Anthony Munday

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Anthony Munday (* 1560 in London ; † August 10, 1633 ibid) was an English author. The forerunner of William Shakespeare is best known today for his work on Robin Hood .

life and work

Munday was born the son of a cloth merchant and trained as a printer. This also prompted Munday to try his hand at writing in 1576. His first work was a few verses that he added to a book of poetry that he was printing. After returning from a trip to France and Italy, he began to publish larger works.

Munday specialized in different genres at different stages of his career. He wrote chivalric romances mainly between 1588 and 1602 and again 1618/1619, dramas between 1596 and 1602 and Lord Mayor shows between 1602 and 1616. He also translated chivalric romances from Spanish into English, published poems, newspaper articles and staged public spectacles. Munday always had lively and good connections to clients, publishers, patrons, printers and theater owners, so that he also had a financially successful career. At the end of his life he had received around 80 titles and awards, was appointed "Clerk of the City of London " and had been commissioned to write a current edition of the Survey of London . In his time he was one of the most popular and widely read authors in England.

None of the traditional authors of his time have survived as many works from such a long period as Munday. Nevertheless, he is considered one of the less important authors of his time and has the dubious reputation of being an uninspired wage clerk par excellence in literary studies. A speculative book from 1928 was Munday's only biography until two monographs were published in the mid-2000s, and to this day there is no edition of his work.


Several of Munday's dramas were later incorrectly published as works of Shakespeare
  • Fedele and Fortuna also Fedele and Fortunio , 1584
  • Mother Redcap , with Michael Drayton , (not recorded.)
  • The Downfall of Robert Earl of Huntington , 1597-8.
  • The Death of Robert Earl of Huntington , with Henry Chettle . 1597-8.
  • The Funeral of Richard Cordelion , with Robert Wilson, Henry Chettle, and Michael Drayton, 1598. (Unpublished)
  • Valentine and Orson , with Richard Hathwaye 1598. (Unpublished)
  • Chance Medley , with Robert Wilson, Michael Drayton and Thomas Dekker. 1598. (Not published)
  • Owen Tudor , with Michael Drayton, Richard Hathwaye, and Robert Wilson. 1599-1600. (Not published)
  • Fair Constance of Rome Parts I and II, with Richard Hathwaye, Michael Drayton, and Thomas Dekker, 1600. (Not published)
  • The Rising of Cardinal Wolsey , with Michael Drayton, Henry Chettle, and Wentworth Smith , 1601. (Unpublished)
  • Two Harpies , with Thomas Dekker, Michael Drayton, Thomas Middleton, and John Webster , 1602. (Unpublished)
  • The Widow's Charm , 1602. Printed 1607
  • The Set at Tennis , 1602. (Unpublished)
  • The Life of Sir John Oldcastle with Michael Drayton, Robert Wilson, and Richard Hathwaye; printed 1600.
  • with others: The Book of Sir Thomas More , between 1596 and 1601


  1. a b Hamilton p. Xv
  2. Munday, Anthony in: Alan Hager (ed.): Encyclopedia of British Writers, 16th, 17th, and 18th Centuries Infobase Publishing, 2009 ISBN 1-4381-0869-9 p. 289
  3. Hamilton p. Xvi
  4. Hill p. 2
  5. Hill p. 1


  • Donna B. Hamilton: Anthony Munday And The Catholics, 1560-1633 Ashgate Publishing, Ltd., 2005 ISBN 0-7546-0607-4
  • Tracey Hill: Anthony Munday And Civic Culture: Theater, History And Power In Early Modern London 1580-1633 Manchester University Press, 2004 ISBN 0-7190-6382-5

Web links