Jean Bodel’s Classification of the Medieval Romance

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Jean Bodel’s Classification of the Medieval Romance

Jean Bodel’s Classification of the Medieval Romance

Jean Bodel’s Classification of the Medieval Romance

Jean Bodel’s Classification of the Medieval Romance

In the Medieval Age (1066-1450) a new form of literature mostly in verse and a few in prose came into being in French and English which are called ‘Medieval Romance’. The themes of those romances were chivalric love and courtly virtues such as courage, honour,, dutifulness, truthfulness, mercifulness etc.

The tales or stories that those romances dealt with were picked up from various sources, especially from history and legends of the world. Jean Bodel, a scholar has classified the Medieval Romances into three categories (after the sources of the materials they dealt with) as- (i) The Romances dealing with the matter (stories) of Rome (ii) The Romances dealing with the matter of France, (iii) The Romances dealing with the matter of England.

The Romance dealing with the matter of Rome refers to those romances the sources of which are Rome and Greece. In other words, to say, these romances are created out of the tales or stories from the legends of Rome and Greece. For example, the Romances of King Alexander and The Destruction of Troy are worth noting. In the ‘Romance of King Alexander’ the materials are taken from Greece and it narrates the mighty deeds of Alexander the Great hero of Macedonia. In the romance entitled ‘The Destruction of Troy’ the legend of Rome has found a way to supply the materials.

The Romances dealing with the matter of France refer to those romances whose stories are picked up from the legends or history of France. In this category of romances, there is a cycle of romances that deals with the heroic exploit of the great French peer Charlemagne and his followers. These romances are better known as Charlemagian Cycles of Romance. The chief one of this cycle of romances is ‘Chanson de Ronald’ which celebrates the heroism of Ronald in his last battle against the Saracens.

The Romances dealing with the matter of England refer to these romances which are made out of the native sources of England. In this category of romances, the Arthurian Cycles of Romances are worth noting. Among the Arthurian Cycle of Romances ‘Sir Orfeo’, ‘Sir Launfal’, ‘The Avowing of Arthur’, ‘Sir Gawayne and the Greene Knights etc. are worth mentioning.

Here it is to note well that there is another category of romances the stories or tales of which were taken from the legends of the East, especially from the legends of Asia. Among such romances, mention may be made of The Flore and Balank which narrates the tale of a pair of young lovers who are separated for a certain period of time. It is a matter of regret that scholar like Jean Bodel has ignored such a category of romances dealing with the matter of the East. 0 0 0.

Jean Bodel’s Classification of the Medieval Romance

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N. B. The article ‘Jean Bodel’s Classification of the Medieval Romance’ originally belongs to the book entitled ‘Critical Essays on English Poetryby Menonim Menonimus

Books on Literary Criticism by M. Menonimus:

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  2. World Poetry Criticism
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  4. World Novel Criticism
  5. World Essay Criticism
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  12. Tawfiq al-Hakim’s Novel: ‘Yawmiyyat Naib Fil Arayaf’-An Analytical Study
  13. Analytical Studies of Some Arabic Short Stories
  14. A Brief History of Arabic Literature: Pre-Islamic Period (500 AD-622 AD)
  15. A Brief History of Arabic Literature: Early Islamic Period (622 AD-661 AD) …

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I am Menonim Menonimus, a Philosopher & Writer.

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