Essay about Defense of Her Majesty and the Church of England in The Faerie Queene

:: 6 Works Cited
Length: 2884 words (8.2 double-spaced pages)
Rating: Blue      
Open Document

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Defense of Her Majesty and the Church of England in The Faerie Queene

  In The Faerie Queene, Spenser presents an eloquent and captivating representation of the Roman Catholic Church, her hierarchy, and patrons as the malevolent forces pitted against England in her exploits as Epic Hero. A discussion of this layer of the allegory for the work in its entirety would be a book in and of itself, so, for the purposes of this exercise, the focus will be confined to Book I, Canto 1, through the vanquishing of the dragon, Errour. Even in this small section of the work, however, it will be evident that Spenser very much took to heart both his duty as an Englishman to honour Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth I, and his duty as a Protestant Christian to champion the Church of England. The purpose of this exercise is not to prove whether Spenser was correct in his assertions, but to explore the manner in which he sets forth his views; it is, therefore, written from the position that his views are righteous, in the interest of eliminating the need for multiple caveats stating that the ideas herein are an interpretation of Spenser's beliefs. That being said, Spenser's multi-layered allegory sets him apart as perhaps the first Anglican Apologist, in whose footsteps C.S. Lewis would later follow with his own deeply symbolic tales. That Spenser displayed the literary and imaginative prowess to lay down so many layers of richly crafted allegorical fabric has made The Faerie Queene a work for the ages, both as lessons in English and Ecclesiastical history and as a fine example of the enduring beauty of the Language.


        Spenser, in his letter to Sir Walter Raleigh, points out the most obvious allegorical devices that run through the...

... middle of paper ...

...urce. Internet. Available:

        Updated 20 March 1999; Accessed 20 October 1999.

Holy Bible, Authorised King James Version Moorman, J.R.H. A History of the Church in England. 3rd ed. London: A&C Black, 1980.

Russell-Smith, Penny. "Historic Royal Profiles: Elizabeth I." Electronic Resource. Internet. Available:

        Updated 12 April 1999; Accessed 20 October 1999.

Russell-Smith, Penny. "History of the Crown: the Tudors." Electronic Resource. Internet. Available:

        Updated 12 April 1999; Accessed 20 October 1999

Spenser, Edmund. The Faerie Queene, Book I, Canto 1. The Norton Anthology of English Literature. 6th ed. vol. 1.

        M.H. Abrams, gen. ed. New York: Norton, 1993. 516-32


Click the button above to view the complete essay, speech, term paper, or research paper

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

This essay is 100% guaranteed.

Title Length Color Rating  
Essay on Prophetic Vision in Edmund Spenser's The Faerie Queene - Prophetic Vision in Edmund Spenser's The Faerie Queene In the First Book of The Faerie Queene, Edmund Spenser reveals his prophetic and apocalyptic vision for the fledgling British Empire, personified in his hero Redcrosse. As the secular instrument of Gloriana, the Faerie Queene, Redcrosse takes on the sacred task of Una (representing religious truth) to free her parents, Adam and Eve, from their bonds of sin. Before he can achieve his task, the Redcrosse knight (representing holiness) must mature as a Christian knight as he and Una encounter inhabitants of Faerie Land and interact with them....   [tags: Faerie Queene Essays]
:: 1 Works Cited
647 words
(1.8 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
The Birth of the Church of England Essay - The sixteenth century was a tumultuous time for England. For years, the country had been steadfast in its Catholic beliefs, until the reign of Henry VIII. The monarch, infamous in history for having had six wives, founded a new church free from papal control. Thus, the Anglican Church, or the Church of England, was born in the midst of a growing European Reformation. A brief history of the monarch is needed in order to understand the split from the Catholic Church. Henry Tudor was born the second son of King Henry VII who became the heir upon the death of his older brother in 1502 (Phillips 99)....   [tags: monarchy, annulment, reform] 770 words
(2.2 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Essay on Good vs. Evil in Faerie Queene by Edmund Spenser - Good vs. Evil in Faerie Queene by Edmund Spenser Good versus evil is one of the most commonly used themes in literature. Edmund Spenser’s “Faerie Queene” is no exception to this theme. The story consists of a knight who must save the day and win the hand of his true love. This plot in itself is really common in story plots. The “Faerie Queene,” however, adds a little life to this old tradition. Allegory is placed in this story and really makes up the theme and brings it to life. Allegory is a literary device where a metaphor is extended throughout the narrative and the characters in the story symbolize a type of virtue....   [tags: Faerie Queene Good Evil Allegory Essays] 888 words
(2.5 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
The Role Of Nurse Glauce In The Faerie Queene Essay - In Book Three of The Faerie Queene, the character of Glauce plays an important role in aiding Britomart, the main character, to set off on her journey. Britomart, who represents Spenser's idea of ideal Christian chastity, confronts some challenging and poignant issues before she heads off on her adventure; namely, she sees a vision of her future husband in an enchanted looking glass, and does not quite know how to handle the feelings of all-encompassing love that arise in her. The terror, doubt and confusion she experiences are similar to what is felt by any young girl embarking on the emotional rollercoaster of adolescence, but with the added factor of the spectral figure she sees in the mi...   [tags: Faerie Queene Analysis, Literary analysis] 1601 words
(4.6 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Henry VIII and the Church of England Essay - INTRODUCTION King Henry VIII was an important figure in helping to kick start the Reformation in England, even though it was not his intent. His break with the Papacy and his constantly changing ideas on how the new Church of England should be run gave the Protestants the foothold they needed to gain popularity in Europe. Although his intentions were purely politically motivated, he started a change in the way the layman viewed the church and how it should be run. THE LIFE OF HENRY VIII Henry VIII was born on June 28, 1491 to the King Henry VII of England and Queen Elizabeth of York....   [tags: British History]
:: 1 Works Cited
2172 words
(6.2 pages)
Term Papers [preview]
Essay on Dragons in Beowulf and in Edmund Spenser’s The Faerie Queene - Dragons in Beowulf and in Edmund Spenser’s The Faerie Queene When one usually thinks of a dragon, one thinks of dragon-slayers, adventure, damsels in distress, and cheap fantasy novels. Dragons in literature have not always been used for such meaningless entertainment. There are many precedents for dragons in medieval literature, two of the most prominent being in the Old English poem Beowulf and in Edmund Spenser’s The Faerie Queene. In both of these epic poems, dragons play major antagonistic roles....   [tags: Beowulf Spenser Faerie Queene Essays]
:: 6 Works Cited
1988 words
(5.7 pages)
Term Papers [preview]
The Church of England Essay - The Church of England, a Protestant Episcopal church which is the official established church of great Britain, is a branch off Catholicism without allegiance to the pope. The Expectations of a member of the clergy within this church are a set of both written and unwritten laws. Protestant ministers, where they are allowed to marry and have children, do in a basic respect follow the same moral and ethical obligations as a catholic priest. They are to live their lives for the love of God, and Christ....   [tags: essays research papers] 495 words
(1.4 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Edmund Spenser‘s Dazzling Quest for Virtue in The Faerie Queene Essays - Edmund Spenser‘s Dazzling Quest for Virtue in The Faerie Queene "Voyeur: one who habitually seeks sexual stimulation by visual means" (Webster's Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary). According to Baby's Record, as a child my favorite stories included Daniel in the Lions' Den, Jonah and the Whale, Elisha and the 40 Children Eaten by the Bears, The Three Little Pigs, and Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Before sex came violence, tamed by a mother's lap and blessed by the inspired Word. Voyeurism may well be "the relation ....   [tags: Faerie Queene]
:: 2 Works Cited
719 words
(2.1 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Essay on history of the church of england - The History of the Church of England, J.R.H. Moorman, pp. 59-220 Book Report The middle ages began when William the Normans took over England. William liked to regard himself as a reformer. He would not allow the pope to interfere with what he regarded as the king’s lawful business. He regarded himself as the head of the Church in England. William appointed his close friend, Lanfranc, as the archbishop of Canterbury. They both ruled England until William’s death. William Rufus who was William the Normans’ son took over the throne....   [tags: essays research papers] 950 words
(2.7 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Role of Women in Edmund Spenser's The Faerie Queene Essay - Role of Women in Edmund Spenser's The Faerie Queene       Edmund Spenser in his epic romance, The Faerie Queene, invents and depicts a wide array of female figures.  Some of these women, such as Una and Caelia, are generally shown as faithful, virtuous and overall lovely creatures.  Other feminine characters, such as Errour, Pride, and Duessa are false, lecherous and evil.  This might seem to be the end of Spenser's categorization of women; that they are either good or bad.  Yet upon closer examination one finds that Spenser seems to be struggling to portray women more honestly, to depict the "complex reality of woman" (Berger, 92).  Spenser does not simply "idealize women or th...   [tags: Faerie Queene Free Essays]
:: 7 Works Cited
2917 words
(8.3 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]