Thomas Middleton’s Legal Duel: A Cognitive Approach




Thomas Middelton, The Phoenix, Duel, Jacobean, metaphor, legal language, political language


This article explores the Duel Scene (Scene 9, 99-277 (II.iii)) in Thomas Middleton's play The Phoenix (1607) in light of cognitive metephor theory. In reading this scene alongside the cultural and social changes in Elizabethan and Jacobean legal discourse, the mutual exchange of influence to both legal and political language and to drama and the theatre. The specific use of metaphoric blended spaces opens up for a combined linguistic and historical analysis.

Author Biography

John-Wilhelm Flattun, Arts and Humanities Library University of Bergen

Academic Librarian, Subject Specialist English, Art history


Axton, M. (1977). The Queen's two bodies: drama and the Elizabethan suc¬cession. London: Royal Historical Society.

Fortescue, J. S. (1997). On the laws and governance of England. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Happé, P. (1999). English drama before Shakespeare. Longman literature in English series. London: Longman.

Hutson, L. (2007). The invention of suspicion: law and mimesis in Shakespeare and Renaissance drama. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press.

Lakoff, G. (2008). The neural theory of metaphor. In R. W. j. Gibbs (Ed.), The Cambridge handbook of metaphor and thought. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Lewis, J. U. (2004). Law, Liberty, and Parliament: Selected Essays on the Writings of Sir Edward Coke, Chapter His Theory of “Artificial Reason” as a Context for Modern Basic Legal Theory. Liberty Fund. ed. Allen D. Boyer.

Middleton, T. (2007). Thomas Middleton: The Collected Works. The Oxford Middleton. Oxford, Clarendon Press. Taylor, Gary eds.

O'Callaghan, M. (2009). Thomas Middleton, Renaissance dramatist. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.

Prest, W. R. (1972). Inns of court under Elizabeth I and the early Stuarts, 1590-1640. [Si.]:.Longman.

Prest, W. R. (1986). The rise of the barristers : a social history of the English bar, 1590-1640. Oxford, Oxford University Press.

Spenser, E., A. C. Hamilton, H. Yamashita, and T. Suzuki (2007). The Faerie Qveene (Rev 2nd ed. ed.). Harlow: Pearson Longman.

Vinje, John-Wilhelm (Forthcoming). Approaches to the Text, Chapter: The Semiotics of a Performance Text: The Case of John Webster. Early Modern and Modern Studies. Fabrizio Serra Editore. Eriksen, R. and Vinje, J.W. Eds.

Webster, J. (1995-2007). The Works of John Webster. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, David Gunby et. al. eds.




How to Cite

Flattun, J.-W. “Thomas Middleton’s Legal Duel: A Cognitive Approach”. Early Modern Culture Online, vol. 2, no. 1, Feb. 2018, doi:10.15845/emco.v2i1.1279.