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Licia Sonnets 48

Giles Fletcher The Elder 1548 (Watford, Hertfordshire) – 1611



I saw, sweet Licia, when the spider ran
Within your house to weave a worthless web,
You present were and feared her with your fan,
So that amazéd speedily she fled.
She in your house such sweet perfumes did smell,
And heard the Muses with their notes refined,
Thus filled with envy, could no longer dwell,
But straight returned and at your house repined.
Then tell me, spider, why of late I saw
Thee lose thy poison, and thy bowels gone;
Did these enchant and keep thy limbs in awe,
And made thy forces to be small or none?
No, no, thou didst by chance my Licia see,
Who for her look Minerva seemed to thee

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Giles Fletcher The Elder

Giles Fletcher, the Elder was an English poet and diplomat, member of the English Parliament. Giles Fletcher was the son of Richard Fletcher, vicar of Bishop's Stortford. Fletcher was born in Watford, Hertfordshire. He spent his early life at Cranbrook before entering Eton College in about 1561. From there, Fletcher continued his education at King's College, Cambridge, where he was appointed a fellow in 1568 and gained his B. A. in the academic year 1569-70. Studying Greek and poetry, Fletcher contributed to the translation of several of Demosthenes' orations. On 22 March 1572, Fletcher became a lecturer in King's and held this position until March the following year, until he became a lecturer in Greek, a position which he held until Michaelmas term 1579. Continually rising within the academia, Fletcher rose to dean of arts, the highest position he was to attain at Kings, in 1580-81. However, this would not last long, for he decided to marry, forcing him to give up his fellowship. On 16 January, in his father's church, he married Joan Sheafe. Returning to Cambridge later, he received his Doctor of Civil Law degree. After attaining his law degree, the family settled back in Cranbrook, where once again the family was united. On 8 April 1582, Giles and Joan's first child, Phineas, was baptized. During the same year, Giles was made chancellor of the diocese of Sussex. more…

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