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Download Gargantua and Pantagruel by François Rabelais in EPUB Format for Free

Gargantua and Pantagruel: A Classic French Satire in EPUB Format

If you are looking for a hilarious, witty, and outrageous read, you might want to check out Gargantua and Pantagruel, a series of five novels written by François Rabelais in the 16th century. This masterpiece of French literature is considered one of the earliest examples of satire, as well as a precursor of the modern novel. In this article, we will explore what makes Gargantua and Pantagruel so special, and how you can download and enjoy it in EPUB format.

gargantua et pantagruel epub files

The Author and His Times: Who was François Rabelais and what was his influence?

François Rabelais was a Renaissance man in every sense of the word. He was a monk, a doctor, a lawyer, a humanist, a scholar, a writer, and a lover of life. He lived in France during a turbulent period marked by religious wars, political conflicts, social changes, and intellectual discoveries. He was influenced by the classics of Greek and Roman literature, as well as by the works of contemporary writers such as Erasmus, Montaigne, and Boccaccio. He was also a friend of many prominent figures of his time, such as King Francis I, Cardinal du Bellay, and Marguerite de Navarre.

Rabelais used his vast knowledge and his sharp wit to create Gargantua and Pantagruel, a series of novels that mock the vices and follies of his society. He criticized the corruption of the church, the ignorance of the scholars, the tyranny of the nobles, the superstition of the people, and the hypocrisy of the moralists. He also celebrated the values of humanism, such as curiosity, freedom, tolerance, education, and joy. He did so with a remarkable inventiveness and originality that earned him both admiration and condemnation from his contemporaries.

The Plot and The Characters: What are the main events and themes of the five books?

The first book of Gargantua and Pantagruel tells the story of Gargantua, a giant who is born after his mother eats too much tripe. He grows up to be a strong and brave warrior who fights against his enemies with his huge club. He also becomes a wise king who reforms his kingdom according to humanist principles. He builds an ideal city called Thélème where people live in harmony without laws or constraints.

The second book introduces Pantagruel, the son of Gargantua who is even bigger than his father. He travels across Europe and Asia with his loyal companions: Panurge, a cunning trickster; Friar John, a jovial monk; Epistemon, a learned scholar; Carpalim, a swift runner; Eusthenes, a strong wrestler; Gymnaste, a skilled fighter; Rhizotome, a root-cutter; Xenomanes, a traveler; Herr Trippa, a fortune-teller; Epistemon's wife Badebec, and Pantagruel's horse Bourdon. They encounter many strange and wonderful creatures, such as the Chitterlings, the Limousin, the Papimanes, the Dipsodes, the Furred Law-Cats, the Sheep of Panurge, the Lanterns, the Macreons, the Andouilles, the Agelastes, and the Cocatrix.

The third book focuses on Panurge's dilemma: whether he should marry or not. He asks for advice from various sources, such as astrology, divination, dreams, oracles, and sibyls. He also consults with famous figures of history and mythology, such as Socrates, Cato, Virgil, Helen of Troy, Ulysses, and Merlin. However, he is never satisfied with the answers he receives and remains undecided.

The fourth book follows Pantagruel and his friends as they embark on a sea voyage to find the Oracle of the Bottle, which is supposed to give Panurge a definitive answer about his marriage. They sail through many islands and lands, such as the Island of Alliances, the Island of Tools, the Island of Tohu-Bohu, the Island of Ruach, the Island of Medamothi, the Island of Wild Women, the Island of Lanterns, the Island of Odes, the Island of Papimania, the Island of Chaneph, the Island of Ganabin, the Island of Tapinois, the Island of Quaresme-Prenant, the Island of Macreons, the Island of Procuration, the Island of Wild Men, the Island of Satin, the Island of Engastrimythes, the Island of Cheli, the Island of Ennasin, and finally the Island of Bacbuc where they meet the Oracle.

The fifth book continues the adventures of Pantagruel and his friends in their quest for the Oracle. They visit more islands and lands, such as the Ringing Island, the Dainty Island, the Furred Cats' Island, the Hearsay Island, the Quintessential Island, the Essaying Island, the Whimsical Island, the Cosmographers' Island, the Frozen Sea, the Land of Satin, and finally Thalasse where they find the Temple of the Bottle. There they learn that the Oracle's answer is simply "Trinc", which means "Drink" in Rabelais' invented language.

The Style and The Humor: How does Rabelais use language, imagery, and allegory to create comedy?

One of the most remarkable aspects of Gargantua and Pantagruel is Rabelais' use of language. He mixes different registers and genres, such as high and low, prose and verse, Latin and French, serious and comic. He invents new words and expressions, such as "panurge", "pantagruelian", "gargantuan", "rabelaisian", "trinc", "do what thou wilt", "drink to me only with thine eyes", "make water like a cow", "break wind backwards", "by my beard", "by my faith", "by my troth", etc. He also plays with puns, anagrams, acronyms, alliterations, rhymes, metaphors, similes, hyperboles, euphemisms, oxymorons and other rhetorical devices.

Rabelais also uses imagery and allegory to create comedy. He describes in great detail the physical features and actions of his characters and their surroundings such as their size their appetite their clothing their weapons their battles their wounds their excrement their urine their sexual organs their sexual activities etc. He also uses these elements to convey deeper meanings and messages about human nature society religion politics philosophy etc. For example Gargantua's birth symbolizes the emergence of a new humanism from the old medieval order; Pantagruel's name means "all-thirsty" which reflects his quest for knowledge; Panurge's name means "all-fearful" which reflects his insecurity; Friar John's name means "God's grace" which reflects his generosity; Thélème means "will" which reflects Gargantua's ideal city where people are free to do what they want; etc.

The Legacy and The Adaptations: How has Gargantua and Pantagruel influenced literature art and culture?

Gargantua and Pantagruel has had a lasting impact on literature art and culture. It has inspired many writers who have admired its style its humor its imagination , Jonathan Swift who wrote Gulliver's Travels, Voltaire who wrote Candide, Laurence Sterne who wrote Tristram Shandy, Mark Twain who wrote The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Lewis Carroll who wrote Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass, James Joyce who wrote Ulysses, Salman Rushdie who wrote The Satanic Verses, and many others.

Gargantua and Pantagruel has also influenced art and culture in various ways. It has been adapted into plays, operas, musicals, films, cartoons, comics, video games, and other media. Some examples are Honoré Daumier's lithographs, Gustave Doré's illustrations, Alfred Jarry's play Ubu Roi, Jacques Offenbach's opera Boule de Neige, Jean-Luc Godard's film Week End, René Goscinny and Albert Uderzo's comic series Asterix, Terry Gilliam's film The Adventures of Baron Munchausen, and many others.

Gargantua and Pantagruel has also become a part of popular culture and language. It has given rise to many expressions and references, such as "gargantuan", "pantagruelian", "rabelaisian", "do what thou wilt", "drink to me only with thine eyes", "by my beard", "by my faith", "by my troth", etc. It has also inspired many names and places, such as Gargantua Bay in Canada, Pantagruel Island in Antarctica, Rabelais University in France, Thélème Abbey in Italy, etc.

Conclusion: How to download and enjoy Gargantua and Pantagruel in EPUB format?

If you are interested in reading Gargantua and Pantagruel, you can download it for free in EPUB format from various websites, such as Project Gutenberg, Feedbooks, ManyBooks, etc. EPUB is a popular and widely supported format for digital books that can be read on various devices, such as computers, tablets, smartphones, e-readers, etc. You can also use online converters to change the format to PDF, MOBI, TXT, HTML, etc. if you prefer.

Once you have downloaded the file, you can open it with any EPUB reader app or software that you have installed on your device. Some examples are Calibre, Adobe Digital Editions, iBooks, Google Play Books, Kindle App, etc. You can also use online EPUB readers that work on any browser without installation or registration. Some examples are EPUBReader, MagicScroll, Readium Cloud Reader etc.

Now you are ready to enjoy Gargantua and Pantagruel in EPUB format. You can read it at your own pace adjust the font size color and layout bookmark your favorite pages highlight important passages add notes and share your thoughts with others. You can also explore the rich annotations links images and audio that some editions offer to enhance your reading experience.

We hope this article has given you a good overview of Gargantua and Pantagruel

its author its plot its style its humor its legacy and its adaptations. We also hope it has inspired you to download and enjoy this classic French satire in EPUB format. Happy reading!


  • What is the genre of Gargantua and Pantagruel?

  • Gargantua and Pantagruel is a satire that mocks the vices and follies of human society with humor and exaggeration. It is also a picaresque novel that follows the adventures of a hero (or anti-hero) who travels through various places and meets various people.

  • What is the language of Gargantua and Pantagruel?

  • Gargantua and Pantagruel is written in French, but it also includes many words and phrases from other languages, such as Latin, Greek, Italian, Spanish, German, English, etc. It also invents many new words and expressions that have become part of the French language and culture.

  • What is the message of Gargantua and Pantagruel?

  • Gargantua and Pantagruel has many messages and meanings that can be interpreted in different ways. Some of the main themes are humanism, freedom, education, curiosity, tolerance, joy, etc. It also challenges the authority and dogmatism of the church, the state, the scholars, the moralists, etc.

  • What is the best edition of Gargantua and Pantagruel?

  • There are many editions of Gargantua and Pantagruel that vary in terms of translation, annotation, illustration, etc. Some of the most popular and acclaimed editions are by M.A. Screech, Burton Raffel, Donald Frame, Samuel Putnam etc.

  • What is the best adaptation of Gargantua and Pantagruel?

  • There are many adaptations of Gargantua and Pantagruel that vary in terms of medium, style, fidelity, etc. Some of the most popular and acclaimed adaptations are by Honoré Daumier Gustave Doré Alfred Jarry Jacques Offenbach Jean-Luc Godard René Goscinny and Albert Uderzo Terry Gilliam etc.


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