Category Archives: sixteenth century

Of Ane Blak Moir

Dr Nicola Clark of the University of Chichester and I hope that an Open Access Modern English translation of what Prof Karl Steel of Brooklyn College has called a “precociously racist” poem will prove useful for those studying and learning about black lives in Early Modern Britain. Prof Steel has written an excellent blogpost on teaching the poem, in part exploring its use of rhetorical convention as well as giving suggestions for further reading on the poem and its contexts. You can find the translation further down this page.

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Unexpected Delights

Just one stanza for you in this post, but what a stanza.  I have been reading poetry written in the reign of Henry VII and the first decades of the reign of Henry VIII.  This is the period of literature filled with what C S Lewis in English Literature in the Sixteenth Century called ‘bad poets’.  Lewis’s verdict is damning: “This is the real midwinter of our poetry; all smudge, blur, and scribble without a firm line or a clear colour anywhere.”

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