Joe Glaser, CH 11, 745-5763



Texts:  English Sixteenth Century Verse, ed. Richard Sylvester. Norton, 1984.

             ISBN 0 393 30206 7

Edmund Spenser’s Poetry, ed. Maclean and Prescott. Third ed. Norton, 1993.

            ISBN 0 393 96299 7


The sixteenth century was one of the high points of English culture. Familiar writers of the period include Wyatt, Surrey, Sidney, Spenser, Marlowe, and—of course—Shakespeare. We'll be reading all these as well as some lesser-known but excellent poets, like Fulke Greville and George Gascoigne. We’ll study narrative and lyric poems and the sonnet sequences that make the period unique. We’ll talk about Elizabethan prose as well and how it prefigures writing of later periods.


Most classes will mix a bit of lecture with group work on the meaning and form of assigned selections. We'll average about sixty pages a week but the reading load will vary, going from short, intense poetry assignments to longer readings in narrative poetry and prose.


Four basic grades will make up your semester average:


Attendance, exercises,  daily grades             25%

                                   Midterm and Final                                           25% each

Research Paper                                                25%


Tests combine short-answer items and discussion topics from study guides provided beforehand.

Daily grades are quizzes over the day's readings. Exercises are written discussions on some aspect of what you've read. These are important practice for the discussion topics you'll encounter on the tests. Missing grades cannot be made up. You may miss two with no penalty, but further misses count against your average. If you pass all quizzes and get all exercises in on time, you qualify for an 5-point bonus toward your class net average--enough to go from a B (85%) to an A- (90%).

Attendance Policy:  You are allowed up to three unexcused cuts. After you've missed three classes, I'll want valid excuses. Anyone missing more than six classes without a cast-iron excuse (something like a hospital stay) will be penalized five points per cut on his or her final average or asked to drop the class.

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