Chaucer and the Canterbury Tales: A Short Introduction by John C. Hirsh

By John C. Hirsh

This concise and full of life survey introduces scholars with out previous wisdom to Chaucer, and especially to The Canterbury Tales. offers crucial proof approximately Chaucer, in addition to a framework for wondering his poetry. Encourages an engaged studying of The Canterbury Tales. Introduces scholars to the historic and spiritual history had to comprehend the contexts within which Chaucer wrote.

  • Provides crucial evidence approximately Chaucer, in addition to a framework for puzzling over his poetry.
  • Encourages an engaged examining of The Canterbury Tales.
  • Introduces scholars to the historic and non secular historical past had to comprehend the contexts during which Chaucer wrote.

Chapter 1 Who used to be Geoffrey Chaucer? (pages 1–28):
Chapter 2 Gender and faith, Race and sophistication (pages 29–41):
Chapter three Others (pages 42–62):
Chapter four Love (pages 63–81):
Chapter five God (pages 82–101):
Chapter 6 Visions of Chaucer (pages 102–112):
Chapter 7 demise (pages 113–131):
Chapter eight end (pages 132–133):
Chapter nine Which story was once That? A precis of the Canterbury stories (pages 134–151):

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Example text

But however deep his personal or professional attachment to Richard may have been, Chaucer was never in any danger under the new regime. Quite apart from his age, quite apart from his established reputation for public duty and for English poetry, quite apart even from his connection, through his wife, to the Lancastrian cause, there was also the unassailable fact that for many years Chaucer himself had been associated, as a supporter and more importantly as a client, with John of Gaunt, the new king’s father.

But then on February 3, 1399, John of Gaunt died, and everything changed forever. John had been Richard’s supporter, even when it became apparent to everyone that Henry Bolingbroke, his son by his first wife, was working against Richard. John’s past support, which was indeed valuable, made it impossible simply to have Harry executed, and with John of Gaunt still alive, Richard imposed an exile on Henry of only six years, and promised that, once his father John of Gaunt had died, Henry could keep his inheritance, rich estates in Lancaster.

The result of such critical practices has been to “blame” the person more than the office, and to think of Chaucer as more personally judgmental (damning the Parson and the Summoner to an Augustinian hell, for example) than reflective about what the pilgrims’ social roles and responsibilities either are or should be. The classic case is that of the first pilgrim whom Chaucer introduces to his audience, the Knight, to whose important, all-embracing person and tale I shall return in no less than three of the chapters.

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