Antique etching printed on paper by unknown artist depicting a scene from the epic poem from 1590's "The Faerie Queene" by Edmund Spenser
Paper measures: 13 1/4" x 9 1/4", printed area: 7 7/8" x 6 7/8"
Some yellowing due to age
Below the image:
"At last him chamst to meet upon the way
a faithless Sarazin
Hee had a fair companion of his way,
A goodly lady clad in scarlot red…
The knight of the Redcrosse…
Gan fairly couch his speare to words ride
- Faery Queen
BKI Canto 2"
Edmund Spenser (1552/1553 – 13 January 1599) was an English poet best known for The Faerie Queene, an epic poem and fantastical allegory celebrating the Tudor dynasty and Elizabeth I. He is recognized as one of the premier craftsmen of nascent Modern English verse, and is often considered one of the greatest poets in the English language.
Spenser's masterpiece is the epic poem The Faerie Queene. The first three books of The Faerie Queene were published in 1590, and a second set of three books were published in 1596. Spenser originally indicated that he intended the poem to consist of twelve books, so the version of the poem we have today is incomplete. Despite this, it remains one of the longest poems in the English language. It is an allegorical work, and can be read (as Spenser presumably intended) on several levels of allegory, including as praise of Queen Elizabeth I. In a completely allegorical context, the poem follows several knights in an examination of several virtues. In Spenser's "A Letter of the Authors", he states that the entire epic poem is "cloudily enwrapped in allegorical devises", and that the aim behind The Faerie Queene was to "fashion a gentleman or noble person in virtuous and gentle discipline"