I'm reading Arthurian texts and I know that it's considered a romance, but there is there such a big difference between modern romance, love stories, and medieval romances, which can be tales of adventure. My question is this: did medieval romances develop into the modern romance genre we know today? If not, why and when did the difference occur?

1 Answer 1


In this English SE discussion, the history of romance in literature was covered fairly extensively; and we basically concluded that romance originally meant stories or histories styled poetically (i.e. in rhyme or verse) that were subsequently put to music in songs and ballads sung by troubadours, bards, or minstrels -- who were frequently rewarded for their skills with favors from pretty ladies.

(Like modern groupies or really devoted fans of that sort of entertainment.)

In that manner, the idea of love affairs eventually became culturally and socially associated with romance (which in medieval times was defined quite simply as poetry).

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