Nicole Gilles and literate society
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Emerson, Catherine. (2019). Nicole Gilles and literate society. In Catherine Emerson (Ed.), 'Le Bel Épy qui foisonne' Collection and Translation in French Print Networks, 1476–1576. Oxford: Peter Lang, doi:10.3726/b11478
Nicole Gilles was active in the literate society of Paris in the last quarter of the fifteenth century in a number of ways: as a reader and patron of books, as a publisher and as a writer whose work may have circulated amongst his literate friends. Traces of each of these sorts of engagements with literate culture can be seen in documentary evidence which survives and gives a picture of Gilles as a participant in contemporary book culture who adapted his own work to fit its norms. In particular, the way that he uses references in his work demonstrates an awareness of the documentary practices of literate culture. Nicole Gilles is one of those intriguing characters of literary history whose work enjoyed a period of intense success followed by almost complete oblivion. The Universal Short Title Catalogue lists 111 editions of his Chroniques et annales de France (albeit many of them variant imprints of the same edition) between the first in 1525 and the end of the period covered by that catalogue in 1600.1 Following this, the Bibliothèque Nationale de France lists further editions published in 1617 and 1621 and after that there is no trace of any subsequent editions.2 The case of Nicole Gilles is all the more interesting because one of the editions of his work was produced by a leading figure in the sixteenth-century French book trade,...