Early Modern Mythological Texts: Troia Britanica XI, Notes

Thomas Heywood.  Troia Britanica (1609)

Notes to CANTO XI


Ed. Katherine HEAVEY


Diomede: F, Diomed.

Ulysses: F, Ulisses.

Helen: F, Hellen. Back to text



Argumentum 2

Lambda: The eleventh letter of the Greek alphabet (to correspond with canto XI). See note to canto I, arg. 2, “alpha”. Back to text




this fair garden, midst the ocean set: Compare Shakespeare, Richard II, II.i.42-46, John of Gaunt’s description of England as “This other Eden, demi-paradise, … This precious stone set in a silver sea”, and III.iv.44, the servant’s description of England as a “sea-walled garden”. Back to text



British Bren: Brennus, king of Northumberland. His story is recounted by Geoffrey of Monmouth. He appears in Jasper Fisher’s Fuimus Troes (1625), and in the anonymous lost play Belinus and Brennus (1610). See Thomas L. Berger, William C. Bradford and Sidney L. Sondergard, An Index of Characters in Early Modern English Drama: Printed Plays 1500-1660 (Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1998) pp. 125, p. 141. Heywood alludes to him again in Troia Britanica, XVI, where he conflates him with Brennus, a chieftain of the Gauls: see notes to canto XVI, stanza 17.

Nennius: Another mythical British prince whose story is told by Geoffrey of Monmouth. Nennius also appears in Fisher’s Fuimus Troes, and in John Fletcher’s Bonduca (1613). See Berger, Bradford and Sondergard, An Index of Characters, 132. Back to text



hardiments engage: exploits undertake

Edgar: Edgar the Peaceful. The legend according to which Edgar showed his supremacy over six (or eight) tributary British kings by having them row him up the river Dee in Chester was repeated in most chronicles. It takes its origin in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, which mentions that after his coronation at Bath in 973, “the king led all his marine force to Chester; and there came to meet him six kings; and they all covenanted with him that they would be his allies by sea and land”, ed. James Ingram (London: Dent, 1870), p. 96. Back to text



Curthose: In canto XVII, stanza 9, Heywood returns to the issue of Robert Curthose’s election to the kingdom of Jerusalem and adds that he refused the title: “The Norman Robert, choosed king by election / Of Palestine, refused the sacred style, / Which Boulogne Godfrey took to his protection”. Back to text



hight: Was called

Pedro: Peter of Castile, supported by Edward the Black Prince and John of Gaunt during the Castilian Civil War. They restored him to his throne after the battle of Najera (1367) but he was murdered by his brother, a death Chaucer remembers in “The Monk’s Tale” (De Petro Rege Ispannie). In 1371, John of Gaunt married Pedro’s daughter Constance and unsuccessfully lay claim to the throne of Castile. Back to text



Bedford and Talbot bold: the roles of the Duke of Bedford, Regent of France, and of John Talbot in the French wars were dramatized in Shakespeare’s 1 Henry VI.

ne’er: F, neare

Edward the fourth (though wantonly misled): Heywood’s two-part play Edward IV was entered in the Stationer’s Register in 1599 – the play centred on the King’s adulterous relationship with Jane Shore. Back to text



Charles Brandon: 1st duke of Suffolk, whose tilting exploits and marriage with Henry VIII’s sister are alluded to several times in Troia Britanica: VII, 70; XI, 8 and XVII, 98.

Howard: Commander-in-chief of the English fleet against the Spanish Armada in 1588. Already celebrated in Troia Britanica, III, 6.

Grey: Arthur Grey, Lord Grey of Wilton, Lord Deputy of Ireland in 1580-1582.

Norris: Sir John Norris. In Troia Britanica, XVII, 130, Heywood alludes to his role as Captain of the troop Elizabeth I sent to Brittany in 1592-1594 to help Henry of Navarre fight the Catholic League.

Vere: Edward de Vere, 17th Earl of Oxford. Back to text



There is a place from earth, sea, heaven stands free: For the description of Fame, Heywood draws on Ovid’s description of Rumour, in Metamorphoses XII, 39-63, and also perhaps the 1567 English translation of Arthur Golding, and Geoffrey Chaucer’s fourteenth-century poem The House of FameBack to text



Yet is her house erected on a hill: In Ovid, Metamorphoses XII, 43, Rumour’s house is on “a high mountain summit”. Ovid, Metamorphoses, trans. A. S Kline. In Chaucer’s House of Fame (III, 1116-17) Fame’s palace stands “upon so hygh a roche, / Hier stant ther non in Spayne”. (Riverside Chaucer, ed. Larry D. Benson, Oxford: Oxford UP, 1987).

A thousand loopholes … every late and early hour: In Ovid’s Metamorphoses, XII, 44-46, Rumour’s house contains “innumerable entrances, a thousand openings, and no doors to bar the threshold. It is open night and day”. In Chaucer’s poem, the roof of the House of Fame is full of  

a thousand holes, and wel moo,

To leten wel the soun out goo.

And be day, in every tyde,

Been al the dores opened wide

And be nyght echon unshette. (III, 1949-53)

sounding brass: In Ovid (XII, 46), the reference is to “sounding bronze”. Back to text



ne’er: F, neare. This could mean “ne’er” (i.e. “never”) or “near” (i.e. “near was”, “almost”). Back to text



pursevants … Heralds: Heywood expands on Ovid with his description of the various people in Fame’s palace. Chaucer describes “pursevantes and heraudes / That crien ryche folks laudes” (III, 1321-22)

One speaks of wars: Compare Heywood’s stanzas 13 and 14 to Chaucer’s House of Fame: 

And over alle the houses angles

Ys ful of rounynges and of jangles

Of werres, of pes, of mariages,

Of reste, of labour, of viages,

Of abood, of deeth, of lyf,

Of love, of hate, accord, of stryf,

Of loos, of lore, and of wynnynges,

Of hele, of seknesse, of bildynges,

Of faire wyndes, and of tempestes,

Of qwalm of folk, and eke of bestes;

Of dyvers transmutacions

Of estats, and eke of regions;

Of trust, of drede, of jelousye,

Of wit, of wynnynge, of folye;

Of plente, and of gret famyne,

Of chepe, of derthe, and of ruyne;

Of good or mys governement,

Of fyr, and of dyvers accident. (III, 1959-76) Back to text



knight-adventurers: F, Knights adventurers.

Lies mixed with truths, and truths discoursed with fables: In his notes to this canto, Heywood writes that he has relied on Ovid’s description of Fame (or Rumour) rather than Virgil’s. However, there are some similarities to Virgil’s account in the Aeneid, which describes Rumour as “clinging to the false and the wrong, yet heralding truth” (IV, 188). Virgil, Aeneid, trans. H. Rushton Fairclough, rev. G. P. Goold (Cambridge, Mass: Harvard UP, 1916). Ovid’s Metamorphoses IX, 138-39 describes Rumour as one “who loves to add lies to fact, and expands from the tiniest truth by her falsehoods”. Back to text



to fend and prove: to argue, wrangle. Back to text



Here you may see … to a giant’s size: Virgil describes Rumour thus: “small at first through fear, soon she mounts up to heaven, and walks the ground with head hidden in the clouds” (IV, 176-7). Back to text



Here dwells credulity, rash error, fear: Compare Ovid, Metamorphoses XII, 59-61, “Here is Credulity, here is rash Error, empty Delight, and alarming Fear, sudden Sedition, and Murmurings of doubtful origin”.

bruits: F, brutes.

From hence the Trojans hear: In Metamorphoses XII, 64-66, Rumour brings news of the Greek approach.

Th’Atrides: Agamemnon and Menelaus (the sons of Atreus). Back to text



three distant leagues: Tenedos stands three miles from Troy in Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 7. Back to text



20-40: Heywood conflates two different moments of Caxton’s Recuyell, the embassy of Diomede and Ulysses to Troy (III, 8) and the list of warriors who came in Troy’s support (III, 9).

Pandrastus: Adrastus in Caxton’s Recuyell.

Pandorus: F, Panodrus.

Tholosson: “from the province of Tholoson came four kings with five thousand knights armed: the king Carras, the king Amasius, the king Nestor, that was a much strong man, and the king Amphimacus”, Caxton, Recuyell, III, 9.

Nestor: Obviously not the better known Greek Nestor. This ally of the Trojans is Guido delle Colonne’s Nestor, from Benoît de Sainte-Maure’s Nesteus—or Nestex, Nector, Nestor, according to various manuscripts (Le Roman de Troie, 6678), himself from Dares’s Nesteus or Nastes (De Excidio Troiae Historia, XVIII).

dreaded sore: a phrase also describing Philemus, below, XI, 25. Back to text



Glaucus: “From the realm of Lycie came the king Glauton with three thousand knights”, Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 9. He reappears as Glaucion stanza 71 below.

Sarpedon: “his son Sarpedon … cousin of king Priam”, Caxton, Recuyell, III, 9.

Eusemus: from Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 9: “From the realm of Lichaon came the king Ensemus with three thousand knights”, a distortion, through Benoît and Guido, of Dares’s king Euphemus from Ciconia (De Excidio Troiae Historia, XVIII). Back to text



Larissa: from Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 9: “From the realm of Larisse came two kings with fifteen hundred knights, the king Mistor, that was a much great man, and the king Capidus”. In the course of transmission, the two kings’ names were distorted from Dares’s Hippothous and Eupedus (De Excidio Troiae Historia, XVIII).

Spartan trull: Helen. Back to text



Remus: Heywood follows Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 9: “From the realm of Thaborye came the king Remus with three thousand knights and in his company came four dukes and seven earls … They bare in their arms the colour of azure without other sign, and thereby was the king Remus and his people known in the battle”. The description originates in Benoît de Sainte-Maure’s paragraph on “Li reis Remus de Cisonie” (Le Roman de Troie, 6713), who appeared in Guido delle Colonne as king Remus from Thabaria.

Pylex:  From Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 9: “From the realm of Trachie came the king Pilex and the duke Achamas with eleven hundred knights”. Through Benoît and Guido, from Dares’s Pirus and Acamas from Thracia (De Excidio Troiae Historia, XVIII). Back to text



Achamas: F, Achumus, but Achamas in marginal note and in Caxton. See preceding note.

Pessemus: From Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 9: “From the realm of Panonye came the king Pessemus and the duke Stupex his cousin with three thousand knights right expert to joust and to shoot with the bow”. They ultimately derive from Dares’s Pyraechmes and Asteropaeus from Paeonia, through Benoît de Sainte-Maure’s Pretemesus and Steropeus from Peoine (Le Roman de Troie, 6754-55) and Guido delle Colonne’s Pretemessus and Stupex from Pannonia (Historia Destructionis Troiae, ed. Griffin, p. 116).

Stupex: See preceding note.

three Boetian dukes: From Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 9: “From the province of Boecye came three dukes with twelve hundred knights, the duke Ansenims, the duke Fortunus, and the duke Sammus”. They are Ausimus, Fortinus and Sanius for Guido delle Colonne, from Benoît de Sainte-Maure’s Asimas, Fortis, and Sanius (Le Roman de Troie, 6759-60). Back to text



Two brother-kings: From Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 9: “From the realm of Burtyn where as grow good spices came two kings brethren with a thousand knights, the king Boetes and the king Episteus”. They derive from Benoît de Sainte-Maure’s Boetes and Epistroz (Le Roman de Troie, 6793-97), through Guido delle Colonne’s Boetes and Epystrus from Boetin.

dreaded sore: a phrase already describing Nestor, above, XI, 20.

Philemus: From Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 9: “From the reign of Paphagore … came the right rich king Philemeus with three thousand knights … and this king was as great as a giant”. He is Guido delle Colonne’s Philimenis from Paffagonia, derived, through Benoît de Sainte-Maure, from Dares’s Pylaemenes from Paphlagonia (De Excidio Troiae Historia, XVIII). Heywood mentions him again under the name of Pylemen, borrowed from Chapman, stanza 31 below, then, following Caxton again, under the name Philomenes, stanza 51. Back to text



Perseus, Thiclion, Symagon: From Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 9: “From the reign of Ethiope came the king Perseus and the king of Thiction … with three thousand knights … and also was with them Simagon, the son of king Thiction”. Dares and Benoît de Sainte-Maure have Perses and Mennon from Ethiopia; Guido delle Colonne adds Sigamon (or Simagon), Menon’s brother. Perseus is Perses, stanza 53 below. Back to text



Thelemus: Caxton mentions Theleus (Recuyell, III, 9). Guido delle Colonne has Theseus; Benoît de Sainte-Maure, Heseus; Dares, Rhesus. He becomes Thesus when Heywood mentions him again stanza 71 below and in stanzas 83-84, and 95.

Archilochus: Caxton, Guido and Benoît all have Archilogus. Heywood restores the original name, Archilochus. Back to text



Argrestes: Caxton writes that “From the isle of Argrest came two kings of whom I have not the names, with twelve hundred knights” (Recuyell, III, 9). Benoît de Sainte-Maure names those kings Fion and Edras (Le Roman de Troie, 6887), but Guido delle Colonne claims that “de insula que dicitur Agresta venerunt duo reges cum militibus mille cc, quorum nomina hic expressa non sunt”, Historia Destructionis Troiae, ed. Griffin, p. 116 (“from the isle called Agresta came with twelve hundred soldiers two kings whose names arte not given here”).

Deiphobus: F, Deiphebus, throughout, modelled on Caxton’s Deyphebus.

Epistrophus: F, Epistropus, as in Caxton and Guido delle Colonne; Pistropleus in Benoît de Sainte-Maure’s Le Roman de Troie; Dares’s Epistrophus (De Excidio Troiae Historia, XVIII). Heywood also calls him Epistrophus in Troia Britanica, X, 23, there too modelling himself on Caxton, Recuyell, III, 5. Back to text



Sagittary: The sagittary is described by Caxton, Recuyell, III, 9. In Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida, Agamemnon declares that “The dreadful sagittary / Appals our numbers” (V.v.14-15). Back to text



Nastes: From this stanza on, Heywood completes the list of names borrowed from Caxton with names borrowed from Chapman’s Seaven Bookes of the Iliades of Homere (1598): “The rude, unlettered Caribae, that barbarous were of tongue, / Did under Nastes’ colours march” (p. 45). Heywood substitutes the Meones—whom he defined as “Trojans” in the endnotes of canto X—to the less known Caribae. He makes him come “from Meander flood” because in Chapman’s Seaven Bookes, “The crooked arms Meander bowed, with his most snaky flood, / To Nastes and Amphymachus …” (p. 45).

Tentumidas: borrowed from Chapman, Seaven Bookes, p. 44: “These were Pelasgian Pithus’ sons, son of Teutamidas”.      

Pandarus: F, Pindarus. Chapman, Seaven Bookes, p. 44: “Pandarus did lead to field”.

Hyrtacides: Chapman, Seaven Bookes, p. 44: “Who Sestus and Abidus bred, Hyrtacides did guide”. Back to text 



Adrestus, Amphius, Merops: Chapman, Seaven Bookes, p. 44: “Adrestus, and stout Amphius lead, who did their Sire displease, / Merops Percosuis …”. Heywood borrows Chapman’s spelling Adrestus for Adrastus.

Ennonius … / And Chronius: Chapman, Seaven Bookes, p. 45: “Chronius and augur Ennomus the Mysians did command”.

Pylemen: Chapman, Seaven Bookes, p. 44: ”Pylemen with the thickened heart the Paphlagonians led”. Taking him for a different captain, Heywood mentioned him already stanza 25 above, under the name Philemus, derived from the medieval tradition.

Pyrechmes: Chapman, Seaven Bookes, p. 44: “Pyrechmes did the Peons rule, that crooked bows do bend”.

Euphemes: Chapman, Seaven Bookes, p. 44: “Euphenus the Ciconian troops in his command disposed”, translating Homer, Iliad, II, 846.

Ciconians: F, Cicinians. See preceding note.

Who: F, whom. Back to text



Ascanius and Dius: Heywood conflates two sentences from Chapman, Seaven Bookes, p. 45, “Epistrophus and Dius did the Halizonians guide” and “Phorcys and fair Ascanius the Phrygians brought to war”.

Pyrous: Chapman, Seaven Bookes, p. 44: “The Thracian guides were Pyrous and valiant Acaimas”.

Mnemon: Possibly the same as Menon in Troia Britanica, VIII, 40, but perhaps Memnon (see XIII, 58 and later). The homonymy between a Trojan Menon (VIII, 40, and possibly XI, 32) and a Greek Menon (XI, 68, 71-72) reflects the same homonymy in Caxton, a confusion which derives from Guido delle Colonne’s Historia Destructionis Troiae, where scribal mistakes transformed into Menon both the Trojan ally Memnon and the Greek captain Merion. Memnon appears with his proper name in XIII, 58.

Pylous and Hypothous: Chapman, Seaven Bookes, p. 44: “Pyleus and Hyppothous the stout Pelasgians led”. Back to text



Antenor: F, Anthenor, throughout, after Caxton’s spelling. Introduced in Troia Britanica, VIII, 39.

Polydamas: F, Polydamus; but F, Polydamas stanza 86 below. Introduced as Polydanus in VIII, 39. Caxton’s spelling is Polydamas, but Lydgate’s is Polydamus. Back to text



novel: news, tidings.

applies his speech to Priam thus: Heywood draws on Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 8, for the confrontation between the Greek envoys and King Priam. In Dictys’s account (II, 21-22), Ulysses gives a more conciliatory first speech, and Priam is not present. In Dares’ account (XVII), Ulysses appeals to Priam, assuring him that it is the Greeks’ desire to avoid war: however, he is dismissed harshly by the Trojan king. For English translations of these texts, and a brief account of each, see The Trojan War: The Chronicles of Dictys of Crete and Dares the Phrygian, trans. and ed. R. M. Frazer (Bloomington: Indiana UP, 1966). Back to text



King Diomede by chance doth Cresseid spy: Caxton does not describe Diomede’s seeing Cressida at this point. Back to text



He craves her name by whom he seems so danted: Compare with Diomede’s praise of Cressida, and Troilus’ angry response in Troilus and Cressida, IV.v.116-23.

danted: daunted. Back to text



I challenge thee the combat, valiant Greek: In Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde, V, 50-54, Troilus wants to challenge Diomede to fight when he comes to collect Criseyde from Troy, but fears Criseyde might be killed in the confusion. Back to text



Theutram: From Caxton’s Theutram, deriving from Guido delle Colonne’s Theutran, a deformation of Dares’s Teuthras. He is king of Mysia in Dares, of Messa in Guido, and of Messe in Caxton. Hence Heywood’s Messean land. See following note.

Telephus crowned king: The death of Theutram at the hands of Achilles, and the succession of Telephus, is described by Caxton, Recuyell, III, 9, and by Dares the Phrygian, XVI. Dictys of Crete (II, 1-3) describes how Telephus leads the Greeks to Troy, despite his initial reluctance to help. Back to text



Palamedes: F, Palamides, as frequently in cantos XI and XII, modelled on Caxton’s Palamydes; but also alternating with F, Palumides, in cantos X, XI, XII (26) and XV (endnotes), and F, Palimed, in canto XII (Argumentum).

Whose absence murmured long: Dares (De Excidio Troiae Historia, XVIII), simply says that Palamedes explained he had been incapacitated by sickness and unable to arrive sooner. There is no mention, in Dares, of the Greeks’ impatience at the delay, which is introduced by Benoît de Sainte-Maure (Le Roman de Troie, 6955-78) and repeated by Guido delle Colonne (Historia Destructionis Troiae, ed. Griffin, p. 118). According to Caxton, “And of his coming, the Greeks had great joy, and had murmured afore because he tarried so long, whereof he excused him by sickness that he had had”, Recuyell, III, 10. Back to text



forced to perish for suspected treason: Here Caxton’s Recuyell III, 10, gives Diomede’s counsel, that the Greeks shame themselves by their long stay in Tenedos, and should leave immediately. Heywood, instead, digresses to allude to the story of Ulysses’ hatred of Palamedes (briefly mentioned by Virgil in Aeneid II, 81-93, Ovid in Metamorphoses XIII, 34-62, Dictys at II, 15, and Natale Conti in Mythologia, XI, i). Furious with the man who exposed his feigned madness, and sent him to war, Ulysses framed Palamedes as a traitor, and he was condemned to death by Agamemnon. In Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 21, Palamedes’ death occurs much later, when he is killed by Paris on the battlefield, according to the tradition started by Dares, De Excidio Troiae Historia, XXVIII. Heywood develops the reason for Ulysses’ hatred of Palamedes and revenge in canto XII, stanzas 24-27 and 34-35. Back to text



upon the beach he lands: Prothesilaus’ landing is described by Homer, Iliad II, 695-702, Dictys, II, 11; Dares, XIX; Caxton, Recuyell, III, 10. Back to text



Archelaus and Prothenor: Caxton, Recuyell, III, 10, “They sold their lives dear, abiding the succour of king Archelaus and the king Prothenor, that anon arrived”. Guido delle Colonne, Historia Destructionis Troiae, ed. Griffin, p. 117, “Qui omnes amara nece subito priissent, nisi Archelaus et Prothenor statim terram cum eorum navibus attigissent” (“They would all have quickly died a bitter death if Archelaus and Prothenor had not soon reached land with their ships”). From Benoît de Sainte-Maure, Le Roman de Troie, 7221-30. Back to text



Askalus and Agabus: Caxton names Ascalus and Agalus, Recuyell, III, 10. Back to text



on the margent: On the bank. Back to text



Philomenes: The same as Philemus, stanza 25, above.

stounded: stunned.

The late victorious had dropped down a corpse: Caxton describes the Trojans saving Philomenus and bearing him away from battle on a shield, III, 10. For the battle scenes in this canto, Heywood draws extensively on Caxton, Recuyell, III, 10-12. Back to text



Perses: The same Heywood called Perseus stanza 26 above. In each occurrence, he follows Caxton’s spelling. Back to text



Palamedes: F, Palumides.

stain: F, slain

Symagon: see note to stanza 26, above.

the son of Naulus: This is the same Palamedes whose eventual death Heywood describes in stanza 46. Caxton describes his exploits in battle at III, 10. Back to text



a lion gules, the field or: Red and gold (heraldic terminology). Hector’s shield depicts a red lion on a gold background. Here Heywood draws closely on Caxton, who describes Hector’s appearance and his entrance into battle at III, 11. Heywood’s punctuation has been corrected from “A lion gules the field, or”. Back to text



beaver: Part of the helmet.

cleft his head: in Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 11, Hector “cleft him unto the nombril” (i. e. the navel). Back to text



his courser Galathee: Described by Caxton, III, 11. Back to text



Charon: Ferryman of the Underworld. Back to text



the fatal sisters: The Fates. Here Heywood is expanding significantly on Caxton’s description of Hector’s prowess. Back to text



torras: Perhaps “terrasse” or “terries”, defined by the OED as “An earthwork thrown up by a besieging force”, or “a raised level place for walking”.

retrait: His return. Hector, who set out at the beginning of fighting all in white, is now soaked in blood. Back to text



For ’gainst the great Achilles no man stands: Caxton describes Achilles’ turning the tide of battle in the Greeks’ favour, Recuyell, III, 11: “For against Achilles endured no man but he were beaten down to the earth or sore hurte”. Back to text



shouts: F, showres. Possibly showers (e.g. of arrows) though the following line makes “shouts” more likely.

the city gates defend: Heywood draws on Caxton, III, 11. Back to text



frushing: From “frush”, “To strike violently so as to crush, bruise, or smash”.

thinks to end the fray: Caxton does not mention Troilus battling Diomede at this point, instead giving a general account of the continued fighting. In Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde, the narrator remarks of Troilus “alwey moost this Diomede he sought” (V, 1757). In Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida, V.ii.174-79, it is again Troilus who resolves to meet Diomede in battle, and part of their fight is staged at V.iv.18-23. Back to text



though young: Shakespeare’s Hector mentions Troilus’ youth in Troilus and Cressida at V.iii.29 and 31. Caxton presents him as Priam’s youngest son (Recuyell, III,2).

But whilst upon their helms … their fury sunders: Chaucer’s narrator notes that despite Troilus’ and Diomede’s meeting in battle, “Fortune it naught ne wolde / Of oothers hond that eyther deyen sholde” (V, 1763-64). Back to text



even: Evening

To see their champions proudly armed they joy: The watching women are described by Caxton, Recuyell, III, 11. Back to text



Menon: the Greek Menon, i. e. Merion, see note to stanza 32 (Memnon), above. Back to text



Jat’d: F, Iat’d. Perhaps from “iet”, “To throw, cast, toss”. Back to text



Glaucion: Glaucus in stanza 21 above.

Thesus and Archilochus: see notes to stanza 27, above.

pale: i.e. fence, defences. Back to text



Securabor: From Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 11. A deformation of Guido delle Colonne’s Cicinalor (or Cynabor), itself from Benoît de Sainte-Maure’s Cicinalor (Le Roman de Troie, 8506).

noble Margareton: In Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida, V.viii.7-15, Margareton identifies himself as “a bastard son of Priam’s”, and unsuccessfully challenges the Greek Thersites to fight. In Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 11, he is described as “one of the bastards of king Priam” and is killed by Achilles. His name is a deformation of Guido delle Colonne’s Margariton, borrowed from Benoît de Sainte-Maure’s Le Roman de Troie, 9919.

Three kings: Sampitus, Machaon and Alcanus in Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 11. They are Guido delle Colonne’s Anthipus, Machaon and Alcanus, from Benoît de Sainte-Maure’s Antipus, Merceres and Alcamus (Le Roman de Troie, 8533-34).

Machaon: F, Maclaon. Heywood calls him Machaon in Troia Britanica, X, 26. See also preceding note.

Thesus: See note to stanza 27 above. Back to text



Troylus Menesteus singles: This battle is described by Caxton at III, 11. Back to text



Alcanus: F, Alccenus. The same as in stanza 73 above. Back to text



Hyripsus and Hupon: Caxton, Recuyell, III, 11: “Then came to the battle Hupon and Hiripisus with two thousand fighters, and against them came Menelaus and Prothenor”. They are Guido delle Colonne’s Hupon and Eripisus, from Benoît de Sainte-Maure’s Hupoz and Cupesus (Le Roman de Troie, 6703 and 8678).

Hupon: F, Hapon. Hupon everywhere else. See also preceding note.

lowers: i.e. looks angry. Back to text



Polydamas: F, Polydamus. See stanza 33 above.

Remus: F, Rhemus. Remus in Caxton’s Recuyell and in Heywood’s stanza 23 above. See note on Remus there.  

A fairer prince than Celidus lived none: Polydamas’ battle with Celidus, “the most fair king of the world”, the death of Celidus, and the furious reaction of Hector, are described by Caxton, Recuyell, III, 11. Back to text



Salamines: People of Salamis, followers of Ajax. Back to text



Theuter: Caxton’s Thenter (Recuyell, III, 11), from Guido delle Colonne’s Theucer himself deriving from Benoît de Sainte-Maure’s Theucer (Le Roman de Troie, 8891).

madest great Hector bleed: Theuter’s wounding of Hector is described by Caxton, III, 11. The last two lines of stanza 81 and first two lines of stanza 82 are the narrator’s rhetorical (and ironical?) address to the Theuter. Back to text



Those that grow next him: those that spring up. Back to text



Thesus: See note on Thelemus, stanza 27 above.

Fond man retire thee: Thesus’ warning to Hector is described by Caxton, Recuyell, III, 11. Back to text



debility: OED defines as “The condition of being weak or feeble; weakness, infirmity; want of strength”.

Celidonius, Moles: Caxton, Recuyell, III, 11: “An admiral of Troy, Celidones, slew Moles of Oreb, the nephew of king Thoas”. From Guido delle Colonne, “Celidonas autem interfecit Moles de Orep, nepotem Regis Thoas”, Historia Destructionis Troiae, ed. Griffin, p. 144. From Benoît de Sainte-Maure’s Celidonias and Meles d’Orep, Le Roman de Troie, 9900-02. Back to text



Mandon, Cedonius: Caxton, Recuyell, III, 11:”Mandon smote out an eye of king Cedonyus”. From Guido delle Colonne’s Madon and Cedius, deriving from Benoît de Sainte-Maure’s Maudanz and Scedius, Le Roman de Troie, 9907-11.

Menestheus: Heywood draws on Caxton, Recuyell, III, 11, “The king of Gaul jousted against Menesteus”. Benoît de Sainte-Maure and Guido delle Colonne describe a fight between Menesteus and king Duglas, who becomes “le roy dugal” in Raoul Le Fèvre’s Recueil, the origin of Caxton’s “king of Gaul”, and of Heywood’s after him.

Prothenor: Fights Fanuel in Benoît de Sainte-Maure, Guido delle Colonne and Raoul Le Fèvre. Caxton has Famuel, which Heywood read Samuel.

car: chariot. Back to text


86-103: Hector’s rescue of Polydamas, Hector’s wrath at Cassilanus’ death, Philon helped by Hector and Polydamas in his fight against Nestor, Aeneas’ fight with Ajax, the intervention of Ulysses and Humerus, Ulysses’ fight with Paris, Troilus wounding Ulysses, Hector’s horse slain under him, Dynadorus giving Hector Polixemus’ horse, Deiphobus wounding Theuter, Hector freeing Thesus from Quinteline and Moderus, Menesteus’ rescue of Thoas, Hector wounded by Humerus, Hector’s fight with Ajax and his courtesy to him, the ensuing truce: all are drawn from Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 11-12. Back to text



Philotas: Caxton, Recuyell, III, 11, Phylotas. But Heywood’s Philoatas, after Caxton’s Phyloteas, stanza 90 below. Back to text   



Polydamas: F, Polydamus. See note to stanza 33 above. Back to text



Philoatas: Caxton’s Phyloteas (Recuyell, III, 11), from Guido delle Colonne’s Philitoas. Philotas in stanza 87, above. Back to text



the king of Cyprus: It is “the king of Frigie”, Ulysses’ “cousin”, that Paris kills in Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 11. Back to text



stour: F, stower. fight, skirmish (OED).

Dynadorus, Polixemus: they are Caxton’s Dinadorus and Polixenus (Recuyell, III, 11), from Guido delle Colonne, Historia Destructionis Troiae, ed. Griffin, p. 140. Back to text



Deiphobus: F, Deiphebus, Caxton’s spelling. Back to text



Quinteline, Moderus: Caxton’s Quyntelynus and Moderus (Recuyell, III, 11), from Guido delle Colonne’s mention of the attack of Quintilienus and Modernus on Theseus (Historia Destructionis Troiae, ed. Griffin, p. 140). Back to text



cur’sie: courtesy. Thesus’ courteous advice to Hector and Hector’s mercy to Thesus are described by Caxton, Recuyell, III, 11. On Thesus, see note to Thelemus, stanza 27 above. Back to text



Thoas: Heywood simplifies Caxton’s account, according to which Thoas is attacked not by Hector, as Heywood writes, but by Hector’s “bastard brethren”, who mean to avenge Cassilanus’ death. They unhorse Thoas, “raze off his helm” and would have killed him if “the duke of Athens” (i.e. Menesteus) had not come to his rescue and freed him in spite of being wounded “in his side” by Paris’ arrow (Recuyell, III, 11).

hell/pell-mell: Compare Shakespeare, Richard III: “Let us to’t pellmell— / If not to heaven, then hand in hand to hell” (V.vi.42-43). Back to text



Humerus: in Caxton’s Recuyell, III, 11, Humerus wounds Hector “in the visage”; infuriated, Hector cleaves his head “unto the teeth”. Back to text



the two kinsmen now each other knows: In Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida, Hector’s fight with Ajax, and their reconciliation, are described at IV.vii.1-25. Caxton describes their encounter at III, 11. Back to text



Hadst thou to him … saved Troy: In Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida, Troilus urges Hector not to go into battle, telling him “Brother, you have a vice of mercy in you, / Which better fits a lion than a man” (V.iii.37-38). Caxton remarks that because of Hector’s courtesy to Ajax the Trojans missed an opportunity to win the war and he cautions against excessive mercy in the conclusion of Recuyell, III, 11. 

teene: harm. Back to text



There’s a fate in all things: Compare Shakespeare, Hamlet, “There’s a divinity that shapes our ends / Rough-hew them how we will” (V.ii.10-11).

his soldiers all retreat: Hector’s ill-fated decision to order a truce for the day, and the burial and burning of the dead, are described by Caxton at III, 11. Caxton notes of Hector’s ordering the retreat at this point “This was the cause wherefore the Troians lost to have the victory”. Back to text



Ate: Greek goddess of folly, who often played the part of Discord in early modern literature: see Spenser, The Faerie Queene, II, vii, 55, and Chapman’s marginal note to his Iliads, XIX, 92, defining her as “the goddess of contention”. In his endnotes, Heywood describes her as “goddess of revenge or strife”. Back to text


[Heywood’s endnotes to canto XI]

we have rather imitated Ovid than Virgil: See notes to stanzas 14 and 16.

in whose names: Not only did Heywood find different names in Caxton’s Recuyell and in Chapman’s Seaven Bookes, he also inherited of accidental homonyms from the medieval tradition, like the two Menon, one Greek, the other Trojan (see note to stanza 32 above) and the two Nestor (see note to stanza 20, above).

The Trojan Dictys: Dictys actually claims to have fought on the side of the Greeks, while Dares wrote from the perspective of the Trojans. The surviving version of Dictys’ account is written in Latin, but this is apparently a translation of a Greek original. See The Trojan War, trans. and ed. Frazer, 7-9. Back to text

Telephus: See note to stanza 44 above.

Theutram: F, Theutam. See note to stanza 44 above. Back to text

Ate: See note to stanza 103 above.

Homerus Iliad 7: Heywood draws on Conti’s Mythologia, I, xviii (Venice: Comin da Trino, 1581, p. 49). In their edition, John Mulryan and Stephen Brown note that the reference should actually be to Iliad XIX, 91. Natale Conti, Mythologia, trans. John Mulryan and Stephen Brown, 2 vols. (Tempe, AZ: Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, 2006) vol. 1, p. 60. After reproducing Conti’s transliteration of Homer’s line, Heywood also transcribes the mythographer’s translation into Latin (i.e. “Ate, the eldest daughter of Jupiter, who harms all mortals”), hence the Latin name Conti and after him, Heywood give her, Lesio (Harm). Back to text

The tale of Cephalus and Procris: Here Heywood adapts Ovid’s tale in Metamorphoses VII, 796-865. This excerpt found its way into William Jaggard’s 1612 edition of Shakespeare’s Passionate Pilgrim (referred to as PP), sigs. G4iv r-Hv; and into John Benson’s 1640 collection of poems (JB), sigs. F4iii r-F4iv v. In Ovid, the tale is told by Cephalus, who has come to Aegina from Athens, to treat with King Aeacus and win his support in the war with King Minos.

well clothed with flowers: Ovid’s “semper florentis Hymetti” (“of ever blossoming Hymettus”), Metamorphoses, VII, 702.

A holy well …: Here and later, the extended descriptions of natural imagery are Heywood’s elaborations.

tam’rix: tamarix, the Latin form of tamarisk.

trifoly: F, triffoly. Trefoil, or clover.

Zephyr: The god of the west wind. Back to text

sweet Air come, cool my heat: so F. PP, FB, sweet Air, come cool my heat.

hath: so F. PP, JB, halfe.

cornel: F, PP, JB, corveile, a probable misprint for corneile, a common early modern spelling for the cornel tree. Back to text

Then to the woods (stark wood) in rage she hies her: With a pun on ‘wood’ meaning ‘mad’. In Ovid, Procris follows Cephalus the next day. Back to text

What meanest thou Procris … this madness guide thee?: The creation of a separate narrative voice is Heywood’s innovation – in Ovid, Cephalus recounts the whole tale from his point of view. 

Air: F, Arye. Back to text

Behold the place, her jealous mind … ’gainst her ribs to beat: These insights into Procris’ jealous mind are Heywood’s additions. In his prefatory remarks to this translation, included in his notes to canto XI, he notes that the episode is out of place here, but had been “omitted in my former cantons, especially in that which seems to inveigh against jealousy”. In a prefatory letter to the Earl of Leicester, which introduces his translation of the Metamorphoses (1567), Arthur Golding explains that the tale of Cephalus and Procris demonstrates “That married folk should warily shun the vice of jealousy / And of suspicion should avoid all causes utterly”. Arthur Golding, trans., The xv bookes of P. Ouidius Naso, entytuled Metamorphosis (London: 1567), sig. Aiiiv. Back to text

She sees her error now: In Ovid, Procris still does not realise her mistake at this point. Back to text

His bow he bends, and a keen shaft he draws: In Ovid, Metamorphoses, VII, 841, Cephalus’ weapon is a javelin or spear. Back to text

It glads me most, that I no cuck-quean die: A “cuck-quean” was a term for a female cuckold. In Ovid, as she dies, Procris begs Cephalus not to marry Air; he tells her of her mistake, and when she dies he recalls “her look seemed easier then, untroubled by death” (VII, 862). Back to text


Back to canto XI (1-50 & 51-103)

On to canto XII


How to cite

Katherine Heavey, ed., 2016.  Troia Britanica Canto XI (1609), Notes.  In A Dictionary of Shakespeare's Classical Mythology: A Textual Companion, ed. Yves Peyré (2009-).


<< back to top >>