STUKELEY ON STAGE
Thomas stukeley was The subject of ballads, poems, art and plays long after his death One surprising source of information regarding the career of Sir Thomas Stukeley is the works of art and literature that portrayed him. That he was the subject of such works, in some cases long after his death, suggests that he held some importance and notoriety in Elizabethan England. Ballads were composed about his expedition to Florida, and (probably) in 1588 George Peele wrote The Battle Of alcazar containing several scenes featuring Stukeley, including his death. There are aspects of the play that reveal it was tied up in anti-spanish propaganda in 1588, such as blaming Philip II explicitly for Stukeley’s death, but there are also touches of accuracy, such as the names of the Italian soldiers who betray Stukeley. Peele’s play was revived and published in the 1590s.
another play was the anonymous The Famous
History Of The life and death Of Captain Thomas Stukeley,
which may have combined more than one work.
Philip Henslowe’s diary also records a ‘Stewtley’ performed in 1597.
We also have poems recording him as “lusty Tom”. There were also paintings, such as Sir Thomas Stukeley Slain With The three Christian Kings in the collection of lord lumley, in 1590, although they have been lost.
King Philip II of Spain circa 1573. Philip took Stukeley in and gave him accommodation and titles. He also used him for his own purposes