The Heptameron (Penguin Classics)
Paperback – June 5, 1984
by Marguerite de Navarre (Author), Paul A. Chilton (Introduction)
***BOOK CONDITION ----USED ---Good---Medium Wear, light scratches on front page bottom edge..inside pages all clean, no writings***
In the early 1500s five men and five women find themselves trapped by floods and compelled to take refuge in an abbey high in the Pyrenees. When told they must wait days for a bridge to be repaired, they are inspired - by recalling Boccaccio's Decameron - to pass the time in a cultured manner by each telling a story every day. The stories, however, soon degenerate into a verbal battle between the sexes, as the characters weave tales of corrupt friars, adulterous noblemen and deceitful wives. From the cynical Saffredent to the young idealist Dagoucin or the moderate Parlamente - believed to express De Navarre's own views - The Heptameron provides a fascinating insight into the minds and passions of the nobility of sixteenth century France.
For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
Although its authorship has never been conclusively proven, The Heptameron is generally accepted as the work of Marguerite de Navarre, Queen of Navarre and the sister of Francois I. The Heptameron, which has parallels to both Chaucer's Canterbury Tales and Boccaccio's Decameron, presents a collection of some seventy very short stories told by five gentleman and five lady travellers who find themselves stranded in an abbey. Proposed as an edifying method of passing time, the story-telling - as well as the conversations that follow each one - rapidly (d)evolves into an all-out verbal battle between the sexes. Most often the tales concern lovers, romantic conquests, and women's virtue - an object of intense pride and considerable power, or a prize of questionable/infinite value, depending upon the point of view. The stories include intimate details of adultery, flattery, betrayal, rape, and war; their very boldness and honesty may surprise many twentieth-century readers. The author declares that these stories actually were told by a group at the court of Francois I; the tellers testify to the veracity of their individual tales, and scholars have substantiated the claims for as many as twenty of the stories. Fictional or true, The Heptameron provides a rare and fascinating glimpse into the sixteenth century. Alternately bawdy, violent, chaste, funny, scatological, and sad, The Heptameron is a book to delight, offend, and educate twentieth-century readers. -- For great reviews of books for girls, check out Let's Hear It for the Girls: 375 Great Books for Readers 2-14. -- From 500 Great Books by Women; review by Erica Bauermeister
About the Author
Paul A. Chilton is Senior Lecturer at the University of Warwick. He is the author of books and articles on French Renaissance literature and on language, society and politics. Paul A. Chilton is Senior Lecturer at the University of Warwick. He is the author of books and articles on French Renaissance literature and on language, society and politics. Paul A. Chilton is Senior Lecturer at the University of Warwick. He is the author of books and articles on French Renaissance literature and on language, society and politics.
Grade Level : 12 and up
Item Weight : 13.3 ounces
Paperback : 544 pages
ISBN-13 : 9780140443554
Product Dimensions : 7.7 x 5.1 x 1 inches
Publisher : Penguin Classics; Reprint Edition (June 5, 1984)
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