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By Philip Schwyzer

The Tudor period has lengthy been linked to the increase of nationalism in England, but nationalist writing during this interval usually concerned the denigration and outright denial of Englishness. Philip Schwyzer argues that the traditional, insular, and imperial country imagined within the works of writers akin to Shakespeare and Spenser was once no longer England, yet Britain. Disclaiming their Anglo-Saxon ancestry, the English sought their origins in a nostalgic imaginative and prescient of British antiquity. targeting texts together with The Faerie Queene, English and Welsh antiquarian works, The replicate for Magistrates, Henry V and King Lear, Schwyzer charts the genesis, improvement and disintegration of British nationalism within the 16th and early 17th centuries. an incredible contribution to the increasing scholarship on early sleek Britishness, this examine provides distinct recognition to Welsh texts and traditions, arguing that Welsh resources crucially encouraged the improvement of English literature and identification.

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23 The red dragon featured prominently in the royal arms and on the royal coinage. 25 22 23 24 25 Fisher suggests (personal communication) that the name may refer to Alice Perrers, the mistress of Edward III. If so, this would accord with a bardic tendency to associate the consorts of English kings with Rowena (as in Lewys Morgannwg’s slander of Anne Boleyn, below). Rees, The Son of Prophecy, p. 125. ) It is true that the Merlinic prophecy pertaining to the red dragon is distinct from the angel’s prophecy to Cadwaladr, though they have a common theme.

10 The meeting places of the Urdd Gobaith Cymru (The Welsh League of Youth), a nationalist organization founded in the 1920s, are known as aelwydydd. 9 18 Literature, Nationalism, and Memory under the leadership of the Tudurs, will at last come home. The images of fire, spark, and hearth are conjoined as a complex figure for the ways in which the present is at once preserved from the past, and is the past’s preserver. These few examples are indicative both of the importance the bards attributed to lineage and of the wealth of metaphors they developed to describe it.

Or is he ‘‘the fulfiller of the profecye’’ in a broader, more transcendent and irenic sense, a bringer of peace and deliverance to all the peoples of Britain, not the Britons alone? The pageant implicitly poses the question, and leaves it up to the king to respond with a sign – a sign that will inevitably be read in the judgment he passes on the city. By provocatively reminding him of the matter of Cadwaladr, the pageant offers the king the opportunity to invest his hoped-for act of mercy with prophetic significance (or conversely, by withholding mercy, to identify himself as 29 30 On the Severn’s status as border, see Philip Schwyzer, ‘‘Purity and Danger of the West Bank of the Severn: The Cultural Geography of A Masque Presented at Ludlow Castle, 1634,’’ Representations 60 (1997), 22–48; and ‘‘A Map of Greater Cambria’’ in Literature, Mapping, and the Politics of Space in Early Modern Britain, ed.

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