Nursery Rhymes


Medieval life and Times

Medieval Trouveres
Definition and description of the Trouveres: The Trouveres can be described as a school of poets who flourished in Northern France and Europe from the eleventh to the fourteenth century.

History of the Trouveres
Immediately following the Troubadours came the Trouveres, who were simply troubadours of nobler birth, and perhaps of finer imagination.

There were many of these singers and poets the most famous of whom are listed below. Among the more celebrated, the most familiar among them being those of Blondel, the minstrel of Richard the Lionheart, and the Chatelaine de Coucy (died about 1192), from whom we have twenty-three chansons.

Famous Medieval Troubadours or Trouveres
The elite Medieval Troubadours or Trouveres included many famous and influential men of the Middle Ages. The most famous Medieval Troubadours included:

  • King Richard I of England (the Lionheart)
  • King Thibaut IV of Navarre
  • King Alfonso X of Castile and León
  • Jaufré Rudel de Blaia
  • Arnaut Daniel
  • Gaucelm Faidit
  • Raimon de Miraval
  • Arnaut de Mareuil
  • Guiraut Riquier
  • Bernart de Ventadorn
  • Peire Vidal
  • Raimbaut de Vaqueiras
  • Folquet de Marseille (archbishop of Toulouse)
  • Bertrand de Born

Chansons de Geste
It was the trouveres who invented the Chansons de Geste  which were songs of action; in other words, ballads. One of the most celebrated of these was the "Story of Antioch," a romance of the crusades, extending to more than 15,000 lines. This poem was not intended to be read, but was chanted by the minstrels during the crusades themselves. One Richard the Pilgrim was the author. The song is, in fact, a history of the crusade in which he took part, up to a short time before the battle in which he was killed. Another very celebrated piece of the same kind, the "Song of Roland," the history of a warrior in the suite of Charlemagne, is said to have been chanted before the battle of Hastings by the Jongleur Taillefer. Other pieces of the same kind were the "Legend of the Chevalier Cygne" ("Lohengrin") "Parsifal" and the "Holy Grail." Each one of these was sung to a short formula of melody, which was performed over and over incessantly, excepting variations of endings employed in the episodes. A very eminent author of pieces of this kind was the Chevalier de Coucy, who died 1192, in the crusade. There are twenty-four songs of his still in the Paris Library.

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