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"Quels beste ce pooit estre" : Merlin et le bestiaire dans trois Suites du Merlin en prose : d'une poétique du personnage à une poétique du roman

Abstract : One of the most eminent figures of Arthurian literature, renowned in the Middle Ages as in later periods, Merlin remains however a polymorphous and contradictory character. A study focusing on two aspects will allow us to perceive his ambiguities and to form the poetics of the character. Firstly, from a relational perspective, the bestiary, that is to say the literary fauna, constitutes an element of this definition. In Prose Merlin’s retrospective prose sequels (the “Vulgate” Suite, the “Post-Vulgate” Suite and the Livre d’Artus), romances which constitute the apex of thirteenth century Arthurian texts in prose, this relation axis encounters an intertextual perspective. By its extent and its nature the Merlin bestiary reveals itself to be extremely variable and difficult to categorize, as is the nature of the character. The paradigms of incarnation and voice, together with the intus/foris dialectics, that govern the relations between the character and the bestiary, show that Merlin becomes increasingly complex, because he combines a role of vates responsible for the fiction and the prophetic bestiary with a distinctly romantic dimension by the end of the Prose Merlin. Finally, in the Prose Merlin sequels, the bestiary also explains both the (re)development and the end of these two aspects of the character, as well as the poetics of the texts. Through the metonymical, metaphorical and analogical relations with Merlin, the bestiary thus builds up three different synchronically contrasting conceptions of the character, matching the tone and the various poetical purposes in the Suites. It contributes thus to the moral message and the poetical thoughts that each of these romances, aware of their portent, consciously carry.
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  • HAL Id : tel-01529204, version 1

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Lise Fuertes-Regnault. "Quels beste ce pooit estre" : Merlin et le bestiaire dans trois Suites du Merlin en prose : d'une poétique du personnage à une poétique du roman. Littératures. Université de Bourgogne, 2016. Français. ⟨NNT : 2016DIJOL007⟩. ⟨tel-01529204⟩

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