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Would you like us to take another look at this review? No, cancel Yes, report it Thanks! You've successfully reported this review. We appreciate your feedback. OK, close. Write your review. Of what good to me is a goal that is too high? The nature of their relationship — was she his wife or lover? If I become old in years, this will be repaid in suffering a thousand times; MF , 42— The initial strophe focuses on the internal state of mind and spirit of a man who takes the cross.
The second strophe continues in the same vein, urging the knights the singer is addressing see MF , 37 to entrust their life and wealth back into the hands of Him who conferred them to begin with. Using the Frau Welt theme, the singer confesses that he has long been tempted by worldly concerns, and he prays now to Christ for help to separate himself from worldly matters by means of the cross he now bears.
MF , 23—26 [Since death has robbed me of my lord, I am no longer interested in worldly affairs. The only appropriate goal for Hartmann at this juncture of his life is to perform work for God, and half of the blessings earned by his efforts are promised to his departed lord MF , 31— Thankfully and joyfully, Hartmann states that his departure with the kreuzheer crusading army frees him from all worldly bonds. In the first strophe the singer employs personified minne in a chivalric metaphor: minne, having taken him prisoner, has released him on the condition that he depart.
I hear the words, but where are the deeds? The reference to Saladin suggests that the departure of the singer is a crusade, and if a comma is inserted after the word her, then this noble form of address refers not to Saladin as someone who is no longer living in which case the crusade must be that of , but rather to his own lord in which case Saladin is alive and the crusade in question must be that of In the final strophe the singer continues to assert the superiority of his minne over the kind practiced by the minnesingers who are here addressed and criticized collectively, a very rare occurrence in the medieval German lyrics of this time.
Like other lyricists before and after him, Hartmann grapples with the contradictions and paradoxes of a conception of love that is based on service and reward and that is thus recognizably similar to the political relationship between lord and vassal. Only after they have risked losing reputation, love, and life itself, as they live the life of an eremite or undergo the trials of chivalric adventuring, do the heroes achieve a happiness that is substantial and lasting.
To the extent that this attitude of responsibility, reminiscent of that of the heroes of the narrative works, replaces the more strictly plaintive one that predominates elsewhere in the love lyrics, Hartmann might be seen to be empowering himself — even if only ex negativo — and to be defining a new lyrical position that is uniquely his own.
Notes 1 Seiffert views Hartmann as a transitional figure standing between the generation of Hausen and that of Reinmar and Walther von der Vogelweide , 1—2. Henkel argues that the desire to correctly attribute strophes to their author is a typically modern one that would have been foreign to the Middle Ages In this article we shall follow the scholarly consensus, rather than the medieval perspective postulated by Henkel, by not regarding Song XII as by Hartmann.
Cited in text as MF. Gottfried von Strassburg, Tristan. Friedrich Ranke. Stuttgart: Reclam, Die Lieder Hartmanns von Aue. Brackert, Helmut. Frankfurt a. Bumke, Joachim. Munich: Beck, Hartmann von Aue: Epoche — Werk — Wirkung. Elias, Norbert. Bern, Haferland, Harald. Hohe Minne: Zur Beschreibung der Minnekanzone. Berlin: Erich Schmidt, Hasty, Will. Columbia, SC: Camden House, Heinen, Hubert. Henkel, Nikolaus. Elizabeth Andersen et al. Jackson, W. Cambridge: Brewer, Kasten, Ingrid. Claudia Brinker-von der Heyde and Niklaus Largier.
Klare, Andreas. Thomas Cramer and Ingrid Kasten. Nellmann, Eberhard. Zu Hartmanns drittem Kreuzlied. Obermeier, Sabine. Reusner, Ernst von, ed. Hartmann von Aue, Lieder. Salmon, Paul. Saran, Franz. Hartmann von Aue als Lyriker: Eine literarhistorische Untersuchung. Halle: Niemeyer, The Medieval German Lyric — Oxford: Clarendon, Timothy McFarland and Silvia Ranawake. Schmid, Ludwig. Ludwig Schmid. Schreyer, Hermann. Naumburg: Sieling, Seiffert, Leslie.
Urbanek, Ferdinand. While in Erec the abandoning of chivalric activities and social responsibility precipitates a crisis that launches the major plot, in Yvain it is the opposite, namely there is too much emphasis on chivalric activity. Both works exhibit a similar narrative structure: rapid attainment of good fortune at the beginning, loss of fortune, followed by a long and arduous path back to new and lasting fortune.
This schema can be traced back to the adventure epics of classical antiquity, and is the foundation of religious narrative poetry as well. In view of all these things that they have in common, the differences are quite significant. The earlier effort, Erec, has a more serious tone, and at the end comes close to replicating chivalric and courtly reality.
Yvain, on the other hand, is more cheerful and does not need a comparable convergence. Romance as fiction is dominant; history and fantasy are combined into a new unity. And, further, we do not know whether Hartmann proceeded verse by verse or whether he occasionally recapitulated larger segments. Instead, he placed selected Arthurian knights at the center of his tales. The knight enters into another realm and wins the love of a lady who evidences fairy-like characteristics.
Avanture is, of course, a key concept in the lais of Marie de France, who writes in the tradition represented by the Historia regum Britanniae.
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For Hartmann, on the other hand, neither the Arthurian history of the Roman de Brut nor the lais were literary points of reference. Here, too, Hartmann goes his own way in that he largely does away with the frame. Hartmann, who surely knew this part of the text, chooses not to give a signal setting off the brief introductory section from the rest of the tale. For him, it is clear; the entire text was one unit from the start. His depiction has, however, little to do with historical actuality. Hunting was, to be sure, a royal privilege in the Middle Ages, but Arthur proclaims a hunt for the White Stag, a creature of faery.
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In view of the fact that the winner of the hunt has the right to bestow a kiss on the fairest lady at the court, Gawan urges that the hunt be canceled because of the difficulties it could cause at court, since each of the several hundred knights in attendance would maintain that his lady is the most beautiful. But in this instance the likely problems do not revolve around issues of life and death or matters of war and peace, but rather involve a beauty contest!
This motif introduces an erotic element that conforms to the fairy tale, but not to feudal power struggles. In spite of all objections, the king asserts his authority and promptly announces that the hunt will take place in the forest avantureuse, a locale outside feudal reality. It is interesting that this hunt, whose proclamation causes such consternation, ceases to exist as an element of the narrative.
Instead, the Erec plot advances in its place. Erec has won both the sparrow hawk contest — about which, more later — and the beautiful Enite. The decision as to who the most beautiful woman at court might be has been postponed — at the suggestion of the queen — until Erec returns.
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De facto, then, the king places himself in a position of dependency on Erec, his knight, whose behavior, on the other hand, grants great authority to Arthur and his queen. He states quite clearly on two occasions that only the queen may clothe the threadbare Enite , Three times in forty lines Arthur calls on the assembled knights to witness his proclamation that Enite is the most beautiful woman at the court — He tolerates no contradiction.
But since no opposition would be expected anyway, the royal pathos strikes one as artificial and out of place. From Hartmann we learn in only one verse at the end of the first part that Erek refuses to allow Enite to be clothed by the Duke of Tulmein Indeed it is the queen herself, and of her own volition, who undertakes to clothe Enite after the young couple arrives at court — without being called upon to do so by the young knight More striking is the diminished participation of the king in all these activities: no grandiose appearance before the knights; no ceremonial oratory, and no exaggerated insistence on royal authority.
For example, the setting in motion of the actual story, the Erec plot, results from a double separation from the Arthurian court, in that not only does he not take part in the hunt for the White Stag, but he also parts from the queen. Was Hartmann aware of the significance of this brilliant inspiration or did he naively take it over? Even if we cannot answer that question definitively, we can determine some things. In the case of the respective depictions of Erec, for example, differences emerge that are not merely the result of the addition or subtraction of some details, but rather reveal differing narrative conceptions.
His fame is unequaled at court 82—92 and his good looks are proverbial. The splendid appearance of the knight, who is armed only with a sword, and who apparently enjoys the special favor of the queen, is described in detail — This description is, however, not tied to its original situation in the tale; instead it becomes a variable that can be inserted at will into the narrative. In this regard we only need mention the episode of the sparrow hawk contest.
On the way to the tournament grounds the chevalier Erec appears with Enite before the gaping crowd, who remark upon his extraordinary resplendence, one that is only enhanced by the beauty of Enite — Hartmann systematically goes his own way. He does this not because of incomprehension — after all Hartmann is not exactly poorly endowed with a sense of narrative embellishment and description.
On the contrary: Hartmann operates from a completely different conception. Although it must be pointed out that, from a medieval perspective, twenty-five is not so young. Be that as it may, the youthfulness of Erek becomes for Hartmann the leitmotif of the entire tale. Nonetheless, he is destined to be the victor. Thus we see with Hartmann a shift in emphasis from the external to the internal. And the latter, too, misjudges Erek in that he only sees a boy who really should give up his childish contrariness , a theme that is mentioned again and again during the course of the episode , , Enite, too, is viewed under the rubric of youth, something that will be of importance during our later discussion.
It is therefore not surprising that Hartmann depicts Erek as a wellmannered young man who immediately volunteers to ride out to the unfamiliar knight, who is accompanied by a lady and a dwarf, and make inquiries Five times in quick succession, attention is drawn to the whipping, and once again later, in verse None of this is to be found in Hartmann. Hartmann adheres to a more realistic course of events and does not mention the whip until it is used. Hartmann avoids repetition and merely states that Erek fared the same as the maidservant.
In view of the fully armed unknown knight, Erec reasons, he would have had no chance. Such echoes of heroic poetry are not to be found in Hartmann. This is, of course, rather surprising in view of the rather precarious economic situation of the old man. Moreover, Erec has yet to say a word ! Thus, Koralus is depicted as an old man with a crutch who does not rush toward Erek. Further, Erek requests lodging for the night and is told that he is welcome, but not to expect more that the circumstances will allow.
Hartmann describes no grand feast, no luxurious quarters as found in his source. Rather, he remains firmly rooted in reality and depicts the genteel poverty of Koralus and his family with their rather simple meal and primitive beds of cloth-covered straw. As another attempt at normalcy, Hartmann also provides the names of the impoverished family.
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Hartmann dispenses with all such references to contemporary literature. As the poet did previously, so also here does the old man get God into the act as the originator of her beauty — and her wisdom! But he was, as he said, waiting for a more favorable moment when God would allow even greater honor to befall his daughter, in that adventure would provide a king or count who would take her with him. It is clear that two narrative concepts confront one another here. In contrast, we are told that Erek — who, of course, does win — shows compassion towards Iders after his victory How do the two poets pave the way to this critical situation?
Here, as at the end of the romance, Arthur is depicted in his capacity as feudal overlord who bestows fiefs and exercises authority. For his part, however, Hartmann not only omits this emphasis but, indeed, turns the episode into its opposite: it is Arthur who wishes to see Erek wed at the court — Hartmann omits this possible association, which enhances the literary nature of the festival description, and indulges in a descriptive routine with a reference to the stylistic ideal of brevity.
Instead, Hartmann assures his listeners that both were granted lasting bliss, and further he states that two people have never loved each other so much until death did them part —9 , thereby providing his audience a comforting prospect with which they can follow ensuing events.
Rather he allows the naked reality to speak for itself. Hartmann makes clear that this is all happening too fast, and arouses the suspicion that it could end badly. In this scene, too, Hartmann stresses the youth of Erek and Enite, which serves to cast doubt on whether they possess the necessary maturity for such a responsibility. On the other hand, youth also has the latent possibility of growth and insight, as found, for example, in hagiographic accounts of conversion. After this, however, the two versions diverge. Awakening, Erec hears her remark and demands an explanation.
One could almost believe to have been transported into the supernatural world of the lais of Marie de France, a world that, as we have seen, is of little interest to Hartmann. The term parole, then, assumes an almost magical force, as found otherwise in a fairy tale. Like the term parole, mar fus also takes on the function of a leitmotif. It is immediately picked up by Erec, who demands to know why he is unfortunate , and Enite returns to the formulation at the conclusion of her remarks to Erec She clearly states how much she suffers from the accusations against Erec; she is even more grieved because she is blamed for the situation — She calls on Erec resolutely to change his ways, a surprising and psychologically less authentic turn, in that the previously timorous and tearful Enite is now able to speak in no uncertain terms.
But that is not all. Here another picture of the woman emerges, namely that of the Enite who, filled with anxiety that she might be rejected, bitterly regrets that she ever uttered the fateful parole. We recall that the image of Erec engendered before the sparrow hawk contest was quite the same, and already portended his victory in that battle. This should not, however, be viewed as a sign of arrogance superbia.
But since it was individual misbehavior that caused Erec to drop out of courtly society, his reinstatement must likewise be based on individual actions. Thus the episode concludes with a touch of humor, portending nothing unpleasant. The poet employs the term twice , , and it ranges throughout the entire account like a leitmotif, with Erek himself taking it up.
All the rest is eliminated: there is no report about the knight putting on his armor, no attempted intervention by his father. Instead, Hartmann states that Erek conceals his armor under his garments, acting as if he would return soon, and departs secretly. Externally, then, Erek is not for Hartmann a magnificent knight. The chivalric core must first of all be made visible again.
Hartmann, by contrast, pays scant heed to this. Enite bursts into loud lamenting, gesticulating wildly. To God she directs the question why He allowed her to live, and to Death she makes the request that she be killed. She ends her self reproach by pleading with God and Death. And since the latter will not come, she resolves to commit suicide. In a rigorously rhetorical context, the female figure appears in a new light. But why here precisely? The Middle Ages were familiar with famous suicide scenes from the literature of classical antiquity, for instance that of Dido.
The present situation is reminiscent of Pyramus and Thisbe. He clearly puts himself on the side of women, and with that takes the edge off the following scene, something that is important, since at its beginning we are confronted with her lamentation, a protest against God, and, at the end, with her resolve to commit suicide. Its impact is thus lessened. Hartmann shapes the address to Death into a rhetorical masterpiece in which Enite can work herself up into a state approaching mystical love of death.
The conclusion of the grand scene, too, is characteristic of Hartmann. Hartmann, on the other hand, lets himself be carried away to create a grand scene. Hartmann, too, is not happy with this abrupt shift in mood. At first the count reacts understandingly to her behavior —7 , and attempts to reason with her again and again. But when, after two hundred verses, he sees that he is getting nowhere, he loses control of himself and hits Enite, thus effecting the turning point — Here Hartmann also employs appropriate vocabulary when the count, in his last effort to persuade Enite to yield to his entreaties, promises her the title of countess The psychological depiction of the count corresponds to the stylized hagiographic martyr model of Enite.
In this narrative model Hartmann takes mere allusions in his source and develops them into a full-blown temptation theme — To be sure, Enite does not become a saint in this way, but it is significant that such religious thought patterns present themselves quite naturally in a secular context. It is of no less interest and, indeed, something of a surprise that the episode that immediately follows moves into comedy.
The rules of courtly etiquette are overturned; everyone flees, thinking only of his own safety, so that a grotesque and comic chaos ensues. Completely unnecessarily, Hartmann inserts himself into the scene on three occasions , , —81 by commenting on the action and, in the last instance, even letting us know that brave as he otherwise might be, even he would have run from Erek. With their reunion on the one horse, the unfortunate physical separation of the couple is over, anticipating, once again, their final reconciliation, which now only has to be confirmed verbally.
Hartmann takes the opportunity here to elaborate on the topic of indolence gemach , which he introduced as a motif in the verligen scene. He stresses that Erek becomes impatient with his reconvalescence, since he was intent only on proving himself as a knight and not on taking it easy — It is significant that this change affects primarily Enite. She needs a new horse. The impact of this surprising and seemingly inappropriate expansion cannot be lightly dismissed as mere rhetorical amplification amplificatio , as the ending of the tale will reveal.
Hartmann omits this entire scene, as we shall see below. He was less interested in the ruler, Erek, than in the lovers Erek and Enite, whom he connects with the all-encompassing, ancient-medieval tradition of lovers depicted in the ambitious furnishings of the horse. The listener does not expect another adventure now. After all, everything has been settled, and the protagonists are on their way home. Both poets work in different ways to shape the special position of the adventure. Hartmann, however, has the travelers reach a crossroads around noon Not much later we hear that Guivreiz, as would be expected, is quite familiar with the area.
His mistake, then, in recommending the wrong road is highly unlikely. It may well be that Hartmann inserted this narrative stumbling block intentionally in order to arouse attention. Further, we know that the more comfortable path almost always leads to peril, but this will not be the case here, thereby turning the common biblical concept on its head. When he sees the Brandigan castle, Guivreiz realizes his mistake and wants to return to the road that leads to Brittanje. Erek wants nothing to do with that, and a long dispute ensues, with the result that Guivreiz finally agrees to spend the night at the castle.
There are hints of an adventure that no one has ever survived. One simply reaches a castle that is surrounded by a turbulent stretch of water. Erec asks his companion about the castle. Surprisingly, Erec is interested solely in the name of the adventure — The name expresses the nature of the adventure, so much so that no further information is requested or is necessary. That an adventure has a specific name and that the name becomes then a focus is not common in chivalric romances. Nonetheless, Hartmann is no less skilled in introducing the motif of the quest into his narrative.
At first glance, the symbolism of the crossroads can suggest something negative, and the path taken proves to be highly dangerous. Moreover, Erek thanks God explicitly , for allowing him to take part in this exchange through the battle with the much more renowned Knight of the Orchard. And should he be victorious, Erek hopes that God will grant him some honor as a result — Is Hartmann providing an analogy or is he secularizing religious concepts?
The constant appeal to God, which cannot be dismissed as so many empty words, speaks for the former. The convergence of secular narrative material with religious thought patterns must have enhanced the effect. The same is true of the depiction of the further course that the Mabonagrin adventure pursues. Further, we are informed that Erek takes hardly any food, and departs after taking St. The portrayal of the situation of Mabonagrin and his mistress is, in the hands of both poets, somewhat akin to the squaring of a circle.
To this mixture Hartmann adds a religious dimension. That there can be no question of a type of integration here that could do justice to modern literary aesthetics only emphasizes even further that which is uniquely medieval in the account. Hartmann merely refers back to his source, But the garden and the enchantment are all that is left of the fairy-tale model. The lady is not a fairy but rather a relative of Enite, and Mabonagrin is related to the lord of the castle.
How the lady advanced to the position of mistress of the garden is left unanswered. Similarly, the circumstances under which the lady gained control over the knight have nothing to do with fairies and fairy tales. Rather it is a tale of youthful love, a subject with which the medieval audience was familiar. The knight, Mabonagrin, promises his love to grant her request without first knowing what it is, and is now forced to remain in the garden with her until one comes who will defeat him.
Through his deed, Erek has released the sorrowing land, and joy has returned. The exquisite robe with which Erec is cloaked further enhances this impression. Hartmann approaches this part of the romance radically differently. In his hands, the element of compassion becomes the major motif of the episode, a motif already introduced during the sparrow hawk episode when Erek shows mercy to the defeated Iders.
It is quite clear that Erek is king by the grace of God — not Arthur! Here, in contrast to the Angevin cultural sphere, the Arthurian world was, apparently, too distant. The Rolandslied [ca. Second, with regard to the role of King Arthur in the narrative: the poet raises high expectations at first 1—6, 33— But immediately following these glowing encomia and in sharp contrast to them, one receives a completely different impression of the king 42— For on this high holiday he absents himself from the court and lies down to sleep.
The knights are dumbfounded, and the audience is probably meant to be as well. Arthur, against all expectations asleep; Arthur, who normally does not even eat unless aventiure — frequently initiated by him — happens, appears here almost merely as an incidental figure. Thus in the hands of a skilled poet, traditional narrative material becomes a malleable mass with a degree of self-awareness that had scarcely been encountered before in vernacular literature.
Hartmann deals with this aspect in his prologue. No mention is made of his source, thus stressing his own proud achievement as a learned knight. In the prologue there is a suggestion of the praise of things past in connection with King Arthur. At the same time Hartmann is setting the priority of his work maere above deeds from the past. One could designate it as a humanizing attenuation of the king. In the French work we hear that Calogrenanz takes a path to the right , and the Wildman later tells him that he should go straight ahead if he is seeking adventure Hartmann, however, confronts his Kalogrenant with several possibilities from which he chooses the road to the right , a narrow, uncomfortable path.
The Wildman, however, will recommend a path to the left, which will, of course, also prove to be disastrous This way of dealing with set thought patterns brings with it certain consequences with regard to the applicability of such patterns within the new epic context, also in comparison with Erek, where the dependence on religious models is more definite. In Iwein Hartmann goes beyond his source with surprising originality. Humorous elements also lighten up the encounter with the Wildman and the fight with the lord of the spring. When Kalogrenant, specifically described as a knight seeking adventure, glimpses the wild animals, he feels uneasy and keeps his distance — Upon seeing a man in the midst of the beasts, he takes heart and rides on, but upon closer inspection the doughty knight becomes even more fearful, because this man is truly more awe inspiring than the beasts.
The outlandish description of the Wildman is in keeping with the scene. In this dialogue Hartmann again demonstrates his rhetorical knowledge by enlarging the stichic exchange between the knight and the woodsman into a lively back and forth. There, Calogrenanz only tells the Wildman that he is a knight on a quest for adventure and marvels avanture and merveille, —66 in order to test his valor, but he has been searching for a long time without success.
He omits the quest for marvels. Older scholarship tended, mistakenly, to see in this definition of aventiure an ideal that Hartmann wished to propagate. It is clear from later events that this can hardly represent an ideal perspective. Something essential is missing. Not so Hartmann, whose conception stresses the comical aspects of the scene and who humorously allows a yawning gap to materialize between the ambition of the knight seeking adventure and the rather pitiful results of his efforts.
By this the German poet demonstrates that he is in control of the narrative and not it of him. At the beginning of the adventure at the spring, Hartmann maneuvers the terms adventure and valor into important positions —34 , thereby raising expectations, which are, however, subsequently not fulfilled. Of course these acts will now be presented in the story of the poet, Hartmann, and will no longer be entrusted to the report of a character in the maere.
Through the objective third person narration the account gains in magnitude without losing immediacy. Apparently Hartmann did not quite understand this yet, and scaled the indirect monologue back to a simple interior monologue —44 , thus allowing Iwein to inform the listeners of his plans. At first it appears as though he wishes to go into detail when he touches upon the phases typical of a joust —28 , but then he interrupts himself, telling that he cannot report exact facts, since no witnesses were present, that one of the persons involved was killed and that the other one was of such excellent chivalry that he did not want to boast with an account.
No sign of mercy here, a feature, we recall, that distinguishes Erek even in his first joust. From mere hints in his source, Hartmann, in the full sense of the word, develops scenes that can stand any comparison with a successful modern comedy and belie the prejudice that Hartmann is a petty moralist. We noted similar indications in Erek. Characteristic of the tone in Iwein is the manner in which the poet depicts the crisis of the hero.
When Iwein becomes aware of his transgression — missing the agreed-upon deadline out of pure desire for fame as a warrior — and learns from Lunete the severe condemnation of his wife, he falls into a deep crisis, which has, by way of contrast, more drastic consequences than in Erek. Erek does indeed leave the court, but remains as a knight within the suitable perimeter of aventiure, and attains in this way a new and valid life.
Iwein quite literally sheds his chivalric being, runs into the woods naked and mentally confused, and sinks to an animal-like level of existence. This radical change finds a parallel in religious tradition. In Iwein the religious signals that are associated with this narrative pattern are fundamentally changed in their function. As noted above in the discussion of Erek, Hartmann — deviating from his source — constantly sought a connection with religious concepts in order to give his text additional depth. He acts differently in Iwein. The external dependence on obvious religious narrative patterns and concepts becomes a reason for the author to free himself of them and to employ them in cheerfully played out scenes.
This is an important step in literary history. The recovery and restoration of Iwein to normal human existence, which at the same time forms the basis for his new, better form of life, is entrusted only to the world of faery, namely the miraculous ointment of Morgan le Fay. In contrast to Erek, the quasi-use of religious patterns signifies rather an independence, a breaking away from them. There we only hear that the hero, upon waking, wonders through which adventure par quel avanture, the courtly attire placed next to him had come.
Hartmann works this brief remark into an elaborate line epic showpiece.
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It is evident that, in the process, Iwein becomes the mouthpiece of the poet, who is able to disregard all psychological probability; it is part of his literary technique. These more serious contemplations are embedded in a humorous scene. With his reflections on dreams and life, the learned knight Hartmann probably also wanted to surpass his source. The new chivalric life that Iwein is granted cannot amount to an idle course of acquiring fame, if merely because it is rooted in the two-tiered adventure track. In the process, religious elements are just touched upon. And in contrast to Erek, Hartmann does not go beyond his source here.
That is not true, however, in the case of the episode with the unfortunate noblewomen forced to do slave labor. The last battle Iwein has to overcome is the joust with Gawein at the Arthurian court. The younger daughter of the count of the Black Thorn, who is about to be cheated out of her inheritance, finds no advocate there for her just cause. Without hesitation the gallant Gawein is willing to lend the law-breaker support. Hartmann problematizes this scene somewhat, which attests to his psychological understanding and empathy.
When the messenger notices that she is about to catch up with Iwein, she has second thoughts —86 , which naturally played no role before, but now plague her. How will the knight react? Hartmann also works independently in the depiction of the legal contest between Iwein and Gawein. Hartmann expands on certain hints found in his source. Here Hartmann inserts an interlocutor, which enables him to step out of the tale and have himself addressed by his name, Hartmann, and thus come into direct contact with his audience.
This brings about an easy relationship between poet and listener, which allows the narrative to become an object of discussion. In verse the word tjost is even mentioned: the spent lances are replaced, and borrowing metaphors from the world of commerce, the exchange of sword blows is consistently expressed as a give and take.
Here Hartmann goes back to a minor remark from Gawain in the source —55 and interprets it in an extremely ornate way. Surprisingly, Arthur is not willing to do this. Hartmann, however, proceeds here in a humanizing and moralizing way, insinuating that because of her noblemindedness, the younger sister would renounce her rights to the inheritance. In both texts, the judicial competence of King Arthur appears in a poor light. Hartmann adds to this scene an exculpating remark that is typical of him, in which the older sister, afterwards, characterizes her behavior as being typical of a woman; it should not be taken too seriously.
Hartmann also gives the end of the epic, the reconciliation between Iwein and Laudine, its own touch. It is through tricks and oaths that Laudine is willing to receive her husband again. Beyond that, however, Hartmann makes Laudine fall on her knees, an action that has been unjustly criticized by some scholars. As Erek asked Enite, so Laudine now asks Iwein for forgiveness for the suffering he has had to bear because of her harsh attitude.
Thus the mechanism of trickery and oaths is joined with human feelings. With this, Hartmann also wants to stress the fact that this work, unlike Erek, does not deal with the concept of an exemplary ruler, but rather that the question how to attain lasting happiness in marriage lies at the center of this work. That the narrator Hartmann was also able to present this in a relaxed and amusing way deserves special mention.
Notes 1 All Erec translations are taken from Carroll. Edited and Translated by Carleton W. Series A. Edited and translated by William W. Oxford Version. Edited by T.
Atkinson Jenkins revised ed. Boston: Heath, Hartmann von Aue Erec. Edited by G. Green has discussed the phenomenon of thirteenth-century romance as an emergent understanding of fiction and the nature of fictional truth as opposed to historical truth ch. The themes of gender and love remained inextricably linked at the center of these discussions. Indeed, Simon Gaunt argues compellingly that gender discussions are constitutive of the romance genre — discussions of what it means to be male and what it means to be female, of what defines masculine and what defines feminine, which are framed in romance in ways that epic could not accommodate This process of becoming, an integral part of the romance and particularly of the German Arthurian romances by Hartmann von Aue and Wolfram von Eschenbach , offers a series of possibilities to be explored and negotiated throughout any particular narrative, and these negotiations structure an ongoing process of defining gender in a social context, both publicly and privately.
As gender is an integral part of social performance, romance poets illustrate the continuous process of defining gender through a variety of roles, emotions and relationships. In the romances of Hartmann von Aue, one concept clearly emerges as the fundamental structuring principle for the development of relationships among the main characters: love. Typically, as one might expect, relationships among men generally structure public life, whereas relationships between women tend to remain localized in the private sphere.
The relationship of primary concern to courtly poets is the relationship between man and woman. It is the one filled with the most tension, as it literally embodies a number of interconnected and associated relationships: between public and private spheres, between communal and personal needs, between the greater social good and the erotic desire of one individual for another. For Hartmann, then, conjugal love is the relationship that must be properly aligned — negotiated — to maintain the balance essential for the health and function of the courtly world.
As Hartman and other courtly poets strive to attain this balance in their works, they illustrate the considerable tensions involved in the process of cultivating relationships, frequently revealed in images of entrapment and confinement juxtaposed with images of movement and freedom. Hartmann integrates these images vividly into his texts to illustrate the appropriate formation of gendered relationships that assure the stability of the courtly world.
The texts deal with the construction of both masculinity and femininity, though it is not surprising that the main concern remains the knight. Entrapment was a real threat, in the form of physical imprisonment or incapacitation, but perhaps even more problematic in the form of emotional attachment often caused by identifying too strongly with a woman, to paraphrase Karras. The dilemma of potential entrapment and inability to function creates problems for relationships. As these relationships become more problematic, the images intensify. We will see that the images of confinement and release employed in Erec become more prevalent and more intense when Hartmann revisits the courtly genre in his second romance, Iwein.
Enite, for example, participates integrally in the mobility that her partner demonstrates; indeed, the journey that Erec and Enite undertake together makes up the major portion of the work. By contrast, Laudine remains in her own realm while Iwein journeys with his lion companion to find his way back to her. Through their speech and actions, the women in Erec and Iwein exhibit considerable authority in the social and physical spaces that they occupy. These interactions encourage the audience to consider the ways in which the spatial arrangements and movement participate in a continuous process of representation, an integral part of which is the dynamic interaction between self and other.
In Tristan, Gottfried praises Hartmann for his verbal artistry and his unique ability to capture in his work the meaning of aventiure adventure , which shines through the decorative words of his poetry as clear as crystal. Nevertheless, the enactment of appropriate masculine or feminine roles in same-sex or opposite sex relationships is more important for the greater good of the community than individual feeling. In his depiction of these roles, Hartmann lays bare the consistent tension that underlies the nature of love and the construction of gender roles by means of recurring images of confinement or entrapment, underscoring the conflicts between personal desire and public obligation.
Erec Placed near the conclusion of Erec, the joie de la curt episode most clearly illustrates the proper relationship between love and gender roles. The garden reveals the dangers, and serves as the mechanism for the proper realignment of relationships. Because of a rash promise that he made to his lady, Mabonagrin has withdrawn to the garden of Brandigan at her request.
A Companion to the Works of Hartmann von Aue (Studies in German Literature Linguistics and Culture)
This tree-filled garden is the quintessential locus amoenus, a place of stunning beauty: the flowers fill the air with their scent, the birds sing sweetly, and the fruit trees are in bloom. The wonders of this place compel all who enter to forget all cares and all sorrows. Indeed, Derek Pearsall considers the garden in Erec to be the best example of a medieval garden landscape After glimpsing the splendid tent, Erec catches sight of a most beautiful woman, second only in beauty to Enite.
The poet describes this woman with the same care and perhaps excessive attention to detail as he lavished on his portrayal of the garden and the tent to which Hartmann devotes more than twenty lines of description, — And this is indeed the case in the garden of joie de la curt. Hartmann has indicated from the first mention of this adventure that something is amiss here. For twelve long years, the events that recur in this garden have caused much suffering, leaving eighty grieving widows and a despairing lord to lament their misfortune. Clearly, this place represents no paradise. Two physical features of the garden reinforce its threatening quality.
First, it seems to be magically surrounded by something indiscernible: neither wall nor trench, neither moat nor hedge can be seen or felt around it. In fact, there is only one narrow, hidden path leading into the garden that only few know of. Hartmann later reveals that a cloud envelops the garden, so thick that no one can penetrate it except by finding the narrow path. In defeating Mabonagrin, Erec frees not only the knight but also his lady, both of whom have remained hitherto isolated in the garden — All members of society have a duty and an obligation to serve the others around them, especially if they hold a position of power and authority.
Although the garden is a place of beauty and pleasure, it is incapable of serving the greater social good, and therefore it clearly cannot continue to exist. The garden is also gendered female. Unwilling to face the prospect of losing him to the temptations of chivalric life, she elicits a fateful promise from him to remain with her in the garden so that she will never lose him to another woman — She literally rules this space, having created it through her request in the first place, and she essentially keeps Mabonagrin prisoner within it.
This unconventional arrangement has a devastating effect on the society around the garden; the heads on the posts that encircle it represent a serious affront to courtly order. For this reason, the narrative effectively works to eliminate this space of the lush garden of Brandigan in favor of a more appropriate social space, gendered male and represented by Erec and Mabonagrin. Hartmann uses the stagnated relationship between Mabonagrin and his lady in the garden as a means to underscore the instability of the purely erotic attraction that initially endangered Erec and Enite Kuhn, By privileging the married state of Erec and Enite over the passionate lawlessness of Mabonagrin and his lady in the garden, Hartmann advocates the conjugal relationship.
This relationship remains central, depicted in the life that Erec and Enite lead at Karnant. The castle at Karnant frames the story of Erec and Enite as a couple. It is there that they begin and end their life together, carrying out the attendant responsibilities of rulership with varying degrees of success. At first, the couple clearly seems unable to fulfill their social obligations at court. Instead they fall into the sin of sloth verligen. This is the point at which, upon departing from the garden as a foursome, Erec and Enite as well as Mabonagrin and his lady re-enter society; their process of becoming is nearing its end.
The danger of the garden and the initially inappropriate relationship at Karnant are corrected and balanced by parallel relationships that illustrate an appropriate existing balance or a process of negotiating it. This becomes clear through a comparison of the court at Karnant with that of Arthur. The Arthurian court represents a fixed point in the narrative, a place whose static existence offers a contrast that underscores the progress of the process of becoming; it is a place that gives form and purpose to the negotiations for power and space that occur in the forest.
This is illustrated, for example, by the interactions that occur between Queen Ginover and Enite. When Erec first brings his bride to the court after the tournament at Tulmein, Enite is still dressed in the tattered clothes she was wearing when he met her. Ginover takes Enite aside to her private quarters. The privacy or separateness of the conversation is emphasized also by the fact that the poet, while he allows the audience to know the general topic of conversation, gives no further details as to its specific substance.
They then rejoin their men and leave the garden, entering once again into the larger society to take their places there. The crown belongs to him exclusively as well; unlike her French counterpart, Enite does not receive her own crown in their coronation ceremony. Although Francis G. The forest is the space where Erec and Enite undergo their process of becoming, where they become rulers.
They do not seek a path through this wilderness; rather, that path seems to find them, and it guides them both through a process of maturation: Erec learns to put his prowess to use serving the community becoming a knight and king , and Enite learns to speak and assert herself at appropriate moments becoming a queen.
Essential to these responsibilities is a love relationship that demonstrates an understanding of appropriate behavior in appropriate situations. The community must take precedence. Of course, the knight gets his lady in the end, and Hartmann seems to present an optimistic vision of the future after Iwein and Laudine have been reunited through the persistent efforts of Lunete. An image of entrapment underscores the entire narrative of Iwein.
His attitude soon changes, however, when he glimpses Laudine in mourning as she follows the bier of her dead husband. The sight of this beautiful woman tearing her hair in distress overwhelms him and robs him of his senses. After this first glimpse of Laudine, moved by watching her do violence to herself in her grief, Iwein decides that he must have her. By the time the funeral procession has concluded, Iwein has become a double prisoner, caught both physically and emotionally. Later, Iwein himself expresses his desire to remain imprisoned, telling Lunete:.
This world is a threatening space. Gawein gives voice to this threat, perceived as the danger that Iwein could not only lose himself but also his knightly identity which are actually one and the same by remaining in this world. The second half of the narrative is the result. In the second part of the narrative, Iwein must correct a fundamental misunderstanding in his relationship with Laudine, an error he does not begin to comprehend until he breaks his promise.
The problem is that Iwein only understands the relationship as the fulfillment of his own desire. Laudine, on the contrary, understands it as a commitment made by Iwein to serve her community: as knight, as defender, as consort. As in Erec, this journey of self-discovery takes place in the forest; however, in Iwein, the journey concerns Iwein alone.
Iwein experiences the productive and restorative power of nature in the forest as a place through which he passes on his way to becoming a better knight. The humiliation causes Iwein to lose control of himself completely, succumbing to madness. He forgot all of his courtly breeding and tore off his clothing, so that he was as bare as a hand. Thus he ran naked across the fields to the wilderness. Instead of destroying beauty or creating chaos, it re-establishes order and eventually prepares Iwein to re-enter the community.
He and the audience with him can no longer recognize the knight Iwein. After all vestiges of civilization have been stripped from him, Iwein begins to find his way back: learning to hunt and then to cook and to share bread and water with a hermit. As a wild man in the forest, Iwein may indeed represent madness and uncivilized nature. At this moment, Iwein lies literally at a midpoint between worlds and between lives.
The Arthurian court, as the setting of his previous life as a knight of the Round Table, represents one world. The forest offered a different world, supporting and sustaining Iwein since his attack of madness and providing a place in and through which he could gradually find his way back to the world of civilized humankind.
That will be his permanent home; it is the community in which he belongs. He does this with the aid of the Countess of Narison. She and her women heal him, provide him with clothing, and bathe him. This time, the new Iwein is not merely fighting a joust or searching for aventiure; on the contrary, the physical threat to the besieged countess is real, and she needs his help. As he lifts the siege on her castle, he furthers the process of healing that also enables him to start on his path toward eventual re-integration into courtly society.
Upon setting out, Iwein simply takes the first trail he sees. This path leads him to the lion and ultimately, after further adventures, back to Laudine. A significant part of this new reality involves helping others; like Erec, Iwein is put to the test in the service of various communities. The initial marriage of Laudine and Iwein has offered challenges to interpreters since Wolfram von Eschenbach. Modern criticism continues to deal with the problematic union between Laudine and Iwein with various explanations for apparent inconsistencies. In the context of twelfth-century society, however, Laudine has no choice but to act as she does; her responsibilities as ruler compel her to emphasize the continuity of territorial and communal relationships.
Thus she illustrates the twelfth-century valorization of community over personal feeling. Her land must be protected at all costs, especially since Arthur threatens it with his army. Hartmann is quick to offer an explanation for her seemingly inconstant behavior. When she had the honor of meeting the king because of him, she saw clearly that she had good fortune, also that he had won the fountain with courage and defended it as a hero.
She has gained love and honor in bestowing her hand upon Iwein; obviously, she can make her own decisions and she has chosen well. The matter of the fountain remains. The fountain represents a magical power associated with Laudine and her fairy history. And indeed this division seems insurmountable.
In a sense, both Laudine and the spring represent elements to be conquered that are actually extensions of the self which, in the medieval world, is male. The threat of the storm remains constant, though the devastation it causes is temporary. On four separate occasions throughout the work, various Arthurian knights come upon the fountain and unleash the same destruction. When Iwein makes his final visit to the fountain, unleashing the storm and thereby announcing his presence to an unsuspecting Laudine, who does not yet know his true identity as the Knight of the Lion, he has surpassed the flawed Arthurian ideal.
His wanderings in the forest have brought him to this consciousness, have led him to his true self. Having regained his reputation as a worthy knight in his role as the Knight of the Lion, Iwein makes one more journey to the spring and the stone in order to recover fully and to complete his self. The nature of the final reconciliation mirroring the urgency of the original marriage underscores the disquieting otherness represented previously by the forest, by the spring, and finally by Laudine.