In English literature the pastoral is a familiar trait of Renaissance poetry. Edmund Spenser's Shepherd's Calendar, as the first major Elizabethan pastoral, of considerably greater length than any other work of this kind, used the pastoral as a means for political and religious discussion. It imitated not only classical models but also pastoral poets of France and Italy and succeeded in bringing about a new vogue for pastoral. Shakespeare's love lyrics and those of Ben Jonson and Michael Drayton also have a pastoral setting.
The Pastoral can be applied to both poetr…
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