Faerie Queene Hardcover – Feb 22 1922
|New from||Used from|
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
No Kindle device required. Download one of the Free Kindle apps to start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, and computer.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
"Each of the five volumes published by Hackett (the last of which is co-edited and introduced by Andrew Hadfield) has an introduction that sets the scene and orients the reader towards the particular book of the poem being dealt with, followed by the complete text with a glossary at the bottom of each page. By breaking down the epic into five individual volumes, readers can set their own pace and choose which book to read, and the clear print and spacing on the page makes the enterprise of embarking on The Faerie Queene a most manageable and ultimately enjoyable experience." - Sean Sheehan, Irish Left Review, September 10th, 2012 Two editions of Spenser are both from the same series, published by Hackett Publishing Company, which is providing inexpensive paperback volumes of The Faerie Queene , under the general editorship of Abraham Stoll. The volumes printed this year, books 1 and 5, are edited, respectively, by Carol V. Kaske and Stoll himself. A single volume combining books 3 and 4, edited by Dorothy Stephens, is forthcoming, as is book 6, edited by Andrew Hadfield. The volumes are attractively printed, with notes at the bottom of the page. Each volume includes an introduction, the Letter to Raleigh , a brief 'Life of Edmund Spenser,' textual notes, a glossary, an 'Index of Characters,' and a bibliography. Kaske's introduction to book 1 forms an accessible student guide, touching on a wide range of topics, from versification, genre, and allegory, to 'Spenser's Religious Milieu.' At the same time, there are fresh flashes of insight, no doubt derived from Kaske's long experience of teaching a complex poem... Eschewing 'political and biographical allegory (p. xvi), the notes offer plenty of help to the student seeking to get behind the veil of Spenser's dark conceit, for they emphasize symbolism and historical context, especially literary context or 'sources.' Stoll's edition of book 5 of the Faerie Queene includes a judicious introduction of considerable merit. Not simply well written and learned, it partitions the information in an accessible and interesting way. Stoll is fully attuned to the recent controversies surrounding the Legend of Justice, but he does more than record them for the student reader; he manages to express sympathy for both poet and poem. Students need to hear the historical nature of Spenser's achievement for English literature, and Stoll leads nicely with this topic: book 5 is 'one of the most challenging meditations on justice in English literature' (p. ix). Stoll is as sensitive to the violence of book 5 as he is to its strangeness and beauty. Students will appreciate the short inventory of important works of criticism at the end of each section. The notes are not as full as Kaske's, but perhaps appropriately so... I look forward to having access to the remaining volumes in this series. --Patrick Cheney, Studies in English Literature 1500-1900 Teachers of Spenser will also welcome two more installments of the Hackett editions of separate books of The Faerie Queene under the general editorship of Abraham Stoll, this time on books 2 and on books 3 and 4. In my view, these are the most attractive, inexpensive, but also comprehensive editions to date, with far better (and easy to read) notes on mythology and name symbolism (matters increasingly foreign to our undergraduates) than almost all previous versions. --Catherine Gimelli Martin, Studies in English Literature 1500-1900 The multivolume format provides varied introductions and annotations--a benefit to any student--and facilitates the general reading experience through smaller bindings. The prefatory material of individual volumes focuses on history, subjects, and ideologies pertinent to specific books. The edition is thus ideal for classroom use, especially in survey courses or for those who prefer to read several individual books rather than study the poem in its entirety. The format and language of the editorial input lend themselves to undergraduate study. These editions offer a solid analytical grounding for readers at various levels, and together compile a sound and substantial set of editorial perspectives on Spenser's most famous work. --Rachel E. Frier, Sixteenth Century Journal --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.
From the Publisher
Founded in 1906 by J.M. Dent, the Everyman Library has always tried to make the best books ever written available to the greatest number of people at the lowest possible price. Unique editorial features that help Everyman Paperback Classics stand out from the crowd include: a leading scholar or literary critic's introduction to the text, a biography of the author, a chronology of her or his life and times, a historical selection of criticism, and a concise plot summary. All books published since 1993 have also been completely restyled: all type has been reset, to offer a clarity and ease of reading unique among editions of the classics; a vibrant, full-color cover design now complements these great texts with beautiful contemporary works of art. But the best feature must be Everyman's uniquely low price. Each Everyman title offers these extensive materials at a price that competes with the most inexpensive editions on the market-but Everyman Paperbacks have durable binding, quality paper, and the highest editorial and scholarly standards. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.See all Product description
Top Customer Reviews
Although everyone has heard of Edmund Spenser's amazing narrative poem, 'The Faerie Queene,' it's a pity that few seem to read it. To a superficial glance it may appear difficult, although the truth is that it's basically a fascinating story that even an intelligent child can follow with enjoyment and interest.
It appears difficult only because of Spenser's deliberately antique English. He needed such an English because he was creating a whole new dimension of enchantment, a magical world, a land of mystery and adventure teeming with ogres and giants and witches, hardy knights both brave and villainous, dwarfs, magicians, dragons, and maidens in distress, wicked enchanters, gods, demons, forests, caves, and castles, amorous encounters, fierce battles, etc., etc.
To evoke an atmosphere appropriate to such a magical world, a world seemingly distant in both time and place from ours, Spenser created his own special brand of English. Basically his language is standard Sixteenth Century English, but with antique spellings and a few medievalisms thrown in, along with a number of new words that Spenser coined himself. The opening lines of the poem are typical :
"A Gentle Knight was pricking on the plain, / Y cladd in mightie armes and siluer shielde, / Wherein old dints of deepe wounds did remain, / The cruell markes of many a bloudy fielde...." (page 41).
If, instead of reading with the eye, we read with the ear or aloud, the strange spellings resolve themselves into perfectly familiar words such as clad (clothed), mighty, arms, silver, shield, deep, cruel, marks, bloody, field. And "Y cladd" is just one of those Spenserian medievalisms that simply means "clad" or clothed (i.e., wearing).
The only two words in this passage that might cause problems for the beginner are "pricking" and "dints," and it doesn't take much imagination to realize that these must refer, respectively, to 'riding' (i.e., his horse) and 'dents.' But if you can't guess them, an explanation is provided in the useful list of Common Words at the back of the book.
Once you've used that 2-page list for a little while, progress through Spenser's text becomes a snap. And learning a few hundred words is a small price to pay for entrance into one of the most luxuriant works ever produced by the Western imagination, and one that once entered you will often want to return to.
The Penguin edition, although it contains the complete text of 'The Faerie Queene,' is significantly without an Introduction, presumably because the editors felt that we don't really need one. The book does, however, contain stanza-by-stanza Notes. These have been placed at the end where they can be referred to at need, and where they don't interfere with the flow of the story as we experience it.
There have been many editions of 'The Faerie Queene.' Students who are studying the poem formally will want to have the fully annotated edition by A. C. Hamilton, a bulky edition with extensive and detailed notes, but in which the actual text of the poem is not so easy to read, being a rather poor and considerably reduced copy of the 3-volume Clarendon Press edition.
The Penguin has always seemed to me to be the best available edition for the general reader. As is usual with Penguins, it has a clear and well-printed text, and the Notes are just about right, being neither skimpy nor excessive. Though fat, it's not too big to carry around, and you may just find yourself taking it along with you on your next trip.
Spenser is one of England's very greatest writers. And he was writing, not for critics, but for you and me. Admittedly his language can be a bit tricky at first, and he certainly isn't to be rushed through like a modern novel. His is rather the sort of book that we wish would never end.
His pace is leisurely and relaxed, a gentle flowing rhythmic motion, and that's how he wants us to read him. To get the hang of things, try listening to one of the many available recordings. And if you hit a strange-looking word, don't fret or panic. Try to hear the word in your mind, and guess at its meaning. That will often help, but if it doesn't, Roche's list or his brief and excellent notes should.
So take Spenser slowly, and give his words a chance to work their magic. Let him gently conduct you through his enthralling universe, one that you will find both wholly strange and perfectly familar, since human beings and their multifarious doings are Spenser's real subject, and somewhere in one of his enchanted forests you may one day find yourself.
Jin of Vanguard University of Southern California
Now, I believe this book fails insomuch as it tries to be a great modern chivalresque epic like Tasso's or Ariosto's (from whose works a lot of the characters' names come). Probably, he didn't even understand the full magnitude of those works. In this, he is hampered by his medieval mind. Action, intended as a way of developing character and portraying embattled and sovereign human individualities who continuously create a world of their own making, is shallow.
Success is in the static aspect, in the way Spenser manages to imbue "tableaux" referring to some eternal configuration of the existing with a strong power over the unconscious. It is a work which shines either by particular descriptions (their technique influenced Milton), or by the overall pattern that the adventures of the characters create. This pattern can be viewed as a gigantic description of a gigantic thing, as the descriptions in the more proper sense which are contained in it are of smaller things.