Marin le Roy de Gomberville  

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"It is no doubt extraordinary, that such tedious and fantastic compositions as the romances of Gomberville and Calprenede should have attained the popularity they so long enjoyed ; but while readers could be procured, we cannot wonder that authors were willing to persist in this species of writing ; for, as Dr Johnson has remarked, "when a man by practice had gained some fluency of language, he had no farther care than to retire to his closet, let loose his invention, and heat his mind with incredibilities. A book was thus produced without the toil of study, without knowledge of nature, or acquaintance with life."--History of Fiction (1814) by John Colin Dunlop

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Marin le Roy, sieur du Parc et de Gomberville (1600 – 14 June 1674) was a French poet and novelist.

He was born at Paris, and at fourteen he produced a volume of poetry. At twenty he wrote a Discours sur l'histoire and at twenty-two a pastoral, La Charité, which is really a novel. The characters, though disguised as shepherds and shepherdesses, represent real people for whose identification the author himself provides a key.

This was followed by a more ambitious work, Polexandre (5 vols. 1632–1637). The hero wanders through the world in search of the island home of the princess Alcidiane. It contains much history and geography; the travels of Polexandre extending to such unexpected places as Benin, the Canary Islands, Mexico and the Antilles, and incidentally we learn all that was then known of Mexican history.

Cythérée (4 vols.) appeared in 1630–1642, and in 1651 the Jeune Alcidiane, intended to undo any harm the earlier novels may have done, for Gomberville became a Jansenist and spent the last twenty-five years of his life in pious retirement. He was one of the earliest and most energetic members of the Académie française.

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