Skip to main content

Research Repository

Advanced Search

Counsel, public debate, and queenship : John Stubbs’s 'The discoverie of a gaping gulf', 1579

Mears, N.

Counsel, public debate, and queenship : John Stubbs’s 'The discoverie of a gaping gulf', 1579 Thumbnail



John Stubbs's controversial pamphlet against Elizabeth's proposed marriage with Francis, duke of Anjou, The discoverie of a gaping gulf (1579), has conventionally been seen - with Edmund Spenser's The shepheardes calendar and Philip Sidney's letter to Elizabeth - as part of a propaganda campaign organized by Leicester and Walsingham to force Elizabeth to reject the marriage. Yet the evidence linking Stubbs with Leicester and Walsingham is thin. This article re-examines that evidence in the light of recent research on court factionalism, men-of-business, and concepts of counsel. It argues that A gaping gulf was an independent initiative taken by Stubbs which expressed very different attitudes to 'counsel' from Sidney's letter. It suggests that participants in public debate need to be explored on their own terms, rather than as necessarily catspaws of councillors; that there was an emergent Elizabethan public sphere independent of the court which, in holding different attitudes to counsel than councillors, could bring them into conflict with Elizabeth.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date 2001-09
Deposit Date May 23, 2008
Publicly Available Date May 23, 2008
Journal Historical Journal
Print ISSN 0018-246X
Electronic ISSN 1469-5103
Publisher Cambridge University Press
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 44
Issue 3
Pages 629-650
Keywords Elizabeth I, Francis Duke of Anjou, Marriage.
Public URL
Publisher URL 10.1017/S0018246X01001947


Published Journal Article (201 Kb)

Copyright Statement
© Cambridge University Press 2001

You might also like

Downloadable Citations