Pierre Gringore

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Gringore, Pierre


Born around 1475, probably in Thury-Harcourt (Calvados Department); died in 1538, probably in Lorraine. French dramatist, pamphleteer, and poet.

Gringore sympathetically depicted the townspeople in his poem The Chateau of Labor (1499). He was the author of pamphlets opposing the Roman curia. His short comic plays—the so-called soties, which were sharply political— became famous. Among them were The Hope for Peace (1510) and The Game of the Prince of Fools (1512), which ridiculed the Roman pope Julius II. Gringore was the author of the historical mystery The Life of Monseigneur St. Louis. Later, he switched to the reactionary camp. In the poem Heraldry of Heretics (1524), Gringore attempted to justify the Inquisition.


Oeuvres complètes, vols. 1–2. Rome, 1858–77. In Russian translation in Khrestomatiia po istorii zarubezhnogo teatra, vol. 1. Moscow, 1953. Pages 144–46.


Oulmont, C. Pierre Gringore. Paris, 1911.
Dittmann, W. Pierre Gringore als Dramatiker. Berlin, 1923. (Romanische Studien, fasc. 21. Edited by E. Ebering. [Contains a bibliography.])
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Rather different from the other essays is Cynthia Brown's study of printed accounts of the 1514 Paris entry of Mary Tudor, orchestrated by Pierre Gringore, emphasizing the theatrical character of the staged events witnessed by the Queen as she passed through the city, and contrasting this presentation with the subsequent presentation of themes age via the medium of print.
Violent pamphlets against the papacy were composed, such as those written by Pierre Gringore, La Chasse au cerf des cerfs (1511) (directed at Julius II) and Le Jeu du prince des sots (1512).
Gringore was for a time its second dignitary, Mere Sotte ("Mother Fool").
Pierre Gringore held a unique position, as he served as sole organizer, composer, most likely director, and chronicler of the "entry theaters": the allegorical spectacles or "mysteries" that were presented at predetermined stops--Porte Saint-Denis, Fontaine du Ponceau, Trinite, Porte aux Peintres, Eglise des Saints-Innocents, Chatelet, and Palais Royal--along the itinerary of the procession.
His edition takes the classic form: an introduction of some fifty pages, covering topics such as the career of Gringore, the historical and religious background, language and versification, staging, and a literary-dramatic analysis.
Other rhetoriqueurs were Jean Bouchet, Jean Marot, Guillaume Cretin, Pierre Gringore,
Furthermore, the text offers some pertinent insight into the development of the genre of satire, as it elucidates the transition from a satirical tradition heavily influenced by late medieval farce and sottie plays--which is illustrated in authors such as Pierre Gringore, Clement Marot, and the early Francois Rabelais--to a more syncretic satirical model that more thoroughly combines French sources and classical models.
Pierre Gringore became the preeminent sotie dramatist.
The work has been variously ascribed to such noted rhetoriqueurs as Jean Bouchet, Pierre Gringore, and Andre de La Vigne, all of whom Duhl considers carefully before arguing cautiously but persuasively in favor of not so much a conclusive attribution as of a "new hypothesis" and "new line of inquiry": the Sotise a huit personnaiges as an anonymous, perhaps collaborative, and above all imitative artifact of the Basoche and the University of Toulouse, likely stitched together by some such local poetizing notable as Blaise d'Auriol.