Dreaming the English Renaissance

Paperback (Print)
Buy New
Buy New from BN.com
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $5.95
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 82%)
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (11) from $5.95   
  • New (4) from $9.98   
  • Used (7) from $5.95   


Dreaming the English Renaissance examines ideas about dreams, actual dreams people had and recorded, and the many ways dreams were used in the culture and politics of the Tutor/Stuart age in order to provide a window into the mental life and the most profound beliefs of people of the time.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Levin's book displays a fascinating curiosity cabinet of images—from asparagus to Anne Boleyn—that visited the dreams of English men and women during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Borne along by Levin’s lively and anecdotal prose, we encounter the major players in British political history, from Richard III to James I, who appear alongside familiar figures in the history of science, including Robert Burton and Nicholas Culpeper. Dreaming the Renaissance will remain a manicule, urging close scrutiny of passages in our sources that might otherwise be dismissed as sensationalism or rhetorical embellishment.”—Journal of Modern History

“In Dreaming the English Renaissance: Politics and Desire in Court and Culture, Carole Levin attempts to trace the varied meanings of dreams in early modern England. She has succeeded admirably in achieving that goal. Levin’s treatment is rich in detail drawn from an amazing variety of primary sources, such as learned tomes on dreams, plays, poems, diaries, letters, ballads, pamphlets and broadsheets, as well as on a substantial number of recent scholarly works concerning the life and times of early modern England. This is quite a good book on English dreams and dreamers of the early modern era.”—Discoveries

“Levin’s work, as a combination of archival research, historiography, literary criticism, and cultural studies, takes part in a broad spectrum of scholarly conversations.”—The Sixteenth Century Journal  

"Dreaming the English Renaissance is cultural history at its very best, providing unusual access into the hopes and fears of early modern men and women. A deeply rewarding read for anyone interested in the turbulent social, political, and religious world of Tudor and Stuart England."
--James Shapiro, Columbia University

"How often is a deeply researched, densely scholarly book also a page-turner? Carole Levin's mesmerizing account begins with Richard Haydock, the 'sleeping preacher' at the court of King James.  Haydock analogized dreams to 'a stone cast into the water, from which arises presently a circle, which instantly begets another, and yet a third.'  Just so, historical import and new understandings ripple from the remarkable dreams, nightmares, premonitions, and visions Levin has rediscovered. Her careful analysis of unconventional sources gives us a Renaissance that is at once more wonderfully strange and more intimately knowable than we have ever had before.
--Lena Cowen Orlin, Georgetown University
"Carole Levin's latest text brings us into the fluid, illusory, confusing, and conflicting world of early modern dreams, dreamers, and dream theory.  Levin's cultural study is accessible to those unfamiliar with the politics and social customs of early modern Europe but is still interesting to those immersed in political, literary, and historical considerations.  Her narrative and argument often move in a fluid, dreamlike state, but, ultimately, these dreams teach us about the fears, hopes, desires, and concerns of early modern people on both personal and grand scales."
--Colleen E. Kennedy, Journal of British Studies Book Review

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780230602618
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publication date: 10/14/2008
  • Pages: 224
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Carole Levin is Willa Cather Professor of History at the University of Nebraska. She is the author of The Heart and Stomach of a King: Elizabeth I and the Politics of Sex and Power and The Reign of Elizabeth I.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations

Introduction 1

1 1605, the Year of Three Dreams 9

2 Theorists and Practitioners: Dreaming about the Living and the Dead 33

3 Religion and Witchcraft 61

4 Sexuality, Power, and Dreams of a New Dynasty 93

5 Sacred Blood and Monarchy 127

Afterword 159

Notes 161

Bibliography 189

Index 205

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)