Sir Philip Sidney (1554-1586)
Philip Sidney ( Penshurst ( Kent ), 30 november 1554 – Arnhem , 17 October 1586 ) was a prominent figure in England at the time of Elizabeth I .  He was a famous aristocrat, diplomat, maecenas and poet. He lives on in his famous sonnets . After his death a true cult arose around this “perfect courtier “.
· 2Study and travel
· 5End of life
· 7External links
Sidney was born in the castle of Penshurst in the county of Kent as the oldest son of Sir Henry Sidney and Lady Mary Dudley. His mother was the daughter of John Dudley, Duke of Northumberland and a sister of Robert Dudley , Earl of Leicester. His younger sister Mary Sidneymarried Henry Herbert , 2nd Earl of Pembroke. Sidney wore his longest work, Arcadia later to her.
Philip received home teaching from his mother until he was old enough for Shrewsbury School. Then he went to Christ Church College in Oxford , where he did not graduate. In 1571 he left the university and a year later he left for Europe with his uncle, the Earl of Leicester. He visited France, Austria and Italy on a ‘Grand Tour’. In Vienna he met Charles de l’Ecluse , the botanist. In Venice he met Veronese , Giordano Bruno and Tintoretto . After his return, he visited his father in Ireland. Back in England in 1576 he met the Count of Essex and his daughter Penelope, who became the muse for his Astrophel and Stella, a series of love poems that is counted among the best of the English series of sonnets.
According to his biographer and contemporary Thomas Moffett, Sidney regularly visited John Dee’s home in Mortlake in the 1570s, where he received instruction with Edward Dyerin alchemy and related occult sciences .  
Sidney developed into a beloved courtier and several diplomatic missions were entrusted to him. He visited Heidelberg in vain to investigate the possibilities for a Protestant alliance. In 1578 he wrote a ‘masque’, entitled The Lady of May , on the occasion of the queen’s visit to Leicester House. In the same year he left the court after an argument with the Earl of Oxford and went to live with his sister Mary where he wrote his Arcadia . He maintained contact with the historian Justus Lipsius .
In 1582 he was knighted and married Frances Walsingham . In 1585 Sidney came in the wake of his uncle, the Earl of Leicester to the Netherlands. He became governor of Vlissingen and was involved in the fight against the Spaniards in Axel .
Sir Philip Sidney is mortally wounded at Warnsveld.
Memorial for Sir Philip Sidney at the spot where he was fatally injured.
In 1586 he died in Arnhem of the consequences of the injuries he had sustained in the Battle of Zutphen . He was 32 years old. The queen said a year later that she would like to buy back the life of Sir Philip Sidney with many millions.
Mourning lights on his death were written by Edmund Spenser and Michael Drayton. In An Apology for Poetry or Defense of Poesie(published in 1595) he defended the primacy of poetry.
In 1913 Sidney was given a statue in Zutphen, at the Coehoornsingel, in a park that until then had been known as the English cemetery . Here, in the harsh winter of 1795, English and Hanoverian soldiers were buried who died while withdrawing from the advancing French troops.  A few years later, a street was named after him in Zutphen. The place where he was mortally wounded by a Spanish musket bullet is located at the entrance to a walking path on the Warnsveldseweg, southeast of the current Roman Catholic cemetery. Here is a small memorial.
On October 17, 2011, exactly 425 years after his death, Sir Philip Sidney received a memorial stone in Arnhem. A stone strip has been affixed to the house at Bakkerstraat 68 with the following text: “In this house died October 17, 1586 SIR PHILIP SIDNEY English poet, diplomat and warrior, sustained his injuries in the battle of Zutphen He gave his life our freedom “. Philip Sidney was present at the revelation, the Viscount de L’Isle and a descendant of the brother of Sir Philip Sidney.
· The Lady of May (1578), treatise on the occasion of the Queen’s visit.
· Defense of Poetry (verse 1581), a book in which he sees the poetic imagination as the creator of a world that transcends the real world.
· Arcadia (1593), pastoral novel, inspired by the Aminta of Le Tasse .
· Astrophel and Stella , a collection of sonnets in honor of Penelope Devereux, daughter of Walter Devereux, 1st Earl of Essex. This collection is considered an important work of English literature . It is reminiscent of Petrarch , but with more sentiment. The author also expresses the rebellion of the poet and the lover against the conventions of Petrarch.