Introduction and Summary
The Kingis Quair is a dream vision attributed to King James I of Scotland. It survives in one fifteenth-century manuscript, Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS Arch. Selden B.24. Unusual for its particularly extended dream frame, its seemingly autobiographical content and regal author, and its complex meditations upon Fortune and free will, the poem is an extraordinary tour-de-force, blending the personal with the political, the religious with the romantic.
The poem is divided into 197 seven-line stanzas, written in the verse form of rhyme royal (ababbcc) familiar from Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde. It describes an imprisoned narrator, who reads Boethius’…
Citation: Reinbold, Lotte. "The Kingis Quair". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 13 April 2021 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=13237, accessed 22 April 2021.]