Christine de Pizan, The Book of the Queen


Christine de Pizan (b. 1364, d. 1430) was the first professional woman author in Europe. Writing in the French language, she often commented on the politics of her time and defended the moral and intellectual character of women. This is the largest and most splendid manuscript of her works. It was produced under Christine’s direct supervision and dedicated to Isabeau of Bavaria, queen consort of Charles VI of France. This page shows the opening of Cent Ballades d'Amant et de Dame (100 ballads of the lover and the lady), illustrated with a picture of Christine writing in her study. 

Full title:
Christine de Pizan, The Book of the Queen
c. 1410–14, Paris
Usage terms

Public Domain in most countries other than the UK.

Held by
British Library
Harley MS 4431

Full catalogue details

Related articles

Women in medieval society

Article by:
Alixe Bovey

From attitudes to original sin to the roles of wives, mothers and nuns, Dr Alixe Bovey examines the role of women in medieval society.

Related collection items