Compare and contrast: The Canterbury Tales

3366 words - 13 pages ✓ Expert Reviewed
VIEW DOCUMENT
Preview

A COMPARISON AND CONTRAST:THE KNIGHT'S AND MILLER'S TALES REVISITEDThe Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer is a classic piece wherein pilgrims tell tales during their journey to a holy shrine in Canterbury. A Knight and Miller are two of the pilgrims. Chaucer gives personality to each character wherein a drunken Miller can tell a tale that is full of brilliant characterization and also have nicely balanced action, and a tough soldier like the Knight can weave a romance "with all the art of a seasoned minstrel." (Lawrence 42)The Knight, being the noblest amongst the pilgrims, is invited to speak first. The second tale-teller is the Miller. The Miller speaks second, not by invitation, but as a way to repay the Knight's romantic tale. In having these two tales told back-to-back, one is able to compare the two. In many ways, The Miller's Tale "functions as a subversive mirror of the Knight's story." (Rossignol 242) This is also an opportunity to find many similarities as well as differences between the two tales.The term "subversive mirror" is certainly appropriate in dealing with these particular tales. Although The Miller's Tale does mirror The Knight's Tale by utilizing similar elements, it also corrupts those same elements it is in fact imitating. By using the term "subversive," it is suggested that the Miller is actually trying to pervert The Knight's Tale by undermining the morals that are represented in it. The Miller seems determined in his tale to parody the situations and sentiments of The Knight's Tale. This "subversive mirror" reference is indeed on the mark.Several similarities are easily recognizable between The Knight's Tale and The Miller's Tale. These similarities are the "mirroring" which take place from The Miller's Tale to The Knight's Tale. "The opening formula (of The Miller's Tale) . . .is almost identical to the Knight's; after that, nothing is the same, but many things are instantly recognizable because they have already appeared, if in a different form, in the Knight's Tale." (Cooper 111) Both stories are romances, even though The Miller's Tale is not chivalric like the Knight's. Both tales also utilize a lover's triangle among their main characters where two young men vie for the affection of the same young woman. (Rossignol 243)There are other similarities between these two tales. Both tales give a similar characteristic to two of the actors in the stories. Arcite and Absolon both have a character flaw wherein they confuse what it is they want and what they actually receive in the end. The Miller borrows the concept of the message that a dream holds for one of his characters. This is taken from a portion in The Knight's Tale where Arcite receives a message in a dream. Also, The Miller's Tale...

Find Another Essay On Compare and contrast: The Canterbury Tales

The Canterbury Tales Essay

1161 words - 5 pages her husband “[f]or . . . his jalousye” Despite their differences, the two clerics ally at the story’s end to dupe the carpenter, and so nobody believes John’s story about Nicholas’s trick. The Canterbury Tales provides and keeps in action, a social group engaged naturally in mutual entertainment. It is that last element that sets the parody in such a coherent way. The Tales are meant to entertain, that is why Chaucer the pilgrim portraits such a...

Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales Essay

1738 words - 7 pages The Canterbury Tales serves as a moral manual in the Middle Ages. In the tales, Geoffrey Chaucer portrays the problems of the society. For instance, Chaucer uses the monk and the friar in comparison to the parson to show what the ecclesiastical class are doing versus what they are supposed to be doing. In other words, it is to make people be aware of these problems. It can be inferred that the author’s main goal is for this literary work to...

Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales

651 words - 3 pages Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales While the majority of literary classics today do well at engaging the reader and allowing them a vicarious understanding of a fictitious character’s life, Chaucer found a way to engage more than just the reader and the character. In his Canterbury Tales, Chaucer masterfully links together himself as the author, himself as a character in the story, the other characters, and then finally the readers. Chaucer’s...

Chaucer: The Canterbury Tales

1268 words - 5 pages Geoffrey Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales are a series of entertaining stories told along a religious pilgrimage from London to Canterbury. Each of the tales are related by a different member of the traveling group and represents their views on the society they live in. One pilgrim tells most of the tales about another, and either praises them or accuses them as a fraud or a sinner. These tales are actually much more than just entertaining...

The Canterbury Tales

710 words - 3 pages The Canterbury Tales “The Prologue to The Canterbury Tales” were told during a pilgrimage journey from London to the shrine of the martyr St. Thomas a Becket at Canterbury Cathedral. This was approximately 70 miles to the southeast. These Tales were told by a group of 29 pilgrims, and a Host who met up with them at the Tabard Inn. They left the Inn on the morning of April, 11. The Nun’s Priest Tale was the first story actually told...

"The Canterbury Tales"

1036 words - 4 pages Medieval FeudalismGeoffrey Chaucer wrote the Canterbury Tales as a social commentary of feudalism in mediaeval England. He moved literature beyond the themes of courtly love and knightly adventure that dominated the many medieval tales called romances. Geoffrey...

The Canterbury Tales

2290 words - 9 pages Through The Canterbury Tales, Geoffrey Chaucer is able to ironically portray the life friars lived throughout the 14th century. Geoffrey Chaucer was born around 1345 and lived in London. (Strohm par 1). He grew up being trained as a civil servant and diplomat. Around 1366 Chaucer married Queen Philippa of Spain (Encyclopedia of World Biography 483). Through being appointed to Parliament, he traveled to many different countries on diplomatic...

Canterbury Tales: The Prologue

1298 words - 5 pages To begin, I will tell you a little about Geoffrey Chaucer and his famous writings. The age of Chaucer was around 1343 to about 1400. Geoffrey Chaucer is known as the father of the English Language. Chaucer is the most important English writer. We do not know the exact time of the death of Chaucer but, we believe it is around 1400. In his tales he talks about going on a pilgrimage to Canterbury. Now before I get any further, you should probably...

Fabliaux In The Canterbury Tales

2715 words - 11 pages How are the ironies, contrasts, and parallels under the constraints of Fabliaux different in The Merchant?s Tale to those in The Miller?s and The Reeve?s Tales in The Canterbury Tales In one sense Chaucer?s comic tales, his fabliaux can seem like a well-intentioned respite from his...

The Knight And The Squire From "The Canterbury Tales'.

785 words - 3 pages Canterbury Tales. In his classic work, Chaucer creates caricatures of many "sacred" figures of medieval culture, whom he lampoons using a sarcasm ahead of his time. Among the characters Chaucer satirizes, is a Knight and his son a Squire, both of whom Chaucer showers with praises deserving of a god. Through Chaucer's brilliant use of double edged praise, it becomes apparent that the Knight and his son, the Squire are both men whose images are nothing...

Comparing Othello And Canterbury Tales

1065 words - 4 pages Comparing Othello and Canterbury Tales The use of manipulation and misleading for personal gain has proved to be successful for many people throughout history. Famous poet, Geoffrey Chaucer, and famous play writer, William Shakespeare, illustrate characters who possess these manipulating qualities in their personalities. Geoffrey Chaucer’s Pardoner, from The Canterbury Tales, and William Shakespeare’s Iago, from Othello, are...

Other Compare and contrast: The Canterbury Tales Essays

Corruption And Greed Within The Canterbury Tales

1044 words - 4 pages The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer is a collection of stories by a group of pilgrims who are heading to Canterbury Cathedral. In this book, the pardoner and the reeve show antipodal characters in many ways. The pardoner is beautiful blonde hair man who is being loved by everyone. However he is very corrupted and smart and sells fake religious stuff to people saying very good compliment. On the other hand, the reeve is very serious and...

Analyzing And Comparing The Canterbury Tales

816 words - 3 pages Canterbury tales, Chaucer creativity and humorously provides a cross-section of 12th century English society though the group of pilgrims. In 12th century society people draw straws back then to decide who won and who lost. “Shortly after the departure day, the pilgrims draw straws” , It obviously shows us how people thought back then, they used sticks instead of coins, or dice compare to modern day society. “The tales are full of secular mirth...

The Canterbury Tales Essay - 624 words

624 words - 2 pages The Canterbury Tales 3. The rioters in "The Pardoner's Tale" set our to kill Death because they are afraid to die themselves. They assumed if they killed Death, they wouldn't have to die and also they would live in dignity because they have killed God's adversary. They believed a reward would be at hand given by God to satisfy their lust for their personal desires from others. Also in their drunken rage, liquor had affected their judgment and...

Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales Essay

929 words - 4 pages Law reflect the effects of the Church in society. The stark contrast between the devout tone of the “Retraction” and the critical tone of The Canterbury Tales highlight Chaucer’s commentary on the corruption of the Church. The “Retraction” reminds the reader of the severe consequences of opposing the Church during the Middle Ages. Chaucer’s profession of faith, which appears so out of context in comparison to many aspects of The Canterbury...