Canterbury Tales (selected)

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Barron's Educational Series, 1970 - Literary Criticism - 530 pages
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Begun soon after 1386 and written during several years that followed, Geoffrey Chaucer's great narrative poem The Canterbury Tales presents a richly detailed, highly entertaining, and sometimes bawdy picture of English society in the fourteenth century. Rich with humorous insights into the many foibles of humanity, this poem is considered by most literary critics and scholars to be the first great example of literary art written in vernacular English. Its narrative opens as a party of 30 men and women from various walks of life gather at the Tabard Inn in London, from where they set out on a holy pilgrimage to Canterbury and its shrine dedicated to Thomas Becket. As they travel, each person has a story to tell.

The most famous and beloved of Chaucer's stories are presented in interlinear form this intensely readable volume. Alternating each of Chaucer's original lines with its translation into modern English, this book encourages readers to savor the genius of Chaucer's original poetry while following each line with an easy-to-understand modern translation of his Southeast Midlands dialect of Middle English. This scholarly yet truly approachable translation of Chaucer's original poem is the work of Vincent F. Hopper, a longtime professor of English literature at New York University. He opens with the famous Prologue--

Whan that Aprille with his shoures sote
When April with his showers sweet
The droghte of Marche hath perced to the rote,
The drought of March has pierced to the root

--and then goes on to present
  • The Miller's Tale
  • The Reeve's Tale
  • The Prioress's Tale
  • The Nun's Priest's Tale
  • The Pardoner's Tale
  • The Wife of Bath's Tale
  • The Franklin's Tale . . . and more.
    This fine volume also includes an enlightening introductory essay on Chaucer's art, with Professor Hopper's commentary on England as it existed in the fourteenth century. He concludes with a short list of recommended reading on Chaucer's time and his art.

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Contents

The Knights Tale
55
The Millers Prologue
197
The Reeves Prologue
246
The Prioresss Prologue
277
The Nuns Priests Prologue
297
The Nuns Priests Epilogue
341
The Wife of Baths Prologue
384
The Wife of Baths Tale
438
The Franklins Tale
466
Notes
523
Copyright

Common terms and phrases

References from web pages

Jane Zatta's CHAUCER site
With Prof. Jane Zatta's passing, her CHAUCER site has been moved so that it might be preserved in recognition of her contributions to Chaucer and Middle ...
www.siue.edu/ CHAUCER/

The Canterbury Tales - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Canterbury Tales is a collection of stories written by Geoffrey Chaucer in the 14th century (two of them in prose, the rest in verse). ...
en.wikipedia.org/ wiki/ Canterbury_Tales

Geoffrey Chaucer (c.1343-1400)
Geoffrey Chaucer, father of English Literature. Quotes, biography, works, articles, and links to additional resources
www.luminarium.org/ medlit/ chaucer.htm

Jane Zatta's Chaucer Web Site Index
Extensive background on each tale plus links to other resources
www.unc.edu/ depts/ chaucer/ zatta/ Zatta_Index.html

Full text and plot summary of The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer
Bibliomania e-text and plot summary: The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer.
www.bibliomania.com/ 0/ 2/ 14/ 24/

The Canterbury Tales Project
In this talk, we will outline the aims of the Canterbury Tales Project, say something of the methods we are using to achieve these aims, and reflect on the ...
www.ucalgary.ca/ ~scriptor/ chaucer/ rob.html

The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer - Read Print
The Canterbury Tales, Bookmark The Canterbury Tales for future reference. ... Select from the table of contents below to start reading The Canterbury Tales. ...
www.readprint.com/ work-186/ Geoffrey-Chaucer

Glencoe Literature: Literature Library - The Canterbury Tales
In The Canterbury Tales, a band of men and women meets at an inn to begin a pilgrimage to the shrine of Thomas Becket. The inn's host suggests that they ...
www.glencoe.com/ sec/ literature/ litlibrary/ canterbury.html

The Canterbury Tales Summary and Analysis
The Canterbury Tales summary with 762 pages of encyclopedia entries, essays, summaries, research information, and more.
www.bookrags.com/ The_Canterbury_Tales

Chaucer's Canterbury Tales ~ presented by ELF
Welcome to the ELF Edition of the Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer. This site features two full editions of the Canterbury Tales online: the original ...
www.canterburytales.org/ canterbury_tales.html

About the author (1970)

Geoffrey Chaucer, one of England's greatest poets, was born in London about 1340, the son of a wine merchant and deputy to the king's butler and his wife Agnes. Not much is known of Chaucer's early life and education, other than he learned to read French, Latin, and Italian. His experiences as a civil servant and diplomat are said to have developed his fascination with people and his knowledge of English life. In 1359-1360 Chaucer traveled with King Edward III's army to France during the Hundred Years' War and was captured in Ardennes. He returned to England after the Treaty of Bretigny when the King paid his ransom. In 1366 he married Philippa Roet, one of Queen Philippa's ladies, who gave him two sons and two daughters. Chaucer remained in royal service traveling to Flanders, Italy, and Spain. These travels would all have a great influence on his work. His early writing was influenced by the French tradition of courtly love poetry, and his later work by the Italians, especially Dante, Boccaccio, and Petrarch. Chaucer wrote in Middle English, the form of English used from 1100 to about 1485. He is given the designation of the first English poet to use rhymed couplets in iambic pentameter and to compose successfully in the vernacular. Chaucer's Canterbury Tales is a collection of humorous, bawdy, and poignant stories told by a group of fictional pilgrims traveling to the shrine of St. Thomas a Becket. It is considered to be among the masterpieces of literature. His works also include The Book of the Duchess, inspired by the death of John Gaunt's first wife; House of Fame, The Parliament of Fowls, and The Legend of Good Women. Troilus and Criseyde, adapted from a love story by Boccaccio, is one of his greatest poems apart from The Canterbury Tales. Chaucer died in London on October 25, 1400. He was buried in Westminster Abbey, in what is now called Poet's Corner.

Vincent F. Hopper was for many years Professor of English at New York University.

Bibliographic information