Pierre de Ronsard

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Pierre de Ronsard (1524 – 1585) was attached to both the French and Scottish courts in his youth; he was later named royal poet for the House of Valois. He led the group of poets called the Pleiades, who looked to classical poetry for paradigms but wrote in French rather than Latin to encourage the development of French literature. In An Introduction to the French Poets, Geoffrey Brereton writes, “He projected . . . an image of his own century. . . . It was precisely Ronsard’s inability to either assimilate his models or to forget them which gave his work its character.”