Last Updated on May 6, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 775
As they had previously planned, Euphues and Philautus embarked from Athens for England. During the two-month voyage, Euphues offered Philautus considerable counsel on how to behave while in the strange country and cautioned him especially about his penchant for falling too easily in love. To illustrate his point, Euphues told the tale of young Callimachus, who learned through bitter experience the perils of travel. Euphues closed his discourse with a description of the island to which they sailed.
Upon their arrival, the two young men encountered Fidus, an old man who kept bees. After telling them of the folly of discussing the queen about whom they had asked, Fidus illustrated for them the principles of a sensible monarchy by describing his colony of bees with its queen, workers, and drones. Upon the urging of Philautus, he also told them of his own unhappy experience when he fell in love with a young maiden who loved another man and who died of grief after her lover was killed in a distant land. This experience had led Fidus to retire to beekeeping in a secluded area near Dover.
Leaving the old gentleman with thanks for his hospitality and his story, Euphues and Philautus proceeded toward London. The trip was largely taken up with another warning by Euphues to Philautus about the dangers of love, advice given in spite of the Italian’s vehement denials of any such weakness.
Soon the two strangers arrived in London, and they were welcomed because of their wit and address. Admitted into court circles, they were delighted with English virtue and charm. Philautus’ eye soon fell upon Camilla, a young maiden not of high birth but of great beauty and virtue. He fell immediately and hopelessly in love. After a heated debate with himself about his plight, Philautus was discovered by Euphues, who began praising English women for their beauty and virtue. Philautus stopped his friend and accused him of being in love. The two young men quarreled, and Euphues moved to new lodgings.
At a masque, Philautus revealed his affection to Camilla, who received his overtures coldly. After further rebuffs, he went to an Italian sorcerer in search of a charm to win his beloved. The sorcerer told Philautus that stories of such spells of love, about which he told many popular tales, were all false and that only God, who made the human heart, could govern its inclinations. He advised Philautus to write to his love of his devotion.
The young Italian did so several times, one letter being secretly transported to Camilla in the hollowed-out core of a pomegranate and her reply returned in a volume of Petrarch. Camilla still refused his love, however, and soon she refused to answer his letters. During his pursuit of Camilla, which took place mostly at the house of Lady Flavia, his hostess introduced Philautus to Frances, a girl who was almost as beautiful as Camilla and quite as witty and virtuous. She engaged in several debates with him about love and looked with considerably more favor upon the young Italian.
Camilla was also courted by Surius, a young English nobleman, and Philautus finally became convinced of the hopelessness of his love for her and began to feel strongly the loss of his friendship with Euphues. After an exchange of letters, in which Philautus begged his former friend’s pardon, the two young men were reunited.
At a party given by Lady Flavia, Camilla and Surius, Frances and Philautus, and Lady Flavia and an old friend engaged in a three-sided debate that Euphues judged. Wisely taking the middle ground, he declared that virtue and honor must be part of love for both the man and the woman, and he praised the higher love that is above lust. At the party, Philautus discovered that he was very fond of Frances, and Camilla realized that she loved Surius.
While Philautus wooed Frances in the country, Euphues remained in London to study the court and English ways. Before long, however, he was called back to Athens by urgent business. From his home, Euphues wrote his EUPHUES’ GLASS FOR EUROPE, in which he praised at some length English life, the English court, and especially the English sovereign, whose beauty, chastity, and wisdom Euphues declared to be perfect.
In a letter from Philautus, Euphues learned of his friend’s plan to marry Frances, of Camilla’s marriage to Surius, and of the good wishes of his English friends. Euphues replied with a long letter containing counsel for his friend concerning the management of a marriage. Then the wise Athenian retired to a distant mountain for study and meditation.
Unlock This Study Guide Now
- 30,000+ book summaries
- 20% study tools discount
- Ad-free content
- PDF downloads
- 300,000+ answers
- 5-star customer support