Title Page
 Table of Contents
 The meaning of paradox in the sixteenth...
 The literature of paradox before...
 Sidney’s conception of the revised...
 Functional paradox in the revised...
 Biographical note

Title: Functional paradox in Sidney's revised Arcadia
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00098001/00001
 Material Information
Title: Functional paradox in Sidney's revised Arcadia
Physical Description: iii, 263 leaves. : ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Hallam, George Walter, 1926-
Publication Date: 1959
Copyright Date: 1959
Subject: English thesis Ph. D
Dissertations, Academic -- English -- UF
Genre: bibliography   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Thesis: Thesis -- University of Florida.
Bibliography: Bibliography: leaves 249-261.
Additional Physical Form: Also available on World Wide Web
General Note: Manuscript copy.
General Note: Vita.
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Bibliographic ID: UF00098001
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: alephbibnum - 000570623
oclc - 13710661
notis - ACZ7601


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Table of Contents
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    Table of Contents
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    The meaning of paradox in the sixteenth century
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    The literature of paradox before 1586
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    Sidney’s conception of the revised Arcadia: A method for paradox
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    Functional paradox in the revised Arcadia
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    Biographical note
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Full Text





June, 1959


For microfllmed copies of Peter hamus's Dialectioue

and Abraham Frauncs's unpublished treatises on Ramistic

logic, I am indebted to the courtesy of the authorities of

the Bibliotheque hatlonale and the Dtritish usewu. ky

thanks are also due the librarians at the University of

Florida and Jackeonville Lniversity for may services of a

special kind. Fror my supervisory committee, and particu-

larly its chairman, I have re* ved a literary discipline

that far transcends the writing Lf a dissertation and to
those of my colleagues who have given ae assiaanoe with

Latin, Frnch and Greek and to those hc have been good

enough to read parts of the typescript and offer valuable

suggestions on a number of points, I am deeply grateful.

And, for her unstinting encouragement over the years, here

is a personal tribute to my wife,


Chapter Page

I, INTF.DUCTI,'N ,................................ 1

CENIR-Y ...................................... 17

III1. T~3 LITEALTURIr OY PARADOX BU'OXi 15E6 ........ 60

A.Ai-AU: A METHOD FOR PARADOX ................ a3
.dII iA ..... ............................... .
VI. CONCLUSION ................................... 205

AFPENDI7 ................ .......................... 217

BIBLIOGAPHY ....................................... 249



This study is primarily an attempt to demonstrate

that Sidney's revised Arcadia may be read as a unified

whole and should, in the light of its unity, be included in

the literature of paradox. Nearly all recent studies of Sid-

ney's work reaffirm an interpretation established during a

period of scholarship from 19C' to 1935. At the heart of

this interpretation is the contention that the revised

ArcaA is an heroic poem or Benaissance epic. Though
Justly ascribing to Sidney's book a greater seriousness ai

conception and design than eighteenth- or nineteenth-century

critics would allow, the interrretation tends, on the one

hand, to augment rather than to reduce the apparent pro-

lixity and incoherence which formed the basis for much

earlier criticism of the romance and, on the other, to

deny that the romance nay be read as a unified whole with

some simplicity of purpose operating beneath its outward com-

plexity. If viewed in the light of paradoxes of situation

functioning conceptually in accordance with certain princi-

ples of Ramistic logic, however, the revised Arcadia will be

found to have a unity that derives from an interrelationship
of theme, structure, plot and style. Viewed in this manner,

the revised Arcadia will also be found to have as its true
foundation a ground-plan Sidney admired in Erasmus and


Agrippa, namely, an inquiry into the discrepancy between
things as they seem to be and things as they really are.

For nearly fifty years after its first publication

in 1690 Sir Philip Sidney's revised Arcadia enjoyed wide

popularity, passing through fifteen editions an surviving an

increasing dislike for far-fetched tales of i;lght errantry.1

But in the latter half of the seventeenth century the pc.pular-

ity of the work rapidly declined, partly no doubt because the

memory of its author had waned, partly because literary and

public attention was then on drama, and, with the pcssibie

exception of Aphra Behn's OroPoga in 1688, the age produced

no prose fiction of any importance. When in the next century

the novel began to flourish with Defoe, Riehardson and Field-

ing, reading tastes had changed. The demand was now for "real"

life, and the fantasy and prolixity of Sidney's romance cculd

no longer be tolerated. Henceforth criticism of the revised

1Subsequent editions in 1598, 1599, lut0, IC-7, li13,
1621, 1622, 1623, 1624, 1627, 1630, 1633, and 1633 attest to
the popularity of the wcrk. It is interesting to note also
that among some twenty-five derogatory references, by such
writers as Shirley, Fletcher, BDuter, Shakespeare, Meres, Jon-
son, Burton, Shadwell, and Dekker, to tne zpanish romances--
e.g., the Palmerin series, IUrrcr At IJilghthccd, c-inc fe
Chtlvlry--that were popular in the late sixteenth and early
seventeenth century, Sidney's revised Arcadia is rnL. tl be
found. See Henry Thioas, ej.a-h ahn iortuguese crjs.nces
Zhivalry (Cambridge, 1920), pp. uL-jiul. "he only unfavorable
sever teentr-century criticism of any note is Milton's well-
known jibe in elkonoclastee that tna revised krcadia is a
"vain amatorious ioen."

Arcalia wea, ritn oe cr two e::cepticns, unifcn.ly unfavorable.
Directed mainly at the structural complexity of the

worry, the criticism ecnoed a ccrnderaticn licrice Walcole set

forth in 17E9. In a statemcnt that haz since become noto-

rious, Walpole scorned the work as "a tedious, lamentable,

pedantic, pastoral romance, which the patience of a young

virgin in love cannot now wade through."2 In 1909, IM er,

occurred the beginnings of a decided shift in critical cpin-

ion of the revised Arcadlj. For in that year the bookseller

Bertram Dotbll made public his discovery of five manuscripts

of what scnc.lars generally rfer et as the O"j Arcadia, an
earlier, straightforward verslcn in which Cidney placed the

A Cataloirue iL ha Royal aA lNoble Authaore 2f EalAAd ,
2 vols. (London, 1759), 1, 3. Cf. also William hazlitt's
remark that the revised Arcadia contains "the most involved,
irksome, progressive, ana hateroclite subject that ever was
chosen to exercise the pen or patience of man" (T a C L.f
orlr .f lllaj h ,azlltt, ed. P. P. Howe, i vols. /London,
1931/, VI, L); J. A. .ymonds' summary of a "jungle of pasto-
rl, sentimental, and heroic adventures" (S= Plillr J A6Ana
LLondon, 19IL/, p. 23); or J. J. Jusserand's statement that
Sidney was "no more capable of restraining.. ./Zanciej7 into
logical order than a man can restrain or introduce reason into
a dream" (TMe j nglah hovel JA i kL L &f Shalkeiseare, tr.
Ilizabeth Lee LLonaonC 1'j/, p. 26.e. Lee also the adverse
criticism by J. W. h. ALKins in Cambrida e iiistry gt -ntll
Literature, III, 363-354 end by W. J. Courthope in A .iLtora
l i sisInh Poetry, 6 vols. (London, 1934), II, ,20. More
ufvoraole criticism is in the following works, which empha-
size the heroic in Sidney's romance and thereby anticipate
Edrin Lreenlc '.i theory of the revised Arcadia as an heroic
poem (see note 5, celow): Isaac bisraell, Amenitiesl f lit-
erh 2, 3 vols. (Lonrdon, 1841), II, 36--j"i; %illiam 5tigant,
ir illip Sidney," Cambridge ssa (London, 158); and
CSaint-Karc Girardin, iour te h~Ltr tre urramntlae (laris,

pastoral element foremost.3 Scholars were now in a position

to inquire into Sidney's motive for rewcrrnng an earlier ver-

sion, and their corresponding shift of attention from the

pastoral to the heroic element in the revision led generally

to criticism more favorable than Walpole's disparaging remark.

The real significance, therefore, of Lobell's discovery is

that within a few years it opened up what was to be nearly a

quarter of a century of Arcadian scholarship, :.erslded in 1913

by the appearance of Edwin Greenlaw's "Sidney's orcaTi as an

Example of Elizabethan Allegory,"4 an article that imr'dlaLely

set the course for modern criticism of Sidney's rLoance.

Greenlaw's article introduced an interpretation of the

revised Arcadia that is now widely accepted by scholars. "By

Sidney and his contemporaries," writes Greenlaw, "Arcadia was

See "ew Light upon Sir Philip lney's 'Arcadai,'"
The Cuartqrly JiEie CCXI (July, 1909), 14-100. The U1J
,rcajia, written in 1580, appears as Volume IV of The Ccmite
tcrs r ~11 .hEll .lEl re, ed. Albert Fedillerat, 4 vols.
(Lon rdon, _1-l-19L1), hereafter referred to as ~1rks. Two otner
versions of the romance exist: Sidney's re/islon, begun 1531-
1582, left incomplete at a point near the end cf boc.c III,
frequently referred to as the Ne_ Arcaila and .uLblished in
quarto by Ponsonby in 1590; a ccmposite text Issued in follo
by Sidney's sister in 1593, containing the revised fragmernt
plus slightly modifled additions from tre hrce.iae. .ll
references to Sidney's romance in the present stu.ay are, un-
less otherwise indicated, to the 1590 quarto edition.

41n Kittredge Anniversary papers (Boston, 1913),
pp. 327-337.

regarded as an heroic poem."1 GCeenlaw's theory underlies

the central point of his article: that "Sidney's book...

is less truly to be described as a pastoral romance than as
an 'historical fiction,' a prose counterpart of the Faerle

ueen, having for its object 'to fashion a gentleman or
noble person in vertuous and gentle discipline,' and to por-

tray 'a good gcvernour and a vertuous man.'"6 To substanti-
ate the theory of the revised Arcg"a as an heroic poem,

Greenlaw relies chiefly on contemporary references to the

work as heroic by Abraham Fraunce, Sir John Harlngton, Gabriel

Harvey, and Francis Meres, on the well-known passage in the

Defence of Poesie where Sidney speaks favorably of Xenophon
and Helicdorus as writers of heroic poems in prose, and on the

testimony of Sidney's friend, Fulke Greville, as to the high

seriousness and moral intent in the revised Arealla. Rein-

sIbid., p. 327. Though anticipated in some measure by
tre essays of Disraeli, Stigant, and Girardin cited abcve,
Greenlaw is usually given credit for the theory. Cf. the
note on this point by Marcus Goldman, Sir hllp Zre and
B Arcadia ("Illinois Studies in Language and Literature,"
Vol. V11, Nos. 1-2 [Urbana, 1934] ), p. 137.

6Op. cit., p. 337.

forced by a number of critical studies,? Greenlaw's theory

has met witn little opposition,9 and its security can be felt

in a recent remark by C. S. Lewis. "The first thing me need

to know about the Arcadia," says Lewis, "is that it is a
heiroe po7syi not Arcadian idyll, not even Arcadian, romance,
but Arcadian epic."9

In particular, Friedrich Brie, Zidney's Arcadia,
eino itudle ur enellschn Renaissnnce in Cuerlen und
FPrschvngen, CXIV (1918), an interpretation of the revised
Arcadia as an allegorical epic; Varcus Goldman, o~. cit.,
pp. 144-163, 136-210 a study of the revised krcadia as
heroic romance and of Sidney's Indebtedness to salory'a MErti
d'Art _h for a part of the chivalric and moral content; and
Lerinet C0. uyrick, gaji Fhllr Zlide As a iteraryr Craftlsma
(Cambridge, Mass., '135), pp. 110-295, an examination of the
work especially in the light of rules for the renaissance epic
as laid down in linturno's E Foeta. General comment on the
revisel Arliia as ia heroic ;oem may be found in C. S. Lewis,
Ea&li t Literature n jae 3xteenth Century (Oxford, 1954),
pp. bl-JL'i4 and in riltz Caspari, H.an ls ja b tg ocial
Order ia A Idne land (Cnicago, 1564), pp. 1E/-175, a study
tnat also describes kidney's rLmance as an eatodiment of the
humanistic ideal.
R. V. Zandvoort, Sidney Arcadil: A ComnParison j-
ts.mn 1fe ~Ro Versicn (Amsterdam, i. 9), pr. ll-1Z4, has
raised the strongest objection to the theory. Zandveort finds
pervasivee rather than convincing" Greenlaw's claim that
Sidney looked upon his work as an neroic poem. "That Sidney
may nave regarded the Arcadia seriously," says Zandvc.ort,
"does not necessarily mean tnsr he regarded it as an attempt
tc illustrate the allegorical theory of epic poetry." Zand-
voert interprets the revised krcadi as "at once a romance
and a treatise." -or further details in his objection,
see his review of Myrick's Philip dn~m a a Literar
Craftsman in Bsiieilstt L Anglia, XLVII (1934j, 24t-L45.

Op. eit., pp. 334-325. Cf. also the comment by Geof-
frey Tillotson in his review (1&, XXIV L193 7, 337-329) of
myrica's atudy: "...it is doubtful If counter arguments other
than those Mr. lyriek has allowed for sill be advanced-he is
fortunate in coming at tan end of a period of Sidney scholar-
ship and makes full use of his position."

In the expansion and establishment of Greenlaw's theory,

the major problem has been to account for the presence in the

revised Argaia of 1) the depreciatory preface, 2) the past-

oral and love elements, and 3) the enormous complexity of

Books I and II in particular. Scholars have had little dif-

ficulty in removing the first two of these obstacles. The

depreciatory preface, with its statement that the romance is

"but a trifle, and that triflinglie handled," is felt by all

to belong almost certainly to the original version.10 And as

for bidney's use of love and the pastoral, scholars point to

the Defence of Poesie. There, with regard to love, Sidney ob-

serves that "even to the Heroicall, Cuid hath ambitiously

claimed" and refers to the "sugred invention of that picture

of love in ZReliodorus'j7 Thearenes & Chariclea" 11 and, with
regard to the pastoral, he notes that "some have mingled mat-

ters Haroicall and Pastorll...if severed they be good, the

conjunction cannot be hurtfull."12 The apparent incompatibil-

i ty of the intricacy of design with the simplicity of the

10The preface is usually taken to be an example of
srrezrztura, "the courtly grace which conceals a sober pur-
pose san is, indeed, the mark of consummate artistry" (Myrick,
t*. alt., P. 298). Moreover, in the preface kidney speaks of
tne work as being done, a comment that could refer only to
the Old Arcadia.

.11W III, 10.

12bid., p. 22.

classical epic cannot, however, be squared with any cf 210-

ney's theories in the Defence of Poese. What scrn.lrs have

done, therefore, is to consider the complexity as an example
of Renaissance luxuriance. Hence a reader looking into

Myrick's defense of the revised Arcadia as an heroic ioem

will find the complexity (along with the pastoral elements

and the great length) treated under a separate chapter en-

titled "Ornament in the Now Arcadia."13

To treat the intricate, colllicated nature of the re-

vised Arcadia as crnament or luxuriance is to treat it as

something of an excrescence that is not organically func-

tional, and is thus a satisfactory criticism only if the

romance is to be thought of as meeting the requirements for a

Renaissance ideal of the epic. But such a treatment lenles

unity in the revised Arcamii and does little to make the work

any more comprehensible to modern readers than it was te

eighteenth- and nineteenth-century readers. That Sidney

troubled himself to revise the straightforward, unified Qjg

Arcadia strongly suggests that he conceived the revision as

organic, that is, as a romance with an InterrelaltiLnsnip of

theme, structure, plot and style. Since current InirF.ret.-

tions of the revised Arcadia as an heroic poem dc n t recog-

nize this possibility, the principal aim of this study is to

1SQ. cit., pp. 171-189.

demonstrate that, however incoherent Sidney's romance may ap-

pear on the surface, it does have a unified design.

One of the more familiar scenes in the revised Ar

is the shipwreck near the beginning of Book I. Rescued from

this disaster, Musidcrus, one of the three heroes of the ro-

mance, has solicited the aid of Arcadian shepherds and is re-

turning to the scene in hope of finding his friend Pyrocles,

who has apparently perished in the same wreck.

They [the Arcadian shepherds steared therefore
as neere thetherward as they could but when they
came so neere as their eies were ful masters of
the object, they saw a sight full of piteous
strangeness a ship, or rather the carkas of the
shippe, or rather some few bones of the carkas,
hulling there, part broken, part burned, part
drowned% death having used more then one dart to
that destruction. About it floted great store of
very rich things, and many chestes which might
promise no less. And amidst the precious things
were a number of dead bodies, which likewise did
not only testified both ele~ts violence, but
that the chief violence was grown of humane in-
humanities for their bodies were ful of grisly
wounds, & their bloud had (as it were) filled the
wrinkles of the seas visages which it seemed the
sea would not wash away, that it might witness it
is not alwaies his fault, when we condemne his
cruelties in summe, a defeated, where the conquered
kept both field and spoiled a shipwrack without
store or ill fgptings and a wast of fire in the
midst of water.4

The style of this shipwreck scene is particularly impressive.

La"c, I, 9-10.

The emphasis upon the strangeness of the sight; the ccrtrast

evident in the commingling of precious spoils with dead bodies;

the summary statement of "a defeats, where the conquered Kapt

both field and spoiled: a shipwrack without store or ill foot-

ings and a wast of fire in the midst of water"--all these

points clearly mark the importance of the passage as one of

paradox of situation. Yet scholars have all but overicoked

this aspect of Sidney's style.15 Their concern lies in de-

fending the scene against the criticism of J. J. Jusserand,

who was particularly disturbed by what he felt to be a jocular

use of the pathetic fallacy in the sentence "their bloud had

(as it were) filled the wrinkles of the seas visage: which

15The only extensive treatment of Sidney's paradoxes
is by Samuel Lee Wolff, The Greek ii nrces jg llzabethan
Eros Fiction (New York, 1 li)j, p. A7-,t,. 'rcUf'rl cnlef
interest, however, is in Sidney's indebtedness ct tellcdcrus
and Achilles Tatius. Other critics make only brief mention
of paradox as a stylistic feature of the revised Arcriaa. Cf.,
for example, Myrick, 9.. Lit., pp. 187, 189. It is rather
odd that Mona tilson, Sr r nli11- &idn (London, IrtO), pp.
304-309, makes no mention of paraocx in her admirable analy-
sis of "The Arcadian Style." Bor is there any discussion of
paradox in Zandvoort's chapter on "The Style of the Two Area-
dias," oj. t.. pp. 166-188, though he does cite (p. 171)
an instance or wo of oxymoron, a type of paradox tiatc com-
bines contradictory or incongruous words. Staniey farYness,
"The Prose Style of Sir Philip Sidney," in university; ,l_-
ccnaIln tudies in Language and Liter atre, r P (11),
pp. 57-'7', lKev j omits menriln ol paraucx, though it should
be stated that liarkness restricts his study to irregularities
in Sidney's sentence patterns.

it seed the sea would not wash away...."16 The paradoxi-

cal nature of the shipwreck scent sets the basic tone for

the whole book and is essential to its unity.

For the shipwreck scene is but one of nearly a hun-
dred examples of paradox in the revised Anzdia. Many of

these paradoxes are, as critics observe, statements that Sid-
ney works in for stylistic embellishment, but many more ap-

pear as situations which he plots against a larger paradox

of anarchy in the midst of an Arcadian setting. It turns out

that Sidney is exploring the difference between appearance

and reality. Together these paradoxes of situation develop

(i.e., illustrate) a central theme that demonstrates a para-

doxical truth about virtue or high honor. Stated in Sid fy's

own words, the central theme of the revised Arcadia is that

16p. eit., pp. 265-259. Jusserand comments further
(p. 259) that "There is indeed In French literature a dagger
celebrated for having rougl le traitre! but what is it in
comparison; and ought it not in its turn to grow pale with
envy at the thought of this sea that will not wash itself?"
For a defense of Sidney's description, see Myrick, op. Sct.,
pp. 185-183, who feels that the "most careful craftsmanship"
marks the passage as a whole and thinks Sidney, "in his care-
fully maintained point of view, shows in his art a conspicu-
ous inteLlectual quality." See also J. F. Danby, Poets S
Fortune's ~1U (London, 1952), p. S0, who writes "The ship-
wreck description is not one of Sidney's purple passages.
And as we have seen the pattern it reveals is not an arbi-
trary or conventional one imposed from the outside. It is
the imprint of a mind mastering its objects. Sidney's style
is balanced, antithetical, alliterative, calculated...Sidney
saw the world in terms of division, balance, and resolution.
Hit style is a reflection of that vision."

"the Jorney of high honor lies not in plain wayes,"17 which

is a reworking of a conventional theme found in Ovid and

later in Bacon: "Adversity doth best discover virtue.''13

Having related theme, plot and style by characterizing most

of the episodes in Book II and the situations that constitute
the main and sub plots in the work as a whole, paradox then
intensifies an involved, labyrinthine structure that Sidney

uses chiefly because a simple structure would not carry his

theme. Thus, as Fulke Greville puts it, the end in the re-

vised ArEadia is "not vanishing pleasure alone, but moral

Images, and Examples, (as directing threds) to guide every

man through the confused Labyrinth of his own desires, and


With the combination of paradox and labyrinthine move-

aent, the revised Arcadia becomes a riddle. Designed to

teach as well as to delight, a riddle is characterized by

perplexity and ingenuity. Until the riddle is solved, the

perplexity remains primary; the ingenuity, secondary. The key

17orks, I, 301.

18Bee Chapter IV.

19=ir la r.-v lles Life of E h ~illy L Y, ed.
Nowell Smith (Oxford, 17uL), p. "L3.

to Sidney's ridale is paradox a study of which, though the

device is one of the very elements that contribute to the

form of the romance, nevertheless solves the puzzle and re-

veals its ingenuity. Analyzed in terms of paradox, the re-

vised Arcadia emerges not as a ragged, incoherent jungle of

thoughts and events but as a unified romance which, beneath

its perplexity and in the face of its unfinished state, is

carefully designed to fulfill what Sidney believed to be the

purpose of poetry to teach and delight.20

The unified design briefly outlined above comes about

through Sidney's application cf paradox to a particular method

of discourse that serves this twofold purpose of poetry. It

will be seen that the new reading of the revised Arcadia

follows closely the Defenac of Poesie and Greville's testi-

mony as to Sidney's aim. The reading also relies on a source

hitherto slighted by critics. In view of the widespread ac-

ceptance of the revised Aradia as an heroic poem or epic, it

is usually assumed that Sidney's use of the jin nedias re type

20iQ a, Ill, 9. "Poesie therefore," says Sidney, "is
an Art of Imitation: for so Aristotle termeth it in the word
Annthr a tnat Is to say, a representing, counterfeiting, or
figuring forth to speaker Metaphorically. A speaking FicEureG
with this end to teach and delight." It should be ncted tnea
Sidney maintained that poetry can be inclusive of prose. See
cr':s, III, 10.

of structural pattern was due to the influence of Hellodorus's

Aethiolca. This indebtedness seems all the more certain in
view of the fact that Sidney is known to have borrowed other

material, including paradoxes, from Helleodcru..1 It is

quite likely, however, that Sidney's source was more immediate;
that for his inverted structural plan he drew upon the de-

sription of the prudential method of discoursing outlined in
the logic of the French reformer, Peter Ramus. This method
is a statement of the Jin zman u re scheme to which Raras de-
votes some eight pages in his major treatise, fully explain-
ing the plan and clearly designating it as one not roly suit-

able for the functional use of a stylistic device like para-

dox but particularly adaptable for the poet whose task it is

to teach and delight a popular reader. Indeed, the unified

design of the revised Arcadia itself as adumbrated here is in

the very spirit of Ramus's application of logic and rhetoric

to literature, particular his demonstration of how a figure

such as paradox can logically function to "prove" a theme.
In short, the evidence strongly suggests that the revised
Aradia is an example of Ramistic logic.

21See rolff, o g.J, pp. 210 ff. Sidney's sources
have been studied extensively. A convenient, annotated bi-
bliography appears in Zandvocrt, 0. Zct., pp. 189-197, to
whose list should be added the studies by Goldman and myrick
referred to above, and the following g wrkss MlxEr Fatchell, ~g
Pal-erin Eopcerea in Elizabethan EPFa EqlaPti n hu crk, lu"'),
pp. 116-l'., and Freda L. Townaana, "Sidney and Ariosto,"
pfLA, LX1 (March, 1946), 97-108.

For the modern reader the term praadE is likely to

be colored by modern notions and interpretations that all

too often restrict its meaning to a statement expressing a

verbal contradiction. The discussion of the meaning of para-

dox in the sixteenth century, based primarily on an examina-

tion of the most widely used grammar-books, treatises on

rhetoric, and compendiums of rhetorical figures, discloses

three senses of the term that were familiar to an Elizabethan

writer. From its original meaning of a statement or proposi-

tion contrary to received opinion, the term same to include

apparently or actually contradictory statements and then,

supported by theelement of surprise or wonder often implicit

in the original sense, statements or situations contrary to

expectation. It is mainly this latter sense, the paradox of

situation, that provides the basis for unity in the revised


In the sixteenth century paradox appeared also in an

expanded form: a literary genre with which Sidney was well

acquainted and which doubtless, when considered along with the

well-known paradoxical character of his life, did much to

shape a personal outlook on the world in terms of sharp con-

trasts. The survey of the literature of paradox before 1686

places the revised Aaadi in proper context as an artful in-

novation of paradox in opposition to a frequent and popular
employment of the device as a rhetorical exercise.

The concluding chapter of this study summarizes fcur

important corollaries to the central thesis that the revised

Arecsda may be read as a unified whole through an FwErenass

of Sidney's application of certain principles of Rmlistic in-

vestigation and method to the use of paradox. First, by em-

ploying the spirit of Ramism to validate Sidney's theory as

to the end of poetry, which is to teach and delight, the re-

vised Arcadi will be seen to take on a distinct practical

character. Second, by creatively illustrating the Influence

of Ramus's contention that the art of logic is to reason well,

the rcmance assumes an historical importance. Third, by
achieving unity through the interrelationship of theme,

structure, plot and style, the romance gains the literary

distinction of contributing to the development of English

prose fiction. And finally, by divulging a paradoxical

truth, as Sidney saw it, about the nature of reality, the

romance assumes an ontological significance.



Dating from 1540, the term sara oxr in the etymolo-

gieal sense recorded by the PxZRi |nli& ADitionary of "a
statement or tenet contrary to received opinion or belief,"l

emerged in English writing close to the outset of the
Elizabethan period. This original meaning of the term,

derived from Greek par (contrary to) plus *MI (opinion),

was current throughout the age and received particular ea-

phasis and popularity when it appeared in a well-astablished
genre with a tradition dating back to the ancient Greeks.
The meaning is not, however, one with which a modern reader

is likely to be familiar. Nor is he likely to recognize any
sense of paradox other than that in which the term is con-
strued as a statement actually or apparently self-contradic-
tory. Yet the term 2~arEa was understood during Sidney's

time in at least three closely related senses, two of which

often obscured the original meaning. Since an understanding
of the detailed analysis of the revised Areadia that appears

in a later chapter will demand a knowledge of each of these
three senses, and particularly the two historical senses, and

1The entry reads in part as follows "Palsgrave Tr.
ALiLaIpt Prol. Bijb, We shall not wytsafe any Paradoxes in
noo place, 1, we shall not wytsafe...any thynges, that be
aboue or beyond the common opynyon of men."

since the chapter will insist upon rather close distinctions
among them, a workable description of the muAsing of paradox
in the sixteenth century is here necessary.
Perhaps it is well to keep in mind that in tnis

chapter and the next no attempt is made to travel specific
sources for Sidney's paradoxes. Rather are the tro chapters

together to be thought of as an attempt to provide a descrip-
tion of paradox and to define a milieu of paradox by which

Sidney, a man of wide reading and learning, night be expected

to have been Influenced as his inquiry into the discreparcy
between appearance and reality began to take shape.
A full understanding of what the term nrao meant

to an Elizabethan writer like Sidney can best be gained in

the light of a brief inquiry into the nature of renaissance

rhetoric, particularly its relation to logic, and an ex-
amination of these treatises and textbooks on rhetoric which

supplied definitions and illustrations of the term.
Since the subject of paradox belongs to that branch

of Renaissance rhetoric known as style, a full definition of
the term is not, for reasons shortly to be adduced, easy to

come by. To the modern reader, sixteenth-century rhetoric is
likely to appear sowndiess confusion. Disagreer.inL amng
authorities as to what material was properly a matter for

logic and what was properly a matter for rhetoric led to

difference of opinion with regard to the nature of the divi-

sions within these disciplines. The two parts of rhetoric
around which much of the confusion centered were invention
and style. In the Middle Ages dialectic or logic occupied a
place of first importance in the triviun~ of its traditional

(i.e., Ciceronian) five divisions of invention, arrangement,
style, memory, and delivery, rhetoric managed to retain only
the latter three, the first two having been assigned to logie.
In the Renaissance, however, rhetoric was elevated to a top
position in the trivia. Yet invention, its first branch,
was net always given treatment in school manuals. On the one
hand, a few writers, e.g., Leonard Cox in jT liAr s craft
of rhetoryke (1594 ?)2 and Thomas Wilson in Itd AEre sE Rh-

tor(lu 0 (1560), attempted to restore invention and arrange-
ment to their traditional place in rhetoric. On the other
hand, some writers, especially those who, like Abraham Fraunce

in The A rdl i Rhetorike (1588), had fallen under the in-
fluence of Peter Ramus and the Rhetoriea of his disciple

2Cox's treatise has the distinction of being the
earliest English work on rhetoric. It deals with only one
point of Ciceronian rhetoric, vis., inaatnt or investigation.
For a discussion of Cox's departure from the Rhetcrica 4A
1ereanlu and Cieero's L? inv'ntLone in the handl1.jg of inven-
tion, and of Cox's contntion that olalectical and rhetorical
invention are not entirely separate, see Wilbur Samuel Howell,
Lgic and Rhetoric in England, 1500-1700 (Princeton, 1956),
pp. 93-94.
3Cf. the reprint of the 1685 edition, collated with the
edition of 1660 (the dgit rrincery) and that of 1567, done
by G. I. Mair (Londcn, 1909), p. u. Wilson's rhetoric, an
illustration of all five divisions of traditional or Cicero-
nian rhetoric, was first published in an incomplete form in 16 3.

Audemarus Talaeus, took issue with traditional rhetoric and

assigned invention, arrangement, and memory to il.gic--bihch
left only style and delivery as the whole of rhLU'rlc.4
Hence one frequently finds in an Elizabethan trCatisr oil rhe-

toric much the same material, dealing with or related to in-
vention, as that presented in a treatise on logic.5
Similar confusion and overlapping appeared in style,

another main branch of rhetoric, and an aspect to wi!ich Ln-

vention was in part related. Much ef the richness and exuber-

ance of language in Elizabethan literature was due to the

schoolboy's early training in rhetoric, for not only did
rhetoric hold first place in the trivium but of its five
branches style was at that time considered by some writers
the most important. Yet style was the least stable of these

4The popularity of Hamus (1515-1572) and his supposed
reform of logie and rhetoric lasted Iui LngilEd frm. t:, latter
half of the sixteenth century to the early seventeenth cen-
tury. Pamistic logic was .'i,Li:-duced at Can:ridgo irn t.e early
1E7U's 'bi the lectures of Laurence Chaderton, und in 1L75-76
Gabriel survey delivered at tho ean ir.Glti.tiln a aeries of
lectures on Ramus's doctrine of rhetoric. See Ci aptar IV.
Ramistic rhetoric, which ii.cldJd atbo-t ti6erty-fiv6 trcies
and figures and a csacourse on delivery was advanced by
Talaeus in his L nti.tl.-i3ei cratrior 11C37), usually 1e-
farred to as the pnnFtrjriAa. 'raunce's Ba Arcadlian rrotLf-e--
ed. Ethel Seaten luiara.r, 1 50)--ia c vdrzir.n C1 tte tL.-torica
and contains nuriro.-- .11..straticrns from SLdney's Ol .rcadia.

5Cf. Willian G. Crane, J! Pnrl p ,tnrle Ag ji
RenailssanI (hew York, 1937), pp. -/', bo-tu.

branches, partly because of the association of one of its
categories with logic and partly because of loose termino-
logy among writers on rhetoric. In many Renaissance text-
books on rhetoric under the general heading of style were

grouped figures of amplification designed to aid the student
in the development of a theme. The most important of these

figures were those of thought. Since these were derived

from the process of dialectical invention, one might, how-
ever, find them under "topics" in a treatise calcgic. Thus
the figures of thought in Henry leacham's h~e uAi .
Elcne (1677)6 do not appear in Fraunce's Z3 IraB d

Ehetrit because Ramus had assigned those figures to logic.

In view of this overlapping one might expect to find an ex-

ample of paradox cited as a contrr or a contradictory
under "topics" or "places" of invention in a treatise on
rhetoric. As Williaa 0. Crane observes, "To schoolboys and
literary men of the Renaissance it mattered little whether
such devices as definition, distinction, division, cause,
similitude, dissimilitude, example, and testimony of authori-
ties fell under the heading of 'topics of logic' or under

6"The Garden of Eloquence conteyning the Figures of
Grammer End Rhetorike...Set fourth in rnglishe, by henry
Pecham, Minister. Anno. 1577." 1C 19497. A corrected edi-
tion of Peacham's rhetoric, snowing the Influence of Ramism,
appeared in 1593. A facsimile reprint of this edition is
available, with an Introduction by lilliam G. Crane (Gaines-
ville, Florida: Scholars' Facsimiles & Reprints, 1954).

*figures of thought.'"7
In addition to confusing one division of style with

logical invention,-Elizabethan writers of textbooks and
compendiums created further confusion by ignoring distine-
tions in some of their illustrations for rhetorical figures.

For instance, note the following cases wherein a contradictory
(paradoxical) statement appears under different hsadingst
1) under trg~ejdsV i in Wilson's UMg A~lS s2 Phetorli.
Contrarietie, is when our talk standeth by contrary
words or sentences together. As thus. We might
dispraise some one man, he is of a strange nature
as euer I saw, for to his friend he is cmrltsth, to
his foe he is gentle giue him fair w'rdes an-i you
off,-nd himn check him sharply, and you wiamea him.
Let uLi haue his will, and he will flie in tny facet
keepe him short and you shall haue him at commaind-

2) under jthy~gae in Richard Sherry's A i S ts t hg ig-

seaa Rr aa&XE _DZ A LiO (1555)
Enthymemea a sentena e made of contraries...to be
allowed of evil, is gret reproch. Ais' flattry
getteth frendes, trueth hatred.-

2U. 2ct., p. 63.

8f. the edition by G.H. Nair, p. 199.

0ol1. iv. ~MZ 24A29.

3) under BcLraY in Dudley Fenner's hea Arte AIJtIt&
and Rethcrike (1584)
Cc.ntrariej7, opposites whereof one is set against
one and thZeef re they directly fight one against
another. L/E. ...to be ones father and his begot-
ten Sonne. O
4) under paradomn in Peacham's *h Garan gL E uence (1577)
It was such lucke as you nener heard of, almost in-
oredible, that when fyre should haus consumed him,
fire saued him, and lykewyse at another tyme, when
water should haue bene his death, it saued his
5) under ironia in Fraunce's The Areaa Rheat~,ri
Irona a Trope, that by naming one contrarie inten-
aetu anr.ther...and it is perceived by the contrar-
ietie of the matter it self, or by the manner of
vtterance qulte differing from the sense of the
words. /E7 0 notable affection, for the loue of
the father, to kill the wife, and disinherit the
children. 0 single ninded modestie, to aspire to no
lease, than to the prinolie Diadems.12
Such confusion of rhetorical figures is perhaps understandable.
Sister Miriam Joseph notes that the "Tudor rhetoricians treat
eleven figures based on contraries and contradictories."13
The figures are litotes, synoeciosis, paradox, antithesis,
antanagoge, irony, synarlsis, inter se pugnantia, antiphrasis,

10Fol. Br. SE 10766.

1122i. aLt., Miij.

12See the edition by Ethel Seaton, p2. S.", P. 10.

13.hak'.espre' use PS the ALrts &f ja (New York,
1947), p. .

paralipsis, and epitrope, the last three being forms of
irony. Since contrast is the basis of each of these figures,

an illustration of one might well serve to illustrate another.
Shakespeaa0s "Cowards die many times before their deaths /
The valiant never taste cf death but once" (JQliu Caesar,
II, i, 32) is clearly an example of paradox; but one night

also use the lines, as Sister Joseph herself does, fcz an 11-
lustration of syncrisis, a figure "which compares ccnt-rary
things in contrasting clauses."
Though understandable, confusion botije aj certain
aspects of rhetoric and logic and within rhetoric itself

means, of course, that no single, generally accepted defiai-
tion of paradox was in use during Sidney's time. Mcrecrer,

it has been implied that paradox was but one of a host of

figures (and words) that were undergoing changes in meaning
during the Renaissance. Yet in spite of the apparent diffi-
culties such changes produced, imbedded in grammar-achool

textbooks and literature is sufficient information to make
understandable what the term meant to the Llizabethan and to

provide a workable description of paradox for the present

For help in writing themes the Elizabethan schoolboy
made use primarily of three kinds of textbooks a manual that
supplied elementary instruction in gathering and orgr-niing
material, a textbook with a wealth of illustrations for

copiousness of matter, and a rhetoric book or ccmpernium
listing the various tropes and figures that aid in amplifica-
tion and cranmentation. Of the available manuals of instruc-
tion in composition, the nost widely used was the iPrc. -
azimta of Aphthonius, particularly the Latin edition pub-
lished in 1542 by Reinhard Lorieh.14 Aphthanius's manual
consisted of fourteen exercises with definitions and il-
lustrations.15 To achieve copiousness of matter, the stu-
dent could supplement the Pro t with Erasmus's D

SAiSA (1511).16 It is interestln4 that both of these texts

14The title page of the edition used here reads in
part as follo~si "Progymnasmata Latinitate donate...H. Niddle-
ton. 1657." jNC 700.

16See the Introduction by Francis R. Johnson to the
fa:simlle reprint of Rlolerd ainolde's A L AJ 1 o alled t
Foundaclcn i at teaiLke A 56 (New York, 145).

16"De duplici copia varborun ae rerum...J. Kyngston.
1569." LS 10472. Concrete evidence of the fusion of rhetoric
and logic can be seen in the case of commentaries on Eras.as's
D CCia. In each of his three treatises on rhetoric, De
rhetcrcia U1 tre1s (1519), tituticne rlhotorea (I]),
and i-LeantLcru rL~L.F:e .le J di ( lU31)I rnilip helanch-
then refers nia readers to the second book of the ze n22lS
for further treatment of figures of amplifloaticn; ana in his
commentary on Cicero's Topr A--lScl la In Cir sTni nisA
(lM 4)--he notes the close parallel DetaeeQL oe AS ODa and
Clcero's treatise. Moreover, in A r'trtiso f Lcnraes Aa
Trorae (1550) Richard 'herry lists unaer 'liV ures ol sentences"
material from the P_ ccJi for gaining abundance of matter.
But in a dunlei c a Aer or a reru iL ecm.n.starJ.l
J. Voltreircrii (agan.a, 1&4&), John 'ocl;ch h3a arjuea that
tni same maLerial originates in the process of logical inven-
tion. Further discussion of these particular Instances of
confusion between rhetoric and logic can be found in Crane's
iU =A Ph&tr. An Qai R aMenaMsae, pp. 71-73.

made provision for "contrarie," under which heading a para-

dox or paradoxical statement sometimes appeared.17 But the

"contrarie" did not Involve the paradox of defending a view

contrary to received opinion or belief, but simply the treat-

ment of a suDject with its opposite.18 As a starting point

for a description of paradox, those works concerned chiefly,

though not exclusively, with style therefore provide ample

illustration, e.g., Cicero's treatises and the various texts

and compendiuns that deal with rnetorlcal figures.

Popularity of the etymological meaning of paradox has
already been cited as teinZ due mainly tc its expansion into

a literary genre. This meaning of paradox was, of course, in

use among the early Greeks. Jocrates, for example, forced

Thrasyma-nus to assert a view contrary to received opinion,

namely, that the unjust ore vise and good.19 From the Greeks

the meaning came to England through the Romans, Cicero in

171n tre Progvayasaata, p. 32; in the Js aoria, p.34r
and p. 49r.
18For example, in Richard Rainolde's A D oke called.
the Foundaclon of Rhetorike, which is an Englisn adaptation
of Loricn's Latin text of tna Prcvmrniasmata, the contrary
view to Solon's law whiche suffered adultrie to bee punished
with deatn, ro judJement glen thereupon"simply offers an
"argument sufficient to confounded the laws of Solon," name-
ly, "no man ought in his oan cause, to be his own Judge or
bagistrgte." See the reprint by Francis R. Johnson, 2j. eit.,
fol. Ix .
19Cf. Warner G. Rice, "The Parados.l of Ortansio
Lando," Univarslty of ilcbtan Publications I Lana" and
Literature, V11I (Il ), 5

particular. His well-known azh"Aj stajlccr was a series

of arguments which he termed paradoxes because they "are

urprisil and they run counter to universal opinion."0

Asila from its appearance in a genre, which receives due at-

tention in the next chapter, the etymological meaning of para-

dox was also current in works of a diversified character in

the more limited form of statements and propositions.

In the 1777 edition cf Te ar Eloy uenc
Henry Peacham defines and illustrates paradox as follows:

Paradoxon, when we affyrme something to be
true, by saying we would not haue beleeued
it, nor yet once suspected it, or in good things,
by saying we near lookte for it, thus, I would
nouer haue beleeued that he had bons such a
one, but that I heard it auouched of credible
persons and testyfyed by very good witnesses
surely it is truth that I tell you, he is not
without doubt the man you take him for. Another,
it was such luck* as you neuer heard of, almost
incredible, that when fyre should haue consumed
him, fire sued him, and lykewyse at another
tyme, when water should haue bene his death, it
saued his lyfe. Act. Apost. 26. Paule being
accused of the Jewes to King Agrippa, how that he
beleeued and taught the resurrection from death,
which Doctryne they counted false, and therefore
brought him to his aunswere, Paule used this fig-
ure, showing that not long Defore, he was of
their opynyon and thought as they doe now, why
should it be thought, quoth he, a thing incred-
ible to you, that God should raise agayn the
dead? I also verily thought in syselfe, that I
ought to doe many contrary things, cleaned
against the name of Jesus of Nazareth, which thing

2Cicero De oratore III: De fate: P-radoxA stc.lce-run:
De Lzr ntini crtc-rid e, tr. t. hacVlam, ("'Th Loeb pasaleal
LlIrery"; Cambriage, wbss., 194W), p. 267.

I bid also in Jerusalem, Paule tc tne Gala-
Llians, I maruayle that you are so scone

Peacham's definition has been quoted in full for purposes of
comparison later in this chapter with a corrected version of

.sB MJard .L A212M 2M that appeared in 1593. There it will
be seen that, aside from problems in syntax, the defirition

just quoted is quite ambiguous; for it actually includes three
senses of the term. For the present, however, it is suffi-
cient to point out evidence of the original sense, which can
be seen in the phrase "by saying we would not haue beleeued
it" and in the illustration from Acts. A similar maLoing for

paradox appeared in the work of Thomas Dlundeville. In Jhe

Art At Logllk (1899) he wrote, "Paradoxt which is as much to
say as an opinion contrary to all men's opinions..."; and of-
fered as his example the following specious arguments "the
Sophister will make you to grant that a rich and happy k:lr. is
wretched, by force of argument thuss whosoever is subject to
sin is wretched but all rich and happy kings are subject to

o22*. g1., iljv.

sinne, ergo all rich and happy kings are wreched.22

Finally, kidney himself, in reply to the charge that poets
are the greatest liars, used the term in its original sense

when in the ~f a o f_ esic (1583) he said "I answer
Paradically, but truly, I think truly that of all writers

under the Sunne, the Poet is the least lyer...."23 In the
present work this etymological meaning of paradox-a tenet or
proposition contrary to received opinion or belief--is refer-
red to as iarads x cotrary.
Doubtless it would be futile to argue that responsi-
bility for the first appearance of paradox contrary in English

writings was attributable to any one person. A general in-

terest among Elizabethans in the classics, including Greek,

where the device was frequent, makes substantiation of the
argument nearly out of the question. Yet it would not be be-

22"The Art of Logike. Plainly taught in wne English
tongue, by N. Blundeville...for J. Windet. 153'." =i 3142.
The quotations are on pp. 162-163. It is interesting to note
that Blundeville's work, which represents a reaction against
Ramism and a return to scholastic logic, gives further evi-
dence of the shifting of terms from rhetoric to logic. In
contrast to Peacham's ~ht ad of Elo'vence (15?7), here
paradox is cited as a rhetorical figure, Blundevillele treat-
ise clearly places paradox in the realm of logic. This is com-
parable to Dudley Fenner's insistence (of. ij.* Bg ) that
paradox belongs under "disagreeable arguments" in Iogic.
23 Crlte Eorts ir hl. ,i ed. Albert
Feuillerat, 4 vols. (Cam.ridge, Lng., 1L-;- ), ill, 28-here-
after referred to as .erka. Arnther example would be Pyrocleo
defense of the contemplailve life as opposed to the active
life, in the familiar debate scene in Book I of the revised

side the mark to claim for Cicero, a master of Latin prose,
a large share in the matter. For it was mainly Cicero whom
the early Elizabethans studied as a model of style, then held
to be the chief division of rhetoric. "The rhetorical troat-
Ises of Cicero," writes Crane, "particularly his De LC ratore
E iavention, and 1 Dbar titione .rtorla, along with the

AdA JikgBtta, which had long been attributed to him, received
considerable attention in the schools."24 Crane's point is
but further testimony to a Renaissance reverence for the
authority of Cicero that is now a commonplace.25 Cicero's
SParag" Steleorrum has already been mentioned, and in view of
the esteem in which Cicero was held, there is no reason to
doubt that this work had much to do with populariation of
paradox contrary as a literary genre. It seems safe, there-
fore, to begin with Cicero in discussing the appearance during
the Elizabethan period of a second meaning of paradox.

2it Rhetoric_ A j at. a p. 67.

'5"But the imitation of Cicero had its weaknerses and
its abuses, as it was inculcated by the pcdagogues. Tha ten-
deney to imitate the merely formal cl.ractsristics rf Cicero's
style, to neglect thoughtful matter in favor of comnnplacesa,
formulas, showy tropes and schemes culled from one's reading,
and phrases patched together in a moscic compiled out of 'tne
current aids to writers,' was all too common." See Ihrold E.
Wilson, "Qabriel Harvey's (.c.rc-rnianu" i t4lp C~. 1i.a
-ilP-iai :o1. 4 Nov. 9 p. LU. a.nlaL iuney a Letter
to nis urctiher Robert in 1580 O(rcra Ill, 1 2): "%o yow can
speaker and write Latine not btr brouily I never require great
study in Cicerenlanisme the c;elfe abuse of Oxford, QA aj
X1aba miamLAar, r g LIA&A ng~liuat."

In the ag crat-re Cisero declares that "the cr[csitlon

of verbal contradictories is one of the chief embellishments
of diction, and this same device is often witty as well....".6
Not a definition of paradox, Cicero's statement nevertheless
points up the main characteristic of a meaning cf the term
that dates, according to an entry in the O f alih f-
tlrnari, from 1569 and, although usually present in the form
of a statement or proposition, came by transferred sense to
be applied to any phenomenon or action with seemingly con-
tradletory aspects. Whereas in the original sense of the
term emphasis lay on a contrary, with this second meaning
came a stress on a contradiction, either actual or (more of-
ten) apparent. Sometimes the contradiction remained implicit
in the phrasing of the sentence, as in the following entry
again from the Qxfel4 il Dit or : "Your strange Para-
dox of Christes eating of his cwne fleshe."27 The more com-
mon practice, however, was to express the contradiction in a

forcible manner by means of antithesis and epigram, as in
Shakespeare's "No face is fair that is not full so black."28
It will be observed that in the development of this second

26See Racksha's translation, S._S., p. 397.

TAs cited in the ricLLcnr, the reference reads as
follows "1569 Crowley =h. a. initsn 1.187."

28laVe L ugAINrs ; 2Ic IV, iii, 253.

meaning the etymological sense was not lost but simply sub-

ordinated by a ccntiAdiltion, which, in keeping with the

Elizabethan interest in style, quite often became the neans

for verbal dexterity.
That this second meaning of paradox found a place in

textbooks and compendiuas of the period was anlTi:ipmted ear-

lier in the discussion of the confusion among writers like

Richard Sherry, Thomas WIlscn, Abraham Fr unrce, Heany Pea:ham,

and Dudley Fenner as to the proper terminology for rhetcrical

figures. It should be noted, however, that because of this

very confusion the type of paradox based on a ccntradioticn
rarely appeared, defined and illustrated, under the category
one would expect--that is, under "paradox"; rather did it ap-

pear as an example of whatever figure or placa--.g., en-

thymeae, ccntrarietie, ironia, contrary-the author of the

textbook or treatise fancied the example to fit. In other

words, a contradictory statement whether actual or asperent

was not always construed as a paradox. Indeed, it was some-

times cited simply as a grtradtil. Such is the case with

an entry in Aphthcnius's Prr-cr'nrsnatr. As an example of

prudential under the general heading of "exemplum,"

Aphthonius records the ccntra ictic "At senectus ipsa morbas

avocat a rebus gerendls, as inutiles reddit (But old age it-

self removes pains from things that have to be done, and ren-

ders them ineffective)," which is followed in turn by a do-

tailed sorti1a.29 let there is sufficient evidence to in-

dicate that, despite its frequent appearance under classifi-
cations other than "paradox," what has been here described as
a second type of paradox was understood as euch by Eliza-

bethans. In Love's Labour's &I the King's emphatic response

to Biron's "No face is fair that is not full so black" is-

"0 paradoxj"0 Moreover, in an earlier work, Henry Peacham's

.ma Giradn S Eloecuran (1577), this type of paradox is de-

29See the 1572 edition by H. Middleton, 22. Ata., p.
217v. j= 700. The sa2u~t reads as follows "Multo plura,
quam juuenes, efficiere possunt sens, rerun studies assueti.
Quorum arma sunt artes, & virtutum exercitationes. Nee viribus
aut velocitate corporum res magnae gerentur, sad consilio,
auctoritate, atque prudential (Peeple advanced in age are able
to accomplish much more than young people, because they are ac-
custcmed to the study of things. Their weapons are the arts
and the exercise of virtues. Not by physical strength nor by
bodily agility are great things accomplished, but by delibera-
tion, authority, and prudence)."

30IV, iii, 254. Cf. also Hamlet's remark to Ophelia
(III, i, 111-116)s "Aye, truly, for the power of beauty will
sooner transform honesty from what it is to a bawd than the
force of honesty can translate beauty into his likeness. This
was sometime a paradox but now the time gives it proof." Ham-
let's remark demands a word of comment. When a statement or
proposition contains a seemingly contradictory element that is
not stressed, the difference between paradox contrary and para-
dox contradictory is not always easy to see. A statement that
makes the contradiction emphatic by means of antithesis pre-
sents no problem; but otherwise either sense may be applicable.
Hamlet's remark is a case in point. In other words, as an ex-
ample of paradox contrary Hamlet's comment, once held to be
contrary to received opinion or belief, has through time gained
acceptance. The passage is sometimes annotated in this way
(Cf. the text of let in .jor ritL writers ed. G. B.
Harrison, 2 vols. New York, li/9 I, WO). It is this wri-
ter's feeling, however, that though antithesis is absent the
apparent contradiction in the passage subordinates the crig-
inal sense, and that the example is therefore properly one vf
paradox contradictory.

fined and illustrated under its proper category. "Para-

doxon," writes Peacham, "when we affyrme something to be

true, by saying we would not haue beleeued it, nor yet

once suspected it, or in good things, by saying we nauer

lookte for it...."31 Peacham's deriniticn has already been

quoted in connection withparadox contrary, but the defini-

tion applies equally well to the second type of paradox.

For the latter, because of its apparent contradiction, was

often understood simply as a statement or proposition that

appears false but that can be proven true. One of Peaehaa's

illustrations bears out the point. "It was such lutes as you

enuer heard of," he says, "almost incredible, that when fyrc

should haue consumed him, fire saued him, and lykewyse at

another tyme, when water should haue bene his death, it saued

his lyfe."32

The authority of Cicero's treatises and the many

textbooks, manuals, and compendiums of rhetoric gave popular

currency to this second meaning of paradox. Along with
these works should be mentioned the influence of the Greek
romances, beginning in 1679 when Thomas Underdowne transla-
ted into English the AthajiecaR of lielioderus. One of the
main stylistic features of these romances is the use of

paradox, especially paradox contradictory. In the opening

pages cf the Athl~~ima for example, appears a description
of the remains of an unusual battle (fought on land inundated

by a flood) that apparently began as a banquet. Moored near-
by was a ghostly ship. "To be brief," translates .Uderacwne,
"God showed a wcnderfull sight in so short time, bring

bloude with wine, joyning battaile with banketting, mingling
indifferently slaughters with drinkinZs, and killing with
quaffinges ...the conquerors -rj7 no where, a manifest vie-
torie but no spoyls taken away, a shipped without mariners
cnely, but as concerning other things untouched, as if shee
had been kept with a garde of many men, and lay at road in a
faulse harboure."33 Another Greek romance popular with Eliz-
a bethans, particularly Robert Greene, was Achilles Tatius's

Lcie Ld Clitoahon. Book II of this story contains the
following paradox of fire and water; "I myself have seen some
of these miraculous sights; there is, for example, a spring in
Sicily which has fire mixed with its waters; if you look down
you can see the flame shooting up from beneath, and yet if you

touch the water it is as cold as snow: the fire is not put out
by the water, nor is the water heated by the fire, but a truce

33See hag &.etrtran iaticr.'; c..n~ r, ihid r & po .
ijjmrcwne Othe iQulor rhinsiations1 iLcnacn, 16Lo), p. .

reigns in the spring between the two elements."34
The influence cf the Greek romances is o.ct notice-

able in the works of Elizabethan writers of proEs fictionri
who employed the device cf paradox chiefly as ::na-en atiln.
For example, in John Lyly's M nr'ln:r: ~- rt j n9 f lt (1i73)
abound sentences like the followings "I, but in the ccld'mst
flint there is hotte fire, the Bee that hath homny in Yh.r
mouth, hath a sting in hir t-yla...."35 Or in CGorge Gas-
coigne's The Lfp'jFnt Fable of Par.1!n-.nnrj, ;:ercUn ai Lmt

jA 3jhaAg (1572) appear statements like "So that conczidring
the natural climate of the country, I must say that I ;-av
found fire in frost. And yet comparing the ina.ualit-, o'f ry
deserts, with the least part of your rlort.hin-s, I feel a
continual frost, in my most fervent fire."36 Or, finally, cne
has no difficulty in finding a number of C.amples from any eme
of Robert Greene's romnaes, for instance, this one from iLa~-

a (~159)s "I think~ "E.nLL, that high minds are thD

J j he 1112 Inu3s, tr. S. Gaselee. ("Tna Loeb
Classical Library"' Londron, a1I7), p. 86. Samuel Lee Wolff,
T'2 ESZE TLLrSSLa-sLa 1l J, ercnas 'ictrJ3 (New iork,
Iul), pp. h.11-. tis snow UA 'La In Lri- rvvisei Aircaula
Sidney uses quite a number cf these paradoxes from noeiooorus
and Achilles Tatius.

35See T 0s 'Pcl u cAM L= ad. R. W.arwiek
Bond, 3 vol. O ft .-d, 1 i, 4.
3 Cs.ccagna's work is scr..-itimes referred to as 1.i A-
venti:' .t.tCr j.. S.ee .c ,i--I nl, Fictlic-, ed. Rctbert
Aslay ana a,.ln Mi. .;.os.leej i.';ewr l f.

shelters of Euertie, and Kings states are courts for dis-

tressed persons....37? The list could readily be supple-
mented from the field of poetry, such as Spenser's descrip-
tion of Nature in j_ ?aqri Ca ene: "This great Grandmother

of all creatures bred,/ Great Nature, ever ycung, yet full
of eld;/ Still moving, yet unmoved from her sted;/ Unseene
f any, yet of all beheld...."38 But the foregoing examples

indicate the currency of this figure.

37See f an.1 lrk 7 fert e Grene ed. Alexander
Grosart, 12 vols. (Lonadn, l1bl-l.e3) II, 60.
2'%k. VII, vii, 109-112. Cf. the paradox in the last
couplet of the following lines from Marlowe's H ad JI -
(Ag (11, 318-322)l
And from her countenance behold ye might
A kind of twilight break, which through the hair,
As from an orient cloud, glimps'd here and there;
And round about the chamber this false morn
Brought forth the day before the day was born.
Or the use of paradox in the well-known "Rich" sonnet (Enoras
II, 299) which has been the mainstay for those who find bio-
graphical significance in Sidney's Astro~ hel and al

My mouth doth water, and my breast doth swell,
My tongue doth itch, my thoughts in labour bes
Listen then Lordings with good eare to me,
For of my life I must a riddle tell.
Toward Auroras Court a Nymph doth dwell,
Rich in all beauties which mans eye can seet
Beauties so farre from reach of words, that we
Abase her praise, saying she doth excells
Rich in the treasure of deserved renowned,
Rich in the riches of a royall hart,
Rich in those gifts which give th' eternall crownse
Who though most rich in these and everie part,
Erhich make the patents of true worldly bliss,
Hath no misfortune, but that Rich she is.

A later chapter will show that Lidney uses this type

of paradox both in the form of statements to ampllfy the
central theme and in the form of situations to directly de-
velop that theme. When used in the present study this figure,
where a statement or proposition or action is either ap-
parently or actually contradictory, is called Paradox ccntra-
Much of the ambiguity noted earlier in Peacham's de-

finition of paradox disappeared in a corrected version of Ih

nGft At El~cen3 s published at London in 133.33 In this
revised edition Peacham defines the term as "a forme of speech
by which the Orator affirmeth some thing te be true, by say-

ing he would not haue beleeued it, or that it is so strange,
so great, or so wonderful, that it may appeared to be Incredi-
ble."40 He then illustrates the definition with the account

from Acts he had used in the 1l57 edition of his rhetorie--of
St.Paul's argument with the Jews over the Resurreetion; and he

adds the remark that the figure is to be used when the "thing
which is to be taught is new, strange, incredible."41 Compared

B"The Garden of Eloquence, conteining the most excel-
lent Ornaments, Exornations, Lightes, fiow-rs7 a.ri fermes cof
speech...London, .?F. for H. Jackson. 153." ji i14j3.

40ol. 112.

41Fol. 113.

with its original, Peacham's revised definition gains in
directness and clarity. The changes themselves are note-
worthy. Among these are an addition to and a tightening of
the definition itself, and a removal of several illustrations.

In other words, Peacham has recognized the ambiguity in the
earlier definition and, though he retains in the correction
traces of both paradox contrary and paradox contradictory, has

attempted to restrict his definition to one meaning. Now this
single meaning that Peacham has introduced into his revised
epitome represents a third type of paradox that was already
in use during the sixteenth century.

It will be recalled that in the krLgIdA stolecrm
Cicero terms his little arguments paradoxes not only because
they "run counter to universal opinion" but because they "are
surprising." le here equates paradoxx" (a/-'coa. ) with "ad-

mirabilia."42 And elsewhere, in the De partitions oratcriae,
he notes that one's style should employ brilliant touches that
please the earth "decorative detail junh as surprising or un-
expected events or things forshadowed by portents."43 The
point to be made is that quite often paradox contrary carried
with it implications of the marvelous, the wonderful. Hence,

42Rackham's translation, pE. =t.f p. 257.

43=A., p. 365.

by transferred sense, a third meaning of paradox caos into

use.44 Instead cf the stress lying on a coLnradlctlon cr on

sEmethlng contrary to opinion or belief, the stress lay on

something sjufrislf and atrry t atn ti' tids thiLrd

type of paradox was not limited to statements or tenets; in-

deed, it was more often applicable to a situation in general
cr to any phenomenon or action running counter to what might

A4 particularly interesting entry on "paradosogra-
phers" in the OQ.j.gr lsa: lk 1 iAltic n indicates that the
meaning had a Lradition ALIiat hntedates Gicaro andr, indeeds
existed even then as a distinct genre. "Interest Ln the mar-
vellous and out-of-the-way, as sucrL ("j, . ... a ), is
prominent in the i4XyRey, the rdstories of Jarcdotus, Theo-
pompous, and SphoIGus, Iani other Greek writings. Paradoxo-
graphy came into existence, as a distient literary genre, early
in the Alexandrian age, and continued to be practised for many
centuies. The Seven Wonders of the World (6ra Eri- e -, --
9,'.,-... ), that is, the temple of Zeus at Olympia, the .cios-
sts or fkodes, the hanging gardens of Semiramis, the walLs of
Babylon, Lthe yramnias, tie Mausoleum, and the temple of Arte-
als at Lphesus (or the Delian altar of Apollo), seem to have
been canonized in Alexandrian times. Uallimacrius'J ccntem-
porary, Bolus.,.and Oallimachus himself...may perhaps be re-
grrued as the founders c.f .aradoxograpny. Arceilaus composed
i A (epigrams on 'peculiarities') for Ptolemy Euergetes
t2-K-I B.C.), and Antigonuj...of CarysLus wrote cn similar
themes at about the same time. Callimachus' pupil, Philo-
stephanus of Cyrene, wrote, like Archelaus in verse, cn
T.. _'_- o and K .ict i Prominent awarg the aranr.x-
OLge.;''s c-l tia hcrian period are Isignus snd thlesc.n....Ai''er
Phlegon paradoxography seems to have declined in Fcepaairity.
But as late as the sixth century A.D. Philo of ryzantium i.roe
77T -rwv r-r aary The parade oabraphers cfLen took some parti-
Eulir country as their field, Siily, iy cythia, etc. Natural
phenomena, especially river, ,ttiacted them greatly. but zoo-
logy, history, and social customs al;c cnam wit.hir their pur-

naturally be expected4 5 It is the sense Peacham Ettenpts to

capture in the 1693 version cf The Garden Tr:l.c-:enc and

is the only sense recognized a few years earlier by Gcorge

Futteriamn in Ii Arts _o f-lnlish Pc-sle (1583): "Many tires

our Toot Is carried by some occasion to report of a tlinc that

is marvelous, and then he will seemed not to speaker it simply

but with some sign of admiration."14 In the present study

46In the C'zford Ernish Dcticr.ry' this mearirng of
r.racdr.c is incluiea under sense I and also murder sense 4,
wniron reads in part as follows& "transf. A prerncmenon tmat ex-
hibits some contradiction cr conflict with preccnceived ro-
tions of wr.at Is reasonable or possible." Cf. also tne en-
phasis upon the enexpectei in another entry included ulder
sense 1, that is, under paradcx contrary ",~.I. A ccriclusion
or apodosis contrary tc what the audience ha oeen led up to
expect. Obj. 167S Phillips (cd. 4), Paradox...Irn Rhecrick,
it is something which is cast in by the by, contrary to tile
opinion or erxectation of tr.e Auditor, and is otherwise
called Hyrrr-ne." Quirntlllan'a remarks on this type cf para-
doz are f interest. C. his Institutir ratcrin,1 r. i. L.
Eutler (New YcrkL I';1 11, 11, Zc f "Tnis figure is termed
sur enslcn by Calsus. fL has two fcrms. For so may anopt ex-
actly toe opposite prccedure to that just meutllned and after
raising expectation cf a sequel of the iost serious nature,
we may drop to something which is of a trivial character, and
may even imply no offence at all. Lut since this does not
necessarily involve any form of communication, sorme have given
it the name of Tarj4a cr S'jLr.s. 1 do not agree with
those who extend the name of _i"ure to a statement tnai some-
thing has happened unexpectedly to the speaker nimaelf...."

46ee Arbor reprint, p. 22. A paradox eontradi'-
tory, as well as a paradox contrary, could sometimes carry
implications cf the marvelous or toe incredible, e.g.,
Peacham's definition noted above. Cf. also Aristotle
"ArI" e1 Rtaitor tr. Joh, henry Freese ("The Loab Classi-
cal Library"; Cam-ridge, Mass., 1947), pp. 317-3191 "Another
topic is derived from things which are thought to happen but

this third type of paradox, wnich emphasizes a situation
contrary tL: that the reader nigrt naturally expect, is consi-

dered as paradox cf situation or paradox unexpected.47

are incredible, because It would never tave been thought so,
If they had not happened or almost happened. And further,
these things are even nore likely t. be truel for we only
believe in that which is probable if tnen a thing is Incred-
ible and not probable, it will be true; for it is not because
it is probable and credible that we tninK it true. Thus,
Androoles of Fitthus, speaking against tne law, being sncuted
at whea he said 'the laws need a law to correct them,' went
on, '...pressed olives need oil, although it i= incredible
thAt wrat produces oil should itself need oil.'" For
Aristotle on the unexpected, see below, p. 48.

Lister Joseph, r. cIt. p. 323, distinguished only
two meanings for paradox In the sixteenth century. "Paradox
in the sixteenth csrtury," she writes, "ld. tvo meanings
(1) a statement contrary to received opinion, evoking wonder
because it is farvelcus, strange, incredible; (2) a statement
apparently self-contradictory." Several reasons can be of-
fered, however, for distlnguisning the third meaning. In the
first place, paradox contrary did not necessarily evoke the
wcrderful or rhe rarvelous (cf. Sidno' is answer to the charge
that the poets are the greatest liars). Secondly, the exten-
sion of paraiox contrary was ma lialted to statements that
evoke wonder, hut to situations as well. Finally, as the
above note on paracoxography Indicates, the third meaning ar-
gued for here existed earlier as a distinct literary genre.
Warren Iaylor, Tidcr FiLE res a S 1btOr1j (Chicao, 1937), p.
43, also oltes only two meanings. His definition reads as fol-
lonas "Showing wonder when affirming a thing that appears Ia-
credible; affirmLng as true a statement whicr seems self-con-
tradictory." aiylor omits tie etymological meaning, which
was clearly in use during the period. Cf., for example,
Blundeville's explanation In r.he rft f Loalke.

Sinoe paradox unexpected at times overlaps tha see-
and meaning of paradox, turns on the element of surprise, and

bears a close reseblance to irony of situation, further com-

ment on it here is necessary. First of all, whether a situa-

tion or proposition or statement is to be considered as para-

dox contradictory or as paradox unexpected depends upon the

emphasis in evidence, and often upon an arbitrary judgment.

Ordinarily a statement Lives no trouble because it is couched

in antithesis, which throws the contradictory element into

strong relief. For instance, the example cited earlier from

the 1677 edition of ~g Garde A1 Ele~ aense-"hen fyre should
haue consumed him, fire saued him, and lykewyse at another
tyme, when water siculd haue bone his death, it saued his

lyfe"--could be classified as paradox unexpected were it not

for the fact that tne element of contradiotion is stressed,

mainly by antithesis. But a situation in Spenser's iaCe

m (Bk. I, 111, 10-18) is not so easily classified. eCn-

sider tho scene where Una has been cast into despair be-

cause the Rederosse Knight has abandoned her. Spereer thus

marvels at her plight:

And now it /penser's hear.j7 is empassion~ so
For fairest Unaes saKe, of wncm I sing,
That my frayle eies these lines with teares do
To tliinke how she through guyleful handeling
Though true as touch, though daLehter of a king,
Though fair as ever living wigit was fayre,
Though nor in word nor deede ill writing,

Is from her knight divorced in despayre,
And her dew loves deryv'd to that vile witches

Either paradox contradictory or paradox unexpected could
describe this stanza. In the writer's opinion, however, the

element of contradiction is subordinate to the element of the

unexpected. In other instances the surprise is so strongly
pronounced that no problem arises, as will be seen below in

the case of a situation from Sidney's revised 'i~adia.

In the second place, it should be observed that para-
dox unexpected is not to be equated with any surprising de-

velopment, that is, surprise for the sake of surprise. Para-
dox unexpected is to be applied to a situation or action that
is contrary to what the reader expects and, in order to rule
out mere surprise for the sake of surprise and stress instead
the wonderful, the incredible, the marvelous, retains at least

a semblanae of paradox contradictory. Two illustrations will
make the point clear. In the medieval romance Gjuy O iarrcC

Harrawde, Guy's companion, is apparently slain in battle. Guy

takes Harrawde's body to an abbey, leaves the body with the
abbot to be buried, and then goes forth to seek further ad-
venture. Presently the reader learns, however, that Harrawde

is not dead because the abbot is able to revive him and heal
his wounds.48 Now this is a surprising development that is

48$2b Rr.nrce LjL IL j alitZ ed. Julius Zupitza,
EETS ES. 25-26 2na verasin (London, 1875-76), pp. 40-3ti.

counter to the reader's expectation. But since the situa-
ticn bears no semblance of an inner contradiction, it is not
to be considered as paradox unexpected. In contrast, consi-
der a situation in Sidney's revised rmadla. Early in the
romance the princely KMsidorus participates in an expedition

against an unruly band of rebels called the helots. After
several skirmishes between the two forces, tusidous engage
Ln single combat with the captain of the helots. The rebel
leader proves himself invincible, and to Musidorus's (and the
reader's) surprise reveals that he is Musidorus's inseparable
friend Pyrcclae.43 Like the scene in ia L fiMLk this

scene is a result contrary to what the reader expects. But
implicit in the action, and therefore qualifying it as an ex-

ample of paradox unexpected, is an apparent contradiction,
namely, that Pyrocles, himself a prinee, has gravitated to the
humble leader of an unruly mob of rebels.
In the third place, a modern reader might feel that a
situation described in this study as paradox unexpected is
more accurately described in terms of being Ircnic or of being
the result of the lra .g f all. Consider, for example, the
scene just mentioned from the revised ArSad g or, better, con-
sider any scene that turns on a reversal of fortune (i.e.,

4iorks, I, 38-43.

Aristotle's pelrlntl. ). Such a scene may or may not be con-

trary to the reader's Expectaticn. In Oediorus LA the mes-

senger's revelation is contrary to what Oedipus expects but
it is nct contrary to the expectation of the reader, who is

aware (by dramatic irony) of what is ur'knoan to Oedipus. Eut

in the well-known episode of the Paphlagonian Uing in the re-
vised Argadia the reversal of fortune is a surprise to the
reader as well as to the character. At any rate, a reversal
of fortune is likely to bring to mind irony.

However, if the reversal of fortune, with or without a
concomitant recognition or discovery, is contrary to what the

reader is led naturally to expect, then it may qualify as
either paradox of situation or irony of situation. The dif-
ficulty is that in both irony of situation and in peaauox of

situation lies a sharp contrast between what is expected to

happen and what actually does happen. Irony of situation is
not, however, an Elizabethan concept. Its first usage, ae-

cording to the xfQrg Engjlh Dietionar does not come until
the middle of the seventeenth century;50 and even that isage

is the only one before 1833 recorded by the ietlcnsrv. liz-
abethans appear to have used irony chiefly as irony of state-

30The entry reads as follows "1649 G. Daniel Tri1lrch.,
O. excviii, Yet here (and 'tis the Ironie rrf arre Enere
Arrowes former the Argunent,) he best Acquitts himself, wh;o
doth a Horse rraefer To his proud Rider."

ment, that is, in terms of a contrast between the meaning
intended and that expressed. For example, in U& Ar a

E Abraham Fraunce defines irony as a "Trope, that by
naming cne contrarie intendeth another...and it is perceived
by the contrarietie of the matter it self, or by the manner
of vtterance quite differing from the sense of the wordes...."51
As his illustration of irony, Peacham, in the 1103 text of fa
02ra gn lc.u1r:encT offers the following statement: "And the
Lord God said, Behold, the nan is become as one of us, to
know good and euilll by this derision the Lord God reprooheth
AdM miserie, whereinto he was fallen by ambition."52
That is more, quite often an element is at work in
irony of situation that is not at work in paradox of situation,
namely, an apparent intervention of fate with a mockery of the
appropriateness of things. In a commentary on the unexpected

S10f. the edition of Fraunce's treatise by Ethel Seaton,
. &U.l., p. 10.

S .. SU., pp. 35-36. Cf. also Sister Joseph's com-
ments (5, t., p. 32~) on Tudor use of irony, which she da-
fines as "a trope which by naming one contrary intends another.
It is used in derision, mockery, jesting, dissembling." Her
definition agrees with the entry on irony in Taylor's compen-
dium of Tudor rhetorical figures cited above "1. a. Expressing
in words a meaning directly opposite that intended. b. Speaking
in derision or mockery." Taylor ascribes the first occurrence
of the term in a Tudor rhetoric to Sherry's A Treatise
.ehmA _Ad Troes (1550) and oites Iron.l ,liss i'l'3i.:-,
l..t Jie3trfL IAaSkI. olai eating, .risio, ana fi" ,rLe.
as c their names givenn to the figure.

in his Icet1- .ristotle notes that unexpected incrd.srts

should be so constructed that one is an In-.ltablea csre-
quaene of the other. "For in that way," he :S'yE, "'the ilol-

dents will cause more iaasament than if th.ribapp:ne.d mechan-
eially and accidentally, since the most aar in oa.cldental oc-

eurrences are those which seem to have been rovi6 ntial, fcr
instance when the statue of Iitys at Argos allied the ianL who

caused iUtys's death by falling on him at a festvial."C3 It
will be seen that in Sidney's use of para,'oxes unr.xpected that
turn on a reversal of fortune such apparent ir.terventlcn ci a
mocking fate is generally absent.
Therefore, in view of the fact that irony of -stuation
is a term not current during Sidney's day, the =c*tiv tWhind
a given situation, that is to say, the apparent r.tervention

of fate with its mockery of the appropriateness -f things
(which distinguishes irony of situation from ~arodCx of situa-

tion), is net in this study considered to be more impcrt.nt

than the nature of the situ.lticn 1italf, which is 1aJically
paradoxical. Moreover, all reversals of fortune that are c:n-
trary to the reader's expectation and are attended by some
element of contradiction will be construed as p crad.xets of
situation or paradoxes unexpected.

53ArlEtecri sf r.- s "LZn.f.lI a -Ll
tr. I. lur.iton rye T'"i. Leb Classicsl library" | C.ral. ge,
mass., 1053), p. 39.

Of the three meanings of paradox--paradox contrary,

paradox contradictory, qnl paradox unexpected--outlined in

this chapter, the latter two are the most i ;ortant in so far

as the present study is cornerned. It will be seen that

Sidney uses paradox of situation--either paradox contradictory

or paradox unexpected--in an crganic interrelationship of
structure, central theme, plot and style, and amplifies this

usage with many instances of paradox contradictory in the

statement form. Yet, though paradox contrary is negligible

in a functional sease in the revised aedA3iA, it is not to be
ignored; fcr its importance lies in its development into a

literary genre, and it is likely that Sidney's acquaintance

with this genre had more influence upon the whole paradoxical
character of his revision than had the brief paradoxes he ap-
pears to have borro-ed from the Greek roun-m s.


One of the most engaging manifestations of the

humanists' revival of interest in the classics is the Renals-

sance paradox, which for purposes of this chapter can be de-

fined as an expansion of the commonplace paradox contrary

into a distinct literary genre. Based on a tradition that

had its origin in the fifth century B. G. with the paradoxes

of Zeno the Eleatic and the paradoxical discourses of Gcrgias

and Polycrates, the genre did not reach a peak in vogue until

a few years after Sidney died. But by 1586 it was firmly estab-

lished and immensely popular as well with the general public

as with scholars and humanists of the first rank.

On the surface Sidney's use of paradox in the revised

Arcadia appears to be a recognition of the popularity of the
form. Such a view is consistent with his belief as to the

central purpose of poetry, which is to teach and delight. Of
these two functions, the ability of poetry to delight is for

Sidney the more important. "And that moving is of a higher
degree then teaching," he says emphaiocally in the Defence tf

Pgalai, "it nay be this appeared, that it is well nigh both
the cause and effect of teaching. For who will be taught, if

hee be not mooved with desire to be taught? And what so much

good doth that teaching bring fourth, (I speaker still of

morall doctrine) as that it mocveth one to do that which it

doth teach."l Though "moving" and "delighting" are not sy-
nonyous, Sidney expects the reader to be moved by means of

delight. To capitalize the wide appeal of a figure, like

paradox, that serves to delight, would therefore be one of

Sidney's first considerations in revising his romance.

But it will be seen that his use of paradox is also
a recognition of the potentialities the form holds for il-
luminating inquiries into some of life's complexities and in-
consistencies; and these potentialities are obviously more
readily realized in the genre than in the more limited usage.

Sidney's acquaintance with the literature of paradox showed
him how effectively the form, particularly when it is imbued

with irony, can suspend two levels of meaning and evoke the

kind of antithetical and intellectual play that, even in a
mere rhetorical jest piece, calls forth thought as well as
laughter, and that, in the more serious piece, aims at truth
by distinguishing between appearance and reality.

In the light of Cioero's influence upon Renaissance
writers, it is proper for an inquiry into Sidney's acquaint-
ance with the genre to begin with the well-known Poara
stni.orm, composed sometime around 46 B.C. Each of Cicero's

1_ G alta I E iL ? ~l in, ed. Albert
Feullerat, 4 vols. (Cambridge, 1ng., l11i-<6), III, 19--
hereafter referred to as EgPts.

six paradoxes is of the type generally referred to as the
"defence of contraries," wherein the writer simply sustains
a view contrary to received opinion.2 Cicero thus argues
"that only what is morally noble is good," "that the possess-
ion of virtue is sufficient for happiness," "that transgres-
sions are equal and right actions are equal," "that every
foolish man is mad," "that only the wise man is free, and
that every foolish man is a slave," and "that the wise man
alone is rich."3 With these arguments Cicero extended a
Greek tradition that had originated in the fifth century B.C.
when Zeno of Elsa propounded his four paradoxes of motion and
established a form of discourse that became popular among the
sophists, the stoics and the skeptics. Den Cameron Allen
gives an account of the adroitness with which these ancients
used the defence of contraries.

2Information on the early development of this form ef
discourse and its transition into the Fmnalssance can be found
in the folio:ong studies& E. N. S. TTosmpsrn, "The Sevanteenth-
Century :Engish Essay," University L LS3 'uanlW tic L tulal
III (1925-1927) 94-10S| t.. L. uenrnett, "our karadoxes by .ir
William Cornwallis, the Younger," Harvrd t udies Jj~11 Afl
heit aa Lierature XIII (l31) 219-240; Earner 0. Rice,
"The Paradossi c. Ortenslo Landoe" "nlvrsity f l Luai-
licatlcns Lu a Literature, V111 (19;3), 6t-74;
.rraIcx6es rL) nn Jll. A Faziiile Reproduction wnrn an
Introiucticn Dy Don Came:cn Allen (G inesville, Ficrldas 1956),
3The translation used here is thE.t by H. Rackham,
Cicera DI jralorse II A ao '.r an allIScr a;s k 1-.rIl-
tione cratorinae Vol. I, ("the Lceb ilas- Ical Librury"j
Cambrige, .-ss., 1948), pp. 255-303.

Plate describes the unhappy Cleinias snared
into an admission that,is the unlearned,
not the learned, who can learn; he also gives
us in full the paradox of Lysias, who contends
that the non-lover is to be preferred to the
lcver. Socrates is a master of the art; he makes
Protagcras admit that holiness is unjust and
Thrasymachus say that the unjust are both wise
and good. The stoica took over these methods and
argued that body is soul that man is good, that
pain is a good, that death is a boon. The skep-
tics followed th same intellectual patterns
Sextus IE;irl.'u3 expands it in his iypotyvioses
deacnstrating, for example, that concepLs cL
right or wrons have no validity or reality,"
Cicero took this form and gave it the touch of a skilled sty-
Although Cicero professes his little arguments to be
amusing and clever attempts to popularize the principal ethi-
ael doctrines of the stoics, they are not without serious in-
tent. For example, despite its familiar, anecdotal style, the

first paradox is serious in its contempt for temporal things
and for the popular notion that the chief good is pleasure.
"An action rightly done, and honourably, and virtuously," says

Cicero in earnest, "is truly said to be a good action, and I
de g d only what is right and honourable and virtuous."5

4.. W i., xviil-xix. Further development of the genre
occurred in the tradition of Christian paradox, e.g., Tertnl-
lian's ZeatIm (third-fourth century A.D.), which also in-
terested hensissanco writers in the form. See henry night
Miller, "The Paradoxical Encomium with Special Reference to
Its Vogue in England, 1600-1800," JE, LIII (Feb., 196i), 167.

Rackhan's translation, SO. at.,p. 261.

Even in the preface to Parlxa rstoieeru Cicero makes
it clear that he is writing "with the greater pleasure be-
cause the doctrines styled iaradora by the Stoies appear to me
to be in the highest degree Socratic, and far and oway the
truest."6 As defences of contraries Cicero's paradoxes, like
the traditional forms upon which they were drawn, are at once

an attempt to be rhetorically clever and to separate truth
from falsity.

Sidney's opinion of the aredoxa stolccrn and the

defences behind it can be determined only approximately. That

he was familiar with the tradition is certain, in view of the

scope of the classical references in the Nfeieo gr Pcesle.

6IbL.. p. 257. Aristotle, in his btaris, comments
on this genre and observes that it may be the most weighty
of those topics that deal in paradox. "Again," he writes,
"since men do not praise the same things in public and in se-
cret, but in public chiefly praise what is just ani beautiful,
and in secret rather wish for vrr. is expedient, arcther topic
consists in endeavouring to infer its opposite from cno or
other of these statements." Thus a man may express the notion
that the non-lover is to be preferred to the lover, nnereas he
really wishes the opposite point of view. "If then his words
are in accordance with his real wishes," Aristotle coseants
further in SoDhisic1 len.c (ii, 12), "he must be confronted
with his uuulic statenentsi If they are in accordance with the
latter, he must be confronted with his secret wishes. In
either ease he must fall into paradox, and contradict either
his publicly expressed or secret opinions." For tris refer-
ence to Aristetle, see Th "Art" cf LRhetri~ m tr. John Henry
Freese ("The Loeb Classical Liorary"; Car.crldge, hMss., 1947),
p. 313. Though the aanuscrit is not extant, Sidney is said
by John Hoskins to have translated a part of Aristotle's
Bht12o See Malcolm Wallace, lihet Lie ait fhl~li2 ldnea
(Cambridge, 1916), p. 235.

And though one of his main points in that treatise is that
philosophy is less capable of divulging truth than is poetry,
there is no reason to doubt that he looked approvingly on
those school paradoxes that were serious in intent. As for
the arad aa tor ra in particular, Sidney probably looked
into Cicero's two arguments on virtue, which is expounded in

the Deaence of oesir as the highest and most excellent truth
and the "ending end of all earthly learning." In the same
work he refers to "the saying of Plate and Tally...that who
could see vertue, would bee wonderfullie ravished with the
love of her bewtie."7 Further, it will be seen that the 2e-

fence f P.oaea itself may be viewed as a sober illustration
of Cicero's form, which Sidney followed by way of the popular

ae incartitunaei a i.ta jsci ntlar I aertls of the
German humanist, Cornelius Agrippa.
But first it should be pointed out that, as part of
their inheritance of the literature of paradox from the an-
cients the humanists took over an extension of the defence
of contraries known as the paradoxical encomium, "a species of
rhetorical jest or display piece which involves the praise of
unworthy, unexpected, or trifling objects, such as the praise

LVfork2, II, 25.

of lying and envy or of the gout or of pots and pebbles."8
Though this form of paradox is sometimes indistinguishable
froa the defense of a contrary, the stress is usually on
"praising" rather than on "defending" and the piece is ncre
likely to be written with less gravity and to be indicative
of the author's speciousness and humor. Outstanding among
the ancients who used this form was the great ironist, Lucian
of Samosata (c. A.D. 125-190), whose ~Uacae lauiatic (the
praise of a fly) holds a place alongside Cicero's Paradoa
stoleorM as having a direct influence upon Renaissanee wri-
ters of paradox.
As Cicero had done before him, Lucian perfected a
form already established by his predecessors. As far back as
the time of Polycrates (c. 635 B.C. ff.) and Gergias (485-
380 B.C.) writers interested themselves in the "defence of tra
indefensible."9 In a recent investigation into the history of
the genre, MIlier finds that there is even "some evidence to
indicate that paradoxical encomia were set as exercises in the

miller, gi. it., pp. 145-178. For further material
on the paradoxical encomrum, see Theodore C. Eurgess, Lojdeao-
ji Literature (Chicago, 1902), pp.157-166; R. D. Ec&errow,
ed. = t L~ c h l ,&a hi 4 vols. (London, l104-1910),
IV, ~i?, 3j9-3,5j A.. ease, "Things Without Honor," LCas-
i11 Philolor, XXI, (192S), 27-42; and Alexander h. Sacksorn
"Ine Paradoxical Enoomiu in Elizabethan Drama," Universty
axe.A studia2I W Elli XXVIII (1949), 83-104.
9The phrase is Pease'soj. c=t., p. 31. It is perhaps
more accurate to say that the genre dates even from Homer. See
Erasmus's comment below, p. 62.

ancient schools of rhetoric."10 These encomia were thus ex-

tensions of the classical panegyric turned into a kind of rhe-
torical game. Polycrates, for instance, wrote an encomium on
mice, and among the lost works of Gorgias's pupil Alcimadas,

are a praise of death and a praise of Nals (a river-nymph).11
The form was not everywhere popular at this time.

Isocrates, who wrote an Lmaji &J Helen In objection to
Gorgias' paradoxical discourse on the same subject and Muziri s

a panegyric in refutation of Polycrates' defence of the mythi-

cal king, is said to have scorned those who wrote praises of
bumbldbees and salt.12 But though the form appears to have
been neglected for several centuries, it was taken up again
in later ages with renewed interest by both Greek and Roman
Sometime during the first century B.C. the Roman poet

Catullus, for example, found occasion to use the paradoxical
encomiun to express some sentiments on love. His half-serious,
half-jesting lines to his mistress' sparrow are characteristic
of the genre. "Sparrow, my lady's pet," sighs Catullus, "with

10. clt., P. 147.

1,llh agord Classical Dictionary, g.E., "encomi n."

12'=l. Isocrates' two paradoxical discourses are in
Isccrateg, tr. Larue van Hook, 3 vols., ("The Loeb Classical
Liorary"i Cambridge, Mass., 1954), III, 54, 61-97.

whom she often plays whilst she holds you in her lap, or gives
you her finger-tip to peck and provokes you to bite sharply;
whenever she, the bright-shining lady of my love, has a mind
for some sweet pretty play, in hope, as I thinkthat when the
sharper smart of love abates, she may find some small relief
from her pain-ah, might I play with you as she does, and
lighten the gloomy cares of my heartl"13 Later writers of

less literary renown kept the tradition alive. Miller re-
cords several interesting examples of paradoxical encomia
among Greek and Roman authors up to and through Lucian's
time: praises of the gnat, the parrot and hair by the sophist
Dio Chrysostom (A.D. 40-112); a praise of Thersites and the
quartan fever by Favorinus (A.D. 80-150); a praise (with
serious intent) of the Greek palliam by Tertullian (A.D. 160-
225); a praise of hair by Philosotratus (A.D. 170-248); a
praise of baldness, Kr'crni c22.lit4i, by the neo-PlaLonist
Synesius (c. A.D. 300); and finally a praise of figs by Julian
the Apostate (A.D. 331-363).14

_1____ll___ Tlll s =1 j PerYhllJu 1iy.l8tis, tr. F.W.
Cornish ('TeIr Loeb GjasEicr1 L.ibrary"; CaLbriage, Lass., 150),
pp. 2-5.
L4B fit. p. 149. Synesius' discourse on baldness
was a favorite th Renaissance writers. The work was trans-
lated into Eingiish in 15791 "A paradox prouing that baldness.
is much better than bushie haire. Inglishsd by A. Fleming.
1579." a1 23803.

In his discourse on a fly Lucian surpasses all these

classical writers of the paradoxical encomiun, not only in

giving play to cleverness but in giving substance and mean-

ing to the form. Aside from the mere sport of demonstrating

that in comparison with other winged creatures the fly is

superior in such matters as intelligence, strength and cour-

age, and in pointing out the praise that comic and tragic

writers have bestowed upon the creature in the past, Lucian

adds deft touches of irony to the whole piece. The skill with

which he ironically exposes the vanity of human actions in

the Dialaoues tfhe ~jg Lucian transfers to the liusag

laudatio. His praise of the fly implies that man for all
his worldly attainments is no better off. Indeed, hatched

"as a maggot from the dead bodies of men," the fly lives in

the society of men-"on the same food and at the same table"--

and "takes precedence even of kings in eating." Further, in

a passage that bristles with Ironic humor, Lucian demonstra-

tes the fly's immortality of soul. "You may be sure," he

says, "I propose to mention the most important point in the

nature of the fly. It is, I think, the only point that Plate

overlooks in his discussion of the soul and its immortality.

When ashes are sprinkled on a dead fly, she revives and has

a second birth and a new life from the beginning. This should

absolutely convince everyone that the fly's soul is immortal
like curs, since after leaving the body it comes back again,
recognizes and reanimates it, and makes the fly take

wing."15 Not until the sixteenth century did another wri-

ter of the form come along to match Lucian's skill of clever-
Sidney's opinion of paradoxical encomia, of which

Lucian's discourse on the fly is the superb example among

the ancients, is quite clear from a passage in the D-fence

f Peoeae that shows equally well his familiarity with the
defence of contraries. "We know," says Sidney, "a playing
wit can praise the discretion of an Asse, the comfortable-

ness of being in debt, and the jolly commodities of being

sicke of the plague. So of the contrary side, if we will

turns 8vid verse, Ug latst v rts, r-roximltate mali, that

good lye hid, in nearnesse of the evill. Aeriia will be as
mery in showing the vanitie of science, as Lrasius was in the
commending of folly. And neither shal any man or matter,
escape some touch of these smiling Raylers."16 The context

of the passage indicates that Sidney is here thinking spei-

fically of those writers who use the form to carp at poetry.
But even so, as with poetry, Sidney liked the good and dis-
proved of the bad; so also with paradoxical encomia, many of
which were little more than superficial display pieces cf wit.

152~L.an, tr. A. M. Harmon, 8 vols. ("The Loeb Clas-
sical LLbrary"| Cambridge, Mass., 1953), I, 81-97.

EVAI, III, 26-27.

Those encomia like Lucian's Muscae laudatio that serve a
higher end, however, Sidney would certainly have approved of.
Luclanic irony later Influenced the paradoxes of Agrippa and
Erasmus, and Sidney hastens to tell his readers in the pas-

sage just quoted from the 2Pefgon I fPeae the respect he

holds for the works of these two writers. "But for IrasI
and Agrlpira," he says, "they had an other foundation then the

superficial part would promise." In short, Sidney would

hold that a paradox of the genre type is good only in so far
as it serves the same end as poetry& that it teaches as well
as delights.

In alluding to Erasmus's pFalA Folly and
Agrippa's &I Incertitudine & raitatr s scientlarum a arilum
Sidney is singling out the two outstanding examples of the
genre among early Renaissance writers.17 Although Elizabe-

thans frequently regarded these two works as counterparts

equal in merit--if one is to Judge from several references

similar to Sidney's-later ages have Justly given greater
recognition to Erasmus's piece.

17In the medieval period the genre seems to have been
developed but slightly. Pease records (". ct., p. 41) a
praise of baldness, 1cga 4 Calval, by bucbald of St. Amand
in the ninth century and praises of various animals by Michael
Psellus the yoLnger in the eleventh century. Aside from the
encomia, the use of paradox was limited to serious puns in the
non-genre type, as in the Latin liturgical poetry of Adam of
St. Victor and St. Thomas Aquinas. See Walter J. ng, "Wit and
Mystery," Speauli, XXII (1947), 310-841.

His satirical monologue first appeared in a Latin
version in 1511 and later, in 1519, Sir Thcm3 Chsalcnsr gave
it an English translation. Behind the work lies th) t.adi-

tion of the so-called "fool llter-turj," of which Sebastian

Brant's SgMhj Fol3 (1494) is the most noted exsple.

But as regards form, The ZraisU St 21ol1v owes more to the

classical paradoxical encomia, a fact which Erasmus calls

attention to in his preface.

Let any...who are offended by the lightness and
foolery of my argument remember, 1 be6, that
mine is net the first example, but Lhat the same
thing was often ;rscti 3 b; rLeat autiorj.
Homer, all those agej ago, made sport alth a
battle of frogs znJ ml:a; Virgil with a gnate
and a salad; Ovid with a nut. P'olycrata eu-
logized Busiris; and Isoerates, though a casti-
gator of Polycratesa did the same; GLaucon argued
in praise of injustlcol Favorinus, of Thersites
and of the quartan fever Synesius, of bAidnesj;
Luctan, of the fly and of the para3ite. L'eneoa
sported with an Apotheesis of the Emperor Claud-
ium; Plutarci, in a dialogue between CrylLus and
Ulyssess Lucian and Apuleius, with an ass, and
someone rwom 1 do not know, with the last A11
and testament of Grunius Coroeotta, a hog.8

The Praise Ls Foll, tr. Heyt H. Hudson (irinceton,
1941), p. 2. Similar lists of parado:xial encomla appear in
Castiglione's C irtler (18 ~), Thomes 7llson'.-s Ta t ft
ThPtrricue (lu3 ), hirvay'as uPI2 auCer rgration (159.), and
a&rington'a he nletanmcrL-hcsi of Ajax (15d). The first two
works were familiar to ~i-ney.

Two points are worth noting in connection with Erasmt 's

list. In the first place, as the foremost humanist, Erasmus
was, by reviewing the genre and adding to it a brilliant

example of his own, lending considerable authority to the
merits of the form and thus assuring it a place among the

writings of later humanists. In the second plaee, of the
a.t~tr3 that appear in Erasmus's list, Luoian calls for a
special word of comment. "Some years after he had published

The Praise s Foily," says Hoyt Hiuson in a commentary on
Erasmus as a Lucianist, "he wrote to a friend that it was
Thomas More's fondness for wit and fun, 'and especially for

Lueian,' that prompted him to write this book ,19 The most im-
portant of the many Luclanio elements in Erasmus's encomium

is irony; and as Hudson aptly observes in the paragraph just

quoted, this irony is "less obviously benevolent than Socra-
tic irony. It is likely to hold itself, as well as other

things, lightly. It cuts more than one way." It is the com-
bination, then, of two equally effective figures of contrast,

irony and paradox, that gives Qj Praise L FllJ1 its special
character; for with this combination Erasmus achieves a per-
feet blend of manner and matter.
Under a closer examination, 2b& Eraise rS Fel is
seen first of all to represent fully paradox as a literary

19d. x.
1114, Xix.

genre, for despite its outward appearance as a paradoxical

encomium only, the work actually makes use of both this form
and the defence of contraries. Erasmus even varies slightly
the traditional pattern of the encomium. Thus instead of

praising Folly, he allows Folly to praise herself. He then
shows her in self-praise exalting corruption, debauchery and
wantonness of every sort, and defending at the same time a

number of tenets contrary to received opinion, e.g., "prudence

in judgment is not what it is ordinarily thought to be," "it

is not true that madness is a form of wretchedness," "to be

foolish is the natural state of man," and "the Christian re-

ligion is akin to folly."
Even thus far :Te raise at F! ll is written in ear-

nest. Erasmus's tone is more than playful; his purpose in

placing traditional views in a different light is more than a

test of wit. He is looking behind the curtain, and what he

sees is that life is paradoxical and that things are not as
they seem. All human affairs, says Folly,

like the Sileni of .loibiades, have two aspects,
each quite different 'rom the other; even to the
point that what at first blush (as the phrase
goes) seems to be death may prove, if you look
further into it, to be life. What at first sight
is beautiful may really be ugly; the arps-ently
wealthy may be poorest of all; the disgraeef-'l,
glorious; the learned, ignorant; the robust,
feeble; the noble, base; the joyous, sad; the
favorable, adverse; what is friendly, an enemy;
and what is wholesome, poisonous. In brief, vcu

find all things suddenly reversed, when you
open up the Sllenus.'-

What Erasmus has in mind, then, is to show that what is com-

menly held to be true is anything but true. To maintain his

paradoxes, however, Erasmus works by implication as well as

by direct statement. That is to say, he makes use of irony.

Two examples will serve to show his skill in moving from the

explicit to the implicit in the handling of a paradox.

Consider, on the one hand, Folly's argument that the

wise are maladjusted to public affairs. To support this il-

lusinating comment on a neglected side of ire, Folly simply

adduces the evidence.

Take your sage to a feast and he will mar the
good cheer either by a morose silence or by
conducting a quiz. Invite him to a ball, and
you learn how a camel dances. If you carry
him to a play, he will dampen the mirth of the
audience, and, a modern Cato, he will be forced
to walk out of the theatre because he cannot put
off his gravity. If he engages in conversation,
on a sudden it is a case of the wolf in the
story. If something is to be bought, or a con-
tract made, if, in short, any of those things
without which our daily life could not be car-
ried on must be done, you will say that this
wiseacre is no man, but dead wood. Thus he can
be of little use to himself, his country, or his
family, and all because he is inexpert in every-
day matters, and far out of step with general

20"i., p. 36.

ways of sinking and modes of life ameng the

It will be observed that in this example Erasmus uses para-
dox explicitly for purposes of satire. With all his learn-
ing, the wise man is ill equipped for real life. The true
humanist, Erasmus would say, is not out of touch with social

reality. Or consider, on the other hand, how Folly maintains
ironically the paradox that even wisdom is arrived at by way
of folly. To inquire into life's paradoxes, says Polly, is
considered imprudent. "The part of a truly prudent man, on
the contrary," she goes on, "is (since we are mortal) not to
aspire to wisdom beyond his station, and either, along with
the rest of the crowd, pretend not to notice anything, or af-

fably and companionably be deceived." Yet men will argue
that to do so is folly. "Indeed, I shall not deny it," says
Folly, "only let them, on their side, allow that it is also
to play out the comedy of life."22 Much of Ih E Pral

oll is written in this vein, that is, an ironical suggestion
of the truth, paradoxically stated, of a wisdom higher than
worldly wisdom. In attacking churchmen, for instance, and

21id., p. 33.
Jbjl., p. 38.

arguing the paradox that Christianity is folly, Erassmu's
Folly, says Hudson, "does not stand at the level of worldly

wisdom, which in general approves those whom she attacks.

Neither, except in moments by the way, is she speaking non-

sense. Every attack is precisely against following in the

spiritual kingdom the standards and practices that prevail

in worldly, carnal affairs."23 Seen from an over-all view-

point, then, irony and paradox work together in her very

praise of wickedness and worldly wisdom, Folly ironically im-

plies the humanistic ideal that rejects such activities and

seeks a truer wisdom.

In the preface to IThe iraiae S Pfo Erasmus ob-

serves that nothing "is more puerile, certainly, than to

treat serious matters triflingly; but nothing is more grace-

ful than to handle light subjects in such a way that you seem
to have been anything but trifling."24 Little wonder that Sid-

ney agreed and that he saw in the work, and in Agrippa's 2g

aantata, "an other foundation then the sulerficiall part

would promise." Exactly what Sidney meant by foundation is

not clear from the D~efr p1f Poesio, but it is most probable

that he had in mind the striking paradoxical character of

these two works. Sidney not only thought highly of this founda-

tion; he was influenced by it. Though the point cannot be

pursued here, later it will be shown that the foundation of

23Id"., xxxvii.
Ibld.. pp. S.

The reisr, e Follye and the Do fsaitaj --the attempt to di-

vulge a paradoxical truth by inquiring into the -liffeiren.e

between appearance and reality--is the foundation of the re-
vised ArcadA.
Apart from Erasmus's superiority in subtlety of style,

it would be difficult to single out anything of real imcr-
tance for present purposes that is in -h PFaisa -f rE cll and
not in the Pa vanitate. Like its counterpart, the 2 1a3l-

^Ig uses both the defence of a contrary and the p-rad, ical
encomium to strike out against the pride of worldly wisdom

and the vanity of human actions. And the irony and ambiguity

of meaning that characterize be_ Pralg of ELly are found al-
so in the Rg ySgnlat. When the two works differ materially,

they do so in terms of structure. Instead of fclli ing

Erasmus's practice of fusing both genre types of paradox with
ironic overtones, Agrippa keeps the two types separate. That

is to say, he first presents an extended defence of a con-

trary opinion in which he ironically makes a mockery of know-
ledge, and than at the end of his vure he asserts his theme
in a new light, i.e., in a short auloLy or an ass.

Agrippa's theme, which is mainly spiritual, is a re-
working of .oorates' familiar dictum that the truly knocledge-

able man is one who makes an admission of ignorance. Like

Erasmus, Agrippa attacks the shortcomings of his age in
spiritual and intellectual matters, and calls especially for

a life patterned after what the humanists considered to be

the true principles of Christianity uncorrupted by scholas-

tic learning. As he discloses the uncertainty and vanity of

the arts and sciences, which fall short of truth and blind

the individual to faith, Agrippa argues the paradox that it

is better to know nothing and believe in faith and God alone,

wherein lie truth and certainty. "Nothing," he writes, "can

chance unto man more pestilente then knowledge."25 And

again: "Yet he knoweth nothing, except he know the will of

Gods word, and execute the same: he that hath learned all

things, & hath not learned this, he hath learned in vaine,

and knoweth all things in vaine."26

In his final comment on the vanity of earthly know-

ledge, as he turns from the defence proper to a brief dis-

course in praise of the ass, Agrippa exercises wit and burles-

que, but his intent is no less serious than it is in the major

section of the work. To be like the ass and know nothing,

says Agrippa, is better than to be learned and know too much
of the subtleties, for "if the unprofitable burdens of humane

25The title-page of the version used here reads as fol-
lows: "Henrie Cornelius Agrippa, of the Van Lt and ynceetain-
tie of Artes and Sciences, Englished by JaLmeA/ San/fora/.
1569." STC 204. The quotation is from fol. 4r.

6Fol. 181v

knowledge be not set aparte... nI7 yee be not turned again
into bare and mere Asses,.. .Zhc? ye be utterly and altc-
gether unprofitable to carrie the mysteries of divine wis-

Agrippa's influence upon later humanists and scholars
as a model for clever writing was profound. Barnaby Riche
indicated in his Akka=j to Enlan (1578) that the young
courtly gentlemen of his day were studying the a T_ .Ltat
with a desire "to be curious in cauilling, :.ropounding capti-
ous questions, thereby to shewe a singularitie of their wise-
domes."28 Sidney himself appears tc Lave drawn upon the &t
vaAanite in writing his famous treatise on poetry.29 A. C.
Hamilton has recently shown that Agrippa's use of paradox

gave Sidney a rhetorical method for defending the art of

2Fol. 185V.

28Sir Egerton Brydges, aI i F ibl tcar:rhesr
(London, 1810), i, 510. Quoted by iamilton, c. cit., p. 163.

1 In elevating poetry over all other arts and sciences
Sidney consciously makes a defence of a contrary. As was
noted earlier, he answers the charge that the poets are the
greatest liars with the following statement. "I answered ZM-
oy.al3l," he says, "but truly, I think truly that of all
writers under the Sunne the ZRAj is the least lyer." kidney'ss
point is that the poet is not concerned with what is but with
what should be, and thereforee though he rectuLt things not
true, yet because he telleth them not for true, he lleth not...
frieL s, III, 28-297." Sidney's use of the word raradcYiclly
(the flr. recorded literary usage in Lnglish) suggests treat
he is aware, not only in this particular passage but in his
whole treatise, of defending a view contrary to received opin-

poetry. Specifically, Lmilton's thesis is that "Sidney ex-
polits Agrippa's argument in the &I vanitale in order to at-
tack all the other arts and sciences, and to establish thereby
the central argument for his defence of poetry."30 Sidney's
central argument, according to Hamilton, is that poetry alone

can achieve truth, all other sciences and arts being limited
by Nature.

Along with Sidney's high opinion of the e TIltatej
and Barnaby Riche's testimony as to the popularity of the

work, is a favorable comment from Sidney's friend, Gabriel
Harvey, who considered the Dg vanitate a flawless example of
the genre. "They are rare, and dainty wittes," Harvey wrote in

iEraeas Superarozating "that can roundly call a man Asse at
every third word; and make not nice, to befoole him in good
sullen earnest, that can strangle the proudest breath of their
pennes, and meaneth to borrow a sight of their giddiest braines,
for a perfect Anatomie of Vanitie, and Folly."81

Harvey appears to have been particularly impressed by
an aspect of Agrippa's humor that points to still another le-
vel of meaning at which the literature of paradox can function.

30"Sidney and Agrippa," M, New Series, VII (April
1956), 151.

31The Torks of Gabriel Harvey,ed. Alexander Grosart,
3 vols. (London, 1884), II, 245.

loth Agrippa and Irasmus were master entertainers at what is
often called learned parody, wherein a writer in command of
considerable learning produces fun "out of the very modes
and techniques of learning itself."32 This rhetorical device

can be found, for example, in the ZDlto~le obscuroru vir-

ora a series of letters compiled In 1515 by Crotius Rublanus
and Ulrich von Hutton. Among the letters is one, for instance,

from a churchman who puts to the test of logic the paradox
that lechery is no sin. After all, says the churchman in de-
fence of having a mistress, Samson and Solemon btot had their
affairs and still received God's favor. "ae he addresses to
her some of the passionate songs of the Canticlesl and cllnches

it all with the erroneous syllogism, that, if Amor is love and
God is love, then Amor cannot be a sin."3 Agrippa's bur-

lesque is, of course, on a grander scale and is much more sharp-
ly defined. In his study of Agrippa's influence upon Sldney,
Hamilton has remarked on this ambiguity in the aE yanltaoe.

Be finds that the work may be read "as a sceptical discourse...
but equally it may be read as an elaborate joke whose whole

point is that 'a demi-Sed in or isufficiency of knowledge, a
divel in the practise of horrible Artes' (as Gabriel Harvey

32Hudson, *g. ct., xEx.

33Thompson, gp. IJt., p. 97.

calls him), can use immense knowledge to denounce the use of
knowledge. 34

In the work of Erasmus and Agrippa the literature of
paradox before 1686 is seen at its best. A whole host of six-

teenth-eentury humanist scholars felt the influence of these
two writers. The influence is especially noticeable in the

development of the paradoxical encomium, which before 1586 was
exploited to a far greater extent than was the defence of con-

traries. As Don Cameron Allen observes, the humanists who fol-
lowed Erasmus filled the century "with praises of gout, pox,
drunkenness, gallstones, dirt, bagatelles, nothing fever,
etc."35 Though most of these encomia were jest pieces, a few

took on a serious note.

Erasmus's friend Sir Thomas More, for instance, made
a modest use of the form in his toija (1516), Book II of which

is a praise of nowhere. As Erasmus had done before him and

Agrippa was to do a few years later, More found paradox conven-

34R. Olt., p. 162. Cf. also Sanford's preface to his
translation of Agrippa's 21 AL "And although this author
sharply inueigeth against them (which to the rude multitude for
that cause, maye same naught and noysome) yet his intent is,
not to deface the worthinesse of Artes and Sciences, but to re-
proue and detected them euil vses and declare the excellence
of his wit in disproulmge then,-for a shewe of Learningi which
euil vses, doubles haue crept in, through the peruerse doings
of men."

35Q1. Ait., xx.

tent for purposes cf satire. Hythlcday's acccunt of the vir-
tues of the Utopian society foras an ironic comment on the
shortcomings of iMre's own society. Though Sidney had slight
reservationn, he thought enough cf the Utoril to cite it in his
jefe* oa Fooa i as an example of "the speaking picture of

Fc-esi." What philosopher's counsel can so readily direct an
entire co m.nwealth, says Sidney, "ar the Way tf Sir Thomas
bMores dAtoAA_ ? I say the Wray, because where Sir ThcrsB
Moore erred, it was the fault of the man and not cf tne Pcets
for that Way of patterning a Crmeni-wealth, was mrcst absolute
though he perchaunee hath not so absolutely performed it."36
Erasmus's and Agrippa's use of tho Dpradoxical enccm-ium

to ridleule pretentious knowledge and set a praise upon ig-
neranme attracted other humanist writers. Montalgnb, for ex-
ample, gave the theme brief treatment at cnr point in the
Agog frt Rialmond 581boE (1680). Afterreducing nan to the
level of animals, Montaigne ironically praises lpncrance over
learning and intellect. "It is by the reditatlon cf cur ig-
norance, more than our learning," he rites, "that we know
anything of this divine wisdom."37 A few years Lator, in

3=or.L III, 16.

37Iae eia.8 s 1ri 'l L di MonLtine, tr. Jacob ZEit-
lin, 8 vcls. (ew Y rk, 18935, II, 160. For the influence of
Erasmus and Agrippa upon cOh Aflor R Letd AbJod, sea
Zeitlin's notes, pp. 499-603, An important critical approach
to the Renaissance paradox, particularly tne paradoxes in

15SL, a nilnr iriter r.-mncd Ldwerd '.-Lunce tcek up this sane

these ald gave it a fuller treatment in a pious discourse

Eraznus, Mcre, Agrippa, and lintaigne, car, be found in an arti-
ale by A. E. Malloch, "The Techniques and Function cf the he-
nalssF.n'e Parado x" UP, LIII (April, 1956), 131-203. After
examining one of Donne's letters, in which paradoxes are ex-
plaijnd as ntcingc, that have existence only within an anti-
thetlial action cf the reader, Malloch remarks (p. 195) that
"Done'a statement that his paradoxes are nothings has this
much truth, that they cnly seem to represent a conceptual
argument, but in fact, do not. They achieve anr sustain this
appearance by means of a fabricated argument which consists of
discrete stateenLs equivocally united...Thus the paradox may
be said to present one part in a verbal drama (truly a word
play); the other part li net written out, but is supplied by
the reader as he tries 'to find better reasons.'" The paradox
is thus closely related, says Malloch, to the scnolastic ~ -8"
I"a disputata, which, like the paradox, "perfects the deli-
berately 'allicious argument for the purpose of revealing
tbth, though it differs from the paradox in containing a
written refutations the reader of the disputed question par-
teipats as audience, the reader of the paradox as actor....
. l/7." By the sLzteenth century the disputed question was
losing its life, and the paradox, in the hands particularly of
the s ptis. wau re-introduced to express a relative philoj-
ophy (I.e., that knowledge is right only for a given nmment) as
opposed to school philosophy (i.e., that knowledge is eternal
and right for all time). Trherrefre, alloch concludes (p. 202),
"If we bear in mind Loane's word abcut tne ;ur;cjes ef nl1
paradoxes ('if they make yo to find better reasons against thea
they do their office'), if ie bear in mind the suggesting that
paradoxes are one half of a dialogue, then such wcrks as
trasmus' _Q@ jprEaij cf L1l, AdrlpEa's IhL Vanity jf Arts and
gScenaeg, and mcntalgne's Arjolgi fc-r R cd become
weth~ds of forcing tL-. reader to assert (with Myre) That
knowledge is dramatic, i.e., that it is proportional to each
historical scene. And not only do these works lead to a
conclusion that knowledge is dramatiei their very way of lead-
ing is itself dramatic."

entitled thl erase of l.thing. This little tract, though

partly whimsical and clever in its puns on the word nothing
is mainly serious in its attack on mere temporals. In tie
preface Damuce claims to have "endeauored to shun AZrlyra

vanities, and Lrasmus follyes, as one that might haus been a

paterne of either," but echoes of Agrippa are everywhere evi-
dent. Take, for example, the following bit of ilety: "Christ.
losing imbracements of the little children (who cared for no-

thing), are not of least importance for their simalicltie be-

ing the shadow of our fyrst innocency, is to be reentered, as
the posterne of true godlynes: which lieth not open to them
that haue the world in admiration, and be not resolute fol-
lowers of the children ignorance."38
Most humanist writers, however, used the paradc1ical

encomium to give play to their cleverness and wit. Rabalais'

familiar praise of debt and debtors, cf the codpiece, and of
"Messere Gaster" in Dooks III and IV of Garsantua !ard kPca-
gal offers a familiar example. Another interesting example

'8The title-page of Daunee's piece roads as fcllowes
"The Prayse of Hc-.ilne. By E. D. 1585." L 7.83. The quote
is at Fol. F., In 18Z7 J. P. Collier ascribed Daunce's work
to Sidney's l1cso friend, Sir Edward Dyer. Recently, however
Dyer's authcrship uas been discredited, main y on tne strength
of internal evidence of style. See Ralph X. Sargent, "The
Auntr.rrnip of tia .raye of ~ rti'lIn," Sh L Mbera 4th sers.,
III (19U1), L 2-331,

is the lA abilities At"' APAB of the Italian musician
and composer, Adriano Banchieri. Although this work did not

attain an English translation until 1595,39 Sidney could have

known it in the Italian version and may be referring to it in

the D-fenc3 ,: Poala when he says, "We know a playing wit can

praise the discretion of an Asse...." Composed in two parts,

La jobilltit, is a dull, copious cwrk that shows only spots

of humor. Banchieri first cites the praises bestowed on other

animals, and then claims the worthiness of the ass over them

all, concluding the section with the statement that "the nature

of the Asse is good, pleasing, humble and courteous which
four rare qualities, are farre contrary to the theft, pride,
unrulinesse and villainy of other beasts."40 The second part,
after marshalling an extensive number of classical and contem-

porary sources in praise of the ass, ends with the reminder
-that for his ride into Jerusalem Christ himself chose the ass.

In his study of the genre Miller records a long list
of similar paradoxical encomia that were inspired by Erasmus's

satire and written by important scholars of the sixteenth cen-
tury. He cites Latin eneomia by

39The title-page of this translation reads as follows
"The Noblenesse of the Asse. A work rare, learned, and excel-
lent. By A. B. 1595." Sa 1343.

40ol. 32v.

Daniel Heinsius on the lous' (i_ rla i"ciL),
Philip i;.lenchthcn on the ant iams E.rlncaJe)
Eilibaldi lli'cr.t elmer on the gout CgU or
A~L~r .ri cdm ), Caelio Calcagniln on the
Ilch 1YL.1= li 1:r.gI.a), Antonius Majoragio
cn mud (J enrL mrlng, Jcann33 Pass3rati cn the
ass (iLci ,_ asigni), Janus Dcusa cn snade (Ja
Laud1 uaba) Justus Lipslus cn the elephant
(L-'..- -el-htan ), Frariiecus Scrlbanius cn Lhe
fly (iJmuse Z Sc fntlnu' .aratlcg U rr nicu
`2=cuffl, SI Ery:.U3 SFuteanus cn the egg (Q11

To this list should be added a praise of the goose by the French
scholar J. J. Soaliger.42 "All these authors--German, Dutch,
Italian, French-were...," as Miller observes, "humnists and
scholars of sore importance." And it should also be pointed
out that many were acquaintances Sidney had made during his
travels on the Continent.
In contrast to the wide popularity enjoyed by the para-
doxical encomia, defenses of contraries received scant attea-
ticn before 1586. Except for Sidney's D.ifnag e Pesie, most
of those that were published are of little worth. Thk most in-
teresting perhaps is the l rrour f adnesi published by James
Sanford in 1676.43 Sanford, it will be recalled, made an Eng-

4102. iU-., p. 152.

42Cited by Pease, . 1 ., p. 41.

43"The Mirreur of Madnes, or a Paradoxe maintaining
Madness to be most excellent done out of French into English by
JaLJS e sanfori7. 1576." 8SC 17980.

lish translation of Agrippa's 21 vaitat in 1569. A work of
much less literary merit, the rrour af MBai is interesting
only in being amusingly specious. Note the following excerpt

that recalls the Eaistolae obscurum vireru in its use of
fallacious logic.

As pleasure is of necessity Madnes, yet honest,
profitable, and necessary, as before is proud,
Ergo, Madnes is both honest, profitable, and
necessary. But what if I make for Eicure, and
proue, that all pleasures are good, e::cellent, then
I trust, I shall enforce the like consequence of
Madnes, my chief reason shall be a skaUtg~, for
euery accident, hath his excellence of his sub-
jects now, if pleasure be in the most excellent
subject; and the same Madnes; then Madnes for
the excellencie.f the subject, must nedes be
most excellent.'

Of the same tenor as Sanford's defence of madness are two mi-
mnr pieces, he Defene a Pouatie against the esaire
wnrladle riches and ha Paf an tg Pleasure, brought out by
Anthony Munday in 1577 and 1578, respectively.45 Concerning

44See Fol. B5.

45Celeste Turner, Athoj MLaaiZ ABn lizabethan an
dtgT, in InR irsAy t Jllcrnia Pubic'tl Ji r niLIS
Vol. II, No. 1 (Berkeley, lA19), p. 9. Two cther examples,
which this writer has not seen, have been recorded. The title-
page of the first example reads as follows "A Defence of Death.
Contayning a most excellent discourse of life and death, writ-
ten in Frenche by Pbili. de mkrnaye Gentleman. And done into
English by E. A. L157k/." LST 18136. The other example is
a -Paradoe centre 'AC (l16l), cited by Thompson, 2R. cit.,
p. W7. Apparently the author is unknown.

T2U Def e cf 2 Pouertie, of which no copies are extant,

Celeste Turner says that it is "no doubt similar to the clas-

sical arguments for poverty in Te ofne ei f ~ c.rcrrarles";

and of Th EAe af p 1gasure she writes, "The work itself, a

series of moral poems, depicts the incredibly bad consequences

of every sort of pleasure."46
Turner's reference to ht DT'fence ef 'ntrarles calls

for a word of comment. In writing The Dfga g Ivuertli

and The Payne a Pleasure Munday was less indebted to Agrippa's

famous work than to an Italian collection of paradoxes publi-

shed by Ortensio Lando in 1643.47 The most direct Irnfluence

upon the English paradox occurred in 1593 when Munday rendered

these paradoxes into English under the title of j.re kefrnca _

Contraries. On the heels of this translation followed the

well-known ventures into the form by Donne, Cornwallis, and

Hall. Unfortunately Munday's translation comes too late for

present purposes, but Sidney could have known Lando's paradoxes

either in the Italian or in a French translation published by

Charles Estienne in 153. Lande's work is composed of twslve

clever defences, similar to Cicero's, on such topics as "pover-

ty is better than wealth," "blindness is better than sight,"

46On. eit., p. 9.

47ee garner Rice, pp. 59-74.
See Warner G. Rice, Ra-. eit*f PP* 59-74.


and imprisonmentt is better than liberty," Sidney's refer-

enee in the Efence Ca1 rPesle to a praise of "the comfortable-

nes of being in debt, and the Jolly commodities of being sick

of the plague" suggests a familiarity with Lando's work either

in the original or in the French text.

The present inquiry has shown Sidney's acquaintance
with a well-defined body of paradoxical literature that was

in vogue during the sixteenth century. The wide popularity of

the genre left room, of course, for a good deal of superfi-

ciality and the mere development of rhetorical skill in adapt-

ing what Don Cameron Allen calls an "un-English thinking to

the English prose genius."48 Sidney's remark on such abuse

of the genre by so many "smiling Raylers" has already been

cited, and Gabriel harvey had words to the same effect. "They

were silly country fellowss" he said, "that acmmended the
Bald pate, the Feauer quartane; the fly, the flea, the gnat,

the sparrow, bawdery, leachery, buggery, madness itself.

What Dunse, or Scrbcnist cannot naintaine a Paradoxe?"14

But such criticism did little to damage the genre. What it did

do was to indicate clearly the facility with which a paradox

ean be contrived, and hence a cause for its continued popular-

4a~0. cit., xxi.

49Harvey's .r s ed. Grosart, Vcl II, pp. 244-245.


ity. Furtherore, and paradoxically enough, there appeared
a paradox as meaningful as T _aEse & FrIy or the De

.anitAt. Certainly Sidney liked not only a good poet but
a good paradox. As will be seen later, though he had to de-
part from the form and employ a method for paradox that was

more suitable for his purposes, in the revised Arcadia he

shows the influence of the genre at its best.



Nothing perhaps is more characteristic of the human-

ists in the revolt against the alleged intelleetnal and spirit-

ual tyranny of the asdieval period than their insistence that

education have a practical character. Concomitant witrn open-

ing up vast areas of discovery, popularliing travel and ex-

ploratlon, sti'alating religious and scientific inquiry, and

emphasizing man's place in this world, the humanists generally

held a contempt for the subtleties and fruitless mctnphyrica

of scotist philosophy, for the other-worldliness of mcnasti-

eism, and demanded instead knowledge that they considered to be

amre useful.
At the beginning of the sixteenth century, for example,

appeared a movement aimed broadly at making all knc~ledgee Use-

ful and more particularly at putting education in closer touch

with social reality. It was in the spirit of this movement,

which produced a number of literary works concerned with an

education suitable for the man of affairs,1 that Sidney con-

Oeived the revised Arcadia.

1In Italy and France the movement found literary exprei-
ion in such works as Csaiiglicne's The Courtier (16S), Rabe-
lais' Carrantua a* W antairel (1632-16.4), and Mcntalene's

3ldney himself Ta3 a Irr.ctical min. In toi ljient of

a court Frra)r-.nt trat led to cxt-nalve travel .nJ service to

the Queen and a zatciiless craiple of social acconpilshmenta,

he could scarcely have been anything else. Further, a Re-
naissance nan of the world whose trl-U:is, .1i:e tt.cae of the

noble Pyrucles in the revised fn. l, laRy c.,o 6 "'in ceads to
performed, then in words to defernda,," :Zidnye lived the pllics-
ophy of education he sets forth in the 1'afrc'Lt Er~ la.
"So that the ending end of all earthly learning," ne unere
writes, "being verteous action, those a.;lls that mist serve to

gLUay (16be-iSit), particularly his discourses "On the Up-
Lrinvinr cf Crnildren" and "Of Pedantry." Counitrjarts Lrn Lng-
lano were Elyot's Ihe o:e named those 'uarnr (1531), ksAham's
To,.Tphill (1545) and Th e-,].mster (l170). Lyly', 1j
l?79) and Sp enser's r atBrle awn aBs (1S8S9-66), the later
u idrtLaine "tc fasricrn a terntlemirn Lr noble person In virtu-
ous azid gentle discipline." Allied with the alms of tne liter-
ary movement were the educational ideals behind tne ;rcrosal
by Sir iumphrey Gilbert, navigator and soldier under .Idney's
father In IrelsnJ, fcr "'he Lrectlcn f anr Ahasde:my in Lcidon
for Elueation of her lrijesties Wares and others the youths of
nobility and gnrtler-e" (l.7T) and the esablilshmeant around
1576 of Gresham College by Sir Trcmas ,resham. Founder cf the
Royal ixc0niZe, Cresiuas ;rcpBsed tc ,isv lectures "cn Lne sei-
encos of divinity, ssLronomy, geomrpry, music, law, medicine,
and rhetoric." 'f. the LAf, z.v., "Glibarr, Air humphrey" and
"Gresham, Sir Tl.imas." William Boyd, he Historyv f y ister
li'Aucailir. (Lonlon, l..tA), p. 2-X0. Boyl has an excellence cnap-
ter on the broodenino of humanasm and the educational milieu
of the sixtnpnth century.

bring forth that, have a twat Just title to be Prinaes over

al tne rest."2 Such a practical view twrd learning went

hand in hand, of course, wirn a contempt for the alleged
sophistry of the medieval eshoolman, and te theft is a

recurrent oe in Sidney's writings.

"So yow can speaker and write Latine not barbarously,"
he writes in a letter to his brother Robert in 1580, "I never
require great study in Ciceronianisae the craiefe abuse of Ox-
ford, li dun verbaL _ecttu, lsaM ne1iuunt."3 Oft

quoted, this sentence suggest Sidney's dislike not only for
the purely formal training in style--with Cicero as th oel

and with little or no attention to content--but also for the

sophistical wrangling and word-splitting that was characteris-
tic of traditional logic and school debates. As the philoso-
pher Windelband observes of the Renaissance hu-anists,"Instead

af corcerptlons de branded thllng; instead of artificially
constructed words, the language of the cultivated world; in-

stead of subtle proofs and distinctions, a tasteful exposition
that should speak to the imagination and heart of the living

2e Z Co letes P &S I1, L ed. Albert
Feuillerat, 4 vols. (Cambridge, 19ll-l 6,, II, 12-here-
after referred to as Iorsl .

3forks, III, 132.

man."4 Aside from its scorn for scholasticism, .Aidney's let-
ter to his brother is notable for the stress it places on
carrying out studies in a practical manner. Sidney's advice
in the reading of history is to pay particular attention to
worthy examples touching on all manners of fortificatiLns,
laws, politics, custoas; and, since the historian is also a
discourser who often plays the part of a divine or a phile-

sopher and aIra a xiD lleXn Le I a =t I zA2 oa .uall-
atibea eA circutmtantili ~gA ," to trust not to remocry but
to construct a useful table of remembrances "that when yew
reade any such thing, yow strait bring it to its head, net
only of what art, but by your logicall subdivisions, to the
next number and parcel of the art." (In this description of
the table of remembrance is an unmistakable hint of the utili-
tarian logic of Peter Ramus, which will receive due attention
later.) Sidney further advises his brother to excel in arith-
metic, geometry, musie, and the manly art of horsemanship.
A similar tendency to hold school philosophy up to
scorn while stressing the practical value of learning appears
in the DEfA>nco f Joegsi. Consider, for example, Sidney's

4A I t L trv Q P'blfc.rhy, tr. James H. Tufts (New York,
1901), p. 360. An earlier instLnce of Cidney's scorn for the
schoolmen occurs in his first literary effort, ht lAa At A,
a masque Ire3ent.i for Elizabeth's entertainment at i\ instead
in i~7b. In thi3 brief piece the pedant schoolmaster Rhcabus
and his verbal quiddities are verily laughed off the pa.ltral

celebrated dofinitirn of the poet. Unlike the school jhilos-

opher with his abstract sophistry, the poet, aeeording to
Sidney, is one who "beginnett not with obscure definitions,

which must blurre the margent with interpretations, and loaded
the mnmorie with doubtfulnessce but he cometh to you with
words set in delightful proportion, either accompanied with,
or prepared for the well enchanting skill of usicke, and with
a tale forsooth he cometh unto you, with a tale, whieh hold-
eth children from play, and olde men from the chimney corner."
In respect to poetry he is even more specific: unlike philos-

ophy, which is tied to the preeept and gives only a wordish
description, or history, which is tied to the fact and wants
the precept, poetry can bring learning into closer relation to
the actualities of life. "Let us but hear old Anchig,"
says Sidney, "speaking in the middest of Tr2ter flames, or see
lljages in the fulnesse of all Calieos delightes, bewaile his
absence from barraine and beggerly Ithcae. Anger the Stolkt2

said, was a short madness let but Sonhceles bring you LAI
en a stage, killing and whipping sheepe and oxen, thinking
them the Army of Greekes, with their Chieftaines Aa
and 12naleaU; and tell me if you have not a more familiar in-
sight into Anger, then finding in the schoolmen his -Giu and
Difference." Considered along with Sidney's letter to his
brother and his dictum that virtuous action is "the ending end
of all earthly learning," these examples from the 3fernc~ AL
Poesle make clear Sidney's interest in the practical.

It was this interest in part that motivated lSiiey

to write the revised Ares-ki. In the absence cf a derinlte
statement of his intention, scholars have had recourse t, na

account by Fulke Greville, poet, cL-urtier, and cr3 of idnL;y's

closest friends. To Craville, Sidney erint.sted the only man-
useript of the revision. According to Crevllle'z cccunt, it

is Sidney's purpose to delineate in the frame of his cwa cu-
monwealth all the vicissitudes of erod and ill f~z ture .in both

public and private affairs; and, by turnirig "the barren P'nilo-

sophy precepts into preg.-a c Ioag~ a of life," to "liLa cut such
exact pictures, of every posture in the minded, that any tan
being forced, in the strains of this life, to pass %.rou;.
any straights, or latitudes of good, or ill fortune, Light (as
in a glasse) see how to set a good countenance upon ol1 the
discountenances of adversitie, and a stay upon the acrbitant

sailings of chane."65 Thus to offer, thr:ught ezxat picturoa,

a guide to the exercise of virtuous action in the very teeth

of adversity--this is the purpose of the revised L-Z=ada. rur-
ther, Greville explains that Sidney's teaching is intended to
give delight as well as instreutions "And though my Ioble

Friend had that dexterity, even with the dashes of his pn to
make the Aeailah Antiques beautifie the agents of his works)

e il r 1 kR Crevil f.e P. 1 a = Jj .dMey, ed.
Nowell 5uluio (O.-cord, l1u;), pp. 1t-16.

yet..his end in them was not vanishing pleasure alone, but
morell Images, and rxamrles, (as directing threads) to guide
every man through the confused 1-1yr1nth of his own desires,
and life."6
Though Greville's account is sometimes dismissed as
exaggeration because of its insistence on the finer morali-
ties,7 it has much to recommend it as a reliable statement
of Sidney's purpose. Not only does it strike the familiar
keynote of scorning scholasticism ("the barren Philosophy
precepts") in favor of matter that can be put to use, but it
is consistent with Sidney's theory of the purpose of poetry
in the DsfeSse & j~EAij. There Sidney defines poetry as
"an Art of Imitation: for so A.rist.tle termeth it in the word

pu/ atls that is to say, a representing, counterfeiting, or
figuring forth to speaker Metaphorically. A speaking I~.AgBL ,

6E.b, p. 223.

7The strongest objection to Greville's account is that
by R. W. Zandvoort in S1dnr.-'':- ,rc1 s Ccn arfo.n PtraR
"a Ze VYgziona (Amsterdam, lau;), pp. ll-Lse. Zarndvoors
find. that Greville's testimony as tc the inculcation of moral
lessons in the revised Arcdia is "somewhat surprising, in view
of the composite texture o' trne romance, which is by no means
woven of one sin.ie thread...." Defences of Greville's account
are numerous. Cf., for example, Iarcus Gcldman, Sia Philil
idnnO jf t _2 Ardiad ("illlr, .1 s udl di~ in janrguage ard Litera-
ture," V.-l. XVII,I.cs. 1-2 Z.rbane, 197), p. 123. Creville's
editor--LegM nan Draa LK 'e.9 i reviLLl, ed. Geoffrey Bul-
lough, vol. (London, 1945), I, 5--writes: "His interpreta-
tion with its insistence on the moral gravity of his friend's
message may err by ex4ygeration, but it cannot be dismissed as
a mere attempt to find virtue in a tale of which Greville's
sober age must otherwise disapprove."

with this end to teach and delight." The subject m ot fit
for poetry to teach delightfully is virtuous action.
Just as Sidney's central purpose in the revised

Aradia is marked by the notion of practicality, so his plan
of composition bears a similar stamp as it develops out cf an
interest in the most remarkable manifestation of the hur-anis-
tic attempt to bring learning into toueh with reality. Side
from the sheer complexity of the work, the most striking fea-
ture of the revised Anlr>a is an inverted or j r edi.a XS
type of structural pattern. Conventional in epic poetry and
prose, the j "das Xaa technique was employed by Leliodorus,
whose AathilipL* provided Sidney with a primary source. But
it is quite likely, too, that an intermediary influence lay be
tween Sidney and Ueliodorus. In ZT L&aeils Lrzie (15~2)
Sidney's protege, Abraham Fraunce, writes "Reade homer, read
Demosthenes, reader Virgill, read Cicero, read Bartas, read
Torquato Tasso, reader that most worthie ornament of our English
tongue, the Countesse of Peabrookes Agrala, and therein see the

,"For the web (as it were) of his story," writes John
Hoskina in his Directic-ns fcrT ESrgch nnd t.'1 (1509), "he fol-
lowed three--HeAlidorus In Greea, Lanzarus' rceadia in Italian
and Diana de Montemalor in Spanish." See ieLcolm 'Vllace, Ih&
I L 2 ir ii = AI- Ednev (Cambridge, 1915), p. 235. The stan-
dard study cf dney's debt to 1;elLodcrus is by Samuel Lee
Volff, =s GirE! Re sans Ice j Elizabethan ?-psar Fic tio (New
York, 1912), pp. 314-j3, M3.

true effeetes of natural Logike which is the ground of arti-
ficiall." The reference in Fraunce's statement is to the
practical logic of Peter Ramus. Critics have given but pass-
ing notice to Fraunce's statement, but evidence makes it ap-

plicable to Sidney and suggests that the revised Arcad il-
lustrates Ramistic logic, particularly in its use of a hetero-
elite structure and paradoxes of situation that "prove" a
central theme.
When Sidney began to work on the revised AraLia in
1581-1582 perhaps no other subject was more hotly debated
throughout learned circles in Europe than Ramus's proposed

reform of logic and rhetoric.10 Ramus had stunned the sea-

demic world by asserting in his master's thesis at Paris in
1536 that Q b ArstQtele d~tt ~ sjeat, ~ or.lenttiia

egso. This thesis was less an attack on Aristotle than on

9"The Lawiers Logike by Abraham Fraunce. Imprinted
by William Low for Thomas Gubbin and T. Newman. 158 ."
Z 11344. The quote is on fol. 4v.

10The most recent study of Rams is by Wilbur Samuel
Howell, Lale j -toric ni A lndi 1600-1700 (Prinaeton,
1986), pp. 146-L61, to w..ich is appenaed (p. 146) an ade-
quate bibliography of critical materials. Earlier stLdies
on Ramus that have been of help in the preparation of this
chapter are those by Rosemond Tuve, Elizabethan ~nd ta-
ahaljca lmaery (Chicago, 1947), pp. :l-L:5j by iiaiia
Craig, h ,crantad ~g a (Osfrrd, 19C2), pp. 14.-169; and
by Eerry .-llier, 11 g-w Ll nd'g canventeanh u QgLa
(Canbridge, a~a., i.3z4), pp. 111-15 ouo--JO, ana Appen-
dix A.

the followers of Aristotlo. As Abraham Fraunce was to write
in a commentary on Ramus, theirr be no greater enemyes In
deed to Aristotle, then they that in words be Aristotellansa
no better friends to him indeed, then they yt least prcfesse
in words."1 Following in the path of Lfurontius Valla's
^ DisuatcaUner s iE Aristoteleos (1493),
Ludovlco Viva's Al BSjeJallig (1531), and Marits nasolius'

Pf vgrJiis ZSialf t I raticne rhiloisoh3ndl (153),
Ramus objected to the alleged lack of any utility in the
logomaahy of scholasticism. His proposed reform in tie in-
terest of utility simplified traditional logic by ss;,,rat-
ing that discipline from rhetoric, reducing the number cf
categories, subordinating the syllogism, and cr.n3idering Ic-
gie first of all as an art of disputing well, with the
truth or falsity of ideas determined by an orderly arranoe-
ment based on man's use of his natural Intelliganre.12

11"A brye and general comparison of Ramus his Lo-
gike with that of 4rLstctle," an unpubii.hed treet.i-e writ-
tan around 158162 anJ dedicated tu Sidney. A discussion of
this important manuscript appears below.

22d I'tit. d PIrr I l -at2 (155) anrd
the jlniy'e mc _iam Rw'us.'s sLicrie3 i,- rhe-
toriL, riiparp cif Lwn',,aticn and judgment anr r3dutced to
some L.:efL:'l-five tropes and figu~ea and a di.icourse un de-
livery, were advanced in ldj7 Ly' O'mr Talcn Ln L nl T2titu-
tjnj oratri.A, usually rarerred to as the anle.loic.
KaiaLs's Logic was fir3t trltnslated into .nglih in 1L';4 by
Roland dacllmaine: "Tne Logika of the Most Itaoelle.t Philo-
sopher P. Ramus Martyr. Per :. Roll. Iakylnenaeum scotum
for Thomas Vautrolier." = 1&546. Fcr a thorough account
of the literature of Ramus's legic in Europe, see Perry kil-
ler, A*. Uit., pp. ix-501.

In England the controversy cver hamus centered at

Cambridge. Introduced there in the early 1570's by v$ of

Laurence Chaderton's lectures on logic and Gabriel Harvey'a
on rhetoric, Ramism gained acceptance in the next decade
mainly through the efforts of three men: William Temple of

King's College, George Downhame of Christ's, and Alexander
Richardscn of mueents. Of these commentators, Temple is the
most important. Active in the early 1580's, he engaged in

a series of controversies over Reaus with Everard Digby of
St. John's College and with Johannes Piseator, the German
philologist, and published in 15S4 an edition of Ramus's

NPlitect Ai2M with a dedication to Sidney.
Though Sidney studied at Oxford, where opposition

to the Cambridge position on Ramus was strong, it has long
been known that toward the end of his brief career he ac-
cepted Ramus's system of logic. Aside from Fraunce 's tes-

timony in -hL Log~g and Temple's dedication to
Sidney of the f el Uhii i 2M, evidence is not lack-
ing that Sidney imnew Ramus intimately. Malcolm Wallace,
Sidney's biographer, makes this claim en the strength of a

passage in the preface to Theophilus Banosius's .triE a

CL_ entariruio BRlioneli CLr'i-tina (1577), one of the
sources for the life of Ramus. Banosius dedicated this
work to Fidney with the comment: "You not only entertained
the tenderest love for u-aau7when alive, but now that he is

dead, esteem and reverence hi~.3e To Bancsiiu's statement
may be added Milton's remark in the preface to his reoen-
sion of Ramus's logics "I hold with our countrymen lidney...
Peter Ramus is believed the best writer on this art."14
Temple's edition of the -'L.ctjr!,re ?1:t Sec car-
ried a dedicatory epistle that fixes the date fcr- :14-ey's
first acquaintance with Ramus's logic as 1584, the date of
publication. "So that you may begin to love this discl-
pline," Temple tells Sidney, "which was saved as frcm ruin
by the genius of P. Ramus and quite splendidly cluciUaated
by him."l5 Other evidence, however, points to an earlier
date--one that coincides with the nericd commonly aesigndJ

i'uoted by Wallaeep, a. r&., ?p. 118.

A Eiiatuz ia.LW1amlet s &I E A. st ,L.o cE ATrpaund
after .! t ri jA .au, tr. AlLaj r. Gilbert, in
--rk, 17 vols., Tho Columbia edition (New York, 1935)
A.i J. It should also be noted that sidney (and his brothTr
Robert) knew AndrQ Wechel, the famous printer and ;ublisher
of Ramus's aorks. See feallce, M. aft., p. 124 and orgIs,

1For pertinent passages from the dedicatory epis-
tle, see Howell, IBI, p. 204. Sidney'-= reply ti Temple
is cited in 1r, TII, 14i, and indicates Teaile' ccntrl-
bution to the v-egu ct l:amism. 'I have receayed l l.th yowr
book and letter," Li..ney wrote Temrle, "and think my self
greatly beholding unto yow for them. I greatly dosyre to
know yow better, I mean by sight, for els yonr wrytings nake
yow as well known as my knowledge ever reach untc, and eila
assure yourself Xr. Temple that whyle I live yow shall have
me reddy to make known by my best power that I bear yow
good will, and greatly esteem those thingee I conceal in

tothe composition of the revised Arsadia.

In the preface to t LaI.Is Lot Fraunce calls
attention to an earlier venture into Ramistic logic in the

form of three treatises composed sometime between 1580 and

1585. Fraunce never published these works, but a copy of

all three is in British Museum MS/Add. 34,691.16 The title-

page of the manuscript reads as follows "g he-hi'des

Lgite conteyning the praeepta of that art put down by
Reamus examples set owt of Beurhusius, Piscator, Mr. Chat-

terton and diners others. Together with twome general dis-

courses, the one touching the prayse and ryEhte vse of

Logike, the other concernynge the comparison of Ramus his

Logike with that of Aristotle." The longest of the treat-

ijes, MT the1heardea I.olik,- is dedicated to Sidney's in-

timate friend, Sir Zdward Dyer and, with its copious il-

lustrations from bpenser's Th SheBerd' CaleMnd (1679),
represents an early draft of j1 Lawle Lcr .k Although
the treatise on the nature and use of logic bears no dedi-
cation, it will be seen that Fraunce wrote it at Sidney's

16A bibliographical description of the complete man-
uscript, 36 folio pages long, is Yi latnlcue S. A_ T .
to the "t'awrirtt n the Fr'Llsr .j'vsia I=R :f:e ,&
two s..crter treaties in the manuscritt, 'Of the nature and
use cf .ugLke'" and1 "A bryef and general comparison of Ramus
his Logike with that of Aristotle," are transcribed in Ap-
pendix A of the present study.

request. The third treatise is dedicated to Sidney "A
bryef and general comparison of aReus his Logike with that
of Aristotle, to ye ryghte worshypful his very good Master

and Patron Master PI Sydney."
Aside from its historical interest, Fraunce's man-

uscript is important because it strongly suggests the in-
fluence of Ramism on the writing of the revised Arcadia.
In the first place, the two shorter treatises were composed,
according to Freunce in the preface to ha LaA'iwer3 Lrgik
"when I first came in presence of that right noble and most

renowned knight sir Philip Sydney" and drewe both him to
a greater liking of, and my self to a further trausyling

in, the easier explication of Ramus his iogike."17 Secondly,
that Sidney asked Fraunce to write the treatises is clear

from the opening passage in the discourse en the nature and

use of logic. Fearing that he is not equal to the task of

writing on the broad subject of logic, Fraunce says "But
bee it as bee maybe, seeing he desireth to hear, uch de-

serueth to haue, and willeth me newe, who may comaundte m

suer, I had rather be thought ouer rashe by writtinge, then
not so thankfull by concealinge."8 Finally, Sidney appears

17The preface to the copy of Frauaet's treatise us-
ed here is wantLng; tre relevant information is quoted by
Howell, UA. gu., p. 223.

ol. 29r

to have made this request to Fraunce at the time usually

assigned to the composition of the revised Arn&sa that is,
in 1881-15S.19 Fraunce left Cambridge in 1583 to enter

law, and a passage at the end of the treatise dedicated to
Sidney-"pardon, I prayer yow, the stammering messing

for the tyme was short, the place vnquiet, my body erased,

my mynde mLlested, my books in Cambridge...."0-suggests
that Fraunce was still at the University. Moreover, Fraunce

19Lahclars generally agree that Sidney completed the
l Ar~ in 1680; the title of the Philips MS. states
tnat the work was "made in the year 1580" (Cf. Zandvoort,
S. cit., p. 5). On the date of composition for the revi-
sed verlson, however, scholars are at odds. Unfortunately,
in a letter that cculd otherwise have settled the matter
once and for all, Fulke Oreville has puzzled scholars with
an ambiguous reference. Writing to Francis Walsingham in
1586, he said of the revised Arcadial "I have sent my lady,
your daughter, at her request, a correction of that old one,
done four or five years sinee, which he left in trust with
me...." (Quoted in full in Wallace, g. *ct., p. 282).
Whether "done" refers tn correctionn" or to "that old one "
has been a matter for debate. Scme (e.g., Wallace, p. 23)
assume it to refer to "that old one" and hence set the date
for the revision after 15821 others (e.g. Zandvoort, p. 7)
take it to refer to "eerreetion" and settle on a date bet-
ween 1581 and 1582. Some support for the latter date is
offered by Hons Wilson, I PhElLP 14dn (Loaden, 1950),
p. 135& "Some time during 15d8 tis friend, the exiled Earl
of Angus, saw '(though not polished and refined as now It
is) his so beautiful and universally accepted birth, his
Areadia.'" This statement could refer to the revised ver-
sion in an early stage; or it could refer just as well to
the 13 Arcadia. An attempt to establish a date for at least
part, if nt, tho whole, of the revision in 1584 has been
made by Denver Ewing Baughan "%idne en tAieEarl
oL L.)icester and the Revised Arca i," J.Gr, LI ~Jan., t )

20,ol. 36'.

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