The Oak and the Brier in The Shepheardes Calender

Philip Sidney created one-way anagram in his Song for an Accession Day Tilt (1577). In the song, Philisides and Mira can be easily transformed to Philip Sidney and Mary.

Next important issue is The Shepheardes Calender (TSC, 1579). All names in TSC are carefully selected based on Sidney's method. One quick example is the tale of the Oak and the Brier.
Which made this foolish Brier wex so bold,
That on a time he cast him to scold,
And sneb the good Oak, for he was old. (TSC, February)
"Foolish Brier" can spell Frier. Frier is an obsolete form of Friar. "Good Oak" can spell God. Oak is an obsolete form of yoke. This can be affirmed by Palinode's lines:
Good is no good, but if it be spend:
God giveth good for none other end. (TSC, May)
So what is that "Husbandman" that cuts the "good Oak"?
It's Human.

No comments:

Post a Comment