The metrical fables of the Trouvères, or early poets north of
the Loire, in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. The word fable,
in this case, is used very widely, for it includes not only such tales
as Reynard the Fox, but all sorts of familiar incidents of
knavery and intrigue, all sorts of legends and family traditions. The
fabliau of Aucassin and Nicolette is full of interesting
incidents, and contains much true pathos and beautiful poetry.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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