Aemilia Lanyer's 'The Penshurst'

1013 Words5 Pages
Aemilia Lanyer spent some time with her patron Margaret Countess of Cumberland, and her daughter Lady Anne Clifford, who reside on the Cookham estate. Lanyer’s country-house poem which predates Ben Johnson’s “The Penshurst” by 5 years, is as the title suggests a poem dedicated to the estate of her patrons. Lanyer gives colorful descriptions of the estate almost to the point where she depicts the land on which the estate rests as holy and sacred. However, Lanyer immediately opens the poem by distancing herself from the estate and it’s glorious nature, “Farewell (sweet Cookham) where I first obtained / Grace from that grace where perfect grace remained” (1-2) Lanyer is telling the reader that she is no longer a visitor of Cookham and she is physically leaving the place, and leaving all that is good and graceful behind. Lanyer conveys the sense that there is so much good and grace at Cookham that she cannot leave there with that grace that it must remain there. Before Lanyer begins to praise the physical beauty of the grounds, she mentions the Mistress of the place, “Yet you (great Lady) Mistress of that place, / From whose…show more content…
While she leaves the estate, she is not only saying goodbye to the grounds, but to her patrons whom she holds in the highest regard. The final lines of the poem, “Who virtues [the Mistress] lodge in my unworthy breast, / And ever shall, so long as life remains, / Tying my life to her by those rich chains” (208-210), while Lanyer spent a temporary amount of time at Cookham, the impact is life-long, she wants to convey to the reader the impact that the Mistress of Cookham has had on her

    More about Aemilia Lanyer's 'The Penshurst'

      Open Document