many: Demetrius. … Or if you follow me, do not believe But I shall do thee mischief in the wood. Helena. Ay, in the temple, in the town, the field You do me mischief. (2.1.236 – 39)

The temple, the town, the field, and the wood are all the same to Helena; in all of them she is tormented by her unrequited love for Demetrius. Moreover, both humans and fairies seem free to enter or leave the wood at will; it is a shared space which is common and open to all rather than a place of entrapment or danger, and indeed part of it seems to be specifically associated with Theseus when Peter Quince says “At the Duke’s oak we meet” (1.2.103). In The Merry Wives of Windsor we hear of an oak in Windsor Great Park which is apparently sacred to Herne the Hunter, perhaps a figure from folklore;²¹ in A Midsummer Night’s Dream we have an almost exact converse, in the shape of a wood used by fairies which has a tree apparently sacred to Theseus. But then there is of course already a jokey ambiguity attached to the status of Theseus, because however much he assures Hippolyta that “I never may believe / These antique fables, nor these fairy toys” (5.1.2– 3), he is himself an antique fable par excellence; if he does not believe in fairies he can hardly believe in himself, so the existence of fairies is in a sense a condition of his own existence. If the wood is a place of anything, it is a place of the imagination, as Demetrius hints when he says that he is “wood within this

 In The Merry Wives of Windsor Shakespeare mentions a figure now sometimes associated with the Wild Hunt, Herne the Hunter (William Shakespeare, The Merry Wives of Windsor, edited by Giorgio Melchiori [London: Thomas Nelson and Sons, 2000], 4.4.26 – 36), although Harriet Phillips notes that Herne “is not attested before the play and is widely assumed to have been invented by Shakespeare” (“Late Falstaff, the Merry World, and The Merry Wives of Windsor,” Shakespeare 10, no. 2 [2014], pp. 111– 37, p. 125). On the origins of the Wild Hunt see Carolyne Larrington, The Land of the Green Man [2015] (London: Bloomsbury Academic, 2019), p. 99.

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wood” (2.1.192): when its other meaning of “mad” is brought into play, “wood” describes both Demetrius’s location and his state of mind. Most notable is the play’s treatment of time. Katharine Briggs notes that fairyland seems to have its own clock and calendar: “Time spent with them passes at a different rate than when spent with mortals; seven days in fairyland is generally equivalent to seven years of mortal time,”²² and Mary Ellen Lamb refers to “early tales of wanderers who returned to their families, or their descendants, years after they had disappeared, claiming that they had been living with the fairies.”²³ This too is not the case in Dream. At the beginning of the play we are invited to contemplate two directly opposite perspectives on time: Theseus. Now, fair Hippolyta, our nuptial hour Draws on apace; four happy days bring in Another moon: but O, methinks, how slow This old moon wanes! She lingers my desires, Like to a step-dame or a dowager Long withering out a young man’s revenue. Hippolyta. Four days will quickly steep themselves in night; Four nights will quickly dream away the time; And then the moon, like to a silver bow New bent in heaven, shall behold the night Of our solemnities. (1.1.1– 11)

Theseus thinks time is passing very slowly; Hippolyta thinks it will go very fast. Modern productions often play Hippolyta as hostile and fearful at this point, but it is easily possible to read her lines as offering reassurance and comfort to Theseus rather than as simply resisting his perspective. Either way, there is a difference, but it is not a difference between human time and fairy time. There is a similar confusion about time when Theseus greets the four lovers with “Good morrow friends. Saint Valentine is past” (4.1.138). This is literally true—St. Valentine’s Day, which falls on 14 February, must be past if the play is set on midsummer night—but there is also an element here of the idea of humans returning from fairyland to find that it is later than they thought it was. It is, however, a burlesque rather than a serious version of the motif because it is often played  Briggs, The Anatomy of Puck, p. 14.  Mary Ellen Lamb, “Taken by the Fairies: Fairy Practices and the Production of Popular Culture in A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” Shakespeare Quarterly 51, no. 3 (Fall 2000), pp. 277– 312, p. 288.

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as an arch, avuncular remark which gives the young people time to put their clothes in order. Again, then, an aspect of traditional fairy stories is glanced at, but again Shakespeare handles it differently. And yet for all this the play also reminds us that there is one aspect of human and fairy experience which is not shared. In a very interesting article on the play Edward Burns argues that the fairies do have a different relationship to numbers, counting, and time; he notes that “The fairies always refer to the humans as ‘mortal,’” reminding us that they themselves are not. Although he also observes that “The deaths of Pyramus and Thisbe within Quince’s play are farcically unconvincing, but the effect of that is the un-farcical one of a conquering of mortality by art,”²⁴ Burns has hit on a profound difference between the two. But fairies are not mortal not because they are immortal, but because they are dead. Fairies are repeatedly associated with death. In Greene’s James the Fourth, at the start of the Induction, in modern editions, Oberon is first seen next to a tomb, though uncannily it proves to contain a man who is still alive. In fact, its occupant is one “Bohan, a Scot, attired like a Redesdale man.”²⁵ Redesdale, W. L. Renwick’s ingenious emendation of the text’s “rid-stall,” was a haunt of Border Reivers, and tension between England and Scotland also lies at the back of the story of Bessie Dunlop, who was burned at the stake in 1576, claimed that the fairy with whom she had dealings had been killed at the battle of Pinkie Cleugh in 1547, fighting the English as part of Scottish resistance to the “Rough Wooing” of Henry VIII, designed to force the child Mary, Queen of Scots to marry his son Edward. The behaviour of this particular “fairy” has led to speculation that he was in fact a living man who was in hiding because he was a Catholic, since the first words he spoke were “Sancta Marie,”²⁶ in which case Bessie’s observation that he wanted her to “denye hir Christendome” presumably means that he challenged her Protestant faith. Both James the Fourth and the story of Bessie Dunlop take us to the edge of England, but Dunlop’s story also takes us to the edge of Protestantism. This may appear not to be the case in Shakespeare. However Regina Buccola argues that in Cymbeline, for instance, “The skein of religious association in the

 Edward Burns, “‘Two of Both Kinds Makes Up Four’: The Human and the Mortal in A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” in “Divers toyes mengled”: Essays on Medieval and Renaissance Culture, edited by Michel Bitot with Roberta Mullini and Peter Happé (Tours, France: Université François Rabelais, 1996), pp. 299 – 309, pp. 304 and 308.  Robert Greene, James the Fourth, edited by Norman Sanders (London: Methuen, 1970), Induction 1.0. All further quotations will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.  Henderson, “Witch, Fairy, and Folktale Narratives,” pp. 17, 19, and 22.

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play threatens always to unwind, revealing that underneath the page-boy disguise and pagan burial rituals, the initial female heir to England’s throne just might be the fairy queen, mistress of pagan rituals and guardian of Catholicism’s dead.”²⁷ Indeed there is a sense in which fairies are always already Catholic. Pamela Allen Brown remarks that in the late sixteenth century “Rome and Faerie may have seemed plausibly contiguous realms. In Daemonologie (1597), James associated Rome and Fairyland,”²⁸ and Reginald Scot declared in The Discoverie of Witchcraft that “Divers writers report, that in Germanie, since Luthers time, spirits and divels have not personallie appeared, as in times past they were wont to doo … but now that the work of GOD hath appeared, those sights, spirits, and mockeries of images are ceased.”²⁹ Another possible connection between the play and Catholicism arises from the fact that the author of the 1590 pamphlet Tarltons Newes out of Purgatorie (who was possibly Thomas Nashe)³⁰ gave his name as “Robin Goodfellow”; since Purgatory was an exclusively Roman Catholic concept, there may be a suggestion here that the Robin Goodfellow figure is perceived as linked to Catholicism in ways which further trouble the edge of Christendom. The wood outside Athens, then, speaks of both traditional forms of belief which were always outside Christendom and also the faultline between the two confessions which was creating an existential crisis within it. The lurking Catholicism of A Midsummer Night’s Dream can also be connected to Ovid, a figure of interest to both Dream and Twelfth Night. Wendy Wall notes that in The discouerie of witchcraft Reginald Scot wrote of how “your grandams maides were woont to set a boll of milke before [an incubus] and his cousine Robin good-fellow, for grinding of malt or mustard, and sweeping the house at midnight”; she goes on to observe that “people associated fairy stories with serving women and domestic work.”³¹ Theseus and Hippolyta, however, belonged to the classical culture which was almost exclusively the preserve of those who went to grammar school (which was only for boys), and Mary Ellen Lamb suggests that Shakespeare’s decision to draw the name of his fairy queen Titania from Ovid’s Metamorphoses blurs the line between common and

 Regina Buccola, Fairies, Fractious Women, and the Old Faith: Fairy Lore in Early Modern British Drama and Culture (Selinsgrove, PA: Susquehanna University Press, 2006), p. 165.  Pamela Allen Brown, Better a Shrew than a Sheep: Women, Drama, and the Culture of Jest in Early Modern England (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2003), p. 161.  Reginald Scot, The Discoverie of Witchcraft, edited by Rev. Montague Summers (John Rodker, 1930; repr. New York: Dover, 1972), p. 87.  Charles Nicholl, A Cup of News: The Life of Thomas Nashe (London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1984), p. 81.  Wall, “Why Does Puck Sweep?,” p. 70.

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learned cultures to suggest an equivalence in their social value.”³² Alexandra Walsham notes that “John Falconer rejected tales about the red stones and green moss at the bottom of St. Winefride’s spring as ‘Ovids Metamorphosing Fables.’”³³ In these Ovid-haunted plays, there is an emphasis both on the border between animal and human and on the border between humans and their environment. Both these comedies of the green world imagine one of their characters wholly or partially transformed into one of the denizens of that world. These transformations suggest the extent to which the green world is figured as an environment which is not only different in itself but also has the power to produce difference in humans, allowing them to experiment with new identities in ways that do not entail the darker consequences so often attached to the original Ovidian metamorphoses. Unlike Bottom, Orsino is not literally translated, but he does say that when he first saw Olivia, “That instant was I turned into a hart, / And my desires, like fell and cruel hounds, / E’er since pursue me” (1.1.20 – 22). The clear implication is that he is Actaeon, who spied on the goddess Diana bathing and was punished by being turned into a hart and eaten by his own dogs, who failed to recognise him; moreover the Wild Hunt supposedly rides on the eve of Twelfth Night, so the idea of a hunt is a doubly appropriate one, and suggests that Twelfth Night too may be remembering England’s pagan past. Orsino, unlike Actaeon, does not really become a hart, and so unlike Actaeon does not die. In any case his name points us to a very different animal, for it means bear. Next to the Globe, bears were baited, and the link was stronger than mere propinquity: Jason Scott-Warren observes that “When the stands in the Bear Garden on the South Bank collapsed under the weight of an unexpectedly large crowd in 1583, the venue was rebuilt on the model of the new, threestory playhouses. The men who ran professional theater in late-Elizabethan and Jacobean London also made their money from commercial blood sports.”³⁴ Edward Alleyn, who first acted Marlowe’s heroes, worked hard to secure the Mastership of the Bears; Ben Jonson’s Epicene speaks of two famous bears as if they were familiar acquaintances—“when Ned Whiting or George Stone were at the stake”;³⁵ and Shakespeare has Master Slender refer to the bear Sackerson

 Lamb, “Taken by the Fairies,” pp. 306 and 307.  Alexandra Walsham, The Reformation of the Landscape: Religion, Identity, and Memory in Early Modern Britain and Ireland (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011), p. 213.  Jason Scott-Warren, “When Theaters Were Bear-Gardens; Or, What’s at Stake in the Comedy of Humors,” Shakespeare Quarterly 54, no. 1 (Spring 2003), pp. 63 – 82, p. 64.  Ben Jonson, Epicene, or The Silent Woman, edited by Richard Dutton (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2003), 3.1.47– 48.

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by name in The Merry Wives of Windsor. ³⁶ The use of the name Orsino implicitly invites us to consider the nature of the entertainment we ourselves are watching and how it compares with that next door. In the little world of the Globe one was (and is) shut in; one of the tallest buildings in Elizabethan London, it offered no views of any of its neighbours. Yet as anyone whose patience has been tested by the police helicopter is only too well aware, it is a space which is very vulnerable to surrounding sound, which could presumably have included roars from the bear-baiting. Even if no such noises were audible externally, the play makes them internally: Sir Andrew wishes that “he had bestowed that time in the tongues that I have in fencing, dancing and bear-baiting” (1.3.90 – 91) and Fabian says of Malvolio “You know he brought me out of favour with my lady about a bear-baiting here” (2.4.6 – 7), to which Sir Toby replies “To anger him we’ll have the bear again, and we will fool him black and blue, shall we not, Sir Andrew?” (2.4.8 – 9). In the quarrel scene Fabian says Cesario “pants and looks pale as if a bear were at his heels” (3.4.287– 88): Stephen Dickey’s formulation is that “Toby and Fabian, adept baiters both, … goad Cesario and Andrew into attacking each other.”³⁷ In Twelfth Night we do indeed have the bear again as Malvolio, a human victim, is taunted and baited as a bear would be (and is effectively as blind as some bears were because we are asked to understand him as being in an unlighted space); Dickey suggests that “The chain to which we twice have our attention called is an emblem of Malvolio’s middling social position and his symbolic status as a bear.”³⁸ As a result, we are invited to question what exactly we are watching. Ralph Berry, noting of Malvolio’s closing line that “At pack, the subliminal metaphor discloses itself. It is a bear-baiting. The audience becomes spectators, Malvolio the bear,” concludes his essay on the play by declaring baldly “I surmise that the ultimate effect of Twelfth Night is to make the audience ashamed of itself.”³⁹ I would not go so far as this—no stewards have been harmed during the making of this play—but I do think that one effect of the play is to make the audience aware of itself. Dickey argues that “For Shakespeare’s contemporaries, bearbaiting and theater were culturally isomorphic events” and calls Twelfth Night “the play in which … Shakespeare uses the sport’s bloody routines most intricately,

 William Shakespeare, The Merry Wives of Windsor, edited by Giorgio Melchiori (London: Thomas Nelson and Sons, 2000), 1.1.275 – 77.  Stephen Dickey, “Shakespeare’s Mastiff Comedy,” Shakespeare Quarterly 42, no. 3 (Autumn 1991), pp. 255 – 75, p. 272.  Dickey, “Shakespeare’s Mastiff Comedy,” p. 269.  Ralph Berry, “‘Twelfth Night’: The Experience of the Audience,” Shakespeare Survey 34 (1981), pp. 111– 19, pp. 118 – 19.

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both to illuminate the psychology and relationships of his characters and to explore the dramatic medium itself.”⁴⁰ Scott-Warren, building on this, suggests that “The two forms of entertainment overlapped spatially and socially, but in the early seventeenth century they also came to share a representational mode,” an idea which he discusses specifically with reference to Twelfth Night and Epicoene,⁴¹ and he points out that Olivia too is figured as a bear when she asks Viola “Have you not set mine honour at the stake / And baited it with all th’unmuzzled thoughts / That tyrannous heart can think?” (3.1.116 – 18). What exactly might those thoughts be, and is it indeed the case that only a tyrannous heart can think them? Scott-Warren argues that “In first-hand accounts of animal-baitings, animals are regularly anthropomorphized,”⁴² but what happens if the mirror is turned in the other direction and the bestiality of humans is revealed? Perhaps one thing we might notice is that although bears can be hunted, as Hippolyta remembers in A Midsummer Night’s Dream (4.1.111– 13), bear-baiting differs from hunting in that the victim is not free to run. The contrast between the two forms of “sport” works to valorise the hunt, whose protocols acknowledged the connection between animals and humans, but invites us to notice that bearbaiting artificially suppresses those connections and yet at the same time gives names to bears. Part of the reason for the importance of the bear-baiting motif in the play derives from the sheer fact of propinquity: extradiegetically, the actors and the bears were neighbours. Some of the play’s characters also have neighbours, and they too relate to questions about the edge of Christendom. Feste says “I do live by the church, for I do live at my house, and my house doth stand by the church” (3.1.5 – 7). An implied relationship with the church raises a question which lies at the heart of early modern English drama, whose origins are often traced back to a church ritual, the Quem Quaeritis, and which frequently draws attention to the vexed question of where the border between sacred and spiritual power should lie: a year or so after Twelfth Night, Hamlet, a play which was perhaps already in Shakespeare’s mind, stages a confrontation between a priest and a nobleman beside a grave, in a particularly neat emblem of a disputed jurisdiction between state and church over who controls individual citizens and whether those citizens are to be understood primarily as bodies or as souls. Plays also often capitalise on the extent to which the bare Elizabethan stage is able to suggest a complex multiplicity of places, with its upper playing

 Dickey, “Shakespeare’s Mastiff Comedy,” p. 255.  Scott-Warren, “When Theaters Were Bear-Gardens,” p. 65.  Scott-Warren, “When Theaters Were Bear-Gardens,” p. 71.

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area to which connotations of moral or social elevation often accrued and an understage area which could be marked as a place of the dead (as it is for the Ghost in Hamlet), while stage left, the proverbial side of the devil, might be marked as sinister in more than just the literal sense, in what Tim Fitzpatrick has called “a set of generic spatial and semiotic conventions that loosely governed the way in which the early modern performance space and its inbuilt physical resources were used to stand for places and things in the fictional world.”⁴³ As I shall explore in chapter 6, Shakespeare in a number of his plays shows himself acutely aware of the churches and ecclesiastical property in the vicinity of the Globe: Michael Wood notes that his brother Edmund Shakespeare was buried on 31 December 1607 in the South Bank church of St. Saviour and St. Mary Overie (now Southwark Cathedral), and that “After the service, on his way out of the church, Shakespeare would have passed the tomb of the fifteenth-century poet John Gower,”⁴⁴ who features as a character in Pericles, which Shakespeare co-wrote with Wilkins the next year. The plays also contain references to “Winchester geese,” the sex workers who operated in the vicinity of the Bishop of Winchester’s palace, a short walk from the Globe. Shakespeare was well aware that he, like Feste, lived by the church, and though it may be Hamlet which explores the implications of that most fully and resonantly, they are already beginning to surface in Twelfth Night. Twelfth Night is a play which has surprisingly well-developed eschatological concerns, so much so indeed that Randall Martin declares “The intertextual effects of Twelfth Night’s shipwreck and rhetorizing horizons redirect audiences’ critical imaginations back to Paul’s texts … I propose that we think about the play subtitled What You Will as Shakespeare’s subversive Letter to the Illyrians.”⁴⁵ During the course of the play several possible theological positions are surveyed in ways which draw attention to the internal fissures of Christendom. When Viola says, “My brother he is in Elysium” (1.2.3), she names the classical underworld. Two lines later, the Captain says “It is perchance that you yourself were saved” (1.2.5), returning us to a Christian and specifically a Calvinist worldview in which one may or may not be of the Elect; and shortly after that a more cheerful (and potentially Lutheran) note is struck when the Captain speaks of

 Tim Fitzpatrick, Playwright, Space and Place in Early Modern Performance: Shakespeare and Company (Farnham, UK: Ashgate, 2011), p. 2.  Michael Wood, In Search of Shakespeare (London: BBC, 2003), pp. 301 and 302.  Randall Martin, “Shipwreck and the Hermeneutics of Transience in Twelfth Night,” in Twelfth Night: A Critical Reader, edited by Alison Findlay and Liz Oakley-Brown (London: Bloomsbury, 2014), pp. 123 – 43, p. 127.

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how “Courage and hope” led Sebastian to tie himself to a mast (1.2.12)—that is, he did not despair, and his survival may therefore suggest that humans can influence their own spiritual destinies. Joseph Pequigney notes that “the given name Sebastian recalls the martyr traditionally pictured as a handsome youth —a kind of Christian Adonis—with a nearly nude body pierced by arrows,”⁴⁶ and the connection may work to strengthen the idea of Sebastian as one sustained by faith. However, the stories of saints and martyrs had fallen out of favour since the split with Rome, and Twelfth Night not only acknowledges that split but also registers the growing divisions within Protestantism itself when Maria says of Malvolio “sometimes he is a kind of Puritan” (2.3.136) and Sir Andrew says “I had as lief be a Brownist as a politician” (3.2.30), a Brownist being a follower of Robert Browne, a dissenter who sought separation from the Church of England. Feste reverts to the apparently safer territory of the classical when he asks the incarcerated Malvolio “What is the opinion of Pythagoras concerning wildfowl?” (4.2.49 – 50); however, this is not just about the classical world because it would also remind the audience of Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus, where Faustus as he faces death and damnation wishes “Ah, Pythagoras’ metempsychosis, were that true,”⁴⁷ and Doctor Faustus is a play (or plays) in which the split between Calvinism and Lutheranism surfaces in its most terrifying form. Most suggestively, Sir Toby declares “If all the devils of hell be drawn in little, and Legion himself possessed him, yet I’ll speak to him,” of which the Arden 3 note observes “This is … the first of many possible echoes of the notorious True Narration by the Puritan exorcist John Darrell” (3.4.81– 83), which centred on a series of events whose meaning was hotly contested by Protestants and Catholics. As Frank Brownlow among others has shown, the exorcisms at Denham are echoed in King Lear,⁴⁸ and the interplay between Lear and Twelfth Night (confirmed when Feste’s song is reprised by Lear’s Fool) stages a metatheatrical confrontation between the green world and the anti-pastoral of the withered heath which, like the imaginative overlap with Hamlet, helps us to see that Twelfth Night is pushing at the boundaries of comedy and is already beginning to edge into the territory beyond.

 Joseph Pequigney, “The Two Antonios and Same-Sex Love in Twelfth Night and The Merchant of Venice,” in Shakespeare and Gender: A History, edited by Deborah E. Barker and Ivo Kamps (London: Verso, 1995), pp. 178 – 95, p. 181.  Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus, edited by David Bevington and Eric Rasmussen (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1993), A text, 5.7.107.  F. W. Brownlow, Shakespeare, Harsnett, and the Devils of Denham (Newark: University of Delaware Press, 1993).

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Twelfth Night also offers images of a different world slightly nearer at hand, a new world as opposed to a next world. I have already noted Joseph Pequigney’s suggestion that Sebastian might evoke Saint Sebastian. It is also just conceivable that two of the names of Twelfth Night might have been suggested to Shakespeare by their collocation in R. D.’s A true report of the generall imbarrement of all the English shippes, in which the text proper begins: The day and yeare aforesaid was, at Saint Sebastian: The Violet of London staid both Ship and also man.⁴⁹

The collocation, in adjacent lines, of the names Sebastian and Violet looks suggestive, especially in the context of a play which begins with shipwreck, as does the curious syntax which flirts with the possibility that the Violet is a man. Perhaps, then, Shakespeare had real as well as fictional travels in mind, especially since the name Viola might equally suggest an encounter of another kind. The national plant of Croatia is the viola adriatica, or Adriatic violet. Could Shakespeare conceivably have known that, and could his use of Illyria as a setting have been prompted by more than the prettiness of the name—could it in fact have encoded memories of the actual Illyria, modern-day Croatia, and the struggle between its capital Ragusa (now Dubrovnik) and the Venetian Republic? In fact “by the date that Twelfth Night was written, the Levant Company had already begun to trade at Ragusa, so it appears that Twelfth Night was first performed at court at just the time when the republic of Ragusa was coming into favor again,”⁵⁰ and it may seem suggestive that Antonio should say “In the south suburbs, at the Elephant, / Is best to lodge” (3.3.39 – 40) and that “The ‘Elephant and Castle’ in Bankside was a … gathering place for sailors from Mediterranean countries; Ragusans were habituated to it during their years as Spain’s allies. Shakespeare may have learned about the Dalmatian coast and Ragusa from sailors and sea captains who visited London and did their drinking there.”⁵¹ Veslin Kostic

 R. D., A true report of the generall imbarrement of all the English shippes, vnder the dominion of the kinge of Spaine and of the daungerous aduenture, and wonderfull deliuerance of a ship of London called the Violet, being of the burthen of 130. tunne: by the especiall prouidence of God, from the violence of Spanyardes, at a port called S. Sebastian in Biskay (London: John Wolfe for Thomas Butter, 1585), p. 1.  “Ragusa and Shakespeare.” Online: http://www.croatians.com/SHAKESPEARE-DUBROVNIK. htm.  “Ragusa and Shakespeare.”

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notes that “The reign of King Henry VIII (1509 – 1547) saw a rapid growth of Anglo-Ragusan commercial relations, so that a fairly numerous colony of Ragusan merchants sprang up in London” and that they mostly lived round the Tower.⁵² It is not impossible to imagine information supplied by such sources informing Antonio’s remark that “Once in a sea-fight ’gainst the count his galleys / I did some service” (3.3.26 – 27) and Orsino’s own reference to “The spinsters, and the knitters in the sun” (2.4.44). The first suggests some understanding of the power conflicts in the region; the second testifies to an understanding of what everyday life might be like in a warm country where traditional handicrafts were practised, to an extent which one might well find surprising in a denizen of London during a mini Ice Age which saw frost fairs held on the Thames, but which would be more understandable if informed by anecdotes and recollections of such a life. Countries even further away may also be glanced at. Orsino may grandly declare “Tell her my love, more noble than the world, / Prizes not quantity of dirty lands” (2.4.81– 82), but the play clearly gestures towards the attempted land-grab in the New World. Maria says to Viola “Will you hoist sail, sir? Here lies your way” (1.5.197) and Viola herself exclaims “Then westward ho” (3.1.132). We also look east as well as west when Sir Toby declares “My lady’s a Cathayan” (2.3.74) (particularly suggestive since Cathay was where Columbus initially thought he had landed) and when Maria says of Malvolio “He does smile his face into more lines than is in the new map with the augmentation of the Indies” (3.2.74– 76). More specifically, Fabian vows “I will not give my part of this sport for a pension of thousands to be paid from the Sophy” (2.5.174– 75) and Sir Toby declares of the supposed Cesario “They say he has been fencer to the Sophy” (3.4.272). The Sophy in question, Shah ’Abbas, was a figure much heard of in England, to the extent of being the source of an artefact in the collection of Bess of Hardwick, whose textiles I discuss in chapter 9: “The 1601 inventory of Hardwick … shows a number of Turkish carpets … and two carpets still in the Long Gallery today date from the sixteenth century: one, a Persian woven for Shah Abbas, was commonly placed beside his throne and on it a black cheetah”; it had probably been brought back by Bess’s eldest son Henry Cavendish, who had travelled to Constantinople (staying en route in Ragusa with an Englishman, William Robinson, in a clear indication of the fact that Illyria was not just a remote fantasy land but a real place which English travellers could and did visit and report back from).⁵³ As for the Sophy’s fencer, this, as Ri Veslin Kostic, “Sketches from the Life of Ragusan Merchants in London in the Time of Henry VIII,” Dubrovnik Annals 12 (2008), pp. 45 – 56.  David N. Durant, Bess of Hardwick: Portrait of an Elizabethan Dynast (London: Peter Owen, 1977), pp. 153 – 54.

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chard Wilson observes, refers to Robert Sherley, one of the three brothers whose stories formed the basis for Day, Rowley, and Wilkins’s play The Travels of the Three English Brothers. ⁵⁴ (One of those brothers was a visitor to Illyria: Elizabeth Pentland points out that “Sir Anthony Shirley and Captain John Smith each spent time in Ragusa in 1601.”⁵⁵) America too might conceivably be just glanced at in the play when Malvolio asserts that “the Lady of the Strachy married the yeoman of the wardrobe” (2.5.36 – 37). The Arden 3 note suggests that this may refer to “one William Strachey, shareholder in the Children’s company at the Blackfriars theatre in 1606, and one David Yeomans, the wardrobe master of ‘tireman’ of the company.” This is the same William Strachey who was later to chronicle the loss of the Sea Venture and thus influence The Tempest, and though he seems not to have travelled abroad yet at the time when Twelfth Night was written, it is not inconceivable that possible travel plans already formed part of his conversation. It is also suggestive that Twelfth Night was performed in the Middle Temple, which R. M. Fisher calls “the Inn with the strongest tradition of geographical interest.”⁵⁶ Lauren Working notes that “members of the Inns, encouraged to engage creatively with current affairs and to project themselves as promoters of civil society, were enthusiastic promoters of overseas projects that proposed to subdue ‘savages’” and that “Richard Hakluyt … attributed his interests in colonization to visits to his cousin’s chambers at the Middle Temple”; she comments too on “appropriations of Native Americans at the Inns, specifically through tobacco smoking and the staging of two masques featuring American motifs.”⁵⁷ As with its expansion to include an eschatological dimension, then, Shakespeare’s stage becomes simultaneously visible on different geographical planes too as we are prompted to think of other countries as well as of other worlds. Both A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Twelfth Night show us characters who are identified as Christian, including Hermia who is threatened with a nunnery and Feste who lives by the church, and both plays juxtapose their lifestyles and beliefs with those of a range of other characters who either represent or have ex-

 Richard Wilson, “‘When Golden Time Convents’: Twelfth Night and Shakespeare’s Eastern Promise,” Shakespeare 6, no. 2 (June 2010), pp. 209 – 26, p. 215.  Elizabeth Pentland, “Beyond the ‘Lyric’ in Illyricum: Some Early Modern Backgrounds to Twelfth Night,” in Twelfth Night: New Critical Essays, edited by James Schiffer (London: Routledge, 2011), pp. 149 – 66, p. 155.  R. M. Fisher, “William Crashawe and the Middle Temple Globes 1605 – 1615,” The Geographical Journal 140, no. 1 (February 1974), pp. 105 – 112, p. 108.  Lauren Working, “Locating Colonization at the Jacobean Inns of Court,” The Historical Journal 61, no. 1 (2018), pp. 29 – 51, pp. 30 and 32– 33.

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perienced alternative belief systems, as well as fairies in one play and bears in the other. Both plays show us that there is no border that cannot be crossed, and no society that cannot be inflected by others, and both also counterbalance images of encounters abroad with images of England’s past. Both geographically and chronologically the edges of Christendom are seen as permeable and porous, to be found at home as readily as abroad, and troubled by the fact that Christian itself becomes an unstable category when we cannot securely tell humans from animals or the living from the dead.

Chapter 6 The Last Plays and the Edges of Christendom In 1581, Thomas Watson published a Latin version of the Antigone. ¹ The story of Antigone was known before that—Humphrey, Duke of Gloucester, had an illegitimate daughter called Antigone,² and she appeared as a character in George Gascoigne and Francis Kinwelmersh’s Jocasta (1566)³—but Watson’s plays, though now lost to us, were particularly admired by his contemporaries, and his translation would have attracted attention. It is impossible to tell if Shakespeare, “Watson’s heir,”⁴ ever read Watson’s play,⁵ but three of his last plays, Pericles, The Winter’s Tale, and The Two Noble Kinsmen, take up the heritage of Greece, and all tell a story which echoes that of the Antigone in that they are concerned with failure to bury;⁶ moreover, the parallel with the Antigone is underlined by the motif of parent-child incest lurking in the background of both Pericles and The Winter’s Tale. Concern about burial is a repeated motif in Greek literature. It is most obviously present in the Antigone, but it is also a recurrent concern in Homer. In Chapman’s translation, Eumaeus boasts (falsely) of Odysseus that “Vultures and dogs have torn from every limb / His porous skin, and forth his soul is fled”; there are fights over the bodies of Sarpedon, Patroclus, and Hector, to name only three, as well as elaborate descriptions of the rites they ought to have; and Achilles laments that Patroclus is “Dead, undeplor’d, / Unsepulchred.”⁷ The connection be Charles Nicholl, The Reckoning, 2nd ed. (London: Vintage, 2002), p. 214.  Kenneth H. Vickers, Humphrey, Duke of Gloucester: A Biography (London: Archibald Constable, 1907), pp. 164– 206.  Tanya Pollard, Greek Tragic Women on Shakespearean Stages (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017), p. 45.  William Covell, Polymanteia (London, 1595).  Though on Shakespeare’s possible knowledge of Greek texts, see Tania Demetriou and Tanya Pollard, “Homer and Greek Tragedy in Early Modern England’s Theatres: An Introduction,” Classical Receptions Journal 9, no. 1 (2017), pp. 1– 35. They posit a much wider engagement with Greek, and with a wider range of texts, than has often been supposed. They note that the Earl of Essex could read Greek and also stress the extent of Marlowe’s knowledge of and exposure to Greek texts.  Robert Miola usefully surveys uses and awareness of the Antigone story in the Renaissance period in “Early Modern Antigones: Receptions, Refractions, Replays,” Classical Receptions Journal 6, no. 2 (2104), pp. 221– 44, pp. 231– 32, including the 1566 Gray’s Inn play Jocasta, by George Gascoigne and Francis Kinwelmersh.  George Chapman, Chapman’s Homer: The Iliad and the Odyssey (London: Wordsworth, 2000), Odyssey, Book 14, lines 199 – 200, and Iliad, Book 22, lines 330 – 31. https://doi.org/10.1515/9781501514159-008

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tween Greece and strange burials is glanced at in Timon of Athens, where Timon prepares himself a tomb on the very edge of the shore and seems subsequently to have been conveyed into it without any obvious human agency. Simon Palfrey and Emma Smith comment of Timon being “Entombed upon the very hem o’th’sea” (5.5.67) that “the image is foundational: burial at the very cusp, neither land nor sea, an embattled verge marked by constant attrition, by never-ending wear and tear … his corpse is both beached and flooded.”⁸ It is however in the last plays that the motif reaches fruition. I have argued elsewhere that a motif of botched burial is important in Cymbeline,⁹ and in The Tempest Prospero recalls how “graves at my command / Have waked their sleepers, ope’d and let ’em forth / By my so potent art,”¹⁰ with “graves” positioned here as the subject of the sentence as if they themselves had agency; moreover there is no church on the island, and no indication of what might have happened to Sycorax’s body when she died. Perhaps, though, what happens to bodies has ceased to matter as Prospero takes his leave with the plea “As you from crimes would pardoned be, / Let your indulgence set me free” (Epilogue 19 – 20). Poised on the last beat of the line, dissolving both metre and speech, “free” is a word that defies understanding, suggesting as it does the absence of any shape or structure which might provide a paradigm within which we could conceptualise it. In this play in which humans have lived and worked alongside spirits and land has become simultaneously everywhere and nowhere, the edge itself has reached its edge, and the distinction between body and spirit breaks down. In two of the last plays on which he ever worked, Shakespeare couples ideas about the edge of Christendom with the idea of failure to bury. Henry VIII, which shows us the very beginning of the Reformation, features three characters whose burials, Shakespeare’s audience would almost certainly have known, were disturbed or deviated from their original plan. Stephen Alford notes that when the Lord Mayor took office the ceremonies included “a formal visit to the tombs of England’s kings in Westminster Abbey,”¹¹ but some kings did not

 Simon Palfrey and Emma Smith, Shakespeare’s Dead (Oxford: Bodleian Library, 2016), pp. 144– 45.  See Lisa Hopkins, From the Romans to the Normans on the English Renaissance Stage (Kalamazoo, MI: Medieval Institute Publications, 2017), chapter 6, “Valiant Welshwomen: When Britain Came Back.”  William Shakespeare, The Tempest, edited by Virginia Mason Vaughan and Alden T. Vaughan (London: Cengage Learning, 2011), 5.1.48 – 50.  Stephen Alford, London’s Triumph: Merchant Adventurers and the Tudor City (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 2018), p. 49.

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have tombs. Jonathan Baldo, connecting Henry VIII to the reburial of Mary and James’s wish to forget Elizabeth, notes that “Katherine sees herself as denied even the memorial of a grave (3.1.150),”¹² and she is very nearly right, because she was interred in Peterborough Cathedral in distinctly hugger-mugger style. Cardinal Wolsey never occupied the impressive coffin he had prepared for himself, which was eventually used for Lord Nelson—Baldo observes that “Wolsey’s imagining himself asleep ‘in dull cold marble, where no mention / Of me more must be heard of’ might have evoked memories of the Reformation’s removal ‘of all the brasses and obit inscriptions calling for prayers for the dead.’”¹³ Most strikingly, Henry VIII himself does not even have his own tomb; his coffin was put temporarily next to that of his third wife Jane Seymour, and stayed there. It might be possible to see Cardenio also as having a place within this paradigm. The first lines of The Double Falsehood, which may represent a version of Shakespeare and Fletcher’s lost play, speak of death and a grave: Roderick. Duke.

My gracious father, this unwonted strain Visits my heart with sadness. Why, my son? Making my death familiar to my tongue Digs not my grave one jot before the date.¹⁴

Later Violante says, I am now become The tomb of my own honour, a dark mansion For death alone to dwell in. (2.2.34– 36)

Roderick plots a feigned funeral with a fake body (4.1.234– 38), Violante assures herself that “there is nothing left thee now to look for / That can bring comfort but a quiet grave” (4.2.79 – 80), and Camillo says, “Ay, then your grace had had a son more, he, a daughter; and I, an heir. But let it be as ’tis; I cannot mend it. One way or other, I shall rub it over with rubbing to my grave, and there’s an

 Jonathan Baldo, “Necromancing the Past in Henry VIII,” English Literary Renaissance 34, no. 3 (Autumn 2004), pp. 359 – 86, pp. 363 – 64 and 378.  Baldo, “Necromancing the Past in Henry VIII,” p. 381.  Brean Hammond, ed., Double Falsehood or The Distressed Lovers (London: Methuen, 2010), 1.1.1– 4. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.

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end on’t” (5.2.1– 4). There is not much here to go on, but I think it is possible to suggest that this text does look as though it might form part of the group constituted by the last plays, for unburial is a central concern in them. In The Winter’s Tale, we hear two fragments of the story which Mamilius wants to tell Hermione. He begins with “There was a man,” at which Hermione interrupts to say “Nay, come sit down: then on,” and he then resumes “Dwelt by a churchyard: I will tell it softly, / Yond crickets shall not hear it.”¹⁵ In fact, no one hears it, because Leontes arrives to break up both the storytelling and the fabric of Mamilius’s life. This is all we know about Mamilius’s story except that it would have been sad—“A sad tale’s best for winter” (2.1.25)—but it is enough to let us see that it would also have been a story about an edge, for churchyards, Mamilius’s chosen setting, marked one edge of the human journey through life. In a sense, churchyards also marked an edge of Christendom, for Christendom has two sets of edges, geographical and temporal. I want to explore how Shakespeare’s last plays figure birth and death as edges of Christendom through their marked interest in the motif of failure to bury, which threatens a failure to make an orderly exit from Christendom, and I also want to connect the interest in failure to bury to the plays’ locations on the edges of Christendom. I shall be arguing that the last plays take their audiences to the geographical edge of Christendom in order to focus attention on the best way to negotiate the temporal edge of Christendom: how should one die, and above all how should one be buried, in order to pass the edge of this world and enter safely into the next? For these plays, the edge which joins the temporal and geographical edges of Christendom is the edge between the soul and the body, and the body must be dealt with properly in order for the spirit to break free.¹⁶ Temporally, one emerged into Christendom at the moment of birth. When Mamilius offers to tell his story to Hermione, she is “round[ing] apace” (1.1.16), and on the point of bringing a new soul into Christendom. Although Mamilius

 William Shakespeare, The Winter’s Tale, edited by J. H. P. Pafford (London: Methuen, 1989), 2.1.29 – 31. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.  Sharon Emmerichs, noting that “In many cultures, including most religious sects, there exists a belief that strict adherence to mores regarding the disposal of a body—that is, attention to where the corpse is ultimately located as well as how it is laid out within that space—will allow the living to interpret what sort of person the deceased was in life, as well as have a direct impact on what happens to the soul or the spirit of the deceased in the afterlife,” argues that in The Spanish Tragedy “Andrea’s lack of a proper grave makes it impossible for him to enter heaven” (“Shakespeare and the Landscape of Death: Crossing the Boundaries of Life and Afterlife,” Shakespeare 8, no. 2 [2012], pp. 171– 94, pp. 174– 75).

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does not know it, he is about to make the opposite journey, and will shortly be in the churchyard himself, or perhaps inside the church. He will therefore be negotiating a different temporal edge, for if one entered Christendom at birth, one left it at the moment of death. But the two stages are linked. The Scottish preacher William Birnie, writing in 1606, declared, “There be three seuerall stations that the diuine Prouidence by degrees hes assigned to man, whereby he may mount to immortalitie: First the wombe, a mansion for nine moneths: next the world that indureth to dissolution: last the graue, the tabernacle of bodilie rest vnto the resurrection.”¹⁷ Lawrence Green suggests that Shakespeare inherently implies a link between death and procreation: “In Shakespeare’s plays the eschatological threshold between life and death often coalesces neither in the cemetery nor in the interior of a church or Cathedral. Instead, grave space collides uncomfortably with domestic space in the shared territory of the bedchamber”; “Bedchambers in Shakespeare—particularly ladies’ chambers—almost always operate as proxy grave chambers and their occupants as emblematic monumental effigies.”¹⁸ Bedchambers were where women gave birth, but for Green, they are figured as always already places of death. The appropriate place and mode of negotiating that final edge of Christendom were problematic. In his biography of Bess of Hardwick, David N. Durant notes that in 1586 one Peter Bisse alleged that he had heard Henry Beresford “say that he knew that the Earl [of Shrewsbury] had raised twenty thousand men in revolt against the Queen. Furthermore, said Bisse, this had been said on the hallowed ground of Tormarton churchyard about Michaelmas 1584.”¹⁹ For Peter Bisse, what was said in the churchyard meant more than what was said elsewhere. For William Birnie, though, the churchyard was not holy at all. The dedication of Birnie’s The blame of kirk-buriall to James, marquis of Hamilton, declares that “There is nothing wherein the Antichristian crew is found more condemnable” than “their many fold sepulchromany,” and Birnie goes on to explain that “as fishe in euery sea is at home, so we in euery earth, if we be the Lords, to whom the earth and her implements do all appertaine”; “Otherwise if thy graue were of gold, yet it is but the gate of hell.”²⁰ It was this unchristian insistence on being buried in the churchyard, Birnie affirmed,

 William Birnie, The blame of kirk-buriall, tending to persuade cemiteriall ciuilitie (Edinburgh: Robert Charteris, 1606), n.p., n.sig.; doc. image 3.  Lawrence Green, “‘And Do Not Say ’tis Superstition’: Shakespeare, Memory, and the Iconography of Death,” Comparative Drama 50, no. 2 (2016), pp. 249 – 70, pp. 257– 58.  David N. Durant, Bess of Hardwick: Portrait of an Elizabethan Dynast (London: The Cromwell Press, 1988), p. 139.  Birnie, The blame of kirk-buriall, doc. images 2 and 9.

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which was responsible for the pernicious popular belief in ghosts: “Gods seemely sanctuarie beeing transferred to the (without whited, but within rotten) sepulchers of men odious to Christ … becommeth in populare opinion thereby the alrishe Innes of bogles and Gaists. So that many for that presumed feare dare not enter alone in the Kirk.”²¹ This takes us back to the setting of Mamilius’s winter’s tale, and it also, I think, takes us to a question which lies at the heart of the last plays: when it comes to one’s spirit negotiating the temporal edge of Christendom, does it matter where one’s body is located geographically? Alistair Moffat argues that it did: “An ancient belief persuaded people that the place of burial was very important. The more sacred the ground, the more effective the soil itself would be in purging the body of sin.”²² While Shakespeare may not have concurred precisely with this view, he does devote considerable attention to the question of where and how people are buried. One of Birnie’s arguments against burial in churchyards is that “The common kinde of sepulchers are more answerable to Pauls order.”²³ Geographically, too, Christendom traditionally followed a contour line supplied by St. Paul, but this Mediterranean emphasis was expanding and diversifying in an age of overseas exploration. Randall Martin surveys the various available maps of Paul’s travels and argues that they set up a triumphalist icon, translating into visual terms the core idea that Paul’s eastern Mediterranean missions to the gentiles were divinely mandated and historically irresistible. It was this suggestion of unstoppable Christian belief spreading globally outward that made Bible and atlas maps of Paul’s missionary journeys attractive to the aspirations of militant Protestants and supporters of New World colonization.²⁴

Particularly suggestive is Ortelius’s 1579 map of the travels of St. Paul, Peregrinationis Divi Pavli Typvs Corographicvs, which has a cartouche containing 2 Corinthians 5, part of which can be translated as “we believe, and long to travel outside our body, and to be with our Lord.” However the assumption that physical and spiritual travel are linked was being challenged on a number of fronts. In the last plays, Shakespeare plots a series of new edges of Christendom, starting in 1608 when he produced a very strange play with a very strange collaborator. George

 Birnie, The blame of kirk-buriall, doc. image 17.  Alistair Moffat, The Reivers (Edinburgh: Birlinn, 2010), p. 129.  Birnie, The blame of kirk-buriall, doc. image 9.  Randall Martin, “Pauline Cartography, Missionary Nationalism, and The Tempest,” in Shakespeare / Adaptation / Modern Drama: Essays in Honour of Jill L. Levenson, edited by Randall Martin and Katherine Scheil (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2011), pp. 198 – 217, pp. 202 and 207.

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Wilkins was a brothel owner and rogue, but he had also collaborated (with Rowley and Day) on The Travels of the Three English Brothers, which told of the adventures of Robert, Thomas and Anthony Sherley in Persia and elsewhere; Ernst Honigmann suggested that Shakespeare deliberately sought out Wilkins because of his “special interest in Mediterranean histories,”²⁵ since Pericles also charts the travels of its hero around the Mediterranean. Pericles is above all a play of the shore, and as such, it is inherently a play of instability. Sea-green signified inconstancy,²⁶ and the idea of writing on sand was a proverbial symbol of impermanence; at every level, the sea spoke of change. Pericles too speaks of change, but it is cultural as much as physical. The play opens with the first of a number of choruses spoken by the fifteenthcentury poet John Gower, whose tomb in St. Mary Overie Shakespeare would probably have seen when he paid for his brother Edmund to be buried there on 31 December 1607.²⁷ More recently, a new and unexpected layer of meaning had accrued to the name Gower, for it had become a possible spelling of giaour, meaning infidel: Jerry Brotton notes that Anthony Jenkinson explained that the Shah asked him “whether I were a Gower, that is to say, an unbeliever, or a Mussulman, that is, of Mahomet’s law.”²⁸ In Pericles, however, Gower emblematises the learning and values of an older world. He lived before the Reformation polarised Christendom into two confessions, and the three of his own books shown on his tomb, which support his head, are in English, French, and Latin respectively, bespeaking a firmly European culture moulded by the heritage of the classical past. Gower certainly starts on a reassuringly archaising note when he introduces the story by saying “It hath been sung at festivals, / On

 E. A. J. Honigmann, The Stability of Shakespeare’s Text (London: Arnold, 1965), p. 196.  Janet Arnold, Queen Elizabeth’s Wardrobe Unlock’d (London: Maney, 1988), p. 91.  Michael Wood, In Search of Shakespeare (London: BBC Books, 2005), pp. 301 and 302. Brian Walsh notes the reference to bells in Pericles and that the great bell was rung for Edmund Shakespeare’s funeral (“‘A Priestly Farewell’: Gower’s Tomb and Religious Change in Pericles,” Religion and Literature 54, no. 3 [Autumn 2013], pp. 81– 113, pp. 105 – 6). He also notes a tentative suggestion by Alan Nelson that the Edmund Shakespeare references may be forgeries by John Payne Collier (p. 109, n. 70). Richard Finkelstein argues that “In general, Shakespeare’s romances engage rhetorically with more than one theological design’ … [an] essentially medieval, Catholic form shows a surprising compatibility with Reformation arguments that individuals can do little to shape their fate” and that “with sources in medieval (Catholic) chivalric romance, a similarity to saints’ plays, possible Marian references, and depictions of effective rituals by Cerimon, some tones in Pericles sound like the old religion” (Richard Finkelstein, “Pericles, Paul, and Protestantism,” Comparative Drama 44, no. 2 [Summer 2010], pp. 101– 29, pp. 102 and 101).  Jerry Brotton, This Orient Isle [2016] (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 2017), p. 56.

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ember eves and holy ales,”²⁹ and the past into which he ushers us does indeed seem to be classical. Wilkins’s record, though, would suggest that any treatment of the Mediterranean in which he had a hand would have contemporary as well as historic valences, and at an early stage of the play, Pericles informs Cleon that expectations based on classical paradigms are not really valid any more: And these our ships, you happily may think Are like the Trojan horse was stuffed within With bloody veins expecting overthrow, Are stored with corn to make your needy bread. (1.4.90 – 93)

The classical story of the Trojan horse is no longer a reliable guide to events; instead we are in an obviously postclassical world, where there are metaphorical whales “who never leave gaping till they have swallowed the whole parish, church, steeple, bells and all” (2.1.32– 34). The idea of the parish implies a community within Christendom; however, churches, steeples and bells speak not only of Christianity per se but also of its fragmentation into two confessions, and Pericles seems to register that fragmentation in a number of ways, particularly when it comes to the question of appropriate burial practices. Paul Dean notes that “In both Gower and Shakespeare, Marina’s would-be killers construct a sham tomb for her, which Pericles is shown, so that her reappearance must indeed seem like a resurrection to him: and, of course, for Gower’s readers as for Shakespeare’s audience an empty tomb could mean only one thing.”³⁰ It is in this seaside cenotaph to a girl said to have died at night that that the play’s spatial and spiritual purposes cohere. When souls parted, their journey was often envisioned as a literal one, an idea typically expressed through the idea of a passport being necessary for it: John Bowle’s funeral sermon for the Earl of Kent speaks of “the pasport, Dimittis, let depart.”³¹ The metaphor of the passport has interesting connotations in that it implies that the country of destination is not only undiscovered but under foreign government, one in which the traveller might perhaps always be an alien, but it also does other cultural work, for at least some commentators

 William Shakespeare, Pericles, edited by Suzanne Gossett (London: Arden Shakespeare, 2004), 1.0.5 – 6. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.  Paul Dean, “Pericles’ Pilgrimage,” Essays in Criticism 50, no. 2 (2000), pp. 125 – 44, p. 128.  John Bowle, A sermon preached at Flitton in the Countie of Beford at the funerall of the Right Honourable Henrie Earle of Kent, the sixteenth of March 1614 (London: William Stansby for Richard Woodroffe, 1615), sig. A4r.

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associate the idea of a passport specifically with Catholicism: thus Thomas Adams in The deuills banket described in foure sermons declares scornfully that as far as Catholics are concerned “the Pope will for Money seale them a pasport for Heauen.”³² Presumably though any such passport will not actually prove effective, and this might offer an intriguing sidelight on the one passage in Shakespeare which specifically uses the passport conceit in this sense, when Cerimon says of the apparently dead Thaisa “A passport too! Apollo, perfect me / In the characters” (3.2.65 – 66)—or at least that is what he says in the Arden 3 edition, but in the 1609 quarto we have “a pasport to Apollo.” It is fitting that this should be a crux, for in both its image of the empty tomb and its ideas about journeys both physical and spiritual, this play sows doubt, and uses its setting in and around Greece to do so. Richard Finkelstein notes that “The many ‘exotic’ locales of Pericles are almost all associated with Paul” and that indeed “Because of Paul’s centrality to the Reformation project, the engagement with him in Pericles builds a context that exposes some fundamental Protestant patterns and arguments in the play.”³³ A distinctly sceptical perspective on Paul makes its presence felt, though, when Gower describes how Antiochus tried to keep his daughter for his own incestuous purposes by making sure that she could not marry: Which to prevent he made a law To keep her still and men in awe: That whoso asked her for his wife, His riddle told not, lost his life. (1.0.35 – 30)

There seems to be an echo here of Marlowe, who according to the Baines note said “That the beginning of religion was only to keep men in awe.” Marlowe is said to have added that Paul “was a timorous fellow in bidding men to be subject to magistrates against his conscience”;³⁴ this works to remind us that St. Paul’s authority was not beyond challenge,³⁵ and when we learn that the vis-

 Thomas Adams, The deuills banket described in foure sermons (London: Thomas Snodham for Ralph Mab, 1614), p. 108.  Finkelstein, “Pericles, Paul, and Protestantism,” pp. 103 and 104.  Roy Kendall, Christopher Marlowe and Richard Baines: Journeys through the Elizabethan Underground (Madison, WI: Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 2003), p. 332.  Marlowe may also be glanced at again when Thaisa notes that the motto on the shield of one knight is “Qui me alit me extinguit” (2.2.33), which might just conceivably nod at the motto on the painting at Corpus Christi which may or may not be of Marlowe, which is “Quod me nutrit me destruit.”

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itors to the Mytilenean brothel include a Transylvanian (4.2.19), from a territory which Vassiliki Markidou reminds us was under Ottoman influence,³⁶ we are forcibly reminded of the extent to which the contours of Christendom had now to be plotted with reference not to St. Paul but to the Turks, since areas once associated with the expansion of Christendom are now held by the Turks and thus speak rather of its retreat; William Lithgow notes for instance that Reggio di Calabria “was that Towne where Saint Paul arrived after his shipwracke at Malta in his voyage to Rome: it was miserably sacked by the Turkish Gallies of Constantinople, Anno 1609.”³⁷ Both geographically and spiritually, Pericles plots the edges of a changing world, in which where exactly one is both matters terribly and yet is impossible to control, because maps are outdated and the edges which matter are uncharted and unstable, and I suggest that this is linked to the fact that throughout the play, the disorderly disposal of bodies is a recurrent motif. The bodies of Antiochus and his daughter are destroyed by a thunderbolt, and Brian Walsh suggests of the funeral rites Pericles wishes he could have supplied for Thaisa that “The fantasies he expresses in this speech are, from a Jacobean perspective, infused by older traditions,”³⁸ representing nostalgia for a culture that is no longer available. Instead Thaisa has to be cast into the sea, and the supposed tomb of Marina is empty. The troubling of the geographical edge of Christendom is thus doubled by a troubling of its temporal edge. In The Winter’s Tale, Shakespeare seems again to have been thinking of Greece when he chose the name Hermione; moreover Tanya Pollard and Sarah Dewar-Watson both see The Winter’s Tale as a version of the Alcestis story, and Dewar-Watson argues convincingly for George Buchanan’s 1539 translation as the source.³⁹ Shakespeare’s Hermione, though, is pointedly not Greek, for she is the daughter of the Emperor of Russia. What Greece and Russia had in common was Orthodoxy; when Henry Cavendish travelled to Constantinople in 1589, his servant Fox noted that “the Russes relygyon I understand not more then that they do profess a poore kynd of Crystyanyty, but nether Papysts nor

 Vassiliki Markidou, “‘To Take Our Imagination / From Bourn to Bourn, Region to Region’: The Politics of Greek Topographies in Pericles, Prince of Tyre,” in Shakespeare and Greece, edited by Alison Findlay and Vassiliki Markidou (London: Bloomsbury, 2017), pp. 169 – 93, p. 182.  William Lithgow, The Totall discourse, of the rare adventures, and painefull peregrinations of long nineteene yeares travailes from Scotland, to the most famous kingdomes in Europe, Asia, and Affrica (London: Nicholas Okes for Nicholas Fussell and Humphrey Moseley, 1632), p. 398.  Walsh, “‘A Priestly Farewell,’” p. 87.  Pollard, Greek Tragic Women on Shakespearean Stages, pp. 172– 73, and Sarah DewarWatson, “The Alcestis and the Statue Scene in The Winter’s Tale,” Shakespeare Quarterly 60, no. 1 (Spring 2009), pp. 73 – 80.

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Lutherans. When any of [them] revoult and turn Poles, as many of them doe, they crysten them agayne what age so ever they be. The Grekes and they have but one churche.”⁴⁰ Fox’s reference to “a poore kynd of Crystyanyty” further makes it clear that although Russia was Christian, it was also an edge of Christendom, and a particularly troubling one at that. The English travel writer Giles Fletcher believed that “Russe doth signifie asmuch as to parte, or divide,” and for Fletcher, the thing that most obviously divided Russia from the west was its Orthodox faith, which he saw as fundamentally different from Western Christianity. Fletcher was appalled that “Charged with a crime, the Russian could simply swear innocence by the kissing of a cross,” and scandalised when an Englishman named Richard Relph “entred himself this last yeare into the Russe profession: and so was re-baptized, living now asmuch an idolater as before he was a rioter, and unthrifty person”;⁴¹ indeed the extent of Fletcher’s horror at what he saw in Russia alarmed those who wished to promote trade with the country—Stephen Alford notes that “So explosive was Fletcher’s exposé of the tsar and his court that the Muscovy Company had gone to Lord Burghley to have the book suppressed. They were successful.”⁴² Orthodoxy even operated to a different calendar: the Muscovy company secretary Anthony Jenkinson noted that 4 January was the Russian Twelfth Night,⁴³ rather than 6 January as in England, and William Russell in The reporte of a bloudie and terrible massacre in the citty of Mosco identifies 5 September as the Russian New Year.⁴⁴ However, The Winter’s Tale coincided with a suggestion that Russia might become more firmly integrated into Europe. James had always been interested in Russia: Olga Dimitrieva observes that “In 1604 James I sent Boris Godunov a huge carriage richly decorated with gilded relief carving that was full of political symbolism. The decorative programme embodied the idea of the Christians’ triumph over Turks.”⁴⁵ By 1612, he was contemplating actual possession of it.

 A. C. Wood, ed., Mr. Harrie Cavendish His Journey to and from Constantinople 1589 by Fox, His Servant, Camden Miscellany vol. 17 (London: Offices of the Royal Historical Society, 1940), p. 20.  Daryl W. Palmer, Writing Russia in the Age of Shakespeare (Aldershot, UK: Ashgate, 2004), pp. 84 and 105. On the perception of Orthodoxy as heresy, see Alison Findlay and Vassiliki Markidou, “Introduction,” in Shakespeare and Greece, p. 8.  Alford, London’s Triumph, p. 234.  Palmer, Writing Russia, pp. 1– 2 and 51.  William Russell, The reporte of a bloudie and terrible massacre in the citty of Mosco with the fearefull and tragicall end of Demetrius the last Duke, before him raigning at this present (London: Valentine Sims for Samuel Macham and Matthew Cooke, 1607), sig. A3r.  Olga Dimitrieva, “From Whitehall to the Kremlin: The Diplomacy and Political Culture of the English and Russian Courts,” in Treasures of the Royal Courts: Tudors, Stuarts and the Russian

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Daryl Palmer notes that “when John Merrick, chief agent for the Muscovy Company, returned to England in the autumn of 1612, he asked James I to envision Russia as his own,” adding that “James was still contemplating the project when The Winter’s Tale was performed at court on the occasion of Princess Elizabeth’s wedding in February 1613.”⁴⁶ For Shakespeare’s audience, Russia was still an edgeland, but one that perhaps seemed closer than before. Shakespeare had been interested in Russia for some time. Daryl W. Palmer notes: Thanks to a curious 1688 printing of what appears to be an eye-witness account of the entertainments called Gesta Grayorum, historians can construct a calendar of events running from the twentieth of December until Shrovetide, a schedule that includes a performance of Shakespeare’s Comedy of Errors and a series of Russian adventures that seem to have suggested lines in Love’s Labour’s Lost. ⁴⁷

This series of entertainments also offers a very suggestive intertext with Twelfth Night. Palmer notes that as part of the Gesta Grayorum, at which a member of Gray’s Inn was given the title of Prince of Purpoole and put in charge of the revels, “six knights appeared at the court of Purpoole, ‘returning from their Adventures out of Russia’” (to be followed up by a pretend visit to Russia by the prince) and that when Boris Godunov sent an embassage to announce his election in 1600, “the English hosts invited the Muscovite embassy to celebrate Christmas. The ambassador was royally feasted at Twelfth Night, where he may have watched Shakespeare’s new play.” Palmer also notes the persistent association between Russia and bears:⁴⁸ “In a sense, the bear exists as a cross-cultural formula for trauma and closure that roars—to the English ear—in Russian accents.”⁴⁹ Perhaps, then, Twelfth Night with its interest in bears and choice of date spoke of encounters with Russia as well as with Persia; it certainly seems suggestive that John Fletcher’s The Loyal Subject, which was set in Russia, features a character named Viola and another called Olimpia who is in love with a crossdressed boy, and has Olimpia asks Petesca “What think ye of her Colour?” to which Petesca replies “If it be her own, / ’Tis good black Blood; right Weath-

Tsars, edited by Olga Dimitrieva and Tessa Murdoch (London: V&A Publishing, 2013), pp. 13 – 29, p. 26.  Daryl W. Palmer, “Jacobean Muscovites: Winter, Tyranny, and Knowledge in The Winter’s Tale,” Shakespeare Quarterly 46, no. 3 (Autumn 1995), pp. 323 – 39, p. 327.  Palmer, Writing Russia, pp. 80 – 81.  Palmer, Writing Russia, pp. 82 and 183.  Palmer, Writing Russia, p. 195.

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er-proof, / I warrant it,” as if there were some connection in his mind between Russia and the play.⁵⁰ The Winter’s Tale develops this interest in Russia in very specific ways. When Hermione declares that “The Emperor of Russia was my father” (3.2.119), audiences might possibly have recalled the story of the various False Dmitrys who claimed to be the son of Ivan the Terrible. False Dmitry I reigned from 1605 to 1606. In the best manner of the last plays, he claimed that his mother had saved his life by giving him to a doctor who had hidden him in a monastery; his story, with only a change of pronoun, is almost summarised by Paulina when she says “That [he] is living, / Were it but told you, should be hooted at / Like an old tale” (5.3.115 – 17). In his The reporte of a bloudie and terrible massacre in the citty of Mosco with the fearefull and tragicall end of Demetrius the last Duke, William Russell claims that one of the servants of False Dmitry I was a Scottish captain by the unlikely sounding name of Albert Fancie,⁵¹ which could have offered a possible means for the pretender’s story to filter back to Britain (Russell’s own account was of course also such a means), and Margreta de Grazia notes that “In 1605, the anonymous author of Sir Thomas Smithes Voiage and Entertainments in Rushia likened the demise of Russia’s regime in 1605 to the tragedy of Hamlet,” comparing False Dmitry I to “a first, but no second to any Hamlet,”⁵² clearly showing that he was indeed a figure known in England. False Dmitry I was succeeded by two further pretenders, False Dmitry II and False Dmitry III, both of whom were “recognised” as the same person as Dmitry I by the latter’s wife Marina, and False Dmitry II was active from 1607 until he was murdered in late 1610, so the story was current when Shakespeare wrote. A particularly striking intertext between The Winter’s Tale and the stories of the various False Dmitrys is the motif of burning bodies. On 29 May False Dmitry I’s body was disinterred and burned on the grounds that he was an enchanter and had caused an unseasonable frost the night after his death.⁵³ In The Winter’s Tale, Leontes wishes Hermione were “Given to the fire” (2.3.8) and orders “Commit them to the fire!” (2.3.95), “see it instantly consum’d with fire” (2.3.133), “Go, take it to the fire” (2.3.140), and “better burn it now” (2.3.155); Paulina declares “It is an heretic that makes the fire, / Not she which burns in’t’ (2.3.114– 15) and

 John Fletcher, The Loyal Subject (London: H. N. for W. Keble, 1700), pp. 3 – 4. There is another echo when Olimpia lamenting her dismissal says of Alinda: “I lov’d it, / I doated on it too, and yet I kill’d it” (p. 71).  Russell, The reporte of a bloudie and terrible massacre, sig. A4r.  Margreta de Grazia, Hamlet without Hamlet (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2007), p. 45.  Russell, The reporte of a bloudie and terrible massacre, sig. C3v.

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says of the casting out of Perdita that “a devil / Would have shed water out of fire, ere done’t” (3.2.192– 93). The insistence with which bodies are imagined as being burned is underlined by the extent to which they are not imagined as being buried. For Elizabeth Williamson, tombs function with surprising frequency as the vehicle for a resurrection, and what she finds notable about the end of The Winter’s Tale is that there is not a tomb on stage.⁵⁴ The idea of burial is repeatedly evoked, but always in reference to a burial that does not actually happen. Thoughts about graves are one of the things that prompt Camillo to wish to return home: “It is fifteen years since I saw my country: though I have, for the most part, been aired abroad, I desire to lay my bones there” (4.2.4– 6), while the old shepherd laments: You have undone a man of fourscore three, That thought to fill his grave in quiet; yea, To die upon the bed my father died, To lie close by his honest bones: but now Some hangman must put on my shroud and lay me Where no priest shovels in dust. (4.4.454– 59)

Actually, though, this is a play in which there have never been any graves at all: Leontes commemorates his wife and child in a chapel which houses a statue rather than a tomb, and only part of Antigonus can be buried because the rest has been eaten by the bear. Graves are particularly insistently associated with Hermione, who declares that if she is guilty she is content to have “my near’st of kin / Cry fie upon my grave!” (3.2.53 – 54); soon afterwards, finally realising her innocence, Leontes says of her and Mamilius “One grave shall be for both” (3.2.236). Paulina apostrophising Hermione says, “so must thy grave / Give way to what’s seen now!” (5.1.97– 98), and Leontes notes that he has “in vain said many / A prayer upon her grave” (5.3.140 – 41). In fact Hermione has not died and so cannot have been buried: her grave, like Marina’s, must be a cenotaph. Perdita echoes Ophelia when she tells Polixenes and Camillo “For you, there’s rosemary, and rue” (4.4.73 – 74), and when she wishes she had flowers to strew Florizel with he asks, “What, like a corpse?” (4.4.128 – 29), but again this imagery is not connected to any actual burial.

 Elizabeth Williamson, The Materiality of Religion in Early Modern English Drama (Farnham, UK: Ashgate, 2009).

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The absence of tombs might have been particularly noticeable in the play’s first performances, because there may have been both a temporal and a thematic connection with the reburial of the body of Mary, Queen of Scots. When told that she would be executed the next day Mary immediately asked if she could be buried in France;⁵⁵ in fact she had been interred first in Peterborough Cathedral and then afterwards, on James’s orders, transferred to Westminster Abbey. Peter Sherlock has posited that the erection of the new tomb “was almost certainly timed to coincide with the wedding of her granddaughter, the princess Elizabeth, to Frederick, count palatine of the Rhine. A marriage contract had been signed in May 1612 and may have served as a spur to complete the tomb, following the precedent of the Danish king’s 1606 visit to the abbey monuments.”⁵⁶ The presence of Elizabeth and Frederick seems to be tacitly acknowledged in the reference to “th’freshest things now reigning” (4.1.13), while Mary, Queen of Scots may conceivably be evoked by the phrase “th’argument of Time” (4.1.26 – 27) which could perhaps glance at her motto of “Veritas temporis filia,” and there is also a potential mariological pull in the idea of the statue that comes to life which could prepare for the invocation of a Catholic queen.⁵⁷ This possible allusion to an actual tomb would have underscored the play’s interest in the idea of the empty grave. Most strikingly, there is a repeated idea that graves may not be able to contain bodies permanently. Antigonus says I have heard, but not believ’d, the spirits o’th’dead May walk again: if such thing be, thy mother Appear’d to me last night. (3.3.16 – 19)

Later, Paulina evokes the idea in connection with Antigonus’s own body when she calls the idea of Perdita’s being discovered “all as monstrous to our human reason / As my Antigonus to break his grave” (5.1.41– 42), while Leontes thinks remarrying would make Hermione’s “sainted spirit / Again possess her corpse” (5.1.57– 58). Here the idea of failure to bury is effectively transmuted into the idea of resurrection, and the empty grave acquires distinctly sacral symbolism. It is therefore not surprising that in this play in which the word “grace” echoes

 John Guy, Mary Queen of Scots [2004] (London: Fourth Estate, 2018), p. 499.  Peter Sherlock, “The Monuments of Elizabeth Tudor and Mary Stuart: King James and the Manipulation of Memory,” Journal of British Studies 46, no. 2 (April 2007), pp. 263 – 89, p. 286.  See for instance Ruth Vanita, “Mariological Memory in The Winter’s Tale and Henry VIII,” Studies in English Literature, 1500 – 1900 40, no. 2 (Spring 2000), pp. 311– 37.

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so resonantly, older forms of belief are resurrected without apology: Perdita says simply “do not say ’tis superstition, that / I kneel, and then implore her blessing” (5.3.43 – 44) and Paulina’s admonition to the onstage audience, “It is requir’d / You do awake your faith” (5.3.94– 95), surely speaks also to the offstage one. It suggests a fantasy in which the schism in the Christian church could be healed by the return of the old religion, but at the same time it acknowledges that it is only a fantasy. Finally, The Two Noble Kinsmen is centrally concerned with both Greece and the idea of failure to bury, not least in that its two heroes are presumably cousins of Antigone, since they are explicitly identified as nephews of Creon. This play is the self-proclaimed inheritor of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, to which it stands as effectively a sequel. But it inherits too from Chaucer, who is mentioned in the Prologue, from Greek tragedy, evoked by the same story of prevented burial as underlies Antigone, and from Hamlet, which is echoed in the opening scene’s unsettling mix of motifs of death and marriage as well as by the presence of a mad girl who sings and who is seen near water. It is even more nearly akin to the last plays, to which it is chronologically so close, not least in the fact that it shares with them the motif of the shipwreck. The Tempest starts with a shipwreck, or at least with what appears to be one, since we are later told that neither vessel nor crew has sustained any actual hurt; the same motif is also to be found in The Winter’s Tale and Pericles, and I argue elsewhere that traces of it are detectable in Cymbeline too.⁵⁸ The one in The Two Noble Kinsmen is even more residual, and indeed does not actually happen, but I want to suggest that it raises many of the same questions as those in other plays which do. The shipwreck to which I refer is that imagined by the Jailer’s Daughter. One should of course note at the outset that some of the scenes in which the Jailer’s Daughter features are in fact generally attributed to Fletcher, and the Arden 2 editor notes that the motif of a lovelorn girl imagining a shipwreck is also to be found in The Maid’s Tragedy, which Fletcher co-wrote with Beaumont, where Aspatia thinks of Theseus and Ariadne.⁵⁹ However, Douglas Bruster has argued: The dramatic idiolect of the Jailer’s Daughter is remarkable because it appears to transcend the peculiarities of authorial style—to retain a stylistic integrity, that is, despite the two playwrights’ own compositional idiolects. She appears in nine scenes in The Two Noble Kinsmen, two of which were probably written primarily by Shakespeare (2.1 and 4.3), the

 Lisa Hopkins, Renaissance Drama on the Edge (Farnham, UK: Ashgate, 2014).  William Shakespeare and John Fletcher, The Two Noble Kinsmen, edited by Lois Potter (London: Thomas Nelson and Sons, 1997), pp. 48 – 49. All quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.

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rest primarily by Fletcher (2.4; 2.6; 3.2; 3.4; 3.5; 4.1; and 5.2). How she speaks depends less on who was writing, however, than on who the playwrights imagined her to be.

(He also notes that “These shared characteristics include emphasis on … the sea and sailing.”)⁶⁰ It seems, therefore, legitimate to treat this as sharing at least the sensibility of a Shakespearean shipwreck, and indeed Bruster links the Jailer’s Daughter directly to The Tempest, arguing that “Where The Tempest begins with the cries of mariners aboard a sinking ship, The Two Noble Kinsmen channels such cries through the voice of the Jailer’s Daughter.” For Bruster, she is in fact a crucial character: he claims that “it is precisely in the mad language of this otherwise disempowered character that we get the richest picture of the arrangements of power in the play, of social relations in the early modern playhouse, and of transformation in the Jacobean culture that produced The Two Noble Kinsmen.”⁶¹ I think Bruster is right, and that the Jailer’s Daughter’s imagined shipwreck in particular helps us to prise open some of the bigger questions in which the play is interested. After the Jailer’s Daughter sets Palamon free, she goes out that night to find him, and failing to do so runs mad, the pain of her unrequited love exacerbated by hunger and fatigue. Her wits turn as she wanders alone, and it is here that she first imagines that she sees a shipwreck: I am very cold and all the stars are out too, The little stars and all, that look like aglets; The sun has seen my folly. – Palamon! – Alas, no, he’s in heaven; where am I now? Yonder’s the sea and there’s a ship; how’t tumbles! And there’s a rock lies watching under water; Now, now, it beats upon it; now, now, now! There’s a leak sprung, a sound one! How they cry! Run her before the wind, you’ll lose all else. Up with a course or two and tack about, boys! Good night, good night, you’re gone. – I am very hungry. Would I could find a fine frog; he would tell me News from all parts o’th’world. Then would I make A carrack of a cockle shell and sail By east and north-east to the king of pygmies, For he tells fortunes rarely. (3.4.1– 16)

 Douglas Bruster, “The Jailer’s Daughter and the Politics of Madwomen’s Language,” Shakespeare Quarterly 46, no. 3 (Autumn 1995), pp. 277– 300, pp. 278 – 79.  Bruster, “The Jailer’s Daughter and the Politics of Madwomen’s Language,” pp. 288 and 277.

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Susan Green, who offers one of the few extended accounts of this passage, seems unsure about what is actually going on in it: She sees a shipwreck, imagines one, draws others into antic imitation of another, then journeys inward on her own voyage “to th’end o’ th’ world” … Her imagination quickens as she watches a ship veer toward a rock lying underwater (how does she know it’s there?). As it goes down, she matches with her words the rhythm and intensity of the event she observes (or imagines occurring?).⁶²

However, I think the Jailer’s Daughter imagines the shipwreck, and I think that partly because she is associated with someone else who does not actually see a shipwreck, but thinks she does. Later in the play, once her madness is well established, the Jailer’s Daughter casts her roving thoughts on two legendary figures associated with shipwrecks, Dido and Aeneas: “in the next world will Dido see Palamon, and then will she be out of love with Aeneas” (4.3.14– 16). In Marlowe’s Dido, Queen of Carthage, Aeneas first presents himself as a victim of shipwreck: With twice twelve Phrygian ships I ploughed the deep, And made that way my mother Venus led; But of them all, scarce seven do anchor safe, And they so wracked and weltered by the waves As every tide tilts ’twixt their oaken sides.⁶³

Later, when Aeneas wishes to depart from Carthage, Dido wishes “that the Tyrrhene Sea were in mine arms, / That he might suffer shipwrack on my breast / As oft as he attempts to set up sail!” (4.4.101– 3); finally, when he has actually left, her love and fear leads her to think she sees him being shipwrecked: Look, sister, look, lovely Aeneas’ ships! See, see, the billows heave him up to heaven, And now down falls the keels into the deep. O sister, sister, take away the rocks, They’ll break his ships! (5.1.251– 55)

 Susan Green, “‘A Mad Woman? We Are Made, Boys!’: The Jailer’s Daughter in The Two Noble Kinsmen,” in Shakespeare, Fletcher and “The Two Noble Kinsmen,” edited by Charles H. Frey (Columbia: University of Missouri Press, 1989), pp. 121– 32, p. 129.  Christopher Marlowe, Dido, Queen of Carthage, in The Complete Plays, edited by Mark Thornton Burnett (London: Everyman, 1999), 1.1.220 – 24. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.

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Throughout his career, Shakespeare showed himself haunted by memories of Dido, Queen of Carthage. Here there is so close a similarity between the deluded vision of the Jailer’s Daughter and the deluded vision of Marlowe’s Dido that I think the one dramatic scene is modelled on the other, in ways which work to present the Jailer’s Daughter as a transhistorical and transcendent figure of a desire which is neither socially constructed nor socially constrained and to associate this story of a nameless low-born madwoman with the ur-text of colonial encounter and the foundational myth of the translatio imperii. In subsequent scenes, the thoughts of the Jailer’s Daughter continue to dwell on the sea. First she sings a ballad about a ship, the George Alow: The George Alow came from the south From the coast of Barbary-a And there he met with brave gallants of war, By one, by two, by three-a. “Well hailed, well hailed, you jolly gallants, And whither now are you bound-a? O let me have your company Till we come to the sound-a.” (3.5.60 – 67)

The Arden 2 note on this passage says that the George Alow is “the name of a ship in a ballad of 1611,” which told the story of how the English vessel the George Aloe defeated the French Sweepstake in a sea-fight off the coast of Barbary; the derivation of the vessel’s unusual name is uncertain, but H. Littledale endorses a suggestion that the name was originally the George a’ Looe,⁶⁴ and this is certainly plausible since Looe Island off the coast of Cornwall is otherwise known as St. George’s Island. It is not clear when the incident referred to in the ballad is supposed to have taken place—the only clue appears to be a Stationers’ Register entry for 14 January 1595 for a ballad called The Soldier’s Joy which stipulated that this was to be sung to the tune The George Aloe and the Sweepstake, which gives us a terminus a quo—but we are told unequivocally that at the time of the fight both vessels were heading for Safi in Morocco, where Elizabeth’s ambassador Henry Roberts had been based. Both the ballad and the imagined shipwreck can, I think, be seen as working in the same direction. If the reference to Barbary, who appears as a dancer (3.5.27) like the singing of willow (4.1.80), recalls Othello, as may the stress on the morris

 H. Littledale, “The Mad Songs in The Two Noble Kinsmen,” Modern Language Review 5, no. 2 (April 1910), pp. 200 – 201.

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dance which was sometimes supposed to be derived from “moorish” and often featured Moors (Arden appendix 5, 359), the main line of descent of the Didoinfluenced Jailer’s Daughter is through the Dido-influenced Tempest. What, then, if the George Alow is another Sea Venture, and should similarly alert us to specific trade interests and cultural issues? Certainly, as Nabil Matar observes, “Elizabeth cooperated commercially and diplomatically with both the Turks of the Ottoman Empire and the Moors of the Kingdom of Morocco,” and in her reign “Morocco was an excellent trading partner where numerous Britons resided for extended periods of time,”⁶⁵ while in The Merchant of Venice Bassanio lists the ships of Antonio’s which have failed as coming “From Tripolis, from Mexico and England, / From Lisbon, Barbary, and India.”⁶⁶ Once the Barbary Company had been founded in 1585, trade grew steady and regular; as Emily Bartels notes, sugar was the most important commodity exported from Morocco but dates, almonds and molasses were also traded, as well as saltpetre, needed for gunpowder, while English exports included “armor, ammunition, timber (for ships), metal (for canons).”⁶⁷ In 1603 Henry Roberts suggested that James I should colonise Morocco. Our attention might be further directed to Morocco by the play’s interest in horses. The Jailer’s Daughter imagines that Palamon has given her a horse that can do dances, including the morris, read, write, and do accounts, and which scorns the love of the Duke’s chestnut mare (5.2.40 – 67), and horses are important too elsewhere in the play, not only in relation to the death of Arcite but also when Palamon laments: Oh, never Shall we two exercise, like twins of honour, Our arms again and feel our fiery horses Like proud seas under us. (2.2.16 – 20)

Indeed the note is set early, when Palamon declares:

 Nabil Matar, Turks, Moors, and Englishmen in the Age of Discovery (New York: Columbia University Press, 2000), pp. 9 and 64.  William Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice, edited by W. Moelwyn Merchant (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 1967), 3.2.68 – 69.  Emily Bartels, Speaking of the Moor: From “Alcazar” to “Othello” (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2008), p. 24. See also Matthew Dimmock, New Turkes: Dramatizing Islam and the Ottomans in Early Modern England (Aldershot, UK: Ashgate, 2005), p. 17, on the Barbary trade.

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Either I am The fore-horse in the team or I am none That draw i’th’sequent trace. (1.2.59 – 60)

Later, Theseus says of Arcite “Emily, I hope / He shall not go afoot” (2.5.52– 53), and soon after Arcite notes that Emilia has given him A brace of horses: two such steeds might well Be by a pair of kings backed, in a field That their crowns’ titles tried. (3.1.20 – 21)

We also hear of Arcite’s “bright bay” (3.6.78) and the other horse, “a black one, owing / Not a hair-worth of white” (5.4.50 – 51), which ultimately causes Arcite’s death, while Theseus when Arcite describes Palamon says “He speaks now of as brave a knight as e’er / Did spur a noble steed” (5.3.115 – 16), as if a horse were an extension of a knight’s personality. The prevalence of the horse motif might serve various purposes. Martin N. Raitière has suggested a politicising metaphor to Philisides’s fable in The Countess of Pembroke’s Arcadia of how “by and by the horse faire bitts did bind,”⁶⁸ and Jonathan Bate too remarks on horsemanship being a traditional image of good government.⁶⁹ However, horses were also one of the principal imports from Barbary, and indeed the word “Barbary” is in Shakespeare almost synonymous with “horse,” from Richard II lamenting the fickleness of “roan Barbary” to Iago figuring Othello as “a Barbary horse.”⁷⁰ The Two Noble Kinsmen, as mentioned above, has links with Othello, and also with Hamlet in the figure of the mad, lovelorn girl who so obviously recalls Ophelia. However, it goes beyond Hamlet by focusing not only on the fact of death but on the even more disturbing and viscerally taboo subject of leaving bodies unburied. In this it also links to news which the original audiences might recently have heard from Barbary, as for instance in an anonymous pamphlet of 1607 entitled The fierce and cruel battaile fought by the three Kings in Bar-

 Martin N. Raitière, Faire Bitts: Sir Philip Sidney and Renaissance Political Theory (Pittsburgh: Duquesne University Press, 1984), p. 83.  Jonathan Bate, Soul of the Age: The Life, Mind and World of William Shakespeare (London: Viking, 2008), p. 271.  William Shakespeare, Richard II, edited by Stanley Wells (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 1969), 5.5.78 and Othello, edited by E. A. J. Honigmann (London: Thomas Nelson and Sons, 1997), 1.1.110.

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barie, nere to the cittie of Maroques, the 25. of Aprill last. This opens with a battle between the King of Maroques (Marrakesh) and the son of the King of Fez in which seventy-two English soldiers fought whom the son of the King of Fez “had got out of the ships of Captain Ferres, Captaine Feyts, Captain Brist, Captaine Watter-drinker,” and culminates with the information that the forty-five Englishmen who died in the battle were not buried “but were eaten by the Dogges.”⁷¹ Even more interesting is another Barbary-related pamphlet, Three miseries of Barbary: plague, famine, ciuill warre, for this was written by George Wilkins, with whom Shakespeare had collaborated on Pericles. This begins with the story of Muly Mahomet, already familiar to English audiences from Peele’s The Battle of Alcazar, and moves through to the same generation as The fierce and cruel battaile pamphlet, to whose story it imports a flavour of King Lear: It seemed that the Father lost much of his imperiall state and dignitie, when hee placed his three sonnes (like three great lights) to shine equally in his kingdome, considering that all the beames of maiestie that came from them, might (if he had pleased) haue beene sent foorth from the centred glory of his owne head.

Wilkins too then moves on to tell of how not only war but also an ensuing outbreak of plague led to a situation in which “the carkases of vnburied men were so many, that a far off they might be taken for hills.”⁷² The plot of The Two Noble Kinsmen is wholly set in motion by a similar failure to bury, when Theseus is interrupted in the midst of his wedding to Hippolyta by three weeping queens who lament: We are three queens whose sovereigns fell before The wrath of cruel Creon, who endure The beaks of ravens, talons of the kites And pecks of crows, in the foul fields of Thebes, He will not suffer us to burn their bones, To urn their ashes, nor to take th’offence Of mortal loathsomeness from the blest eye Of holy Phoebus, but infects the winds With stench of our slain lords. (1.1.38 – 47)

 Anonymous, The fierce and cruel battaile fought by the three Kings in Barbarie, nere to the cittie of Maroques, the 25. of Aprill last (London: printed for Thomas Archer, 1607), pp. 1– 2 and 9.  George Wilkins, Three miseries of Barbary: Plague, famine, ciuill warre (London: printed for W[illiam] J[aggard] by Henry Gosson, 1607), sigs. C1r and C3v.

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The apparently nonsensical delusions of the Jailer’s Daughter may thus alert us to the fact that for all its fairy-tale atmosphere, this play has its eye firmly on the wider world. Morris dancing was often though erroneously believed to be associated with Moors: Brotton notes that in Marrakesh the English envoy Edmund Hogan “watched what the bemused Englishman described as ‘a Morris dance,’”⁷³ and Alison Findlay argues that “The ‘country pastime’ of English Morris dancing (3.5.101) explicitly evokes an amalgam with the Ottoman ‘Other’ in the lines which describe how ‘this mighty “Moor” of mickle weight’ must join with ‘Is.’”⁷⁴ Coupled with the fact that Hippolyta and Emilia are Amazons, popularly believed to inhabit the very areas that the English colonial enterprise was interested in exploring, this introduces an exotic influence which reminds us of wider geopolitical concerns; so too does the bringing together of images of ships and of horses evoke the idea of the Barbary trade, and its growing importance in the political and commercial landscape. Collectively, all these plays thus tell a story in which being situated at the geographical edge of Christendom is recurrently linked to a failure of proper burial rites, and it seems too to be repeatedly suggested that these rites are maimed because Christendom itself is internally fragmented by the damaging division into two confessions. Perhaps it is no wonder that as Shakespeare’s thoughts turned away from the stage they turned to the question of his own grave, and that his principal concern seems to have been that it should remain undisturbed. Unlike William Birnie, Shakespeare seems to have felt that how and where the body was buried did matter to the spirit, and it is therefore not surprising that he represents the geographical and spiritual edges of Christendom as connected.

 Brotton, This Orient Isle, p. 74.  Alison Findlay, “Reshaping Athens in A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Two Noble Kinsmen,” in Shakespeare and Greece, edited by Alison Findlay and Vassiliki Markidou (London: Bloomsbury, 2017), pp. 196 – 216, p. 207.

Chapter 7 The Politics of the Rose: English Histories and Foreign Flowers The garden was a contested space. What grows in the soil might seem the ultimate instance of the indigenous, but Jane Whitaker calculates that “In total, the number of new plants introduced to English gardens in the Elizabethan period was almost 600, some brought from the wild of England and others from overseas” and cites Holinshed as commenting on the prevalence of imported flowers,¹ as if their appearance was something significant in English history. In The Winter’s Tale, plants are central both to the play and to the myth of Demeter and Persephone which clearly lies behind it, but their status is complicated. Rebecca Bushnell notes that the gillyflower, which Perdita does not wish to plant, was “seen as an emblematic English flower (even though in fact the cultivated form, the carnation, came from the east and was imported into Western Europe only in the fifteenth century)”; she points out that the frontispiece to Parkinson’s Paradisi in Sole, which shows Adam and Eve in Paradise, features a gillyflower,² which suggests both its antiquity but also its origins in a land other than England. Benedict Robinson observes: Most of the flowers Perdita mentions are recognizably English plants; but at least one is a conspicuous and recent transplant, the Crown Imperial, whose name is often taken as a reminder of Perdita’s own status as a transplanted royal. In his Herball, Gerard calls it a “rare and strange plant,” noting that it has been brought from Istanbul, “amongst other bulbus rootes, and made denizons in our London gardents” (K5v; R4r); Parkinson identifies its native habitat as Persia.

Robinson suggests that “If The Winter’s Tale works to erode the distinction between nature and artifice, it does so in part by evoking a developing trade in foreign flowers.”³ The distinction between art and nature is not the only thing which is called into question by exotic new plants. Alexander Samson notes that “Gardens, horti-

 Jane Whitaker, Gardens for Gloriana: Wealth, Splendour and Design in the Elizabethan Garden (London: Bloomsbury Academic, 2019), pp. 175 and 166.  Rebecca Bushnell, Green Desire: Imagining Early Modern English Gardens (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2003), pp. 59 – 60 and 150.  Benedict S. Robinson, “Green Seraglios: Tulips, Turbans, and the Global Market,” Journal for Early Modern Cultural Studies 9, no. 1 (Spring/Summer 2009), pp. 94– 121, pp. 100 and 96. https://doi.org/10.1515/9781501514159-009

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culture and their literary representation intersected with many of the critical, defining social transformations of the early modern period,”⁴ and Robinson argues that “A flower is not like any other commodity. It is not simply imported into England, but once imported, grows there, perhaps even becomes part of an English ecology”: Such plants are resident aliens, migrants, living things not merely imported but “endenizond,” alive and increasingly at home in England. Gardening naturalizes the foreign flower, adapts it to local conditions and local tastes. The flower favored in Turkey thus differed significantly from the varieties cultivated in Europe; as the tulip changed Europe, the flower itself was changed by Europe.⁵

Perdita’s mention of the fritillary is particularly suggestive, first because Parkinson noted that the fritillary had no medicinal use and served only for ornament,⁶ calling into question the implication in the Bible that all plants had either medical or nutritional value, and second because Miriam Jacobson argues that in Venus and Adonis Shakespeare has Adonis translated into a fritillary rather than an anemone; Jacobson considers that “Shakespeare’s inclusion and extended focus on two Levantine imports in the poem—an Arabian horse and a Turkish bulb—present an alternative narrative of generation, productivity, and publication.”⁷ In this chapter I argue that some English history plays also draw attention to foreign flowers, including ones which originate outside Christendom, and that they do so in ways which invite us to question the processes by which history is made at home. In the closing scene of King John, the king, having been poisoned by a monk, dies. He does so in the open air, for his heir Prince Henry has shortly before commanded, “Let him be brought into the orchard here.”⁸ Situating the moment when the reign of one king gives way to that of another in an orchard connects the succession to the throne to the idea of nature and the seasons, and suggests a peace and ripeness which the king had struggled to achieve in life. It also inaugurates a series of scenes set in gardens which will play an important part in the history plays which follow. I argue that such scenes draw attention to issues pertaining to edges of Christendom in two ways, first by reprising issues of burial in that flowers are connected to funerals, and secondly by raising the question of whether English history is providential or accidental.  Alexander Samson, “Locus amoenus: Gardens and Horticulture in the Renaissance,” Renaissance Studies 25, no. 1 (2011), pp. 1– 23, p. 1.  Robinson, “Green Seraglios,” pp. 100 and 97.  Bushnell, Green Desire, p. 61.  Miriam Jacobson, Barbarous Antiquity: Reorienting the Past in the Poetry of Early Modern England (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2014), p. 115.  William Shakespeare, King John, edited by R. L. Smallwood (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 1974), 5.7.10.

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Henry VIII provides a telos for Shakespeare’s English history plays, though the revelation of that fact is safely delayed until well into the reign of James. Henry VIII does not merely conclude the story as Shakespeare tells it but reinterprets it by retrospectively implying that the Wars of the Roses which the first two tetralogies ostensibly dramatise serve as a proxy for the more recent conflict of the Reformation, which had been woven even more intimately into the fabric of English daily life. However, there had already been a clue to this lurking subtext in Shakespeare’s use of garden scenes, especially when they involve roses, for the rose had both political and religious associations: John Gerard called it “the honor and ornament of our English Scepter, as by the conjunction appeareth, in the uniting of those two most Royall Houses of Lancaster and Yorke,”⁹ but the rose was also, as I shall explore, a symbol of the Virgin Mary. Moreover, it was an immigrant. Linda McJannet observes that “Mary C. Fuller points out that the English national flower, the ‘damascene’ or damask rose, is originally from Damascus,”¹⁰ while Gerard’s mention of the rose’s connection to the houses of Lancaster and York is followed almost immediately by a rather different association for it: “the Turks can by no means endure to see the leaves of Roses fall to the ground, because some of them have dreamed, that the first or most antient Rose did spring out of the bloud of Venus: and others of the Mahumetans say that it sprang of the sweat of Mahumet.”¹¹ The rose is made strange here by being connected to Turks, although the Turks themselves are less strange than they might be because at least some of them are apparently interested in classical mythology, and dream of Venus. In King John, the Bastard expresses his gratitude that he does not look like his legitimate half-brother: And if my legs were two such riding-rods, My arms such eel-skins stuff’d, my face so thin That in mine ear I durst not stick a rose Lest men should say “Look, where three-farthings goes!”¹²

 John Gerard, Gerard’s Herball: The essence thereof distilled by Marcus Woodward from the edition of Th. Johnson, 1636 (London: The Minerva Press, 1971), p. 270.  Linda McJannet, The Sultan Speaks: Dialogue in English Plays and Histories about the Ottoman Turks (Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan, 2006), p. 6, citing Mary C. Fuller, “English Turks and Resistant Travelers: Conversion to Islam and Homosocial Courtship,” in Travel Knowledge: European “Discoveries” in the Early Modern Period, edited by Ivo Kamps and Jyotsna G. Singh (New York: Palgrave, 2001), pp. 66 – 73.  Gerard, Herball, p. 270.  William Shakespeare, King John, edited by E. A. J. Honigmann (London: Methuen, 1954), 1.1.140 – 43. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.

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The three-farthing coin, first introduced in 1561, shows the queen with a rose behind her head and bears the motto “Rosa sine spina,” “Rose without a thorn.” Roses are connected to inheritance again when Constance figures Arthur as one: “Of nature’s gifts thou mayst with lilies boast / And with the half-blown rose” (2.2.53 – 54). The image of the rose thus cuts two ways in King John: it acknowledges both the attraction of moral and spiritual values such as maternal affection and the “right” that underlies Arthur’s claim to the crown, but also the force of political reality and of money. Roses might evoke the peace and beauty of gardens, but they could also suggest strife: in Hans Eworth’s painting Elizabeth I and the Three Goddesses the red and white roses lying at the feet of Venus speak of both her beauty and the discord of the Trojan War, which is about to be caused by this moment. Shakespeare’s English history plays share elements with a genre emerging concurrently, domestic tragedy. Ostensibly domestic tragedy and chronicle history are polar opposites, since one homes in on a private household and the other takes the whole nation as its scope. In fact there is significant overlap, since the apparently private household is typically presented as a microcosm of the state, to the extent that the murder of the private citizen Thomas Arden of Faversham is mentioned in Holinshed’s Chronicles as well as being the subject of a play. Of particular interest for Shakespeare’s histories is the anonymous A Warning for Fair Women, which tells the story of the murder of George Sanders, a respectable London citizen, by George Browne, who hoped to marry Sanders’s wife Anne. A Warning for Fair Women was entered in the Stationers’ Register on 17 November 1599 and in the introduction to her edition of the play Gemma Leggott speculates that it was performed at the Globe, which would put it in the same season as Julius Caesar and Henry V;¹³ indeed David Grote states simply that “One of the plays alternating with Henry V all but certainly was the anonymous A Warning for Fair Women.”¹⁴ Like many domestic tragedies A Warning for Fair Women is very interested in space, and there is a particular tension between outdoor and indoor spaces. In her article “Illicit Privacy and Outdoor Spaces in Early Modern England,” Mary Thomas Crane argues that “real privacy, especially for illicit activities, was, until well into the seventeenth century, most often repre-

 Anonymous, A Warning for Fair Women, edited by Gemma Leggott. Online: https://extra.shu. ac.uk/emls/iemls/resources.html, p. 6. All quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.  David Grote, The Best Actors in the World: Shakespeare and His Acting Company (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2002), p. 82.

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sented as readily attainable only outdoors.”¹⁵ Indoors, there was a danger of being spied on by servants: the house is not a safe place. By contrast, the garden might be. As a result, gardens and garden produce, such as fruit and flowers, may become charged with multiple levels of meaning. One manifestation of the privacy potentially afforded by outdoor spaces is the religious symbolism underlying a garden such as Lyveden New Bield in Northamptonshire. Andrew Eburne notes that “the 1593 act [for Restraining Popish Recusants] … had driven recusancy more firmly into the private arena” and that the safest place for expressing this was the garden: he observes that “Popular contemporary Catholic culture attached religious significance to a great variety of plant life” and “roses, raspberries and willow are all specifically associated with the Passion of Christ—Palm Sunday was traditionally known as Willow Sunday,”¹⁶ while Rebecca Bushnell notes that “Virgins had long been associated with the image of ‘a flower in an enclosed garden,’ and the lily, the rose, and the violet symbolized the Virgin Mary, in particular.”¹⁷ As Shakespeare suggests in As You Like It, in his reference to “sermons in stones and books in the running brooks,” the natural environment could be shaped to politico-religious purposes in ways that might effectively pass under the radar. A priest hole or a private chapel was anathema to the government, but a garden with symbolic connotations was likely to be tolerated; Shakespeare himself was a relative of Edward Arden, “a prominent Catholic who kept a priest disguised as a gardener,”¹⁸ and Eburne notes that “In 1605 Robert Cecil sent his gardener Mountain Jennings to Lyveden to view the orchard there before laying out his own at Hatfield.”¹⁹ It does not seem to have mattered to Cecil that Lyveden was an open challenge to the religious orthodoxy of which he was a principal guardian. Domestic tragedy is a prime locus of exploration of the intersection between public and private in both house and garden. Like that of Arden of Faversham, the murder dramatised in A Warning for Fair Women is mentioned in Holinshed, and also like that of Arden this may have been because its characters were socially prominent: Leggott observes of its central female character that “Anne Sanders was the sister of Francis Newdigate who was the second husband of Anne Stanhope, who, at the time of their marriage, was the Duchess of Somerset

 Mary Thomas Crane, “Illicit Privacy and Outdoor Spaces in Early Modern England,” Journal for Early Modern Cultural Studies 9, no. 1 (Spring 2009), pp. 4– 22, p. 5.  Andrew Eburne, “The Passion of Sir Thomas Tresham: New Light on the Gardens and Lodge at Lyveden,” The Garden History Society 36, no. 1 (Spring 2008), pp. 114– 34, pp. 115, 125, and 126.  Bushnell, Green Desire, p. 117.  Michael Wood, In Search of Shakespeare (London: BBC, 2003), pp. 89 and 90.  Eburne, “The Passion of Sir Thomas Tresham,” p. 118.

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and whose first husband was Edward Seymour, the once Lord Protector and uncle of the boy King Edward VI.”²⁰ (Anne Stanhope was thus also the mother of the Earl of Hertford, whose wife Lady Catherine Grey had a potential claim to the throne which had been covertly noted in Thomas Sackville and Thomas Norton’s play Gorboduc. ²¹) Moreover, Leggott notes that Anne’s husband George Sanders too “was closely related to some of the most well known figures in Elizabethan society including Edward Saunders, Sir Christopher Hatton and Walter Haddon.”²² The connection with Sir Christopher Hatton (coincidentally now famous principally for his connection with a garden, in the shape of Hatton Garden) is particularly suggestive because he had been responsible for Act Four of Tancred and Gismund, at the beginning of which Megra, Alecto, and Tisiphone arise from hell and dance,²³ and A Warning for Fair Women may nod to this. It opens with History and Tragedy (soon joined by Comedy) entering to dispute which should hold the stage; Tragedy wins. In Act Two, Scene Two the characters are led on stage by the Furies and Lust and Chastity do battle for Anne. This time Lust wins, and later Tragedy brings on a bowl of blood and anoints the hands of Browne, Anne Drury and Roger, and one of Anne Sanders’s fingers (2.2.56 – 60). The result of both these allegorised struggles for supremacy is a sense that though one thing ultimately happens, things might have turned out differently; the action seems provisional and potentially fluid rather than governed by fate or manifest destiny, and there is also an implication that where baser motives strive with nobler ones, the baser are likely to prevail. I am going to suggest that the play’s use of a rose supports this sense of provisionality, and that a similar sense of accident and chance leaches out into history plays which refer to roses. It is not news that there are some intersections between the world of Shakespeare’s history plays and the world of domestic tragedy. In The Merry Wives of Windsor, a play which overlaps with the second tetralogy through the presence of Sir John Falstaff, Master Slender refuses to come into dinner, and at the end of the play Fenton says Anne has been spared “A thousand irreligious cursed hours / Which forced marriage would have brought upon her.”²⁴ Master Slender’s preference for waiting outside the house is never explained, but both it

 Leggott, A Warning for Fair Women, introduction, p. 4.  See Henry James and Greg Walker, “The Politics of Gorboduc,” The English Historical Review 110 (February 1995), pp. 109 – 21.  Leggott, A Warning for Fair Women, introduction, p. 3.  The Tragedie of Tancred and Gismund (London: Thomas Scarlet for R. Robinson, 1591).  William Shakespeare, The Merry Wives of Windsor, edited by Giorgio Melchiori (London: Methuen, 2000), 1.1.245 – 50 and 5.5.223 – 24.

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and Fenton’s words find a close echo in George Wilkins’s play The Miseries of Enforced Marriage, where Clare spurns repeated requests to come in and eat because she is nerving herself to commit suicide after reading the letter in which her lover announces that he has been forced into marriage; indeed Philip D. Collington has suggested that Merry Wives is a deliberate parody of domestic tragedy, pointing in particular to the fact that the name of Page evokes the lost play Page of Plymouth. ²⁵ I suggest that the history plays themselves are similarly in dialogue with A Warning for Fair Women. Although it is in many ways a rather simple text, A Warning for Fair Women is interesting in its use of floral imagery. Flowers, plants, and herbs are mentioned at a number of points. Anne Sanders tells Browne “such unexpected kindness is like herb John in broth” (1.3.42), explaining “Tmay even as well be laid aside as used” (1.3.45). Joan tells Bean she dreamt that you were grown taller and fairer and that ye were in your shirt and methought it should not be you, and yet it was you, and that ye were all in white, and went into a garden, and there was the umberst sort of flowers that ever I see. And methought you lay down upon a green bank and I pinned gillyflowers in your ruff and then methought your nose bled, and as I ran to my chest to fetch ye a handkerchief methought I stumbled and so waked: what does it betoken? (2.4.50 – 57)

Leggott suggests that what it betokens is “a bad omen as flowers in a dream generally ‘signified a funeral,’”²⁶ but Joan’s dream also brings flowers and blood into conjunction in a way that will prove prophetic of later events in the play (a potential connection between the two always lurked since “flowers” was a euphemism for menstruation). Later, The Music playing, enters Lust bringing forth Browne and Roger at one end Mistress Sanders and Mistress Drury at the other, they offering cheerfully to meet and embrace. Suddenly riseth up a great tree between them, whereat amazedly they step back, wherepon Lust bringeth an axe to Mistress Sanders showing signs that she should cut it down, which she refuseth, albeit Mistress Drury offers to help her. Then Lust brings the [a]xe to Browne and shows the like signs to him as before, whereupon he roughly and suddenly hews down the tree, and then they run together and embrace. With that enters Chastity, with her hair dishevelled, and taking Mistress Sanders by the hand, brings her to her husband’s picture hanging on the wall, and pointing to the tree, seems to tell her that [her husband] is the tree so rashly cut down. (3.2.19 sd)

 Philip D. Collington, “‘I Would Thy Husband Were Dead’: The Merry Wives of Windsor as Mock Domestic Tragedy,” English Literary Renaissance 30, no. 2 (2000), pp. 184– 212.  Leggott, A Warning for Fair Women, introduction, p. 6.

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For these characters, things that grow in the ground are not merely ornamental or useful; they also tell profound symbolic truths about people’s lives, one of which is that we too will end up in the ground. Officially, A Warning for Fair Women is Protestant in sensibility, but as so often in domestic tragedy, what seems simple is not necessarily so. Sanders dies praying “Jesu receive my soul into thy hands” (3.3.74), and Drury seems to strike the same note when she says I am as well resolved to go to death As if I were invited to a banquet: Nay such assurance have I in the blood Of him that died for me as neither fire, Sword nor torment could retain me from him. (5.4.107– 11)

Ostensibly Drury is echoing Sanders by announcing a commitment to the doctrine of sola fide, belief in justification by faith alone, without the need for works; however, her speech is coloured by the language of martyrdom—fire, sword, and torment—and martyrdom is a way of achieving a state of sanctity by doing something (or having something done to you) rather than by just believing something. Moreover, the idea of the banquet has the potential to point at the inflammatory debate about the nature of the host, which Catholics saw as actually transmuted into the body of Christ while Protestants believed it to have an essentially symbolic function. There are other instances of this sort of ambivalence. Anne Sanders sounds securely Protestant when she says, “gentle keeper bring me / Those books that lie within my chamber window” (5.4.121– 22) and then tells her children “here I give to each of you a book / Of holy meditations, Bradford’s works” (5.4.167– 68), but more disturbing associations accrue to Browne’s resolve when he murders Saunders: Now will I dip my handkerchief in his blood, And send it as a token to my love, Look how many wounds my hand hath given him, So many holes I’ll make within this cloth. (3.3.70 – 73)

The first thing we have been told about Browne is that he has come from Ireland (1.2.1– 5). Stephen O’Neill argues that this is not really significant: “While Browne’s hope for a subjugation beyond the Pale takes on an irony in light of his subsequent murderous actions, the play does not capitalize on his country

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of birth.”²⁷ However it might well work to associate him with Catholicism, and the ideas of dipping handkerchiefs in blood and counting wounds certainly do so. Most notably, the play features what appears to be a miracle, centring on blood, even though the official Protestant position was that the age of miracles was past. The first time blood gives the game away, there is a natural explanation: Browne has got it on his trousers. James. … But soft, what have I spied? Your hose is bloody. Browne. How, bloody? Where? Good sooth ’tis so indeed. (3.4.15 – 16)

This would be particularly noticeable because the Waterman says Browne was wearing “A doublet of white satin / And a large pair of breeches of blue silk” (4.2.29 – 30), against which the blood would show up clearly. However there is no such logical explanation for what happens when Bean, who has been wounded past speech, sees Browne, the man who hurt him, and another character suddenly exclaims, “See how his wounds break out afresh in bleeding” (4.4.135). It is even harder to explain the moment which once again brings together the motifs of blood and flowers: 2 Lord. … Why do you wear that white rose in your bosom? Anne. In token of my spotless innocence, As free from guilt as is this flower from sin. (5.1.210 – 12) Anne. Ah good my Lords be good unto Anne Sanders, Or else you cast away an innocent.

Soon though something happens to that rose: 2 Lord. It should not seem so by the rose you wear, His colour now is of another hue. (5.1.267– 70)

The rose that was originally white, which Anne offered as a badge of her innocence, has suddenly changed colour, which the judge reads as a token of her guilt. What presumably happens here is that the boy playing Anne must have

 Stephen O’Neill, “Beyond Shakespeare’s Land of Ire: Revisiting Ireland in English Renaissance Drama,” Literature Compass, September 2018. Online: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/ doi/abs/10.1111/lic3.12491?af=R, p. 7.

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two roses, one white and one of another colour, and dexterously substitutes one for the other. As for what the other colour is, it is not specified but can surely only be red, since roses do not come in black and no other colour would carry symbolic freight, and roses were in any case proverbial for being either white or red: in Pericles, Bolt says of Marina “For flesh and blood, sir, white and red, you shall see a rose.”²⁸ Red would suggest blood, and intradiegetically the only way of understanding this seems to be to take at face value James’s remark that “in the case of blood / God’s justice hath been still miraculous” (4.4.158 – 59). Extradiegetically, however, it would also connect the scene to the Temple garden in Henry VI Part One when the warring lords choose either white or red roses, giving the moment an overtone of tragedy of state and implicitly reminding us of Anne’s political connections as well as her personal guilt. Warning’s moment of cruentation—the bleeding of a dead or near-dead body in the presence of its murderer—may also recall Richard III, where Lady Anne exclaims “See, see, dead Henry’s wounds / Open their congeal’d mouths and bleed afresh.”²⁹ A Warning for Fair Women may look like a private and personal story which seems to be having trouble finding its theological bearings, but it can also change colour on its own account, and look suddenly like a story with wider and more overtly political resonances, in which the question of theological bearings has become rather more momentous than it may first have appeared. On the face of it, the Henry VI plays can have nothing to do with the Reformation. In fact, they are an ideological battleground. The fact that the plays are set in the century before the Reformation means that religion could have been treated meekly and unproblematically, but in fact we are clearly imaginatively if not chronologically in a firmly post-mediaeval world. At the obsequies of Henry V, Bedford apostrophises the dead king, “A far more glorious star thy soul will make / Than Julius Caesar.”³⁰ This is the first of many signs in the play of a degree of humanist learning unexpected in mediaeval England, and these fourteenth-century characters also display a surprising awareness of a sixteenth-century Italian politician when York says “Alençon, that notorious Ma-

 William Shakespeare, Pericles, edited by Suzanne Gossett (London: Arden Shakespeare, 2004), 4.5.41– 42.  William Shakespeare, Richard III, edited by Antony Hammond, in The Arden Shakespeare Complete Works, edited by Richard Proudfoot, Ann Thompson, and David Scott Kastan (London: Thomson Learning, 2001), 1.2.55 – 56.  William Shakespeare, King Henry VI, Part 1, edited by Edward Burns, in The Arden Shakespeare Complete Works, edited by Richard Proudfoot, Ann Thompson, and David Scott Kastan (London: Thomson Learning, 2001), 1.1.55 – 56. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text as 1 HVI.

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chiavel?” (1 HVI, 5.3.74). Moreover Catholicism, the official religion of Henry VI’s England, is made seriously disturbing by being consistently connected to the wicked, French Joan of Arc, who assures the French court that “Heaven and Our Lady gracious hath it pleased / To shine on my contemptible estate” (1 HVI, 1.2.74– 75) and even declares that she has been the subject of a miracle: And, whereas I was black and swart before, With those clear rays which she infused on me, That beauty am I blest with, which you may see. (1 HVI, 1.2.84– 86)

Joan figures herself as having undergone a remarkable transformation which is clearly connected to sixteenth-century discourses of washing Ethiops white (and is also, I shall suggest later, uneasily poised against other ideas of colour change in the plays); she sounds more like a mutinous (and implicitly unchristian) early modern non-European than a mediaeval Frenchwoman. Joan is also lavish in her invocation of saints: she apparently got her sword from “Touraine, in Saint Katherine’s churchyard” (1 HVI, 1.2.99), tells the court to “Expect Saint Martin’s summer, halcyons’ days” (1 HVI, 1.2.131), and finally is suggested as herself a subject for canonisation when Charles says “Joan de Puzel shall be France’s saint” (1 HVI, 1.6.68). In contrast, though the English do cry “Saint George, a Talbot” (1 HVI, 1.2.38), the general impression is that God and the English do not really have anything to do with each other, and he is certainly not helping them win any battles. In his absence, what we see instead is the nobles of England choosing not national but factional interests. Rather in the way that the events of A Warning for Fair Women are made to appear arbitrary by the battles between genres and between Lust and Chastity, so here they are made to seem arbitrary by being symbolised by the choice of a red or a white rose, for not only are the combatants’ respective choices of colour apparently a matter of chance but Shakespeare elsewhere specifically detaches the name of the rose from what it signifies when he says in Romeo and Juliet that a rose by any other name might smell as sweet. In Henry VI Part One there is a repeated troubling of any suggestion that either the red or the white rose is a clear and consistent signifier. When the quarrel begins, Somerset declares, “Well, I’ll find friends to wear my bleeding roses” (1 HVI, 2.4.72) and Richard of York swears “by this maiden blossom in my hand” (1 HVI, 2.4.75). Somerset sees the colour of his roses as the red of blood; York thinks the whiteness of his symbolises virginity. Soon, though, the white rose acquires another meaning when Vernon lodges a complaint about Basset:

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he first took exceptions at this badge, Pronouncing that the paleness of this flower Bewrayed the faintness of my master’s heart. (1 HVI, 4.1.105 – 7)

This is conventional enough, but it is important to note that it is in response to Basset’s complaint that the meaning of the red rose has also been perverted, this time by Vernon: Crossing the sea from England into France, This fellow here with envious carping tongue Upbraided me about the rose I wear, Saying the sanguine colour of the leaves Did represent my master’s blushing cheeks When stubbornly he did repugn the truth About a certain question in the law. (1 HVI, 4.1.89 – 95)

There’s no art to find the mind’s construction in the face; both whiteness and redness can, it seems, be construed as testifying to defects of character. The meaning of the roses’ colour thus appears to float free, and yet the holy innocent Henry VI is wrong to think that the roses have no intrinsic meaning at all: I see no reason, if I wear this rose, That anyone should therefore be suspicious I more incline to Somerset than York. (1 HVI, 4.1.152– 54)

Henry is mistaken because though the roses may have no “natural” meaning, they do have a political one. His action will lead to civil war. If the inherent meaning of white and red roses is unfixed, it is also unclear how many rose bushes there are. When the idea of turning the roses into badges is first introduced, Richard of York says, “From off this briar pluck a white rose with me” (1 HVI, 2.4.30). Three lines later, Somerset adjures his followers to “Pluck a red rose from off this thorn with me” (1 HVI, 2.4.33). Is York pointing to one plant—“this briar”—and Somerset to another—“this tree”—or are we to assume a single stage property carrying roses of different colours? Obviously this would not be realistic, but then you cannot grow a Tudor rose, and that did not stop Elizabeth I from being painted with them; John Anthony notes that “The rose was the emblem of the Tudor dynasty and Elizabeth herself was often portrayed in the royalist imagery of the time as the eglantine rose. The rose appears in those portraits of her which were widely dispersed by her govern-

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ment as a principal feature of the cult of Elizabeth, the spring queen.”³¹ The matter is not clarified when Vernon introduces the idea of counting: Stay, lords and gentlemen, and pluck no more Till you conclude that he upon whose side The fewest roses are cropped from the tree Shall yield the other in the right opinion. (1 HVI, 2.4.38 – 41)

The phrase “The fewest roses … cropped from the tree” will bear two constructions: either there are two trees, with presumably roughly the same quantity of flowers on each, or “the tree” means what it says, and there are both red and white roses on it. (Wendy Wall notes that there are recipes for manufactured roses,³² and in The Two Noble Kinsmen a stage direction orders “Here is heard a sudden twang of instruments, and the rose falls from the tree,”³³ so this is an effect that could presumably have been achieved on stage.) Most notably the whiteness of his rose has come to mean something rather surprising to York: And, by my soul, this pale and angry rose, As cognizance of my blood-drinking hate, Will I for ever, and my faction, wear (1 HVI, 2.4.107– 9)

Now the flower is white not because it is innocent but because it is angry, and the phrase “blood-drinking” smuggles in a suggestion that the white rose might somehow absorb and negate the red of blood. In Titus Andronicus, Aaron the Moor thinks “Coal-black is better than another hue / In that it scorns to bear another hue”;³⁴ here York seems to be implying a similar though more surprising claim for white, implicit in which would also be the idea that, as in A Warning for Fair Women, roses can change colour. When Vernon himself picks a white rose, Somerset says cattily,

 John Anthony, The Renaissance Garden in Britain (London: Shire Publications, 1991), p. 13.  Wendy Wall, Recipes for Thought: Knowledge and Taste in the Early Modern English Kitchen (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2016), p. 85.  John Fletcher and William Shakespeare, The Two Noble Kinsmen, edited by Lois Potter (London: Bloomsbury Arden Shakespeare, 2015), 5.1.168 sd.  William Shakespeare, Titus Andronicus, edited by Jonathan Bate (London: Routledge, 1995), 4.2.101– 2.

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Prick not your finger as you pluck it off, Lest, bleeding, you do paint the white rose red. (1 HVI, 2.4.49 – 50)

Soon after Somerset himself, when asked where his “argument” is, replies, Here in my scabbard, meditating that Shall dye your white rose in a bloody red. (1 HVI, 2.4.60 – 61)

Implicit in both of Somerset’s statements is the idea that the roses which are originally white can be changed to red. This might have been considered to be possible. Rebecca Bushnell observes that “In the early modern period, a dramatically or multicoloured flower was always valued over the white flower, as was the double over the single bloom, and much effort was expended into transforming white and single flowers into something rich and strange”; indeed Francis Bacon thought that the color white was often a sign of the flower’s degeneration, or a lack of culture, since “it is observed by some that gilly-flowers, sweet-williams, violets, that are coloured, if they be neglected, and neither watered, nor new moulded, nor transplanted, will turn white. And it is probable that the white with much culture may turn coloured.”³⁵

However the change of the rose from white to red is also a possibility which is richly suggestive if viewed in religious terms. Red roses were sometimes said to take their colour from either the blood of Adonis or the blood of Christ,³⁶ which is red itself but washes the sinner white. Roses were also closely associated with Mary (hence the name of the rosary), who in mediaeval art might be depicted enthroned among them. Trea Martyn observes of the red and white flowers visible in the background of Lord Burghley in his garden that “red and white are the colors of the Christian martyrs, appropriated by Tudor propagandists after the War of the Roses.”³⁷ The manifest theme of the Wars of the Roses is political, and is concerned specifically with who is descended from whom: when York is restored in blood that reopens the question of whether the throne belongs to the descendants of John of Gaunt (a younger branch but  Bushnell, Green Desire, pp. 133 and 151. She notes too that “Thomas Hill’s Natural and Artificial Conclusions instructed the reader ‘how to make sundrie devises or Armes or such like, in a Rose, Carnation, or Flower de luce or Lily’” (p. 143).  Rosamond Richardson, Britain’s Wild Flowers (London: The National Trust, 2017), p. 248.  Trea Martyn, Elizabeth in the Garden (London: Faber and Faber, 2008), p. 171.

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claiming through a male) or to those of Lionel of Antwerp (a better claim in terms of primogeniture but transmitted through females). To put this in a religious context, however, reduces it to silly and sinful squabbling: we are all children of Adam and Eve, and the murder of one brother by another was an early consequence of the Fall. In this sense, the unresolved question of whether there are two trees or one takes on profound symbolic force, because the answer is that both are true: the white and red roses represent different branches of the same Plantagenet root stock, as implied by the imagery of the tree of Jesse. And if one rose can potentially change to the colour of another, then this is a conflict with no logical foundation, which can only ever end by bathing us all in the red of blood. By implication, the same is true of religious conflict. The damask rose, a flower from beyond the edge of Christendom, thus points us to trouble at the heart of Christendom. The use of plants continues in the second tetralogy, which is chronologically earlier than the first but was written later. However, there are changes to both the types of plant named and the uses to which they are put. In Henry IV, Part One, Prince Hal says to Falstaff, “Jack, meet me tomorrow in the Temple hall.”³⁸ This might remind us of the quarrel in the Temple garden, but there are only intermittent references to roses in Shakespeare’s later history plays, and they do not carry the same ideological weight. In Henry IV, Part One, Hotspur asks his father and uncle if it must be said that they have helped To put down Richard, that sweet lovely rose, And plant this thorn, this canker Bolingbroke? (1 HIV, 1.3.173 – 74)

The deposition of Richard II was part of what led to the Wars of the Roses, and in that sense Bolingbroke too should be a rose, specifically a red one. But that idea is not in play here: for Hotspur, Richard is a rose because nostalgia has made him seem attractive, whereas Bolingbroke is a canker because his reign is proving irksome to the Percy family. There is a similar disregard for the politics of the rose in Richard III, where Tyrrel says of the princes that “Their lips were four red roses on a stalk.”³⁹ The princes are scions of the House of York: if they are roses,

 William Shakespeare, Henry IV, Part 1, edited by P. H. Davison (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 1968), 3.3.196. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text as 1 HIV.  William Shakespeare, Richard III, edited by E. A. J. Honigmann (Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1968), 4.3.12.

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they ought to be white ones. But as in Henry IV, Part One, “rose” here has been drained of political meaning and suggests merely something which is beautiful and possibly sacral. There seems to be a similarly deracinated use of the term in the second part of Henry IV, where the Hostess tells Doll, “your colour, I warrant you, is as red as any rose.”⁴⁰ There might be some bite to this in that we are at least in the reign of a Lancastrian king, but in fact it seems a simple platitude of the sort of which the Hostess is fond. If roses have lost their political charge, however, other plants have gained a geopolitical one. For plays set wholly in England, both parts of Henry IV are fascinated by a very different set of localities. At the Battle of Shrewsbury Falstaff declares “Turk Gregory never did such deeds in arms as I have done this day” (1 HIV, 5.3.45 – 46), and he also briefly inhabits a rather surprising Jewish identity when the stage direction “Falstaff riseth up” (1 HIV, 4.4.109 sd) is followed by him using the word “counterfeit” nine times in eleven lines (1 HIV, 5.4.112 – 23) in what looks like a deliberate recollection of Marlowe’s Barabas, who has a similar parody resurrection and who makes memorable use of the term “counterfeit.” Barabas is a Jew living on the Mediterranean island of Malta, where Ottomans and Christians clash head on; Falstaff is in Shrewsbury, where the closest thing to an edge is supposed to be the nearby Welsh border, and yet in both the Henry IV plays we have the sense of being in a much stranger and more embattled frontier zone. Particularly suggestive in this respect is Pistol, whose apparently meaningless rantings in fact track the contours of Christendom. “Have we not Hiren here?” (2 HIV, 2.4.169 – 70) takes us to Constantinople, where the Sultan loved Irene, the fair Greek. “Troyant Greeks” (2 HIV, 2.4.162) evokes the contact zone between Europe and Asia. “[F]eed and be fat, my fair Calipolis!” (2 HIV, 2.4.174) takes us to Morocco, setting for Peele’s The Battle of Alcazar, while “Know we not Galloway nags?” (2 HIV, 2.4.185 – 86) evokes the troubled Scottish Border, where a terrified woman’s question “Are there no Christians here?” is supposed to have been met with the answer “No, we’re all Elliots and Armstrongs.” In a later appearance Pistol declares “I speak of Africa and golden joys” (2 HIV, 5.3.100) and also brags “When Pistol lies, do this, and fig me, like / The bragging Spaniard” (2 HIV, 5.3.118 – 19). In Henry V, two of the insults he levels at other characters similarly refer to edges of Christendom, “Pish for

 William Shakespeare, Henry IV, Part 2, edited by P. H. Davison (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 1977), 2.4.24– 25. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text as 2 HIV.

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thee, Iceland dog, thou prick-eared cur of Iceland!” and “O hound of Crete”:⁴¹ Iceland, although converted to Christianity in the year 1000, was still often considered a haunt of devils, and Crete was part of the Orthodox lands. Finally Fluellen thinks Pistol is “as valiant a man as Mark Antony” (HV, 3.6.13 – 14), a soon retracted and apparently gratuitous sentiment but one which does have the potential to connect him to Egypt as well as to Rome. Pistol thus functions almost as a tour guide repeatedly reminding us of where Christendom stops and of where some of its most contested borders are and have been. The two plays have a particular fascination with Turks. Falstaff says of Shallow’s reminiscences “every third word a lie, duer paid to the hearer than the Turk’s tribute” (2 HIV, 3.2.296 – 97). The newly minted Henry V declares, This is the English, not the Turkish court; Not Amurath an Amurath succeeds, But Harry Harry. (2 HIV, 5.2.47– 49)

When Falstaff promises to make him great Shallow says, “I cannot perceive how, unless you give me your doublet, and stuff me out with straw” (2 HIV, 5.5.85); of course this is a joke about Falstaff’s size, but a darker subtext lurks beneath it, for flaying dead bodies and stuffing them with straw was something done by the Ottomans to enemies such as Marcantio Bragadin, the last Venetian governor of Cyprus. In Henry V, the king says, “else our grave / Like Turkish mute shall have a tongueless mouth” (HV, 1.2.232– 33) and hopes his son will “go to Constantinople and take the Turk by the beard” (HV, 5.2.206 – 7). Noting the various references to matters Turkish in the Henriad, Benedict Robinson argues that they relate not only to what was happening outside Christendom but also to the problems within it: The divisions inaugurated by the Reformation fractured the most basic terms of Christian identity, so that both Protestants and Catholics could speak of each other as “Turks,” collapsing the categories of heretic and infidel and even claiming that the doctrinal substance of each rival confession mirrored that of Islam. Shakespeare parodies the radical Protestant version of this rhetoric when he has Falstaff claim at Shrewsbury to have outdone “Turk Gregory” on the battlefield.

 William Shakespeare, King Henry V, edited by T. W. Craik (London: Routledge, 1995), 2.1.42– 43, 2.1.74. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text as HV.

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Robinson suggests that “The strange relations between ‘Harry’ and ‘Amurath’ evoked in 2 Henry IV and Henry V are the traces of a wider struggle between Christendom and the nation as theopolitical spaces,” and that “For both Catholics and Protestants, the early modern wars of religion were imagined as holy wars, in effect redrawing the boundaries of Christendom around one or another of the warring Christian confessions.”⁴² To speak of Turks is in short to remind the audience yet again of the Reformation and the violence it had brought, and to suggest that the most perilous edge of Christendom was theological rather than topographical. It is of a piece with this sense of Christendom as imperilled that in both the Henry IV plays and also in Richard II the strangest of all strange locations is home. Henry IV has heard a prophecy that he will die in Jerusalem; that proves to be the name of a room in his London palace. In Richard II, John of Gaunt’s speech, sometimes received as almost jingoistic in its ostensible celebration of English insularity, connects England to Palestine: This blessed plot, this earth, this realm, this England, This nurse, this teeming womb of royal kings, Feared by their breed, and famous by their birth, Renownèd for their deeds as far from home For Christian service and true chivalry As is the sepulchre in stubborn Jewry Of the world’s ransom, blessed Mary’s son.⁴³

England and Palestine are further merged when the Bishop of Carlisle moves from explaining that Norfolk fought “Against black pagans, Turks, and Saracens” (RII, 4.1.95) to prophesying that “Peace shall go sleep with Turks and infidels” (RII, 4.1.139) and “this land be called / The field of Golgotha and dead men’s skulls” (RII, 4.1.143 – 44). It is not surprising that what grows in this dangerous otherland should also be marked as foreign. In bucolic Gloucestershire, Justice Shallow says, “Nay, you shall see my orchard, where, in an arbour, we will eat a last year’s pippin of mine own graffing, with a dish of caraways” (2 HIV, 5.3.1– 3). Caraways do grow in England, but Pliny (in Philemon Holland’s translation, first published in 1601

 Benedict S. Robinson, “Harry and Amurath,” Shakespeare Quarterly 60, no. 4 (Winter 2009), pp. 399 – 424, pp. 404 and 407.  William Shakespeare, Richard II, edited by Stanley Wells (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 1969), 2.1.50 – 56. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text as RII.

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and presumably therefore in preparation in the late 1590s) called it “a stranger” and said it came from Caria.⁴⁴ A similarly submerged exoticism lurks in Richard II when the gardener orders, Go, bind thou up young dangling apricocks Which, like unruly children, make their sire Stoop with oppression of their prodigal weight. (RII, 3.4.29 – 21)

The gardener is ahead of the game, because Hakluyt considered the apricot (prunus armeniaca) to have been introduced to England only in the reign of Henry VIII, and until well into the seventeenth century they were considered tender in most parts of England, flourishing only in Kent.⁴⁵ There is a notable contrast here with an earlier image connecting Richard to flowers, the Wilton Diptych, in which, as Dillian Gordon notes, The only flowers certainly identifiable seem frequently to have had a religious significance: roses, strewn over the meadow and also worn as chaplets by the angels, refer to the purity of the Virgin; the blue flowers appear to be violets, symbols of the humility of the Virgin, or perhaps irises, referring to her sorrows. Other plants include daisies, a blue periwinkle, ferns, clover and possibly small mushrooms in the bottom right-hand corner.

Gordon also notes that “The earliest record of the diptych is in the collection of Charles I, who was said to have acquired it from a certain Lady Jennings in return for a portrait of the king by the Dutch painter Jan Lievens,”⁴⁶ but it is not impossible that Shakespeare saw it, and Helen Ostovich suggests that there is a similarity in sensibility if not in actual plants in that situating Isabel within a garden “aligns her generally with the cult of the Virgin Mary … and questions the political realities of the play by asserting a spiritual dimension of kingship that the Lancastrians unsuccessfully deny.”⁴⁷ Where the painter of the Wilton Diptych focuses on native flowers, though, Shakespeare chooses exotic ones, in the shape of both the apricot and the rue of which the gardener proposes to plant a bank

 Pliny, The historie of the world, translated by Philemon Holland [London: Adam Islip, 1634], p. 30.  Vivian Thomas and Nicki Faircloth, Shakespeare’s Plants and Gardens: A Dictionary (London: Bloomsbury, 2016), pp. 28 – 29.  Dillian Gordon, Making and Meaning: The Wilton Diptych (London: National Gallery, 1993), pp. 21 and 82.  Helen Ostovich, “‘Here in This Garden’: The Iconography of the Virgin Queen in Shakespeare’s Richard II,” in Marian Moments in Early Modern British Drama, edited by Regina Buccola and Lisa Hopkins (Aldershot, UK: Ashgate, 2007), pp. 21– 34, p. 21.

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(RII, 3.4.104– 7). Gerard explains that wild rue is “found on mountains in hot countries, as in Cappadocia, Galatia, and in divers provinces of Italy and Spain, and on the hills of Lancashire and Yorke.”⁴⁸ It grows, then, in four foreign places, and though it is also found in Lancaster and York, the fact that they are the counties associated with the Wars of the Roses serves to politicise rather than naturalise it. Twenty years after Henry VIII was written, the Caroline dramatist John Ford wrote two plays, The Broken Heart and Perkin Warbeck, which appear very different from each other, since one is a tragedy set in ancient Sparta and the other a history set in late fifteenth-century England and Scotland. For Ford, the Reformation is still a lingering concern, but there is also a sense that a new political conflict may be on the horizon, as trouble grew between Charles I and disaffected members of his aristocracy. In Ford’s The Broken Heart, Penthea says “When we last gathered roses in the garden / I found my wits, but truly you lost yours.”⁴⁹ It was probably soon after The Broken Heart that Ford wrote Perkin Warbeck, which focuses on the final flowering of the white rose. The Broken Heart too has a political subtext.⁵⁰ The virgin princess who, dying, leaves her cousin to be the ruler of a neighbouring state recalls Elizabeth, while the idea of starvation also smuggles in a glance at Arbella Stuart, a figure whom we know to have been of interest to the Middle Temple of Ford’s youth. When Orgilus says that he and Penthea had “fixed our souls / In a firm growth of union” (1.1.30 – 31) he uses a metaphor with both horticultural and political resonances, for “union” is the term for the point at which a new stem is grafted onto an older one to form a new cultivar or species. In Perkin Warbeck too what seems to be about the fifteenth century can easily be read as pertaining to the seventeenth, for the dedicatee of Perkin Warbeck, William Cavendish, Earl of Newcastle, was the first cousin of Arbella Stuart, and there seem to be glances at her in this play as well as in The Broken Heart. ⁵¹ There is also what looks like a glance at the divine right of kings when Katherine says to the Countess of Crawford, “My father / Hath a weak stomach to the business, madam, / But that the

 Gerard, Herball, p. 267.  John Ford, The Broken Heart, edited by T. J. B. Spencer (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1980), 4.2.120 – 21.  See Verna Ann Foster and Stephen Foster, “Structure and History in The Broken Heart: Sparta, England, and the ‘Truth,’” English Literary Renaissance 18, no. 2 (1988), pp. 305 – 28.  See my “On the Edge of the S(h)elf: Arbella Stuart,” in Women on the Edge, edited by Lisa Hopkins and Aidan Norrie (Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2019), pp. 159 – 78.

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king must not be crossed,”⁵² and there is too a faintly disturbing suggestion that this is still a live story when Perkin tells James that he is Reserving the relation to the secrecy Of your own princely ear, since it concerns Some great ones living yet, and others dead, Whose issue might be questioned. (2.1.94– 97)

Ostensibly this is about the story being too dangerous to tell in the late fifteenth century, but Peter Ure has shown that Ford’s invention of the character Dalyell bore directly on a much more recent scandal. This is a story that could still be dangerous in 1634. In Perkin Warbeck, as in Richard II, we are in a garden. Surrey says of Perkin that Margaret of Burgundy “has styled him ‘the fair white rose of England’” (1.1.124), though Henry says “phew, he’s but a running weed, / At pleasure to be plucked up by the roots” (1.1.132– 33) and calls him “the creeping canker of disturbance” (4.4.54), while Huntley’s verdict on him is “no Plantagenet, by’r lady, yet, / By red rose or by white” (2.3.77– 78). And in Perkin Warbeck too the rose means conditionality. Perkin concedes that Henry won at Bosworth, but adds that he might not have done so, and that his dynasty too might one day be unseated as the Plantagenets had been. We are always aware of alternative possibilities, and there is an implicit suggestion that the choice between them is not absolute but arbitrary: York and Lancaster are alternative identities and so too are Catholic and Protestant. In this sense perhaps it does not really matter if Perkin Warbeck is not really a king; he might have been, and he can certainly talk like one. Moreover, the fact that he can do so alerts us to the final level of provisionality and artificiality involved: none of those people are who and what they say they are, because they are all actors—indeed perhaps even the roses are actors, made of tissue or cloth, unless it was really possible to source fresh ones for each performance. From the first tetralogy to Perkin Warbeck, via A Warning for Fair Women and The Broken Heart, the rose works as a sign of the fragility and conditionality of the identities chosen by the characters, and an emblem of England’s political and religious uncertainties; it even encodes a suggestion that skin colour, apparently such a stable determinant of identity, might not really be fixed and permanent. For both Shakespeare and Ford,

 John Ford, The Chronicle History of Perkin Warbeck, edited by Peter Ure (London: Methuen, 1968), 2.1.6 – 8. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.

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the rose becomes the symbol of what is at stake politically, but garden scenes also become a way of talking about the difficult and contradictory relationship between trouble at the edges of Christendom and trouble within Christendom.

Part Three: Edges at Home

Chapter 8 North by North-West: The Danelaw and the Edge of Christendom If there is one story Shakespeare must have known it is that of Guy of Warwick.¹ To us, Guy may seem a rather anticlimactic sort of hero, since his most famous deed was fighting the not very fearsome-sounding Dun Cow. However, it has been suggested that beneath the seemingly ridiculous Dun Cow may lurk the words Dena Gau, the Danes’ kingdom, and that this may encode a reminder that the border of the Danelaw was not far from Stratford, and that successive Viking invasions changed England’s sense of its own cultural geography and brought the edge of Christendom bang up against the country’s heartlands. In Locrine, we are repeatedly reminded that the character who gives his name to the river Humber is a Hun, and Kim Gilchrist has remarked that many of the characters in plays about the early history of Britain have a distinctly foreign feel.² The fact that this particular border no longer existed did not make it less threatening. Ian Smith, noting “the Renaissance transitive logic that specifically equates the ancient barbarian type with the early modern African,” points out that for the Romans the British were “Numbered among the northern barbarians,”³ and that there were ways of accentuating the difference of Danes in particular: “Hamlet is not only a male protagonist, but he is also white—his iconic black clothing serving to contrast with his pale northern European complexion.”⁴ As I shall show, Hamlet is indeed an important—indeed an iconic—text for negotiating England’s relationship with its difficult Danish past. In this chapter I discuss two plays, Anthony Brewer’s The Lovesick King and Richard Brome’s The Queen’s Exchange, both of which invite their audiences to imagine England’s pagan past, and both of which use Shakespeare to help them

 On the prominence of the Guy of Warwick story in Warwickshire see Helen Cooper, “Guy of Warwick, Upstart Crows and Mounting Sparrows,” in Shakespeare, Marlowe, Jonson: New Directions in Biography, edited by Takashi Kozuka and J. R. Mulryne (Aldershot, UK: Ashgate, 2006), pp. 119 – 38, p. 121.  Kim Gilchrist, Staging Britain’s Past: Pre-Roman Britain in Early Modern Drama (London: Bloomsbury, 2021).  Ian Smith, Race and Rhetoric in the Renaissance: Barbarian Errors (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2009), p. 5.  Ian Smith, “We Are Othello: Speaking of Race in Early Modern Studies,” Shakespeare Quarterly 67, no. 1 (Spring 2016), pp. 104– 24, p. 107. https://doi.org/10.1515/9781501514159-010

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do it. They look to two plays in particular: Hamlet, a classic play of unburial, and Macbeth, where Macbeth himself is quite wrong to think that Banquo cannot come out of his grave. For both Brewer and Brome, Shakespeare can be used to do cultural work, and one of the things he can do is help to trouble and destabilise the idea of the edge of Christendom by reminding us of England’s own internal, contested, and moving border with the Danelaw; in The Lovesick King Alured accuses the Danes of “seek[ing] our utter Extirpation, which five and twenty years you have attempted, planting here your selves in Norfolk, Suffolk and in Cambridgeshire,”⁵ and The Queen’s Exchange insistently suggests that Northumbria, where Lindisfarne had seen the first Viking raid, is fundamentally different from the land of the West Saxons. Moreover, both The Lovesick King and The Queen’s Exchange delve into the underground world which supplies the north with its mineral wealth but also has overtones of the diabolical. Shakespeare’s career can in a sense be seen as structured by twin geographical poles. Pembroke and Montgomery, the “incomparable brethren” to whom the First Folio was dedicated, were marcher lords, whose territory and titles were both associated with the west, on the border between England and Wales. Lord Hunsdon, for whose playing company Shakespeare acted and wrote, was a Border warden, and Catherine Loomis has recently suggested that the “bloody man” in Macbeth may well have been directly influenced by a pamphlet account of his son Robert Carey’s ride to Edinburgh to inform James VI of the death of Elizabeth.⁶ The north of England and the west of England may seem to be very different places, but there were systemic links between them. Oswald, first King of Northumbria, died at Oswestry in the Welsh marches; his skull, initially displayed on a pike there, later became a relic of Durham Cathedral, connecting him to both north and west and affording an early example of how bodies and body parts of dead Christians were used to try to anchor the frontiers between Christian and pagan parts of England. (Oswestry derives from “Oswald’s Tree,” and Alexandra Walsham notes that Bede connected the wooden cross which Oswald erected at Heavenfield with an attempt to reinvent the pagan worship of trees.⁷) The Battle of Shrewsbury, shown by Shakespeare in Henry IV, features Border lords fighting on the marches.

 Anthony Brewer, The Love-sick king, an English tragical history with the life and death of Cartesmunda, the fair nun of Winchester (London: Robert Pollard, 1655), sig. F4v. Further quotations will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.  Catherine Loomis, “‘What Bloody Man Is That?’: Sir Robert Carey and Shakespeare’s Bloody Sergeant,” Notes and Queries 246 (September 2001), pp. 296 – 98.  Alexandra Walsham, The Reformation of the Landscape: Religion, Identity, and Memory in Early Modern Britain and Ireland (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011), p. 29.

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Above all, the march and the Border both marked the interface between Englishness and Britishness, for beyond them lay the Celtic fringe to which the Britons had been pushed back by the invading Saxons and Danes. Both The Queen’s Exchange and The Lovesick King tell stories about tensions between different parts of early mediaeval Britain, and to do so they make use of the fact that three of Shakespeare’s greatest plays, Hamlet, Macbeth, and King Lear, are set in periods when the internal boundaries of Britain were still in flux. Lear should logically be pre-Roman, but the reference to “a century” as a military unit invites us to associate it with the period between the Romans and the Normans. Macbeth is set during the reign of Edward the Confessor, and Hamlet refers to the Danish occupation of England. In the question of where England began and ended, the question of where the north began and ended was crucial. Stuart Laycock notes that “The element Merc in Mercia refers to a border, so essentially the name Mercia means ‘borderland,’” something of which early modern linguistic enquiry is likely to have increased awareness;⁸ in The Lovesick King Osbert, Duke of Mercia, is a pivotal figure in shifting the balance of power to the Danes. One specific area of tension came between Mercia and the Danes. Athelflede, Lady of the Mercians, daughter of Alfred the Great, instituted from her seat at Tamworth a building programme which essentially plotted a border between Mercia and the Danelaw; she also built the first known fortification at Warwick in 914 as a defence against the Danes. When Elizabeth visited Kenilworth in 1575, the inhabitants of Coventry asked her to reinstate the locally popular play The Conquest of the Danes, which although devoid of “ill exampl of mannerz, papistry, or ony superstition,” “had recently been suppressed by ‘the zeal of certain theyr Preacherz’”:⁹ perhaps the popularity of the play reflected a memory that the Danes had once been a real presence in and around Coventry, while the fact that the play had been condemned by the Church meant that Danes could still be religiously troubling. This idea that the men of the north were pressing on Coventry reminds us that the north had historically possessed more than one frontier, many of them physical boundaries erected as ways of defining and demarcating the very concept of northness: the Stanegate,¹⁰ Hadrian’s Wall, the Antonine Wall, and the Scots

 Stuart Laycock, Britannia: The Failed State; Tribal Conflicts and the End of Roman Britain (Stroud, UK: The History Press, 2008), p. 228.  Beatrice Groves, Texts and Traditions: Religion in Shakespeare, 1592 – 1604 (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 2007), pp. 39 and 55.  Max Adams remarks that the Stanegate “at its inception was probably intended as a frontier in its own right” (The King in the North: The Life and Times of Oswald of Northumbria [London: Head of Zeus, 2013], p. 150).

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Dyke followed one after the other, none of them in the same place as its predecessor. As the northern border moved, so did centres of power: York gradually gave way to Newcastle as the northernmost fortified city of England, before Newcastle itself gave way to Berwick-upon-Tweed, whose massive walls represented one of Elizabeth I’s rare building programmes. To a certain extent there were strategic interests in play in such shifts—Hadrian built the Wall where he did because it straddles the gap between the Tyne and the Solway—but there were also strong economic considerations: Berwick-upon-Tweed protected valuable fishing rights, and both the Wall and the city of Newcastle protected mining rights. Max Adams argues that “It is no coincidence that the most lasting permanent border structure of the Western Empire was built just a few miles beyond the most northerly state-controlled lead mines in Britain, in Weardale and Allerdale”: The Roman road system, strategically linking forts and signal stations, created a web of fast communications far into what is now Scotland. If the Romans failed to permanently conquer these lands it was probably not because they couldn’t but because the game was not worth the candle. Their mineral prospectors knew where the most northerly exploitable ores were and decided that nothing beyond the frontier of Hadrian was worth their permanent attention.¹¹

As mining operations in the region extended to coal as well as lead, the region took on even greater importance, and needed better defences than could be offered by distant York. By the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries the situation was further complicated by York’s strong association with the House of York, which led it not only to lament the death of Richard III but to declare support for Lambert Simnel, terming him “King Edward VI,” with the result that when Simnel was defeated at the Battle of Stoke Henry VII had Te deum sung in York Minster in order to make quite sure they understood his to be a lost cause.¹² We can see this growing importance of both Newcastle and mineral resources very clearly in Anthony Brewer’s play The Lovesick King, which plots the changing limit of both the north and the Danelaw. As the play opens, Osbert, Duke of Mercia, has sided with the Danes and betrays Winchester to them, leading to the death of the character whom the dramatis personae identifies as “Etheldred King of England.” Given that Etheldred is based at Winchester and is presented as the brother of Alfred the Great, he is in fact more properly King of Wessex, but calling him King of England and reducing the ruler of Mercia to the status of a mere duke obviously makes it easier to deal in concepts of na-

 Adams, The King in the North, pp. 211– 12.  John Ashdown-Hill, The Dublin King (Stroud, UK: The History Press, 2017), p. 208.

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tion rather than of locality, and this is what The Lovesick King does. The story of the main plot is almost comically simple: at the beginning of the play the marauding Danes have chased the English all the way down to the south coast, leaving them only Winchester (and they take that in the first scene); by the end of it, the English have chased them all the way back again, reclaiming the country for a securely English identity. As the men of the north retreat, the northern edge of what is understood as England is pushed progressively further. The reason for this extraordinary reversal is partly that the Danish king Canutus allows himself to be distracted by the beauties of Cartesmunda, the fair nun of Winchester, and so stops bothering about fighting, but it is also partly attributable to the growing importance of Newcastle, as we see when at the end of the play King Alfred declares “your Newcastle strength set England free” (sig. G1v). The Lovesick King is a play that is deeply concerned about Englishness. Just before he is killed, King Etheldred (referring to himself in the third person) notes that “in nine set Battels against the conquering Danes hath Etheldred with various fortunes fought, to rescue you and England from the spoyls of War and Tyranny” (sig. A2r), and it is made repeatedly clear that what is at stake is the survival of England, not merely of Wessex. Canutus orders his followers “Who bears the name of English strike him dead” (sig. A3r) and tells them to “Whip out this English Race, with iron rods” (sig. A3v). It seems that Etheldred is right to warn his followers that if they are not victorious, they will have to see “Your Wives and Daughters slaves to Danish lust” (sig. A2r), and Edmund equally right to add that the result of losing the battle will be The names of English torn from memory; Oh let your valors in one chance be buil’d, Or quite extirpe a Nation from the World. (sig. A2r)

Canutus himself, by contrast, is initially at least, utterly un-English. In several early modern plays, the Danes pose a religious as well as a sexual threat. Kim F. Hall notes that “The trope of blackness had a broad arsenal of effects in the early modern period, meaning that it is applied not only to dark-skinned Africans but to native Americans, Indians, Spanish, and even Irish and Welsh as groups that needed to be marked as ‘other,’” and that “the designation “Moor” very often stood alternatively … for the ethnically, culturally, and religiously ‘strange.’”¹³ The Danes are often “Moored” in this way. In The Tragical  Kim F. Hall, Things of Darkness: Economies of Race and Gender in Early Modern England (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1995), pp. 6 – 7.

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History, Admirable Atchievments and various events of Guy Earl of Warwick, Swanus, King of Denmark, invades Athelstane’s England and the Danes appear, curiously enough, to be Muslim, since they invoke Mahound, and in Henry Burnell’s Landgartha the Norwegian heroine Landgartha has a cousin called Fatyma. Canutus and his Danes certainly conform to this stereotype. The Danes enter crying “Kill, kill” (sig. A2v), and Alured presents them as acting directly contrary to the will of Heaven: “See noble Edmond what the Danes have done, a King, by Heaven created for a crown, … betrayd to death and slaughter pittiless” (sig. A2v). Most notably, as Robert W. Dent points out, the story of The Lovesick King is “an Anglicized version of a frequently dramatized story, that of Mahomet and the fair Irene at the fall of Constantinople.”¹⁴ This implicitly connects Canutus to the Prophet Mohammed, and he certainly sounds oriental enough when he says to the beautiful Saxon Cartesmunda “vail thy face my love, we must not have thee seen too much by slaves” (sig. F3r), and when he echoes Tamburlaine by vowing to the dead body of Cartesmunda Canutus arms, a while shall be thy Tomb, Then gold inclose thee till the day of Doom. (sig. F4r)

Finally, Alured refers to “the usurped Temples of Canutus” (sig. G1v), again associating him with non-Christian worship. Canutus is also blasphemous: as far as he is concerned, it is fine to kill all the English because “The vanquish’d are but men, the Victors, gods” (sig. A3v). Soon, however, something odd starts to happen. Canutus’s sister Elgina falls in love with Alured, the future Alfred the Great (who in fact lived over a century before Canute); we are spared the sight of a Saxon icon in love with a Dane by the fact that Elgina is accidentally killed, but not before she has uttered a resounding defence of her own identity when, pleading for Alured to be spared, she argues that “If all the English perish, then must I, for I (now know) in England here was bred, although descended of the Danish blood, [the] King my Father, thirty years governed the one half of this famous Kingdom, where I, that time was born an English Princess” (sigs. B2r – v). Even Canutus starts sounding like a king of England when he says of Cartesmunda, “Were Hellen now alive, this Maid alone would stain her beauty and new Troy should burn, Paris would dye again to live to see her” (sig. B1r): the allusion to the tale of Troy implicitly figures him as an inheritor of the translatio imperii in the same way as more unequivocally English kings are often seen as  Robert W. Dent, “The Love-Sick King: Turk Turned Dane,” The Modern Language Review 56, no. 4 (October 1961), pp. 555 – 57, p. 556.

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being. The play is after all aware that the Danes, paradoxically, are both others and mothers; having started as alien, they have become English. One reason for the play’s sensitivity on this point is that it was almost certainly specially written for a visit to Newcastle by a Scottish-born king of England who had a Danish wife and whose pet project was to instantiate a blended identity for his two previously separate kingdoms. Although it was not published until 1655, M. Hope Dodds argues that it was certainly written for one of James I’s two visits to Newcastle in 1603 and 1617 and that the likelier is in 1617, since there would not have been time to prepare it in 1603 when he was there from 9 to 13 April on his way south after the death of Elizabeth.¹⁵ However I think the earlier date is the more probable, because the play seems likely to have been commissioned by John, Lord Lumley (d. 1609), who was both a direct descendant of Roger Thornton (whose only child had transmitted his whole fortune to the Lumleys) and a coal-mining magnate (and whose first wife Jane had translated Euripides’s Iphigenia in Aulis). Lumley made such great play of his ancestry that James I is said to have remarked “I didna ken Adam’s name was Lumley,”¹⁶ and John Leland recorded: Roger Thornton was the richest merchant ever to dwell in Newcastle. He lived in the time of Edward IV, and built St. Katharine’s Chapel, the town hall, and an almshouse for poor men, which he sited next to Sandhill Gate within the town, a little below Newcastle Bridge and right on the bank of the Tyne. His daughter and heiress married into the Lumley family, and greatly increased their possessions; the island [?] and almost all the land they own in Yorkshire and Northumberland, was inherited from Thornton.¹⁷

The fact that the Lumley family seat was at Chester-le-Street would have given Lumley a motive to commission a play extolling Newcastle, and his almost fanatical interest in his own ancestry is likely to have been the prompt for the inclusion of Thornton. He also had a reason to be interested in history because his sister Barbara married the antiquarian Humphrey Lhuyd, who not only noted the importance of the Viking legacy when he referred to “that renowned wood which of the Danes is called the Forest of Dean” but specifically connected north and west when he spoke of “Oswestry, a noble market, and emwalled round at the charges of the Fitzalans, a most ancient family of England whose

 M. Hope Dodds, “‘Edmund Ironside’ and ‘The Love-Sick King,’” The Modern Language Review 19, no. 2 (April 1924), pp. 158 – 68, p. 164.  Anthony Wagner, Heralds and Ancestors (London: British Museum, 1978), p. 42.  John Chandler, John Leland’s Itinerary: Travels in Tudor England (Stroud, UK: Sutton, 1993), p. 340.

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inheritance it is”:¹⁸ Lumley’s first wife Jane had been a Fitzalan. When Randolfe’s Wife says of Thornton “Is hee not, think you Husband, one of those Players of Interludes that dwels at Newcastle, and conning of his Part” (sig. A4r) she may well be alerting us to a local company hired for the occasion. Even if I am wrong about the Lumley connection, it is in any case impossible to rule out either that the play was ready for 1603, given that James had long been a likely heir, or that it was written very shortly after, since the citizens of Newcastle would have had every reason to expect that James’s duties as King of Scotland as well as of England would bring him back to the city much more frequently than in fact they did. It is certainly a play about the king. One of James’s pet projects was to abolish the Border and have the Border counties renamed “The Middle Shires”; he declared that they were now “the verie hart of the cuntry,” and at one point even proposed to set up his own capital at York in imitation of Constantine,¹⁹ who had been proclaimed emperor there. The Lovesick King implicitly opposes this idea. It goes out of its way to present York as both tainted by its long association with Danes and also dangerously vulnerable to attack, and reads to a large extent like Newcastle’s bidding document for the title of Top City in the North. The Danes put all their faith in York, but it is misplaced: despite the strength of its Roman walls, York falls to the Scots, who threaten to level it with the earth unless the Danes yield the city (sig. E4r). Newcastle, however, is presented as never conquered. Alured tells its civic leaders that “your true Allegiance hath proclaim’d it self that never yeelded yet to foreign Scepter, you have fortified your walls ’gainst all invasions” (sig. F2r), and stresses that for the last twenty-five years the Danes have been “planting here your selves in Norfolk, Suffolk, and in Cambridgeshire” (sig. Fr4), reminding the audience that despite Danish encroachments at their edges, such as a settlement in Tynemouth, the Northumbrian heartlands remained unconquered. It is a neat irony that at one point Grim the Collier should hear shouting and observe “I think there’s some Match at Foot-bal towards” (sig. F1r), because the note is indeed that of a north-east derby between Newcastle and York, in which Newcastle emerges as the triumphant winner. In Act Two of The Lovesick King, when we first move to Newcastle, we also apparently leap forward several centuries to focus on the story of merchant Roger Thornton, a historical figure but one who did not live until the fifteenth  Humphrey Llwyd, The Breviary of Britain, edited by Philip Schwyzer (London: Modern Humanities Research Association, 2011), pp. 121 and 119.  J. G. A. Pocock, “Two Kingdoms and Three Histories? Political Thought in British Contexts,” in Scots and Britons: Scottish Political Thought and the Union of 1603, edited by Roger A. Mason (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994), pp. 293 – 312, p. 307.

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century. The two parts of the play at first seem wholly disconnected, but they come together not only at the end but also when Thornton promises not only to rebuild Allhallows Church (where he was in fact buried) but also to build a tomb for his late master from the metal from which the gold came, both offering a parallel to Canutus’s resolve that Cartesmunda should be buried in gold (sig. E4r) and also connecting Thornton too to the East: “for his sake, I will reedifie Allhallows Church, where in the peaceful bed of death he sleeps, and build a Tomb for him cut out in Touchstone, which in our Persian Voyage was return’d, from whence my golden Mineral arriv’d” (sig. F1v). The main plot and the subplot need, then, to be read together: the story of the rise of Newcastle, driven by the trade and travel which enriched its merchants and celebrated in the construction of its walls and churches, should be understood as part of the story the play tells about Englishness and the city’s place on the edge of Christendom. When we first meet him, Thornton is a poor peddler, but a witch has assured him that if he can get himself taken on as a servant in Newcastle he will make his fortune. This duly happens, and he proceeds to show his gratitude by giving the city walls: Thornton. Workman. Thornton. Workman. Thornton. Workman. Thornton.

How many Towers of strength may be erected, dividing each distance by a hundred pace. ’Tis cast already, and the compass falls, A hundred fourscore Towers to grace the Walls. How high de’you raise the Walls? As you directed sir, full a hundred foot. Right, and twelve in breadth. Just so, sir, ’twill be a pleasant walk to view the Town: So I wo’d have it; And therefore from the highest erect a Battlement above the Platform four foot high a’ both sides, both to secure, and make the place more pleasant; See it rais’d so. (sig. E3r)

Leland said of Newcastle that “the strength and magnificens of the waulling of this town far passeth al the waulles of the cities of England, and most of the townes of Europe,”²⁰ but it was not only the strength of walls but also their age that was a sign of prestige. In A Survey of London Stow had claimed extraordinary antiquity for those of the capital, declaring that “Helen, the mother of Constantine, was the first that inwalled this city, about the year of Christ, 306” and also quoting  Quoted in Eneas Mackenzie, “Fortifications and Buildings: Town Walls and Gates,” in Historical Account of Newcastle-upon-Tyne Including the Borough of Gateshead (Newcastle-upon-Tyne, 1827), pp. 105 – 117. Online: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/no-series/newcastle-historical-ac count/pp105-117.

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the twelfth-century William Fitzstephen as claiming that there had originally been walls on the south bank too: “London was walled and towered in like manner on the south, but the great fish-bearing Thames river which there glides, with ebb and flow from the sea, by course of time has washed against, loosened, and thrown down those walls,” but for Stow that is still sufficient “proof of a wall, and form thereof, about this city, and the same to have been of great antiquity as any other within this realm.”²¹ The building of the walls of Newcastle is usually credited to William Rufus, looking to consolidate his grip on the area after his father’s Harrying of the North in 1069 – 1070: according to Harding’s Chronicle, William Rufus “buylded the Newcastell upon Tyne The Scottes to gaynstande.” Some parts of the city’s walls seem to predate this, and indeed to include elements of Roman fortification, but the play is probably right in ascribing the West Gate, which was pulled down in 1811, to the wealthy merchant Roger Thornton. The covert implication that the Thornton subplot is contemporary with the main plot preserves this tradition, but also makes that part of the wall older than it really is, and thus metaphorically as well as literally more venerable. Partly as a result of his munificence, the Newcastle in which Thornton lives is an extremely prosperous one. The merchant Goodgift says, I, I, Wife, thy Brother Randolfe here is known a famous Merchant for Newcastle Coals, and England holds the circuit of his traffick, but we that are Adventurers abroad, must fame our Country through all Christendom, nay far beyond our Christian Territories, to Egypt, Barbary, and the Tauny Moors, Where not indeed? if Sea and wind gives way unto our dancing Vessels; nay, nay, Brother, your merchandize compar’d with us, I tell you, is but a poor fresh-water venture. (sig. A3v)

There is a piece of historical elision at work in that Goodgift here shares the concerns of seventeenth-century English traders rather than fifteenth-century ones, and argues specifically that this city within Christendom must look to contact with lands beyond Christendom to enrich itself. Randolfe himself, however, puts his faith not in the results of overseas trade but in home-grown sources of wealth: Well, brother, well, pursue your Foraign gain, I rest content at home, at the years end wee’l cast the difference ’twixt your far-fetch’d treasure, and our Newcastle home-bred Minerals, you shall perceive strange transformation, black coals turn’d to white silver, that’s my comfort sir. (sig. A3v)

 John Stow, A Survey of London Written in the Year 1598, introduced by Antonia Fraser (London: The History Press, 2009), pp. 28, 16, and 31.

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Randolfe’s faith in minerals is echoed in the scene in which Thornton discovers that metal which he had bought as iron is in fact gold, making him the richest subject in the kingdom, and the importance of Newcastle’s underground wealth is confirmed when Grim the Collier offers to march his seven hundred miners underground to London, a journey which he affirms will take no more than six days. But the underground world which makes Newcastle rich is also an edge of Christendom: Grim calls himself “Controler of the Cole-pits, chief Sergeant of the Selleridge, nay the very Demigorgan of the Dungeon” (sig. D2r), identifies his seven hundred followers as “honest Tartarians” (sig. F1r),²² and connects mining to both the diabolic—“If you wo’d rake hell and Phlegitan, Acaron and Barrathrum, all those Low Countries cannot yeeld you such a company” (sig. F2v)—and to the exotic, when he tells Randolfe “Seven hundred Indians or Newcastle Collyers, your Worship keeps daily to dive for Treasure five hundred fathom deep for you” (sigs. D1r – v). Newcastle is an English edge of Christendom. In order to tell the story that it wants to, The Lovesick King finds that it needs both Macbeth and Hamlet. Macbeth is evoked primarily in order to register this play’s difference from it. The play features a king of Scots called Donald and another Scot called Malcolm, but these apparent nods to Macbeth are counteracted by the fact that it is the Scots who help civilise England rather than vice versa, an obvious compliment to James. The Scots help Alured march as far as York, which they threaten with destruction if it does not yield, but they are very pointedly dissociated from the pillage and devastation which historical cross-Border raids traditionally entailed, as we see when Alured says, I came now with my best Hors-manship from the Scotch Army, whose Royal King in Neighbor amity, is arm’d in my just cause, has past the Tweed with prosperous forrage through Northumberland, all Holds and Castles taken by the Danes restore themselves to his subjection in our behalf. (sig. F2r)

These are no Border Reivers or marauding half-savages but well-mannered and well-behaved troops who “forage” prosperously rather than despoil, do not appear to have destroyed any property, and promptly pass over to English hands any cities that they take. It seems only fitting that Alured at the close of the play should repay their help by gifting them some of England. Great King of Scotland, we are yet a debtor to your kind love, which thus we ’gin to pay, all those our Northern borders bounding on Cumberland, from Tine to Tweed, we add unto

 There may be a play on the false etymology which traced the name of the Central Asian Tartars to Tartarus, the classical hell.

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your Crown, so ’twas fore-promised, and ’tis now perform’d; Most fit it is that we be ever lovers; The Sea that binds us in one Continent, Doth teach us to imbrace two hearts in one, To strengthen both ’gainst all invasion. (sig. G2r)

Even this, though, does not have the feel of a genuine reduction in English territory since Alured is so insistent on the essential territorial integrity of the British mainland, a theme that would have been very familiar to Jacobean audiences. The Lovesick King’s presentation of the Scots as civilised does not, however, quite disguise the fact that Macbeth tells a story about Northumbria as well as about Scotland. A website on the history of Viking Northumbria offers a slightly unexpected perspective on the events of Shakespeare’s play: In 1054 Siward, the Earl of Northumbria, defeated the Scots under King Macbeth and Siward’s nephew Malcolm Canmore was appointed Lord of Strathclyde and the Lothians. It was an attempt to bring the Scottish lowlands once more under Northumbrian control.²³

Macbeth certainly does not privilege such a view of events, but it does allow for it, reminding the audience both of Siward’s status as Earl of Northumberland and the fact that Malcolm is his nephew. Shakespeare was aware of the importance of the Northumbrian backing for invasion: in Caradoc of Llancarvan’s The historie of Cambria, now called Wales, the section about Macbeth, Banquo, and Fleance is immediately preceded by the information that “Oswald Earle of Northumberland, when he heard that his sonne was slaine in Scotland, whither his father had sent him to conquere it, asked whether his deaths wound was in his brest or in his backe; and they said in his brest: and he answered, I am right glad thereof, for I would not wish me nor my sonne to die otherwise.”²⁴ Macbeth reuses this anecdote and has Malcolm assure Macduff that even before he arrived, “Old Seyward with ten thousand warlike men / Already at a point, was setting forth,”²⁵ making it quite clear that the invasion of Scotland is a specifically Northumbrian rather than more generally English enterprise, and later Malcolm addresses Siward as “worthy uncle” (5.6.2). It is also suggestive that Malcolm should close the play by saying to his followers, “Henceforth be earls, the first that ever Scotland / In such an honour named” (5.7.92– 93). Scotland may not  http://www.englandsnortheast.co.uk/VikingNorthumbria.html.  Caradoc of Llancarvan, The historie of Cambria, now called Wales, translated by Humphrey Llwyd (London: 1584), p. 97.  William Shakespeare, Macbeth, edited by Nicholas Brooke (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1990), 4.3.144– 45.

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have had earls as such, but it had had jarls, such as Macbeth’s cousin Thorfinn Sigurdsson who ruled not only Orkney but Caithness, and the climate of philological enquiry in the early seventeenth century would not have made it hard to perceive that the two words were cognate. When Malcolm converts his thanes to earls, he borrows the title of his Northumbrian uncle and extends it to Scotland, and by failing to mention the alternative version of jarls he implicitly dissociates Northumbria from any tainting element of Danishness. The Lovesick King may show the English having to be helped by the Scots, but alluding to Macbeth allows it to remind audiences that at least the Scots have a record of fighting invading Scandinavians. Another play with an interest in Scandinavia, Hamlet, is also a presence in The Lovesick King. It occurs in the subplot concerning the hasty remarriage of Randolfe’s widowed sister. When Randolfe first suggests to her that she could now marry the wealthy Thornton, she demurs, “Hey, ho, Hee’s a very honest man truly, and had my husband dyed but two months ago, I might ha’ thought on’t” (sig. E3r). After a little persuasion, however, she consents to marry him the same day. This looks pointed, as too does the inclusion of a character with the name Osric; it works to connect the Thornton family to the Danes in the same way as Thornton’s Tamburlainian interest in gold parallels him with Canutus, confirming the sense that there is contact between the two ostensibly disparate plots. However, Hamlet too is interested in walls and battlements, and understanding The Lovesick King as in dialogue with Hamlet helps us see things not only about Brewer’s play but also about Shakespeare’s. At an early stage of The Lovesick King, Osbert reminds Canutus that “an hundred thirty years the English Kings have paid just tribute to the conquering Danes” (sig. A3r). That Hamlet is explicitly set during this period is signalled by the fact that Claudius dispatches him to England “for the demand of our neglected tribute,”²⁶ and by the subsequent observation that the country he is expected to visit is one whose “cicatrice looks raw and red / After the Danish sword” (4.4.63 – 64). Like The Lovesick King, too, Hamlet is notably interested in underground activity: the Ghost is a “mole” who works fast in the earth (1.4.170), and Hamlet reflects: ’tis the sport to have the enginer Hoist with his own petard, and’t shall go hard But I will delve one yard below their mines And blow them at the moon. (3.4.208 – 11)

 William Shakespeare, Hamlet, edited by Harold Jenkins (London: Methuen, 1982), 3.2.172.

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As the Arden 2 edition notes, “a petard was an explosive device, recently invented, for breaking through gates, walls, etc.,” so this is a passage which has in mind exactly the kind of warfare which the walls of Newcastle were able to withstand. The Lovesick King is thus not simply recalling Hamlet, but intelligently considering the ways in which Shakespeare’s play speaks to the history of England, and to the history of the north of England in particular. For The Lovesick King to point to Hamlet enables it to suggest a number of things without having to articulate them directly. In both Hamlet and The Lovesick King, the crown changes hands. In Hamlet, it has been acquired by Claudius and is expected to pass to Hamlet, but in fact devolves on Fortinbras. In The Lovesick King, the crown of England is brought to Canutus after the death of Etheldred, but subsequently passes to Alured. In both cases, a Dane is the loser, and in both plays wives are fickle, which may have expressed some unease about Anna of Denmark. More fundamentally, though, both plays suggest that crowns may be lost as well as won, and Hamlet explicitly declares that the Danish crown is elective, a matter of some debate among political theorists. Moreover, both plays posit an England which is subject to a foreign power, but in both cases the audience is implicitly or explicitly invited to remember that such a state of affairs was only temporary. Newcastle, so long a bulwark against the Scots, was prepared to extend only a provisional welcome to its new Scottish king, and reference to Hamlet helps it inject that note of caution, and to remind the audience that today’s Middle Shires might yet revert to being tomorrow’s northern border. Another play which talks both about the north and about Shakespeare is Richard Brome’s The Queen’s Exchange. This opens at the court of the West Saxons, the people whom Camden understood as living beyond Wansdyke,²⁷ and the fact that Wansdyke derived from Woden’s Dyke suggests that they too are located at an edge of Christendom. The West Saxon queen, Bertha, is proposing to marry yet another Osric, the King of Northumbria (the name is also found in the anonymous A Knack to Know a Knave, published in 1594 and featuring King Edgar and St. Dunstan). The proposed marriage is opposed by her father’s favourite counsellor Segebert on the grounds that there are fundamental and irreconcilable differences between Northumbria and Wessex:

 Alexandra Walsham notes that the name of Wansdyke “illuminate[s] the ways in which ancient earthworks of unknown origin came to be attributed to the deity Woden” (The Reformation of the Landscape, p. 25).

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I know, and you, if you knew anything, Might know the difference twixt the Northumbrian laws And ours. And sooner will their king pervert Your privileges and your government, Than reduce his to yours.²⁸

Segebert implicitly connects Osric to Tamburlaine, who also uses “reduce” of his project of world domination: “and with this pen reduce them to a map.”²⁹ However Bertha dismisses Segebert’s advice and receives the Northumbrian ambassador Theodric (Theodoric was historically the name of a king of Bernicia, a kingdom eventually subsumed into Northumbria under Oswald), who is no blunt northerner but in fact so honey-tongued that the West Saxon lord Elwin laments that “howe’er the laws may go, our customs will / Be lost: for he, methinks, out-flatters us already” (1.1.222– 23). Plans for the marriage proceed apace—except that once again a subplot takes a hand. The play which The Queen’s Exchange most obviously remembers is King Lear. Segebert, like Lear, has three children, except that in this case there are two sons, Offa, a name which obviously speaks of boundaries by recalling Offa’s Dyke, and Anthynus, and one daughter, Mildred. Anthynus is the eldest, but the least favoured, and when Segebert on the point of being exiled conducts a love test, Anthynus fails it miserably: Segebert. Now there rests, of all my children, but you To resolve me how you have found my love? Anthynus. You ask me last, sir, I presume, cause you Have had me longest, to crown their testimony. Segebert. Yet you seem, Anthynus, by your leave, the Least to know me, but like a stranger look Upon me when these give me due respect. Anthynus. Less than due I dare not give you; and more Were to abuse you. Though I do not applaud, I must approve you are a right good father. (1.2.75 – 84)

Segebert is not impressed with this qualified rapture, and decides to punish it by disinheriting Anthynus insofar as he is able to:

 Richard Brome, The Queen’s Exchange, edited by Richard Wood, 1.1.116 – 20. Online: http:// extra.shu.ac.uk/emls/iemls/renplays/qexchcontents.htm. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.  Christopher Marlowe, Tamburlaine the Great, in The Complete Plays, edited by Mark Thornton Burnett (London: Everyman, 1999), Part One, 4.4.84.

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Though you are eldest, and my lawful heir, And must be lord, at my decease, of all My large possessions, yet, it is my will That, till my death, my Offa have the sway And government of all, allowing you That yearly stipend formerly I gave you. (1.2.116 – 21)

Nevertheless, the loyal Anthynus follows his father into exile in Northumbria, where he is able to defend the old man from a murderous attack by outlaws. The presence of outlaws in the woods of Northumbria might suggest that it is a lot wilder than Wessex, and Anthynus does indeed term it “this wild desert” (2.3.15), but in fact the supposed outlaws have been suborned and paid by the wicked Offa, who wants his father dead so that he can inherit his estate, and actually Northumbria is really not all that different from Wessex. We even find the Lear plot cropping up there too, since Osric, the King of Northumbria, has a fool called Jeffrey who wants to stay with him during his self-imposed absence from court. Most strikingly, the West Saxon lord Anthynus and the Northumbrian king Osric turn out to be absolutely identical, for no particular reason that the play ever troubles to give us. Their interchangeable bodies lead to an ending which keeps the two kingdoms technically separate when the West Saxon queen Bertha marries the West Saxon lord Anthynus, but since the Northumbrian king Osric marries Anthynus’s sister Mildred a marriage alliance has been forged which will presumably lead to much closer ties between the two lands. The play thus ends by evoking both separation and unity. Where Northumbria does differ from Wessex is that it is haunted. When Anthynus goes to sleep in a Northumbrian wood, he has either a vision or a genuine supernatural experience: Enter six Saxon kings’ ghosts, crowned with sceptres in their hands, etc. They come one after another to Anthynus, then fall into a dance; loud music sounds. After the dance, the first leads away the second, he the third, and so on; the last takes up Anthynus and leaves him standing upright. (3.2.39 sd)

This is a bit surprising in that King Lear is the only one of Shakespeare’s four preconquest plays to include no supernatural material,³⁰ but of course what is being recalled here is Macbeth (in case we miss that, Alfrid says shortly afterwards to

 Hamlet has the ghost of Hamlet’s father, Cymbeline Postumus’s vision, and Macbeth the witches and Banquo’s ghost.

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Edelbert, “A witch could not guess righter / Than thou hast done” (3.2.80 – 81). Anthynus correctly interprets what has passed as a prophecy about future rule: If now I be awake, and am Anthynus, … Then did I see, in apparition, The ghosts of our six last West Saxon kings, … Of which, the last, Kenwalcus, our late king, And father to the tyraness that banished Mine, seemed to take me up to his succession. (3.2.45 – 52)

The north is a holy place: Max Adams notes that the first stone structure built in England after the departure of the Romans was York Minister and Hexham Abbey the second,³¹ making them, according to Stow, older than the Tower of London, since he rejects the idea that it was built by Julius Caesar and declares it to be built “of stone brought from Caen in Normandy, since the Conquest.”³² Another great religious centre, Lindisfarne, brought literacy to the area, and Northumbria’s greatest king, Oswald, killed the pagan king Cadwallon at a river helpfully called Devil’s Water³³ and became a saint after his victory at the even more resonantly named Heavenfield, fought only yards from Hadrian’s Wall. (This was remembered by Geoffrey of Monmouth, who wrote that “Oswald was besieged by this Penda in a place called Hevenfield, that is, the Field of Heaven,”³⁴ and in the early modern period by Foxe, who called him Oswald “last king of the Britanes,” by Holinshed, and in The Faerie Queene; as late as the seventeenth century coins showing Oswald were being minted in Switzerland.) Suggestively, The Queen’s Exchange appears to have been in some form of intertextual dialogue with the now lost Play of Oswald, whose eponymous hero, heir to Mercia, has been sent to Northumberland in infancy to escape from his murderous uncle. Part of the very small fragment which remains has Oswald saying, “brother I am glad you cozen’d / me of a wife; sister I am glad you call’d / me not husband,”³⁵ suggesting an incest motif similar to that found in The Queen’s Exchange where the villainous Offa

 Adams, The King in the North, p. 295.  Stow, A Survey of London, pp. 58 and 46.  Max Adams, In the Land of Giants: Journeys through the Dark Ages (London: Head of Zeus, 2015), p. 205.  Geoffrey of Monmouth, The History of the Kings of Britain, translated by Lewis Thorpe (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 1966), p. 277.  See David McInnis, “Play of Oswald (BL MS Egerton 2623),” Lost Plays Database. Online: http://lostplays.folger.edu/Play_of_Oswald_(BL_MS_Egerton_2623).

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tries to persuade his sister Mildred to sleep with him, and hinting that The Queen’s Exchange too may be invested in the Oswald story. In The Queen’s Exchange, the border between worlds seems almost as porous as at that victory at Heavenfield which gave Oswald both an earthly and a heavenly kingdom,³⁶ for the apparently dead do not stay dead. The murderers sent by Offa convince him that they have indeed killed his brother and father, and the reader or audience member might well be deceived into thinking that Segebert is indeed dead. However, Offa struggles to believe it, asking successively, “You are sure they both are dead?” (4.1.2), “but are they dead indeed?” (4.1.7), “But he’s dead too, y’are sure?” (4.1.15), and “They are both dead you say?” (4.1.22), before disposing, as he thinks, of the murderers themselves by pushing them through a trap-door into a cellar. In fact neither Anthynus nor Segebert is dead, and the murderers are inadvertently liberated from the cellar by a gang of would-be jewel thieves. By contrast, though the supernatural is twice gestured at in the West Saxon scenes, it is not real on either occasion: when Anthynus asks those attending him “What fiends or fairies are ye?” (4.2.32), the rather prosaic answer is that they are a physician and his attendants, and when a group of men dressed as devils appear on the stage, they turn out to be jewel thieves wearing costumes which they hope will frighten away anyone who might see them. The King of Northumbria might be physically indistinguishable from the future King of the West Saxons, but their two territories are subtly different, because Northumbria is a contact zone with the other world and the land of the West Saxons is not. Maximinus ends The Queen’s Exchange by promising: Build what Religious Monuments you please, Be true to Rome, none shall disturbe your peace. Set forward Princes, Fortunes Wheele turnes round; We Kingdomes lose, you the same hour sit Crownd. And thus about the World she spreads her wings, To ruine, or raise up the Thrones of Kings. (sig. L2r)

However, this assurance of religious freedom may well have had a hollow ring for the original audience. The Queen’s Exchange is difficult to date precisely, but Richard Wood has suggested that as well as its obvious debt to Ford’s ’Tis

 Another instance of eschatological resonances accruing to a northern border can be found in A Knack to Know a Knave, where the bailiff of Hexham is carried away by the devil.

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Pity She’s a Whore it is also in dialogue with his 1633 Perkin Warbeck,³⁷ and 1633 or 1634 does indeed seem a likely date, because the play appears to reflect on the Scottish coronation of Charles I in 1633. I have argued elsewhere that this second coronation for Charles, coupled with the fact that the arrival of Prince James gave the reigning king two male heirs for the first time since the death of Prince Henry, prompted speculation about whether England and Scotland should remain joined under one monarch or whether the two sons of the king might each inherit one of his two kingdoms.³⁸ This is a question which The Queen’s Exchange addresses head on, since as Richard Wood suggests its introduction of a fool named Jeffrey makes it look like a glance at Henrietta Maria, who had a fool named Jeffrey Hudson, and it evokes Lear, the ultimate succession play, and Macbeth as part of its strategy for doing so. Lear itself is indecisive about whether power passes to the midlands-based Edgar or the Scottish Albany. The Queen’s Exchange proposes that two separate scenes of power shall continue, one in the north and one in the west, and though it does hint that the initially threatening Northumbria might ultimately become more closely aligned with Wessex, Wood is surely right to suggest that “the happy failure of Bertha to marry the northern king, Osric (thus not uniting their kingdoms) would be seen as a comment on the union.” Like The Lovesick King, then, The Queen’s Exchange seems to suggest a less than total commitment to the Stuarts, and once again it uses Shakespeare to do so. To evoke Macbeth or Hamlet is, however, not only to comment on the Stuarts; it is also to remind the audience that parts of Britain had a Viking past. That might seem to be merely a historical curiosity, but when Maximus in The Queen’s Exchange talks about religious toleration and when The Lovesick King shows us a subsidiary hero who built a chantry chapel, they also invite their audiences to connect that history of paganism to the more contemporary and more disturbing question of the divide between the two confessions. In the main plot of The Lovesick King, Cartesmunda comes to look exactly like the unchaste nun of Reformation propaganda and Canutus makes her strange when he apostrophises her “O fairest soul! I fear’t a harder Task to conquer thee, than all the spacious Bounds of Barbary” (sig. B1r); in the subplot Thornton says “Then will I have some Fifty Beades-men in my life time, for that’s the first way to be prayed for here, and mourned for when I am gone” (sig. A4r), and First Collier uses the language of schism when he jokes that “Newcastle Coals are Hereticks,

 See Richard Wood, Introduction to The Queen’s Exchange. Online: http://extra.shu.ac.uk/ emls/iemls/renplays/qexchintro.htm.  Lisa Hopkins, Drama and the Succession to the Crown (Farnham: Ashgate, 2011), chapter 6.

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and must be burnt at London” (sig. D1r). In The Queen’s Exchange, the Northumbrian ambassador makes his king sound idolatrous when he describes his treatment of Bertha’s portrait: “He does allow’t a table, waiters and officers / That eat the meat” (1.1.239 – 40), at which the West Saxon Elkwin comments aside “O horrible” (1.1.240), and he has his attendants order that the arrival of Bertha should be celebrated “with bells and bonfires” (2.1.12). Almost immediately, though, he is distracted by the portrait of Mildred, with which he instantly falls in love, which leads him to decide to become a pilgrim; the physician’s observation that “I know nor why, nor to what shrine” (3.1.68) confirms the Catholic resonances of this, and when the Queen of the West Saxons arrives in Northumbria to marry the supposed king the wedding is celebrated by a cardinal (4.2.188 sd). It is also in Northumbria that we find Jeffrey, the fool who shares his name with Henrietta Maria’s, and when we first see him he is working on both the bonfire and the bell-ringing. Anthynus by contrast imagines himself as armed by “white innocence and holy prayers” (2.3.24) and suggestively spends “three days” (3.2.7) searching for the father whom he believes to be dead, and though he speaks of a “sacred relic” (3.2.35) it is a safely secular one, being earth stained with his father’s blood. The apparent implication is that the religious practices of the West Saxons feel different from those of the Northumbrians, which have a distinctly Catholic flavour. Once again, an edge of Christendom becomes a place which points up the tension between the two confessions.

Chapter 9 Let the Right One In: Edges of Christendom in Cavendish-Talbot Houses In the recipe and remedy book of Alethea Howard, Countess of Arundel, the instruction for what to do “For a Child dead in the Mothers Belly” instructs the healer, When thou comest into the house that the woman is in, put in thy right foot first into the house, and make the signe of the Cross saying in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost. Anna brought forth Samuell, and thou woman do that in thee lyeth to do, oh thou Child whatsoever thou be Male or Female come out. Christ calleth thee, Christ Raigns, Christ commands thou shouldst come out, come to Christendome this say three times and three Pater Nosters every time, and shee shall be delivered by Gods grace.¹

For Lady Arundel, a child who was being born in England was quite simply entering into Christendom. She compiled her book in the 1620s, but by the time it was published in 1655 the notion of Christendom was under a new kind of pressure brought to bear by the English Civil War, and christenings in particular had become “an ideological battlefield.”² Lady Arundel’s sister, Elizabeth Grey, Countess of Kent, also wrote a book of recipes and remedies, which had been published two years earlier. There are some differences between the two sisters’ work: Lynette Hunter points out that Henrietta Maria’s and Elizabeth Grey’s books are both octavo but “Alethea Talbot’s book is a rather different handsome quarto” and that “The work is highly significant because it documents the movement from a herbal-based Galenic medicine to a balance of herbal and chemical … Natura Exenterata is making claims not only on skill and technology, but also on a new area of knowledge and the process of intellectual enquiry.”³ At the

 [Alathea Talbot Howard, Countess of Arundel and Surrey], Natura Exenterata: Or Nature Unbowelled by the most Exquisite Anatomizers of Her (London: H. Twiford, G. Bedell, and N. Ekins, 1655), in Elizabeth Spiller, Seventeenth-Century English Recipe Books: Cooking, Physic and Chirurgery in the Works of Elizabeth Talbot Grey and Aletheia Talbot Howard (Farnham, UK: Ashgate, 2008), p. 196.  Lucy Moore, Lady Fanshawe’s Receipt Book: An Englishwoman’s Life during the Civil War (London: Atlantic Books, 2017), pp. 68 and 136.  Lynette Hunter, “Women and Domestic Medicine: Lady Experimenters, 1570 – 1620,” in Women, Science and Medicine, 1500 – 1700, edited by Lynette Hunter and Sarah Hutton (Stroud, UK: Sutton, 1997), pp. 89 – 107, pp. 103 – 4. https://doi.org/10.1515/9781501514159-011

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same time as Alethea’s book is certainly more openly intellectual than her sister’s, however, some recipes show clear signs of what we would now call magical thinking: an ointment for a green salve “must be made between May and Bartholomew Tide,” while “An Ointment for an Ach, Rheum or swelling in the joints, made with swallows. By Mrs. Kempe” stipulates “(Memorandum the Swallows may not touch the ground).”⁴ Some are indeed openly Catholic. For “Aqua Composita” the herbs have to be picked “betweene the Ladie dayes.”⁵ “Another for the bleeding of a wound” reads simply “Write these four letters, A O G L with the blood of the wound, about the wound”;⁶ A and O perhaps stand for Alpha and Omega, and the whole is likely to have a religious significance. For both sisters the kitchen and the stillroom are frontiers of Christendom, and must be defended as such. Granddaughters of Bess of Hardwick, Lady Grey and Lady Arundel inherited a tradition of luxurious and ceremonious living which was thrown into chaos by the war; though their books were compiled before the war, by the time they were published in the 1650s they represented a nostalgic glance back at a world now vanished. In Lady Kent’s A choice manual, the first of two “Receipts for Bruises, approved by the Lady of Arundell,” is “Take black Jet, beat it to powder, and let the Patient drink it every morning in beer till he be well,” and “An approved Medicine for the Plague, called the Philosophers Egge” starts innocuously enough with “Take a new laid Egg,” but then demands “five or six simples of Unicorns horn,” though it does concede that hartshorn will do as a substitute.⁷ When they visited their grandmother at Hardwick the sisters would have seen a unicorn on the plaster frieze of the High Great Chamber, so they might possibly have thought that such things existed, and indeed Mary, Queen of Scots used unicorn’s horn as an antidote against possible poisoning attempts while living in Bess’s household.⁸ However, even if you could obtain a substance that you called unicorn horn before the Civil War, you would certainly not have been able to do so afterwards. This is nostalgia for a world ill lost, and the sense of a divided nation is accentuated by the fact that Lady Kent’s book was dedicated by its editor, “W. J.,” “To the Vertuous and most Noble Lady, LETITIA POPHAM,

 Howard, Natura Exenterata, in Spiller, Seventeenth-Century English Recipe Books, pp. 83 and 34.  Howard, Natura Exenterata, in Spiller, Seventeenth-Century English Recipe Books, p. 56.  Howard, Natura Exenterata, in Spiller, Seventeenth-Century English Recipe Books, p. 67.  Grey, A Choice Manuall, in Spiller, Seventeenth-Century English Recipe Books, pp. 74, 132, and 134.  David Templeman, Mary, Queen of Scots: The Captive Queen in England, 1568 – 87 (Exeter: Short Run Press, [2016]), p. 112.

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Wife of the Honorable and truely Valiant Colonell ALEXANDER POPHAM.” Alexander Popham was a Parliamentarian commander, so there could be no doubt of where W. J.’s sympathies lay, but although both sisters were dead by the time of their books’ publication, their first cousin William Cavendish had been a Royalist general. This divide between editor and authors neatly encapsulates the ideological fissures of the Civil War, which bore directly on the question of whether England could still safely be considered part of Christendom. Alexandra Walsham notes that across the country “official and clandestine assaults upon images and idols accompanied the descent into war between 1640 and 1642. The spontaneous outbreaks of religious vandalism against images, altar rails, surplices, prayer books, and other items of church furniture that marked this period were stirred up by a hatred of the Caroline ecclesiastical authority,” but many of the measures introduced by Parliament went well beyond reversing Laud’s innovations; amongst other things, they destroyed “the rock houses once occupied by anchorites” in William Cavendish’s park outside Nottingham,⁹ forbade the celebration of Christmas, and disinterred dead bodies. In The First Part of Bell in Campo, a play written by William Cavendish’s wife Margaret, the Steward asks “why will not your Ladyship have my Lords figure cast in Brass” and Madam Jantil explains, Because the Wars ruin Tombs before Time doth, and metals being usefull therein are often taken away by necessity, and we seldome find any ancient Monuments but what are made of Stone, for covetousness is apt to rob Monuments of metal, committing Sacrileges on the dead, for metals are soonest melted into profit, but Stone is dull and heavy, creeping slowly, bringing but a cold advantage, wherein lies more pains than gains.¹⁰

In this chapter, I want to explore other ways in which women of the CavendishTalbot family interacted with the edge of Christendom through the creation of hangings and other wall decorations and the writing (and perhaps staging) of plays, as well as food preparation. I argue that in each case and in each household a major strategy for keeping out things which were perceived to threaten the values of Christendom was to let them in; however, as the period progressed and the threat to the edge of Christendom came closer and closer to home, the outside had to be invited further in than ever before.

 Alexandra Walsham, The Reformation of the Landscape: Religion, Identity, and Memory in Early Modern Britain and Ireland (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011), p. 128.  Margaret Cavendish, The First Part of Bell in Campo, in Plays Written by the Thrice Noble, Illustrious and Excellent Princess, the Lady Marchioness of Newcastle (London: A. Warren for John Martyn, James Allestry, and Thomas Dicas, 1662), Scene 21, p. 600.

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For Hakluyt, a principal purpose of exploration was to find new markets for English wool,¹¹ and in The Knight of Malta a soldier who is asked what he has in his pack replies “Tis English Cloth.”¹² Cloth was indeed an important export, but it was also important at home. The hangings which currently adorn the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse are based on ones at Hardwick Hall, including one which represents a Penelope who looks remarkably like Bess of Hardwick and another of Chastity which has been proposed as a portrait of Mary, Queen of Scots.¹³ Their presence in the intimate space of the Wanamaker nicely catches the extent to which such hangings were originally both public and private, domestic and national, and this was particularly true of the hangings originally created by Bess of Hardwick for her house at Chatsworth and now on display at Hardwick New Hall. When Bess created Hardwick New Hall in the 1590s, she introduced a touch of deliberate exoticism in the wall decorations. In the High Great Chamber, the plaster frieze (which can be dated to 1597), shows a forest with two very different landscapes. One might be European, though “[a] bear would suggest that this scene was a little wilder than anything that would have been currently found in England, and a gazelle would suggest this scene could be situated in a fairly distant, perhaps near eastern region”; the other is definitely not, since it shows monkeys, lions, tigers, elephants, camels, and a unicorn. It is obviously difficult to pronounce on the habitat of unicorns, but Crosby Stevens suggests that “[i]n the Elizabethan imagination this might be situated in the middle East or North Africa or India, or perhaps in paradise, or the New World of current exploration and conquest,” and she thinks that there is also “a touch of the native American or even Amazonian Queen” in the image of Diana.¹⁴ The Cavendish family had reason to be interested in exploration because both Thomas Cavendish the navigator and Douglas Cavendish, the first wife of Richard Hakluyt, were distant cousins, and we also know that the materials used in the creation of the frieze were already exotic: John Balechouse, also known as John Painter, is known to have used pigments including fernando bark, brasil, and blockwood from  Cited in Nandani Das, “Encounter as Process: England and Japan in the Late Sixteenth Century,” Renaissance Quarterly 69 (2016), pp. 1343 – 68, p. 1361.  John Fletcher, Nathan Field, and Philip Massinger, The Knight of Malta (London: Humphrey Moseley, 1647), 2.1.100. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.  Susan Frye suggests the identification on the basis that Chastity is accompanied by a unicorn, which were prevalent in Mary, Queen of Scots’ iconography. Susan Frye, Pens and Needles: Women’s Textualities in Early Modern England (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2010), pp. 68 – 69.  Crosby Stevens, “The Green World of the Seventeenth Century,” unpublished paper given at the Off the Shelf Festival of Worlds, Sheffield, 15 October 2019.

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the Americas.¹⁵ The High Great Chamber is ostensibly a stage for a potential visit by Elizabeth I (though her advancing years made it unlikely that she would actually come, and indeed she never did). The iconography could be presenting the queen as a global monarch, but the fact that it is concentrated on the wall also serves to suggest that the wilder and more savage aspects of it are being kept at bay—are indeed being hunted. At the same time, though, introducing a touch of exoticism into the image of Diana herself, who obviously figures the queen, hints at a level of permeability between both inside and outside and between domesticity and the wider world. Bess of Hardwick received correspondence about major European events and her son Henry visited Constantinople; this apparently rural Derbyshire mansion was in constant touch with the wider world, as would be all too visibly illustrated when the queen’s embassy Sir Henry Brounker invaded its peace to demand an explanation of actions by Bess’s granddaughter, Arbella Stuart, which bore on the succession to the throne of England. The elephants, the unicorn, and the exoticised Diana emblematise the way in which Hardwick Hall is simultaneously a house securely situated well within the bounds of Christendom and also a window onto the world beyond those bounds. That sense of walls as both boundaries and edges is also found in the hangings commissioned by Bess. Hangings served a variety of purposes in Elizabethan England. On a very basic level, they kept draughts at bay and were thus a basic requirement for making a house habitable; when ordered to furnish Tutbury Castle for the reception of Mary, Queen of Scots, Bess’s first act was to send hangings.¹⁶ They were also visible signs of wealth, and could potentially be turned into cash: Sarah Gristwood notes that to finance her escape from the Tower of London, Bess of Hardwick’s granddaughter Arbella sold her aunt Mary Talbot some embroideries by Mary, Queen of Scots.¹⁷ In addition, the Hardwick hangings were bespoke and made by hand (as I shall discuss below, they were assembled from repurposed materials and then sewn together), and as such they were expressive. Anything made with a needle is personal, and Gristwood notes that in captivity in the Tower after the marriage of her son to Elizabeth Cavendish, Arbella’s other grandmother Margaret Lennox embroidered a present for Mary, Queen of Scots “made with grey hairs from her own head”; as a new year

 Pamela Kettle, A History of the Hardwick Inn (Chesterfield, UK: Sutton Court, 1991), p. 10.  Mary S. Lovell, Bess of Hardwick: First Lady of Chatsworth [2005] (London: Abacus, 2006), p. 207.  Sarah Gristwood, Arbella: England’s Lost Queen (London: Bantam, 2003), p. 368. There could also have been a hint when Arbella made James a purse that money would be an acceptable return (p. 282).

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gift Arbella herself sent the queen “a scarf or head-veil of lawn cut-work flourished with silver and silks of sundry colours” which she had made and which Elizabeth received with “especial liking.”¹⁸ Handwork can say something about both giver and recipient, so it is not surprising that, as Susan Frye has it, “A few women in the sixteenth century … used needlework to explore alternative narratives of the feminine as political, authoritative, active, and expressive, although invariably chaste and productive”; for them, “needlework became a dynamic discourse through which its practitioners simultaneously obeyed and defied the injunction to passive silence.” Frye notes that there is particular expressiveness in the needlework of Mary, Queen of Scots: After Mary’s escape to England in 1569, the majority of her needlework asserts her identity as former queen of France, as present queen of Scotland, and as heir in waiting … The spider octagon … recalls Robert the Bruce’s lesson in waiting for one’s moment, and in so doing suggests that Mary can outwait Elizabeth. The dolphin octagon plays on the English pronunciation of “dauphin” as a reminder of her connections to the powerful de Guise family and her French marriage.

Even more politically charged was a cushion made by Mary for Norfolk with the motto “Virescit Vulnere Virtus”: “The message, that the barren stalk of Elizabeth should be cut away so that the fruitful branch of Mary might flourish, made the cushion admissible evidence at Norfolk’s trial.”¹⁹ When needlework could speak as loudly and as dangerously as this, it is not surprising that, as Antonia Fraser notes, “In 1614 William Drummond of Hawthornden gave a full and marvelling description of the joint embroideries of Mary and Bess in a letter to Ben Jonson.”²⁰ Bess had been dead for six years by then and Mary for twenty-eight, but their needlework continued to matter. Frye sees Bess’s needlework projects as less politicised than Mary’s, arguing that “The source of Elizabeth Talbot’s impulse to complete large needlework pieces was dynastic” and pointing to a particular link in the hangings depicting female virtue: “The fact that [she] named two daughters Temperance and Lucrece, two figures in this series, suggests that she connected these mythic narratives with her own life.”²¹ However although it is not outwardly visible, the Hard-

 Gristwood, Arbella, pp. 391 and 173.  Susan Frye, “Sewing Connections: Elizabeth Tudor, Mary Stuart, Elizabeth Talbot, and Seventeenth-Century Anonymous Needleworkers,” in Maids and Mistresses, Cousins and Queens: Women’s Alliances in Early Modern England, edited by Susan Frye and Karen Robertson (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999), pp. 165 – 82, pp. 166 and 170.  Antonia Fraser, Mary, Queen of Scots [1969] (London: Panther, 1970), p. 488.  Frye, “Sewing Connections,” p. 173.

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wick Hall hangings are characterised by a radical ideological fissure, for the materials which were used to make them spoke both of strangeness overseas and change in England. Frye explains that “Bess used both silk from abroad and the materials that she had at hand, including, for her largest hangings, the priests’ copes acquired by her third husband, Sir William St. Loe.”²² The reason for Sir William’s acquisition of copes was that he (like Bess’s second husband Sir William Cavendish) was employed in the dissolution of the monasteries, so the hangings encoded a reminder of England’s turn to Protestantism which would have seemed all the more poignant once the Catholic Mary, Queen of Scots became a prisoner in the household of Bess and her fourth husband, the Earl of Shrewsbury, a captivity which entailed long periods of residence at Chatsworth. Frye notes that “Bess’s inventories reveal that there were over forty tapestries at Chatsworth alone,” and observes particularly that “Bess’s workshop … created more than forty ‘portal’ female figures …, each of them a female personification standing in an arched doorway, including a Liberal Arts series and a Cardinal Virtues series.”²³ These portal figures are particularly compelling because they so clearly mediate between different physical spaces, and also I think between different imagined ones. They draw attention to the walls on which they hang as edge zones, and in some cases specifically edges of Christendom, in ways both underlined and complicated by the fact that they themselves are composed of materials which recall the confessional divide within Christendom at the same time as they point to what lies outside it. Most notable is the image of Faith, who as Kate Hubbard amongst others has noted is a figure “looking rather like Elizabeth I,”²⁴ and who is paired with an image of Mahomet. On the surface, the purpose of this juxtaposition is clear. Santina Levey notes that this is one of “three pieces, each illustrating a virtue and its opposite vice: the contrary of Christian Faith is Mahomet; Hope is contrasted by Judas, the ultimate example of Despair; and in place of Charity, the third theological virtue, Temperance, is opposed by Sardanapulus, the personification of intemperate indulgence.” However, Levey identifies something unexpected about the image in the shape of the odd detail of “the conversion of the mosque behind Mahomet into a Christian Gothic church,”²⁵ and Matthew Dimmock notes that “the embroiderer(s) of the Hardwick piece made some telling

 Frye, Pens and Needles, p. 60.  Frye, Pens and Needles, pp. 58 and 61.  Kate Hubbard, Devices and Desires: Bess of Hardwick and the Building of Elizabethan England (London: Chatto and Windus, 2018), caption to image 15.  Santina M. Levey, An Elizabethan Inheritance: The Hardwick Hall Textiles (London: The National Trust, 1998), pp. 69 and 72.

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alterations from Collaert’s earlier image, particularly in the portrayal of Faith … The background has … been deliberately changed from a classicized depiction of idolatry in the original … This change seems intended to acknowledge Mahometan monotheism … The primacy of holy texts to both Protestantism and Mahometanism is also emphasized.” Dimmock proposes a simple explanation: “England entered into an elaborate association with the Ottoman Empire in the same year this embroidery was created—1580.”²⁶ In the similar hanging created for Charles V, Faith crushes Mahomet underfoot; here she offers him a cup. Rather than demonising Mahomet, Bess’s hanging finds a space for him both physically and imaginatively and uses a number of strategies to make him seem as acceptable as possible. His recumbent pose might seem designed to allay fears that Elizabeth had placed herself in a position inferior to that of the Sultan, but it also recalls that of Hilliard’s miniature “Young Man amongst Roses” (plausibly but not certainly a representation of the Earl of Essex) and so romanticises the relationship between the two monarchs and assimilates it to the familiar Western paradigm of courtly love. This is a Mahomet for whom there is hope, and whom the wall is happy to let in. The same dynamic of assimilation of the exotic can be seen in Cavendish family drama. In another of the portal hangings, Cleopatra is shown with Fortitude and Justice. Cleopatra is not an obvious choice of good woman, especially for a patron who was herself female; although Mary Sidney’s version is an exception to this, Kim F. Hall notes that “Unlike most male writers, women writers continually remind their readers of Cleopatra’s dark foreignness.”²⁷ However Katie Whitaker notes that Margaret Cavendish defended Cleopatra,²⁸ and we might also observe that Shakespeare’s Antony and Cleopatra has two instances of the nature/fancy dichotomy which was to become such a staple of Cavendish family discourse, “O’er-picturing Venus where we see / The fancy outwork nature” and Cleopatra’s Nature wants stuff To vie strange forms with fancy, yet t’imagine An Antony were nature’s piece ’gainst fancy.²⁹

 Matthew Dimmock, Mythologies of the Prophet Muhammad in Early Modern English Culture (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013), pp. 75 – 76.  Kim F. Hall, Things of Darkness: Economies of Race and Gender in Early Modern England (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1995), pp. 182– 83.  Katie Whitaker, Mad Madge: Margaret Cavendish, Duchess of Newcastle, Royalist, Writer and Romantic (London: Vintage, 2004), p. 127.  William Shakespeare, Antony and Cleopatra, edited by John Wilders (London: Bloomsbury, 2014), 2.2.207– 8 and 5.2.97– 99.

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Members of the Cavendish family would also have surely been interested to know that when Thomas Cavendish the navigator sailed up the Thames in November 1588 a Spanish agent reported home that “It was as if Cleopatra had been resuscitated.”³⁰ Perhaps most notably, Lady Anne Clifford, a close friend of the Cavendish-Talbot family, seems to have had herself painted as Cleopatra.³¹ In a play called The Concealed Fancies the sisters Lady Jane Cavendish and Lady Elizabeth Brackley, great-granddaughters of Bess of Hardwick, used Cleopatra to counteract the fact that during the English Civil War Christendom, at least as far as the besieged Royalists were concerned, was locked within the besieged houses of desperate Royalists and the barbarians were literally at the gates.³² One of the commonest complaints of Royalist women was the foul language used by the besieging Parliamentarian soldiers, which was audible to the embattled household: words they had never heard before, words they did not acknowledge as part of their own language. The Concealed Fancies fights against that with some better words when Tattiney asks “Do you not wonder that Courtley and Presumption are held wits? For methinks there are no such miracles in their language” and Luceny replies “Why, that’s because we have been brought up in the creation of good languages, which will make us ever ourselves.”³³ The Cavendish sisters defend what they understand as civilised values, and in keeping with the ethos of Hardwick, where portal figures both guard entrances and permit contained and limited access for some unexpectedly alien aspects of the outside world, they do so by granting access to someone unexpected. When the three sisters are under siege, Cicilley says to Sh, “You mean how did you look in the posture of a delinquent? Faith, as though you thought the scene would change again, and you would be happy though you suffered misery for a time” (3.4.6 – 10), and Sh replies that she was able to do this because “I practised Cleopatra when she was in her captivity, and could they have thought me worthy to have adorned their triumphs[,] I would have performed his gallant tragedy and

 Cited in Das, “Encounter as Process,” p. 1361.  See Yasmin Arshad, Imagining Cleopatra: Performing Gender and Power in Early Modern England (London: Bloomsbury, 2019), pp. 120 – 29.  Alexandra Bennett observes that the reference to “18. or 22. youth” “supports the contention that The Concealed Fancies was written after the fall of Welbeck,” ca. August 1644 (Alexandra G. Bennett, “‘Now Let My Language Speake’: The Authorship, Rewriting, and Audience(s) of Jane Cavendish and Elizabeth Brackley,” Early Modern Literary Studies 11, no. 2 [September 2005]. Online: http://extra.shu.ac.uk/emls/11-2/benncav2.htm).  Lady Jane Cavendish and Lady Elizabeth Brackley, The Concealed Fancies, in Renaissance Drama by Women: Texts and Documents, edited by S. P. Cerasano and Marion Wynne-Davies (London: Routledge, 1996), 2.3.139 – 43. All further quotations will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.

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so have made myself glorious for time to come” (3.4.13 – 16). The barbarians really were at the gate, but Cleopatra can paradoxically help to deal with them. The Concealed Fancies is informed at every level by the two girls’ status and experience as members of the Cavendish family. The main plot, which centres on the two fictional sisters Luceny and Tattiney, clearly affords, amongst other things, a means for the two actual sisters Jane and Elizabeth to express the intellectual sympathy and mutual devotion which is evident throughout their lives and writings; the subplot introduces three female cousins, who to some extent seem to offer additional portrayals of the two Cavendish daughters and of their younger sister Frances—Alison Findlay argues that Jane was clearly intended to play Luceny and Sh., Elizabeth Tattiney and Cicelly, and Frances Is.,³⁴ though we cannot be sure that the play was ever actually performed—and two brothers, who are clearly based on their own two brothers Charles and Henry. Their aunt Elizabeth Grey, Countess of Kent, may be implicitly referred to in the list of cosmetics at 1.2.43³⁵ and is explicitly so when we hear of “my Lady Kent’s cordials” (3.4.56 – 57). More controversially, it is often and not unreasonably assumed that the troublesome Lady Tranquillity is modelled on the sisters’ future stepmother, Margaret Lucas,³⁶ and that would certainly lend savage irony to Tattiney’s remark that “I hate see a fond fool, let it be he or she” (Epilogue 75 – 76), for it was as a fond fool that Margaret was acidly castigated by Samuel Pepys when he dismissed her biography of her husband as “the ridiculous history of my Lord Newcastle wrote by his wife, which shows her to be a mad, conceited ridiculous woman and he an ass to suffer her to write what she writes to and of him.”³⁷ But Margaret also wrote other things, and in her play The Unnatural Tragedy she picks up the traditions of the family into which she had married by referring to a set of wall hangings showing the story of Abraham, Sarah, and

 Alison Findlay, “‘She Gave You the Civility of the House’: Household Performance in The Concealed Fancies,” in Readings in Renaissance Women’s Drama: Criticism, History, and Performance, 1594 – 1988, edited by S. P. Cerasano and Marion Wynne-Davies (London: Routledge, 1988), pp. 259 – 71, p. 260.  Susan Cerasano and Marion Wynne-Davies comment in their note on this passage that “Lady Tranquillity’s cosmetics are not unlike the potions described in A Choice Manual of Rare and Select Secrets in Physick and Chirurgery by Elizabeth Grey, Countess of Kent, a book which is referred to at III.iv.56” (Cavendish and Brackley, The Concealed Fancies, in Cerasano and Wynne-Davies, Renaissance Drama by Women).  The idea that Lady Tranquillity should be read as Margaret is controversial, but is supported by Alison Findlay in Playing Spaces in Early Women’s Drama (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006), p. 49.  Samuel Pepys, The Diary of Samuel Pepys, vol. 9, edited by Robert Latham and William Matthews (London: G. Bell and Sons, 1976), p. 123.

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Hagar, and by figuring them too as portal figures marking both a boundary and a contact zone. The Unnatural Tragedy opens with Frere suggesting to his friend that they should visit Turkey, but the friend is not keen because he considers Turkey a “barbarous country” in which it will be difficult for them to gain access to women;³⁸ but in fact they find plenty of barbarity at home in France, in the shape of incest, adultery, and spousal neglect. The Elizabethan hangings at Hardwick were valuable and a source of pride, but in the seventeenth century, tapestries became an even more important feature in the decor of English country houses in the wake of James I’s establishment of the Mortlake factory in 1613 and his encouragement of the planting of mulberry trees to supply the silk necessary for their manufacture.³⁹ The Cavendish houses were no exception: Katie Whitaker notes of the furnishings that the Newcastles brought back from Antwerp, where they lived as Royalist exiles during the Civil War, that “One set of tapestries in particular, representing the four Evangelists, was so fine that tourists seeing it in England readily believed reports that it had cost William £2,000.”⁴⁰ The imagined tapestry of Abraham, Sarah, and Hagar provides thematic echoes of both The Unnatural Tragedy’s main plot and subplot and also of Cavendish’s own situation, and it also comments on religious divisions since Hagar’s son Ishmael, sired by Abraham specifically so that he could become the father of many nations, is often considered the progenitor of Muslim Arabs. Probably alluding to a set of tapestries in the royal collection, the Hagar panel speaks of the continuity of the royal line and by implication tropes dynastic continuity more generally, and, like the Hardwick portal figures, thus forms an interface between the private space of the house and the public space of the world outside, underlining the extent to which this is a play with a public resonance as well as a purely private one. In her Sociable Letters, Margaret Cavendish makes it quite plain that she herself has no gift for needlework: “I did Inwardly Complain of my Education, that my Mother did not Force me to Learn to Work with a Needle, though she found

 Margaret Cavendish, The Unnatural Tragedie, in Playes written by the thrice noble, illustrious and excellent princess, the Lady Marchioness of Newcastle (London: A. Warren for John Martyn, James Allestry and Thomas Dicas, 1662), 1.1.7. All further quotations from the play will be taken from this edition and reference will be given in the text.  Lanto Synge, Antique Needlework (Poole, UK: Blandford Press, 1982), p. 63. Tapestries might also be displayed outdoors on occasion: William Alexander’s 1607 play The Alexandraean Tragedy has a character speak of how at a celebration “Strange Tapestries were stretch’d the streets along” (William Alexander, The Alexandraean Tragedy, in Recreations with the Muses [London: Thomas Harper, 1637], p. 126).  Whitaker, Mad Madge, p. 236.

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me alwayes Unapt thereto” (she also refers to needlework when she implicitly ranks it lower than writing in the dedication of Poems and Fancies).⁴¹ The complaint, however, seems a rather half-hearted one, for Cavendish soon goes on to reflect that even if she did have the ability, she doubts the appeal of the occupation: if I had been as Long Absent from my Lord as Penelope was from her Husband Ulysses, I could never have Employed my Time as she did, for her work only Employed her Hands, and Eyes, her Ears were left open to Loves Pleadings, and her Tongue was at liberty to give her Suters Answers, whereas my Work Employes all the Faculties and Powers of my Soul, Mind, and Spirits.⁴²

Bess of Hardwick had identified with Penelope, but her granddaughter-in-law clearly has no desire to do so. In The First Part of Bell in Campo, Margaret Cavendish is scornful about Penelope: “though the Siege of her Chastity held out, yet her Husbands Wealth and Estate was impoverished, and great Riots committed both in his Family and Kingdome, and her Suters had absolute power thereof; thus though she kept the fort of her Chastity, she lost the Kingdome, which was her Husbands Estate and Government, which was a dishonour both to her and her Husband”;⁴³ Katja Pilhuj observes: While the character of Penelope is quite often deployed as an exemplar of wifely devotion, Lady Victoria rewrites her story into an eroticized siege that ultimately results in the successful penetration, if not of Penelope herself, then of the husband’s household, potentially figured as an index to the wife’s virtue.⁴⁴

 Margaret Cavendish, Poems and Fancies (London: T. R. for J. Martin and J. Allestrye, 1653), where the epistle dedicatory to Sir Charles Cavendish declares: True it is, Spinning with the Fingers is more proper to our Sexe, then studying or writing Poetry, which is the Spinning with the braine: but I having no skill in the Art of the first (and if I had, I had no hopes of gaining so much as to make me a Garment to keep me from the cold) made me delight in the latter; since all braines work naturally, and incessantly, in some kinde or other; which made me endeavour to Spin a Garment of Memory, to lapp up my Name, that it might grow to after Ages.  Margaret Cavendish, Sociable Letters, edited by James Fitzmaurice (Peterborough, ON: Broadview, 2004), pp. 212– 13.  Cavendish, The First Part of Bell in Campo, Scene 2, p. 581.  Katja Pilhuj, Women and Geography on the Early Modern English Stage (Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2019), p. 217.

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This is an attitude visible throughout Cavendish’s work: Emma Rees notes that “Through an adroit manipulation of domestic images connected with varieties of needlework, Cavendish negotiates her position as a writing woman, and central to these passages, and arguably to much of her overall project is this motif of the virtuous Homeric Penelope.”⁴⁵ Cavendish is much more interested in offering literary criticism of Homer, as the Sociable Virgins do in The Unnatural Tragedy when the First Virgin asks “What say you of the Chronologer of the Gods and gallant Heroes, which was Homer?” (p. 337), than in emulating his heroine. Her sympathies would in this if in nothing else be with Monsieur Malateste in the same play, who accuses his long-suffering first wife “You are always at work, for what use is it? You spend more money in silk, cruel [crewel], thread, and the like, than all your work is worth” (p. 326). Moreover, even if she had imitated her grandmother-in-law by taking a personal interest in needlework, wall hangings are for Cavendish tarred by her apparent association of them with a topic on which she was very sensitive, reproduction, since she was barren, and painfully aware that Newcastle had married her partly because he desired more sons. Elsewhere in Sociable Letters, wall hangings feature as one of the frivolous and vainglorious things craved by pregnant women, who to prove they are Prouder, and take more Pleasure in Being with Child, and in Lying in, than in Having a Child, is their Care, Pains, and Cost, in Getting, Making, and Buying Fine and Costly Childbed-Linnen, Swadling-Cloths, Mantles, and the like; as also fine Beds, Cradles, Baskets, and other Furniture for their Chambers, as Hangings, Cabinets, Plates, Artificial Flowers, Looking-glasses, Skreens, and many such like things of great Cost and Charge.⁴⁶

Hangings here are identified as not only women’s things, but specifically pregnant women’s things. In The World’s Olio, hangings feature again, this time in connection with the education of children, another topic on which the selfconsciously childless Cavendish can often be waspish. Cavendish first laments that some nurses and parents “strive to make themselves Children in their speech, and not rather strive to make Children speak like wise men” and then that as they breed them in their language, so they breed them in their sports, pastimes, or exercises, as to play with children at boe-peep, blind-man-buff, and Cocks hod … or to hide

 Emma L. E. Rees, “A Well-Spun Yarn: Margaret Cavendish and Homer’s Penelope,” in A Princely Brave Woman: Essays on Margaret Cavendish, Duchess of Newcastle, edited by Stephen Clucas (Aldershot, UK: Ashgate, 2008), pp. 171– 81, p. 171.  Cavendish, Sociable Letters, p. 98.

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themselves behind hangings and old cubbords, or dirty holes, or the like places, where they foul their cloaths, disaffect the Brain with stincks, and are almost chokt with durt and dust Cobwebs, and Spiders, Flys and the like getting upon them.⁴⁷

Hangings may be convenient for games of hide-and-seek, but the space behind them is for Cavendish no Narnia-like door into a world of magic and alternative possibility but rather a non-space inhabited not by humans but by insects, where the brain cannot function and the body struggles to draw breath. On one side of the divide marked by the hangings is light, learning, literacy, company, domestic order; on the other, its opposite, a blank. Indeed elsewhere Cavendish explicitly associates this space with furtiveness: in The Second Part of Natures Three Daughters, Beauty, Love, and Wit, a stage direction tells us, “Enter Monsieur Nobilissimo, and Madamoiselle Amor, and Madamoiselle La Belle comes and peeps through the Hangings, and sees them,” and when Madamoiselle La Belle emerges her sister Madamoiselle Amor asks, “So Sister, are not you asham’d?”⁴⁸ Similarly in The Female Academy, a stage direction reads “Enter a Company of young Ladies, and with them two Grave Matrons; where through the Hanging a company of men look on them, as through a Grate.”⁴⁹ It is perhaps not surprising that in Cavendish’s fantasy of the perfect interior, there are no tapestries at all: The whole Globe is Nature’s House; and the several Planets are Nature’s several Rooms; the Earth is her Bed Chamber; the Floor is Gold and Silver; and the Walls Marble and Porphyrie; the Portals and Doors are Lapis-Lazarus; instead of Tapistry Hangings, it is hung with all sorts of Plants.⁵⁰

For her husband, hell is a place where “Instead of costly Arras there / The walls poor sooty hangings were,” that is, a place which lacks proper tapestries; for Cavendish, that might well be heaven, an Edenic vision.⁵¹ Nevertheless Lady Victoria in Bell in Campo uses an image derived from needlework when she says “Noble Heroickesses, I am glad to hear you speak all as  Margaret Cavendish, The World’s Olio (London: printed for J. Martin and J. Allestrye, 1655), pp. 60 – 61.  Margaret Cavendish, The Second Part of Natures Three Daughters, Beauty, Love, and Wit, in Playes written by the thrice noble, illustrious and excellent princess, the Lady Marchioness of Newcastle (London: A. Warren for John Martyn, James Allestry and Thomas Dicas, 1662), Act 2, Scene 4.  Margaret Cavendish, The Female Academy, in Playes written by the thrice noble, illustrious and excellent princess, the Lady Marchioness of Newcastle (London: A. Warren for John Martyn, James Allestry and Thomas Dicas, 1662), Scene 2.  Margaret Cavendish, Nature’s Pictures (London: A. Maxwell, 1671), p. 273.  William Cavendish, The Humorous Lovers (London: The British Library, 2011), p. 47.

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with one voice and Tongue, which shows your minds are joyned together, as in one piece, without seam or rent,”⁵² and however she might feel about them in real life, Margaret Cavendish makes powerful dramatic use of a set of hangings. In her play The Unnatural Tragedy, the Steward orders, My Master and our new Lady are comming home; wherefore you must get the House very clean and fine: You Wardropian; you must lay the best Carpets on the Table, and set out the best Chairs & Stools; and in the Chamber wherein my Master and Lady must lie, you must set up the Cross-stitch bed, and hang up the new suit of Hangings, wherein is the story of Abraham and Sarah, and Hagar her Maid. (p. 348)

“The Cross-stitch bed” and “the new suit of hangings” seem to be understood as two separate things, and given that there is a particularly famous set of tapestries showing the Abraham and Hagar story, which I discuss below, I take the “new suit of hangings” to be specifically wall hangings, and probably to be tapestry rather than the embroidery of which the cross-stitch bed is made. In this attention to walls Cavendish’s play may be echoing a Shakespearean precedent. In Cymbeline, Iachimo describes how Innogen’s bedchamber was hang’d With tapestry of silk and silver, the story Proud Cleopatra, when she met her Roman, And Cydnus swell’d above the banks, or for The press of boats, or pride.⁵³

As R. J. Schork notes, there is an ironic apparent appropriateness in the presence of this particular scene in Innogen’s bedchamber: “Iachimo, in selecting the narrative details of his wager-winning report, begins with an ominous historical analogue: a beautiful and sexually adventurous foreign queen throwing herself at the feet of a conquering Roman hero.”⁵⁴ Shakespeare had thus shown the way to weave tapestry within the fabric of a play, and this is what Cavendish also does. Christine Petra Sellin observes that Hagar

 Cavendish, The First Part of Bell in Campo, Scene 9, p. 588.  William Shakespeare, Cymbeline, edited by J. M. Nosworthy (London: Cengage Learning, 2007), 2.4.69 – 72.  R. J. Schork, “Theme and Characterization in ‘Cymbeline,’” Studies in Philology 69, no. 2 (April 1972), pp. 210 – 16, p. 212. Cavendish was interested in the question of Shakespeare and Cleopatra: in Sociable Letters, commenting on Shakespeare’s genius, she asks “who could Describe Cleopatra Better than he hath done” (p. 177).

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was a major preoccupation in the seventeenth-century Dutch Golden Age, as the many iterations of her story in art and literature demonstrate. By the 1630s, her story became a favorite subject in Dutch painting and prints, which treated her with an unprecedented degree of sympathy, mercy, and dignity. The Dutch transformed the outcast into a symbol of redemption and a model of maternity. Hagar’s story was interpreted as a didactic domestic drama, touching on topics as relevant to households then as now. These included family breakups, extramarital sex, rivalry between women over men, feuding stepsiblings, and struggles between husbands and wives and masters and servants.

The numerous versions produced in the Netherlands included one by Rubens,⁵⁵ in whose house the Cavendishes lived in exile in Antwerp. The story was also popular in textile art. Nancy Graves Cabot, noting that “a marked preference is evident for certain Old Testament subjects, specifically the stories of Adam and Eve, Abraham, particularly his banishment of Hagar,” lists thirteen extant examples of Abraham and Hagar embroideries, more than of any other motif she considers, and writes that “It is fascinating to imagine the interest and pleasure that illustrated Bible stories brought to women in English households, where religious fervor burned, and few could read.” Margaret Cavendish could read and does not seem to have burned with any particular religious fervour, but she too found this particular Bible story useful and suggestive.⁵⁶ In The Unnatural Tragedy, the story of Abraham, Hagar, and Ishmael works on a number of levels. In the first place, it has potential relevance to Cavendish herself, since Hagar, whose situation is loosely equivalent to that of a second wife, conceives and bears Ishmael, while Sarah remains barren until the much later birth of Isaac, upon which Hagar and Ishmael are expelled from the house. Cavendish herself would never bear any child, let alone one which could displace the hostile stepchildren who were the legacy of her husband’s first marriage, but she could dream, and it might have been doubly sweet to do so given the relentless concentration of the iconography of Cavendish houses on the legitimate bloodline, which led to her being surrounded by decorative schemes in which she herself perforce had no part.⁵⁷ However, the subject of the Hagar tapestry also has obvious thematic relevance to the play, for it tells a story which exemplifies ongoing negotiation about who is inside the family group and who is outside it. This echoes not only Cavendish’s own position as a stepmother whose arrival was clearly unwelcome to her grown-up stepchildren but also the main plot of The Unnatural Trag Christine Petra Sellin, Fractured Families and Rebel Maidservants: The Biblical Hagar in Seventeenth-Century Dutch Art and Literature (London: Continuum, 2006), pp. 1– 2 and 93.  Nancy Graves Cabot, Pattern Sources of Scriptural Subjects in Tudor and Stuart Embroideries (Alcester, UK: Read Books, 2010), pp. 5, 56, and 6.  Dr. Crosby Stevens, personal communication.

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edy, in which the suitably exogamous marriage arranged for Soeur by her father is disrupted by the return of Frere, who rather than being properly reincorporated into the family from which he has long been absent instead disrupts and inverts it, disastrously disturbing the coding which governs its formation. The story the Hagar tapestry tells relates even more directly to the subplot of the play, since it is being put into position on the orders of Monsieur Malateste, whose late wife Madam Bonit had a maid, Nan, with whom Monsieur Malateste had an affair which his first wife tolerated but which his new one will not, so that the question of whether Nan is or is not to be expelled Hagar-like from the house becomes a repeated motif in the play. Madam Bonit had attempted to do this and Monsieur Malateste forbade it, but his second wife ups the stakes by making it a deal-breaker for the continuation of their marriage, so he reluctantly assents and Nan has to go. There is also a suggestive variation on this theme in that Nan herself presides over the effective expulsion of Madam Bonit from the space of the house when she says to the other maids “It is a strange negligence, that you stand prating here, and do not go to help to lay my Lady forth” (p. 345): what she is talking about here is actually laying out the corpse, but the odd word “forth” introduces a definite sense of outness. The fact that Cavendish-Talbot households testified so richly to the imbrication of public and private meant that particular resonance inevitably accrued to their boundaries, leading to an interplay between the wall itself, which marks the boundary between that which is house and that which is not-house, and the textiles which hang on that wall and which, in the case of The Unnatural Tragedy, tell a story of expulsion from the house into the not-house. The wall operates both as a wall and also as a screen onto which wider concerns are projected and which thus serves to connect the fabric of the house with the fabric of the wider world. In a sense, then, the scene that the Hagar tapestry shows encapsulates the essence of Cavendish family life and Cavendish household drama, in which the story of the family is inextricably interwoven with that of the nation and in which Welbeck and Bolsover have a dual identity as spaces consecrated to the family and as spaces which had been both used for the entertainment of the king and had subsequently been defended for him during the Civil War. This dual identity is echoed in the question which attaches itself irresistibly to The Unnatural Tragedy, which is what kind of play it actually is. It may seem to have much in common with the pre-Civil War genre of domestic tragedy, since none of the characters is a head of state and the events it stages have no repercussions beyond the private houses in which they occur: indeed its last line is “I am sure there is a sad, a sad House to day,” (p. 365) which seems both deliberately to refuse a moral and to underline the domestic setting. But is it also a public play? It is in part about the aftermath of exile, in that Monsieur Frere

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has been travelling so long that he is in effect a stranger to his own sister, and that this motif may have an applicability wider than the immediate Cavendish household is suggested by the Sociable Virgins’ discussion of the accuracy of Camden, and specifically of his assessments of the behaviour of various prominent persons during the Civil War—a point on which Cavendish’s husband Newcastle was sensitive, since his own flight to the Continent after the battle of Marston Moor had been attacked as premature. A tapestry telling the story of Abraham, Isaac, and Hagar certainly does have extradiegetic, extra-familial reference on a number of levels, in ways which once again spoke of exile, dispossession, and dynastic continuity and discontinuity, but on a national rather than a domestic scale. There were four tapestries from the usual ten-part Abraham story at Hardwick New Hall, having been purchased by Newcastle’s grandmother Bess of Hardwick in 1591. These were occasionally hung in the Withdrawing Chamber instead of the Virtues which were usually there, which both accounts for the unusually bright colours they retain and chimes with Lady Happy’s idea in Cavendish’s play The Convent of Pleasure that wall hangings should be changed according to the change of seasons;⁵⁸ however, they represent respectively “The Meeting of Abraham and Melchisedek,” “The Return of Sarah by the Egyptians,” “God Appears to Abraham,” and “Rebecca at the Well,” and so none of them touches on the story of Hagar. There was, however, a complete and far more famous set of ten gilt-thread tapestries telling the story of Abraham at Hampton Court, which represent the editio princeps from which the Hardwick versions are derived. These had almost certainly been commissioned by Henry VIII, for whom Abraham was a figure of great resonance because of his long wait for a son, in an illustration of Lisa Jardine and Jerry Brotton’s contention that “in the early sixteenth century, the large-scale tapestry series became a series of symbolically over-determined artefact upon which the political hopes and aspirations of the imperial courts of the period were repeatedly projected.”⁵⁹ These Abraham tapestries had in due course descended to Charles I, but they were not dispersed along with the rest of the royal collection because Cromwell kept them for his own personal use. He did, however, have them valued, yielding a figure of £8,260, which made them the most expensive set of tapestries in the collection (the Caesar set, which was valued next highest,

 Margaret Cavendish, The Convent of Pleasure, in Three Seventeenth-Century Plays on Women and Performance, edited by Hero Chalmers, Julie Sanders, and Sophie Tomlinson (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2006), 2.2.27.  Lisa Jardine and Jerry Brotton, Global Interests: Renaissance Art between East and West (London: Reaktion Books, 2000), p. 63.

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was put at £5,022).⁶⁰ They probably featured at the coronation of Charles II in the year before The Unnatural Tragedy was published (indeed Cavendish’s apparent awareness of them could, I think, be taken as additional evidence in support of this idea, since Newcastle’s eldest son Henry, who represented the family at the coronation,⁶¹ could have reported back).⁶² “The Circumcision of Isaac” is of particular interest because it shows Sarah and Hagar both united, in the middle of the tapestry, and then later at odds, as on the right-hand side Sarah expels Hagar and Ishmael from the household after she herself at last gives birth to a son, Isaac.⁶³ The implication for Cavendish’s play might well be that if the new Madam Malateste were to give birth to a son she might well hope that any previous heirs could be displaced, even if Cavendish herself could only ever have entertained such an idea as an unacknowledged fantasy. There was, however, another potential application to the world outside the play, for the year that it was published also saw Charles II marry Catherine of Braganza, and any child born of her would supplant his favourite but illegitimate son, James, shortly to be created Duke of Monmouth, who was already a teenager just as Ishmael had been when Isaac was born. At nearby Chatsworth a few years later, the other branch of the Cavendish family chose images of Caesar to commemorate their support for the Glorious Revolution; maybe Margaret too might have imagined using household furnishings to register political awareness. Perhaps commissioned originally by Henry VIII for the coronation of his own Isaac, Edward VI, the Abraham tapestries, then, speak above all of the continuity of the royal line, and by implication trope dynastic continuity more generally, and they also bear on the question of Charles II’s marriage. In the context of Cavendish’s play, the tapestry of Abraham, Sarah, and Hagar, instead of opening into non-space, as in the Sociable Letters, thus forms an interface between the private space of the house and the public space of the world outside, functioning like the perspective glass which Cavendish drama in general is so fond of fantasising⁶⁴ and which symbolises the family’s role in the affairs of the nation and the extent to which this is a play with a public resonance as well as a purely private one. The Unnatural Tragedy may be closet drama in its genre and domestic

 See http://www.royalcollection.org.uk/collection/1046/the-story-of-abraham-series.  Whitaker, Mad Madge, p. 245.  See http://www.tate.org.uk/research/publications/tate-papers/van-dyck-and-tapestry-england.  For analysis of this, see Julia Reinhard Lupton, “Soft Res Publica: On the Assembly and Disassembly of Courtly Space,” Republics of Letters 2, no. 2 (June 2011), pp. 95 – 113, p. 99.  See for instance Cavendish and Brackley, The Concealed Fancies, where “Sh” says of Lord Calsindow “I wish he saw us in a prospective” (3.4.46) and Courtley imagines “a prospective, wherein you’ll see / My griefs of fuller moan, like rocks to be” (4.4.13 – 14).

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in its feel, but Cavendish’s dramatic use of tapestry gives it a public resonance too, suggesting ways in which the domestic is at least potentially also the political. For Margaret Cavendish and for her stepdaughters Jane Cavendish and Elizabeth Brackley, Christendom was under threat because although there was theoretically no confessional divide between them and their opponents in the Civil War, there was such a gulf in ideology, behaviour, and language as to make Parliamentary soldiers seem to them barely human, let alone Christian. The Cavendish women dealt with the threat of what they perceived as alien by selective incorporation of it, and in so doing they followed a precedent first set by Bess of Hardwick. Sarah Gristwood notes that after the countess of Nottingham died Elizabeth wrote to Henri IV that “All the fabric of my reign, little by little, is beginning to fail.”⁶⁵ Elizabeth did not mean “fabric” literally, and yet it would not have been completely absurd if she had done so, for Bess of Hardwick did indeed use textile collages as a basis for ideological constructs, and her descendants followed suit. The walls of English houses may be perilous and permeable spaces, facing simultaneously in towards the household and out towards the wider world, but letting the right one in can help to keep what is most threatening at bay.

 Gristwood, Arbella, p. 206.

Conclusion The edge of Christendom is represented on the early modern stage as under stress from three directions: the embattled geopolitical frontier with the Ottomans; the internal faultline between the two confessions; and systemic reminders of a pagan past. The plays I have discussed here, and also examples of other cultural forms such as prose romances and hangings, officially depend on an opposition between what is Christian and what is not, but are often wary about both parts of the equation. Non-Christian beliefs at the edges of Christendom may be rehabilitated by being cast as residually classical rather than savagely pagan, but audiences are insistently reminded of the schism between Protestants and Catholics (and sometimes also of the differences between Catholicism and Orthodoxy). In England, too, echoes of the pagan past, in the shape of the Danelaw, further trouble the sense of its Christian identity, and so too do even such apparently homely things as what is planted in gardens and hung on walls. In the first part of the book I looked at Rome, and argued that it is represented as marginal both temporally (in Julius Caesar) and geographically (and by implication ideologically) in Doctor Faustus, Hamlet, Hoffman, Macbeth, and Antony and Cleopatra. Only in the plays of Philip Massinger is Rome in any degree recuperated by being counterpoised with Islam rather than with Protestantism, and even then extreme caution has to be exercised about the thing which gave Rome its claim to authority, its possession of the body of St. Peter and those of other saints. In the plays discussed in this first part saints, ghosts, and beheaded bodies all call the doctrines of Rome into question, with the result that what ought to be the heart of Christendom becomes one of its most imperilled edges. Moreover, several of the texts I consider are haunted by memories of Marlowe’s The Jew of Malta, with its dangerous alternative version of the Christ story which calls into question the very idea of Christendom. In the second part, Christendom was shown to be further troubled by encounters with a variety of disturbing creatures including fairies, transformed creatures, and bears with Christian names. Chapter 4 argued that the two mentions of Armenia in Tamburlaine point to a wider interest in shifting borders and new ways of conceptualising land. In chapter 5, I suggested that in Twelfth Night and A Midsummer Night’s Dream the Indian boy and the idea that the supposed Cesario has been fencer to the Sophy may suggest a conventional contrast between European and non-European, but this is not where the plays’ energies lie; rather when the plays juxtapose their human characters with bears and fairies respectively, they reveal “Christian” itself to be an unstable category. Chapter 6 extended that by discussing texts which suggested that a particularly mohttps://doi.org/10.1515/9781501514159-012

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mentous edge of Christendom, that between this world and the next, was also imperilled and difficult of access. The third part looked at some edges much nearer home: gardens, the walls of houses, and the shifting internal border between Christian, Anglo-Saxon England and the Danelaw. Chapter 7 used the apparently innocuous question of what flowers were being grown in English gardens to interrogate practices of memorialisation. Flowers were strewn to commemorate the dead, and Shakespeare sets some of the key scenes of his history plays in gardens. This could suggest that one king succeeds another as one season does another, but it also focuses attention on the futility and disruption of the Wars of the Roses and, by extension, of the subsequent rupture with England’s Catholic past. Chapter 8 moved to parts of England which had once been occupied by the Danes. In A Knack to Know a Knave, possibly written or co-written by the clown Will Kemp and first published in 1594, the bailiff of Hexham, who on his death is bodily removed by the devils, has a roguish son called Cuthbert, after a famous northern saint, and the bailiff advises another who is a priest that “Thou must (my son) make shew of holinesse, / And blinde the world with thy hipocrisie.”¹ These details highlight the problematic Catholicism of the north, and chapter 8 explored other plays in which Catholicism is connected to the Danelaw to suggest that religious doubt is not only a thing of the past. Elsewhere in A Knack to Know a Knave Alfrida says to her husband when she hears King Edgar is coming to visit them: I will be attyred in cloth of Bis, Beset with Orient pearle, fetcht from rich Indian And all my chamber shall be richly, With Aras hanging, fetcht from Alexandria. (sig. F2r)

Alfrida’s interest in hangings is also to be found in households presided over by women of the Cavendish-Talbot family, and chapter 9 showed that both the materials and designs of such hangings could make even the home an edge of Christendom, especially when it was a home besieged by Parliamentarian soldiers whose language dismayed and distressed Royalist women and whose actual or alleged disinterral of bodies challenged notions of Christian burial. Chapter 9 also suggests that the Cavendishes’ preferred solution to external threats was to partially admit them, in a contained and sanitised way which both acknowledged danger and trapped it at the threshold. The different ways in

 Will Kemp [?], A Knack to Know a Knave (London: Richard Jones, 1594), sigs. B1r – B2v.

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which various women of the Cavendish and Talbot families policed the boundaries of the household can be seen as a domestic equivalent of beating the bounds, and forms one of a strand of ritualised practices which this book has found cropping up in a surprising number of different contexts. If Christendom could not securely and unproblematically be, it could do, and two particular kinds of activity had rich and helpful resonances for maintaining a sense of what constituted a Christian society: burying human bodies and hunting animals. Although both of these topics could be much more exhaustively studied than I have had space to do here, it is clear that both the proper disposal of bodies and the language and rituals of the hunt were seen as central to the distinction between what was Christendom and what was not—and yet even they could fail when first the Reformation and then the Civil War brought disinterment of bodies in their wake or when predator blurred into prey, as in the widely current story of Actaeon. What this book has shown is that for all the external pressures it faced, the most troubling edge of Christendom lay in its own beating heart, whether that was conceived of as the city of Rome, as the churchyard, or as home itself.

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Index of Place Names, Authors, and Works A Knack to Know a Knave 35, 196, 200, 224 A Warning for Fair Women 161 – 165, 167 f., 170, 178 Adams, Max 143, 185 f., 199 Akhimie, Patricia 8, 23, 117 Alexander, William 19, 32, 42, 65, 76, 95, 114, 205, 213 – The Alexandraean Tragedy 213 Alford, Stephen 136, 145 Alleyn, Edward 126 Altdorfer, Albrecht 114 – Battle of Issus 114 Andrea, Bernadette 72 f., 138 Anthony, John 6, 9, 12 f., 133, 141, 169 f., 189 Appian 58, 65 f., 68 Arden of Faversham 161 f. Armenia 25, 95 – 101, 106 f., 109, 114, 223 Baines, Baraba J. 60 f., 65, 143 Balbi di Correggio, Francesco 76, 79 Baldo, Jonathan 137 Bale, John 18, 39 Balechouse, John 206 Barbary Company, the 154 Barker, Simon 56 f., 65, 130 Barnes, Barnabe 50 – The Divil’s Charter 50 Bartels, Emily C. 113, 154 Bate, Jonathan 155, 170 Baumer, Franklin L. 1, 72, 81 Berry, Edward 23, 51 f. Berry, Ralph 127 Bess of Hardwick 6, 19, 70, 132, 139, 204, 206 f., 209, 211, 214, 220, 222 Birnie, William 139 f., 157 Blount, Dale M. 118, 121 Bolsover Castle 27, 219 Boris Godunov, tsar of Russia 145 f. Brackley, Elizabeth 27, 211 – The Concealed Fancies 211 f., 221 Bragadin, Marcantonio 174 https://doi.org/10.1515/9781501514159-014

Brant, Sebastian 40 Brewer, Anthony 27, 183 f., 186, 195 – The Lovesick King 27, 183 – 188, 190, 193 – 196, 201 Briggs, Katharine 120, 123 Britton, Dennis Austin 6 – 9, 16, 69 Brome, Richard 27, 183 f., 196 f. – The Queen’s Exchange 27, 183 – 185, 196 f., 199 – 202 Brooks, Harold 119 Brotton, Jerry 72, 105, 141, 157, 220 Brown, Pamela Allen 10, 64, 125, 129 f., 161, 163 – 166 Bruster, Douglas 150 f. Buccola, Regina 119, 124 f., 176 Burnell, Henry 188 – Landgartha 188 Burnett, Mark Thornton 10, 39, 41, 96, 99, 101, 152, 197 Burns, Edward 124, 167 Burton, Jonathan 3, 17 Bushnell, Rebecca 158 f., 162, 171 Cabot, Nancy Graves 218 Caesarea Mazaca 69 Calvin, John (Jean) 39 f. Camoens, Luis de 1 f. Canby, Sheila R. 14, 106 Caradoc of Llancarvan 194 Carey, Robert 184 Carion, Thomas 39 Cary, Elizabeth 70 Caterina Cornaro, queen of Cyprus 95 Catherine of Braganza, queen of England 221 Cavendish, Charles, son of William Cavendish, earl of Newcastle 212 Cavendish, Douglas 206 Cavendish, Elizabeth 207 Cavendish, Henry, son of Bess of Hardwick 6 Cavendish, Henry, son of William Cavendish, earl of Newcastle 212, 221

Index of Place Names, Authors, and Works

Cavendish, Jane 27, 211, 222 – The Concealed Fancies 211 f., 221 Cavendish, Jane 27, 211 Cavendish, Margaret, marchioness and later duchess of Newcastle – Bell in Campo 205, 214, 216 f. – Poems and Fancies 214 – Sociable Letters 213 – 215, 217, 221 – The Convent of Pleasure 220 – The Unnatural Tragedy 212 f., 215, 217 – 219, 221 – The World’s Olio 215 f. Cavendish, Thomas 206, 211 Cavendish, William, earl and later marquess and duke of Newcastle 177, 212 – 13, 215, 220 – 1 Cavendish, William, second husband of Bess of Hardwick 209 Chakravarty, Urvashi 19 Chapman, George 22 f., 53, 114, 135 Charles I, king of England 176 f., 201, 220 Charles II, king of England 221 Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor 25, 71, 81, 84, 210 Chatsworth House 209, 221 Chaucer, Geoffrey 150 Chettle, Henry 24, 31, 34 – Hoffman 21, 24, 31, 33 – 38, 43, 50, 105, 223 Clarke, Siobhan 47 Clarke, Susanna 117 – Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell 117 – The Ladies of Grace Adieu 117 Clifford, Lady Anne 112, 211 Cole, Edward George 100, 193 Collington, Philip D. 164 Cooper, Thomas 39, 183 Crane, Mary Thomas 161 f. Crowley, Roger 2 f., 105, 112 Curran, John E. 52 Cyprus 2 f., 18, 27, 75, 91, 95, 101, 174 Daborne, Robert 6, 85 – A Christian Turned Turk 6, 85 Dadabhoy, Ambereen 68 Daniell, David 23, 51, 54 f. Danube School 102, 113

245

Das, Nandini 15, 206, 211 Davidson, Clifford 42 Day, John 123, 133, 141 – The Travels of the Three English Brothers 6, 133, 141 De Grazia, Margreta 147 Degenhardt, Jane Hwang 6, 83 – 86, 90 Dekker, Thomas 49, 81, 84 – 87, 90 – The Virgin Martyr 25, 69, 81, 84 – 87, 90 f. – The Whore of Babylon 49 f. Dent, Robert W. 39, 96, 99, 188 Dewar-Watson, Sarah 144 Dickey, Stephen 127 f. Dimietrieva, Olga 145 Dimmock, Matthew 3 f., 18, 71 f., 84, 98 f., 105, 110, 154, 209 f. Dodds, M. Hope 189 Dunlop, Bessie 121, 124 Durant, David N. 132, 139 Eburne, Andrew 162 Edward VI, king of England 163, 186, 221 Elizabeth I, queen of England 3 f., 17, 44, 70, 80, 169, 186, 207, 209 Elizabeth (of Bohemia), princess of England and electress palatine 149 Erickson, Peter 19 Eriksen, Roy 38 f., 42 Eworth, Hans 161 – Elizabeth I and the Three Goddesses 161 False Dmitrys, the 147 Field, Nathan 5, 63, 74, 76, 80 f., 85, 199, 206 – The Knight of Malta 5, 22 f., 25, 68 f., 74 – 77, 80, 85, 91, 206 Findlay, Alison 129, 144 f., 157, 212 Finkelstein, Richard 141, 143 Fisher, R. M. 133 Fitzpatrick, Tim 129 Fletcher, Giles 145 Fletcher, John 5, 74, 76, 85, 146 f., 150, 170, 206 – Cardenio 137 – Henry VIII 136 – 7, 160, 177

246

Index of Place Names, Authors, and Works

– The Knight of Malta 5, 22 f., 25, 68 f., 74 – 77, 80, 85, 91, 206 – The Loyal Subject 146 f. – The Two Noble Kinsmen 26, 135, 150 – 153, 155 f., 170 Fletcher, John 5, 74, 76, 80 f., 145, 150 – 152 Fludd, Robert 90 Ford, John 86 f., 177 f., 200 – Perkin Warbeck 177 f., 201 – The Broken Heart 87, 177 f. – ’Tis Pity She’s a Whore 201 Francis I, king of France 112 Franklin, Colleen 36 f. Fraser, Antonia 49, 192, 208 Freehafer, John 11 Frye, David 108 Frye, Richard N. 107 f. Frye, Susan 206, 208 Fuchs, Barbara 1 Fuller, Mary C. 160 Fuller, Thomas 18, 72 Gasper, Julia 85 Gerard, John 158, 160, 177 Gilchrist, Kim 183 Gillies, John 97, 114 Goodwins, Sara 120 Gordon, Dillian 90, 176 Gower, John 129, 141 – 143 Gray, Patrick 57, 59, 61, 135, 146 Green, Lawrence 139 Green, Susan 152 Greene, Robert 95 f., 107, 124 – Alphonsus, King of Aragon 96, 107 – James the Fourth 124 Greengrass, Mark 72 Greville, Fulke 14 f. – Alaham 14 Grey, Elizabeth, countess of Kent 163, 203 f., 212 Gristwood, Sarah 207 f., 222 Grote, David 48, 50, 161 Guy of Warwick 16, 183 Habib, Imtiaz 106 Hadrian, Emperor 42, 185 f., 199

Hakluyt, Richard 105, 133, 176, 206 Hall, Kim F. 7, 19, 40, 78, 112, 116, 187, 206, 210, 220 Hamlin, Hannibal 57 – 59 Hardwick Hall 19, 27, 206 f., 209 Hassel, R. Chris 46 f. Hatton, Christopher 163 Henderson, Lizanne 121, 124 Henri IV, king of France 222 Henrietta Maria, queen of England 201 – 203 Henry, prince of Wales 72, 80, 201 Henry IV, king of England 36 Henry VIII, king of England 4, 75, 124, 132, 136 f., 149, 160, 176 f., 220 f. Herodotus 102 – 105, 108 f. Holinshed, Raphael 158, 161 f., 199 Homer 135, 215 Horsey, Jerome 106 Howard, Alethea, countess of Arundel 203 f. Hubbard, Kate 209 Hungary 25, 68 – 74, 91 Hunter, Lynette 23, 122, 203 Hutchings, Mark 112 Isle of Man, the 120 Ivan the Terrible, tsar of Russia

106, 147

Jacobson, Miriam 14, 159 James VI and I, king of Scotland and England 1 Jardine, Lisa 14, 220 Jenkinson, Anthony 105, 141, 145 John, king of England 4, Johnson, Richard 8 f., 31 f., 71 – The Most Famous History of the Seaven Champions of Christendom 8 f., 31 – 33, 71 Johnson, Samuel (Dr.) 51 Jones, Emrys 35, 86, 101, 113, 224 Jonson, Ben 22 f., 27, 53 – 56, 90, 126, 183, 208 – Epicene 126 – Sejanus 56 – The Alchemist 90 f.

Index of Place Names, Authors, and Works

Kaula, David 52, 58 f. Keck, David 113 Kemp, Will 35, 204, 224 Kewes, Paulina 60 Kirke, John 11 f. Knolles, Richard 97 – The Turkish History 97 Kolb, Justin 9, 31 f. Kostic, Veslin 131 f. Kouymjian, Dickran 96 – 98, 107 Kyd, Thomas 18 – The Tragedy of Soliman and Perseda

18

Lamb, Mary Ellen 123, 125 f. Languet, Hubert 34 Laroque, François 23 f. Latham, Minor White 119, 212 Laycock, Stuart 185 Leggott, Gemma 161 – 164 Leland, John 20 f., 189, 191 Lennox, Margaret Stewart, countess of 207 Levey, Santina 209 Lithgow, William 2, 14, 17 f., 20, 31, 38, 70, 72, 77, 144 Little, Arthur L., Jr. 15 – 17, 116 Llwyd/Lhuyd, Humphrey 63, 189 Locrine 183 Loomba, Ania 6, 8 Loomis, Catherine 184 Lovascio, Domenico 58 Lucan 60 Lumley, Jane 107 Lumley, John 189 f. Luther, Martin 17, 34, 125 Lyly, John 119 – Endymion 89 Maguire, Laurie 42 Malcolm, Noel 2, 4, 193 – 195 Malta 4, 24 f., 68 f., 71 – 77, 79 – 81, 91, 144, 173 Markidou, Vassiliki 144 f., 157 Marlowe, Christopher 9 f., 24 f., 31, 33, 35, 38 – 40, 42 f., 56, 60, 67, 72, 74, 79, 95 – 102, 106, 108, 110 – 114, 126, 130, 135, 143, 152 f., 173, 183, 197, 223 – Dido, Queen of Carthage 6, 33, 152 – 154

247

– Doctor Faustus 21, 24, 31, 33, 35 f., 38 f., 42 – 44, 50, 99, 106, 130, 223 – Edward II 33, 35 – Tamburlaine the Great 25, 95 f., 100 f., 106, 113, 197 – The Jew of Malta 10, 35, 38, 60, 67, 75, 77, 79, 99, 223 – The Massacre at Paris 33 Martin, Randall 21, 70, 96, 129, 140, 168, 214, 216 Martyn, Trea 171, 205, 213, 216 Mary, Queen of Scots 22, 25, 37, 44, 70, 87, 91, 124, 129, 137, 141, 149, 160, 162, 171, 175 f., 204, 206 – 209 Mary I, queen of England 84 Massinger, Philip 5, 25, 68 f., 73 f., 76, 80 f., 84 – 87, 90 f., 206, 223 – Believe As You List 86 – The Knight of Malta 5, 22 f., 25, 68 f., 74 – 77, 80, 85, 91, 206 – The Picture 25, 69, 73 f., 91 – The Renegado 25, 68 f., 74, 81, 83, 85, 91 – The Virgin Martyr 25, 69, 81, 84 – 91 Matar, Nabil 1, 154 Matthias Corvinus, king of Hungary 73 Mayne, Jasper 14 – The City Match 14 McJannet, Linda 17, 160 Melville, Sir James 44 Merchant, Paul 11 f. Middleton, Thomas 56 – The Roaring Girl 56 Milton, Giles 15 Mitchell, Colin P. 100 Moffat, Alistair 140 Mullany, Peter F. 74 f. Muscovy Company, the 106 f., 145 f. Myhill, Nova 85 Nashe, Thomas 33, 40, 43, 120, 125 – The Unfortunate Traveller 33, 40, 43 Newcastle, earl (later marquess and duke) and duchess of 177, 186 f., 189 – 193, 196, 201, 205, 210, 212 f., 215 f., 220 f. – See Cavendish, Margaret and Cavendish, William

248

Index of Place Names, Authors, and Works

Nixon, Catherine 108 Norton, Thomas 116, 163 – Gorboduc 20, 116, 163 Obermueller, Erin 73, 90 O’Neill, Stephen 165 f. Ormuz 13 f. Ortelius, Abraham 95, 97 f., 113, 140 – Peregrinationis Divi Pavli Typvs Chorographicvs 140 – Theatrum Orbis Terrarum 97 Ostovich, Helen 37, 176 Ottoman Empire 1 f., 4, 6, 15, 25, 68 f., 74, 82, 86, 95, 97, 99, 105, 154, 210 Owens, Margaret 48 Oz, Avraham 113 Page of Plymouth 164 Palfrey, Simon 136 Palmer, Daryl W. 145 f. Panja, Shormishtha 72 Pankova, S. V. 103, 109 Panossian, Razmik 101 Paris, Matthew 4, 10, 39, 106, 188 Parkinson, John 158 f. Payaslian, Simon 96 f. Peele, George 6, 156, 173 – The Battle of Alcazar 6, 156, 173 Pequigney, Joseph 130 f. Persia 6, 9 f., 13 f., 96 – 99, 101, 104 – 108, 132, 141, 146, 158, 191 Petrarch 40, 42 Philip II, king of Spain 84 Pickering, Kenneth 100 Pilhuj, Katya 5, 214 Play of Oswald 199 Pollard, Tanya 135, 144, 184 Publicover, Laurence 6, 98 Purkiss, Diane 120 Raitière, Martin N. 155 Rees, Emma 215 Renwick, W. L. 124 Rhodes 3, 9, 18, 75 Rist, Thomas 19 f. Roberts, Henry 153 f.

Robinson, Benedict 18, 132, 158 f., 163, 174 f. Rochester, Joanne 73 Rome 15, 19, 21, 24 f., 28, 31 – 44, 46, 49 – 52, 54 f., 59, 67, 69, 88, 91, 111 f., 125, 130, 144, 174, 200, 223, 225 Rose, Mark 26, 52, 59, 66, 158, 160 f., 171 f., 177, 210, 224 Rowley, William 133, 141 – The Travels of the Three English Brothers 6, 133, 141 Russia 4, 97 f., 101, 105 – 107, 144 – 147 Sackville, Thomas 116, 163 – Gorboduc 20, 116, 163 Saint Paul 40, 144 Salkeld, Duncan 106 Samson, Alexander 158 f. Schanzer, Ernest 65 f. Schleiner, Winfried 120 f. Schork, R. J. 217 Scot, Reginald 10, 22, 44, 103, 124 f., 149, 185, 190, 193 – 196, 204, 206 – 209 Scotland 2, 10, 31, 43 f., 46, 50, 67, 70, 120, 124, 144, 177, 186, 190, 193 – 195, 201, 208 Scott-Warren, Jason 126, 128 Scythians 71, 102 – 105, 109, 111 Seaton, Ethel 112 Sebastião, king of Portugal 2 Sellin, Christine Petra 217 f. Shakespeare, Edmund 129, 141 Shakespeare, William 4, 22 f., 36, 44 f., 51, 53, 95, 115, 119, 122, 127, 136, 138, 142, 150, 154 f., 159 f., 163, 167, 170, 172 – 175, 194 f., 210, 217 – A Midsummer Night’s Dream 23, 25 f., 49, 115 – 119, 121 – 125, 128, 133, 150, 157, 223 – Antony and Cleopatra 21, 24, 31, 43 – 46, 49 f., 95, 114, 210, 223 – As You Like It 23, 60 f., 162 – Cardenio 137 – Coriolanus 60 – Cymbeline 26, 48, 118, 124, 136, 150, 198, 217

Index of Place Names, Authors, and Works

– Hamlet 21, 24, 31, 33 – 36, 43, 50 – 52, 63, 65, 128 – 130, 147, 150, 155, 183 – 185, 193, 195 f., 198, 201, 223 – Henry IV, Part One 23, 36, 172 f., 175, 184 – Henry IV, Part Two 23, 36, 172 f., 175, 184 – Henry V 26, 54, 161, 167, 173 – 175 – Henry VI, Part One 22, 167 – 169 – Henry VI, Part Two 22, 167 – 169 – Henry VIII 136 – 7, 160, 177 – Julius Caesar 22 – 25, 41, 49, 51 – 62, 64, 66 f., 115, 161, 167, 199, 223 – King John 4, 23, 26, 159 – 161 – King Lear 60, 130, 156, 185, 197 f. – Macbeth 21, 24, 31, 43 – 51, 60, 184 f., 193 – 195, 198, 201, 223 – Othello 2, 10, 18, 60, 74, 91, 95, 153 – 155, 183 – Pericles 26, 118, 129, 135, 141 – 144, 150, 156, 167 – Richard II 23, 26, 155, 172, 175 f., 178 – Richard III 167, 172, 186 – Romeo and Juliet 168 – The Comedy of Errors 42, 118 – The Merchant of Venice 130, 154 – The Merry Wives of Windsor 23, 53, 122, 127, 163 f. – The Tempest 1, 26, 133, 136, 140, 150 f. – The Two Noble Kinsmen 26, 135, 150 – 153, 155 f., 170 – The Winter’s Tale 26, 135, 138, 144 – 150, 158 – Timon of Athens 136 – Titus Andronicus 37, 170 – Twelfth Night 23, 25 f., 115 – 117, 125 – 131, 133, 145 f., 223 – Venus and Adonis 159 Shrewsbury, Elizabeth Talbot, countess of – See Bess of Hardwick Shrewsbury, Gilbert Talbot, earl of 139, 173 f., 184, 209 Sidney, Mary 210 Sidney, Philip 15, 34, 70, 74, 80, 155 – The Countess of Pembroke’s Arcadia 80, 155 Sir Gawain and the Green Knight 48

249

Smith, Emma 136 Smith, Ian 9, 117, 183 Sohmer, Steve 57 Sophocles – Antigone 135, 150 Spenser, Edmund 31, 79, 103 – A View of the Present State of Ireland 103 – The Faerie Queene 9, 32, 199 St. Loe, William 209 Stanivukovic, Goran 32, 73, 95 Starks, Lisa S. 49, 51, 57, 59 f. Steggle, Matthew 70 Stepanova, E. V. 103, 109 Stevens, Crosby 206, 218 Stoekel, Rudolph 1 Stow, John 21, 37, 49, 191 f., 199 – A Survey of London 49, 191 f., 199 Strachey, William 133 Streitberger, W. R. 70 Stuart, Arbella 115, 145, 149, 177, 201, 207 f., 218 Suleiman the Magnificent, Ottoman sultan 71, 107, 112 Szulakowska, Urszula 90 Talbot, Alethea 203 – See Howard, Alethea, countess of Arundel Talbot, Elizabeth 203, 208 – See Grey, Elizabeth, countess of Kent Thomas, Miranda Fay 54, 61, 64, 66 Timur the Lame 98, 102, 112 Trapp, J. B. 40 Trebizond 12 f., 15, 98, 112 Trier 39 f. Troy 9, 32 f., 188 Tunis 25, 68 – 70, 73, 81 – 85, 91 Ure, Peter

178

Vaughan, Virginia Mason Virgil 33, 40 Vitkus, Daniel J. 2 f., 6 Wales

79, 120, 184, 194

77, 136

250

Index of Place Names, Authors, and Works

Wall, Wendy 42, 108, 112, 119, 125, 170, 185 f., 191, 199, 216 Walsham, Alexandra 48, 126, 184, 196, 205 Walters, Lisa 118 Walsh, Brian 144 Watson, Thomas 135 Webster, John 64 – The Duchess of Malfi 64 Weever, John 21 Weir, Alison 47 Welbeck Abbey 27, 219 Whitaker, Jane 158 Whitaker, Katie 210, 213 Wilders, John 44, 95, 210 Wilkins, George 129, 133, 141 f., 156, 164 – Pericles 26, 118, 129, 135, 141 – 144, 150, 156, 167

– The Miseries of Enforced Marriage 164 – The Travels of the Three English Brothers 6, 133, 141 Williamson, Elizabeth 6, 77, 148 Wilson, Richard 106 f., 133 Wilton Diptych, the 176 Wittenberg 17, 21, 24, 31 – 35, 38, 113 Wood, Christopher S. 113 f. Wood, Michael 129, 141, 162 Wood, Richard 197, 200 f. Woodbridge, Linda 51 f. Woodcock, Matthew 118 f. Working, Lauren 133 Yearling, Rebecca

48

Zander, Horst 52, 55, 57, 61 Zekiyan, Boghos Levin 101