A Gathering of Flowers from Shakespeare

Front Cover
Porcupine's Quill, 2006 - Art - 130 pages
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In this remarkable volume, one of Canada's most celebrated artists has collaborated with a distinguished professor of English to create a work of art and scholarship both beautiful and informative.

Sir Phillip Sydney, one of the earliest of English literary critics, claimed that the purpose of `poesie', or literature, was `to teach and to delight'. A Gathering of Flowers accomplishes both goals with great success. The artist's astonishingly realistic images are accompanied by a succinct education in the nature and properties of flowers, and by the quotations and explication of lines written by the greatest poet of the English language. Shakespeare used flower imagery in many of his plays, providing dramatic significance as well as aeshetic effect. David Hoeniger cites many of these, including Oberon's vivid ...

`I know a bank where the wild thyme blows,
Where oxlip and the noffdding violet grows,
Quite over-canopied with luscious woodbine,
With sweet musk-roses and with eglantine.
There sleeps Titania sometime of the night,
Lull'd in these flowers with dances and delight.'

For each quotation, he provides an explanation of the significance or symbolism of the floral image. The beauty of Shakespeare's poetry is complemented by the vivid artistry of the engravings. This co-operative effort of artist and scholar has been most successful in fulfilling Sir Phillip's stated purpose, to teach and to delight.

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About the author (2006)

A member of the Society of Wood Engravers (England) and of the American Society of Botanical Artists, Gerard Brender ; Brandis has produced hundreds of drawings, wood engravings and watercolours of flowering plants, many of which were studied in his own garden. These images have appeared in books, including Wood, Ink and Paper, At Water's Edge and Portraits of Flowers (all published by The Porcupine's Quill) as well as in his own handmade editions. His work is represented in the collections of the Royal Botanical Gardens (Hamilton, Ontario), the Missouri Botanic Garden, the Arnold Arboretum and the Hunt Botanical Library. His garden and his studio are located in Stratford, Ontario.F. David Hoeniger is professor emeritus from Victoria College, University of Toronto, where he taught for many years in the Department of English. He is also a former director of the university's Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies. Professor Hoeniger is the author and editor of numerous works on Shakespeare, his work and his times, including Medicine and Shakepeare in the English Renaissance (1992), and Science and the Arts in the Renaissance (edited with John W. Shirley, 1985). His editions of Shakespeare include the Arden Pericles (1963) and the Penguin version of King Henry the Eighth (1966). Professor Hoeniger lives in Toronto.

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