Critical prefaces of the French Renaissance

By Bernard Weinberg | Go to book overview

NICOLAS DE HERBERAY DES ESSARTS
PROLOGUE TO Amadis de Gaule 1540

TEXT:

Le Premier Liure de Amadis de Gaule, qui traicte de maintes adventvres D'armes & D'amours, qu'eurent plusieurs Cheualiers & Dames, tant du royaulme de la grand Bretaigne, que d'aultres pays. Traduict nouuellement D'espagnol en Francoys par le Seigneur des Essars, Nicolas de Herberay. Acuerdo Oluido. Auec priuilege du Roy. 1540. Nouuellement imprimé à Paris par Denys Ianot libraire & imprimeur, demourant en la rue neufue nostre dame, à L'enseigne Sainct Iehan Baptiste, contre Sainte Geneuiefue des Ardens. [New York Public Library.]

[Cf. Brunet, I, 214-15; Vaganay, Amadis en français, Florence: Olschki, 1906, pp. 3-6, for the text of the prologue as it appears in the 1544 ed.]


COLLATED:

(1548) Le Premier Liure de Amadis de Gaule, traitant de maintes avantvres d'Armes & d'Amours, qu'eurent plusieurs Cheualiers & Dames, tant du royaume de la grand' Bretaigne, que d'autres païs: Traduit nouuellement d'Espagnol en Françoys, par le Seigneur des Essars Nicolas de Herberay. Acuerdo Oluido. Auecq' priuilege du Roy. A Paris, Par Estienne Groulleau, demourant en la rue neuue nostre Dame, à l'enseigne saint Ian Baptiste. 1548. [Newberry Library.]

[Cf. Brunet, I, 215. The 1548 ed. cited by Vaganay, op. cit., p. 14, is apparently a different edition.]

(1550) Le Premier Livre d'Amadis de Gavle, mis en Francoys par le Seigneur des Essars Nicolas de Herberay, Commissaire ordinaire de l'artillerie du Roy, & Lieutenant en icelle es païs & gouvernement de Picardie de monsieur de Brissac, Cheualier de l'ordre, grand Maistre& Capitaine general d'icelle artillerie. Acverdo Olvido. Auecq' Priuilege du Roy. A Paris. Pour Vincent Sertenas Libraire, tenant sa boutique au Palays en la galerie par ou l'on va à la Chancellerie, & au mont saint Hylaire à l'hostel d'Albret. 1550. [University of Chicago Libraries.]

[Cf. Brunet, I, 215.]

With the spread of printing in the sixteenth century, many of the prose romances which had delighted readers in the Middle Ages were published in popular editions. To them were added many new romances imported from other countries. Herberay des Essarts's version of the Amadis story soon became one of the most current of these, and it was regarded by many contemporaries as one of the finest French works of the century. The bibliography of the work has been treated by Hugues Vaganay in his Amadis en français, Livres I-XII : Essai de Bibliographie et d'Iconographie,

-85-

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