Thomas Norton: Parliament Man

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Thomas Norton can be numbered among the universal men of the England of Queen Elizabeth I - those who combined action with literary, intellectual and artistic accomplishment. Norton was a scholar, poet and translator, the author of racy polemical pamphlets, and the co-author of Gorboduc , the first blank verse tragedy in England. He was at the same time an active Protestant religious reformer and an ardent anti-Catholic: indeed during his lifetime he acquired a certain notoriety as Rackmaster Norton , who interrogated Catholics under torture in order to uncover actual or intended treason. Sometimes his enthusiasms landed him in trouble, including a spell in the Tower. But Norton's most important claim to fame is perhaps as the first great English Parliament Man .This new biography is the first to make extensive use of Norton's own speeches, letters, pamphlets, white papers and other writings. Through a vivid evocation of the cares, concerns, successes and disappointments of one man, Michael Graves gives a unique insight into the Elizabethan Age, into the life of Parliament, of London, and of religion in a time of change, fear, hope and intrigue.