Difference Between Courtly Love And Petrarchan Love
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Courtly love (Occitan: fin'amor [finaˈmuɾ]; French: amour courtois [amuʁ kuʁtwa]) was a medieval European literary conception of love that emphasized nobility and chivalry. Medieval literature is filled with examples of knights setting out on adventures and performing various deeds or services for ladies because of their \"courtly love\". This kind of love is originally a literary fiction created for the entertainment of the nobility, but as time passed, these ideas about love changed and attracted a larger audience. In the high Middle Ages, a \"game of love\" developed around these ideas as a set of social practices. \"Loving nobly\" was considered to be an enriching and improving practice.
Courtly love began in the ducal and princely courts of Aquitaine, Provence, Champagne, ducal Burgundy and the Norman Kingdom of Sicily at the end of the eleventh century. In essence, courtly love was an experience between erotic desire and spiritual attainment, \"a love at once illicit and morally elevating, passionate and disciplined, humiliating and exalting, human and transcendent\". The topic was prominent with both musicians and poets, being frequently used by troubadours, trouvères and minnesänger. The topic was also popular with major writers, including Dante, Petrarch and Geoffrey Chaucer.
The term \"courtly love\" was first popularized by Gaston Paris and has since come under a wide variety of definitions and uses. Its interpretation, origins and influences continue to be a matter of critical debate.
While its origin is uncertain, the term amour courtois (\"courtly love\") was given greater popularity by Gaston Paris in his 1883 article \"Études sur les romans de la Table Ronde: Lancelot du Lac, II: Le conte de la charrette\", a treatise inspecting Chrétien de Troyes's Lancelot, the Knight of the Cart (1177). Paris said amour courtois was an idolization and ennobling discipline. The lover (idolizer) accepts the independence of his mistress and tries to make himself worthy of her by acting bravely and honorably (nobly) and by doing whatever deeds she might desire, subjecting himself to a series of tests (ordeals) to prove to her his ardor and commitment. Sexual satisfaction, Paris said, may not have been a goal or even result, but the love was not entirely platonic either, as it was based on sexual attraction.
The term and Paris's definition were soon widely accepted and adopted. In 1936 C. S. Lewis wrote The Allegory of Love further solidifying courtly love as a \"love of a highly specialized sort, whose characteristics may be enumerated as Humility, Courtesy, Adultery, and the Religion of Love\".
Later, historians such as D. W. Robertson Jr., in the 1960s and John C. Moore and E. Talbot Donaldson in the 1970s, were critical of the term as being a modern invention, Donaldson calling it \"The Myth of Courtly Love\", because it is not supported in medieval texts. Even though the term \"courtly love\" does appear only in just one extant Provençal poem (as cortez amors in a late 12th-century lyric by Peire d'Alvernhe), it is closely related to the term fin'amor (\"fine love\") which does appear frequently in Provençal and French, as well as German translated as hohe Minne. In addition, other terms and phrases associated with \"courtliness\" and \"love\" are common throughout the Middle Ages. Even though Paris used a term with little support in the contemporaneous literature, it was not a neologism and does usefully describe a particular conception of love and focuses on the courtliness that was at its essence.
Poets adopted the terminology of feudalism, declaring themselves the vassal of the lady and addressing her as midons (my lord), which had dual benefits: allowing the poet to use a code name (so as to avoid having to reveal the lady's name) and at the same time flattering her by addressing her as his lord. The troubadour's model of the ideal lady was the wife of his employer or lord, a lady of higher status, usually the rich and powerful female head of the castle. When her husband was away on Crusade or elsewhere she dominated the household and cultural affairs; sometimes this was the case even when the husband was at home. The poet gave voice to the aspirations of the courtier class, for only those who were noble could engage in courtly love. This new kind of love saw nobility not based on wealth and family history, but on character and actions; such as devotion, piety, gallantry, thus appealing to poorer knights who saw an avenue for advancement.
Since at the time some marriages among nobility had little to do with modern perspectives of what constitutes love, courtly love was also a way for nobles to express the love not found in their marriage. \"Lovers\" in the context of courtly love need not refer to sex, but rather to the act of loving. These \"lovers\" had short trysts in secret, which escalated mentally, but might not physically. On the other hand, continual references to beds and sleeping in the lover's arms in medieval sources such as the troubador albas and romances such as Chrétien's Lancelot imply at least in some cases a context of actual sexual intercourse.
The historic analysis of courtly love varies between different schools of historians. That sort of history which views the early Middle Ages dominated by a prudish and patriarchal theocracy views courtly love as a \"humanist\" reaction to the puritanical views of the Catholic Church. Scholars who endorse this view value courtly love for its exaltation of femininity as an ennobling, spiritual, and moral force, in contrast to the ironclad chauvinism of the first and second estates. The condemnation of courtly love in the beginning of the 13th century by the church as heretical, is seen by these scholars as the Church's attempt to put down this \"sexual rebellion\".
However, other scholars note that courtly love was certainly tied to the Church's effort to civilize the crude Germanic feudal codes in the late 11th century. It has also been suggested that the prevalence of arranged marriages required other outlets for the expression of more personal occurrences of romantic love, and thus it was not in reaction to the prudery or patriarchy of the Church but to the nuptial customs of the era that courtly love arose. In the Germanic cultural world a special form of courtly love can be found, namely Minne.
At times, the lady could be a princesse lointaine, a far-away princess, and some tales told of men who had fallen in love with women whom they had never seen, merely on hearing their perfection described, but normally she was not so distant. As the etiquette of courtly love became more complicated, the knight might wear the colors of his lady: where blue or black were sometimes the colors of faithfulness, green could be a sign of unfaithfulness. Salvation, previously found in the hands of the priesthood, now came from the hands of one's lady. In some cases, there were also women troubadours who expressed the same sentiment for men.
The literary convention of courtly love can be found in most of the major authors of the Middle Ages such as Geoffrey Chaucer, John Gower, Dante, Marie de France, Chretien de Troyes, Gottfried von Strassburg and Thomas Malory. The medieval genres in which courtly love conventions can be found include the lyric, the romance and the allegory.
Courtly love was born in the lyric, first appearing with Provençal poets in the 11th century, including itinerant and courtly minstrels such as the French troubadours and trouvères, as well as the writers of lays. Texts about courtly love, including lays, were often set to music by troubadours or minstrels. According to scholar Ardis Butterfield, courtly love is \"the air which many genres of troubadour song breathe\". Not much is known about how, when, where, and for whom these pieces were performed, but we can infer that the pieces were performed at court by troubadours, trouvères, or the courtiers themselves. This can be inferred because people at court were encouraged or expected to be \"courtly\" and be proficient in many different areas, including music. Several troubadours became extremely wealthy playing the fiddle and singing their songs about courtly love for a courtly audience.
The vernacular poetry of the romans courtois, or courtly romances, included many examples of courtly love. Some of them are set within the cycle of poems celebrating King Arthur's court. This was a literature of leisure, directed to a largely female audience for the first time in European history.
Allegory is common in the romantic literature of the Middle Ages, and it was often used to interpret what was already written. There is a strong connection between religious imagery and human sexual love in medieval writings.
Marie de France's lai \"Eliduc\" toys with the idea that human romantic love is a symbol for God's love when two people love each other so fully and completely that they leave each other for God, separating and moving to different religious environments. Furthermore, the main character's first wife leaves her husband and becomes a nun so that he can marry his new lover.
Allegorical treatment of courtly love is also found in the Roman de la Rose by Guillaume de Lorris and Jean de Meun. In it, a man becomes enamored with an individual rose on a rosebush, attempting to pick it and finally succeeding. The rose represents the female body, but the romance also contains lengthy digressive \"discussions on free will versus determinism as well as on optics and the influence of heavenly bodies on human behavior\".
Through such routes as Capellanus's record of the Courts of Love and the later works of Petrarchism (as well as the continuing influence of Ovid), the themes of courtly love were not confined to the medieval, but appear both in serious and comic forms in early modern Europe. Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, for example, shows Romeo attempting to love Rosaline in an almost contrived courtly fashion while Mercutio mocks him for it; and both in his plays and his sonnets the writer can be seen appropriating the conventions of courtly love for his own ends. 153554b96e