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Representing Avarice in Late Renaissance France - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Representing Avarice in Late Renaissance France

Jonathan Patterson


Why did people talk so much about avarice in late Renaissance France, nearly a century before Molière’s famous comedy, L’Avare? As wars and economic crises ravaged France on the threshold of modernity, avarice was said to be flourishing as never before. Yet by the late sixteenth century, a number of French writers would argue that in some contexts, avaricious behaviour was not straightforwardly sinful or harmful. Considerations of social rank, gender, object pursued, time, and circumstance led some to question age-old beliefs. Traditionally reviled groups (rapacious usurers, greedy lawyers, mi ... More

Keywords: avarice, L’Avare, Molière, Montaigne, Marguerite de Navarre, Ronsard, intellectual history, gender, enrichment, status, Renaissance

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2015 Print ISBN-13: 9780198716518
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2015 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198716518.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Jonathan Patterson, author
St Hugh's College, University of Oxford