The Faerie Queene
The Faerie Queene ENGL 301
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This 7 page Bundle was uploaded by Megan Snyder on Sunday October 4, 2015. The Bundle belongs to ENGL 301 at Old Dominion University taught by Dr. Edward Jacobs in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 40 views. For similar materials see Intro to British Literature I in Foreign Language at Old Dominion University.
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Date Created: 10/04/15
British Literature 922 92915 The Faerie Queen Cantos iiii Notes These are the notes for Weeks 5 and 6 of Dr Jacobs British Literature l course during which we discussed Edmund Spencer s the Faerie Queen Included are the quiz questions and answers which we went over in class Dr Jacobs breakdown of the major events of each canto and an analysis of the allegorical function of this text If you missed these quizzes Dr Jacobs does not use the same question on the makeup Quiz Q Why does the Redcrosse Knight abandon Una A The magician Archimago creates the vision of Una and another knight sleeping together the RC Knight thinks her impure Q How does the RC Knight meet Duessa A He kills Kirkapine and claims Duessa as his lady Q What happens when Una encounters the lion A Recognizing Una s innocence the lion becomes her protector instead of attacking her Brief Summary We are introduced to the Redcrosse Knight who as his name suggests bears a shield with a crucifix painted on it in blood He has been instructed by the Faerie Queen to kill a dragon who terrorizes the family of Una a beautiful princess with whom the knight begins his quest Also travelling with them is a dwarf servant The three get lost in a storm and find themselves before the cave of a monster named Errour who wraps RC in her tail but before the monster can strangle him he cuts of her head Errour s babies then feast on her blood and burst After this exhausting battle RC Una and the dwarf are invited to stay the night with an old man who turns out to be the evil magician Archimago Archimago casts a spell on RC that causes him to dream of Una see an Una lookalike sleeping next to him and see the real Una sleeping with another knight It is this last false image that fools RC into thinking Una impure and he along with the dwarf abandons her RC fights and defeats the knight Sans Foy and claims his lady Fidessa as his own They rest under a couple of trees one of which cries out when RC pulls on its branches The talking tree reveals that it is actually the man Fradubio who has been cursed by the evil witch Duessa Meanwhile Una chases after her companions and Archimago expertly disguised as RC chases after her She encounters a fierce lion which upon recognizing her purity refrains from attacking her and becomes her protector The lion forces his way into the home of a mother and daughter so Una can rest In the night the daughter s criminal boyfriend breaks in and the lion kills him Una leaves and the mother and daughter furious with the princess explain to Archimago dressed as RC what has happened In one giant misunderstanding Una think she s found RC when she sees Archimago and the knight Sans Loy Sans Foy s vengeful brother thinks he s also found RC when he sees Archimago until just before killing him he removes his victim s helmet to discover that it is in fact Archimago his good friend Sans Loy then takes Una as his own British Literature 922 92915 Here s how Dr Jacobs broke it down Canto Major Events Enter into the wandering woods Errour is 1 defeated by RC and Una Archimago creates the illusion of Una with another knight Archimago separates RC and Una RC defeats 2 Sons Foy RC is with Duessa story of Fradubio and Fruelissa Lion protects Una and kills Kirkapine Sans Loy kills the lion Archimago disguises himself as RC Allegory The Faerie Queen is an allegory for England during the Protestant Reformation in which all of the characters represent both their literal meaning the Redcrosse Knight is in fact a knight with a red cross on his shield as well as symbols for larger ideas holiness This seems simple enough until we as readers ask ourselves quotwhat is holy Clearly Spencer was commentating on British society at the time by naming the dragon that RC slays Errour representative of error for example but again what is error The purpose of Spencer s tale is to preach theology and doctrine and teach lessons and broad concepts while still entertaining the point of most fantastical fairy tales Children enjoy this actionpacked story of a knight fighting monsters while subconsciously being acclimated with themes of good v evil faith and loyalty to the crown Faerie Queen effectively functions as political propaganda Defends Queen Elizabeth and her reign Supports the consolidation of the Anglican Church 0 Rather than preaching Spenser entertains readers with allegorical figures and thus forces them to think for themselves 0 Requires an active interpretive audience 0 The ambiguity of allegory also serves a purpose 0 Speaks to Catholics Calvinists Protestants etc o The villains and monsters as well as the quotgoodquot characters have traits of all these groups of people No single group is criticized o Recurring theme things are not always what they seem I Archimago and Duessa s spells Redcrosse amp Una Una represents oneness and unity while RC represents holiness Together the characters as well as the ideas struggle to overcome adversity RC is a brave and feared knight but is also sad 0 Wishes to serve the Faerie Queen 0 In serving the Queen and Una RC hopes to earn God s grace and the Queen s honor 0 He is untested British Literature I 922 92915 0 His armor does not belong to him has seen more action than he has Una likened to the Virgin MaryJesus o Dressed in white 0 Rides on a donkey with a lamb at her side 0 Interpretation England needs both a savior Christ and a mother Mary in the form of Queen Elizabeth the virgin queen The Dwarf Goes with RC when he abandons Una presumably to protect the knight Subtly implied that Una will be fine RC is kind of dimwitted o Dwarf able to see through Archimago s visions o Suggests a class difference 0 Represents grace which in Christian faith one is never without 0 The Holy Spirit Humble devoted service to fellow as well as the church valued Small yet wise loyal a Yogalike figure The Lion amp Kirkapine The lion the chivalric symbol of the Tudor monarchy protects Una the unity of England and kills Kirkapine the daughter s criminal boyfriend Lion mutilates his body and seeds the land with his flesh 0 Land thirsty for its blood 0 Redistribution of the wealth he steals from the church 0 A sacredness of violence similar to the taking ofthe body and blood of Christ during communion o Allegorical to Henry VIII Elizabeth s father seizing church land and redistributing it lawlessness chaos anarchy and corruption I A warning to the Tudors too much lawlessness and bloodshed will bring down the monarchy I Elizabeth follows the rules and holds the country together 0 Kirkapine directly opposes holiness of the church 0 Raids local churches for their treasures leaves the rest 0 An attack on iconoclasm ofthe high church The Faerie Queen Cantos ivviii Notes Quiz Q Why does RC decide to leave the House of Pride A It is built on sand and in the back there is a pile of dead bodies British Literature 922 92915 Q Why can t RC put up a fight with Orgoglio A He is weakened from his battle with Sans Joy has drank from a cursed well and has no armor Q How is RC rescued from Orgoglio A Prince Arthur saves him Brief Summary RC and FidessaDuessa enter the House of Pride where they encounter Queen Lucifera She takes them on a carriage ride drawn by six beasts who each represent a deadly sin When they return Sans Joy brother of Sans Foy and Sans Loy is waiting for RC but Lucifera orders the two knights to wait until the next day to fight During the night Duessa reveals to Sans Joy that she loves him and that RC is holding hercap ve In the morning RC and Sans Joy battle but just as RC is about to defeat his opponent Duessa casts a spell that hides Sans Joy in a dark cloud She visits Night and begs her to help her nephews the Sans brothers and together Night and Duessa bring Sans Joy to the Underworld where he is reluctantly healed by Aesculapius Back at the House of Pride the dwarf has informed RC of the piles of dead bodies surrounding the palace so naturally they leave Meanwhile Archimago attempts to rape Una but she is saved by a herd of halfman halfgoat creatures that begins to worship her A knight amongst the herd named Satyrane helps her escape and they meet Archimago disguised as a traveler He tells them that RC is dead and Satyrane goes to find and fight his murderer for Una Duessa finds RC who has drank from a cursed fountain that makes its victims lazy Just then the giant Orgoglio appears but RC has no time to grab his armor Knowing that RC has no chance Duessa offers RC and herself as servants to the giant and he agrees throwing RC into a dungeon The dwarf runs off to find Una who is griefstricken by the news They then encounter Prince Arthur and he agrees to help find RC Arthur ultimately defeats Orgoglio when the veil over his shield falls revealing a brilliant and blinding light and retrieves RC from his cell Here s how Dr Jacobs broke it down Canto Major Events RC is in the House of Pride challenged by Sans Joy RC defeats Sans Joy Duessa saves him dwarf shows RC the truth about the House of Pride Una is saved from Sans Loy by Satyrane RC falls to Orgoglio Una encounters Prince Arthur dwarf tells Una and Arthur about RC Arthur defeats Orgoglio on a quest for Gloriana 4 OOICDU39I British Literature 922 92915 Duessa convinces RC to take of his armor Relaxing even forjust a moment will get you in trouble never let your guard down politically RC lack of faith in cantos iiii leads him to a battle with pride in cantos ivviii o Sans Foy translates to quotfaithlessness it is ironic that RC defeats him after exhibiting faithlessness in abandoning Una In Faerie Land contemporary England everything is not what it seems Arthur s shield shows everything as it is The Faerie Queen Cantos viiiixii Notes Quiz Q Who does Contemplation tell the RC Knight he really is A Saint George Q What luck helps RC defeat the Dragon A He falls into the Well of Life on the first day of his battle then falls into a stream beneath the Tree of Life on the second Q How do Archimago and Duessa try to interrupt the betrothal of RC and Una A They claim that RC is already engaged to Duessa Brief Summary After resting Una presses Arthur for answers as to who he is and where he is from but Arthur only reveals that he has a wound that won t heal and is on a quest to find the Faerie Queen of whom he has dreamed Before going their separate ways Arthur gives the RC Knight a healing elixir in exchange for a magical book RC and Una then encounter Sir Trevisan another knight running from Despair who has nearly convinced the knight to kill himself Trevisan reluctantly shows RC and Una where Despair lives but before RC can kill him Despair talks him into suicide too In an attempt to save him Una takes RC to Caelia and her three daughters With the help of several others they teach the RC Knight Christian virtue and ultimately heal him of his depression and the wise old man Contemplation explains to RC that he is now ready to become a hero and a saint RC must now fight the dragon that holds Una s parents captive and even though he manages to injure the beast a few times RC struggles greatly to overcome his foe On the first day he is burned by the dragon s fiery breath but luckily falls near the Well of Life which revives him overnight On the second day the dragon stabs RC in the shoulder and RC cuts off the dragon s tail and one of its hands then falls again into a magical healing stream that runs from the Tree of Life On the third day RC finally defeats the dragon by stabbing it in its mouth British Literature 922 92915 The entire kingdom celebrates RC s victory and the king grants the knight permission to marry Una Just then however Archimago disguised as a messenger reveals that RC is already engaged to the witch Duessa but upon realizing their true identities both are imprisoned for their trickery RC returns to serve the Faerie Queen for six years Here s how Dr Jacobs broke it down Canto Major Events 9 Arthur tells of his quest RC resists Despair RC visits the House of Holiness where Caelia and 10 her daughters heal him Contemplation reveals that RC is St George and that Cleopolis is heaven on Earth 11 3 day fight with dragon RC and Una are engaged but RC must return to 12 serve the Faerie Queen for 6 years Archimago and Duessa are unmasked and imprisoned Caelia s Daughters Caelia heaven has three daughters Fidelia faith Speranza hope and Charissa love each of whom represents both a Christian virtue as well as a womanly spirit see below Una a woman herself brings RC to these women who are ultimately the ones to heal the knight by teaching him how to worship God 9 a celebration of female power and Queen Elizabeth Fidelia is a school teacher 0 Teaches people to read during a time when only the expert clergy knew how to decipher the Bible Preaches but also teaches her students to read the Bible for themselves 9 free will Shares her knowledge with others Instills in her students quotcelestial discipline line Described as powerful and faithful enough to make the sun stop moving stanza 19 canto 10 0 Can be described as the best of both the Catholic and the Anglican Church Speranza is a nurse 0 Nurturing tends to the sick Charissa is a mother 0 Has just given birth to another child a maternal figure OOOO Allegorical Functions Contemplation s assertion that RC is St George solidifies that this is an allegory for England at the time o Represents English citizens and Christian worshippers as a whole 0 Born English but then stolen and brought to Faerieland 0 Perhaps a nod to England s long history of immigration British Literature 922 92915 0 As long as you serve this monarchy you are welcome in England 3day fight with dragon 0 Dragon represents Satan 0 RC likened to Christ 0 HOWEVER he is far from a martyr figure Luck allowed RC to defeat the dragon 9 you can t defeat evil without gracedivine intervention 0 Story begins with an emphasis ontest of faith and trust Archimago then pride Orgoglio and finally grace dragon The Faerie Queen amp Queen Elizabeth 0 The Faerie Queen AKA Gloriana never make an appearance in the story 9 unattainable A representation of purity chastity 9 Elizabeth was known as the virgin queen Arthur While RC is a knight on the rise so to speak Arthur has succumbed to wandering Faerieland in search of a woman he s dreamed of o Admits that he doesn t really know what he s doing in Faerieland and that it s hard to read or understand dreams and God s ways 9 commentary on the Catholic church Serves as a m to RC they share similarities but theirjourneys result in much different outcomes 0 Both on a mission with a specific purpose Arthur s quest hopeless though
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