Graphic Satire and the Printed Image in Shakespeare's London

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


How was the multiplied, printed image encountered in Shakespeare’s London? This chapter examines a range of genres and themes for single sheet, illustrated broadsides in an emerging, specialist print market. It discusses how such images were used to persuade and to entertain a potentially broad cross-section of society along moral, political and religious lines, and according to both topical and commercial interests. The mimetic nature of the English print in both engraved and woodcut form is highlighted, with its frequent adaptation of continental models to suit more local concerns. Consideration is also given to the survival of certain images in later seventeenth-century impressions, indicative of popularity and the common commercial practice of reprinting stock from aging plates and blocks, and the sporadic nature of censorship upon the illustrated broadside.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Oxford Handbook of the Age of Shakespeare
EditorsR. Malcolm Smuts
Place of PublicationOxford
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages24
ISBN (Print)9780199660841
Publication statusPublished - 12 May 2016


  • graphic satire
  • engraving
  • woodcut
  • broadside
  • print trade
  • illustration


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