Rating: (*****) Copyright: Public Domain in the U.S. Please check the copyright status in your country.
Summary of the Book 'A Gentleman Gentleman':
A proper dyaloge betwene a Gentilman and a Husbandman eche complaynynge to other their miserable calamite through the ambicion of the clergye was printed in two versions by Hans Luft of Antwerp in 1529. This book appears in Robert Steeles list of books banned in Henrys reign Steele refers to it as Dialogue between gentleman plowman. While clearly in the Piers Plowman Tradition Piers does not appear as a character. The first version has a 684 line acrostic poem opening and dialogue that was written in the sixteenth-century invention. Following this there is an authentic late fourteenth-century Lollard anti-clerical text written ca. 1375-85. (It is included in Matthew ed. The English Works of Wyclif. ) To all this the second version adds another prose tract probably from the late fifteenth century which argues in favor of vernacular Bible translations. The dialogue begins with the gentleman lamenting how his class has fallen low and is unable to help the poor because long ago they were fooled into giving their lands and wealth to the church. The husbandman then argues for confiscating the possessions of a corrupt clergy which preys upon the poor. Belief in purgatory and indulgences is singled out as the favorite swindle of the clergy who are ultimately to blame for rising rents. The husbandman suggests taking the issue to parliament (the 1529 Reformation Parliament) but the gentleman demurs alluding to Simon Fishs A Supplicacyon for the Beggers and Thomas Mores rebuttal and defense of purgatory in The Supplycacyon of Soulys (1529). King John Sir John Oldcastle and Humphrey Duke of Gloucester are listed as good men who came to bad ends for opposing the clergy. Then there is an allusion to the burning of William Tyndales New Testament in 1526 and Henry Vs persecution of Lollards. To defend Lutherans and opposition to clerical possessions from charges of newfangledness the husbandman introduces what he takes to be a century-old treatise i.e. a late-fourteenth-century Lollard text that supports disendowment of the clergy and barring them from secular offices. (The husbandman places it in the time of Richard II. ) Now I promyse the after my iudgement I haue not hard of soche an olde fragment Better groundyd on reason with Scripture. Yf soche auncyent thynges myght come to lyght That noble men hadde ones of theym a syght The world yet wolde chaunge perauenture For here agaynst the clergye cannot bercke Sayenge as they do thys is a newe wercke Of heretykes contryued lately. And by thys treatyse it apperyth playne That before oure dayes men did compleyne Agaynst clerkes ambycyon so stately. The I of the husbandman at this point leads into the I of the Lollard treatise which is attached at the end with little done to make a transition it is revised to function as contemporary anti-Roman polemic.
Excerpts from the Book 'A Gentleman Gentleman':
... later, at Sonning-on-the-Thames and caught sight of the dear fellow, with Lonnegan by his side, striding down the tow-path in search of me. By the ... ... in abusing everything in English art that wasn't three hundred years old, and going into raptures over Lincoln Cathedral. The more he saw of Lonnegan ... ... and that was saying a lot-with hand-polished tables, sleeve and trouser-polished arm-chairs, Chippendale furniture, barmaids, pewter mugs, old and new ... ... bowl with some tobacco from his rubber pouch, drew the lucifer across his shoe, waited until the blue smoke mounted skyward and resumed his former ... ... architect missed none of its beauty and charm. I picked up my brushes and continued work. The spirit of perfect camaraderie makes such silences ... ... moment-accepted gracefully, not offended-never offended at anything. Was willing to see that the young son caught the train, or would meet the daughter ... ... abroad-Capri, Tangier, Cairo. It was on one of these jaunts that he met Saw Logs, who, after sizing him up for a day, promptly called him Tommy, ... ... kitchen cabi. There were no blossoms now out of his reach. Our little squirrel had gained the top. To dazzle the wife and daughter with the priceless ... ... you and the way it sinks into your soul. Bury your face in a bunch of them, if you don't believe it. Then the bridge. That mouldy old mass of red ... ... flowers in tiny vases, as well as a long serving board the width of the room, where everything that can be boiled, baked or stewed and then served cold ... ... to be. This tap-room, I must tell you, is not a bar in the American sense, nor is the girl a barkeeper in any sense. It is the open club of the ... ... American. Lonnegan as chief spokesman, in answer to an inquiry, and with an assurance born of mastery of his subject instantly recognized by the listeners, ... ... with the subject. I floated in with some comparisons touching upon the technic of the two schools of water-color painting, and, finding that ... ... like that sort of thing. We do here-that is, some of us do, because it marks the difference in rank, and we all, being kings, are tickled to death that ... ... away from home a year, mostly in England, and hadn't seen anybody, from a curator in a museum to the manager of an estate, who wouldn't take a shilling ... ... Jove. That little fellow with the wraps is Tommy.. A moment later Tommy reappeared and made straight for the barmaid. Get me some crushed ... ... Mac nor Lonnegan intended introducing him to either of the Englishmen. The barmaid pushed a second tray over the counter, and Tommy drew up a chair ... ... Sam to get something bigger. But the old man held out wanted to know what I thought of it, and, of course, I had to say she was all right, and that ... ... with laughter, slapping his pajama-incased knee with his fat hand, the tears streaming from his eyes. They've gone. he cried. Scooted. Saw ... ... Wig, and The Mermaid and the Boy. Another, literary... >>read more<