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Castles themselves housed many men but few women, and poets, wishing to idealize physical passion, looked beyond the marriage state.The Roman poet had pictured a lover as the slave of passion—sighing, trembling, growing pale and sleepless, even dying for love.She leaves the caravan and remains in Paris, but Mathurin must go on and seek his father.
The Ovidian lover’s adoration was calculated to win sensual rewards.
The courtly lover, however, while displaying the same outward signs of passion, was fired by respect for his lady.
Courtly love, French amour courtois, in the later Middle Ages, a highly conventionalized code that prescribed the behaviour of ladies and their lovers.
It also provided the theme of an extensive courtly medieval literature that began with the troubadour poetry of Aquitaine and Provence in southern France toward the end of the 11th century.
The term —translated into English as “courtly love”—came into wide use during the late 19th century through the work of the French philologist Gaston Paris, but the term itself was rarely used in medieval literature of any European language.
Today is practical shorthand for an understanding of love that, according to some scholars, came into being during the Middle Ages and that constituted a revolution in thought and feeling, the effects of which resonated throughout Western culture. His love was invariably adulterous, marriage at that time being usually the result of business interest or the seal of a power alliance.
Unlike most of his other novels (whose number exceeds 100), The Walking Drum is not set in the frontier era of the American West, but rather is an historical novel set in the Middle Ages—12th century Europe and the Middle East.
Forced to flee his birthplace on the windswept coast of Brittany to escape the Baron de Tournemine, who killed his mother, and to seek his lost father, Mathurin Kerbouchard looks for passage on a ship and, although forced to serve as a galley slave initially, travels the coast and attains the position of pilot, frees a captured Moorish girl, Aziza, and her companion, then frees his fellow slaves and with their help sells his captors into slavery and escapes to Cádiz in Moorish Spain, where he looks for news of his father.
In Paris, Mathurin talks with a group of students but offends a teacher and must flee again for his life.
Chancing upon the fleeing Comtesse de Malcrais, Suzanne, whom he assists in escaping from Count Robert.
Denied passage down the Dnieper by boat, the caravans head southward from Kiev.