Helinand (c.1162—1237) was born to a noble flemish family which had fled to France after the assasination of Charles the Bold. In the richly creative, rough and tumble world of the twelfth century, he proved himself an accomplish poet.
In Verses on Death Helinand combines his love of poetry and his love of monastic tradition; from his cloister, he invites death to visit those dearest to him, to turn their attentions to the joys of eternity.
Both in Old French and in Jenny Lind Porter's translation, the verses provide lively, colloquial and arresting reflections on the transitory vanity of worldly pleasures.
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