The Role Of Nurse Glauce In The Faerie Queene Essay

The Role Of Nurse Glauce In The Faerie Queene Essay

Length: 1601 words (4.6 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

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 mirror. In Cantos Two and Three of Book Three, the sections that deal with Britomart's background, the only member of her natural family that is mentioned is her father. Therefore, in the absence of a natural mother, it is Glauce, Britomart's nurse, who steps in to fill the role. Glauce, whose name ‘associates her with the mother of the goddess Diana and … with the owl, companion of Minerva' (Spenser notes 807), works to help Britomart through her time of intense change, behaving towards the young girl as a mother would to her own duaghter. Although a seemingly secondary character in the scheme of Book Three of The Faerie Queen, as she only appears in the two cantos mentioned above, Glauce's role as a mother figure to Britomart - a role she fulfills to the utmost degree - is a vital component behind setting the story in motion.
Glauce exemplifies the role of motherhood in many different ways in her treatment of Britomart. First of all, she is immediately aware of Britomart's change in attitude after viewing the image of Artegall in the e...


... middle of paper ...


... release Britomart to her journey alone; dressing herself up as the knight's squire, Glauce prepares to travel with the young girl, providing the unconditional and unending support of a mother to Britomart in the face of her impending adventure. It is Glauce that gives Britomart the confidence needed to undertake such a task, and it is Glauce that makes all the arrangements for the journey. She takes everything into her own hands to ensure that Britomart is successful in her endeavors, and therefore lives up to her role as a mother figure to Britomart, and as the implementary tool in setting the story of Book Three in motion.

Works Cited
Spencer, Edmund. "The Faerie Queene: Book Three". Ed. M.H. Abrams, et al.
New York: W.W. Norton and Company, Inc., 2000. 783-862.
"The Faerie Queene". Renescence Editions. 1995. University of Oregon.
November 13, 2002.

Need Writing Help?

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

Check your paper »

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]

Powerful Essays
2917 words (8.3 pages)

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]

Powerful Essays
647 words (1.8 pages)

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]

Powerful Essays
719 words (2.1 pages)

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

- 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....   [tags: Faerie Queene Essays]

Powerful Essays
2884 words (8.2 pages)

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]

Powerful Essays
1988 words (5.7 pages)

An Analysis of Selected Stanzas From Book II, Canto VII of Spenser’s Faerie Queene 1

- An Analysis of Selected Stanzas From Book II, Canto VII of Spenser’s Faerie Queene 1 I Her face right wondrous faire did seeme to bee That her broad beauties beam great brightness threw Through the dim shade, that all men might it see: Yet was not that same her owne native hew, But wrought by art and counterfetted shew, Thereby more lovers unto her to call; Nath’lesse most heavenly faire in deed and vew She by creation was, till that she did fall; Thenceforth she sought for help, to cloke her crime withall....   [tags: Faerie Queene]

Free Essays
1917 words (5.5 pages)

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]

Powerful Essays
888 words (2.5 pages)

Essay about Theme of Temperance in The Faeirie Queene

- Theme of Temperance in The Faeirie Queene The themes of temperance, that being the employment of restraint, or at least moderation, especially in the yielding to personal appetites or desires, and of intemperance, the submitting to such desires, pervade Book Two of The Faeirie Queene. Prior to describing individual rooms within the Castle of Alma, it is useful to briefly discuss how the idea of the castle functions within the Book. Spenser compares the towers of the structure with towers at Thebes and Troy, which stand as monuments to individual According to Berger, Alma's Castle functions as an 'archetype of human temperance'; Spenser specifically describes the building in terms...   [tags: Faerie Queene Essays]

Powerful Essays
675 words (1.9 pages)

The Faerie Queene Essay examples

- Edmund Spenser’s epic poem The Faerie Queene is well known as an allegorical work, and the poem is typically read in relation to the political and religious context of the time. The term allegory tends to be loosely defined, rendering a whole work an extended metaphor, or even implying “any writing in verse or prose that has a double meaning”(Cuddon 20). In true Spenserian style, with everything having double meanings, both uses of the term allegory are applicable to his writing. Thus, during the course of this essay it is best not to think of allegory in terms of the size of a body of writing, but as writing with a “second distinct meaning partially hidden behind its literal or visible mean...   [tags: Literary Analysis, Spencer]

Powerful Essays
1938 words (5.5 pages)

The Faerie Queene Essay examples

- The poem, "The Faerie Queene", is a story about a courageous knight who goes through great trials and fights monsters. This in itself is entertaining but, it also has many allegorical references to Christianity. Many times Spenser talks about things when in reality he's really talking something closer to home. For instance, this faerie land he talks about sounds like he is referring to England, the country where he's from. Also, the title Faerie Queene itself is seems to represent Queen Elizabeth, the Queen of England....   [tags: Poetry]

Powerful Essays
463 words (1.3 pages)