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The arguments used to justify the deposition of Richard II in 1399 created new forms of political discussion which developed alongside new expectations of kingship itself and which shaped political action and debate for centuries to come. This interdisciplinary study analyses the political language and literature of the early Lancastrian period, particularly the reigns of Henry IV (1399-1413) and Henry V (1413-1422). Lancastrian authors such as Thomas Hoccleve and the authors of the anonymous works Richard the Redeless, Mum and the Sothsegger and Crowned King made creative use of languages and idioms which were in the process of escaping from the control of their royal masters. In a study that has far-reaching implications for both literary and political history, Jenni Nuttall presents a fresh understanding of how political language functions in the late medieval period.
'Troilus and Criseyde', Geoffrey Chaucer's most substantial completed work, is a long historical romance; its famous tale of love and betrayal in the Trojan War later inspired William Shakespeare. This reader's guide, written specifically for students of medieval literature, provides a scene-by-scene paraphrase and commentary on the whole text. Each section explains matters of meaning, interpretation, plot structure and character development, the role of the first-person narrating voice, Chaucer's use of his source materials and elements of the poem's style. Brief and accessible discussions of key themes and sources (for example the art of love, the holy bond of things, Fortune and Thebes) are provided in separate textboxes. An ideal starting point for studying the text, this book helps students through the initial language barrier and allows readers to enjoy and understand this medieval masterpiece.
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