The Faerie Queene

what is Edmund Spensers social commentary/ critique in Book 1 of the Faerie Queen?

What do we make of Spenser's historical and biblical allusions.

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The Faerie Queene was written over the course of about a decade by Edmund Spenser. He published the first three books in 1590, then the next four books (plus revisions to the first three) in 1596. It was originally intended to be twelve books long, with each book detailing a specific Christian virtue in its central character. When he presented the first three books at the court of Queen Elizabeth, Spenser was looking for the prestige, political position, and monetary compensation he believed the work merited. However, he came away disappointed by the relatively small stipend (to his mind) that he received, and attributed his lack of spectacular success with Elizabeth to her advisor and Spenser's political opposite, Lord Burghley.


below you will find an excellent source for biblical imagery in the Faerie Queen.