Spenser's The Faerie Queene, Book I eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 285 pages of information about Spenser's The Faerie Queene, Book I.


Characters           Moral       Religious and      Personal and
Spirtual_           Political_

Redcross Knight Holiness Reformed England St George

Una Truth True Religion

Prince Arthur      Magnificence, or   Protestantism, or    Lord Leicester
Private Virtue   the Church Militant

Gloriana Glory Spirtual Beauty Queen Elizabeth

Archimago Hypocrisy The Jesuits Phillip II of Spain

Duessa Falsehood False Religion Mary Queen of Scots,
Church of Rome

Orgoglio Carnal Pride Antichrist Pope Sixtus V

The Lion            Reason,      Reformation by Force    Henry VIII,
Natural Honor                        Civil Government

The Dragon Sin The Devil, Satan Rome and Spain

Sir Satyrane Natural Courage Law and Order Sir John Perrott
in Ireland

The Monster Avarice Greed of Romanism Romish Priesthood

Corceca Blind Devotion, Catholic Penance Irish Nuns

Abessa Flagrant Sin Immorality Irish Nuns

Kirkrapine      Church Robbery      Religious State     Irish Clergy
of Ireland          and Laity

Sansfoy Infidelity

Sansjoy Joylessness Pagan Religion The Sultan and
the Saracens

Sansloy Lawlessness

The Dwarf Prudence,
Common Sense

Sir Trevisan Fear

The Squire Purity The Anglican Clergy

The Horn Truth The English Bible

Lucifera Pride, Vanity Woman of Babylon Church of Rome

4.  THE SPENSERIAN STANZA.—­The Faerie Queene is written in the Spenserian Stanza, a form which the poet himself invented as a suitable vehicle for a long narrative poem.  Suggestions for its construction were taken from three Italian metres—­the Ottava Rima, the Terza Rima, the Sonnet—­and the Ballade stanza.  There are eight lines in the iambic pentameter measure (five accents); e.g.—­

v -/- | v -/- | v -/- | v -/- | v -/- a gen | tle knight | was prick | ing on | the plaine followed by one iambic hexameter, or Alexandrine (six accents); e.g.—­

v -/- | v -/- | v -/- | v -/- | v -/- | v -/- as one | for knight | ly giusts | and fierce | encount | ers fitt The rhymes are arranged in the following order:  ab ab bc bcc.  It will be observed that the two quatrains are bound together by the first two b rhymes, and the Alexandrine, which rhymes with the eighth line, draws out the harmony with a peculiar lingering effect.  In scanning

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Spenser's The Faerie Queene, Book I from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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