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A History of the French Novel, Vol. 1

152 The Pastoral and Heroic Romance



Subsidiary importance of Brantome and other character-mongers--The _Heptameron_--Note on Montaigne--Character and "problems"--Parlamente on human and divine love--Desperiers--_Contes et Joyeux Devis_--Other tale-collections--The "provincial" character of these--The _Amadis_ romances--Their characteristics--Extravagance in incident, nomenclature, etc.--The "cruel" heroine--Note on Helisenne de Crenne.



_The Pastoral and Heroic Romance, and the Fairy Story._

Immense importance of the seventeenth century in our subject--The divisions of its contribution--Note on marked influence of Greek Romance--The Pastoral in general--Its beginnings in France--Minor romances preceding the _Astree_--Their general character--Examples of their style--Montreux and the _Bergeries de Juliette_--Des Escuteaux and his _Amours Diverses_--Francois de Moliere: _Polyxene_--Du Perier: _Arnoult et Clarimonde_--Du Croset: _Philocalie_--Corbin: _Philocaste_--Jean de Lannoi and his _Roman Satirique_--Beroalde de Verville outside the _Moyen de Parvenir_--The _Astree_: its author--The book--Its likeness

to the _Arcadia_--Its philosophy and its general temper--Its appearance and its author's other work--Its character and appeals--Hylas and Stella and their Convention--Narrative skill frequent--The Fountain of the Truth of Love--Some drawbacks: awkward history--But attractive on the whole--The general importance and influence--The _Grand Cyrus_--Its preface to Madame de Longueville--The "Address to the Reader"--The opening of the "business"--The ups and downs of the general conduct of the story--Extracts: the introduction of Cyrus to Mandane--His soliloquy in the pavilion--The Fight of the Four Hundred--The abstract resumed--The oracle to Philidaspes--The advent of Araminta--Her correspondence with Spithridates--Some interposed comments--Analysis resumed--The statue in the gallery at Sardis--The judgment of Cyrus in a court of love--Thomyris on the warpath--General remarks on the book and its class--The other Scudery romances: _Ibrahim_--_Almahide_--_Clelie_--Perhaps the liveliest of the set--Rough outline of it--La Calprenede: his comparative cheerfulness--_Cleopatre_: the Cypassis and Arminius episode--The book generally--_Cassandre_--_Faramond_--Gomberville: _La Caritee_--_Polexandre_--Camus: _Palombe_, etc.--Hedelin d'Aubignac: _Macarise_--Gombauld: _Endimion_--Mme. de Villedieu--_Le Grand Alcandre Frustre_--The collected love-stories--Their historic liberties--_Carmente_, etc.--Her value on the whole--The fairy tale--Its _general_ characteristics: the happy ending--Perrault and Mme. d'Aulnoy--Commented examples: _Gracieuse et Percinet_--_L'Adroite Princesse_--The danger of the "moral"--Yet often redeemed--The main _Cabinet des Fees_: more on Mme. d'Aulnoy--Warning against disappointment--Mlle. de la Force and others--The large proportion of Eastern Tales--_Les Voyages de Zulma_--Fenelon--Caylus--_Prince Courtebotte et Princesse Zibeline_--_Rosanie_--_Prince Muguet et Princesse Zaza_--Note on _Le Diable Amoureux_.

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