William Fowler

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William Fowler (1560 – 1612) was a Protestant spy in Paris before returning to Scotland to become a minister and, later, moving to London to serve as secretary to Queen Anne. Besides composing original work, he also translated widely from the Italian masters such as Petrarch and Castiglione. His “Sonet: In Orknay” utilizes the rhyme scheme popularized by Fowler’s English contemporary, Edmund Spenser (1552 – 1599), thus representing Fowler’s quick talent for absorbing both classical and current trends in literature.