Chretien De Troyes's Romances

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The romance genre is centered around many themes, the most famous being love. The protagonist is almost always the one character that is receiving love or working towards obtaining love. The Romance genre began around the 12th century in Europe. The most famous author of that genre and time was none other than Chretien De Troyes. Troyes is the author of seven poems, four of which were completed by just him. The other three have been worked on and finished by other authors. In this essay the themes from two of his works will be discussed. The works being analyzed are The Knight of the Cart (Lancelot) and The Story of the Grail (Perceval). The first theme being discussed is love. Love would be the most common thing found in…show more content…
Finally, the theme of mercy will be explored. In the story The Knight of the Cart, Lancelot gives many characters second chances. Lancelot was quite strong in virtue for he showed many people how merciful he was. One example would be of when Lancelot fought the 'proud knight' and was going to let him go. Yet, the girl on the tawny mule rode up and persuaded Lancelot to give her the proud knight's head and so the knight was killed (lines 2784-2947). Even though the knight met his demise, the situation showed Lancelot's mercy. The knight would have been alive if it were not for the girl coaxing Lancelot to kill him for her. An example from The Story of the Grail, Perceval shows mercy to people also. Perceval fights, wins, and shows mercy to both Anguingueron and Clamadeu. Perceval sends the two men to service the maiden which Kay had slapped in the beginning of the story. The examples from the two stories show that mercy is a common theme. Furthermore, mercy is found alongside of the theme of honor. Both virtues are found in knights in the time period of the romance stories. The themes discussed above are found in both Chreten De Troyes's stories. The themes can also be found in many other romance stories written in the 12th century. The difference between an epic and a romance is that epics glorify military victory and statuses; romances
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