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François Rabelais: Further Reading and Internet Resources

Further Reading

Editions of the complete works of Rabelais

Rabelais, François. Editor, Mireille Huchon, with the collaboration of François Moreau. Paris: Gallimard, c1994. (Pléïade edition)

Rabelais, François. Œuvres complètes. Editor, Pierre Jourda, with a new bibliography by Christiane Lauvergnat-Gagnière. Paris : Garnier, 1991.

Rabelais, François. Les Cinq livres. Editors, Jean Céard, Gérard Defaux, and Michel Simonin. Livre de Poche, 1994.


English translation

Rabelais, François. The Complete Works. Trans. By Donald Frame, with an introduction by Ray LaCharité. Berkeley: U of California Press, 1991.

Bibliography of all early editions of Rabelais’ works

Rawles, Stephen, and Michael Screech. A new Rabelais bibliography : editions of Rabelais before 1626. Geneva: Droz, 1987.

About Rabelais and his books

Bakhtin, Mikhail. Rabelais and His World. Trans. Hélène Iswolsky. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1968.

Bowen, Barbara C. Enter Rabelais, Laughing. Nashville, TN: Vanderbilt University Press, 1998.

Duval, Edwin M. The Design of Rabelais’s Pantagruel. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1991. The Design of Rabelais’s Tiers Livre de Pantagruel. Geneva: Droz, 1997. The Design of Rabelais’s Quart Livre de Pantagruel. Geneva: Droz, 1998.

Gray, Floyd. Rabelais et le comique du discontinu. Paris: Honoré Champion, 1994.

Greene, Thomas. Rabelais: A Study in Comic Courage. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, [1970].

Jeanneret, Michel. Le défi des signes. Rabelais et la crise de l’interprétation à la Renaissance. Orléans-Caen: Paradigme, 1994.

Rigolot, François. Les langages de Rabelais. Geneva: Droz, 1996.

Screech, Michael. Rabelais. London: Duckworth, 1979.

Zegura, Elizabeth Chesney, ed. The Rabelais Encyclopedia. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 2004.

The works cited above reflect some of the many different scholarly approaches to Rabelais and provide bibliographical references for additional study. This short list conveys only a small sample, however, of the depth and variety of studies devoted to Rabelais and his books.

Note: Two extensive bibliographies of Rabelais studies, prepared for the Agrégation de lettres by Jean Céard and Marie-Claire Thomine, are available on the website of the Société Française D’Etude du Seizième Siècle (SFDES):



Internet Resources for Readers of Rabelais

(including electronic texts, digital facsimiles, and biographical material)

Rabelais et la Renaissance: excellent French site with biography, extensive background information, summaries and commentary for each book, and a “petit glossaire rabelaisien”

Clear, concise dossier pédagogique on the website of the French national library. The dossier presents basic biographical information and an overview of Rabelais’s works and key concepts encountered in them.

Rabelais à haute voix: Excellent audio recordings of selections from each of the first four books, in mp3 file format that is easily downloaded.


Recording (mp3) of Ch. LV (“Comment en haulte mer Pantagruel ouyt diverses parolles degelees”) and LVI (“Comment entre les parolles gelees Pantagruel trouva les motz de hueule”) of the Quart Livre. The recorded text, nearly identical to the 1552 text of the Gordon Collection volume, corresponds to file numbers 0281_R6v through 0287_S1v in the digital facsimile of Gordon 1552.R26, available at Open the facsimile and the recording in different windows to listen to the recording while following along in the corresponding text.

Website of the Société Française D’Etude du Seizième Siècle (SFDES): Includes two extensive bibliographies of Rabelais studies, prepared for the French Agrégation de lettres by Jean Céard and Marie-Claire Thomine.

RABELAIS ET SON TEMPS: presents numerous illustrations (reproductions of book pages) relevant to Rabelais’s books and his era. The site also includes links to statistical lexical studies of Rabelais’s books:

Works by Rabelais in image format on other websites

The catalogue of the Bibliothèque virtuelles humanistes includes two works by Rabelais in high-quality image format with accompanying bibliographical notices.

- Les oeuvres de M. Francois Rabelais. A Lyon., 1564.   
- Tiers livre des faictz et dictz heroïques du noble Pantagruel. A Paris : Par Chrestien Wechel, 1546.

Transcriptions of Rabelais’s books available online

Transcription of Pantagruel (Athena), based on text of the editio princeps of 1532, with additions noted from the 1533 edition.

Transcription of the Pantagrueline Prognostication (Athena).

Transcription of the Pantagrueline prognostication (1535), by François Bon (same as the transcription available on the Athena site).

Transcription of Gargantua (Athena), based on the text of the editio princeps of 1534, with corrections from the 1535 edition published by François Juste.

Transcription of Gargantua (ABU), from the Garnier Edition (published in the late nineteenth century), which was based on the edition published by François Juste in 1542 (the last edition reviewed by Rabelais himself).

Transcription of the Tiers-Livre (Athena), based on the edition published by Michel Fezandat in1552.

Transcription of the Quart-Livre (Athena), based on the microfilm of the Michel Fezendat edition of 1552.

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