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13 February 2017 @ 11:50 pm
…Here, breaking into sobs, and raising her eyes to the priest: "Oh! wretch, who are you? What have I done to you? Do you, then, hate me so? Alas! what have you against me?"
– "I love you!" cried the priest.
Her tears suddenly stopped, she gazed at him with the look of an idiot. He had fallen to his knees and was devouring her with an eye of flame.
"You understand? I love you!" he cried again.
"What love!" said the unhappy girl, shivering.
He resumed: "The love of one damned."

This struck me as rather appropriate for Claude… Wicked Game, sung Gregorian-style…

 
 
Current Location: The North Tower
Current Mood: amusedamused
Current Music: Gregorian, 'Wicked Game'
 
 
10 February 2017 @ 01:32 pm
OK, it's over 40 years too late in date and costume, and the sitter has rather more hair, but this painting does put me in mind of Claude… (He'd also be a rather good Hamlet!) I first noticed him as the cover-boy on my old acquaintance Andrew Pettegree's The Book in the Renaissance (which is very interesting and useful re: Claude's world).
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Current Location: The North Tower
Current Mood: calmcalm
 
 
08 February 2017 @ 09:55 pm
There are samples from the soundtrack of the Menken/Schwartz Disney-based musical. As I mentioned, it's an uneasy hybrid of the Disney film, the earlier German-language Disney musical, and the novel, with some peculiar changes to the characters' relationships.
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Current Location: The North Tower
Current Mood: calmcalm
 
 
07 February 2017 @ 12:04 pm
It's a pity we never really get a description of Claude at Mass – because surviving examples of 15C vestments are stunning.
The Whalley Abbey vestments, in Towneley Hall Museum, Burnley (possibly visitable for you, aleksdesilesia?), and the Burrell Collection in Glasgow, are superb:
Chasuble (back view)
Dalmatic
Dalmatic in Glasgow

The Victoria and Albert Museum has some gorgeous examples, too, and has just finished an exhibition on Opus Anglicanum, the embroidery style that makes so many mediæval vestments so dazzling.
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Current Location: The North Tower
Current Mood: artistic
 
 
06 February 2017 @ 10:59 pm
A little on a couple of the apparently minor, but really quite significant, female characters who hover at the edge of the story: a princess and a goddess who are more than just names being dropped…
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Current Location: The North Tower
Current Mood: geeky
 
 
 
06 February 2017 @ 01:00 pm
This is fascinating, about the quarries under Paris!
 
 
Current Location: The North Tower
Current Mood: curiouscurious
 
 
Re: Claude's injuries, I think there's an element of Hugo deliberately reflecting the macabre nature of late 15C religious art. The novel is deeply saturated in the art and architecture of its setting and nothing was more characteristic of the era (post-Black Death Western Europe) than the devotional cults of the Wounds of Christ and Corpus Christi. Indeed, a very useful book on this period even draws on this for its title and core motif: Charles F. Briggs, The Body Broken: Medieval Europe 1300-1520 (2011). Devotional images wallowed in bloody detail:(Art links possibly NSFW)Collapse )In his personal spiritual and sexual torment, Hugo's self-mutilating young priest is writing on his own body a version of the Imitatio Christi
 
 
Current Location: The North Tower
Current Mood: creative
Current Music: The Waterboys, 'A Pagan Place'
 
 
02 February 2017 @ 11:49 pm
The wonderful and much-missed Umberto Eco referred to Claude a few times in these related essays/lectures:He also wrote the introduction to a 2003 Italian translation of NDdP, of which I must try to get a copy… Because I think he was one of us (a Frollophile).
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Current Location: The North Tower
Current Mood: thoughtfulthoughtful
 
 
31 January 2017 @ 10:19 pm
I note there's an open-air production of the ballet from Yoshkar-Ola in the Mari Republic. I like the use it makes of the rather lovely building in front of which it's filmed. Pâquette appears in this production, and the recognition scene is quite well-acted.
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It's interesting how authors can play with and recycle discarded plotlines. At one point, Hugo came up with a storyline where Claude bribes a prostitute to kill Phœbus, only the body she delivers to him in a sack turns out to be… Jehan.
He decided against this, but instead used a variant of it in his play Le Roi S'Amuse, in which the jester Triboulet inadvertantly has his daughter Blanche killed, instead of François I. This, of course, is better-known in the Italianised musical version by Verdi – Rigoletto, although the Hugolien origin is still very obvious. The Duke/King and Gilda/Blanche strongly resemble Phœbus and Esméralda, although Gilda/Blanche's naïvety is more credible than Esméralda's, as she's a former convent-girl, not a girl raised among thieves and cut-throats.
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Current Location: The North Tower
Current Mood: amusedamused