The Canterbury Tales Questions and Answers
by Geoffrey Chaucer

The Canterbury Tales book cover
Start Your Free Trial

What are three reasons The Canterbury Tales were and are important?  

Expert Answers info

Margaret Mccarney eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2013

write338 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Law and Politics

In addition to the other responses here, we can consider Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales important on a variety of levels. Since this is really a question of value, how we evaluate the importance of a text varies.

From a historical perspective, this text is an important marker in the evolution of the English literary language. It is considered the first highly important work written in the vernacular, and it shows us what people in London sounded like circa 1390. The language was polyglossic, merging Anglo, Latin, and French in a delightful hodgepodge that highlights our literary ancestors. Because it was written, we can see the phonetic sound of many of Chaucer's words as well.

From a historical perspective, we also can find allusions to events that indicate cultural and political values. The Peasants Revolt and the emergence of mechanical clock towers are just two such mentions that allow us to see what fourteenth-century readers would be expected to recognize. While satirical, the range...

(The entire section contains 3 answers and 1,095 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now


check Approved by eNotes Editorial

munarriz eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2017

write49 answers

starTop subject is Literature

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

John Newell, J.D. eNotes educator | Certified Educator

briefcaseLawyer

bookB.A. from University of Nevada-Reno

bookM.A. from Rice University

bookJ.D. from McGeorge School of Law


calendarEducator since 2016

write100 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Law and Politics, and History

check Approved by eNotes Editorial