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Vauquelin De La Fresnaye, Jean

VAUQUELIN DE LA FRESNAYE, JEAN (1536-1608), French poet, was born at the chateau of La Fresnaye, near Falaise in Normandy, in 1536. He studied the humanities at Paris and law at Poitiers and Bourges. He fought in the civil wars under Marshal Matignon and was wounded at the siege of Saint-L6 (1574). Most of his life was spent at Caen, where he was president, and he died there in 1608. La Fresnaye was a disciple of Ronsard, but, while praising the reforms of the Pleiade, he laid stress on the continuity of French literary history. He was a student of the trouveres and the old chroniclers, and desired to see French poetry set on a national basis. These views he expounded in an Art poetique, begun at the desire of Henry III. in 1574, but not published until 1605.

His Foresteries appeared in 1555; his Diverse* poesies, including the Art poetique, the Satyres franc,oises, addressed to various dis- xxvii. 31 tinguished contemporaries, and the Idylles, with some epigrams and sonnets, appeared in 1605. Among his political writings may be noted Pour la monarchie du royaume centre la division (1569).

The Art poetique was edited by G. Pellissier in 1885. It is summarized for English readers in vol. li. of Mr George Saintsbury's History of Criticism. A notice of the poet by J. Travers is prefixed to an edition of the (Euvres diverses (Caen, 1872).

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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