Liberty, Law, and Rule in Early Modern England


This conference brought together three legal and constitutional texts from the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries with three English plays from the same period. The Elizabethan and Jacobean periods saw strong rulers but also witnessed a flowering of parliaments and a period in which liberty—at least for some—had never been greater.


Conference Readings

Coke, Edward. The Selected Writings of Sir Edward Coke, Volume 1. Edited by Steve Sheppard. Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2003.

James VI and I. King James VI and I, Political Writings. Edited by Johann P. Sommerville. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994.

Shakespeare, William. Measure for Measure: Second Series. Edited by J. W. Lever. London: Arden Shakespeare, 1967.

Shakespeare, William, Anthony Munday, and Henry Chettle. Sir Thomas More: Third Series. Edited by John Jowett, Thomas Dekker, and Thomas Heywood. New York: Bloomsbury Arden Shakespeare, 2011.

Smith, Thomas. De Republica Anglorum. Edited by M. Dewar. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009.

Webster, John. The Duchess of Malfi and Other Plays. Edited by Rene Weis. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009.