the general prologue Character Development

answer the questions if you have any questions please ask The “General Prologue” that opens The Canterbury TalesThis lesson will focus on four of the more than 30 characters who join the religious pilgrimage described in Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales, written in the late 1300s.Chaucer introduces the pilgrims in the “General Prologue” that opens the book. Then the characters take turns telling stories to entertain themselves on the voyage from London to Canterbury and back.

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Character Links in Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales | QL #1083
Character Link in Chaucer’ The
Canter ur Tale
How doe Geo re Chaucer reveal character through de cription and
tor tran ition in thi medieval ma terpiece?
Meet Chaucer’ pilgrim : the Pardoner and the tudent
The “General Prologue” that open The Canter ur Tale
Thi le on will focu on four of the more than 30 character who join the religiou
pilgrimage de cri ed in Geo re Chaucer’ The Canter ur Tale , written in the late
1300 .
Chaucer introduce the pilgrim in the “General Prologue” that open the ook. Then
the character take turn telling torie to entertain them elve on the vo age from
London to Canter ur and ack.
Comparing pilgrim
Often, a pilgrim will open and clo e a tor with a hort prologue or an epilogue that
“link ” the torie .
looking clo el at the de cription of the pilgrim in the “General
Prologue” and their interaction in their prologue and epilogue , ou can nd
connection and contra t etween character that reveal important theme .
elow, ou will explore connection
etween the Pardoner and the tudent.
Later in the le on, ou will compare the Miller and the Reeve.
For each connected pair of pilgrim , read the de ignated hort election
from The Canter ur Tale .
Then re pond to the que tion a out their appearance , occupation , value ,
ehavior —and connection .
Comparing the Pardoner and the tudent
The Pardoner
Read the modern ngli h line de cri ing of the Pardoner from the “General Prologue”
(line 669-714). Then re pond to que tion 1-4.
Wh doe n’t the Pardoner wear a hood?
Character Links in Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales | QL #1083
What doe he carr in hi wallet, and what doe he intend to do with it? What
other item doe he carr ?
De cri e the Pardoner’ ph ical attri ute .
What kill doe he rel upon?
Read The Pardoner’ Prologue (line 329-462) and The Pardoner’
Ho t’ Re pon e (line 919-968). Then re pond to que tion 5-7.
pilogue with the
The Pardoner i among a group of ver unde ira le religiou per on on the
pilgrimage. In hi Prologue, he u e hi kill in peaking and manipulating an
audience to attempt to prepare them for hi tale and for the propo al he make
in hi pilogue. What i the u ject of hi peech? What doe he o er to ell to
the people in exchange for hi pardon ?
What information doe he give the pilgrim a out the craft of hi ermon ? What
evidence i there that he practice the oppo ite of what he preache ?
Character Links in Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales | QL #1083
What action doe the Pardoner take in the pilogue, and how do the
contradict hi preaching? How do the Ho t and the other pilgrim react to him in
the pilogue?
The Clerk
Read the de cription of the Clerk ( tudent) from the “General Prologue” (line 285-308).
Then an wer que tion 8-11.
Wh doe the narrator de cri e the Clerk’ hor e?
How doe the Clerk earn hi living? How doe he prefer to pend hi earning ?
De cri e the Clerk’
t le of peaking.
Doe the Pilgrim admire the Clerk? Doe he nd an fault with him?
Character Links in Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales | QL #1083
Read The Clerk’ Prologue and The Clerk’
que tion 12-13.
pilogue (line 1142-1176). Then re pond to
What critici m doe the Ho t make of the Clerk?
What i the ource of the Clerk’ tor ? The place and time of the original tale are
important to the Clerk’ tor . Notice what the Clerk a in the pilogue a out
the tor ‘ relevance to the ngland of hi da .
Read the nvo to the Clerk. Then an wer que tion 14-16.
What i the me age of the Clerk’ ong a out the proper ehavior of hu and
and wive ? How doe the original etting of the tale a ect it meaning from the
narrator’ point of view?
What advice to women doe the ong give? Do ou agree?
Character Links in Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales | QL #1083
What e ect do the epilogue and envo have on the meaning and tone of the
Clerk’ tor ?
The Miller and the Reeve
Comparing the two character
The Miller
Read the de cription from the “General Prologue” (line 545-566). Then an wer
que tion 1-4.
What doe the narrator a a out the Miller’
ize and intelligence?
What doe the de cription of hi ph ical attri ute
ugge t a out hi
How doe he illicitl increa e hi income?
Character Links in Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales | QL #1083
How doe the Miller entertain the pilgrim a the leave London?
Read The Miller’ Prologue. Then an wer que tion 5-8.
The link etween “The Knight’ Tale” and “The Miller’ Tale” i an intere ting
di pla of Chaucer’ atire of the working cla . How do the pilgrim re pond to
the Knight’ tor ? Who doe the Ho t expect to tell the next tale?
Wh doe the Miller, who i far eneath the Knight ociall , a ert hi right to tell
the next tale? What attack on the Miller’ character doe the Reeve make? What
defen e of hi po i le cuckoldr doe the Miller a ert?
In thi conver ation, a dra tic change from “The Knight’ Tale” ha taken place in
tone and in the attitude di pla ed toward romantic love. Wh doe Chaucer
juxtapo e uch contra ting attitude ?
Character Links in Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales | QL #1083
What advice doe Chaucer have for hi “re ned” reader who ma e hocked
the Miller’ character and hi tor ? How doe he, a the author, e cape lame
for choo ing to include uch tale in hi collection? What attitude doe he
expre toward including them in the la t two line of the link?
The Reeve
Read the de cription from the “General Prologue” (line 587-622). Then an wer
que tion 9-12.
How doe the narrator’ de cription of the Reeve reveal hi character?
What are the Reeve’ talent ? Doe the narrator nd the Reeve admira le? Who
eem to ene t mo t from hi kill ?
e ide managing an e tate, what trade ha he learned?
Where doe he ride?
Character Links in Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales | QL #1083
Read The Reeve’ Prologue. Then an wer que tion 13-15.
Wh doe the Reeve take the Miller’ tale a a per onal a ront?
What doe he a to defend him elf? How doe the Ho t react to thi
How doe the Ho t propo e the Reeve hould o er hi defen e?
What i the Reeve’ plan for revenge?
Create our own character
Review the de cription of the Ho t and the other character in the “General
Prologue.” Note an new information a out the e character and the narrator
the tor link . What po i le content and theme do the link
Character Links in Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales | QL #1083
elect two well-known pu lic contemporar gure ou elieve have
characteri tic compara le to an pair of pilgrim . Compo e a hort de cription
of each of the e two contemporar gure in the t le of Chaucer’ “General
Prologue.”Then create a dialogue that how interaction etween the two
character , compara le to the t le of the linking pa age .

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