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Jean Lemaire de Belges's «Les Illustrations de Gaule et singularitez de Troye»

The Trojan Legend in the Late Middle Ages and Early Renaissance

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Judy Kem

This study compares Lemaire's treatment of the Trojan legend in his three-volume Les Illustrations de Gaule et singularitez de Troye (1511-1513) to this sources as well as to medieval French and Latin versions of the legend that he wished to correct. It also examines Lemaire's moral and political objectives in writing the work, as well as his view of history. It demonstrates that Lemaire reinterprets the past by offering complementary yet widely divergent moral lessons to his female and male readers while he attempts to influence the future by promoting European unity and a crusade against the Turks.