Abstract

This paper contends that in Prothalamion commercial and heroic ethoi remain for Spenser fundamentally incompatible. Close attention to the London setting of the poem, especially to those commercial aspects that the poem seems deliberately to suppress, suggests that Spenser is deeply reluctant to embrace London's commercial ethos as something conducive to heroic values and achievements. Against what he feels to be the compromises of commerce, Spenser proffers poetic vision, while in the measured praise of the Earl of Essex that forms much of the poem's interest, Spenser distinguishes heroic imperatives from the mercenary and commercial concerns that accumulated around Cadiz.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1522-9270
Print ISSN
0039-3657
Pages
pp. 79-106
Launched on MUSE
2007-02-19
Open Access
No
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