The great crusader hero: Louis IX or Joinville?
Almeida, Adriana (Aluna de Mestrado da Faculdade de Letras do Porto)
Revista Medievalista Online, ano 4, número 4 (2008)
Joinville’s Vie de Saint Louis is, in the least, a touching account of a hard campaign in the East, and the humanity and sanctity of a king. There are countless ways in which the reader can be touched, though, from excitement at battle descriptions, tenderness at the goodness of King Louis IX, or annoyance prompted by the imposing presence of the narrator himself. This essay seeks to study the author’s relation to the ideals of chivalry as exposed in Joinville’s work, and try to understand, if possible, who is the real hero in the Vie de Saint Louis.
In the Dedication to the future Louis X, Joinville claims to have written the book at the request of his mother, Queen Jeanne de Navarre, to put down in writing, ‘the pious saying and the good deeds of our King, Saint Louis’, illustrating the sanctity of the monarch.