Christine de Pizan Additional Biography


(Literary Essentials: Great Poems of the World)

Although Christine de Pizan ranks as France’s first woman of letters, she was not of French but of Italian birth. Born about 1365 in Venice, she spent only her first years in Italy, leaving her birthplace when her father received the position of astrologer at the court of Charles V of France. Tommaso di Benvenuto da Pizzano, known as Thomas de Pizan after his arrival in France, brought his family to Paris around 1368, and it was there that Christine had an experience that was to shape the course of her lifework. With her father’s encouragement, she received the kind of education usually reserved for boys in the Middle Ages. A precocious child, Christine was eager to learn, and this unique educational opportunity proved to be...

(The entire section is 552 words.)


(Great Authors of World Literature, Critical Edition)

Christine de Pizan (krees-teen duh pee-zahn), sometimes spelled Pisan, was the daughter of an Italian scholar, Thomas, known for his work as a physician and his studies in astrology. Both King Louis I of Hungary and Charles V of France noticed these attributes and invited Thomas to become a part of their courts. In 1364 Thomas moved from Bologna to Paris, and in 1368 Christine and her mother joined him there. In two of her writings Christine provides some biographic information. In L’Avision-Christíne she discusses her life in relation to her father, and in Le Livre de la mutacion de fourtune she writes of her struggles as a woman in a male-dominated world.

Christine de Pizan’s birth date is...

(The entire section is 500 words.)