Friday, November 2, 2012


Meaning: Cotgrave:  
a slovenlie fellow, one that usually weares his hose ungartered, and shooes untyed; also, the name of a famous foole belonging to King Francis the first; and thence, any fop, cokes, ridiculous ninniehammer, or laughing-stocke.
Triboulet was indeed a fool to Francis I, not to mention Louis XII. As well as this derogatory French term, he was apparently an inspiration for Rigoletto .

Usefulness: 1 (of myself, mainly, although technically I think that would make me a triboulette)

Logofascination: 2 (I admit to cheating here, and picking up a French word rarely used in English - wiktionary lists it, but not the OED.)

In the wild: nope, but there are plenty of academics writing about his appearance in Rabelais.

Degrees: 1

Connections: n/a

Which is used in: G&P, Third Book, XXXVIII: How Triboulet is set forth and blazed by Pantagruel and Panurge. As advertised, Pantagruel and Panurge spend the chapter praising Triboulet, in one of several chapters throughout G&P in which long lists of adjectives are applied to the same word - fool, in this case.  Sir Thomas particularly enjoyed these chapters, generally making them significantly longer than the original. In concluding their blazing of Triboulet, Pantagruel says:
If there was any reason why at Rome the Quirinal holiday of old was called the Feast of Fools, I know not why we may not for the like cause institute in France the Tribouletic Festivals, to be celebrated and solemnized over all the land.
Speaking of holidays, I am embracing the Melbourne tradition of extending one horse race into as long a vacation as possible, so posting over the next few days will be intermittent to non-existent, depending on my internet connection, motivation, and temulentiousness.

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