Tracing the mythohistorical influences on Elizabeth I’s speech to the troops at Tilbury (1588), this article reexamines Tilbury’s critical historiography to assert that debates over historical veracity exaggerate the importance of truth for a hero narrative and argues for viewing the address as an instance of ritualized oratory. Adopting E. R. Leach’s model for the symbolic representation of time, this study locates the prebattle oration at a liminal point between secular and ritual/war time. It contends that Elizabeth’s speech evokes Victor Turner’s communitas and Kenneth Burke’s identification in rhetorical moves that solicit audience cooperation and appropriate conscious mythmaking processes.
"“Thy Fame Shall Never Cease”: Ritualized Oratory and Mythmaking in Renaissance Reproductions of Elizabeth I’s Tilbury Address,"
Narrative Culture: Vol. 8
, Article 9.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/narrative/vol8/iss2/9