A History of Elizabethan Literature

By George Saintsbury | Go to book overview
Save to active project


ONE name so far dominates the prose literature of the last years of Elizabeth, and that of the whole reign of James, that it has probably alone secured attention in the general memory, except such as may be given to the purple patches (of the true Tyrian dye, but not extremely numerous) which decorate here and there the somewhat featureless expanse of Sir Walter Raleigh History of the World. That name, it is scarcely necessary to say, is the name of Francis Bacon. Bacon's eventful life, his much debated character, his philosophical and scientific position, are all matters beyond our subject. But as it is of the first importance in studying that subject to keep dates and circumstances generally, if not minutely, in view, it may be well to give a brief summary of his career. He was born in 1561, the son of Sir Nicholas Bacon, Lord Keeper; he went very young to Cambridge, and though early put to the study of the law, discovered an equally early bent in another direction. He was unfortunate in not obtaining the patronage then necessary to all men not of independent fortune. Though Elizabeth was personally familiar with him, she gave him nothing of importance--whether owing to the jealousy of his uncle and cousin, Burleigh and Robert Cecil, is a point not quite certain. The patronage of Essex did him very little good, and drew him into the worst action of his life. But after Elizabeth's death, and when a man of middle age, he at last began to mount


Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Cite this page

Cited page

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
A History of Elizabethan Literature


Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 471

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?