Christine de Pizan

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Christine de Pizan

Christine de Pizan, sometimes known as de Pisan, (Venice 1364 – about 1430) was an Italian French late mediaeval author. She spent most of her childhood and all of her adult life in Paris and then the abbey at Poissy. She wrote only in her adopted language, Middle French. She challenged the male-dominated realm of the arts. She is known as Europe’s first professional woman writer.

She wrote both poetry and prose works. There were biographies and books of practical advice for women. She wrote 41 works in her 30-year career from 1399–1429.[1] She married in 1380 at the age of 15, and was widowed 10 years later.

Her influence carried all throughout Europe. It affected the social life for many Europeans because she gave confidence to women that they could rise beyond what men told them to do. Some think this is misreading her intentions.[2]

Selected works[change | change source]

  • L'Épistre au Dieu d'amours (1399)
  • L'Épistre de Othéa a Hector (1399–1400)
  • Dit de la Rose (1402)
  • Cent Ballades d'Amant et de Dame, Virelyas, Rondeaux (1402)
  • Le Chemin de long estude (1403)
  • Livre de la mutation de fortune (1403)
  • La Pastoure (1403)
  • Le Livre des fais et bonnes meurs du sage roy Charles V (1404)
  • Le Livre de la cité des dames (1405)
  • Le Livre des trois vertus (1405)
  • L'Avision de Christine (1405)
  • Livre du corps de policie (1407)
  • Livre de paix (1413)
  • Epistre de la prison de vie humaine (1418)
  • Ditié de Jehanne d'Arc (1429)

References[change | change source]

  1. Jenny Redfern 1995. Christine de Pisan and The Treasure of the City of Ladies: a medieval rhetorician and her rhetoric. In Lunsford, Andrea A, ed. Reclaiming Rhetorica: women in the rhetorical tradition. Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press, p. 74.
  2. Earl Jeffrey Richards (ed) 1992. Reinterpreting Christine de Pizan. Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press, pp. 1-2.