Goddesses and Queens

The iconography of Elizabeth I

Edited by Annaliese Connolly and Lisa Hopkins

Goddesses and Queens


  • Paperback

Book Information

  • Format: eBook
  • ISBN: 978-1-5261-6287-8
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Published Date: June 2021
  • BIC Category: Literary studies: general, Anthologies: general, ART / Subjects & Themes / Portraits, LITERARY COLLECTIONS / European / English, Irish, Scottish, Welsh, The arts / Portraits in art, Early Modern Literature, Literature, Literature & literary studies / Literary studies: c 1500 to c 1800, The arts / History of art & design styles: c 1400 to c 1600


The visual images of Queen Elizabeth I displayed in contemporary portraits and perpetuated and developed in more recent media, such as film and television, make her one of the most familiar and popular of all British monarchs.

This collection of essays examines the diversity of the queen's extensive iconographical repertoire, focusing on both visual and textual representations of Elizabeth, not only in portraiture and literature, but also in contemporary sermons, speeches and alchemical treatises. The collection broadens current critical thinking about Elizabeth, as each of the essays contributes to the debate about the ways in which the queen's developing iconicity was not simply a celebratory mode, but also encoded criticism of her. Each of these essays explains the ways in which the varied representations of Elizabeth reflect the political and cultural anxieties of her subjects


List of illustrations/Acknowledgements/Notes on contributors
I A world in crisis: Elizabeth's iconography and religious tensions
1 Elizabeth I as Deborah the Judge: exceptional women of power - Carol Blessing
2 Warlike mates? Queen Elizabeth, and Joan La Pucelle in 1 Henry VI - Ben Spiller
3 'Rudenesse it selfe she doth refine': Queen Elizabeth I as Lady Alchymia - Jayne Elisabeth Archer
II Virginia and the Virgin: Elizabeth and the New World
4 Elizabeth I: size matters - Deanne Williams
5 'And in their midst a sun': Petrarch's Triumphs and the Elizabethan icon - Heather Campbell
6 'Nature without labor': Virgin Queen and virgin land in Sir Walter Ralegh's The Discoverie of the Large, Rich and Bewtiful Empyre of Guiana - Helen J. Burgess
III The Old World and the New: classical precedents
7 The dark side of the moon: Semiramis and Titania - Lisa Hopkins
8 Evaluating virginity: A Midsummer Night's Dream and the iconography of marriage - Annaliese Connolly
9 Cynthia waning: Cynthia's Revels imagines the death of the queen - Matthew Steggle
IV Coda: Elizabeth's afterlife
10 'Turn thy Tombe into a Throne': Elizabeth I's death rehearsal - Scott L. Newstok


Annaliese Connolly is Senior Lecturer in Renaissance Literature at Sheffield Hallam University. Lisa Hopkins is Professor of English at Sheffield Hallam University

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