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From the Paperback edition.
An illustrated retelling of Geoffrey Chaucer's famous work in which a group of pilgrims in fourteenth-century England tell each other stories as they travel on a pilgrimage to the cathedral at Canterbury.
"McCaughrean's accomplished prose version of the medieval classic retains the basic plot and humor of Chaucer's original poem. Colorful detailed illustrations accompany an accessible introduction to the medieval masterpiece."--The Horn Book Guide
From the Paperback edition.
General Prologue 1
The Knight's Tale 26
The Miller's Prologue 85
The Miller's Tale 88
The Steward's Prologue [The Reeve's Prologue] 105
The Steward's Tale [The Reeve's Tale] 107
The Cook's Prologue 118
The Cook's Tale 120
Introductory Words to the Man of Law's Tale 122
Prologue to the Man of Law's Tale 125
The Man of Law's Tale 127
Epilogue to the Man of Law's Tale [of disputed authenticity] 158
The Wife of Bath's Prologue 159
The Wife of Bath's Tale 182
The Friar's Prologue 193
The Friar's Tale 195
The Summoner's Prologue 205
The Summoner's Tale 207
The Cleric's Prologue 223
The Cleric's Tale 225
Chaucer's Happy Song 258
The Merchant's Prologue 260
The Merchant's Tale 262
Epilogue to the Merchant's Tale 292
Introduction to the Squire's Tale 293
The Squire's Tale [unfinished] 294
The Landowner's Prologue [The Frat/Hitts Prologue] 313
The Landowner's Tale [The Franklin's Tale] 314
The Physician's Tale 337
Introduction to the Pardon Peddler's Tale [Introduction to the Pardoner's Tale] 345
The Pardon Peddler's Prologue [The Pardoner's Prologue] 347
The Pardon Peddler's Tale [The Pardoner's Tale] 351
The Shipman's Tale 365
The Host's Merry Words to the Shipman and the Prioress 377
Prologue to the Prioress's Tale 378
The Prioress's Tale 380
Prologue to Sir Thopas 387
Sir Thopas 388
The Host Stops Chaucer's Narration 395
The Tale of Melibee 397
The Prologue of the Monk's Tale 431
The Monk's Tale: De Castbus Virorum lllustrium [The Fall or Illustrious Men] 434
The Prologue of the Nun's Priest's Tale 457
The Nun's Priest's Tale of Cock and Hen
Chauntecleer and Pertelote 459
Epilogue to the Nun's Priest'sTale 475
The Second Nun's Prologue 476
Prayer to the Virgin Mary 478
The Second Nun's Tale 481
Prologue of the Cleric-Magician's Servant [The Canon's Yeoman's Prologue] 495
Tale of the Cleric-Magician's Servant [The Canon's Yeoman's Tale] 500
The Provisioner's Prologue [The Manciple's Prologue] 520
The Provisioner's Tale [The Manciple's Tale] 523
The Parson's Prologue 530
The Parson's Tale 533
Here the Maker of This Book Takes His Leave 597
Posted October 9, 2008
I Also Recommend:
I got an advance copy of this and have read the first few tales -- what an amazing translation. It's accessible and will be perfect for classroom studies or just catching up on a classic.
9 out of 12 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 15, 2009
Writing a "review" of The Canterbury Tales is difficult, not because the book/collection isn't worthy of a review, but because it is so widely variant and has so many nuances to be discussed.
So what do you say in a brief review of The Canterbury Tales?
To start with, I would suggest you try reading it in the original Middle English. The language/spelling/pronunciation can be a problem, so be sure you get an edition that's glossed (unless you're proficient in Middle English). During the semester, I found a "children's" edition of the tales at my local library. It included Modern English "translations" of a couple of the tales along with some illustrations. It was kind of fun to read, but it lost some of the rhythm and drive of the tales by having them in a modern format.
The writing is fun and clever (once you get through the 'translation' issues with the Middle English). For a common reference, it's like reading Shakespeare, only more archaic by a couple hundred years. The language of the narrative varies depending on the narrator of the particular prologue/tale, but with Chaucer at the helm behind the scenes, the writing is generally very good, descriptive, layered, humorous, inspiring, etc. (except for when he's trying to illustrate 'bad writing', and then it's good in that it's so bad).
The messages presented are widely varied as well. The Knight's Tale was an intriguing tale of romance and chivalry with lots of courtly intrigue...but at times it felt a little dry. The Miller and the Reeve were hilarious tales and introduced me to a new (to me) genre in the fabliau. The Wife of Bath had an interesting prologue and a fun tale, again with a semi-romantic style and an interesting moral. The Nun's Priest gave us a fun little animal fable. The Prioress presented a strange little tale about miracles or anti-semitism or devout love or something else?
Overall, I would definitely recommend having a copy of The Canterbury Tales on your shelf. Some tales are easier to read than others. Some tales are more fun while others are more thought provoking (as stated in one of the prologues, a tale has one of two purposes, to educate or to entertain...and there are examples of each). Once you get your teeth into the language (probably the biggest hurdle) I suspect you'll enjoy these.
8 out of 11 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 26, 2009
Posted December 3, 2008
I read this book in my senior year of high school, quite honestly this book would go right over most people's heads(including me at first). The book was written in the 14th century so its understandable that the book's concepts are hard to grasp.But all an all I actually like the Canterbury tales once I re-read them and understood it better. This book takes time to really understand, however some people might right away but you should give it a chance, if you really want to read up on some great 14 century literature.
5 out of 7 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted December 22, 2012
All translations are NOT created equal. I am brushing up on Chaucer for a credit-by-exam option for my degree and wanted to make sure I was working off of the same translation as the professor. The translation he desired was Nevill Coghill's, Penguin's translation. That is the paperback version listed on the page. That is what I wanted. That is what I needed.
When I saw that there was a nook version available in that edition I was ecstatic. Often it is difficult to find correct translations for many of my texts. I immediately previewed the version to double check and noticed, to my disgust, that the nook book version is just the B&N edition, NOT the penguin translation by Coghill. This is NOT clear on the page as the nook book is listed as an equivalent for the Penguin edition. I then also noticed that the "overview" section is also praising a different translator, not Coghill. As someone who is actually concerned about using accurate translations for academic purposes this is a problem. Varying editions of Chaucer can be VERY different. For example, I have a Bantam Classics, side-by-side translation that omits a number of the tales. Other translations change words and syntax to the point that it is unrecognizable and loses all of Chaucer's distinct tone. For people who actually read these classics for academics, it is a shame and a disgrace that a reputed bookseller would be careless enough to not pay credit to the correct translation and understand that there ARE in fact differences.
3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted April 26, 2011
there are so many publications of this book in so many formats and translations that the b&n strategy of compositing data from all publications of the same name makes the site totally useless with regard to this kind of book. is it a side by side translation, annotated, something else? who knows. is it the translation by Hastings, Raffel, Wright, Ecker & Crook, Reeve & Shipman, or some one else? who knows!? they're all referenced! is it the complete tales or a selection of a few? it could be either according to the information presented by this site! b&n need to fix this bad.
3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted April 17, 2012
I still prefer Coghill's translstion, bit Raffel's is a very close second.
Many of the reviews here seem to be of a translation other than Raffel's. For example, some reviewers allude to a Middle English version. This indicates thst they are not reviewing Raffel's version.
Perhaps B&N can sort this out. It id not only confusing but results in inaccurate reviews.
2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 9, 2008
Simply, this is a book recording the tales that people told one another during a pilgrimage from one place to another. It is very entertaining and a book that should be read by all.
2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted December 17, 2011
Posted January 14, 2011
I really don't recommend the Canterbury Tales at all. Of all eight tales, only four were "appropriate" and of those four, I liked two, The Knight's Tale and The Pardoner. These stories were bizarre and bad. I read a couple of pages into a tale, didn't like where it was going at all, and then skipped to the next one, not because I don't like reading or I'm lazy, but it just started going in a bad direction. I didn't read to see how those tales ended because I didn't want to know.
Even if they were "clean," some were just too creepy. Another thing I didn't like was one of the because towards the end was just too long. This may sound stupid but, it just dragged it out. I don't if you ever read a book like that, but it's almost painful. I could kind of compare this tale to an Aesop's Fable, because it had a moral and the main characters were mostly animals, but the story just felt kind of dragged out by the end. I just kept thinking, "When is this going to end?" Usually I don't mind descriptiveness, but in The Nun's Priest's Tale, it was just a little too much.
Also there was references to the Bible, then to Roman Gods, and then to Troy, which if I remember right, involved Greek Gods, which was altogether confusing. It was like there were several religions mixed in here, in a way where it seemed that everyone was of the same religion that involved many religions.
There was some positive things though. As I mentioned above, Chaucer was very descriptive, which wasn't always a bad thing. In The Knight's Tale, it was very easy to envision in my mind. The begging was very slow, but it got better as I got in. I actually really did enjoy this story, even though it made me a little sad, and if it weren't for a couple other tales included in this book, it would probably have a lot higher ratings, at least from me.
But sadly, there are other tales then The Knight's Tale, so I really wouldn't recommend this book. If you do read it, just read the beginning and the end tales. It's in the format of short stories, so all you would need to read is the prologue, which is fine. He goes into great detail here about what the characters are wearing, but it's just to give you a good idea of what they look like and what their character is like. Here though, I thought that he made the characters almost to what they weren't. They seemed a little too perfect and their tales didn't really match up to how he described and praised them.
In conclusion, I wouldn't recommend this book, sadly, and if you do, be careful, because like I said before, I didn't like where some of those tales were going. Sadly I did not like The Canterbury Tales.
1 out of 5 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 29, 2014
Posted March 17, 2014
Posted February 18, 2014
Posted October 5, 2011
Posted September 26, 2011
I really had to laugh when I read the review ( Lauren's?) that said the individual tales were "too long." People need to get some perspective. Back in those days there was no TV, no computers, no video games not even a Nook. Many of the poems were looonng--think Dante'sInferno! People didn't have all the time wasters that we do. Plus these things were not purely recreational--time was too important so there was a moral also. Think of it as a different culture-- because it was!
0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 28, 2011
i loved it when i was in highschool and i love it now :) chaucer does a great job in hiding morals within his stories and you can tell who he likes to write about and who he doesnt. i dont care what others say. you have to read all of the stories. its a great read and i highly recomend it.
0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 20, 2011
Okay I dont know what Lauren Hall is talking about because Chaucer does an excellent job in writing this work of literature. Chaucer describes the characters in a way that they would be seen back in thise days but he also points out that their appearance does not always match up with the reality if their character. Chaucer is criticizing the people of 'power' in his tike period and he does so very comedically. So readers, do not just take advice from a person who knows nothing about literature (cough Lauren cough), read it yourselves!!! You will be glad you did!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 6, 2010
Posted January 30, 2010
This is an absolutely wonderful poetry version of the Tales. It may not be as precise as other, older versions, but it breathes new life into the book. It is by far my favorite version.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 19, 2007
As a high school student who was forced to read this, I initially did not look forward to reading the book, but the humor that Chaucer displays and the fantastic weaving of the stories is incredible. I recommend this book to everyone.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.