Montaigne and the Low Countries (1580-1700)


Montaigne (1533-1592) is known as the inventor of the essay. His relativism, his craving for self-knowledge and his taste for freedom and tolerance have had a long-lasting influence in Europe. It is therefore surprising that until present no substantial study has been devoted to the multiple relationships between Montaigne and the Low Countries.
This volume aims to fill this gap. It studies the Netherlandish presence in Montaigne’s Essays, represented by Erasmus and Lipsius and by contemporary history (the Dutch Revolt against Spain). It also deals with Montaigne’s translations and editions in the Dutch Golden Age, as well as his readership, which included humanists such as Scaliger and Vulcanius, the poets Hooft and Cats, and a painter, Pieter van Veen, who illustrated the Essays.

Contributors include: Frans R.E. Blom, Warren Boutcher, Jeanine De Landtsheer, Philippe Desan, Karl A.E. Enenkel, Ton Harmsen, Jeroen Jansen, Johan Koppenol, Anton van der Lem, Michel Magnien, Kees Meerhoff, Olivier Millet, Alicia C. Montoya, Marrigje Rikken, and Paul J. Smith.
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Biographical Note

Karl A.E. Enenkel is Professor of Neo-Latin Literature at Leiden University and teaches classical Latin and Neo-Latin in the Department of Classics. He has published extensively on international Humanism and on the reception of Classical Antiquity and is the general editor of Intersections. Yearbook for Early Modern Studies.
Paul J. Smith is Professor of French Literature at Leiden University. His research focuses on 16th-, 17th - and 20th-century French literature, its reception in the Netherlands, French and Dutch fable and emblem books and literary rhetoric. He is member of the editorial board of Intersections, Montaigne Studies and Neophilologus.

Review Quotes

"Extremely welcome" - The Year's Work in Modern Language Studies, vol. 69, 2007, p. 843 (published 2009).

Table of contents

List of Illustrations
Notes on the Editors
Notes on Contributors

1. Montaigne and the Low Countries: Synopsis and New Perspectives, Paul J. Smith
2. Montaigne et Erasme: Bilan et perspectives, Michel Magnien
3. Echos de la Révolte: Montaigne et les Pays-Bas du XVIe siècle, Anton van der Lem
4. Michel de Montaigne, Marie de Gournay and Justus Lipsius. Some overlooked particulars preserved at Leiden University Library, Jeanine G. De Landtsheer
5. Entre Lipse et Scaliger: Bonaventure Vulcanius (1538-1614) et la première réception des Essais de Montaigne, Kees Meerhoff
6. Dominique Baudius lecteur de Montaigne, Olivier Millet
7. The Early Reception of Montaigne in Holland: Van Hout, Coornhert and Spiegel, Johan Koppenol
8. P.C. Hooft, lecteur et imitateur de Montaigne, Jeroen Jansen
9. Montaigne and Jacob Cats, Frans R.E. Blom
10. Jan de Brune le Jeune montaignien, Ton Harmsen
11. A Woman Translator of Montaigne. Appreciation and appropriation in Maria Heyns’s Bloemhof der doorluchtige voorbeelden (1647), Alicia C. Montoya
12. A very Personal Copy: Pieter van Veen’s illustrations to Montaigne’s Essais, Elmer Kolfin & Marrigje Rikken
13. From Father to Son: Van Veen’s Montaigne and Van Ravesteyn’s Pieter van Veen, His Son Cornelis and His Clerk Hendrik Borsman, Warren Boutcher
14. La lettre à Mlle Le Paulmier retrouvée, Kees Meerhoff & Paul J. Smith
15. Les éditions des Essais avec des adresses néerlandaises aux XVIIe et XVIIIe siècles, Philippe Desan

Index Nominum


All those interested in intellectual history, French literature, Dutch literature, history of the Low Countries, art history, book history, reception studies.


Collection Information