Building the Text: Architecture as Metaphor in Late Medieval and Early Modern France by David Cowling

Building the Text: Architecture as Metaphor in Late Medieval and Early Modern France

byDavid Cowling

Hardcover | March 1, 1998

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Descriptions of imaginary buildings abound in late medieval and early modern texts in France as in other European countries. The vogue for allegorical buildings was, however, more than a literary fashion: by deploying familiar metaphors of the building in new contexts, writers gained apowerful tool of persuasion. This book explores the complex relationship between metaphor and allegory in the largely neglected but extremely rich corpus of writing that spans the late fifteenth and early sixteenth century in France, and concentrates on the output of Jean Lemaire (c.1473-after1515), whose fascination with architecture played a crucial role in defining his self-image as a writer. By exploiting the semantic richness of the image of the temple, Lemaire was able to combine panegyric of his patrons with advertisement of his own talents and to promote an ideology of theself-conscious and self-confident writer that was to characterize the stance of Ronsard and the Pleiade in the poet-architect debate of the later sixteenth century.

About The Author

David Cowling is at University of Exeter.
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Title:Building the Text: Architecture as Metaphor in Late Medieval and Early Modern FranceFormat:HardcoverDimensions:256 pages, 8.5 × 5.43 × 0.79 inPublished:March 1, 1998Publisher:Oxford University Press

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198159595

ISBN - 13:9780198159599

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Table of Contents

List of IllustrationsIntroduction1. `Il n'y a plus nobles logiz que sont cons': The Body as a Building (I)2. `Ung lieu de si grand seurete': The Body as a Building (II)3. `Ferme estoit sans povoir trebucher': The State as a Building4. `Colloquerons ceans le sien ymage': Architectural Metaphors for the Mind and Memory5. `Ce sont les huis et les cleres fenestres ...': The Text as a Building6. `Ung temple y a, plus beau ne vit oncq nulz': Fictions of the Building in Jean Lemaire de BelgesConclusionAppendix: A Checklist of Architectural Allegories of the Period 1460-1540BibliographyIndex

Editorial Reviews

`This exciting and valuable book addresses a motif strikingly frequent in rhetorique writing, the description of imaginary buildings in allegorical contexts ... An impressively wide range of documentation is mobilized to illustrate the accumulation of the building's connotative potential;these historical surveys are in themselves extremely useful resources, which scholars of other periods and literatures could consult with profit. Equally admirable is the judiciousness and sophistication with which Cowling examines diverse texts ... Medievalists, early modern specialists, andcomparatists alike should find this study extremely rewarding.'Adrian Armstrong, University of Manchester, FS, vol 53, no 2, 1999