1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/La Calprenède, Gauthier de Costes, Seigneur de

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LA CALPRENEDE, GAUTHIER DE COSTES, Seigneur de (c. 1610-1663), French novelist and dramatist, was born at the Chateau of Tolgou, near Sarlat (Dordogne), in 1609 or 1610. After studying at Toulouse, he came to Paris and entered the regiment of the guards, becoming in 1650 gentleman-in-ordinary of the royal household. He died in 1663 in consequence of a kick from his horse. He was the author of several long heroic romances ridiculed by Boileau. They are: Cassandre (10 vols., 1642-1650); Cléopatre (1648); Faramond (1661); and Les Nouvelles, on les Diverlissements de lo princess Alcidiane (1661) published under his wife's name, but generally attributed to him. His plays lack the spirit and force that occasionally redeem the novels. The best is Le Comte d'Essex, represented in 1638, which supplied some ideas to Thomas Corneille for his tragedy of the same name.