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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on 18 May 2006
Before the famous Italian Renaissance, you could speak of a French Renaissance in the 12th century as far as literature is concerned.

In Southern France there were the Troubadours, singers and poets, often part of the nobility or their entourage. In the North of France you had Chrétien de Troyes and his Arthurian romances and the Lais of Marie de France, to name only two of the most important.

The 'Roman de la Rose' was written in the 13th cent. but is probably the most important masterwork of the French Renaissance.

About the person of Marie de France almost nothing is known for certain.Her 'Lais' - stories about romance or adventure - are based upon

the popular and folkloristic tales that already existed for centuries in Bretagne - a region close to where the Atlantic meets the North-Sea.

These stories were handed down from generation to generation by story tellers.

The Lais of Marie de France excel by diversity. There are love stories - of course - but also vivid descriptions of

tournaments and even a story about a werewolf.

Marie de France proofs that medieval literature can be entertaining.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 27 May 2010
An excellent Penguin classic complete with notes, a must for lovers of old poetry styles, something to be savoured and re-read many times
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 30 December 2011
I had to read this for an introduction into medieval literature for my university course and had trouble in putting it down. The tales are brilliantly translated and with many of the lais being very short, it meant i whizzed through the book pretty quickly. It is a refreshing read and a book i will definately pick up again.
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on 3 January 2015
This is English and provides a useful commentary alongside the text. As such id highly reccomend above other versions. Do please check the text u get, if not this one, is English not french
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on 27 February 2013
I loved this book. I'm taking an English course so this arrived right on time and the stories in here are just awesome!
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on 28 April 2015
Bought as a primary text for my uni degree course. Very helpful and clearly explained
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on 23 October 2014
A delight for medieval romantics fans
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 17 February 2012
A charming book of short lais written by Marie de France of the 12th Century. The tales differ slightly, but all bear the same themes of chivalry and courtly love. The tales are charming and incredibly easy to follow as the book is written in modern English prose, rather than original Old French tales written in verse.
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0 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 10 January 2013
The book itself has no problems, my problem is with Amazon, I use windows 8 Kindle app, when I purchased the book it said in the write up that it came with actual numbered pages that related to the book itself. I needed this book for Uni, so numbered pages are a requirement for my studies, I was over the moon, I paid for the book and a when it arrived what a surprise! the pages had no numbers at all, only a percentage bar, and no way of viewing the page numbers. I spent several hours searching the internet to see if there was a way of getting the page numbers, to no avail. I even tried to contact amazon, no reply. That's no good to anyone who needs to be able to cite their work and add bibliographies, so there we are yet another disappointment I've had with amazon.
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