A 5 page research paper that examines the first book of Spencer's "Faerie Queene," Donne's Holy Sonnet "Oh my Blacke Soule," and Montaigne's essay "On Repentance" concerning how each of these writers regards the topic of repentance. The writer argues that an examination of three representative works from each writer suggests that they saw repentance in a similar light, as something essential to the spiritual health of the soul, but something that is also a gift from God and not within the power of mere human beings. No additional sources cited.
Repentance/ Spencer, Donne and Montaigne - May, 2003 for more information on using this
paper properly! Christians have long pondered the problem of sin, particularly in regards to their own spiritual state. An awareness of personal sin can lead the individual Christian to
despair, but it should also then proceed to repentance. Sixteenth century writers Edmund Spencer, John Donne and Michel de Montaigne addressed the issue of repentance at length in their work.
An examination of three representative works from each writer suggests that they saw repentance in a similar light, as something essential to the spiritual health of the soul, but something
that is also a gift from God and not within the power of mere human beings. Edmund Spencer addressed the topic of repentance in Canto X of Book
I in his epic poem, "The Faerie Queene." The hero of Spencers poem is the Redcrosse Knight. Read as a romantic saga, the plot of Book I consists of
a series of chivalric exploits. However, on a symbolic level, the narrative depicts a Christians struggle for spiritual salvation. In Canto X of Book I, Spencer addresses the topic
of repentance. The Redcrosse Knight and his lady travel to the House of Holiness because they realize that the soul of the good knight is suffering. The knight is healed
through the power of repentance. This is accomplished by subjecting the knight to many ordeals and tortures, prescribed by his physician, Patience. And sad Repentance used to embay His
bodie in salt water smarting sore, The filthy blots of sinne to washe away, So in short space, they did to health restore The man that would not life,