This research looks at Edmund Spenser's The Faerie Queene, one of the earliest and most celebrated pieces of epic poetry in the English language. While it has long been recognized that Spenser's work participates in the agenda of the Protestant Reformation, this research illustrates that Spenser's work is much more than a reflection of the norms of the Elizabethan period. Using the character of Duessa as a focal point, this research illuminates the ways in which Spenser used The Faerie Queene to not just echo but present his idiosyncratic stance on the threat of Catholicism to the English people.

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