The Wife of Bath's Tale
Terms in this set (48)
Who was the King at the time?
Why were there no longer any magical creatures (fairies, elves, etc.)?
The friars blessed every part of the island to keep them away
What sin did the Friars commit?
The friars slept with sleeping women
What did the Knight do to the young woman?
As he was leaving the river, the knight raped a young woman
How did the kingdom react to what the knight did?
The kingdom was disgusted and mad
How did the king react to what the knight did?
The king sentenced the knight to death (according to law)
How was the knight supposed to die?
Why did the knight get treated differently from the friars after raping?
The knight was from noble descent and represented the king's court
Why did the Queen and the ladies of the kingdom ask for the knight's life?
They felt that the king should be merciful
What was the Queen's decision on how to handle the knight?
She decided to send him on an educational journey
What was the purpose of the educational journey?
To find what women really want the most
Why did the Queen want the Knight to know what women want most in the world?
So that he would treat women with respect
In the end, did the result of the educational journey teach the knight what the queen wanted him to learn?
How long did the knight have to find out the answer?
A year and a day
What other option did the knight have?
Why is it important that he "never touched the coast"?
He never tried to run away
What was the problem that the knight was experiencing?
No two women agreed
What were the answers that he was receiving?
Wealth, treasure, jollity, pleasure, good in bed, remarriage, flattery, freedom to do as they please, to be thought of as wise, having no faults, and being thought of as discreet
What allusion did one woman use to prove that women could not keep a secret?
The story of Midas and his wife.
In the story of Midas, what was the secret?
Midas had donkey ears
Why didn't Midas want people to know? Who was the only person that he told?
He didn't want to be made fun of and have his reputation crushed. He told his wife.
How did Midas' wife respond to his secret?
She couldn't keep the secret so she ran down to a river and whispered it to the water (from the story of Ovid).
What mood was the knight in as he rode home?
Sad, nervous, scared
What did the knight see that "vanished into thin air"?
More than 24 beautiful, dancing women
After the women vanished, what remained?
An ugly, old woman
What did the old woman ask the knight? What did they agree on?
She asked him what he was searching for. They made the agreement that he would do whatever she asked if she told him what women want.
What did the old woman end up asking the knight to do?
To marry her
When did the old woman say that he would know the answer?
She said he'd know the answer that night and that his life was guaranteed to be saved.
What did the knight say all women wanted?
Women want to be in charge of themselves and their spouses
How did the knight respond to the woman's proposal?
He was disgusted but was forced to marry her
Did the knight and the old woman get married?
Yes, they got married in secret the next day
How does the reaction of the knight to the request of the old woman parallel the reaction of the kingdom to the knight's original crime?
Both were disgusted after someone having their body taken by force but ended up giving a second chance
What is a theme of the Wife of Bath's Tale?
Why did the knight not like the old woman's request?
He wanted control of his body
What was the irony of the knight and old woman's wedding?
Wedding days are expected to be filled with happiness but theirs was full of heaviness
According to the knight, how can the old woman never fix the marriage situation?
She couldn't change her age or beauty
Why does the old woman give the knight a choice after he treated her the way he did?
1. to make her husband happy
2. to test him
What was the choice that the old woman gave her new husband?
Either she would stay ugly but a good and faithful wife or she would become beautiful but an unfaithful, bad wife.
What did the knight decide?
To give the choice to the old woman
Why did he give the choice to her?
All women want to be in charge of themselves. He either learned to respect or learned the right answer.
What did the old woman end up deciding?
To become beautiful and still be a faithful wife
Did the knight end up happy?
Yes, he had a beautiful, faithful wife
How did the knight's character develop in the story?
He learned to respect women and stay faithful to them
What is another prominent theme in the tale?
Women should be respected
What is one character comparison that you can make?
The old witch from Beauty and the Beast that tested the prince but really was a young, beautiful enchantress.
What were some reasons as to why the old woman showed herself to the knight as ugly in the first place?
To teach him lessons (why women wanted to be in charge of themselves) and to test him (to see if he truly understood what women want)
When did the knight TRULY understand what he was sent out to learn?
He understood why women want to be in charge of themselves when he was not in charge of himself by being forced into marriage
How did the knight's original crime to the woman go against what all women want?
The young woman had no control over herself when she was taken by force