GASCOIGNE, George

(1539-1577)
George Gascoigne was an English poet and dramatist as well as a politician, courtier, and soldier of fortune who is chiefly remembered for successfully im­porting and domesticating foreign literary genres. Born in Bedfordshire, En­gland, and educated at the University of Cambridge and Gray's Inn, Gascoigne was the eldest son of Sir John and Margaret Scargill Gascoigne of Cardington. He developed an early fascination with court life that continually drained his finances. He married Elizabeth Bacon Breton in 1561, who was in fact already married, and the process of extracting her from her first marriage combined with the litigation that followed also contributed to the drain on his fortune. In need of money, Gascoigne joined Sir Humphrey Gilbert's forces in 1572 in support of William of Orange in the Dutch wars against the Spaniards. He returned within a year, no better off than before, and decided to use his writings and his connections to gain advancement.
Gascoigne continually sought royal favor and finally received it by assisting with the entertainments of Elizabeth I* on her visits to Kenilworth and Wood­stock in 1575. In 1576 he was granted an appointment by her advisor, William Cecil, Lord Burghley, was sent to Holland as an agent, and returned with a report of the siege of Antwerp by the Spanish, entitled The Spoil of Antwerp, Faithfully Reported, by a True Englishman, Who Was Present—one of the first examples of war correspondence in English.
Gascoigne was greatly interested in proving that English was a language fit for poetry, and many of his works can be seen as serving that end. He wrote the first Greek tragedy to be presented on the English stage (Jocasta, performed in 1566), the first prose comedy translated from Italian into English (Supposes, 1566), the first treatise on prosody in English ("Certayne Notes of Instruction" in The Posies of George Gascoigne, 1575), and one of the earliest formal satires in English (The Steele Glas, 1576). Finally, Gascoigne's A Hundreth Sundrie Flowres (1573) foreshadowed later English sonnet sequences.
Bibliography
C. T. Prouty, George Gascoigne: Elizabethan Courtier, Soldier, and Poet, 1942.
Richard J. Ring

Renaissance and Reformation 1500-1620: A Biographical Dictionary. . 2001.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Gascoigne, George — ▪ English poet born c. 1539, Cardington, Bedfordshire, Eng. died Oct. 7, 1577, Barnack, near Stamford, Lincolnshire  English poet and a major literary innovator.       Gascoigne attended the University of Cambridge, studied law at Gray s Inn in… …   Universalium

  • Gascoigne, George — (?1525 1577)    The dates of his birth and death are uncertain; those given here are from the DNB. He came from a Bedfordshire family and was educated at Trinity College, Cambridge, but left without a degree. He became a lawyer at Gray s Inn in… …   British and Irish poets

  • Gascoigne, George — ► (1542 77) Poeta y dramaturgo inglés. Fue el introductor del teatro de tipo italiano en Inglaterra. Autor de Los supuestos y El espejo de acero …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Gascoigne, George — (1525 or 1535 1577)    Poet and dramatist, s. of Sir John G., and descended from Sir William G., the famous Chief Justice to Henry IV., he was ed. at Camb., and entered Gray s Inn 1555. While there he produced two plays, both translations, The… …   Short biographical dictionary of English literature

  • Gascoigne — Gascoigne, George …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • George Gascoigne — (* um 1525 in Cardington, Bedfordshire; † 7. Oktober 1577 in Bernack bei Stamford, Lincolnshire) war ein englischer Dichter. Gascoigne studierte Jura am Trinity College der University of Cambridge. Er wurde dann zunächst vermutlich Mitglied des …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • GASCOIGNE (G.) — GASCOIGNE GEORGE (1542 1578) Étudiant à Trinity College, à Cambridge, George Gascoigne fit son droit à Gray’s Inn et représenta son comté, le Bedfordshire, au Parlement (mal, car il ne put y siéger longtemps à cause de ses frasques). Il mena à… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • George Gascoigne — George Gascoigne. George Gascoigne (h. 1525 – 7 de octubre de 1577) fue un poeta inglés. Era hijo mayor de Sir John Gascoigne de Cardington, Bedfordshire. Estudió en el Trinity College de Cambridge, habiendo trabajado como abogado. Estuvo en… …   Wikipedia Español

  • George Gascoigne — (c. 1535 ndash; October 7, 1577) was an English poet. He was the eldest son of Sir John Gascoigne of Cardington, Bedfordshire.Early lifeHe was educated at Trinity College, Cambridge, and on leaving the university is supposed to have joined the… …   Wikipedia

  • Gascoigne — is an English surname (derived from the geographical name Gascony ), and can refer to:People surnamed Gascoigne*Bamber Gascoigne (born 1935), English broadcaster and author *Bianca Gascoigne (born 1987), English model *Charles Gascoigne… …   Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.