Abstract

This essay examines anew Katherine Philips's considerable debt to the discourse of male friendship so pervasive in early modern translations of the classics and in the English treatises derived from them. That debt is apparent in the ideology of the union of the souls of friends—in the notion of soul fusion—that animates her poetry and in the friendships memorialized in her letters to "Berenice" and Sir Charles Cotterell. The essay argues that Philips was committed to bringing the precepts of male friendship into her own eroticized friendships with women and that she sought to create among her own circle of friends the same kinds of networks of chosen kinship that were traditionally available to men.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1522-9270
Print ISSN
0039-3657
Pages
pp. 523-542
Launched on MUSE
2006-08-17
Open Access
No
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