The Wife of Bath's Tale from The Canterbury Tales. Poetry by GEOFFREY CHAUCER. Translated by NEVILL COGHILL y Benchmarks D, E The Wife Of Bath's Tale. Introduction. We remember the Wife of Bath, not so much for her tale as for Chaucer's account of her in the General Prologue and, above. THE WIFE OF BATH'S TALE. Geoffrey Chaucer. THE PROLOGUE.. Experience, though none authority*. *authoritative texts. Were in this world, is right.
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The Canterbury Tales: The Wife of Bath's Tale. 2 should die, there is no shame or charge of bigamy to marry me. It would be good, he said, to touch no woman. Before the Wife begins her tale, she shares information about her life and her experiences in a prologue. The Wife of. Bath begins her lengthy prologue by. The Pardoner started up, and thereupon. “Madam,” he said, “by God and by St. John,. That's noble preaching no one could surpass! I was about to take a wife;.
The imagery of the Tale is another factor that proposes a subversion of values as they stood. At first the idea of a tale set in the days of King Arthur alludes to a romantic setting where virtue and justice are highly commensurable.
Yet the protagonist of the tale is a knight who rapes a young woman and looks for clemency, and he was supposed to be an example of virtue and chivalry. That is in itself an inversion of values and certainly not what the audience would expect from a Breton lai. The knight could be placed symbolically as representative of male supreme power and, theoretically, of honour and nobility, however here he is portrayed as a dubious character who committed an evil deed.
Moreover, another characteristic to be noted is in the form of the Tale, it is too long and digressive for a Breton lai that is normally a short and straight-forward story. Tardim 3 The speech starts in line as a satirical monologue. After the initial satire the hag goes on and alludes to Dante, demonstrating how knowledgeable she is and at the same time creating an obvious anachronism.
By doing so the hag twists the satirical monologue into an attack on puritanical creed. In the next passage there is the use of a simile that draws a particularly important deduction.
What seems relevant about the use of the simile is the speaker acknowledgment that everyone knows too well, as well as she says, that in life gentility works in complete different ways than what is abstractly idealised. She is redefining the idea of nobility and suggesting that, in fact, everybody knows what she is talking about. When considering the audience of the Wife, that is quite revealing and truthful at the same time, as most of the pilgrims are from an allegedly higher order but do not display an elevated disposition.
Which goes in conformity with her formal tone yet it still carries some ambiguity at the first glance Dempster Beidler, Peter G. Chaucer, Geoffrey.
Kolve and Glending Olson. London: W. Lines The Wife of Bath uses her sexual power to control her husbands. The Wife of Bath is unabashedly lustful and physical.
Her Prologue takes the form of a literary confession, in which she openly admits and defends her sins. Active Themes The Pardoner interrupts, worried because he is about to be married.
The Wife of Bath tells him to shut up and have another drink: when she, the expert in marriage, has told him her tale, he will be able to make his own decision about whether or not he should marry. In the General Prologue, Chaucer describes the Pardoner as feminine and anxious, which makes sense with his nervousness about being wed to a woman much stronger than himself.
Active Themes Of her five husbands, the Wife of Bath says, three were good and two were bad. The first three were good because they were rich, old, and obedient to her every whim. Once they had given her their money and land, she no longer had any use for them.
She would make her husbands bring her presents and put them through torments. Women in medieval society could only gain power and money through their husbands.
The Wife of Bath both goes against and conforms to stereotypes: though she takes power over her husbands, she also admits to marrying solely for money. Download it! The Wife of Bath tells all the wives to listen to her carefully: Always, she says, be mistress in your own household, for women are twice as good as men at lying and cheating.
She would launch into a tirade, firing an array of all kinds of accusations. Though men may have all the tangible power in society, women are better at lying and deceiving than men are: though a man may be the head of the household, the woman, according to the Wife of Bath, is the neck, turning him wherever she likes.
Some men, she claims, only want women for their looks, some for their money, some for their figure, some for their gentleness. An ugly woman lusts for any man she sees and will jump on him with animal lust. To the man who claims that he does not need to marry, the Wife of Bath cries, may thunder and lightning strike him down!
The Wife of Bath gives a typical rant that she might launch into against one of her husband. She gives a long list of what men want in a woman, which foreshadows the long list of answers to the question of what women want that the knight in her Tale seeks to answer.
Active Themes The Wife of Bath rants against the old proverb that women only show their vices after they are married. She also argues against the complaint that the husband is expected to flatter and praise his wife in public.
The husband should trust the wife to go wherever she likes. Husbands, she argues, must trust their wives. And in so arguing, she argues against the norms society that gives men the right to believe they can and should control their wives.
Active Themes The wise astrologer Ptolemy, says the Wife of Bath, knew best: Ptolemy advises men to mind their own business. What good is it to spy on her? If she will stay, she will stay; if she will stray, she will stray. Not only does the Wife of Bath re-interpret the Bible, she also finds her own textual authorities who agree with her ideas about morality.
Active Themes The Wife of Bath boasts that through her sexual and verbal powers, she kept control over her five husbands. If they ever accused her of anything, she would call them drunk, and she could make them admit to crimes they never committed in their lives.