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Anne of France: Lessons for my Daughter

Anne of France: Lessons for my Daughter

Sharon L. Jansen
Copyright Date: 2004
Edition: NED - New edition
Published by: Boydell and Brewer,
Pages: 120
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  • Book Info
    Anne of France: Lessons for my Daughter
    Book Description:

    Anne of France (1461-1522), daughter of Louis XI and sister of Charles VIII, was one of the most powerful women of the fifteenth century. She was referred to by her contemporaries as Madame la Grande, and remained an active and influential figure in France throughout her life. As the fifteenth century drew to a close, Anne composed a series of enseignements, "lessons", for her daughter Suzanne of Bourbon. These instructions represent a distillation of a lifetime's experience, and are presented through the portrait of an ideal princess, thus preparing her daughter to act both circumspectly and politically. Having steered her own course successfully, Anne offers her daughter advice intended to help her negotiate the difficult passage of a woman in the world of politics. This is the first translation into English of Anne of France's Lessons.

    eISBN: 978-1-84615-265-8
    Subjects: Language & Literature

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. Preface
    (pp. vii-xiv)
  4. Introduction
    (pp. 1-22)

    One of the most powerful women of the late fifteenth century, Anne of France is relatively unknown today, at least to those of us whose first language is English. While she is occasionally mentioned in the political biographies of her father, Louis XI of France, and her brother, Charles VIII, her own story remains unfamiliar, and the book of advice she composed for her daughter was last edited in the nineteenth century and has never before been translated into English.¹ Yet in the waning years of the fifteenth century,Madame la Grande, as she was known to her contemporaries, controlled...

  5. A Note on the Translation
    (pp. 23-24)
  6. Lessons for My Daughter
    (pp. 25-68)

    My daughter, the perfect natural love that I have for you—while bearing in mind our lamentable weakness and our present wretched life (innumerable and great dangers must be overcome in this transitory world), recognizing the imminent, sudden, and early death that I expect at any moment, and notwithstanding my poor, rude, and limited ability—gives me the desire and the determination to prepare a few little lessons for you while I am still with you, knowing well your inexperience and extreme youth and hoping that in time you will recall these lessons and that they will help you a...

  7. Interpretive Essay
    (pp. 69-90)

    Without the authority guaranteed by the title of regent, Anne of France nevertheless managed to wield her considerable power quite effectively during the years she governed France, but justhowshe managed to do so was not at all clear to her contemporaries, nor is it any more clear to us today. As her supporters and detractors struggled to explain the role she assumed after her father’s death, they had a great deal to say about her, but very little of what they said offered any analysis of her decisions or any insight into the political philosophy driving those decisions....

  8. Appendix I: Louis XI, Anne of France, and the Regency Question
    (pp. 91-94)
  9. Appendix II: Unpublished Letters from Anne of France
    (pp. 95-98)
  10. Select Bibliography
    (pp. 99-102)
  11. Index
    (pp. 103-105)
  12. Back Matter
    (pp. 106-106)