Marie de France is quite the important figure in Medieval Lit

Holmes's treatment of Marie de France sets her in relationship to the poets of her time.

"In Fraser MS. Gray thus writes: 'For Thee, who mindful &c.: as above.' He meant to bring in the second of the four rejected stanzas, followed by this, (Fraser MS.):

If chance that e'er some pensive Spirit more,
By sympathetic Musings here delay'd
With vain, tho' kind, Enquiry shall explore
Thy once-loved Haunt, this long-deserted Shade.
Haply &c."

"In Fraser MS. Gray thus writes: 'For Thee, who mindful &c.: as above.' He meant to bring in the second of the four rejected stanzas, followed by this, (Fraser MS.):

If chance that e'er some pensive Spirit more,
By sympathetic Musings here delay'd
With vain, tho' kind, Enquiry shall explore
Thy once-loved Haunt, this long-deserted Shade.
Haply &c."

"In Fraser MS. Gray thus writes: 'For Thee, who mindful &c.: as above.' He meant to bring in the second of the four rejected stanzas, followed by this, (Fraser MS.):

If chance that e'er some pensive Spirit more,
By sympathetic Musings here delay'd
With vain, tho' kind, Enquiry shall explore
Thy once-loved Haunt, this long-deserted Shade.
Haply &c."

6 For a concise, balanced discussion of Marie de France's identity, see Mickel, Chapter 1. .

30 It is possible that Marie's attack on the much glorified English mythical hero was intended to lessen his status and thereby strengthen the Norman regime and rulers. The argument against this theory is her choice of contemporary issues, such as administration of justice, feudal favoritism, and adultery which resonate with Henry's court. It is also possible that her criticism of those elements in the world of Arthur praises Henry's success in those areas through contrast with the fictive king’s failings; but this seems oblique, especially considering Marie's more direct approach of addressing social ills in the . .

The Lais of Marie de France “Lanval” Summary and …

32 It should be noted that the judicial arm of government is perennially susceptible to criticism, and that the administration of the French monarchy in the late twelfth century is evaluated in the , contemporary with Marie’s works; see Patricia Terry, trans., (Berkeley, U of California P, 1983) pages 7-14. Although Noble the Lion fares better than Henry as Arthur, the French king is still criticized for his favoritism towards undeserving courtiers; however, Henry’s vulnerability to attack seems greater due to his concentration on improving the justiciary. .

The Lais Of Marie De France Essay Examples | Kibin

Maréchal, Chantal A.“Marie de France Studies Past, Present, and Future.”

"Here again want of lucidity is the one defect in a beautiful stanza. Gray seems to mean 'who ever was so much a prey to dumb Forgetfulness as to resign life and its possibilities of joy and sorrow without some regret?' But not only is it patent that millions have been so much a prey to the 'second childishness and mere oblivion' of age that they have passed away without the power to feel regret, but the whole sequence of thought shows that this cannot be Gray's meaning. He uses 'prey' in a prospective sense, the destined prey; accordingly Munro translates

Quis subiturus enim Lethaea silentia &c.
It is perhaps Gray's classicism which betrays him here, for Horace, who has sometimes the same sort of obscurity due to condensation, has just this anticipatory use when he says (Odes, II. 3. 21 sq.) that it makes no difference whether as rich and high-born or poor and low-born you linger out life's little day, the victim of merciless Orcus; i.e. certain in either case to become so at last.
Again, Gray seems to be shaping anew the question in Paradise Lost (II. 146 sq.):
''For who would lose,
Though full of pain, this intellectual being,
These thoughts that wander through eternity,
To perish rather, swallowed up and lost
In the wide womb of uncreated Night,
Devoid of sense and motion?''
and when he speaks of 'this pleasing anxious being' and 'the warm precincts of the cheerful day,' he may be supposed to express the same horror of the annihilation of thought, the same dread of eternal darkness. Yet, in the main, the terror of which Gray speaks is the forgetfulness of the dead by the living. In this and the following stanza the true significance of the 'frail memorials' is explained. Though men are destined to oblivion they crave to be remembered, as they have craved for human support and affection in their last hours; it is thus that 'even from the tomb the voice of nature cries.' In fact whilst we find the form and some of the accessories of Gray's thought in Milton, we find the substance of it rather in Homer, Virgil and Dante, who give us the same voice of nature as heard from the further shore; as when the spirits say to Dante, Inferno, xvi. 85 sq.:
''if thou escape this darksome clime
Returning to behold the radiant stars,
See that of us thou speak amongst mankind'' "

FREE Essay on The Lais Marie de France - Direct Essays

"Here again want of lucidity is the one defect in a beautiful stanza. Gray seems to mean 'who ever was so much a prey to dumb Forgetfulness as to resign life and its possibilities of joy and sorrow without some regret?' But not only is it patent that millions have been so much a prey to the 'second childishness and mere oblivion' of age that they have passed away without the power to feel regret, but the whole sequence of thought shows that this cannot be Gray's meaning. He uses 'prey' in a prospective sense, the destined prey; accordingly Munro translates

Quis subiturus enim Lethaea silentia &c.
It is perhaps Gray's classicism which betrays him here, for Horace, who has sometimes the same sort of obscurity due to condensation, has just this anticipatory use when he says (Odes, II. 3. 21 sq.) that it makes no difference whether as rich and high-born or poor and low-born you linger out life's little day, the victim of merciless Orcus; i.e. certain in either case to become so at last.
Again, Gray seems to be shaping anew the question in Paradise Lost (II. 146 sq.):
''For who would lose,
Though full of pain, this intellectual being,
These thoughts that wander through eternity,
To perish rather, swallowed up and lost
In the wide womb of uncreated Night,
Devoid of sense and motion?''
and when he speaks of 'this pleasing anxious being' and 'the warm precincts of the cheerful day,' he may be supposed to express the same horror of the annihilation of thought, the same dread of eternal darkness. Yet, in the main, the terror of which Gray speaks is the forgetfulness of the dead by the living. In this and the following stanza the true significance of the 'frail memorials' is explained. Though men are destined to oblivion they crave to be remembered, as they have craved for human support and affection in their last hours; it is thus that 'even from the tomb the voice of nature cries.' In fact whilst we find the form and some of the accessories of Gray's thought in Milton, we find the substance of it rather in Homer, Virgil and Dante, who give us the same voice of nature as heard from the further shore; as when the spirits say to Dante, Inferno, xvi. 85 sq.:
''if thou escape this darksome clime
Returning to behold the radiant stars,
See that of us thou speak amongst mankind'' "


Marie de france essay topics

"In Fraser MS., the punctuation showing that it was the poet's first intention to make the line part of the apostrophe to himself. It echoes the sentiment of Gray's beautiful written in the album of the Grande Chartreuse Aug. 1741, as he was returning from his sojourn in Italy, in which he says, - if he cannot have the silence of the cloistered cell:---
Saltem remoto des, Pater, angulo
Horas senectae ducere liberas
Tutumque vulgari tumultu
Surripias, hominumque curis.
At least, O Father, ere the close of life
Vouchsafe, I pray thee, some sequestered glen,
And there seclude me, rescued from the strife
Of vulgar tumults and the cares of men.
[R. E. Warburton in Notes and Queries, June 9, 1883.]
Mason is perhaps so far right that it was with this wish that the Elegy, like the was meant to end; we may admit this without supposing that it was intended to close with 'Doom.'
But whilst it is probable, from the punctuation of 'strife,' that Gray meant through this and possibly other stanzas to end the Elegy after the manner of the Alcaic Ode, it is quite clear that he soon abandoned that intention; for 'strife' here necessitated in the ending of the first line of previous stanza:
'No more with reason and thyself at strife,'---
and in the corresponding rhyme, some alteration which he never took the trouble to make, preferring to give his thoughts a more general scope and to use the four stanzas above cited as far only as they could be set in a natural sequence on this new model. This is the explanation of his side line. He in fact could avail himself only of two stanzas, the second and the fourth; the first 'The thoughtless World' &c. has in either sequence a little too much the character of a detached sentiment to please him, and, upon the altered plan, it was, for the same reason, difficult to introduce the third. We may well regret this, for Mason is right in saying that it is equal to any in the whole Elegy.
'Far from the Madding Crowd' is the title of one of Thomas Hardy's best novels, in which every one of the characters is drawn from humble life."

Marie de France's carrier

"After this follows in Fraser MS.,
''The thoughtless World to Majesty may bow
Exalt the brave, and idolize Success
But more to Innocence their Safety owe
Than Power and Genius e'er conspired to bless
And thou, who mindful of the unhonour'd Dead
Dost in these Notes thy (their written above) artless Tale relate
By Night and lonely Contemplation led
To linger in the gloomy walks of Fate
Hark how the sacred Calm, that broods around
Bids ev'ry fierce tumultuous Passion cease
In still small Accents whisp'ring from the Ground
A grateful Earnest of eternal Peace [Footnote: ''see additional note, p. 292.'']
No more with Reason and thyself at Strife
Give anxious Cares and endless Wishes room
But thro the cool sequester'd Vale of Life
Pursue the silent Tenour of thy Doom''
''And here,'' says Mason, ''the poem was originally intended to conclude, before the happy idea of 'the hoary-headed Swain &c.' suggested itself to him.''
Mason perhaps converted Walpole by a reference to the state of this MS., which no doubt establishes an interval between the first and second half of the poem. But he ante-dated, it maybe suspected, the composition of the first half.
The Fraser MS. (to judge from the facsimile) has a line drawn along the side of the last three, and possibly meant (as Sir W. Fraser's reprint interprets it) to include the first also of these four stanzas.
The stanzas which follow these four are: Far from the madding crowd's &c. as in the received text (with minor variations to be noted), down to 'fires,' .
All the MS. to the end of the four rejected Stanzas is in a much more faded character; and Mason must be at least so far right that the Poem from 'Far from the madding %c.' was resumed after a considerable interval.
But we have only Mason's authority for the statement that the Elegy was ever meant to end with these four stanzas, and it is very questionable. We may be biased by the completeness of the poem in its published form, - but surely without this contrast to assist our judgment it would have seemed to us to finish badly and abruptly with ''Pursue the silent Tenour of thy Doom.''
And if this ending would not satisfy us it could not have satisfied Gray. Again, it is probable from the MS. that down to 'Doom' the Elegy was all written much about the same time, or as the Germans say, in einem Guss. Suppose then it had reached that point in 1742, and this is probably what Mason means when he suggests that it may have been concluded then; is it conceivable that Gray, who had communicated to Walpole other completed poems of that date, and even the fragmentary , would have kept back the Elegy, which ex hypothesi he must have regarded as finished? Yet Walpole, as we have seen, is certain that Gray sent him only the first three stanzas, two or three years after the year 1742. Surely either these twelve lines were all that Gray had then written, or they were a specimen only of the unfinished poem."