What is the lay of the Nightingale about?

The Middle Ages

  1. Instructions:

In the module about the Middle Ages you have read two texts by Marie de France as well as the Myth of Tristan and Isolde. For this journal, you will:
(1) Choose either the Lay of the Honeysuckle or The Lay of the Nightingale.
(2) Discuss the lay you have chosen in your journal.

(3) Include the title of the lay you have chosen at the top of your journal.
(4) Do not forget to write complete sentences to these questions.
(5) Please include them into one text with separate paragraph for each question.
(6) You need to write at least 300 words for this journal.
(7) You may choose which questions you want to deal with as long as you have at least 300 words.

Which lay have you chosen?

(1) The Lay of the Nightingale:

  1. Questions for your journal:
  •  What is the lay of the Nightingale about?
  • How many characters are they in the story? Describe their physical and psychological features?

Compare and contrast the two knights? How they similar? How are they different?

  •  What is a coffret?
  • What do the nightingale and the coffret symbolize?
  • How is love represented in this lay?
  • Is true love between a husband and a wife possible according to this story?
  • How do you understand the title of this lay?
  • What does this story tell us about French medieval society?


(2) The lay of the Honeysuckle:

  •  What is the lay of the Honeysuckle about?
  •  Does Marie de France tell the entire story in this lay? Can you guess why not?
  •  Who are the main characters of the story?
  •  Why are the lovers in the forest? What the forest symbolizes?
  •  How are they different from the characters in the Lay of the Nightingale?
  •  Why is the role of the honeysuckle in this lay?
  •  Why is it called the lay of the honeysuckle?
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