chivalric romance

type of prose and verse narrative

As a literary genre of high culture, romance or chivalric romance is a type of prose and verse narrative that was popular in the aristocratic circles of High Medieval and Early Modern Europe. They were fantastic stories about marvel-filled adventures, often of a chivalric knight-errant portrayed as having heroic qualities, who goes on a quest. It developed further from the epics as time went on; in particular, "the emphasis on love and courtly manners distinguishes it from the chanson de geste and other kinds of epic, in which masculine military heroism predominates."Popular literature also drew on themes of romance, but with ironic, satiric, or burlesque intent. Romances reworked legends, fairy tales, and history to suit the readers' and hearers' tastes, but by c. 1600 they were out of fashion, and Miguel de Cervantes famously burlesqued them in his novel Don Quixote. Still, the modern image of "medieval" is more influenced by the romance than by any other medieval genre, and the word medieval evokes knights, distressed damsels, dragons, and other romantic tropes.Originally, romance literature was written in Old French, Anglo-Norman, Occitan, and Provençal, and later in Portuguese, Castilian, English, Italian (Sicilian poetry), and German. During the early 13th century, romances were increasingly written as prose. In later romances, particularly those of French origin, there is a marked tendency to emphasize themes of courtly love, such as faithfulness in adversity.
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genre: chivalric romance

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Don Quixote

novel by the Spanish author Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra

author: Miguel de Cervantes

1605 or 1615

Orlando Furioso

epic poem by Ludovico Ariosto

author: Ludovico Ariosto

1516 or 1532

Jehan de Paris

French romance

author: anonymous

Châtelaine de Vergy

anonymously-written short 13th century romance of courtly love in Old French

author: anonymous

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