Sexual and artistic manipulation : Elizabeth's and Leicester's key for survival in the Elizabethan era

Document Type



Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor's Name

James M Sutton

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Joseph Patrouch

Third Advisor's Name

Donald Watson

Date of Defense



The purpose of this thesis is to outline a new understanding of the relationship between England’s Queen Elizabeth I and her favorite courtier, Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester. This new understanding proposes that their childhood experiences and education were fundamental to their relationship as adults. They learned their manipulative abilities as a key to survival early in their lives, and repeatedly manifested this pattern throughout the years, as willing participants in a sexual and artistic game lasting only as long as both players followed the rules. The highpoint of this union was reached during the summer of 1575 when Leicester entertained Elizabeth at his palatial country house, Kenilworth.

Critical interpretation and a multidisciplinary research approach, including history, child psychology, architecture, and literature, provide significant proof that Elizabeth and Leicester sexually manipulated each other in order to survive the turbulence of sixteenth century England.



This document is currently not available here.



Rights Statement

Rights Statement

In Copyright. URI:
This Item is protected by copyright and/or related rights. You are free to use this Item in any way that is permitted by the copyright and related rights legislation that applies to your use. For other uses you need to obtain permission from the rights-holder(s).