From earliest times, controversies abounded about the Blessed Virgin Mary, her Immaculate Conception or capacity for sin, and other issues. These controversies achieved particular intensity and expression in a debate about the Mater Dolorosa, the “sorrowful mother” at the foot of the Cross, a debate that began with the patristic writers and came to intense new life in early modern English polemic. Like many before, Edmund Bunny argued that Mary’s grief demonstrated culpable doubt in the divinity of her son.
The link between the reformation and witch-hunting in Scotland has not always been clear, including the role played by the reformer, John Knox. This paper argues that Knox’s contribution was the direct consequence of how he read scripture and applied it to contemporary developments in Scotland. Knox’s approach to scripture, as studied by previous scholars, is outlined and then applied to the particular texts in the Bible related to witchcraft and sorcery.
Although the two princes may be the most well-known children in Richard III, Clarence’s son and daughter surface at key moments in Shakespeare’s script. Clarence’s daughter, the historical Margaret Plantagenet, would go on to become the Margaret Pole executed by Henry VIII, and she offers an intriguing instance of a young female child on the early modern stage. By reading the girl Margaret as the future successor to the adult, I argue that Clarence’s daughter haunts Shakespeare’s play as the memory of past (and forthcoming) wrongs under the Tudor dynasty.
In the years up to 1623, Papirio Bartoli, Cardinal Federico Borromeo’s Milanese agent in Rome, drew up a project for an intervention on St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican. The Lombard’s main proposal was the construction of an enormous boat-shaped choir at the crossing of the church, but the dilettante also suggested the construction of two new aisles, a new façade, and a porticoed piazza in front of it. This essay analyzes the iconographic components, the liturgical sources, and the models of Bartoli’s project.
Sixteenth century Lutheran funeral sermons were intended for both clerical and popular audiences and sought to instruct and console the grieving. Unlike the Lutherans, the Reformed rejected most funeral ceremonial, including the preaching of funeral sermons. The collection of funeral sermons by the Reformed pastor Johann Brandmüller is unique in applying the Reformed style of published sermons, intended primarily as a theological resource for pastors, to a distinctively Lutheran genre.
In the modern American humanities classroom (whether it is literature, political science, or history) faculty may find it difficult to construct a framework for the analysis of women’s pan-historical place in power and in medieval and early modern British history, literature, and popular culture. Faculty first confront the core questions (Why should American students care? How do I make this subject interesting to them?) but then immediately face practical but formidable pedagogical questions.
The genesis for this set of essays originated almost sixteen years ago, when the Book Review Office of the Sixteenth Century Journal moved to Roanoke College and began receiving diverse books of Shakespearean scholarship for the purpose of placing, editing, and publishing book reviews of those books. We, the Book Review Editors, have often joked that it would be possible to publish an entire edition of book reviews devoted solely to Shakespeare.
This article examines the early modern reception history of a Hebrew epitome of Josephus Flavius’s Antiquities originally composed by the Jewish historian and philosopher Abraham ibn Daud of Toledo. Circulating in Latin, English, and German, Protestant printers and editors in particular regarded this work as a concise and accessible alternative to the Antiquities.