1 ONE BODY AND ONE SPIRIT: THE COMMUNAL IMPULSE IN THE WORK OF FRANCIS QUARLES AND HIS CONTEMPORARIES By RANDI MARIE SMITH A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLME NT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2009
2 2009 Randi Marie Smith
3 To my Grandmother, Ethel Willett, for all she was, and to my friend, Ben Caldwell, for all he might have been
4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I could not have completed this project without the support and encouragement of many people. I would like to thank my committee Ira Clark, R.A. Shoaf, Melvin New, and Howard Louthan; I appreciate their willingness to spend their time and effort to encourage and advise me. I would especially like to thank my committee chairperson James J. Paxson, who read countless drafts and always had time to chat about improving my work. I would also like to thank my friends Kryst il, Melissa, Susan, Nancy, Martin, and many others. I have to thank them for listening to me no matter what time it was and for always having an encouraging word to say. I would especially like to thank Kadesh Minter for reading every word and for always k nowing which ones to change. George Addicott III has my thanks for his love and encouragement far beyond the call of friendship. Additionally, my thanks go to professors from across the University of Florida campus for advice and support. I would like to t hank God for the inspiration and strength He sent me that allowed me to have the courage to start and complete this project. Finally, I would like to thank my family, especially my parents Catherine A. Bryant and Randy B. Smith, for all of their love and s upport. Without these people, this project would not have been possible. I owe them all more than I can repay; all I can say is that I appreciate them.
5 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS .................................................................................................................... 4 LIST OF FIGURES .............................................................................................................................. 6 ABSTRACT .......................................................................................................................................... 7 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION ......................................................................................................................... 9 2 MEMBERS INCORPORATE: EVIDENCES OF COMMUNITY IN EARLY MODERN POETRY ................................................................................................................... 30 3 A MYSTICAL REPAST: FOOD AND COMMUNAL REJECTION ................................... 73 4 HOPE OF HEAVEN, FEAR OF EARTH: THE POETIC DEATHWISH ........................... 107 5 CONFESSING COMMUNICATION: MOMENTS OF METAPOESIS IN FRANCIS QUARLES ................................................................................................................................. 141 6 QUARLES IN THE TWENTY-FIRST CENTURY: CONCLUSIONS AND FUTURE DIRECTIONS ........................................................................................................................... 175 BIBLIOGRAPHY ............................................................................................................................. 181 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ........................................................................................................... 193
6 LIST OF FIGURES Figure page 2 1 The Invocation. ................................................................................................................... 67 2 2 Book I, Emblem 5 The Fashion of this World Passeth Away. Emblemes(1635) and Hieroglyphikes ( 1638). .......................................................................................................... 68 2 3 Emblem I, 10 Yee are of Your Father the Devill. Emblemes(1635) and Hieroglyphikes (1638). .......................................................................................................... 69 2 4 Emblem II, 15 I Will Put My Feare in Their Hearts, that They Shall Not Depart from Me. ............................................................................................................................... 70 2 5 Emblem IV, 11 I Will Rise, and Go about in the City, and Will Seeke Him that My Soule Loveth: I Sought Him, bu t I Found Him Not. .......................................................... 71 2 6 Emblem V, 6 Whom Have I in Heavn but Thee? And What Desire I on Earth in Respect of Thee? .................................................................................................................. 72 3 1 E mblem III Book 1. Even in Laughter the Heart is Sorrowfull, and the End of Mirth is Heavinesse.. .................................................................................................................... 104 3 2 Emblem XII Book 1. Yee May Suck, But Not be Satisfied with the Brest of Her Consolat ion. ........................................................................................................................ 105 3 3 Emblem II -Book 5. Stay me with Flowers, Comfort Me with Apples, for I am Sick with Love. ........................................................................................................................... 106 4 1 Emblem XIV -Book I. Lighten Mine Eyes, Lord, Lest I Sleep the Sleep of Death. ..... 139 4 2 Emblem IX -Book I. The World Passeth Away, and All the Lusts Thereof. ................ 140 5 1 Emblem 9 Book 3: The Snar es of Hell Compassed Me About. .................................... 169 5 2 Emblem 12, Book 4: Have You Seene Him Whom My Soule Loveth? When I Had Past a Little fro Them, then I Found Him, I Took Hold of Him, and Left Him Not. .... 170 5 3 Book 5 Emblem 14. How Amiable Are Thy Tabernacles. ............................................ 171 5 4 Book 5 Em blem 15. Make Haste my Beloved, and Be Like the Roe or the Young Hart upon the Mountains of Spices. .................................................................................. 172 5 5 Book 5. The Farewell. ...................................................................................................... 173 5 6 Quarles, Francis. Pictura. Hierogliph I. Behold I was shapen in Inquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.. ............................................................................................. 174
7 Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy ONE BODY AND ONE SPIRIT: THE COMMUNAL IMPULSE IN THE WORK OF FRANCIS QUARLES AND HIS CONTEMPORARIES By Randi Marie Smith May 2009 Chair: James J. Paxson Ma jor: English Francis Quarles produced his most popular and lasting poetry during the religious upheaval of the seventeenth century Emblemes (1635) and Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man 1639). Though these works have been looked upon as generally inferior works of meditative poetry, I argue that they contain a central thematic element that has been neglected in most studies of such poetry a communal impulse. Religious poetry in this period has been studied primarily for its effects on and direction of individual believers. However, Quarles formal meditations were meant not only to improve the individual, but also to recreate that individual as a vital member of a community. The tensions that exist between the individual and the community infuse the work of authors such as Joseph Hall, Robert Southwell, Francis Quarles, and George Herbert These authors interrogate the relationship between individual and community through sub themes that include individual place and purpose, food, death and rejection, and language itself. First, I explore the place and purpose of community in the meditational works of these authors. Each author provides a variation on the definition of place and purpose. Halls Vowes and Meditations and The Arte of Divine Meditation give inst ructions on and elucidate the benefits of meditation for both the individual and the community. Various poems of Southwells include both direction and subject matter for meditation to the specific, limited Catholic Recusant community.
8 Herberts The Temple emphasizes individual participation in the communal structure of the church. Finally, Quarles emblem poems deal with the dichotomous dynamics of acceptance and rejection of the basic forms of communal activity. Further, I s urvey briefly constructions of the reciprocal influences of meditation and community from some pre -figurative medieval works and in t he epic that explored sixteenth -century communityEdmund Spensers Faerie Queene Having investig ated the relationship, I explain specific things that act upon it : communal self identification and food, communal rejection and death, and, finally, communal discourse and mutual understanding These moments enrich the poems and invest the works as a whole in the sixteenth and seventeenth-century pattern of int errogating language within itself, and in turn, the self within the community.
9 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION A nd that we be very membres incorporate in thy mistical body, whiche is the blesse d company of al faithful people. Book of Common Prayer 1559 T he wo rdes which we have herd this daye with our outward eares, may through thi grace be so graffed [grafted] inwardly in our hartes, that they may bring furth in us the fruite of good living. Book of Common Prayer, 1559. These epigrams I take from prayers inc luded in the weekly communion service known and recited weekly by millions of devout British Anglicans. T hey address two major poles of Christian thought the individual and the communal, which must be reconciled in practice. Scholars have tended to focus on one aspect or the other, without addressing two facts: Individuals must live and participate in communities C ommunities cannot exist except through the desire and participation of individuals. Theologically, t he tension between these potentially polar c oncepts has been addressed differently by each denomination of the Christian faith. The Roman Catholic Church offered two potential answers to this debate the withdrawal from the worldly community into cloisters and monasteries ; and, contrarily, the parti cipation in the world by confirmed Christians. However, the former solution to the problem, that of cloistering, was not available to Protestant and Reformation Christians; but the question of how to reconcile the two aspects remained. The solution, in bo th cases, lay within the practice of communion. As Carolyn Dinshaw has argued, the activities of communion constituted these groups themselves as communities (1 ; italics added ). Ira Clark contends that during this period of communal confusion, English Christians seem to have been motivated by deep psychoreligious needs stirred by the Reformation and Counter Reformation ; and that as a result of these needs, they vacillated between sinful individualism and saved communion (29). While Clark attends to
10 th ese needs and behaviors as he examines and refines a neotypology, his critique of much of the poetry emphasizes the sinful individual and his or her identification with the types used in the poetry.1 However, the purpose of the poetry is not just to re deem the individual. For sixteenth and seventeenth-century Christians both Catholics and Protestants meditative poetry and meditational works also set forth the way that the individual Christian would work within his or her chosen community collectively, t he mistical body of Christ. It is within the saved communion, the corpus mysticum that Christians had to function a major idea that is reflected in some of the meditational poetry of the period. Moreover, the believers need to join and define the space surrounding them in communion brought into existence an open, active relationship [exists] between works of literature, ideological forms and aspects of social organization (Aers ix). The ideological form in this case is the practice of meditation th at becomes popular in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. Thus, I trace the connections between this system and the community that it informs through the meditational literature of Francis Quarles, Joseph Hall, Robert Southwell, and George Herbert. Aers and his colleagues, Bob Hodge and Gunther Kress hold the now common belief that language itself is a social activity which is constantly in a state of change, expressing forms of life and consciousness evolved by specific social beings and groups (ix). The socially performative nature of language is what allows poets like Quarles and writers like Hall to illustrate things that are important to both the individual reader and his or her larger social group. Further, the relationship explored here seems to be one that is topically expressed and investigated most clearly in the work of Quarles, Southwell, Hall, and Herbert. Each of these 1 Ira Clark coined the term neotypology, because he determined that the poets of the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries were reinventing the medieval concept of typology t o fit their needs primarily a newly revived problem in sacred psychology (4).
11 writers is a member of a specific social group, from the Anglican layman Francis Quarles to the outcast community of Catholics embodied in Southwell to the privileged clergy that people the works of Hall and Herbert. Though these groups overlap socially in some ways, the most consistent thing about them is their investment in a body of Christians; to be sure, Clark demonstrates that these bodies of reforming humanists and Catholics, Reformed Anglicans, and particularly Puritans and Protestants were invested in close attention to literal meaning and interpretation of Biblical texts. This investment allowed the rise of seventeenth -century popularizers who offered scriptural interpretations to believers of all faiths (15). By delving into the connections and the changes that language seeks to make in these social groups, I show how each author engages his audie nce as a means of constructing a consciousness of self and world, which can become a second reality, an alternative to the confusion of late Elizabethan, Jacobean, and Caroline religious realities (Aers ix). Historians and literary theorists have class ified the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries as the primary period for confessionali zation that is, for the construction of specific theological communities, in the wake of the Reformation.2 T hey have primarily looked at theological sources such as sermo ns, church documents, and works like the Anglican Book of Common Prayer Though none of the poets discussed in this work are specifically confessional, this pervasive desire to define and establish community is reflected in poetical works. In addition to c onfessionalization, a nother source for the development of Ch ristian community exists ; that source is imaginative literature, specifically, the literature of meditation. I do not disagree that one of the functions of meditational literature is, as Louis L. Martz and others have argued, a 2 Thomas A. Brady notes that the term confessionalization was coined in the 1970s by Heinz Schilling; it was extended to its present meaning by Wolfgang Reinhard and Ernst Walter Zeeden (4, 7, 12). Further, it is based on the post Reformation idea of a confession, which isan individual or collective often normative testimony of beliefextended to the churches or communities that held or confessed them (Brady 3). My thanks go to Dr. Howard Louthan of the University of Florida for pointing me to this article.
12 place for an acute self -consciousness that shows itself in minute analysis of moods and motives (Martz 2) However, Martz does not address the potential of this literature to provide a vehicle for the creation of Christian community. His argument in The Poetry of Meditation rests partially on an analysis of the meditation techniques of the Jesuit Spiritual Exercises and those texts that informed or were inspired by them .3 Martz focuses on the use of the Exercises by nonJe suits and their influence on nonCatholic texts; the primary participants were novices seeking to join the Society of Jesus a specific Christian community In his exploration of meditative poetry, he does not investigate the fact that these exercises were used as a preparation for and a reaffirming of that community (Roberts 453). Further, the writers employing meditative techniques in their poetry tended to be both educated by and interested in shaping the ir communities. We see this desire for involvement in the dedicatory epistles of Joseph Halls Vowes and Meditations (1605) and The Arte of Meditation (1606); in the religious lyrics and writings of Roberts Southwell ; in the emblems of Francis Quarles ; and in the construction of Herberts The Temple (1633) This need to shape both the internal Christian life of their readers and their external Christian community potentially comes from the tension that arose in England after the Dissolution of the Monasteries (15381541) At this time, the average English Christian found himself with a need not only to determine what he believed, but also to participate in the life of his community, with a new duty to the poor, needy, orphaned, and other indigents that would have once been the responsibility of the Church.4 In Literature and Religious Culture in 3 Martz points out that the Spiritual Exercises were not the only exercises of their kind; he outlines extensive commitment required for the original version of the Exercises and how they were adapted for common use in a way that is reminiscent of medieval religious practice (26). He uses the work of the poets Robert Southwell, John Donne, George Herbert, Henry Vaughn, and Richard Crashaw as his primary evidence. Martzs analysis of these poets as meditative has been generally accepted among critics of the sixteenth and seventeenth century. 4 To support his argument on the rise of meditation in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries, Martz notes that it was a fact, lamented by writers of every persuasion, that English devotional life had been shattered by the rapid upheavals and bitter controversies of the sixteenth centurys middle years (7). While Martz focuses on the
13 Seventeenth Century England, Reid Barbour argues that during the Caroline period the Church was involved in a stocktaking of the human experience and construction of Protestant faith, religious circumstance pertains to the discursive conditions of persons, places, and times (both past and future); to the circumscribing realities of matter and providence; to worship as decoration and as imagination; to the ways in which Protestants interact, institute their churches, think, solve moral and social dilemmas; and to the means through which they dramatize, spread, heroize the faith, and find salvation (11) It is important that this inventory covered all parts of life that had been previously dictated or at least informed by various ceremonies in the church. While Barbour focuses primarily on how these apprehensions were interrogated by dramatists like Jonson and Shirley, similar concerns about the social discourse and its relationship to church and the individual can be mo re emphatically found in the works of Francis Quarles, Joseph Hall, Robert Southwell, and George Herbert, among others. 5 Many of the works that I examine here are currently classified as meditational. Though Barbour is interested in church ceremony as it occurs during actual worship services, each of these authors makes the compelling argument that they must rethink their spiritual lives from the outside (concerning the character, reach, and visibility of providence) and from the inside (regarding the wa ys in which human beings think, believe, and imagine), or that the outside and the inside are influenced by these ceremonies (Barbour 16). If the Caroline church and government was as interested in structuring the internal and external discourses of its people as Barbour implies, then meditation though a private practice serves the same function. Its individual meditation, I conc entrate on the relationship between individual and community that underlies some of the same poems. 5 Barbour is extending and re examining the arguments made by Achsah Guibbory in Ceremony and Community from Herbert to Milton: Literature, Religion, and Cu ltural Contact in Seventeenth Century England and by Kevin Sharpe in Remapping Early Modern England: The Culture of SeventeenthCentury Politics
14 subjects come from a common source.6 Though no official Book of Meditation exists for any of the denominations whose writers I examine here, Martin Elsky h as made the point that meditation is highly influenced by liturgy in most cases; this influence can be best seen in the emphasis on remembrance implied in the practice of each (68). Elsky notes that the practice of presenting sacred events as if they wer e simultaneously historical and current developed from medieval poetry in which the Gospel events are maintained as present and ongoingmaintaining both the historical and eternal significance of Christ captured in a poetic remembrance. This type of pr esentation can be found in such Middle English lyrics as The Dream of the Rood (70).7 Such remembrance techniques are the foundation of meditation as Elsky details and connect the older poetry with its descendants.8 A brief survey of this type of lyric al material might be useful in order to position community within the medieval precursors to early modern meditational writing. The author of The Dream of the Rood has the Rood, or Cross, tell the Dreamer that on the day of the Crucifixion, weop eal ges ceaft, / cwidon cyninges fyll. Crist ws on rode (5556). For the Rood and the Dreamer, creation is constructed as a community of believers who weep together at 6 Barbour claims that apologists such as John Cosin and Jeremy Taylor argue that liturgy and ceremony insure national and spiritual unity, and they preserve peace and order, and the ceremony is extended to things like meditation, which, though private, affects both behavior and the senses (106). Barbour bases this on the seventeenthcentury apologists dependence on Erasmuss allowance of the senses in sacrementall worship, a dependency that he sees in works like Jeremy Taylors Holy Living (107). I predicate my notion on the importance of literature in communal activity on this construction. However, Barbour va lorizes and centers on official records for much of his documentary material, while I rely on imaginative literature. 7 Elsky does not specifically investigate this idea in medieval poetry, though he briefly alludes to the medieval lyric as a potential pla ce for it. I use The Dream of the Rood to examine his idea. 8 In her seminal work on Protestant poetics, Barbara K. Lewalski contends that the poetics of much seventeenthcentury religious lyric derives primarily from Protestant assumptions about the poetry of the Bible (5). However, she limits the scope of those lyrics by arguing that the primary poetic influences upon the major devotional poets of the century Donne, Herbert, Vaughan, Traherne, Taylor are contemporary, English, and Protestant (5). I argue instead some lyric poets of the period, including Herbert, were also carrying forward and redefining the idea of community found in medieval texts. Quarles, whom Lewalski does not count among the major poets, is especially wide ranging in his source material.
15 the Crucifixion. Later in the poem, the author narrows the parameters of this community to in clude only those who are hwre me r dryhtnes egnas, freondas gefrunon, that gyredon me golde ond seolfre, those men of the Lord who take up the cross and dress it in gold and silver (75 77). At the end of the poem, this select group will sit with t he Dreamer at the Lords Table, which can be read as a metaphor not only for Heaven, but also for the ceremony of Communion (140146). The action of participating in and accepting this dream as a re -telling of the Christian truth is also a reinforcement of the ideal of Christian community as a place of worship and fellowship. Similarly, in Langlands Piers Plowman the dreamer/shepherd who narrates the tale makes references to large communities of believers with whom he must choose to relate.9 They are a co mmunity that believes rightful reson shulde rewle you alle (Passus 1:54). The speaker argues that God to alle good folke such grauynge defendeth, / to written in windowes of here wel dedes (Passus 3: 6465). For Langland, the community of Gods believe rs should be reasonable and good; if they are, God will defend them and write their good deeds on the windows of their souls.10 These good deeds will enable the members of the community to recognize each other. In The Canterbury Tales, Geoffrey Chaucers Parson is the character most obviously concerned with communion in the religious sense. His tale emphasizes the need for repentance and mentions that thanne shal man understand what is the fruyt of penance  is the blissful compaignye that rejoysen hem evermo, everich of others joy (10761079). As the last 9 In positing Piers Plowman as an allegory of community, I follow the work of David Aers in Community, Gender, and Individual Identity: English Writing 13601430. Aers reads Piers Plowman as an interrogation of the defining position of poverty to the individual Christian. 10 Robert Southwell and George Herbert will later use the metaphor of the window to discuss broken souls. See my discussion of the term crazie in Hope of Heaven, Fear of Earth (109).
16 completed tale, it also ends most manuscripts of the Tales with an emphasis on community and righteous behavior, an emphatic contrast to the bawdry of some of the other tales. While the Parson is the only Pilgrim to directly mention actions that lead into the Christian community, I would argue that many of the tales told by the other characters are indirectly related to the well being of the community as a whole. Certainly the tales of Chanticleer and Alison are focused on communal well -being, despite critical concentration on their structure as genre parodies.11 Each of these precursory medieval texts thus highlights a different aspect of community. In The Dream of the Rood, community is defined as t hose who honor the cross and sit at communion; while for Langland, the good deeds of the community are paramount. Finally, for Chaucers Parson the repentant nature of community as the endpoint of Christian action is most important. The Early Modern Christ ian community is influenced by these three medieval aspects of community and their relationships to individual believers. However, its members seem based on the popularity of both emblem books and more conventional meditative works to have wanted a way to improve both the community itself and their own harts (Quarles Epigram I, 2).12 Edmund Spenser serves as both a literary and historical bridge between the medieval communal impulse and its presence in some of the meditational poetry of the sixteenth and seventeenth -centuries. Indeed in The Faerie Queene, meditation is specifically connected to membership in a community of believers Even Edmund Spens er, whose Faerie Queene does not seem to be written for devotional purposes, reflects this theme of commun ity building most obviously in the journey of Red 11 Briefly, I would argue that among othe r things the tale of Chanticleer (the Nuns Priests Tale) demonstrates the need to trust ones community over ones self, while the tale of Alison (the Millers tale) illustrates the complications of living in a community. For a canonically central work of Chaucer criticism that argues for the Parsons singular and sanctifying, communal vision as the necessary endpoint of the Canterbury Tales linear structure, see Donald R. Howard. 12 All citations from Quarles are listed as Emblem/ Epigram/Inscriptio Book Number, Emblem number.
17 Crosse Knight in Canto X of Book I .13 In this canto, Red Cr osse makes a spiritual journey towards repentance and thereby, into the community of charity within the House of Holinesse. After Red Crosse is re leased from his imprisonment by D espair, he is a fraile, feeble, fleshly wight with divelish thoughts dismayed (Spenser I. IX. 53) .14 By referring to him as a wight Una associates him with a being that does not participate in a human community, acco r ding to one sixteenth -cent ury definition of wights as supernatural, preternatural, or unearthly beings (OED n. 1b) .15 A s such a being, Red Crosse cannot participate in the world that Spenser has created. After all, a fraile, feeble, fleshly man can hardly rescue damsels in distress, slay the serpents of Error, represent the spirit of England, or otherwise fulfill his societal role. Therefore, Una takes him to an auntient house not farre away / renowned throughout the world for sacred lore, / and pure, unspotted life the House of Holiness (Spenser I .X. 3). As envisioned by Spenser, the House of Holinesse is a Protestant version of the sacred community of the convent or monastery, a space that holds sacred lore that can lead to a pure, unspotted li fe. Like potential members of the Society of Jesus and other sacred communities, those people attempting to enter into the House of Holinesse must prepare themselves to participate in life there. This passage in The Faerie Queene creates an idealized comm unity through a meditation on charity 16 This meditation leads to Red Crosses healing and his re -discovery of his social role interrogates the meditation and the community. 13 My thanks go to Dr. Reid Barbour for pointing me in this direction during a conversation at the 2007 Southeastern Renaissance Conference. 14 The citation numbers here refer respectively to book number, canto number, and line num ber. 15 All definitions given from the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) are so dated as to have been current for these writers unless otherwise indicated. 16 I am choosing to read The Faerie Queene as a form of political allegory working to idealize and per fect England. The reading of The Faerie Queene as at least a partial political allegory (in addition to many other types) is a common one among Spenser critics. In this case, I follow readers as early as editor of the 1648 tract The faerie leveler, or King Charles his leveler descried and deciphered in Queene Elizabeths days by her poet laureat Edmond
18 Spenser carefully establishes and populates the closed community where he wishe s to insure Red Crosses place. He creates a sense of special enclosure with the dore they find fast lockt; / for it was warely watched night and day, for fear of many foes (Spenser I. X. 5). In a religious reading of the House of Holinesse, the foes rep resent sin and sinners, which Spensers Christian characters must always defend against and watch out for. Red Crosse is not suited to a community made up of such personified virtues as Reverence, Zele, Humilita, Clia, Fidelia, Speranza, and Charissa Sig nificantly, t he order in which he and Una encounter these figures outlines the patterns of behavior that are acceptable to this community. In order to enter, they must follow Humilit the gatekeeper, placing themselves in his posture of humility so that t hey passe in stouping low; / For streight & narrow was the way he did show (I. X. 5). The adoption of the humble posture before entry reflects the necessity of adopting a specific posture so that the meditations lessons can be absorbed (Hall 111) A ddit ional ly the physicality of a humble journey down a straight and narrow path echoes the humble soul journeying towards heaven. Here, Una and Red Crosse make the journey together to begin the process of joining the company of the House of Holinesse. It is not a journey they can make alone; Zele gladly did them guide picking up where humbleness leaves off (I. X.6). Each meeting serves as a step closer to Red Crosses self -discovery; and these outline the virtues that he needs to become part of their comm uni ty. When Red Crosse begins disdaining life, desiring leave to die Clia recognizes it as the commune plight, which sinfull horror works in wounded hart (I. X.23). By referring to the problem as a commune, or communal one, Spenser implies that th is plight is one experienced Spenser, in his unparalleled poeme entituled, the faerie queene, a lively representation of our times with whom Andrew Hadfield opens his entry Politics in A Critical Companion to Spenser Studies (42). This work is possibly the first politically critical reading of The Faerie Queene. For more current uses of the political nature of The Faerie Queene see Jennifer Klein Morrisons and Matthew Greenfields col lection, Edmund Spenser: Essays on Culture and Allegory.
19 by each member as they grow in worship and knowledge, coming as it does after Red Crosses time in Fidelias school house (I. X. 19). During the sixteenth century commune pronounced common had already gained currency as a term used to refer to something that b elonging equally to more than one (J.); possessed or shared alike by both or all (the persons or things in question) in short, something that is experienced by the whole group (OED a.1a.) .17 This illness is intern al, an inward corruption that can only be cured with fasting every day, the swelling of his wounds to mitigate, and made him pray both earely and eke late (I. X. 26). The cure that Patience and his cohorts at the Hospital a place where community membe rs may be cared for replicates the practice of meditation and fasting to improve individuals. Only after Red Crosse has endured these practices can he join fellow believers and view the New Jerusalem and its guardians. Though he and Una leave the holy city, Red Crosses assertion that he, after he has discharged Unas quest, will returne unto this place, / to walk this wa y in Pilgrims poore estate indicates that the internal changes and meditations have made him ever a part of the community, so that no ma tter where he goes, he will come back (I.X.64). Like the journey of John Bunyans much later Pilgrim, this one continues until death. The communal impulse and its link to meditation are not found solely in poetry and its medieval precursors. Sixteenth a nd seventeenth -century authors are exploring its use and defining its terms in other genres as well. Though I focus primarily on poetry, the essays of Anglican Bishop Joseph Hall invest meditation not only with structure, but with its place in the communit y. Hall was one of the dominant Protestant voices promoting Christian meditation and produced two of the most important works on the subject. The first Vowes and Meditation in 17 Among the examples given to support this definition, the editors of the Oxford English Dictionary include examples from both Spenser and Joseph Hall. This connection shows the continuance of the definition within the period.
20 1605 was a collection of short prose thought pieces constructed for discrete, in dividual meditation. In the second work, The Arte of Meditation of 1606, Hall explores how meditations should be structured and practiced. Though both are meant for individual use, the dedicatory epistles to each book reveals a larger social motive. More evidence within both texts reflects a concern not only for the state of the individual soul, but also for the community in which those souls participate. In the dedication letter to Sir Robert Drury, Hall first defends his presentation of meditations and prayers by saying that though the world is furnished with other writings, even to satietie and surfet, yet of those which reduce Christianity to practice, there is [at] least scarce enough (Dedicatory Epistle). This statement does not stand simply as a j ustification for the collection of aphorisms; instead, it indicates a specific pedagogical desire for the compilation, that of reducing and explicating Christianity into a practicable belief system one apparently not limited by the walls of the Church.18 H all wants the mundane world to profit from his work so that he becomes surrounded by a community of believers by which meanes, so many men as I live amongst, so many monitors shall I have, which shall point me to my own rules and upbraid me with my aberra tions (Dedicatory Epistle). By cultivating and enabling the Christian mindset among those that he lives with, Hall can continually improve and be improved by his community, creating a reciprocal relationship. Similarly, in the first chapter of Arte of Me ditation Hall maintains a desire that his work will influence his community positively. He explains that it is through meditation that man, Christian or not, most improves himself. Calling meditation an heavenly business as any that belongeth either to m an or Christian, and such as whereby the soul doth unspeakably benefit 18 Aphorism is Halls term for the meditations and vowes of the title within the dedicatory epistle.
21 itself, Hall places the practice of individual meditation on a par with the communal practices that take place on Sundays and feast days (105). This placement is important due to Hall s status within the Church. If a Bishop argues that the benefits of meditation are unspeakable, i.e. indescribable, then the community must not merely accept it; the community must embrace it. Hall also tells his audience that not only the individual sou l will benefit by this practice. Meditation is alone, the remedy of security and worldliness, the pastime of saints, the ladder of heaven, and, in short, the improvement of Christianity (105). In other words, the whole body and belief system of Christian ity can be improved if its members will practice meditation. Halls meditations seek to incorporate community improvement and participation in a solitary series of actions. Unlike Spensers Archimago, Halls meditator must seek out a place that is both sol itary and silent for his meditations; indeed, he gives specific exemplary types for his audience to examine: Jesus on the Mount of Olives, John the Baptist in the desert, King David in his bed, and St. John Chrysostom in the bath (110).19 This requirement, like many of the others in Arte of Meditation resembles the requirements in the Jesuits Spiritual Exercises However, Hall has indirectly indict ed the Jesuits, whom he alludes to as those who engrossed it to themselves and used it to separate from the world in hidden cloisters (105). His meditations require a solitary space in conjunction with a specific set of communal habits from its practioners. According to him, meditation should be intermingled with the work of the world lest Christians become p retenders to it (109). As a practice, it should inform every part of a Christians life, whether he is employed in the church or not. Hall strongly recommends that 19 Archimagos solitary occupations may be interpreted as evil when compared with the communal investment of the other ch aracters in The Faerie Queene. The tension between the individual and the community can be traced back to the unresolved conflict between the vita activa and the vita contemplativa the life of the world and the life apart from it. This argument can be seen as early as Aristotle, who debates which is better: the bios thentokan (separation from the city state) or the bios politikos (engagement with the city state) in The Politics (193). I would argue that in the seventeenth century meditational books like Hal ls attempted to reconcile the two lifestyles.
22 those whose very trade is Divinity, (mee thinks) should omit no day without his line of Med itation; those which are secular men, not many; remembering that they have a common calling of Christianity to attend as well as a special vocation in the world: and that the other being more noble and important, may justly challenge both often and dillige nt service. ( Arte 108, emphasis mine) The instruction here recognizes two things. First, a distinction exists between men of the Church and laymen, in that the latter may have some few days when he cannot attend to meditation. Second, despite the differenc es in their special vocations, they have one very important thing in common their shared need for meditation and communion. Many of Halls individual meditations further define and stress the importance of community to the individual.20 Though several of the meditations are extensions of common aphorisms, their inclusion gives them authority from a spiritual leader. He includes a meditation on the nature of a persons community in which conversing with evil companions is what breeds in us an insensib le declination to ill, and works in us, if not an approbation, yet a less dislike of those sins ( Meditations 1:8). In short, if individuals choose the company of bad people, they will become desensitized to sin and begin to participate in it. The implied contrary is that if the company of good Christians is chosen, then an individual will grow better by identifying and rejecting sin. Hall further developed this ideal with a meditation instructing that Christians care not for any companion as may teach me somewhat; or learn somewhat of me (Meditations 1:20). This precept gives the meditator a criterion by which to evaluate potential companions and direct his actions. In this meditation, Hall is evoking Pauls letter to the Philippians where Paul instructs the communion there to be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample (3:17). Obviously, the meditator should 20 As was common practice for the period, Hall uses masculine pronouns throughout; however, he dedicates the second Century of Meditations to a woman, Lady Drury, which leads me to conclude that, although gendered masculine, the meditations were for everyone.
23 combine the two precepts in practice so that the companions he chooses are teaching him wholesome things not bad ones. Finally, Hall prevents the complete closing of the community a risk for cloistered orders by stating that though it be an excellent thing to learne; yet I learne, but to teach others ( Meditations 1.20). Thus, the community is continually improved by the expanding circle of knowledge. In the dedicatory epistle to the Third Century of Meditations Hall writes to Sir Edmund Bacon that it is more behovefull to the common good that those thoughts which our experience hath found comfortable a nd fruitful to ourselves should (with neglect to all censures) be communicated to others ( Meditations 43). This desire to share with and, thereby, improve an expansive community permeates the whole of both texts. Where Meditations and Vowes offers topics to be meditated upon, Arte of Meditation gives instructions on how the activity may be done most profitably. Hall does not seem to insist on purely doctrinal meditation and sharing; rather, we are to mine our experience for thoughts and events that are comforting and fruitfull i.e. that have caused spiritual growth. Then, individuals share those moments with others who need to hear them, whether they are Anglican, Roman Catholic, or neither. Such sharing, both texts imply, will mentally improve both individual and community. Halls desire to improve his community thus depends on a wide circulation of his ideas and a receptive audience. While I cannot speak to Halls popularity, the popularity of the emblem genre, and one writer in particular, indicates t hat such ideas were welcome.21 Readers will notice that the focus of this dissertation tends to be on Francis Quarles, whose meditational 21 Critical analysts of the emblem genre have generally agreed that it started in Augsburg in 1531 with Andrea Alciatis Emblematum Liber (Bath 1). Rosemary Freemans English Emblem Books stands as one of t he broadest works on the history of the tradition while Michael Baths more recent Speaking Pictures attempts to place their popularity in England more firmly in context. Peter Daly traces the connections between the genre on the Continent and in England w ithin The English Emblem Book and the Continental Tradition. Daly also examines the way that emblems would influence other facets of English literature in Literature in Light of the Emblem.
24 emblem books were widely circulated through the nineteenth century (Hltgen and Horden 10). Born in 1592 to a moderate ly wealthy family of Northhamptonshire and Norfolk, Quarles attended Christs College, Cambridge from 16051609, and then, as was typical for his time, went on to Lincolns Inn (Hltgen and Horden 1). Over the course of his life, he would dabble in court s ervice, perform secretarial duties to the Archbishop Ussher, and finally, take the post of Chronologer of the City of London (Hltgen and Horden 2, 3, 7).22 Interspersed with and concurrent to these duties, he wrote and published a lengthy bibliography of works ranging from religious and pastoral poetry to political prose commentary. Quarles produced his most popular and lasting poetry during the religious upheaval of the seventeenth century Emblemes (1635) and Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1638) .23 T hough Quarles works have been generally disparaged since his death, they are far more complex and rich than his critical reception has suggested. His emblems are not merely the didactic stepchildren of a popular trend in literature ; Hltgen argues that th eir reception makes Francis Quarlesprobably the most popular English poet of the seventeenth century ( Francis Quarles 340) His popularity enabled him to poetically influence both the individual and the communal self -concept, and his work demonstrates important techniques for the conceptualization of the self and the community within the period. In his poetry, Quarles seeks to follow the sixteenth and seventeenth -century precept that works of imaginative literature could be both entertaining and improvi ng. Though these works have been looked at as generally inferior works of meditative poetry, I argue that they hold as central the element that has been neglected in most 22 Karl Josef Hltgen has published extensively on Quarles life i ncluding the Oxford National Dictionary of Biography entry and the only complete biography, Francis Quarles 15921644: Meditativer Dichter, Emlematiker, Royalist Eine Biographische und Kristiche Studie 23 From 1639 forward the two texts were published tog ether, and I use the version of the text edited by Karl Hltgen and John Horden. They take their edition of Emblemes (1635) from the copy (SM 882) in the Stirling Maxwell Collection, University of Glasgow and Hierglyphikes (1638) is from the same collect ion, document SM 893 (9).
25 studies of such poetry the communal impulse. Religious poetry in this period has been studied primarily for its effects on and direction of individual believers. However, Quarles formal meditations, like those of Ignatius of Loyola, were meant not only to improve the individual, but also to re -create that individual prior to his admittanc e to a community. Quarles invests his emblematic poetry with this communal impulse through typology, allegory, images, and meditation. Further, the visual requirement of the emblem form complicates interpretation and creates a place for discussion about th e impact of iconology and textuality in communal meditative poetry. Frances Quarles has been critically denigrated since the eighteenth century (Bath 199). I do not claim that he is a brilliant poet, or that he has perfected an entirely unique set of poe tic techniques. But I cannot agree with critics like Edward T. Jones, who summarily dismisses his work as sententious and claims that at their best his allegorical narratives and lyrics give evidence of a reasonably complex argument and reading of exper ience; at their worst, the allegory is flat, obvious, and crudely hortatory (6, 8). However, it is my contention that Quarles fulfills a unique space in his time. Rosemary Freeman notes that in England there is no evidence of any emblem book being enlarg ed. They rarely attained even a second edition. The salient exception is Quarles, for whose work there was a continual demand (43).24 She also records that over two thousand copies of his Emblemes and Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man were printed for th e first combined edition in 1639 and another three thousand at least were issued in the subsequent year (114). Finally, she observes that in the eighteenth century, Walpole remarked 24 Freeman provides primarily a reading of Quarles and his primary sources, Typus Mundi and Pia Desideria However, she does credit his adaptation and revision of these two works with creating a new kind of emblem book in England (114132). She does separate his popularity and wit from those whom criticism has termed the metaphysical poets and claims that the popularity stems mainly from its obviousness and superficial use of rhetoric (129130). While that may be, I will attempt to show through the close readings that follow that her reading of Emblemes and Hieroglyphikes as burdened by weakness of content is an unfair one (130).
26 in a letter to George Montagu (albeit disparagingly) that Milton had had to wait until the world had done admiring him (Quarles) (qtd. in Freeman 114 115). Quarles popularity enabled him to influence poetically both the individual and the communal self -concept. His work demonstrates important techniques for the conceptualization of the self and the community within the period. In his 1969 dissertation, Francis Quarles: A Revaluation, Edward T. Jones views Quarles as a transitional poet in the seventeenth century, valuing him only as an icon of the moral status quo of seve nteenth -century culture. Jones calls his works didactic, morally useful interpretation(s) of God, man, and society (127). In this study, Jones attempts to increase Quarles critical estimation in order to support his claim that Quarles is a harbinger of the later Augustan poets. His argument for Quarles as a transitional figure between the sixteenth and eighteenth centuries is worthy of study, but it underestimates Quarles poetic ability. Jones ignores Quarles style and dismisses the meditational aspect s of his works, focusing instead on an unfavorable comparison of Quarles to Donne and the eighteenth -century Augustan poets. Following Jones study, Peter Daly employs Quarles as an example of an English emblem writer in The English Emblem and the Continental Tradition but does so in an attempt to define the use of emblems in Early Modern England without concern for fuller textual implications. Ernest B. Gilman, in "Word and Image in Quarles' Emblemes, examines Quarles within the context of the issues of representational art and iconoclasm within Reformation England, but with t he unfortunate result wherein he sees the tensions between word and image in the emblems as a failure, not as a potential site for enhanced meaning. I argue that this tension provi des emphasis for the work that the reader puts into the emblems.
27 In my reading of what amounts to an actual paucity of modern criticism relating to Quarles, I have found very little that moves beyond a brief mention of his verbal craft or comparisons of h im to a canonical English poet. Few modern critics have paid any serious attention to Quarles work; most pass lightly over him in a quest more fully to develop someone elsea Donne or a Herbert. Even Karl Hltgen, arguably the foremost Quarles scholar, do es not engage in close readings of Quarles work; rather, in Francis Quarles Emblemes and Hieroglyphikes: Some Historical and Critical Perspectives, he elucidates something that most other critics of Quarles dismiss : the relationship between Quarles wo rk and his primary source material Typus Mundi and Pia Desideria .25 In what is a standard and strident source study, Hltgen briefly mentions what Quarles took from the two emblem books what he changed, and what those changes did for the Emblemes He then gives alternate sources for several portions demonstrating that Quarles reading was both extensive and broad. After Hltgen, Quarles criticism has received the most notice from those studying the emblem phenomenon. In Graven Images: Protestant Emblem B ooks in England, Huston Diehl argues that while modern critics have often dismissed emblem writers, they were immensely popular in their own time Diehl calls the emblem book a truly unique Renaissance art form (49). Eleanor James disagrees with Diehl, dismissing Quarles as a peculiarly mundane and utilitarian sort. She does, however, concede that no study of seventeenth-century emblems can be complete without him (29). In the foundational study English Emblem Books, Rosemary 25 Written by Dutch Jesuits, these two texts are products of the Counter Reformation culture. Hltgen and Horden consider it likely that they were brought to Quarles attention by his friend, Edward Benlowes (5). Significantly, Benlowes was the heir of a wealthy Catholic family who discovered both books while on his Grand Tour (Hltgen and Horden 5). Though Benlowes was Catholic, Hltgen does not indicate that he was disturbed by the Reformed changes that Quarles made in his use of the plates. Rather, he and Horden note that Benlowes contributed a commendatory Latin poem Tot Flores, Quarles; and some copies of both of the 1635 editions of Emblemes have as an appendix a long eulogistic poem by Benlowes, Quarlis (5). The potential contributions of a Catholic gentlemen to a Reformed text supports Ira Clarks contention that Quarles sought to reach the universal Christian (65).
28 Freeman argues that Quarl ess work occupies an important place in the history of the emblem convention in England, for it introduced both new themes and a new method of allegorizing them (118). Though her demonstration of Quarles placement within the poetic history of the sevent eenth century is helpful, she does not expand upon the subject and structure of the emblems themselves, though she notes that both general verbal and visual forms contributed to their popularity (126). When Freeman tells us that Quarles symbols represent the individual experience of the human soul in its search for sanctity, and [that] their significance is psychological, she claims a greater dimension and scope for Quarles than previous critics found in his emblem books (119). However, she does not delve into this subject, relegating its perfective form to George Herberts The Temple. Quarles popularity as an author, and his unique mastery of emblem poetry, must warrant a more thorough examination of his poetic subjects and their influences. In contra st to the aforementioned critical dismissals of Quarles, I will examine in this study his representational poetry in an effort to draw out the ways in which Quarles works to establish a pattern of both individual and community identity. Along with Robert S outhwell and George Herbert, Quarles examines the relationship between individual and community through themes that include: individual place and purpose, food, death and rejection, and language itself. In Members Incorporate: Evidence of Community in Med itative Poetry, I explore the place and purpose of community in their work Each author provides a variation on the de finition of place and purpose. Quarles Emblemes (1635) and Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1638) deal with the dichotomous dynamics o f acceptance and rejection of the basic forms of communal activity. 26 Various poems of 26 Throughout this text, I will use the terminology for emblems laid out by Peter Daly in Literature in Light of the Emblem He delineates the parts that make up the emblem: as is well known, the emblem is composed of three parts for which the Latin names seem most useful: inscriptio pictura, and subscriptio (7). The first is the motto or
29 Southwells include both direction and subject matter for meditation to the specific, limited Catholic Recusant community. Finally, Herberts The Temple emphasizes indi vidual participation in the communal structure of the church. I contend that these aspects of community within work that has been largely looked at as individualistic, evidences an alternative reading of the meditational form. Having investigated the nat ure of community, I begin to explain specific things that act upon it and complicate its relationship with the individual. Within the chapter A Mystical Repast : Food and Cultural Rejection I gesture toward combination of psychoanalytic and cultural theo ry to explore the intersection of communal self -identification and food both earthly and spiritual in the poems of Quarles and Southwell Moving from sustenance to lack, or death, in Hope of Heaven, Fear of Earth : The Poetic Death Wish I examine the r ejection of the earthly community because of its failure to the individual. Beginning with Freuds Mourning and Melancholia and Robert Burtons An Anatomy of Melancholy I consider places where Quarles and Southwell reject the world. Not only do they ill ustrate the failure of the world, but within the poems presented, they justify a desire for death as the only place for sustenance. Finally, in Confessing Communication: Moments of Metapoesis, I examine Francis Quarles gestures toward and comments on t he constructed nature of his medium. In doing so, Quarles posits that a community of believers is entirely dependent on a mutual understanding of the expectations of each of its members. These moments enrich the poems and endow the works as a whole with th e sixteenth and seventeenth -century pattern of interrogating language within itself, and in turn, the self within the community. emblem that introduces the emblem while the second describes the picture that accompanies the text and the third functions as the caption of the second (7).
30 CHAPTER 2 MEMBERS INCORPORATE : EVIDENCES OF COMMU NITY IN EARLY MODERN POETRY A heavn -borne Of -spring of a new -borne birth; and earthly Heavn; An ounce of heavnly Earth. Francis Quarles, I Will Put My Fear In There Hearts, Emblemes (1635) Lord of all whom here thou feedest, / fellow heirs, guests with thy dearest, / make us in heavenly company. Robert Southwell, A Holy Hymne Francis Quarles, Robert Southwell and George Herbert are more than just poets of meditation; they are also poets of community. The two epigrams show dimensions of that community, particularly, its requirements: that of the second birth in Christ, and that of the Eucharist, the communion ceremony that feeds those so born. Unlike Bishop Joseph Hall and George Herbert, Francis Quarles never held a formal position within the Anglican Church, though he had been at Christs College, Cambridge and studied law at Lincolns Inn (Hltgen Oxford DNB).1 Even though he never took formal orders as a divine or practiced law, Quarles was involved in both areas intellectually. His early writings are all based on scriptural stories and principles. Emblemes (1635) an d Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1638) remain his most popular works.2 I argue that it is in these most popular writings, which Hltgen terms an amalgamation of the emblematic and the meditational, that Quarles also explores the construction of a Ch ristian community for the Reader, who Quarles addresses in his introduction (Francis Quarless Emblemes 8). 1 In linking Quarles with Joseph Halls meditational construction, I follow the work of Karl Hltgen, who alludes to the connection in Francis Quarless Emblemes and Hieroglyphikes : Some Historical and Critical Perspectives (4). 2 Thoug h originally published separately, the two works were generally published together after 1639 because Quarles made it clear that the latter was a sequel to the former. That is the edition that I will be using.
31 Quarles poems follow a different pattern than Halls meditations, though they share a similar concern for the community of their readers. Instead of expecting his readers to create a mental picture of their own to focus their meditation, Quarles provides one in the pictura that accompanies each of his poems. Karl Hltgen argues that here we can see one of the reasons for Quarles popularity and su ccess as an emblematist: theoretical concepts whose adequate verbal discussion and explanation would be too difficult for most of his readers are directly translated into simple visual symbols (Francis Quarless Emblemes 13). By using Quarles simple vis ual symbols as their meditative focus, readers could concentrate more fully on the theoretical concepts, as Hltgen calls them, that were indicated by the poems themselves, like self improvement, the corrupt nature of the world, and the communal impact on the individual. This simplified instruction allows Quarles to create what Ira Clark calls the tale of the universal, seeking Christian, and conveys that character along with a sense of the contemptu mundi to his audience, making his goals more accessi ble (66 67).3 Though The Invocation to the first book begins with an address to the soul of the writer, the pronouns shift from singular forms of thy to the plural our late in the first stanza (Quarles lines 1, 30). The shift from singular to plural will be maintained through most of the poem. I maintain that this shift opens an invitation to the reader to create a sense of community. The journey through the rest of the poems will be undertaken in this community with the author/speaker and the rea der. When a singular pronoun is reintroduced in the last stanza, it is as the address to God, thou great Theanthropos (Quarles 33). However, in the last two lines, the pronoun usage shifts to indicate the desire of the speaker that God use the Conduit of my Quill to Convey thy Current, whose cleare streames may fill / The hearts of men with love, their 3 I will discuss Quarles and the contemptu mun di condemning the world more fully in Hope of Heaven, Fear of Earth.
32 tongues with praise (Quarles 45, 46 47). The obvious plea for God to inspire his poetry in these lines is less important for this reading than the com munal effects of that inspiration. The results of such inspiration have the potential to impact all of mankind, or at least those who follow the silent Parable of the emblems presented in Emblemes (1635) (Quarles Address to the Reader A3).4 As his poe ms explicate these parables, the audience should be inspired with love and praise, thereby forming a worshipping community. The accompaniment of the text by a pictura requires the audience to study the two to find either common ground or tension. Admitted ly, t he pictura here does not concentrate on the worshipping community, but on the author and his desire for communication (Figure 2 1).5 In Francis Quarless Emblemes and Hieroglyphikes : Some Historical and Critical Perspectives, Karl Hltgen focuses p rimarily on the more obvious elements of the pictura that accompanies The Invocation. Translating the Latin mottos, he relates them to the thrust of the text, the plea for divine inspiration and what Hltgen calls the praise of the Lord the chief task o f the devotional poet (4).6 The figura of the woodcut is presumably meant to represent Quarles soul that is being rowze[d] in the context of the poem (1). To me, however, what is most interesting about the pictura and how it works with the poem, is th e pile of objects that the soul reclines 4 Karl Hltgen speculates that Quarles uses terms like parable and type in the Address to the Reader in order to get around any lingering Protestant discomfort over the use of picture s, especially these with their Catholic cupids (5 6). Hltgen briefly acknowledges the double meaning of type as a picture or emblematic engraving, and as an allegorical representation of Christ or God, and notes that seventeenthcentury readers would have been better equipped than later ones to deal with verbal and visual allegories (6). The ease that Hltgen mentions is what would have made them comfortable with the idea of types, and as Ira Clark has argued, such usage would have been common f or the period as they re invented the concept. Barbara K. Lewalski also notes that this address serves as Quarles justification for reworking Catholic texts (185). 5 Unless otherwise indicated, all pictura from Quarles Emblemes and Hieroglyphikes of th e Life of Man are reproduced with permission from the Penn State Emblem Book Project. http://emblem.libraries.psu.edu/quarltoc.htm 6 Hltgen translates the Latin motto d um coelum aspicio, solum despicio of the Invocation pictura as I aspire to heav en and despise the ground; he also interprets the leafy tree as the leafed tree of religious poetry because of its motto Majora Canamus [Let us sing of greater things]. Finally, he points out that the motto for the barren tree is the Vix ea nostra ( and reads in full Vix ea nostra voco) found in Ovid, and translates it as I hardly regard these things the honor of family or ancestry, any longer as my own, a motto taken from Philip Sidney (34).
33 against. Quarles has not chosen to reconstruct or to restructure the emblem he is using from the Pia Desideria (1624) in order to force it to reflect the lanskip or the morning lark mentioned within the text (17, 12).7 Instead, the objects foreshadow those things that the soul and through it, the reader will reject over the course of the work. The text makes reference only to secret Crimes and children who are cursed with Sin, and these crimes and sins are w hat the pile elucidates. The ability of the pictura to clarify the meaning of the poem without a direct verbal reference reflects a symbolic system that supports W. J. T. Mitchells claim that a picture, then, is a very peculiar and paradoxical creature, both concrete and abstract, both a specific individual thing and a symbolic form that embraces a totality (xvii). If the pictura not only visually presents the subject of the poem in the specific individuality of the questing soul figura it also embrac es the symbolic totality of the purpose of the emblems by showing that figura crushing earthly wealth and the figure of the Amor Humanus, which represents earthly flesh and desire throughout the emblems.8 Thus, the pictura is able to present both a narrow picture to begin a meditation upon, and also to give hints about the purpose of Emblemes (1635) as a whole. Peter M. Daly argues that the pictura is thus more significant than the text that accompanies it; but I think that for Quarles work to function fully both text and pictura are necessary (44). Over the course of the emblems, Quarles will use both to describe perfect communities, sinful communities, with the quest to escape from the latter and find the former as part of the guiding scheme of the emble ms. 7Hltgen discusses some of the Protestantizing cha nges that Quarles did make to the picturae from Pia Desideria (1624) and Typus Mundi (1627) in Francis Quarless Emblemes and Hieroglyphikes : Some Historical and Critical Perspectives. 8 Hltgen interprets, and most critics, including myself, agree, that the two Cupid figures that appear in most of the other picturae represent Amor Divinus and Amor Humanus, or Divine Love and the Human Soul, or Anima (3). He bases this interpretation on the relationship between Quarles figures and their sources in the Counter Reformation texts (3).
34 Quarles explores the perfect, prelapsarian earthly community and the contemporary balance between perfection and perfidy in Emblem I, 5. This emblems inscriptio is based on the verse from 1 Corinthians 7: 31 The Fashion of this World Passeth Away ( The Fashion).9 Here, Quarles uses a law metaphor to describe the perfect community that once existed presumably before the fall and that should exist again. Usurping the classical Golden Age metaphor, Quarles describes a society When just Astra poysd h er Scales / In mortall hearts, whose absence earth bewailes (7 8). Originally a pagan goddess of justice, by Quarles time, Astra had been co -opted to stand as a personification of justice and an instrument of the Christian God in the tradition of the numinous female figure found in literature from Apuleius to Bernard Silvestris. Presumably, the well -educated Quarles would have been aware of this usurpation, and, therefore, would have had no compunction about setting her and her scales in the hearts of hi s fellow man to represent the just and fair nature of a society of believers. Further, the speaker argues that, in the prelapsarian society he is describing, men could deale secure, without Indentures, because a trust existed in a kinship of beliefs for then, Reason ruld (Quarles 18, 32). This kinship of belief and a return to the rule of reason is what Quarles is seeking to build among his readers. The utopic idealization is couched in an indict ment of the passionate, earthly love inspired by froth -b orne Venus, and her Brat; a lust not only for the flesh, but for the things of this world, rather than an assemblage of believers, longing for the next (Quarles 9). In order to return to this reasonruled world, the reader and the speaker must reject the love [that] grew fleshly, false, unjust, returning God and justice to their community and making it possible for men to deal fairly with one another (37). 9 Critically, these inscriptio s have served as the titles of the emblems. I have indicated parenthetically how I will shorten each one to use in citations.
35 The pictura accompanying this text features only two of the Golden Age figures mentioned in the t ext, Cupid and Erynnis, though only one Fury figure is present (Figure 2 2).10 Intriguingly enough, the two figura e are playing a game with the upside down Orb of England (present in some form in many of the emblems). The textual reference states that in the Golden Age, there was no whining soul, to start / At Cupids twang, or curse his flaming dart; / The Boy had, then, but callow wing, / And fell Erynnis Scorpions had no stings, and then moves on to a description of the better acted world did move / Upon the fixed Poles of Truth and Love (26 28, 2930). The world is balanced between love and Justice here represented not by the Astra of the early poem, but by the classical Fury who would eventually carry judgment out. However, the instability of the moment is predicated on the active nature of the image. It is only at this moment that the orb representing the symbolic world is stable, because, as one can see, both figures lean furtively towards it (Figure 2 2). The potential for destabilizing movemen t demonstrates the lack of balance in the postlapsarian world. The last two lines of the poem are emphasized by the position of the figures with the stick and snake -styled whip; the speaker talks about the world has beene / Kept going with the scourge of Lust, and Spleene, of Cupid and the Furies (4344). The pictura captures the moment just before that, the moment before the Golden Age ended with Astras departure. This marginal moment is reminiscent of the liminality that Michael Camille invests mediev al illuminations with and shows how precarious any type of stability is even that of a printed and therefore stable, picture.11 10 I read this term as the one that Aeschylus uses for the Furies in the last book of the Oresteia trilogy The Eumenide s 11 In Image on the Edge: The Margin of Medieval Art Michael Camille theorizes that manuscript illuminations and other marginal artwork interact with the associated text in a nonlinear, loosely rela ted way that can create tension between the two. According to Camille, this loose correspondence allows the figures in the margins to comment on and respond to, as well as to occasionally represent, the text.
36 In Emblem I, 10, Quarles again directly addresses the Readers (9). The inscriptio of the poem is from John 8, which recas ts the familial relationship from God the Father to your Father the Devill whose lustsyee will doe (Quarles Yee Are Of 10). Using this verse as the inscriptio Quarles can look more closely at the potential perversions of an earthly community and, therefore, can bring his readers through a meditation that will reject that community while outlining the goals their redesigned community should have. In order to do this, he uses the social game of bowles to delineate the goals of each community.12 This game cannot be played alone, and for company, Quarles includes Mammon, Cupid, Satan, and Fortune. If we look at the pictura that accompanies the poem, which as I have earlier contended would have provided the meditative focal point, the audience can see th at Mammon and Cupid are the bowlers while Satan is that juditious Friend, / That gives the ground, and who appears to be refereeing for them (3233, Figure 2 3). This social game is not an appropriate society for the individual Christian to participate i n because of the associations with greed, lust, frivolity, and ultimate destruction that Quarles creates with the players selected as carefully as Spenser populates the acceptable community of the House of Holiness. Not only is the company unsavory, but the rewards of the game are more than questionable. The poem and the audience ask Wheres the Palme that Fortunes hand allowes / To blesse the Victors honourable Browes? (Quarles 23 24). The symbolic meaning of the palm leaf crown for the victor is well -established; however, for Quarles it is not the crowning of the victor that matters, it is the blessing of the victor as indicated by the lines employment of the verb blesse instead of crownes. The idea of a blessing is a religious or spiritual one but here it seems to depend on the honour of victor amongst a group of inherently dishonorable 12 Bowles is also spelled boules and bowls after the round balls used in the game, here lawn bowls (OED n2).
37 contestants. However, Quarles commands his audience to Come, Reader, come; Ile light thine eye the way / To view the Prize (25 26). This command enables sev eral actions. First, it causes the reader to become further invested in the meditation of the game that the poem provides. Secondly, the references to light, with an emphasis on guidance, eyes, and viewing, reconfirm the visual nature of the emblem poe m as well as its meditational purpose. Not only can the readers literally view the prize in the pictura but they can also be directed to it within the text of the poem, making the delineation of the prize a combined effort, because Quarles as poet must be willing to show, but the Reader must be willing to come and view. Finally, if the readers will allow their eyes to follow to the light, they will be blessed in that they will see the earthly prize for what it is: a Crowne for Fooles in the hands of Gi ll Fortune (Quarles 34, 27). The use of gill, or jill to describe the personification of Fortune implies that this fortune is a common girl, potentially a harlot a description which adds a sexual layer to the Crowne for Fooles (OED noun 4). This s exuality implies that the fools hat she holds instead of a laurel wreath is not the only prize to be had; a fool can also have the harlots corrupted possible syphilitic genitals.13 This revelation is followed by a shift in the poem from a third person description of the game to an interrogation of the reader and his community. Quarles first asks Who breathes that boules not? What bold tongue can say / Without a blush, he hath not bould to day? (35 36). Using the trope quaestio, Quarles directs the med itator to judge the state of his life by making his actions comparable to those in the game of bowles. The implied answer to the later question is that there is not a bold tongue that can say without a blush of shame that he hath not bould to day, or any day. In addition to the quaestio, Quarles emphasizes the 13 The connection between crown and the disease syphilis is a common one during this period. In A Glossary of Shakespeares Sexual Language, Gordon Williams traces through from the refere nce of the French ecu coin or crown, to describe the baldness of syphilitic sores and its progression through the English word for the type of coin, crown, to the bawdy pun used by Shakespeare and others to connotate both diseased wealth and diseased s exuality (134).
38 corrupt nature of the game with the homonyms bouled and bold; only a bold, or presumptuous, man here indicated by the synecdoche of tongue would claim not to have bouled, or sinned (OED a 3). In the sinful world of the poem, it would take a presumptuous man indeed to make such a claim. However, the reader need not fear being left to this metaphorical game of corrupt earthly communion. The meditation ends with the traditionally required pr ayer to God that turne thou [God] my Brazil thoughts anew, / New soale my Boules, and make their Bias true (Quarles 41 42). Here, the Brazil thoughts are unclean and loaded with sin and falseness, because of the seventeenth -century definition of Brazil as a type of Coal containing much pyrites (OED Brazil n2). The plea is for God to turn the worthless thoughts into something new, and implicitly worthwhile, and to re -sole or redo the bowles themselves so that they run true rather than false. In retur n, the Christian/Reader/Quarles agrees to cease to game; till fairer Ground be given, / Nor wish to winne untill the Marke be Heaven (43 44). This agreement has implications for the Christian community that the reader and speaker of the poem presumably i nhabit. Rather than continuing to game on Satans grounds, with Satans friends, for Satans prize (a fools cap and a whore), the community will instead develop patient waiting for fairer Ground, conceivably the New Jerusalem of the apocalypse and the rew ard of Heaven.14 Late in Book II of the Emblemes (1635) with Emblem 15, Quarles provides an outline of Christian behavioral expectations that parallels and dictates each members ability to participate in the community of their fellow believers (121). The i nscriptio is a statement by God about the 14 Quarles provides supporting evidence for the arguments of his poems in the form of short quotations that come after the main emblem and before its accompanying epigram. These quotes come mainly from Church Fathers like St. Augustine or fr om the Bible For this emblem, the quotations are from St. Bernard, which is an accusation against the Sonnes of Adam and their covetous Generation, and one from St. Hierome about the seven deadly sins whose Ashes are uncleanesse; whose end is Hell ( 43). These quotations both justify Quarles concerns about mankind and his sinful ways and provide a tie to the elements of the pictura, Mammon, the sexualized Fortune, and others.
39 state of his worshippers. Taken from the thirty-second chapter of Jeremiah, it reads I will put my fear in their hearts, that they shall not depart from me (I Will Put Fear). The hearts addressed within this ve rse are usually assumed to refer to the hearts of the Hebrew people. Since early modern Christians tended to identify typologically with Old Testament Hebrews, the audience for Quarles emblem would have identified these hearts as their own. Ira Clark poin ts out that this usage expanded self -explication, which broadened audience sympathies and sometimes extended the impact of the neotypological lyric (64). Consequently, a typological narrative like this one would have widened the range of people to whom the work is both accessible and interesting, because more would have understood it. The opening address of the poem: now the soules sublimd, further emphasizes the relationship of the instructions it contains for Christian readers (Quarles 1).15 The sublimd soul is one whose heart restord and purgd from drossie Nature; in other words, this heart and soul have been made new by Christ and are, therefore, able to return Repentant to his native home, the community of Christ (3, 16). The conscious action of repentance followed by spiritual purgation and restoration are the first steps towards joining a community, and are much like those that Spensers Red Crosse knight performs. However, this emblem makes it clear that these cannot be the only cons cious actions of the new member. After the soul ungendered in this poem joins the community, a certain type of behavior is expected of it, for Then, it lives; O then it lives involvd In secret Raptures; pants to be dissolvd: The royall Offspring of a se cond Birth Sets ope to heavn, and shuts the doores to earth. (29 32) 15 As we will see, Quarles uses many alchemically loaded terms like sublim d within the emblems. Due to the focus of this project on the communal aspects of these poems, I shall not address this usage.
40 Aside from alluding to the type of Nicodemus, whom Christ instructs on the need for a second birth, the emphasis on the living nature of this soul contrasts the living death of a soul th at participates in earthly communities rather than the community of believers (John 1:21).16 This life is spent in meditations on secret Raptures on the hope to heavn and a shutting, or rejection, of the doores to earth. While the panting for diss olution is a cry for death typical throughout Quarles emblems, the characterization of the re -born soul as royal does not occur elsewhere. This characterization reflects the royalist and Anglican leanings of Quarles. It is also influenced by the Calvinist idea of the Elect, the only group of people who could truly be saved. During the seventeenth -century, the Anglican church was highly influenced by Calvinist teachings; and though Quarles does not obviously argue for election, the idea of the reborn soul a s royal indicates a setting apart of both soul and community, much as royalty is set apart from the common man. In several instances, Quarles uses negation to describe the state in which such souls lived. They appear to inhabit a place of certainty where No hope deceives it, and no doubt divides it; No Grief disturbes it; and no Errour guides it; No Feare distracts it; and no Rage inflames it; No Guilt condemns it; and no Folly shames it; No sloth besotts it; and no lust inthrals it; No Scorne afflicts i t; and no Passion gawles it. (41 46) To an audience of Christians, whose world has as we have seen turned upside down many times, a world of such certainty would have been undeniably attractive. The questions of the time are answered by negating them as pr oblems. Structurally, Quarles use of anaphora built on the word no and the corresponding use of epistrophe built upon the word it emphasizes negation by rhythmically pounding the reader. Rather than doubt, fear of error, rage at policy change, and 16 For further development of this idea, see Chapter 4, Hope of Heaven, Fear of Earth.
41 con demnation and its attendant guilt, Quarles uses negation to dispense with these problems of the old community. Unity and calm are projected as the state of a soul that is now an Arke of peace and the heavn -borne Offspring of a new -borne birth (48, 51). This birth allows it to join the calm community, probably a very attractive prospect to believers during the Caroline period. The pictura of I Will Put is not as easily connected to the text it accompanies as other pairs within Emblemes A gap such a s those suggested by Michel Camille exists between the two, but the clue to the reading can be found in the use of the eye in the clouds. The watchful eye looking down on the squabbling figurae may indicate the necessity of a communal awareness and convict ion of sin as a prerequisite for joining that community. Whether the eye is meant to be that of God or the community, the struggle it observes of the two figurae over a heart reflects the movement of the sinners soul described in the text. The soul that Like as an idle vagrant (having none) / That boldly dopts each house he viewes, his owne; but eventually will arrive Afore Repentant to his native home; / Evn so the rambling heart, that idly roves / From Crime to Sin (7 8, 1618). This roving is impl icit in the struggle. Though we do not see it in the pictura the text implies that the winner will be the Amor Divinus through its use of the term Repentant (8). The relationship between watchful awareness and repentance is outlined in the later parts o f the text. In the inability of the pictura to fully elucidate that struggle, the tension between text and image demonstrated that Michel Camilles thesis regarding medieval illuminations continues forward into the emblem genre ( Image on the Edge ). Qu arles does investigate further the sinful community, and in the inscriptio from Canticle 3:2, he describes the type of worldly community to be avoided. He charges the community around him with a lack of faith in I Will Rise and Go About in the City, and W ill Seek Him
42 Whom My Soul Loveth; I Sought Him, But I found Him Not (I Will Rise), Emblem IV, 11. The poem opens with the soul in a panic: O how my disappointed souls perplext! / How restless thoughts swarme in my troubled brest (1 2). This panic beg ins internally with the soul and breast, but will soon be externalized in both the poem and its pictura. The latter shows a figura presumably a woman to correspond to the female speaker of this part of the Canticles, rising from a heavily draped bed (see Figure 2 5). The poem shifts externally as the speaker, and with him the reader, searchd this glorious City; Hees not here; / I sought the Countrey; she stands empty -handed; / I searchd the Court; Hes a stranger there (Quarles 21 23). These places city, country, and court share the distinction of being manmade systems for classifying communities. In the state that Quarles finds them, even with descriptors like glorious, they are not apparently places where the soul can find Christ, the Author of my Rest (6). In these lines, Quarles accuses not only the earthly city, echoing Augustine and paving the way for Bunyans City of Destruction, but also the highest level of earthly community, the Court, and the broadest, the Country. From these larger levels of communality, the speaker moves on to interrogate its individual members. He Moovd the Merchants eare; alas, but he Knew neither what I said, nor what to say: I askd the Lawyer; He demands a Fee, And then demurres me with a vain delay: I askd the Schoole -man; His advice was free, But scord me out too intricate a way; I askd the Watch -man (best of all the foure) Whose gentle answer could resolve no more; But that he lately left him at the Temple door. (28 36) Significantly, here, Quarles cho oses men of the city to be questioned, or asked. He does not indicate that any of them are of noble birth, though the lawyer and the merchant might be rich. However, his readers would have presumably been better able to relate to the merchant, the
43 lawyer the doctor, the teacher, and the Watch-man than titled noblemen. As a result, Quarles makes them types in and of themselves. Quarles also uses this passage to point out the types of responses that should not be given to one who seeks to join the communit y of believers. Members should know what the seeker is asking (unlike the Merchant), and they should not charge for advice or delay in granting it as the lawyer does. The denunc iation of the school master is tempered with the acknowledgement that his advic e is free. However, the intricate path that he outlines to solve the problem includes an indict ment of theologians and philosophers who attempt to make the path to God a difficult one. Finally, the approbation of the Watch-man is two leveled. Not only do es a Watch -man protect the physical safety of a community, but here he appears to be the best informed of that community, able to identify the last place he saw Christ the Temple door. This approbation alludes to the watchfulness biblically encouraged in verses like: my soul waiteth for the Lord more than they that watch for morning: I say more than they that watch for the morning (Ps. 130:6). This connection emphasizes the need for the community to be ever alert for Gods presence; here, in the figure of the watchman, it designates an alert member of the community. However, the statement seems to imply that the Watch -man, and presumably others, leave him at the Temple door, rather than bringing him into the streets. Therefore, the community is not pr oviding a space for those who seek Christ to find him in it. Instead, the soul, having sought, and made my great Inquest, returns to the sickbed that it had left, Where, looking down into my troubled brest, / The Magazen of wounds. I found him there (37, 4243). The implication is that because the community lacks this access, the path can only be found within a wounded heart, conceived here as the nexus of a military conceit. While Herbert will similarly use the metaphor of an afflicted or wounded spirit to move the soul along its journey in The Temple Quarles gives the reader cause to wish to improve his
44 or her community.17 If the members of the City, Court, and Country had known that Christ was to be found within a wounded soul, then they could hav e so advised him, at least preventing his having to exhaust himself. The pictura complicates this idea a little because it implies that the speaker should never have left the bedroom in the first place. As you can see in Figure 2 5, the bed curtains functi on much as the veil in the Holy of Holies; here, they shield the mystery of the Amor Divinus figura peeking from behind them. Another biblical allusion of the veil is to the hidden knowledge and dark glass of Corinthians 13:12, where Paul explains that Fo r now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. This connection expands the search of the poem not only for Christ, but also for knowledge. The placement of the figura indicat es that both can be found in the room, or the self, of the seeker. The narrative within the pictura looks as though the little dog, a symbol of loyalty, is trying to prevent the figura from following what could be interpreted as a false flame. This fal se flame is being carried from the room by a figure that has already passed mostly into the margins of the picture. The foregrounding of the flame, figure, and dog emphasizes the choice made in the text and its inscriptio the choice to go out into the wi der community. The obscured position of the Amor Divinus supplies both a statement on the omnipresence of God and humanitys inability truly to see that presence. The desire for the omnipresence of God in the whole community of the earth is further devel oped in Emblem V, 6, titled Whom Have I in Heavn but Thee? And What Desire I on Earth in Respect to Thee (Whom Have I). Within this emblem, Quarles addresses and justifies a humans love for the earth and earthly communities by equating them with thei r 17 See poems like the Affliction ser ies within Herberts The Temple.
45 relationship to God. The woodcut is dominated by a single figura the Amor Humanus, and two globes, one representing the earth on which the figure sits, and the other representing heaven (Figure 2 6). A close look into the orb, or sphere, of heaven revea ls faintly the figure of Amor Divinus, representing Christ. The tension within the poem between love of earth and love of heaven is perfectly depicted in this pictura The androgynous, dominant figure encapsulates this tension by gesturing down towards the earth with one hand while reaching with an open palm towards the heavenly orb. The androgyny of this figure provides a universal type, open to identification by a reader of either sex. Since the figure is positioned so that the audience cannot see his/her face, this simple gesture is the only sign of the tension inherent in the hierarchal community of love possibilities constructed in the text. The poem moves from widest to narrowest communities. It moves from a love of the whole earth, my makers Creat ure, therefore Good to the Ayre, her dainty sweets refresh / My drooping soul, and from the air to the sea, she provides me store (Quarles 2, 78, 14). Each of these places gets a stanza, but each stanza questions what those places would be if it wer e not for Gods presence, because whats a Creature, Lord, compard with thee? (5) After decreeing that he, and therefore the reader, will to heavns high City direct journey, the speaker examines those things that are prized in an earthly city wea lth, wisdom, joy, friendship, delights, and pleasures. The figura finds that Without Thee, Lord, things be not what they be, / Nor have they being, when compard with Thee (19, 41 42). Quarles shows what each earthly goal lacks if it does not have God or if it is compared with God; he explains that things or goals without God be not what they be i.e. worthless instead of worthy. These earthly things suffer the same fate when they are compared to God, a reduction of worth. The implication is that earthly communities and the values that they espouse are worthless without God.
46 In the Epigram attached to Emblem 6, Quarles gives the meditator instructions on how to recast the soul and its community in Gods image. The speaker questions Who would not throw h is better thoughts about him, / And scorne the drosse within him; that without him (1 2). These lines appear to be instructions for both internal and external meditation to help rid the subject of his or her sinful drosse. After this purging, the medita tor is instructed to Cast up (my soule) thy clearer eye; Behold. / If thou be fully melted: Theres the Mold (3 4). The souls eye is clear of the shadows of sin, and can, therefore, see the patterns that will allow it to remold itself and its environ ment after God. As a reference to the Biblical and theological position of man and his construction in the image of God, this interpretation allows for the improvement of communities on earth through the improvement of their individual members (Gen. 1:27). Presumably, in a remolded community, everyone from the Court to the street populace would be able to direct a seeking soul towards God. The seeking soul of these tumultuous religious times was not, of course, limited to Protestants like Quarles. Jesuit priest Robert Southwell is unique in his Roman Catholicism, but like Hall and Quarles, he was invested in bringing together a community of believers.18 The availability of Southwells work is debated; certainly publishing them could be a hanging offense as late as 1602, but as Scott Pilarz points out most of them went into print as early as 1594 (xiii, xvi). For our purposes the question of when they were published is not important; what is important is their circulation and their apparent purpose. They cir culated not only among the Catholic recusants but also among the educated Protestants.19 Southwells works are important 18 All Southwell poems will be from the collected works edited by James H. McDonald and Nancy Pollard Brown. Therefore, all division references come from their collections style. 19 In Robert Southwell and the Mission of L iterature, 15611596: Writing Reconciliation, Scott Pilarz points out the limitations of focusing solely on the Reformation/Counter Reformation dichotomy in readings of Southwells works. Further, Pilarz argues that reconciliation between the two is an important part of Southwells work. While I
47 on several levels. First, they speak primarily to an oppressed community of believers. Secondly, they urge that community to uphold cert ain standards of personal belief and behavior. Finally, as Jesuit texts, the meditative nature of these works relies, as Francis Quarles later poems will, on both communal emblems and images.20 John Roberts argues that that the most distinctive features of Southwells literary personality his sense of close affection for Christ and the saints and the intimacy with which he speaks to them are attributable above all to his familiarity with the method of meditation recommended by the founder of the Society of Jesus (450). Because Southwell was a Jesuit in good standing, he must have gone through the Spiritual Exercises during his novitiate for his admittance to the order, which is where his familiarity stems from. Also supporting a relationship between Sou thwells poetry and the behavior of a community, A.D. Cousins argues that in his poems, St. Robert Southwell sets before the reader a comprehensive spiritual discipline, wherein one must especially consider two choices: that between an egocentric and a th eocentric life; that between a self able to be expressed in merely human terms and a self which can find no expression without the Word (38). I would add to Cousins argument by noting that the instructions and meditations for achieving the preferred theo centric life are of the sort that directs the readers actions in his or her community. By conveying this sense of intimacy and familiarity to his readers, Southwell enabled them to participate in it, and thereby, bring the community thus formed closer to the theocentric state that Cousins sees. For the Southwell poems in manuscript form, editors Nancy Pollard Brown and James H. McDonald supply the reader with a copy of Southwells letter about this unnamed collection To am not focusing on reconciliation as such here, the idea of reconciliation and community are to a degree inseparable since the sinner must be reconciled to something either God, his community, or both. 20 Pointed out originally by Louis L. Martz in The Poetry of Meditation these features are now routinely assumed about Southwells work.
48 His Loving Cosen (1 2). In this letter, Southwell defends his chosen medium for illuminating his meditations on the nature of God and the church. He tells his cousin that poets, by abusing their talent, and making the follies and fayninges of love, the customary subject of their base en devours, have so discredited this facultie, that a Poet, a Lover, and a Liar, are by many reckoned but three wordes of one signification (1). The combined signification of liar, lover, and poet is detrimental to the medium of poetry, because of the elemen t of falseness that the term liar introduces, with its implication that the expressed emotions are not real. However, Southwell argues that poetry because it is used in both the Old and New Testaments is a redeemable method of supplying Godly entertainm ent and instruction if written on solemne and devout matter[s] as he has done here, wherein it may be seen how well verse and vertue sute together (To H is L oving Cosen). The suitability of virtue to verse is important, because without that suitabilit y his verses would be as worthless as those of the poet/lover/liars that he has scorned. As they stand, this suitability should allow the reader to get a sweet repose (To the Reader 11). Further, Southwell clearly associates his verses with the Psalms of King David, telling his intended readers that with David verse to vertue I apply (emphasis Southwells, To the Reader 14). The Psalms of the Old Testament, traditionally attributed to King David, were frequently used as the foci for meditations duri ng this period. Therefore, this comparison gives a more serious undertone to the claims for mirth and entertainment that Southwell makes for his poetry. It may well function in those realms, but it will also function as a source wherein the reader can find virtue and can conceivably learn to apply it.
49 In Christs Sleeping Friends, Southwell asks his readers to identify with the sleeping apostles, and exhorts them to awaken.21 However, he is not heavyhanded in his address. The poem opens with a description of Christs meditations when he in agony did pray and watch in paine in the Garden at Gethsemane (Southwell 4). First, Southwell credits his audience with enough Biblical knowledge that they will be able to identify the setting of the scene without its being described. What is important for Southwell, and by extension, his readers, is the Three sundrie times he his disciples findes / With heavy eies, but farre more heavy mindes (5 6). The state of heavy-minded lassitude is what Southwell wants to evoke for his audience in their meditation. This state of mind is emphasized in the movement of the poem. Southwell spends the first two stanzas on the story of Gethsemane and then moves to another Biblical moment when inattentive sleep caused problems. He embe ds the story of Jonas fateful sail, when careless Jonas mute and sleeping lay (18).22 Southwell uses the storm that sends sleeping Jonah to the belly of a great fish as a comparison with Judas, who Like a blustring gust, Doe stirre the furious sea of Jew ish ire, Though storming troopes in quarrels most unjust Against the barke of all our blisse conspire, Yet these disciples sleeping lie secure, As though their wonted calme did still endure. (19 24) This calm in the midst of a storm is clearly a false ca lm; the description of Judas effect on the Jewish ire and its war -like association with the storming troopes who conspire against the barke of all our blisse is meant to rouse not the sleeping disciples, but the reader. I argue this 21 Pilarz attributes such exhortation as a place to provide readers with a dynamic that promotes resolve, enthusiasm, and courage despite opposition; such a desire underscores my argument that in his poetry, Southwell is trying to draw together his community (93). 22 Ira Clark argues that it is here by using Jonah as a recognizable type of Christ that Southwell comes closest to invent ing a new form of sacred lyric, the rudimentary neotypological lyric (44). Like Clark, Pilarz addresses Southwells use of the types of Jonah and Judas; he focuses on their association with the disciples to underscore the disciples lack of zeal in the G arden of Gethsemane (96).
50 interpretation based on the use of the reflexive pronoun our in line 22. Prior to this pronoun, the poem has been cast in third person, a story being told to the reader. This possessive use ties the reader into the fate of the barke of all our blisse, Christ.23 Therefo re, when Southwell shifts the direction of the poem with the command lift up your eies, they become the eyes of the audience, not just those of the disciples (37). It is only in this last stanza of the poem that Southwell shifts his address to clearly in clude the readers. The reflexive possessives used in this stanza create a sense that the reader and the disciples are part of one community, which must awake so that it can guarde the comfort of [our] lives (40). Further, the destructive sleep of the disciple/Jonah/audience can be contrasted with the sleep of Jesus on the fishing boat in Matthew 8:24. Southwell appropriates Matthews tale and uses it as a simile for Christ in the lives of his readers. While on the boat, Jesus sleeps, a storm comes up, and the disciples panic and awaken him. Although the situation to this point seems reversed from Jesus awakening of the disciples or Jonahs awakening in the storm, Jesus response to the awakening is important here, And he saith unto them, Why are ye f earful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm (Matt. 8:26). Faith separates the sleep of Christ from the sleep of the disciples and Jonah. Ira Clark notes that the heavy mindes of the disciple s are not heavy with physical weariness, but with the burden of sorrows and sins; in short, they are burdened with a lack of faith, while Jonahs flight and sleep occur in a period of disobedience or lack of faith to God (Clark 46, 47). On the other hand Christs sleep is that of one who has faith that God, His Father, will bring 23 Based on the second noun form listed in the OED, I read the word barke here to mean a small ship or boat. As Ira Clark demonstrates, this barke can be associated with several typological figures and their corresponding fait h such as Zaccheus and Noah (49).
51 them safely back to shore in the storm.24 Contrastingly, it is also this faith that enables his wakefulness at Gethsemane. The political context within which Southwell is writin g influences the reading of this poem and could inform the use of reflexive nouns and pronouns within the last stanza. Just as the community of the disciples is under attack in the preceding paragraphs of the poem, the community of Southwells predominantl y Catholic audience is under attack in Elizabethan England. And, as Judas storm will spoile their plant, the reforms of the Protestant faith will spoil the lives of the Catholics as they with Jonas fall asleepe (36, 35). Like the disciples, therefore the slumbering Catholics must awake and Marke Judas how to teare your roote he strives, / Alas the glorie of your arbor dies, / Arise and guarde the comforte of your lives, because No Jonas ivy, no Zacheus tree, / Were to the world so great a loss a s he (37, 3840, 4142). Though the loss of Jesus is fundamental to the community of the disciples, it is more importantly a loss to the Christian community as a whole. The English Roman Catholics of Southwells time had similarly lost their community at the dictates of the state. Southwell uses A Holy Hymne to help his audience explore the purpose and meaning of the act that makes them a community, the ceremony of the Eucharist/communion.25 In this poem, Southwell addresses the community of Sion, a nam e conventionally used to refer to the Christian fellowship. The poem begins with several stanzas that combine various forms of the exhortation Praise thy Saviour, with the story of the Last Supper, which provides the ceremony 24 The stormy sea is also reminiscent of the Sea of Fortune where Troilus is tossed by blake waves in Book 2 of Geoffrey Chaucers Troilus and Cressida (line 1). The Biblical Beast that rises out of the sea in Revelation 13: 1 also supports the idea of the sea as a place of chaos and darkness, a place of fear like that experienced by the disciples and Jonas. 25 Ira Clark argues that A Holy Hymne is Southwells adaptation of Aquinas Lauda Sion and serves as the place for movement from physical type to spiritual truth (41). Such movement presages the meditational move from physicality to spirituality.
52 of the bread and the cup.26 In this hymn, Southwell accomplishes several things: he sets his audience into an attitude of praise; allows them to meditate on the history and outcomes of the Last Supper; indict s the Protestant changes in the ceremony; and instructs them on the Roman Ca tholic position of transubstantiation that should inform their practice. Southwell ends the meditation on himself and Sion with the request that God, Lord of all whom here thou feedest, / Fellow heirs, guests with thy dearest, / Make us in heavenly compan y (70 -72). Like the prayer that concludes a solitary meditation, this prayer seeks to unite the reader, author, and all who kneel at the altar in a Heavenly company, or community. This community is mandated not by the state, but by Christ in his final hours. Southwell prefaced his long work Saint Peters Complaint with a directive poem, The Author to the Reader, that instructs his audience how to read the complaint that follows.27 First, unlike the earlier poem to the reader, this one does not cla im to be offering mere entertainment; instead, Southwell tells the Deare eie that daynest to let fall a looke, / On these sad memories of Peters plaints that he should Learne by their faultes, what in thine owne to mend (1 2, 6). Clearly, the audience is supposed to approach the following poem as a meditation, and, therefore, take it into their hearts so that they may improve themselves. As in Hall, by improving themselves, they improve their community.28 Further, he tells the reader that The world doth waxe in evill, but waine in good, making the world a community to reject, or an object of contempt (the contemptu mundi) (12). Then he notes that This makes my mourning muse resolve in teares, / This Theames my heavy 26 The Lords Supper would later be called Eucharist and communion as well. 27 I examine Saint Peters Complaint more cl osely in Chapter 2, A Mystical Repast. 28 In reading this introductory poem as a work of instruction to the reader, I follow Ira Clark in his work on the neotypological lyric. Clark notes that it is this address that moves the position of Peter from a per sonal identification to effective examples for his persecuted congregation (39).
53 pen to plaine in prose, because In Paynim toyes the sweetest vaines are spent; to Christian workes, few have their tallents lent (The Author to the Reader 13 14, 17-18). Therefore, the implied goal of this poem, and potentially his other works, is to alleviate the weeping of the mus e and heaviness of the pen by rejecting pagan works. Instead, he will lend his talent and the minds of his readers to Christian works that may cause good to wax and evil to wane. Southwells instructions to the reader conclude with a gesture that I think is important for the sense of poetry or prose as a place for meditation, the active consent and participation of the reader. Southwell requests that his audience License my single penne to seeke a phere, You heavenly sparkes of wit, shew native light: Cl oude not with mistie loves your Orient cleare, Sweet flights you shoote; learne once to levell right. Favour my wish, well wishing workes no ill: I move the Suite, the Graunt rests in your will. (1925) Because Southwell does not invoke the muse, Christ, t he Holy Ghost, or any other divine force of inspiration with this stanza, and because he does not capitalize the reflexive possessive your in the final line, I argue that he is attempting two specific things at the end of The Author to the Reader. Firs t, he is making one final reading requirement, that the audience shew native light: / Cloude not with mistie loves your Orient cleare; they should not allow the pagan allusions and styles of other poets to shade their wit and their interpretation, what he terms as levell right, of the poem that follows. Secondly and finally he requests their active participation in the accomplishing of the goal of the poem. By their License and their Graunt, Southwells pen can bring more good into the world. Ther efore, they must read and meditate actively, taking the faultes of Peter and using them to mend their own, thus improving themselves and the world community (6).
54 In the preceding passage, Southwell also invokes both mortal fear and the music of the spher es when he asks them to l icense my single penne to seeke a phere (19). The term phereis a homophone for fear probably the anxiety of a broken communityand a reference to the music of the spheres, allegedly the song of the planets and the universe. T he latter reference can be found in the words association with heavenly sparkes of wit and native light (20). Further, Southwell may have been punning on the Greek term pherein from phero ( that means to bear or convey ( Lid dell and Scott 19221924). This meaning gives forward motion to the poem and reflects the movement of the pen on the paper, moving from the top of the stanza toward the bottom, to the cleare light of God. Finally, the Oxford English Dictionary offers the wor d phere as an alternative spelling for the noun fere meaning A companion, comrade, mate, partner; whether male or female (n1.1). This association elaborates on the quest of the pen and its author. Not only are they seeking a poem of wit and grace, bu t they are also seeking a companion, a community in which to find the Graunt (25). If Southwell speaks primarily to the closed audience of Catholics and Quarles to the universal Christian, then George Herbert is an author singularly involved with and f ocused on the most normative of Christian experiences in early modern England that of the Anglican Church.29 Herbert was an Anglican pastor from a prominent family; and so, unlike Francis Quarles, he took vows after he matriculated, preparing to direct a c hurch congregation. From his published works, we can see that Herbert was interested as much in the communal aspect of his calling as in the personal one. Herberts The Temple is usually studied as a space for the individuals journey to God; however, that journey does not take place in the separate meditation 29 Ira Clark identifies the universal Christian as the subject for emblem books like Quarles; they are not written for a specific confessionalization, but appeal broadly, despite the Protestant restructuring of Catholic texts (65).
55 space outlined by Joseph Halls requirements (110). Rather, Herberts speaker -soul takes his journey in the created communal space of the Church. It is within this space, as Clark argues, that Herber t laid bare the primary sacred motivations not only of the structure of the church, but of the community (x). McLaughlin and Thomas note that the tripartite structure of the book reflects the order of the Prayer Book ritual of communion, the preparation for communion, the experience itself, and its consequences for the body of believers; therefore, while this journey is still, to a certain degree, a singular journey, the community that journey supports is present even in the structure of the book (111) In the parallels that Herbert creates between the structure of his poem collection and the architecture of a church building, John N. Wall sees the suggestion that what applies to the informed reader of Herberts poems also applies to him as a member of the visible worshipping community (194).30 Walls argument confirms Herberts investment in the normative structures of the English church (194). This visible community and its relationship to the state of the whole church are climatically developed in the final poem of the journey, The Church Militant. Herberts poetry has been categorized as attached by an overwhelming degree to the cycles and usages of the Book of Common Prayer.31 Martz had, of course, included him in his study of meditational poe ts, thereby securing Herberts context for many a seventeenth-century scholar. However, I would argue additionally that the placement of this meditational journey within the created space of the Church generates a reciprocal relationship between the indivi dual 30 Wall develops a reading of Herberts poems, particularly of The ChurchPorch, Perirrhanterium, and Superliminare, that emphasizes the ideas of reading, language, and active choice on the part of the audience (188198). My readings are meant to show the continuing presence of community in meditative texts, while Wall is interested in the idea of choice as it operates within that community. 31 See Brewster Fords George Herbert and the Lit urgies of Time and Space for further analysis of The Temple and the Book of Common Prayer.
56 Christian and the corporate body of the Church.32 Obviously, this relationship is one that Herbert would have been familiar with due to its emphasis in the communal sections of the liturgy ; such liturgical community can be found in claims like that w e be very membres incorporate in thy mistical body, whiche is the blessed company of al faithful people from the communion liturgy of the Book of Common Prayer 1559. The first section of The Temple is The Church Porch which serves as the transitional s pace between the inner body of the church and the outside world ; John N. Wall refers to it as the place wherein Herberts goal is to move the reader out of his personal world and into the public arena, the community (67).33 Additionally, Brewster S. Ford notes that The Church -Porch is subtitled Perirrhanterium, the technical term for asperging with holy water.34 The subtext h ere designates the first part of the poems dual purpose: to cleanse the congregants and separate them from the outside world. Fur ther, the word is also a translation of the vestibulum (Latin) or hikhal (Hebrew) of Solomons First Temple .35 This term translates into English as vestibule 32 Though Ernst H. Kantorowicz uses this term often as the corpus mysticum Christi generally for the Roman Catholic confession, I follow John Wall in using it to de scribe the Anglican community (Kantorowicz 194, Wall 14). However, Wall and thus, I are drawing on the definitions of corporation outlined by Kantorowicz in The Kings Two Bodies. Kantorowicz traces the rise of English sacred and secular corporation from t he late Middle Ages until the sixteenth century. It is Kantorowiczs outline of the foundation of the corpus Christi in St. Paul and the development of the corpus mysticum from the Eucharistic sacrament to the sociological connotation of Boniface VIII th at allows Wall to transfer the term and the idea to the Anglican Church (Kantorowicz 194). The sense of the mystical body of the church would have been current during the development of the Anglican communion (Kantorowicz 196). 33 Martz claims that in T he ChurchPorch Herbert is following the precept of self examination espoused by philosophers from Socrates to St. Bernard and Thomas Kempis (119). Structurally, Martz finds Herberts work here associated with the gnomic stanzas of Robert Southwell; suc h a similarity may indicate Herberts familiarity with Southwells poetry, though as Martz notes the gnomic stanza is a common Elizabethan form (198). 34 Wall claims that the argument and content of Perirrhanterium represent an expansion in hortatory fashion of the response to the question What does thou chiefly learn by these commandments? in the Prayer Book catechism (189). Wall uses the Prayer Book as his primary template for reading Herbert. He examines more fully than I the question of language, particularly the rhetoric of presenting choice in The Temple as a whole, and especially, Herberts comments on preachers within Perirrhanterium (192, 247). He also associates Perirrhanterium with the rite of confirmation in addition to the ritual aspe rging of the congregation that I focus on (196). 35 A description of the Temple can be found in 1 Kings 7:1551.
57 or entryway, and it specifies the first part of world within the Temple Ford argues, and I agre e, that both are entrances to the body of the church; moreover, I argue that the implications of the asperging indicate the entrance as a place of symbolic cleansing, and the later reference to Solomons Temple could signify an idealized idea of the community they are entering (20). Within The Church -Porch, Herbert dictates the type of community that he wants to be a part of through negative definition. Wall attributes a dynamic assertiveness to The Church Porch; for him, it is not just Herbert definin g his community: he is actively seeking to move the reader to changes in his behavior (188). This active nature tempers the meditative potential of the poem, and according to Wall, asks the reader to locate himself within such categories, to decide wher e he is, and to move to amendment (188). These categories represent an earthly life, and Herbert strives to make the choices clear. For example, neither Herbert nor his readers should get drunk, and if thou sin in wine or wantonness, the speaker recomme nds a specific set of social actions to receive pardon for those actions; Louis L. Martz says that here Herbert covers a world of error and, thus, represents a versified elaboration of the methods of preparation for Communionadvised by the Imitation ( Herbert 49, Martz 291, 290).36 These actions are not explicitly stated; rather, they are the implied contrary to the recommendation that the recovering sinner boast not thereof; nor make thy shame thy glory (50). Because boasting would make sin the prerog ative of the community, the truly repentant sinner should avoid it and embrace his or her shame. Herberts speaker goes on to reject other sins, such as swearing, telling bawdy stories, gluttony, and idleness to create a repentant community and pure Church 36 For Martz, the preparation is for spiritual communion in prayer and meditation or mental communion; this reading supports my emphasis on community in Herberts work (290, 291). Martz finds briefly this preparation in Herberts use of Perirrhanterium and the position of the poem Superliminare (290). I am examining the indications and definitions of that community more closely than Mart z does. Martz is referring to The Imitation of the Life of Christ by Thomas Kempis.
58 like that promoted earlier by Chaucers Parson. These rejections, which occur metaphorically on the church porch, leave sin outside the Temple itself. However, Herberts speaker makes it clear that these sins are not limited to the parish that he is a part of. Though John Wall assigns Perirrhanterium and The ChurchPorch the position of a move toward community, I would argue that Herbert is aware of more than one community. These poems represent the move from an outside community to a specifically Anglican one (197). Instead, the outer community consists of all of O England! full of sin, but most of sloth; Spit out thy phlegm, and fill thy breast with glory: Thy Gentry bleats, as if thy native cloth Transfusd a sheepishness into thy story: N ot that they all are so; but that the most Are gone to grass, and in the pasture lost. (9196) Herbert uses this stanza to clarify several things. The replacement of phlegm with glory implies a replacement of medieval humors of the body with divin e grace.37 This use of a humor term also gives a one word synthesis of the personality of the members; in this case, they lack passion and are overfull of the cold and moist humour of phlegm (Burton 184.108.40.206). England is no longer the domain of stalwart l eaders; instead sheep rule, following not God but sin, particularly the sin of sloth. These sheep leaders serve as anti types of Christ as -Lamb; thus, they are not worthy to lead the people of England, and are lost. The reference to thy native cloth pr ovides two-fold emphasis. Though the wool trade had started to decline by the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries, sheeps wool and woolen cloth had been a major national export from the English medieval period; it was also what most native garm ents were still made of in the seventeenth century (Bucholz and Key 191). Therefore, the idea of native 37 The use of humoral and affective physiognomy to make generalizations about a persons or groups character can be traced back to ancient Greeks and was well develope d by writers like Chaucer during the medieval period (Friedman 152). John Block Friedman investigates Chaucers extensive use of the humors and their impact on the interpretation of various characters, especially those in The Canterbury Tales.
59 cloth would have resonated on a literal level with many of Herberts readers. However, a Biblical level also exists in this metaphor, found in the last two lines of the stanza. The idea of sheep being lost and in need of rescue recalls the Biblical description of Christ as The Good Shepherd and as the Lamb of God (Mark 6:34, John 1:29). By using the trope ironia here, Herbert is able to imply that inste ad of continuing to function as sheep, the Gentry and the peasants should reject sin (the grass of the pasture) and follow God in its place. Secondly, the apostrophe O England! that opens the stanza also opens the souls to be improved by the work as a whole. This offer is directed to all those that consider themselves part of England, rather than limiting the meditations and their effects to just a local Anglican community After all, the craven, sheepish nature of England springs chiefly from out educ ation, or lack thereof, in the appropriate behavior of a Christian community (97). Herberts speaker argues that if they S tudy this art, and make it thy great design; / A nd if Gods image move thee not, let thine (101102). The art referred to here is that of meditation, which and here Herbert would agree with Hall should be part of the every day life of its practitioners. It may repair the image of England by moving it closer to that of God as well. Though the admonition is made to a single reader d escribed in the singular pronoun thy, over the course of the poem Herberts speaker refers to the good company that individuals must keep and the way that each parent should raise thy son to make him rich in heaven, not on earth (138, 108). Like Ha ll, mutual accountability is at work here. Communities can be improved in three ways: through individual actions, through choice of company, and through the descending generations. Many of the stanzas within The ChurchPorch give recommendations and inst ructions for godly living within a community of people. I would argue that the placement of these instructions is important because of the communal nature of the
60 church as a whole. It is here, on the Church -Porch, that people could have socialized before and after the church services. Therefore, it is here that social and spiritual rules are acted out to determine appropriate behavior. Further, the poems subtitle Aspergius indicates the cleansing nature of the interactions described here. Asperging i s the action of sprinkling (with holy water) (OED vbl. n.). T he social cleansing and the rules laid out in the introductory poem provide guidelines to Christian life. These guidelines will be especially significant once he or she has entered the church and completed the meditations of The Temple Towards the end of The Church-Porch, the speaker recommends that as Christ purgd his temple; so must thou thy heart. All worldly thoughts are but thieves met together To cozen thee. Look to thy actions w ell: For churches are either our heavn or hell. (421426) This purgation begins with the individual, but ends with the church itself. The first line indicates the latter with a reference to Jesus and the removal of the money changers from the Temple cour tyard (Matt. 21:12). If each member will look to [his] actions well, then church will be a heaven for all, rather than a hell. Further, the rejection of worldly thoughts is a common action of the time and is a theme shared by Quarles and Southwell as w ell. In rejecting the worldly thoughts, the meditator is by extension rejecting the company of those that are cozened by them, choosing to join and better a community of the faithful as well as garnering a more pleasantly social experience at church. H erbert ends the poem with recommendations for behavior in church, just in time for his audience to enter The Temple proper. These instructions can be read both as concrete behavioral recommendations and as instructions for meditating on the poems contained in the
61 rest of the text. An example of such an instruction is found in the tenth stanza, where Herbert admonishes his reader to Take not his name, who made thy mouth, in vain: It gets thee nothing, and hath no excuse. Lust and wine plead a pleasure, av arice gain: But the cheap swearer through his open sluice Lets his soul run for nought, as little fearing. Were I an Epicure I could bate swearing. (55 60) Obviously, this stanza is a condemna tion of those who break the Fifth Commandment, thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; because the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain (Ex. 20: 7). Interestingly, Herbert raises this sin above the sins of gluttony and greed in the statement Lust and wine plead a pleasure, avarice gain. The greater emphasis on vocal communication implies that while there is some small, inadequate excuse for some sins, no excuse exists for swearing. Swearing is a misuse of communication from which nothing can be gained. As he says it is a sin of laziness, and even a follower of Epicurus, the pagan sect that at least theoretically allowed for all earthly pleasures would scorn, or bate it. This injunction, like many of the concrete sanctions, is directed at an individual about his or her behavior in and out of church. However, instructions about the companions one chooses, the company one keeps, and the need to educate the children in order to remove these sins from the community are interspersed with these individual directives (271275, 149150, 97102).38 Stanza 17 echoes Hall in his admonishment to care not for any companion as may teach me somewhat; or learn somewhat of me, except that Herbert frames it as a critique of the current social education (Hall Meditations 1:20). Moving on from the unfit, sheep-leaders, Herbert tells his readers how the sheep came to 38 In the fal l of 2008, I had the pleasure of teaching a course on John Donne and George Herbert. The students in this senior level class deserve my thanks for a rigorous class discussion on these passages. They made me think through the conjunction of individual and c ommunity that appears in these stanzas in a new way.
62 be. He claims that This loss springs chiefly from out education, because Some till their ground, but let weeds choke their son: / Some mark a partridge, never their childs fashion: / Some ship them over, and the thing is done (97, 98100). In other words, focus on the world and neglect of their children has led to the corruption and sheep -like stupidity we have already discussed. This idea echoes the Biblical instr uction to train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he shall not depart from it a notion found in Proverbs, the Old Testament instruction manual for living a godly life (Prov. 22:6). Focusing his directive more specifically than Hall, who wants all to teach all, Herbert admonishes these careless parents to set themselves up as types In the couplet that concludes the stanza, he tells them to Study this art, make it thy great design, / And if Gods image move thee not, let thine (101102). This art is the combination of mediation and education. Meditations focus on the images of God, and the emphasis on typology explored by Ira Clark and Barbara Lewalski make it a site for the creation of types, both the types provided by God and the children as images of their parents. Here, art will improve the children, who learn by example, and the parents by their meditation, thus reaching the whole society. Further connecting the social aspects of The Church Porch with the interiority and i ndividuality of many of the poems within The Church section is the very short poem Superliminare. The title comes from superliminary, which means preliminary; introductory (OED a.). Etymologically, The Oxford English Dictionary notes that the term is made from the Latin super above and the Greek l min -, l men threshold. This derivation supports and extends Herberts choice to place it literally at the threshold, or entrance, to The Temple proper; the poem serves as a means of ingress for the reader/meditator. In addition, the use of super or above, indicate its position as a warning; it also defines who may cross that
63 threshold, or rather, who may move from the liminal space of The Church Porch with its tension between the world and the C hurchand into the community of the Church. Superliminare supports my conjecture that the instructions in The ChurchPorch are meant not only for the physical church, but for meditation as well for the entrance into the interiority of the mind.39 Herb erts speaker addresses the reader firmly, saying Thou, whom the former precepts have Sprinkled and taught, how to behave Thyself in church; approach, and taste The churchs mystical repast. (Herbert 1 4) Obviously, the former precepts are those outlined in The Church -Porch and are meant to be applied to the reading that follows. The reference to sprinkling refers to both the ritual with the aspergis and to the baptism of the believer. These two actions would have purified him or her to take their pla ce, in turn, within the communion of the church. After all, the Anglican rule concerning who may take communion, the mystical repast, is that only those members who doe truely and ernestly repent you of your sinnes, and bee in lov e and charity with your neighbors should take communion (Communion Service BCP 1559). In other words, only those members who are repentant and who are positively associated with the communityin love and charity not those who are having or are causing problems. The assumpti on made by the text is two -fold: first, that all members are baptized; and second, that they will be honest enough with themselves to have repented of their sins and made sure that they are right with their neighbors. Wall notes that the clause requires th e reader to make a judgment on himself evaluating whether he has in fact been Sprinkled and taught, how to behave by reading Perirrhanterium (194). Mystical repast not only can be a term for the right of communion, but also an expression of 39 Wall also reads the Superliminare as a doorway into The Church; he defines the first quatrain that I talk about here as the inclusionary quatrain indicating who can come into the church, and the s econd, which I address later, as the exclusionary quatrain (194).
64 the end result of following the meditations that exist in this text.40 Following the meditations should result in a mystical communion with Christ. Finally the use of the adjective mystical also recalls the nature of the body of Christ as it is described in the litany, again emphasizing the communal nature of this activity. In Herberts poems church is not at all a space for t he isolated individual. Though the second short stanza of Superliminare is directed to profaneness in order to warn it away, it als o indicates the need for desire inherent in the practice of meditation and the reading of the poems that follow. The speaker says that come not here: / Nothing but holy, pure, and clear, / Or that which groaneth to be so (5 7). The choice inherent in th e desire implied by groaneth seems to be the deference between compulsory attendance in church and the choice to meditate and become a better person. Only those that want a better life will commit the action. In his introduction to the Penguin edition of Herberts collected works, John Tobin argues that his choice of profane and profan ation, with the Latin fanum meaning temple, reminds us that throughout The Temple the sacred and the secular, the holy and the unholy have their locus in the fleshly temple, the human heart (xvi -xvii, emphasis Tobins). The dichotomies that Tobin points out here are the tensions that spring from the individuals place in the two recognized Christian communities, the Church and the world. This tension is explored in the New Testament in John 17, which consists of a prayer by Christ about his actions and purpose in the world. This prayer is often summed up in the proverbial admonition to Christian churches to be in the world, but not of it, deriving from Christs sta tement that I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil. / They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world (John 17: 1516). Unlike Southwell and Quarles, Herbert is 40 For more detailed discussion about the mystical repast see the chapter A Mystical Repast.
65 more willing to acknowledge that Christians must live in the world, and should not be taken out of it prematurely. He will demonstrate how to live in it and improve it within The Temple proper, though he has started here in The Church Porch. The poem that closes The Te mple is also about the community of the church on earth. The title The Church Militant was a common designation for the body of Christs followers. After the individuality of many but not all of the meditations within The Church, the purpose of this p oem seems to reaffirm the position of that individual within the community and history of the Church. Though the address is to the Almighty Lord, the Church history that follows it traces its way from the early church through its reestablishment in Ameri ca, of which an omniscient God would be aware. However, a nontheologian might not know many of the details. The all encompassing nature of the community of the faithful is traced for the audience. The encompassing nature of Herberts concern for the com munity he is involved in can be seen in many of the other poems in The Temple from poems that seem on the surface to be about other things like Love II and Lent to poems whose titles indicate this interest like The British Church, The Family, and The Priesthood.41 The ties between community and individuals are tight within the Christian belief system. Therefore, the connection that this succession of Christian poets made between individual meditation and communal improvement is an inevitable one. Though the ties have become obvious by the time that Bunyan writes Pilgrims Progress, Quarles, Hall, and the others handle these questions in a much more coherent manner. The presence of communal concerns and recommendations for communal behavior is wove n throughout these forms of meditation. If we read these poems as indictments of the greater English community, then we see the concern for 41 Wall critiques and develops Herberts language and his rhetoric of community from The Temp le. Therefore, I have chosen not to do so here.
66 reshaping the individual in a broader context. It is not just the individual that is at stake, but England as a whol e. Aside from Hall, with his desires to teach others, none of these poets appears to be concerned with missionary work outside the church. Conversion to the state mandated version of the faith is not a focus of these poems. Instead, they invest in tracing ways to live and grow within that mandate. Even Southwell, who stands outside the Anglican Church, copes with the dilemma of being subsumed by it and of needing to maintain a community within it. As we will see in the next chapter, some of poets, particula rly Quarles and Southwell, but Herbert as well, examine an alternative to living within an earthly community by probing the political and social ways in which such a realm cannot feed or sustain a modern Christian living in the turmoil of the seventeenth-c entury.
67 Figure 2 1. The Invocation. Emblemes(1635) and Hieroglyphikes (1638). With permission of The English Emblem Book Project. http://emblem.libraries.psu.edu/qu00_1.htm
68 Figure 2 2. Boo k I, Emblem 5 The Fashion of this World Passeth Away. Emblemes(1635) and Hieroglyphikes (1638). With permission of The English Emblem Book Project. http://emblem.libraries.psu.edu/qu036_37.htm
69 Figure 2 3. Emblem I, 10 Yee are of Your Father the Dev ill. Emblemes(1635) and Hieroglyphikes (1638). With permission of The English Emblem Book Project. http://emblem.libraries.psu.edu/qu040_41.htm
70 Figure 2 4. Emblem II, 15 I Will Put My Feare in Their Hearts, that They Shall Not Depart from Me. Embleme s(1635) and Hieroglyphikes (1638). With permission of The English Emblem Book Project. http://emblem.libraries.psu.edu/qu120_21.htm
71 Figure 2 5. Emblem IV, 11 I Will Rise, and Go about in the City, and Will Seeke Him that My Soule Loveth: I Sought Him, b ut I Found Him Not. Emblemes(1635) and Hieroglyphikes (1638). With permission of The English Emblem Book Project. http://emblem.libraries.psu.edu/qu224_25.htm
72 Figure 2 6. Emblem V, 6 Whom Have I in Heavn but Thee? And What Desire I on Earth in Respect of Thee? Emblemes(1635) and Hieroglyphikes (1638). With permission of The English Emblem Book Project. http://emblem.libraries.psu.edu/qu264_65.htm
73 CHAPTER 3 A MYSTICAL REPAST: F OOD AND COMMUNAL REJ ECTION What never filld? Be thy lips skrewd so fas t seize these/ to the earths full breast? Quarles, Yee May Suck, ut not be Satisfied with the Breast of Her Consolation, Emblemes My teares my drink, my famisht thoughts my bread; / Day full of dumps, Nurse of night unrest Southwell, Davids Peccavi Within the poetry of both Francis Quarles and Robert Southwell a common appetite, or lack thereof, exists.1 In many of the melanch olic poems, feeding, food, and fertility play a role in the problem of and the solution to communal mourning Just as Chr istians consume their Savior through the ceremony of Communion, Quarles and Southwell look from the rotten food of earth to the spiritual food in heaven. Images of sucking, feeding, gorging, gluttony and atonement are tied together to illustrate the obses sive desires of each poem Southwell relies solely on words concepts, and the rituals of the Church, while Quarles supports his verbal images with emblems that occupy the same ceremonial space. Within their poetry, food occupies two distinct positions bas ed on the symbolic meaning attributed to it : w hen it is earthly food, both authors have their speakers reject it as unwholesome, unfulfilling, and ultimately destructive because of its 1 As we saw in Members Incorporate, George Herbert was more invested in the Anglican Communion than even the Royalist Quarles. Like his more famous predecessor John Donne, Herbert participated actively wit hin that community as a pastor. Within The Temple, readers can see that Herberts concerns about spiritual fulfillment and earthly food are less fraught and less intensely negative than the more disassociated Quarles and the disenfranchised Southwell Wit h regard to spiritual nourishment, C.A. Patrides shows the centrality of the communion ceremony for Herberts The Temple in his book Figures in a Renaissance Context Patrides argues that the correspondent relationship between God and man stressed by Donne appears in Herbert through the communal sacramenta lism of all his poems (128, emphasis mine ). According to Patrides, this sacramentatlism is not just the performance of the sacrament, but the essence of things, the very nature of nature for Herbert. T he implications that Patrides draws here about the necessity of this communal action echo its status as the place for spiritual fulfillment on earth. Therefore, Herbert differs from Quarles and Southwell not in his dedication to the Eucharist, but in his a ttitudes towards earthly consumption. Given that Partrides has established this argument, I will not be examining Herbert further in this chapter.
74 relationship to the sinful earth ; thus, p lacing food in this position a llows them to mourn the sinful, willful nature of their fellow man as well as of themselves. Tying food and consumption into melancholy and its treatment does not originate within their poetry, nor is the position of food as a symbolic social signifier unique to them. In The Anatomy of Melancholy, Robert Burton urges those who suffer from melancholia to partake of various forms of food. Following the predominant structure of the rest of the text, the section on Diet Rectified in Substance reviews the pos itions of historic authorities like Galen, Guianerius, and others on what Burton refers to as the six nonnatural things that caused [melancholy] and which must cure it (220.127.116.11.)2 Burton gives the first of these nonnatural things as diet (18.104.22.168) He is not interested solely in what the melancholics eat, but in how those items are prepared. It seems that the idea of preparation, the question of how the food is modified from its natural state is most important to its ability to alleviate the stat e of melancholy. Burtons concern over the preparation and types of food and drink what he classifies as diet might even be seen to prefigure Claude Lvi -Strauss s interrogation of cooking habits in The Raw and the Cooked In this influential study in stru cturalist anthropology, Lvi -Strauss delineates an entire theory of social structure by plugging cultural particulars regarding certain native peoples of South America into semiotic fields. Eventually, LviStrauss takes the principles of The Raw and the C ooked and develops the semiotic triangle, the vertices of which are marked as the raw, the cooked, and the rotten (The Culinary Triangle 28). This triangle is used to delimit the semantic field and enable critics to talk about relative civilizati ons. Thus, Lvi Strauss s semantic -semiotic model tracks another governing binary oppositions is merged with the double opposition between elaborated/ unelaborated on the one hand, and culture/nature on 2 Citations for The Anatomy of Melancholy are given as (Partition. Section. Member. Subsection). All citations in this text come from Holbrook Jacksons 2001 edition.
75 the other ( Lvi Strauss 29). Burton, Quarles, and Southwell have similar paradigm of earthy/divine versus fallen/perfective with regards to the food their audiences may consume. Though Burton gives healing powers to some earthly food, Quarles and Southwell do not agree with or accept the premise that ear thly food however properly or naturally it may be prepared can alleviate their religiously motivated melancholy.3 Th e melancholic obsession they explore can be satisfied only by rejection of the earthly food symbolizing a rejection of the earth and its communities that leads to a wish to be subsumed by death While current psychoanalytic trends connect the body with its hungers the poems of Francis Quarles and Robert Southwell address the consummatory or incorporative drive of the spirit or the spiritu al consummatory appetite .4 In this picture, f ood and the consumption of food become more than a desire to either incorporate something that is lost or the need to fulfill a primordia l want (Emmett, Doige 139). By establishing a relationship between the app etite of the spirit and food, the poetry can comment on both the state of the earth and the state of the reader/participant. Quarles and Southwells spiritually -focused metaphor of food demands active participation and imitation on the part of the reader. Caroline Walker Bynum defines the participatory nature of Christian food relationships in two ways, both of which I will explore in relation to Quarles, Southwell, and Herbert. First, for 3 Burtons interest is primarily how to use diet to cure a melancholic versus Quarles and Southwell who emphasize mankinds need for divine, and thus perfective, food. 4 For a more detailed discus sion about the pleasures derived from a consummation action see Norman Doiges Appetitive Pleasure States: A Biopsychoanalitic Model of the Pleasure Threshold, Mental Representation, and Defense in Pleasures Beyond the Pleasure Principle edited by Robe rt A. Glick and Stanley Bone. In this collection Glick and Bone both medical doctors claim that Freud translat[ed] into psychological terms the biologists recognitio n that the pursuit of pleasure and the avoidance of pain are primary survival mechanisms (Foreword ix). This re encapsulating of Freudian psychology within the biological community allows Doige to create a theory of consummatory thoughts as triggers for the appetitive pleasure system (139). I have used Doiges work to establish the idea of the consummatory spiritual appetite that cannot be fulfilled in the earthly community, but only by heavenly, or spiritual, food.
76 ancient Christians, food was the stuff that defined their community. Fellow Christians were those with whom one broke bread with whether it was the communion meal or the dinner after a service. Later, for medieval Christians, food took on a greater symbolic meaning, whether as the Eucharistic Blood and Body, or as the soc ial symbol marking the have/have not dichotomy of wealth versus poverty.5 For Quarles and Southwell, correspondingly, food and those things it may represent seem to serve as both a as a connection to the symbolic afterlife represented in Christ and a mean s for defining community. As the poems follow a specific pattern of meditation, the consumption of food grants redemption if it is reclassified as a sacramental or sacred food Sacred foods are defined as the elements of the Communion/Eucharist ritual or t he blessed fruits of Eden. Sacred food can aid in an acceptance of Christs redemptive sacrifice, and by metaphorically consuming His flesh, the speakers can achieve an end other than immediate death from physical and spiritual starvation. In these patter ns, food takes the place of sex, alcohol, and other behaviors as a way to define or reject community.6 Quarles begins to create a relationship between a deep melancholy over the world and the search for, and ingestion of, food within Even in Laughter the Heart is Sorrowful (Even in Laughter ) of Emblemes (1635). In the manner of a teacher, suitable to the meditative poem, Even in Laughter opens with a tri line rhetorical question, A las Fond Child, / H ow are thy thoughts beguild, / T o hope for Hony i n a nest of wasps ? (Quarles ll .1 3 all emphases mine). In this question, Quarles denotes precisely what he wants to talk about in the poem: the mourning that he feels towards the world (alas) because of the way the world leads the unsuspecting astray (be guild ) and the perfidy of his fellow man (wasps). These wasps cannot be 5 This sociological symbolism can be seen in Passus VII of Piers Plowman when Truth describes the food of poor and how it differs from that of the rich (92 95). 6 Not the wine of the Eucharist, but other recreational beverages which, when consumed too heartily, lead to drunkenness.
77 a productive community that could offer sustenance as a hive of honey bees might. The implied contrast between the worthless wasps and the sustaining bees echoes Pliny. In the Natural History Pliny praises bees both for the life -sustaining properties of their production (honey and wax), but also for their system of manners that outstrips that of all other animals, although they belong neither to the domesticated nor to the wild class (XI.iv).7 The system of manners is the collectivity and community within which bees work and support each other. For Quarles, such collective production would be needed to sustain the spirit through earthly food. Pliny follows his discussion of bees with one on wasps and, while he does not directly contrast them with bees, such a contrast is implied (XI.xxiv). Unlike bees, Plinys wasps are given only a brief treatment and no helpful traits are observed; rather, Pliny focuses on their stings, the part of them that is most harmful to mankind (XI.xxiv). Therefore, Quarles is using definitions similar to Pliny to separate the states of the human community into those of productive bees and destructive wasps.8 The poem begins with the interjection A las t h at is associated with grief, mourning, and absence (Quarles 1). This desolate interjection sets the tone for the whole poem On the other hand, the ambiguity of the interjection fond Child may give the reader the ability to place him/herself as the address ed Quarles thus provides an invitation to meditate on th e material contained therein a pattern followed by most of his poems. As Louis Martz tells us, meditation, then is not simply diligent thinking, but thinking deliberately directed toward the develop ment of a certain set of emotions (14). By inviting the reader into the poem, Quarles 7 Plinys full discussion of bees covers Chapters iv xx in Book XI of the Natural History 8 It is worth noting that the late sixteenth century when Quarles was bornsaw the first publication of bee keeping manuals in English. Such a rising interest may have been what sparked Quarles comparison. I shall develop this idea in the future, possibly using Lvi Strausss Honey and Ashes as well as Pliny to investigate the extended wasp/ bee dichotomy that Quarles employs in this poem.
78 enables him or her to participate in the feelings upon which the poem concentrates. The address thereby separates both the speaker and the reader from the world of wasps that surround them. Besides referring to the common insect, the term wasp was also applied figuratively to persons characterized by irascibility and persistent petty malignity, esp. to a multitude of contemptible but irritating assailants (OED n1.2 ). The description of a world inhabited by people who irritate and are capable of contemptible malignance is a theme that wends its way through both Quarles and Southwells poetry Here Quarles begins to illustrate his contempt for the earth. Since this p oem is not written as a dialogue the speaker can attempt to answer his own question so as to emphasize the negative aspects of earthly food by comparing a quest to retrieve H ony in a nest of wasps with a quest to seek for ease in Hell / O r sprightly Ne ctar from the mouthes of Asps (Quarles Even In Laughter 3, 5 6). 9 10 Furthermore, unlike other stinging creatures, specifically bees, neither asps nor wasps produce any type of wholesome food viable for human consumption. The irritating people that ca n be described by these terms like the wasp and asp produce only toxic poisons, or deadly sins. The compariso n of the words and actions of the wicked with the poisons emitted by serpents and insects is biblically based In Deuteronomy 32:33, the speaker sa ys that their wine is the poyson of dragons, and the cruel gall of asps. The wine of the wicked is their speech, because they have sharpened their tongues like a serpent: adders poyson is under their lippes (Psa. 140:3) .11 This equation between wine, sp eech, and poison supports the conjecture that to 9 Others are. See Emblem XIV Book III. 10 Here, Quarles uses [w]asps as a homoioteleuton rhyme engine connecting to the later Asps. 11 In opposition, bees are biblical providers of sustenance. Samson sees a swarm of bees and honey in the carcase of the lion. / And he took thereof in his hands, and went on eating (Judges 14:89). This event enables Samsons riddle to his companions and his eventual pillage of them. Samson remarks what is sweeter than honey, which provides a biblical basis for Quarles association of it with sustenance (Judges 14:18).
79 seek sprightly nectar fro m the mouthes of Asps is a futile endeavor. It also defines the corrupt nature of earthly food whether speech, wine, or bread and its connection with sin. The long -standing co nception of toxic food s ability to corrupt the flesh stems from a material ist tradition that Gordon Teskey outlines in Allegory and Violence He defines allegory as a mutual devouring or, as I shall call it, allelophagy and claims that it is the corpor eal expression of the symmetrical otherness (8).12 The idea of mutual devouring is introduced into the Christian worldview as early as the Biblical last supper It is during that supper, of course, that Christ instructs his followers to eat bread and drin k wine in remembrance of Him (1 Cor. 11:2326) Later Christians imbue d the new Sacrament of communion with a cannibalistic symbolism of fully partaking of their Lord. Conversely despite cultural taboos on actual cannibalism the ultimate act of toxic consu mption for Christians is not that of consuming the flesh of their savior, because that act represents salvation. Instead, the most toxic act of consumption is also one of the earliest Eve s and Adam s non -cannibalistic consumption of the apple fr om the Tr ee of Knowledge (Gen. 3:6). Subsequently, they are devoured by sin and shame. This act of consumption sundered humans from their Creator and caused them to be devoured by death. Therefore, the unwholesome material consumption can be represented by animal s and insects like the wasps and the asps that do not produce sacred food like the Bread of Life, or wholesome food like bee honey. 12 The dichotomy or othering between consumption and the spirit is further explored in Sigmund Freuds Beyond the Pleasure Principle Freud notes that a compulsion to repeat permeates and causes the fulfillment of the pleasure drive (24). Later Freudian psychologists such as Norman Doige will define this compulsion as the consummatory appetite. B oth Freud and Doige are referring primarily to a physical set of compulsions that are repeated to bring the subject to a satiated state. Within the poetry of Francis Quarles and Robert Southwell, the speakers want to fulfill a spiritual rather than a physical appetite. This appetite is at odds with the material because, as both poets demonstrate, it cannot be sated with earthly activities such as physical consumption or sexual consummation.
80 Both the images of asps and bees reflect an emblematic quality associated with the audiences ability to associate verba w ords, with the res, or thing, that they signify (Daly 28). Quarles audience would have been able to visualize the futility of Hell and the quest for nectar in a setting where nectar is the drink of the gods in classical mythology, but comes from the mou th of a serpent, here emblematic of the Ancient Enemy, Satan (OED n. 1a ). 13 Both images emphasize the futility of fulfilling a desire for spiritual hunger, or pleasure, with the fruits of the earth. Having answered his original question and set up a dimens ion of futility, Quarles can now fully illustrate the Biblical inscriptio of his text/emblem even in laughter the heart is sorrowful, and the end of that mirth is heavinesse from Proverbs 15:13 ( Even in Laughter ). By placing the biblical inscription ab ove the text rather than above its accompanying emblem, Quarles emphasizes the primacy of the text rather than the pictura (Figure 3 1) Though Michael Camille and Peter Daly assert that the pictura usually expanded14 the text, Quarles poetry sometimes rev erses that trend (Camille 22, Daly 48). The emblem for this poem does not develop the same richness as the text that it accompanies, as the placement of the inscriptio bears out. The negativity of the inscriptio conveys the feelings of a protracted state of hopelessness attributable to melancholy (Burton I.2 Doige 142) This negativity is not stressed in the clean environs of the pictura Instead, it illustrates the first stanza of the poem by showing two figura e who resemble cherubs or cupids and repres ent the two participants of the dialogue. One is 13 For more specific and elaborate disc ussion of the use of wordemblems in poetry, see Peter Dalys book Literature in the Light of the Emblem (1988). As part of this project, Daly attempts to separate and define what a word emblem (as opposed to a pictorial one) is. His primary definition is that a word emblem is a verbal image that has qualities associated with emblems (74). Daly then spends the chapter further distinguishing the term. 14 The potential for an expansion or contraction of meaning comes from allegory/personification theories ra nging from the medieval definition forward. In his Piers Plowman: An Introduction, James Simpson notes that such a theory was often applied to readings of the Old Testament as well as being a medieval educational technique (169, 176). The purpose of these readings was often multifold, but often rested on the need to justify the drawing of certain types of meaning from the work. Rosemond Tuve gives Marots reading of Ezekiel as an example of this justificatory style of reading ( 234). Daly and Camille have ap propriated this definition of allegory theory to attempt to explain the relationships between text and either medieval illuminations (Camille) or pictura (Daly).
81 reaching into the Orb of England, that is part of the Coronation regalia, and pulling out an empty comb while insects, presumably wasps, swarm around him. By showing the Orb of England filled with wasps Qua rles asserts t hat England is the world that by extension is the corrupt Hive The hive is a place from which the fond child cannot extract proper, satisfying nourishment (Quarles 1, 7). As we can see, t he first figura carries what appear s to be a small tablet as well as a bow and quiver of arrows A round his head glows the aura or nimbus used to represent the presence of God in a person in traditional art However, the two figurae are not seen in discourse and the foulness of the soules vexation cann ot be seen on eithers face (Quarles 9). It is within the text itself that Quarles chooses to expand on the equation of the Earth with a fruitless hive and where by the heart is sorrowfull and the end of mirth is heavinesse .15 Rather than a world of plent y or light, Quarles insists that his readers consider the world a Hive, From whence thou canst derive No good, but what thy s oules vexation brings: Put case thou meet Some peti -peti -sweet, Each drop is guarded with a thousand stings ( Even in Laughter 7 12). Firmly reinforcing the extended metaphor of the world as a wasps nest, Quarles does not leave any hope of accruing sweet food here honey of the peti peti -sweet on earth The equation of sweetness with holiness/goodness shows Quarles continuation of a medieval gustatory semiotics. As we see in Passus XIII LXIII of Piers Plowman, medieval definitions of food equate over prepared food with potentially fallen behavior. At the feast of Conscience and Learning the master of divinity and his followe rs eat dainties while our heroes eat simple fair garnished with sour sauce (Langland XIII.40 44, 47) As well, the master will eat no whole 15 Emblem III Book I inscriptio from Prov. 15:3
82 meats but only fare prepared as stews mortrews and soups potages; he also guzzles wine (XIII.42, 61) The whole culinary focus of the episode is a compariso n of over -prepared foods versus more simple and robust fare While Quarles does not overtly engage the metaphor of over -prepared dishes as fallen or sinful food, it is implied by the importance he places on the a cquisition of natural sweets like honey. By specifying that the impossibility is only an earthly one, Quarles prevents his speaker from falling into the deadly sin of despair, the state of mind in which there is entire want of hope (OED n. 1a. ). Instead, the melancholic speaker can still be saved through his hope of heaven. T he speaker acknowledges that seekers may find so me small, or peti -peti -sweet, but cautions that each drop will be guarded by the thousand stings of angry wasps (or fallen people ).16 Therefore, seekers are afflicted with a s oules vexation from the lack of satisfaction for their consummatory impulses. They cannot be satisfied by the empty combes and will spend themselves on trash and Toyes, / G riefe ingendering Joyes (Quarles Even in Laughter 18 20). With the move from concrete objects like (honey) combes to questions of G riefe -ingendering Joyes Quarles moves his concern from concrete nourishment to the consummatory appetite of the spirit.17 Because grief ingendering is used as a descriptor for the joyes that occupy earthly minds, two things are accomplished. First, the selected words create a se nse of verbal tension between the words grief and joy which imply opposite states of mind (OED grief n. 1, joy n. 1a.) Second, the fact that these transitory joys produce, or engender, grief also suggests the food motif. Like a person presented with rotten food, a person who is only briefly spiritually satisfied will become ill or grief -stricken due to the lack of wholes ome nourishment. Though Quarles 16 I read these as the stings of wasps rather than bees following Plinys definition of bees as helpful to man (XI.iv). That definition prevents them from being such harmful guardians. 17 This move from the physical to the spiritual is similar to the one that John N. Wall sees in Herberts Superlimi nare. For an extended discussion of this, see Chapter 2 Members Incorporate.
83 emphasizes the need for good, filling food throughout the Emblemes (1635), he does not specifically present pictures of rotten or unwholesome food. Rather the presence of such food on earth is assumed by its symbolic associa tion with alternative signifiers like sex and fallen people. Such an association, the equation of corrupt sexuality with rotten or non-nourishing sustenance, presages Lvi -Strauss observation of a similar connection in the mythology of the native tribes o f North and South America ( The Raw and the Cooked 180). In Quarles, investing in the relationship between the earthly physicality of sex and the failure of the earth to satisfy human need positions him in contrast at least hereto his contemporaries like J ohn Donne who tried to reinvest sexuality as a heavenly experience. For Quarles, the decayed sexuality of the fallen is no more satiating than the bloody, poisoned non -food produced by the earth. However, his poem acknowledges the addictive desire for su stenance. He investigates this obsessive need for s piritual consummatory satiation. T he inability of the waxen Homes or the world, to supply satiation creat es a vacuum. This poem admonishes the Fond youth, give ore, and vexe thy s oule no more, In seeki ng, what were better far unfound; Alas thy gaines are only present paines To gather Scorpions for a future wound (Quarles Even in Laughter 31 36). The youth cannot find the satiation that he seeks in the earthly orb and therefore, will gain present pai nes from the wasp/people In his attempt to do so, he gathers Scorpions or sins These sins will lead to the future wound of a death that does not end in eternal spiritual satisfaction through contact with God (35 36). This poem does not culminate in a satisfactory delineation of how or where the addressee might find spiritual satisfaction. Instead, Quarles completes it with a series of rhetorical questions that continue to cast doubt on the ability of the earth to fulfill the needs of its inhabita nts because W hats earth? O r in it, / T hat longer than a minit / Can lend a free delight,
84 that can endure? ( Even in Laughter 3739). According to both Robert Burton and Norman Doige, melancholia can only be cured by finding something that can endure, or consistently satiate the consummatory appetite, be it spiritual or physical ( 22.214.171.124 157). At this point in his meditations, Quarles cannot offer his readers an answer to who would droyle, / O r delve in such a s oyle, / W here gaines uncertaine, and th e paine is sure because he and his readers must do so until offered a superior type of earth or food that does not bring pain (40 42). Obviously, this problem contradicts the idea that earthly communities can be improved enough to provide nourishment for their members. Quarles becomes more specific about the inability of the earth to provide satisfaction in Yee May Suck, but not be Satisfied with the Brest of Her Consolation, (Yee May Suck) the twelfth Emblem of Book I of the Emblemes (1635). Within this emblem, he becomes less oblique about the rottenness of earthly sustenance and the sinfulness of those who depend solely on it for their nourishment. They will never [be] filld no m atter how their lips be skrewd s o fa st seiz e these / T o th eart hs full breast For as he tells one, T hou swallow s t at one breath / Both fo od and poyson down; / Thou draws t both milk & death ("Yee May Suck 1 2, 4 5). Rather than an oblique reference to the stings of wasps or their empty hives as he made in Even i n Laughter, the speaker addresses the problem of taking spiritual nourishment from the breast of the earth immediately. Although he does acknowledge that both food and poyson are swallowed, the latter negates the impact of the former and lead s the speak er to a physical death. This set of images invokes a tangible picture, or word -emblem ,18 that the more metaphysical wasps did not. As usual, Quarles begins his poem with a set of questions during which the latter 18 In Literature in the Light of the Emblem Daly traces the prevalence of word emblems versus the equally popular pictorial emblem and concludes that the former arose from the popularity of the latter (75). Quarles employs both in his work.
85 question builds upon the former To repeat, What never filld? Be thy lips skrewd so fast seize thes e / T o th earths full breast ( Yee May Suck lns 1 2). Like the addressee in Even in Laughter the owner of lips is on an un attainable quest, he will not get hony from a nest of wasps or spri ghtly Nectar from the mouthes of Asps but will find poison in the breasts of earth like the poison from wasps and asps (Quarles Even in Laughter 3, 5 6). This pattern of expansion is reflected in the words of the poem and in the imagery of the emblem s pictura Unlike the clear, straightforward pictura of Even in Laughter, the pictura for Yee May Suck does not consist of readily identifiable objects like the Orb of England and wasps (Figure 3 2) Instead, it exists in what both Michael Camille an d Peter M. Daly would term a gap between the poem and the meaning of it (Camille 20 21, Daly 39). The center image of the emblem is a massive fertility figure The image personifies the bounty of the earth by giving it full brea s ts ( Yee May Suck 2). The extreme fertility of this globe is further emphasized by a cornucopia floating above and slightly in front of it. The cornucopia is an ancient symbol for plenty or fertility (OED c. ). Two figurae kneel or squat in front of the fertile orb. The left most figura appears plump and is clad in rich jesters garb. He has his lips s ei z e to the breast above him and, clasping it, seems to be sucking as much and as hard as he can. Unlike his gluttonous companion, the rightmost figura dressed in simpler clo thes, kneels by a table and is milking only a cupful of liquid from the bounty in front of him. Since the pictura enables the opening questions of the poems, the reader can examine the two figurae and relate them to the speaker of the poem and his address ee, i.e. themselves. The first figura is the glutton who tries to overcompensate for his spiritual emptiness by U nwholesome gulps composd of wind and blood; rather than choosing A moderate u s e [that] does both repast and please as the thinner,
86 less ga udily dressed second speaker/figure does ( Yee May Suck 9 10).19 Caroline Walker Bynum shows that medieval Christians considered blood combined with milk to be a source of nourishment for the young and points out that such a combination was often depictedin art and visions as flowing from the the breasts of the Virgin, of Christ, and of religious leaders, persons who could provide spiritual sustenance (65, 74). The adulteration of this blood with wind shows the corruption of the breasts in the pictura at their source, the earth. This blood is not the blood of Christ and cannot offer sustenance, even mixed with milk. The infantilization of the fallen figura and its violent attachment to the breast of the earth his lips are skrewd to the place of suste nance could signify the unhealthy and lasting attachment to the mother -figure in the oral -phase identified by Freud (The Sources of Infantile Sexuality 278 n7).20 In Quarles quest to educate himself and his audience, this infantile figure is the immatur e, still -fallen human who cannot tear himself away from the tainted pleasures of the earth. In contrast, the second figura is the mature believer, straining the poison from the earthly milk and being nourished by heavenly food (Figure 3 2). This second fig ure then signifies the rejection of the maternal and an embracing of the father -figure, rather than the oedipal rejection of him.21 This acceptance becomes the receipt of nourishment from God the Father through Christ instead of from earthly, feminized, and corrupt sources. While the inscriptio for the melancholic poem earlier in the cycle automatically addressed the abstract notions of mirth, depression, and death, the twelfth inscriptio yee may 19 This combination may also have alchemical overtones that I will not go into here. 20 As a re presentation the infantilized figuras empty sucking offers a concrete image for the inscriptio of the poem and picture 21 The rejection of the female fertility figure potentially also serves as a rejection of the pagan cults of the great mother the feminine archetype developed with a combination of psychonalysis and structuralism by Jung in Four Arc hetypes. He notes that a fixation on the mother figure can lead to neuroses (Jung 17). While the term neuroses is anachronistic to Quarles, this emblem seems to recognize the problem of attaching too strongly to earthly sustenance.
87 suck, ut not be satisfied with the bre s t of her Consolatio n is taken from Isaiah 66:11.22 The negativity implicit in the phrase ut not leads to a recognition, prior even to a reading of the poem, that attempt s to ease spiritual woes through earthly joys will be fruitless. Consolation alerts the reader to th e fact that the hunger being assuaged (or not) is a spiritual mourning or appetite, rather than a physical one Its description as a breastplate suggests an association with the Breastplate of Righteousness described in both the Old and New Testaments.23 According to St. Paul, the breast plate of righteousness provides protection from the corrupting world; here, the breast of Consolation cannot, if it is associated with earthly sustenance, provide a similar spiritual protection. The phenomenology of the mouth as the organ for consumption (sucking, eating, drinking) ironically also produces speech which is corruptible or transformable as a pun. Quarles uses this phenomenology to enrich his text through the phrase suck ut ( Inscriptio Yee May Suck). In the elision of suck, ut in the text, Quarles moves from the formal suck, but of the verse to a form that is more evocative. The combination of suck + ut can be elided to produce the punned phrase so + cut. This combination carries the imperat ive that is implied in the poem: in order to be sustained, one must cut ties to the earth. Continuing with the idea that the formation could mark further auditory hallucination, or punning, the phrase can be read/heard as soak + it/out; the idea of the figura being soaked with bloody milk, but not being sustained by it. Still further, Quarles creates the potential for an inter -lingual pun with the combinations allusion to the Latin sicut, which translates to just as ( The Oxford Latin Dictionary ; co nj.).The pun in sicut always implies a reflexive action, as of the Lords Prayer in 22 See earlier discussi on of Even in Laughter 23 The Breastplate of Righteousness appears in the Old Testament in Isaiah 59:17 and then in Pauls epistle to the Ephesians when he instructs them to s tand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness (6:14).
88 Latin: et dimitte nobis debita nostra sicut dimittius debitoribus nostris which translates as and forgive us our debts just as we forgive our debtors. Quarles would have been familiar with this reflexivity, and so here, sicut carries the reflexive implication that you may suck just as I suck, but neither of us shall be satisfied ( Inscriptio Yee May Suck). This reflexivity creates a likeness between author and reader, reaffirming their mutual journey.24 Finally, the two words can illustrate the action of the figura ; they can be read as suck and out, which is what the fat figura seems to be attempting, to suck out his sustenance from the brest of the earth In this elision, we see both Quarles poetic instinct, and the complicated nature of his poetic constructions. The receiver may feel that a diminishment of spiritual hunger is reflected in a swelling body .25 However, t hough t he plump, infantalized fig ura has a Paun ch that burlyes out [his] Coate neither the poem nor the pictura indicates that he has incorporated the object that would release him from the cycle of mourning (Yee May Suck 18) T herefore he and those that identify with him are still trapped in the unsuccessful cycle of melancholia Rather than being swollen with a preg nancy of relief, the addressees Paunch is dropsied, and thy Cheekes are bloat; Thy lips are white and thy complexion, tawny; 24 In For There is Figures in All Things, R.A. Shoaf argues that the conception of juxtology, or verbal similitude likeness is a defining mark of the Renaissance (267). Shoaf defines the term juxtology as theory of duality through which things are rhetorically made alike or, and this seems more likelythrough which their difference is emphasized (272). I argue that here Quarles invests in that Renaissance duality to show that neither writer nor audience can wring sus tenance from the earth. 25In The Incorporative Identifications of Mourning and Melancholia: A Textual Causerie. Paul Emmett claims that a swollen body is a necessity for the successful incorporation of mourning ritual (no pagination). Emmett draws his con clusions from an analysis of Robert Burton Anatomy of Melancholy along with analyses of the theories of Freud, Kristeva, and others.
89 Thy skin is a bladder blowne with watr y humors; Thy flesh a trembling Bogge, a Quagmire full of humors .26 ( Ye May Suck 2023) His body is not healthy because it has been poisoned by the milk and death the figura has imbibed from earth: milks a ripned Core / T hat drops from her de s ea s e that matters from her Sore (Yee May Suck 5, 1617). Though the description of the disease given here fits the symptoms of dropsy, metaphorically it is the disease of sin. This sin causes the sickly dropsy and the nasty humors that have invaded the bod y of the figura Even t he kinds of land that the speaker chooses to equate with the Body are worthless like the wasps Hive of Even in Laughter Neither a bog nor a quagmire can be cultivated, and both are capable of sucking an unwary person down to deat h (OED bog n1.1 a quagmire n.1 ). By noting the influence of watry humors a seventeenth -century audience could speculate that the figura is aff licted with an overabundance of water, and thus, phlegmatic in personality. In The Anatomy of Melancholy, Bu rton argues that black bile produces melancholy, cold, dry, thick, black, and sour, begotten out of the most feculent part of nourishment, and purged from the spleen, is a bridle to the other two hot humors, blood and choler, preserving them (126.96.36.199). T he description of the nourishment that begets melancholy as feculent is especially significant here, because that adjective denotes something l aden or polluted with filth; foul, feti d (OED a.1). That this emblem focuses on the befouled nourishment avai lable on earth demonstrates Quarles familiarity with the connections between food and emotion. Though the humor associated with a melancholic personality is black bile, any im balance of humors can lead to emotional problems such as an inability to satisf y the spiritual consummatory appetite If such satiation could occur, it would end the mourning process with a healthy swelling of the 26 The image of wind filling a bladder is a common one as late as the sixteenth century (witness the death of Spensers Orgo glio) ( Faerie Queene 1.8.24). Here, however, Quarles changes the filling from wind to water, punctuating the shift in the humors of his subject.
90 spirit rather than a bogging of the body. This waterlogged inability is represented in the poem by the bogs and qua gmires that infest the fallen The speaker also addresses the fact that the nourishment taken from the earth cannot be held in. Indeed, the addressee is never filld (1). As the quagmires and the bogs cannot support the growth of nourishing foods, the poisoned sustenance provided by the earths breasts cannot be retained except in the form of illness. The failure to hold onto the nourishment provided reflects the failure of Adam and Eve to hold onto the bounty of Paradise they had been freely given (Gen. 1:29 30). After the Original Sin mankind was cursed with the inability to find satisfaction in earthly provisions by Gods order ; cursed is the earth for thy sake: in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the dayes of thy life (Gen. 3:17). Throughout the Bible, m arshes/swamps are depicted as unclean things on the face of the earth. In Ezekiel 47:11, it is the miry places thereof and the marishes thereof shall not be healed; they shall be given unto salt; in short, these swampy mires will retain the curse of the earth even as other waters are healed. Spiritually, the curse of the earth is reflected in the quagmire of the soul.27 As in Even in Laughter the meditation offered by the poem does not conclude by solving the problem for the foole who depends on ea rth for his spiritual sustenance. However, it does offer a choice. Either the audience must choose a Substance, foole, that will remain/ W ithin the limits of thy leaking measure or if they s tay, they furrow thoughts the deeper, / A nd being kep t with car e, they loose their carefull keeper ( Yee May Suck 30 -31, 4041). In other words, the audience must choose to find a Substance that will sustain their bodies by satisfying 27 Quarles also follows the classical association of swamps as places of death, rather than life. In Virgils A eneid, Charon carries the departed souls across the swamp of the Styx (6.384416). Dante Aligieris Inferno echoes that construction while also making it the place of punishment for those who have been wrathful in life (5.79). Finally, the Gawain poet dem onstrates the English medieval tradition of this in Cleanness. Within Cleanness, the foul, tarred, filthy morass of the Dead Sea exhibits the spiritual condition in sinners (10201023). These classical and medieval associations demonstrate Quarles inv estment in the educational practices of his time, particularly in their combination with Biblical allusion.
91 their spiritual consummatory appetite, or become a le aking measure. If they c hoose the latter, they will lo se their connection with God, their carefull keeper and die. The substance must be one that can give the Consolation denied by the inscriptio and cannot therefore be the earthly food that contains nothing wholesome, wher e the wholes infected ( Inscriptio 1 5). Since the whole earth and by extension the community of non-believers that inhabits iti s infected with sin and therefore as rotten as the food it produces, consolation for earthly grief and appetite must come from Heavens otherworldly source. Like Quarles, Robert Southwell also acknowledges the presence of a spiritual consummatory appetite and its need for resolution through some type of incorporation in order to prevent or alleviate grief. F ood in Southwell still exacerbates the mourning process into melancholy in at least two of his poems : St. Peters Compla i nt and Davids Peccavi though not as graphically as in Quarles (McDonald and Brown 29, 35).28 While other poems by Southwell briefly employ the language of hunger, these two poems make the connection between grief spiritual hunger and the failure of the community ex plicit .29 Also unlike Quarles poems, Southwells poems are not accompanied by illustrative picturae Still, they present an emblematic qua lity through the descriptive language that enables the audience to pictureand therefore meditate on the necessary image for processing the ideas presented .30 28 The Latin peccavi translates to I have sinned; by Southwells time it is used much as a mea culpa a verbal admission of guilt or a confession ( OED int. and n).The public nature of the confession that Southwell here attributes to David brings the concerns further into the public, communal realm. 29 See Saint Peters Afflicted Mind for a brief example. 30 During the Clark Lecture Series at Trinity College, Cambridge, T.S. Eliot argued that this ability to transform Eliot uses translate ideas into sensible forms that can be readily engaged by the reader is one of the defining characteristics of metaphysical poetry (54). For Eliot, this transla tion is a means of enlarging the apprehension of the senses (54). Southwell must engage his readers through their familiarity with the Eucharist and confession in order to raise their zeal.
92 Like many of Quarles poems, Saint Peters Complaynte31 begins with a series of rhetorical quest ions that is, it uses the master trope quaestiothat invite the audience to enter into a meditation with the speaker.32 These questions create speaking pictures suitable for meditation by introducing the topic for introspection (Bath 53). In this case, the speaker, using the persona of St. Peter, question ing why he should be allowed to keep on living : How can I live, that have my life denyde? What can I hope, that lost my hope in feare? What trust to one that trewth it self defyde? What good in him that did his god forsweare? (Southwell 1 4). Here, the use of the trope quaestio destabilizes life, hope, and truth, which become indicators of melancholy reinforcing Burton, who notes that the corruption of ordinary desires is one of the signs of melancholy during his discussion of the power of appetite, one of the parts of the moving faculty (188.8.131.52 ). The speaker does not answer the questions, but instead interprets them for himself and the reader to fully release the melancholic notes of the poem. He is g uilty of the synne of synnes, of evells of the very worste [a] synnful wretch, of synners most accurste (Southwell 56). The life that he (Southwell/Peter) and through the meditative extension, the reader has denied is Peters life in Christ. This denia l or forswearing of God awakens a spiritual consummatory appetite by a willful sever ance of the connection with the Food that satiates it. Southwells provision of a cause for spiritual hunger and melancholy separates his 31 Two versions of this poem exist. The short version titled Saint Peters Complaynte examined in this chapter, and the longer, different version Saint Peters Complaint prefaced by The Author to the Reader examined in the preceding chapter. 32 Scott Pilarz attaches to these questions a relationship with Southwells c atalogue of his own feelings during The Spiritual Exercises and speculates that a biblical allusion later to Peter and the maid later in the poem may have also alluded to Queen Elizabeth I in the present (Matt. 266975, Pilarz 250). Pilarz also argues tha t the self reflection/ examination of the conscience that Peter goes through in the poem emphasizes Southwells investment in the Jesuit practice; while this is true, Pilarz does not note that such emphasis was growing in popularity during the sixteenth an d seventeenth centuries (251). However, I agree with his interpretation that the use of reflexive practices within the poems structure may have been meant to model those practices for the audience (251).
93 work from what Quarles will even tually do. While Quarles fully develops the theme of unsatisfying food, he does not offer a cause for the spiritual consummatory appetite. Mourning and cursing his actions, the speaker/St. Peter examines the self accusations with which the spirit could be filled. Though Peter had been called a Chosen rocke who would be a pastour to feed Gods faithfull flocke he now sees himself as a pastour, not to feede but to betray (Southwell 19, 21, 24). Pilarz notes that as Peter had been the foremost discip le, he must now become the model penitent (251). A lapsed Peter will not be feeding the flock of believers with the food of f aith, leaving many more people spiritually hungry. This spiritual hunger could potentially be what Southwell the priest sees in t he community of Christ; it may also be what Southwell the poet is trying to assuage. The first solution offered to this spiritual hunger is death, because in death all hunger is cut off. With another self -command, Peter orders himself to D ye: dye: disloya ll wretch, thy life detest ( 8). At this moment, he characterizes his spiritual appetite with questions that he cannot answer about what might cause a cessation These questions include were all the Jewes tyrannyes too fewe/ T o glutt thy hungry looks an d what Jewish rage, yea infernall sprite, / C ould have disgorgd against him greater spite (49 50, 6566).33 Though he asks several other questions that outline his growing journey from mourning to melancholy, these two questions show how thoughts of hunger are related. Each question transforms rotten, earthly fruit into the more concrete earthly action that will not glutt the appetite of the spirit, nor allow it to incorporate rather than disgorg peace to finish the grieving process Instead of offe ring a solution to the meditator involving a food/action, this poem stresses that perhaps the grief process itself can 33 Because the literature of the attitudes toward Jewish people in the period is enormous, I will mention here only the distinction between the Hebrews of the Old Testament living sub legem and the Jew of the New Testament, a person of Israel living sub gratia Christi Therefore, the use of these term s indicates where the type may be located biblically.
94 Lett deepe remorse thy due revenge abate: Lett teares appeace when trespass doth incence: Lett myldnes temper thy deserved hate. Lett gra ce forgive, lett love forgett my fall: With feare I crave, with hope I humbly call (Southwell Saint Peters Complaynt 6872). However, this final supplication for relief of the spiritual appetite does not guarantee that relief will be given. Though the speaker crave[s] relief the way a starving man wants food, the fact that he feare [s] maintains the feeling that it may not be given. The addictive nature of this desire is implicit in the use of the verb craves to describe it; the speaker does not only desire relief, he requires it to survive. Further, like a junkie craving his next fix, this passage begs for relief and forgiveness through an anaphora directed at God. Each Lett has a request or instruction on how the craving could be stilled; if f or example God will Lett grace forgive, lett love forgett my fall, then his spiritual appetite will be fulfilled by the spiritual foods of forgiveness and grace. These are things that his audience, his community, should be begging for as well. Like Quarl es community, this speaker knows that earthly acts cannot bring spiritual wholeness, but hopes that his grief and by extension, the grief of his community can induce God to relieve their pain Like Peter in Saint Peters Complaynte, the speaker of David s Peccavi (presumably David) equates his spiritual grief with unassuaged hunger by noting that F eared are now my Pheares, grief my delight, M y teares my drink, my famisht thoughts my bread Day full of dumps, Nurse of unrest night My garments gyves, a blo ody field my bed My sleep is rather death, than deaths allie (Southwell 710).34 34 Pilarz also notes the similarities between Peter and David, but focuses his analysis of Davids Peccavi on its inversion and relationship with Psalm 102 rather than on the communal and appetitive as pects of the poem (252). Clark similarly and briefly emphasizes the hopeless nature of both St. Peters Complaynt and Davids Peccavi; he centers on Southwells choice of exemplary failures the very people that Christ/ God raised to Glory, noting refer ences not only to Peter and David, but also to Mary Magdalen (41). However, uniquelyboth to my reading and Pilarzs Clark sees an emphasis on Christs redemption at the end of Saint Peters Complaynt (40).
95 Again, Southwell does not thema tize the hunger after the manner of Quarles, but makes it an explicitly abstract, spiritual one. Rather than drinking the wine and eating the b read/wafer of the Communion ritual, David sips teares and eats famisht thought. By associating the tears and thoughts with the ritual of Communion, Southwell provides a touchstone for his audience who would be familiar with that type of symbolic spiritual nourishment. Further, his spirit is not being nourished by this solitary repast; his sleep is death, than deaths allie (10). The alliance of sleep and death is a classical one based on the stories of Hypnos (sleep) and his brother Thanatos (death) ( Hesiod 221225). As I discuss in the next chapter, two types of death can be identified within this poetry. The first is physical death, which is not the danger here. For the physical body, sleep is deaths ally, and a healer of physical ailments (Pliny XX VIII.xiv). Here though, we see the second sort of death found in the poetry of Robert Southwell, the death of the spirit, which sleeps and is, therefore, dead, rather than participating in a lively communion. However, this stanza also demonstrates that as Burton writes throughout The Anatomy of Melancholy melancholy pervades every aspect of life from the day of dumps to the unrest of night (9). D eath appears to be the only answer though this speaker wishes that his teares and thoughts could ease hi s hunger permit ting joyful days and nights. However, by describing the famisht thoughts Southwell creates a tension between the idea of feeding and that of famishing. Something that is well fed is not famished, and therefore, if this speakers thoughts are not wholesomely nourished, they cannot relieve the need to consume that fills his spirit. Like the speaker of Psalm 69.9, this speaker is consumed by the zeal of thy house and not fed by it. Since he cannot diminish or gratify his hunger through te ares and famisht thoughts the speaker seek s another abstract spiritual food However, he must find one that is not earthbound
96 like his current remedy. No such cure is offered by the poem. At this point during the meditation process, the solution still appears to be death, but the speaker says that what now sith fansie did with folly end, / W it bought with losse, will taught by wit, will mend (29 30). Therefore, the reader and the speaker can assume that an alternative to death will be offered that the wit and will together can discover and use to satiate the spiritual appetite. W hile many consider that melancholia defines the impossibility of mourning and an impossibility of any fulfillment, Quarles and Southwell find two possibilities to compl ete mourning: death or pure redemption (Haverkamp).35 Poetically, these two possibilities are attached to food and grief Food may contain either the hope of redemption or the threat of a threat of eventual death. Biblically, wine and grapes are associated in the same two ways. For sinners, their vine is the vine of Sodom, and of the vines of Gomorah: their grapes are bitter, their clusters gall, but to Christians, the same wine may be the wine of the Eucharist or the Mass, blessed at the Last Supper of J esus (Det. 32:32).36 The bitter and the gall of the sinners are a reflection of the death inherent in their lack of spiritual fulfillment, since bitter means expressing or betokening intense grief, misery, or affliction of spirit and gall expresses a bitterness of spirit, asperity, rancour (OED bitter n1.4, galln1.3a ). Images of these types of food are related to mourning imagery about the falsity of the world and spiritual deprivation. Though the negative imagery seems t o predominate, both aut hors have poems wherein food (often mythical or spiritual) provides an alleviation of mourning/melancholy. As we shall see, they find it in the mystical repast of communion, the meal of wine and bread that creates a community of Christians on earth and p rovides a link to heaven. 35 See my extended discussion of Freuds Mourni ng and Melancholia below, in Hope of Heaven, Fear of Hell. 36 Thus, Quarles and Southwell transfer the in bono et in malo of Augustines model of Biblical sin found in Against Julian ( Contra Julianum) to a similar duality in wine or spirits (Augustine I I.6).
97 Quarles uses food to alleviate the melancholia of earthly love within Stay Me with Flowers and Comfort me with Apples, for I am sick with love (Stay Me), the second emblem of Book V. This poem falls towards the end of the me ditations within the Emblems and Hieroglyphikes collection and opens with questions like the heavily melancholic poems do. To begin, the speaker invokes the Tyrant love and makes an emphatic statement how does thy s oraigne powr / S ubject poore soules to thy impervious thrall! ( Stay Me 1 2). The soraigne power of love is immediately attached to the idea of food by the somewhat accusatory quaestio that follow the initial invocation. The y s ay, thy Cups composd of sweet and sowre; The y say, thy di ets Honey, mixt with Gall; How comes it then to pass e, the s e lips of our Still trade in bitter; taste no sweet at all? ( 3 6). The word Cup invokes the cup of the ceremony of Communion. However, this cup is not composed of the Blood of a Savior, but of bitter gall and false sweet. Therefore, it will not quench the appetite of the spirit that makes the speaker faint and spent symptoms that Burton includes in his section on r eligious m elancholy ( Stay Me 14, Burton 184.108.40.206). Because the c up of l ove can not slake his thirst, the speaker must find some type of food or drink that can satiate the consummatory appetite rather than leaving dry, my wafted powrs, / [but] W ill sweeten my un s avry houres (16 17). At this point the inscriptio that Quarles has ch osen becomes relevant: stay me with Flowers, and comfort me with Apples, for I am s icke with love is taken from the Cant icle of Canticles 2: 5. Besides the lovely structural irony of using the fifth verse of the second chapter to develop the second emblem of the fifth book, it details what the speaker knows will satisfy his appetite and ease his melancholy: Tis not the las ting Deuzan I require, N or yet the red -cheekd Queening I request;
98 N or that which, first bes hrewd the name of wife; No, no, bring me an Apple from the Tree of life ( Stay Me 2327.) In order for the spirit to be revived and satiated, the speaker must incorporate the Apple from the Tree of l ife which he can do only through the redemptive powers of Communion and Christ (REV 22:19).37 Here, Quarles uses anaphora to emphasize the types of apples that will not satisfy his hunger as he builds suspense about what will. The first apples named are common, earthly varieties, the Deuzan which is considered to be long lasting and the Queeni ng which is a type of sweet apple; because they belong to the earth, these apples cannot slake fire except with death since they contain the poison of sin that, as we have seen, spoils earthly food (OED Deuzan obs, Queening n1).38 The t hird apple is th e apple from the Tree of Knowledge Quarles establishes this identity by noting that it is the apple with which disobedient Eve first beshrewd the name of wife T herefore, it is the apple that led to mans downfall, the poisoning of the earth, and the in ability of either the earth or man to sate fully the consummatory spirit. Further, the command depends not on a heavenly figure, but on other members of the speakers community to provide the apple. Community and communion here mark the trope polyptoton an d, through this repetition, stress the link between the two. No divine figure is invoked in the command, which seems to indicate that the salvation of the man or woman also depends on the active participation of his or her community through the service of communion. 37 Rev 22: 19In the middle of the strete of it, and of either side of the river, was the tre of life bare twelve maner of frutes, and gave frute every moneth: and the leaves of the tre femed to heal nations with. 38 In Shakespeares 1 Henry IV Fa lstaff refers to himself as an old apple John; this association of old fruit/apple may indicate rotten, earthly fruit as opposed to fresh (2.4.294). Given Falstaffs position in the text, especially in contrast to Hal, such an opposition seems likely. Ac cording to the OED, the Deuzan is equated with the term apple john (obs.). The Queening, while not directly equated with a well preserved applejohn, is noted for being long lasting and wellpreserved (OED n1). Further, in Quarles text its earthly genesis is what would allow the fruit, like the Deuzan, to rot while presumably the fruit of heaven would remain forever fresh.
99 Rather than the ubiquitous and heavily symbolic globes, orbs, wasps, or figurae of previous emblems pictura XII illustrates the concrete images that the poem invokes, which would perhaps have been the easiest images for the audience to picture without help (Figure 3 3).39 However, where both the orb and the figurae served in some way to extend the meaning of the text they were paired with, this pictura serves only to illustrate its mate. The reason that the figurae are women is because the speak er for this portion of the Canticle of Canticles is the Bride in the colloquy that makes up this book of the Bible. The illustration shows two older women, the bless ed Maids of Honour that the speaker asks for assistance, cradl ing a younger woman (the speaker) and offer ing he r flowers and apples. They are reclining in a small orchard dell surrounded by tall trees laden with apples and little flowers growing from the earth. The spring -like image looks revivifying for all of the women They appear to be a s fertile as the garden, which is strongly reminiscent of Eden. Therefore, the garden is the location for the Tree and Bower that will make the speaker (and through her the audience) bless e that happy houre, / T hat brings to me s uch fruit, that brings me such a Flowr ( 42, 4344). This blessing is the satiation of the consummatory appetite without the foregoing death and a celebration of the community that helps to provide the fruit. While Quarles looks to the Tree of Life as a redemptory food source Southwell evokes the more common symbol that combines redemption and food, the ceremony of the Eucharist, or as he calls it, Of the Blessed Sacrament of the Aulter .40 In this poem, the connection between sacred, or wholesome, food and spiritual satisfa ction is made explicit. For Southwells Catholic 39 However, the apple is possibly the archetypal orb, both before and after the Fall. 40 Ira Clark notes that this poem is Southwells a daptation of Thomas Aquinas Lauda Sion, in which Southwell explicitly establishes the movement from physical type to spiritual truth (41). The type pair consists of the Passover Supper and the Eucharist; to me, Southwell also emphasizes the capabilit ies of such a move and the investment of the latter with heavenly/ spiritual properties.
100 audience, the connection would have been immediate because the ceremony of the Mass repeated at least every Sunday, but potentially daily would have had the same soothing impact for the meditator as the pictura of an orc hard would have for Quarles readers. The ceremony is intimately tied with the ideas of consummation, redemption, and reaffirmation, and therefore, immediately evokes the ties between food and grief/sin as well as the close ties of a community that had to practice this communion in secret Southwells spea ker reaffirms this connection by referring to the paschall feast the end of auncient rite An entraunce was to never endinge grace Tipes to the truth, dymn glymses to the light, Performi ng Deede presageing signes did chase, Christs Final meale was fountayne of our good: For mortal meate he gave immortall foode ( 1 6). The paschal feast refers to the paschal lamb, the lamb slain and eaten at the Passover; applied to Christ, hence also t o various symbolic representations of Christ and begins the feast with a reference to a sacred as well as an abstract food, Christ (OED adj. 2 ). Though Christs final meal was a concrete one commonly known as The Last Supper, it becomes the source for ima ges of immortal foode that can sate the spiritual consummatory appetite (Luke 22). The speaker notes that [earthly] thinges bredd to blisse do make them most acurste (48). He, like the speaker of Stay Me knows that earthly delight s can not please his spiritual hunger because all of them are rotten or acurste. As an alternative, the speaker offers himself and his audience the spiritual food wherein Whole may be his body in smallest bredd, Whole in the whole, yea whole in every crumme, With which be one or be Tenn thowsand fedd All to ech one, to all but one dothe cumme, And though ech one as much as all receive, Not one too much, nor all too little have ( 67 72).
101 Therefore, the spiritual hunger that could not be fed by the pastour, not to feede bu t to betray can be assuaged through transubstantiation, a process that makes each of the crummes used in the Eucharist ceremony into the whole of Christ s body (Southwell Saint Peters Complaynte 21). Therefore, the bread and wine employed in the cer emony become a source of spiritual solace because twelve did he [Jesus] fee de, twelve did their feeder eat and so T he grace, the joy, the treasure here is such / No witt can wishe nor will embrace so much ( Of the Blessed Sacrament of the Aulter 11, 23 24). As well as referring to the Mass, the poem calls forth a picture of the heavenly manna provided for the Israelites in the desert when they were in need of physical sustenance and spiritual proof that they were under the protection of a god (Ex. 16: 31). The provision of manna prevented [any] lack: so every man gathered to his eating both spiritually and physically (Ex. 16: 18). Note that Southwell further invokes this moment in Exodus in the last two lines of the passage. The communicants E ch one as much as all receive, / N ot one too much, nor all too little have ; in short none has any lack (71-72). Rather each exhibits Aristotelian moderation in exactly how much sacred manna (or bread and wine) he or she needs and takes. Thus s acred food whethe r made sacred through ceremony or through Gods providence allays the consummatory appetite and relieves feelings of grief and melancholy, and In forme of bredd and wyne our nurture is (66). And, it is always taken in moderation, as a result, functioning as the very sign of moderation. Finally, the meditator and the speaker can experience a total cessation of the consummatory appetite through the picture of the Mass and the reassurance that they will continue to be fulfilled in heaven. The promise of future satiation comes from Jesus words at the Last Supper, where he shal drink it newe with you in my Fathers kingdome (Matt. 26:29). This total fulfillment allows for the successful completion of mourning and the restoration of a viable community in the kingdom of heaven.
102 As we see, all the references invoked by the sacred ceremony are those of communities that are redeemed and blessed. The disciples are blessed in their association with Christ and are bound by the ceremony that he enacts with them. Sim ilarly, the community of the Israelites was bound together by their worship of God; they were redeemed by him not only with providential food, but also with forgiveness of their sins when they doubted him. Southwells scattered Catholics would have seen themselves united with their fellows in a ceremony redolent of these ideas and older than themselves, practiced in the same way by Catholics all over the world Therefore, the reassurance of fulfillment and blessing not only alleviates mourning for the individual, but also reassures him of his community. The need to assuage melancholy was a serious concern during the sixteenth -and seventeenth -centuries owing to its centrality as a medieval, philosophical, and social concept. It thus had to be addressed within the meditations presented by both Southwell and Quarles. Just as philosophers recommended sunlight, air, and wholesome food as the major set of remedies for religious melancholia, both poets looked into what effect food might have on the consummatory s pirit ( Burton 220.127.116.11). As we have seen, they did not conclude that earthly food was the solution as did Burton and those ancient philosophers such as Galen whom Burton cites Rather it was part of the problem. In order for food to offer true sustenance t o the melancholic, it had to be the food of the spirit of God. Only t his type of food could ease melancholy and stave off death. Both Quarles and Southwell used familiar images and symbols to ground their readers in the sense of both melancholy and redemption. However, Southwell was able to assume that his audience was familiar with the Roman Catholic Mass and its attendant rituals. References and invocations to the saints would bring to mind statues of those saints and their attendant emblems. On the othe r hand, Quarles was speaking from a tradition that had discarded much of the ritual
103 formulations of the Catholic Church. While the Church of England was still centered on a heavily ritualized Mass, Quarles intended audience probably included counter ritua listic Separatists as well. Since neither fully standardized order of worship nor ceremony of Communion could be invoked, Quarles used existing emblematic devices to direct his readers thoughts. Whether the direction was achieved through the use of rarifi ed and vague or common symbols, Quarles and Southwell were both able to demonstrate a similar melancholic problem and offer solutions to it, either through the sacraments or the acceptance of the Fruit of Life. These solutions could apply both to the indi viduals as well as to the communities of believers that were addressed and directed within the poetry.
104 Figure 3 1. Emblem III Book 1. Even in Laughter the Heart is Sorrowfull, and the End of Mirth is Heavinesse. Emblemes (1635) and Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1638) With permission of The English Emblem Book Project. http://emblem.libraries.psu.edu/qu012_13.htm
105 Figure 3 2. Emblem XII Book 1. Yee May Suck, But Not be Satisfied with the Brest of Her Consolation. Emblemes (1635) and Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1638) With permission of The English Emblem Book Project. http://emblem.libraries.psu.edu/qu048_49.htm
106 Figure 3 3. Emblem II Book 5. Stay me with Flowers, Comfort Me with Apples, for I am Sick with Love. Emblemes (1635) and Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1638) With permission of The English Emblem Book Project. http://emblem.libraries.psu.edu/qu2 48_49.htm
107 CHAPTER 4 HOPE OF HEAVEN, FEAR OF EARTH: THE POETIC DEATHWISH The Worlds a Torment; he that would endeaver/ to find the way to Rest, must seek the way to leave her. Francis Quarles, The World Passeth Away, and All the Lusts Thereof, Emble mes Death was the meane my kyrnell to renewe, / by loppinge shott I upp to heavenly rest. Robert Southwell, Decease Release As I have demonstrated, the speakers in the poems of Robert Southwell and Francis Quarles often fail to enact anything that can bring them out of a state of mourning. In his 1917 essay Mourning and Melancholia, Freud argues that like one who is in mourning, a person suffering from melancholia represents his ego to us as worthless, incapable of any achievement and morally despicable (584). This now classic psychological formulation can be seen to characterize traits in the poetry of Southwell, Quarles, and to a more minor extent, Herbert Freud claimed that the problem stemmed from some measure of lack on the ego, which I argued i n the preceding chapter amounted to a lack of spiritual nourishment as it gets presented by these three poets (585). For Freud, the ego had a desire to incorporate this object into itself, and, in accordance with the oral or cannibalistic phase of libidin al development in which it is, it wants to do so by devouring it (587). Such desire for nourishment hypothetically corresponds to the cravings we have observed in the preceding chapters of this dissertation. A nd in turn, this type of unfulfilled melancho lia often results in impulses towards and attempts at suicide as Freud has it, because of the patients inability to end the melancholia (588). Earlier, Robert Burton had defined the symptoms of religious melancholia touching on the tendency of this type of melancholic to seek to offer violence to themselves or ultimately to succumb to suicide (18.104.22.168 ). Freud himself did not offer any specific remedies for the prevention of such a cour s e of
108 self -destruction nor does he speculate on the potential for e go satiation .1 By shifting Freuds hypothesis, Paul Emmett successfully argues that melancholia could be satiated by the symbolically oral incorporation of the lost, mourned object. While neither Quarles, Southwell, nor Herbert create s a speaker that a ctively contemplates suicide, all three write poetry wherein the earthly mourning process fails to peak in an experience of spiritual incorporation; instead, the speaker makes a supplication to God entreating his removal from the world through death. Ofte n the poems build picture s of sinful, darkling communities that can no longer be tolerated by the ir godly speaker s The weight of the earths sin oppresses the ir poetic speaker s, causing them to grieve without ce ssation. This failure to cease mourning on e arth imbues the poetry with a sense of futility c ulminating in the death wish, the suicidal impulse, as it has been modeled by both Burton and Freud However, the death wish as it is presented through the poetry of Quarles, Southwell, and Herbert can only be answered and fulfilled by God; our poets thus avoid the charge of standing as proponents of suicide. Two form s of death are thus invoked within the poems. The first is the spiritual death that the speakers experience while trapped on earth with its wor ldly population. The second death is the death of the physical body and the release of the soul to Paradise where it can reach fulfillment. It is the second ty pe that the speakers desire God to grant them. While Southwell specifically defines and examines both the types of death and the abstract reasons behind the death wish, Quarles explores the sins of the world that lead to the desire for death. In the poem A Phansie turned to a Sinners Complaint, Robert Southwell examines the spirit of a man whose d eath is of the mind clearly suffering from the symptoms of 1 In psychology, the term satiation means t he point at which satisfaction of a need or familiarity with a stimulus reduces or ends an organism's responsiveness or motivation (OED b). I use it in terms of the ego and its melancholic loss.
109 melancholia because that mind always yields to extreamest pangues, / Y et threatens worse behinde (2224). Southwell begins this poem with a double description of death. These descriptio ns, whi ch are set up as dichotomies within the first stanzas of the poem, portray the two types of death: the death that the speaker desires ardently and the living death that he feels that he is experiencing. The terms that Southwell chooses to describe both his present living/death and the corporeal death he wants God to send him are eerily similar to those that Bur ton uses to describe the mentality of a melancholic, a person of despair, terrors of the mind, [and] intolerable pains (3.4 .1.2 ). Preceding Quarles Southwell sets up the two kinds of death in a binary system This system allows him to define one by how it is not like the other and dodges the stigma of a flirtation with suicide after all, if he is already metaphys ically/spiritually dead, it does n ot constitute a suicidal mentality to wish for physical death. During the first stanza, the speaker desires the community of fellow melancholics. He asks that Hee that his mirth hath lost, Whose comfort is to rue Whose hope is fallen, whose faith is cras de, Whose trust is found untrue (14) come and join him so that he shall not rue alone (8). These criteria ma t ch the sy mptoms of melancholy. The lines also reflect for the meditative audience what their state of mind should be as they read the poem, be cause for them to fully understand the speaker, they must understand lost mirth rue in place of comfort fallen hope crasde faith and trustlessness. The speaker is no longer secure in his faith because it has cracked like a crasd mirror due to the lack of trust and mirth in the wicked world. Using the adjective crasd to describe his faith has some important implications (3). The term implies that his faith is crazed in the sixteenth -century sense of the adjective crazy
110 meaning i ndisposed, ailing; diseased, sickly; broken down, frail, infirm ; this association further emphasizes the melancholic nature of the poem (OED a. 2). However, the term also references the concepts of faith as a crazed or broken, cracked; flawed, damage[ d] feeling or thing (OED ppl. a. 1). Both senses indicate the same thing that the faith of this speaker is damaged and scattered. Southwell s conception of faith as a broken, crasd thing is not the only use of this metaphor. Later in The Windows, Geo rge Herbert will present man as a brittle2 glass and from this description, question God about how a flawed man can preach thy eternal word? (1 2). Like Southwell, Herbert thinks that man as he is on earth is unworthy because of his insecure faith. How ever, where Herberts speaker ends with awe for the works of God who mak[es] thy life to shine within / T he holy Preachers the speaker of A Phansie Turned to a Sinners Complaint laments the transformation of his reflective glass into crasde faith (The Windows 7 8, Phansie 3). By clarifying this concept of broken faith, Southwell can begin to separate the death -onearth a type of spiritual death from the true, physical death that he wants God to send him T he wished death, That feeles no pla int or lack: That making free the better part, Is only Natures wrack (A Phansie Turned to a Sinners Complaint 17 26). The better part that would be freed by true death is the soul. If not corrupted by the earthly pleasures such as wealth and glutton y then the soul is the best part T he body is inevitably tied to earth and its corruptions in order to exist or, as scripture has it, thou art dust, and to dust thou shalt return (GEN 3:19). This dichotomy between the material body and the soul hearkens back, of course, to medieval church thought, which denounced the body as the site of sin enc asing the 2 Though Herbert uses the term as an adjective, not a participle, the implied meaning of flawed or damaged remains. In The Windows, Herbert is marveling at Gods ability to take a flawed man and use him to represent his word on earth.
111 repentant soul.3 This connection links the rot of earthly food to the damage of the soul and to unavoidable death. Working in the late sixteenth century and continuing the dualistic tradition, Michel de Montaigne advanced a theory on the corrupt nature of man and its association with food working from the Christian tradition that states since the body of man was created from the dus t of the earth, mans Fall distorted the fruits of the earth Th rough those tainted fruits, corruption can spread to the body. However, the soul of man was inspired by God and can take sustenance from the fruits of the spirit and be separated during the earthly, physicality of the corrupt, decaying body.4 In That We Taste Nothing Pure, Montaigne claims that that there is design, consent, and complacency in giving a man's self up to melancholy (620). With this statement, Montaigne extends the Christian theory of earthly corr uption to show that man consents to the corruption of the earth and is often complacent about it. Even though Southwells speaker protests the corruption of the earth, he makes no proactive move to relieve his melancholy. This speaker answers in the affirm ative Montaignes question about whether t here [are] not some constitutions that feed upon it [melancholia] Southwell does not show any attempt to alleviate this suffering through earthly things. Further, the complaints of the speaker confirm Montaigne s contention that of the pleasure and goods that we enjoy, there is not one exempt from some mixture of ill and inconvenience an extension and agreement with the Christian assertion that all earthly things are corrupt (619). 3 Examples of the medieval debates about and between the body and soul abounded; some examples include texts such as Desputasion between the Bodi and the Soule (unattributed), Dialogus Inte r C o rpus et Animam (attribution contested c.13251340? B.C.E.), and Disputatio Membrorum (Phillip the Chancellor c.1200s). Michel Andr Bossy compares the position of these debates, seeking out their similarities, and compares them to Marvells Renaissance di alogic poems on the same theme. However, most support the reading of body as a weight on the soul. 4 See later discussion of Lighten Mine Eyes Lord, Lest I Sleep the Sleep of Death (Lighten) by Francis Quarles.
112 On the other hand, literary theorist and Spenserian Gordon Teskey builds up the same id ea of the corrupt body into a postmodern theory of allegory H e then uses that theory to explain the corruption of the fruits of the earth. He claims that the archaic, negative other marks the po int at which instrumental meaning exerts force on what is meaning to that chaos (6). Therefore, he sees the condition of corruption that Christians find in the world to be an attempt to make the world a sign of vice (25). Like Montaigne and Southwe ll fo r whom the world displays both the corruption and potential redempti on T eskey argues that in the Christian reading the world thus became a text, fixed in one state at its creation, from which the presence of the divine has been removed due to the sin of man (37). However, the archaic negative that defines the mourning of Southwells speaker comes from what Teskey would term the mutual devouring allelophagy that is the corporeal expression of the symmetrical otherness we have seen in the word allegory (8).5 In Southwells poem the body and the spirit are at odds. Following Teskeys formulation, o ne must devour the other because it here, the soul no longer has a corporeal expression in the world. In turn, the body is corrupted by the world, which has been corrupted by man. Only the soul is left. It must either be devoured in a spiritual death so that it can be balanced and expressed by the body each being a reflection of the other or the body must die an earthly death so that the soul may fly to a Par adise better suited to its reflection. In a rejection of the corrupted earthly community, Southwells speaker and later those of Quarles will request the latter option. The speaker of A Phansie Turned to a Sinners Complaint has not achieved this physic al death. Instead he suffers the spiritual death that always yields extreamest pangues and makes his phansies like thornes / In which [he goes] by night (23, 33 34). Burton notes that people 5 Teskey sets forth his combined theory of allelophagy and allegory in Violence and Allegory especially in Chapter I: Personification and Capture: Francesca da Ramini (1 31).
113 afflicted with religious melancholy often suffer from the eff ects of superstitious rites, blind zeal, vain fears, blind obedience, needless works, incredibilities, impossibilities, monstrous rites and ceremonies, willfulness, blindness, obstinacy, etc ( 22.214.171.124 ). Since a fancy can be an unreal imagining, a delusi ve imagination; hallucination the terms superstitious, vain, incredible not credible or truthful and impossible can be applied to the speakers phansies Most often, the idea of a fancy has a positive connotation in modern English, but its seventeenth century association with death and untruth makes having phansies negative (OED A.n.3 ). The result of this spiritual death is a religious melancholy. Unlike those of other poems we have looked at, this speaker tells his audience how he came to be spirit ually malnourished and unfulfilled in his consummatory appetite. Though he S owd the soyle of peace, M y bliss was in the spring; And day by day the fruite I eate, That Vertues tree did bring (A Phansie 49 52). The speaker no longer consumes spiritual fruit of Vertues tree, because he believes that he doth fear revenge from God for an unspecified sin that draws his soul away from Heaven and toward the corrupting earth (31). The fruite from Vertues tree could be interpreted as another name for the Tree of Life, which means that to know peace and bliss his spiritual consummatory appetite was sated by sacred food rather than the fleshly portion of the earth. However, Vertues Tree could also be a re-envisioning of the tree of the Church community found in Passus 15 of William Langlands The Vision of Piers Plowman. The tree Right so out of Holy Chirche alle yveles spredeth There inparfit preesthode is, prechours and techeris. And se it by ensaumple in somer tyme on trowes: Ther some bowes ben leved and some bereth none, Ther is a meschief in the more of swiche manere bowes (Langland 15: 9498).
114 The bowes of the tree of the Church are its prechours and techeris and the fruit that inparfit preesthood produces is the fruit of the Church, t he means for the salvation of its members. Though the speaker of Piers Plowman tells us that out of the Holy Chirche alle yveles spredeth he also notes that some bowes ben leved and some bereth non. Therefore, not all the fruit of the church is evil, because some bowes are leaved with the green, fair fruit of spiritual reason where the roote of the right feith to rule the peple but T her the roote is roten, reson woot the sothe,/ S hal nevere fiour ne fruyt, ne fair leef be grene (Langland 15: 100, 101102). The tree of the Church is the corrupted tree of virtue on a corrupt earth. If Southwells speaker had been eating from one of the roten branches of the communion, then his current corruption is explainable. In order to both remain in the worl d and be spiritually sated again, the speaker must pluck the fruit only from the healthy branches of the Tree. However, whom grace and virtue once advauncd / now sinne hath caste away and he is lef t depressed and full of woe ( 4344, 66). Though the sinne is not specified, the conjecture can be made that it was a sin of the flesh because the speaker invokes the frail inconstant flesh, soone trapt in every ginne; soone wrought thus to betray thy soule, and plunge thyself in sinne ( 9396). The wea kness of the flesh, here described as frail and inconstant was common ly so represented during the seventeenth -century Something that is frail cannot consistently guard against sinne (OED a.2 ).6 Upon succumbing to earthly pleasures, the frail body w ill necessarily prevent the soul from assuaging its appetite for spiritual foods It can, therefore, cause the spiritual death in the poems of both Southwell and Quarles. Like many of the other 6 Any more than the frail Red Crosse Knight can fulfill his social duties. See my discussion of Spensers The Faerie Que ene Canto X, Book I in the introduction.
115 speakers created by Southwell and Quarles, this speaker wishes for a physical death so that he can become nothing but spirit by leaving the corrupted flesh frail [and] inconstant. As long as this prayer goes unanswered, the speakers E xercise remorse, A nd dolefull sinners layes, My booke remembrance of my crimes, A n d faults of former dayes (Southwell A Phansie Turned 137140). In short, the speaker will live in a melancholy that leads to a spiritual starvation and a constant longing for true death. This living, spiritual death is one that Spenser associates with a melancholic, empty personality as well. In The Faerie Queene, the character of Malbecco later Jealousy is enthralled with his lover Hellenore .7 After seeing her in flagrante delicto with another man, he removes her from the community of the world and tries to set up a limited communion between just the two of them by appealing to her pity (3.10.3). Like Southwells speaker, Malbecco claims that he is spiritually dead, or dead and alive, without her. Spenser does not have Malbecco pronounce his love. Instead, the complications and falsities of secular love are outlined by Paridell, Hellenores seducer, who: Then his false engines fast he plyde, And all the slights unbosomed in his hart; He sighd, he sobd, he swownd, he perdy dyde, | And cast himself on g round her fast besyd. ( Faerie Queene 3 .1 0 .7 ). Though Paridell s reactions seem to mirror the dolefull sinners layes that Southwells speaker mentions with his sighing, sobbing, and swooning, he perdy dyde (Southwell Phansie 138). Perdy an obsolete f orm of the word pardie is a form of oath: = By God!; hence as an 7During the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, poets including Donne, Southwell, Quarles, and Herbert co opted the literary styles of secular poetry, particularly Petrarchan sonnets, to address the sacred love of a believer for God and Christ. This adaptation enables a comparison between the two types of love and love poetry. Later, I will more closely examine Southwells sacred love parodies A Phansie Turned to a Sinners Complaynt and What Joy to Live.
116 asseveration: Verily, certainly, assuredly, indeed (OED int. ). Therefore, his protestations that he has dyde could be taken as mere protestations, or false engines designed to manipulate Hellenore. It is not Paridell, however, who dies. Instead, the betrayed and bereft Malbecco commits suicide ( Faerie Queene 3:10:57). However the difference between Malbeccos living death and the living death of Southwells speaker is that he cont inues his spiritual death because of whom he prays to for release. Rather than relying on the hope of heav en and physical death, he her prayd, for mercy, or for meed, / To sace his life, ne let him be descryde, / But hearken to his lore, and all his cou nsell hyde ( Faerie Queene 3: 10:50). His life can only be saved if she can grant him mercie and enthrall herself again. Since this salvation is of the earthly flesh, Malbecco yet can never dye, but dying lives / A nd doth himself with sorrow new sustai ne and there dwels he ever (Spenser 3:10: 6061, 64). Malbeccos reliance on profane love for redemption causes him to forever languish, spiritually dead (indeed to the point of being only a soulless shell a prosopopoeia or personification he soon Geal osie is hight Spenser 3.10.69) Correspondingly, Southwells speaker fears this permanent death of the spirit that cannot be redeemed and released by a physical death This desire for true death is further developed in Southwells What Joy to Live. Un like the speaker in a Phansie, the speaker of What Joy to Live does not conceive of a spiritual death in himself. Rather the bitterness of the world around him makes him and through him the reader question why he would want to go on living in a world w here L ove is lent for loane of filthy gaine, M ost frends befriend themselves with friendships shew, H ere plentie peril, want doth breed disdaine, Cares common are, joyes faultie, short, and few (13 16). As we will see in Quarles Lighten Mine Eyes this speaker cannot bear the corruption of the world. People are in danger of this corruption if they have plentie of the worlds goods, but are
117 disdained by the flesh lovers if they lack material goods. Rather than forming friendships out of love or faith th at would create a healthy community this speaker says that they are for shew ; presumably he is referring to the practice of befriending or ingratiating oneself to a more wealthy or powerful person in order to increase in worldly goods or status If the concerns of the mind are worldly, they can be interpreted in both the senses of the adjectival common both lower in stature and wide ly known (OED adj. II. 10. a & b ). Since the joyes of earth cannot adequately fulfill the spiritual void, they are shor t and few and are faultie because they do not raise the level of spirituality but anchor it to the flesh. The speaker notes that while M en present hap, I future hopes do crave and All worldly fraights ( 9, 10). This speaker is out of step with the de sire for the earthly fraights gain and sinful lusts. Longing not for earthly pleasures but for a more advanced state, the speaker tells us that life is loathd, where love may not prevail and peace I none enjoy as long as he dwells in the sinful, f lesh oriented world (6, 1). This loathing and lack of peace leads to a plea for death. Where other loving where they live, long life require, / T o live where best I love, death I desire (11 12). Again, the death wish, or desire, that the speaker feels is for the physical death defined in A Phansie Turned to a Sinners Complaint. However, death is inevitable for all living creatures, because Adams fall mandated that all go to one place, and all was of the dust, a nd all shall return to the dust ; therefo re, the speaker is asking for the inevitable to speed up (Ecc. 3:20). This speaker reassures himself and his readers that unlike those who seek the earths balefull bliss that damnes where it delights and treasure sought still to the owners harmes he would rather die soon than live so many deaths to try and pl easure upshot is to die accurst ; he will forsake this world and be raised to the bliss of paradise (24, 20, 25, 30).
118 Both A Phansie Turned to a Sinners Complaint and What Joy to Live are sacred parodies of poems about profane love. The parodic aspects of the two poems give a resonance to the aspect of their meaning that gives redemptive powers to sacred love. As we saw in the discussion of the plight of Spensers Malbecco, and it clarifies further his reliance on profane love for redemption left him languishing in a spiritual death. While both the poems that are parodied mourn the loss of the speakers secular love interest, Southwell uses the knowledge that his audience would have had of t hem to demonstrate the need to turn from profane love and the things of the earth toward sacred love, which could ultimately satisfy the spiritual appetite and release the soul. A Phansie Turned to a Sinners Complaint provides a line by line parody of Sir Edward Dyers poem entitled A Fancy according to McDonald and Brown (135). Dyers poem is a lament that makes a hart the aulter whose mystris is a woeman rather than the heart that i s beloved of God (A Fancy 29, 96).8 Throughout Dyers poem, t he focus is on the travails that an earthly lover mourns in that love w rought in her name ( 109). Rather than the grief of a spiritual death from the corruption of earth, Dyers speaker is the transience of profane love. Since he has been spurned by his mystris he wants to hide / A nd never come to light while Southwells speaker spurns earthly love and seeks fulfillment in the realm of the spirit. The speaker of A Phansie Turned was forsaken first by grac e, / By pleasure now forgotten and mourns t he graces wage that have others from me gotten more than the sparks of bliss (77 78, 79, 80, 86). Dyers speaker is a spark, or young man, of the seventeenth century one 8 Lou is L. Martz provides a line by line comparison between the two poems in order to show the few changes that Southwell made to Dyers work (190191). Though he mentions What Joy to Live, he gives it short shrift and says that it shows Southwells use of th e Petrarchan techniques at their worst (187).
119 concerned with pleasure and courtship.9 However, Southwell uses many of the s ame metaphors for melancholia used by Dyer; in doing so he turns his speaker into a sacred lover, mourning the rejection of grace that leads him to plead for physical death. Though Southwell uses many of the ecstatic terms of Dyers poem to prove the supe riority of sacred over profane love, he chooses to parody the popular sonnet Pace Non Trovo e Non Ho Da Far Guerra by Petrarch in What Joy to Live in order to reinforce that superiority.10 The Petrarchan sonnet lauds the love that sometimes seems a God sometimes a boy, or the profane love frequently represented by the boy -god Cupid. This profane love causes the speaker of the sonnet to wish for death, yet after help I gape; / I hate m y self, but love another wight a wight being any living creatur e in s ixteenth century English, though the word also carried supernatural or pneumatological connotations ( Southwell 1011, OED n. 2 ). This speaker is placing his trust in another mortal being and in a communal construction that must fail. This type of de pendency is the type that Southwell and Quarles berate in their poems because it is an earthly attachment. Though Petrarchs speaker is in love, he hates himself and wishes for death. He is not spiritually fulfilled by this wight. However, the speaker of What Joy to Live has the hope of eventual spiritual fulfillment because he does not worship Cupids secular passions, but finds that all worldly fraights to me are deadly wracke and so they loving where they live, long life require, / to live where best I love, death I desire (Southwell 9, 1112). Unlike the speaker of Petrarchs sonnet, Southwells speaker will reject the deere Dame that afflicts his counterpart (XL 18). Through the formal rejection of secular love 9 See The World Passeth Away, and All the Lusts Thereof (The World Passeth) on page 131 for a longer discussion about the term spark in the seventeenth century. 10 In their commentary on What Joy to Live, Nancy Pollard Brown and James H. McDonald note that a translation made by Thomas Watson, Passion XL in Hekatompathia, or the Passionate Centurie of Love (1582), bears the closest linguistic resemblance to Southwells sacred parody (145). Therefore, that is the translation of the Petrarch that I will be using for comparison.
120 represented by a woman who c annot live where [he] loves best the speaker of What Joy to Live can deny the worldly corruptions and call for spiritual fulfillment in death. Though Southwell defines what death is in A Phansie Turned to a Sinners Complaint and describes the corru ption of the world in What Joy to Live, the prayer for death is most strongly invoked in I Die Alive. The whole poem is a plea for death, because on earth the speaker live[s], but such a life as ever dies, I die but such a death, as never ends, My dea th to end my dying life denies, And life my living death no whit amends (5 8). This stanza combines the spiritual death outlined in A Phansie Turned and the inability to actually die. Nothing about the life he leads on earth can console him or make amen ds for his melancholy The speakers life ever dies and that spiritual death never ends because he cannot be spiritually satiated on earth and also cannot commit suicide to end his earthly existence without being damned. In order to prevent that damnation, the melancholic speaker prays that God will answer his grace or prayer, and as death come take away his pain (4). The use of the word grace rather than prayer sets up an interesting pun that complicates the meaning of the poem. Grace can refer to a prayer, but it can also refer to mercy specifically divine mercy (OED n. 15a ). If the speaker receives his wish for death, he will be granted grace or mercy. Another, more obscure connotation is the idea of giving a coup de grace or de ath, to someone who is grievously wounded rather than letting them die in pain (OED n3. 5e ). Since this speaker feels that life on earth is like a mortal wound, he asks that God would give him grace or death. Finally, the word grace can also imply the will of God that empowers the world (OED n. 11 ). By addressing grace the speaker is addressing the only thing that could take him out of the
121 world without committing a sin to do so. Consequently, the dimensions of this one word demonstrate that fulfillment can come from turning to God or grace, rejecting the earth, and death. Since the consummatory appetite cannot be fulfilled on earth where T he deathes I feele, in present dangers lie the speaker here seeks a graceful perhaps blessed physical deat h and heaven in order to assuage his spiritual emptiness. Quarles Lighten Mine Eyes, O Lord, Lest I Sleepe the Sleep of Death (Lighten Mine Eyes) appears to be a straightforward Christian appeal for the light of God based on Psalm 13 which asks be h old and hear me, O Lord my God, lighten mine eyes, that I slepe not in death (Inscriptio Ps. 13:3).11 W hen examined more carefully moreover, for both structure and word choice, and viewed in conjunction with Epigram 14, the poem becomes a death wish T he complexity of the poem enables a focus on the speakers call for Gods light that is almost inadequate to the implications it carries about death and suicide. Quarles uses allegorical metaphors, puns, and prosopopoeia to outline his wish to be returned to his creator. The darkness of Lighten Mine Eyes and Epigram 14 is more than physical; it represents the metaphysical darkness of the speaker T he two poems present the only answer that he has to defeat its pervasiveness. Quarles shows in great detail the causes of spiritual death by examining the prevalence of darkness in the world and its contrast to the pure light of God. In this poem, Quarles expands upon Psalm 13, in which the speaker is torn by the question of his importance to God. The Psalmist is terrified that God has forgotten him and questions how long the pain of his fear will last. Quarles imitates the Psalmists questing fear to add character to his speaker. While the Psalm was written by Hebrew s for a Hebrew audience, Quarles like all t ypologically taught Christian readers interpreted it from the perspective of a Christian. By 11 This emblem is the fourteenth one from the first book of Emblemes (1635)
122 using the Psalmists emotions within his poem, Quarles offers his audience the chance to experience the fear and subsequent release Q uarles uses panicked question s about how and when light, both physical and metaphysical, will return to the world (1 2). Quarles also repeats the invocation of Sweet Phosphor, bring the day to echo the author of Psalm 13s apostrophe to O Lord My God (Quarles 3, Ps. 13:3). Unlike the Psalmist, who does not repeat his invocation, Quarles uses his apostrophe and the repetition thereof to give his poem shape and cohesion. The ex u lting enemies of the Psalmist are reflected in Quarles poem when he discusses those [sinners that ] have n ight who love night (Psalm 13:4, Quarles 24). For Quarles, these sinners represent a community of enemies who could draw the speaker away from God and towards the darkness of sin that they love. Towards the end of Psalm 13, the speaker grows more confiden t in God and writes but I have trust in thy mercie: my heart shal rejoice in thy salvacion (13:5). Just as Psalmist 13 knows that God will defeat his enemies and bring him salvation, Quarles speaker grows convinced enough in Gods light to state that L ight will repay / T he wr ongs of night (13:4, Quarles 4849). While Quarles poem reflects many of the emotions that the Psalmist invokes, he ends it in a much different mood. He will not sing to the Lord, because he has dealt bountifully with me and rejoice that God loves him as he is, on earth. Instead, he gives in to despair and melancholy and begins to wish for death so that he may rejoin God. This disjunctive conclusion demonstrates the severed connection between the speaker and the world around him. Through an invocation of apostrophe to Sweet Phosphor a refrain for the poem the speaker addresses something greater than himself in order to form a connection with it, and also provides an interesting twist to its interpretation. This twist comes from the fact that classicall y Latin Phosphor is the appellation of the Morning Star, not the Sun, which was called Sol (OED
123 An.1) Virgil tells his readers that iamque iugus summae surgebat Lucifer Iadae, where Lucifer has been translated as both Phosp hor and morning star (Virgil 2.800, Dryden, Williams, emphasis mine). Therefore, the theory that Phosphor invokes the Sun, and thus can be read as the Son of God might be challenged In its place, a closer look at the Biblical symbolism can give insig ht into Q uarles use of Phosphor in the poem. In Christian symbolism, Lucifer the Fallen angel, is referred to as the angel of the morning star and his Latin na me translates as Light bearer ; and poetically, the name Phosphor is more often linked to him than Christ, particularly by Quarles in his earlier poem Hadassa (OED A.n.1, Quarles Introd. f. B4 ). Quarles is unlikely to be invoking the fallen angel of biblical and apocryphal mythologies to bring light to his darkness. However, medieval and biblica l precedent exists for the transference of images and symbols between Satan and Christ. In A Theory of Biblical Typology in the Middle Ages, James J. Paxson investigates the use of the term lamb12 in the The Second Shepherds Play of the Wakefield Cycle ; there, it is invoked almost simultaneously to refer to both Satan and Christ (323 footnote 54). Further, Paxson argues that such slippage is observed biblically as early as St. Augustine, who in On Christian Doctrine scrutinizes the use of terms such as lion and serpent (quoted in Paxson 380). Both the lion and the serpent are used as appellations for good and bad traits within the Bible. To summarize Augustines argument, the first describes both Christ as the Lion of Judah in Rev. 5.5 and as a ravening lion representing evil enemies in Psalm 22:13. The latter can be both the wise serpent of Matthew 10:16 or the devil of Genesis 3:1 and Revelations 20:2. This symbolic ambivalence is not, therefore, shocking. Quarles could be invoking both the associatio n with Lucifer, because 12 Here Quarles invests in one of the standard tripartite animal symbols for Christ, the lamb (the others are the dove and the fish). The idea of Christ as the Lamb of God is found in John 1:29 and is a foreshadowing of the sacrifice of Jesus with its reference to lambs, sacrificial animals throughout the Old Testament.
124 medieval audiences [would have] accepted the notion that the Antichrist was he who would come directly before Christ during Parousia (Paxson 376). Quarles potential awareness of such an attitude cannot be dismissed and, consequ ently, the term may well invoke the coming of Lucifer in order to hasten the second coming of Christ. However to accept only this interpretation would limit the poem too much, since one of the most prominent metaphors for Jesus is the Light, and the Gre ek phos means into the light (Liddell and Scott 1952) Thus Phosphor can also be read as an appellation of Christ who brings his followers into the light of God Since the morning star is the one which precedes the sun, the identification of Phosphor with Jesus offers a viable connection for a reading that links the two. The knowledge, or discovery, of the light of Jesus is the Christian prerequisite for salvation. Discovery of Jesus light must precede admission into heaven ly realms. By calling on Sweet Phosphor the speaker is acknowledging the light of Christ Thus he can be confident that when his poor mortal blaze is puffed out he will truly see the light of heaven and be spiritually fulfilled in the same way that Communion fulfilled his spiritual appetite on earth ( Lighten Mine Eyes 1, 30, 44, Epigram 1 4 ). Q uarles introduces the light metaphor in stanza one. This promised light is both the light of the sun of Earth and of the Son of God. By setting up this parallel, Quarles can remind his audience that God is responsible for both types of light. The ideas for light that Quarles uses in his poem derive from two languages specifically the Greek leukotom and the Latin lux, lumina. Each derivation carries a sl ightly different definition that Quarles employs increasing the complexity of the poem.13 Leukotom means naked and derives from leukos which translates as 13 Latin and Greek frequently serve as the linguistic armature of both typology and modern science. Quarles knowledge of both can be assumed given his education.
125 white or bright, describing the action and type of light requested (OED Light etymology). This meaning reflects the revelatory nature of light feared by those people who love night and who blush to let men know/ the baseness they neer blush to do ( Lighten Mine Eyes 24, 1920). They are sinners who surround the speaker. He uses their fear of revelation to set himself apart from them ; as a sinful community, they cannot help him to achieve fulfillment Since he does not love the night he is not afraid of lights revelatory nature; the speaker has nothing to hide. He wishes to achieve total re velation and thereby a cessation of melancholy through the light of God. The Latin words lux, lumina mean the light of day, the sunlight that is the reality of what the speaker desires, and which helps things grow (OED Light etymology). The craving for the return of daylight is reflected in both Lighten Mine Eyes and Epigram 14 with the speakers cries of promised light / N eer break, and clear those clouds of night and the desired light that T hy windows will discover ( Lighten Mine Eyes 1, Epigra m 4). However, the sinners of stanza three do not fear this simple, growth -empowered daylight. The spiritual daylight that the speaker truly calls for could bring his sin -laden world to grace, because the spiritual daylight feeds the hunger of the world s people that was previously filled by sin. Furthermore, the eyes that would see this spiritual light are the windows to the soul specifically addressed in Epigram 14, and unnamed but present throughout Lighten Mine Eyes 14 However, it is with this addr ess to the eyes of the soul that the speaker most overtly expresses his desire to join God through death. Only when his windows will discover [the] break oday will the soul of the speaker be happy, and this statement determines what will 14 The poetic description of eyes as the windows to the soul can be found as early as Guillaume de Salluste Du Bartas who wrote t hese lovely lamps, these windows of the soul in Divine Weekes and Works First Week, Sixth Day which was translated into English as early as 1605 by Joshua Sylvester (209).
126 happen if Igno rance puff out this light (Quarles Epigram 14 1 4 ). In this line, light refers back to the mortal blaze of Lighten Mine Eyes (30). However, like the window/eyes in Epigram 14, the candle is more than just a physical, light giving object. Beyond this physical function the flame of Quarles candle represents the passionate soul of the speaker. While that passion is still referred to as a blaze within the poem, it is qualified with the word mortal and is described as dull and melancholy ( Lig hten Mine Eyes 32 33). The mortality of the flame and its present dullness imply that it will not long be able to withstand the spiritual and physical darkness pressing upon it. The speaker realizes this dilemma and knows that his problem will not be resolved by the rising of the physical sun when he asks what comforts here ( 35). This intimation concerning the lack of comfort on earth will lead to his eventual conclusion in Epigram 14 that to be happy again this mortal blaze will need to be puff[ ed] out, enabling him to escape the darkness for the break oday ( Lighten Mine Eyes 30, Epigram 14 1, 4). When the speaker voices his desire for death, the tension that has been mounting in the preceding poem is realized. He has fully grasped that he cannot survive on sinful earth, waiting patiently for the return of Gods Light and fearing that Ignorance has blown out the light permanently. Since the speaker does not know if eer the breath-exiled flame [will] return he, in the end, sees certainty only in a heaven -sent death (Lighten Mine Eyes 45) He knows that what is beginning is a spiritual death like that of the speakers in Southwells poems, and like them, prefers a physical death to the anguish of a spiritual one. Throughout the work, th e poet uses another common dichotomy: light set up in opposition to darkness. On the surface, the poem describes the natural cycle between the light of day and the dark of night. This daylight, which pours from the sun, reflects the overall idea of light i n stanza 2. The implication is that since darkness soil[s] / T he face of the earth, and thus beguile [s] /
127 O ur souls of rightful action if light were present, the souls w ould be able to complete whatever the rightful actions are (8 10). Created first by God, light is capable of inspiring righteous action and therefore fulfilling the spiritual desire, or appetite, to commune with God. Darkness and night manifest themselves as both physical darkness and as a spiritual shadow that signifies the spiritual death that surrounds the speaker. Both of these definitions are historical. Found in Old English as deorc and Old High German as darknjan, the other Teutonic languages lack an adjective that implies, as these two roots do, something that is hidden, not vi sible though such a definition can be established with the Latin tenebra (OED Dark a. Etymology ). However, this sense of hiddeness can be found in the dark of Quarles poem. The darkness enables those that slyly love to immure / T heir cloistered crimes and sin secure to hide all thought of eventual punishment (Quarles 1718). In addition to the slight against cloistered Catholicism, this hiding place that darkness offers to sin is what corrupts the night and makes the light, which repay the wrongs of n ight more desirable (Quarles 48 49). Though the word dark appears only once, it soils / T he face of earth ( Lighten Mine Eyes 9 10). In other words, the soil, or dirt, of earth is being stained by darkness rather than cleaned and brightened by light.15 This pun on soiled was further developed by descriptions of night, mists, and fog and their effects on the world. This staining darkness is a post -fall condition that stands in opposition to the prelapsarian binaries of Genesis, where the light helps de fine the darkness (Gen. 1:4). Nor, though it may resemble it, is this the primal darkness of Gen. 1:1; that early darkness is presented as a place of boundaries. It is only in Quarles postlapsarian world 15 The conception of darkness as filth is found earlier in the medieval poe m Cleanness. The poem is often attributed to the Gawain poet because of its location as part of the Pearl Manuscript, Cotton Nero A.x. in the Bristih Museum. In Confessing Communication, I look at Emblem 11, Book 4. In that text, Quarles talks about a shade that covers England from coast to coast. However, this shade is the protective mantle of Christ about the land. The two different shadows recalls allegory. The Latin term for shade is umbra which as Erich Auerbach notes in Figura is another term for allegory ( 48). Like the associations with hyponoia earlier in the poem, the term here subtly evokes the necessity of reading beyond the surface and the difficulty of piercing such layers.
128 that darkness can be and has been equated with sin and pollution. A s the speaker begins to consider what will happen when Sweet Phosphor, bring[s] the day he longs for the new -born ray that will gild the weather cocks of our devotion and make the earth clean again (11, 12). Unless the earth can be m ade clean again, those people living on its soiled i.e. corrupted fruits will not be able to find spiritual satisfaction. Quarles uses two sets of puns to illustrate his death wish and to show that only God can provide spiritual satisfaction. The most c omplex pun is built around the words exhale exile and expire The other set involves the verb discover and verb/adjective divine The triumvirate of exhale exile and expire occurs in the last stanza of Lighten Mine Eyes, which begins with an invocati on to Ignorance, ask ing that it Blow, blow thy spite; Since thou hast puffed out our greater taper, do Puff on, and out the lesser too. If eer that breath exiled flame return, Thou hast not blown as it will burn. ( 4246) The idea of blowing, or puffing out is the same as exhaling a breath. When someone or something is exiled, it is cast out of its world. If the breath -exiled flame or soul, is cast out of its world, the body of the speaker, then the speaker will expire, or die (45). In the stanza, the greater taper is the sun that has not risen. The lesser taper is the life of the speaker. If he cannot have life, if he must be exiled from light, he wants to blow out, or exhale his last ignorant breath and expire or die. This invocation for expi ration is the most evident plea for death in the poem. However, the pun is continued in Epigram 14 with the speaker explaining to his soul or lesser taper what will happen if Ignorance puff out this light ( Lighten Mine Eyes 44, Epigram 14 1). In The Language of Allegory: Defining the Genre Maureen Quilligan notes that the action of the puns occurring in Book I of The Faerie Queene was to use as part of the informing principle of the narrative what their own histories as words say about
129 them (35). Like her example of the phrase the rightest way, Quarles puns, and through them his allegories, depend on knowing the historyparticularly the Biblical connotations of the words being punned on. Since God inspired man with the breath of life (G en 2:7) only he can inspire man with the means to keep the lesser taper fueled. During the discussion of the power of Ignorance the second set of puns occurs. Throughout the poem, the desired light has been both physical and spiritual (Lighten Mine Eyes 39) .16 The speaker says that if the spiritual puffing out that he has requested occurs, his soul will discover break oday (Epigram 1 4 ). At this point, the meaning of discover is to reveal t he light of God (OED v.3a. ). Since the light discovere d will be the light of God, it will be divine or holy and can satiate his spiritual appetite. However, divine can also be used as a verb that means to uncover something supernatural such as the light of God that will be discovered after the speaker is ex haled and expires (OED v.I.1 ). Divination and discovery are what the speaker longs for throughout poem and he has now established they can only come from the exile of death. The pictura that accompanies Lighten Mine Eyes attempts to visualize the oppre ssive nature of the darkness that surrounds the speaker (Figure 4 1) A lone figura is seated in the foreground surrounded by darkness. Rather than leave the darkness in a totally amorphous shape, the artist chose to define part of it as a disk, a large an tihalo that appears to be condensing around the figura as if to smother him. The only light present in the pictura comes from a single candle emblematic of the lesser taper (44). The candle and its holder are engulfed in darkness and their outline can hardly be seen. The flame only illuminates the face, hands, and upper legs of the figura The parts illumined give weight to the idea that the speaker of the poem 16 Quarles personifies Ignorance, and commands it Blow, Ignorance (Lighten Mine Eyes 39).
130 is a Godly man because the hands and face are drawn in an attitude of prayer with the face upt urned and the hands folded beneath the chin. The sense of the pictura is that at any minute, the light could be engulfed by sin/darkness as the circle behind it narrows further. If the lesser taper is overwhelmed by the corruption of the earth, then tota l spiritual death will occur and the speaker may turn to the fruits of the flesh for fleeting satisfaction of that emptiness. Though Quarles speaker devotes only one stanza to those who love the night in Lighten Mine Eyes he describes them and mocks their relationship to the Light within The World Passeth Away, and All the Lusts Thereof (The World Passeth ), the ninth emblem of Book I. The first two stanzas of this emblem poem describe the dunghill worldlings that Drawe neare, brave sparks, wh ose spirits scorne to light Y our hallowd Tapours, but at Honours flame; You, whose heroic Actions take delight To varnish over a new painted name (Quarles The World Passeth 17, 1 4). A possible reading of sparks is as a metaphor for the soul. Howeve r, the association between the idea of light/fire and the human soul is further complicated by a contemporary meaning of the word sparks. Not only can it stand for the bits of fire thrown out from a blaze or an unhardened soul, but in the seventeenth cen tury spark was the slang term for a young roustabout or a light -hearted fop (OED n2.2 ). While these sparks are thrown off by the hallowd or blessedTapours that represent the souls they are not ignited by the Light of the spirit like the candle in Lighten Mine Eyes .17 18 Instead, the speaker avers that they are lit at the flame of Honour and are therefore too focused on the world. Rather than delighting in the fruits of the spirit and mourning the sinfulness of the world, these sparks metony ms for 17 Quarles draws on a classical image for the soul as a spark or star found in Book 6 of The Aeneid (6.642). 18 See preceding discussion of candle imagery in Lighten Mine Eyes.
131 themselves are focused on achieving worldly victory by gaining painted names potentially coats of arms, and by wiping out, or varnishing over, the deeds of others. However, the speaker quickly points out the folly of such worldly focus by des cribing these actions as chasing the Icarian wings of babbling Fame, / B ehold, how tottring are your high -built s tories/ O f earth, whereon you trust the groundwork of your Glories ( The World Passeth 6 8). The use of the adjective Icarian allows the s peaker to mock the priorities of the sparks. Like Icarus, who disobeyed his Father and flew too close to the sun in order to demonstrate his own Glory, these swains trust the Fame of earth whose glory is tottring and whose memory is forgetful (Ovid M etamorphoses 8.182239) The sparks also allude to another willful Greek youth, Phaeton, who begged his father Apollo to be allowed to drive the Sun Chariot, and was so enamored of the feeling that he nearly burnt the earth to cinders; instead he burned when Jupiter struck him with a lightning bolt (Ovid 2.1 405). These references anticipate Quarles invocation of Phosphor in Lighten Mine Eyes, as well as classifying the sparks as disobedient youths whose antics will lead to their destruction. Like Icar us and Phaeton, th ese sinners are resting their eyes on the earthly joys of a wanton smile before eternall Ioyes; / T hat know no heavn but in your Mistresse eyes and that can, like crowne -distemperd fooles, despise / True riches, and like Babies, whin e for Toyes (10 11, 1314). While warning them against the vain and momentary toyes of earth, the speaker laments those who are rejecting the eternall Ioyes and True riches He would define the latter as the fruits of the spirit and etern al life wit h God in Heaven. The sparks are still attempting to satisfy a spiritual appetite with the consummatory products of lust and greed, allegorical in the Ovidian myths as excessive solar energy. However, the speaker calls them to leave off their spite and re velry and
132 Cast up golden Trenches, where ye come, W hose only pleasure is to undermine, A nd view the secrets of your mothers wombe; Come bring your Saint, pouchd in his leather Shrine ( The World Passeth 1821). On the surface this admonition is ra ther light and seems to ask them to give up their worldly goods, represented by the trenches of gold. Nonetheless, it has a much more provocative meaning when alternat ive ways of looking at the words Saint and Shrine are brought to bear Formally, sain t implies that the persons so designated may be lawfully addressed in prayer for their intercession with God, and that miracles have been wrought through their aid after death and each has his or her own shrine (OED a. 2a). Though they may seem to be an indictment of Catholicism, the fact is that the two previous lines suggest sexual pleasures inherent in the t renches or female genitalia, where they come or find sexual release and how they seek, through sexual penetration to view the secrets of [th eir] mothers wombe (Quarles The World Passeth 20). In The Incorporative Identifications of Mourning and Melancholia, Paul Emmett discusses such desires as part of the need for melancholics to incorporate the object that they mourn. Since the speaker h as already noted that these sparks are interested only in wanton smiles then the Saint they worship can be interpreted as their penis and its leather shrine would have been their fashionable codpiece or breeches were we to pursue the sort of psych oanalytic reading pioneered by Emmett ( The World Passeth 10). They do not worship at either the shrines of the saints of the Church or at the alta r of God, but seek sexual consummation and the satiation of physical wants rather than the true fulfillment found in spiritual consumption The plurality of the sparks and fooles identifies them as a community at least in the eyes of a Christian; Quarles and his readers would have been well familiar with Christs statement that where two or three are gath ered in my name, there I am in the midst of them
133 (Matt. 18:20). In this passage, Christ identifies what makes a community: two or more people gathered for a similar purpose. Therefore, the implied community here is one that could be corrupting; Quarles fo llows Bishop Joseph Halls precept that people are influenced by the community that they participate in.19 Like Hall, Quarles is drawing on the biblical directive of St. Paul to the Philippians about how they are to choose their companions (3:17). If this c ommunity of sparks is all that Quarles and his readers have, then the loss that drives him to the death wish could be the lack of an uncorrupted communion. As in many of the other poems that mourn the sinfulness of the world, the speaker of The World Pa sseth does not offer a viable way to navigate the feeble, faithlesse, fickle world, wherein / E ach motion proves a vice, and evry Act, a Sin (Quarles 31 32). Because of this inability, the speaker presents his own death wish as the only viable way to e nd his mourning and their sinning for W hats our onely griefes our onely Cure: / T he Worlds a Torment; he that would endeavor/ to find a way to Rest, must seek the way to leave her (46 -48). In other words, he who wants to cure his grief and end his mou rning must find a way to die. Burton tells us that those people who are in the melancholy of despair are in great pain and horrors of mind, distraction of soul, restless, full of continual fears, cares, torments, anxieties; they can neither eat, drink, nor sleep for them and that many in this state lay desperate hands upon themselves (126.96.36.199, 188.8.131.52 ). While the speaker as in Lighten Mine Eyes is not openly advocating suicide, he does not discuss how to leave the world short of death. Therefore, the sinners and the speaker and presumably the reader should ask God to remove them from it so that they may have relief from their griefes and rest from their continual fears, cares, torments, and anxieties 19 See my discussion of Joseph Halls Vowes and Meditations above in my Introduction.
134 This reading of the poem is generally refle cted, though not expanded upon, in the pictura that accompanies it (Figure 4 2) The round orb with the crossed top that represents both England and the world is falling to the right and an older man is tumbling off it onto a pile of coins while a Father Time/Death figura puts one foot on the side of the orb. The Father Time/Death figura is examining his hour glass and readying his scythe ; both actions represent the fleeting nature of time and the fact that all time ends in death. By showing a cupid figura with his bow and arrows tumbling off the orb as well, Quarles can illustrate that even lust is subject to eventual death. However, the male figura does not seem to be seeking deaththough he seems to have found it. Therefore, the pictura more clearly illu strates the inscription that accompanies it the world passeth away, and all the lusts thereof than the seeking of the poem. Consequently, it exemplifies the instability of the world, a theme that runs throughout the poem. Though George Herberts The Temple is on the whole a positive look at the saving nature of Gods grace and the journey of the believer in the community of his fellows, death does touch several of the poems. Unlike Southwell and Quarles, Herbert does not seem as invested in the intrin sic link between the body and the spirit, or the melancholic idea that one must die so that the other may live. In his formalist reading of the scatological imagery in the work of Harrington, Donne, and Herbert, T.G.A. Nelson argues that these three poets like Sidney in Astrophil and Stella investigate the separation of the body from the soul, though they acknowledge the corrupt and corrupting nature of earthly pleasures (272, 286). Further, Donald E. Stanford argues that in Herberts skillful versethere is less terror and less exaltation (63).20 Louis L. Martz, in comparing Herbert to Donne and Southwell, says that in all Herberts poems on death there is no trace of fear or horror at the prospect, but a calm, mild acceptance of 20 Stanford is tracing the potential relationship between the work of Herbert, Edward Taylor, and Phillip Pain. Intriguingly enough, he briefly mentions Quarles as an inspiration for the first two.
135 the inevitable (143). W hile Stanford and Martz are perhaps right in their evaluation of his tone, neither asks why Herbert may have been less terrified. Based on my readings of Mortification, Time, and Death, I hope to show that like Southwell and Quarles Herbert did not f ear death, but embraced it because he was assured or satiated in his communion.21 In Mortification, Herbert employs the common extended conceit of the stages of mans life to demonstrate that every moment from birth how soon man doth decay (1). This continual decay is provided for from birth when swaddling clothes are really little winding sheets / Which do consign and send them unto death through childhood when boys go first to bed, / T hey step into their voluntary graves and then to middle age whe n the dumb inclosure of his house and home enable him to maketh love / Unto the coffin, that attends his death (4 5, 18 19). Finally to old age when a chair or litter shows his bier, / Which shall convey him to the house of death (29 30). However, each of these moments of death is also a moment of life where only their breath / Makes them not dead (9 10). This fact of life despite the perpetual move towards physical death allows Herbert to view the inevitable slide with patience. As long as the bo dy and soul ha[ve] breath / As yet to spare, then the person can ask yet Lord, instruct us so to die, / That all these dyings may be life in death (3233, 34 35). This plea presumably represents the desire to behave in each stage so that earthly life w ill be as fulfilling as the everlasting life that Herbert anticipates. That way, even the youth who spends all day exchanging mirth and breath / In company will not be harmed by the corrupt world around him.22 21 In his reading of Faith, Ira Clark argues that the personas sense of blind law and hunger for Gods will are absorbed by his faith in Christs appeasement of justice and his communion through the Eucharist (87). While Clark states this explicitly about Faith, he im plies it about the attitude in Mortification, and I agree that that sense of appeasement and communion are the reasons for the calm Herbert presents toward death. 22 Nelson argues that Herbert explores the inherently corrupt nature of earth through subt le allusions in The Forerunners and The Rose (284286).
136 Further, Herberts speaker does not beg for death, but celebrates its inevitability and rewards in a dialogue. This dialogue is between the speaker and the personification of Time. The opening lines of meeting with Time, slack thing, said I, / Thy scythe is dull; whet it for shame seem to indicate a longing for death, particularly given Quarles similar image of Time/Death in The World Passeth Away (Herbert 1 2, Quarles Figure 4 2). Conversely, Herberts answer to death contains the admonition that who wants the place, where God doth dwell, / Pa rtakes already half of hell (23 24). The verb want s accentuates the extremity of the lack felt by those who are outside of the place where God doth dwell (OED v.1a. intran. ). Despite its chiding tone and brief emphasis of want, Herbert does not use the poem as a vehicle to call for death. Instead, he elects to close it with a plea for instruction. His speakers appetite is sated on earth through communion, and, therefore, asks as an alternative to corporeal death, that Lord, instruct us so to die, / That all these dyings may be life in death (35 36).23 This plea reflects both kinds of death found in Quarles and Southwell, the living death and the physical death. However, Herbert changes the former from the torture it represents in Quarles and Southwell to an opportunity. Each of the little deaths he has outlined all these dyings may be lived so that the speaker is with God on earth and, consequently, spiritually alive outside of heaven. It is in Death that Herbert answers the question of why his poems are less fraught with terror, to echo Donaldson (63). Structured as a confession to a personified Death figure, Herbert speaks in the plural we, indicating that the statements which follow are not limited to a single speaker, but presumably include s himself and the Christian community (Herbert 5 and following). He first acknowledges that figure by saying, Death, thou was once an uncouth, 23 See C.A. Patrides argument on Herbert and communion as I have outlined in footnote 1 of Chapter 3, A Mystical Repast.
137 hideous thing; in short, not a figure to be embraced, but a figure to fear. Death suffers the problem that Af ter the loss of life and sense, / Flesh being turned to dust and bones to sticks, that dry dust, which sheds no tears, but may extort them from others (1, 7 -8, 8). This inability to shed tears, marking the definitive end, Herbert indicates, was frighten ing. The permanence of the reduction of life to dust was at fault for deaths hideous appearance. However, the use of the past tense in the statement Death, thou wast once an uncouth hideous thing implies a change in perception, from which accrues a les sening of fear Since our Saviours death did put some blood / Into thy face (emphasis mine, 1, 13). Obviously, this description alludes to the death and resurrection of Christ; however, poets normally focus on the effects of grace on man, where Herbert d escribes how death is grown fair and full of grace, / Much in request, much sought for, as a good (15 16). Perhaps by way of this beatification, Herbert demonstrates why earlier poets like Southwell and Quarles longed for death. Though they speak of it a s means to an end, Herbert makes obvious its attraction to those who are saved. It becomes, here, the attractive community, much in request, much sought for, like a courtier in high demand because of the monarchs favor. This favor is its mark of blood, the same blood that is represented in the service of communion. Because Herbert and presumably the community he has created rest secure in that service they can view death with a clear eye, and therefore, [they] can go die as sleep (21). Because their d epression and desire for death are connected with the corruption of the earth and its people, the spiritual consummatory appetite of these speakers cannot be fulfilled. Having accepted the degradation of the body inherent in the idea of its materialistic c orruption, the poets can only see a positive movement in its total rejection through death. As we have seen in the selection here, Quarles and Southwell do not offer a way to satisfy that appetite outside beyond
138 death for such is merely in Gods hands How ever, they do explore both earthly and heavenly methods for ending their mourning through the fulfillment of a spiritual appetite. This exploration demonstrates for their readers the instability of the world and the necessity of the fulfillment of the cons ummatory appetite. By defining fruit as rotten and rejecting the possibilities of profane love, the poets can display the benefits of sacred food over sinful food. Thus, they show why death can provide better spiritual gratification than either of the more earthly pursuits of eating and having sex. The imagery within the death poems that we have looked at also sets up the thematic connections between food, mourning, and nature that attach significance to the requisite spiritual satiation for earthly happine ss. Only by full incorporation of spiritual food can mourning cease and the corruption of the soul and communion be transformed.
139 Figure 4 1. Emblem XIV Book I. Lighten Mine Eyes, Lord, Lest I Sleep the Sleep of Death. Emblemes (1635) and Hieroglyphik es of the Life of Man (1639) With permission of The English Emblem Book Project http://emblem.libraries.psu.edu/qu056_57.htm
140 Figure 4 2.. Emblem IX -Book I. The World Passeth Away, and All the Lusts Thereof. Emblemes (1635) and Hieroglyphikes of the Li fe of Man (1639) With permission of The English Emblem Book Project. http://emblem.libraries.psu.edu/qu036_37.htm
141 CHAPTER 5 CONFESSING COMMUNICA TION: MOMENTS OF MET APOESIS IN FRANCIS QUARLES This poor man cried out, and the Lord heard him and saved h im out of all his troubles. Psalms 34.6 This passage reveals a basic belief about the nature of prayer: it is dependent on active participants God to hear and the faithful to speak. The action verbs used in the epigram to describe both the praying, cried out and its results heard, saved, predate and support J.L. Austins argument that much speech is made up of performative utterances (Austin 6). This conception of performance and expectation of result was adopted by the Renaissance writer, who, Bri an Vickers argues, was supposed to arouse the readers emotions by his representation of lifeby doing this, the writer would also help to form or shape the readers character, inflaming him to imitate virtue, much as the psalmist was saved when th e Lord heard his trouble (9). Clearly, the same expectation for performance exists; the writer and his poem stand in the place of God and the psalmist, a dual dichotomy. The audience must engage the material so that they can be inflamed, and, thus, saved. However, this inflamation is not the full expectation. Audiences likewise [depend on] the Spirit [who] also helpeth our infirmities; for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings that cannot be uttered (Romans 8:26). This is a second expectation that must be addressed: the expectation that the addressee will understand the groanings of the addresser (Prince 16).1 In this case, the sender can rely on the Holy Spirit to ensure the unde rstanding of the receiver. A mortal poet cannot share this expectation, though he needs his audience, both divine and mortal, to fulfill Edmund Spensers the general endwith all the bookto fashion a gentleman or nobleperson in virtuous and gentle dispos ition (Allegory 298 ). This dependence 1 To use A. J. Greimas terms (Prince 80, 86).
142 on the ability of the receiver to understand the message of the sender creates tension, because for the Renaissance writer, poetry must be understood in order to fulfill its role to teach and delight, as Horace fi rst proclaimed and Sidney echoed (345). Francis Quarles expressed the tension and concern over this requirement, adding to it the religious dimension demanded by meditational poetry, namely the concern that God must hear and understand what is imperfectly expressed as well. That is, it adds the third part of rhetoric: to teach, delight, and move; Austin refers to this movement as the prelocutionary act effectiveness ( 101). As the early structuralist Roman Jackobson argued, communication requires the unde rstanding in some way of all parties involved, or its language is not fulfilling this basic task (Prince 16). I argue that Quarles recognizes many of the problems of written communication a form that complicates the performative aspect and is therefore mor e dependent on the audience and uses that recognition to enhance his poetry. Thus I will look at some of the metapoetic moments within Emblemes (1635) and Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1638) in this chapter, which Quarles employs in two ways.2 First, they guides his audience into a fuller communication with his work. Second, the metapoetic moments question the efficacy of written, and by implication verbal communication not only between himself and his audience, but also between Christians and God. Th is second form of metapoesis begins to comment on the limitations of language as a means of communication a concern similar to that of modern poststructuralism. As I mentioned in my introduction, Quarles has been critically denigrated primarily because h e is seen as providing didactic, morally useful interpretation(s) of God, man, and society (Jones 127). The didactic nature of his poetry might be compared with the work of John 2 In its most basic sen se, metapoesis involves poetry about the making of poetry. I look at those moments within Quarles work that display his anxiety over the actions and their presumed results.
143 Donne, George Herbert, Gabriel Harvey, John Taylor, and Henry Vaughn.3 Based on my interpretation of the instructions for successful poetry given by Puttenham, Sidney, and other early literary theorists, I find this criticism to be ill-founded. While Quarles is invested in a didactic aim that of improving his community he is aware of the potential failure of that aim, because of the potential failure of language. I will demonstrate here how many of his most metapoetic, and therefore, most didactic poems, give insight into his anxiety about the failure of language and its investment in the ineffable and the inexpressible. This concern about the need for mutual understanding and the tension that need creates surfaces in many places within Renaissance poetry. By defining the criteria for good poetry in a way that requires that the audi ence not only enjoys it, but understands its meaning well enough to get some improvement out of it, Renaissance writers set up a situation where such a concern was inevitable. In this chapter, I will focus on the metapoetic anxiety and its correspondent di dacticism within the emblematic works of Francis Quarles, though I will allude to some of the other writers he has been compared to, particularly George Herbert. Critics must wrestle with the complications such anxiety raises in order to recognize Quarles depth as a poet. Such a consideration may also shed light on the poetics of his day. The ninth emblem of Book III The Sorrows of Hell Compassed Me About, and the Snares of Death Prevented Me is one of the most overtly didactic and metapoetic of Emblem es (1635) Quarles begins the ninth emblem of Book III with a series of rhetorical questions in the first fourteen lines. The first of which is also the most multivalent, asks is not this Type well cut? (1). By choosing the term type to describe the pictura that accompanies the poem, Quarles is highlighting two options for his readers. First, and most clearly, he wants them to engage 3 For my review of this comparison, see the Introduction above.
144 intimately with the woodcut ; this reading is supported by the fact that each of the questions following the first points to wards a different aspect of the picture. This construction also links the poem to the resurgence of Biblical typology that Ira Clark outlines as a place for intensified personal self -examination and identification with biblical settings, scenes, figures, and objects (ix). By acknowledging his use of a type Quarles signals to his readers the method with intensity and identity they should use to read the poem and view its accompanying pictura Further connecting himself to the trend Clark refers to as a vogue from Wyatt through Sandys of poets associating with David, a prominent type as king and as celebrant who failed miserably and was saved gloriously, Quarles draws his inscriptio from Psalm 18:5 (Clark 30). This psalm states that that the sorrows of h ell compassed me about, and the snares of death prevented me (Quarles 157). However, when we read the poem, we see that it is not David the saved King shown in the literally typeset pictura As you can see in Figure 5 1, the sinner is not a lone me; ra ther, although one figura is certainly foregrounded in a snare, at least one other, possibly female, figure can be seen in the background, pursued by demons. This unidentified female figure, accompanied by the more prominent male figure, opens the type for identification by both genders.4 Though the psalm emphasizes pain and suffering, Quarles use of the type leaves his readers with hope, reflecting the requirement that to fulfill the type the subject needs to identify with David as the redeemed sinner; o nly this way can the poem be well -cut. Rhetorically, this emblem is structured as a hypophora, for it begins with a series of questions that Quarles will attempt to answer later in the poem. However, the opening questions highlight the artificiality of the medium as well as the instructionary purpose of the chosen structure. The first two questions is not this Type cut? In every part / Full of rich cunning? ask 4 See below for a discussion on the potential identity of this figure as the soul.
145 the reader to make a value judgment on both the accompanying pictura and on the abilities o f Quarles and his publishers (The Sorrows 1 2).5 The questions also call for the reader to make a careful, intense examination of the pictura to determine if, in fact, the type is well cut and in every part/ full of rich cunning (emphasis mine). Not only do these questions emphasize the poetic craft of the piece, but they also work to get the reader involved in the woodcut.6 Quarles address to the constructed nature of the pictura continues when he asks if it is not fild with Zeuxian Art; the line refers to the fifth century Greek artist Zeuxis who was known for creating a rudimentary version of chiaroscuro in order to make his paintings more lifelike (OED a, Encyclopedia Britannica). This comparison, listed as the second usage of the term Zeuxia n in the OED, compliments the intelligence of the reader for whom a knowledge of ancient art is being assumed and the artist of the woodcut, whose work is being compared favorably to that of the ancients. Rosemond Tuve also classifies the use of the rhetor ical technique of epizeuxis defined as the emphatic repetition of a word with no other words between them, as one of part of the criterion for significancy (Lanham 70 71, Tuve 154). The emphasis of epizeuxis is on the words themselves as the things th at help us to see exactly what he [the poet] is writing about, and why he thought that important (Tuve 154). Though Quarles does not use the technique of epizeuxis within the text of the poem, I would argue that the pictura is serving in this capacity. Q uarles uses his examination of the pictura to in Tuves words help us see exactly what he is writing about, and why he thought that important (154). In other words, the heavily didactic questions that open the text are Quarles means of fulfilling the c riterion of significancy, that the images provided address or reinforce that which the subject already says or means the 5 Who were, after all, the ones doing the typesetting and woodcutting. 6 In Allegorical Imagery Rosemund Tuve argues that during the Early Modern period, poets and readers alike took extreme pleasure in poetry as a craft (27). I argue here that Quarles use of the first two questions acknowledges this pleasure and uses it to the value of the poem.
146 moment we have a clear view of it (Tuve 147). Given both the underlying reference to epizeuxis and the obvious comparison to an arti st known for his lifelike works, the emphasis of this didacticism is the reciprocal nature of the text and the picture. The reciprocity provides added meaning and life to the pictura through the accompanying poem and vice versa. The life like quality of t he pictura is essential to its reading reception, and Quarles confirms this importance with the question, are not the Hunters, and their Stygean Hounds / limmd full to the life (3 4). As an obsolete term for illuminated, the verb limmd is glossed b y the OED as painted, depicted, portrayed, which recognizes the artifice of the life depicted (ppl. a.). Further, the pun of limmd and limbed is a play on what the artist does in visual work. In this case, his woodcut limns, or draws, the limbs, or bodies, of the poem (OED v 2b, OED n 1.1). Only through the limmd picture can the text have limbs. However, its derivation from illuminated recalls the central theme of light as life that Quarles invokes in several other poems of Emblemes (1635) and which is the guiding metaphor within the emblems of Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1638).7 If the reader understands limmd as illuminated, then two other potential meanings for the question arise, both of which impact the reading of the emblem as a whole. Besides the most obvious meaning of lighted up, the word illuminated as the past tense of illuminate also means to give light to, or remove blindness from (the eyes), esp. fig. in religious sense as a verb and as a past participle or adjective, can indicate enlightened spiritually; divinely taught or inspired (OED v. 1b., v.. 2). Though the original question directs the readers physical eyes to the Hunter devils and their hell hounds, which are always tenebrous or black in Quarlesi an images, the other possible meanings elucidate a metaphysical reading. The first nods to the 7 For a longer discussion of this metaphor, see Chapter 4: Hope of Heaven, Fear of Ea rth.
147 purpose of the emblems as tools for understanding God and religion, literally to remove any blindness the reader might have about the awful life of the sorrow es of hell ( Inscriptio ). The later meaning is the state of spiritual enlightenment (illumination) that the reader should achieve with a full understanding of both the poem and the pictura The life of the hunters, hounds, and the other traps presented in the poem are meant to alert and frighten the reader into a more discerning knowledge of the world that they live in. Thus, they accrue an understanding of the pitfalls within and without their community. Quarles does not limit himself to the sense of sight in his quest to develop his audiences discernment; rather, in the hypophora, he evokes the sense of hearing and scent as well. It seems natural for him to begin by invoking the sight, because reading is a visual activity. However, he does not limit himself to it; I would argue that in extending his reach to the other senses, Quarles is trying fully to involve his audience in the world of the pictura so as to access is available to all possible meanings. He asks them didst ever heare the sounds, / The musicke, and the lip -divided breaths / Of the strong -winded Horne, Recheats, and deaths / Done more exact (4 7). Though some might argue that this question restricts his audience to a leisure class that would have time for riding to hunt and hearing suc h sounds, the fact that noise carries makes it possible for the question to apply to his whole audience. Further, these noises are sound functions that, though without words, do carry discreet connotations and meanings. The hornes here a synecdoche for the hunters themselves blow recheats to signal the beginning of the hunt and then blow the deaths, which signal the end of the hunt (OED n). Given the context of this poem, a reader would assume that the death signaled would be the entrapment and damnation of a soul, or hart. This interpretation depends on the interpretation of aural performance; in order to acquire meaning, the readers must heare the sounds and understand what their performance
148 means. Since these sounds signaled the beginning or e nd of a hunt, the fact that the audience can hear them might also illicit a panicked reaction. Because they are prey for the hunters, the closing of the pack might mean their own death via sin. Since it is this death that Quarles is warning them about, t he fear and panic this question elicits helps the poem to succeed in its purpose. Quarles continues to emphasize the dangerous nature of these hunters in a series of short, swift questions about thinfernall Nimrods hollow? / The lawlesse Purliews? and t he Game they follow? (6 8). The rapidity of the questions increases the pace of the poem, because he does not pause to answer them. The expectation exists that the reader will be able to hear this noise, and the swift pace of the poem here at the beginnin g recalls the swiftness of the beginning and end of the hunt. Quarles uses this short, staccato structure to move the poem quickly, from start to finish so that the reader arrives at the most obvious association between pictura and life. However, the ass ociation between the life of the pictura and the life of the world is made most blatant in the two rhetorical qua estion e s that finish this section of the poem: Beholder, say, / Ist not well done? Seemes not an emlous strife / Betwixt the rare cut pictur e, and the life (12 14)?8 This direct address to the reader reconfirms his or her participation in the poem. More importantly, the use of the term emlous which means to be desirous of imitating to describe the strife that exists between life and the rare cut picture emphasizes the reciprocal if not wholly integrated relationship Quarles wants to create between the two. Seeing this relationship will help the readers apply this meditation to the community that they live in; hopefully they will re cognize the snares and sorrows for what they are, traps of death and hell. 8 These rhetorical quaestiones are dialogical speech acts in the Bakhtinian sense. They represent an engagement between the reader, author, and picture. See M.M. Bakhtins The Dialogic Imagination for a basic definition of dialogical speech acts ( 44).
149 As an emblematist, Quarles is not willing to leave his readers full understanding to chance after all, what if they answered all the questions with no. Here, Quarles use of the rhetorical device hypophora also indicates the way in which the audience is expected to read the text. The term derives from either a combination of the Greek hypos with phorein meaning to carry under or from hyponoiahypos combined with noia denoting under -meaning where the latter is often a synonym for allegoria or allegory (Whitman 265).9 Either derivation implies a need to look beneath the surface of the questions, and, by extension, the surface of the pictura. This expectation and device allow Quarles to ask questions that like those contained in the fourteen opening lines are designed to involve the reader in the interpretation of the pictura and to guide their meditations before the reader is taken to the battery of quaestiones arranged in pa irs. For example, Quarles addresses the reader, Poore soule! How art thou hurried to and fro? / Where canst thou safely stay? Where safely go? (25 26). Here, Quarles chooses to use a version of parabasis or direct address, to emphasize the rhetorical qu estion. Though this parabasis seems to call for the readers reaction, Quarles immediately gives negative answers to both questions. The soul can neither safely stay, because if stay, these hot -mouthed Hounds are apt to tear thee, nor can it go because, if go, the snares enclose, the nets ensnare thee; neither fate is an optimal one for a Christian, which Quarles is aware of (27 28). Within this line, we also see the close attention to structure that critics like Ros emo nd Tuve have attributed to Early M odern poets in the use of snare as both a noun and a verb ( Elizabethan 27).10 This synecdoche serves to emphasize the pervasive nature of those traps down to the very structure of 9 John Whitman traces this association and notes that Until the first century BC, the word hyponoia, under sense, was used to designate that which was meant (the philosophic meaning), as opposed to that which was said (the literal meaning) (265). I am aware of the difficulties of properly defining allegory, and I do not have the space to enter that debate given the limits of this project. 10 Rosemary Freeman notes that this anaphora is depicted within the pictura by a small, almost insignificant spi der (121).
150 the poem, just as the anaphora emphasizes it on a rhetorical level. The st ructure reinforces the argument of the text that such snares are located everywhere. The next pair of questions moves the emphasis to the dangers of the worldly community. First, Quarles asks what good in this bad world has powr tinvite thee / A willin g Guest? wherein can earth delight thee; these questions directly address the fact that the audience has the potential to be a willing participant (29 30). However, Quarles answer to these questions, that her pleasures are but Itch; Her wealth, but ca res, emphasizes his disbelief that the world can hold pleasure (which I examine in A Mystical Repast and Hope of Heaven, Fear of Earth; 3132).11 Quarles uses anaphora to highlight where the snares, or cares, lie and what they are for his audiences il lumination. He sets ten lines up for this anaphora with the phrase Snares at the beginning of every statement. Each line contains two statements separated by a semi -colon; for instance, Snares in thy substance; / Snares attend thy want (34). This repet ition accelerates the pace of the poem and highlights the implication that all of life, both the internal Snares [that] lie within thy heart and the external Snares without, is surrounded by them (42). However, the type association with David cannot be complete if Quarles leaves off with this depressing catalogue of the hopeless, trapladen nature of life, because David, his model, is redeemed. The psalm that Quarles quotes as the inscriptio concludes on the hopeful note that God shows unfailing kindness to his anointed (18:51). Further, he must include a prayer in order to maintain a meditative structure. Therefore, the poem itself concludes with the hopeful prayer that Great God of Harts, the worlds sole sovraigne Ranger, Preserve thy Deere, and let my soule be bles In thy safe Forrest, where I seeke for rest: 11 Chapters 3 and 4.
151 Then let the Hell -hounds roare; I fear no ill; Rouze me they may, but have no powr to kill. (46 50) Obviously, this prayer continues the hunting conceit we see throughout the poem; Quarles is fond of using this conceit as a metaphor for the relationship between God, his worshippers/the audience, and the minions of Satan. The pun on harts as hearts or deer allows Quarles to emphasize the place of the Christian, or Hart, as the hunted thing, or game throughout the poem (7). By calling on God as the sovraigne Ranger Quarles indicates to whom these hunted Harts that make up his audience should look for help. This prayer does two things. It completes the meditative structure of the poem and it concludes with the same note of triumph as Davids psalm does, in that the hell -hounds have no powr to kill. The last two lines of the prayer also fully determine the emphasis between the snares depicted in the poem and pictura and the real wor ld. Nothing about the prayer points back to the pictura or the souls displayed there Instead, it addresses the hell -hounds of the world, the snares that precede it. In short, the end of the poem moves the idea of Type from the physical woodcut into the metaphysical type and the world it inhabits. The metapoetic nature of the poem has done its job in connecting the subject matter of the text to the world of the speaker. This transition more fully links the less metapoetic nature of the epigram and the acc ompanying quotes from St. Ambrose and Savonarola.12 Finally, the use of the hunting conceit may reveal more clearly the association between the type, David, and the figures in the pictura. Rather than representing Bathsheba, the feminized figure in the bac kground could represent the hunted soul versus the trapped flesh of the dominant figura The feminization of the soul is something that occurs often in metaphysical poetry, for example in Donnes Metempsychosis. I would argue that the trapped figura in t he foreground 12 It should perhaps be noted that the accompanying quotes seem to define what, precisely, worldly snares are primarily gluttony and lust in a way that the poem does not (Quarles 159). It only explains within the anaphora w here they can be found. I develop Quarles investigation of these snares more fully in A Mystical Repast.
152 can represent flesh for two reasons. Looking at Figure 5 1, we can see that the figura is reaching for what appears to be a roast fowl of some sort, and scattered beside the fowl is a flask like object and a pair of goblets.13 While such objec ts are not mentioned in the text itself, I would argue that they represent the fleshly snares, that Savonarola outlines as In eating, he sets before us Gluttony; In generation, luxury; In labour, sluggishnesse; In correcting, anger; In honour, pride; In the heart, he sets evill thoughts; In the mouth, evill words; In actions, evill workes; when awake, he moves us to evil actions; when asleep, to filthy dreams. (Quarles 159). As I have discussed, Quarles sets up similar dichotomous relationships in his a naphora in order to describe where such snares can be found. The placement of objects representing at minimum gluttony and luxury within a snare ties the structure of the text, the pictura and the accompanying quotes together more obviously than a sur face, or non allegoric, reading would allow. Reinforcing these ties is the position of the ensnared figura reaching for the objects. His posture reflects the meaning of both quotations by St. Ambrose, that the reward of honours, the height of power, the delicacies of diet, and the beauty of a harlot are the snares of the Devill and that whilest thou seekest pleasures, thou runnest into snares, for the eye of harlot is the snare of the Adulterer. The skeleton that is closing the snare may represent not o nly the physical death and corruption of the flesh, but also the physical representation of the souls ensnarement.14 Given that the bulk of the other picturae have as Hltgen points out a figure that represents the Amor Divinus and the Amor Humanus, it m akes sense that here, the figura that still runs free could be the soul that is chased by the hunters and temptations of the world. 13 Alternatively, the objects could be read as the ciborium and the chalice used in the Roman Catholic communion ceremony. This reading places an indictment on the potentially worthless nature of such communion because the items are located within the closing trap. Further, this association is early evidence of Quarles firm stance as an Anglican and Kings man, which I address briefly in the introduct ion. 14 Recall my discussion of the tensions between body and soul in Chapter 4: Hope of Heaven, Fear of Earth. This tension comes from the bodys physical wants and its corrupt attachment to the earth and the souls desire to be fed by and return to comm union with God.
153 Unlike the immediately metapoetic and obviously didactic nature of The Sorrows, the twelfth emblem of Book 4 is not as apprehensive about its own constructed nature. Instead, Quarles concerns himself with the expression of his language as it moves the quest of the speaker and by extension the reader forward. Quarles persona has spent the entire poem leading the reader on a search for the Beloved, here representing the nature of God or Christ.15 The quest is a version of that found in the Canticle of Canticles 3:3, Have you seene him whom my soule loveth? When I had past a little fro them, then I found him, I took hold o n him, and left him not, (Have You Seen) which also serves as the inscriptio to the poem (Quarles 229). The Canticle of Canticles was considered one of the most allegorically charged books of the Old Testament, and is often used in emblem and emblematic poetry; therefore, Quarles is able to turn it into a discussion not only about the souls hunt for God, but also, in the last stanzas, an attempt to describe the feelings that finding the beloved rouses within the seeking soul. However, in the last line o f the sixth stanza, the speaker addresses a problem that speaks to the limited abilities of language to describe the ineffable. He questions, but who can presse those heights, that cannot be exprest (42). Here, we see the possible prefiguration of a post modern, post -structural linguistic commonplace, that words cannot adequately convey or serve the purpose that Roman Jakobson or A.J. Greimas outlined for them; additionally, the failure of language to describe the ineffable nature of God is a common theme in Christian ideology, the via negativa of defining God, in that he is all that humanity is not (OED via n. 3b). This definition via the negative 15 The association of Christ as lover was a common one in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Quarles here draws on the same type of sacred parody we saw earlier in Southwell. This conjunction enables us to think of parodies as metapoe tic forms. Though they do not always consciously call attention to their reconstructed nature, the act of deliberately adapting one form to use for another requires metapoetic awareness of both the writer and the reader. Otherwise, the reader will not be a ble to engage the poem fully.
154 comparison is an extension of the inexpressibility topos that Quarles deals with here.16 For his readers, the basically inexpressible nature of God combines with the ineffectiveness of language in both the text and the pictura This movement from didacticism to inexpressibility may be one of the reasons for Quarles more general didacticism. After all, if God is inexpressible and ineffable, how can an author be sure of fulfilling the educational requirement for good poetry? First, the poem opens with a lament about the speakers inability to find or reach Christ as Lover.17 The speaker does not ask if he or she is looking in the wrong places like the speaker of the preceding emblem, I Will Rise, and Go About in the City, and Will Seeke Him My Soule Loveth: I Sought Him, but I Sound Him Not (I Will Rise).18 Rather the speaker of Have You Seen inquires How has my unregarded language vented / The sad Tautologies of lavish passion (8 9).19 The term unregarded as it describes language introduces the concern that if God is ineffable, can He regard, or look upon, the speaker, especially if the language used to call on Him is based in the sad Tautologies of lavish passion. In this instance, the Tautologies of lavish passion refer to a widely used technique of using parody to turn the phrases of secular love poetry into sacred love poetry .20 However, this momen t of mockery does not stop Quarles 16 In a critical essay on the medieval poem The Pearl, Ann Chalmers Watts defines this topos as not that the speaker fails, though the speaker does, but that any tongue fails (27). For Quarles though, it is not the fault of the tongue, but the flaw of the speaker that is most distressing. 17 The association with Christ as lover is a common one during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. This association is one of the reasons that the Canticle of Canticles has been alleg orized as the search of the soul for Christ, and this allegorization led to the sacred parodies of the Petrarchan love sonnets ( Flinker 2930). 18 Also based on a verse from Canticle of Canticles, which I elaborate on in Members Incorporate. 19 Full Ins criptio Have Y ou S eene Him Whom My Soule L oveth? When I Had P ast a L ittle from Them, then I F ound H im, I T ook H old on H im, and L eft him N ot 20 During the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, poets including Donne, Southwell, Quarles, and Herbert co opted the literary styles of secular poetry, particularly Petrarchan sonnets, to address the sacred love of a believer for God and Christ. This adaptation enables a comparison between the tw o types of love and love poetry. Earlier, I addressed more closely Southwells sacred love parodies A Phansie Turned to a Sinners Complaynt and What Joy to Live.
155 from using such familiar allegories as the turtledoves loyalty to express the quest and feelings of a persons soul towards God. He directs his readers to Mark, how the widowed Turtle, having lost The faithfull partner of her loyall Heart, Stretches her feeble wings from Coast to Coast, Haunts evry path; thinks evry shade21 does part Her absent love, and her. (11519) This continual faithfulness and searching connect the metaphor of the Turtle -dove to the quest within this chapter of the Canticles. Further, the identification of Christ as the beloved being searched for is completed in the idea of the Holy Spirit, the dimension of God that is the most inexpressible, which is often depicted in art as a dove. 22 But, the use of the turtle dove in secular love poetry like Shakespeares The Phoenix and the Turtle is also wide -spread. While this metaphor is appropriate as a way of describing the connection between the speaker and the divine, it is complicated by its associa tion with the profane. This turtledove hunts from presumably mortal coast to coast, but, because of the divine nature of her absent Love, the hunt does not come to fruition, and the hunter falls into the nonverbal, as she bewailes her everlasting widow -head (21). The verb bewailes indicates a move from language that is merely unregarded to un language, or language that is non verbal, but still expressive and performative. This slip into the non -verbal highlights the problem of communication tha t is touched upon earlier in the poem. The speaker asks about his unregarded language, in other words, his plea that has been ignored (8). Unregarded, the participial adjective for the verb regard 21 See my discussion of shade/ umbra and allegory in footnote 16 of Chapter 4: Hope of Heaven, Fear of Earth (126). 22 Here Quarles invests in third of the standard tripartite animal symbols for Christ, the dove (the others are the fish and the lamb). The idea of the dove comes from its association with Noah, wherein the dove goes a head to show that it is safe to leave the ark (Gen. 8:12). Further, the dove is associated with both Christ and the Holy Spirit when Jesus is baptized and the Holy Spirit descended in a shape like a dove upon him (Luke 3:22).
156 combined with the negative prefix un implies a non seeing of the language. This slide into the unregarded implies an almost deliberate move on the part of the audience or God not to hear or acknowledge the speaker and creates the underlying fear and tension in that neither the reader nor God is listeni ng/reading/paying attention (OED ppl. a., prefix1 8). Unlike the believer in the epigram, who cried out and was heard, this speaker claims that How oft have I complained without compassion from man or God (11). On the surface this appears to be just the fear that no one is listening, and the prayer/poem will not fulfill its purpose either to praise God Quarles stated intent in Book 1s The Invocation or its didactic purpose, to illumine the behaviors of its more mundane audience.23 However, the con clusion of the poem moves this fear from the realm of the unregarded solidly to the realm of the verbally inexpressible. In the latter stanzas of the poem, the speaker attempts to describe the joys of heaven and the feelings evoked by proximity to God. Us ing a line break, Quarles cuts off the statement and how my ravisht brest, leaving the reader to wonder what, exactly, the ravisht brest does or feels (41). Like Dante at the end of Paradiso, Quarles adopts the position that such places and feelings ar e indescribable as he questions, but who can presse those heights, that cannot be exprest?24 Unlike the rhetorical questions of The Sorrows, Quarles does not use hypophora to answer this one. The last stanza of the poem describes the everlasting nature of the relationship between the speaker and the Beloved. The audience is left to wonder if a God and a place that cannot be described can receive the prayers sent them. In the penultimate emblem poem, Emblem 14, Book IV, Quarles is again concerned with t he ability of mere men to describe the Courts of Heaven, to which their prayers must ascend. 23 Recall our discussion of this poem from my chapter Members Incorporate. 24 In Paradiso Canto XXXIII Dante lapses into the ineffability topos and the failure of language when he has to describe God (5557).
157 Based on Psalm 84:1, the poem attempts to describe How Amiable are Thy Tabernacles, O God of Hosts (How Amiable) ( Inscriptio ). However, within the first six lines of the poem, the speaker is forced to acknowledge Howe far beyond the height / Of puzzled Quils, or the obtuse conceit / Of flesh and blood, or the too flat reports / Of mortall tongues, are thy expreslesse Courts (6 8). The text does not slip int o the realm of un language nor does it have the intensely didactic opening of The Sorrows Instead, it attempts to use language to express the expreslesse. 25 W hy? In two lines, Quarles dismisses those instruments at his disposal: quils conceit / O f flesh and blood, and mortall tongues. These three things are the components of written performance. Obviously, the quill is the mechanical instrument that is used to produce text s ; such an object is a requisite part of the ability to produce or per form the act of writing. It is not necessary for aural communication The personification of the quil through the use of the adjective puzzled gives autonomy to the device and simultaneously takes it away; puzzled q uils cannot pen the wonders of heaven. A further interpretation of the quil is that it stands as a synecdoche for the writer, an extension of the writers self, and therefore, its puzzlement also extends to the writer. This interpretation of the quil is suggested by the punning use of conceit in the next phrase of the poem, the conceit of flesh and blood. L ike the puzzled quil this phrase suggests both the act of writing and the problems of human communication. Rhetorically, the term conceit refers to an extended metaphor within a text, one that use[s] multiple logical bases, upon all of which the comparison obtains in order to entertain and explain something (T uve Elizabethan 264). The implication here is that no conceit of human 25 E.R. Curtius discusses the inexpressibility topos in European Literature and the Latin Middle Ages (159162) He precedes Watts in defining the use of topos during the period, though Watts provides a more indepth application of it.
158 creation suffices to reveal the court of God. H owever, the term conceit is also carries the meaning of conception, thought and can have a connotation of vanity (OED n 1 and n 6). Combined with the terms flesh and blood, here representing humans, the implication is that only vanity or pride woul d conceive that human thought could convey the courts of God properly. Further, the description of the conceit as obtuse emphasizes the stubbornness of man and the potential impenetrability of any rhetorical conceit that attempts to describe heaven. Fu rther, the use of the adjectival obtuse from the Latin obtusus emphasizes the blunt, dull, stupid[ity] of human understanding and ability; as a rhetorical device, such a conceit would fail as a descriptor (OED etymology of obtuse). The final phrase in this section refers to the too flat reports / O f mortall tongues (7 8). These too flat reports also refer to both the acts of written and verbal communication. Printed descriptions are literally flat (one dimensional) reports, but the adjective flat also adds a sense that the reports are u nrelieved by conditions or qualifications ; absolute, downright, unqualified, plain; peremptory (OED a.II.6.a). In short, these reports are inadequate to describe glory of the expreslesse Court (Quarles 9) Quarles doubled examination of both written and verbal communication continues with the phrase mortall tongues; combined with flat reports, this phrase indicates both the physical tongue of the speaker, which lacks the ability to convey a sense of t he courts, and the paucity of mortall languages or tongues. These latter speech acts are bound to die when their producers do. Such death ridden acts stand in contrast with the eternal, celestial languages of the spheres often invoked by metaphysical poe ts. This reference also brings forward a negative, or reverse, type, that of the workers on the Tower of Babel, who said, Go to, let us build us a city a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven, and let us make us a name (Gen. 11: 4).26 In the Judeo Chris tian 26 James J. Paxson gives the Old Testament type of Absalom as an example of a classic Biblical coun tertype (371).
159 tradition, it is this prideful, self -glorifying act that leads to the chaos of multiple tongues, when the Lord did there confound the language of all the earth (Gen. 11: 9). This confounding is part of the inevitable problem of mortall tongues, le aving all of them inadequate to illustrate the heavens. Thus, it would seem that none of the poets physical, mental, or rhetorical devices might be capable of expressing the expreslesse. Further, Quarles asks God to excuse my bold attempt, and pardon me / For shewing Sense, what Faith alone should se e (11 12). This request closes the first stanza of the poem and uses a play on the idea of sense and see to deal with the physical impossibilities of heaven. He has just emphasized both the kinetic and linguistic difficulties of human perception, but now asks that they be excused so that he can make an attempt to introduce the limited faculty of sense to sight that Faith alone should see and realize instantly, silently without recourse to physical des cription. However, the rest of the poem does seem limited and predictable with Quarles using Biblical descriptions from Revelation for example, the pearly gates and lavish descriptions of earthly gems such as saphyrs, chrysolites, and diamonds (Qu arles 16, 24, 26, 28, Rev. 21:21). Further, these descriptions are not reflected in the accompanying pictura (Figure 5 3) In the pictura, it appears that the senses can observe the expreslesse Courts (Quarles 8). The foregrounded figura is again positio ned so that the audience cannot observe its face; instead the artist positioned him/her in a way that directs the eyes of an audience to the top of the pictura To answer the question of what pictures want, it seems that this one wants to do what the text can only attempt (Mitchell 28). By shifting the focus away from the figura, Quarles reorients the reader and speaker away from themselves and refocuses them on heaven and the future. The scene in the upper space of the pictura seems very typical of the d escriptions of heaven from
160 Revelation, an odd choice, considering that the inscriptio comes from Psalms. For my purposes, the most salient feature of the pictura is the way that two cherubim are holding up two curtains, revealing the figure of God or Chris t. These curtains are reminiscent of the bed curtains in I Will Rise, which had concealed the divine figura from the seeker. Paul claims that their [the believers] minds were blinded: for until this day remaineth the same vail untaken away in the readi ng of the old testament; which vail is done away in Christ (2 Cor. 3: 14). The upturned face and lifted arms of the figura implies that the veil has been lifted, and the wonders of heaven are revealed to the physical senses via the Faith in Christ that Pa ul requires and Quarles alludes to (Quarles 12). Because the relationship between reader and figura is implicit in most of the poems, the proposition of this text is that the heavens can be glimpsed through mortall tongues and puzzled Quils despite the worries of the first lines (6 8). As we can see, Quarles does not rely on overt didacticism to control the reading of the text or its pictura. Unfortunately, the lack of didacticism separates the verba of the text from the res of the pictura Subsequently w e also see here the difficulty of allegory itself : its tendency toward obliqueness. As Thomas A. Maresca, points out all critics studying allegory tend to employ a common vocabulary of about half a dozen key words trope, scheme, figure, metonomy, analo gy themselves ill -defined (248). The lack of standardization with the definitions of the mere vocabulary of allegory further emphasizes the obscuration that we see in Quarles use of allegory. However, the use of allegory and rhetoric renders a potential impossibility for fully reading Quarles imagery; Maresca argues that the term allegory, with all its attendant confusions, enacts something of what allegory is: that it points to meanings apprehensible but not necessarily definable or translatable (248) This definition of allegory works particularly well for a discussion of communication, particularly poetic communication. In his attempts to both
161 entertain and delight his audience, Quarles must wrestle with ideas and images that make it difficult to fulfill Puttenhams six points: analogia, taxis, syntomia, synthesis, kyrilogia, and tropos regulations for all good utterances as set down by the ancients; unfortunately, he acknowledges at once that the failure of these techniques is that all this being by them [the ancients] very well conceived, there remained a greater difficulty to know what this proportion, volubility, good construction, and the rest were (Puttenham 233).27 Puttenham and many other sixteenth and seventeenth-century critics attempt to define these terms, to set out definitely what will make an art out of English Poesy, as well as there is of the Latin and Greek (Puttenham 193). Therefore, Quarles and the other poets of his day are burdened with the expectations of their audiences ab out what poetry should be. Further complicating matters for Quarles, at least in the emblems, is his investment in Christianity and religion. As I have previously discussed, Quarles must deal with the inexpressibility topos and the failure of language to e xpress the nature of God. These complications are dealt with in ways that may seem arbitrary; for example, the use of the trope quaestio to highlight aspects of the pictura to illuminate the meaning of the text and vice versa. On the other hand, the use of the pictura in emblematics may be a way of dealing with the inexpressible nature not only of allegory, but of language itself. Following in Rosemary Freemans footsteps in an attempt to expand the place of the emblem books in Renaissance culture, Michael Bath argues that they are dependent on a common belief [system] (5). In drawing on that system, emblematists like Quarles can attempt to conquer the problems of language and communication. However, as we have seen in Quarles work, doubt remains. 27 Respectively: proportion; volubility and tunablity; brevity of composition; good construction; sound proper & natural speech; lively and stirring (Puttenham 233).
162 The la st two poems in the fifth and last book of Emblemes (1635) do not return to the overt didacticism of the earlier work, nor does The Farewell set itself apart by special anxiety over its ability to communicate meaning to the audience.28 However, Quarles anxiety over the question of whether or not God chooses to hear prayers resurfaces at least briefly in the ultimate poem of the fifteen poem structure of Book V Emblemes (1635). A superficial reading of Make Haste My Beloved, and Be Like the Roe or the Yo ung Hart Upon the Mountains of Spices (Make Haste) reveals little more than a sacred parody of the seventeenth -century metaphysical love poems; yet, the tense question art thou so easly wood? So apt to heare / The frantick language of my foolish feare complicates that superficiality (13 14). The questions implicit here are not for the reader, as The Farewell at this point is to God. Instead, they express the foolish fear that God is not apt to heare the language of his followers. No answers to t his question about whether or not God listens are given within the poem. Yet, the pictura seems to answer calmly: yes, God hears. The scrolls and words move up to heaven smoothly while the figura of Amor Humanus sits and thinks (See Figure 5 5). The pictura conveys no sense of a frantick pace, nor does it indicate that the words will not be heard. They move smoothly through the parted clouds; here, the clouds represent the veil separating man from God, drawn aside to allow the prayers of the writer and his audience pass through. It seems that at least in the pictura Quarles fears have been calmed. Though the hieroglyphs within Quarles sequel, the emblems within Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1638 ) are not generally overtly concerned with either th eir production or with the 28 Like The Invocation that opens Emblemes (1635), The Farewell is sepa rate from the standard fifteen emblems that otherwise make up the books of the text. Quarles emphasizes this separation by giving them titles, rather than the numbers that signal the other poems.
163 potential pitfalls of the mortall tongue. 29 Still, the first of the hieroglyphs does raise the question that was investigated in the earlier Emblemes : the question of the writers ability to guide the reader without divine aid The requirement for audience improvement is one that haunts Quarles throughout both works. Unlike the opening poem of Emblemes which seems confident in his ability, with divine aid, to praise God and improve his fellow man, the opening hieroglyph is rem iniscent of the distressed inexpressibility of How Amiable.30 Rather than a quil that is merely puzzled, and, which, in the end, seems to do some of what it sets out to do, Quarles here refers to himself as a feeble Quill.31 The adjectival feeble i mplies that his abilities [lack] strength, weak, infirm (OED a.1). This shift from a confident opening to a weak one may suggest his discomfort with the requirement for honesty and didacticism that informs his poetry and that of his contemporaries. Fur ther, he associates Hieroglyphikes as a second service of Emblemes (Quarles 1). In the address to the Reader, he instructs them to Fall too; and much good may it do you, with the last instruction implying that he believes it can do them good (1). Howev er the presentation of himself as the feeble quill shakes that belief, and he begs that And here, thou Great Originall of Light, Whose error -chacing Beames do unbenight The very soule of Darkness, and untwist My feeble Quill; Reflect thy sacred Rayes U pon these lines, that they may light the wayes 29 Written as a sequel, or what Quarles refers to as a seco nd service of the Emblemes (1635); however, the two texts are published together from 1639 onward. 30 See above my Chapter 1: Members Incorporate. 31 In Quarles use of quill to represent will, or ability, we see a convergence of R.A. Shoafs juxtology and the classical rhetorical tropes of acoustic convergence, such as paronomasia, syllepsis and hom oi otele uton. The former tells us that the two objects, quill and will, are like. The relationship between the two is implied in the sound of the word quill, because will never appears in the poem; by basing this pun on the last letters of each word, Quarles forms a hom oi otele uton. Similarly, the extended pun of this quill[s] inability works with the inability of the will to write the words. Fina lly, the association between quill and the words that surround it like feeble in line 19is a form of syllepsis in which the adjectives describing quill also describe the will.
164 That lead to thee; So guide my heart, my hand, That I may doe, what others understand; Let my heart practice what my hand shall write. (19 26) This plea echoes in some ways the structural choices that Quarle s makes within The Invocation of Emblemes (1635). Here, as there, he invokes God as his muse, rather than embracing the classical muses. By addressing God as the Great Originall of Light, he is evoking God as the Word that creates that Light and ties h is work to that creation, much as his text seeks to recreate the world around him (Gen. 1.1, John 1.1).32 Quarles is not confident that he can improve the world through what my hand shall write alone, and thus fears that this second dish may grow cold. This passage also combines Quarles pervious interest in God as light with his goal of improvement. The error -chacing Beames are to clean Darkness on two levels.33 The phrase do unbeknight / The very soule of Darkness can be read as the speakers s oul, removing night from it in order to untwist the feeble Quill which is Quarles gift. It is also the soul of Darkness, of evil. When we read this set of phrases in conjunction with the texts opening lines, we see how this could be Quarles s oul. In the opening lines, Quarles claims that man is mans ABC: there is none that can / Read God aright, unless he first spell Man (1 2). Therefore, Quarles purpose must be two-fold; his readers must understand man and God. In order to spell God in his poetry, he must also be able to read man. Clearly, his soul must be untwist[ed] so that he can create turns, or topos, to allow his audience to read God and man within his work. The mere fact of this prayer shows that he at least here doubts his abi lity to perform these twists unaided. 32 While Genesis 1:1 simply states that God said let there be light: a nd there was light, it is in the Christian New Testament that John refers to God as the Word that creates the world and the light. Quarles terminology evokes both. 33 See my discussion of Lighten Mine Eyes, Lord in Chapter 4: Hope of Heaven, Fear of Ea rth.
165 This interpretation of the soule as Quarles is further supported by the next request that thou [God] assist / My feeble Quill; Reflect thy sacred Rayes / Upon these lines; that they may light the wayes / That lea d to thee (22 25). If the darkness and the clouds of Ignorance have been cleared from his soul, then Quarles can spell Man and read God (22). Only the illuminating light of God can make his lines the paths to heaven. This idea of the sacred Ray es and the way that lines of poetry can lead to heaven emphasize Quarles Reformed stand and his investment in his times.34 Further, Quarles anxiety about his ability to fulfill the prescriptions of good poetry, that it serves to do, what others unders tand, can be seen in these questions (26). Though Quarles is addressing this question from the position of a writer engaged with God and audience, it is similar to the anxiety that Herbert later produced in The Windows, when he asks Lord, how can man p reach thy eternal word (1). Like his predecessor Quarles, Herbert moves to an assumption that God can illuminate his words for an attentive or at least captive audience. However, Herberts conclusion is that God can combine doctrine and life, colours and light in one, and thereby make use of even the brittle, crazy glass that is man (The Windows 2, 11). While Quarles does have faith that God can light the wayes that lead to him, he does not seem too confident that God will send those sacred ray s to this medium. This hieroglyph does not end on a confident note about its ability to convey meaning through the mist or darkness of the human soul (33, 21). Instead, he ends it with a plea and a directive. In the last two lines of the first stanza, we see this doubt. The last line of that stanza responds with the plea that God would let my heart 34 Lowell C. Green argues that the widespread creation of and support by the states of schools during the sixteenthcentury depended primarily on the need for literacy emphasized by Luther and Melanchthon (117). Green notes that the emphasis upon mass education was the application of the Protestant principle that every baptized person, as a priest before God, must be able to read his own prayer book, Bible, and catechism (118). With the rise of literacy rates stemming from the educational reforms of t he sixteenth century, readers like those in Quarles audience would have recognized the importance of written and spoken communication to their place in the world. This interest also invests Quarles in the Protestant poetics of Barbara K. Lewalski (6).
166 practice what my hand shall write (Quarles 27 ). We see here an echo of John Halls statement that one of the reasons he wrote The Divine Meditations was t o give himself a standard others would hold him to ( Hall Dedicatory Epistle to The Arte of Meditation ). 35 The last stanza of the poem opens with his doubt writ plain, as the poem stands and ends he is a Tapour wanting light (28). It is this unburnt tap er that can be seen in the foreground of the accompanying pictura. At this point, the reader might suspect that, in order for the rest of the poems to fulfill their duty to illuminate, entertain, and improve their readers, the candle must be lit. However, in this second stanza, Quarles reverses himself somewhat. While he does not deny the earlier interpretation that he cannot fulfill a poets purpose without God, he shifts his anxiety, and therefore the anxiety of the reader, to the consequences of having t he taper lit. He provides a meditation on what the light might mean by looking at the Greek admonition to know thy selfe which he describes as this golden Preceptcame down from heavns high Court (29 30).36 The golden nature and divine origin of thi s precept ties it into the error -chacing Beames that Quarles calls for in the preceding stanza (20). For this precept, Quarles claims the distinction of being (self -reflection) that lets man first spell Man, because the way to know thy selfe, is first to cast / Thy fraile beginning, Progresse, and thy Last: / This is the Summe of Man (3537). Upon reading the Hieroglyphikes as a whole, the audience can see that this is the precept that will be explored throughout: the examined life of man. Though the end result of this process is to know that glorious, that presumptuous thing, calld Man and thereby to read God, it also reveals the flaw: that ere he had life, estated in his Urne, / A nd markt for death; by nature borne to burne ( 45 46). In short, we are born but to die, and that is the lesson of know thy selfe (29). 35 See my discussion of Joseph Hall in Chapter 1: Members Incorporate. 36 Authors italics. Educated in the classics, Quarles would most likely have been familiar with both the Greek and Latin gnothi seauton versions of this command. The concept of self reflection underlies the principles of meditation, particularly those of the Jesuits from whom Quarles takes his pictura (Pilarz 251).
167 And that is the note the poem ends on: a somewhat confident idea that man can come to know man, but that the knowledge leads only to the ability to confront his own mortality. Such a reading is borne out in the line itself. Because of the relationship between the golden Precept, the error -chacing Beames of the great Originall of Light, the poetic expression of mortality may be the one thing that Quarles is confident that he can write about when they pierce the Clouds of Ignorance (29,20, 19, 22). Quarles placement of the tapour standing in this Urne can be read as the unlit spirit, waiting for the divine spark of self knowledge, and the body, the Urne that contains that spirit until it is interred, presumably burned down, in the Urne of the grave (38). Of course, a Tapour wanting light is not living, and this need for light to live also invokes the conception of inspire from Genesis, where God breathes into, or inspires, Adam with a soul (OED, Gen. 2:7). Quarles confirms this reading of soul as light when he states parenthetically that his soule gave light / To his vile substance, confirming the divinely inspired nature of the light that Quarles has ask ed for (43 44). He is asking, then, two things that God ensoule his poetry, and through his poetry, What his hand shall write, himself and his audience, that my heart practice it (27). It is only through the process that Quarles conceives the ability t o know thyself so that a man may spell Man and, thereby, read God (29, 2). This desire to understand and to know remains an anxious one. The anxiety is born from Quarles doubt about his ability to illuminate through a Mist and the inevitable end o f such illumination, which is as Quarles closes the attached Epigram with that he that begins to live, begins to die (H. I. 33; Epigram I.4). I read this mist as a barrier to a human understanding of the divine as comparable to that which we see in Pau ls letter to the Corinthians. Paul tells his audience that for now we see through a glass, darkly; this statement becomes one of the principles of allegory, requiring deep reading of the
168 world around us, including the words put before us (1 Cor. 13:12). Quarles is asking for the clearing of that barrier by the divine. But that clearness can sometimes only come with death or spiritual maturity. As I have shown, Quarles was not alone in his anxiety, either as a Christian or as a poet. Familiar with contemp orary critical texts like George Puttenhams English Poetics and Rhetoric and Philip Sidneys A Defense of Poetry, it was inevitable that he should engage in the metapoetic practices of his day. However, as Herbert later will, Quarles casts this problem in poetics as a paramount religious one.
169 Figure 5 1. Emblem 9 Book 3: The Snares of Hell Compassed Me About. Emblemes (1635) and Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1638) With permission of The English Emblem Book Project. http://emblem.libraries.psu.edu/qu156_57.htm
170 Figure 5 2. Emblem 12, Book 4: Have You Seene Him Whom My Soule Loveth? When I Had Past a Little fro Them, then I Found Him, I Took Hold of Him, and Left Him Not. Embleme s (1635) and Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1638) With permission of The English Emblem Book Project. http://emblem.libraries.psu.edu/qu228_29.htm
171 Figure 5 3. Book 5 Emblem 14. How Ami able Are Thy Tabernacles. Emblemes (1635) and Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1638) With permission of The English Emblem Book Project. http://emblem.libraries.psu.edu/qu296_97.htm
172 Figur e 5 4. Book 5 Emblem 15. Make Haste my Beloved, and Be Like the Roe or the Young Hart upon the Mountains of Spices. Emblemes (1635) and Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1638) With permission of The English Emblem Book Project. http://emblem.libraries.psu.edu/qu300_01.htm
173 Figure 5 5. Book 5. The Farewell. Emblemes (1635) and Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1638) With permission of The English Emblem Book Project. http://emblem.libraries.psu.edu/qu304_05.htm
174 Figure 5 6. Quarles, Francis. Pictura. Hierogliph I. Behold I was shapen in Inquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me. From Emblemes (1635) and Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1638). Ed. Karl Josef Hltgen and John Horden. Hildesheim: George Olms Verlag, 1993.
175 CHAPTER 6 QUARLES IN THE TWENT Y -FIRST CENTURY: CONCL USIONS AND FUTURE DIRECTIONS The goal of this project has been three -fold. Primarily, I have wa nted to demonstrate the aesthetic richness of Francis Quarles most popular and major works, Emblemes (1635) and Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1639). A secondary goal was to begin to trace what I along with John Wall saw as a unique and often neglecte d aspect of meditative poetry in general that it represented and promoted a thematically central communal impulse. By widening the critical scope of such poetry from strictly individual improvement to communal improvement, I believe we can derive deeper m eaning from the various forms of address, rejections and acceptances, and the potential for activity within each work. Further, I hope I have demonstrated that such an impulse fits into the highly metapoetic traditions of sixteenth and seventeenth century poetry, and that it highlights thus the pre -figurative tensions about the poets ability to communicate with audiences, with self, and with God. Having explored various examples of these moments in Quarles work, an expanded analysis of Emblemes (1635) a nd Hieroglyphikes of the Life of Man (1639) will enable other areas of communal production, rejection, and communication in the future In addition to more expanded readings of Quarles emblem poetry, I intend to examine his incidental poetry, political wr itings, dramatic piece, and any correspondence to see if his definitions of community and his ways of dealing with it alter when both form and audience shift. How much of what he works through in the emblems particularly the anxiety explored in Confessin g Communication, is dependent on and due to the intricacies of the emblematic style? This examination will include a discussion about whether the idea of community differs based on intended audience. For example, I see a difference in the poems John Donne writes for limited circulation and the sermons he presents to wider audiences I believe these questions will lead to a deeper
176 understanding of the relationship between publishing and writing during the early -modern period when the ability to support ones elf as a professional writer began. While I have worked on the self -contained iconography and text, I note here in closing that I shall, of course, develop my examination of those problems for the period in general and the emblem medium in particular. Su ch an examination could include an expansion of this project or a separate project on emblematics. I think that the iconographic study of the pictura in emblems might be worth teasing out as part of the changing use and definition of allegoria from the end of the medieval period through the symbolic upheavals and revaluations of the Romantic period. The climax of the problem comes in early modern literary and dramatic representation. Therefore, this examination would be especially fruitful if it is extended to look at the word/ visual emblems and iconographies of the stage. I would work with, for example, the personified figure of Revenge that directs the action in Thomas Kyds The Spanish Tragedy the scenes at Glorias tomb and the false body at the Dukes murder in Thomas Middletons The Revengers Tragedy and transitional figures such as Moll Frith in Thomas Dekkar and Thomas Middletons The Roaring Girl. The implication for staging these kinds of secular scenes seems to depend on the same type of icono graphical investment that exists in emblem poetry; indeed, their visual rhetorics may be emblematic.1 For example, the Revenge character in The Spanish Tragedy is an emblem of the driving force of the play, the revenge of a ghost on those who killed him and forgot him. Revenge tells Andrea that here sit we down to see the mystery / and serve for Chorus in this tragedy, indicating that this figura and the ghost of Andrea remain on stage throughout the play (Kyd I.I.90 91). By giving the prologue and commenting (as the chorus) on the action, both characters serve to explain the circumstances of the seemingly senseless violence 1 This visual relationship has be en shown for Shakespeares iconography by critics such as Bridget Gellert in her investigation of The Iconography of Melancholy in the Graveyard Scene of Hamlet.
177 within the play. Like Quarles emblems, this action depends on a correspondence between text and picture/ staging in order to convey to the audience the authors intended meaning. Therefore, the emblematic quality of professional theater within the sixteenthand seventeenth -centuries stems from the same need to fully communicate with its audiences, i.e. the same need to build a new and particular kind of community that drives Quarles. I shall also continue developing my theory of community by interrogating more deeply the similarities and differences among how it is defined both rhetorically and practically in the span between the medi eval and early modern periods. Building on the historical and gender theoried programs of, say, Caroline Walker Bynum and Carolyn Dinshaw, and in combination with R.A. Shoafs psychoanalytically -derived theory of rhetorical likeness, I shall trace the crea tion of communities within chosen texts. I have already started a version of this project with Like Will To Like: Interior Likeness in Constructed Sibling Relationships in both Fulwell and Shakespeare.2 Much attention has been given to whether or not Shakespeare is like his contemporaries. Almost as much critical attention has been given to those whom he influenced and to those by whom he was influenced. However, I would argue that a significant potential conversation has been left out. At this juncture, no one has looked critically at the possibility that Shakespeare was influenced by the moral interludes of the 1550s. Though no concrete evidence exists at this juncture that Shakespeare saw any performances of these interludes, the probability that he d id not given the affluent nature of his family during his childhood and early youth is slim. In this paper, I argue that there are significant similarities in the use of the word like and its ability to describe character relationships in Ulpian Fulwell s Like Will to Like (1587) and William Shakespeares A Midsummer Nights Dream (15941596?) 2 Like Will to Like is a 1587 moral interlude by Ulpian Fulwell; the line Like will to like is presented repeatedly as the inevitable within The Prologue and the rest of the text (first appearance 6).
178 and Alls Well that Ends Well (16021606?). Specifically, I examine the way that many characters relationships are established and made clear based on similarities in speech and manner, literally like to like. The first sets of relationships I explore are those of constructed familial relationships based on inward likeness and amiability. Many of Shakespeares works examine the idea of homosocial friendships that a re as close as sibling relationships while in Fulwells Like Will to Like Nichol Newfangle chooses men to be brothers. These relationships often have a rhetorical dimension in that not only are the circumstances of their lives similar, but the two characte rs also speak in the same manner. It is significant that the two people participating in these relationships are not normally blood siblings, though they are occasionally cousins. In Like Will to Like I scrutinize the constructed sibling likeness of Raf e Roister and Tom Tospot as well as the thief brothers Cutbert Cutpurs and Pierce Pickpurs. In the works of Shakespeare where many of these examples exist I look at similar (though less criminal) relationships such as those between Helena and Hermia in A M idsummer Nights Dream and Diana and Helen in Alls Well that Ends Well However, Shakespeare develops versions of likeness beyond the scope of Fulwells criminal siblings. Fulwells characters remain unrepentant criminals, and their likeness leads to pro blems within the relationships. Contrarily, Shakespeare does redeem the character Bertram with the interrogation of Paroles and the wits of Helen and Diana. This redemption serves to set up a type of likeness that is not interrogated in Fulwells interlude This likeness is the likeness of lovers. While it is also an interior likeness despite exterior difference as the constructed sibling relationships we have looked at are Fulwell does not chose to address it. No female characters are written into Fulwell s play, which would make it difficult for him to examine this
179 sort of likeness. However, the next step in establishing a connection between Shakespeares work and the moral interludes is to look into other interludes for sexual and love likeness to see how they relate to that likeness in Shakespeares works.3 Another angle that needs to be investigated is the difference between the likeness of constructed sibling interiority and natural sibling interiority like that of the natural brothers of Shakespeares works, including, for example, the Lords Dumaine of Alls Well that Ends Well and the brothers of The Comedy of Errors. Both Shakespeares works and the moral interludes could be profitably examined for such connections. The constructed sibling angle could be expanded to look at the positive temporality of Celia and Rosalind in As You Like It and the negative temporality of Polixenes and Leontes in The Winters Tale Finally, the relationships between vice characters and those they corrupt could be looked a t in terms of constructed kinship with address to Falstaff and Prince Hal in I Henry I V as well as in the moral interludes. My research program in and beyond this project would demonstrate the connection between Shakespeare and the moral interludes. Flesh ing out this connection could result in new guidelines for a discussion of the concept of likeness in the dramatic works of the sixteenth century based in the presence of the communal impulse. Although the Tudor interlude somewhat complicates the time line for community construction in England, it continues a process that begins in literature at least with Chaucers The Canterbury Tales Developing these ideas widens the possible ways to read together Chaucer, Shakespeare, Quarles, and the generations of 3 I draw on the theory of likeness outline by R.A. Shoaf in Shakespeares Theatre of Likeness Shoaf makes the point that in literature, p articularly Shakespeare, humans learn by copying others, particularly exemplars (2) However, he argues that this copy l ikeness is complicated by the tensions of both potentiall y bad examples and by the division of the sexes (6). Using Shoafs theory that both the need to copy and the agony of sexual division must be dealt with, I see that communities are created here by likenesses that provide both exemplars andat this point ignore sexual division. I have explored only same sex pairs at this point, but I agree with Shoaf that Shakespeare is fully aware of the tensions that arise from a character/humans need to determine likeness
180 au thors after him and to expand their reading communities inside the academy and outside as well. Over the course of this project, I have demonstrated the importance of the impulse to create communities in works that have been styled as individually focused The combination of popularity and genre made Quarless work an ideal space to explore the communal impulse. The parameters of food, death, and communication illustrated the way that the impulse affected many areas of life. However, the connections betwee n writers as varied as Quarles, Southwell, and Herbert have shown that this impulse was not limited by literary genre or religious affiliation. Finally, in investigating the communal impulse in Quarles emblem poetry specifically, the potential methods of critiquing that genre have been expanded. Increasing the range of a genre potentially will benefit literary criticism as a whole by offering a different perspective for reading similar work in other periods like the medieval illuminations.
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193 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Randi Marie Smith graduated with the degree of Bachelor of Arts from Centenary College of Louisiana in May 2003. In 2005, she completed her masters degree at the University of Florida. During her time there, she worked on projects involving Dante Alighieri, George Herbert, and a series of Reformation poets. Miss Smith has also been involved with the Medieval and Early Modern Studies Center as a graduate fellow and was inducted into the Phi Kappa Phi Honors Society Miss Smith was also a recipient of a Graduate Teaching Award from the University of Florida Graduate School in 2008 2009 academic year. She will complete her doctorate with a concentration in Early Modern/Renaissance poetry in May 2009. Upon completion, she looks forward to continuing her work as a scholar and a teacher.