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Related to fabliau: mock-heroic


plural fabliaux (both: fäblēō`), short comic, often bawdy tale in verse that deals realistically and satirically with middle-class or lower-class characters. Fabliaux were often directed against marriage and against members of the clergy. The form was extremely popular in France during the Middle Ages. Excellent examples of fabliaux can be found in pre-Christian Oriental literature, in Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, and in Boccaccio's Decameron.



a short comic or satirical verse tale in French urban literature of the 12th to early 14th centuries. About 150 fabliaux are extant, most of them anonymous, although such major poets as Rutebeuf wrote them as well.

The fabliaux were lively depictions of comic situations; they combined coarse humor with moral precepts. The main characters were sensual priests and monks, deceived husbands, and peasants. In terms of plot and ideology the fabliaux are similar to farces. The fabliaux influenced such Renaissance short stories as those of Boccaccio; their plots and stylistic features were later used by La Fontaine, Molière, Balzac (Droll Stories), and A. France.


Fablio: Starofrantsuzskie novelly, per. so starofrants. Moscow, 1971.


Istoriia frantsuzskoi literatury, vol. 1. Moscow-Leningrad, 1946. Pages 138—44.
Rychner, J. Contribution à l’étude des fabliaux, vols. 1–2. Geneva-Paris, 1960.


References in periodicals archive ?
Fabliau women are all married except Symkyn's daughter Malyne in the Reeve's Tale and they are subject to such rules of marriage and medieval societal codes.
It is well established that biblical drama, and especially N-Town, situates the virgin birth and the Holy Family in a fabliau context.
After all, The Freiris of Bernik is a fabliau and, as we might expect from an example of the genre, the tale confines itself almost exclusively to a bourgeois, domestic location; in this case, the household of Symon Lawrear, which is actually situated outside the town's walls.
Furrow at times also seems to approach romances as though they were modern, printed texts, edited in isolation from their manuscript contexts, yet these contexts (the "manuscript matrix") would perhaps shed more light on the issue of "neighbouring genres" (chapter 3), which unlike the theoretically and thematically constructed genres of fabliau and chanson de geste, actually accompany romance texts in medieval England.
At the heart of Pearcy's theoretical approach lies the concept of a conjointure (a term borrowed from critical studies of romance) between a rhetorical narreme and a logical episteme, which results in that element of fabliau humour which maybe termed' wit' (pp.
Mon berceau s'adossait a la bibliotheque, Babel sombre, oo roman, science, fabliau, Tout, la cendre latine et la poussiere grecque, Se melaient.
Again, the high-flown sentiments and the language of love-sickness belong to the romance tradition, but Kit and the Pardoner inhabit the world of the fabliau (Darjes and Rendall 1985); the audience, and both these characters, know that getting her into bed is, in an outrageous pun, "his hole enten-cioun" (l.
The Miller's Tale, for example, is usually categorized as a fabliau.
12) Barbara Nolan has recently applied her sense of Chaucer's orchestration of The Canterbury Tales as a miscellany containing all medieval genres (romance, fabliau, saint's life, parody, beast fable, Breton lay, sermon) to her study of manuscripts containing French fabliaux.
All these visions of Cokaygne are similar in that they portray a land of ease and plenty, but with its elimination of mammals and fleas and its depiction of the monks and nuns, "Land of Cokaygne" is quite different from the French La Fabliau de Coquaigne and Dutch "Schlaraffenland.
In translating the Columbian writer's fabliau to the stage, CTC faced the considerable challenge of creating a visual equivalent to his inimitable magical realism.