Chrétien’s Equal: Raoul de Houdenc
Title Details

247 Pages

23.4 x 15.6 cm

Series: Arthurian Studies

Imprint: D.S.Brewer

Chrétien's Equal: Raoul de Houdenc

Complete Works

by Raoul de Houdenc

Translated by Nigel Bryant

  • Description
  • Contents
  • Author
By his contemporaries, Raoul de Houdenc was 'mentioned in the same breath as Chrétien de Troyes as one of the masters of French poetry' (Keith Busby, The New Arthurian Encyclopaedia).
The writers of later romances deemed Raoul's work worthy of memory on a par with the Prose Lancelot, and placed Raoul and Chrétien on the same level in terms of authority.

Raoul de Houdenc was a major and innovative figure in 13th-century French literature. His surviving works are unusually diverse: they include an impassioned tract about the values of chivalry (The Romance of the Wings), two superbly crafted Arthurian romances (Meraugis of Portlesguez and The Avenging of Raguidel), and a swingeing polemic against declining standards especially among the bourgeoisie (The Burgess's Burgeoning Blight). And with his hugely influential satire The Dream of Hell he was the very first to compose allegory in the vernacular, mastering to perfection the art of parody and the unexpected.

After a long period of neglect Raoul is finally receiving the scholarly attention he deserves, and this is the first translation into English of his complete surviving works.

The Avenging of Raguidel 'must surely be counted as one of the most fascinating and innovative of the French Gawain romances' - Norris J. Lacy.
Manuscripts and Editions: The Texts Translated
Further Reading
The Romance of the Wings
Meraugis of Portlesguez
Sir Gawain and the Avenging of Raguidel
The Burgess's Burgeoning Blight
The Dream of Hell
The Path to Paradise
Index to Meraugis of Portlesguez
Index to The Avenging of Raguidel

NIGEL BRYANT is well known for his lively and accurate versions of medieval French works. His translations of Chrétien de Troyes' Perceval
and all its continuations and of the extraordinary late Arthurian romance Perceforest have been major achievements; he has also translated Jean le Bel's history of the early stages of the Hundred Years War, and the 13th- and 14th-century biographies of William Marshal and Bertrand du Guesclin. He was awarded the 2019 Norris J. Lacy Prize for outstanding editorial achievement
in Arthurian studies.



August 2021

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Title Details

247 Pages

2.34 x 1.56 cm

Series: Arthurian Studies

Imprint: D.S.Brewer