chantefable

chantefable

[French shahnt-fah-bluh]
noun, plural chantefables [shahnt-fah-bluh] .
(in medieval French literature) a prose narrative interspersed with verse.

Origin:
< French; see chant, fable

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Encyclopedia Britannica
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chantefable

a medieval tale of adventure told in alternating sections of sung verse and recited prose. The word itself was used-and perhaps coined-by the anonymous author of the 13th-century French work Aucassin et Nicolette in its concluding lines: "No cantefable prent fin" ("Our chantefable is drawing to a close"). The work is the sole surviving example of the genre. The word is from the Old French (Picard dialect) cantefable, literally, "(it) sings (and it) narrates."

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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