The spiritual development of some knightly characters in the Roman courtois : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in French at Massey University

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Massey University
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In 1963 when I was studying Vergil's Aeneid, I became gradually aware that the Trojan leader, so often accused of being a negative plaything of the gods, was a great man and a great religious hero. For being able to see this point of view, I am greatly indebted to an enlightening article by F.A.Sullivan, S.J., who demonstrates how Aeneas, in his quest for a new Troy undergoes a spiritual Journey not unlike that experienced by people who truly seek union with God by the sanctity of their lives. Last year, when I was reading Yvain for the first time, it again became apparent that the hero, in his quest for reconciliation with his wife, could also show some features of a similar tripartite development. Further reading indicated that signs of a deep religious experience could also be found in other heroes, particularly in some of the romances of Chretien de Troyes, who have been studied here from the aspect of their spiritual progression. Among all those who have in any way helped me to prepare this work, I should like to thank the Sisters of the Congregation to which I belong,the Sisters of Mercy,Wellington,who have given me much encouragement; the staff of the French section of the Modem Languages Department, Massey University, and especially Dr.Glynnis Cropp who has given so readily of her time and scholarly advice; the Library Staff, particularly the Interloan Section of Massey University; and finally, Mrs.Esme Lynch for her capable typing. March 1972. [From Preface]
Chrétien, de Troyes, 12th cent, Criticism interpretation, Arthurian romances, History criticism