Young and in love : poetic production through allegorical age in Charles D’Orléans
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Charles d’Orléans (1394-1465) had a long and extensive history with poetry, both collecting and writing, that began in childhood and carried through his imprisonment to the end of his life. Charles’s familiarity with poetry and the allegorical mode specifically provides Charles with forms to manipulate as the questions the veracity of the genre’s strengths in revealing hidden truths. For a writer whose own youth was cut short by the early assumption of adult aristocratic responsibilities, Charles d’Orléans’s poems dwell upon the figures of the four ages and the workings of time. Dislocated from his native France and held in England as a prisoner, Charles is owned by neither critical tradition despite writing in both languages. Charles’s poetry, and even his life, can be characterized by the word ‘between’: he spoke between languages, lived between nations, and wrote between ages. Fortunes Stabilnes manipulates the allegorical genre by introducing this state of ‘between’ and allowing introspection where previously there had been none. This report argues that the poet-persona in Fortunes Stabilnes moves between the established allegorical ages to gain inspiration for his poetic endeavors.