Anonymous Writing Styles in The Song of Roland

Anonymous
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Poetic Form and Rhyme

The Song of Roland is written in poetic form. The verse paragraphs are called laisses, and they are of varying length. The rhyming scheme is assonance, meaning that only the final stressed vowels are identical. Most lines have 10 syllables, with a break, or caesura, after the fourth syllable.

Point of View

The story is told by an omniscient, or "all-knowing," third-person narrator. The author is not involved in the story, but is very clearly on the side of the French, Authorial asides criticize the treachery of Ganelon or the frighrfulness of the Saracens, for example, while praising the bravery of Roland and the wisdom of Olivier.

Symbolism

As in most medieval texts, symbolism is an important part of The Song of Roland. Charlemagne's dreams are full of symbols, mainly animals. Medieval bestiaries, or animal dictionaries, attributed certain characteristics to each animal. These characteristics transfer to...

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This section contains 602 words
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The Song of Roland from Epics for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.