Adenes Le Roi

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Adenes le Roi (born in Brabant c. 1240, died c. 1300), also known as Adenez, Adans Le Roi, Roi Adam, Li Rois Adenes, Adan le Menestrel or Adam Rex Menestrallus, was French minstrel or trouvère. He owed his education to the kindness of Henry III, duke of Brabant, and he remained in favour at court for some time after the death of his patron in 1261.

In 1269 he entered the service of Guy de Dampierre, afterwards count of Flanders, probably as roi des ménestrels, and followed him in the next year on the abortive crusade in Tunis in which Louis IX lost his life. The expedition returned by way of Sicily and Italy, and Adenes has left in his poems some very exact descriptions of the places through which he passed. The purity of his French and the absence of provincialisms point to a long residence in France, and it has been suggested that Adenes may have followed Mary of Brabant there on her marriage with Philip III of France. He seems, however, to have remained in the service of Count Guy, although he made frequent visits to Paris to consult the annals preserved in the Abbey of St. Denis.

There are four poems written by Adenes. The Enfances Ogier narrates the exploits of Ogier the Dane fighting the Saracens in Italy, and was an enfeebled version of the Chevalerie Ogier de Danemarche written earlier by Raimbert de Paris.[1] The Berte aus grans piés told the history of Bertha of the Big Foot the mother of Charlemagne, founded on well-known traditions which are also preserved in the anonymous Chronique de France, and in the Chronique rimée of Philippe Mousket. The Bueves de Comarchis belonged to the cycle of romance gathered round the history of Aimeri de Narbonne. The fourth was a long roman d'aventures, Cléomadès, borrowed from Spanish and Moorish traditions brought into France by Blanche, daughter of Louis IX, who after the death of her Spanish husband returned to the French court. Adenes probably died before the end of the 13th century.

The romances of Adenes were edited for the Académie Impériale et Royale of Brussels by A. Scheler and A. Van Hasselt in 1874; Berte was rendered into modern French by G. Hecq (1897) and by R. Périé (1900); Cléomadès, by Le Chevalier de Chatelain (fr) (1859). See also the edition of Berte by Paulin Paris (1832); an article by the same writer in the Histoire littéraire de la France, vol. xx, pp. 679–718; Léon Gautier, Les épopées françaises, vol. iii, &c.


  • Beuvon de Commarchis (ca. 1275)
  • Les Enfances Ogier (ca. 1275)
  • Berte aus grans piés (ca. 1275)
  • Cléomadès (1285)


  1. ^ Ward (1883), pp. 610,613.