I need an outline of pages 1-17 describing the role of women in society in this time period and how they were viewed. No need to go into depth in specific people or writings.

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Literature of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance MEDIEVAL AND RENAISSANCE HISTORY The pears that historians define as the Old English period, the Middle Ages, and the Henaissance constitute a time of important literary activity. From the first half of the eighth century, when scholars speculate that the great Angle Savon epic called Beowulf was composed, to the years between 1384 14co, when Geoffrey Chaucer wrote his Canterbury Tales, to 1604, when Shakespeare's Hamlet was first printed in London, these age produced i'm bet of classics. Besides Beowulf, the Old English era saw the compos dimmed euch major poemme as "The Dream of the Rood" and "The Wanderer." In the Middle Agea, besides the Canterbury Tales, arthen created courtly romances wich an Sir Gawain and the Green Knight (1374-1400), dream thouis such an Pirn Plowman fea, 1372-89), and religious dramas, include ing The Second Shepherd's Play (ca. 1425) and Everyman (after 1495). Finally, the Renaissance years that fostered Shakespeare's astounding crea thity also developed the talents of such poets us Edmund Spenser (The Farm Queene, 1590, 1596, 1609), Christopher Marlove (Doctor Faustin, lol, 16161, Sir Philip Sidary (Arcadia, 1590, 1593), Thomas Wyatt, and Ben Joneson. It Is algnilicant, however, that most of the writers who flourished in these periods were men. When we turn to the literary history of women in these nine hundred years, we find no tests in the Old English period that have been definitively identified as composed by women, few by medieval wecorn, and - in comparison to the great wave of male-authored teats pro- duced in this period-comparatively few by Renaissance women. The female writers whose works we include here suppest the kinds of women whose words have been preserved. Women's literature in Middle English is represented by just four somewhat shadowy figures a mysterious Anglo Norman arbtocrat who composed compelling, verified romances (Marie de Franceh a religious recluse (Julian of Norwich), an recentric preacher ( Margery Kempe), and an enigmatic author of hunting and fishing handbooks, possibly a prioress (Juliana Berners), whose authorship has been Intermittently disputed over the centuries. More prolific and better known, Benaissance women of letters are exemplified by nine complex and diverse Upuses The most prominent among these were powerful aristocrats or in home way associated with the court: the poet. polemicist, and Protestant martyr Anne Askew, daughter of an old Lincolnshire family who shared her spiritual convictions with her friend and asociate Katherine Pair, the wife of Heary Vill: Elizabeth I, the charismatic queen after whom the English Henivance is named the "Elizabethan period", Mary Sidney Herbert,

money which ed landing ellajal chip la deviant Benchun touts Dame I leares, whoer father and birchand served the rope Indy ionalard's thirteenth century French commentary on the Psalm and me French rullection of pavers and pardirations Lady Margin, The muller of I lowry VIT and grandmother of Henry VIll, rendered ina English book f' of the famous Innation of Chorus, a spiritual guide attributed I'm onbrod philosopher Thomas a Kempis (1480-147 1), along witha thionly kidry plain work sided The Mirrorof Gold Ini didition, we know that a numberof oder wellborn medical women were sufficiently literate to read and write lauren, some of which are included in the cache of fifteenth century docu. parts were ments, now known as the Paston Letters, that originally belonged toa family Thane sur of Norfolk gentry. It has been speculated, moreover, that many anonymous modined tests were withored by wonton who chose not to sign their works "Anon_. san alien a woman, proclaimed Virginia Woolf in 1929, asshe invasion of muend on the rich horde of ballads and tales whose creators have never been and the In Identified. But even some spiritual meditations-such as the early fifteenth- French t's cratiny vision of the afterlife known as "A Revelation Showed tom Holy England Woman -appear to have had female authors whose names have not been written hi of French When the Renaissance brought a newly secular interest in art and learning imajor wor in England, Increasing numbers of literary women took up their pens to write either for private circulation in aristocratic circles or, less often, for publi cation, The contemporaries of our Renaissance writers included wuch Figure chronicle as the polemicil Jane Anger (FL. 1589) and such moralists as Elisabeth Gry- In partici meson fea. 1563 1603) and Elizabeth Jocelin (1595-1622). Yet even in Margery. this more liberal period, the situation of most women was not conducive to But she creativity. In the words of the scholar Elaine Beilin, the flegal, theological by the th and familial subjugateon of Renaissance women had "an inhibiting effect whichy o on women writers. "As in the Middle Ages, most lived severely privele lives aware lu In which, confined to the home-whether farm, castle, or convent-and allegiant constrained by cultural definitions of femininity, they had neither the cup with the rience of public Me nor the expectation of an audience that would foster In addit composition, An in the Middle Ages, too, It is likely that a number of the Woman works women did produce were not thought worth saving, while others have central

Hiand Cahnhe . ning if Mary in that conteme her Maumee in our indeed in special Fubella Whitney na feminin sun mierl hirth along in Rachel Sprylid Ining We kim ftranslations of moved the myal and wualibey potre manal many Elizahulen intellectuals, an was her nicons on the Psalm Mary Wroth Isabella Whitney and Lbrabeth Cary were aning the very lima h Margaret Englishcommon to attempt compontion in the geruncool hyra poetry and verse rendered inen tragedy, which had hours been rachusingly immu uline preserves, and some ide attributed wholars speculate that Armilla Langer may actually have been the ilata- ching with a tunisly independent "dark lady" of Shakespeare's sonnets Alypical in with a minber al edicion and intellectual aushiny, these worch responded to spiritual ad and write warmorrun and historical events about which most of their female country. antiry docu wats were at least publicly, silent d to a family "Those seventy included a series of major political upheavals, a set of draule social changes and a dramatic niecesion of cultural transformations their works A mg the loves slumping early English history had been the Rich cemary imanion of the country by the Gremanis tribes of the Angles, the Sawom, never been and the Jutr us well as the eleventh-century conquest of the bland by fifteenth- French (Norman) invaders. an event that brought Marie de France in To a Holy England. The Anglo-Sixon language in which the heroic saga fromrulf is written had metamorphosed, because of the Norman conquest, into a range anot bren of French influenced dulecis called Middle English, dialects in which such major works as Sir Grain and the Green Knight, Plen Plou man, and The Learning Caterbury Tale were composed. As English evohed, moreover, it became in over more viable alternative to the Latin that had long been used by chirollers, theologians, and poets in signify the seriousness of their work In particular, it became a language in which women such as Julian and rth Gne Margery, who would probably never have studied Latin, could record their Even in visions and lives But the lives that these women recorded mun who have been determined logical by the shift from an essentially tribal Anglo Saxon culture to a hierarchical effect society organized around a so-called feudal system in which serfs (peasants) wore loyalty to vassals ( knights and landowners , who, in mom, pledged their and illechance to great lords, as well as by the slow disintegration of that western CAJK with the rise to power of a literate, mercantile, town dwelling middle class. Faster In addition, the lives of Julian and Margery fun well as the career of the if the woman kaman an Juliana Berner) must have been marked by the cultural hine centrality of the Roman Catholic Church, which Increasingly dominated

temporaries prose room himmis moment in Chouish binny a moment uncle, Sir F alienated in Inchild hepp ners intohed merucial pijamc a sial and cultural events. ing the kin Ihired Widen Ing and wa Jupad by wich ments but shaped them that male unged in dauntingly included h intellectun comparabl Monthartur Ward ife foes is fick ett the pret homes of York and wa ruch nike " a hanke for the thropel, had begun to be Joman T anfind ha ran Tike monarchs, Henn Vil and Henry Vill. The most may had to cim notic of the Tushar money Elizabeth completed the tramformation of what Into a sin Ledhim a a poolugly fragmented feudal society Into a centralized literary m Balloon sion dominated by a single royal court. It was they conn that facili of their as word Foran production throughout the English Benadsuinge, and not there wa Buignite willy Ali bidmy Herbert, Armilla Langer, and Mary Wruth were mirror th members of minneshed county circles Wroth was Herbert's nices, and WETE MTIL Lanodedand her pornis to Herbert fan well as to other amincrisp, while Herbert dedicated hers jo Elizabeth musin po Hint theme mes en were not juu umochafrd with the centralized authority act again the court. Like Cary, they were sho learned ladies who had the ran good fortune to be educated in the lashing recommended by the new movement that seek called humanism chat is, they had studied the classics and had been trained feminini in the intricacies of Bonaissance rhetoric and logic. Elaborately paradoxical describe unfitically main, and ingeniously allusive, their were embodies the human. when M int passion for polemical skill and classical kemledge that win imported to women Endand from italy during the sisternth century by such thinkers as Sir Thus CanAUTO Boo More, the English author of Utopia (15 to), and Desiderius Erasmus, and glo her Dutch bom author of In Praise of Folly ( 1 509). The lives of these women also coincided with the secularization of culture brought almout by human- tom's renaud of interest in the pre-Christian classics of Greece and Home, In the ineresting substation of the vernacular for churchly Latin, by the M growing literacy of the non-Latin-speaking middle class. by the new nation- album of the aristocracy, and by the Reformation's questioning of papal "By Go June, As the English (Anglican Church separated itself, on the one hand, Cunter from the Home dominated international hierarchy of Roman Catholicism and, on the other hand, from the German and Swiss Protestantism estab- lished his Lacher and Chin, it developed a distinctive national identity, with the English monarch replacing the pope an a central earthly symbol of sacred authority. This phenomenon, along with the rise of modern English and the dramatic strength of the queen, cuminbuted to un extraordinary cultural Afflict vitalin that eyteased itself in the exuberant energy of Elizabethan literature. thitent an ming that manifests itself in the words and works of all the Renamince women discussed shove Ing to in Sal Tullian time

whinnie authors winby Sir Philip Slug, Pal lorcrane Languis, chile Clary daringly inscribed un shaped them while English of single national played in the theater, and pollolied in critical me lan braylon thin dauntingly great age of English his one, And phlaughs and the callies divided by the held here ramably Mary Herlion and Mary Wench momvid in sisthings ers of bork and Intellectual wiredes, few can be wald is have bechanged to literary communities l begun to be comparable to the booich capsized group of male miner who supported The most mag nation of what Jonson, That in representing the carlical writings of English women se him i ernicalled had to conflate the Old English ara, the Muddle Ages, and the Benahouse in that facili. Inin a single "early period is simply the mon dramatic up ad wo n't Dee, and now literary marginality in the years from 200 in 1600. Perhaps further evidence Wroth were of adsris arathetic dilemma is revealed in the thenice and dreams recorded In these women who did manage to write For while the works of thesy artists nicec, and mirror the burying spirits of their ages. they are aden po maller when they irish. while acre written frequenth and duire tively concerned with the problen ient athin poond for women, and they may therefore from allonymcrane when ed authority set against the texts of rule contemporaries Haimted In the images of ie rare good women that men had conureacted for them, these writen created a tradition that seeks either to redefine or to resign waelf to male preconceptions alert cen trained femininity. Specifically, In the years from the 1370%, when Julian began to wradovicaly describe her revelation of divine love in the Book of Shorings, to the 1 590 he human- when Mary Sidney Herben underlink to translate the P'ualmy into English. imparted to wemien had to confront the misogyny of male theologfine who sought in is Sir The censure and silence them as well as an ideal of courtly love that Jamorisel Erasmins. and glorified them in ways that were sometimes problematic. human- MEDIEVAL AND RENAISSANCE IMAGES OF WOMEN nud Home, n, by the "By God," exclaimed Chaucer's Wife of Bath In a famous passage from The v nation Canterbury Tales, of papal ir hand If wommen hadden writen stories. holicism As clerkes han within hir ormorigs They wolde han writen of men more wilkednesse Than al the merk of Adam may redrose. BY, With sacred Afflicted by the book of "wikked wives from which her filth husband per- and the silently read to her every evening, the lively female characun was mepond uilrural ing to the tradition of misogyny that cuended from carly church father wich ralures us Saints Paul and Jerome to later theologians such as Augustine and Ter- isance tullian, it was, Indeed, a tradition that would reach beyond her author's life- time Into the antifemale diatribes of the Mallens Alale Scariom (Hammer of

much you Mothapro did headarieres Chumsa in Lode und Spenser's Whorim Hiki a Dime let tampon began ud bar in William chrations Fury mu of what macrcil m ad Gain Pendu der can but one simmun and the had nunti until she fid promoted to build of her hand and from the garden of delights and in much mog Curled in the iommu of ihf cream. " About unman's biological elmwood, if tires of the firm coming c.z. Homin scholar Fling the Elder Other an dilled him f heading tome bronze and brun are at once seized by rust, lyric th mul a horrible anold fills the for. Nor were such times unique to the partic- iristung ular traditions out of which these three thinkers wrote. Anglo Saxon culture, alich pobird Chartmin in England, wins oblivious of or hostile to never more blood one of the few hike from this period that scholars have Implic in miamirey attributed to a unman _ piece called "The Wife's Lament" (ca, might Who/-begins with an impair aned complaint "I make this song sadly about myself, /about my Wife. I a woman say / I've been unhappy since I grew up" Itrelacion by Willis Banne and Elene Kelli, In Beaway, the age's major ple marcoint. worten am objects of exchange, servants to men, monsters, i makers of monster. Similarly, the Greek philosopher Aristotle had argued la the Fourth century s.c.r. that woman is a "deformity of nature." That pre-Christian definition, taken together with the Bible's excoriation of Ever, Informed the work of such major medicval thinkers as St. Augustine and M. Thomas Aquinas, both of whom believed that women were physically and spiritually inferker to men. What Jur while Eve, the primordial female, was viewed as both secondary ferc- ated from Adam's ribl and destructive fa temptress who condemned human- Mar try to death and degradation), she did have a positive counterpart the mother of al of Christ, the Virgin Mary, who redeemed the world with the fruit of her wnub. It might seem, then. that even though ambitious women were oppressed by what we now call "negative role model," they could gain hea strength from the sacred cumple of Mary, From the twelfth century to about T the fifteenth, Mariolarry the cult of the Virgin--swept Europe. As one his Fire Burton has observed, "her miracles were on every lip" and "provided the stock themes for miracle plays, "the festival dramas in which modern English the Qu ater had its origins. Indeed, in England, worship of the Blessed Mother seems en Pra

a much Printers, Kale in William much rain may Appubar Make Bagh hme summarized the pedrolbally feminin theydy mi an Intrini of buthas lon called the Torunne fail," the klos put the calamity haghi about by Live's rebellion had to the modemprion panned by Alary's abury phils. Cor, the first Be hardde the appd bie ben F all human The appil intra ben cat untilshe A been horne's quene ghts and in leased he the time biological That appeal take was the Elder Therefore me moin singen iner, crops im of four Other poems celebrated the paradox of Mary's madeily motherhood. The hris that begins "I sing of a maiden / That is makeless" Imatchlessly foe the partic instance, alfirms that "onaler and maiden / Was nevere noam but when / Wel may watch a lady / Codes mader be" (mincher and malden le , nagin was never none but the well may such a lady God's mother bel, Such Tests lan have implied that far from being man's inferior. woman, made in Mary 's image might be his superior. As one medieval thenlogin argued. thy about grew up Woman is to be preferred to man, to wh in material. Adams made From clay and Eve from side of Adam in place. Adam made matside paradise onsters. and Eve wing in conception a woman conceived God which a man dul the had not do: In apparition Christ appeared to a woman after the Bevrection, nature." to wit the Magdalene: in exuhation a wontan is exalted above the choirs ition of of angels, to wit the Blessed Mary. St. Bernadine even declares that "It justine is a great grace to be a woman more women am saved than men!" ically What is most nideworth here is that Mary's grace sanctifies all women, even in ostensibly Fallen one wich as Christ's disciple the reformed prostitute Mary Magdalene. This, though Mary herself may have been unique alone of all her sex,"as the title of Marina Warner's useful study of Mariolatry has other it even ordinary women are not to be excluded from the queendom of f her heaven that she miles The implications of such a vindication of the female were far reaching, quin First, they put in question the presuppositions of antifemale clerics and insti- paled a dialogue between misogynists like the author of the sardonic French Quince joins de mariage (The Fifteen Joy of Marriage, 1480-90) and defend- luck of women like the Chaucer of The Legend of Good Women, a long poem the praising female virtue. Second, they even transformed some of the philo em's sophical foundations of Western literature. From Plato on, the European

ha plans and mine's wich rim pen in her mugs, the Le win she slip Worse Frill destruction a Marly, Use me he loved hoodies if this ination, which four ile flow mus the Ed poplar duke wah urinal bar, the creation of In medieval band play in te Vos Newt, Itune in an parikh angel in the Herman GM de mer my chinathe of the brined lal, is an emblem of Moment perfection. For all these poets, and for the knights who followed by telling t thedahik niles at bay on a the phoner of the noted medical historian aged crone Im Pairs Truddued" for the lines served his lady as humbly as the transformis Though Food ringi's Dominance, aten medieval feudalism had begun to dis reveal its b Integrity, the commihome of courtly bowe persisted in lierature, if not in life. another E So Philip Sthey's prone mamathe Arcadia, for Instance, recounts the in more id knight and fadies in a pastoral cesim abeer the in of love romance impmornin an arabheck aical, while his sonnet sequence barephil and stella 134) ophome the pal loper's frelings for his mistress on the assumption olding that such passionate emotions toward a beloved woman were the most appro- priate subject for bric poetry. Influenced by the highh wylined modes and for men aberatch romantic theme of Fetrainchanium."a literary movement that wife beat began in look with Petrarch and was brought to England by Sir Thomas The Cler What, Sidney was only one of the many major Renaissance poets who pro- Patient dured wich mann cycles meditating on the rapeare and torment of man's that wa bee for women. Others included Edmund Spenser (Amoredri, 1595), Samuel a tygrey Daniel Delia, 1593). and Shakespeare (Sonnets, 1609). In the same jean when there writers were composing their celebratory sonnets, moreover. Sporeit's The Fore Curene offered images of pure and powerful heroines Miller's such as Una, Gloriana, and Britomart. And throughout this period, poets wife an regularly proclaimed their aesthetic indebtedness to the female divinities they are knoin an mum, find celebrated as source of inspiration by the Greek and wife as Roman unders is hom many Renaissance poets strove to emulate. Ennobling and empowering an the thework of Marinlatry, the rhymes of Ing the courthy love, the wants of Priorchanism, the allegorical figures of Spenser, In i and the concept of female mines might seem to have been for women, how. cover ever, they all retained traces of the very misogyny they would appear to have treatn lyrics, writin

memore room but do" the rachly samen ridd p him nich paninital The Laund, ulm and me secular al worship For It's muni pan, du herself has pounded on colorvilair har was the phen portraised in supplied invite bands of bernie dends that had begun in spread rapally minion as mumaires and aliche fant beautiful lusby them romances hine, I court and to but he a curse tens. In the medical tale of Sir torain mad the Green eight ed son birm five Trouponce, ilee here is weird by a tempterms whose wiles threaten his la Hour The dounction and w hose charms forte him to confront his own minutelit, sim mir's La Via flagly, the medieval Tenian documents Tristan's death of the harsh of a false an, which for Inkde even while it dramamines the bags of the Cave al Lover, and Sh Thomas e creation of Malory's Florenth-armory Archiman cycle preserves the gearures ul chivalry of Love is a but ales traces the way it's buintegration of the Round Table is brough n the Homan shout by Queen Guinevere's faithleones Warlies and bad bullies abound n emblem of in medieval literature, and they are almost clagg awequated with female newally, amsection, and creativity. No wonder, then, his Chaucer has his bray, assertive, and creathe Wife of Bath praise and reverse this association val historian by telling the sion of a knight who ha tricked into woulding and bedding on imbly as the aged come and is rewarded for relinquishing his curhotly in her when she tramforms herself into a beautiful lady. cgun to dis Though Chaucer's Wife of Hath's Tale parodies the courtly mmunce to I not in life. reveal its underhing misogyny, the Wife of Bath benielf Hal character our al counts the another genre. which dwelled mom frankly on the defects of anmen the art of lone fablain: In Fact, this genre mikes exploit the misery in Implicit in the courtly I and Stella romance. Realistic and comic, Eddiaus were folktales addressed to a hair- pools andience. Their plots generally turned on the machinations of ruck issumption okling wives and cunning maids, while the resolutions they recommended most uppro for men who wanted to tame such shrews ranged from public humiliation to modes and wife beating. At the same time. as Chaucer himself suggests in his emal to ment that The Clerks Tale, which told the story of a famously submissive hermine called r Thomas Patient Griselda, some writers implied, perhaps imisically and perhaps not who pro that women could avoid Griselda's fundships only by becoming sarge The of man's a tyare youd in Ynade and, as one translation puts it, "clatinfing) like a mill J. Samuel -to bear the male." Enormously popular throughout the Middle Ages fabliaus formed the basis of a number of Chaucer vinalives, including The noreiner Minder : Tale and The Non's Priest's Tale, the first a story of a faithless young heroines wife and the second a tale of a henpecked moster Good humored though ad, ports they are- in each case the storyteller clearly Tech as much sympathy free the wife as for the husband-these tales deflate rosummit ideals of love by depict. week and ing the female as fleshly, shrewd, earthbound. In the same way that medieval genres which seemed to praise women convertly Implied critiques of femininity and were accompanied by franker treatments of the battle of the seves in the fabliar, so tre Renaisance spicy, lyrics, and dramas castigated as well as crichrated key female figures. These writings wages that below the surface of even the most honorife language to have

the rule al pai the hivingian Father Er ling forbade diven al property. usually reach it"-that my falerly and foolishly were no long ing to the k withme, elle atgood did a Cordelia in King age's in order Gown and Ihope in King Lear, Of courer, Shakespeare's dry- they could eachoctoroomibooger pico if villainous male characters lago in Orh- husbands. Hon Edsend in King Lear, and in on, But, again, the evil of such A nimbe money will hold with warped meand muahly, By contrast, poort to e sooo muchas Lady Macbeth, Conmi, and Began are marked by monstrous In le andthree or grotesque credit energy, Lady Macbeth's penenity in any food al one point to her pha Come. . sumses me here and a ally untutu derby bor aidminion that If she had sworn to do so. she would have tutors of th "Plurind has nipple from her child's boneless gums / And dashed litsl had been in Print out /Similarb, thy voracious lust for power and the sexual insatiabley works. And w/ Conrail and Began an dramatized nut only through their treatment of the agod father but also in their credit Intrigues with the bastard Edmund, their lands Indeed, about in his madness the dispossessed king Lear proclaims that clothing, a Than from the waist"even dainty ladies are "Centaur, / Though women their men all when / Hut in the girdle do the Gods inherit / Beneath is all the fiend's." Inasiness. In apparently insane magyar seems ultimately sane in light of his two older When a drughire whrinusme What clarifies the assumptions about the proper rela- holdings. mon between the wears that there plays dramatized, moreover, is that even to enter th tactich s donotious characters such as Viola in Twelfth Night and Ros the Late m alled in As You Like is 1 600) mus ultimately be stripped of their indepen Fifteenth-c dence and brought to acquirace in a husband's power. All's well that ends the legal, well Slubeaprare declared, but to "end well" a woman must, like Viola, Similarly, become bet lord's "andstress and his fancy's queen." looking of Helds, and From the MEDIEVAL AND RENAISSANCE WOMEN'S LIVES erws Inde engaged Did Shakespeare's plays reflect the reality of Renaissance women's lives? Did and vold courtly romances inderor the lives of aristocratic medieval ladies, and did and cities fabliaus tell the truth about ordinary women in the Middle Ages? By all Industrie and bakh

forof villain animal turadically astin faired his attention in his I concedes that has plied to many ofhey aferly and foolishly mually marion! a third part of her husband's esfair, and in 1219 King John us and lingling : Cordelia in Aing Is the ling. whale, for their daughien continued to is ved an early ing in in due to ensure the intepin, of important mute . und corn pown Shakespeare's dry women could to me arily marine off, spainat their gun wishes, unlen tens lago in Oil they could purchase from their feudal lands the right in choose their mun the eall of such husbambi lity. By contrust. A number of great Likes did booster, have the perer of patimage, a ted by monstrous purr to elevate poon and brights through financial as well im personal th's penversity in encure ment, Iemu the eleventh center on, arioperatic womencommits he here? and at cloned illuminated manuscripts for their own moms, llecause they wor bus she would ham ally unturnred in Latin chemoches and breause they arm often the primary and dashed [its) turoes of the next generation, by the end of the Middle Age such anmoral cial Insalishilsy had been influential in promoting vernacular transhiring of Latin religious ir treatment of works. As daughters, wives, and mothers, medieval ladies also helped puand ward Edmund their lands manors, regularly organizing almagoing. hunchold budgets. clothing, and food for large families and minues of servants and run, when proclaims that their men were away, supervising form ulfairs, Iaustins, and other estate hough women business all the fiend's When a family like the Pastone in Norfolk, mise by acquiring large lands of his two older holdings, their sons were sent in Eton and Oxford and sometimes educated he proper mel to enter the Ions of Court, while their daughters remained at home, Yet, da T, is that even the late medieval family documents called the Payton Letters reveal, their ight and Has Fffrench-century wives and daughters actively concerned themselves with heir indepen the legal, educational, and moral welfare of their husbands and brothers. ell that ends Similarly, the wives of middle-class English farmers were responsible for I, like Viola looking after their husbands' sock. making butter and cheese. helping in the fields, and producing cloth for the family from the wool of their own sheen. From the evidence of manorial court records, it wraho clear that many wide nis independently faried the holdings of their deceased hishands and ES engaged in luigation on their own behalf. Moreover, country women brownd and sold ale at a profit, while bourgeois and working clue women in towm and cities earned considerable sums of money from two when major home hi and did industries-textiles topinning and weaving) and food production tbrewing test By all and hikingh when and socalled fewer sale (widows and unmarried women)

win The lid For Instance, d In works like I leben chubai's workin den girl was approinked at an carly ayn nus did, like china plan rumibally a business mint, the love of both wormen convent, but andband would it rorami mirin In ahlition, then ad that figure home with died by the prideof a bildoing that begin early and coded jewelry, man Fidel ducked in be unmained and maintained at great physical cou to Honed More the woman Whore sull, the pose of both was frequently threatened by the though biten urri plus monon of witch huming, in sotivity shut became increasingly ona bon hommeon the fourteenth and the severicenth centuries. The ratio records and won on to men sound of witchriah ranged from twenty to one in some portal Lacopyto one hundred to one in other areas, Lake the Jow the which sources to on blamed for moul illa that, in the fourteenth censury, included the Black Thath like lager) and the Hundred Years War between England and France. Like the heartic, the was believed in worship strange gods, whose mass would undermine the authority of the ritablished church. In this era. The Mallra Melfourum, mentioned earlier, functioned with great efficiency During the an a handbook for much hunters. the scholars Barbara Ehrenreich and Deir- either fries dee Inelish have estimated that the total number of women tortured and of married record during the period may have climbed into the millions might have It is handy surprising. therefore, that a significant group of young women Aristocratic took refuge in the church. some simply turned to prayer or meditation, but or fourth chees entered convents, where they could educate themselves and tutor the Middle-cla dougMen of pralily furnilies, where they were safe from harassment, and cian trade, where their administrative as well as intellectual abilities were juven scope. who belair Medieval nunnerics were usually poorer as well as smaller in number and in Although population than monasteries. Their official business, especially record keep entrusted ing man frequently carried on by male chaplains who were better educated then their female counterparts, Yet these institutions did serve is sanctuaries ings, and for the unmarried daughters of the nobility and even of the middle class A To whom Benedictine min like the German writer Hrowwitha could pursue a serious literary career within the content, producing humans, Latin plays, and saints' Law home lives. Moreover, although by the fifteenth century the nunncries of England that coul were bring faulted for worklly Frivolity, and although must had imany case In fact never been in powerful as the monasteries, a few had long been hastions of without wrath. "If the Abbot of Glastonbury would marry the Abbess of Shaffer women. han, "observed our wit, their heir would have more land than the king of cial setil England " While to most coments such a statement would not apply, even sured or the piloted medieval nunneries clearly functioned as communities of consoled Screen, the

in English anal of Chairen Idied mininleipand er failser ina both wumen hand embed miral coal in ened by the thomas mine as high chees lubpsicion than is meal teachers. Thus, corn hemuch literary marks did summarize some bey contemporary visions of The mile women, social historian mou inevitably draw more information from gold me in wine crew and legal documents than they do from courtly romances and fab- How No we will suggest. Renaissance scholars mul depend on similar the Black lines to supplement the images they find in plays. prose romances, unil land and this era, Diciency During the Henaissance, women in England continued in be defined as nd Deir either frans mis (unmarried or widowed manen) by femremind friend ared and I married womenk Some of those who belonged to the first of these groups might have -as they had had in the Middle Ages consideraldr freedom. Arlocrane widows could manage their own property. choose second, third or fourth husbands; and handle marriage senkements for the mules on, bar Middle class widows could evablich businesses, join guilds, enter inin for- Hor the rign trade. and even, in some cases, we or be sued. Similarly, some of their not, and who belonged to the second group were alm surprisingly independent scope. Although as femmes covert they had practically no legal rights, they were ulien and in entrusted In their husbands with major responsibilities. As in the Middle keep Apea, aristocratic whe's supervised great estates, inchiding large findhold ings, and frequently functioned almost as the business partner of the men I whom they were married. Similarly, middle ches when-like medieval bourgeoises-often shared in their husbands mercantile enterperher or over saw hinene industries (spinning, weaving, silk making, bookhinding, brewing) that could be quite remunerative land In fact, the only Renaissance women who may be said to have been entirely without legal, economic, or social power of any kind were young married wonten, ropecially girls from wealthy families, who might bring large firms cial settlements to their future husbands. These girls were frequently pres wired or forced by their parents to enter into marriages of convenience to consolidate important estates. Worse still, if they had any property of their own, they were sometimes subject to abduction by unscrupulous adventurers

the virgin definition Lam inf male louis mich female has pointedn of the Jacohi Manile Thal mous and the mal woman Inlord visiting England in IN Potent ate if Winrahere saidy docland that 'Lapland is s which From Painin In as on, a prison for sermons, and a hell or purgatory for Thingthis ly his female must be sumidened hyperbolic, he and a few a muahly the Prejean reformer John Know author of The Fire Mad of the Treepel apodug the Momin Herimet of Where (1858-thought the British Ides had "unnaturally" succumbed to if mode ("meetour If munen because England and Scotland were goss Despite the erial In yucca i shiina Mary Tinfor, Mary Stuart, and Elizabeth I, and eval and He because a few great ladies had consideralde poarr in courtly circles with a core Neverthricia the morrege woman very likely did not feel that she lived in women in Burnline. " Is is drive that after 1500 a surprising number of atfalacratic of perhaps women bergin, for the first time, to reorive the same kind of education in (1364 143 this clancy's that their brothers did, the unprecedented training in Greek and Ladies, 14 Larks that nurled ibe upbringing of such women as Elisabeth I. Mary Sidney which who Herbert, and Bugbeth Cary was a sisong positive consequence of the from all ap Minaniat bir Thomas More's liga that both sexes were "equally suited For Particip the bondedge of learning by which reason is cultivated " But most girls, him the very well born, received little education, In addition, although many Addle class women d'd undertake in carry on their own businesses, histo rian have demonstrated that in the years between 1485 and 1500 the num- ben d ouch women declined drastically. Evidently, the rise of an increasingly on wome ambitious group of male entrepreneur institutionalized and professionalized toward th work that had previously gone on somewhat informally, so that Renaissance Besides men tended to take over guilds and industries where medieval women had the achin earlier dominated or at least participated on an equal ban. books an de should finally be noted that the power wielded by frees covert who joined letters t with their husbands in the supervision of estates or businesses depended on writing the goodwill of the husbands. If a husband was brutal, oppressive, or merely treatise indifferent, his wife had no k cal recourse, because she had no rights of her ertheles own. Thus though plays like Shakespeare's The Timing of the Shrew or female Fueleh Night may subcly misrepresent the reality of mou women's live- as Julia the firm ceaserrating the Renaissance ideology of male dominance and the Mary S orchid glamorizing a portrait of female independence followed by an even Chris mike roninth shion of female surrender-both contain at least a modicum the de not truch Because marriage was a woman's principal goal and the role of wife worldly her priming role. she must always with the unique exception of Elizabeth. the En literary

inlion talkneed thenigh they might lose been, inong became iranlaine splinter Panel them in much he came water my England in "England is a purgatory foe distressed, Laid Mary whiledrew the like masten. he and a few dainna was in which a female literary currer could be discouraged in F John kam deformed. uccumbed in MEDIEVAL AND RENAISSANCE WOMEN WHITERS nd were go abeth , and Despite the sewer of secondarifires that had been imfilled in to manyred roles real and Hershaanice women, a yearning for a female community, together she lived in with a corollary vision of female power, informed much of the literature by aristocratic women in this period, Such a yearning for instance, characterized the work ducation in of perhaps the most prominent early European fentinise, Christine the Plan i Greek and (1364 1429), whose Le Live de la City dis Damm | The Book of the Cin of Mary Sidney Ladies, 1405) offered an unprecedented dream vision of a female utopia in nce of the which what Renaissance thinken called "Women Worthles"-prat women y suited for freen all ages and nations-we're gathered to prove the worthiness of women. Participating In an early version of the French debate iner femininity that was termed the Querelle des Fromme iquarrel about women), Christine ough many assumed equality with male thinkers to contest Jean de Meun's misogynistic uses, hiun- continuation (1269--78) of Guillaume de Loris's Honein de La Hour, a satire the num- on women's wiles in which Jean scuthingly repudiated the courtly humility creasingly toward the female Rose that was cultivated by his predecessor, Guillaume Besides producing her fervent affirmation not just of the rights but also of naissance the achievements of women, the widowed Christine wrote a number of other omen had hooks and became, as a French scholar has noted. the lim female "man of letter to support herself (along with three children), by her pen, Yet like the ho joined writing of in many medieval and Renaissance women, her major feminist ended on frealise was out of print from the sixteenth century to the turnleth, New or mrich ertheless, despite its king neglect, The Cin of Ladies summarized a vision of trol has fenule power that would also be recorded in various ways In wich mystics as Julian of Norwich and Margery Kempe and wich secular gentlesemen is Mary Sidney Herbert and Aemilia Langer. arid the Christine had Continental counterparts and descendants in, for instance. the deviat Italian poet Vittoria Colonna (1490/02-15471 and the more worldly French sonneteer Louise Labe (1524-1560), But neither they not edicum the Englishmomen represented here can be said to have had professional literary careers comparable to hers. Whether they were cloistered like Julian irabeth

dream. wah Libel Man simply most" Ar Don of dues main There is Foe induring Eve's penchant for rebellion, were determine And the proel phod al moreas paved the and women would not participate in if mu lan" while the in remains a ride This much is khican Among thre Englishnumen cubiased Julian nodclined Ches Burns in Latin and En make Tiny mani the ruins of montage to baberate herself from blood and brooding a uddin did the Herbert compared Ceren Bluabeth to God, Ley Angle Nor in, Some all the man of for to can Care and Wrath daud to work in peter maltotally meisterd with the male imagination, while with injure 1 1$1-himself the 1 peace Whiner wing To qua shed the entire city of London to los therefore ala sinn of Jarredman, Miniloh, Aboubunch leak her man life story so seriously the The became an humane gutsbiographer, and Specht daringly entered ing the, And Inc many yra Norman dealvet in Lu ad bay wih hee moogmark Meliszones, "when she reviled as a "foud Fantastic ruinitmphe. mouled herin zung Firises."As for Queen Elizabeth herself, she po add i piradioon id female replay for all her contemporaries, and in her Like her compatriot can weran, qume though it mas, the vaunted and Haunted her power, them mingle "poll the tops" leut off the braids) of those who vexed her. enigmatic Marie prod To be mire, all these women were citmordinary and extraordinarily be nuarnouruled the magh Funate a point day themaches generally understood, for most of thet knights Her lan wen female cundemporirigs had brither a medieval flowering nor a renahuang IF Shakespeare in is the common man transformed into Western culture's and heouines in revis are at conflicted unil most uncommon genna, he had no woman counterpart drawn, as he um economy, the sphere from the intellectually ambitious, aspiring middle class. In 1929. Virgin render ingbles that Will rodd wo why. Hod Shakespeare had a "wonderfully gifted sister,"she brated, sometimes riptuned in / Room of One's Cru, the girl would have been given nomde land ultimate irony cation her parrots would have forced her to do dull domestic chores Mer-December ma tried to make her man young she would have run away to London, orby background be seduced and abandoned by a predatory theatrical entrepreneur, final Our translations she would have died a suicide, though the birds that sang in the hedgym Dorothy Gilbert, wl nut mure musical than the was fand she had the quickest fancy, a gift bir Norman

her hither's, for the tours of maude " the his the find uncon huihed pear buted to the Astory wih Arminia Limper then This paulie Dreya his tinted of the wee Fileperudent Was simply mint and then hour in deram, = Lather fit hiel woman theer of the Lonlon. me English he connid MARIE DE FRANCE hey them find that formined He in the France Yet though Marie appear in More period in "live" while also translating and refminer crorum This much to known born in Not uindy you molding foot day years In England, on her liberal and breeding who wrote her influential mists in the likeet now koran in Langer Anglo- Nummian. Some scholars, indeed, line yucolined that Maru was the powerful thei of Shafie bury, who'w's the illegitimate daughter of Geoffrey of Ankrillly 1 1503 himself the founder of the Plantagenet dinny of Engihh kings- and To her therefore idio shier of England's Heary IL In any case, whatever her peacelogy. this hy that Inveterious muneer ferrator al romances) was cubusand, authoritative, imagina the. And for mam yean, apparently, she lived in England,where she and the Angle d into Norman dialect to crampoor much loved, highly poplar tales of courtly love and Foul- Fantastic catastrophe. tales that were witch mad, icited, and Imitated throughand her era. Like her campained and contemporary, the famous French pool Chretien de Troyes real enigmatic Marty produced verified accounts of the enchantments and anxieties that For airrounded the magical yut troubled count of Arthair, Guinevery, and their fabled hair knights, Her dad were probably transmitted arally rather than thanugh written mun uscripts, yet such Immunession hardly diminished they popularin, Exploring hemies and hennings in Tevisionary depth, Marie shows that must of hier romance characters on an confikted his they are courthy the depicts, with whit me critic calls "wartling economy," also splendors of the fantastic realin of Arthurian elalvalry, along with the Fender troubles that beser the genre in which such splendors were sometime cake Prided sometimes tiriend. In Biulauret,"For instance, the dramatizes the wins land ultimate triumphs) of a werewolf, while in "Youre " the sets the temkins of a bur Agroumi Man December marriage against a richh Inured last problematic fairy tale Dur translations and annotthin here have been prepared by the schols and post Doruthy Gilbert, whose verse capture the vene and wit of Marie's original Ando

Literature of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance MEDIEVAL AND RENAISSANCE HISTORY The pears that historians define as the Old English period, the...
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