Analysis Of Chaucer 's The And The Pardoner 's Tale Essay

1480 Words Mar 17th, 2015 null Page
Fraud and honesty, deceit and truthfulness are common themes echoed throughout Medieval and Renaissance literature. In Chaucer’s The Franklin’s Tale and The Pardoner’s Tale there is a complex interweaving of these issues. This interweaving of thematic material is widespread throughout The Canterbury Tales because of the variety of Chaucer’s characterisation. The encompassing framed narrative of the Pilgrimage to Canterbury enabled Chaucer to characterise a microcosm of society at the time and a multiplicity of tales reflecting different issues over a broad social structure. Consequently, The Canterbury Tales is full of snide remarks in relation to the society in which Chaucer himself lived and some of his views mirrored the attitudes present at the time.

It is important to separate Chaucer the writer and Chaucer the pilgrim however because the views expressed by Chaucer the pilgrim do not adequately reflect those of Geoffrey Chaucer the writer. Chaucer has created a naïve and trusting spectator who comments on the characters he meets in ‘The General Prologue’. This spectator is easily impressed and comments without judgment. This creates one level of irony presented in The Canterbury Tales due to the fact that both Chaucer the writer and his audience know more than the characters of the tales. Chaucer’s greatest irony in The Canterbury Tales is arguably the Pardoner’s hypocrisy. Chaucer incorporates ‘he sayde’ often throughout the Prologue which is satirical and suggests…

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