Des Périers, Bonaventure

Des Périers, Bonaventure
(ca. 1510-ca. 1544)
   French author, notorious for his satirical dialogues Cymbalum Mundi / The Cymbal of the World (1537), a work influenced by the ancient satirist Lucian and apparently intended to demonstrate that disputes over intricate questions of Christian doctrine are a distraction from the true essence of religion. This book impressed contemporaries as an open attack on Christianity and was banned soon after publication. Des Périers also wrote a collection of short narratives, Nouvelles récréations et joyeux devis, published posthumously in 1558, that is somewhat similar to the Heptaméron of Margaret of Navarre, whom he served as valet de chambre. It presents a lively and sometimes ribald picture of life in the courtly society of the time. In his younger years, Des Périers collaborated with the French Protestant Pierre Olivétan on his French translation of the Bible. Des Périers also was a poet and made translations of Plato and Terence. His premature death about 1544 was believed to be a suicide.

Historical Dictionary of Renaissance. . 2004.


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