Gabriel Heaton, "Writing and Reading Royal Entertainments: From George Gascoigne to Ben Jonson"
English | ISBN 10: 0199213119 | 2010 | PDF | 272 pages | 2 MB
This major new study of Elizabethan and Jacobean royal entertainments, including country house entertainments, tiltyard speeches, and court masques, is the first to look in detail at the evidence provided by the surviving material texts. Drafts, royal presentation manuscripts, widely-circulating scribal copies, and printed pamphlets are all carefully placed in their cultural context, and the medium of manuscript is shown to have been at least as important as print for these texts' circulation. From the close collaboration between commissioning host and hired writer, to the varied interpretations imposed by copyists and publishers, entertainments were written and read within a complex social nexus: far from being royal propaganda, they reflected the distinct and sometimes competing agendas of monarchs, commissioning hosts, authors, publishers, scribal intermediaries, and readers.