Rediscovering Sir Philip Sidney at Penshurst Place

by Ann-Maureen Owens

These days it is possible to earn an undergraduate degree in English Literature without learning anything about the true Renaissance man of the Elizabethan Age and that’s a shame. By all accounts Sir Philip Sidney was an impressive courtier, soldier, statesman and poet. I remember learning to appreciate the idea of courtly love by reading his sonnet sequence, Astrophel and Stella in my own undergraduate days. His well-crafted sonnets were arranged into a cycle of over 100 works that formed a long narrative based upon, but not tied to, Sidney’s love for a lady at Queen E...

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