Christopher Marlowe: A Biographical and Critical Study

Christopher Marlowe: A Biographical and Critical Study

Christopher Marlowe: A Biographical and Critical Study

Christopher Marlowe: A Biographical and Critical Study

Excerpt

The author of a recent brilliant work on Sir Thomas More states in his preface that he has striven to imitate More's early biographers, who 'brooded for twenty or thirty years before writing the life of their hero'. I doubt whether I have the philosophic capacity to brood, but I have been engaged in the study of Marlowe's life and writings for over forty years. And since 1920 I have had to record annually in the English Association's The Year's Work in English Studies the new contributions to Marlovian scholarship.

In 1929, in Marlowe and his Circle, I tried to sum up the biographical results achieved in the era that had been opened by Professor J. Leslie Hotson The Death of Christopher Marlowe (1925). The completion, in 1933, of the six-volume edition of Marlowe Life and Works, under the general editorship of Professor R. H. Case, to which I contributed Doctor Faustus, suggested to me that it would be opportune to attempt a comprehensive study from both the biographical and the critical angles. Various causes, including two visits to the U.S.A., have delayed the fulfilment of this plan till now, but I have thus been enabled to refer to the chief recent additions to Marlovian research. These include the documents relating to the Marlowe and Baines families printed by Professor C. F. Tucker Brooke in his Life of Marlowe in the six-volume edition; the new facts about Robert Poley supplied in articles by Miss Ethel Seaton and Miss E. de Kalb; the new light thrown from the Middlesex Guildhall archives by Mr. Mark Eccles on Marlowe's London life; the details about the Coroner's jury gathered from their wills by my lamented friend, Edgar Vine Hall; and the results of the researches by Mr. John Bakeless in the archives preserved at Canterbury and at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge.

Twenty years ago Professor G. C. Moore Smith drew . . .

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