The Canterbury Tales depicts a storytelling competition between pilgrims drawn from all ranks of society. The tales are as various as the pilgrims themselves, encompassing comedy, pathos, tragedy, and cynicism. The Miller and the Reeve express their mutual antagonism in a pair of comic stories combining sex and trickery; in “The Shipman’s Tale,” a wife sells her favors to a monk. Others draw on courtly romance and fantasy: the Knight tells of rivals competing for the love of the same woman, and the Squire describes a princess who can speak to birds. In these twenty-four tales, Chaucer displays a dazzling range of literary styles and conjures up a wonderfully vivid picture of medieval life.
This is a freshly established Middle English text with standardized spelling and punctuation and on-page glossing. It Features an introduction by Jill Mann, a chronology of Chaucer's life and works, detailed explanatory notes, suggestions for further reading, a full glossary, and a bibliography.
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About the Author
In 1386 Chaucer was member of parliament for Kent, but in the same year he resigned his customs post, although in 1389 he was appointed Clerk of the King's Works (resigning in 1391). After finishing Troilus and his translation into English prose of Boethius' De consolatione philosophiae, Chaucer started his Legend of Good Women. In the 1390s he worked on his most ambitious project, The Canterbury Tales, which remained unfinished at his death. In 1399 Chaucer leased a house in the precincts of Westminster Abbey but died in 1400 and was buried in the Abbey.
Jill Mann is a fellow of the British Academy, an Honorary Fellow of St. Anne’s College, Oxford, and a Life Fellow of Girton College, Cambridge.
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The Knight’s Tale
Excerpted from "The Canterbury Tales"
Copyright © 2005 Geoffrey Chaucer.
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Table of ContentsThe Canterbury TalesAcknowledgments
A Note on the Tect
Abbreviations of the Canterbury Tales
The Canterbury Tales
Fragment I (Group A)
The General Prologue
The Knight's Tale
The Miller's Prologue and Tale
The Reeve's Prologue and Tale
The Cook's Prologue and Tale
Fragment II (Group B)
The Man of Law's Prologue, Tale and Epilogue
Fragment III (Group D)
The Wife of Bath's Prologue and Tale
The Friar's Prologue and Tale
The Summoner's Prologue and Tale
Fragment IV (Group E)
The Clerk's Prologue and Tale
The Merchant's Prologue, Tale and Epilogue
Fragment V (Group F)
The Squire's Prologue and Tale
The Squire-Franklin Link, the Franklin's Prologue and Tale
Fragment VI (Group C)
The Physician's Tale
The Physicia-Pardoner Link, The Pardoner's Prologue and Tale
Fragment VII (Group B)
The Shipman's Tale
The Shipman-Prioress Link, The Prioress's Prologue and Tale
The Prioress-Sir Thopas Link and Sir Thopas
The Thopas-Melibee Link and the Tale of Melibee
The Monk's Prologue and Tale
The Nun's Priest's Prologue, Tale and Epilogue
Fragment VIII (Group G)
The Second Nun's Prologue and Tale
The Canon's Yeoman's Prologue and Tale
Fragment IX (Group H)
The Manciple's Prologue and Tale
Fragment X (Group I)
The Parson's Prologue and Tale