François Rabelais

François Rabelais

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François Rabelais (c. 1494 – 9 April 1553) was a major French Renaissance
French Renaissance
French Renaissance is a recent term used to describe a cultural and artistic movement in France from the late 15th century to the early 17th century. It is associated with the pan-European Renaissance that many cultural historians believe originated in northern Italy in the fourteenth century...

 writer, doctor, Renaissance humanist, monk and Greek scholar. He has historically been regarded as a writer of fantasy, satire, the grotesque, bawdy jokes and songs. His best known work is Gargantua and Pantagruel.

Biography


Although the place or date of his birth is not reliably documented, and some scholars put it as early as 1483, it is probable that François Rabelais was born in November 1494 near Chinon
Chinon
Chinon is a commune in the Indre-et-Loire department in central France well known for Château de Chinon.In the Middle Ages, Chinon developed especially during the reign of Henry II . The castle was rebuilt and extended, becoming one of his favorite residences...

, Indre-et-Loire, where his father worked as a lawyer. La Devinière in Seuilly
Seuilly
Seuilly is a commune bob the Indre-et-Loire department in central France.La Devinière, in Seuilly, houses a museum dedicated to François Rabelais, and is claimed to be the writer's birthplace.-See also:*Communes of the Indre-et-Loire department...

, Indre-et-Loire, is the name of the estate that claims to be the writer's birthplace and houses a Rabelais museum.

Rabelais was first a novice of the Franciscan order, and later a friar at Fontenay-le-Comte, where he studied Greek and Latin, as well as science, philology, and law, already becoming known and respected by the humanists of his era, including Budé. Harassed due to the directions of his studies, Rabelais petitioned Pope Clement VII and was granted permission to leave the Franciscans and enter the Benedictine order at Maillezais, where he was more warmly received.
Later he left the monastery to study at the University of Poitiers
University of Poitiers
The University of Poitiers is a university in Poitiers, France. It is a member of the Coimbra Group.-History:Founded in 1431 by Pope Eugene IV and chartered by King Charles VII, the University of Poitiers was originally composed of five faculties: theology, canon law, civil law, medicine, and...

 and University of Montpellier
University of Montpellier
The University of Montpellier was a French university in Montpellier in the Languedoc-Roussillon région of the south of France. Its present-day successor universities are the University of Montpellier 1, Montpellier 2 University and Paul Valéry University, Montpellier III.-History:The university...

. In 1532, he moved to Lyon
Lyon
Lyon , is a city in east-central France in the Rhône-Alpes region, situated between Paris and Marseille. Lyon is located at from Paris, from Marseille, from Geneva, from Turin, and from Barcelona. The residents of the city are called Lyonnais....

, one of the intellectual centres of France, and not only practiced medicine but edited Latin works for the printer Sebastian Gryphius. As a doctor, he used his spare time to write and publish humorous pamphlets which were critical of established authority and stressed his own perception of individual liberty. His revolutionary works, although satirical, revealed an astute observer of the social and political events unfolding during the first half of the sixteenth century.

Using the pseudonym Alcofribas Nasier (an anagram
Anagram
An anagram is a type of word play, the result of rearranging the letters of a word or phrase to produce a new word or phrase, using all the original letters exactly once; e.g., orchestra = carthorse, A decimal point = I'm a dot in place, Tom Marvolo Riddle = I am Lord Voldemort. Someone who...

 of François Rabelais minus the cedille
Cedilla
A cedilla , also known as cedilha or cédille, is a hook added under certain letters as a diacritical mark to modify their pronunciation.-Origin:...

 on the c), in 1532 he published his first book, Pantagruel, that would be the start of his Gargantua series
Gargantua and Pantagruel
The Life of Gargantua and of Pantagruel is a connected series of five novels written in the 16th century by François Rabelais. It is the story of two giants, a father and his son and their adventures, written in an amusing, extravagant, satirical vein...

. In this book, Rabelais sings the praises of the wines from his hometown of Chinon through vivid descriptions of the eat, drink and be merry lifestyle of the main character, the giant Pantagruel and his friends. Despite the great popularity of his book, both it and his prequel
Prequel
A prequel is a work that supplements a previously completed one, and has an earlier time setting.The widely recognized term was a 20th-century neologism, and a portmanteau from pre- and sequel...

 book on the life of Pantagruel's father Gargantua were condemned by the academics at the Sorbonne
Collège de Sorbonne
The Collège de Sorbonne was a theological college of the University of Paris, founded in 1257 by Robert de Sorbon, after whom it is named. With the rest of the Paris colleges, it was suppressed during the French Revolution. It was restored in 1808 but finally closed in 1882. The name Sorbonne...

 for their unorthodox ideas and by the Roman Catholic Church for their derision of certain religious practices. Rabelais's third book, published under his own name, was also banned.

With support from members of the prominent du Bellay family, Rabelais received the approval from King François I
Francis I of France
Francis I was King of France from 1515 until his death. During his reign, huge cultural changes took place in France and he has been called France's original Renaissance monarch...

 to continue to publish his collection. However, after the king's death, Rabelais was frowned upon by the academic elite, and the French Parliament suspended the sale of his fourth book.

Rabelais traveled frequently to Rome with his friend Cardinal Jean du Bellay
Jean du Bellay
Jean du Bellay was a French cardinal and diplomat, younger brother of Guillaume du Bellay, and bishop of Bayonne in 1526, member of the privy council in 1530, and bishop of Paris in 1532.-Biography:...

, and lived for a short time in Turin
Turin
Turin is a city and major business and cultural centre in northern Italy, capital of the Piedmont region, located mainly on the left bank of the Po River and surrounded by the Alpine arch. The population of the city proper is 909,193 while the population of the urban area is estimated by Eurostat...

 with du Bellay's brother, Guillaume, during which François I was his patron. Rabelais probably spent some time in hiding, threatened by being labeled a heretic
Heresy
Heresy is a controversial or novel change to a system of beliefs, especially a religion, that conflicts with established dogma. It is distinct from apostasy, which is the formal denunciation of one's religion, principles or cause, and blasphemy, which is irreverence toward religion...

. Only the protection of du Bellay saved Rabelais after the condemnation of his novel by the Sorbonne
Collège de Sorbonne
The Collège de Sorbonne was a theological college of the University of Paris, founded in 1257 by Robert de Sorbon, after whom it is named. With the rest of the Paris colleges, it was suppressed during the French Revolution. It was restored in 1808 but finally closed in 1882. The name Sorbonne...

. du Bellay would again help Rabelais in 1540 by seeking a papal authorization to legitimize two of his children (Auguste François, father of Jacques Rabelais
Jacques Rabelais
Jacques Rabelais was a minor French Renaissance writer and scholar. Known mostly for his ties to grandfather François Rabelais, Jacques wrote several essays and one book that chronicled the history of other literature.-Biography:...

, and Junie). Rabelais later taught medicine at Montpellier in 1534 and 1539.

Between 1545 and 1547, François Rabelais lived in Metz
Metz
Metz is a city in the northeast of France located at the confluence of the Moselle and the Seille rivers.Metz is the capital of the Lorraine region and prefecture of the Moselle department. Located near the tripoint along the junction of France, Germany, and Luxembourg, Metz forms a central place...

, then a free imperial city
Free Imperial City
In the Holy Roman Empire, a free imperial city was a city formally ruled by the emperor only — as opposed to the majority of cities in the Empire, which were governed by one of the many princes of the Empire, such as dukes or prince-bishops...

 and a republic, to escape the condemnation by the University of Paris
University of Paris
The University of Paris was a university located in Paris, France and one of the earliest to be established in Europe. It was founded in the mid 12th century, and officially recognized as a university probably between 1160 and 1250...

. In 1547, he became curate
Curate
A curate is a person who is invested with the care or cure of souls of a parish. In this sense "curate" correctly means a parish priest but in English-speaking countries a curate is an assistant to the parish priest...

 of Saint-Christophe-du-Jambet
Saint-Christophe-du-Jambet
Saint-Christophe-du-Jambet is a commune in the Sarthe department in the region of Pays-de-la-Loire in north-western France.-References:*...

 and of Meudon
Meudon
Meudon is a municipality in the southwestern suburbs of Paris, France. It is in the département of Hauts-de-Seine. It is located from the center of Paris.-Geography:...

, from which he resigned before his death in Paris in 1553.

There are diverging accounts of Rabelais' death and his last words. According to some, he wrote a famous one sentence will
Will (law)
A will or testament is a legal declaration by which a person, the testator, names one or more persons to manage his/her estate and provides for the transfer of his/her property at death...

: "I have nothing, I owe a great deal, and the rest I leave to the poor", and his last words were "I go to seek a Great Perhaps." One last words reference work provides at least four distinct historical claims to his last words (and additional variations of these) – While many include the phrase "un grand peut-être" ("a Great Perhaps") – all are listed as "doubtful" due to lack of documentation. Additionally some sources examined for Rabelais’ last words cite Cardinal du Bellay; others cite Cardinal de Chatillon creating further confusion.

Gargantua and Pantagruel


Gargantua and Pantagruel tells the story of two giants – a father, Gargantua, and his son, Pantagruel – and their adventures, written in an amusing, extravagant, and satirical vein.

While the first two books focus on the lives of the two giants, the rest of the series is mostly devoted to the adventures of Pantagruel's friends – such as Panurge, a roguish erudite maverick, and Brother Jean, a bold, voracious and boozing ex-monk – and others on a collective naval journey in search of the Divine Bottle.

Even though most chapters are humorous, wildly fantastic and sometimes absurd, a few relatively serious passages have become famous for descriptions of humanistic ideals of the time. In particular, the letter of Gargantua to Pantagruel and the chapters on Gargantua's boyhood present a rather detailed vision of education.

Thélème


It is in the first book where Rabelais writes of the Abbey of Thélème, built by the giant Gargantua. It pokes fun at the monastic institutions, since his abbey has a swimming pool, maid service, and no clocks in sight.

One of the verses of the inscription on the gate to the Abbey says:

Grace, honour, praise, delight,
Here sojourn day and night.
Sound bodies lined
With a good mind,
Do here pursue with might
Grace, honour, praise, delight.



But below the humor was a very real concept of utopia and the ideal society. Rabelais gives us a description of how the Thélemites of the Abbey lived and the rules they lived by:

All their life was spent not in laws, statutes, or rules, but according to their own free will and pleasure. They rose out of their beds when they thought good; they did eat, drink, labour, sleep, when they had a mind to it and were disposed for it. None did awake them, none did offer to constrain them to eat, drink, nor to do any other thing; for so had Gargantua established it. In all their rule and strictest tie of their order there was but this one clause to be observed,
Do What Thou Wilt;


because men that are free, well-born, well-bred, and conversant in honest companies, have naturally an instinct and spur that prompteth them unto virtuous actions, and withdraws them from vice, which is called honour. Those same men, when by base subjection and constraint they are brought under and kept down, turn aside from that noble disposition by which they formerly were inclined to virtue, to shake off and break that bond of servitude wherein they are so tyrannously enslaved; for it is agreeable with the nature of man to long after things forbidden and to desire what is denied us.

Use of language


The French Renaissance was a time of linguistic controversies. Among the issues debated by scholars was the question of the origin of language
Origin of language
The origin of language is the emergence of language in the human species. This is a highly controversial topic. Empirical evidence is so limited that many regard it as unsuitable for serious scholars. In 1866, the Linguistic Society of Paris went so far as to ban debates on the subject...

. What was the first language? Is language something that all humans are born with or something that they learn? Is there some sort of connection between words and the objects they refer to, or are words purely arbitrary? Rabelais deals with these matters, among many others, in his books.

The early 16th century was also a time of innovations and change for the French language, especially in its written form. The first grammar was published in 1530, followed nine years later by the first dictionary. Since spelling was far less codified than it is now, each author used his own orthography
Orthography
The orthography of a language specifies a standardized way of using a specific writing system to write the language. Where more than one writing system is used for a language, for example Kurdish, Uyghur, Serbian or Inuktitut, there can be more than one orthography...

. Rabelais himself developed his personal set of rather complex rules. He was a supporter of etymological spelling, i.e., one that reflects the origin of words, and was thus opposed to those who favoured a simplified spelling, one that reflects the pronunciation of words.

Rabelais' use of his native tongue was astoundingly original, lively, and creative. He introduced dozens of Greek, Latin, and Italian loan-words and direct translations of Greek and Latin compound words and idioms into French. He also used many dialectal forms and invented new words and metaphors, some of which have become part of the standard language and are still used today. Rabelais is arguably one of the authors who has enriched the French language in the most significant way.

His works are also known for being filled with sexual double-entendre, dirty jokes and bawdy songs that can still surprise or even shock modern readers.

Views of Rabelais


Most scholars today agree that the French author wrote from a perspective of Christian humanism
Christian humanism
Christian humanism is the position that universal human dignity and individual freedom are essential and principal components of, or are at least compatible with, Christian doctrine and practice. It is a philosophical union of Christian and humanist principles.- Origins :Christian humanism may have...

. This has not always been the case. Abel Lefranc
Abel Lefranc
Maurice Jules Abel Lefranc , was a historian of French literature, expert on Rabelais, and the principal advocate of the Derbyite theory of Shakespeare authorship.-Early life:Lefranc was born in Élincourt-Sainte-Marguerite...

, in his 1922 introduction to Pantagruel, depicted Rabelais as a militant anti-Christian atheist. M.A. Screech opposed this view and interpreted Rabelais as an Erasmian Christian humanist, the view that commands majority support today. François Rabelais himself was Roman Catholic. Timothy Hampton writes that "to a degree unequaled by the case of any other writer from the European Renaissance, the reception of Rabelais's work has involved dispute, critical disagreement, and ... scholarly wrangling ..." But at present, "whatever controversy still surrounds Rabelais studies can be found above all in the application of feminist theories to Rabelais criticism."


Later writers on Rabelais


In his novel Tristram Shandy, Laurence Sterne
Laurence Sterne
Laurence Sterne was an Irish novelist and an Anglican clergyman. He is best known for his novels The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman, and A Sentimental Journey Through France and Italy; but he also published many sermons, wrote memoirs, and was involved in local politics...

 quotes extensively from Rabelais.

Anatole France
Anatole France
Anatole France , born François-Anatole Thibault, , was a French poet, journalist, and novelist. He was born in Paris, and died in Saint-Cyr-sur-Loire. He was a successful novelist, with several best-sellers. Ironic and skeptical, he was considered in his day the ideal French man of letters...

 lectured on him in Argentina. John Cowper Powys
John Cowper Powys
-Biography:Powys was born in Shirley, Derbyshire, in 1872, the son of the Reverend Charles Francis Powys , who was vicar of Montacute, Somerset for thirty-two years, and Mary Cowper Johnson, a descendent of the poet William Cowper. He came from a family of eleven children, many of whom were also...

, D. B. Wyndham Lewis, and Lucien Febvre
Lucien Febvre
Lucien Febvre was a French historian best known for the role he played in establishing the Annales School of history. He has designed the Encyclopédie française together with Anatole de Monzie.-Biography:...

 (one of the founders of the French historical school Annales
Annales School
The Annales School is a group of historians associated with a style of historiography developed by French historians in the 20th century. It is named after its scholarly journal Annales d'histoire économique et sociale, which remains the main source of scholarship, along with many books and...

) wrote books about him. Mikhail Bakhtin
Mikhail Bakhtin
Mikhail Mikhailovich Bakhtin was a Russian philosopher, literary critic, semiotician and scholar who worked on literary theory, ethics, and the philosophy of language...

, a Russian philosopher and critic, derived his celebrated concept of the carnivalesque
Carnivalesque
Carnivalesque is an traces the origins of the carnivalesque to the concept of carnival, itself related to the Feast of Fools, a medieval festival originally of the sub-deacons of the cathedral, held about the time of the Feast of the Circumcision , in which the humbler cathedral officials...

 and grotesque body
Grotesque body
The grotesque body is a concept, or literary trope, put forward by Russian literary critic Mikhail Bakhtin in his study of François Rabelais' work. The essential principle of grotesque realism is degradation, the lowering of all that is abstract, spiritual, noble, and ideal to the material level...

 from the world of Rabelais.

Hilaire Belloc
Hilaire Belloc
Joseph Hilaire Pierre René Belloc was an Anglo-French writer and historian who became a naturalised British subject in 1902. He was one of the most prolific writers in England during the early twentieth century. He was known as a writer, orator, poet, satirist, man of letters and political activist...

 was a great admirer of Rabelais. He praised him as "at the summit" of authors of fantastic books He also wrote a short story entitled "ON THE RETURN OF THE DEAD" in which Rabelais descended from heaven to earth in 1902 to give a lecture in praise of wine at the London School of Economics, but was instead arrested.

Mikhail Bakhtin
Mikhail Bakhtin
Mikhail Mikhailovich Bakhtin was a Russian philosopher, literary critic, semiotician and scholar who worked on literary theory, ethics, and the philosophy of language...

 wrote "Rabelais And His World", praising the author for understanding and unbridled embrace of the carnival grotesque. In the book he analyzes Rabelais' use of the carnival grotesque throughout his writings and laments the death of the purely communal spirit and regenerating laughter of the carnival in modern culture.

George Orwell
George Orwell
Eric Arthur Blair , better known by his pen name George Orwell, was an English author and journalist...

 was not an admirer of Rabelais. Writing in 1940, he called him "an exceptionally perverse, morbid writer, a case for psychoanalysis
Psychoanalysis
Psychoanalysis is a psychological theory developed in the late 19th and early 20th centuries by Austrian neurologist Sigmund Freud. Psychoanalysis has expanded, been criticized and developed in different directions, mostly by some of Freud's former students, such as Alfred Adler and Carl Gustav...

."

Milan Kundera
Milan Kundera
Milan Kundera , born 1 April 1929, is a writer of Czech origin who has lived in exile in France since 1975, where he became a naturalized citizen in 1981. He is best known as the author of The Unbearable Lightness of Being, The Book of Laughter and Forgetting, and The Joke. Kundera has written in...

, in an article of 8 January 2007 in The New Yorker
The New Yorker
The New Yorker is an American magazine of reportage, commentary, criticism, essays, fiction, satire, cartoons and poetry published by Condé Nast...

, wrote: "(Rabelais) is, along with Cervantes
Cervantes
-People:*Alfonso J. Cervantes , mayor of St. Louis, Missouri*Francisco Cervantes de Salazar, 16th-century man of letters*Ignacio Cervantes, Cuban composer*Jorge Cervantes, a world-renowned expert on indoor, outdoor, and greenhouse cannabis cultivation...

, the founder of an entire art, the art of the novel." (page 31). He speaks in the highest terms of Rabelais, calling him "the best", along with Flaubert.

Rabelais was a major reference point for a few main characters (Boozing wayward monks, University Professors, and Assistants) in Robertson Davies
Robertson Davies
William Robertson Davies, CC, OOnt, FRSC, FRSL was a Canadian novelist, playwright, critic, journalist, and professor. He was one of Canada's best-known and most popular authors, and one of its most distinguished "men of letters", a term Davies is variously said to have gladly accepted for himself...

's novel The Rebel Angels
The Rebel Angels
The Rebel Angels is Canadian author Robertson Davies's most noted novel, after those that form his Deptford Trilogy.First published by Macmillan of Canada in 1981, The Rebel Angels is the first of the three connected novels of Davies' Cornish Trilogy...

, part of the The Cornish Trilogy
The Cornish Trilogy
The Cornish Trilogy is three related novels by Canadian novelist, playwright, critic, journalist, and professor Robertson Davies.The trilogy consists of The Rebel Angels , What's Bred in the Bone , and The Lyre of Orpheus . The series explores the life and influence of Francis Cornish...

. One of the main characters in the novel, Maria Theotoky, writes her PhD on the works of Rabelais, while a murder plot unfolds around a scholarly unscathed manuscript. Rabelais was also mentioned in Davies's books The Lyre of Orpheus
The Lyre of Orpheus (novel)
The Lyre of Orpheus, first published by Macmillan of Canada in 1988, is the last of the three connected novels of the Cornish Trilogy by Canadian novelist Robertson Davies...

, and Tempest-Tost
Tempest-Tost
Tempest-Tost, published in 1951 by Clarke Irwin, is the first novel in The Salterton Trilogy by Canadian novelist Robertson Davies. The other two novels are Leaven of Malice and A Mixture of Frailties...

.

Rabelais is highlighted as a pivotal figure in Kenzaburō Ōe's acceptance speech for the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1994.

Honours, tributes and legacy


  • The public university in Tours, France is named Université François Rabelais.
  • Honoré de Balzac
    Honoré de Balzac
    Honoré de Balzac was a French novelist and playwright. His magnum opus was a sequence of short stories and novels collectively entitled La Comédie humaine, which presents a panorama of French life in the years after the 1815 fall of Napoleon....

     was inspired by the works of Rabelais to write Les Cent Contes Drolatiques (The Hundred Humorous Tales). Balzac also pays homage to Rabelais by quoting him in more than twenty novels and the short stories of La Comédie humaine
    La Comédie humaine
    La Comédie humaine is the title of Honoré de Balzac's multi-volume collection of interlinked novels and stories depicting French society in the period of the Restoration and the July Monarchy .-Overview:...

     (The Human Comedy). Michel Brix wrote of Balzac that he "is obviously a son or grand son of Rabelais... He has never hidden his admiration for the author of Gargantua that he cites in Le Cousin Pons
    Le Cousin Pons
    Le Cousin Pons is virtually the last of the 94 works of Honoré de Balzac’s Comédie humaine, which are in both novel and short story form. Begun in 1846 as a novella, or long-short story, it was envisaged as one part of a diptych, Les Parents pauvres , the other part of which was La Cousine Bette...

     as "the greatest mind of modern humanity." In his story of Zéro, Conte Fantastique published in La Silhouette on 3 October 1830, Balzac even adapted Rabelais's pseudonym (Alcofribas).
  • Rabelais also left a tradition at the University of Montpellier's Faculty of Medicine
    University of Montpellier
    The University of Montpellier was a French university in Montpellier in the Languedoc-Roussillon région of the south of France. Its present-day successor universities are the University of Montpellier 1, Montpellier 2 University and Paul Valéry University, Montpellier III.-History:The university...

    : no graduating doctor can undergo a convocation without taking an oath under Rabelais's robe. Further tributes are paid to him in other traditions of the university, such as its faluche
    Faluche
    A faluche is a traditional cap worn by students in France. It is a black velvet beret, decorated with colored ribbons and badges.Several student groups wear the faluche, especially bitards, basochards, and faluchards...

    , a distinctive student headcap styled in his honour with four bands of colour emanating from its centre.
  • Asteroid '5666 Rabelais'
    5666 Rabelais
    5666 Rabelais is a main-belt asteroid discovered on October 14, 1982 by L. G. Karachkina at Nauchnyj. It is named for the French satirist François Rabelais.- External links :*...

     was named in honor of François Rabelais in 1982.
  • In its 26 August 2009 obituary for Senator Edward M. Kennedy
    Ted Kennedy
    Edward Moore "Ted" Kennedy was a United States Senator from Massachusetts and a member of the Democratic Party. Serving almost 47 years, he was the second most senior member of the Senate when he died and is the fourth-longest-serving senator in United States history...

    , the New York Times described the late Senator as a "Rabelaisian figure in the Senate
    United States Senate
    The United States Senate is the upper house of the bicameral legislature of the United States, and together with the United States House of Representatives comprises the United States Congress. The composition and powers of the Senate are established in Article One of the U.S. Constitution. Each...

     and in life".
  • In Jean-Marie Gustave Le Clézio's 2008 Nobel Prize
    Nobel Prize in Literature
    Since 1901, the Nobel Prize in Literature has been awarded annually to an author from any country who has, in the words from the will of Alfred Nobel, produced "in the field of literature the most outstanding work in an ideal direction"...

     lecture, Le Clézio referred to Rabelais as "....the greatest writer in the French language".
  • In the present day Rabelais can be found basking under the shade of a hackberry tree. The Jardin des Plantes in Montpellier has a statue of him, which watches over hundreds of species in the botanical garden
    Botanical garden
    A botanical garden The terms botanic and botanical, and garden or gardens are used more-or-less interchangeably, although the word botanic is generally reserved for the earlier, more traditional gardens. is a well-tended area displaying a wide range of plants labelled with their botanical names...

    .
  • In France the moment at a restaurant when the waiter presents the bill is still sometimes called le quart d'heure de Rabelais, in memory of a famous trick Rabelais used to get out of paying a tavern bill when he had no money.

Works

  • Gargantua and Pantagruel
    Gargantua and Pantagruel
    The Life of Gargantua and of Pantagruel is a connected series of five novels written in the 16th century by François Rabelais. It is the story of two giants, a father and his son and their adventures, written in an amusing, extravagant, satirical vein...

    , a series of four or five books including:
    • Pantagruel (1532)
    • La vie très horrifique du grand Gargantua, usually called Gargantua (1534)
    • Le tiers livre ("The third book", 1546)
    • Le quart livre ("The fourth book", 1552)
    • Le quint livre (A fifth book, whose attribution to Rabelais is debated)

External links