Rabelais, François

(ca. 1483-1553)
   The details of the life of François Rabelais, who was born in La Devinière, near Chinon, are little known. Certain critics think he was born in 1494. In late 1510, he was a novice in the Franciscan monastery of La Baumette, near Angers, and in 1520 or 1521, he became a priest and Franciscan friar minor at the monastery of Puy-Saint-Martin in Fontenay-le-Comte, where he completed his theological studies and, with special permission, also those in law. Joining the Benedictine order in 1524, he accompanied the bishop of Geoffroy d'Estissac on his work at Poitiers. Between 1528 and 1530, he wore the habit of a secular priest and had two children from a liaison with a Parisian widow. Earning a degree in medicine at the university of Montpellier in 1530, he became a physician in lyon in 1532. The same year, Rabelais translated and edited Giovanni Manardi's Epistolae medicinales, the Hippocratis et Galeni libri aliquot, and the Testamentum Cuspii, writing to Erasmus that he recognized him as his "spiritual father," and published his own first great work, Pantagruel, under the name Alcofribas Nasier (an anagram of François Rabelais). After the publication of his Pan-tagruélinePrognostication (1533), Rabelais, in the following year, accompanied Cardinal jean de bellay to Italy then, returning to Lyon, published consecutively the Topographia antiquae Romae of Morliani and his own work, Gargantua, the story of Panta-gruel's father. Along with Pantagruel, this work had a prodigious success, although both were condemned by the sorbonne. Having regularized his situation in regard to the church, Rabelais made a second journey to Rome with de Bellay (1532-36) and was named chapter canon of the abbey of Saint-Maur-des-Fosses. He then returned to Montpellier (1537), where he practiced medicine. The condemnation of his first two novels did not stop Rabelais from publishing Tiers Livre (1546), under royal patronage. But after the death of King Francis i in 1547, Rabelais's writings were again condemned and he had to flee to Metz, where he served as city clerk. When he again visited Rome with de Bellay (1547-49), the first 11 chapters of his Quart Livre were published in Lyon (1548), with the entire edition appearing only in 1552, having been censured by the church. During the interval, john Calvin, in his Traité des scandales (1550), vehemently attacked Rabelais. The authorship of a final work, Cinquième Livre, published between 1562 and 1564, has been contested, and it seems that the book is not actually the work of Rabelais. In sum, Rabelais's writings are a great expression of 16th-century humanism. A genius, he was an antiquarian, a defender of the spirit of social justice, a pacifist who supported only defensive war, and a physician. He gave satirical expression to the philosophical and political concerns of his contemporaries through an incomparably rich and comic vocabulary, and he filled the French language with neologisms that are still in use today.

France. A reference guide from Renaissance to the Present . 1884.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Rabelais, François — • Sixteenth century French writer Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006 …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Rabelais, François — Ra·be·lais (răbʹə lā , răb ə lāʹ, räb lĕʹ), François. 1494? 1553. French humanist and writer of satirical attacks on medieval scholasticism and superstition, most notably Pantagruel (1532) and Gargantua (1534). * * * born с 1494, Poitou, France… …   Universalium

  • RABELAIS, Francois — (c. 1494 1553) Francois Rabelais was a French humanist and a prominent figure in the French Renaissance. Rabelais s most famous work is the satirical prose novel Gargan­tua and Pantagruel. Little is known about the life of Rabelais. There is… …   Renaissance and Reformation 1500-1620: A Biographical Dictionary

  • Rabelais, François — (ca. 1494 1535)    French author of vernacu lar prose satires. Born the son of a lawyer at Chinon, he entered the Franciscan order about 1510 and presumably received the typical scholastic education provided to members of his order. He and sev… …   Historical Dictionary of Renaissance

  • Rabelais, François — ► (1494? 1553) Escritor francés. En 1532 publicó Pantagruel y en 1534, Gargantúa. Las aventuras del gigante Gargantúa y de su hijo Pantagruel sirven a Rabelais de pretexto para hilvanar sus recuerdos, sus rencores y sus burlas. Un principio… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • RABELAIS, FRANÇOIS —    great French humorist, born at Chinon, the son of a poor apothecary; was sent to a convent at nine; became a Franciscan monk; read and studied a great deal, but, sick of convent life, ran away at forty years of age; went to Montpellier, and… …   The Nuttall Encyclopaedia

  • Rabelais, François —  (c. 1494–c. 1553) French satirist …   Bryson’s dictionary for writers and editors

  • Rabelais — Rabelais, François …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • François Rabelais — Activités écrivain et médecin Naissance entre 1483 et 1494 La Devinière, commune de Seuilly, en Touraine …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Francois Rabelais — François Rabelais François Rabelais Activité(s) écrivain et médecin Naissance entre 1493 et 1494 Chinon …   Wikipédia en Français

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