The Oxford Handbook of Holinshed's Chronicles

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2013-03-01
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press

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The Chronicles of England, Scotland and Ireland(1577, 1587), issued under the name of Raphael Holinshed, was the crowning achievement of Tudor historiography, and became the principal source for the historical writings of Spenser, Daniel and, above all, Shakespeare. While scholars have long been drawn to Holinshed for its qualities as a source, they typically dismissed it as a baggy collection of materials, lacking coherent form and analytical insight. This condescending verdict has only recently given way to an appreciation of the literary and historical qualities of these chronicles. TheHandbookis a major interdisciplinary undertaking which gives the lie to Holinshed's detractors, and provides original interpretations of a book that has lacked sustained academic scrutiny. Bringing together leading specialists in a variety of fields - literature, history, religion, classics, bibliography, and the history of the book - theHandbookdemonstrates that theChroniclespowerfully reflect the nature of Tudor thinking about the past, about politics and society, and about the literary and rhetorical means by which readers might be persuaded of the truth of narrative. The volume shows how distinctive it was for one book to chronicle the history of three nations of the British archipelago. The various sections of theHandbookanalyze the making of the two editions of theChronicles; the relationship of the work to medieval and early modern historiography; its formal properties, genres and audience; attitudes to politics, religion, and society; literary appropriations; and the parallel descriptions and histories of England, Scotland, Ireland, and Wales. The result is a seminal study that shows unequivocally the vitality and complexity of the chronicle form in the late sixteenth century.

Author Biography

Paulina Kewes is Fellow and Tutor in English Literature at Jesus College, Oxford, and a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society. Her research interests focus on early modern drama, politics, and historiography. She is the author of Authorship and Appropriation: Writing for the Stage in England, 1660-1710 (1998) and 'That Great Matter of Succession' and Elizabethan Political Culture (2012) and, editor or co-editor of Plagiarism in Early Modern England (2003), The Uses of History in Early Modern England (2006), and The Question of Succession in Late Elizabethan England (2013).

Ian W. Archer has been Fellow and Tutor in History at Keble College, Oxford since 1991. His primary research interests lie in the history of early modern London, and he has also published on history and memory. He is a Literary Director of the Royal Historical Society.

Felicity Heal is an Emeritus Fellow of Jesus College, Oxford. Her research interests lie in the religious history of Britain and Ireland during the Reformation, in the social history of the gentry, and in gift giving and reciprocity in early modern England. She has written extensively on all these subjects. She is consultant editor for the sixteenth-century section of the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.

Table of Contents

Preface and Acknowledgements
List of Illustrations
Note on References to the Chronicles
Notes on Contributors
1. The Genesis of the Two Editions, Felicity Heal And Henry Summerson
2. Printers, Publishers, and the Chronicles as Artefact, David Scott Kastan And Aaron T. Pratt
3. Censorship, Cyndia Susan Clegg
4. Sources: 1577, Henry Summerson
5. Sources: 1587, Henry Summerson
6. Harrison's 'Chronology' and Descriptions of Britain, Glyn Parry
7. Illustrations in the 1577 Edition, James A. Knapp
8. Holinshed and the Native Chronicle Tradition, Alexandra Gillespie and Oliver Harris
9. Holinshed and Mythical History, Laura Ashe
10. Holinshed and the Middle Ages, Harriet Archer
11. Leland and Other Precursors, James Carley
12. Holinshed and Hall, Scott Lucas
13. Holinshed and Foxe, Susannah Monta and Thomas S. Freeman
14. Later Historians and Holinshed, Wyman Herendeen
15. The Wider World of Chronicling, Daniel Woolf
16. Genres, Tricia McElroy
17. Rhetoric, Jennifer Richards
18. Holinshed and the Classics, Judith Mossman
19. Shows and Pageants, Elizabeth Goldring and Jayne Elisabeth Archer
20. Narrative Voice and Influencing the Reader, Matthew Woodcock
21. Readership and Reception, Felicity Heal
22. Monarchy, John Watts
23. Social Order and Disorder, Ian W. Archer
24. Religious Ideology, Peter Marshall
25. Providentialism, Alexandra Walsham
26. War, Paul E. J. Hammer
27. The International Context, Steven Gunn
28. Tudor Kings and Queens, Susan Doran
29. History Plays and the Royal Succession, Paulina Kewes
30. Shakespeare and Medieval History, Igor Djordjevic
31. Shakespeare and British History, Richard Dutton
32. Spenser and Holinshed, Richard A. McCabe
33. Daniel and Holinshed, Gillian Wright
34. Later Appropriations, Bart van Es
35. Archipelagic History, Philip Schwyzer
36. Mapping England and Wales, Alfred Hiatt
37. England, Ralph Houlbrooke
38. Scotland, Roger Mason
39. Ireland, Colm Lennon
40. Wales, Ralph Griffiths
Appendix A: Contents of the two Editions of the Chronicles by Signature, Tim Smith-Laing
Appendix B: Raphael Holinshed: New Light on a Shadowy Life, Henry Summerson

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