Charles de Coster
- Category : Writers-Fiction
- Type : MGP
- Profile : 3/5 - Martyr / Heretic
- Definition : Split - Small (62)
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Contagion 3
Belgian novelist, writing in French, who stimulated Belgian national consciousness and prepared the ground for an original native literature.
De Coster lived most of his life in poverty and obscurity and took 10 years to write his masterpiece, La Légende et les aventures héroïques, joyeuses, et glorieuses d’Ulenspiegel et de Lamme Goedzak au pays de Flandres et ailleurs (1867; The Glorious Adventures of Tyl Ulenspiegl). Freely adapting the traditional tales of the folk heroes Till Eulenspiegel (Ulenspiegel) and Lamme. De Coster imbues his characters with heroic qualities within a typically Belgian realism. First developed in Légendes flamandes (1858;Flemish Legends), his literary style is highly coloured and archaistic in the manner of Rabelais, Montaigne, and 16th-century chroniclers. With its theme of resistance against oppression, the book has been called “the Bible of Flanders” and “the breviary of freedom". It took 20 years, however, for the novel to be appreciated.
He died 7 May 1879, Brussels.