author: Marie de France, translated by Christian Demilly 

illustrator: Fred L

ages: 8+

64 pages

19,5 x 26 cm

 

Marie de France’s Fables

  • Five hundred years before the famous French fabulist, Jean de La Fontaine, a female reader, Marie de France, published brillant fables.

     

    The Fox and the Crow, The Cricket and the Grasshopper, The Lion and the Mouse… So many famous tales are read and learnt by heart in French elementary schools. But Marie de France was the first poet to write in French these fables inspired by Greek author Esope, in the 12th century, five hundred years before Jean de la Fontaine. 

     

    The twenty-five tales of Marie de France in this collection are full of inventiveness and freshness. Christian Demilly managed to translate the musicality of the text and to break free from Old French’ s techniques to touch the public of the 21th century. Fred L’ s refined and funny illustrations establish a link with the ancient poet’s voice and nowadays children.

     

    "Marie de France’s fables are definitely worthy of her renowned successor: lucid, rhythmic, funny, biting, critical and even caustic. They are surprisingly fresh even ten centuries after their publication. They reflect a difficult, religious society with a strict social group. Nonetheless, this society also offers the freedom to think, to criticize, to resist tyranny with a sense of humour which could be the germs of the French cultural, philosophical and intellectual spirit from the 17th-19th century called Les Lumières." Written by Laurence Faron, editor and director of Talents Hauts.