Memoirs of the Life of Henriette-Sylvie de Moliere: A Novel by Madame de Villedieu

By Madame de Villedieu

Often called Madame de Villedieu, Marie-Catherine Desjardins (ca. 1640-83) used to be a prolific author who performed an immense function within the evolution of the early sleek French novel. one of many earliest girls to jot down for a dwelling, she defied cultural conference through changing into an innovator and attractive to renowned tastes via fiction, drama, and poetry.Memoirs of the lifetime of Henriette-Sylvie de Moli?re, a semi autobiographical novel, portrays an enterprising lady who writes the tale of her existence, a fancy story that runs counter to social expectancies and novelistic conventions. A extraordinary paintings, the tale skillfully mixes genuine occasions from the author's lifestyles with fictional adventures. At a time whilst few ladies released, Villedieu's Memoirs is an important success in making a voice for the early smooth girl author. Produced whereas the French novel shape was once nonetheless in its infancy, it's going to be welcomed by means of any student of women's writing or the early improvement of the radical.

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Additional resources for Memoirs of the Life of Henriette-Sylvie de Moliere: A Novel (The Other Voice in Early Modern Europe)

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17 18 Vo l u m e E d i t o r s’ I n t r o d u c t i o n While noble titles have in the main been given in their English forms, Chevalier is used rather than Knight when it is associated with a proper name, as was often the case in seventeenth-century English. In addition I have preferred in proper names the French Monsieur and Madame to the English Sir or Mister and Madam and after these have naturally used the French de rather than the English of. Thus, for example, Sylvie’s beloved Englesac is referred to both as the Count of Englesac and as Monsieur d’Englesac.

Villedieu, however, did not write in collaboration with others. She wrote alone, as did British women writers of the Restoration. 1 Like Delariver Manley or Aphra Behn, Villedieu was socially marginal, living on the fringes of fashionable and respectable society. Unprotected by a close-knit 1. For more on Villedieu’s legal situation, see Joan DeJean, Tender Geographies: Women and the Origins of the Novel in France (New York: Columbia University Press), 130. , 253, n. 3. 3 Such an account must also begin with a word about names, since in that domain, as in so many others, Villedieu did not conform to societal norms.

In Brussels the émigré community offered Villedieu a warm reception, and at The Hague she met the erudite Constantin Huygens. Her short fiction Anaxandre appeared in 1667. 12 During a brief return visit to Paris to seek additional funding for his military activities, Boësset apparently gave or sold Villedieu’s love letters to her publisher, Claude Barbin. Barbin was eager to publish them and finally reached Villedieu in Holland. Her refusal was categorical, but in the end all that she obtained was the removal of her name from the title page and a decrease in the number of copies printed.

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