The Canterbury Tales Characters

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This is a study guide for our English 12 quiz on The Canterbury Tales characters.

The Knight

Followed Chivalry, had been in many battles, jousted and killed "his man" three times, wise, modest, "true", a perfect gentle knight, fine horses but...not gaily dressed was going to give thanks.

The Squire

Son of the knight, 20 years old, been in the calvary, opposite of his father in appearance, sang, recited poetry, jousted, dance, draw, write, and love

Yeoman

"a proper forester" , carried bow and arrows, was weathered, wore a medal of St. Christopher

Nun

"prioress" refined, elegant, pretentious, had several small dogs, not primarily interested in her religious duties, wears a brooch that may have had a pagan saying on it, was accompanied by another nun and three priest

Monk

"hunting with his sport", might become an abbot someday, violates religious vows forthrightly and outragously, owned greyhounds, lavishly dressed.

Friar

Did not follow religious order (most were beggers with poverty and simplicity the ideas of their orders), found husbands and dowries for young women he had seduced, did not like dealing with "scum", had a lisp, named Hubert

Merchant

Self involved, "Was in debt", more interested in apperance, of wealth and status than honesty.

Oxford Cleric

Extreme poverty, student of philosophy, "tone of moral virtue"

Sergeant at the law

specializes in deeds, did not take cases he could not win.

Franklin

Wealthy landowner, not of noble birth, generous, good host, had been a member of parliment, royal tax collector (sheriff)

Haberdasher

Dyer, Carpenter, Weaver, and carpet maker, all in the same fraternal organization, freemen, wealthy wives want to become alderman.

Cook

Proficient at every aspect of his craft, ulcer on his knee

Skipper

Complexion indicates sea faring life, ignores conscience in battle, widely traveled.

Doctor

Contrives with pharmacists to make money, knew the elements (earth, water, air, fire) and how to use them to diagnose patients, "special love of gold"

Wife of Bath

Some what deaf, always had to be first to give at church (shows vanity and childish and need for attention) "had five husbands", made 3 pilgrimages to Jerusalem, wants to attract men, pleasent and easygoing nature.

Parson

"Never was a better priest", humble parish priest, model of christian service gives away his income, taught christ "but followed it himself before"

Plowman

Honest work, very moral and spiritual, works the soil

Miller

Big man, very strong and ugly, stole grain, played bagpipes.

Manciple

Administrator in charge of providing food for lawyers who lived and trained at london's inn of court, iilliterate, in practical, matters was smarter that the lawyers.

Pardoner

Official authorized to sell indulges (church pardons) for their sins, seft-interest.

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