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What are Chaucer's pilgrim description telling you about the character, Jefferey...

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mijeejo | Student, College Freshman | (Level 2) Honors

Posted November 20, 2008 at 5:29 AM via web

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What are Chaucer's pilgrim description telling you about the character, Jefferey Chaucer himself and life in late-medieial England?

How do the tales further our knowledge of the above? In the case of the pardoner and the wife of the bath.

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burke-eng | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Adjunct Educator

Posted November 26, 2008 at 1:18 AM (Answer #1)

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Chaucer used the pilgrims to describe the many different types and classes of people that existed in late-medieval England. His people can be loosely categorized into the Three-Estates model, a class system that divided people into the aristocracy (knights), religious (priests, nuns, etc.) and laborers. He used each pilgrim to represent a certain type or class of people. The pardoners and the Wife-of-Bath’s tale both have overall themes and morals that represent the views of the character that is telling the tale. The Wife-of-Bath shows her cynicism of marriage and her belief that marriage and love are based on superficial ideas. The Pardoner’s Tale is a warning against greed, although his only motivation is greed. He ends the story tying to make money from the pilgrims by selling his worthless religious items.


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