Queen Eufeme falsely accused Malduit-Silence of attempted rape

A man raping a woman has been recognized as a grave offense across three thousand years of literary history. False accusations of rape have been a related major concern, except perhaps in the past few decades. For help in understanding the historically entrenched problem of false accusations of rape, consider the early-thirteenth-century Old French Romance of Silence {Roman de Silence}. That romance tells of Queen Eufeme falsely accusing the knight Malduit-Silence of attempting to rape her.

From her position of power and privilege, Queen Eufeme burned with sexual desire for the young, beautiful, and courtly knight Malduit. Because of his difficult upbringing, Malduit also used the name Silence. The name Silence has substantial significance in the Roman de Silence. Medieval authors regarded women as much more talkative than men. Malduit went by the name Silence as a man.

Today both women and men typically prefer to keep silent about false accusations of rape. They sometimes even seek to silence those who dare to speak about false accusations of rape. Until the end of the Roman de Silence, Malduit-Silence was silent about being falsely accused of rape. But he finally told Queen Eufeme’s husband, King Evan of England, about his wife’s wicked behavior. Malduit-Silence declared:

Truth does not permit me
to keep anything from you,
nor do I care to keep silent any longer.
Do with me what you will.

{ La vertés nel puet consentir
Que jo vos puissce rien mentir,
Ne jo n’ai soig mais de taisir.
Faites de moi vostre plaisir. }[1]

Malduit-Silence breaking his silence about Queen Eufeme falsely accusing him of rape is the fundamental moral turning point in the Roman de Silence.

Malduit as a child between two minstrels

Malduit’s ordeal began when King Evan left home for a hunting trip. Queen Eufeme then summoned Malduit to her bedchamber to play harp for her. After he had played harp awhile, she told him, “Kiss me, don’t be shy {Baisiés me, ne soiés hontels}!” She was his superior, and he was obligated to follow her orders. He kissed her chastely on her forehead. Then, without seeking his affirmative consent, Queen Eufeme kissed him. By modern standards, she sexually assaulted him. She sexually assaulted him because she was upset about his kissing her on her forehead:

And the lady, who did not care
to be kissed in this manner,
gave him five drawn-out kisses,
very passionate and very skillful.
Besides the two kisses she had promised,
she sent to him so many others
that he was from this totally upset.

{ Et la dame, qui nen a cure
D’estre baisie en tel mesure,
Li done .v. baisiers traitis,
Bien amorols et bien faitis,
Et ot les .ii. baisiers promis
Li a des altres tant tramis
Que il en est tols anuiés. }

He sought to leave. She offered him her body. When he refused sex, she taunted him:

Go tell your father the count
and your mother the countess
that you will become a hermit
and take religious vows.
You’d be a very good abbot!

{ Mandés le conte vostre pere
Et la contesse vostre mere
Que vos hermites devenrés
Et que religiön tenrés!
En vos avra moult bon abé! }

Men’s lifestyle choices should be respected. More hermits and abbots should be featured on postage stamps. When he again tried to leave, she held onto him and accused him of being a greedy prostitute:

She said, “Are you trying to raise the price?
Since you know so much how to return yourself dear,
you should go into buying and selling!
Certainly you know how to imitate well
a cheap commoner in making a deal.”

{ Dist li: “Est cho chierisscement?
Quant vus si chier vus savés rendre,
Bien devriés achater et vendre!
Ciertes, bien savés contrefaire
Felon vilain de put afaire.” }

Then she claimed that she was only testing him and that he really wanted to have sex with her. Eufeme acted crazily.

Potiphar's wife sexually assaulting Joseph

Not actually crazy, Queen Eufeme felt sexually entitled and behaved viciously. Because Malduit didn’t love her, she hated him:

This lady was thinking very broadly
about ways to harm this youth.
Her heart spurred her on. She wouldn’t care
if he were hanged. In fact, she’d like that.

{ Ceste dame estoit moult engrant
Com honir peüst cel enfant.
Ses cuers i point: ne li dolroit
S’il fust pendus, ainz le volroit. }

Eufeme’s aggrieved sexual entitlement led her to place Malduit beyond gynocentric norms:

And then she thought: “If his thoughts were
toward women, nothing could have prevented him
from having just now pleasure with me.
Either I will see him totally frustrated and
completely shamed, if I can make that happen,
or I will never know a moment’s peace.
Certainly, I believe him to be a heretic,
since having a woman doesn’t delight him.
When I showed him my flanks,
he said, ‘O God, stop!’
Isn’t that well enough proof
that he despises and disdains women?
He says that he belongs to the king,
but that makes him just as much belong to me!
He didn’t reject me because of family,
but because he wants something else.
He cherishes young men very pleasantly
and cherishes their company.
He’s a heretic, I know it in faith,
and I threaten him with my love.
I will see that he is totally shamed.”

{ Et pense done: “Se cis pensast
Viers feme, rien ne s’en tensast
Qu’orains n’eüst a moi joé.
U gel verrai tolt desjoé,
En fin honi, se gel puis faire,
U ja n’iere mais sans contraire.
Certes, gel croi bien a erite
Quant a feme ne se delite.
Quant jo li mostrai mes costés,
Que il me dist: ‘Por Deu, ostés!’,
Ene fu cho moult bone ensaigne
Qu’il despist femes et desdaigne?
Il dist qu’il apartient le roi
Mais nel fait guaires plus qu’a moi.
Ainc nel lassça por parenté,
Mais el a en sa volenté.
As vallés fait moult bele chiere
Et a lor compagnie chiere.
Herites est, gel sai de fi,
Et jo de m’amor le deffi.
Honte li volrai porcacier.” }[2]

Eufeme implied that Malduit preferred to have sex with other young men like himself than to have sex with her, the queen of the realm. To her, such preference makes him a heretic. That’s a damning classification in medieval French gynocentric society. In the twelfth-century Old French Romance of Aeneas {Roman d’Eneas}, Queen Amata similarly disparaged Aeneas in attempting to dissuade her daughter Lavinia from loving him. More generally, women’s claims about men’s fears of women commonly function as camouflage for women’s romantic failings.

Queen Eufeme faked an attempted rape and physical assault in order to have Malduit executed. In preparation, she convinced Malduit that she had earlier been merely testing him when she had accosted him. She praised him for his sexual restraint. When King Evan again left the palace for a hunt, she brought Malduit into her bedchamber and locked the door. Then she grabbed him by his belt and declared:

Why are you making for us such a situation?
I have much loved you for a long time.
You have much condemned my body.
I have strongly encouraged you,
and you have injured my body.
Not long ago, I showed my love for you,
and you made of that much clamor.
You didn’t deign to listen to me,
but you took to reject me.
You wouldn’t deign to come here any longer.
I didn’t know how to get hold of you,
but such I have done by my guile,
by God, that I hold you here now.
And by the right of love possession,
take my body. There’s none like it.
Let’s be like man and woman lovers.

{ Por quoi nos fais tu tel covine?
Jo t’ai moult longement amé.
Tu m’as mon cors moult adamé:
Jo t’ai forment acoragié,
Et tu mon cors as damagié.
L’altrier te mostrai mes amors
Et t’en fesis par tolt clamors.
Ne me degnas pas escolter,
Ains me presis a deboter.
Ne degnas puis chaëns venir.
Jo ne t’i seu comment tenir,
Mais tant ai fait par mon engien,
Enon Deu, que jo vos i tiengn;
Et par meïsme le catel,
Prent chi mon cors, il n’i a tel.
Faisons com amis et amie. }

He insistently refused to have sex with her. She then faked a sexual assault:

She began to tear out her hair
as if the Devil made her do it.
She gave herself a punch in the nose,
so that she was covered with blood.
She shed tears, but without making noise or crying,
because she wanted to do this
until King Evan returned from the hunt.
She didn’t want anyone else to know.
She trampled her wimple under her feet
and held very tightly the wretched young man.
“Son of a pig!” she said, “Fool!
May your body suffer today,
you son of a filthy rogue!
The king doesn’t care for his wife
to be occupied in such a manner.
I would be wicked and very cowardly
if I didn’t have you skinned alive
for you so wanting to rape me!”

{ Commence ses cevials detraire
Si com diäbles le fait faire.
Fiert soi el nés de puign a ente:
Del sanc se solle et ensanglente.
Plore sans noise et sans criër
Qu’el velt le fait tant detriër
Que li rois Ebayns vient de cache.
N’i violt qu’altres que il le sache.
Defole sos ses piés se guinple
Et tient bien ferm le vallet sinple.
“Fils a gloton!” fait ele, “fols!
Dehet ait hui li vostre cors!
Fils a encrieme paltonier!
Li rois n’a soig de parçoignier
A sa mollier en tel maniere.
Malvaise sui et moult laniere
Se ne te fac vif escorcier
Ki si me volsis efforcier. }

Silence must have been terrified. Any evidence he might offer probably would benefit him little relative to the social weight of Eufeme’s fabrications. Penal justice systems vastly disproportionately punish persons with penises. Men’s lives should matter, but in the social context of women’s claims of rape, men’s lives often don’t matter.

To advance her false accusation of attempted rape, Queen Eufeme masterfully manipulated her husband King Evan. When he returned home from hunting, he encountered a shocking situation:

The king saw his wife bleeding
and much bloodied all over,
her hair disheveled, her face wet.
This was no laughing matter to him.
“Dear,” he said, “who did this to you?”
“Dear sir, I will tell you all.
See in front of you he who
has done this misery to me.
He thought he had found an immoral woman.
He has tested me many times.
I thought he was only joking,
but just now, when he saw his chance,
and you had gone into the woods to hunt,
he mounted the stairs right away,
entered the bedchamber, and locked the door.
Sir, see what he did to me then!
Silence has done it, sir, indeed sir,
by his madness, by his great passion!
I will allow myself now to tell you
how his madness completely overcame him.
After he had, sir, so injured me,
and torn and shredded my wimple,
he saw well that I wouldn’t yield my chastity.
He begged me to pardon him
for doing such mad destruction
and even that I just let him go.
But I never want to let
your honor be so abased.
He would be very glad if one would allow escape from this.
Dear sir, in order to deter
all people from such outrage,
such madness, such fury,
on this man take vengeance
immediately. Don’t wait for a trial!”

{ Sa feme voit li rois sanglente
Et ensegnie moult a ente,
Ronpus ses crins, mollié son vis.
Or n’i a il ne giu ne ris.
“Biele,” fait il, “qui vos fist cho?”
“Bials sire, jal vos dirai jo.
Veés chi devant vos celui
Ki m’a faite cestui anui.
Cuida sa fole avoir trovee.
Il m’a soventes fois provee:
Cuidai quel fesist par son giu,
Mais orains quant il vit son liu
Et vos fustes el bos alés,
Les degrés ot tost sormontés,
Entre en la canbre et ferme l’uis.
Sire, veés qu’il m’a fait puis!
Silences l’a fait, sire, sire,
Par sa folor, par sa grant ire.
Ne lairai ore sa folie
Que trestolte ne le vos die.
Quant il m’ot, sire, si blecie
Ma guinple rote et depecie,
Et il vit bien que g’ere caste,
De si faite folie gaste
Pria que jo li pardonasse
Et que itant le me lassasce;
Mais jo ne vol mie lasscier
Por vostre honor si abasscier.
Moult volentiers s’en volt estordre.
Bials sire, por le desamordre
Tolte gens mais de tel oltrage,
De tel folie, de tel rage,
Prendés de cestui vengement
C’onques n’atendés jugement!” }

After falsely accusing Silence of attempted rape, Eufeme sought to preempt gathering of evidence and evaluating testimony. She wanted the king simply to act on her words. She wanted him to kill Silence just as Roman men acted on Lucretia’s words to kill other men. Authorities should at least listen to men before disbelieving them and killing them.

With extraordinary strength of character, King Evan resisted a woman’s tears. Few men are capable of such a feat:

The king’s heart was so heavy
that he couldn’t form a single word
without rolling his eyeballs.
And the queen was kneeling
at the king’s feet and weeping and crying
because he was delaying her vengeance.

The queen was strongly disturbed.
Know that she was very upset
that she didn’t see the young man
burned to a crisp, or hanging from gallows.
But the king was a good man and wise
and moderate in his heart’s impulses.

{ Li rois en a si gros le cuer:
Ne desist .i. mot a nul fuer,
Mais que les ioils celui roöille.
Et li roïne s’agenolle
As piés le roi et plore et crie
Car la venjance li detrie

La roïne fort se demente.
Sachiés que moult li est a ente
Qu’ele ne voit ardoir en cendre
Le vallet, u a forces pendre.
Mais el roi a bon home et sage
Et atenpret de son corage }[3]

The king decided that to cover-up the alleged attempted rape and send Silence into exile at the king of France’s court. That’s not doing justice. Moreover, to appease the queen so that she would preserve the appearance of court morality, the king lied to her. He told her that he would have the king of France kill Silence.

Not trusting her husband the king, Queen Eufeme secretly substituted her own letter for the king’s letter. Eufeme’s letter asked the king of France to kill Silence immediately. When the king of France’s wise counselor foiled Eufeme’s murderous plot, the king made his chancellor take the blame for Eufeme’s murderous conspiracy.

Society tends to value a man only for what he can do or has achieved, rather than for his intrinsically virtuous being. When King Evan urgently needed Silence’s services as a warrior, Evan begged Queen Eufeme to allow Silence to return to the English court. Silence thus returned from France with thirty strong French knights. They engaged in brutal violence against men to win an important victory for Evan. When Silence had returned from battle to the English court as an honored hero, Eufeme claimed that he again attempted to rape her. She manipulated Evan into sending Silence away on an impossible, “don’t return unless successful” mission to capture the wizard Merlin.

Only through the wonderful help of the wizard Merlin was Eufeme finally punished for her false accusation of attempted rape. When he came to the English court, Merlin laughed and laughed as if that court was as foolish as those who believe in rape culture. When Silence referred abstractly to the truth, Eufeme immediately silenced him:

Silence, you talk too much!
You had better keep your mouth shut.

{ Silences, trop aves parole!
Vas le devriez avoir plus brieve. }

When Merlin began to reveal the truth about her crimes, Eufeme sought to intimidate him:

You certainly know how to slander women.
What good will come of your slander?
My lord shouldn’t tolerate it,
but he should have you killed
or throw you into one very foul place.

{ Com tu ses mesdire de feme!
Quels joies est de ton mesdire?
Ja nel deüst sofrir mes sire!
Ains te deüst faire tuer,
U en .i. malvais liu jeter. }

Merlin ignored Eufeme’s death threats. Moreover, King Evan finally asserted himself in relation to Queen Eufeme:

“You are wrong, lady,” the king said.
“If a Scotsman or an Irishman
were to tell me folly or wisdom,
he would be entitled to have peace
before me. Am I not a lord?
Allow me to convene and to speak
so as to do my good and my pleasure.”

{ “Tort avés, dame,” dist li rois.
“Si uns Escos u uns Irois
Me disist folie u savoir,
Se deüst il bien pais avoir
Chi devant moi. Ne sui jo sire?
Moi lasciés convenir et dire,
Faire mon bon et mon plasir.” }[4]

Evan addressed his wife respectfully. Then he got annoyed and hurled at her platitudes that have no relation to reality. In reality, men must assert themselves in relation to women or women will effectively silence them. After Evan silenced Eufeme to give Merlin and Silence an opportunity to speak, they revealed Eufeme’s wicked deeds. Evan had Eufeme executed for her crimes — crimes that included falsely accusing Malduit-Silence of attempted rape. Women are much more rarely executed for crimes than are men.[5] Nonetheless, all at this medieval English court regarded capital punishment as fitting and just for Eufeme.

Rape and false accusations of rape should be regarded as serious crimes. Whether a rape victim or false-accusation victim is a man or a woman shouldn’t matter to equal justice under law. Yet today men being raped and men being falsely accused of rape rarely are discussed seriously and compassionately. The medieval Roman de Silence provides an extraordinary opportunity to break the silence about this social injustice. So far, literary scholars have squandered this opportunity in a cesspool of anti-men sexism.[6] One might laugh or cry at this grotesque intellectual spectacle. The wizard Merlin would laugh.

A woman, a tender thing,
knows she can shame you and dares to do so.
And it was a woman who captured me.
Is it any wonder I laugh about it,
when they have deceived us both like this,
when they have set such a snare for us
as twenty thousand men couldn’t do?
Sir, I laugh about this matter.

{ Et une feme, tendre cose,
Vos poet honir et set et ose.
Et c’une feme me ra pris,
Quele mervelle est se j’en ris,
Qu’ansdeus nos ont ensi deçut,
Qu’eles nos ont tel plait esmut
Comme .xx .. .m. ne porent faire.
Sire, jo ris de cest affaire. }

* * * * *

Read more:

Notes:

[1] Heldris of Cornwall {Heldris de Cornouaille}, The Romance of Silence {Le roman de Silence} vv. 6625-8, Old French text and English translation (modified) from Roche-Mahdi (1992). Subsequent quotes from Roman de Silence are similarly sourced. I’ve modified Roche-Mahdi’s translation to follow more closely the Old French source.

The discussion above uses interchangeably rape and attempted rape in which the victim is physically assaulted and bleeding profusely from the assailant’s pursuit of sex. Both types of acts are horrible wrongs. Eufeme claimed that Malduit physically assaulted her, injuring her so as to cover her with her own blood, and attempted to rape her. She also claimed that he didn’t manage to violate her chastity. According to the Roman de Silence, she lied about about all aspects of the attempted rape and physical assault.

Roman de Silence survives in only one manuscript: Nottingham, University Library, MS WLC/LM/6, f. 189r-223v. Recent dating of its composition favors the first half of the thirteenth century. The most thorough analysis puts forward “between 1169 and 1206 (probably towards the end of this range).” Ravenhall (2022) p. 71. Here’s context on the transmission of Roman de Silence.

Silence in the Roman de Silence has been twisted to serve dominant ideology. Scholars have frequently claimed that Malduit-Silence is silenced when finally identified as a woman:

Nature “recovered her rights,” our protagonist is thoroughly feminized, and the king takes her as his wife. Silence speaks no more.

Farr (2017). Silence speaks no more because the Roman de Silence ends. The rest is ideological projection. Roman de Silence isn’t about women or wives being silent, as if that were even socially possible. Roman de Silence is about silence and silencing concerning false accusations of rape and attempted rape. That social problem remains acute in dominant discourse.

Subsequent quotes above from the Roman de Silence are vv. 3759 (Kiss me, don’t be shy!), 3769-75 (And the lady, who did not care…), 3811-5 (Go tell your father the count…), 3884-8 (She said, “Are you trying to raise the price?…”), 3925-8 (This lady was thinking very broadly…), 3929-49 (And then she thought: “If his thoughts were…”), 4048-63 (Why are you making for us such a situation?…), 4075-92 (She began to tear out her hair…), 4115-48 (The king saw his wife bleeding…), 4149-54, 4183-8 (The king’s heart was so heavy…), 6274-5 (Silence, you talk too much!…), 6372-6 (You certainly know how to slander women…), 6391-7 (“You are wrong, lady,” the king said…), 6545-52 (A woman, a tender thing…).

[2] Roche-Mahdi and others haven’t faithfully translated verses in this passage. In vv. 3935 and 3947, Roche-Mahdi translated erite / herites (forms of the same word) as “queer” and “fag,” respectively, followed by Watt (1998) p. 273, n. 16. In translating these verses, Roche-Mahdi “uses particularly aggressive colloquial language.” Pitts (2017) p. 50. Waters translated erite / herites with the anachronistic term “homosexual.” Waters (1997) p. 42. Revelle stated:

The word “erite”, or “heretic” in modern English, is clearly an accusation of sodomy, stating explicitly that Silence prefers the company of young men to that of women.

Revelle (2018) p. 35. Silence, who was fifteen years old (see v. 6602), preferring the company of young men rather than women doesn’t necessarily imply that he engages in sodomy. Nonetheless, in the context of disparaging men, that’s a common insinuation.

According to the vicious Eufeme, men preferentially associating with men makes them like disbelievers in the dominant religion. Thus Eufeme, speaking from her dominant position in the gynocentric order, declared: “He’s a heretic, I know it in faith {Herites est, gel sai de fi}.” The full sense of her words is obscured in less faithful translations, e.g. “He’s a fag, I swear to it”; “He’s a fag [literally “heretic”], I’d swear to it”, and “He is a homosexual, I know it for certain”. See Roche-Mahdi (1992), p. 185; Kinoshita (1995) p. 408, n. 31; and Waters (1997) p. 42, respectively.

Underscoring learned ignorance about gender and sexual assault, Pitts declared that Eufeme “projects an entitlement to Silence’s body in a particularly aggressive, traditionally masculine fashion.” Pitts (1997) p. 39. Medieval literature at least openly recognized women’s sense of sexual entitlement.

[3] In medieval European literature, the phrase “good man {bon home}” can function as a code for calling a man a cuckold. King Evan in fact was a cuckold. Queen Eufeme was cuckolding him with a man disguised as a nun.

The author Heldris de Cornouaille strongly condemned Eufeme’s evil behavior:

Now you shall hear what disloyalty
and what misfortune transpired,
what burning lust and fury
seized this Satan in herself.
For never did Tristan for Isolde
nor lady Isolde for lord Tristan
have such anguished yearning
as did Eufeme the queen
for the young man who was a young woman.
Never did Joseph, who was imprisoned
by King Pharaoh, as one reads,
have such anguish and such evil
by the wife of the seneschal
as did Silence here from the queen.

{ Or oiés quel desloialté
Avint et ques mesaventure,
Con faite rage et quele ardure
Cis Sathanas en soi aquelt:
Car onques Tristrans por Ielt,
Ne dame Izeuls por dant Tristran
N’ot tele angoisse ne ahan
Com eult Eufeme la roïne
Por le vallet ki ert meschine;
N’onques Jozeph, ki fu prisons
Rois Pharaöns, si le lisons,
N’ot tele angoisse ne tel mal
Par la mollier al senescal,
Comme ut icis par la roïne. }

Roman de Silence, vv. 3696-3709. The double comparison with Tristan and Isolde indicates Heldris’s concern for gender equality. The explicit distinction from Potiphar’s wife emphasizes Eufeme’s extremely evil deeds. Countess Eufemie, whose name is phonetically similarly to Eufeme, behaved much differently. Cf. Roche-Mahdi (1992), pp. xx-xxi.

[4] The omniscent narrator earlier recognized the king’s prudence in not confronting his wife:

But he didn’t want to say a word against her,
because when a woman seeks to avenge herself,
she in that way is very biting.
This the king knows. And she is too quarrelsome.
When one asks her to be quiet,
then she will strive to make noise.

{ Mais ne volt son dit blastengier,
Car feme quant se violt vengier
En tel maniere est moult trençans,
Cho set li rois, et trop tençans,
Est el. Quant on le roeve taire
Dont s’esforce de noise faire. }

Roman de Silence, vv. 4265-70. Men have enormous difficulty asserting themselves in relation to women.

[5] In a U.S. Supreme Court case concerning the constitutionality of the death penalty, Justice Thurgood Marshall courageously observed:

There is also overwhelming evidence that the death penalty is employed against men and not women. Only 32 women have been executed since 1930, while 3,827 men have met a similar fate. It is difficult to understand why women have received such favored treatment since the purposes allegedly served by capital punishment seemingly are equally applicable to both sexes.

Furman v. Georgia, 408 U.S. 238 (1972) para. 276, concurring opinion of Justice Thurgood Marshall (notes omitted). While Thurgood Marshall is widely and rightly celebrated as a leading judge, his remarks on sexism in applying the death penalty have been generally ignored. The enormous gender protrusion in the population incarcerated is also generally ignored even in the context of acute concern about gender equality.

[6] For an example of an unintentionally ironic failure in teaching the Roman de Silence, Boulanger (2018).

[images] (1) Malduit-Silence as a child between two minstrels. Illumination in Roman de Silence, Nottingham, University Library, MS WLC/LM/6, folio 203r. Queer Art History has other illuminations from this manuscript, including a depiction of Queen Eufeme attempting to force Malduit to have sex with her (folio 209r). On the paintings in this manuscript, Bolduc (2002). (2) Potiphar’s wife attempting to rape Joseph. Cf. Genesis 39:5-20. Painting “Joseph and Potiphar’s Wife” by Giovanni Francesco Barbieri, called Guercino, painted in 1649. Painting preserved as accession # 1986.17.2 in the National Gallery of Art (Washington, DC). The National Gallery rightly recognizes this image to be in the public domain.

References:

Bolduc, Michelle. 2002. “Images of Romance: The Miniatures of Le Roman de Silence.” Arthuriana. 12 (1): 101-112.

Boulanger, Jennifer. 2018. “Women Reading Silence in a Time of Social Fracture.” Medieval Studies Research Blog: Meet us at the Crossroads of Everything. Posted online October 12, 2018. Medieval Institute, University of Notre Dame.

Farr, Jonanthan. 2017. “Gender-Bending in Thirteenth-Century Literature: The Roman de Silence.” Posted online Feb. 21, 2017. Nursing Clio.

Kinoshita, Sharon. 1995. “Heldris de Cornuälle’s Roman de Silence and the Feudal Politics of Lineage.” PMLA. 110 (3): 397-409.

Pitts, Jessica Renee. 2017. Sexual Assault and Masculinity in Chivalric Romance: Destabilizing the Rhetoric of Womanhood as Victimhood in the Middle Ages. Ph.D. Thesis, Department of English, Florida State University, USA.

Ravenhall, Henry. 2022. “The Date, Author, and Context of the Roman de Silence: A Reassessment.” Medium Ævum. 91 (1): 70–99.

Revelle, Anthony. 2018. “Looking at Failed Masculinity: An Attempt at Reading Medieval Sexuality.” Past Imperfect. 21 (1): 31-57.

Roche-Mahdi, Sarah, ed. and trans. 1992. Silence: A Thirteenth-Century French Romance. East Lansing, MI: Michigan State University Press.

Waters, Elizabeth A. 1997. “The Third Path: Alternative Sex, Alternative Gender in Le Roman De Silence.” Arthuriana. 7 (2): 35–46.

Watt, Diane. 1998. “Behaving Like a Man? Incest, Lesbian Desire, and Gender Play in Yde et Olive and its Adaptations.” Comparative Literature. 59 (4): 265-285.

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