[Milton-L] "Fortune" in Renaissance literature

Salwa Khoddam skhoddam at cox.net
Wed Jul 31 10:35:41 EDT 2013

Thanks Carl, Sara, and Jeffery for the list of works on Fortune in the Renaissance. It is a topic I'm most interested in. And thanks for Dario for providing us with Italian sources on this topic.
Salwa Khoddam PhD
Professor of English Emerita
Oklahoma City University
skhoddam at cox.net
  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: JCarl Bellinger 
  To: John Milton Discussion List 
  Sent: Tuesday, July 30, 2013 12:25 AM
  Subject: Re: [Milton-L] "Fortune" in Renaissance literature

  Forgive me if this source has already been cited, but here's a link to a nicely compact article by Aaron Taylor titled "The Rota Fortunæ Motif from Boethius to Lewis" Below the link I have copied the text of the article's seven footnotes. 


  [1] Boethius, The Consolation of Philosophy, trans. S.J. Tester (Camridge, MA: Harvard U, 2003), pp. 79, 81.

  [2] A.L. Rowse, ed., The Annotated Shakespeare, Vol. 3 (NY: Clarkson N. Potter, 1978), p. 222.

  [3] C.S. Lewis, Poems, ed. Walter Hooper (San Diego: Harcourt, 1992), p. 4.

  [4] The quote is from G.K. Chesterton, ‘A Hymn’,Collected Poetry, Pt. 1, Vol. X of Collected Works of G.K. Chesterton (SF: Ignatius, 1994), p. 141:O God of earth and altar,Bow down and hear our cry,Our earthly rulers falter,Our people drift and die;The walls of gold entomb us,The swords of scorn divide,Take not thy thunder from us,But take away our pride.From all that terror teaches,From lies of tongue and pen,From all the easy speechesThat comfort cruel men,For sale and profanationOf honour and the sword,From sleep and from damnation,Deliver us, good Lord.Tie in a living tetherThe prince and priest and thrall,Bind all our lives together,Smite us and save us all;In ire and exultationAflame with faith, and free,Lift up a living nation,A single sword to thee.(1907)It is worth noting that the British heavy metal band, Iron Maiden, used the first stanza (and a barely recognisable take on the last) in their song, ‘Revelations’.

  [5] C.S. Lewis, The Discarded Image: An Introduction to Medieval & Renaissance Literature(Cambridge: Cambridge U, 2002), pp. 81-2.

  [6] Ibid., pp. 176-7.

  [7] Dante Alighieri, The Divine Comedy: Cantica I—Hell, trans. Dorothy Sayers (London: Penguin, 1949), pp. 112-3.


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