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Henry Howard the Poet Earl of SurreyA Life$
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W. A. Sessions

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780198186250

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198186250.001.0001

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The Audience at Surrey House: Lyrics and Lives

The Audience at Surrey House: Lyrics and Lives

(p.175) 6 The Audience at Surrey House: Lyrics and Lives
Henry Howard the Poet Earl of Surrey

W. A. Sessions

Oxford University Press

The creation of an audience at Surrey House or at any of the other Howard mansions took shape as the historical lives of the poet earl and his friends at court intertwined. By 1542, lyrics and lives as one had already begun to identify the Surrey world, particularly in the self-dramatized love story of Lady Margaret Douglas and Surrey's young uncle Thomas. Special circles of friends not only read and recited but sang poetic texts. The nature of their turbulent worlds could only be understood, so they felt, in the symbolic and intertextual language of poetry, and this circle which sought such language for its own violent histories became increasingly concentric with the Earl of Surrey himself, as three sets of evidence demonstrate.

Keywords:   audience, Surrey House, Lady Margaret Douglas, language, poetry, Earl of Surrey

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