The time in between
England came late to the Renaissance. But by the time it arrived, its greatest contribution would be literary. John Donne, William Shakespeare, and Ben Jonson served a literate aristocracy eager to be informed and entertained.
Into the late sixteenth century comes the observant figure of Michel de Montaigne, a French statesman and prolific essayist who wrote about nearly everything his mind encountered, “from cannibals to codpieces, suicide to faith,” as Will Hamlin, WSU’s English literature and Renaissance scholar, puts it. For most English readers of the time, Montaigne’s French Essais were made accessible by a translation undertaken by his contemporary John Florio, a language teacher … » More …