This book took more time than usual and you will understand why when you read it.Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer is a classic and very solid one at that. I had always wanted to read it but never got a chance so I put it up on my Centuries Challenge and read it off. It is a beautiful piece of literature I must say.Its poetry and prose combined together.
Canterbury Tales is a set of stories told by pilgrims going to visit the shrine of Thomas Backet , a saint in Canterbury. Story begins with the introduction of each pilgrim who have come from various parts of England. The group consists of the Knight, his son the Squire, the Knight’s Yeoman, a Prioress, a Second Nun, a Monk, a Friar, a Merchant, a Clerk, a Man of Law, a Franklin, a Weaver, a Dyer, a Carpenter, a Tapestry-Maker, a Haberdasher, a Cook, a Shipman, a Physician, a Parson, a Miller, a Manciple, a Reeve, a Summoner, a Pardoner, the Wife of Bath and Chaucer. Host of the Tabard inn,Harry sets the rules for them.They have to tell stories , two each during to and fro journey .and he will decide whose tale is best of all based on its meaning and moral. Thus begins the book with these pilgrims,some of them brave ,some cunning ,some naive yet all of them adding to the picture a unique quality that doesn’t fail to stand out at the end of the particular tale told by them.A comparison done with present times will surely show similar characters in our midst.
Being a romantic at heart ,I loved the Knight’s tale the most .Though other tales were equally good.The themes of the tales include love, chivalry, dishonesty, sermon and so on but most of them with a religious message. Some tales I must tell you are incomplete and it is not clear if Chaucer ever completed this work as it abruptly ends with no winner chosen in the end.As the characters have been introduced in the first chapter the focus of the book is mostly on the tales .This in no way makes any difference ,as it still a wonderful book for all Classics and Poetry lovers.
Written in the Middle Ages this book is considered Geoffrey Chaucer’s best work.