Passions romaines (TERRES FRANCE) (French Edition)

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Central to this transformation of literature were the salons and literary academies which flourished during the first decades of the 17th century; the expanded role of noble patronage was also significant.

The production of literary works such as poems, plays, works of criticism or moral reflection was increasingly considered a necessary practice by nobles, and the creation or patronage of the arts served as a means of social advancement for both non- and marginalized noblemen. In the midth century, there were an estimated 2, authors in France mostly nobles and clergy , writing for a reading public of just a few tens of thousands.

Henry IV's court was considered by contemporaries a rude one, lacking the Italianate sophistication of the court of the Valois kings. The court also lacked a queen, who traditionally served as a focus or patron of a nation's authors and poets. Henry's literary tastes were largely limited to the chivalric novel Amadis of Gaul. The word salon first appeared in French in from the Italian word sala , the large reception hall of a mansion. For instance, the term ruelle derives from literary gatherings held in the bedroom, a practice popular even with Louis XIV.

Nobles, lying on their beds, would receive close friends and offer them seats on chairs or stools surrounding the bed. Ruelle "little street" refers to the space between a bed and the wall in a bedroom; it became a name for these gatherings and the intellectual and literary circles evolving from them , often under the wing of educated women in the first half of the 17th century.

In the context of French scholastica, academies were scholarly societies which monitored, fostered, and critiqued French culture. The first half of the 17th century was marked by a phenomenal growth in private academies, organised around a half-dozen or a dozen individuals who met regularly. Academies were generally more formal and more focused on criticism and analysis than salons , which encouraged pleasurable discourse about society.


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However, certain salons such as that of Marguerite de Valois were closer to the academic spirit. In the midth century, academies gradually came under government control and sponsorship and the number of private academies decreased. In certain instances, the values of 17th-century nobility played a major part in the literature of the era. Most notable of these values are the aristocratic obsession with glory la gloire and majesty la grandeur. The spectacle of power, prestige and luxury found in 17th-century literature may be distasteful or even offensive. Corneille's heroes, for example, have been labeled by modern critics as vainglorious, extravagant and prideful; however, contemporary aristocratic readers would see these characters and their actions as representative of nobility.

The notion of glory whether artistic or military was not vanity or boastfulness or hubris, but rather a moral imperative for the aristocracy. Nobles were required to be generous, magnanimous and to perform great deeds disinterestedly i. One's status in the world demanded appropriate externalisation or " conspicuous consumption ".

They were also required to show generosity by hosting sumptuous parties and by funding the arts. Conversely, social parvenus who took on the external trappings of the noble classes such as the wearing of a sword were severely criticised, sometimes by legal action laws concerning sumptuous clothing worn by the bourgeois existed since the Middle Ages. This process of state control of the arts and literature would be expanded even more during the reign of Louis XIV.

Many of these notions are directly inspired by the works of Aristotle and Horace , and by classical Greek and Roman masterpieces. In theater, a play should follow the Three Unities :. Although based on classical examples, the unities of place and time were seen as essential for the spectator's complete absorption into the dramatic action; wildly dispersed scenes in China or Africa, or over many years would—critics maintained—break the theatrical illusion.

Sometimes, grouped with unity of action is the notion that no character should appear unexpectedly late in the drama. Finally, literature and art should consciously follow Horace's precept "to please and educate" aut delectare aut prodesse est. These rules or codes were seldom completely followed, and many of the 17th century's masterpieces broke these rules intentionally to heighten emotional effect:.

In there erupted an intellectual debate la querelle des Anciens et des Modernes on whether the arts and literature of the modern era had achieved more than the illustrious writers and artists of antiquity. The debate would last until the beginning of the 18th century. The term "classicism" is also linked to the visual arts and architecture of the period where it is also known as Style Louis XIV , most specifically to the construction of the Palace of Versailles the crowning achievement of an official program of propaganda and regal glory.

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By relocating to Versailles Louis effectively avoided the dangers of Paris in his youth, Louis XIV had suffered during the civil and parliamentary insurrection known as the Fronde , and could also keep his eye closely on the affairs of the nobles and play them off against each other and against the newer noblesse de robe. Versailles became a gilded cage; to leave spelled disaster for a noble, for all official charges and appointments were made there.

A strict etiquette was imposed; a word or glance from the king could make or destroy a career. The king himself followed a strict daily regimen, and there was little privacy. However, the difficult wars at the end of his long reign and the religious problems created by the revocation of the Edict of Nantes made the last years dark.

In France, the period following the Wars of Religion saw the appearance of a new form of narrative fiction which some critics have termed the "sentimental novel" , which quickly became a literary sensation thanks to the enthusiasm of a reading public searching for entertainment after so many years of conflict.

These short and realistic novels of love or amours , as they are frequently called in the titles included extensive examples of gallant letters and polite discourse, amorous dialogues, letters and poems inserted in the story, gallant conceits and other rhetorical figures. None of these novels have been republished since the early 17th century, and they remain largely unknown today.

The best known of these long adventure novels is perhaps Polexandre —49 by the young author Marin le Roy de Gomberville. In theorizing the origins of the novel, the early 17th century conceived of the form as "an epic in prose"; in truth, the epic poem at the end of the Renaissance had few thematic differences from the novel. Novelistic love had spilled into the epic, and adventurous knights had become the subject of novels. The novels from to would complete this melding. Unlike the chivalric romance, magical elements and creatures were relatively rare.

Furthermore, there was a concentration in these works on psychological analysis and on moral and sentimental questions which the Renaissance novel lacked. The most famous of these authors and novels are:. Not all fiction of the first half of the 17th century was a wild flight of fancy in far-flung lands and rarefied, adventurous love stories.

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Influenced by the international success of the picaresque novel from Spain such as Lazarillo de Tormes , and by Miguel de Cervantes ' short-story collection Exemplary Tales which appeared in French beginning in and Don Quixote de la Mancha French translation — , the French novelists of the first half of the 17th century also chose to describe and satirize their own era and its excesses. Other important satirical models were provided by Fernando de Rojas ' La Celestina and John Barclay 's — two satirical Latin works, Euphormio sive Satiricon and Argenis Despite their "realism" Sorel's works remain highly baroque, with dream sequences and inserted narration for example, when Francion tells of his years at school typical of the adventure novel.

This use of inserted stories also follows Cervantes, who inserted a number of nearly autonomous stories into his Quixote. Paul Scarron 's most famous work, Le Roman comique , uses the narrative frame of a group of ambulant actors in the provinces to present both scenes of farce and sophisticated, inserted tales. Cyrano de Bergerac made famous by Edmond Rostand 's 19th-century play wrote two novels which, 60 years before Gulliver's Travels or Voltaire or science fiction , use a journey to magical lands the moon and the sun as pretexts for satirizing contemporary philosophy and morals.


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  • By the end of the 17th century, Cyrano's works would inspire a number of philosophical novels , in which Frenchmen travel to foreign lands and strange utopias. In the second half of the 17th century, contemporary settings would be also used in many classical nouvelles novellas —especially as a moral critique of contemporary society. By , the multi-volume, baroque historical novel had largely fallen out of fashion. The tendency was for much shorter works nouvelles or petits romans , without complex structure or adventurous elements pirates, shipwrecks, kidnappings.

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    This movement away from the baroque novel was supported by theoretical discussions on novel structure, which sought to apply the same Aristotelian and Horacian concepts of the three unities, decorum and verisimilitude that writers had imposed on the theater. An interest in love, psychological analysis, moral dilemmas and social constraints permeates these novels.

    When the action was placed in an historical setting, this was increasingly a setting in the recent past; although still filled with anachronisms, these nouvelles historiques demonstrated an interest in historical detail.

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    A number of these short novels recounted the "secret history" of a famous event like Villedieu's Annales galantes , linking the action to an amorous intrigue; these were called histoires galantes. Reduced to essentially three characters, the short novel tells the story of a married noblewoman during the reign of Henri II who falls in love with another man, but who reveals her passion to her husband.

    Although the novel includes several inserted stories, on the whole the narration concentrates on the unspoken doubts and fears of the two individuals living in a social setting dominated by etiquette and moral correctness; despite its historical setting, Lafayette was clearly describing her contemporary world. The psychological analysis is close to the pessimism of La Rochefoucauld , and the abnegation of the main character leads ultimately to a refusal of a conventional happy ending.

    For all of its force, Madame de Lafayette's novel is not the first to have a recent historical setting or psychological depth as some critics contend ; these elements may be found in novels of the previous decade, and are already present in certain of the Amours at the beginning of the 17th century. The concerns of the nouvelle classique love, psychological analysis, moral dilemmas and social constraints are also apparent in the anonymous epistolary novel Lettres d'une religieuse portugaise Letters of a Portuguese Nun , attributed to Guilleragues , which were a sensation when they were published in part because of their perceived authenticity.

    These letters, written by a scorned woman to her absent lover, were a powerful representation of amorous passion with many similarities to the language of Racine.

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    The long adventurous novel of love continued to exist after , albeit in a far shorter form than the novels of the s. Influenced as much by the nouvelles historiques and nouvelles galantes as by the romans d'aventures and romans historiques , these historical novels—whose settings range from ancient Rome to Renaissance Castille or France—were published into the first decades of the 18th century. Many of these works were published anonymously; in some cases it is difficult to tell whether they are fictionalized or biographical. In the s, the fairy tale began to appear in French literature.

    The best-known collection of traditional tales liberally adapted was by Charles Perrault , although many others were published such as those by Henriette-Julie de Murat and Madame d'Aulnoy. A major revolution would occur with the appearance of Antoine Galland 's first French and indeed modern translation of the Thousand and One Nights or Arabian Nights in ; another translation appeared in , which would influence the 18th-century short stories of Voltaire , Diderot and many others.

    The period also saw several novels with voyages and utopian descriptions of foreign cultures in imitation of Cyrano de Bergerac, Thomas More and Francis Bacon :. This novel would be emulated by other didactic novels during the 18th century. Poetry was used for all purposes. A great deal of 17th- and 18th-century poetry was "occasional", meaning that it was written to celebrate a particular event a marriage, birth or a military victory or to solemnize a tragic occurrence a death or a military defeat ; this type of poetry was favored by gentlemen in the service of a noble or the king.

    Poetry was the chief form of 17th-century theater; the vast majority of scripted plays were written in verse see "Theater" below. The later 17th century would see Malherbe as the grandfather of poetic classicism.

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    From the s, three poets stand out. Jean de La Fontaine gained enormous celebrity through his Aesop and Phaedrus -inspired "Fables" — , which were written in an irregular-verse form different meter lengths are used in a poem. Jean Racine was seen as the greatest tragedy writer of his age. During the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, public theatrical productions in Paris were under the control of guilds.

    In the guild abandoned its privilege, which permitted other theaters and theatrical companies to operate in the capital.

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    In addition to public theaters, plays were produced in private residences, before the court and in the university. A radio button allows picking the Daily day after day granular options , Weekly, Monthly or other options. On the right, there is also a list of execution times which allows you to specify exactly when the backup will trigger. A very complete scheduler indeed. Next screen shows us different options which are Advanced Options.

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