Chapters (Layout Features)

Chapter 4: Measuring Conventions of Courtliness

Crane, Susan

The relation of baronial ideals to feudal, national, and religious principles is not the only concern of insular romance. A further subject of importance to insular as well as continental poets is ideal love and its relationship to noble life. Like other romances in this study, the insular romances of love and chivalry assess ideal patterns of behavior (here the cultural formations of courtoisie and fine amor) in relation to conflicting images of conduct. But the historical situation of these romances changes more than that of other insular romances: the earlier poets of love and chivalry examine an ideal system that had far less importance to social behavior than did religion or feudal and national principles, but their Middle English successors saw literature's courtly ideals widely followed in social practice.


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Insular Romance: Politics, Faith, and Culture in Anglo-Norman and Middle English Literature
University of California Press

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Academic Units
English and Comparative Literature
Published Here
December 9, 2009