The aftermath of reformation, mid 16th.Century, left the art and literary world in upheaval. The former art of Catholicism which had been figurative and vivid, depicting the saints in all their glory, was redundant and even despised. Many reformers believed that to idolize the saints and to depict them in such a vital and charismatic way was to set up; What we begin to see is a refuge being made in the distant past. Cultural icons of antiquity are resurrected, images made safe/tame by their familiarity and distance in time. The gods of ancient Greece and Rome, become handy vessels for political and moral exploration, whether in writing or art, made impotent of any religious tension by their mythical antiquity.
[...] This is emphasized by another biblical reference, in that the house appears to be built on weak foundations, as it sits on a 'sandie hill.' As we know from the gospel of Matthew, it is a foolish man who builds a house on sand, '7:27 And the rain descended and the floods came and the winds blew, and beat upon the house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.' Indeed, by the end of Canto the mighty house has fallen and all within have come to a dreadful end; 'This all through the great Princesse pride did fall And come to shamefull end . [...]
[...] When he fights the monster Errour, like perhaps many mortals, he experiences a loss of faith as he is overcome by the demon, which is only held in check by Una's presence. However what makes the faithful knight most mortal is his tendency towards depression, based perhaps again on his wavering faith. This is shown clearly in Canto IX. Despair is actually a character, and he sets about convincing the knight that all is hopeless by telling him of difficult moral situations, such as a knight would encounter; But he should die, who merits not to live? The knight is much disturbed by Despair's words and feels as if . [...]
[...] 7:14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way which leadthe unto life, and few there be that find it.' Matthew, King James Version So as the knight and Duessa travel up this broad way, there is a sense of them setting foot on the path to hell. Also as we approach the house it becomes clear that it is not actually made of gold, but brick overlaid with 'golden foile', and also that decay has set in at places; And all the hinder parts, that few could spie, Were ruinous and old, but painted cunningly. [...]
[...] ' And that new creature borne without her dew, Full of her makers guile, with usage sly He taught to imitate that Lady trew, Whose semblance she did carrie under feigned hew.' Also we have the wicked Duessa who is described by Spenser as 'false'. It is Duessa who leads the knight to the house of Pride, and ultimately the gates of hell. What becomes apparent during the unravelment of The Faerie Queen, is that the female characters all seem to be connected to the idea of fairy, even the hideous monster Errour. [...]
[...] Perhaps, but more specifically, Spenser seems to use this battle to portray the strength of faith, and the importance of keeping ones faith. If we go back to the comparisons to Gello, that Byzantinium fairy, Purkiss reveals how she was later Christianized, and then preyed exclusively on the unbaptized and unfaithful. Therefore, Errour can only be defeated by one true of faith, the knight, and so all her prey before must have been the unfaithful. We see how it is faith, especially through Una that guides the knight to his finally victory. [...]
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