Francois Villon: Complete Poems
Francois Villon was the last of the great medieval poets, as important in his own, more limited, sphere as Chaucer or Dante. His fame surpasses that of any other medieval French lyricist in spite of the modest quantity, uneven quality, and often repellent subject-matter of his work. His poems are largely autobiographical, and are rich in their descriptions of thefts, fights, nocturnal prowling, imprisonment, and exile. However, as Barbara Sargent-Baur points outs, when Villon’s work is good, it is very good, indeed unforgettable. His two major works are the Lais, a series of bequests in anticipation of his prudent departure from Paris, and Testament, which is about his primary topic, himself.
There have been many translations of Villon’s work into many languages, including English, but this is the first edition of the whole of the corpus utilizing a re-reading of all the manuscript sources and presenting for each poem a single-source text with all emendations accounted for. It is also the first annotated English version based on the best-text principle and respecting both Villon’s meaning and his metrics. A modern edition of the French texts is presented beside the English on facing pages. In an extensive commentary, Sargent-Baur identifies the poet’s literary and historical allusions, as well as place-names, legatees, and biographical data.
- Series: Heritage
- World Rights
- Page Count: 360 pages
- Dimensions: 6.0in x 0.0in x 9.0in
Author InformationBarbara N. Sargent-Baur is a professor emerita in the Department of French and Italian Languages and Literatures at the University of Pittsburgh.
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