The nature of Renaissance allegory has been the subject of much investigation, notably by Spenserian scholars. The subject is now enlarged through a study of the plays of the Elizabethan Court dramatists of the 1580's and early 1590’s, particularly the comedies of John Lyly. Mr. Saccio rejects the older "topical readings" of Lyly; by extensive interpretation of particular plays he describes three distinct kinds of allegorical operation apparent in successive phases of Lyly’s career and suggests that they form an important paradigm of the development of English drama itself.
Originally published in 1969.
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