Selected Poems from Clément Marot

Marot, Clément (1496–1544), translated by Kline, A. S. (contact-email)

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Clément Marot (1496-1544), born in Cahors, and an older contemporary of Maurice Scève and Louise Labé probably studied law in Paris and later created a career for himself at the French court. In 1520 he attended Francis I at the Field of the Cloth of Gold, and accompanied Francis on his ill-fated Italian campaign ending in defeat at Pavia in 1524. Supporting both the humanist and religious reform movements, Marot was subsequently imprisoned for heresy, and was forced to flee Paris in 1534. After time spent in Navarre and Ferrara, he finally abjured his heresy at Lyon, and in 1539 Francois granted him a house there. His translation of the Psalms into French gained him wide fame and helped to promote the Protestant Reformation. The earliest editions of his works appeared at Lyon in 1538 and 1544, and he is rightly claimed as a key writer of the Lyon school of poetry, which employed themes of spiritual love, based on the works of Plato and Petrarch, and the Renaissance conventions of courtly love.

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Kline, A. S.

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