Hope is central to Machaut's courtly doctrine, since it enables the lover to operate at a level of self-sufficiency whatever might be happening in the world outside his own imagination. Hope is presented as the “remede de Fortune,” the remedy for mischance, the cure for ill luck. In Machaut's works Fortune is always a negative force, in whose power the desiring subject lies unless mental efforts in forging a primary relationship with Hope place him or her beyond it. Machaut's Fortune is modeled after the traditional representation of the goddess, drawing largely on the pagan version impersonated by Lady Philosophy in Boethius' Consolation, book 2. Following the imprecations of Hope in the Remede, this chapter seeks to understand the workings of Fortune through an examination of several of her multiple presentations in Machaut's music and poetry.
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