Journal article

Print and polemic in sixteenth-century France: The Histoires prodigieuses, confessional identity, and the Wars of Religion

J Spinks

Renaissance Studies | Society for Renaissance Studies | Published : 2013


The second half of the sixteenth century saw the rise of the wonder book as a distinct genre shaped by religious conflict. These often richly illustrated compendia presented extraordinary events intended to inspire both fear and wonder. In France, wonder books appeared primarily during the Wars of Religion (1562-98). The most important was Pierre Boaistuau's 1560 Histoires prodigieuses, which appeared in revised editions incorporating new texts by Claude Tesserant, François de Belleforest, Arnauld Sorbin, Rod. Hoyer, and the unidentified 'I. D. M.' through until 1598. This article surveys the complex publication history of the Histoires prodigieuses and its changing presentation of prodigiou..

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