Philip Stubbes: The Anatomie of Abuses

(924 words)
  • M. J. Kidnie (University of Western Ontario)

In The Anatomie of Abuses Philip Stubbes attacks forcefully and at length both public and private English life, exposing to view – and, he hopes, correction – the supposed abuses of Elizabethan society. The book offers a wide-ranging social critique presented in the form of a dialogue between Philoponus, the educated, worldly-wise traveller, and Spudeus, the country yokel, who chat as they walk along about the manners of the people who live in the foreign land of England (“Ailgna” in the first three editions). These particular character names, which translate from the Greek as “hard worker” and “earnest student”, would have had scholastic resonances for many of Stubbes's readers. The former alludes to John …

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Kidnie, M. J.. "The Anatomie of Abuses". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 20 September 2002
[, accessed 30 September 2016.]