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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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(p.217) 8 Imprisonments
Henry Howard the Poet Earl of Surrey

W. A. Sessions

Oxford University Press

Although the normal temptations for a young ambitious nobleman of the highest rank were for Earl of Surrey a kind of continuous snare, the poet earl suffered another kind of imprisonment relatively new to his culture. The bad behaviour and fury exhibited on occasion by Surrey at court, the dangerous violent encounters, sprang, at least on one level, from the nature and inevitable sensitivity of Surrey as poet, whatever the slow entrapment of him by the court of Henry VIII. What might have been allowed and even expected of a Romantic or 12th-century poet could not be tolerated in the reign of Henry VIII, especially from the heir of the Howards. His building of Surrey House may have resulted in part from a desire to alleviate this new kind of frustration and psychic enclosing.

Keywords:   Earl of Surrey, imprisonment, behavior, Henry VIII, Surrey House

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