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Number, Geometry and Order in Du Bartas's Semaines: Reform of Church And Sky?

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Du Bartas's Premiere Semaine (1578) offers a seven-part account of creation, with observations on moral, theological and scientific topics, while the Seconde Semaine (1584–1603) originally sets out to relate the successive ages of the world from the story of Eden. As such, they can be well placed in a large number of popular traditions, like commentaries on Genesis, epic, and philosophical poetry. Here, the poetic Word is linked with number by reference to the Platonic notion of Ideas in creation. Du Bartas's poem focuses attention in the change in thinking about the order and structure of things in terms of hierarchy, and points to a gradual disintegration of the medieval progressional model.

Keywords: Creation (myth); Du Bartas, Guillaume de Salluste (Premiere Semaine, Seconde Semaine); France; Poetry; Science

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: September 1, 1991

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