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John Gower, Squire of Kent, the Peasants' Revolt, and the Visio Anglie


Bennett, MJ, John Gower, Squire of Kent, the Peasants' Revolt, and the Visio Anglie, Chaucer Review, 53, (3) pp. 258-282. ISSN 0009-2002 (2018) [Substantial Review]

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DOI: doi:10.5325/chaucerrev.53.3.0258


Though the status of John Gower as a squire of Kent is acknowledged, it has been generally assumed that the poet sold the manor of Aldington by Thurnham, his chief holding in Kent, in 1373, moving to Southwark shortly afterwards. This grant, however, was not a sale, but an enfeoffment to uses, through which Gower retained a beneficial interest. Gower's occupation of the property in 1381 is attested by his action to enforce a contract for the rebuilding of his house there. The evidence that he was living at Aldington, close to Maidstone, an epicenter of the Peasants' Revolt, provides a new perspective on his representation of the rising in Vox Clamantis, Book 1 (Visio Anglie). A recognition that the grantees in 1373, including Lord Cobham, were Gower's trusted friends provides a clearer view of his social circle and helps to explain his views of Richard II.

Item Details

Item Type:Substantial Review
Keywords:peasant class, archbishops, insurgency, dream vision poetry, classical poetry, popular uprisings, ships, towns, killing
Research Division:History, Heritage and Archaeology
Research Group:Historical studies
Research Field:British history
Objective Division:Culture and Society
Objective Group:Understanding past societies
Objective Field:Understanding Europe's past
UTAS Author:Bennett, MJ (Professor Michael Bennett)
ID Code:130190
Year Published:2018
Web of Science® Times Cited:1
Deposited By:Office of the School of Humanities
Deposited On:2019-01-15
Last Modified:2019-01-15
Downloads:1 View Download Statistics

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