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I don't like Malherbe nor what he stood for, but the "Works" section is heavily biased against him:
Malherbe exercised, or at least indicated the exercise of, a great and enduring effect upon French literature, though by no means a wholly beneficial one. From the time of Malherbe dates the gradual development of the poetic rules of "Classicism" that would dominate until the Romantics. The critical and restraining tendency of Malherbe who preached greater technical perfection, and especially greater simplicity and purity in vocabulary and versification, was a sober correction to the luxuriant importation and innovation of Pierre de Ronsard and La Pléiade, but the lines of praise by Nicolas Boileau-Despréaux beginning Enfin Malherbe vint ("Finally Malherbe arrived") are rendered only partially applicable by Boileau's ignorance of older French poetry.
The personal character of Malherbe was far from amiable, and the good as well as bad side of Malherbe's theory and practice is excellently described by his contemporary and rival Mathurin Régnier, who was animated against Malherbe, not merely by reason of his own devotion to Ronsard but because of Malherbe's discourtesy towards Régnier's uncle Philippe Desportes, whom the Norman poet had at first distinctly plagiarized.
Malherbe's reforms helped to elaborate the kind of verse necessary for the classical tragedy, but his own poetical work is scanty in amount, and for the most part frigid and lacking inspiration. The beautiful Consolation a Duperier, in which occurs the famous line - Et, rose, elle a vécu ce que vivent les roses - the odes to Marie de 'Medici and to Louis XIII, and a few other pieces comprise all that is really worth remembering of him.