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TitleChristopher Marlowe the Craftsman: Lives, Stage, and Page
Author
LanguageEnglish
File Size1.9 MB
Total Pages307
Table of Contents
                            Cover Page
Dedication
Title Page
Copyright Page
Contents
List of Contributors
Acknowledgments
Introduction: Christopher Marlowe the Craftsman: Lives, Stage, and Page
Part 1 Lives: Scholarship and Biography
	1 Marlowe Scholarship and Criticism: The Current Scene
	2 Marlowe Thinking Globally
	3 Reviewing What We Think We Knowabout Christopher Marlowe, Again
	4 Was Marlowe a Violent Man?
Part 2 Stage: Theater, Dramaturgy
	5 Edward II and Residual Allegory
	6 What Shakespeare Did to Marlowe in Private: Dido, Faustus, and Bottom
	7 The Jew of Malta and the Development of City Comedy: “The Mean Passage of a History”
	8 Speaking to the Audience: Direct Address in the Plays of Marlowe and His Contemporaries
Part 3 Page: Texts and Interpretations: Marlowe the Ovidian
	9 On the Eventfulness of Hero and Leander
	10 Marlowe’s First Ovid: Certaine of Ovids Elegies
	11 Marlowe and Marston’s Cursus
	12 Marlowe’s Last Poem: Elegiac Aesthetics and the Epitaph on Sir Roger Manwood
	Page: Texts and Interpretations: Marlowe’s Reach
	13 Hell is Discovered: The Roman Destination of Doctor Faustus
	14 Consuming Sorrow: Conversion and Consumption in Tamburlaine: Part One
	15 Fractional Faustus: Edward Alleyn’s Part in the Printing of the A-Text
Bibliography
Index
                        
Document Text Contents
Page 153

In lines 317–30 of Part One, Leander performs a variation on the play on
words for singleness that I described in lines 232–48.

“Abandon fruitless cold virginity,
The gentle queen of love’s sole enemy.
Then shall you most resemble Venus’ nun,
When Venus’ sweet rites are performed and done.
Flint-breasted Pallas joys in single life,
But Pallas and your mistress are at strife.
Love, Hero, then, and be not tyrannous,
But heal the heart that thou hast wounded thus;
Nor stain thy youthful years with avarice;
Fair fools delight to be accounted nice.
The richest corn dies if it be not reaped;
Beauty alone is lost, too warily kept.”
These arguments he used, and many more,
Wherewith she yielded, that was won before. (I.317–30) The “sole”—“single”—“alone” parlay is
capped by the sound of the number one in the past tense of the verb “to win.”

One of the things most nearly disturbing—but never quite disturbing—things
in the experience of Hero and Leander is the poem’s habit of plunging abruptly
into comic bathos at solemn moments in the narrative. For instance, after the
poem finally returns from the stock digression on (in Theseus’s words in 5.2 of
A Midsummer’s Night’s Dream) “learning, late deceas’d in beggary”—itself a
digression from the digression on Cupid, Mercury, the country maid, and
“adamantine Destinies”—the promised story of the love of Hero and Leander
suddenly resumes—but in a couplet, II.1–2, that just as suddenly veers off from
the tone appropriate to the occasion: “By this, sad Hero, with love unacquainted,
/ Viewing Leander’s face, fell down and fainted.” Typically, the poem refuses to
let its listeners be fully diverted from its course. Before one can react fully to the
ridiculous couplet, the poem slips—with the phrase “breathed life into her
lips”—into the manner of romance. And then, as Hero departs, the poem glides
into knowing amusement at her girlish wiles: By this, sad Hero, with love
unacquainted,

Viewing Leander’s face, fell down and fainted.
He kissed her and breathed life into her lips,
Wherewith, as one displeased, away she trips.
Yet as she went, full often looked behind,
And many poor excuses did she find
To linger by the way. (II.1–7)

Something similar happens and is rescued by similar rhetorical means when the
love of Hero and Leander is at last physically consummated and Hero
immediately falls out of bed onto the floor (II.315).

Page 154

immediately falls out of bed onto the floor (II.315).
When Hero offers “up herself a sacrifice” to Leander’s desire (II.49), and

Leander, in his drastic innocence, does not know what to do with her, the
narrator says Oh, what god would not therewith be appeased?

Like Aesop’s cock, this jewel he enjoyed, And as a brother with his sister toyed,
Supposing nothing else was to be done, Now he her favor and good will had won. (II.50–54)

In lines 51 and 53, as materials in an assertion of sexual inaction, Marlowe uses
five standard sexual terms: “cock,” “jewel,” “enjoy,” “nothing,” and the verb “to
do.” To listen to those lines is to experience something comparable to a minus
composed entirely of pluses. The listening mind—conscious or not of its activity
—is probably furiously active.

A few lines later, friction and the heat of Hero’s proximity educates Leander
Albeit Leander, rude in love and raw,

Long dallying with Hero, nothing saw
That might delight him more, yet he suspected
Some amorous rites or other were neglected.
Therefore unto his body hers he clung;
She, fearing on the rushes to be flung,
Strived with redoubled strength; the more she strived,
The more a gentle pleasing heat revived,
Which taught him all that elder lovers know;
And now the same gan so to scorch and glow,
As in plain terms, yet cunningly, he craved it; Love always makes those eloquent that have it.
She, with a kind of granting, put him by it,
And ever as he thought himself most nigh it,
Like to the tree of Tantalus she fled,
And, seeming lavish, saved her maidenhead.
Ne’er king more sought to keep his diadem,
Than Hero this inestimable gem.
Above our life we love a steadfast friend,
Yet when a token of great worth we send,
We often kiss it, often look thereon, And stay the messenger that would be gone;
No marvel then though Hero would not yield
So soon to PART from THAT she dearly held; Jewels being lost are found again, this never;
’Tis lost but once, and once lost, lost forever. (II.61–86)

The passage is acrawl with sexual innuendo—innuendo that the unnecessary
phrase “in plain terms” in line 71 seems calculated to advertise. Advertised or
not, the sexual suggestiveness is never quite overt. For instance, the first clause
of the passage only that Leander was aware of no potential for further or
greater pleasure than mere dallying. But, given the sexual sense of “nothing,”
context pushes “nothing saw” toward reference to the male Elizabethan’s
inexplicable and inexhaustible fascination with the sight of female pudenda.

Page 306

Trial of Treasure, The 69
Tromly, Fred 125
Troublesome Reign of King John, The 121
Turberville, George 140n8
Two Lamentable Tragedies 66

Urry, William 2, 24

Vaughan, William 43, 44, 57
Vautrollier, Thomas 140
Vergil (Publius Vergilius Maro; also Virgil) 80, 139, 153, 164–5, 173, 174
Vice figure 8, 64–5, 67, 68, 108, 113, 115–16, 186–7

Wager, W[illiam]. See Enough Is as Good as a Feast
Walloons 24–7, 28
Walsingham, Francis 45, 57, 168
Walsingham, Thomas 35, 40, 54, 170
Wapull, George. See Tide Tarrieth No Man
Ward, A. W. (Adolphus William) 181
Warning for Fair Women, A 66
Watson, Thomas 28, 39, 40, 49, 168, 176
Wayte, William 50
Webster, John 92
Weever, John 157
Weil, Judith 31
Wells, Stanley 3, 37
Wells, Susan 105
Werstine, Paul 223
White, Paul Whitfield 3
Whitgift, John (Bishop of London) 141–2, 151, 157
Whitney, Charles 4, 22
Wilkins, George 50
Williams, Raymond 64, 111
Willis, Deborah 19
Wilson, F. P. 1n2
Wilson, Richard 3

Page 307

Wilson, Robert 119
Wilson, Thomas. See Three Ladies of London
Wit and Science 65, 77
Woodes, Nathaniel. See Conflict of Conscience
Woolfson, Jonathan 28
Wraight, A. D. 35
Wright, James 104
Wrightson, Keith 52–3
Wyatt, Thomas 146

Yarington, Robert. See Two Lamentable Tragedies
Youth 65

Zucker, David 180

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