Francois Rabelais is now universally acknowledged to be one of the world's great writers, the peer of Aristophanes, Cervantes, and the Shakespeare who gave us Falstaff. He is also the creator of a literature embodying the breath an spirit of the Renaissance era, with its boundless thirst for new, wider horizons, for human freedom and the good life for all. He was the first great and truly popular writer of modern times. It is only today, in this age of Freud, Joyce, and Proust, the subconscious and the dream, that we are beginning to appreciate his proper worth as writer and artist, and as a man of the modern world.
The four books of Gargantua and Pantagruel are included in this volume; the only omissions are some of the archaic obscure, and least "Rabelaisian" portions. In effect, the whole great work is here, with most of the text intact and with continuity supplied for the omitted passages. Samuel Putnam's translation is smooth and lively and his introduction provides a wealth of material about Rabelais and his times.
"Any American who desires an initiation into Rabelais or a renewal of acquaintance will find the material abundant." - Horatio Smith, The New York Times Book Review
"Putnam's translation is mature, clear, extremely readable. Far from covering up the lusty side of Rabelais he presents it in the light of realism." - Will Davidson, Chicago Sunday Tribune [via]