16th Century Books- Top Ten Tuesdays

The prompt for top ten Tuesdays this week was HARD! It was your top 10 all time favourites in a chosen genre. I am not someone who really picks many favourites. In a way, any book I have kept on my bookshelf is a favourite, but there are a lot of really good books I borrowed. Either I have a really bad memory, or there aren’t any stand outs!

To make matters worse, it is Shakespeare month over here on the Armchair Explorer. I could post on my top 10 favourite Shakespeare plays- but given there are only 37 I would basically be writing a list of most of his well known plays. I thought about doing my top 10 favourite Shakespeare Sonnets, but even then I would be writing about just under 10% of them. (And I haven’t read them all yet! I’m getting to it- a post will follow soon :P).

A little while ago I was watching a documentary on Shakespeare, and learnt that there was a craze a couple hundred years ago where people wanted to collect the skulls of famous people. This came about because of a belief in phrenology- the idea that personality and abilities could be mapped out on the shape of the skull. Shakespeare, Mozart and many other famous people have probably been grave robbed because of this. Another thing that I found interesting, was the mention of another play-write who was contemporary to Shakespeare, who was casually described as ‘the best play-write of the 16th century’. This was in a Shakespeare documentary and I was a bit shocked- there were other good play-writes apart from him? I hadn’t thought about it!

And so I decided to make a list of ‘my favourite authors of the 16th century’, which since I don’t really know many is more a list of ‘who I think is probably important or good’. Please, if you have any knowledge of the era, comment below who you think are the best authors!

  1. Christopher Marlow: Dr Faustus,  because his life sounds dramatic too- he was probably murdered for involvement with treasonous happenings
  2. Martin Luther’s ninety five theses, because its the beginning of the protestant movement- a turning point in history
  3. Calvin: various works
  4. Moderata Fonte: The Worth of Women: Wherein Is Clearly Revealed Their Nobility and Their Superiority to Men, because who isn’t excited by 16th century feminism!
  5. Da vinci: Leonardo’s Notebooks
  6. Machiavelli: The Prince
  7. Thomas Moore: Utopia
  8. Erasmus: In praise of Folly, because this is just a really cool title
  9. Nicolaus Copernicus: On The Revolutions of Heavenly Spheres
  10. and of course Shakespeare make up the 10

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