1st Edition

Pope’s Mythologies Alexander Pope and Myth in the Early British Enlightenment

Edited By A.D. Cousins, Daniel Derrin Copyright 2023

    This volume is the first to discuss the canon of Pope’s verse in relation to Early British Enlightenment thinking about mythology and mythography. Pope did not merely use classical (along with non-classical) mythology in his verse as a traditional, richly diverse medium through which to represent the diversity of private and civic life in his day, but he was an ambitious translator as well as refashioner of myth. It is a medium that he shapes anew and variously across all his major poems. This volume enhances appreciation of myth as a mode of apprehension as well as expression throughout Pope’s verse. In doing so it illuminates how, in early eighteenth-century Britain, understandings of what myth is and what it does were taking new directions – not least in response to Baconian thought and its legacy.

    List of Contributors

    1. Introduction – A.D. Cousins
    2. Locating Divinity in Pope’s Windsor-Forest and The Rape of the Lock – Daniel Derrin
    3. Hot Ice and Wondrous Strange Snow: Allegorical Mythology in Pope’s Homer – Robert S. Miola
    4. ‘Condemn’d whole years in absence to deplore’: Pope’s (Jacobite?) Eloisa to Abelard – Claudia Thomas Kairoff
    5. Lud’s Fam’d Gates: The Dunciad and the Mythical Origins of London – Pat Rogers
    6. Remaking the World: An Essay on Man as Cosmopoiesis – Tom Jones
    7. Beatus Ille: Pope and the Mythos of Retirement – Philip Smallwood
    8. Pope’s Myths of Cultural Heroism in the Epistles to Bathurst and to Burlington – A.D. Cousins



    A.D. Cousins is Emeritus Professor at Macquarie University, Sydney, a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities and a Member of the Order of Australia. He has published nineteen books, with two forthcoming, including monographs on Andrew Marvell, Thomas More, Shakespeare’s non-dramatic verse, mythologies of internal exile in Elizabethan non-dramatic verse, and religious verse of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. He is on the Editorial Board of Moreana (Edinburgh University), the international journal of More studies, as well as of the Australian journal Journal of Language, Literature and Culture (Monash University). He has been Visiting Professor at Beijing University of Chemical Technology, Visiting Adjunct Professor at the Renaissance Studies Center at the University of Massachusetts, Visiting Scholar at Princeton and at Penn State, and Library Fellow at the Library of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he was also Honorary Fellow at the Institute for Research in the Humanities. He holds doctorates in both English literature and political theory.

    Daniel Derrin is an honorary research fellow in the Department of English Studies at Durham University. Prior to research and teaching fellowships at Durham, he was the S. Ernest Sprott fellow for 2014–2015 (University of Melbourne), and Associate Investigator for the Australian Research Council’s Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions (2013-2015). He is the author of Rhetoric and the Familiar in Francis Bacon and John Donne (2013), co-editor with A.D. Cousins of Shakespeare and the Soliloquy in Early Modern English Drama (2018), and Alexander Pope in the Reign of Queen Anne (2021), and co-editor with Hannah Burrows of The Palgrave Handbook of Humour, History, and Methodology (2021).