The Lais are dedicated to an unknown king, who is identified as Henry II.
The origin of the lais has been the subject of much discussion.
See Die Fabeln der Marie de France (1898), edited by Karl Warnke with the help of materials left by Eduard Mall; and Die Lais der Marie de France (2nd ed., 1900), edited by Karl Warnke, with comparative notes by Reinhold Kohler; the two works being vols.
Among other noteworthy places are Mokko-Mokko, with the old British fort Anna; Pasar Bintuhan, and Lais (Laye), the former seat of the British resident.
For an analysis of the Lais see Revue de philologie francaise, viii.
The lais of Marie de France were written in England, and the greater number of the romances composing the matiere de Bretagne seem to have passed from England to France through the medium of Anglo-Norman.
The Lais were first published in 1819 by B.
The Lais which may be definitely attributed to Marie are: Guigemar, Equitan, Le Feene, Le Bisclavret (the werewolf), Les Deux amants, Laustic, Chaitivel, Lanval, Le Chevrefeuille, Milon, Yonec and Eliduc. The other similar lays are anonymous except the Lai d'Ignaure by Renant and the Lai du cor of Robert Biket, two authors otherwise unknown.
It had originally been an assembly of lay vassals and prelates; when its composition became fixed and consisted of councillormagistrates, a certain number of these offices were necessarily occupied by laymen, and others by ecclesiastics, the conseillers lais and the conseillers clercs.
Outside the gate, apparently, was the famous Craneion, shaded by cypress trees, and near it the tombs of Lais and Diogenes, a precinct of Bellerophon and of Athena Melaenis.