The Life and Poems of Nicholas Grimald

By L. R. Merrill; Albert S. Cook | Go to book overview

PREFACE

HENRY THE EIGHTH'S reign was comparatively peaceful. England, having settled her internal troubles, became a power to be reckoned with in European politics; this brought the country into touch with other European countries, and its intellectual life under the influence of the Renaissance. The feeling of security, which had come to the people through the establishment of a strong dynasty, made possible again the social and intellectual life which the Wars of the Roses had destroyed, and this intellectual life was quickened by relations with France and Italy. Every one was eager to know something of the 'new learning,' education spread, and men of culture and of literary attainments were no longer rare.

The Wars of the Roses had stopped literary production; in the meantime the language had changed notably, and the new writers who now sprang up had to bridge the gap. They could get little inspiration from the work of their predecessors; instead, they found it in that of foreign poets, especially those of Italy.

As education in those days was almost entirely humanistic, every educated man was familiar with versification, and the ability to write verses was not an unusual accomplishment. The poets of the time did not write for the public, but only for their own pleasure and that of their friends, among whom their compositions circulated in manuscript, for they seem to have had an aversion to allowing their works to appear in print. George Puttenham, in his Arte of Englishe Poesie, says of their attitude: 'Now also of such among the Nobilitie or gentrie as may be very well seene in many laudable sciences and especially in making of Poesie it is so come to passe that they have no courage to write, and if they have, yet are they loath to be known of their skill, so

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The Life and Poems of Nicholas Grimald
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page i
  • Preface iii
  • Contents v
  • The Life of Nicholas Grimald 3
  • Christus Redivivus 55
  • Preface 57
  • Christvs R E D I V I­vvs, Comoedia Tragica, & Noua. 90
  • The Resurrection of Christ a New Sacred Tragi-Comedy 91
  • Archipropheta 217
  • Preface 219
  • Archipro Pheta,Tra Goedia Iam Recèns in Lucem êdita. 228
  • The Archprophet, a Tragedy, 229
  • Ornatis Simo, Virod. Richardo Coxo Nicolavs 230
  • The Shorter Poems of Nicholas Grimald 359
  • Preface 361
  • Notes on the Shorter Poems of Nicholas Grimald 416
  • Yale Studies in English 459
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