Other literary forms
Nicolas Boileau-Despréaux (bwaw-LOH day-pray-OH) published an extensive selection of his letters to both friends and antagonists, as well as Dialogue des héros de roman (1688; The Heroes of Romances, 1713), a highly critical assessment of the novel form, of which Boileau disapproved. Boileau also translated the ancient critic Longinus’s treatise on the sublime into French as Traité du sublime, bringing it back into the mainstream of European literary tradition. His letters, composed in a highly literary style and envisioned as published documents, are an important part of his oeuvre. Most interesting to the student of literature and criticism is his correspondence with Charles Perrault, who stood for the “modern” side, as Boileau did for the “ancient,” in the famous Quarrel of the Ancients and Moderns that preoccupied the French cultural scene in the latter half of the seventeenth century.