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Introduction: Montaigne And The Low Countries—Synopsis And New Perspectives

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Chapter Summary

This is the introduction chapter of the book, which studies the threefold relationship which exists between Montaigne and the Low Countries. It addresses the Netherlandish presence in the Essais, represented by famous Erasmus of Rotterdam and by the then recent history of Southern and Northern Netherlands, and more specifically the Dutch Revolt against the Spaniards. The second kind of relationship between Montaigne and the Low Countries is limited to one individual case, namely his personal contacts with Leiden and Louvain professor Justus Lipsius. These contacts not only included their correspondence and references they made to each other in their works, but also the correspondence between Lipsius and Pierre de Brach and Marie de Gournay on subject of Montaigne’s death. Lipsius and his intellectual network are at the basis of third, and least known but quantitatively speaking the most extended form of relationship between Montaigne and the Low Countries: his reception.

Keywords: Dutch Revolt; Erasmus of Rotterdam; Essais; Low Countries; Marie de Gournay; Montaigne; Netherlandish presence; Pierre de Brach; Spaniards



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