Welcome to Season Five! In this first episode we sit down with one of the world’s finest historians. Stephen Greenblatt takes us back to the late sixteenth century to witness the death of the Elizabethan playwright Christopher Marlowe.
In 1593 Marlowe was the toast of London. Thousands flocked to the theatres that lined the River Thames to see his hit plays, The Jew of Malta, Dr Faustus and Tamberlaine. Then, one spring afternoon, Marlowe was killed in an altercation at the home of Dame Eleanor Bull house in Deptford.
The facts of what happened that day have been contested ever since. Today Marlowe’s death is considered one of the great mysteries in literary history. In this episode of Travels Through Time, Greenblatt takes us back to a time of religious fervour, spies and suspicion, to weigh the evidence.
As ever, much, much more about this episode is to be found at our website tttpodcast.com.
Scene One: 30 May 1593. Marlowe meets three others at a house belonging to Eleanor Bull in Deptford, a busy port to the east of the city of London.
Scene Two: 5 May 1593. A placard is found pinned to a church used by Dutch immigrants threatening them with death if they did not leave the country and signed ‘Tamburlaine’.
Scene Three: New Year 1593/4. The Earl of Essex accuses the Queen’s personal physician, Rodrigo Lopez, of plotting to poison her, resulting in his trial and death.
Memento: The political climate of 1593 as a warning today.
Presenter: Violet Moller
Guest: Professor Stephen Greenblatt
Production: Maria Nolan
Podcast partner: Colorgraph
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