Pound's Historical Sources for Canto VI
Wanting a fair view of a past era, I have sat down with a French text-book of history printed in 1862 for the use of Catholic schools; “Intrigues Galantes de la Cour de France,” anonymously printed in Holland in 1694; and Zeller and Luchaire’s brief reprint of documents contemporary with Philippe-Auguste and Louis VIII. The styles differ, the ex-cathedra statements are inharmonic, but I have found no contradictory statement of facts. The relations between Philippe, Coeur-de-Lion, and the King of Sicily and their entourages at the start of the crusade in 1191 are as bad as anything in a Henry James novel; the eliminations of the “meagre” historical record have left nothing any simpler than the relations between our friends X., N., and G. Eleanor deserves as much attention as Ninon. But side by side with human and intimate detail one has the constant burning of allegory.
Ezra Pound. Pastiche: The Regional VIII in P&P III:324
Note: Ninon - Probably Ninon de L'Enclos (1620-1705) - French author and patron of the arts, owner of a famous literary salon.
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