Homework Help

Can anyone please define "coyle" for me, as in "lord, what a coyle he kepes" in The Two...

user profile pic

hiramholt22 | eNotes Newbie

Posted February 12, 2011 at 10:40 AM via web

dislike 1 like

Can anyone please define "coyle" for me, as in "lord, what a coyle he kepes" in The Two Noble Kinsmen?

 

Thanks!

1 Answer | Add Yours

user profile pic

julierunacres | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Adjunct Educator

Posted April 3, 2011 at 1:04 AM (Answer #1)

dislike 0 like

'Coyle' is an obsolete spelling of a now obsolete usage of the word 'coil'! In the 16th century, it was a colloquial expression, which fell into literary usage. It means 'confusion', 'din', 'disturbance' or even 'turmoil'; 'to keep a coil' means to make a disturbance.

The jailer's daughter is speaking of her love for Palamon, and so uses the term metaphorically, to mean the turmoil that her feelings create in her heart. It is something over which she has no control, hence she says 'what a coyle he kepes' - making him the active agent.

Join to answer this question

Join a community of thousands of dedicated teachers and students.

Join eNotes