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Cultures courtoises en mouvement

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Isabelle Arseneau
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Francis Gingras

Discours et contre-discours de la courtoisie

Moving the Court to God: The Queste del saint Graal and the Mystical Tradition in French

Maureen Boulton

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The Queste del saint Graal was composed around 1230-1235, that is, in the shadow of the Fourth Lateran Council and its new focus on the religion of the European laity. Partly as a result of this impetus, the thirteenth century saw a great increase in vernacular religious literature of every sort. In this context, the Queste is particularly interesting, because it combines its overtly religious message with the most secular of genres, the Arthurian romance.1 This paper grew out of a comparison of the Queste del saint graal with Thomas Malory’s adaptation of it. Eugène Vinaver drew attention to Malory’s omissions:

Malory had little use for the doctrine of grace, upon which the whole elaborate edifice of the French Queste del Saint Graal rested. He consistently cut out the long theological disquisitions which to the French author mattered at least as much as the story itself… Without any thought of doctrinal interpretation he lets the story speak for itself…2

Vinaver’s observations accur...

Auteur

University of Notre-Dame

© Presses de l’Université de Montréal, 2011

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