By McCormick, Thomas James
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164. Simons and Eley, ‘Male Beauty and Sexual Orientation in Partonopeus de Blois’, pp. 43–7. ’ (Guigemar, vv. ’). It is also worth noting that both Guigemar and Partonopeus spend exactly a year and a half with their respective ladies before being forced into exile, the former in one uninterrupted idyll (vv. 535–6), the latter in two periods of residence at Chief d’Oire, the first of one year, the second of six months. PATTERNS OF YOUTH AND AGE 25 in one of the earlier romances which were incorporated into Alexandre’s compilation, then it is possible that our poet was making a deliberate allusion to a text that was familiar to him and his audience.
Lanval and other fairy-mistress narratives present us with a supernatural heroine who exists outside human time, and is therefore presumably ageless, although her dominant role in the relationship with her mortal lover may create an impression of a certain maturity. 44 Her seniority is implied from the outset when she presents herself to the hero as empress of Byzantium in her own right, ruling without the need of a regent. When Partonopeus breaks her taboo she reveals the full details of her extraordinary education, which provide the information needed for the audience to establish how old she is.
Having failed to restrain the dogs, he then compounds their folly (vv. 619 and 626) by following them deeper into the wilderness, leaving his uncle behind. As Laurence HarfLancner points out, ‘on ne court en effet qu’un seul animal par chasse. Ce serait donc “folie” que de se lancer ainsi à la tombée du jour, la chasse terminée, à la poursuite d’un second animal’ (‘only one quarry is pursued in each hunt. It would therefore be “folly” to set off like this, when the hunt is over and evening is drawing in, in pursuit of a second quarry’, p.