In this Book

summary

Literary allegory has deep roots in early reading and interpretation of Scripture and classical epic and myth. In this substantial study, Mindele Treip presents an overview of the history and theory of allegorical exegesis upon Scripture, poetry, and especially the epic from antiquity to the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries, with close focus on the Renaissance and on the triangular literary relationship of Tasso, Spenser, and Milton.

Exploring the different ways in which the term allegory has been understood, Treip finds significant continuities-within-differences in a wide range of critical writings, including texts of postclassical, patristic and rabbinical writers, medieval writers, notably Dante, Renaissance theorists such as Coluccio Salutati, Bacon, Sidney, John Harrington and rhetoricians and mythographers, and the neoclassical critics of Italy, England and France, including Le Bossu.

In particular, she traces the evolving theories on allegory and the epic of Torquato Tasso through a wide spectrum of his major discourses, shorter tracts and letters, giving full translations. Treip argues that Milton wrote, as in part did Spenser, within the definitive framework of the mixed historical-allegorical epic erected by Tasso, and she shows Spenser's and Milton's epics as significantly shaped by Tasso's formulations, as well as by his allegorical structures and images in the Gerusalemme liberata.

In the last part of her study Treip addresses the complex problematics of reading Paradise Lost as both a consciously Reformation poem and one written within the older epic allegorical tradition, and she also illustrates Milton's innovative use of biblical "Accommodation" theory so as to create a variety of radical allegorical metaphors in his poem.

This study brings together a wide range of critical issues -- the Homeric-Virgilian tradition of allegorical reading of epic; early Renaissance theory of all poetry as "translation" or allegorical metaphor; midrashic linguistic techniques in the representation of the Word; Milton's God; neoclassical strictures on Milton's allegory and allegory in general -- all of these are brought together in new and comprehensive perspective.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Title Page, Copyright
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  1. Contents
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  1. Preface
  2. pp. xi-xv
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  1. Acknowledgements
  2. pp. xvii-xviii
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  1. Part I. Theory of Allegory in Poetry and Epic from Antiquity to the Renaissance
  2. pp. 1-2
  1. 1. Antiquity to the Middle Ages
  2. pp. 3-17
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  1. 2. Renaissance Theoretical Developments
  2. pp. 18-27
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  1. 3. The English Mythographers and Their Tradition
  2. pp. 28-41
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  1. 4. "Idea"
  2. pp. 42-50
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  1. Part II. Theory of the Allegorical Epic from Tasso, Spenser and the Neoclassicals to Milton
  2. pp. 51-52
  1. 5. Tasso: The Practical Problems of the Allegorical Epic
  2. pp. 53-68
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  1. 6. Tasso, the Discorsi: Aesthetics of the Allegorical Epic
  2. pp. 69-79
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  1. 7. Tasso, the Major Tracts: The Poetics of the Allegorical Epic
  2. pp. 80-94
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  1. 8. Spenser as Allegorical Theorist
  2. pp. 95-105
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  1. 9. Neoclassical Epic Theory: The Debate over Allegory
  2. pp. 106-118
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  1. 10. Le Bossu on the Epic
  2. pp. 119-125
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  1. 11. Debts to Renaissance Allegory in Paradise Lost
  2. pp. 126-137
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  1. 12. Allegorical Poetics in Paradise Lost
  2. pp. 138-149
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  1. 13. Allegory and "Idea" in Paradise Lost
  2. pp. 150-168
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  1. Part III. "real or Allegoric": Representation in Paradise Lost
  2. pp. 169-170
  1. 14. Historical Problems in Reading Paradise Lost
  2. pp. 171-180
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  1. 15. Scripture and the Figurative Reading of Paradise Lost
  2. pp. 181-190
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  1. 16. Theory of Metaphor in Paradise Lost
  2. pp. 191-203
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  1. 17. Typology and the Figurative Dimension in Paradise Lost
  2. pp. 204-221
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  1. 18. Protestant Homiletics and Allegory in Paradise Lost
  2. pp. 222-230
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  1. 19. "Accommodation" in Paradise Lost: The Internal View
  2. pp. 231-238
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  1. 20. Toward an Allegorical Poesis in Paradise Lost
  2. pp. 239-250
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  1. 21. The "Language of Allegory" and Milton's Allegorical Epic
  2. pp. 251-256
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  1. Appendix A. Bibliographical Essay on Tasso
  2. pp. 257-262
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  1. Appendix B. "Idea"
  2. pp. 263-266
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  1. Appendix C. Tasso and Spenser
  2. pp. 267-274
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  1. Appendix D. The Literal Level and the "Literal Commentators"
  2. pp. 275-277
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  1. Appendix E. "Accommodation" and Figuration in Paradise Lost
  2. pp. 278-281
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  1. Appendix F. Typological Criticism
  2. pp. 282-286
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  1. Notes
  2. pp. 287-334
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  1. List of Works Cited
  2. pp. 335-349
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 350-368
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Additional Information

ISBN
9780813161662
Print ISBN
9780813118314
MARC Record
OCLC
622288803
Pages
392
Launched on MUSE
2016-01-01
Language
English
Open Access
N
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