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What are two historical aspects of medieval society relevant to The Canterbury Tales by...

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nisapauline | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted September 25, 2012 at 8:04 PM via web

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What are two historical aspects of medieval society relevant to The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer?

 

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thanatassa | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted September 25, 2012 at 8:32 PM (Answer #1)

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One important relevant aspect of medieval society is the class system. Knights were among the upper classes in England in the period. Young men of good breeding learned to become members of aristocratic society by a form of apprenticeship, in which they acted as squires, or assistants, to older knights, who taught them not only the art of warfare but also etiquette.

The second relevant aspect of medieval society was the system of courtly love, in which knights competed for the honour of their chosen ladies. The conventions of courtly love included extremes of devotion, not necessarily resulting in consummated relationships, but rather with the beloved becoming an insiration for great deeds of chivalry.

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