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Home :: Archive :: 1995 :: May ::
Re: Tillyard; Advice
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 6, No. 0409.  Tuesday, 23 May 1995.
 
(1)     From:   Luc Borot <
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        Date:   Monday, 22 May 95 17:03:05 +0200
        Subj:   Tillyard
 
(2)     From:   Dale Lyles <
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        Date:   Monday, 22 May 1995 22:21:28 -0400
        Subj:   Re: Request for advice
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Luc Borot <
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Date:           Monday, 22 May 95 17:03:05 +0200
Subject:        Tillyard
 
Most major objections to many of Tillyard's generalisations can be found in
Elizabethan intellectual productions themselves.
 
Have a glance at the piece on machiavellianism in his *History Plays*, in which
he states that it is impossible for an Elizabethan to just 'think' in those
terms. This is denied by the amount of machiavel-characters in Eliz. political
(and other drama), but also by the existence of political writings taking
reason of state (before Botero) into account. Ms translations of Machiavelli,
Italian editions, etc circulated and were read.
 
The Elizabethans of Tillyard's books were naive people who did not know what
power was all about. The queen knew that she was Richard II, in the days of the
Essex rebellion, didn't she? The chief ministers of the age were as capable of
manipulation, deceit and double-entendre as later statesmen. When a member of
Parliament was in session, could he be duped by the show of deference? In my
very humble opinion, Tillyard took the rhetoric for a real, practical attitude.
Very early on, Lily B. Campbell and BL Joseph did present a much less idealised
picture of Elizabethan attitudes towards the world of politics.
 
As regards other dimensions of Tillyard's books, I would not be so positive,
lacking direct competence, but I'm positive he missed a lot of irony and deceit
in his interpretation of Eliz. political ideas.
 
        Yours,
               Luc Borot
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Dale Lyles <
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Date:           Monday, 22 May 1995 22:21:28 -0400
Subject:        Re: Request for advice
 
I would think the Shakespearean insult books would be fun sellers.  Also,
bookmarks are easy: I know I treasure my two leather ones from RSC.
 
Dale Lyles
 

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