Philip Sidney: Letter to Queen Elizabeth

(1019 words)

Prominent English courtier Sir Philip Sidney (1554–1586) composed his letter to Queen Elizabeth in 1579 as the fervour surrounding her rumoured marriage to the French-Catholic Duke of Anjou and Alençon increased. The duke began courting Elizabeth personally in 1579, and the rumours of their close friendship stirred discontent among English Protestants, like Sidney, who thought that the marriage would precipitate England’s return to Catholicism after the Reformation. It is probable that the letter was commissioned by members of the Leicester circle, to which Sidney belonged (Stewart, p. 218). Initially, the letter circulated in manuscript until it was included in print collections of Sidney’s more well-known …

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Kimbro, Devori. "Letter to Queen Elizabeth". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 15 March 2014
[, accessed 28 May 2015.]