Legends and Satires from Medieval Literature

Legends and Satires from Medieval Literature

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Legends and Satires from Medieval Literature

Legends and Satires from Medieval Literature

Read FREE!

Excerpt

To create anew the walls and towers and gardens of the mediæval world is a comparatively easy task, now that we have so many aids to visualizing that departed age, but it is not so easy to make live again the thoughts and sentiments and beliefs of a vanished generation. All our study of history is valueless unless it brings a clearer revelation of the pulsing, ardent life of humanity. We search old records and old literature that we may find the true image of a world whose hopes and fears and loves prove to us the slow evolution of a progressive civilization in which all human beings share. Out of the failures and the doubts of one age comes the quicker power of another, and true progress looks both backward and forward. To cherish old traditions is both a duty and an inspiration.

The reader who turns his face toward the world of mediæval England and France, seeking to know the spirit which animated our ancestors of six centuries ago, must recognize in plowman, hermit, knight, friar, or minstrel the fundamental fact that their life was actual and real, not a mere tissue of mediæval costume and mechanical movements. In order to understand that epoch it is essential for one to study in detail the works which picture the life of the day. The world of chivalry, with its brilliant pageantry and its vows of courtesy, loyalty, and liberality, is revealed in the pages of Froissart and in the many metrical . . .

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