Toward a revaluation of the imagery of Thomas Campion in "A Booke of Ayres"
Risinger, Mark Preston
Master of Arts
This thesis is an attempt to redefine the concept of imagery in the ayres of Thomas Campion's first published work, A Booke of Ayres (1601). Though Walter Davis and others have commented on the auditory imagery of Campion's poetry, no one has carried out a systematic analysis of the visual elements which are present. The five groups discussed here are night and darkness, fire, the heart, the eyes, and music. After a survey of the solo ayre in England as Campion knew and understood it, there is a discussion of the verbal connection between ayres which relate them to one another and to the five groups of images already mentioned. Analysis of individual songs within each of these five categories demonstrates that Campion's images are conceptualized more then they are visualized, and musical examples point out places where Campion uses text painting to clarify and highlight these image groups.