Free French Renaissance Fiction

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CLICK on the links on this page The will take you to the spot where you can choose the ebook format you wish or if you wish to read the book online.

During the late 19th and early 20th century, French Renaissance fiction in English was popular.  Much of this fiction is now out of copyright, so it available in ebook formats on the internet, but often difficult to find.  I have collected the links to thirty-six (36) available on Project Gutenberg for you.

Authors include classics such as the Countess de La Fayette, Alexander Dumas and Sir Walter Scott among others.

If any of these links no longer work, or if you find links to other free French Renaissance novels, please let me know. Also, I welcome any comments you wish to share with me and other readers.  Comment on my webpage or email me at  Enjoy!


MARY TUDOR, QUEEN OF FRANCE Download here — Mary Croom Brown (Third Consort of Louis XII of France)

THE JUSTICE OF THE KING Download here — Hamilton Drummond, France—Coligny, &c. Smith, Elder, & Co. and Ward, Lock, & Co. — (Louis XI)

THE JUSTICE OF THE KING Download here — Hamilton Drummond, France—Coligny, &c. Smith, Elder, & Co. and Ward, Lock, & Co. — (set in the time of Louis XI)

CHICOT THE JESTER Download here — Alexandre Dumas. An abridged translation of La Dame de Monsoreau.

THE FORTY FIVE Download here — Alexandre Dumas (translation) J. M. Dent & Co.— (French Court, 1585 &c.)

MARGUERITE OF VALOIS, Download here by Alexandre Dumas (The wife of King Henry IV de Navarre)

BAYARD: THE GOOD KNIGHT WITHOUT FEAR AND WITHOUT REPROACH Download here — by Christopher Hare (Life of Bayard)

ST. LEON: A TALE OF THE SIXTEENTH CENTURY Download here — William Godwin. (The adventures of a young chevalier in the reign on François I at the Battle of Pavia, 1525A gothic tale of alchemy and aristocracy)

ROSE D’ALBRET; or, Troublous Times, Download here, — G. P. R. James (Set in Normandy in the 1590s)

A popular novelist of his time, G. P. R. James begins the story of One in a Thousand just before the murder of Henry III. It has a complex plot, and a large crowd of characters from both the Catholic and Huguenot parties. The basic plot, a wealthy heiress held out as a bait by the heads of rival factions to attract the allegiance of two powerful nobles, is based on reality. His plot is wildly romantic and includes, of course, the fair lady, the blameless lover, and dastardly enemies to be overcome. The character of The Duke de Mayenne, the head of the Guises, with his fierce ambition, lack of scruple, and unruly temper, stands out for its vividness, and is infinitely more alive than his purely romantic characters. His portraits of the Leaguers at Paris and the headquarters of Henry Quatre fascinate in their well-imagined detail.

CORSE DE LEON; OR, THE BRIGAND Download here: A Romance. Volume 1 (of 2) — G. P. R. James — France, middle of Sixteenth Century Warne & Co.

HENRY OF GUISE; or, The States of Blois (Vol. 1 of 3) Download here — G. P. R. James

HENRY OF GUISE; or, The States of Blois (Vol. 2 of 3) Download here — G. P. R. James

HENRY OF GUISE; or, The States of Blois (Vol. 3 of 3) Download here — G. P. R. James

THE HUGUENOT: A Tale of the French Protestants. Volumes I-III Download here — G. P. R. James

THE MAN-AT-ARMS OR, HENRY DE CERONS. Volumes I and II, Download here — G. P. R. James. Another novel of the Huguenots

THE PRINCESS OF CLEVES Download here by Countess Marie-Madeleine de La Fayette

LA PRINCESS DE MONTPENSIER Download here Countess Marie-Madeleine de La Fayette
Written by Countess Marie-Madeleine de Lafayette, the novella is set during the 16th-century Wars of Religions during Charles XI’s (1560-1574) reign. Marie de Mezières, madly in love with Henri de Guise, must marry the Prince de Montpensier as her father requires. She must deal with her own heart and the advances of her husband’s friends in tests of her character. The writing is unsentimental and insightful and the setting dramatic.

ORRAIN, A ROMANCE Download here — S. Levitt-Yates
Set during the 16th-century reign of Henry II (1547-1559), this swashbuckling romantic adventure is another find. Orrain, the hero, is the disgraced younger son of a noble family who comes to the aid of Antoine Duke de Bourbon. It is full of love interest, plot twists, intrigue and excitement. 

THE CHEVALIER D’AURIAC, Download here — S. Levett Yeats (Leaguers after Ivry during the reign of Henri IV)

THE KING’S ESQUIRES.  Download here or, The Jewel of France download here— George Manville Fenn. (Reign of Francis I)

MARGUERITE DE ROBERVAL Download here— T. G. Marquis, Fisher Unwin. (A romantic novel about one of the remarkable true life adventures of a woman during the period of Francis I.

THE HELMET OF NAVARRE Download here— Bertha Runkle—Macmillan & Co.  (Henry of Navarre)

QUENTIN DURWARD Download hereSirWalter Scott (Louis XI) (A GREAT READ!)

AN ENEMY TO THE KING : From the Recently Discovered Memoirs of the Sieur de la Tournoire, Download here  — R. N. Stephens   (Beginning in 1578,  a tale of Henri IV and Henry de Guise)

THE BRIGHT FACE OF DANGER, Download here— Robert Neilson Stephens (Sequel To The Above —Being an Account of Some Adventures of Henri de Launay, Son of the Sieur de la Tournoire)

THE POCKET BIBLE OR CHRISTIAN THE PRINTER, Download here, — Eugène Sue (France 1534 at the time of the Affair of the Placards)

FROM THE MEMOIRS OF A MINISTER OF FRANCE, Download here — Stanley Weyman Henry of Navarre

A GENTLEMAN OF FRANCE: Being the Memoirs of Gaston de Bonne Sieur de Marsac, Download here, by Stanley Weyman (Period of the League)

THE HOUSE OF THE WOLF, A Romance. Download Here — Stanley Weyman
Anne, Vicomte de Caylus, and brought to this country—if, in fact, the original ever existed in England—by one of his descendants after the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes. This Anne, we learn from other sources, was a principal figure at the Court of Henry IV., and, therefore, in August, 1572, when the adventures here related took place, he and his two younger brothers, Marie and Croisette, who shared with him the honour and the danger, must have been little more than boys. From the tone of his narrative, it appears that, in reviving old recollections, the veteran renewed his youth also, and though his story throws no fresh light upon the history of the time, it seems to possess some human interest.

COUNT HANNIBAL  A Romance Of The Court Of France Download here — Stanley Weyman France — Coligny, &c. St. Bartholomew Smith, Elder, & Co. (A romance of the Duc de Guise)

IN KING’S BYWAYS, Download here — Stanley J. Weyman

THE ABBESS OF VLAYE, Download here — Stanley J. Weyman
Set in the aftermath of King Henri IV’s conversion to Catholicism, when France still suffered the results of more than thirty years of religious civil war, Weymen …

FOR THE CAUSE, Download here — Stanley J. Weyman (Set in 1589 at the time of the death of King Henri III)

THE SNOWBALL, Download here, — Stanley J. Weyman (Set in 1602, in the reign of Henri IV)

TWO PENNILESS PRINCESSES, Download here — Charlotte M. Yonge (A romantic take on the marriages of two Scottish princesses to two European princes, in which the Dauphin Louis, later Louis XI, plays a sorry role)

THE CHAPLET OF PEARLS Download here— Charlotte M. Yonge (Set at the time of Henri II)

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