Earlyrenaissance1's Blog

Sonnet: Love that doth reign and live within my thougts

Posted in Uncategorized door earlyrenaissance1 op februari 9, 2010

Henry Howard was born in Hundson, Hertfordshire, in 1517. He was the son of Thomas Howard and Lady Elizabeth Stafford. Surrey was his nickname. Surry was a royal descent on both sides of his family. He was given the title “Earl of Surrey”, when his grandfather past away.

Surrey married with the daughter of the Duke of Oxford, Lady Frances de Vere in 1532. Because of their young ages, they don’t live together until 1535.

In 1536 his first son, Thomas, was born in March. There were follow 4 more, Jane Howard, Margaret Howard, Henry Howard and Catherine Howard.

Surrey was a mighty soldier, just like his father and grandfather, and they all were loyal to the Tudors.

The Howards came in trouble when Jane Seymour became queen in 1536. In 1537 the Seymours accused the Howards of sympathizing the rebels of the Pilgrimage of Grace. Surry imprisoned in Windsor. Surrey’s poem “Prisoned in Windsor”, what remind him on his time in Windsor, dates from the same year. The accuses ware fake, and Surrey and his father challenged them.

Surrey was made Knight of the Garter in May 1541 and head of the University of Cambridge. In spite of these titels, however, he was not a good example of follow the rule of law. He was imprisoned twice in the Fleet prison, in 1542 and 1543.

After his release from the Fleet, Surrey served the king in Flanders with the English army on the side of Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, who was seeking to acquire the Netherlands. In a letter to Henry VIII, the emperor commended Surreys “gentil cueur.”3 In the following year, 1544, Surrey was wounded at the siege of Montreuil and returned to England, but was back in France at the head of a company of 5,000 men in Calais.4. In 1545 he became Commander of Guisnes and Commander of the garrison of Boulogne. After several skirmishes and a defeat at the battle at St. Etienne in 1546, Surrey was replaced in the post by his longtime adversary Edward Seymour, Lord Hertford (later Duke of Somerset).

Surry were accused on charges of treason. He was imprisoned in the Tower. Surrey was indicted of high treason in January 1547, despite the lack of any real evidence, condemned, and executed on the 19th of January, 1547 on Tower Hill.

1          Love that doth reign and live within my thought

2          And built his seat within my captive breast,

3          Clad in arms wherein with me he fought,

4          Oft in my face he doth his banner rest.

5          But she that taught me love and suffer pain,

6          My doubtful hope and eke my hot desire,

7          With shamefaced look to shadow and refrain,

8          Her smiling grace converteth straight to ire.

9          And coward Love, then, to the heart apace

10        Taketh his flight, where he doth lurk and ‘plain,

11        His purpose lost, and dare not show his face.

12        For my lord’s guilt thus faultless bide I pain,

13        Yet from my lord shall not my foot remove,

14        Sweet is the death that taketh end by love.

I often came across these text, when I was looking for information:

Note: The sonnet above is translated from Petrarch. Compare with Wyatt’s sonnet “The long love that in my heart doth harbor…” or with a literal translation from the Italian.

What does that mean?

Petrarch whose poetry was about the idealistic approach to love, caused for several Renaissance writers to revisit them and translate them to represent different meanings. Among others, Sir Thomas Wyatt in his poem “The Long Love That in My Thought Doth Harbour” and Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey in his poem “Love That Doth Reign and Live Within My Thought,” both explored the varying view of the original poem created by Petrarch. Their views on the aspect of love helped to be shaped by the Renaissance ideas.

The poem “The Long Love That in My Thought Doth Harbour” by Wyatt essentially depicts one view on love while the poem “Love That Doth Reign and Live Within My Thought” by Surrey, depicts an almost contrasting view. Although they both hold Petrarch’s poem as the origin. The notion that the need for love still existed, but the idea that perfect love could never exist was what basically what drove the entirety of their ideas, and what made them stream from the Petrarchan idea of idealistic love.

Literary works have certain meanings displayed throughout their entirety. A single literary work however can be interpreted in a variety of ways. Petrarch whose poetry was about the idealistic approach to love, caused for several Renaissance writers to revisit them and translate them.


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