Friday, March 16, 2018

Madame de La Fayette wrote France's first historical novel, about 16-year-old heiress

It is the birthday of French writer Madame de La Fayette (1634), who wrote France's first historical novel, La Princesse de Cléves (1678), a tale set in the court of King Henry II of France from October 1558 to November 1559. It concerns a 16-year-old heiress whose mother seeks a husband for her in the king's court. Scholars consider it to be the first psychological novel, in which the characters' inner thoughts are revealed. Many of the characters are historical figures, though the heroine is fictional. The novel presents a precise picture of life at court in the era.

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