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Dame Frances Yates (Dame Frances Amelia Yates) Biography

(1899–1981), (Dame Frances Amelia Yates)

Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionEncyclopedia of Literature: Woking Surrey to Æ


British cultural historian, born at Southsea, educated at University College, London. She joined the staff of the Warburg Institute in 1941. Following the Institute's absorption into University College, London, in 1944 she became a Reader in the history of the Renaissance in 1956. John Florio: The Life of an Italian in Shakespeare's England (1934), her first work of importance, anticipated the themes of much of her writing in its examination of the interactions of politics, religion, philosophy, and art in the culture of the Elizabethan era. Her numerous subsequent studies include The French Academies of the Sixteenth Century (1947), The Valois Tapestries (1959), and The Art of Memory (1966), an account of Renaissance mnemonic techniques. She is best known for her treatments of Rosicrucianism and Neo-Platonism in Giordano Bruno and the Hermetic Tradition (1964), The Rosicrucian Enlightenment (1972), and The Occult Philosophy in the Elizabethan Age (1979). Her books have had a major influence in modifying modern perceptions of the intellectual and cultural character of the sixteenth century. Lull and Bruno (1982), Renaissance and Reform (1983), and Ideas and Ideals in the North European Renaissance (1984) are collections of her essays.

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