AD's English Literature : Time line of History-- THE ELIZABETHAN ERA

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Time line of History-- THE ELIZABETHAN ERA

Elizabeth I, daughter of Henry VIII and his second wife Anne Boleyn, ruled England from 1558 to 1603 during what is known as the Elizabethan Age. She was one of the scholar-women of her time, being versed in Latin, Greek, French, and Italian. Her translation of Boethius shows her exceptional art and skill. In the classics Roger Ascham was her tutor.  Her reign was also a time of great prosperity and achievement, and her court was a center for poets, writers, musicians, and scholars. 

Noted Writers: Ascham ; Wyatt, and Surrey ; Sir Philip Sidney, Edmund Spenser, Hooker, Raleigh, Lyly, Christopher Marlowe, Thomas Kyd,, Greene, Peele, William Shakespeare, George Chapman, Ben Jonson, Francis Beaumont and john Fletcher, and others.
Queen Elizabet  Art Gallery London

1545. Roger Ascham's "Toxophilus." <Elizabeth’s tutor>
1551. Nicholas Udall (1505?–1556), English schoolmaster and dramatist, who wrote the first known English comedy, Ralph Roister Doister" acted. It is based on the plays of the Roman comic dramatists Plautus and Terence.

1557. Tottel's"Miscellany."
1562. Sackville and Norton's " Gorboduc" (first English tragedy)acted.
1570. Ascham's “Schoolmaster."
1573. Donne born. English poet John Donne is best known for his sonnets on the themes of both human and divine love. A clergyman whose sermons are revered for their elegance of language, Donne has a significant impact on later generations of poets.
1579. Spenser's "Shepherd's Calendar."
1579. Lyly's "Euphues, or the Anatomy of Wit."

1580. Lyly's"Euphues and his England." The work is characterized by witty discourses on the subject of love and an affected, ornate style that was thenceforth known as “euphuism.”
1580. English courtier, poet, and soldier Sir Philip Sidney's" Arcadia"

1581. Sidney's"Apologie for Poetry."
1582. Shakespeare's marriage. On November 27, 1582, a license was issued to permit Shakespeare’s marriage, at the age of 18, to Anne Hathaway, aged 26 and the daughter of a Warwickshire farmer. (Although the document lists the bride as “Annam Whateley,” the scribe most likely made an error in the entry.) The next day a bond was signed to protect the bishop who issued the license from any legal responsibility for approving the marriage, as William was still a minor and Anne was pregnant. The couple’s daughter, Susanna, was born on May 26, 1583, and twins—Hamnet and Judith who were named for their godparents, neighbors Hamnet and Judith Sadler—followed on February 2, 1585.

1586 (?). Shakespeare goes to London.
1587. Marlowe's "Tamburlaine."  English poet and dramatist Christopher Marlowe is the greatest English playwright before William Shakespeare. His innovative use of blank verse and tragic subjects in plays will be fully developed by Shakespeare.  Marlowe wrote four principal plays: the heroic dramatic epic Tamburlaine the Great, Part I (1587), about the 14th-century Mongol conqueror; The Tragical History of Doctor Faustus (1588?), one of the earliest dramatizations of the Faust legend; the tragedy The Jew of Malta (1589?); and Edward II (1592?), which was one of the earliest successful English historical dramas and a model for Shakespeare's Richard II and Richard III. In each of these dramas one forceful protagonist with a single overriding passion dominates.

1588-94. Shakespeare's "First Period." English playwright William Shakespeare becomes the greatest playwright of all time. In their combination of philosophical profundity, wide audience appeal, brilliance and beauty of language, and astonishing breadth of characters, his plays are unequaled anywhere in the world.
1590. Spenser's "Faerie Queen"(first three books).
1593. Shakespeare's "Venus and Adonis."
1594. Hooker's "Ecclesiastical Polity"(first four books).
1594. Shakespeare's "Rape of Lucrece."
I595- Spenser's "Epithalamion."
1595-1601. Shakespeare's "Second Period."
1596. Ben Jonson's "Every Man in his Humour."
1596. Spenser's "Faerie Queen"(last three books).
1596. The Blind Beggar of Alexandria by George Chapman. His great work by which he lives in literature is his translation of Homer. The Iliad was pub. in 1611, the Odyssey in 1616, and the Hymns, etc., in 1624.

1597. Hooker's “Ecclesiastical Polity"(fifth book)
1601-8. Shakespeare's "Third Period."
1603. Ben Jonson's"Sejanus."
1605. Ben Jonson's "Volpone or the Fox "
1605. Bacon's "Advancement of Learning."

1609. Shakespeare's Sonnets, sequence of 154 sonnets, is thought to be written between 1595 and 1599. Shakespeare’s sonnets were first collected in book form by the printer Thomas Thorpe, who registered them on May 20, 1609, with the title Shake-speares Sonnets.

1609-13 (?). Shakespeare's" Fourth Period."
1610. Ben Jonson's "Alchemist."
1611. James I of England commissions a revision of the English Bible, a 14th-century translation by John Wycliffe. The King James Version OR Authorised Version of the Bible, as it is called, is completed in1611.

1612 (?). Shakespeare returns to Stratford.
1613. Webster's "Duchess of Malfi." The Duchess of Malfi, staged about 1614, depicts a world of extravagant passions, dark intrigue, and fratricidal violence.


  1. sir, My name is Mir Ahammad Ali. sir, really your site has been a great help to us, the students of english literature and language. Especially the critical analysis of literary genres which have been expressed in an interesting way is liked by everybody. sir I wan'na be a student as well as friend of your's. Can you give me the permission to be your student?

  2. Dear Mir'
    You are welcome. Do your studies and critical approaches rolling.

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