The ‘Breton lay’ is not easy to pin down because the characteristics of the genre are ill-defined, even within the broader category of ‘romance’ which, in turn, has almost no frontiers.
What is Valentine’s Day without a little fairy tale romance? For your Valentine’s Day enjoyment, here are three medieval romances involving fairies.
This project documents and analyzes the gendered transformation of magical figures occurring in Arthurian romance in England from the twelfth to the sixteenth centuries.
French royal courts in the late twelfth century were absolutely smitten with love. Troubadaours traveled from place to place reciting stories of knights and the ladies they wooed.
This article examines the change in women’s fashion that occurred during the 12th century. Garments went from loose and flowing to tightly fitted, featuring belts and laces. The author examines this cultural change through the romance stories complied in the “Lais” of Marie de France, specifically one featuring the character of Guigemar.
The majority of medieval scholars, including Roger Sherman Loomis, argue that the popularity of the Arthurian legend in England was therefore on the wane in the latter half of the fourteenth century; as a result, the major writers of the period, such as John Gower and Geoffrey Chaucer, refrained from penning anything beyond the occasional reference to King Arthur and his court.
The basic plot of the story is fantastic. A good and loyal knight is in exile from his own country, France, and offers his services to a king in England. There he falls in love with the princess even though he has a loyal and loving wife at home….
My intention is not to continue the discourse on such practices but to analyze narrative content in relation to the politics of theology that had an impact on lay writers and their artistic creativity concerning the search for selfhood from the twelfth to the fifteenth centuries.
I will examine two forms of transformation, the werewolf transformation and the monstrous human transformation, both of which feature shape shifters who presumably cannot be trusted
Werewolf texts fiom the Middle Ages — namely, the early thirteenth-century romance, William of Palerne, and Marie de France’s early twelfth-century lay, ‘Bisclavret’ — suggest that the curse of fur might, after all, be a blessing to the individual dissatisfied with his or her place in society
In courtly works, the resolution is generally in favour of the status quo as a courtly adulterous affair rarely works out, while in the fabliau the marriage is generally left intact, although a deceitful wife may be given carte blanche to philander.
What was Marie trying to share with her twelfth century audience when she wrote The Lais?
Medieval French literature provides the modern researcher with references to the healing arts in many passages that are incorporated into prose or poetic works.
The Lais of Marie de France are not only for entertainment but for edification as well.
Sir Launfal may follow the footsteps of its ancestor, but probably with a different intent.
This interdisciplinary, cultural perspective on the relation of courtly love and the representation of women in Marie de France’s Lais puts the discourse of courtly love and its image of women in the Lais into a dialogue with the historical representation of women in the Coutumes de Beauvaisis
Teaching medieval literature and history to high school students is a challenge since it is important to make the subject matter relevant to the students’ lives, many of whom think that yesterday is history.
This study explores the way in which one circumstance of daily life in the twelfth to fourteenth centuries—the relative scarcity of private space—influenced the literature of courtly love.