About This Chapter
Overview of European Epic Poetry Chapter Summary
Lyrical verse as an artistic expression has a tradition extending far back into human history. This chapter explores examples of epic poetry in the European tradition. From Spain to Portugal, to France and Italy, these great poems span Europe and show the culture and history of the people through beautifully combined words. Poetic works discussed in this chapter include:
- Cantar de Mio Cid, a historical poem of the Castillian people
- Orlando Furioso, an Italian tale of love, chivalry, and the crusades
- The Lusiads, a Portuguese travel tale of explorations to India and beyond
- The Song of Roland, a classic French poem of history from the time of Charlemagne
- Elizabethan Poetry, poetical traditions in the time of Queen Elizabeth I of England
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1. Cantar de Mio Cid: History & Meaning
The Cantar de Mio Cid is an epic poem about a real-life historical figure who lived in Spain during a time of conflict with the Moors from Africa. In this lesson, we will explore the history and meaning of this poem.
2. The Song of Roland: Summary & Analysis
Let's learn about the French epic poem ''The Song of Roland,'' or in French, ''La Chanson de Roland.'' We'll summarize this medieval work of literature and provide some analysis of its key elements.
3. Elizabethan Poetry: Traditions & Examples
Traditional poetry forms can sometimes be tricky to understand, so it helps to read some examples. This lesson provides an overview of poetry forms and styles popular in sixteenth-century Europe, particularly English poetry in the time of Queen Elizabeth I.
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