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It tells the story of a group of pilgrims fancy word for travelers on their way to Canterbury, who engage in a tale-telling contest to pass the time. Besides watching the interactions between the characters, we get to read 24 Outline the cantebury tales the tales the pilgrims tell.
Geoffrey Chaucer likely wrote The Canterbury Tales in the late s and early s, after his retirement from life as a civil servant.
In this professional life, Chaucer was able to travel from his home in England to France and Italy. There, he not only had the chance to read Italian and French literature, but possibly, even to meet Boccaccio, whose Decameron—a collection of tales told by Italian nobility holed up in a country house to escape the plague ravaging their city—may have inspired the frame story of The Canterbury Tales.
But the risk paid off: The Canterbury Tales were still going strong when the first printers made their way to England, and William Caxton published the first printed version of The Canterbury Tales in One of the things that makes The Canterbury Tales so fun to read is the great and often, uh, grotesque detail with which the narrator describes each of the pilgrims.
We learn, for example, that the cook has a pustule on his leg that very much resembles one of the desserts he cooks For many of his portraits, Chaucer is relying on a medieval tradition of "estates satire," a collection of stereotypes about people based on what occupation they had or what social class they belonged to.
Another medieval idea his portraits draw upon is "anticlericalism," a tradition that got its start in reaction to a lot of abuses by clergy in the medieval church, but which basically became a collection of stereotypes about friars, monks, nuns, priests, and the like.
What does that say about the strength of the conclusions we draw about people based upon first impressions, or appearances? Since The Canterbury Tales is a story about a storytelling competition, many of the questions it asks are about stories: What makes for a good story? Why do we tell stories?
Why should we tell stories? As the pilgrims tell their stories, though, they turn out to be talking not just about fairytale people in far-off lands, but also about themselves and their society. This leads to a lot of conflict in a group of pilgrims formed by members of that same society, who often take offense at the versions of themselves they see portrayed in the tales.
Dare we say, a Canterbury tale? What is The Canterbury Tales: You know those movies where a new kid moves to town and has to go to a new high school, like Mean Girls?
On his first day of school, the new kid meets a friendly nerd who takes him to the cafeteria and introduces him to all the cliques that make up his new social existence: Of course, the same thing always happens in the course of those movies: Everybody is hiding something interesting.
Nobody is exactly what they first appeared to be. Well, in The Canterbury Tales, the same thing is true: The Canterbury Tales are written in a society that, to some extent, believed you could judge a book by its cover — that the physical characteristics, or the mere category of a person, might reveal something about what was on the inside.
But, as the Tales progress, these people have the chance to speak for themselves. As so often happens when you really get to know someone, what you find out in The Canterbury Tales is that people, even the ones we think we have figured out, are never one-dimensional and always worth getting to know better.The Canterbury Tales is the last of Geoffrey Chaucer's works, and he only finished 24 of an initially planned tales.
The Canterbury Tales study guide contains a biography of Geoffrey Chaucer, literature essays, a complete e-text, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary and analysis.
Summary One spring day, the Narrator of The Canterbury Tales rents a room at the Tabard Inn before he recommences his journey to Canterbury. That evening, a group of people arrive at the inn, all of whom are also going to Canterbury to receive the blessings of "the holy blissful martyr," St.
Thomas à Becket. The Host, whose name, we find out in the Prologue to the Cook’s Tale, is Harry Bailey, suggests that the group ride together and entertain one another with stories. He decides that each pilgrim will tell two stories on the way to Canterbury and two on the way back.
The Canterbury Tales A woodcut from William Caxton's second edition of The Canterbury Tales printed in Author Geoffrey Chaucer Original title Tales of Caunterbury Country England Language Middle English Publication date Text The Canterbury Tales at Wikisource The Canterbury Tales is a collection of 24 stories that runs to over 17, lines written in Middle English by Geoffrey.
Since the Canterbury Tales are a collection of poems about a group of people going on a religious pilgrimage, it would usually be assumed that the members of the group would be pious, religious, devout, and well moraled individuals.
Plot Overview General Prologue. At the Tabard Inn, a tavern in Southwark, near London, the narrator joins a company of twenty-nine pilgrims. The pilgrims, like the narrator, are traveling to the shrine of the martyr Saint Thomas Becket in Canterbury.